OPINION: Vote Tuesday or Pay Later

Posted on January 12, 2024 by EDITORIAL BOARD

It’s going to be cold Tuesday, January 16, but Holley-Navarre Water System members need to bundle up and go vote anyway. It should take less than 5 minutes at the HNWS headquarters on Turkey Bluff Road, YOU can provide important help to stop a pro-incorporation effort to infiltrate the utility’s board of directors and ultimately impose higher taxes and more government restrictions upon Navarre.

The first two candidates on the ballot, Rob Low and Mark Miller, are endorsed by South Santa Rosa News. Why? Because they are honest men who come highly recommended by respected members of the community and those with whom they are associated. 

On the other hand, the pro-incorporation candidate, Wes Siler, director of Preserve Navarre, has been dishonest, spreading false information to push incorporation. Over the past few years, Wes has teamed up with a local Democrat to make nasty attacks on those opposing incorporation.

For example, back in April, Siler sent out a mass email, claiming Protect Navarre, which opposes incorporation, was “led by commissioners from the north.” That’s just one of multiple bald-face lies he’s told. Shawn Barlow Wildman, founder of Protect Navarre, said Siler’s statement was not true, explaing that her group had invited all District 3 candidates to come speak at a meeting. “We will also host Districts 1 and 5, leading up to the 2024 primary election.”

It was wrongful for Siler to spread lies about a group in which he’s not a member and about a meeting which he did not attend. That demonstrates how far he goes to push Preserve Navarre’s liberal agenda. 

An incorporated city could impose 9 surtaxes, including up to a 10% utility tax on your power bill. The budget Wes promotes shows the city would be millions in debt within years of forming. Their proposal includes charging visitors to park on the beach, which would severely limit our places to park on the island. Also,  if incorporation is approved, after the city goes into debt (as their own budget says they will), a small city council could easily raise the nearly 1 mill in property taxes levied upon residential property owners within city limits. Additionally, those property owners will also lose their homestead protection if they own more than a half acre. I could go on and on about the additional fees & taxes and government restrictions Wes is pushing…

Therefore, if you truly care about your neighbors in Navarre, who are struggling to deal with inflation and can’t bear more unnecessary taxes & fees, show up Tuesday to stop “Pay Per Flush” Siler. 

***Additionally, on the ballot there will also be a proposal to amend the utility’s Articles of Incorporation. Please consider voting no because it would simply give too much power to the board of directors. 

Voting will take place from 7:30 am – 7 pm at 8574 Turkey Bluff Road in Navarre.