Escambia Legislative Delegation Supports Term Limits For ECUA Board Members

January 21, 2021

A bill that will impose term limits on members of the Emerald Coast Utilities Authority has been endorsed by the Escambia County Legislative Delegation.

Rep. Michelle Salzman, now serving her first term in the Florida House, proposed the bill and has received the support of delegation members Sen. Doug Broxson and Rep. Alex Andrade,. That almost ensures that it will pass the Legislature and become law this year; local bills impacting local areas usually pass without any opposition.

The bill will limit ECUA board members to three, four-year terms.

Salzman set out to rewrite that legislative act that gives ECUA its authority after a 2018 grand jury investigation that was not made public until September 2020.

“I’m not trying to create a political issue or red tape, but we just need to make sure we don’t make those mistakes again. If we don’t see a positive change, we can do more or consider dissolving the entity altogether if that is best for the citizens,” Salzman told NorthEscambia.com last month. “The current way the special act is written, there is no authority over the five board members, no way to hold them accountable for how they operate.”

While she did not specifically mention him, Larry Walker served on the ECUA board representing District 5 for nearly three decades — from 1988 to 2000 and 2004 until his defeat by political newcomer Kevin Stephens in 2020.

Salzman first called for an oversight board appointed by the Escambia County Commission and Pensacola City Council, but backed upon from that proposal.

“We don’t need to remove the whole reason ECUA is there; we don’t need to take all of their authority away from them,” Salzman said.

NorthEscambia.com photo, click to enlarge.

Comments

9 Responses to “Escambia Legislative Delegation Supports Term Limits For ECUA Board Members”

  1. dishearted on January 24th, 2021 6:29 am

    (Frank) if roads- drainage isnt supposed to be done because the people live outside pensacola city limits why are thet TAXed for the services that were not supposed to get and still denied services. sounds like BOCC is stealing from the people.ok sheriff dept what are you going to do about it, (nothing)

  2. SueB on January 22nd, 2021 9:55 am

    ADD Escambia County Commissioners – reduce 4 years to 2 years & cut yearly income in half.

  3. Henry W Coe on January 22nd, 2021 12:31 am

    Term limits take away a choice for voters and allow Corporatist too cycle in who they want to have elected into an elected position. This is a needleless change that diminishes democracy.

  4. retired on January 21st, 2021 2:24 pm

    NEED TERM LIMITS FOR ALL ELECTED OFFICES, AS IN CONGRESS, SENATORS, ETC

  5. CJ Lewis on January 21st, 2021 12:42 pm

    “The bill will limit ECUA board members to three, four-year terms.” Do we know how the proposed legislation would affect the incumbents? If the term-limits kick-in beginning with those new terms starting in 2022, then the practical effect will not be felt until 2034. A better approach, if anyone had taken the time to think through ECUA as a whole, is to abolish it with its functions performed by Escambia County at less cost allowing for rate reductions. A second best approach would be to amend the ECUA Act to allow the County Commissioners to appoint one person each to oversee ECUA, a person that they could remove if they go rogue. A third best approach would be to amend the ECUA Act to provide for two-year terms of office, a cumulative term-limit of no more than 8 total years in office to include all past terms of office, non-partisan elections and a minimal salary or no salary at all. The big scandalous story not reported here, or elsewhere, is best found in the 2019/2020 campaign finance reports for Broxson, Andrade and Salzman. When you add up the campaign contributions from people or companies named Bear, or Bonner, or from companies in the beer or beverage industry (a total of $38,500 given to the three candidates) you can see who is really calling the shots here on this knee-jerk “Get ECUA” effort. Few people living in State House District 1 are likely to have actually read Salzman’s campaign finance reports but they are pretty shocking, although not as shocking as Broxson’s. Andrade’s are pretty bad too to include for the 2022 election a recent $1,000 solicited from a group called “Constituent Priorities” in Jensen Beach, Florida on the east coast.

  6. Frank Denali on January 21st, 2021 9:58 am

    What people dont realize is how much government actually does in their life. It was never meant to be that big. Most roads are not supposed to be paved outside the city. All these street lights and utilities are NOT supposed to exist. There doesn’t need to be millions if workers in government generating waste. Government creates nothing and it’s not supposed to. If this is your belief you need to move elsewhere. Limited government is what its supposed to be. Government was originally apart time job LOL it was never meant to be the all consuming political correct centralized monolith it is now. Go back.and read your papers ladies.and gentlemen.

  7. Change the Diaper on January 21st, 2021 8:40 am

    YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. Farm Hill on January 21st, 2021 5:46 am

    That’s a good move. Now if there were term limits for the U.S. Congress. Political office should never be allowed to be a career. When people are in an elected office they are supposed to be public servants, looking out for the best interest of the people they are elected to serve. When someone is a career politician, they might forget about the people’s best interest in favor of their own interest.

  9. Jason on January 21st, 2021 1:55 am

    So, if I understand this, Salzman basically decided voters in District 5 must be some kind of idiot to have elected Walker for as many terms as they did. Hmmm….

    I wonder why the local Delegation didnt encourage Salzman to seek term limits for ALL elected officials at the local and state level? How the magic number of three terms was determined to be appropriate? IMHO, I think two terms should suffice along with a 50% reduction of pay and absolutely zero benefits — including no retirement benefits for those who serve in elected positions. But, thats just my opinion.





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