|Attack Mailer by Everglades Trust|
Call you state legislator and tell him or her that weaseling out of full commitment to purchase sugar lands with Amendment 1 funds is going to cost them their political careers.
Everglades Trust launches attack mailers
Palm Beach Post, Christine Stapleton
June 5, 2015
The Everglades Trust has taken a page from the playbook of nasty political campaigns my mailing attack ads targeting lawmakers who it claims are hypocrites and have not done enough for Everglades restoration.Jacobs2
The negative mailers are targeting legislators on the direct impacts in their districts, such as toxic algae, while hitting others on what the trust calls hypocrisy.
The mailer targeting Democratic Rep. Katie Edward of Plantation features a check for $29,250 made out to Edwards from “Big Sugar Special Interest.”
The flip side features a photo of Edwards beside the question: “Political Paybacks or Clean Drinking Water?” and claims “BIG SUGAR is calling in their favors and pressuring our legislators to turn their backs on the will of the voters.”
Democrat Rep. Kristin Jacobs of Pompano Beach responded on her Facebook page to the mailer attacking her.
“The attack mailer is baseless and frankly, just plain bizarre,” Jacobs wrote. “My entire career has been dedicated to sponsoring and passing landmark sustainable water and land conservation policies, many of which have become best practice models across the U.S. It is why the White House invited me to be with President Obama during his recent visit to the Everglades.”
The Trust, a political non-profit that lobbies and supports grassroots restoration initiatives, launched its most recent campaign two weeks after the board of South Florida Water Management District voted unanimously against buying 46,800 acres of land south of Lake Okeechobee from U.S. Sugar.
The Trust and its sister organization, the Everglades Foundation, spearheaded the campaign to buy the land with radio, television and Facebook ads, claiming a reservoir could be built on the land that would relieve damage to the St. Lucie Estuary and Caloosahatchee River. Water from the lake is dumped into the waterways when lake levels become too high and threaten the aging dike around it.
Mary Barley, president of the Trust whose husband, George was a founding member of the Everglades Foundation, said in a statement: “As toxic algae and pollution threaten our waterways, we draw attention to the hypocrisy of politicians who claim to care about our environment, but instead protect the corporate interests, like Big Sugar, that contribute tens of thousands of dollars to their campaigns.”
When asked about the mailers, Erik Eikenberg, CEO of the Foundation and a member of the Trust’s board, said “I’m not the one making those decisions.” Eikenberg said he was in Tallahassee this week meeting with lawmakers about how money raised by Amendment 1 should be spent.
Eikenberg declined to say whether he endorsed the mailers or knew of the Trust’s mail campaign: “I’m running the Everglades Foundation everyday,” Eikenberg said.