Fighting for acountability in Gainesville, Fla.

By Paula Helton

The citizens of Gainesville, Fla., are in a battle against the forces of the left to hold our city government accountable to its citizens. We have long been under the rule of progressive ideologues that function much like the Obama administration in Washington — complete control of its citizens.

Holding our elected officials accountable must begin at the local level.

For those unfamiliar with Ed Braddy, he is the founder of the American Dream Coalition and candidate for mayor of Gainesville. He will meet incumbent Mayor Craig Lowe in a run-off election on April 16 because none of the six candidates running garnered a majority of the votes in Tuesday’s election.

Ed Braddy

Mayoral candidate Ed Braddy

Braddy has been a leader in the fight against the insidious sustainability and smart-growth policies being implemented across the country and here locally.

In Gainesville, and Alachua County, we have instituted European style feed in solar tariffs and have had a biomass plant forced upon us by a city commission and former Mayor Pegheen Hanrahan.

For those familiar with ICLEI, Mrs. Hanrahan was their Secretary while serving as our Mayor. She was at the forefront of championing the biomass plant that has already increased utility bills for the customers of Gainesville Regional Utilities.

Our current Mayor, Craig Lowe, has carried on her vision.

The Gainesville City Commission, in conjunction with their hand-picked head of GRU, Bob Hunzinger, created what they called a “levelization fund” and began charging customers for the upcoming rate increase to be incurred by the use of the biomass plant. In other words, their own slush fund reminiscent of the Obama Administration’s infrastructure slush fund.

This is in violation of the City’s own ordinance against charging customers above the utility’s actual fuel costs.

When faced with the possibility of ratepayers being stuck footing the bill if biomass power remains non-competitively priced, our former Mayor and ICLEI Secretary responded we could change our thermostats, our lighting and our insulation — sort of like President Obama stating we could use less gas in the cars he doesn’t want us to have by making sure our tires are fully inflated.

As I said at the beginning, we have an opportunity to turn things around in the upcoming runoff election between Ed Braddy and our current big-government Mayor Craig Lowe. Accountability to the citizenry has been sadly lacking in Mr. Lowe’s tenure as Mayor.

As with most elections at the grassroots level, it’s a challenge to compete financially against incumbent politicians. This election has the capacity to have an impact on everyone fighting to hold their elected officials accountable from the overreach of local government. Remember, a biomass plant and mass transportation could be in your future.

I encourage you to visit Ed Braddy’s website — — and learn more about how a conservative candidate can be elected mayor in a historically progressive city. A result that will send a message across Florida that limited government candidates can win elections and overcome the progressive policies that are strangling our communities.


American Dream Coalition Mission Statement

Defending Your Freedom, Mobility and Affordable Homeownership Mission Statement

Most people define the American dream as owning their own home and having the mobility to get where they want to go, when they want to go there.  We believe this is an ideal worth defending.  But the American Dream is under attack!

The Smart Growth/Sustainable Development agenda imposes command-and-control policies at the local level that will restrict mobility and make housing unaffordable. Our mission is to support citizens and organizations that support the American Dream.  Free people deserve government at all levels that promotes markets, not mandates.

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2 thoughts on “Fighting for acountability in Gainesville, Fla.

  1. Ralph Radford says:

    Lowes recent arrest for drunk driving, may well cost him this runoff, hopefully so, as Braddy, is as stated the much better candidate, with realistic views, and the people of Gainesville's best interest, on his agenda.

  2. majii says:

    It's not the president or democrats who are busy passing bills that prevent women from being able to make their own healthcare decisions, and it's not the president or democrats passing laws that restrict citizens' right to vote. These are prime examples of big government because they take freedoms away from citizens. Whether you like the president and democrats or not, that's no reason to project what republicans are doing onto them. As a Christian, I believe in honoring the 9th Commandment, something I've noticed that the loudest voices in the Republican Party today view as optional in certain circustances. The loudest voices have drowned out the level-headed moderates, so I don't blame the moderate republicans for disassociating themselves from the party and declaring themselves to be independents. The truth is the truth. It's what God expects, and I refuse to lie to support either political party or its members. President Obama and the democrats have their faults, but they are not trying to take any freedoms from Americans. Millions of Americans think that the bi-partisan background check bill is an attempt to take the right to own guns from citizens. It is, and it's a good thing. Those who can't pass a background check because they're felons and/or have serious mental illnesses have no business having access to guns, and those who support them having guns can't possibly claim to "care" about their fellow man because caring includes some type of action to protect human life. There are too many part-time pro-lifers. IMO, being pro-life means caring about all humans whatever their stage of life. It would be hypocritical of me to want to protect babies in utero (and I do,) and then deny them the basics of food and a place to live after they're born. I think about Rick Warren's son who took his life recently. It is a sad situation. The young man had mental health issues most of his life. The family knew this, yet, the weapon he used to take his own life was a gun. Adam Lanza, Jared Loughner, and James Holmes also had/have mental issues, and we know by the number of dead at their hands that they had no business owning a gun or having access to guns of any kind. Right is right, and wrong is wrong. In the past, the majority of Americans have been willing to stand up for what is right, but in the last few years, it seems that whether some Americans support doing the right thing depends upon what party the politician is a member of. May God have mercy on us because some of us have strayed from the path of righteousness and think nothing of it.

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