The following news release was issued by Fred Gunther on April 19, 2013:
I believe we have reached a point where the CMPA has to be accountable to the public. The Community Maritime Park is a public asset. If a family owned a piece of property and someone came along and said they would pay X for it and one of the family members said I know someone who will pay two times this amount, wouldn’t a responsible family consider a better offer. That is the test we should emulate. What would we do if this was our personal asset?
All of this was last minute because the proposal submitted was last minute, with no opportunity to conduct a reasonable inquiry regarding economic impact and many other issues. This is not the way we should conduct public business. When you kill the messenger it is to shift the focus from the message. I have devoted hundreds, possibly thousands of hours over the last seven years to the CMPA and never received a dime. I have objected to the leasing of parcel 8 to the YMCA because we had no plan and there were many problems with the proposed lease. I am afraid I have offended some very powerful people. At the last meeting, I simply presented a higher offer, answered Board Member’s questions regarding the potential Buyer and did not request approval of said offer from the CMPA Board. I requested both offers be forwarded to the City’s real estate Broker, CBRE, for consideration. If anyone believes I have violated the Florida’s Code of Ethics, they should file a complaint with the Florida Commission on Ethics and allow me to properly defend myself against these allegations. I should have the right to protect my good name and not be tried by the media or by City Council based upon unsubstantiated allegations.