"As Wauchula Turns"

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pilotescort

Forum Supporter
BUD ONEAL;5962........ I may be very wrong but I do believe that he is serious about what he says said:
Wauchula was a welcoming community w/ bi-partison rule when SWARC found a home there. The city government has changed into giving the city manager absolute rule w/o question or recourse. All city positions are on a "at will" basis therefore nobody can fight termination with or without cause. SWaRC will survive no matter what & I hope Bud's beliefs are true. Mosaic mining money has created a totalatarian local government. Major mistakes have been made but they don't seem to care, something Gabor has already escaped from for the sake of his life. This is the under mining that us regulars are concerned with. Wauchula IS pperfect for gyros, but still we have our adversaries.
 

BUD ONEAL

Gold Member
Wauchula was a welcoming community w/ bi-partison rule when SWARC found a home there. The city government has changed into giving the city manager absolute rule w/o question or recourse. All city positions are on a "at will" basis therefore nobody can fight termination with or without cause. SWaRC will survive no matter what & I hope Bud's beliefs are true. Mosaic mining money has created a totalatarian local government. Major mistakes have been made but they don't seem to care, something Gabor has already escaped from for the sake of his life. This is the under mining that us regulars are concerned with. Wauchula IS pperfect for gyros, but still we have our adversaries.


Brooke;
You are right in so much as there is adversaries, But I believe that the city is not one of them, I believe, and that has been proven in the past, there is one pilot / advisory board member who will never like gyros, or for a matter of fact us [sunstate] at all. However there is enough other who seems to be alright with us being there. Just let all of us work and pull in the same direction and all will be good !:director:
 

NoWingsAttached

Unobtainium Member
Bud, Jake, Gabor:

Thanks for setting the record straight. kinda hard to follow through this thread and understand exactly WTF is going on down there, clearly. Sounds more like several people are working this thing through properly with the powers that be, whether everyone likes them or not, and with a fair degree of diplomacy and decorum. Nice to hear that (what I am hearing here anyway) the Sunstate gang will likely remain intact, onsite. Lots 'o luck!

Gerg
 

GyroRon

Former Gyro know it all
Its simple, Jim Hay got fired as airport manager. Rick Martin along with a few other gyro people came to Jim's aid and backed him up at city hall meetings and got involved with Jim's fight with the city manager and other city leaders.

Because of that, the city leaders ( who didn't like having their decision to fire Jim questioned ) started looking at the couple gyro people, as representatives of ALL the gyro people that come to wauchula and base at wauchula. This put the future of Bensen Days in question. And this also has put the people who base at Wauchula under question ( via how the hangars are used, and how there are multiple gyros in each hangar )

Rick is fighting a fight he believes in.

Meanwhile others in the SWARC are concerned that because of this fight, the city leaders could put a halt on us using wauchula for Bensen Days. Also there is concern that the city leaders could put a change on hangar use to only allow one person per hangar, effectively booting the gyros out of wauchula.

Jake and Gabor and now Bud have gone to the city leaders and done damage control, and it appears that everything is okay as far as the club being able to host Bensen Days there. Its still questionable about what will happen concerning the hangars.

Anyway, I chuckle a little over this whole affair. I KNEW this would happen the moment Jim lost his job and there was the beginning of a rally to support him. I said it plainly and clearly, to all gyro people, DO NOT GET INVOLVED in this mess! It would come back to haunt us.
 

RICK MARTIN

Gold Member
For reasons previously stated, I’m trying to be careful about what I say here.

I have already explained everything the best that I know how. But here are a few thoughts to ponder:

1. Would our actions and intentions be more acceptable if we weren’t pilots?
2. Would it be better if it had been a different city employee who had been wronged?
3. Or would you just like to let the wrongdoing go unchecked all together?

And as you ponder, remember that Jim’s job is not the only issue here. The airport is not even the only issue here.

Jake, the answers to some of your questions have already been posted here. I can answer all of them. If you want me to discuss it here I will. But I'm trying to keep my word to you. Call me if you want. But please use my land line 941 795-4668.

Since I really can't offer anything new or different I will wait until after the next meeting to come back.
 
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ultracruiser41

Gold Member
Fact is...people get fired.
Most of us have been fired at one time or another.
Most people who get fired feel its unjust.
Most employers feel the firing is justified.
Most states are "at will employement states" and employers do not need to justify their actions.
I've only terminated people based on "their" actions....not mine.

Obviously there is more to the story of which we will never know.
Time to move on and find another job.
Too much drama!!!!!!
 

JRB549

J.R. Brown
Sorry, I've sat by and said nothing through this whole thread but can't no longer. The FACTS have been a little distorted depending on who is posting, member or not, officer or not of Sunstate #26. Fact #1. Water and Electric at Wauchula airport, for Bensen Days fly-in, then, now and future at no cost was because of Jim Hay. I could go on and on about the things most people don't have a clue about Jim Hay has done for,
first, the Bensen Days event because of his FRIENDS. That's a funny word, friend! I have made a bunch of them since getting into this hobby or atleast I call them my friend and I hope they know, if at anytime, for any reason I'm there. Jim Hay has been a friend to not only all the guys who hanger at Wauchula but also to Sunstate and BD. Now a lot of people think a line needs to be drawn to distance themselves because "its none of our business" or some other clique that makes them feel good about "it not being me". The cost of this stand by Rick in this thread is that he knows who HIS friends are and are not, what a shame. Jim Hay is my friend and a great injustice, regardless of the falsehoods said about him, has occurred. Yes we will have BD and yes they will continue but one family won't be there as in times past and that's OK .
 

BUD ONEAL

Gold Member
Sorry, I've sat by and said nothing through this whole thread but can't no longer. The FACTS have been a little distorted depending on who is posting, member or not, officer or not of Sunstate #26. Fact #1. Water and Electric at Wauchula airport, for Bensen Days fly-in, then, now and future at no cost was because of Jim Hay. I could go on and on about the things most people don't have a clue about Jim Hay has done for,
first, the Bensen Days event because of his FRIENDS. That's a funny word, friend! I have made a bunch of them since getting into this hobby or atleast I call them my friend and I hope they know, if at anytime, for any reason I'm there. Jim Hay has been a friend to not only all the guys who hanger at Wauchula but also to Sunstate and BD. Now a lot of people think a line needs to be drawn to distance themselves because "its none of our business" or some other clique that makes them feel good about "it not being me". The cost of this stand by Rick in this thread is that he knows who HIS friends are and are not, what a shame. Jim Hay is my friend and a great injustice, regardless of the falsehoods said about him, has occurred. Yes we will have BD and yes they will continue but one family won't be there as in times past and that's OK .



J.R,
We all stood up for Jim at several meetings, Jim is and will be my and sunstates friend, We all, most of all I know what all Jim has done for the club And we stood up and let it be known just how we feel about Jim, our friend. The fact is Nothing will get Jims job back for him, it is gone ! Do we like it Hell no we don't. Can anything else be done to help Jim? I don't know, will we help him if it can be done without hurting the clubs position for Bensen Days ? of course we will , Jim is our friend. But the big picture is for not only us ,sunstate, but for the world in general as the whole world knows of Wauchula and Bensen Days and most of the worlds gyro people have been here or intend to be here.
I will continue to work with the city and do all that I can to make this and all future Bensen Days a complete success as I have done for the past many years [27] :whip:
 

SWaRC

PRA Chapter 26
To all the emotional outcries.
I have NEVER swore friendship nor alliance to anyone!
I swore the betterment of SWARC and I kept it.
I like Jimmy and I worked with him as best as I could and yes it was easy.
I will do the same thing with the next guy!!!!!!
Pulling the "friend" "not friend" card is childish.
Tim Chick is my friend too you know.
He had to submit his vacation request last year for this event.
So I should just tell him to go and %*&%# himself because you drama queens expect me to throw the club and the event under the bus for Jimmy?????
Really? Screw you all!
This is not about being friend with Jimmy or not!
This is about you guys need to stop stirring the crap!
Hundreds of people plan their vacation around this event.
I don't get you! Why do you want to destroy what the great pioneers of Bensen Days have built?
DO you understand what you are doing here?
People Like Bud and Ernie and Chuck Beaty and on and on have created this great international heritage and for ONE GUY you are willing to destroy it because you are such a great friend that the consequences don't mean a thing?
Really?
Guys this is not a freaking Disney movie OK?
How does this serve the gyro community?
What? You thought you were just gonna flood the city hall and the city manager will automatically reverse his decision just because you call him spineless and yell at him?
Really? So now I am the bad guy because I don't subscribe to this mayhem?
JR do you wanna run Bensen days? Say the word buddy!It's yours!!!!!
Do you wanna run SWARC? Say the word buddy! Any of you!
You guys are poisoning the well. I can't believe how just a couple of you can create this insanity.
This is very narcissistic and absolutely unnecessary.
Looks like I am going to have to make a few hard decisions in the upcoming days for the future of the club.
Try to talk to people instead about them!!!!!!
 

AirScooter

Scott Waggoner
Just a scenario here:

You and your family live in an appartment complex.

You become friends with the complex manager.

The complex manager gets fired.

Do you raise hell at the owners of the complex to help your friend get his job back? (By the way, that will NEVER happen) As a side note, the owners do not need to give you or your buddy a reason why he is fired, that is just the way it is.

If you do decide to raise hell and go up against the owners, are you prepared to move your family when the owners decide you are a problem tenant??? Because at the end of the day, that is all you are, a tenant, no matter how many of your friends have moved into the complex. Further more, you are letting too many of your buddies stay in your appartment as well. They are on the street too when the owners push you out. If you hadn't raised hell the owners wouldn't have enforced that rule, I mean really, they already knew you were breaking the rules, they just looked the other way until they were provoked.

The smart thing to do would be to help your friend find a job and a new place to live.And you would even keep your place to live.

It sounds like he has a number of skills so it shouldn't be too hard to find a job.

Every man has to choose which hill he dies on, and some are worth dying on and some are just not.

I had a friend recently who was unhappy at his job and it seemed the company didn't care. I encouraged him to find a new job, not burn bridges. And that is just what he did, find a new job.

We are owed nothing in this life, I was GIVEN a job, it is not owed to me by anyone. If I become unhappy or am fired, I will find someone to GIVE me another one. Then it will be up to me to earn the keeping of that job.

I truly hope that all of the work of many isn't negated by few, and that SWARC is able to remain at Wauchula.
 
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JRB549

J.R. Brown
WOW!!! and WOW again...all that Gabor over my post? You read waaaayyyy to much into it that! Bud's replie post was even kiltered, but then again were brothers..didnt know that did ya?
This thread, which was started by Rick Martin chims of Drama in this namesake alone, taken from a daytime drama soap opra " As the world turns".
So.... as Webster would have defined, so shall I. I have an opinion, I can say it without recource because of the 1st amendment of the constitution called "Freedom of speech".
If you dont like it, thats ok you dont have to...period.
I was referring to an officer of Sunstate or so I'm told, not you...who made a post, in this thread "As Wauchula Turn" not to be confused with the T.V. daytime drama soap opra "As the world Turns" about a issue that was of a..... private matter, that played no part in BD's or Sunststes public bussiness. Yet.. the half truth was put up as a "comeback" with Jim Hay looking like the bad guy. I consider you and all those whom I may disagree with from time to time to be MY Friend here on this forum and can only say CHILL, your on the EDGE me amigo. I am not poisining the "well", the facts about date and times for BD are posted and if "they " are comin...they are comin regauredless of this or any other thread on this forum. When I come home from work I make me a Screwdriver.... exhale and take life alittle less serious, I suggest the same for you.
 

RICK MARTIN

Gold Member
As promised, here are my notes and thoughts from Monday night's Wauchula City Commission workshop on the formation of a new airport advisory board:
_________________________________________________

Notes on the Wauchula City Commission workshop held 2-2-2015:

Although the only item on the agenda was supposed to be: “Discuss the structure of the proposed Wauchula Airport Advisory Board”, the meeting started off with a long discussion seemingly aimed at relieving any fears that the airport tenants may have regarding the ongoing change of management. There was a definite show of appeasement.

This was demonstrated by multiple statements made by both the city manager and the city attorney saying that they didn’t want to do anything that would chase away their customer base. Multiple statements were also made saying that they realized the need to respond to the needs of their customers. Granted, our most outspoken critic, commissioner Ken Lambert, was not in attendance, but it was almost like someone had put a bug in their ear.

I believe I also heard the city manager say something to the effect that they didn’t intend to really change anything because things had been working well for many years. Of course there has been a difference since Jim lost his job. The city crews have made some cosmetic improvements (new painted lines on the pilot lounge parking pad, trimming trees, badly needed weed eating etc. But there have also been at least three serious incidents which jeopardized public safety. And of course Jim would have had these three incidents handled swiftly, correctly and without any safety issues at all.

It was indicated that the chief of police would take on the role of investigator and enforcer for the airport.

Since fuel prices and hangar rental rates have been brought up many times, they reiterated that they would do a cost survey to find the right balance between profit and attractiveness. Of course Jim had not only already done this, but actively monitored these issues and had it fine-tuned.

During the discussion of pricing, several references were made comparing the Wauchula airport to the Flagler airport. I would like to give the city attorney credit for finally interjecting the idea that any cost survey would be invalid unless they were careful to compare apples to apples. Anyone can find rates higher or lower in the surrounding area. But even another small airport the size of Wauchula may be able to justify higher rates depending on their location and function. So, kudos to the attorney for pointing this out.

It’s also important to point out that as the appeasement comments drew to a close, the city attorney was careful to also say that all this sensitivity was contingent upon them not feeling “threatened”.

Now to what the meeting was supposed to be about: “Discuss the structure of the proposed Wauchula Airport Advisory Board”

As we expected, it seemed pretty obvious that talks had already taken place between the city manager, the mayor and the city attorney well before the evening’s workshop. The three of them very quickly steered the discussion to what they seemed to already have in mind.

It was humorous, but sadly true when the city attorney started off with a comment to the effect of “if you can even find people willing to serve on the new board”.

This is also interesting, and we’ve seen this a few times now: Now that the airport “authority” board has been dissolved, the city attorney has stated that the old airport “authority” never exercised their authority, implying that they could have if they wanted to. But before the old board was dissolved, the attorney and the city manager always said that it was just an “advisory” board without any real authority. Hmm………………

One of the old airport “authority” board’s authorities was to provide its own employees. We read the charter to them and explained this. And they said they were very happy with the job Jim had been doing. So are we to now conclude that they could have voted to hire Jim in the first place and avoided this whole debacle?

I seem to remember that the old “authority” did start making the suggestion that they should re-hire Jim. The city’s response was to dissolve the board. Somebody tell me again, what was wrong with the way the airport was being handled under the old board? And why was the old board dissolved?

The general new structure or concept they proposed was a board that really may not even need to meet every month. This was justified by again bringing up the issue of the attendance record of the old “authority” board members. And it is true. They often had attendance problems or even cancelled the airport authority board meetings altogether.

What nobody has said or maybe realized is that these issues were primarily the result of Jim hay doing such a thorough job with his airport management. Jim handled the authorities, the financial affairs, the repairs, the routine maintenance etc. There simply wasn’t much for the board to do. In all honesty, with Jim there, they really didn’t even need a board.

So, that might have been a good idea before they fired Jim. But right now, and especially during this period of transition, I’m inclined to disagree. For at least the near future, I think more frequent oversight might be a better plan.

We also believe that the interim airport managers are realizing that the airport is taking too much time away from their other city jobs. I think the city is really starting to feel Jim’s loss and is going to get a wakeup call about what a big mistake they have made.

The discussion started about the need to re-advertise and take new applications for the new “advisory” board. In a previous meeting, the city manager said that new applications would be taken for all seats on the new board and that the old members would have to re-apply. Then, part of the way through Monday night's discussion, he proposed just shoeing in the old remaining three members and letting them “advise” on the acceptance of the new applicants.

You can read into that whatever you want. But I think that leaving the old members on the board (who would previously not assert their “advice”) and then especially letting them decide on the new applicants, would serve to erode any good faith that might be starting to grow. It would be a huge statement that would say: “We’re not going to be fair and objective. We’re going to make sure we keep the board seated with people who will do what we tell them to do”.

I have no idea who else has applied. I know I would apply, if I met the residency requirements. But as far as I know, Bud Oneal and Trez Vining still have their applications in. And I know there will not be any applicants more qualified than these two gentlemen.

Near the end of the discussion I was pleased to see commissioner Neda Cobb, express concern and ask some questions. She wanted to know:

1. How was the maintenance/supervision currently being handled? The city manager responded by saying that the city crews were making a few trips out to the airport each week to handle things.

2. Was it the city’s intent to put someone else permanently on site and living in the mobile home previously occupied by Jim? I can’t remember exactly what the city manager said, but he did not answer the question. So I raised my hand and re-directed him to the original question. He responded that they were looking into installing someone in the mobile home. This is a good thing.

Because, without someone on site, there are MANY areas of concern:

1. There could be an aircraft accident on a Sunday evening when nobody is at the airport. A pilot could literally lay wounded in the wreckage on the runway until the next day or longer.
2. The chances of a plane hitting a cow on the runway are greatly increased.
3. Anybody could just come out and race their car or motorcycle up and down runway.
4. The probability of theft is increased
5. Pilots depend on the internet connection for flight planning. What if it goes down on a Sunday afternoon?

I’m pretty sure Jim used to sleep with his aircraft radio on and of course monitored 122.9 twenty four hours a day. Even when he was in town at his city jobs, he was never too far to come running when needed. AND IT HAPPENED A LOT!

Yes, we definitely need someone knowledgeable on site 24/7.

In conclusion, yes, it was nice to see some logical and sensible discussion taking place at the meeting. But the proof will be to see what action is actually taken.
 
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Resasi

Gold Supporter
From the shoulder, no histrionics, no big emotions. How it was.

Thanks Rick.

Good to get straight talk on what's going down.
 

RICK MARTIN

Gold Member
Notes from the Wauchula City Commission meeting on 2-9-2015:

Carl Saunders (former chairman of the Wauchula Airport Authority and driving force to establish the current airport) spoke about the effort made over the years by himself and others to fund and develop the current airport. He stated that when he left the board the airport really wasn't in debt. And he again questioned how so much debt could have accrued.

Carl also stated that old airport authority was working just fine and that he didn't see the need to dissolve it.

Then Bill Crews (CEO & president of Wauchula State Bank, and former airport authority board member) spoke. He indicated that although he didn't care about the semantics of the airport board's name, he did support what Carl was trying to communicate.

The motion passed to dissolve the old airport authority.

I reminded the commission about the city manager's previous statement requiring new applications for all the seats on the new airport board. I asked for verification that this procedure would be followed and was told it would be.

I also asked if the applicants who had previously submitted applications for the old airport authority board would need to re-apply for the new board. I was told that they would indeed need to re-apply.

Next up:
3-2-2015 – Wauchula City Commission workshop
3-9-2015 – Wauchula City Commission meeting
 

Doug Riley

Platinum Member
I've never quite understood people who not only can tolerate, but seem to enjoy, working in/with local government boards, commissions, and the like. It takes unlimited patience and a more affectionate view of human nature than a lot of us can muster.

Nighttime meetings after a full workday, when it's dark, the fluorescent lights are buzzing and flickering, the chairs are the painful folding-metal kind and your Styrofoam cup of coffee is 14 hours old are no picnic, either.

I'm glad somebody likes to do it, though, or it wouldn't get done. Kudos to Rick.
 
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