The Hillsborough County Commission may or may not approve an incentive package that would lure Bass Pro Shop to Brandon later this month, but it might be wise for supporters of the plan to bring in some members of the public who actually think this is a good idea.
On Wednesday a number of members of the public, many wearing stickers reading "Say No to Bass Pro," told the BOCC that the $6.25 million subsidy for road work to be completed near the project was a classic form of corporate welfare that is not in the best interests of the county.
Obviously the board (proudly in the case of domestic partners) isn't going to be influenced by members of the public, but it's hard to think that there is a surge of support amongst what Richard Nixon once dubbed the "silent majority," folks who think the subsidy is a good think who are just keeping quiet. Democracy is in part about who yells the loudest, and if indications to the radio show I host once a week are any indication, there is not a whole lot of of public support out there in the community.
But perhaps that's a misreading? There will be one more public hearing before the board votes. It might be time for Bass Pro supporters to actually show up and make their voices heard.
Meanwhile, today could get interesting on Capitol Hill, where President Obama's choice for CIA Director, John Brennan, will be asked to comment on the U.S. administration's policies on our drone policy in killing terrorists, and to a lesser extent, interrogation techniques, which tripped Brennan up four years ago.
The Florida good-government group that has been producing outstanding policy papers over the past year on problems with our state government, Integrity Florida, is now under severe scrutiny itself, after the group acknowledged their latest report on Enterprise Florida was funded by the Koch brothers group Americans For Prosperity.
On Tuesday night approximately 50 activists gathered in Ybor City to plot on strategy to try to get the Hillsborough County to reverse their vote from two weeks ago when they rejected a domestic partner registry.