Gainesville Residents United files federal lawsuit against  Florida officials for HB 1645

Press release from Gainesville Residents United

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Ron DeSantis signed Florida House Bill 1645 on June 28, mandating that Governor’s appointees will take charge of the utility services of the City of Gainesville, Florida. The “special law” took effect on July 1. The State is advertising for applicants that the Governor will appoint to a new five-person Utility Authority. This board will manage all aspects of the City of Gainesville’s utility department beginning October 4, 2023.

Gainesville Residents United, Inc. filed a lawsuit today in the United States District Court’s Northern Division (in Gainesville) requesting that the special law be blocked and declared unconstitutional. The lawsuit is titled: “Gainesville Residents United, et al  v. Governor Ron DeSantis, et al.”        

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit are the nonprofit corporation “Gainesville Residents United, Inc.” and individual persons including Susan Bottcher, Evelyn Foxx, Robert Hutchinson, Joe Little, Michael Varvel, and Wes Wheeler. The mission of Gainesville Residents United is “to educate, advocate, negotiate, and litigate issues of importance to our community.”      

Defendants in the lawsuit are Ron DeSantis, Governor of Florida; Ashley Moody, Attorney General of Florida; and Cord Byrd, Florida Secretary of State. The City of Gainesville is also named as a “nominal defendant”. A nominal defendant is included in a lawsuit when they are a party affected by the legal issue, but not necessarily the cause of the dispute. The City of Gainesville is also being included because the new Gainesville Regional Utility Authority has been designated by state law as a “unit” of the City of Gainesville, and therefore is not a separate legal entity capable of being sued.

The lawsuit filed in Federal Court lists twelve separate counts in which the Special Law infringes on constitutional rights, or its passage didn’t adhere to due process, or it violates Florida statutes.

   Summary of complaints in “Gainesville Residents United, et al   v.  Governor Ron DeSantis, et al
Count                         Summary                            Law
1Special Law infringes upon Plaintiff’s ability to “petition for redress of grievances.”
First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (“petition” clause)
2Special Law infringes on the Plaintiff’s right to free speech through “content-based and viewpoint-based discrimination.”
First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (“freedom of speech” clause, and subsequent interpretations)
3Special Law infringes on the Plaintiff’s right to free speech through “prior restraint of speech without procedural and substantive protections”.
First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (“freedom of speech” clause and subsequent interpretations)
4Special Law’s prohibition for any considerations “in furtherance of social, political, or ideological interests” is unconstitutionally vague
First amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and due process arguments
5Special Law is invalid because it violates the constitutional restrictions on the duties of the Governor as an officer of the State.
Florida Constitution – Article III, §11 (A)
6Special Law’s passage failed to comply with Notice requirements in the Florida Constitution and Statutes
Florida Constitution – Article III, §10
   &Florida Statutes – §11.02 
7Special Law, during its legislative consideration,  failed to comply with Affidavit Requirements
Florida Statutes – §11.03 
8Special Law violates statutes by authorizing an un-elected, non-legislative authority to make legislative decisions for a municipality
Florida Statutes – Chapter 180 
9Special Law violates Florida Constitution by failing to provide for a referendum
Florida Constitution – Article III, §10 
10Special Law violates Florida Statutes by affecting municipal employees and “extra-territorial interests”, which require a referendum
Florida Statutes – §166.021 (4)
11Special Law denies the constitutional right for citizens to vote for municipal legislative offices
Florida Constitution – Article VIII, §2 (b)
12Special Law impairs the contract with municipal  bondholders Florida Constitution – Article I, § 10,

Attorneys for the plaintiffs are:
— Terrell Arline of Tallahassee, an expert in local government and Florida laws
— Gary Edinger of Gainesville, an expert in First Amendment and federal appellate law.
— Joe Little, UF Professor Emeritus of Constitutional Law

It is anticipated that the Florida Attorney General will be responding for state agency defendants. Gainesville City Attorney Dan Nee will manage the City’s involvement; the City has also engaged Cindy Laquidara of Jacksonville as special counsel for City litigation involving the Utility Authority.

The complaint can be found here.

  • When this ultimately fails, these lunatics are going to take it up a notch.

    Wait for them to start chaining themselves to doors, practicing disobedience in the board meetings (I.e. yelling), singing “we shall overcome” blah blah blah.

    If I was the Governor I’d start to put a plan together – including bringing in FDLE to ensure it doesn’t turn into a three ring circus.

  • This list of grievances in this so called Federal lawsuit is absolutely comical. Undoubtedly these liberal activists might get a favorable ruling initially, but this will get reversed in the 11th Circuit on appeal. LOL.

  • How do the residents that are in support of the new law file against this organization claiming the “Gainesville residents are united” when they clearly are not and how do the residents file against the city for filing frivolous lawsuits against the new law that a great many of the residents are in favor of?

  • Looking at the list of plaintiffs is it any wonder?

    “Gainesville’s Unhinged Liberal Lunatics” is what they should call themselves. I still remember Hutchinson telling everyone to wear a mask while he’s shopping without one. One could conclude that in some cases the wrong people were infected.

    • Don’t forget Hutchinson saying people should invite the homeless to their homes for Christmas.

      • Created Alachua County Forever while commissioner, then became its director. Crooked

    • Yep, with nuts like “Hutch”, Botcher, and “dirty tricks Hinson” (her not so secret text message war that failed), and other loons (probably PO Boy) they’ll go spend crazy and wind up with nothing in the end, just like they wasted the city and county money, with nothing to show for it.

  • That’s good news, and great to see Joe Little standing up again for the constitution and citizen’s rights and against this hostile takeover by our Napoleonic governor and his partisan lackies Clemons and Perry. The unprincipled supporters of this don’t care about the rights of local government or the perogatives of ownership by citizens or business, which DeSantis has been attacking and usurping in numerous instances, including other bills he signed this week. When power in Tallahassee shifts and another governor tries to pull this same crap, but targeted against red government, it will be too late for these current cheerleaders to complain if the precedents are upheld this time, and we will all live control from Tallahassee.

    • dude I am sorry you all do not care about that the people are crying for help, you don’t care that families not just individuals are becoming homeless and once again I will certainly let you know 3,238 people have signed a petition asking for help. I don’t know what part of your brain you lost somewhere but you really need to find it!

    • Didn’t see Jizzman on the list of plaintiffs.
      Did you miss the filing deadline for the daily feeding?

      Bray on!

    • Look at you, the proverbial pot calling the kettle black with your “partisan lackeys ” comment. You are the epitome of political lackey…or should we refer to you as hack?

    • How exactly is this no longer owned by the city of Gainesville? JEA has an independent board, yet, that utility is still owned by the city of Jacksonville.

      The law flat out states it can’t be sold without a vote. The worst thing that can happen from all of this is that GRU will be funded properly.

      • Good point. Plus GRU won’t be misused to fund woke election planks again.

      • George, the JEA board is not”independent” of the will of voters as GRU will be if Ron Napoleon’s board survives challenges and Tallahassee takes over.

        “Our governing body is made up of a seven-member Board of Directors. Four members are nominated by the Council President and confirmed by the City Council; three members are appointed by the Mayor of Jacksonville and confirmed by the Jacksonville City Council.”

        Get it?

        • Ok. JEA’s board isn’t directly elected by the citizens, either.

          How does that make either one not owned by their cities?

          Get it?

          Is your complaint that the members of the GRU authority won’t be elected by the customers? Well, neither are the crop of city commisioners by the large percentage of customers that live outside of the city limits.

          I’m sure you realize all of this and just want to continue to complain and bash. Knock yourself out.

          • If he were as competent at that as he was at braying. Doesn’t hurt to hope.

          • So, you think a board which is selected by the governor, who by the way has never won the vote in that city, is as responsive to the voters who own the utilities as the board approved by the Jacksonville City Commission? Really?

            If you think the fact that the utility also provides power to a minority which doesn’t live in the city is the main problem, say that and cut the crap. You should however know that those customers would not have a say in FPL or Duke Electric governance either, and breaking off from GRU, not stealing it from it’s owners, should be your goal. If you didn’t know, Rep Hinson offered an amendment to do just that in the House, which was quickly voted down by the rubber stamp, take over minded, GOP majority. That was not their goal, a theft from a blue city was.

          • I have no doubt that within 18 months, GRU will be sold to Duke Energy. Gainesville had and was in the process of decreasing GRU’s debt when Clemmons & Perry side-stepped the voters with this law. Considering Duke bought these two, as well as DeSantis, the writing is on the wall that they will use GRU’s debt as a reason to sell to Duke.

          • What type of crystal ball you using? LOL! You might check it, it’s cracked!

          • Please state exactly why you think Duke would be interested in GRU’s electrical business. The case against it seems strong: Duke already has the business of the main customer in town. GRU has a crushing debt load supported by a white elephant biomass plant and an otherwise aging asset base. The governments in GRU’s service area are rabidly anti-growth. And any utility provider with a fixed asset base should expect to be an easy target for confiscatory taxes.

        • The City Commission has continually betrayed the confidence of the majority of voters. You are a minority who approve of their continued rate hikes.
          Get it or do you only get what they feed you?

          • In a democracy we solve that at the voting booth Guest, and there was a significant turn over of seats at the last election. Ultimately the citizens will and should take responsibility, whether they like it or not. Sorry you don’t understand these things, but maybe you’re not from around here.

          • Jazzman, we are not a democracy. Never have been. We are a representative Republic. Even the Pledge of Allegiance says that.

          • Rogers, a representative Republic is a form of democracy, which means power resides with voting citizens. Look it up.

          • You might want to “look it up.” Voting citizens “vote” for their representatives, not the actual issues. Senators, house reps, commissioners and other elected officials do not poll the “voting” citizens and vote based on the poll. The elected officials vote their conscience. Big difference Jazzman.

          • That “turnover” immediately voted on a big fat raise for themselves. I guess they did not read any of the State Audit findings or look at the budget and see a big fat red line that $1.7 b debt. It’s the same “whats in it for me” attitude MOST City Commissioners have had for decades. Why would this run of the mill crop do anything different? They wouldn’t.

          • Wildman, if citizens make bad choices at the polls, it is on them and they will ultimately pay the price. That is why we don’t ask the UN or NATO to set up an independent board to run our country when we elect total clowns as president.

            It’s amazing that so many of you don’t understand how democracies work.

          • As you so frequently put out, those who brought forth and supported the legislation could never be elected in Gainesville. That’s primarily because of the highly uneducated progressive ideologies currently taking over the United States. They were elected by the majority of people who live within their districts. Got it? How many times does that have to be explained to you? You obviously don’t like it. Do as you say, have the voters change it. I think it’s your comprehension or vision of reality that prevents you from accepting that.

            You bray on about DeSantis having never run a business but fail to mention the failures of Poe, Hayes-Santos; the ineptness of Ward, no experience Arreola or Saco. Why is that exactly? Those individuals didn’t represent the majority of Gainesville; they used the far-left voting idiots to further their own progressive ideas. As mentioned before, Clemons and Perry were elected here. Maybe not by you and your left-wing nuts who suddenly feel people shouldn’t have to exert any effort for personal successes, but those who feel rewards come to those who aren’t afraid of a little effort.

            As far as my being here, I was here long before the infestation you and others like yourself brought here. Hopefully I’ll be here long after people like yourself are either gone or figured out just how bad the choices made were not in the best interests of Gainesville. I’ve seen what happens to a community that is unable to rid itself of the cancerous political ideals. Many people today, they want, they expect government to provide for them instead of the rewards that come from putting forth effort.

            Everyone doesn’t deserve a blue ribbon – despite what you and the idiots you submit to think.

          • Guest, it is doubly amazing that you have been here so long and yet don’t understand how democracy works and think that you should get what you want in government without actually winning it at the polls. Perhaps you should put forth the effort necessary to win that and not rely on hostile takeovers of the property of Gainesville by those who never have and never will be elected there.

            By the way, I’ve been in Florida since 1955, which is less important than the fact that I don’t support taking over the governments of places where voters select leaders I don’t like. You sure you are from America, and if not, where did you get ideas like that? Trump in 2020?

          • But it was important where I was from in your earlier comment. I don’t care when you came to Florida, hoping you leave but nobody’s going to force you. You and others like you cry about the policies in Florida but reap the benefits being here. One of your many problems is you can’t make up your mind. Is it because you’re afraid of someone disagreeing with hidden values or just aren’t capable of seeing your own hypocrisy? Maybe you’re just someone who’s afraid they’ll be called out for their hypocrisy. Many people like you cry equity this and equity that until it hits close to home and then you find an excuse. Current development restrictions are but one, on a federal level, immigration, wages another. You got yours and as long as others don’t encroach on what you have – all’s fair.
            Voters voted – you keep saying that. If it’s a democracy as you claim, why are there some who want to contest the last democratic process? Why are you so fearful that a local group will be nominated and go through a process to oversee the financial dealings of GRU without the commission taking from the revenue stream? Many customers have never had a voice in the governance of GRU and it’s expenditures and now that they may or at least there may be some restrictions, you’re against that?
            Sounds as if you are the one who doesn’t wish for an equal voice. The voice that has a “D” after shouldn’t get more attention than the one with an “R” behind it. Unfortunately, in this highly naive community, it does.

        • Jazzman, why is it that the radical left (you) seem unable to conduct yourself in a civil manner? Just like the “mostly peaceful” riots a while back?

          • Rogers, I believe I am one of the most civil posters on this site, and I haven’t been in a riot since 1963 when the Gators beat #1 ‘Bama in Tuscaloosa and we started with a panty raid (girls were all in dorms and on curfew then) that ended with a bonfire at Univ and 13th Street.

      • It will still be owned by the citizens. This is just another attempt of the city commissioner’s trying to keep control of their golden goose. Once they can no longer control it, their unlimited access to the money will be a thing of the past

        • Rhoda, if they don’t control it, they don’t own it. What is wrong with you? How about we try your idea with your house?

          • Lets try it with your house. Any extra income you make goes towards some looney idea.

          • Well Think, if the members of my household decided we should do that, we would be. By the way, you have no idea what decisions the new board will enact. They have to please no one but the Governor, who doesn’t live here.

          • hmmm I am buying a house the bank owns it but I am making payments on it, but I still control it!!! there is her Idea but you will twist it!
            won’t you Jazzman?

          • Nice example of civility Jazzman. “What is wrong with you,” is such a gentle phrase. LOL.

          • I have owned thousands of shares of stock. Never owned a controlling interest in any stock. Never had control of the company’s direction. Guess I don’t own any of the stock. The world according to Jazzman. What you don’t know, make it up. LOL.

        • Rhoda, if you don’t control what you own within the limits of the law, you don’t own it.

      • JEA independent board members are appointed by the Mayor and City Council, not by the Governor as the GRU measure does. Big difference because local voters had no voice in how the GRU board law was structured.

        • Then they should have voted for the Independent Board when it was on the ballot, that would have allowed the City Commission to pick the members. But as a matter of fact, I know many people who voted against it because the City Commission would have picked the members and everyone knew that Poe would have stuffed if full of his toadies.

    • At 88 years young, and a democrat, I thinks Ol Joe should be proud to be standing and lucid. Is the attorney’s representing Gainesville’s Lowlife past failures of City Government representing the Biomass 8 for free, or do they just want to tarnish their resume. Let’s let all the Plantiffs see the inside of the courtroom and sit in the witness stand. Even JS.

    • I am with you Jazzman, Perhaps we should gently remind all of these kind, civilized generous people that Hitler attacked his OWN COUNTRY FIRST! Think on that for a while while you give up ALL your rights to the neo-Nazi “leaders” you are so blindly following. Open your eyes and stop regurgitating what you hear. YOU are killing our country!

  • It is obvious that these elite groups certainly believe they are the only ones who pay the bills of GRU, certainly they believe they are the only residents inside and outside of Gainesville. My problem with these people is that they pay for their members to go to events, while regular residents have to work harder to pay bills and cannot show up at meetings because they work. As an Admin of Customers for a better GRU I certainly do not believe our group is everyone from The GRU community and cannot speak for all of the community, but what I can do is provide proof that many have issues and want the change that is happening. I can also provide that there were 3,238 signatures on the https://chng.it/pdWLMQSy platform that want this change. Where do they get off saying that they speak for all residents. and Yes I am That Girl Again, as I have said at the meetings I will not shut up and I will continue to fight for the residents that do matter that want this change!!!!!!

  • Ha ha, they will try and fail. These liberals are always trying to rewrite the Constitution. A perfect example of failure is the Biden mafia trying to change the U.S. Constitution and they get B slapped by the Supreme Court.

  • I still am trying to figure out what part of a city commission a couple months ago they missed when the city’s own attorney told them when it came to power grids the state had a huge lead way and could take over

  • When they lose I would love to see Hutch’s face when he has to pay the legal fees.
    He raped the county taxpayers for years, it’s about time he loses some of the wages he did little to earn.

  • As I have said all along, the legislature needs to dissolve the entire city government. That’s how you solve this in the best financial interests of the citizens. Come on Guv, cancel this regressive government!

  • Liberals are upset that their cash flow is being interrupted, so they are suing. In other shocking news, water is still wet.

    (No disrespect meant for this awesome news organization)

  • Our communist neighbors doing what they do. The good thing is they will bleed themselves dry financially. The bad news is that George Soros is likely funding it anyway.

    • If you’re applauding taking local control from the owners of an entity and putting it under the control of the state, you’re the communist. Or don’t you understand English?

      • Like taking control of someone’s yard?
        Who are the thieves here?

        Your hypocrisy speaks much louder than the couple sentences you peck out.

        • That’s, you have heard about laws, right? They are also passed by people elected by voters, and must recognize the conflict between individual rights and the common good.

          • Always picking and choosing aren’t you? You bore me with your mundane comments that contradict almost every statement you claim to embrace.

            Maybe you should do as another author has penned…bray on.

          • you obviously really do not know the Florida constitution. and another thing, I thought you know the city is only allowed to exist at the will of the state.. or you didn’t know that? Might want to check into the Florida Constitution. and god help us if you are the man that teaches constitutional law at UF smh..

  • Correction: 3% of Gainesville Elites is a more accurate NGO name. The same oligarchs who elected the “winners” the last too many years, giving us the need for state intervention now.

    • JeffK, that makes no sense. No one in the city was kept from voting. That’s what the state does under the GOP. Don’t you keep up?

      • Say that again…”No one in the city was kept from voting.”
        Why do those you’ve pledged fealty to proclaim otherwise?

    • I am not so sure of that if it is then they gave it to an organization and not the lawyer representing them. as it is stated that the city is a nominal defendant not plaintiff. which reminds me it is now two weeks since I asked for Public Record regarding payouts.. hmmm

  • Posters here, who all seem to approve of this take over by the state, are unable to address the principles involved and all seem to think, like little children, that they are about to get cake and ice cream. You have no idea what you will get and are cheering for the loss of your power to do anything about it, not to mention the further precedent this sets – like so many of little Ron’s acts as governor – if it stands, for sending power away from local governments in Florida and on to Tallahassee. Do even one of you have the brains to consider and debate this, or is it all “my team is punishing the libs and the Governor is giving us candy!” That’s all I see here, and it does not speak well for your intelligence and principles, if you have any.

    • Have you looked up the case law regarding the past cases as they filed a federal suit for a local special act? hmm I didn’t think so…so when you do I think you may just actually have the panic button on.

    • Personally, I’m in favor of anything that makes your lives miserable…. But that’s just me.

      I was chuckling to myself driving by Suburban Heights and the recent clear cutting. I yelled out in my car “build baby build”!!

    • Yet here you are, a minority 🫏 on this particular medium, giving your blessing to the careless spending and idiocy of those you voted for.
      We know what we’re cheering for – cheering that the clown commission will no longer be able to suck the funds from GRU to further their progressive ideologies. There will finally be a check to their frivolous spending habits.
      Ward must be hard at it for your holiday feast.

      • Guest, I don’t live in the city, so no, I’ve never voted for its commissioners or mayor. Nor have I defended or commented here on any of their policies, except those which led to the trashing of the NW 5th Ave neighborhood and university area with expensive high rise student apartments, and that was in opposition. I have said as owners of GRU, Gainesville citizens, not the governor or his local GOP hacks who have never had the support of their vote, should have control of their property, and bear the rights AND RESPONSIBILITIES, of that ownership. That is apparently beyond your primitive abilities to understand, given that it’s limited to simple tribalism.

        • Sorry, but 40% of the ratepayers forced to use GRU live outside the Communist run city. If you’re not a GRU customer and subject to their onerous rates, you need to lighten up.

          • If jazz is a GRU customer and he supports how they rob GRU and charge us outside the city ( he claims he lives in the county) a surcharge on our bill then he’s dumber than I thought

          • Rogers, I live in the county and have GRU service. If the main problem is your not having input into GRU policy, when have you ever had that with FPL or Duke? Try never, so what’s the difference? If you want out, that what you and Clemons should have been working on, not making it so no citizens have input into GRU policy. In fact Rep Hinson offered an amendment to allow opting out of GRU service for county residents and your hero Clemons, with his GOP buddies in the House, immediately shot it down.

          • Utility services don’t work like that. If people could “opt out” of the utility that covers their service territory, we wouldn’t even be having these conversations. Utilities have assigned service territories, and the legislature can’t give people an option to get service from a utility in a different service territory.

          • Your not paying a surcharge because your in the county with Duke or FP&L that’s taxation without representation if GRU truly belongs to the citizens then give all the customers the right to vote on how it’s ran. Duke and FP&L are corporations

    • What are the liberal lunatics giving you Jizzman? Maybe there is more to a name than meats the eye…🤔

  • Stupid democrats want city commissioners to continue ruining GRU. I am NOT a democrat, I am a resident of Gainesville, and DO NOT support this group. I support Ron DeSantis.

    • Then trying winning the next city election Lyn, instead of relying on the illicit power of the state to take control. They won’t give it back, and you may not support the next governor.

      • There will not be a Democratic Governor in Florida. With the likes of Gilliam, Crist, and other failed candidates that would put Florida in debt, you don’t have a chance. Dissalusionment abounds in the Gainesville/Wokesville LaLa Land Bubble. So raise City Taxes , decrease services and enjoy you crime spree orchastrated by the Democratic Party.

        • So Shad, your position is you will never lose an election here, so principles of self determination are irrelevant to your desire to force your will on other citizens. You do know I hope, that DeSantis won in 2018 by 30k votes out of 8 million, and that Democratic turnout in Florida in 2022 was 49%, compared to 61% in 2018. You sure that’s going to hold? Keep in mind that the Florida GOP’s positions on abortion and gun control are not popular with even GOP voters, and that a referendum on abortion rights in Florida will likely be on the ballot in 2024. What do you think happens if the governor’s continued attacks on Disney hurt it’s business and affect the Orlando economy. And oh yeah, the GOP base is ageing.

          Think about it dude. You might have a self interest in maintaining self determination for local governments, even if you think the governor is building a 1000 year Reich.

          • There’s no doubt that current policies related to abortion and gun control are not popular with all GOPers. Neither is current proposed policies for erasing student loans, housing the homeless or reparations popular with all Dems.
            Point is, the policies are reflective of those elected to support most of those who voted for them. Let’s not forget, with less discipline being given to children and more of those children growing up to expect government to provide for them, the demise of this country will only get worse.
            Remind us how many votes DeSantis won by in 2022.

          • Oh well , 93000 GRU customers won and you, and 100 socialist lost. Circle the wagons and Buckle up. No one should have never taken $250,000 from GRU to fund the lawsuit. The punishment for that is going to STING!

  • Oh goody. I would assume the State can afford better lawyers than Old Joe. Can’t wait to get Susie and her elitist friends under oath for depositions. They might be able to snow their diehard supporters, but that doesn’t mean they’ve got a leg to stand on in court. And considering their level of arrogance, I’m sure parts of their testimony will be quite comical.

    • Yes Fred, the state probably can afford better lawyers, and isn’t it great that they will take over another entity not in lockstep with Der Fuhrer? You must be very proud.

      • You know all too well that DeSantis was not behind taking the City Commission’s Precious away from them. And you also know that the State is well within the law to enact this law. Even the City Attorney told the Commission that “Aside from ensuring that the debt owed by the municipality is protected and that its creditors are protected, the legislature has wide latitude in the ways in which it can create and destroy and change a municipality”. But let’s not let facts get in the way of the elitists who think that only they should have control of GRU so they can continue to load GRU up with debt while running it into the ground.

        • Fred, having the right and exercising it when there is no immediate crisis, are not the same thing. The precedents the governor is setting for hostile takeovers of businesses, governments, and even colleges is unprecedented and not a good thing. I would think that would be especially obvious to supposed “small government conservatives, which most Republicans claim to be. The governor is not one of those.

          • Keep spinning. Only a small group of your diehard supporters still believe you.

      • So this is what most civil sounds like? When loosing an argument involve Nazi references. That always work.

  • Can we all just secede from the 100 or so super left wing activists that run the city and this GRU shitshow(Gainesville Residents United, same acronym as the utility…? sounds fishy in and of itself!) Let’s “un-annex” all the parts of town consisting of the rational majority so we can straighten things out. Oh, even better, let the whackos govern Grace Marketplace, the other fiasco that they created. They can have their own little bubble over there, and we will regularly drive the panhandlers over to them to add to their little captive audience.
    Oy vey!

  • Joe Little can still scrawl his signature? Modern medical marvel!

  • Do these people forget that almost half of the rate payers don’t live in the City nor do they want to. That’s always been their answer, annex if you want a vote. Ha!!!!! No way!!!! And I would encourage as many that can to de-annex, the statue allows it.

    • I doubt it would change much…look at the school board & county commission. We’re hosed.

  • I think any first year law student could totally destroy those ridiculous claims. If the actual lawsuit is so stupid, it shouldn’t even be received for a hearing.

  • It is remarkable the group didn’t file for an injunction against 1645 going into effect.

    That, in itself, speaks to the weakness of the filed complaint.

    • unfortunately in the 90 pages of filed bs they do ask for in each complaint “That the court enter a preliminary and permanent injunction forever enjoining Defendants and their Various agents and employees, from enforcing the Special Law and §7.12 thereof.”

      This is part of the ending of most if not all of their complaints.

  • True story….had 1 rental property, my home where I lived before marrying and moving in with my new spouse. I have rented it for less than market value for years. Nothing wrong with it at all, I’d still be there if I had not gotten married. The tenant for the past 6 yrs was an an elderly lady. Being already agitated by annual landlord fees and increasing property taxes, then getting a 5-6 page ridiculous checklist of requirements the city, not my tenant, wanted done and I would be subject to annual inspections, possible fines (how much you wanna bet they’d find something – $$$) I decided to sell it. My tenant had to find a new home and is paying $300 more a mth for a smaller place. The COG does not see the forest for the trees.

    This was a private agreement between me and another grown, able minded person. She looked at the place, liked it and signed it. COG needs to stay out of it, they already get my paid on time taxes and steal an annual “fee” from me, now they want more. Nope!

    • Oops, wrong bill, wrong lawsuit, but my story and rant still stands.
      COG corruption and horrible decision making is hard to keep up with.

      Thrilled they can no longer continue to screw the citizens of Alachua Co thanks to HB1645, now let’s get this overreaching landlord bill stopped!

    • You are so right. I wish there was some way to undo the great damage these nutcases have leased upon our city.

    • Keso, I agree with you on the damage from unintended consequences the rental law created. Again, the solution is at the polls, or possibly the courts. That’s how we do it America.

  • You see the list of plaintiffs for this sham outfit?
    All corrupt politicians! City hall is desperate if this is the best they can do.

  • Who, I wonder, is paying for this? We know the city commission has kicked in $250K of OUR money. Who else?

    • That $250,000 was for the Akerman Law firm to advise and possibly litigate, for this on the city is set as a nominal defendant, which is because they are suing who represents Florida and the city of Gainesville cannot exist without the state saying so.

  • I could be wrong but it appears Counts 5 through 12 are ‘state’ complaints which have not been heard before the FL Supreme Court which has primary jurisdiction BEFORE seeking remedy before a Federal Court absent an emergency injuction.

    It is, indeed, a peculiar group and even more peculiar filing.

    • That’s gotta be the strategy…. Do the Federal one first (which will be dismissed), then hit the state court right before Oct 1 to get an injunction…

  • As someone who grew up with FP&L utility service, we never worried about who “owned” the utility or wanted to “elect” its directors. Our low bill came, and we paid it. I can’t recall any real power outages other than during Hurricane David. Everything was the same or better (cheaper) than we have here, but without all the BS and baggage (DEBT) that comes with “owning” a woke, mismanaged, saddled-with-debt company. We are like someone who takes pride in owning their own home, but it’s a little mobile home in a trailer park with a leaking roof that they pay $2,500 a month for. That person would be much better off renting an apartment elsewhere for half as much. Another example is a timeshare condo that you “own”, but it ends up costing a lot more than it’s worth and you wish you had stuck to renting a hotel room for a week every year instead.

    Even though the mayor and commissioners have refused to acknowledge it so far, MANY positions at city hall and other city positions could easily be cut. That is the answer. Vagrant Central USA needs to be phased out, and we need normal open container laws so that the police don’t have to waste time roping off or barricading every parking lot in town every night. Do the JLAC people know about that wasteful foolishness of barricading most every parking lot because the clown show can’t get it together and pass (restore) an open container law? It’s all common sense stuff that Chestnut and one or two others should be pushing for.

  • I love how their logo shows diverse people going down a purple drain.

    • They have no lives…

      Just a continual airing of grievances about an injust world… actually has to be a sad life.

      “We shall overcome [candle in the air] We shall overcome”

      Rinse, cycle, repeat.

  • I await with great anticipation to learn the names of the Desantis lackies appointed to run GRU.. I fear they will be the worst political lackies Desantis can find. The Horrible Five.

    • It’s going to be fabulous.

      Can’t wait till we build a joint venture OIL powered power plant!

    • Me too. Let’s hope that they’re not worse than the fiscally incompetent idiots dictating GRU policies now

    • What are you afraid they might do? Lower rates and fire some unnecessary people? Maybe find a more serious general manager than John-boy Walton?

      • That is exactly what they are afraid of as well as they are afraid of the coverups that will be discovered. too late there is stuff some people have already gotten. and boy would you be surprised at some of the unhappy employees with the commission as the utility board, they are jumping for joy for this change.

        • And they’re probably afraid of shutting down the biomass plant, like that would be a really bad thing. Warren might have to check herself into a mental hospital or something.

    • What is holding you back from applying? It is a free and no salary. You get to be a “lackey” and work on improving the utility. Or maybe do what you do right now.

  • I had a paper straw and no utensils for my oatmeal in my bag from McDonalds this morning. Both are ordinances dreamed up by and passed by the City Commission. Do we really need these people making multi-million dollar decisions?

    • We don’t need them making any budgetary decisions. Based on one particular writer’s belief, they have no business running anything if they’ve never done it successfully before.

      Personally, I don’t think any of the commissioners are capable of something as simple as balancing their checkbooks. Why should they be entrusted to manage a utility, let alone manage the city’s budget.

  • “Gainesville Residents United” speaks only for the corrupt and incompetent city government of Gainesville.

    It does not speak for the customers of GRU who have been unfairly and secretly taxed for years by the city commission under the guise of the GRU revenue transfer in order to fund pet projects and their woke agenda.

  • These comments prove this is and never was about the ‘good fiscal governance’ of GRU. This is about revenge, owning the libs of Gainesville, and watching them cry about it.

    • Wrong, Emmit. It is about not stealing from GRU . GRU is Broke because of the City Commission. How can you be in denial?

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