It was billed as a Fort Lauderdale Candidate Event for those seeking the Mayoral post and the District I Commission seat.
The candidates all arrived, with a good showing of some of the City’s top activists.
State Rep candidate Chris Chiari
chats with Commissioner Rodstrom
as Commissioner Teel looks on !
But the crowd, for such an important civic event, seemed paltry. Where were the Galt Milers? Only a handful were there, and they appeared to mostly come from one Condo.
The Galt Ocean Mile has always been critical to City candidates, because the mature residents there always turn out to vote in big numbers. It was apparent that this event was not widely publicized.
Soon the mystery answered itself. It wasn’t your standard Q&A candidate forum at all, but more of an ambush, seemingly set up to attack one candidate.
And that District I Commission candidate was local condo attorney Inger Garcia. Garcia has been critical of the leadership of many of the condos along the Galt for years now. In her column in the Fort Lauderdale City News, a newspaper known for its’ controversial offerings, Garcia has continually warned residents to watch their Condo Boards.
District I candidates
Garcia ….. Roberts …. Teel
She has written about the new State Condo laws that improve transparency and “punish the wrongdoers”. She recently wrote that condo unit owners should report any suspicions that Board Officials have ” made decisions based on their own financial interests”.
After an abbreviated Q&A session, Galt President Pio stated that there were “a few questions”. Then came the ambush. Pio called up only two residents to the microphone and they both blasted Garcia. They chastised her for “implicating corruption”, and for calling them “crooks”. Another in the audience defiantly “shot the bird” at Garcia from his seat.
No other questions were entertained.
The candidates left the stage, while those in the crowd with no affilation to the condo just seemed shocked. It was a bad day for the Galt.