Michael Hartman: We Need To Use Common Sense
By Michael Hartman, Brevard County Commission Candidate // August 23, 2014
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Earlier this week, a local newspaper guest columnist requested that the voters elect independent thinkers.
However, when a true independent thinker such as myself actually runs for office, it causes widespread panic in the county’s “Good Ole Boy” network.
So, the only choice they have is to pull out all of the stops and kill (figuratively) the independent thinker. That’s why you have seen a ton of mud slung my way.
If you listen to all of the naysayers, electing me will kill economic growth in Brevard County and harm us for years to come. Nothing is farther from the truth. As a CPA, businessman, and job creator, I will propose policies that promote economic growth.
However, I want that growth to happen for all citizens and businesses, not just a select few companies.
My goals are threefold: first, we have to change the mentality of the county government. As of now, their attitude is that we serve them, which is totally backwards. And the only way to do that is to elect one of us to sit on the Commission. Second, we need to cut the tax rate for everybody, as opposed to just a select few.
I have a proven track record of being able to cut government costs and increase services.
We did it at the County Housing Authority, and it can be done over the entire county budget. That puts more money in the pockets of every taxpayer. If people have more money to spend, then they spend it on local goods and services, and the entire economy grows for all businesses.
Finally, we need to use common sense in developing and enforcing regulations. Frankly, we have too many regulations that hinder or kill the growth of new businesses, and we need to apply common sense to reduce these job-killing regulations and adopt common-sense enforcement of regulations with a goal of helping to promote, not hinder, business and job creation.
If my goals are your goals, then please vote for me. It’s a vote to bring representation to all of the citizens of Brevard County, not the select few that currently pull the strings in the background.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Myself, my wife Mary, and our daughter Stephanie have lived in Diana Shores on Merritt Island since 1997. Mary and I both grew up in Baltimore. We were married in 1984, and first experienced Brevard County when Mary’s parents retired to Cape Canaveral in 1989. During the next three years, we visited often and fell in love with Brevard County.
In early 1993, I came to Cape Canaveral as a CPA to perform tax work for a client of my CPA firm. Three weeks later, I went back to Baltimore with an offer to join the company as its Chief Operating Officer. Mary agreed, and we moved to Rockledge in the summer of 1993. Stephanie was born in 1995, and we moved in to our home on a canal in 1997. It is perfect for our family, as we all enjoy boating, fishing and tubing on the rivers.
Professionally, I’ve had the opportunity to work in many different industries. During college, I worked in a restaurant chain and progressed from cook to manager to assistant training director. Graduating from Loyola College in 1981 with a BA in Accounting, and earning my CPA, allowed me to learn numerous industries, including window manufacturing, construction, banking, liquor wholesaling, heavy equipment sales, bedding and furniture manufacturing, auto leasing, property management, and real estate development.
Since 1993, my primary business has been residential rental housing development and management. I started off working for a company in Cape Canaveral, and have had my own development business since 1999. I’ve developed extensively in Florida and Texas, as far west as Colorado, and as far north as Michigan. My total development experience spans sixteen states, so I have interacted with a lot of bureaucrats and politicians over the last twenty years. Those interactions have led me to run for County Commissioner.
Personally, I’ve always tried to live life according to the final line in the Jaycee Creed: “We Believe that service to humanity is the best work of life!” In my early years, I served as an altar boy, lector, baseball coach, and member of the Adult Education Committee at my church. In 1982, I joined the Jaycees, and we performed many charitable works over the years for the people in our community. I also volunteered for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, chairing a statewide annual fundraiser and serving on the Board of Directors. Since 1999, Mary and I have been very active in serving Our Saviour’s Church and School in Cocoa Beach.
We chaperoned children on day trips and to sports events. We served as schoolyard monitors at lunchtime. We coached basketball and volleyball. Mary chaired Teacher Appreciation Week. I served as the School Board Treasurer and Finance Committee Chairman. We work at the OSS Fair every year. And now I help open the Church every Sunday morning and serve as an usher at the early Mass. I have also served as the Chairman of the County Housing Authority since September 2009 (a volunteer position). Our goal is to help as many Brevard families as possible find safe, sanitary housing.