Sunday, March 16, 2014

Single Tax Corp. Elects New President

Fairhope, Alabama

At its February meeting, the Fairhope Single Tax Corporation elected Lee Turner to serve as its President, replacing Larry Thomas.

Turner is a 4th generation Fairhoper and owner of Pitman Insurance Agency, which he bought from his grandfather Cecil Pitman in 1996. He also operates a real estate management business, Lot, Inc.

Turner is also a past president of the Fairhope Rotary Club and currently serves as chairman of the City of Fairhope's Planning and Zoning Commission.


 Vice-President    Charles Lake

 Secretary        Leslie Stejskal

 Treasurer        Colin Keleher


            Carol Saltz
            Mackie McCawley
            Fred Watkins
            Cliff Pitman
            David Jester


            Ralph Jennings
            George Gilmore
            Leigh Rogers


Pauline said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pauline said...

Lee Turner has implemented innovations in just the short time he has been President:
*secret hearings to "convict" members without those members being there or allowed to defend themselves.
*created new 'crime' against FSTC. Crime by marriage. (wife might run errand for husband)
*announced "the board became very exhausted by the constant bombarding of information" (gosh, why we should members expect board members, all 12 of whom are paid, to look at information? They can make quicker decisions without information.
Much of the information, such as the rights of the lessees when land is being taken by the state, like on highway 181 and maybe highway 104, is readily available on the internet: The SouthTrust Bank vs. FSTC and the Drummond Coal case, that both indicate Fairhope should not expect any money or very little money in condemnation cases, which FSTC knows, but of course does not tell the lessees the information that was paid for by money in the trust fund to benefit the lessees, still trying to get lessees to settle for 30%.
*created concept that FSTC could only possibly do one thing wrong at a time. He said, "It is not like attacks were aimed at a specific item, but at every single area and decision trying to find a weakness. I likened it attacking an army attacking a fort trying to find a weakness to bring it down." (I liken it to building inspectors noticing rot and decay and trying to get it repaired before the army attacks. But I am not a Council member, just a member, so my views do not count.)
*determined that members cannot refer people to lawyers. "It was discovered that a member referred a specific attorney to people on Highway 181. At this point I called an Executive Session" (secret meeting for the purpose of trying these 3 people, one of whom was 'guilty' of referring lessees to a lawyer. Is it a crime to refer someone to a lawyer?) At that meeting, without having the accused there, the Council voted to take away their membership right to have access to documents at the office. (Alabama Code says members have the right to see and copy all documents.)
*personal attacks aren't personal attacks when made by Council members. Council members can say that members are heretics if they try to tell the Council that leaseholds have rights. Council members can call members' claims of insider deals are preposterous when it is clear that FSTC often pays the companies of its Council for work done for FSTC without any disclosure. (Even after accountants pointed out this requirement, the Council kept with their practice of non-disclosure)
At his very first meeting Lee Turner offered an "olive branch' by creating a compliance committee to look at the many areas of concern by some members of the FSTC. He referred a "request for a refresher course" to this committee and also the Referendum rules. At the second meeting it was announced that the Committee can only look at one issue: 501c4. How can FSTC, who, the Supreme Court ruled, is a fiduciary for a trust fund for the benefit of the lessees, and that all values accruing from the land go in the trust fund to benefit the lessees, suddenly become an "public welfare" corporation that is not allowed to benefit just the lessees as the lease agreement says it will? So it does still have one important issue, if it is not dismantled before it has a chance to start.
What will happen to the original Request for a Refresher Course? Lee Turner got a copy of it. Did he read it? Will he reconsider it now that the Compliance Committee is restricted to 501c4? Will the member introducing it be considered "bombarding" if it is resubmitted? We can only wait and see.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like someone who ran for a position with FSTC and only got a few votes. I am very happy to have this group, especially Lee, looking out for my interests. The fact that the attacks came so soon after the election should be an indication that Pauline was in attack mode as soon as the votes were cast.

Pauline said...

Anonymous (ashamed to sign your own name?) is glad Turner is looking after "his" interests. I was pleased when Turner won because I thought he 'd look after FSTC's interest.