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1,816 reasons to become a Republican for the DeBary Election...

Vote against politics as usual...

Editorial Forthcoming...SATURDAY...



Two and a half weeks after winning the Primary:

On September 13th, 2014 at the visioning session, Mayor–Elect Clint Johnson raised the possibility of bringing Police and Fire in-house; that is to say, for DeBary to have its own Police and Fire and not contract out to the County and Orange City respectively. He stated at that visioning session that it only took one voice to add it to the list and he wanted a feasibility study to bring Police and Fire in-house added to the list.

Question: Did the DeBary Volunteer Fireman's Association know about this position of Mayor-Elect Johnson before the election? And now if you do know - what about it?

The Association Answers: "No, we did not (know) about this."


Who gets to decide if it's legal or not?


From Alan Crawford - President of the DeBary Volunteer Fireman's Association:

As president of the association I will say in hindsight we probably should have never gotten into it. That said it has been done. And will not happen again. It was a non monetary endorsement, just moral support. Meanwhile Mr. Kinsella has collected thousands of dollars from Union across the state. And no one can answer the question why?
And who does decide what is legal we had an attorney check and he couldn't even tell. Our readings of the IRS rulings said we could. Politics are not our primary function. It has been and will always be to raise funds for equipment for the fire department.


DeBary Volunteer Firemen’s Association (DVFA)
Response to Political endorsement charge.
Recently the DeBary Volunteer Firemen’s Association made its first official endorsement of two candidates for DeBary City Council, Mrs. Lita Handy-Peters and Mr. Mike Brady.  This endorsement has brought a cry of “foul” by Mr. Steve Clelland, friend and business partner of Mr. Leslie Kinsella, opponent of Mrs. Handy-Peters.  The DVFA made this endorsement after we became aware of political signs posted around DeBary stating  “Florida Firefighters For Kinsella”. 
Our research on cityofdbary.org website has shown that Mr. Kinsella has received political donations from firefighter unions around the state, i.e. Deltona, Miami, Brevard, West Palm, and others, but none from actual firefighters who are employed or volunteer for the City of DeBary.  We doubt very much that an overwhelming majority of firefighters across the State of Florida would be able to name either of our candidates, much less answer why their union is backing Mr. Kinsella.  This brings up the question, why would firefighter unions across the state would be backing a candidate in DeBary?
Back in 2009, the City of DeBary opened up bidding to provide fire services to the City of DeBary.  The contract was awarded to Orange City, a non-union combination career/volunteer department who offered services for substantially less than the unionized departments who also submitted bids.  Under the current contract with Orange City, the ISO rating for the City of DeBary is 2-2-Y, down from 5-9, one of the lowest ISO ratings in Volusia County. 
Mr. Kinsella’s campaign has suggested that it is his intention to attempt to make changes to the fire services in DeBary by bringing in a union.  It is for this reason that the DVFA made the choice to endorse Mrs. Handy-Peters.  It is our concern that Mr. Kinsella’s bid for election would threaten our current contract with Orange City as well as our sixty-one year old tradition of volunteer service and our connected Association. 
The DVFA has researched the legality of our endorsement and to the best of our knowledge, we may endorse a political candidate as long as it is not our “primary activity”.  Our endorsement of Mrs. Handy-Peters and Mr. Mike Brady has simply been an endorsement.  No Association funds have been donated to either candidate.  Aside from our endorsement, the DVFA has encouraged their members to vote for candidate of their choice.
In response to Mr. Clelland’s statement that the DVFA receives one thousand dollars per month from the City of DeBary, these funds are solely earmarked as reimbursement to fire department volunteers for training, gas, food, and items of clothing.  NONE of these funds are retained for use by the DVFA. 
In closing, the members of the DVFA would ask the citizens of DeBary to decide whether they would prefer to vote for candidates who strongly support their Association and firefighters of DeBary, or a candidate with questionable motives who is backed by outside interests. 
The Officers and Members of the DeBary Volunteer Firemen’s Association