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Miami Herald: North Miami Beach mayor candidates on key issues

This is why we support Paule Villard For North Miami Beach Mayor over Evan Piper: Under Anthony "Tony" Defillipo's corrupt leadership, we witnessed the most egregious ethical and criminal behavior, Mr. Piper remained absolutely silent when the allegations of the former mayor's residency fraud, during the cover up and even AFTER the former mayor's arrest and removal. This silence is no better indication of Mr. Piper's desire to keep a status quo of enabling public corruption even in the face of prosecution, acceptance of reprisal at any cost and irrational xenophobia masked as "Make NMB Great Again" we see his supporters use as their rallying cry.


The Miami Herald printed the responses to 3 questions by both Mr. Piper and Ms. Villard that require your attention (link in comments). Their difference in approach is night and day. Notice that Mr. Piper purposely evades mentioning Defillipo's criminal escapade and the cover up he attempted with the other members of the city commission. You decide whether the enabling of public corruption traditions in the city is the most important issue or not.


Their responses:


1) What makes you the best candidate for mayor of North Miami Beach?


Evan Piper: I have the experience to make a difference from day one due to my commitment to public service combined with my years of successful business experience. In addition, I have the proven ability to work with and unite diverse groups.


Paule Villard: My 28 years in law enforcement and my previous term in office have prepared me from Day One to answer the challenge of restoring faith in city government. After all, I was part of the reform movement to restore the water plant, adopt important ethics reforms and create parks programming for seniors.


2) For the past year, the city commission has been divisive, sometimes failed to achieve a quorum for meetings and deadlocked in votes on some key issues, How will you work to ensure commissioners are decisive on key issues?


Evan Piper: Based on the fact that I have previous professional relationships with all of the sitting Commissioners from my City related work combined with my ability to unite groups, I will be able to create a productive work environment within our City Commission.


Paule Villard: Despite divisiveness, the commission passed a budget, voted on zoning matters, and passed legislation without significant delay. The big problem is that the commission cannot be allowed to operate outside of the law. Now voters will say who they think will best follow the rule of law.


3) Earlier this year, two city employees were fired and arrested for using gift cards intended for residents. City employees have been criticized for excessive procurement card use. How will you work to regulate the spending of city funds by elected officials and city employees?


Evan Piper: Eliminating wasteful spending is a priority. I will make sure that the City Manager immediately puts into place measures and procedures to control and justify City spending. In addition, my business experience gives me the ability to promote fiscal responsibility.


Paule Villard: Let’s be clear. The former mayor’s witch hunt for political enemies led to 2 great employees being arrested but those charges were dropped. On the other hand, the city’s annual financial audit found everything in order and the city has possibly the largest reserves in its history.


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