This is part four of a four part exclusive TONY Z SPECIAL
This episode includes some brief commentary and public comments. We also have a slide show of pictures of the protest from our own Local Photography Wiz Jennifer Smith.
Editors Note:Please notice that not one of the speakers violated the 3 minute rule.
Unlike the Mayor Janet Hernandez who when she last spoke at the last County Commission meeting, to which she was not invited, ignored the County Chairman and rambled for minutes over the 3 minutes even after being asked to wrap it up. In that diatribe she blamed the Commission for being racists. What about CIVILITY madame Mayor? – Editor – TAM
Flyers we have seen indicate a call to action for people to arrive at 5:30PM so the Council Members can take the opportunity and mingle with the crowd to get their thoughts.
Editors Comments: When The First Mayor of Indiantown called and let us know that she was “arranging to discuss the fire rescue proposal with Martin County Fire Rescues Chief and wondered if would like to go along?”
Well you can imagine our response.
The following is part one of a four part series that we will be bringing you exclusively from our own Tony Z. Our thanks to Martin County Fire Rescue and the professionals that explained the in’s and out’s of a very emotional topic, your safety.
We need to mention the dedication to the TRUTH that is exhibited by Ms. Gibbs-Thomas in her role as an elected Servant of the people. Her effort to learn and make decisions in the peoples interest is the way this is supposed to work. Information from one side only is never good. Especially if we swallow it hook line and sinker.
The efforts towards exposure of the facts should never be considered political, racial or anything other than just that, fact finding. Let the truth speak for itself and the politics of nature will take it from there. Editor ~ TAM
TAM has learned that there is not only a bit of a connection between Howard Brown and Mike Iacona when it comes to Fire Rescue. We have also learned some interesting past history about the person telling Indiantown how they should be running their Fire Operations. Seems a lot of the people that travel in the Howard Brown Show seem to be fleeing from controversy when they land at their next location. We are not sure what we are going to bring you up to speed on will sit well with the Good Mayor Janet who has been calling everyone she doesn’t like a racist, but she will have to deal with that herself.
It is important to know those people you are standing alongside in your life. So for the Councils own edification we would like to present the following.
Let’s start here.
This is an excerpt from Mike Iacona’s PR language to describe himself:
“Chief Mike Iacona, M.P.A.
Senior Manager of Fire and EMS
Retired Fire Chief/Director Flagstaff Fire Department, Flagstaff Arizona
Retired Director and Fire Chief, Orange County, Florida
Chief Iacona has 38 years of fire service experience, with the last 17 years as Fire Chief. He currently serves as fire chief for the City of Flagstaff, Arizona and has held this position since 2002. Prior to this, he was the Director of Orange County Fire Rescue, Florida, which included oversight of the County’s emergency management functions. In addition to duties associated with fire chief, he has served in various capacities, rising through the ranks from to fire fighter/paramedic to chief fire officer.”
Actually, from what we have learned even the dates don’t line up. He retired in 2013 from Flagstaff Arizona and no more information about his Professional career is available. So, this being 2021 and a retirement date of 2013 I am having a hard time with the whole last 17 years as a chief. That was 8 years ago. Important, why? If this guy cannot keep his professional credentials accurate, how is going to do for Indiantown?
There is more vanilla resume filler material associated with his background but this set’s the stage.
Notice he retired from Orange County, Florida. Well, maybe technically but it was to save a fight with a Council that was not happy from a stand point of the way he handled minority matters. Here is an April 11, 2000 article excerpt from the Orlando Sun Sentinel.
“Iacona was the deputy chief in Palm Beach County when he was hired in spring 1996 by then-Chairman Chapin. He replaced Chief Mitch Floyd, who was demoted from chief in 1995 – not long after several firefighters were found urinating on photographs of Chapin and then-commissioner Mable Butler. That incident also was related to frustrations over department hiring, though officials said Floyd’s demotion had nothing to do with it.
Iacona, who makes $105,123 a year, has presided over a fiery four years at the department – years that saw diversity issues flare up and consume not just the department but also public attention.
County Chairman Mel Martinez confirmed Monday what in-house memos had detailed – Iacona will be out of his job as chief within the next three months. Martinez said he has grown frustrated watching morale plummet in the fire department where more than 95 percent of the top-ranking lieutenants are white.
Iacona, who has led the department for four years, did not return phone calls Monday. Martinez said the county will begin an extensive search for his successor.
County Commissioner Homer Hartage, who last month called for Iacona to be fired, said Martinez made a courageous decision.
In Orange, most of the accusations of unfair hiring have focused on the higher-paying lieutenants’ jobs. But the entire department lags behind the county’s general population.
Overall, about 70 percent of the department’s 770 employees are white men – compared with about 33 percent of the general population.
Ten percent of the department’s employees are black men and women. Seven percent are Hispanic men and women. Women make up 16 percent of the department.
Of the 122 lieutenants, only four are minorities. Two are black. One is Asian. One is Native American. None is Hispanic.
Lieutenants are typically the first command-officers to arrive at fires and medical emergencies and manage firefighters directly.
Many county leaders, including Martinez, Hartage and Commissioner Mary I. Johnson, have been complaining about the department’s diversity problems for years, blaming Iacona.
“Well, he’s been heading that department for several years … and the balance still doesn’t represent the community,” Johnson said. “So we need to get someone there who can.”
Last year, six minority firefighters filed a grievance alleging that lieutenant promotion tests were rigged, making advancement for minority firefighters nearly impossible. But a county committee that investigated the matter last month found no evidence to support their claims.
News of Iacona’s impending departure on Monday pleased one of the firefighters* who is still appealing that grievance in court.”
Then there is this from the Flagstaff Arizona media:
“5 Jul 2013 – Flagstaff has a new fire chief, but unlike the police department, the city fire department again wasn’t tapped for a promotion.
The new fire chief will be Mark Gaillard of Goodyear, who will succeed Mike Iacona, who has announced his retirement.
According to a news release from the city, Gaillard (pronounced Gay-lard) has been the fire chief for the city of Goodyear since 1986, where he oversaw its transition from an 18-member volunteer department to a full-service department of 101 employees”
The article goes on to extol the virtues of the new Chief.
So, let’s get back to beginning again. Here we have a man that was given a chance to leave quietly or be fired in Orlando who then retired a few short years later in 2013 from Flagstaff Arizona. This according to news sources and his own propaganda. He is well educated and has held positions in the past that do qualify him to give an educated opinion on fire rescue matters.
There is an interesting association though that should be made so you can keep the players straight. If you have been following TAM for any length of time, we have been reporting to you that The Village Manager, Howard Brown is a member of several organizations. One of those organizations is the International Globalist group known as the ICMA. International City Managers Association.
Now take a look at this from the Public Relations material from the CPSM website.
“The ICMA Center for Public Safety Management (ICMA/CPSM) was launched by ICMA to provide support to local governments in the areas of police, fire, and Emergency Medical Services.”
Oh, so the CPSM is tied at the hip with the ICMA. How convenient. It just so happens we have a whole industry of consultants that think their International Globalist standards are exactly what this quite little 6,800 person Village needs. It turns out we are not the first either.
Folks you are being led down a path that is ripe with the potential for deceit and self-enrichment, just not for you, with the people that are leading some of your more immature and inexperienced Council members egos. Time to say no.
We will have more to follow on this topic as our team continues to get you the facts you need to stay informed.
As always be sure to like us on face book and follow on TalkAboutMartin.com so you can get the insider scope on the events that effect your day to day. We have a Tony Z exclusive you do not want to miss and we will be bringing it you in the next day – so in the meantime – Stand By
Yesterday’s Meet and Greet in the park with Council Woman Susan Gibbs-Thomas and County Commissioners Jenkins, Ciampi and Heatherington can be summed up in one word – Wow!
Where do we begin – how about at the beginning – so…. let’s talk Fire Rescue one more time – hang on as we prepare to go down the rabbit hole one more time.
Our own Tony Z has interviews to share and we have some footage as well that we will share as we continue to document yesterday’s events in the Park.
To begin, there are a couple of key points that need to be made about yesterdays event in the sunshine. The first is that after listening to the KC Ingram Shows interviews on the topic, live, I have a hard time understanding why any of the Council would want to fall on this Political Spear. Actually, our good friend Tim compared it to a political grenade! He couldn’t see the sense in a Councilperson dying on this topic either. Especially when there were enough people there yesterday to sign recall petitions of every one of the rascals that votes for this thing. If they want to stay in office, they really should think it through!
People DO NOT want the fire rescue changed at present. And that should be overly apparent by this point to the Council. If not however, we are told another 200 or 300 people will be in front of Village Council an hour before the next Village meeting this coming Thursday @ 5:30p. The idea is to allow enough time for those council people that had scheduling conflicts during the meet and greet on Saturday to have a chance to mingle with their constituents before they sit on their laurels and vote.
It was suggested, by many, and seemed like an acceptable option, to hold a voter referendum and let the people decide. Of course, that takes all of the power out of certain people’s hands and we are pretty sure they want to maintain a tight grip while they, the consultant and Howard Brown drag this Village along for a ride to ruin.
We encourage you to listen your neighbors like Ms. Lynda, Brian Powers, Holly Garrett and others. Fire Rescue, at this point in time is a rush to disaster. Slow Down on the after burners. Put down the pipe and step away from the “EXPERTS” for a bit.
The people are speaking, they are saying NO to changing Fire Rescue – Are you listening Council? Open your ears and oh while we are on ears, can we enforce the noise ordinances please. Until next time, keep up the good fight and stay true. More to come in the days ahead. Be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us at TalkAboutMartin.com Until then – Stand By !
This is a must watch Special Episode of the KC Ingram Show that deals with Martin County Fire Rescue.