Stew Lilker’s

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Columbia Cnty Comm'rs Nash & Phillips: 2 Who Turn Their Backs on Columbia Cnty Residents

COLUMBIA COUNTY, FL  – Commissioners Sylvester "Bucky" Nash and Everett Philips are again ignoring the best interests of Columbia County residents. Both Commissioners represent Columbia County on the Suwannee Valley Transit Authority (SVTA). In November 2016, both Mr. Nash and Mr. Phillips voted to change the meeting days of the SVTA to Mondays, a day which conflicts with Lake Shore Hospital Authority Meetings and from time to time, City Council meetings, such as the Council meeting scheduled for this Monday night. The reason given by Commissioner Nash: "I don't go to those meetings."


In August 2015, Commissioner Nash, during a SVTA meeting, moved to have the SVTA meet quarterly on the second Tuesday of the month. The SVTA approved the change unanimously.

That was a thoughtful move, which was supported by the SVTA Board. Tuesday has generally been an off night for Columbia County and Lake City, City Council meetings.

Then in November 2016, Commissioner Nash, joined by Commissioner Phillips, had a change of heart and voted to move the meetings to Monday.

SVTA Administrator/Commissioner Larry Sessions, Ignoring the Law Is Nothing New At the SVTA 

Who Do Nash & Phillips Represent?

As members of the SVTA Board, Commissioners Nash and Phillips represent all County residents, including those of Lake City, the prime benefactor of the services of the SVTA and residents of the LSHA.

The LSHA is a County-wide special taxing district which deals with indigent care for Columbia County. The indigent use SVTA through the state's funding of the SVTA with Transportation for the Disadvantaged funding. Many residents of Columbia County are interested in both the SVTA and the LSHA because of its responsibility to the indigent.

The SVTA has recently mined the Commission for the Transportation Disadvantaged, an outcropping of the Florida Department of Transportation, for public money to support a money losing Uber like operation, which exclusively operates in Lake City.

This Monday night, the City Council meets. This Monday night, the SVTA scheduled a special meeting.

Columbia County residents who reside in Lake City will not be able to attend this special meeting if they choose to attend the City Council meeting, which has both Columbia County and LSHA business on its agenda.

City Councilman Jake Hill, not a member of the County/City elite Good Ole' Boys Club, when he heard about the SVTA decision to schedule it meetings on Mondays and to schedule a special meeting for this coming up Monday said, "That's just not right."


Florida statues and the Special District Handbook state that meetings of special districts, the SVTA, are to be advertised a week in advance on the agency's website with the supporting information.

Once again, Suwannee County Commissioner/SVTA Administrator Larry Sessions has failed to comply with the law by failing to post Monday's March 6 meeting to the to SVTA website.

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