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BOCC Chairman Endorses Veteran Commissioner, Touts Long List of Accomplishments

HERNANDO – The longest serving member of the Board of County Commissioners has earned the endorsement of the Board’s Chairman for the upcoming 2018 mid-term election.

BOCC Chairman Steve Champion says Commissioner Wayne Dukes has what it takes to remain the District 2 Commissioner – and there is plenty of reason why. “We don’t agree all the time,” says Champion, adding, “What I respect about him is that he’s not controlled by anyone.” Champion praises Dukes’ lifelong service to the Country and says, “My son is a Marine and I have respect for anyone who serves in our great Military.” Dukes served 4-years in the Army and as Civilian with the Air Force, which included working as a Fire Chief for over three decades. Dukes was elected in 2010 as a County Commissioner and has held onto his seat ever since.

Dukes has earned the respect of Hernando County residents by keeping his promise of never voting to raise property taxes; instead, Dukes voted for a millage rate reduction in 2017.

Dukes has racked up a laundry list of accomplishments during his time as Commissioner; from being a member of the Tampa Bay Regional Transportation Authority, serving as Chairman of the Metropolitan Planning Organization when Hernando and Citrus merged, to being chosen as Chairman of the BOCC three times. But it’s Dukes’ environmental achievements that has earned the most respect from Adventure Coast residents.

After the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill of 2010, as a member of the Gulf Consortium, Dukes ensured that Hernando County would receive $5 million every four years to restore the county’s coastline. Other achievements include restoring Hunter’s Lake, adding three artificial reefs, 135 reef balls, expanding Bendickson Reef, among several other accomplishments.

Dukes says tourism dollars have increased from $93.7 Million in 2013 to $188 million in 2016. Employment has also seen a spike under Dukes’ watch, especially in the labor and service industry. Labor jobs increased by 2,090 since 2013 and the service industry saw a gain of 2,902 since 2016.

Retired Attorney Charles Greenwell and School Board Member Beth Narverud are set to challenge Dukes during the Primary Election this August.

Residents will have an opportunity to watch Dukes and Greenwell go head-to-head during RNRF’s first biennial Great Debate on August 2nd. Narverud has declined to participate. We will provide more details on the debate in the coming week.

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  • Actually if you speak with Mr Greenwell you will find he is extremely intelligent. As a private citizen, one of his MANY accomplishments was helping to bring Advanced Life Support to Hernando Beach and put an end to the corrupted volunteer fire department that Dukes supported. He doesn’t push the veteran card but as long as Dukes is pushing his Citizen Army card then I feel Greenwell’s service as a Bronze Star Vietnam veteran card needs to be played. Just sayin.

    Thursday, 12 July 2018, 10:02 am
  • Tom, you’ve gone totally off the rails as a journalist with this. This is a political puff piece. And Dukes has been a lousy commissioner. He is demeaning and condescending to members of the public that dare present opposition to what they’ve already decided to do. All five current commissioners need to go.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 10:29 pm
  • WOW, I’ve got your back. You must be a psychic. You were going to say exactly what Tom said. Whew, what a gift.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 6:34 pm
  • The current commissioners have spent us into a 6 million dollars shortfall in this years budget. Something has to give, can’t blame Democrats, the county is run by all R’s

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 4:42 pm
    • If it was run by DEMOCRATS we be taxed to death and 6 million in the whole. don’t fool yourself

      Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 6:25 pm
  • Sorry Slick but I have a very successful business and am quite savvy in politics. I agree about what you said about government and laws and how they tend to complicate issues. What people are talking about here is a bit different. Political favors for personal gain does not fall into the same category.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 4:00 pm
  • I’m sure the fact that Mr Dukes wife pays RNRF to advertise Tropic Shores Realty would have no bearing on the elaborate write-up compared to the write-up of Mr. Greenwell.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 3:51 pm
      • Precisely, Mr Dukes has a corrupted record..are we going to hold that against Mr Greenwell…,.??? Maybe you guys… the old politician team…Take a look at the previous Hernando Volunteer Fire Dept. that he backed up… It speaks for itself…!!!!

        Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 8:50 pm
  • I have to say almost everybody that comments on this thread are CLUELESS when it comes to government and/or running a business.
    There are a lot of federal and state laws that very much complicate what would seem like simple issues. I was an elected official for 8 years(served 8 yrs), not in Florida but most laws are similar. I have come across many who would do things for personal reasons instead of for the people. Those who say all members should be replaced, guess what you will have the same problems. no one will agree with anyone 100% of the time. There are many times I dont agree with decisions the county or school board makes. So i vote and try to make a difference. If most people that complained about everything had to make these decisions under federal,state and local laws they would be shocked to find how little they could get done. Its an eyeopener. Some of it is people want someone to blame.
    I am in no way endorsing any politician, just trying to open some eyes to the other side

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 3:23 pm
  • Time for Dukes to go! He supported the corruption of the Hernando Beach Volunteer Fire Department right up until the arrests were made live on TV. Accepted campaign donations from companies who were later granted contracts with the county. Under his watchful eye took a county with millions in surplus and watched it go to 14 million in the hole and the list goes on! He has no respect or regard for the citizens he claims to represent. He only represents his own agenda! No wonder Champion supports him. Two peas in a pod.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 1:12 pm
  • Racebannon, excellent post. Republic services sucks, FYI, if you call their number their CALL CENTER is lcoated in CHARLOTTE, N. C. , so WHY COMMISSIONERS IS THEIR CALL CENTER NOT IN THIS AREA.*how is that right, it would pay citizens HERE, can’t have that, right? If you happen to get a hold of a commissioner, which I did,( which wasn’t easy) I was told pretty much you don’t have to have garbage pick up, BUT YOU WILL STILL BE CHARGED. HE WAS A JERK!! AND HE KNOWS WHO HE IS, and idk, but none of these jokers will get my vote.The elderly need help with their taxes etc. The disabled need help.So sit in your ivory towers and talk talk , ring your own bell, tell us how great you are. collect your big salaries for jacking your jaws. As far as endorsing Dukes, cause he served in the army for 4 yrs, well my husband served, my nephews are still serving, Long line of Veterans in our families, that actually saw combat and some gave their lives. Greenwell, well, he served in Vietnam and received the Bronze star, gotta check him out more, then will decide, but it won’t be DUKES. I may even check out the Democrats who knows.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 12:58 pm
  • Well, la-ti-da on his “service” and accomplishments. When will you stop getting ” labor and service jobs” with low pay and no benefits and aid the elderly and low income people of the county??? This county needs FOOD COMMODITIES not lake restoration or beach restoration. Perhaps the county commissioners could spend some time and effort and money investigating and instituting this project so low income people could have food to eat. You know beans, rice, canned and fresh fruit, canned and fresh vegetables, powdered milk, etc. I also notice a number of businesses have closed down, so the claim of bringing jobs to county does not ring true with me.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 10:52 am
  • I can only weep for the future, if this is the best Hernando County has for voters.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 10:47 am
  • Time to replace all of the BOCC!! Who in their right mind would give Republic Services an extended contract and fining them for not doing their job?? And then raise the garbage rates?? Y’all are not working in the best interests of the community! It’s time for new blood!

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 8:49 am
    • AMEN !!!

      Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 10:55 am
  • Dukes is such a POS, how he survived this long is beyond me.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 7:06 am
  • THANKS TOM, I WAS JUST GOING TO SAY THAT.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 6:27 am
  • YOU NEED ANGER MANAGEMENT

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 6:25 am
  • Ill pass… Same ole stuff.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 5:50 am
  • The time is now to vote intelligent people into office, not the usual rag tag crap like the chairman supports this person. Of course they rub each others back, that’s the system. Get out and vote but for able bodied candidates.

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 4:54 am
    • Problem Bethy is there are no intelligent people running for office.

      Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 6:35 pm
  • If Dukes has voted against raising property taxes, then why in the hell did our property taxes more than double several years ago??Answer me that, DUKES!!
    It damn near caused me to lose my house because I am on a
    very low monthly disability budget, so in order to keep my house from going into foreclosure I had to go with a very cheap homeowners insurance that cost less money with a “HUGE” deductible THAT I OTHERWISE WOULD HAVE ABSOLUTELY LOST MY HOME!!!!
    And if I was physically able to pack up my house and sell it in order to have enough money to hire a moving truck, I would Have Moved Far Far away from this hell hole full of junkies/druggies!! So what are you going to do to help myself (“ELDERLY FOLKS WITH DISABILITIES”) and others with such low disability ?????
    CAN YOU ANSWER THOSE QUESTIONS, Duke?????

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 1:56 am
  • Time twq clean house!!! Sorry but its well over do! they will not show this anyway because its true! never should of got rid of the city Police , never in all my days have I ever herd of a police dep. close down!

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 12:10 am
    • Not too far away or too long ago the Dunedin police department was closed and has been covered by the Pinellas County Sherriff now for many years.

      Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 7:11 am
  • Never returns a call.
    Never available.
    Always wants money.
    Never vote for him again.

    Tuesday, 10 July 2018, 11:25 pm
  • well thats all fine and good what the hell can he do about corruption in the sherrifs department you politicians suck my ass i have documents proving such ask amanda gigante sherrif deputy how being assaulted numeris times results in the victum being arrested i have documented proof you all are scum bags

    Tuesday, 10 July 2018, 10:36 pm
  • they’re two corrupt peas in a pod. of course he will endorse him

    Tuesday, 10 July 2018, 10:32 pm
  • Was this a paid ad on the site? Looks a lot like a campaign ad masquerading as a news story. Nothing wrong with that, but should be labeled as such. If it wasn’t paid then I would expect providing equal time for the opposition candidate if there is one.

    Tuesday, 10 July 2018, 10:28 pm
  • I try not to vote for incumbents. After their first term, they tend to just be chair warmers.

    Tuesday, 10 July 2018, 10:01 pm
    • Agree, just like in Washington. Many chair warmers there as well.

      Wednesday, 11 July 2018, 6:40 pm

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