When I do research on a candidate, not only do I talk to them, call them and look at their platform, but I try and look at the past history of where they have stood in regard to helping the community. Water and ease of transportation, as well as great education, are common issues we can all relate to. When a candidate destroys or supports efforts to hinder something that is vital to the residents of our community, we take offense and will gladly vote them out of office.
The State Road 7 funding, extension and water-related issues have been a hot topic for some time now. Indeed, the Town-Crier on Oct. 23 of 2015 posted how the MPO approved funding of the extension and the Palm Beach Post on Feb. 24 of 2015 posted how the Feds endorsed the SR 7 extension. This week in Tallahassee, the state and county officials are pushing for the state to hurry up with their share of money in spite of West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio threatening lawsuits (at taxpayers’ expense) against it. She lived or lives in Ibis and the extension would come out behind that development. Two-hundred and fifty-six thousand people were purported to use it. Royal Palm Beach has a new development coming in behind H.L. Johnson Elementary School. Another 800 cars will hit the intersection at Crestwood and Royal Palm Beach boulevards, which already has 1,019 cars hit it on a Monday morning. To ease this traffic situation that will occur right in front of the school, the roundabout to SR 7, put in on Meridian in La Mancha could be opened up, but David Swift has fought this for years, as like Jeri, he doesn’t want the traffic flowing close to his house.
It appears that is OK for the council to approve new developments that impact current residents’ traffic issues and the safety of the hundreds of school children as long as it doesn’t impact them. Richard Valuntas is for the SR 7 extension and recognizes that the traffic will be an issue and can be relieved if that roundabout is opened. He has schoolchildren, is concerned about school traffic and the kids’ safety.
Vote for Valuntas as he is for the residents, his constituents, is an educated man that makes educated decisions based upon logic and his constituents’ needs. This former Florida House of Representatives candidate will find it an honor to vote for him.
Laurel Bennett, Royal Palm Beach