Editor’s note: Dick Winger is completely his most recent term on City Council having been appointed to finish the remainder of Councilman Joe Graves’ term six months earlier. Previously, Winger has served on City Council six terms and two terms as mayor. The following are his recommendations to fill two open seats on Council in the upcoming November 2 election.
Since my two terms as mayor of Vero Beach, I have kept close track of the government of our beloved City, and of the Initial Progress to Save the Lagoon. Based upon that, I have two strong recommendations for your vote for City Council.
Rey Neville is currently Vice Mayor and doing an exceptional job of protecting our City, plus working on Programs to begin saving the Lagoon. For instance, he is behind the approval for the City to purchase and operate a second streetsweeper to clean up stormwater pollution before the waters goes into the Lagoon. Rey has been a prime sponsor of moving the City Sewer Plant to the Airport site. The new plant will reduce harmful nitrogen from 16ppm to 3ppm in the reuse water used for sprinkling, which seeps into the Lagoon. These are just examples of his leadership on the Lagoon. On another front, just as one example, Rey successfully opposed efforts to increase the square footage of buildings allowed on neighborhood lots, in favor of keeping green space and our tree canopy.
You might not know that Rey’s boyhood home is where the Tide’s restaurant is located. He is a past Commodore of the Vero Beach Yacht Club, lives in Central Beach on the Island, and he is a director on the board of the Florida Council of Yacht Clubs. Rey is a retired Air Force Colonel and he was executive VP of a major point-of-purchase plastics design and manufacturing firm. Put another way, Rey has had a lifelong leadership role in military service, business, and public service in keeping Vero Beach special, all that plus spending his boyhood in Vero Beach.
Ken Daige is an experienced former 2-time City Council member and now on the City Charter Review Commission and Code Enforcement Board. With his past service on the Planning and Zoning Board, he has been an outstanding advocate for our neighborhoods and commercial areas. Believe it or not, since 1986 Ken has served on over 50 local Boards, Commissions, and Outreach efforts, including planning for Ocean Drive/Main Street, the City effort to stop the train, and furthering updates to Veterans Memorial Island Sanctuary. Ken has attended and represented you at virtually every City Council meeting and Budget meeting for more years than I can remember.
You might not know Ken has lived in Vero Beach since 1975, is a Veteran of the U.S. Army 82nd Airborne, and since 1987 is the proprietor of Quality Kitchens and Bath, Inc. He lives in the Historic Osceola Park neighborhood on the Mainland and is a very responsible and informed citizen of Vero Beach.
Thank you, and God Bless you and God Bless our special city!