Mayor Bill Foster's Big Brother machine for 2012 RNC

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Last week, Mayor Foster and his staff convinced City Council to approve spending $270,000 on security cameras to be put in place before the RNC party that is scheduled for the end of August at Tropicana Field.

We’ve covered Foster’s aspirations to become the Big Brother of St. Petersburg, as well as his early failures, but now he is spending over a quarter-million dollars on security cameras for a one-day event, without any guarantee of being reimbursed for the expense. How is it that in the fifth year of budget cuts Council-chair Curran was the only one to vote against this waste of money?

Worse still, we don’t know where these cameras will be placed, or how many there will be, all in the name of “security”.

And in a slap to the face of city council, after the vote Mayor Foster says the cameras will not be moved to neighborhoods(the opposite of what the City Administrator had said), and if council wants neighborhood crime hot spot cameras it is “up to them to figure out a way to pay for them”. With that, Mayor Foster showed just how much of a jerk he can be, especially since the funding source for his new cameras isn’t guaranteed.

Cross-posted with permission of Bob Wilson of the Bill Foster Watch.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.