At typical the town council meetings, there may be from 30 to 45 members who show up, but this meeting was anything but typical. I recollect that there were closer to 100 people present, with an unknown number of members. Many of the faces were new, including one Jamie Maas, wife of Dr. Gonzales. Many of the new visitors elected to hang out near the back of the room, many of those choosing to stand.
I elected to reduce the normal list of issues down to three, reduce airport noise, electric bikes and scooters, and vacation rentals. I purposefully elected to move STRs to the end of the discussion to educate our new visitors about other issues, although it seemed obvious that they were there for one reason.
I first summarized the key points I was going to cover with the remaining charts. Almost immediately upon putting up the first chart, people at the back began yelling out comments. The amount of yelling increased both in volume and numbers.
Many of the people were yelling out comments like, fake data, wrong, and some more personal insults. However, there was one heckler who really stood out, a blond, caucasian, who at one point, literally took steps toward me and with an anger that was palpable, yelled out that I was showing fake information or data (paraphrased). I had no idea who she was at the time.
But, now I know her name, Jaime Maas. Her husband was voted as an area representative on to the MBTC at the November election. Her husband was supported by Blaine Smith, owner of 710 Beach Rentals in his election guidelines. Jaime apparently has a short term rentals, or at least her name is listed in the 2018 as having a TOT certificate. This does not necessarily mean that she has a STR, but it would be consistent with her vehemence at the meeting.
What was particularly ironic is that her new mantra seems to be preaching for setting the past aside and focusing on the future. Really?