Something stinks in the city of Fort Lauderdale. For months, residents and business have dealt with overflowing sewage due to the city’s aging infrastructure. Last December, a sewer main break left residents of the Tarpon Bend neighborhood dealing with 2.5 million gallons of raw sewage. The Sun-Sentinel reported crews spent more than a month cleaning up the disgusting mess.
“It was covering everything that it touched, which is a bio-hazard,” said Jon Hines, of Cliff Berry, Inc., an environmental services company doing much of the work. “I wouldn’t want my kid picking that up, or my dog eating it or walking in it.”
Now, sewage pump trucks are a common sight in the city. Readers send pictures of the trucks to Sun-Sentinel reporter Brittany Wallman, who shares them on Twitter.
Since then, the sewer mess has become a major issue in the upcoming City of Fort Lauderdale elections. Even though angry residents blame the sitting commissioners for ignoring the problem, Vice-Mayor Bruce Roberts claims he will handle the matter if elected Mayor in 2018. Roberts recently sent a mailer to residents.
The Roberts mailer states “politicians like to point their fingers and place blame.” This appears to be a direct reference to Charlotte Rodstrom, one of his opponents. (Rodstrom sent a mailer with pictures of the sewer pump trucks.)
Declaring that “leaders takle action,” the mailer claims Roberts has been at the forefront of the sewer issue. The piece states Roberts is a “genuine” leader who is “doing what needs to get done.”
Apparently, one of the things that needs to “get done” is paying the regulatory compliance manger of a sewage pump company for “campaign research.”
ROBERTS PAYS CLIFF BERRY EMPLOYEE FOR “CAMPAIGN RESEARCH” WORK
According to campaign financial reports, Bruce Roberts’ campaign paid $375 to a Plantation company for “campaign research.” The report shows the campaign made the payment to Legal-Ease Professionals, LLC in September. According to State records, the company was founded in May 2016 by Kelly Brandenburg.
According to State and local records, attorney Kelly Brandenburg is the regulatory compliance manager for Cliff Berry, Inc of Fort Lauderdale. According to their website, Cliff Berry, Inc. specialized in hazardous waste removal and “disposal management.” This is the same company hired to clean up the Tarpon Bend mess in January.
While her LinkedIn resume page states she stopped working for Cliff Berry, Inc. in 2016, other documents show Kelly Brandenburg working on behalf of the company in 2017.
Also, when REDBROWARD called Cliff Berry, Inc on December 4, 2017 and asked for Kelly Brandenburg, the operator said, “one moment please.”
BRANDENBURG CANNOT REMEMBER WHAT SHE DID FOR BRUCE ROBERTS
REDBROWARD spoke to Kelly Brandenburg while she was working at Cliff Berry. Inc office in Fort Lauderdale. When asked if she still works for Cliff Berry, Inc, Brandenburg said she is “doing work for them.” She claims to have many clients.
When it comes to her client in the Fort Lauderdale Mayoral race, Brandenburg did not have much to say.
When asked if Legal-Ease Professionals LLC usually performs “campaign research,” Brandenburg said, “not generally.” She stated her company usually reviews contracts for clients. When asked what she did for Bruce Roberts, Brandenburg said she would need to check her records. “I don’t know why [Roberts] said that,” she stated.
REDBROWARD asked Bruce Roberts for comment. As of publication, Roberts has not responded.
Does Bruce Roberts’ political guru Judy Stern know about this sewer pumping company-based campaign research? Why can’t the sewer pumping company manager remember the work she did for the City of Fort Lauderdale Vice Mayor just a few months ago?
Bruce Roberts is making the sewer issue part of his campaign. Like he said, “leaders take action.” Fort Lauderdale residents deserve answers about who is working for Bruce Roberts.