HOW TO MAKE A GOOD IMPRESSION….Don Young is a congressman from Alaska, not Lee County, Florida. So why was he so intent on approving a $10 million earmark to extend Coconut Road in Bonita Springs eastward several miles so it could join up to I75? An extension that neither the local congressman nor Lee County officials had any interest in? Funny you should ask:
The Coconut Road money is a boon, however, to Daniel J. Aronoff, a real estate developer who helped raise $40,000 for Mr. Young at the nearby Hyatt Coconut Point hotel days before he introduced the measure.
….A consultant who helped push for the project spelled out why its supporters held the fund-raiser. “We were looking for a lot of money,” said the consultant, Joe Mazurkiewicz. “We evidently made a very good impression on Congressman Young, and thanks to a lot of great work from Congressman Young, we got $81 million to expand Interstate 75 and $10 million for the Coconut Road interchange.”
….When he was approached near the House floor by a reporter, Mr. Young responded with an obscene gesture.
Yes, $40,000 probably counts as a “very good impression.” On the bright side, at least they didn’t deliver it in bricks of hundred dollar bills wrapped in aluminum foil.