Richard Matassa
Working to Restore Pride in Hernando
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Strong Positive Leadership –

I believe there is a lack of strong, positive leadership in all levels of our government. It is my belief that leaders should take responsibility and be accountable, whether things are good or bad. I believe that one of the largest problems we are faced with today is that we have trained politicians in leadership roles. They are willing to take credit for all of the great things, but if things do not turn out for the best, they are not willing to stand up and take the blame. Great leaders are willing to take the blame and work harder than they did yesterday to fix it. As a commissioner, he will be accountable and responsible to the county residence and tax payers.

A champion of small local business –

I have been a small business owner in Hernando County for over 20 years. As a young man I was a part of the leadership at my fathers company, Samsson Construction, Inc. a company I still own and run with my family. In addition to Samsson Construction, I own and operate A Civil Design Group, LLC, founded in 2006 after a longtime partnership at Civil-Tech Consulting Engineers, Inc. I am proud that even in an economy which has hit these industries hard, I have been able to not only sustain these companies, but expand in the construction industry, adding 9 full time jobs since December of 2011. I work hard for small local business and understand its importance within the community. As a commissioner I will further champion the cause of all small local businesses in Hernando County, working hard to make Hernando County local business friendly and openly invite entrepreneurs from anywhere to become a part of our community.

A champion for Housing and property values in Hernando County –

I understand the pressures our housing market is under, between sinkholes, insurance rates and outside competition such as The Villages, and other states around the country which have become friendlier to retirees. This is a priority that all of us should find critical to our communities’ success. We are at a crossroads which will require innovative ideas, strong positive leadership and ultimately a change in the culture of Hernando County. All efforts should be made to improve the marketability of our existing communities, such as Timber Pines, Spring Hill, Silverthorn, Ridge Manor and all others through out the county. This can be done with innovative planning ideas incorporated in newer communities throughout the country. This will cost taxpayers nothing, yet offer developers and future residents incentives to become a part of our community. In the area of sinkholes, although more laws are not always the answer, we need to push for laws that require accountability of engineers, inspectors, builders and insurance companies to prove that a sinkhole has damaged the structure, to the point which endangers health safety and welfare. As a trained structural engineer, I often find that minor lapses in construction, design or inspections have lead to the cosmetic issues we see. Further, the truth that nobody speaks of is that voids within the sandy soils existed prior to the construction of the structure. This is not a new phenomenon and not a phenomenon exclusive to Hernando County. As a commissioner I will spread the word that this issue is not the “be all end all” of Hernando County and that alternative construction methods to account for these concerns need to be explored.

The youth and future of Hernando County –

I moved to Hernando County as a young man with my family. Growing up here in was second to none and a utopian experience. While growing up and going away to college, there was no question that I would come back to my home and be a part of this great community. Today, in a declining community and a weak job market, do we offer this same opportunity to our youth, or are we losing our best and brightest to other, more promising parts of Florida or our great Country? Do we offer them a sense of community and pride, in addition to a strong enough economy for them to participate and succeed? I believe it is crucial to the success of a community to bring back our best and brightest and as a commissioner will work tirelessly with the community to bring these young men and women back, with an effort to building industry and a sense of community Hernando County desperately needs and deserves.

Economic Development –

Our community cannot be strong economically until we have again become a preferred destination of retirees around the country and world. With a plan in place, county staff and community dedicated to this goal, we then have an opportunity as a growing and prosperous community to offer to companies small and large around the country a community that welcomes and supports business with open arms to Hernando County. We can offer a prosperous future, an educated work force and a place with a sense of community. As a commissioner I will work tirelessly, working the phones, meeting with business leaders, both those which I have long term relationships with and business leaders I have yet to meet. I will market our great community with a bright and proud future.

“Working to Restore Pride in Hernando”
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