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St. Petersburg Times’ Sandra Gadsden doesn’t care for Foster personnel decisions

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The St. Petersburg Times Sandra Gadsden echoes much of the criticism I have leveled about Bill Foser’s awkward personnel decisions the Mayor has made during his first months on the job, especiallyFoster’s appointment of Todd Yost as the city’s lobbyist:

Yost’s appointment was announced in a rather curious way. “He didn’t contribute money, he didn’t raise money, he didn’t knock on doors for me,” Mayor Bill Foster said. “His involvement in my campaign was zero, zilch, none.”

No offense to Yost, but should Foster have filled the position with a novice at a time when the city badly needs state money, considering its budget shortfall of $12 million to $14 million?

Among the many applicants were some with valuable statewide connections who appeared to be better suited for the job.

Just like the hiring of Jim Neader, Foster’s campaign manager, as a $50,000-a-year sports consultant, this appointment seems forced.

Now, keep in mind,  one of Gadsden prime sources is the perpetually-disgruntled Rene Flowers, who Foster passed over for this position. Hence, Flowers got to put in her two cents about Yost’s selection:

“Code compliance, as you know, has nothing to do with governmental relations. (Yost) will be on an extremely steep learning curve.”

Speaking of steep learning curves, I’m beginning to think it’s Bill Foster is falling down from the steep learning curve he is on as Mayor.

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.

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