Wednesday, November 01, 2017


Good news. Should have been fired a long time ago. Don't let the door hit your stinky butt on the way out, GARY LARSON!

There's another reason to celebrate "New Years Eve Beach Blast Off" in St. Augustine Beach, Florida -- December 31, 2017 is GARY LARSON's last day encumbering the payroll full-time, or greasing a chair as inept, oleaginous, stinky tobacco-stained Building Official. GARY LARSON should NOT be kept on part-time until completion of the Key International Embassy Suites Hotel by Hilton. It's time for GARY LARSON to go! Go on, git!

Posted November 2, 2017 12:02 am
St. Johns County employee to replace St. Augustine Beach building official

A St. Johns County employee will take over duties as the city of St. Augustine Beach’s building official next month.

Brian Law will start as the full-time building official on Dec. 4 for $78,000 a year, City Manager Max Royle said. Royle said Law’s work with the county includes reviewing building plans, but full details of his resume weren’t available on Wednesday.

Current Building Official Gary Larson will remain on staff full time until Dec. 31, Royle said. After that, he will begin part-time work until inspections are complete for the Embassy Suites hotel at A1A Beach Boulevard.

Royle said that because the hotel is a complex project, he believes Larson should stay with the city part-time to make sure the hotel is built in accordance with city codes. But Larson won’t be directing the building department, Royle said.

Whenever hotel inspections are complete, Larson will not be employed with the city, Royle said. It’s not clear how early in 2018 those inspections will be done, he said.

Law grew up in the area and lives near City Hall, Royle said. Law couldn’t be reached for comment on Wednesday.

Royle said the city advertised for a new building official and received applications from 10 candidates, five of whom didn’t meet basic qualifications.

The building official’s work includes enforcing building codes, performing commercial inspections and acting as liaison for the planning and zoning board, Royle said.

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Edward Adelbert Slavin · 

Long overdue. Good riddance to an unjust steward.
But should Gary Larson have been disciplined or fired long ago for:
1. Favoritism toward wealthy landowners and inattention to detail, as in Mayor Richard Burtt O'Brien's illegal 14 F Street McMansion exceeding setbacks?
2. Alleged sexual harassment and retaliation (covered up and never properly investigated, in violation of federal sex discrimination law, by maladroit putative City "Manager" Bruce Max Royle?
3. Supine approval of too-tall Embassy Suites (for which he's going to be kept on until it's completed!)?.
4. Triple-dipping, simultaneously serving as Building Official for St. Augustine Beach and Callahan and Hilliard?.
5. Conflict of interest in formerly serving as an "Ex Officio" member of the St. Johns County Cultural Council board while it was funding inept or incomplete construction work on the Old City Hall, work recently found to be partly defective or incomplete by an independent structural engineer?
6. Failure to present new state building code to Commissioners for timely local code revisions?
7. Getting City sued for First Amendment violations by indulging clever property owner's request to issue an unconstitutional illegal sign permit for Alvin's Alley political sign (Trump for President), resulting in an ill-advised settlement allowing a curb cut that PZB and Commission had rightly denied?
8. Environmental insensitivity, e.g., as his ready willingness to approve any demand for a tree-killing permit? Larson's appalling tree-hating Weltanschauung was a sign of his lack of character. It forced PZB members and Commissioners to work extra hard to cure his bad decisions, as with magnificent Live Oak at new Marriott (saved thanks to heroic, indefatigable work by then-Mayor Sherman Gary Snodgrass and awesome arborist Chuck Lippi,) and another one that Larson would have allowed for doctor's five-car garage, simply because it was within "building footprint."
9. Know-it-all arrogance, with Larson sometimes emitting ugly ukases to concerned residents, barking at them in meetings ("YOU DON"T HAVE A RIGHT TO A VIEW!"),"he once sneered at residents concerned about a too-tall McMansion). Larson was unable or unwiliing to control or conceal his contempt for democracy or to answer questions coherently or competently or respectfully, or objectively while failing to respond to citizen, Commissioner and Board member document requests completely. He was a puppet and a doormat for developers.
10 Refusal to enforce the codes equally, resulting in some architects refusing to do work in St. Augustine Beach during this unjust stewards final days in his reign of error, due to perceived unfair, arbitrary, capricious decisions, incompetence, corruption or favoritism?
Good riddance to bad building inspector. He doesn't need any more time to do any more damage. Don't let him stay around as a part-timer. The new building inspector should perform and journalists and Commissioners should videotape the City of St. Augustine Beach's final inspections on the Key International Embassy Suites Hotel to avoid perceptions of further incompetence or corruption. We, the People are watching.
Louche developer lackey Gary Larson's departure is a moral victory for local activists and for good government. But it's a shame he was allowed to stay so long, harassing employees while inflicting bad decisions.
The too-tall Key International Embassy Suites on St. Augustine Beach shall stand -- until it is possibly inundated by a future hurricane or global ocean level rise -- as a monument to mendacity, misfeasance, malfeasance, nonfeasance, flummery, dupery and nincompoopery. And to tobacco-stinky LARSON's being a lousy building official, a lazy lackey for AKERMAN SENTERFITT, ROGERS TOWERS and other corpulent corrupt corporate law firms.
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