On May 21, 2014 Monroe County Florida Government decided to show leniency to the Marine Mammal Conservancy (MMC) in Key Largo by reducing their outstanding code violation fines by ninety-percent. Many of these code violations put the public at risk for the volunteers who worked on and off from 2009 to 2011 at the Conservancy. Most of the code violations in 2011 were documented by me personally under the guidance and direction of Russ Rector, who reported them to Monroe County Code officials, Florida State Department of Health officials and Federal NMFS officials. The ninety-percent reduction would have meant the MMC would have to pay just $58,000 in fines to wipe the books clean. Unfortunately, as we’ve seen in the past, the Marine Mammal Conservancy is not always forthcoming with facts and information. The MMC “forgot” to mention that they were banned from rescuing any marine mammals by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), along with other “marine rescue” organizations in Florida late last year. This oversight on behalf of the MMC caused the Monroe County government to revoke their fine reduction offer.
Monroe County currently is pursuing a Commercial Foreclosure case against the Marine Mammal Conservancy, Richard Gudoian Jr. and other unknown parties in possession of the property. The next court hearing is October 29, 2014 at 9:30am in the Monroe County Courthouse located on Marathon Key.
The MMC once again owes what’s rightfully due, $580,000 to Monroe County, bye bye. C’est la vie!
Here’s the Keynoter newspaper from June 2014 mentioning the reversal of the reduced fine agreement. Keynoter 06-14-2014