By Anne Michael-Anthony
After three months on the job, Councilwoman Bettina Rodriguez-Aguilera is targeted for recall and among the allegations against her is abuse of power.
Vanessa Brito, president of the Miami Voice PAC is at the helm and directing the efforts for the recall. She accused the Councilwoman of abusing her power as an elected official for her own benefits. Brito held a press conference on Thursday, March 7th, in front of the City of Doral Government Center in which she brought forth her efforts which are underway with the signing of a petition by citizens of Doral to recall the Councilwoman. “The abuse of power is an evil that exists in several cities of the county,” Brito said at the press conference.
The Councilwoman denies Brito’s allegations, “This recall is a mockery of democracy,” Rodríguez-Aguilera said. She further claims that this is a plot headed by Pete Cabrera in retaliation to lawsuits against him and Vice Mayor Sandra Ruiz.
In an official statement that the Councilwoman released to a local Doral paper, she states,
“The allegations on the Petition are frivolous and we have emerged victorious in Court. Should anyone wish to see a copy of the Judge’s decision we will make it available. The lawsuit is an Equal Employment Opportunity Council (EEOC) complaint against Pete Cabrera and Sandra Ruiz both of whom where in the City Council at the time. Any potential monies derived from the lawsuit will be given back in full to the City for quality of life and economic development projects.
There are three lawsuits filed against them for abuse of power, discrimination and assault. One such case of assault against Pete Cabrera has been settled for over $36,000. In addition there are nine complaints, all of which were filed by women City employees.” Bettina Rodriguez-Aguilera stated.
However, all Brito needs to boot the Councilwoman out of her seat is to collect signatures for a cumulative 15% of registered voters in the City of Doral – 2,412 valid signatures. But, exactly what is Brito’s vested interest in the Councilwoman’s demise from power? What exactly is the Miami Voice PAC and why is it so fixated on Councilwoman Rodriguez-Aguilera?
Is there an “internal war” brewing within City Hall? And, if the 2,412 signatures are collected, will the Councilwoman be in or out? Is Brito the one abusing the power of the press to launch a frivolous campaign against the Councilwoman? It seems we have more questions than answers and the City of Doral is in for some challenging times.