A millionaire accused of massacring mangroves on his property narrowly won the vice-mayor's post in yesterday's Palmetto Bay run-off. John DuBois beat Brian Pariser by 28 votes to claim the seat.
Those 28 voters apparently didn't care that the Miami-Dade Department of Environmental Protection has tagged DuBois for "causing irreparable harm to the environment."
Back in 2003, the department cited DuBois for illegally cutting down red, white, and black mangrove trees in his backyard that were blocking the waterfront view he enjoins from his two-story mansion on Old Cutler Road and 175th Avenue. In September, the county sued DuBois because he has refused for more than ten years to replant new mangroves.
DuBois, who purchased his six-acre property for $2.5 million in 2000, sought to dismiss the lawsuit earlier this month, claiming the county's timing is suspect. In his motion, Dubois claims he is "disappointed the plaintiff decided to file suit eight weeks before the election." The lawsuit is still pending.
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DuBois essentially bankrolled his own campaign. Of the $77,291 he raised, $52,500 were personal loans he made to himself. In the other Palmetto Bay city council seat that went to a run-off, financial advisor Tim Schaffer beat businessman Jim Araiza by 217 votes.
Banana Republican left a message on DuBois's voicemail seeking comment and we'll update the post if he responds.