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The Ave Herald

Serving the community of Ave Maria, Florida


Senator Bullard, Allow Us to Introduce Ourselves

It's been called a "town without a vote," but the community of Ave Maria until Wednesday was a town without a state senator - at least one who knew that Ave Maria was in her district.

State Senator Larcenia J. Bullard has represented the 39th District since 2003, but apparently was unaware until Wednesday that the town of Ave Maria and Ave Maria University are within her legislative jurisdiction.

In response to a query from a reader, the Ave Herald began assembling a list of names and contact information for the town's federal, state and county legislators. Since the town does not show up on district maps, but it appeared to lie within Sen. Bullard's district, The Ave Herald sent an email to the senator's office asking for confirmation of this.

No, Sen. Bullard, a Democrat, replied by email, Ave Maria was in a different senate district, one represented by Republican Garrett Richter (see copy of email below). But an aide in Sen. Richter's office said that Ave Maria was not in his district - but was represented by Sen. Bullard.

In a call Wednesday morning to Sen. Bullard's Miami office, an aide, Ralph McCloud, said he did not know whether Ave Maria was in Sen. Bullard's district or represented by yet another senator, whose district, it turns out, does not contain any part of Collier County. In a return call about an hour later, Mr. McCloud confirmed that Ave Maria is in Sen. Bullard's district.

Mr. McCloud would not comment when asked how it is that Sen. Bullard could emphatically state in an email that a development as significant as Ave Maria was not in her senate district. In response to a request to speak to Sen. Bullard, Mr. McCloud said that someone would get in touch with The Ave Herald, but no call was received by the close of business Wednesday.

Sen. Bullard, in her email to The Ave Herald, also mistakenly identified Tom Grady as the state representative serving Ave Maria. The state rep serving Ave Maria actually is Republican Matt Hudson.

Following is the email received from Sen. Bullard:

from This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

date Tue, Aug 4, 2009 at 4:35 PM

subject RE: Question about district

Mr. Shnaider:

I am in receipt of your e-mail. 

The Ave Maria community is located within the 37th Senate District, represented by Senator Garrett S. Richter.  Call (239) 417-6205 if you wish to bring any state-related matters to his attention.  Your State Representative is Tom Grady.  His office number is (239) 417-6200. 

Most Sincerely,

Senator Larcenia J. Bullard

Florida Senate • 39th District


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