Cerabino: Let’s put speed bumps on Lantana’s sex-for-service complaint

Dear Town of Lantana residents:

You might have read recent news reports about one of our citizens filing a complaint with the Florida Commission on Ethics over a request she made to have speed bumps put in her neighborhood.

The complainant, Catherine Padilla, said that Mayor David Stewart had offered to get the town to install this safety measure in exchange for sex with the woman.

As you might imagine, we’ve had some calls at town hall about this. And many residents have asked us to clarify, or perhaps even publish, a listing of Lantana’s services and their corresponding acts of ethical, moral and personal degradation needed to obtain fast-lane approval from the town.

Some have even said, “Oh, brother. If sex is required for speed bumps, what acts of depravity are required from a homeowner to get a zoning-setback variance?”

And is it possible to get a “Stop!” sign from the town? No, then how about a “Don’t stop!” sign?

Or, “What’s the number to the mayor’s hotline?”

Frankly, we are tired of hearing these jokes. And on a side note, whoever is responsible, should immediately return the letter “L” to the sign in the public works department.

Remember, this is just an allegation, and we shouldn’t jump to conclusions.

As Mayor Stewart told The Palm Beach Post:

“These accusations are totally and completely false. I won’t dignify them by commenting. I continue to focus on doing my best for the residents of our town and community.”

So let’s just let the ethics commission do its job.

In the meantime, we appreciate that there are some in town who have expressed your concern for Mayor Stewart by offering to help him with his upcoming campaign for re-election next month.

But that’s not necessary because Mayor Stewart is running unopposed. He has no opponent, so there is no campaign.

So while he appreciates your well wishes, he does not require any help in crafting campaign slogans.

In other words, please stop suggesting slogans for his campaign such as “Swipe right for Mayor Stewart” or “For a good time: Mayor Stewart” or “Let Mayor Stewart give you a hand.”

The speed bumps-for-sex story has gone global, and even in a town that once was home to The National Enquirer, we find it jarring to be written up in the British tabloid, The Daily Mail.

And we are concerned that this story might be putting our sleepy little town on the map in an unflattering and indelible way.

So it’s time for residents to be good ambassadors for our town.

If somebody asks you about this, tell that person that this is not how things work in Lantana. And that, as far as you know, it is possible to get speed bumps in your neighborhood without removing a stitch of your clothing.

You might even want to throw in the possibility that this might just be a big misunderstanding.

That the mayor simply misheard the request.

There are many versions of speed bumps, with some being the more gently sloped variety. Maybe that was the request, and the mayor simply misheard a word.

Instead of hearing the words, “speed bump” he thought the woman said “speed hump.”

Bump. Hump. It can lead to a mistaken impression. Or another phone prank, which by the way, we’re tired of answering.

So please stop calling to say you need a “speed hump.”

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