Big Super Bowl news day in Daytona: Open letter to Gov. Scott on corruption, exclusive interview with Waverly Media's R. Garrett & J. Sotolongo

Palmer Wilson and Dewb Denys / Headline Surfer®Ramara Garrett & Jim Sotolongo of Waverly Media / Headline Surfer®
Headline Surfer photo® /Palmer Wilson, shown at far left, was removed as chair and member of the SEV ad authority an unprecedented second time in October. In the inset photo, Ramara Garrett and Jim Sotolongo, are facing mortgage-related fraud charges in federal court while dealing with the backdrop of a County Council investigation into political advertising connected to their company and incessant coverage in print media they believe is intended to ruin their advertising business.

DAYTONA BEACH -- This Super Bowl Sunday already is a day stacking up with lots of news. The two most significant news developments are an "open letter" to Gov. Scott on pervasive corruption in Volusia County government involving Councilwoman Deborah Denys in the removal of Palmer Wilson from the SEV ad authority and an exclusive interview with Ramara Garrett and Jim Sotolongo. They are the principals in Waverly Media who are accused of mortgage fraud in federal court.

The couple believe they and co-defendants in the ferderal case are being demonized by incessant coverage in the Daytona Beach News-Journal with their lucrative bench adverting business as the ultimate prize. There is a significant breaking news element to this that will be publisherd first. Callas and emails to News-Journal executives have gone unanswered.

As to the letter to the governor, Headline Surfer®  is asking him to intervene in pervasive corruption in Volusia County government that is undermining public confidence and trust.

The internet newspaper is alleging County Councilwoman Deborah Denys abused her elected office for "pecuniary" gain by having Southeast Volusia Advertising Authority Chairman and board member Palmer Wilson removed in October as a favor to "insiders" to regain access to bed-tax monies. The alleged benefit to Denys is campaign financing and other support for her 2014 re-election effort.

It's a serious allegation and not one Headline Surfer® takes lightly since the internet newspaper's complaint accuses her of a second-degree felony. Headline Surfer® will request the Office of Statewide Prosecution and grand jury intervention to fully investigate the situation which has become a growing public disgrace. 

This story, too, has a significant breaking news element that calls into question why the county has not taken over the SVAA like it did when allegations surfaced against a former executive director, Nicole Carni, two years ago. That situation, too, remains stalled.

While some have queried Headline Surfer® as to whether its alleged accusations against the first-term councilwoman are nothing beyond dirty politics, the internet newspaper believes it has "ample" circumstantial evidence for the Office of Statewide Prosecution, which is supposed to investigate such claims of wrongdoing.At the very least, Headline Surfer® will insist on an OSP/grand jury inquest.

The letter to the governor also will address concerns about the County Council's so-called investigation of Waverly Media by private attorney Jonathan Kaney, Jr. as to whether his involvement as an "investigator" is even legal, never mind the the enormous cost to the taxpayers. 

And the letter will address December's Ethics Commission complaints that were dismissed against New Smyrna Beach Mayor Adam Barringer and City Manager Pam Brangaccio. This story, too, has a breaking news element.

In light of these breaking news developments, Headline Surfer® may delay its planned Sunday Conversation on Longwood police and its Super Bowl Sunday player rankings until later in the day or Monday.

Henry Frederick Picture

Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories nearly evenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in West Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.