State Rep. Brett Hage has announced he won’t seek another term in the Florida House of Representatives.
Hage has been howled at by constituents since it was revealed that he is earning $350,000 per year working for The Villages. At the time of the revelation, Hage was knee-deep in an effort to pass legislation that would protect his employer from impact fees to be levied by the Sumter County Commission.
Earlier this year, Villager Andrew Curtis announced he would be running against the Oxford Republican, whom he labeled as “hopelessly compromised.” Curtis has accused Hage of “selling out his own constituents” when he did an “end run” around newly elected Sumter County commissioners attempting to fulfill a campaign promise.
In an exclusive announcement to The Villages Daily Sun published in Friday morning’s edition, Hage said he reached the decision not to seek another term “after many discussions with my wife and family.” He conceded he was “certainly not a celebrity,” although once at a political rally in The Villages, state Sen. Dennis Baxley branded Hage as a political “superstar” after Hage recited the Pledge of Allegiance.
“My goal was never to achieve a ‘like’ on Facebook or a blue checkmark on Twitter,” Hage said.
Villager Ash Marwah, who has also filed to run for the Florida House, offered a harsh assessment of Hage’s two terms in office.
“Brett Hage was co-sponsor of HB337 which is keeping the impact fee low for the Developer and is causing our taxes to remain high after the 25 percent increase in Sumter County Ad Valorem taxes in 2019. We continue to pay the 25 percent higher taxes year after year. Brett Hage could not defend his record for working against the voters in Sumter County. I believe that is why he has dropped out of the race,” Marwah said.
Villager Gilbert Windson, an outspoken government critic, said Hage has “gone home to roost with the other chickens.”
He also suggested that Hage has been a hypocrite.
“Hage’s campaign rhetoric stated he was against Big Government. The impact fees are a good example of Big Government which took away the Villagers right to govern themselves,” Windsor said.
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