Letter: Can a leopard change his spots?

Flower Mound resident Al Filidoro is running in the Republican Primary for Justice of the Peace – Precinct 4, against incumbent J. W. Hand and challengers Scott Smith and Harris Hughey.  Filidoro has stated he wants to bring “integrity” to the court.   Based on Flower Mound’s recent experiences with Filidoro, his touting bringing integrity to anything is laughable.

For those voters who are not familiar with Filidoro or those voters who have worked hard to forget him, here is some background.  Filidoro was a key member of the Northern, Filidoro, Lyda (NFL) ticket that swept the 2010 Flower Mound Council elections with an over 60% margin by leveraging the divisive issue of gas drilling. 

Just two years later, Flower Mound residents were so repulsed by the trio’s negative antics they voted by an even greater margin to oust the NFL. You may wonder what could have happened in just two short years that would cause such a complete turnaround in voter sentiment.  Filidoro’s lack of integrity and sound judgment, and lack respect for residents, business owners and fellow council members played a large role in the turnaround. 

During his term on council, Filidoro orchestrated the removal of planning and zoning board members who did not agree with efforts to manipulate land use ordinances, made it clear that certain land owner representatives were no longer welcome at Town Hall and openly disparaged fellow council members.  He stooped so low as to be caught on an open microphone at a council meeting calling one council member “evil” (in front of a troop of Girl Scouts no less). 

Filidoro’s treatment of business representatives attempting to bring economic development to Flower Mound was no better.  Filidoro refused to meet with the developers of Lakeside DFW (a billion dollar project) and then worked to place disparaging documents regarding Lakeside on the Town’s website (something that had never been done before).  Filidoro also famously voted against a $14 million expansion of a grocery store over moving a gas pump two feet despite a petition signed by over 1,000 residents.

These are just a few of the highlights from Filidoro’s stint on Flower Mound’s Town Council.  His behavior as a council member gives no assurance that he is suited for the job of Justice of the Peace.  In fact, it does the opposite.

Talk to residents in Flower Mound and many can give you other issues that concern them about Filidoro.  Think about going in front of JP Filidoro with a child truancy issue or a small claims case.   Being treated fairly might stretch your imagination given Filidoro’s history.

To many of us it is troubling that he was a Democrat until he moved to Texas.  He even sought elected office as a Democrat in 1982 in Lake County Ohio.  When asked about this at a recent Republican candidate forum, Filidoro offered no reason for his change of heart except that other people had done it.  Knowing Filidoro, it is not unreasonable to wonder if the switch was simply an opportunistic play to allow him to continue his pursuit of elected office.

One final issue I would leave you with, is an outstanding ethics complaint filed against Filidoro.  After losing the 2012  election in Flower Mound, Filidoro missed a state required campaign finance filing deadline – so I filed a complaint with the Texas Ethics Commission.  For most people this would be a simple matter of admitting a mistake and paying a fine.  Instead, Filidoro has chosen to dispute his wrongdoing and waste taxpayer money by requesting a formal disciplinary finding by the Texas Ethics Commission.  This is typical Filidoro.  Do we really need a Justice of the Peace that wastes taxpayer resources because he can’t admit he is wrong?  Do we need a Justice of the Peace who can’t admit when he’s wrong, judging us?

As a member of Flower Mound’s Town Council,  Al Filidoro was known for saying “the best indicator of future behavior is past behavior.” This will be the only time I urge you to take his words to heart.  Filidoro’s past behavior indicates what we can expect from him as Justice of the Peace – none of which is good.

There are qualified candidates without Filidoro’s storied history of being divisive and his demonstrated inability to make sound decisions.  Do not give Filidoro your vote for Justice of the Peace. 

Patsy Mizeur
Flower Mound, TX


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