Welcome to

Capitol News Service

Florida's Best Political Television Coverage

Recent Posts

RSS Capitol News LIVE

  • Volunteer Gets Crafty With Hand Painted Yard Signs for Candidate 1, October21, 2016
    In a time of big money campaigns, volunteers in one Florida Congressional race are a real throwback. As Matt Galka tells us, some folks are getting crafty when it comes to yard signs. Meet Herb Shelton. He’s not running for anything so don’t expect to see his name on the ballot. But Shelton has become a […]
    Matt Galka
  • Lawsuit says medical marijuana question not on some ballots 1, October21, 2016
    A lawsuit filed in Southeast Florida alleges that the medical marijuana amendment was left off some mail in ballots.  Attorneys say they aren’t sure if it was a half dozen, ten thousand or a hundred thousand ballots. A quarter million mail ballots have gone out Broward County, 60 thousand have already been returned. At least […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Federal Judge Rules Against Democrats in Registration Case 1, October20, 2016
    Thousands of Floridians took advantage of an extended voter registration deadline in the state, but getting them verified in time to cast a regular early voting ballot may be in doubt. As Matt Galka tells us, Florida Democrats hoped a federal judge could force the state’s hand and not make them cast provisional ballots. Florida […]
    Matt Galka
  • Politics and Policy at the Pub Thanks to Florida State 1, October19, 2016
    Some people go to bars and restaurants to get away from the noise surrounding politics – especially during this unique political season.  But as Matt Galka tells us, Florida state University is serving up heady policy discussion at a local pub. A couple of beers, a little bit of food…and some voting issues. That’s what […]
    Matt Galka
  • Just 12 Consumers have given to Consumers for Smart Solar 1, October19, 2016
      Florida’s investor owned utilities have pumped more than 15 million into Amendment one on November’s ballot. They say it protects consumers who have solar and those who don’t, but many believe it will only promote solar developed by the very companies companies pushing the amendment. The ads are slick. “Just think one for the […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Florida in the Middle of New Report Ranking State’s Gun Laws and Gun Violence 1, October18, 2016
    Florida is right in the middle when it comes to a new report correlating state’s gun laws and gun violence. But as Matt Galka tells us, some democrats in the state say we are going in the wrong direction. Stricter gun laws equals less gun violence. That’s the takeaway from the Center for American Progress […]
    Matt Galka
  • Judge Rules in Favor of Dems, Orders Mismatching Signature Fix 1, October17, 2016
    Voters who mail in their ballots now have some peace of mind if they scribble their names too sloppy. As Matt Galka tells us, a federal judge made sure that people will have the chance to fix a signature mistake – and make sure their vote counts. “The state of Florida has consistently chipped away […]
    Matt Galka
  • Supreme Court throws out new death sentencing scheme, inmates in limbo 1, October14, 2016
    The Supreme Court of Florida today said that a unanimous jury was required for the state to impose death, throwing out a newly enacted law that allowed ten jurors to impose the ultimate penalty, but as Mike Vasilinda tells us, the court left unanswered what happens to the nearly 400 people already on death row. […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Feds Suspect Florida Hack 1, October13, 2016
    Is Florida voting information in the hands of Russian hackers? As Matt Galka tells us, the feds think it might be, but a state agency says all is well. Cyber security and hacking have become prominent in the election cycle.  Federal investigators believe Russian hackers are behind the attacks. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is […]
    Matt Galka
  • Trump Remarks: Unsafe on any Campus 1, October12, 2016
    The book Unsafe on any Campus was released in July and details administrators inability to adequately deal with sexual assaults on campus, but as Mike Vasilinda tells us, the author now says their problem could be more difficult because of lewd remarks by Donald Trump. When the Washington Post released the video of Donald Trump […]
    Mike Vasilinda

RSS Quote of the Day



Whistleblower says he Poisoned Trees

September 8th, 2011 by Anna Laura Rehwinkel

He worked for Floridas largest billboard company. His job, he says, poisoning trees that block signs. Robert Barnhart was let go last month. Yesterday he filed a whistleblower lawsuit in Federal Court. Whitney Ray brings us an exclusive interview with the former Lamar employee from our Tallahassee bureau.

This tree on Capital Circle near Tom Brown Park in Tallahassee is dying because Robert Barnhart poisoned it. According to a complaint he filed in federal court a supervisor at his job with Lamar Advertising, told him to poison trees blocking billboards.

Right above that branch is where we drilled the hole, said Barnhart.

Barnhart says he climbed the tree, drilled a hole above this branch and poured in poison.

Its definitely dying. Its a result of the chemical. And the reason why it was poisoned is because its in the way of the billboard, said Barnhart.

This elm should look the tree right next to it, green and full of life, but all of the leaves have fallen off and pieces of bark are all along the ground and pretty soon the city will come chop it down.

Barnhart filed a lawsuit against Lamar in Federal Court Wednesday. The suit claims, Barnhart was given a machete, told to hack at the root system, then pour poison on the cut.

I was drove around the day before and showed the locations to poison and told, come in an unmarked truck, dont wear a Lamar logo, wear dust mask and kitchen gloves and poison the trees, said Barnhart.

Killing large trees without a permit is a felony. In this written complain Barnhart told the company he want nothing to do with killing trees. The lawsuit claims he was let go after filing the complaint. His Attorney Steve Andrews says Lamar was trying to quiet Barnhart.

No one wants a whistleblower working for them in a big corporation, said Andrews.

Barnhart was given immunity by the state attorney. Hes suing Lamar for his old job back plus damages. Lamar says the claims are false and calls Barnhart a disgruntled worker.

Lamar Advertising didnt have anyone in Tallahassee today to speak oncamera about the lawsuit, but we were able to reach Barnharts former boss Danny Funderburgh on the phone. Funderburgh says he never received a complaint from Barnhart and hes still actually on the payroll. As for their policy regarding trees that block signs, Funderburgh said we do not have a policy to kill trees or remove any trees. Lamar Advertising follows city and state regulations.

Posted in State News | 9 Comments »

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.

copyright © 2013 by Capitol News Service | Powered by Wordpress | Hosted by LyonsHost.com