An elected county official admits he ignored an ordinance on the beach that states "it is unlawful to ignite an open flame without a permit on the beach," although enforcement is at an officer's discretion.

District 5 Commissioner Tony Anderson said he likes to celebrate his birthday each year on the beach and cooks with a gas grill. "I hate to see that taken away."

Can anyone tell me when "gas grills" were ever allowed on our beaches or why Mr. Anderson could get away with this at a code enforcement officer's discretion?

I recognize that his son is a beach vendor and that WOOD bonfires are allowed with the proper permitting, but there is nothing in the ordinance or permitting process that allows for "gas grills" on our beaches. NOTHING! (State and local parks have charcoal grills.)

We don't get to play by the ordinances/laws that suit us, Mr. Anderson. That is not how the government is supposed to work. You took an oath to uphold the laws of the State of Florida including county offices where you hold a seat on our government.

I do recognize, Mr. Anderson, that perhaps you have not celebrated a birthday on the beach as a County Commissioner yet or had your "gas grill" down there since you were elected, but it begs the question: If you did this as a citizen, weren't you breaking the law then as well? And shame on code enforcement too for turning the other cheek!

Code enforcement not enforcing the ordinances we have now is what continually makes vendors a target.

Be part of the solution, not part of the problem, Mr. Anderson.

— Lynda Morse, DeFuniak Springs