Sunday, February 2, 2014

Joe for Mayor of Hilton Head? Responsible Tourism In and For Our Communities: Timeshares, Resorts, and Beyond

Invest in Your Community, and Your Community Will Invest in You, says Keith Lee, Esquire, of Hammer Law Group, LLC in his article at www.AbovetheLaw.com. And, quite frankly, I agree. Joe and I offer free consultations at our law firm, though we have accepted up to $50.00 on a handful of occasions. Mr. Lee says that "[y]ou have to give yourself freely because you genuinely want to help the community." I know that Joe and I make it a priority to have personal and genuine attorney-client relationships with our clients. So we do not take on cases with which we fundamentally disagree or if we do not believe in our clients or their causes.

Our primary practice area has become timeshare litigation, not because we've been getting rich along the way - it's not - but because we genuinely want to improve our community. Hilton Head Island is dependent upon tourism and the resort industry, and the residents of Hilton Head are dependent upon the same industries, either directly as employees and independent contractors of the same or indirectly as an ancillary industry such as restaurants and professional services. And when hundreds and thousands of people complain about the timeshare and resort industry on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, and other communities, we do not believe that it is a conspiracy of so many people over a span of so many years to defame and damage the reputable timeshare industry.

Thousands of complaints about the timeshare industry in South Carolina and on Hilton Head Island can be found on websites like www.ripoffreport.com, www.complaintsboard.com, www.redweek.com, www.scambook.com, www.islandpacket.com, www.tugbbs.com, www.hatemytimeshare.com, and other similar websites. Moreover, thousands more are received by various government entities that are commonly complained to, such as the Mayor of Hilton Head's Office, the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Affairs Commission, the Attorney General's Office for South Carolina, the US Attorney General's Office, the Governor of South Carolina's Office, various public officials and government entities from states throughout the United States, the Better Business Bureau, the FBI, the CIA, the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office, the IRS, the AARP, various public officials, and the South Carolina Real Estate Commission.

We could be wrong, of course. It has happened before. This could be a conspiracy amongst all of these complainants. They could all be lying. Maybe they all have secret, nefarious motivations. Maybe they all have the same wicked motivations and coordinated this conspiracy of complaints to defame and damage the reputable timeshare industry. They passed down their plans to their descendants in their genes and secretly meet to plot against these upstanding timeshare and resort salespeople and businesses. And their conspiracy survives today. Complaints of timeshare fraud in South Carolina and Hilton Head are publicly available for transactions already occurring in 2014.

Ripping off vacationers in timeshare and other similar transactions is a short sighted economic plan. Not just because they are people; let's not forget the obvious one. And not only because so many vacationers are also the people who have decided to become residents of Hilton Head. But how long does it last? When will the gig be up? When will the timeshare developers finally be held responsible for their actions and leave your particular community's economy in shambles. Name tarnished as a result of ripping off vacationers. Residents still remaining with their homes, families, and responsibilities. And an economic industry forever damaged. What then? Borrowing from Mr. Lee: "this is a wrongheaded and foolish approach" by the timeshare companies with bad business practices and the people that support them.

"Investing in your community, putting your work ethic and professionalism on display for the betterment of a group of people . . . puts you in the minds of everyone in that community" says Mr. Lee. And I agree. That is why I keep telling Joe to run for Mayor. With the birth of my first child, my son, Paxton Steven Naert, my community matters even more to my family and me. As Mayor, I believe that Joe DuBois, my law partner, would represent the interests of the residents of Hilton Head Island and oppose any short-sighted practices of the timeshare, resort, and other industries. But I don't know if Joe is taking me seriously.

The widespread use of the internet has put on display the work ethic and professionalism of the timeshare, resort, and other businesses on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, and other communities by way of websites like those linked above. I believe that we should take responsibility in our communities with responsible tourism policies and practices for the futures of our communities and our families.

To quote Mayor Joe Riley of Charleston, South Carolina: "local businesses are important to the city's economy, but misleading practices are not." Luckily, businesses don't vote. If you believe that Joe DuBois should consider running for Mayor of Hilton Head Island in the 2014 election to be held on November 4, 2014, please click HERE and let Joe know your vote!

Zach Naert