Do gas pump inspection stickers double as political promotion?

Reporter: Dannielle Garcia
Published: Updated:
Nikki Fried gas pump inspection sticker. (Credit: WINK News)
Nikki Fried gas pump inspection sticker. (Credit: WINK News)

Look at the pump the next time you fill up a vehicle in Lee County. Chances are, you will a sticker featuring Niki Fried, agriculture secretary, or Sheriff Carmine Marceno, of Lee County Sheriff’s Office.

Political Analyst Susan MacManus said it is a common practice, especially for people new in their positions.

“Public officials are really trying hard to make sure people know who they are and the positions they hold because there’s so many positions out there,” MacManus said. “And someone new or someone vital like a sheriff it’s really not surprising.”

Taxpayers pay the bill for these stickers and other signage you see around the state. We asked people at the pump if it makes a difference to them.

“It’s a good idea to inform the public that somebody actually did inspect those pumps to make sure there were no skimmers,” Lana Kuperferschmid said. “I couldn’t care the least who’s picture is on it.”

Fried spent $5,000 in taxpayer money on her inspection stickers. She said she put her face on the labels to get people talking about gas skimmers and she said it has worked.

WINK News filed a public information request to find out how much the sheriff spent on his inspection stickers. Our request is pending.

One man at the pump told us, it does not matter if it is a Democrat or Republican on the sticker. He feels he has no say in the matter.

“I may or may not agree with the view of that political candidate and my money is going to him,” Christopher Sliter said.

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