Monday, August 31, 2009
Candidate Wes Blackman for City Commission District 3 wrote a letter to the entire Commission, including the City Manager and City Attorney this morning asking for his opponent, Jo-Ann Golden, to recuse herself from voting for CRA Board member Ed Grimm's re-appointment as well as any interviewee. Inspite of his objection, Mr. Grimm was voted back on the Board. Mr. Grimm works for the CDC, the same employer as Vice Mayor Golden.
As everyone knows, Board appointments ARE political. That is the bottom line. Evidently our City Attorney saw no conflict of interest.
There were six slots opened with the original field of thirty applicants narrowed down to seventeen because of voluntary withdrawals. Those who the Commission felt were the most qualified and showed respect for the City Commission were appointed as follows:
Ed Grimm 4 votes, 2013
Michael Hyde 4 votes, 2013
Cary Sabol 4 votes, 2013
Andy Amoroso 3 votes, 2011
Jessica Rockstein 3 votes, 2011
Peter Meyerhoefer 2 votes, 2010
I understand that several people have dropped out due to two things 1) the postponement at the last minute when they were to interview previously and 2) what the CRA did last week and what they voted upon.
I have been told that these two decisions, the first made by the Mayor and the other made by the present CRA Board itself, have put a damper on the process. Hopefully, we will have a new Board that will understand what the goal is...eliminate slum and blight, not spend nearly a $million on a dream or $15 million on two roads.
There is a cross section of the city applying for this Board and hopefully the City Commission will pick from all the different interests who live and/or have businesses in the city and choose from the various neighborhoods.
If there was a Palm Beach County Hero Award, I can’t think of anyone more deserving than Ed Tichenor. Ed is with Reef Rescue, an organization totally focused and dedicated to saving our coral reefs. It is a continuous battle from boats scraping anchors along the ocean’s bottom thereby killing this living breathing animal to man’s pollution. He is now fighting the greed of a municipality.
Ed wants to bring the Federal protection from as far as the
Reef Rescue has proof positive of its assertions but Palm Beach argues that this is of little significance to them--they don't care--that it is a small amount and uncommon. The Town of
Commissioner Jennings has brought forth a ballot initiative where all voters who live in
With Ed’s tenacity, and the help of Lake Worth, the Staghorn Coral might have a living chance.
Nicholas Gieseler from the Pacific Legal Foundation was present on Tuesday for the Sunset issue. This was Sunset Holding's secret weapon. His spiel? The Bert J. Harris Act will do the City in. Pacific Legal specializes in pro business causes. Nicholas drove all the way down from his office located in Stuart.
Pacific Legal is described as "the key right-wing public interest litigation firm in a network of similar organizations funded initially by Scaife Foundations money across the USA to support capitalism and oppose environmental and health activism and government regulation. The organization has been partially funded by a range of corporations and conservative foundations." Say what?
Nicholas, nothing is a slam dunk and that is something that all lawyers should learn in law school. I offer you that advice for free. One thing that they probably do teach those in law school is that the man who wins is the man who thinks he can. Nicholas was not lacking in confidence.
Try again, Nicholas. This is the real world where homework would have helped you realize that there is NO Bert J. Harris taking here.
Right along with the billboard blight we also have property on Lake Osborne drive in need of some attention. I have been wondering about this property for some time. It has been in this shape for the last 5 years--probably the hurricane did its toll. To my amazement, it is located in the unincorporated area of Lake Worth on Detroit and Lake Osborne Dr. Across the other side of Detroit on Lake Osborne directly to the east of it is the City. So, now I have to wonder if the County even knows about this eyesore.
According to the property records, this property was homesteaded even getting a double homestead last year. The value has gone UP from $75,783 to $101,389. How can this be when it has been abandoned and it is totally falling down. This would be a beautiful property for land alone for someone--high on a hill, direct lake view and cheap. Last years taxes are unpaid. Perhaps someone has bought it on a tax deed.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
City Manager, Susan Stanton is on a mission to improve our customer service and will have a system in place over the next two months or so. Every employee will be signed into the phone system during business hours in order to accept phone calls. These calls will be monitored and reports given to management on a daily basis.
The irony here is that I have yet to receive a call back from Ms. Stanton. She does answer direct e-mails to her, however. I have always wondered if she has ever received the few calls I have made that have gone through her secretary. Once this program is implemented, management will know and perhaps so will we. This is a step in the right direction.
Am I the only one out here who did not know that eating food more often will help you lose weight? I have been doing just the opposite and can't lose a pound. Barbara Jean Webber with her model like figure told me that last night and I had never heard it before. Is it really true? Wouldn't you hate to eat 5 or 6 meals a day and end up weighing 2 tons?
Here are the facts:
One of the best ways to control your caloric intake and lose weight is to eat more often throughout the day. Ideally, you should eat 5 to 6 times per day, with 2 ½ to 3 ½ hours between each meal or snack. There are several reasons why this works.
- Eating more frequently gets your going and keeps it working at an elevated level continuously throughout the day.
- It will amp up your energy and keep your insulin level constant.
- Because you are eating more frequently, you should eat a smaller portion at each meal or snack. Use some common sense here and remember the key word is SMALL! If you are eating your normal portions, this won’t work! This isn’t as hard as it sounds, because you just won’t be as hungry since you just ate 2 or 3 hours ago.
- Since you are not as hungry, it is much easier to pick a lean and . When you let yourself get very hungry, you are much more likely to grab whatever is in sight. This is also when you start to crave all of those things that are so high in fat and calories, and you will probably eat more of it.
- Even though you will ideally be eating LESS food that you are now, you will feel like you are eating MORE. Your mind and body will equate eating more frequently with more food, and therefore feeling more satisfied.
- Knowing that you will be eating more often, you should plan ahead for your meals and snacks. This, too, will help to insure that you pick foods that are good for you and fit into a lean and healthy .
Is it easy to incorporate eating 5 to 6 times per day into your schedule? Not at first! It does take a little extra time and planning. Is it worth it? Absolutely! If you do it sensibly, it will help you to control your intake. The result is reaching and/or maintaining your weight loss goals.
Held at the beautiful home of Mr. & Mrs. Ed Grimm
I don’t blame Mrs. Jennings for not shaking my hand last night. She was being a Mother and she also knows, better than anyone, all the good things that her daughter tries to accomplish and the compassion and passion Cara has for certain causes. If the situation were in reverse, I probably would have been a little more vocal. She showed class. She knows that you can't reverse the action and she must know that you can't negate the wrong choices. But as mothers often do, they will never admit when their kid errs or perhaps did something really stupid—like spending the night in jail.
She was mad a me for the Squeaky Fromme comparison. Actually it was not my intention to put Cara Jennings in the same category as Squeaky Fromme who brought a gun to protest the cutting down of California Redwoods when the President of the
My article was only to point out that protesting what you consider a good or righteous cause can take you to places you never expected. By committing that one stupid act, it can possibly ruin your life forever.
Read about it.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
The order was delayed once by Pres. Bush and three times by Pres. Obama while they were awaiting the outcome of lawsuits filed by various business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce."
Read more on a step in the right direction.
To the few out there who have told me that I write in a negative tone, (only when they don't agree with me) I say it is pointing out the obvious. Do you really want to live in a vacuum? La La Land? The cost of everything is up. Only the government and our CRA don’t understand that it seems, because all of them only know how to do one thing—SPEND and give away money.
State School Board up 6%
Local School Board up 6.2%
Children’s Services up 14.8%
Health Care District up 14.8%
PB County Fire Rescue up 17.2%
We still pay for the Florida Inland Navigation District, interest on the 2002 Recreational Bond (the $5 mil we have NEVER BEEN GIVEN),
Then we have to pay increased fees from
One faction here in the City believes that by charging more to the residents for whom they feel are the cause of our problems, will make things so expensive that they will eventually move on. Price them out. Some think that the disabled and seniors should be dropped off at our beach and shuttled up the dune and charge everyone a fortune just to use God's beach. Then there are others who still have the build at all costs mentality for the tax base and hell with a single family neighborhood. I dropped in on an 87 year old man the other day and his dinner was a banana, a glass of Ensure and a cookie. Seniors don't have public transportation that is affordable. They can't get to the grocery store and the Publix on Lake Worth Road charges more because they cater to the poor on food stamps and the illegal alien. So many of the elderly are trying to hold on to their independence and won't ask for help, unable to really clean, shop, or put food on the table. They are citizens that have been sacrificed--they have never really asked for a thing...a different generation that has paid their dues.
It just gets “whackier and whackier” as everyone comes up with solutions for all of us to pay more, for less, to be inconvenienced more and pay for that inconvenience. In the meantime certain commissioners pat themselves on the back, say a hail Mary or two, for being so caring to our poor, our helpless and "our" illegal aliens while charging the citizens more for everything and then worry about trees at our beach and spending $5 million dollars to re-configure parking lots.
Before long, we won't have a middle class--those who still have some money to pay the bills. The poorer you are the more things cost and we must tackle the cause before we will ever turn Lake Worth around.
"Let's assume Andres Reyes and Howard Jordan were wrong in their contention that an unauthorized PC plugged into to the mainframe operating the electrical system in Lake Worth, Fla., posed a threat to the state's power grid. After raising their concerns privately, the two employees of city-owned Lake Worth Utilities went public, and for their whistle-blowing, were fired by the city earlier this month."
Read more from Government Information Security
"Developers and businesses perceive that the City of West Palm Beach is in fact a “pay to play” city. Developers take actions consistent with this conclusion, including the contribution of substantial sums of money to the campaign account of Mayor Lois Frankel. Contributions are made at times significant to approval of or consideration of projects or matters before various boards and the City Commission in West Palm Beach. Campaign contributions in increments of $500.00 were made by wealthy large scale developers to the political campaign account of Mayor Lois Frankel. These contributions came from individuals, companies, and legal entities which were found to be connected to the developers. The total campaign contributions connected to a given developer varied from $5,000 to $21,000. "
Read the Redacted Grand Jury Report February 2007 on Pay to Play in West Palm Beach
Read the 7 reasons to remember
Friday, August 28, 2009
Maureen says, "What is the mentality that lets them get in your face while wearing a mask? Shredding someone's character before the entire world and not being held accountable seems like the perfect sting."
Read more -- THE ARTICLE
This has been going on for years here in Lake Worth with the same people playing in the same sandbox...the ones who describe themselves as "positive."
The Declude Virus v4.3.46 software on mail.avenet.net has reported that you were sent an E-mail from firstname.lastname@example.org, containing the OBJECT DATA Vulnerability virus in the [In HTML Code] attachment. The subject of the E-mail was "Lake Worth Historical Museum Volunteers Needed". The E-mail containing the virus has been quarantined to prevent further damage.
I knew that the day would come when I would agree with The Lake Worth Herald on something—but actually two things? I will touch on one of them now—The
The problem is that Commissioner Jennings wanted to eliminate 164 parking spaces on the upper level. 184 residents agreed with the Michael Singer Plan—The City manager stated at the last commission meeting that a majority of residents wanted this plan—no they did not. The Michael Singer presentation over one day was attended by a stacked deck of 220 green people.
If you take all that parking out, then it must be put back in. There begins the problem. This means spending millions on design and implementation to re-figure the lower level parking lot. This is nuts! The money should be put to better uses such as the boardwalk and public bathrooms. Our parking is
There was some suggestion about allocating a certain section of the lower level for decal permit holders. Next, if you eliminate free parking for employees at the Casino and Benny's and make them pay for parking, they will all buy parking decals thus taking up any alloted decal parking for residents. Employees at shopping malls don't pay for parking. I don't agree with the Herald on this one but can see the point. It must be worked out for employees too.
There was some suggestion about allocating a certain section of the lower level for decal permit holders. Next, if you eliminate free parking for employees at the Casino and Benny's and make them pay for parking, they will all buy parking decals thus taking up any alloted decal parking for residents. Employees at shopping malls don't pay for parking. I don't agree with the Herald on this one but can see the point. It must be worked out for employees too.
My suggestion has always been to leave the parking alone. Plant more trees where you can. Re-figure the lot across from Benny’s and plant trees down the middle between the parking aisles. Hire a landscape professional (maybe John Lang—this might keep him happy) who will design the landscaping for all our parking areas and you will be surprised how great it will look. Again--Leave the parking alone! People want convenient parking. And Ms. Stanton, residents do not want to park at
After paying on this Bond since 2002, they should just give us the money without the strings. The County says that it has been “pretty patient” with us. Well, we’ve got news for you. We have been waiting for this money for 7 years.
Otherwise Katie Mcgiveron and The Herald are right--tell the County to shove it if they don’t budge on the decal parking and charge every person who does not live in
Give us the $5 mil; it’s ours and then take a hike.
Gilles is a member of the Top 6 Gang that is so prevalent here in Lake Worth.
This Gang is affiliated with 41 shootings and 14 known homicides. It is a Haitian-American Gang involved in horrendous crimes such as the shooting at the Boynton Mall on Christmas Eve 2006.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
With the national debt now close to $12 trillion dollars, $8 million probably seems small in the scheme of things. What's a million here or there? It is a lot of money to a little city with big budget problems.
My positive thought is to get excellent, reasonable, sensible, law abiding, down-to-earth, business minded people elected--not anyone who is against everything for which I believe-implying that the City will get sued because of Sunset--not Man of La Mancha--no fantasies from someone singing The Impossible Dream. We all can't agree on everything all of the time.
If you disagree with anyone in this City that is when the name calling begins. It always gets very personal. But the most prevalent tag name they give you is that you are "negative" or when I talk about illegals that I am "racist." I say, it is just another way of looking at it...another perspective to consider in view of the terrible problems we have in this City. All one has to do is look at the record.
Nice poem, Wes. What it tells me is exactly what I think about the $700,000 give away--it MIGHT turn out good but then, it might not...not all decisions are folly, that sometimes there really is a happy ending. Personally, I would rather base my decisions on cold hard facts and not emotions. As a Board, the CRA should be looking at all aspects and take into consideration every possibility before ever handing over one dime to anyone. There should be some sort of sound decision behind it, not that it MIGHT invigorate our downtown.
---- Original Message -----From: Wes BlackmanTo: Lynn AndersonSent: Thursday, August 27, 2009 9:46 AMSubject: Positive thoughts....
Sometimes things don't go, after all,
From bad to worse. Some years, muscadel
Faces down frost; green thrives; the crops don't fail,
Sometimes a man aims high, and all goes well.
A people sometimes will step back from war;
Elect an honest man; decide they care
Enough, that they can't leave some stranger poor.
Some men become what they are born for.
Sometimes our best efforts do not go
Amiss; sometimes we do as we meant to.
The sun will sometimes melt a field of sorrow
That seemed hard frozen: may it happen for you.Sheenagh Pugh
from Selected Poems
Just come to Lake Worth and you can have it all. That is the message that is out there and it is very loud and clear. We are very generous folks. We don’t ask too many questions if the proposal sounds good. We love to give away buildings. We love to give away assets. We negotiate nothing. We love to waste money. We have all sorts of dreams of green space. We love to re-design parking lots and literally take away potential income at our beach for a tree. We have little thought about taking away decal parking for mangroves. We continue to screw the resident taxpayer in every way possible in order to plant a seed that may never grow from this blighted hollow ground.
What about the CRA’s main mission of cleaning up slum and blight. Somehow over the last several years, that has fallen by the blighted wayside of our city streets and has now been replaced by the visions of total metamorphous.
We have a CRA that just can't figure out how to spend its money fast enough and the other night, simply takes it over the top. The entire room was stacked and packed (I have been told) with business folks and Chamber folks and all those who think that spending all of this money will improve their lives. Perhaps the CRA’s thoughts are, bring more businesses and these owners and visitors will just fall in love with our garbage ridden neighborhoods that have been taken over by criminals ... they will actually buy a house or start a business here.
Instead of starting at the foundation for building this “new house” of ours, the CRA is starting at the top…building the roof first over a bunch of hot air coming directly from the Field of Dreams mentality for which the CRA has paid Hands On Consulting $200,000. Tuesday they agreed to hand over another $700,000 to the Palm Beach Cultural Council, that incidentally, has twice the budget of the CRA. This decision is based on nothing quantitative that the PB County Cultural Council can really do for us only what they tell us they can do-- just hopes, dreams and wishes.
Their presentation was great but give them $700,000? On top of that, the CRA agrees to give away all this money to a group that hasn't even decided on a location. What sort of crazy is that? Just come here...we don't care where you land. That is the reality of what the CRA based its decision. The CRA is in a world of its own when it comes to spending huge sums of money. Immediately the Gateways come to mind.
To me the sensible decision would be to buy the 14,381 SQ FT building at 1000 Lake Avenue for $900,000--that's two hundred thousand more to actually own something. Give a reduced rental rate to this Group to locate to this building. Give them some perks. After two years, if they have proven themselves to Lake Worth, extend their favorable lease. We then house our Code Department (if we have a code department still in effect) or use the extra space for other city departments. The CRA can then use this building as its headquarters and stop paying $2,500 a month rent where they are. In the meantime, we own a building on an important corner of an area that the City wants to develop in the future for a downtown government center. It is right across the street from City Hall. That building is on the market at half its value. The property is already very valuable but in five years it would be priceless and owned by us.
It really is time to stop this endless pipe dream of the CRA and all its give-aways and non-negotiated "deals." Prior to this it was the Gateways. It was a bunch of give-aways for those "scam" homeowners and others who took advantage. Now it is the artist’s destination. What next? For a city that is rapidly turning into garbage haven and one that can’t even afford its code officers anymore, you really have to wonder about the priorities.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
1. In what could be considered as a political maneuver, Brendan Lynch was nominated by Donna Ross, seconded by Shanon Materio and voted in as Chair, some saying that he has the respect and knowledge to lead. Commissioner Ed Grimm wanted to wait until next week when a new Board will be appointed.
2. Donna Ross was voted as Vice Chair.
3. The Palm Beach Cultural Development wants to come to Lake Worth as its headquarters. They asked and the CRA agreed to give them $700,000 in a 10 year forgivable loan at 0% interest. This will be paid in 6 separate draws and will be used on construction costs for a building not yet decided upon. Although totally conjecture and no way of proving its potential value to Lake Worth, some said having them headquartered here will be a great asset for our City.
4. The Budget and CIP were approved.
5. 812 N. Dixie Project. All Site Construction was chosen...$146,221.48
Top Attorney in 2008
This woman actually wanted to shake my hand
Trela, I don't sleep with the enemy and I don't shake hands with them either. Perhaps that is something that lawyers do as a lot of it is only about winning; it is a game.
There is one fundamental reason why I do not like the Florida League of Cities—this group is always against the citizens, you know, you and me. We continue, as citizens, to put up with their anti-resident agenda. They got involved in the Sunset case and joined the law suit against Save Our Neighborhood. They were against the SuperMajority and imposed their will, their clout and money. Now they are against Florida Hometown Democracy along with the Florida Chamber and every developer group that ever existed.
Why are they against all of this? Because in some twisted reasoning they actually believe that a citizen should not have any say in what his/her community looks like even when that city government makes a decision contrary to the Comprehensive Plan. They believe that elected officials should be able to do whatever they damn well please and those who elected them should have no say. They actually mentor city officials on how to screw their citizens. If a city wants an excellent attorney to keep its residents at bay, it doesn't have to look too far.
While our Commissioners Lowe,
What should have been said at that convention about Florida Hometown Democracy:
- Amendment 4 will replace negative impact development and sprawl with well planned comfortable communities designed to attract business and industry
- Amendment 4 will give voters VETO POWER only over projects that exceed what the community’s land use plan approves for a particular site
- Too many destructive comprehensive plan changes have been granted in recent years of our elected officials causing congestion, spiraling taxes, costs for infrastructure, lower property values, sprawl, a shortage of water and a lower quality of life for all
That’s what they should have said! This is no game. This is all about preserving and saving our State from every square inch of it being paved over with no say.
Vote Yes on 4 in 2010.
The Lion of the Senate is dead. Fighting brain cancer since May 2008, Edward Moore Kennedy could no longer win the battle dying at age 77.
We all remember Ted Kennedy and the Chappaquiddick incident 40 years ago where a passenger in his car, Mary Jo Kopechne, drowned. He was found guilty of leaving the scene of the accident and was given a slap on the wrist. This was a defining moment for him I am sure. From that point forward, he devoted the rest of his life to public service. And he did a great job passing many major pieces of legislation with 300 of them becoming law. He constantly and consistently fought the battle for human causes.
I will miss his style, his great smile, his earlier years playing football on the lawn at his home in Hyannis Port with his brothers, being a surrogate father to 13 children after the assassinations of his brothers, John and Robert, his love for sailing and my being able to read and watch and therefore be a part of his fascinating life as depicted in the news.
A remarkable man from a remarkable family; he will be missed.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Ron Exline (Intervenor), Lynn Anderson-SON, Jennifer Marchal-SON, Betty Anderson-SON, Katie Mcgiveron-Chair SON, Tripp Ciocci (Intervenor) and Dante Ciocci.
to all the people who have helped us over the last four years, not only in the Lake Osborne Heights Neighborhood but throughout the City. There were many occasions that residents spoke out and supported us in front of the City Commission as well as the Planning & Zoning Board.
to friends of the PAC who supported us through thick and thin.
to spouses who put up with us for 4 years.
to all those who gave money.
to all those who petitioned and signed the petitions.
to our attorney, Lesley Blackner. Without her we would have been nothing.
to this City Commission for righting the wrong we give a special thanks: Retha, Cara, Jeff, Jo-Ann and Suzanne
Dear Roloh Neighbors and Friends, Mayor Clemens, Vice-Mayor Golden, Commissioner Lowe, Commissioner Jennings, Commissioner Mulvehill, City Manager Stanton and Staff,
What do you say after a four year long and drawn out issue such as 826 Sunset Drive other than Thank You. So many people have given so much of thier time, money and effort to challenge this issue from day one and it has been a very long road......today we have reached the right decission and 826 Sunset is no longer high density or zoned multi-family.
We all need to thank the many citizens of Lake Osborne Heights and all of Lake Worth for the support and dedication to righting this wrong and with out so many people supporting and volunteering, this would never have been corrected.
We need to Thank this Commission for having the courage to reach this decision and to correct that which was not meant to be. This action of recinding the past ordinances is just another sign of Lake Worth coming to a wonderful turning point and becoming a city for its citizens and business owners, and now a chance to grow responsibly.
There are many more decisions that have to be made down the road and many of them will be just as tough if not tougher. However, the people through this commission have a voice, and we hope that in the future that we hold this time of change and future prosperity to be a guide to continue to make Lake Worth the BEST place to live, work and thrive in Palm Beach County.
Just a reminder to eveyone, it takes everyone's support to make a city a better place to live and by supporting your city and staff, local businesses with your patronage and even giving of your time for needed hours of volunteerism to the many city projects and boards we can all make a difference.
One word to future business owners.....Lake Worth IS open for business and this exciting time of new growth and vision for the city is the right time to look at Lake Worth for what it will become in the near future and how it will be a place for new and old businesses alike to grow.
Congratulations to everyone on a big victory today and remember....this city is Lake Worth
Robert E. Waples II
President - Residents of Lake Osborne Heights
PBSO C.O.P Volunteer Unit 109
Volunteer to make a difference today
In a special meeting held today, the Lake Worth City Commission voted to repeal two city ordinances that would have allowed MF 20 zoning (20 units per acre) into the single family
Katie Mcgiveron, Chair of Save our Neighborhood, Inc. and Vice President of the Residents of Lake Osborne Heights Neighborhood Association said, “This Commission recognized the absolute necessity of protecting the single family neighborhoods of
Since 2005, this property has been the subject of intense debate by neighbors demanding that their way of life not be destroyed by up zoning and inappropriate development. In 2005, the Save Our Neighborhood, Inc. PAC collected over 3,000 signatures city wide that wanted the single family zoning kept in place.
“Comprehensive plan changes are always political decisions. With this present City Commission, they recognized the value of the single family residential neighborhoods in the city of
Save Our Neighborhood, Inc.,
As Granny sits around and frets that she will be thrown under the bus because of Obama’s healthcare plan, she literally is falling behind the eight ball just to keep her head above water.
Three out of seven elderly are economically poor or vulnerable and many live in the shadow of poverty. When your own government says that there has been NO inflation, perhaps they need a new benchmark for their analysis. No wonder Granny has big doubts; they didn’t ask her.
The government still includes the price of gasoline index and this figure skews the entire stats. According to the Consumer Price Index, we have had inflation of 2.7%. Take out the energy (price of oil) factor, which the government states has gone way down, who knows how high inflation really is?
We know on a local level that the price of services has gone up along with our electric and will continue to do so. Here in Lake Worth, Granny worries about cooling her residence, maintaining her property, putting food on her table and buying her prescriptions. She infrequently drives her car so the price of gas would not be that much of a concern. Grocery prices are up every week as is the price of all consumer goods. Granny has lost 50% of her investments and the banks that have been bailed out by tax dollars are paying peanuts in interest as they raise all their fees. Those who have retired and living in condominiums are ending up paying for the deadbeats who have refused to pay their monthly maintenance and special assessments while banks are foreclosing right and left.
The latest report again is that there will be no COLA increases for perhaps the next two years with the government saying we have had no inflation. In the same breath, the government says that the price of Medicare is going up. That is deducted right out of the social security check. Granny pays more for health coverage but no increase to pay for it.
When our government can bail out every Tom, Dick and Harry and give Stimulus money to losers, then Granny has a right to be concerned. We are totally off base when we can give $25 billion a year in foreign aid. And Obama wanted to double that amount by 2012. Think about this--$25 billion is much more that what our government collected in federal income taxes. Does the government speak in double speak?
Granny worked all her life and now is forced to worry about the illegal alien loophole under the Obama Healthcare Plan and our tax dollars going to foreign countries in aid that will never be repaid, give away plans up the kazoo while she has to forego a couple of bucks raise in social security. You can see why granny is worried.
Have you noticed how "quiet" this election season is. It's only a little over two months away. I keep thinking about how darn hot it is out there and thanking a former Commission for being the catalyst behind the madness for changing our elections from March to November. Another terrible idea right along with the ugly garbage cans. And that reminds me, even the Chamber of Commerce has been quiet.
So far, I only know of two campaign fundraisers--Laurence McNamara's and Rene Varela's for Mayor. Jo-Ann Golden has one coming up this weekend. I actually got invited to two out of the three and one of those was an afterthought. I like invitations when they are personal. If the candidate takes 30 seconds to call, I like that. If they can't be bothered, neither can I. My time and money are too valuable for me to be treated with such aloofness. It's the same reason why I hate a friend sending me an e-card for Christmas or my birthday...not too much thought behind it and the message is clear.
I'm looking forward to the upcoming weeks with supporters wearing their favorite candidate's T-shirt, campaign literature and the debates. It's fun. One thing for sure, I don't want to hear about the removal of beach decal parking or how I can be bussed from the downtown to the beach. That one will fall on deaf ears.
Monday, August 24, 2009
Tomorrow our CRA meets at 6pm at City Hall one last time before interviews for new members are held on August 31. On the Agenda are several items that are peculiar to say the least.
1. Nomination of a new Chair
2. Nomination of a new Vice Chair
3. Approval of the Budget and 5 Year CIP.
Now why would the CRA schedule items 1 and 2 when everyone on there could be replaced with the exception of Donna Ross? We know that most of the present Board feels that there is no new member who could possibly understand the Budget or the CIP so they want to hurry and get that approved.
Maybe it's all a mistake. Sure it is.
Aside from our oceanfront Lake Worth beach, our golf course is the most valuable land we own in this city. Aren't we lucky to have an 18 hole, par 70 course right on the IntraCoastal Waterway?
Golfers are a special breed of cat. They will play golf in rain, snow, sleet or hail. Nothing deters them from their sport. Yesterday in 95^ weather, these golfers were not deterred either.
The City Manager has stated that the golf course rounds are picking up. I am sure that our new golf pro, Chris Waller, will make our fabulous property a great success. We needed our own pro.
The Lagoon Restaurant opens at 8am and is doing well according to Karen who answered the phone. When asked if the golfers were supporting the restaurant, she said "yes." If any of you just want a nice place to have lunch with a gorgeous view, remember The Lagoon Restaurant. Let's support our golf course in every way that we can.
Citizens continue to speak out across the country and the Democrats just don't want to listen.
President Obama is taking his first vacation since being elected President. After all these raucous town hall meetings he needs a break. Healthcare is taking a nasty twist.
All the criticism and what the President calls "misinformation" has taken its toll. He's now off to play some golf, relax and come back swinging for a birdie.
Sunday, August 23, 2009
FISHING LICENSE FACTS
Who needs a license?
Resident saltwater anglers who fish from shore or a structure affixed to shore will need to buy a shoreline fishing license unless they have a regular saltwater fishing license or are exempt.
Who is exempt?
The new license requirement allows exemptions for residents who are age 65 or older, all children under age 16, resident disabled persons who meet certain qualifications, active duty military personnel while home on leave, and all anglers who fish from a licensed pier. In addition, the license requirement includes two new exemptions - resident anglers drawing food stamps, temporary cash assistance or Medicaid, and anglers who use a pole or line without a line retrieval mechanism (such as a reel) in their home counties.
How much does the license cost?
The license cost $7.50 plus a $1.50 administrative fee.
If I have a regular saltwater fishing license, will I have to purchase a shoreline license too?
No. A resident regular fishing license that covers fishing from shore as well as from a vessel costs about $10 more than the shoreline license and may be the best option for most anglers unless they feel certain they will fish only from shore.
How will the FWC use the money from the new shoreline license sales?
The money will help fund marine resource research, management and law enforcement.
Source: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
My beautiful Mother
Thelma M. Smith
1-4-17 - 8-23-04
Her final resting place
Lake Worth Beach was her absolute love and morning delight for her entire adult life, going there every single day to swim in the ocean and our pool. Her favorite restaurant was John G's. She loved our shops, our downtown, and most of all, she loved our library. She went there almost daily as she was a voracious reader. She loved her home and her family and life--she was happy in its simplicity. We miss you so much Mom. Remembering you today and your favorite place, the Lake Worth beach.
After a series of e-mails from the City Manager, I still have no clue as to how we will enforce our Code (if that is even the plan) and clean up our City. Hopefully, this will all be revealed soon to the citizens of Lake Worth.
Living in one of the most blighted cities I have ever seen or resided, code enforcement is a necessity and should not be treated as an expense that we can not afford. All the code violations affect our quality of life and directly affect our taxes. All properties must be in compliance and we need this enforced.
With a lax code policy more and more people who have no pride in where they live or the neighbors they live around will be moving to Lake Worth. The word will get out--come to Lake Worth and you can live like a slob cementing the thought that what you do should be your right with no government interference.
Is this what we want? Have we as a city given up on protecting our taxpaying citizens? Have we turned into a "live and let live" city? We need more code, not less and we need to collect the fines that are owed instead of these deadbeats sticking it in our nose. We might then have a very profitable code department and eventually clean up the blight.
It's up to all of you to voice your opinion--but we haven't heard the "plan."
Saturday, August 22, 2009
I don't get much of interest in the mail these days as I pay most of my bills online. So what I do get is usually good news or junk.
We all received our proposed tax notices today. I predicted that we would be the highest taxed city in Palm Beach County. I was exaggerating to make a point because no one usually can beat Pahokee or Belle Glade when it comes to millage rates. I don’t know how it will work out but one thing for sure, our millage, overall, is set at 24.7999. Last year it was 21.3563.
Millage is the tax rate used to calculate your ad valorem taxes. One mil equals $1 for every $1,000 of taxable property value. If your millage rate is 24.7999, then you are paying $24.80 in taxes for every $1,000 of taxable property value.
With the cost of everything UP in the City of Lake Worth as the solution to our budget woes, even nickel and dimming us to death on public information costs, we do need to reduce expense. Code Enforcement is not the area.
One of the Lake Voters has sent this e-mail out to all the candidates--
Hi. I was wondering about something simple. I would like to ask all the candidates for their answer to the following question: Do you like pizza, and, if so, what pizzeria would you call if you wanted a delivery? What toppings, if any, would you ask for? Thank you very much for your time! I am going to vote for the candidate who's answer suits me best. Good luck in the forthcoming election! :-)Actually, perhaps this voter has hit on something. We know that once someone is elected to office that it finally boils down to THEIR agenda first. They seem to soon forget about the voters and what the people might want. Some even have contempt for our laws. The don't return phone calls. They don't ever return e-mails--forget about that! Public speaking has turned into a joke. Research? Who ever heard of that? Budget? Who understands it? We can't seem to ever rise above getting out of our own way in this City. How do we ever know who will be a responsible leader?
So, let topping on a pizza decide it.
What the heck-- it's all a crap shoot anyway.
Here on this blog only 20 people participated in the poll with 78% saying that the Healthcare Plan needs work. It does. Those backing Obama are strongly suggesting that it is a generation gap problem with most people under 50 years of age supporting the Plan and those over 50 opposing it.
This sounds like Dennis Koehler's argument to allow Mojito's bar to become a nightlub. Both arguments are meaningless and illogical.
Friday, August 21, 2009
The new Budget for the City of
In this Budget you will see how they are eliminating Andres Reyes’ job as well as Howard Jordan’s. Don’t ever try to make things better in this City…don’t dare complain to your supervisor...don't dare be a whistleblower.
On page 91 (page 106 scrolling down the pdf file) is a graph of positions. As you will notice, Mr. Reyes’ job is being eliminated. Then on page 95 (page 110 of the Adobe file) you will see the elimination of Howard Jordan’s job that of Electronic Device Specialist.
This entire matter was not handled properly from the beginning. Bottom Line.
If you look closely, you will notice that the proposed budget by the Finance Department and City Manager Stanton’s proposed budget differ greatly in the Utility. It appears that
Perhaps there is some other explanation. I left two calls this week for Finance. I have a call into the City Manager since Monday. What's today? Has the "open door" shut?
When: Sunday, August 30
What you get: delicious dinner, Silent Auction, fabulous door prizes and knowing that you are contributing to a worthy cause...PRICELESS. This event will be bigger and better than before.
Price: $15 per ticket
Where to purchase: At the door
What you need to know: You don't have to be an alumnus of LW High to attend.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
"The Obama administration plans to end the $3 billion "cash for clunkers" program on Monday, giving car shoppers a few more days to take advantage of big government incentives."
----- Original Message -----
Well one cost will be on our tax bill--fire. The other one we just pony up to a tune of $1.3 million a month--sheriff.
It was brought up by Commissioner Mulvehill on Tuesday night that after the first 3 years of our contract with the PB County Sheriff’s Office, there will be no cap on what they can raise our costs.We have absolutely no protection and are solely and 100% at their mercy.
Right now, this is what it will cost the City of Lake Worth in this coming year beginning October 1, 2009:
POLICE: $15,677,000.00 (2009-10)
This does not include any overtime or special services. In addition to the above, we will be paying for services for the Hispanic Fest, Christmas Parade, Street Painting Festival, Reggae Fest, Tropic Fest and the Tropical Triathlon.
Last year, the Sheriff’s office paid out over $23 million in overtime to County Departments, Fire Rescue, and the Sheriff, with half that figure going to the Sheriff’s Department. Each deputy, on average, made $2,933 in overtime. This amount goes directly onto the pension calculation. Pensions and benefits are killing us. We will be paying $1,150,000 in retirement benefits for the 47 deputies who elected to stay in our Plan.
The PB County Commission has asked the Sheriff to cut his budget.
Lake Worth approves of Sheriff rate hike
FIRE RESCUE: $2,375,000.00 (2009-10)
As you know, fire rescue will be on our ad valorem property tax bill that we will be receiving by end of October. Pay it in November, if you can, because you will save a bundle. We were paying the equivalent of 2.95 mils. We will now be paying 3.4581 mils or a 17% increase. In addition, the City will be paying annual supplements--$700,000 for the 1st two years; $900,000 for the third year. After the third year, the supplement will be $1.3 million.
The above figure is in addition to what we will pay on our tax bill. This figure includes retirement (yes, we had fire fighters who elected to stay with our Plan), professional and contract services and $40,000 in insurance.
The biggest loss will be our Fire Chief, Chief Paul Blockson, who will no longer be assigned to Lake Worth. But even bigger than that is the loss of our own police and fire rescue. Management was the problem with our police. Cpt. Silva is doing a great job. Too bad we couldn't have found a Cpt. Silva of our own to have run our police department before we so easily handed over our department giving up on Lake Worth.
Perhaps one of these days we will grow up and actually become a "real" City again...have transportation, our own police and fire, have control over our own valuable beachfront property with no strings from the County, decide not to give our valuable assets away to PB County such as our waste water or spend $21 million in infrastructure to be able to buy their water instead of building our own Reverse Osmosis. The first good move of recent years was to exit FMPA.
Until then, we will remain a city in name only.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
When: Wednesday, August 26th
Time: 11:30 am
Meal: Buffet lunch
Cost: Members - $15 Non-Members $25
(RSVP required by 8/20/09)
Where: Bartow Civic Center,
2250 S. Floral Avenue,
The Tiger Bay Club of Polk County will be meeting Wednesday, August 26th at the Bartow Civic Center, 2250 S. Floral Avenue, in Bartow. Lunch service will begin at 11:30 a.m. and the meeting will start at noon sharp!If you're interested, RSVP by tomorrow to Jennifer Alexander at email@example.com or 863-774-1105. You can pay at the door the day of the event or pay in advance by credit card at www.tigerbaypolk.com. Tickets, which include lunch, beginning at 11:30 a.m., are $15 for Tiger Bay Club members and $25 for non-members.
Ryan Houck, Executive Director of Floridians for Smarter Growth serves as a spokesman for the campaign to fight the Hometown Democracy amendment based in Orlando.
Lesley Blackner is President of Florida Hometown Democracy, and the sponsor of Amendment 4. This should prove to be one of the liveliest Tiger Bay meetings yet, as this issue has passionate followers on both sides!
Come out and support Lesley.
Let's clean house has been the theme for the last 3.5 months. Not only in personnel with 30 people now on the pink sheet but the city chamber itself. The entire room appears larger mainly because of the two front pews being removed as well as the writing desks that were in front and the photographs not yet re-hung. This has opened up a lot of space in the front of the chamber but seating for 10 less people. It is rather inconvenient for the Press as well.
Last night there was a packed commission room, standing room only. People were actually asked to leave the room and stand in the hallway. It was reported that the microphones in the hall were literally turned off and no one could hear anything. Also, with the new city policy of keeping the thermostat at 77^, it could have been cooler for my comfort zone.
The Mojito bar problem was discussed for over 3 hours. I thought it would never end. This left little time for anything else. The fact that the City Commission just voted in March on a 3 to 2 (Lowe and Clemens dissenting) to put the Commission liaison reports at the beginning of the Agenda so that the public did not have to stay late and could be informed as to what their commissioners were doing for them and for Lake Worth, has all been reversed now with the new City Manager. She wanted them at the end and at the end they are.