Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Deerfield Beach Residents Discuss the Cove Shopping Center

Keven Klopp did a really great job at last night’s meeting about the Cove Shopping Center. He set it up to encourage participation which was excellent, but best of all he presented a way the project could go forward with very little interruption to business. He is to be commended for the good job. I most likely would have lost my temper at the juvenile antics of some of the business owners, but he stayed cool throughout, and yet gave the message that the project was good for the city and very workable.

I have a friend who works in a store in Boynton in a center very like the Cove. He said they did a complete revision of the Boynton center and the contractors were so good at what they did that they didn’t lose any business at all. The center was renovated in a timely manner and with al-most no dust. This will be our experience also.

I am glad that Mr. Pavone signed the sidewalk easements for his properties, that must make all commissioners feel better about moving forward as his was a strong voice. Commissioners represent not only their friends, and not only the people in their districts, but the residents of the entire city who overwhelmingly are in favor of getting the entrance to their world class beach look less like a third world backward mess and more like what our beach and soon Hillsboro Blvd. show how we care about our city.

The Cove renovation is good for the city. The timing will never please everyone, it can’t. The construction will be better than some believe, and worse than some hope, that is a given. But it will be done at the best time it can be done, during a slow time in the economy, and off season.

The doctor who said there are parking problems is wrong, I go to the shopping center often and I never have to park more than one row away, and usually get a place in front of where I am going even during the season. I remember during the study of this plan, and the workshops some neighbors did a survey of the parking and found that except for Friday night when the Cove Restaurant and, at the time, Charlie’s Crab took all the spots, there was no lack of spots.

His trying to make the point about parking is just an example of the selfish point of view of the doctor and a very few others in the center. Keven explained how the city would bend over back-wards to provide parking and a shuttle.

More typical is how Dr. and Mrs. Bruno and Robert of the Fiesta feel as well as how the resi-dents who participated in the Charettes feel. One Cove resident told me, “I participated in all the meetings the city had and never saw any improvement; I will not go to any more meetings!” They are disgusted that it has taken so long. They are happy that Keven has finally gotten started and expect the city to honor their promises.

Remember the recycling mess when the contract was voted and then taken back, the credibility of the city was damaged greatly. This is similar to that.

Sylvia’s idea of knocking the whole place down is impossible as there are too many owners and no rich billionaire developer waiting to buy them out. A yes vote will upset some people; a no vote will upset some people, residents and businesses alike. All commissioners should take it as a given that they will not make everybody happy and do the right thing for the entire city.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Another Deerfield Beach Cove Shopping Center Meeting

Subject: New Event Cove Shopping Center Parking Lot Reconstruction Project

Meeting  5 p.m. August 24th, City Hall

Could they have come up with a worse time? 5pm, on Election Day.

Or perhaps it's a perfect time, dinner time for families, and a good time to make sure no working people can be there, they are voting or commuting.  Then they can say no one cares.

And, what's up with another meeting anyway, we had meetings galore, 250 people had a say, the design was finalized. Nothing has changed.

Except that it is a better time than ever to do the renovation, the economy is slow and the disruption will be minimal. Now because 3-4 disgruntled shop owners want to stop the construction and keep the center looking like a slum, we have ANOTHER meeting.

What a joke. I will be there, but my instinct is to say what's the use, they don't listen anyway, which I am sure the neighbors of the cove will say, and what the Mayor is counting on.

Mrs. Bruno said it well, you promised us, she said, and now you are going back on that. Shame on you.

Sylvia's pie in the sky idea of making this into a River Walk could never happen, she knows it and we know it, and as Mizner Park and the Ft. L Riverwalk are broke, not a good idea at all.

People who want a parking garage know it is not a good idea for the city to partner in that, it is a BIG money loser and will make the entrance to our beach area look terrible, they have selfish reasons for wanting the city to spend money on a garage.

So, what's the holdup. Who will make money from this not happening?????  Answer that and you will know why we are having another useless meeting.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Oxymoron of the Day: Ethical Politician It’s not only Deerfield Beach. Surprise! (Not.)

In Deerfield Beach we had Mayor Noland, as soon as she was elected, jumping to eliminate the Deerfield Beach Ethics code quickly seconded by Joe Miller. She placed an item on the agenda to rescind it, not to study it, but to get rid of it altogether. The other commissioners, most of whom I assume felt the same way but didn’t want to endure the wrath of the electorate decided to have a committee review the code. The end result is a watered down version of what they had.

That pales in comparison to what the Broward County Commission is planning. According to newspaper reports the commission is going to approve their proposed new code, if they don’t by law it will go to the voters. But, what then?????

Here's what:  reinforcing everything people say about elected officials becoming co-opted by the allure of the office, turned by the trappings of power and slipping over to the dark side as a result of believing what lobbyists whisper into their ears, they plan to gut it.  I assume in the same meeting so as not to have more than a few minutes to abide by the code. They will promptly water it down so much that I’m guessing anyone who is in the vicinity should plan on wearing hip high waders.

County Attorney Fox DDS has suggestions about how to pull its teeth.

From the Sun Sentinel:
Ethics reform dismantling draws quick foes in Broward

By Brittany Wallman August 5, 2010 05:30 PM

Broward County commissioners will pass historic ethics reforms Tuesday. Immediately after-wards, they'll consider watering them down and exempting themselves and family members from some of the new rules.Steam is rising from the county’s Ethics Commission, which spent more than a year crafting the new standards of conduct that voters demanded in 2008.
Ethics commission board member Bob Wolfe called the proposed exemptions “despicable, dis-gusting, and outrageous’’ and said they’d “gut’’ the law.

“We don’t want to see any more of this [corruption] go on. You get a choice to be in public ser-vice,’’ Wolfe said. “Either abide by the rules or go do something else.’’
Read the rest click here

From the Broward Beat by Buddy Nevins:
Can the ethically challenged Broward County Commission sink any lower?

Commissioners will consider next week a set of amendments to gut proposed ethics reform.
The amendments are supposedly authored by the county attorney’s office. I see the hand of Commissioner Ilene Lieberman in this.

Lieberman has consistently argued against ethics reform. She has been accused in the past of using the county attorney’s office to further her aims of derailing any new ethics laws.
Read the rest click here

From the Morning Pulp by Bob Norman:

-- In the latest outrageous bit of behavior from our delinquent Broward County Commission, there is a new plan afoot to gut the new ethics reform. The insidious plan (as it appears on the agenda): The commission will pass the ethics proposals put forth by the Broward County Ethics Commission as they are, as required by law, and then immediately vote on amendments that would exclude themselves and family members from having to follow some of them. Among them is the key provision to bar them and their relatives from lobbying in Broward County.

Read the rest click here 
As you might guess, I will bring this back to why Florida Hometown Democracy Amendment 4 exists. It exists precisely because of the lack of principles of too many of our elected officials, and because of the short sightedness of too many more of them.

Will a code ensure ethical behavior? I know that’s a laugh. But it must do something or else the commissioners wouldn’t be so against it. What are they so afraid of? Follow the money, that’s the answer.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Monday, August 2, 2010

Cove Shopping Center Bids Opened

The three bids for the Cove Shopping Center parking lot improvements were opened today at 2:00 pm. The bidders were given instructions to come in with a base price, and then bid separately on a list of upgrades. The bids were opened and the prices read out which I copied (if there are errors in the numbers it is because I heard wrong) This is what they look like:  (click on the image for larger version)