Wednesday, June 30, 2010
We are showing them how to reduce and become more energy efficient and at the same time we sell electricity that is the biggest contributor to our operating budget.
To hear the hysterical wailing from politicians, power brokers and land speculators, you'd think we wanted to tear down society or something. We just want a vote."
To read more on what Pamela has to say about giving voters the say on growth, click HERE.
Lisa Wilson of The Mentoring Center did not show last night for her interview nor could she be reached by telephone. Trust me when I say the Commission tried many times to reach her on many different telephone numbers. The Commission bent over backwards for Ms. Wilson and went to a ridiculous effort to reach her. I have never seen such a diligent effort to reach an applicant. Would the Commission have gone out of its way to be so accommodating to any other applicant who did not show? I think the answer is obvious. Her possible nomination to the CRA Board is highly unlikely at this point unless, of course, politics plays a big role.I have always been against interviews when the applicant is not there in person. You don't interview for a job in "the real world" that way nor should you interview for a Board position, especially for a CRA that is control of so much money. Telephone interviews are not effective as we witnessed last night with Karri Casper's telephone interview.
Most all of the applicants for the CRA were outstanding but our City Commission will not allow itself to get over personalities...some of whom are vocally advocating their defeat this November. And when it comes right down to it, why should they not take this into consideration when appointing Board members? Boards are, afterall, political and you want to at least appoint people who like you.
The vote was not taken for CRA membership last night and will be conducted at the end of tonight's interviews for The Tree Board, the Community Relations Board, Historic Resources Preservation Board, and the Planning and Zoning Board. Look for another late night.Here is the wordage from Florida Statutes:
The powers of a community redevelopment agency shall be exercised by the commissioners thereof. A majority of the commissioners constitutes a quorum for the purpose of conducting business and exercising the powers of the agency and for all other purposes. Action may be taken by the agency upon a vote of a majority of the commissioners present, unless in any case the bylaws require a larger number. Any person may be appointed as commissioner if he or she resides or is engaged in business, which means owning a business, practicing a profession, or performing a service for compensation, or serving as an officer or director of a corporation or other business entity so engaged, within the area of operation of the agency, which shall be coterminous with the area of operation of the county or municipality, and is otherwise eligible for such appointment under this part.
From the State Statute…Florida Statutes
Every citizen of this country believes that those who immigrate here the legal way deserve all rights once they become citizens and acquire the proper documentation that gives them certain rights here in the united States to work and to live. We have always asked that they immigrate legally. But in the land of opportunity, there are always criminals and they will always be attracted to the U.S., the land of opportunity.
The criminals and the ACLU and even Commissioner Golden's argument is, "no one is illegal." They shout that we citizens who object are nothing more than low-life racists and Nazis, a stupid assertion and believe that if they throw the epithets often enough, some might stick. If people cross our border without documentation, they are criminals. Got it?
Yesterday, ICE and Florida Department of Law Enforcement announced statewide activation of Secure Communities to prioritize, identify and remove criminal aliens. See the U.S. Immigration and Enforcement web site.
Secure Communities strategy prioritizes immigration enforcement actions against convicted criminal aliens.
"Since ICE began using this enhanced information sharing capability in October 2008, immigration officers have removed from the United States more than 8,500 criminal aliens convicted of Level 1 crimes, such as murder, rape and kidnapping. Additionally, ICE has removed more than 22,200 criminal aliens convicted of Level 2 and 3 crimes, including burglary and serious property crimes, which account for the majority of crimes committed by aliens."
There are over 425,000 illegal alien criminals incarcerated in the United States. Those are the ones that are caught for despicable crimes against citizens who are paying the tab for their insurrection.
"Already in Florida, ICE has removed more than 1,800 convicted criminal aliens. ICE does not regard aliens charged with, but not yet convicted of crimes, as criminal aliens. Instead, a "criminal alien" is an alien convicted of a crime. In accordance with the Immigration and Nationality Act, ICE continues to take action on aliens subject to removal as resources permit."
Although this definition waters down the definition of a criminal alien, (they are ALL criminals) it is a step in the right direction.
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Board of Trustees Employees’ Retirement System--Robert Lepa
Board of Trustees Firefighters’ Retirement System--no appointment and re-advertise for the vacancy
Board of Trustees Police Retirement System--no appointment, will re-interview the applicant
Construction Board of Adjustments & Appeals--Steve Marlow and Eric Wasser
Library Board--Drew Martin
The CRA appointments will be decided following tomorrow night's meeting because of the large number of applicants.
Tonight, 24 applicants are trying for 2 positions on the CRA. Why do so many people want to be members of our Community Redevelopment Agency?--to ensure that Lake Worth follows their vision and path in redevelopment.
Right now we have $23 million in NSP2 money. That has to be an enticing reason to want to be a member. Just think what your influence can do to direct all that do re me.
Lisa Wilson has applied to this Board. Ms. Wilson is the Director of The Mentoring Center in a space that was given to her for $1 a year to find jobs for the unemployed as well as the undocumented/illegal immigrant which is against the law. Her business is funded through grants and government money. She lives in West Palm Beach and this business does not pay ad valorem. The way I understand it is, in order to become a member of a city board in Lake Worth, you must either live here or be a manager of a business or an owner of a business in our city that pays taxes. Does she? Who encouraged her to apply?
I was told that when questioned about all the computers at the Resource Center, aka illegal hiring hall and what they were used for, she intimated that the quesitoneer was shhhh, "racccccccist."
Personally, I would rather see anyone appointed to any of our City Boards but Lisa Wilson.
Things are getting so twisted in this country and "political correctness" has taken over common sense. Just look at what our Commission did on Arizona.
In April 2010, U.S. District Court Judge Malcolm J. Howard delivered good news to Mr. Nieto. He ruled that Camp Lejeune officials violated his free speech rights back in 2008 when they ordered him to remove decals attacking Muslim terrorists from his vehicle. Judge Howard enjoined Marine officials from further enforcing the ban against Nieto.
The rest of the story on political correctness running amuck as follows--
Beginning in 2001, to show his anger toward the Muslim terrorists who killed his son, Nieto displayed various decals on his vehicle expressing anti-terrorist sentiments, such as "Remember the Cole, 12 Oct 2000," "Islam=Terrorism, " and "We Died, They Rejoiced." Based on a complaint from a Marine who is married to a Muslim, on July 31, 2008, two military police officers (MPs) issued Nieto a ticket for displaying "offensive material."
After Nieto refused to remove the "offending" decals from his vehicle, the Base Magistrate issued Nieto a written order, ordering him to remove his vehicle from the base until all decals were removed and banning his vehicle from all other federal installations. The order in effect prevented Nieto from driving his vehicle to Arlington National Cemetery (a federal installation) to visit the grave marker of his fallen son.
As a result of the Marine Corps’ unlawful action, the Thomas More Law Center, a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, filed a federal lawsuit against the Camp Lejeune Commanding Officer and the Base Magistrate on behalf of Nieto in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina. The civil rights lawsuit challenged the constitutionality of the military’s ban on Nieto’s speech.
Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Thomas More Law Center, commented, "Political correctness is destroying our military. 9/11 was caused by Islamic terrorists, and our troops are being killed by Islamic terrorists overseas and on our very own military bases; yet, our commanders are more concerned about ‘diversity’ and not offending the Muslim community.
And here, the military re-victimized a father anguishing over the murder of his son by Islamic terrorists because they don’t want to offend Muslims." During sworn testimony taken in the case, Marine officials admitted they would allow speech that favored Islam, but not Nieto’s speech because they considered it "extremist, indecent, and offensive."
In his opinion, Judge Howard responded to the government’s argument as follows: "Defendants argue that the regulation is reasonable and necessary because it is aimed at preventing speech the sole intention of which is to inflame the passion of those within the Base command. However, defendants fail to recognize that pro Islamic messages, such as ‘Islam is Peace, ’ and ‘Islam is Love,’ may be just as incendiary to individuals like plaintiff as anti-Islamic messages are to the individual who complained about plaintiff’s decals."
Robert Muise, Senior Trial Counsel for the Law Center who handled the case, commented, "As Judge Howard’s well-reasoned opinion makes plain, political correctness and ‘diversity’ do not justify violating the Constitution. As a former Marine, I am ashamed at the way the Marine Corps treated this grieving father and war veteran. When I told him of the good news yesterday, he was elated. He plans to be back on base with his vehicle early next week."
“The decision to target Nieto’s opinions seemed purely content-based and arbitrary,” the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression announced last year.
What is going on in this country? The above was reported in various news media across the country. See The Marine Times for reference.
A little more than 4 months until Election Day. Will Florida enter the era of Hometown Democracy - which gives voters a real seat at the table when it comes to the future of their community - or will we continue with the status quo - in which lobbyist controlled politicians continue to run Florida into the ground? Florida voters will decide on November 2nd.
Polls show Floridians are ready for Hometown Democracy, but the day after Labor Day, when the political season kicks in, the big money will arrive to try and destroy Amendment 4 with a tidal wave of disinformation. Hometown Democracy is depending on YOU to make sure that doesn’t happen. Donate today and spread the word.
To quote Dr. Seuss: “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”
Monday, June 28, 2010
Decades ago, in the time of my parents and their parents before them, generation after generation, there was pride in working and attaining the American Dream from the sweat of your own efforts and labor. Today, it is nothing but government entitlements. You want a house? No problem. The government will help you get one. Shady banks will help you get one. Shady mortgage brokers will make sure you get one. And the list goes on.
We just got a government grant of $23 million that will help with that very same thing. You no longer have to work and save money for that down payment. Oh no. You will be given it. The government will even help you with mortgage payments. You need a sprinkler system? Just ask our CRA. They used to give money away for some guy who just asked for it--had his hand out. They have eliminated that program for now—no money.
And this has been the problem here in
This entire mentality is so prevalent it has ruined this City. 55% of the housing is owner occupied and 45% are rentals. Commentary in the budget suggests this is because the average median household income is $38,709. I discount that as a reason. Owning a home is cheaper than paying rent. Housing has also been inexpensive in
So, we get back to the entitlement mentality…Socialism. It has started at the top and this is why this country is in so much trouble. We borrow money to stay afloat and then give $2 billion to Brazil for oil exploration. We give Israel roughly 1 trillion dollars per year. This equates to $187,000 per hour for the last 59 years. Our priorities are askew.
Elected officials are not addressing the give-aways and the impact. On page 24 of the Lake Worth Budget you can see that we rank right up there in residents seeking free programs and those waiting for free social services. The illegals get free breakfast and lunch at The Mentoring Center. We continue to encourage the hand-out mentality and people breaking the law. What makes us believe that we owe people anything but the basic services?
Here in Lake Worth, we have to protect those services that are vital and get out of those that are not essential and stop the give-aways. If people can’t afford something, should that be the City of Lake Worth’s problem? We must have cooperation of the Unions to get to where we need to get.
How do people get their pride back? They need to stop believing they are the victims and we need to insist that there is no more free lunch. They need to start believing that citizenship is a privilege, not a right. Laws must be followed with no exception. Stop the entitlements.
We have a new City Manager who has presented a bold new Budget. Let’s take our City back. We must change the way we have been doing business.
Getting desperate folks? Vote NO people are all those Chamber of Commerce people, the builders, the developers, all those into almighty greed who lie and who want to change land uses just for themselves. The hell with the rest of the residents. LaSonna?
On November 2, the people will get the right to vote on land use changes. If not, perhaps they will change the zoning across from a property on Pine Street and build a massage parlor or something. Let's hope not. We all should have the right to vote on growth and changes to land uses and how our city looks.
If you take greed out of the equation, any rational person will vote YES on Amendment 4.
Photo by Marsha Drew
(I have never seen a Spoonbill in the wild)
Sunday, June 27, 2010
New to Lake Worth High starting in the fall of the 2010-2011 school year, teachers and students will have access to Video Conference hardware. This technology will give students the unique ability to expand the walls of the classroom and take students to locations around the world via computer.
According to Brett Packard, Assistant Principal, "This will become a vital component as students learn through collaborative projects that are curriculum based. Communication and presentation skills are developed as students prepare for the global community where they will live and work."
The following-referenced opinion piece was written by Robert A. Hall, a former Massachusetts state senator and U.S. Marine Corps veteran who is also the author of the 2005 book The Good Bits (The Marines, the Massachusetts Senate and Managing Associations). Robert Hall blogs as The Old Jarhead at tartanmarine.blogspot.com, and the piece quoted here, titled "I'm Tired," was his entry for 19 February 2009.
I'm 63. Except for one semester in college when jobs were scarce and a six-month period when I was between jobs, but job-hunting every day, I've worked, hard, since I was 18. Despite some health challenges, I still put in 50-hour weeks, and haven't called in sick in seven or eight years. I make a good salary, but I didn't inherit my job or my income, and I worked to get where I am. Given the economy, there's no retirement in sight, and I'm tired. Very tired.
I'm tired of being told that I have to "spread the wealth" to people who don't have my work ethic. I'm tired of being told the government will take the money I earned, by force if necessary, and give it to people too lazy to earn it.
I'm tired of being told that I have to pay more taxes to "keep people in their homes." Sure, if they lost their jobs or got sick, I'm willing to help. But if they bought McMansions at three times the price of our paid-off, $250,000 condo, on one-third of my salary, then let the left-wing Congress-critters who passed Fannie and Freddie and the Community Reinvestment Act that created the bubble help them with their own money.
I'm tired of being told how bad America is by left-wing millionaires like Michael Moore, George Soros and Hollywood Entertainers who live in luxury because of the opportunities America offers. In thirty years, if they get their way, the United States will have the economy of Zimbabwe, the freedom of the press of China, the crime and violence of Mexico, the tolerance for Christian people of Iran, and the freedom of speech of Venezuela.
I'm tired of being told that Islam is a "Religion of Peace," when every day I can read dozens of stories of Muslim men killing their sisters, wives and daughters for their family "honor"; of Muslims rioting over some slight offense; of Muslims murdering Christian and Jews because they aren't "believers"; of Muslims burning schools for girls; of Muslims stoning teenage rape victims to death for "adultery"; of Muslims mutilating the genitals of little girls; all in the name of Allah, because the Qur'an and Shari'a law tells them to.
I'm tired of being told that "race doesn't matter" in the post-racial world of Obama, when it's all that matters in affirmative action jobs, lower college admission and graduation standards for minorities (harming them the most), government contract set-asides, tolerance for the ghetto culture of violence and fatherless children that hurts minorities more than anyone, and in the appointment of U.S. Senators from Illinois.
I think it's very cool that we have a black president and that a black child is doing her homework at the desk where Lincoln wrote the Emancipation Proclamation. I just wish the black president was Condi Rice, or someone who believes more in freedom and the individual and less arrogantly of an all-knowing government.
I'm tired of a news media that thinks Bush's fundraising and inaugural expenses were obscene, but that think Obama's, at triple the cost, were wonderful; that thinks Bush exercising daily was a waste of residential time, but Obama exercising is a great example for the public to control weight and stress; that picked over every line of Bush's military records, but never demanded that Kerry release his; that slammed Palin, with two years as governor, for being too inexperienced for VP, but touted Obama with three years as senator as potentially the best president ever. Wonder why people are dropping their subscriptions or switching to Fox News? Get a clue. I didn't vote for Bush in 2000, but the media and Kerry drove me to his camp in 2004.
I'm tired of being told that out of "tolerance for other cultures" we must let Saudi Arabia use our oil money to fund mosques and mandrassa Islamic schools to preach hate in America, while no American group is allowed to fund a church, synagogue or religious school in Saudi Arabia to teach love and tolerance.
I'm tired of being told I must lower my living standard to fight global warming, which no one is allowed to debate. My wife and I live in a two-bedroom apartment and carpool together five miles to our jobs. We also own a three-bedroom condo where our daughter and granddaughter live. Our carbon footprint is about 5% of Al Gore's, and if you're greener than Gore, you're green enough.
I'm tired of being told that drug addicts have a disease, and I must help support and treat them, and pay for the damage they do. Did a giant germ rush out of a dark alley, grab them, and stuff white powder up their noses while they tried to fight it off? I don't think Gay people choose to be Gay, but I damn sure think druggies chose to take drugs. And I'm tired of harassment from cool people treating me like a freak when I tell them I never tried marijuana.
I'm tired of illegal aliens being called "undocumented workers," especially the ones who aren't working, but are living on welfare or crime. What's next? Calling drug dealers, "Undocumented Pharmacists"? And, no,I'm not against Hispanics. Most of them are Catholic, and it's been a few hundred years since Catholics wanted to kill me for my religion.I'm willing to fast track for citizenship any Hispanic person, who can speak English, doesn't have a criminal record and who is self-supporting without family on welfare, or who serves honorably for three years in our military.... Those are the citizens we need.
I'm tired of latte liberals and journalists, who would never wear the uniform of the Republic themselves, or let their entitlement-handicapped kids near a recruiting station, trashing our military. They and their kids can sit at home, never having to make split-second decisions under life and death circumstances, and bad mouth better people than themselves. Do bad things happen in war? You bet. Do our troops sometimes misbehave? Sure. Does this compare with the atrocities that were the policy of our enemies for the last fifty years and still are?
So here's the deal. I'll let myself be subjected to all the humiliation and abuse that was heaped on terrorists at Abu Ghraib or Gitmo, and the critics can let themselves be subject to captivity by the Muslims, who tortured and beheaded Daniel Pearl in Pakistan, or the Muslims who tortured and murdered Marine Lt. Col. William Higgins in Lebanon, or the Muslims who ran the blood-spattered Al Qaeda torture rooms our troops found in Iraq, or the Muslims who cut off the heads of schoolgirls in Indonesia, because the girls were Christian. Then we'll compare notes. British and American soldiers are the only troops in history that civilians came to for help and handouts, instead of hiding from in fear.
I'm tired of people telling me that their party has a corner on virtue and the other party has a corner on corruption. Read the papers; bums are bipartisan.
And I'm tired of people telling me we need bipartisanship. I live in Illinois, where the "Illinois Combine" of Democrats has worked to loot the public for years. Not to mention the tax cheats in Obama's cabinet.
'm tired of hearing wealthy athletes, entertainers and politicians of both parties talking about innocent mistakes, stupid mistakes or youthful mistakes, when we all know they think their only mistake was getting caught.
'm tired of people with a sense of entitlement, rich or poor. Speaking of poor, I'm tired of hearing people with air-conditioned homes, color TVs and two cars called poor. The majority of Americans didn't have that in 1970, but we didn't know we were "poor." The poverty pimps have to keep changing the definition of poor to keep the dollars flowing.
I'm real tired of people who don't take responsibility for their lives and actions. I'm tired of hearing them blame the government, or discrimination or big-whatever for their problems.
Yes, I'm damn tired. But I'm also glad to be 63. Because, mostly, I'm not going to have to see the world these people are making. I'm just sorry for my granddaughter.
Saturday, June 26, 2010
I have said it before, we are better off than Boynton Beach.
Boynton's CRA Director called police on its Mayor and a citizen he was with when they tried to enter the CRA offices. Now mayors are getting jerked around by staff. We have known for a long time that it is staff that runs the show but this is ridiculous. What next?
It’s time to take back our City, as Susan Stanton says, and with her proposed Budget that she has been working on for the last seven months, we can. Decisions made in the past have crippled our forward movement. Union benefits are out of control. The entire economy because of sub-primes, brought our little city to its knees. The only thing left for survival is to stop the insanity and that means the Unions. Bad contracts that happened a decade ago have finally caught up to us.
The current City tax base “will not generate adequate property tax revenue to fund existing city services without making comprehensive and systemic reductions in both the cost and scope of City services and contractual commitments.” That means the Unions. The Unions, to this day, have been unwilling to come to the table. Right now, our total obligation to Union pensions this year is $7.4 million with an increase to $9.7 million by year 2016. The total unfunded exceeds $58 million that we will have to pay! The percentage of payroll for the Firefighter’s alone is 152.13% of payroll. Insanity? I think so.
As we all know, there are many States and Cities struggling to stay solvent. The main problem is the out of whack and overly generous contracts with Union workers. Here in
Our City Manager has suggested the following without raising millage or layoffs:
PB County Fire/Rescue--Deferral or reduction of $350,000 supplemental payment
Employee--Reduction of $1,816,000 in the Defined Benefit Pension Plan and adopting a Defined Contribution Plan (This was also suggested by Bill Thrasher of the Financial Advisory Board)
Police Defined Pension Plan--Reduction of $370,000 beginning Oct 2011
Personnel benefits--Reduction of 1,355,000
Total savings: $4,740,000.
Please read the 38 page City Manager Budget Message starting on page 17 of the Budget, a most “visionary” perspective from our City Manager who is thinking progressively and has the ability to look beyond the “now” to formulate strategies that will ensure the health of our City and its future success. Other than red-light cameras and downtown parking lot meters, and not having read the actual Budget yet, I support this proposed budget, based on the City Manager's Message, 100%. We have been in this box for way too long.
Friday, June 25, 2010
"Florida Republican leaders have begun crafting anti-illegal-immigrant legislation modeled after an Arizona law that has incited widespread protests and fueled national and international debate over U.S. immigration policies."
Read more about it HERE.
"Civil rights groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union have filed legal challenges to the legislation and President Barack Obama’s administration is expected to follow suit." That's as good a reason as any to know that Arizona is on the right course.
Read more-- John D. Macdonald and the Roots of Hometown Democracy
Travis McGee would vote YES on Amendment 4.
According to the The Daily Beast--
Exclusive: Top Taliban Commander Cheers McChrystal Sacking
by Mushtaq Yusufzai
Militant commanders followed this week's news of Gen. McChrystal's departure with keen interest. Mushtaq Yusufzai gets the reaction from Senior Afghan Taliban commander Sirajuddin Haqqani.
The Afghan Taliban has a saying: "Americans may own the watches. But we've got the time."
As President Obama sacked Gen. Stanley McChrystal this week, replacing him with Gen. David Petraeus, Taliban commanders watched events unfold from afar, and then declared that this was yet another victory.
The change of leadership, they said, gives them even more time in their fight against U.S. forces.
Ahmadullah Ahmadi, a Taliban spokesman, said that sending Gen. McChrystal home in the middle of the war, in such a inglorious way, was good news as it proved how troubled and divided the U.S. political and military leadership had become.
"Before Gen. McChrystal, many strong military generals suffered defeat," in Afghanistan, Ahmadi said. "The Americans know that Afghanistan is the 'graveyard of empires.' But even so, they invaded this country."
Senior Afghan Taliban commander, Sirajuddin Haqqani, said he and his men had been informed as soon as the story about McChrystal broke. When Haqqani heard about the disparaging comments that McChrystal had made, he knew straight away that the American commander in Afghanistan was in trouble, and would get fired.
To amend the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 to prohibit foreign influence in Federal elections, to prohibit government contractors from making expenditures with respect to such elections, and to establish additional disclosure requirements with respect to spending in such elections, and for other purposes.
The above was just passed on a vote of 219 to 206.
Read the Summary.
Crying today are Constitutionalists and scores of gun rights organizations and ostensibly friendly conservatives that have lined up against the NRA over the DICSLOSE Act, including national groups such as the Chamber of Commerce, the Family Research Council, Freedom Action, Gun Owners of America, Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, the National Organization for Gun Rights, the Coalition for Liberty, and state level groups such as Grass Roots North Carolina, Gun Owners of Nevada, the Oregon Firearms Federation, Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, South Dakota Gun Owners, the Virginia Gun Owners Coalition, and Wisconsin Gun Owners, among many others.
What is their gripe? They believe that Obama wants to seize lists of all gun owners in the country. The NRA is the only Group that is exempt from the list.
The Vote in Florida, 15 Republicans and 2 Democrats voted "no," (one of whom was Democrat Alcee Hastings) with 8 Democrats voting "yes," (Kendrick Meek, Ron Klein and Ted Deutch were some on the "yes" list).
(Sec. 102) Applies the ban on contributions and expenditures by foreign nationals to foreign-controlled domestic corporations. I can't even imagine a foreign corporation doing business in the United States having control over our elections by the influence of campaign contributions. The passing of this Bill was right and sensible. All you gun groups need to take a chill pill and understand that full disclosure and transparency is the name of this game.
This legislation will now move on to the Senate and will be referenced as S.3295
"On January 14, 2010, HUD awarded a combined total $1.93 billion in NSP 2 grants to 56 grantees nationwide. This includes 33 consortiums at a regional level and four national consortiums carrying out activities in target areas throughout the country. These grantees were selected on the basis of foreclosure needs in their selected target areas, recent past experience, program design and compliance with NSP2 rules." The City of Lake Worth was awarded $23.2 million.
I stayed home to listen and the audio went out after 30 minutes never to come back up. This was unfortunate and these "technical difficulties" are happening with frequency it seems.
At the June 1st meeting, (backup consists of 533 pages to download before you can even read the stuff) the City Commission "conveyed" 3 properties to the CRA:
25 S. F, 325 N. D and 331 S. E Streets, according to Ms. Oliva, Director of the CRA. Two of them will be used for affordable housing and one for qualified working artists. This was on the agenda as a Resolution 08-2010 under Public Hearings.
The five properties that the CRA wants in addition to the above are:
Approved for the NSP2 Grant
328 N. C
225 S. E
Approved for Cultural Renaissance
902 N. C
107 N. B (was on the market for $35,000)-->
I have to admit that I don't understand this Grant. I do not believe, for one moment, that the rehabilitation of 130 houses will make any dent in the blight problem we have...not one little dent. The rehab of 130 houses will NOT revive the neighborhood and will not stabilize it, as Mayor Varela suggested unless all 130 houses were on the same contiguous blocks, not spread out all over the CRA district.
The CRA has $23.2 million...sounds like a small fortune to me. Why then did the City not sell these houses, no matter the sales price or value, to the CRA, not just elect to give assets away? Walking into City Hall on Wednesday evening I ran into Commissioner Maxwell and he said, "Because of the way that the Grant was written, the City can't sell any properties to the CRA to be used in this NSP2 grant." In addition, the CRA has NO money but they are "buying up properties" according to this week's Lake Worth Herald. The money that the City could have made from the sale of these properties would have paid for Phase I of the Casino project.
The rehabilitation of 130 homes will not eliminate blight in our City. What might possibly eliminate blight in a section of our City would be to take one neighborhood, street by street, clean up the landscaping per lot, paint the house and do some cosmetic and minor repairs...get them spruced up...allot $20,000 per house and you could cover 1,000 houses, not 130, but the Grant was not written this way. The Buyer then purchases a "fixer upper" for a small sales price with the guarantee that he will actually live in the house. It will create affordable housing, something of which we are not short, and help a few people own a home.
So, who benefits? Tax dollars from anything in the CRA District does not come back to the City. We have already said fixing up 130 houses will not do it. The city will not benefit in any way. The CRA gets all of the tax benefit. Right now, we need operating dollars. Why do we continue to GIVE THINGS AWAY?
Not understanding our 100+ surplus property inventory and why we have been sitting on these properties for years, I still can't help but ask, why can't' we and why haven't we sold them and why haven't we taken the necessary actions to do so? If we couldn't sell them in this down market or because of their deplorable condition, why did we not demolish them and sell the land to a developer? Anything is better than sitting there with inventory that is continually getting in worse condition and beyond value.
This comes back in July for the Commissions' vote.
Thursday, June 24, 2010
"Venezuela will nationalize a fleet of oil rigs belonging to U.S. company Helmerich and Payne, the latest takeover in a push to socialism as President Hugo Chavez struggles with lower oil output and a recession."
Read more about Ana Rodriguez's (you remember her, right?) former homeland HERE and how they are nationalizing property owned by a United States corporation.
Chavez has kept pressure up on the private sector in recent months, blaming a "parasitic bourgeoisie" for Venezuela's recession and 30 percent annualized inflation.
Maybe that's where Ana learned how to call everyone a "racist" who does not believe in her open border policy and her Socialistic BS. We know that whole group has no respect for Corporate America, you know, the very entities that have created jobs and wealth for US citizens and have helped make us the World's largest economy.
In February, five conservation groups filed a lawsuit in federal court in Fort Myers, Florida against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for its failure to designate critical habitat to protect the Florida panther. Listed as an endangered species since 1967, fewer than 100 Florida panthers survive in the wild.
The Conservancy of Southwest Florida, the Sierra Club (David Levy, you should resign), the Center for Biological Diversity, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, and the Council for Civic Associations say they are suing to protect the panther's remaining habitat before it is lost due to sprawl development and climate change.
Read MORE on this....just another reason to vote YES on Amendment 4 this November 2.
It has now been two years—TWO YEARS-- since Commissioner Jennings introduced an Ethics Ordinance. The Commission then debated it and debated it. It came back to the Commission on
Today it was reported that the voters of
This is a worthwhile Charter Amendment. If
Read more at the PB Post Editorial, A new Political Cave-In.
Read more at South Florida Gay News and what Jarrett Terrill says about Amendment 4.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
1) the proposed budget does NOT include an increase in millage
2) there are no lay-offs anticipated.
Look for the Preliminary Budget to be out within the next 3 business days, possibly even tomorrow. It will be discussed at a workshop with the City Commission on Tuesday, June 29 beginning at 8:30 am.
As the oil spill gushes on, the Brown Pelican is a harsh and sickening reality of this environmental disaster. It is one of the casualties, along with sea turtles, song birds, shore birds and Dolphins. This dreadful "accident" continues on after two months with no solution in sight. Lives and income have been lost and the harm to our shores and our waters has occurred because of the love of oil.
More oil is spilling out than ever before and no one knows what to do... 750,000 gallons per day.
Saying that it is "the right decision for national security," The President did not take the high road today. Instead of admitting that we have a big problem in Afghanistan, President Obama fired General McChrystal. The President has replaced him with General David Petraeus.
For the General to break protocol as he did, leads me to believe there is something very wrong with the direction we are taking or not taking in Afghanistan. The general would not have given an interview with Rolling Stone unless he wanted to bring attention to the "non-attention" of President Obama. McChrystal had asked for 60 to 80 thousand troops and an open-ended commitment from the President; the president sent 30,000 and gave a timeline to get out.
Read the Rolling Stone article -- Stanley McChrystal, Obama's top commander in Afghanistan, has seized control of the war by never taking his eye off the real enemy: The wimps in the White House.
Peter J. Matthews
Lake Worth Resident
former Marine and Vietnam Veteran
Dan Moffett’s editorial in Tuesday’s Palm Beach ComPost highlights the differences between the idyllic and the practical. Ivory tower residents pontificate while mortals cope. Will he please define “comprehensive immigration reform legislation” in plain, unadorned English please? Yo siento, no me intiendo progressive! Without securing the border first, how can even the best plumber repair and replace a burst water main?
He states that Lake Worth’s Commissioners debated late into the night before approving the Resolution against Arizona. Dan, see what happens when you rely on others for the facts. Don’t ever assume, because you ought to know what it makes out of “u” and “me.” There was never any debate. The Mayor made a declaration about his intention to vote yea before the action and hastily retreated so others could speak freely. Mayor, who among us aren’t descendants of immigrants (even the so called ‘native Americans?” And then he, a la Pontius Pilate, retires to another, more comfortable room with the public address system broadcasting the action so he knows full well what‘s happening!
The Vice Mayor then trots out her well rehearsed “Golden remarks” and turns it over to Commissioner Mulvehill who then officiously launches her expansion of the resolution to include all of Florida’s inclusion to Lake Worth’s intrusion into Arizona’s self-defense actions. Looks like 3 yea votes so far without any input from Commissioner Jennings (wonder if she was swayed by the lead speakers?). Alright, 4 yeas to disregard their oaths to uphold the Constitution of the United States. Don’t confuse me with facts, my mind is made up. So, with no further ado, lets open it up for citizen’s (or not) input. Are you for real?
If you can’t mind the store over the “Casino Fiasco,” 3 miles from City Hall, what makes you think you have the competency to intrude into business 2,300 miles away? Make sure you include Florida on the return envelope; I wouldn’t want to embarrass any other city with the same name of Lake Worth in the USA. We own this one!
Instead of attacking Arizona, why not target the federal government? After all, our 2004 resolution seeking federal assistance has been ignored. Do the commissioners truly feel that “Where the tropics Begin” would be ungovernable if Arizona’s pro-active protection measures were adopted here? It’s not a local issue; it’s a federal issue. Go to the source of the problem in all attempts to remedy same...or is the Commission more content to “…rule o’er us“(as in “God Save the Queen“) (American Revolution?) by decrees, edicts, and fiat. This action strongly points to that answer.
Mayor Giuliani enhanced New York City by honing in on quality of life issues: Fix the broken windows, enforce existing laws, etc. Commissioners, do the same here in Lake Worth. Fixate on our problems.
Some two weeks ago, the ComPost pointed out that our city’s tax base had declined by more than 46% over the past 3 years, perhaps a billion (with a “B”) dollars. That ought to be a priority, no? The same article attributed His Honor, Mayor Rene Varela, with stating the infrastructure, the city’s backbone, was busted. Whoa, another thought - work on that too! I betcha you can ask neighborhood associations and other concerned entities to address their anxieties so that our “buttisky” Commissioners will be able to fill their duty hours working for “We, the people." These quality of life endeavors could be targeted to improve our local ethnic and racial issues, not Arizona.
Later, the citizens would rate their performance on Election Day. What a novel concept? Accountability! Imagine, elected officials being responsible for their actions (and inactions). Would the same names and faces be on the dais in the future if we continue to empower them to axe our tax base and degrade our quality of life while dithering their time pandering to projects and a Resolution against Arizona law that don’t affect us? I hope we citizens say no.
Politician, heal thyself.
Read a real Scary article, on the oil spilling in our Gulf that was sent to me by a reader along with another article, entitled How the ultimate BP oil spill could kill millions.
Back in 1999, Chris Cooper of the Wall Street Journal wrote an article on the oil field off of Eugene Island, Louisiana that indicated Eugene Island is rapidly refilling itself, perhaps from some continuous source miles below the Earth's surface. That, they say, raises the tantalizing possibility that oil may not be the limited resource it is assumed to be."
If they are right, there is a possibility that this oil spill will never be contained and capped off. If that is true, what does this mean for the United States? What have we done?
As Lake Worth resident, Cesar Figueroa says, "To me we are at peak oil, which means that we have taken all the easy wells on the surface and now if we start to take out the very deep oil , we will be playing with fire. The bottom line is that we have passed the natural production flow of nature ( Earth ) in using the resource because we have passed the limit to how many humans are on the plant now. And if oil went back to being 50 cents a gallon, then we would have 12 not 6 billion people on the plant. Checkmate their are no more options left... mother nature will do it's thing and all we can do is wait."
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
A federal judge in New Orleans has blocked the moratorium on deepwater drilling imposed by the Obama administration after the Gulf spill. The administration said it will appeal the ruling. This Judge does not think the President is God.
Read more about it HERE
Dan Moffett's statement that Lake Worth did the correct thing to "embrace diversity rather than divisiveness" is just not the facts in what the Lake Worth City Commission did last Tuesday when it denounced Arizona's 1070.
The Commission, just by putting it on the Agenda, caused divisiveness in a community where property values have fallen nearly 50% over the last two years and a City that has looked the other way on illegal immigration. This was not "good sense" as Mr. Moffett purports but rather the bad judgment of "political correctness" of liberal commissioenrs and other "well-meaning" folks who are against the law for something that MIGHT happen, racial profiling. They are protecting the "rights" of illegal aliens and are not the least bit interested in protecting our borders or our laws.
It is truly pathetic, Dan, that you suggest that they were right to give up, roll over, stand up for the criminal and not the sovereign State of Arizona and not adhere to the Constitution or to their oath of office.
Kendrick Meek won this debate. I did not agree with either one of them on certain issues such as agreeing to Anchor Babies, Stimulus and just following Party line. Greene likes Sotomayor and is for liberal Supreme Court justices. By this admission alone, he will not get my vote. Meek answered it well by stating that justices should not be projecting their political thinking into decisions but make sure that Federal Law is in line.
Greene hit below the belt by attacking Meek by saying that the only job Meek had created was a consulting job for his mother. We don't need any more sleaze in politics.
Kendrick Meek has the endorsement of Mayor Lois Frankel and he certainly impressed me.
Although not a star and not a planet, last night's moon showing 84% full, was a bright spot in a black sky.
Commissioner Scott Maxwell won this blog's poll with 84% of the vote which asked, which commissioner would you vote for today based on the Arizona 1070 vote of last Tuesday's City Commission. He was the only one standing up-- the only bright star in that very black room that night.
President Obama said, "What I've directed my Justice Department to do is to look very carefully at the language of this law to see whether it comports both with our core values and existing legal standards, as well as the fact that the federal government is ultimately the one charged with immigration policy. And I expect to get a final report back from the Justice Department soon, at which point we'll make some decisions in terms of how we are going to address that law."
Kris W. Kobach, a professor of law at the University of Missouri at Kansas City says, "Arizona Law will endure." He was Attorney General John Ashcroft's chief adviser on immigration law and border security and was one of the principal drafters of Arizona S.B. 1070.
Yesterday John Jordan, always blunt and to the point, asked the Mayor why he was for the illegals. He responded as above. No one has a crystal ball here. Obama is NOT God and he certainly has not had "change" that I can believe in. Just yesterday the Supreme Court upheld a federal law that makes it a crime to provide "material support" to terrorist organizations. Thank God the entire Supreme Court has not been compromised.
Fremont, Nebraska just approved a ban on hiring or renting to illegals and the word is that some will challenge that in court. Why are our laws constantly challenged? Terrorists should have no rights and neither should illegals.
We shall see if left-winged scare politics and socialistic agendas have consumed all reason and sanity and will squash States Rights and the 10th Amendment. What is even worse is the Feds using our tax dollars to fight Arizona, a State trying to enforce a law that the Federal government has failed to implement. The majority of citizens agree with Arizona and agree with our Federal Laws that are not outmoded; they are just not enforced.
"I believe in states' rights.... I believe we have distorted the balance of our government today by giving powers that were never intended to be given in the Constitution to that federal establishment." ~ Ronald Reagan
Although wind, solar and biomass are assumed to grow as much as 10 times faster than overall energy use, they provide only 11 percent of supply in 2035, up from 5 percent in 2008."
Robert J. Samuelson, Washington Post, June 21, 2010
Monday, June 21, 2010
I was told that the Mayor told his Coffee Clutch at the Towers today that we have hit on "hard times" and that the City of Lake Worth's work force has been cut by 240 employees. Did he also mention that the police and fire that went to the County make up the majority of this 240 number? Did he mention how much more it is costing us for the decision to go with the County for these services?
As I was not there and this was third party commentary, I will give the Mayor the benefit of this doubt and will assume that he gave all of the facts.
In today's paper we learn that Greenacres Staff has concluded, after careful analysis, that it would not save them money at all by merging their police and fire into the County. Of course, the Unions want to merge as it means more money to them.
Greenacres spends half of its budget on public safety and have concluded that in five years, they will save $5.3 million by having its own police department. Having their own fire department will save them $170,000 over the same period.
Greenacres is a city with similar size to
The court ruled 6-3 Monday that the government may prohibit all forms of aid to designated terrorist groups, even if the support consists of training and advice about entirely peaceful and legal activities.
Usually voting with the more liberal Justices of the Court, Justice Stephen Breyer took the "unusual step of reading his dissent aloud in the courtroom. Breyer said he rejects the majority's conclusion that the (U.S.) Constitution permits the government to prosecute the plaintiffs criminally for providing instruction and advice about the terror groups' lawful political objectives." Liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor, who is getting more liberal every day, joined the dissent.
"Material support intended even for benign purposes can help a terrorist group in other ways," Chief Justice John Roberts said in his majority opinion.
In order to make this as simple as possible and to allow you to understand why we are not protected from further commercialization of our beach, please make sure that you read the last paragraph--IMPORTANT.
"The Beach and Casino district (BAC) is a zoning category for the Lake Worth public beach and casino area. It is intended for public use of the beach area and other beach related uses and private commercial and public uses in the casino area."
Use restrictions in the Public Recreation and Open Space (PROS) district.
Principal uses permitted by right in PROS district. Parks and other outdoor open space areas intended for active use. Essential services.
23.18.02.02. Principal uses permitted as special land uses in PROS district. No uses are permitted as special land uses in the PROS public recreation and open space district.
23.18.02.03. Accessory uses permitted by right in PROS district. Any use accessory to and customarily incidental to a principal use permitted by right.
As everyone knows, our current stores or any future stores that are ancillary to the beach are permitted uses. It is specifically spelled out in the Zoning PROS.
The BAC zoning does not address the area south of the Casino and west of the seawall (the current area west of Benny's and currently our upper level parking area).
The zoning says--All uses not specifically permitted (will not be allowed).
So, as that entire section is not specifically addressed, what can be built there is up to politics. This is an opportunity to develop commercially and this can be decided by any Commission.
Think West, Wes.
In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer. ~Albert Camus
Think of your friends who live up North or Green Bay or freezing out there in Minnesota... always looking forward to Summer when they can get out in their shorts, play some golf, take a weekend trip to a nearby lake for boating or swimming or go to the beach. We are lucky to be in Lake Worth where our weather is nearly perfect every day of the year... with an annual mean of 75.3^.
We have every reason in the world to take advantage of our assets and upgrade and maintain them: our Casino, our Golf Course, (which has now turned around because of management) as well as our downtown can be money makers beyond our imagination and put our City on the map as a destination to bring in millions of tourist dollars.
We are now going forward to be self-sufficient in water and our Reverse Osmosis Plant is under construction. We have obtained an NSP2 Grant to clean up blight. We have the tendency to look at the bad but good decisions have been made to make Lake Worth better. Now if we, as citizens, can solve the illegal alien problem, the over-crowding problem and the crime, because the Commission has failed the citizens in this regard, this City will be that much closer to prosperity.
And for a little bit of trivia, the hottest temperature ever recorded in the United States was on July 10, 1913 when Death Valley, California reached 134 degrees F.
The temperature reached 136 degrees in El Azizia, Libya on September 13, 1922, setting the world record for heat.
As Henry James said, "Summer afternoon - summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language." And just think--we have Summer every day in Lake Worth.
Sunday, June 20, 2010
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 20, 2020
MARTIN COUNTY – Stuart
Monday 7:00 pm, June 21, 2010:
Lesley Blackner will be speaking to the Martin County Conservation Alliance Monday June 21 about Florida Hometown Democracy, Amendment 4.
2351 Southeast Monterey Road
Stuart, FL 34996-3331
HELP SPREAD THE WORD - BRING A FRIEND! The meeting is free and open to the public. There will be handouts and campaign materials available to distribute.
GET THE FACTS: Hometown Democracy Amendment 4 is an “add-on” to the existing land-use approval process. Local city or county commissions will study, hold public hearings, and vote on proposed changes to the overall master plan (local comprehensive land-use plan) just like they do now. Here’s the new Amendment 4 step: voters will veto or approve the commissioners’ decision on the next regularly scheduled Election Day. No special elections are required. It’s that simple.
Read more at Florida Hometown Democracy
If you have questions, they all can be answered at the A4 FAQ's
CONTACT: Lesley Blackner’s Office: (561) 659-5754 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Learn about and follow Hometown Democracy on Facebook and Twitter.
DONATE NOW TO HELP SAVE WHAT'S LEFT OF FLORIDA..(Click here)
Vote YES 4 Hometown Democracy!
PO Box 636, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32170-0636.
Florida Hometown Democracy
On Sunday, May 23, four students from Lake Worth High School competed in the Lambda Alpha Alpha (LAA) chapter of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc nationally mandated Talent Hunt Contest. Congratulation goes out to April Weatherspoon for winning First Place in the Talent Hunt Contest. April is now eligible to represent the LAA at the state competition that can earn her up to $5000.00 dollars in scholarship money for college. Congratulation also goes out to Esther Charles for taking thirds place honors. Congratulations to Fanny Lambis and Aniceto Hardimon for finishing in the top five. Go Trojans!!!
Glenn Stubbs, Omega Psi Phi
Drafting and Design News
Lake Worth High Senior, Michael Keller won the N.A.W.I.C. ( NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF WOMEN IN CONSTRUCTION) CAD drawing competition for the area and finished 2nd in the region. He was a four year drafting and design major student.
We had the awards dinner last Thurs, night at the Double Tree on PGA Blvd. Michael also took home a check for $400.00 .
Michael has been accepted to the University of Florida, he plans on majoring in Civil Engineering. Congratulations to this fine student!
Sports Physicals Needed to be ready for Fall Sports
If you are planning on playing a sport next year, don’t miss an opportunity to get your physical and all the necessary paperwork completed over the summer. See Mr. Groveman if you have any questions.
Lake Worth High School
Adult and Community Ed
Public Recreation and Open Space Zoning thus
protecting it from small hotels, etc.
I like to bring the above blog back up from time to time just so that you will NOT forget what happened at our beach and why the zoning was not changed to protect our beach from commercialization. This was supposed to go to ballot on November 3, 2009 and we, the people, were to vote on this.
Commissioner Jennings did not like the ballot language and in fact said, even though this was originally her initiative, she would not "knock on doors" to support it. Elaine Humphreys, city attorney, said that the more appropriate place to restrict commercial use was in the Zoning and therefore the best approach would be to change the zoning code. Once that was done, the City could change its Charter which would then be in compliance with the Zoning Code.
None of this was EVER done--zoning was not changed and everything went dead--all the effort was in vain even though petitions were brought forward to get it on the ballot. It was culled by Jennings and We Love Lake Worth Political Action Committee that gathered the necessary signed petitions. All the work and effort was as if it never happened.
The City Commission took no action--they let the people down and by so doing, gave up our beachfront property to any possibility. Beach and Casino zoning (commercial zoning) went to the DCA and the only things holding up the Comp Plan now are the owners of the Sunset parcel and La Sonna Hayes, a political pawn in the stalling process, who is challenging heights.
Greater Bay wants its greedy hands on our beach so it can flip the deal. The Dirty Dozen, a group that is certainly confusing, is in support of these actions. The are talking against the re-build of our Casino and giving some counterfeit, insincere argument that we can't afford it or our financial condition should not allow our casino to proceed. They always argue that it is the other side that wants no progress but what they really mean is, if you do not agree with their vision for Lake Worth than you are wrong; you are the hypocrite and they are the only ones with mystical powers of truth. They should love Commissioner Jennings instead of vilifying her at every chance.
Col Allen West, Candidate for Congress, District 22
To read his speech, click HERE
Allen served in Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom where he was battalion commander for the Army’s 4th Infantry Division. Allen’s honors include a Bronze Star, three Meritorious Service Medals, three Army Commendation Medals (one with Valor). He was also the US Army ROTC Instructor of the Year in 1993. Upon retiring from the army he taught high school for one year before serving in Afghanistan as an advisor.
Saturday, June 19, 2010
Joseph Carafano of the Heritage Foundation believes it may have something to do with the Obama administration’s close relationship with labor unions. What the Heritage Foundation says
Read more about it and the Jones Act HERE
"We are still receiving reports of foreign-flagged vessels being turned away or their offers of assistance hanging in limbo. That should not be the case," Sen. George LeMieux (R) of Florida wrote to President Obama. "There is a breakdown of communication and it is critically important the situation get fixed and we see an armada of skimmers at work." Read about it here
At first, commissioners voted down a controversial amendment in Bradenton to a comprehensive land-use plan that would have increased the number of homes to be built in Hawthorn Park, a Neal Communities development in northwest Bradenton.
However, developer Pat Neal asked that a re-vote be held Monday because commissioner Ron Getman was absent. The request was granted and Getman will be present Monday by phone.
Read about the Manatee Coalition for Responsible government an advocate of Florida Hometown Democracy.