Search and Categories

Here’s The Scoop … A1A Pine To Terra Mar Drive .. A Drive Down Memory Lane …

May 31, 2010 by Barbara

FDOT …. LAP AGREEMENT …. ONE LAP TOO MANY?

Dear Readers… as the Commission awaits the consensus from the MPSC on the current FDOT A1A project at their second meeting in June…(Comm. meets June 8/MPSC meets June 15)… a Google produced the following historical FDOT article from 1989… on another FDOT project in the same area plus…. as well as the Greenway Project for bike lanes …and there is Chen from way back when…to the present and the latest memo from the new Int. Asst. Town Manager on the current A1A project….

………………………

“First The Dust, Then A Wider Road
August 02, 1989|By TERRY NEAL, Staff Writer
road widening project on State Road A1A may be dirty, dusty and slightly inconvenient, but business operators and residents said that`s the price of progress.
The $4.9 million Broward County project will widen the road from two to three lanes between Pine Avenue in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea and Northeast Second Street, just north of Atlantic Boulevard, in Pompano Beach.
Drainage, sidewalks and lighting will also be added as part of the project.
“It`s going to be a beautiful thing when it`s finished,“ said Gene Hudak, a resident manager at Sea Ranch Club condominiums at 4900 N. Ocean Blvd.
State Road A1A is also called Ocean Boulevard and Ocean Drive.

Knowing that the quality of the road will vastly improve is helping drivers and business owners deal with the inconveniences, they said.
People who regularly drive the road, and who own or manage businesses complain mostly of the dirt and rocks the project has produced.
The ground along the purchased right of way is being leveled in preparation for paving.
Drivers turning off A1A sometimes have to cross about 50 feet of dirt and gravel, where the road is being widened.
Many business managers agree that business has been hurt, but not severely.
“A lot of people just don`t want to drive in that mess,“ said Pam Wunderlich, who manages The Tree House, A Children`s Boutique at 4721 N. Ocean Drive. “I`ve only been here since November, but I think business is down a little bit.“
Wunderlich said she did not think the construction on the road had significantly slowed traffic.
When the approximately 2.2-mile project is done, there will be one lane in each direction with a turn lane in the middle.
Many also agreed that the sidewalks and drainage systems will improve the quality of the road.
Hudak said after heavy rains, “water would just build up and sit for hours,“ on the east side of the road, across from the condominium.
He said the condominium is being sued by a man who crashed his motorcycle into one of the buildings after he drove through a large puddle of water and lost control.
Peter Cowick, a Broward County transportation project manager, said the project is one of the last from a bond issue approved by voters in 1978.
The original project plans would have widened the road to five lanes, but Cowick said the county was having too much trouble purchasing the right of way.
County officials expect the project, which started in January, to be completed by August 1990.”
http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/1989-08-02/news/8902230833_1_transportation-project-manager-lanes-ocean-drive

……………..
Barrier Islands Greenway

7/31/03 – Public outreach meetings were conducted during the weeks of June 2 and June 9, 2003, with five separate meetings held over that time to solicit public input for the A1A Greenway Master Plan. The program for each of the public workshops involved discussion of the observations included in the Opportunity and Constraints memorandum as delivered by the design team as well as interim recommendations for the development of the corridor.

The meetings were held during the first two weeks in June 2003, in Pompano Beach, Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, Fort Lauderdale, and Hollywood. Approximately 50 people attended the workshops and provided good feedback to the draft recommendations.

Other issues raised by the public were incorporated into the draft master plan. Next steps in the process included final compilation of the public comments, refinement of the draft master plan and finalization of the recommendations. Delivery of the final draft of the master plan and recommendations was accomplished in November 2003.

2/04 – Several public workshops were held soliciting input from the communities being affected by the proposed Greenway design and construction.

…………………

Bicycle Greenway There has been changes in the project staffing. There are a series of A1A meetings presented in Pompano Beach and Hollywood. They will be looking to add two more lanes to the A1A Green way to phase 1 of the study.

http://www.broward.org/Greenways/Pages/WhatsNewFAQ.aspx
……………
CHEN & ASSOC…. SINCE WAY BACK WHEN …. PALM CLUB- 2010….

Lauderdale-by-the-Sea

LBTS Town Engineer

Project Description

Chen and Associates is the Town Engineer for the Town of Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, providing technical support to all engineering related matters. One of the main priorities is reviewing and approving engineering plan submittals for site plan review and engineering permits. This requires ensuring all submittals comply with Town ordinances and all County, State and Federal regulations regarding site development.

Reviews include general site conditions, water, sewer, paving, drainage, appropriate permit calculations, NPDES compliance, traffic analysis and proper coordination with surrounding municipalities.

Several studies have been made and recommendations have been given to the town on a variety of topics including:

• Stormwater study for flooding prevention

• NPDES compliancy study and report

• MS4 annual report

• Parallel, angled and valet parking specifications

• Drive-through restaurant requirements

• Structural beautification features

• Streetscape improvements for El Mar Drive

• General engineering details and specifications

• Turtle compliant street lights

• GIS map production

• Archiving digital record drawings

• Sewer design for Palm Club

Lauderdale-by-the-Sea has two major FDOT roads passing through it requiring coordination with FDOT for many of the projects. Coordination is also required with the City of Fort Lauderdale to provide water and sewer utilities, the City of Pompano Beach who provide sewer utilities, and Florida Power and Light for power supply. Chen and Associates also coordinated traffic studies and structural analysis on existing facilities.

……………

BC- The Commission/Administration need to have a look at some of the prior work done by Chen …as listed above traffic studies and FDOT studies……as well as turtle lights…and valet/angle/parallel parking … as they are back in the forefront with this Commission…Who knew Chen was involved with the Palm Club sewers?….WOW!…

…………

AIA LANDSCAPING PROJECT … “Pine north to Terra Mar Drive “…produced at May 25, 2010 Commission meeting by Int. Asst. TM Bentley..

“1. The project files include minutes from Commission meetings in 2002 related to the Intracoastal/Beach Area Capital Improvement and Infrastructure Study. The A1A streetscape and beautification project, which had an estimated cost of $2,625,000 in 2002, was the first project listed in the report.

2. The $705,374 grant application was filed with the County in 2004.

3. The current  $58,300 LAP agreement is for design (all FDOT money, no Town match)

4. Construction is budgeted at $647,100 of which approximately $200,000 is the Town’s match.

5. The $647,100 construction cost is shown in the Capital Improvement Plan in FY 2011 ($367,000) and FY 2012 ($280,100). We budget and pay the full cost of construction and then receive reimbursement from FDOT. The Town would have to commit to paying $200,000 in the next year’s CIP.

6. LAP Agreement ($58,300 for design)

The LAP Agreement provides in Section * Termination or Suspension of Project, that only FDOT can cancel or suspend the project.

FDOT is reviewing what they would do if the Town withdraws at this point in time…

7. PBS&J design agreement ($58,300)

This agreement can be cancelled on 7 days written notice and PBS&J gets paid for work to date of cancellation.

PBS&J advises they are about 60% ($35,000) completed on their deliverables.”

……………….

BC- the minutes online on the Town’s website only go back to 2004 so the 2002 minutes would be obtained by PRR only unless they are included in the upcoming backup for the first meeting in June ……. PBS&J say they are 60% done? …They came to the MPSC only because newly elected  Commissioner Sasser insisted and former Asst. TM Olinzock gave in…They asked for input from the committee not realizing the committee was kept in the dark…PBS&J never came back to the MPSC and would not answer questions without going through the TM …leaving the committee at a disadvantage and unable to contribute much at all …. This writer  believes this was the intent of previous Asst. TM Olinzock  and former TM Colon ala the Pavilion … According to Asst. TM Bentley we pay the big bucks and then we wait to be reimbursed for the construction from FDOT.. What’s the FDOT’s track record in timely reimbursements?……PBS&J have the above cancellation requirements in the agreement thanks to the concerns brought to the  podium by then-resident/candidate for Commission Scot Sasser’s inquiry last Feb./March…

In conclusion….the question still is…what are we really getting for all the money we put in… landscaping?…We have it on the east with a few spots in need of code involvement on the west….Sidewalks?…the sidewalks in the north on A1A, despite some claims match the sidewalks in the south on A1A…with the exception of in those in front of Minto and Wings put in by them … Lights?…..there are lights. and they are above the standard according to PBS&J (prev. post)….. Paved crosswalks to “portals” in the north?…most are private and prior to this many residents in that area wanted nothing that would offer people insight to them ….to park illegally  and to enter the beach in that area…Portal areas themselves?…again most are private and other 2 were recently repaved…Pine Ave.A1A to El Mar Drive portal?…Sea Ranch Club is on north side landscaped and a hotel on west.. A median grassy area right there on A1A?…for what?…Unless the MPSC has more information …and a sudden change in the consensus of their members from their May 5, 2010 meeting (prev. post)… the committee and the Commission should take a pass… and put all monies into drainage… the Pavilion and El Mar Drive…

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … The Election’s Over ….It’s Time To Govern …

May 30, 2010 by Barbara

COULDN’T FIND THE CLIFF NOTES ….

Dear Readers …longtime and Avid Readers know from past posts this writer from time to time posts articles found in Vanity Fair….While it’s been a while due to lack of travel .. ..with obligations stemming from the last LBTS local election …I have been catching up on past isues …In last month’s May issue was an article about General David Patraeus …I read it right after the Commission meeting on May 25th and the vote for the block party on North Tradewinds…In the first excerpts below it struck me …. the comparisons I found between the General seated in front of the Senate and the new Commission/Administration sitting in front of their new constituents …

A look at the excerpt on Patraeus titled “Done, Sir” which for this writer closely parallels the new Administration in place over the last 30+ days…

Please, for those of you who agree or disagree with Patraeus politically look beyond the Democrat/Republican thing and zone in on the exchanges excerpted below…

“The Professor of War”…Excerpts…(link to full story below)….

“Decked out in dress greens, his uniform so laden with insignia, badges, patches, ribbons, and medals that it seemed to pull him into a slight stoop, the Most Important General in America, David Howell Petraeus, arrived on Capitol Hill in September of 2007 bearing remarkable news.

Just back from Baghdad, the hot center of a four-year-long war that had come to be seen as a fiasco, Petraeus would testify that things had begun to improve—that the counter-insurgency strategy he had initiated eight months before was working, against all odds and expectations. Violent incidents had fallen off dramatically. Former Sunni insurgents had come around and begun to oppose al-Qaeda. Dangerous Shiite militias were putting down their arms. Instead of conceding futility and abandoning Iraq to chaos and civil war, there was a good chance the United States could stabilize the country enough to begin a relatively bloodless and honorable phased withdrawal.

The general brought, in short, unwelcome news, at least to many Democratic lawmakers.

When he arrived in the crowded hearing room, on the morning of September 10, only his immediate staff had read his planned testimony.
Shutters clicked and cameras flashed. The general seemed perfectly calm but was, in fact, uncomfortable. The stakes were enormous, the emotion was palpable, the scrutiny was intense. ….. He looks more like a bookworm than a warrior. Cheerful by nature, he is eager to please and eager to explain. Petraeus is a world-class explainer. …..

But no matter how well prepared he might be, there was little chance of dazzling this crowd. Before he had even opened his mouth he was under attack. Democrats had won a majority in Congress and were gearing up to ride anger and frustration over the Iraq war to the White House. The last thing they wanted to hear was that things were looking up—that President George W. Bush’s so-called surge was working. The advocacy group MoveOn.org, anticipating that Petraeus would fail to signal retreat, had attacked him with a full-page ad in that day’s New York Times, labeling him “General Betray Us.” Before the first word of his presentation, Armed Services chairman Ike Skelton described the general’s efforts in Iraq as a failure. Foreign Affairs Committee chair Tom Lantos, a pink-faced Democrat from California with a perfectly coiffed white halo, squinted down at the general—again before seeing or hearing a word from him—and pronounced, “With all due respect to you, I must say, I don’t buy it.”

That was just the start. Petraeus would sit through two long days of hearings, first in the House, and the next day before the Senate heavyweights, including three Democratic presidential hopefuls vying with one another to appear the most fervently anti-war. He had flown through eight time zones to answer questions, only to face interrogators more keen on listening to themselves. He was lectured by Foreign Relations Committee chairman Joseph Biden, who questioned the validity of the general’s figures about the sharply reduced violence. (Biden was in fact wrong.) Senator Hillary Clinton, then the front-runner, in so many words called Petraeus a liar. To be fair, she put it politely, and might even have meant it as a compliment, one professional prevaricator to another, calling his testimony an “extraordinary effort” but one that requires a “willing suspension of disbelief.”

Senator Barack Obama was equally dismissive. He had staked his campaign in part on the purity of his opposition to the war. When his turn came, Obama lectured Petraeus on the futility of his mission, using up the full seven minutes allocated to him and giving the general no chance to respond. “We have now set the bar so low,” said Obama, “that modest improvement in what was a completely chaotic situation … is considered success. And it’s not. This continues to be a disastrous foreign-policy mistake.”

Petraeus had known that his reception would be unfriendly. This was not the loyal soldier reporting back from the front to a grateful nation; this was an inquisition. Congress had commanded his presence. The general had prepared for it like a defense attorney facing a hostile jury. He understood the politics in play. He also knew what was going on in Iraq far better than anyone else in the room.

It had been a dark period. His strategy for turning things around wasn’t unpopular only with Congress. Most of his own superior officers at the time—people such as General George Casey, the previous commander in Iraq and now the chief of staff of the U.S. Army, and General John Abizaid, who headed the U.S. Central Command (CentCom), the job Petraeus himself now holds—didn’t believe in it, either. A lifelong team player, Petraeus had been plucked out of the chain of command by President Bush. For the first time in his life, his immediate superiors were envious, suspicious, even actively hostile. In Iraq, American casualties had soared in the spring months, when he began implementing his new strategy, ordering soldiers out of their fortified enclaves and armored Humvees and into forward bases where they patrolled the dangerous streets on foot. ….
Facing Congress, he didn’t waver. It was the same now as on the day Bush had met with him privately in the Oval Office after the Senate confirmed his selection for what most felt was an impossible mission. The general had said, “Mr. President, this isn’t double-down.… This is all-in.” It was an expression that would be repeated often within his inner circle. They were staking everything on the outcome. There could be no second thoughts, no looking back.

The legislators who peered down skeptically at this unimposing officer in his resplendent uniform did not know their man. Here was someone who had forged an unparalleled record of success in perhaps the most competitive institution in America. In the words of one former aide, “Petraeus is the most competitive man on the planet.”

Biden pressed him hard, seeking to dismiss the general’s numbers and to wrest an admission that Iraq’s violence was beyond control. The senator had made frequent trips to the war zone. He saw himself not just as a critic but as a particularly well-informed and wily critic. He cast doubt on the general’s data, which showed a steep decline in violent incidents beginning in midsummer. The chairman contrasted that trend with contradictory findings in a recent Government Accountability Office report, which he referred to as “an independent study,” suggesting that it was more credible.

He let the damning implication hang there for a moment, and then magnanimously waved it aside, saying, “But let me not get into that debate.” Generous Joe had decided not to embarrass the witness further.

But he did want one little thing. He wanted Petraeus to concede—two sensible men looking each other in the eye—that however you crunched the numbers Baghdad was bad news. “Let me ask you a question,” said the chairman, like a cat probing a mousehole with its paw. “Can a Sunni Arab travel safely to a Shia neighborhood in Baghdad today without fear of being kidnapped or killed?”

Petraeus would respond, but he wasn’t going to let the slap at his statistics go unanswered. “First of all, Mr. Chairman, if I could make just one comment about the G.A.O. report … ” He explained that, far from being “independent,” it had used exactly the same data he had, except that its numbers were out of date—they ended “at least five weeks prior to our cutoff date, which ran until this past Friday.” Petraeus added, “The final five weeks have been pretty important.”

“Again, I don’t want to get into an argument about that,” said Biden. It was increasingly evident why not. “Let me get directly to my question”—and he asked again, extending that paw deeper into the hole, if there was any part of Baghdad where a Sunni could travel safely into a Shia area.
Leaning forward in his chair, Petraeus said, “It depends on the neighborhood, frankly, sir.” He conceded that the city was still dangerous, but insisted that, yes, there were now areas safe enough for Sunnis and Shiites to travel.

Biden wouldn’t let go. He tried a different approach, one that showcased his boots-on-the-ground expertise. He recounted how, on a recent visit to Iraq, his helicopter had been grounded by a sandstorm outside Baghdad. He and the other dignitaries had waited three hours for the storm to subside. Biden asked, “If that sandstorm had kept up, would any of those guys have gotten in a vehicle and traveled back to Baghdad?” He smiled broadly for the cameras with a great show of sparkling white teeth. “Maybe I’m mistaken. Was there any possibility of that likely to happen?”
He was answered by Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, who had been working closely with Petraeus and was seated next to him at the witness table.

“Yes, sir,” said Crocker. “We tried to keep some of the commotion behind the scenes out of your view, but one of the alternatives we were actively working on was a road movement all the way back to Baghdad if we couldn’t get your helicopter out.”

“And that road movement would have been highly secured, would it not?” asked Biden.

“Well, for the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, yes, sir.”

You could almost hear the trap snap shut. Then came the laughter, which brought another smile to Biden’s face, this one sheepish. “Oh, I love you,” Biden said. “I love you.” Biden had drawn a different picture than he intended: the Washington Pooh-Bah visiting the combat zone for a photo op, no doubt creating a nuisance for the men working to secure his safety, impatiently waiting out a sandstorm, and now questioning the judgment of the general charged with protecting him. Who knew the situation better—the visiting pol or the general? And Petraeus hadn’t even spoken in his own defense.

“Done, Sir”
The testimony of David Petraeus before Congress was televised live, and General John Galvin, a retired four-star, watched it with avid interest and occasional amusement from his home in Atlanta. He was reminded of the first time he had met Petraeus, then a 28-year-old officer who had been recommended to him by a colleague as “the best captain in the division.”
When Galvin was given command of the 24th Infantry Division, at Fort Stewart, in 1981, he loaded his belongings into a trailer at Fort Monroe, in Hampton, Virginia, hitched it to his car, and drove down to the base, outside Savannah. He was met at the gate by his new aide, a whippet-thin, apple-cheeked, fair-haired young man who looked no older than 18. Petraeus took the wheel and drove Galvin to his quarters. The new commander tried to make conversation. He mentioned a few changes that had been on his mind, things he would like to implement with the division “right away.”
Petraeus listened and then said, “Done, sir.”
Galvin assumed that the captain meant he had noted the requests and would soon take care of them. But he wasn’t sure.
“Really?” he asked.
“I took care of those things, sir.”
The general mentioned another item on his agenda.
“Done, sir,” said Petraeus.
Galvin was impressed. He would expect a captain who had commanded a company to have a good grasp of that particular duty, but Petraeus had never commanded at a higher level. How had he managed to anticipate what a new leader might want? Not just anticipate it but have the confidence to act on it without waiting for instruction? In time, the general saw in his young aide a level of competence he had never before encountered.
“And here he is now before Congress, a four-star general himself, and he’s sitting on the edge of the chair leaning slightly forward, and they talk and talk and talk, and then he says, in effect, ‘Done, sir,’” says Galvin. “See, David Petraeus listens. He listens so intently that he slowly and subtly begins to dominate the conversation, even if the other person is the one talking. Before long they realize that he is out in front of them. He finds ways of letting them know—not with impatience but with earnest efficiency. You saw him doing that with those senators. He would listen for 10 minutes and then give back a three-sentence summary of what they just said. What I kept hearing was that young captain telling me, ‘Done, sir.’”

BC-OF NOTE: This article was for ‘Blue”…..
http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2010/05/petraeus-201005

……………………..

BC- As previously posted CIC Chair Liliana Pomareda was back on the Consent Agenda on May 25th for her “Block Party”…After some rather repugnant comments made by the new CIC Chair …and some pointed inquiries made to the Town Manager…Asst. Town Manager and the Town Atty. it was evident that staff was recommending this due to it being done successfully in other municipalities …negligible liability issues…and a new administration that believes they should assist in any way they can to bring neighbors together (we hear the same remarks are being made on other situations that have impacted other residents and businesses as a result of the former Administration having quite a different modus operandi) …The Asst. TM stated he went ahead with the item after looking at the code and seeing the request did not fall under the Special Event $100 deposit requirement… So it took that hurdle off the table…Vice Mayor Dodd could not vote it down due to Ms. Pomareda’s “rat hole” comment concerning the code department because doing so would have been to do a “McIntee/Silverstone” in reference to the duo voting down the BOA’s recommendation for approving the variances for Karen D’Uva last year when Ms. D’Uva made comments about staff’s less than steller actions throughout her multi-years process at the podium … McIntee told her he would not go for it after that and his pal followed suit…Mayor Minnet voted against it due to her belief it was the cart before the horse as far as the code/ordinance being in place…a position she held firm to before the statements were made by this applicant and also Ms. D’uva… Comm. Sasser voted for it due to the responses stated above from the Administration and Town Atty. and again taking any emotion out of it and voting on the merits and the recommendations… Comm. Clottey voted in the affirmative as well as she did for Ms. D’Uva and Comm. Vincent voted against due to “public safety” and taking into consideration Development Director Jeff Bowman’s comments at the previous Comm. meeting that what is stated on a permit can turn out to be something quite different…thus the “mardi gras” comment made by Vincent.. In the end the Mayor’s desire for detailed officers was not contained as a friendly amendment and the vote was 3-2 to go along with the staff’s recommendation…What needs to be addressed still before the June 5, 2010 party is what BSO  is requiring per the backup material and a report back from the staff (code) and BSO after the event itself on how it ended up in order for the Commission to proceed to draw up a form with the requirements for the next event which can be handled without coming before the full Commission…We have heard that a neighbor was unhappy about this event and not being informed it was coming in front of the Commission… Asst. TM Bentley made reference to that not being on the flier Ms. Pomareda passed around to her neighbors at the May 25th meeting …In the backup there was no requirement to have that on it…so it would need to be a requirement for the next applicant…Liliana Pomareda sent an e-mail to the Commissioners…(see below) which was  2-parter for those that voted her way and those that did not…She invited them to attend… This writer encourages the Commission to drop by to be able to see for themselves and then make any recommendations from their observations ….

That said, there are two schools of thought here…in this writer’s opinion….the CIC Chair is doing what her new political position demands by getting in the face of the new Commission/Administration and looking to get any traction in order to make a dramatic change yet again in the next local election…Also, from the feedback I am getting …. there is still a small faction who want payback for the last 2 years and they want the Commission to vote only on emotion…and personalities rather than to govern evenhandedly on the merits of the item before them …and the recommendations they receive from Administration/TAtty’s/Staff and our public safety providers after doing their homework…

Too bad…for those who might want to go that route….It’s a guaranteed early demise for any majority who does a “McIntee-Furth”!…

……………………

Note: E-Mails are public record……..

From: LILIANA POMAREDA
Sent: Thu 5/27/2010 6:44 PM
To: Birute Ann Clottey; Stuart Dodd; Scot Sasser; Chris Vincent; Roseann Minnet
Subject: N. Tradewinds Block Party

Vice Mayor Dodd, Commissioner Clottey, Commissioner Sasser,

Thank you for approving the permit for the block party for the kids. Glad to see your spirit of bringing the community together. The residents of North Tradewinds are excited about this event. Hope to see you there.

Mayor Minnet, Commissioner Vincent,

Sad to see you did not approve of such a great event for our residents. Also sad to see all the Town Council time spent, meeting after meeting, hours of Town Staff to discuss a simple request. Once again I see campaign promises not kept, perhaps you will change your mind if you come to see how nice it is when the community comes together with no political intentions. You are welcome to attend. I assure you Commissioner Vincent that you will see no “Mardi Gras”. I assure you Mayor Minnet you will not see any serious liability for the Town, requiring a public events insurance policy since after all this is a private event. You will only see smiles on kids faces and friendly neighbors.

Hope to see you all there!!!

Liliana Pomareda

North Tradewinds

…………….

more to come…….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Another Exit ….From The Lauderdale-By-The -Sea Town Administration …

May 28, 2010 by Barbara

AND THEN THERE WERE THREE …

Dear Readers …We hear Human Resource /Risk Management Manager Kathy O’Brien has been terminated by the Int. Town Manager after almost a month of being on paid administrative leave and after the results of the inquiry into the payout for former Town Manager Esther Colon…

Kathleen O’Brien was hired as an Accountant I per her Employment Agreement dated January 26, 2005 at an annual salary of $31,200.00 (signed by Baldwin 2/01/05 and O’Brien on Jan. 27, 2005) ..On Jan 25, 2006 she received an “Offer of Continuing Employment” with the 5% COLA (cost of living) giving her an hourly rate of $22.05 … Her next Employment Agreement was dated  March 24,2006 (unsigned by Baldwin and signed by O’Brien 3/24/06) “Offer of Employment-Promotion” to the position of Account Technician with a salary of $48,172.80 …Next was an Employment Agreement “Offer of Continuing Employment” dated April 23, 2007 ( signed by Baldwin 4/1/07 and signed by O’Brien 3/29/07) for an hourly rate of $25.5339 with the COLA increase…

If she was terminated by Ms. Hoffman according to her last employment agreement (as well as her prior Agreements) with the Town dated April 23, 2007  “Offer of Continuing Employment” where it is states she was continuing in the position of Accounting Technician  she was only entitled to the following which is the standard for “At Will” employees thus far from the Public Record Requests …

“This Appointment may be terminated unilaterally, at any time by the Town Manager and need not reflect performance-related reasons.

If this Appointment is terminated by the Town Manager, you shall be entitled to base salary earned through the date of termination.”

There was no Employment Agreement for Ms. O’Brien stating she was the HR/Risk Management Manager and this writer put in a followup request for it …Deputy Town Clerk Nikki Smith phoned me last week to state there was no Employment Agreement for Kathy O’Brien for her HR/Risk Mgr. position …that it had been a “title change” done with a vote of the Commission… Ms. Smith told me she was also going to send me an e-mail stating what she stated in the phone call…I have not received that e-mail …I put in a PRR for the Commission and Commission meeting when that title change took place …I find it rather odd that a Commission would take such a leap in changing an Account Technician who was hired as an Account I two years prior and make that change without having an Employment Agreement to go along with it….

O’Brien was not alone in her “leap” within the Finance Dept. under Baldwin-Colon…

Finance Director Kaola King was hired on Feb 19, 2008 as an Accountant I…by Colon …and on the back page of her agreement was the following..

“Purchasing -give her manual (Kaola does entries and Kathy does updates)

Capital Assets- semi-annual

Grants-monthly (Senior, Bus & annual FDOT, annual EPA)

Upgrades proposed budget book for (o8-09)

Kaola & Kathy- update A/Ps, CRs, G/L”

Ms. King was hired on Feb 20, 2008 as an Accountant I at an hourly rate of $23,7094. On April 1, 2008 Ms King received “Offer of Employment (Promotion)” that gave her a salary of $75,000.00 and promoted her to Finance/Budget  Director..in less than 2 months!…Then on April 11, 2008 she received the COLA recently revealed in the Colon payout inquiry that we are now being told was a precedent “historically” with the passing of the Town’s budget but without the vote of the Commissions …She was now to be paid $83,081.18!…

Ms. King’s Employment Agreements all have the same termination by the Town Manager only allowing for base salary through the date of termination…

As previously posted former Interim Town Manager John Olinzock was an “At Will” Employee also with the same Employment Agreement content of termination of his Assistant TO “Offer of Employment-(Promotion) dated May 19, 2007 (signed by Colon 5/30/07 and signed by Olinzock 5/30/07) for a salary of $65,884.52 and his Assistant Town Manager dated July 2, 2008 (signed by Colon 7/3/08 and signed by Olinzock  7/8/08) Employment Agreements with a pay shown on his last Agreement sent in the PRR of $75,154.22 … I received no agreement for his prior position as Special Projects Manager…

June White’s Employment Agreements …same  termination verbage …for her first one dated July 31, 2007 (signed by Colon 8/8/08 and signed by White 8/6/08) for a salary of $56,057.90…Her “Offer of Continuing Employment” dated August 28,2008 (signed by Colon 8/28/08 and signed by White on 8/28/08) for a salary of $61,038.38 with the 5% COLA increase…

Development Director Jeff Bowman who was a Code Officer prior to his promotion has the same termination statement in his Employment Agreement dated September 8, 2008 (signed by Colon 9/17/08 and signed by Bowman 9/27/08) …His “Offer of Emplyment (Promotion) gave him a salary of $67,166.16 ..I have made a followup PRR for his prior agreements..

Director of Municipal Works Don Prince again…same Employment forms…same termination statements …only entitled to base salary through termination …in his “Offer of Employment (Promotion) dated July 2, 2008 (signed by Colon 7/2/08 and signed by Prince 7/2/080 for as salary of $70,775.25 and again for his “Offer of Continuing Employment” dated July 29.2009 (signed by Colon 7/28/09 and signed by Prince 7/29/09) for as salary of $74,314.01 wit the 5% COLA increase… I have made a followup for the prior agreements made with Mr. Prince before his promotion…

Public Information Officer Steve D’Oliveira has the same form with the same termination of entitled to base salary through termination…per his “Offer of Employment ” dated October 3, 2007 (signed by Colon on 10/4/07 and signed by D’Oliveira on 10/4/07 ) for an hourly rate of $30.0000..

Fire Marshal Steve Paine replaced Fire Marshal Alex Stevenson …Stevenson, as previously posted had same Employment Agreement form …same base salary for termination as the rest of these employees… In his “Offer of Employment” date Sept. 14,2009 (signed by Colon “9/15/2008″ [HUH?]and signed by Paine 9/21/09) states “an  hourly rate of $35.00 disbursed monthly upon receipt from Director of Development or Designee”…and that he is an “On Call” employee of the Town and only states “This appointment may be terminated unilaterally, at any time by the Town Manager”.. Hmmm. what about the VFD Fire Chief?…

Of note…according to the 2nd 2010 Income/Expense Report for the VFD from Jan through March …Fire Marshal Paine as he is referred to on the VFD website as “Inspector” as it is stated in the report received a salary of $13,500.00 as well as his $35.00 per hr. from the Town …We are also told that Paine has taken on a greater role within the VFD after the “abandonment” of McIntee (per Chief Perkin’s at his April 2010 monthly report to the Comm.) and is now training the men…going on fire calls  which means further income received …He is rumored to be a possible replacement for Chief Perkins sooner rather than later (Dec. 2010 or Jan 2011)…Talk about your hats !…(and Conflicts?)…

The “Employment Agreement” for Interim Asst. Town Manager Bentley … also hired as an “At Will” employee states the same as the above Baldwin/Colon Agreements per the “Employment Offer Letter dated April 30, 2010 signed by Interim Town Manager Constance Hoffman and signed on May 3, 29010 by Ralph Bentley …There is no vacation/sick leave … just the base salary through date of “separation from the Town” and reimbursement for his expenses that are under section 2 and 5 (cell phone allowance and mileage for Town-related business activities)…

This writer wants to see what Olinzock and O’Brien exited with and if it is any different than what their agreements spell out…(base salary)…The Personnel Purchasing Manual states the agreement usurps the manual and while the manual offers 2 weeks severance in a Resolution in 1991 and accrued Vacation/Sick leave with caps and percentages …the Baldwin/Colon Employment Agreements do not…..It should become public knowledge soon along with any other necessary staff terminations in the upcoming weeks ….. I also want to know if any charges will be coming for their roles in the Colon payout along with Ms. King and whomever else signed off or was involved including Ms. Colon who could not have been uninvolved …in this writer’s opinion…

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … The Monthly By The Sea Future Is Out Today …..

May 28, 2010 by Barbara

THE ONLY LOCAL NEWSPAPER IN LBTS …


Read the Future!

In This Issue…

OLINZOCK TRANSFERS $296,000 TO COLON

ESTHER COLON OWES THE TOWN $69,308

COMMISSION DEMANDS RETURN OF MONEY

OUTRAGE OVER COLON PAYOUT SCANDAL

LBTS PREPARES STORMWATER MASTER PLAN

BSO NABS MURDER SUSPECTS IN LBTS

RESIDENTS DROP OFF DRUGS AT TOWN HALL

CRIME STATS: BSO LBTS POLICE BLOTTER

JOIN POA, VOTE FOR HOMETOWN HERO

TROOPS SOON RETURNING TO TOWN

4TH OF JULY SCHEDULE OF FESTIVITIES

BY THE SEA LIFESTYLE COLUMNS

CALENDAR OF EVENTS

AND MUCH MORE…

http://www.bytheseafuture.org/

BC- A special thanks for the story on the BCbythesea daughter’s published research paper … one minor correction…interviews on radio worldwide and web/print news…..and yep we are the proud parents!…

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … May 26, 2010 LBTS Roundtable … #2 … Not Quite Loud & Clear …

May 27, 2010 by Barbara

A DUD?…

Dear Readers … The May 26, 2010 Roundtable was the the debut for the new ceiling microphone centered over the “round” table which was strategically placed in the front center of the hall to accommodate it… Unfortunately the debut was a dud for those of us listening on the internet after the first few minutes of the Mayor’s report on the Town Manager report were either muffled or backed up with a tunnel like noise… We hear it was just as bad or worse for the few who attended the meeting in Jarvis Hall even after Steve d’oliveira informed the Town Manager who instructed the Commission to use the hand held mikes once again…

A look online when looking for a photo to use produced the following…
“Ceiling Microphone – Why You Shouldn’t Use One
A ceiling microphone may seem like a perfect idea when it comes to designing a room that needs a microphone, such as a conference room. It may even seem like the only place to put a microphone because is won’t clutter the room, it stays out of sight, and it won’t spoil the overall design of the room itself. But experienced engineers that specialize in audio say that a microphone like this is the last thing you want to add to a room.
The reason you might ask? Well, because it is too far away from the source you want the microphone to pick up. It is also usually too close to undesired noises such as loudspeakers, air conditioning vents, or even buzzing lights. A microphone is sensitive when it comes to noise. It can pick anything up including moving air. A microphone on the ceiling is no exception to this, and cannot determine which sounds are desired and which are not. It will pick them all up.
There are alternatives to using ceiling microphones which will work much better instead. For example, a television anchor uses a microphone on their lapel. You can easily find alternatives to a ceiling mic to place in a room. You can always place a small microphone in the middle of a conference table which will not stick out or become an eye sore. You can also use sets of lapel microphone which shouldn’t bother anyone in using them. If you must use a microphone connected to the ceiling, try using one with a stand that will let it reach down to ear level so you can obtain the best sound quality possible.”

http://www.the-microphone-guide.com/

Back to business… After the Town Manager search item the Commission moved onto the LETF funds (prev. posts) and VM Dodd’s desire to straighten out the mistake he and this writer concur took place with the wrong use of the funds for the BSO’s new headquarters…Again, the Vice Mayor found the concern was of cost and the upcoming budget .. and impact taking those funds from the General Fund would have, while the consensus was next time LETF funds are used it will be done within the proper guidelines of use…The Town Manager directed Asst. TM Bentley who was listening elsewhere in Town Hall to bring the breakdown Muni. Dir. Don Prince had put together but was not in front of the Comms. at this point…The amount was 65,160 for the items VM Dodd wanted …but it had not been broken down …VM Dodd said he would have “peace of mind” if the Town paid for the holding cell and the other items could remain under the LETF funds…It will be broken down to find that cost and the Mayor said it would come back in July to be addressed…”Clueless” Cottey said she “had a little problem remembering history”…(Finally she was right on something!) and went on to totally prove her opening statement in her flawed recollection of the former Chief Gooding demanding the much more money (prev. post)…and that “two Chiefs” wanted the funds…..The Mayor and Vice Mayor chuckled as the Mayor stated “they didn’t remember it that way”… Old habits….and Kool-aid history for the remaining die-hard CIC member of the dais!…

Next up, VM Dodd’s mitigation of liens…The Vice Mayor stated this was a “pet project” of his and relayed the recommendation for it by out Special Magistrate who is also the Pompano Beach who has their own mitigation process …that program was sent to the Commission by a resident and the Mayor put it on this Roundtable to explore once more …It failed the last time around due to an “unresponsive staff” that countered the Special magistrate’s recommendation and who did not supply the Pompano Beach program or any other similar type programs as requested by Dodd…

Comm. Clottey revisited he previous suggestion to fix properties and attach a tax lien to them..don’t go soft” …She then spoke of some cities having a 10-15% foreclosure rate ..while we do not…

Comm. Vincent brought forth the point of leverage to mitigate and further went on to bring forth that while there is one extraordinary circumstance it is not costing the town and we are not giving up money after the Mayor followed up Clottey to explain that we are lucky in LBTS (today) with just a handful …she responded to Vincent that the reason to have a new policy was “community” …to try and work with properties….

Comm. Clottey said the problem was not the banks but the agents ..and again spoke of the program she wanted to institute to clean up the properties and then charge them…

The Mayor again stopped Clottey from going off topic..

Comm. Sasser asked the TAtty. about our ability to mitigate by the Town Manager to a certain point and then to the Commission if it exceed that amount..

VM Dodd reminded the Commission that the previous administration had informed the previous Comm. of going to the banks and being on top of this situation …something oother town did or could not do…

Comm. Clottey after hearing a proposal of repayment being 50% through the TM stated if it was her on the hook she would “bother the Town Manager” to get it from her…

Comm. Sasser then restated the 50% to include a dollar amount ..

As the group mulled over what that amount would be the VM stated it should be $15,000 which is the limit the TM can use without the Comm. and it should be 50% or $15,000 whichever is higher…

The Mayor said this will be on the June 8th agenda ..

The Int. TM made one final addition by stating a property owner with several properties in question should not be allowed to settle until all are in compliance…

BC- We hear the gentleman who brought this back via an e-mail with the Pompano plan (prev. post) also questioned if the house in question in the north end of town was not moved forward on by the former administration and Comm.majority for reasons that might have benefited one departed dais member on the sale of his home…Hmmm….

The Boat ordinance was also back due to a constituent e-mail and public comments…the mayor asked if there was any consensus for further discussion on the subject to change the ord….(a copy of the long-time ord. was provided in the backup showing the illegality of boats on the beach)… The only comment was from VM Dodd who spoke of the fishing on the beach ord. and how passing it now allowed for canoes and kayaks to be launched from the beach… he added boats should no be left on the beach..and reminded all the kite-surfing issue needed to be addressed as it was “withdrawn at the 11th hour” (by former VM McIntee …prev. post)…due to lack of a kite-surfing audience (on day 2 of a Comm. meeting) …when it came for the final decision … Com. Clottey chimed in there was a difference of opinion on the requirements from local kite-surfers and outsiders…The Mayor asked for it to be deferred to the Sept. Roundtable ..further reigning in the meeting …from going off topic…

BC- During the campaign the kite-surfing was a big issue in the condos and the condo residents made it clear they wanted action taken in season when they were around and they wanted prior notification to condos to participate in the process…

The Senior Center was put on by Comm. Sasser after questions were still arising over the use by participants who are not annual renters…but are seasonal or a guest or family member…

Comm. Clottey again called for a name change to the Community Center instead ..open to any age and stated there should be a nominal fee for those who do not reside here…HUH?…. Was that a “senior moment?”…. This was implemented during the debacle she and the former TM instigated  …

Town Clerk White stated the issue was people who claimed residency but could not prove it…then they were charged…

Comm. Vincent spoke of the leases that would be required for any length and asked about part time residents and those staying at hotels for an extended stay…He related a situation he was made aware via e-mail concerning an immediate family member residing in the family’s 2nd apartment for a time certain but the the residency was not in that person’s name…

The Mayor agreed that the center should be the Community Center..

Comm. Clottey after being told she was off topic twice prefaced her remarks by stating it would be off the subject and brought up the defunct (McIntee-VFD) swimming program by insisting the the program was never implemented due to it not having Red Cross certified instructors…She said the Town receive a lot of response for the lifeguard s but it “went down the tubes” due to there not being any with Red Cross certification..HUH?..

BC-How is that possible if her assertions of “a lot of responses” is factual?…Last we heard the former TM was recommending the pool be filled in (prev. post)… This writer agrees ..as previously posted it is a big bathtub unsuitable for classes to children ….

The Town Manager can draft the policy changes or additions and Comm. Sasser asked if there was any conflict to the contract with a name change as suggested by Clottey…The TAtty. was not concerned about the name but was concerned that some changes could be a conflict with the Broward County grant …if we want to continue with the grant (a question still needing some discussion)…Comm. Sasser who has already spent quite some time on the Senior Center contract (he found the dire consequences from Clottey/Colon were erroneous at best)…will look some more and then confer with the TAtty….

Vice mayor Dodd wants to bring single stream recycling changes (if possible under the current Choice contract) to town to give us a 30% increase in revenue by using a “wheely-bin” every 2 weeks rather than every week…. The Mayor was for it and staff who are already in discussions along with Comm. liaison Sasser will add it to the list…

Comm. Vincent asked the Vice Mayor about having 2 “wheely-bins” and if someone will mistake them with garbage..

VM Dodd answered they can be labeled or a different color such as green for “being green”…

BC- This writer’s only concern is resident reaction to losing recycling weekly…Last Dec. when the holiday schedule was botched by the Colon contract with Choice leaving many in town with a dropped week of recycling there were alot  of unhappy residents who did not want to be stuck with their recycling an extra week…

Red light Cameras…brought to the table by Vice mayor Dodd …who is convinced they save lives  and stated Chief Gooding had been in favor of them…Dodd spoke of is time on the corner of A1A and Commercial and the problems he observed…He did add the state takes the lion’s share offering nothing upfront…

Comm. Sasser asked if it was just at Commercial …

VM Dodd said we could piggy-back with Ft. Lauderdale to get them..

The Town Atty. touched on the litigation and the Mayor stated we could proceed after waiting to see what would come from pending litigation…

Comm. Clottey wants signs that state the cameras are there and spoke of people getting ticketed 2 times once by the camera and once by the police…HUH?….

Comm. Vincent said he was not “worried about the reputation of the town”…this is “all about public safety and revenue”…”Mainly for public safety and revenue”…

VM Dodd reiterated it is proven for public safety and people will slow down.”

The Mayor said FDOT needs to work on it..

Comm. Clottey said we have had people hit by cars there ..stating again we have no signage …followed by “If you’re behind another car and you don’t see the signage”…HUH?…

BC-No signage and the car behind the car can’t see it..Hmmm..because she said there was no signage!…

Comm. Vincent said we need signs to stop it , not revenue adding it would mostly be the tourists not the residents …

The Town Manager chimed in to state that City Managers have stated most of the tickets come from “rolling right hand turns , not speeding”…That adjustments needed to made with the red light camera companies …

Comm. Clottey inquired about the privacy issues …

The TAtty. answered about pending cases and the Mayor ended it with a consensus of the red light cameras and timer of the lights…

BC- Very disappointed in this consensus …The TM tried in her backup to point out the pitfalls as well as her brief comment…The previous Comm. had a red light camera company powerpoint presentation last year with a company brought in by former Chief Gooding..It was one of the few times I agreed with former VM McIntee …the bulk of the profits go to the company… Also, if the Comm. thinks they get an earful from angry visitor and residents who receive parking tickets…just wait til this gets up and running…Finally, I do not believe it will alleviate any danger at that intersection…That intersection needs to have a change in how traffic flows going east …big time… I sure hope some members have second thoughts on this decision…

The signal lights on A1A …Bel Air’s Civic Assoc. Board wants one..while Clottey kept mum about the e-mail from a Bel Air resident stated it was not desired by all and they want the Comm. to take a pass …It was the Mayor who brought it to the table…as VM Dodd informed Clottey to “be careful what you wish for” and relayed the downside of a traffic light as he deals with one at the end of Imperial …There was back and forth …talk of yet another traffic study …and a surprising wet noodle aimed at former Asst. TM JohnO by Clottey for putting her off when she repeatedly pressed him on it… and never followed through on it!…The other light is the pedestrian crossing light in front of Assumption Church and the emergency light left over from BSO’s use…Clottey insisted it was functioning as a signal light after stating she sat and watched it…The Mayor countered that it was not and that she had checked as well…The Town Manager said a traffic study should be done in season which we are beyond right now…The Mayor wanted to know the cost and get public input..

The Mayor brought back lifeguards and a lifeguard feasibility study offered up to her by  gentleman concerned about the lack of lifeguards in LBTS…The Mayor added it was not a priority this year ….

Comm. Clottey commented there were no drownings after the VFD implemented the Beach Rescue program…The Mayor agreed but added the gentleman who wanted to do the study had some issues with that as opposed to lifeguards ..

VM Dodd reiterated that the drownings happen away from the pier area behind hotels and condos…making it hard to justify having lifeguards by the pier ..

Comm. Clottey said most do not want lifeguards..

The Town Manager said our signage is new and is the most modern per the state..

The VM wanted to again speak of further safety options such as the life poles being outfitted with a second ring..(in process said the Mayor-per the VFD) and perhaps closer to the water in non-turtle nesting time…

The Mayor said the consensus was not at this time..

BC- Prev. posts show we had extensive talks with the Lifeguard Assoc. and a number of Lifeguards who came to Jarvis Hall to discuss this along with some very harsh words in a recent article in the Sentinel… This writer is for some lifeguards by the Pier only with signage stating it is a lifeguard area… precisely for tourism…outfit the professionals with ATV’s to pick up the slack and increase the response time to anything happening up and down the beach…The VFD is not on the beach daily…

E-mails were placed on the agenda by Comm. Vincent who directed his comments to the Mayor/VMayor who along with Comm. Clottey have had the misfortune to have dealt with this antiquated system over the last 2 years …The consensus was Comm. Vincent was not alone in his frustration and it is a top priority being looked into by the Town Manager and an I.T. company…

With that they adjourned ….

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Still No Comment … Still No “Gray Area” For Colon ? ….

May 27, 2010 by Barbara

THE OVERPAYMENT IS IN BLACK AND WHITE …

Dear Readers… After Tuesday night’s meeting and the Interim Town Manager’s report the decision and direction was made for the Town to recoup the overpayment of compensation to former Town Manager Esther Colon.

The Sentinel did a follow-up posted tonight on their website (see below)…with a second “no comment.” from  Ms. Colon and the comment from the Town Atty. that we will just ask for it first…Hmmm…

Verbatim from the Oct. 12, 2009 Special Workshop Town Manager performance Review … … Posted 10/13/09…

“Town Manager Colon-”Thank you Mayor, I know I am not on the agenda to speak but I would like to clarify some issues for the record and most of them I’ll do from just listening to everybody.”

“First let me explain something. I was not hired by the five members of the commission on this dais. I was hired by the five members of the prior sitting commission. I do want you to understand and you can check the record and you can subpoena the previous commission as well as you can subpoena me. My contract was reviewed independently by each sitting commissioner with the Town Attorney. My contract was motioned first motion to approve by Mayor ProTem Chuck Clark. It was second by Commissioner Yann Yanni, it was, excuse me John Yanni. It was approved 5-0. I read an article in the Futures paper and the only commissioner or the only elected official that was truthful in that article was mayor Oliver Parker. Mayor Parker did not like my severance position and like always I like a good little argument. He did not like a one year severance package. I said I worked too hard in this town during the broom sweep campaign. I’m sorry commissioners it was, we got locked out of Town Hall when you won so I was there. I said if that is any indication of what the residents are gonna do during election time I am not gonna put my heart and soul to run the day to day operations of this town unless I have a contract I’m worthy of. I believe I, at that time I had thirty years of public service and that is a contract that five independent commissioners reviewed with the Town Attorney, did not violate any Sunshine Laws and that is the contract they approved. Two of those sitting commissioners are currently on this dais.”

“A couple of months ago this commission started to divide , the residents started to divide. They believe they can use me as a sounding board. I will go and work with Robert Baldwin any day without a problem for one reason. Robert Baldwin never told me what to do, how to do it. All he told me was as long as you obey the law, you do  what you’re supposed to do. I have always done that in my 30+ years as a public servant. I have one fault and I have criticized this commission publicly once, only once. I have not been disrespected this commission. I have been disrespected by many residents on this dais and I have told you all I like you, I don’t like you but I’m gonna come here and do my job and if there’s one thing I will not allow anyone to do. And when I say anyone I mean my brother, my sister, my father , my mother God rest they’re all in peace, I’m not gonna break the law. The one time that I disrespected this commission was when they gave me a unlawful order. Do we remember that commissioners? And I told them you can direct me to do that and I’m not gonna do it. If that’s bein’ disrespectful and rude well then I’d like to see anyone in this commission put in this audience purposely disrespect the law. I am not a puppet. If you all think that Vice Mayor McIntee tells me what to do, boy you haven’t seen some of our good fights. I will agree to disagree with everybody that’s sittin’ on this dais and everybody that’s sittin’ in the audience and my staff who’s sittin’ up there who’s not even a third of them but boy do we have great arguments everyday too. I’ll tell you one thing that none of you know about me is I am a very fair person. You might come to my office and not like what I have to say. I’m sorry, I believe in black and white. There’s no gray. And if that style does not approve or agree with you well then I believe I requested Commissioner Dodd once to make a motion to terminate my contract. I believe that was the day the vote of confidence came and it was 5-0. Even Commissioner Dodd voted, gave me a vote of confidence. I said Commissioner Dodd if you don’t think I’m doin’ a good job then vote to terminate my contract. I don’t have a lifetime contract. Whoever keeps on inventing that story, I’m not a Supreme Court Judge. I’m a human individual like everybody else. If you don’t like me there’s nothing I can do about it. I’m gonna come here, I am gonna do my job and the only thing I ask and I’m sorry if I do have a problem with that word and many others, is that people don’t try to coerce me because it’s not gonna work. I am gonna do here and do my job until this commission or the next commission wants to do it be the Town Manager and I pray to God that whoever follows suit does not allow any resident or any elected official play political games. Because that is what I’m all about. Thank you.”

……………..

Standout comments from Former TM Colon contained above …

“and you can subpoena the previous commission as well as you can subpoena me.”

“I will go and work with Robert Baldwin any day without a problem for one reason. Robert Baldwin never told me what to do, how to do it. All he told me was as long as you obey the law, you do  what you’re supposed to do. I have always done that in my 30+ years as a public servant.”

“if there’s one thing I will not allow anyone to do. And when I say anyone I mean my brother, my sister, my father , my mother God rest they’re all in peace, I’m not gonna break the law.”

“I’m sorry, I believe in black and white. There’s no gray.”

BC- We will now see if there is any “gray” Ms. Colon now believes in ….when Ms. Colon is “asked” by the Town to reimburse us for her overpayment …thus far…

………………….

Sentinel …..

“Lauderdale-by-the-Sea seeks partial return of former town manager’s severance pay

The town commission unanimously authorized the town attorney to recover $69,308 from former Town Manager Esther Colon.

The amount is part of $296,188 in severance payments made to Colon the same week of her April 20 dismissal.

Interim Town Manager Connie Hoffmann alleged in a May 20 report that there were errors in calculating Colon’s benefit payments for deferred compensation and accumulated sick and vacation leave.

Reached at her Miami Lakes home, Colon would not comment on the town’s inquiry.

“We’ll probably start off just by asking for it and see what happens,” Town Attorney Susan Trevarthen said. “Obviously it’s a matter of great importance to the commission. We’ll seek to resolve this as quickly as possible.”

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/broward/lauderdale-by-the-sea/fl-lauderdale-by-sea-colon-overpaymen20100527,0,293477.story

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop .. May 26,2010 LBTS Roundtable Meeting #1 …… She Loves Us, She Loves Us Not? …

May 26, 2010 by Barbara

INTERIM MEANT INTERIM?…

Dear Readers …We learned last night that the new Interim Town Manager, Connie Hoffman might actually be here for the short term to work her magic in getting to the bottom of  the mess left in the wake of the termination of former Town Manager Esther Colon… As the Commission discussed the Town Manager search Ms. Hoffman reiterated what we had first heard when she came forward to offer the Town her services …that she was available immediately to serve for just the interim position…That position seemed to evolve into a possibility of it being permanent when as she came forward on the day she was chosen…What was added last night was she thought this was also a perfect chance to see if she wanted to return to a Managerial position and if this was the right fit for her…She was put in this position by the surprising comments made by Comm. Vincent who stated after the Mayor’s report as the liaison for the Comm. and the Town Atty./Town Manager to proceed with the search RFQ…The Mayor explained that she had changed her mind about hiring a search firm after carefully considering the cost involved ($12-24,000) and considering the response we received in such a short time for the Interim TM position…She felt we could create a profile with the assistance of the Town Atty. and Town Manager as well as the parameters…The Commission could come up with 5 candidates, have a meeting with the residents and get a consensus of the Commission as they had on April 26th and choose a Town Manager… She spoke about the experience required and compensation …She thanked the Commission for affording her this liaison position, adding this needed to be done quickly and wanted to hear from her fellow Comms.  on how they wanted to proceed…(much of what the Mayor said was hard to pick up due to using the new overhead mike that was not picking it up well, sounding like she was in a tunnel…after she finished it was back to the hand held as well)…

Comm. Vincent was next and went off into left field by saying there was no urgency, he didn’t see it and he wanted to set it aside for 6 months, not do anything now then do a performance review of the Int. Town Manager/Int. Asst. Town Manager and see if there was a need to move forward…He went on to speak of the 5-0 vote for Hoffman…

Comm. Clottey agreed with Vincent that there was no sense of urgency ..she wanted to do an outside search and said she had a problem with Hoffman writing any specs that it put her in a terrible situation ..She said she was happy with Hoffman and said there needed to be a clear choice with no strings  or talking behind closed doors…

TM Hoffman clarified that the specs would be done by PIO Steve d’Oliveira and she would assist with locating public documents… This was when Ms. Hoffman needed to explain her situation and to tell the Commission to move forward with the search while she took that time to decide on whether she wants this…The Mayor thanked her for this…

BC- This writer always felt there was a sense of urgency due to the possibility that Fort Lauderdale might come a- calling for her to return with their own City Manager having one foot outside the door and also due to what Ms. Hoffman has found before her in the Colon aftermath…(We hear there were mountains of Town’s business left unfinished and unattended dating back quite some time as Colon was occupied putting out her own fires!)….

Comm. Vincent still did not seem to catch on and said they could go ahead in 6 months if Ms. Hoffman decided she did not want the job (she stated she would decide in the next 90 days)…

Comm. Clottey wanted Ms. Hoffman to stay through the budget process because it was not advantageous to the town for there to be a new TM at the same time…Ms. Hoffman was put in a corner and stated she did not know how to answer that…The Mayor shut Clottey down stating that was not the discussion for the evening the discussion is on the search…”Clueless” Clottey stated they needed an experienced company and it was not a lot of money stating the last time it was done within the Commission it put them in a bind  and some were not happy with it, it needs to be a “cleaner situation”…

BC- The problem the last time was no search outside and no transparency for 3 years on the contract, the benefits and the payout!…

Vice Mayor Dodd said we have a “unique situation” with this Town Manager and if she decided to move on she could consult with us as we moved forward in the process…He felt we should not go out and pay a firm ..instead be prepared go out with adverts nationally which was not done for Colon but did want some help in choosing the best candidates by a professional…He said the Town could now see the difference in a professional and nonprofessional running the Town…

Comm. Sasser also wanted to go the route of doing it internally agreeing with the Mayor about the turnout we had from the Interim position and added Int. Asst. TM Bud Bentley was among those who responded and while he is happy with TM Hoffman he is also quite happy with Bentley as well….He stated that if the response was not great then  move on to a search firm…He also agreed with Comm. Clottey that there should be a “Chinese wall” in place for Ms. Hoffman…..

Comm. Clottey was still on the conflict issue and Ms. Hoffman said she did not want to help out…The Town Atty. chimed in about the difference in what Ms. Hoffman was offering and what would be a conflict …

The Int. TM stated that we have the basic requirements already in the Charter (prev. post) and explained ho she had done this as a consultant with position profiles and interviewing Comms. for what they were looking for…She chose PIO d’Oliveira for the job because she said he was a “terrific writer.”…

The Town Atty. said she wanted the Comm. to be aware of how important this decision is and that the expense may not be costly when you weigh it against the cost of making the wrong decision.. In hiring a TM we are “basically handing the keys to the car to this person.”..She added the monetary costs vs political costs …angry residents..

Comm. Sasser joked that prior to this the most important decision this Commission made was picking the Vice Mayor!.. He then reiterated his stance…

The Mayor wanted to make it clear they were not choosing within and wanted a full search …wanted to consider the costs and stated they were elected to make decisions …adding they could put together a description with staff (Steve) get it advertised in the ICMA (Manager’s Assoc.) and Florida League of Cities etc…then take the next step..

Comm. Sasser continued from there stating Steve could bring his writeup to the Comm. to approve the ad….

Ms. Hoffman told them they needed to include the salary and benefits …which would narrow or make the field larger for candidates…She recommended they define that..

The Mayor spoke of what could be found on the internet in similar communities in Florida ..stating this area demands a higher salary and she has found the range to between $130-200thousand…+ benefits..and that should be part of the description..

Int. TM Hoffman spoke of finding comparisons of salaries online at a site (prev. post from Oct. 23, 2009 TM Performance Review)..and the salaries being public record…

BC- A “2-11-09 Salary Survey” found last year by this writer … Town/City Managers

Plantation-strong Mayor  $116,058.00

City of Sunny Isles Beach $138,382.40

City of Miami Springs $144,170.00

Cooper City $150,000

Southwest Ranches $160,000

Lauderdale By The Sea (Esther Colon) $160,541.94

Davie $177,022.00

Sunrise $187,334.00

Coral Springs $189,211.00

Miami Gardens $ 190,340.00

North Miami Beach $200,000.00

Hollywood $ 201,106.00

Adventura $ 206,608.00

North Miami $207,438.00

Miramar $ 208,832.00

Hallandale Beach $212,388,80

City of Miami $220,000.00

Fort Lauderdale $ 230,090.00

Pembroke Pines  not an employee-contracted through private company

……………….

Comm. Sasser said this is a great town …

Comm. Vincent countered that the cost of living in Broward county is high…

The Mayor stated she thought the ads should be in Florida alone due to the Sunshine laws and the great pool of people ..that was her recommendation…

Com. Vincent joked “why don’t we make it a part time job..

Vice Mayor Dodd spoke of his problem with one year of severance having he position for 2 years and the accrued sick/vacation leave and wanted it “deeply investigated” of what we’re offering …

The Town Atty. offered up some different combinations of severance tied in with length of employment and no accruals…She added paying out accrued yearly with no carryover..stating in some municipalities really long term employees are walking away with a million dollars!…

Comm. Clottey spoke of calling sick day “personal days” adding teachers have the same accrued sick/vacation leave…(HUH?) …She  said she did not have any carry over at the private university she taught at…

Comm Vincent said “we’re not experts” ..He said the $20,000 could get us the “best bang for our buck”…”Can’t chase a dollar for a dime.”..

Comm. Sasser emphatically disagreed…

Comm. Clottey spoke of being on search teams and gave her rundown on the process..

Comm. Sasser brought the Commission back on track with again reiterating the direction and what was needed to move forward and the package then a workshop…and reiterated what he the Mayor and VM Dodd were in agreement on responses before money spent..

Comm. Vincent did an about face ans stated “that makes sense.”…

The Mayor added onto Comm. Sasser’s statement by saying many of the applicants may not be qualified cutting down the list and agreed on a workshop ..

Comm. Vincent asked “are we going to decide then go to a firm to negotiate” in wanting to know the actual cost involved with hiring a search firm..

Ms. Hoffman said because of the economy firms are now more apt to negotiate ..She also advised the Commission not to wait for 60 days ..to put out an RFP for a firm with what the Town was requiring and get them to hold the proposed cost for 6 months…She stated they did not want to hold the process up or they would lose candidates…She also advised the Commission to break down the elements they wanted …(Ms. Hoffman had previously made this suggestion)…

The Mayor tied it all together …with an assist from the Int. TM and TAtty. with Comm. Sasser reminding them of the workshop and was ready to move on…but…

“Clueless” Clottey wanted to change the qualifications in the Charter and the Town Atty. in unison with several Commissioners reminded her the Charter cannot be changed without a vote of the people…OUCH!…

Not done yet…Dr. Clottey still mumbled on about adding to it and then wanted to know if “shall”  equals “must” as she read a portion of the qualifications ….

The Town Atty. replied yes…

BC- This writer agrees with the Mayor/Vice Mayor and Comm. Sasser….

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … May 26, 2010 LBTS Round Table ….Flashback… Town Manager’s Salaries and Benefits …

May 26, 2010 by Barbara

SEEN THIS BEFORE …..

Dear Readers… while I digest tonight’s meeting and prepare get to work on posting it…a familiar topic was discussed tonight ..the compensation package that will be offered to the next Town Manager…The Int. Town Manager referred to a site to get that info for comparison..This writer recalled that when we were going through the highly charged and totally political first LBTS TM performance review debacle in 2009  former Comm. Jim Silverstone introduced a spread sheet he said he put together in a rather lame attempt to justify the former Town Manager’s compensation…It was flawed, in this writer’s opinion as he skewed it and left out pertinent information that was included in his own backup..(see below post…4th paragraph)… A look at the Roundtable will show the comments made by Silverstone ….

http://lbts.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=2&clip_id=262

The most important portion he neglected to speak of at the table was the following..

” The results of the comparison indicate that length of time served as city manager and the number of  employees the city manager manages are the main factors in determining salary.” …

The TM performance review posts on BCBythesea are Oct. 13,20,22,23 & 24th …

……………..

Posted Oct. 24, 2009 …#5….

“Dear Readers … Do we really want to give Commissioner Silverstone 4 more years on the dais?…. At the final Town Manager Performance Review he either chose to give out bad information or he did not read  the information he gave out…Both scenarios do not bode  well for this “Broom Boy”…next March…

Right after Mayor Minnet made her comments about the number of the employees we have in Town compared to our population …Comm. Silverstone presented his own analogy…He said he went online to find out information comparing our town to Surf Side in Miami Dade and Lighthouse Point…He compared them by number of top level employees…and their property taxes …What he came up with was Surf Side had 15 including the Town Atty./ LBS had 8.75 including the T.Atty./ LHP had 10 including the T Atty./….BUT… he conveniently left off the Asst. Town Manager who can be found on page 78 in the budget book in the all encompassing and tricky “community standards” . …This writer has previously spoken of the “Community Standards” category of the budget…which first started showing up in the budget prior to 2007 when Ms. Colon became the Town Manager…it’s a “catch-all” for hiding the numbers of employees…etc…making the numbers in the old stand-by depts. appear as if we have less employees… So the correct number of employees Jimmy-boy …would be 9.75 including the T.Atty. close to LHP which Jim correctly pointed out has almost double the population….Jimmy-boy conveniently chose to leave out the millage rate for the other towns…Surf Side 5.5224/ LHP 3.6118 (both according to their Sept. online meetings)…So LHP who has their own Police and Fire Dept. has a lower millage than LBTS…Hmmm….

He then wondered further into the muck by talking about the Town Manager’s contract…he said he had both contracts and did a comparison…Did he have all 4 portions of the contract info required…The Horton contract/ the 2001 memo on the agreement from Baldwin/ the 2006 memo on the agreement from Baldwin (specifically given to the comm. for him and McIntee to know what Baldwin’s agreement was) and Esther’s 2007 contract?…If so he failed miserably in his “analysis” or he purposely aimed to deceive the voters yet again on his role in the Town Manager’s contract…(prev. post of his ever changing story)… In Comm. Silverstone’s comparison he says that Ms. Colon works 52 weeks a year compared to Mr Baldwin’s 42 because he took 10 weeks off…It has been established in both the  2001 and the 2006 memos and at the May 2007 contract approval for Colon that Baldwin did not always take off the 10 weeks each year and he was not paid for any time taken…which means his $146,733 dollar salary would be less for any time taken away……And Ms Colon this year makes $160,000+ not $146, 743…so scratch that comparison!… Again, when Jimmy-boy attempts to compare that dang 10 weeks (excuse) of time allowed off…but it still is an non-entity to compare as stated above and if Ms. Colon took that 10 week provision in her contract it would amount to approx. $28,00 if taken in total…much less than all her own additions……Mr Silverstone gets the 3rd  and 4th comparisons  wrong…In the 3rd comparison…TM Colon gets 1 yrs severance if fired plus sick /holiday accrued time for both being TM and Finance Director…TM Baldwin received no severance…The 4 months severance Jimmy-boy used  was Baldwin’s  predecessor Horton’s in his contract…A look at the 2001 & 2006 agreements show Baldwin received no severance if fired and only accrued sick and holiday time along with unpaid hours… In comparison number 4…again TM Colon does not get any severance for resigning that is so (although Jimmy-boy stated she should have that too!)……But neither did Baldwin…Jimmy-boy again used the Horton contract not used by Baldwin…He also uses an erroneous Comp. of time accrued before being TM for Baldwin who was hired only as TM…unlike Ms. Colon who does indeed get Comp. for her prior position as Finance Director…He conveniently left out …..as stated at the meeting by the Mayor Ms. Colon’s indemnity clause…also not in the Baldwin agreement…and he has left out that Ms. Colon is to receive 2 pensions…something that was left over from the Horton contract due to the time he was hired…and finally he is most deceptive on adding “signed on 05/22/07 ALSO SIGNED BY T.A. CHEROF”…because in his possession Jimmy-boy knows Cherof signed “AS TO FORM”…which meant not to “content”…because as this writer stated on Oct. 20th at the podium former Town Atty. Cherof did NOT draw up Ms. Colon’s contract and did not meet independently with each Comm…(more on this to come)…Shame on Comm. Silverstone!…You have as many versions on the manager’s contract as your BFF has on the suicide incident…

BC- PERTINENT TO TONIGHT’S ROUND TABLE …(May 26, 2010..TM salary and benefits)…

Not done yet ….For the trifecta of piss-poor proof presented to his constituents and fellow commissioners…his comparison of town managers from Oct. 2007…He said he found it in the Long Boat Key News… and attempted to show that most city managers have this “modernization” type of contract with a full year’s severance.being standard …..except a close look at his sheet show that out of 18  cities.. …5 of the managers who had a 1 year severance in 2007 ……Of those 5 …one had been the Mgr. for 3 yrs with 324 employees/ two had been the Mgrs. for 10 yrs with 126 employees & 2,491 employees/1 had been Mgr. for 9 yrs with 203 employees / and the 5th one  – LHP had been Mgr. for 4 mos with 110 employees (at a salary $117,552 for double the population!)…..The rest of the list showed… 6 had a 6 mo. severance…1 had a 3 mo. -6 mo. severance/ 1 had 3 mos./ 1 was NA/ 1 had pd vacation/ 1 had paid vacation balance…It also added at the bottom…the following…

Perhaps this Commissioner was counting on his fellow commissioners to join him in not doing his homework and filing his handouts in circular…thus perpetuating his false statement made upon conclusion of this information “But I’ve done my homework here and what I’m basing my numbers on factual numbers that make sense to me.”…And that Commissioner Silverstone is the problem…this made sense to you!… ARGHHHH….

Voters need to make sense on March 9, 2010…and vote for his opponent!…

more to come…”

…………..

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Stuck In The Sand?…

May 26, 2010 by Barbara

ONE HOURGLASS TOO LONG …

Dear Readers … Last night I felt the “Days of My Life” … slipping away once again from too much talk on the dais… The point made going into this new Commission from the Town’s law firm was to make a major change in how the Town’s business would be done…The goal was to follow Adventura …(home of the 3.0 millage rate) …and have one Commission meeting and one Roundtable a month..Richard Weiss pointed out  that one major problem with the previous Commission was the Commissioners that felt the need to have their “bite at the apple “(or cherry or whatever your fruit preference is) extending the time of the meetings in the process…Ending that was a major “selling point” to the landslide victory this new Commission enjoyed …Somewhere though, the Commission is stuck and the last two commission meeting are going on a good hour to an hour  and half too long!…

Here’s what has to happen…in this writer’s opinion…the Commissioners need to get their questions (if there is more than one) to the Town Manager before the Monday before the Commission meeting and then take those answers and put them in a 3 minute or less summary to assure their constituents that they have done their homework as they share their information succinctly …. At the present time they receive their backup on Friday in the late afternoon…perhaps the Town Manager/Town Clerk could see to it that any backup that is available earlier than Friday afternoon could be e-mailed to the Commissioners prior to Friday for even more time to allow the Commissioners the opportunity to digest and formulate their questions with additional time as well for the answers from whomever (staff/consultants) needs to supply them…

The Mayor needs to stand firm on the rules of 3 minutes from the Commission on an item …Any discussion that goes beyond that needs to be kicked onto the next available Roundtable for extended discussion with more backup to assist them…That backup can also be done by sending it in written form to the Town rather than directing a long list of items from the dais  after the call is made to move it off the dais …That direction again extends the meeting …Those items of direction should also be put in a 3-5 minute summary for the public at the Roundtable…

No more additions at commission meetings from anyone on the dais the night of the meeting….. unless it is an emergency…Thus far, those additions which I am sure are being added with the best of intentions throw a big wrench into the entire Commission meeting process… and are driving those of us watching mad!…

While this Commission is on hold with certain campaign promises made due to those items being in process due to  the TAtty./TM/ staff  (Ethics/ Code of Conduct/ Choice to name a few)…the length of the Commission meetings and the Commissioner’s actions on the dais are not!…

With that said…. here’s what took place at the May 25, 2010 Commission meeting that began at after the 7 pm start time and ended at 10:23 pm with a 15 minute break..

It was “summer dress” for summer (agreed upon at a prior meeting to start before June) …

Rev. Hunsaker was absent so the Mayor read a prayer Memorial Day Payer…

Item 15C the Pier Access was tabled per staff request for staff to do background…VM Dodd asked for it to be on Roundtable which will be June 9th ….no additions (1 addition was made at Town Manager Report) …

No presentations….

Public Comments 8 were called 6 came forward…Liliana Pomareda wanted to speak on a subject different than her consent agenda item (block party) and was not allowed to… Ken Kuglar took a pass… Vito Chiarello and Chuck Gress had praise for the new Commission…. Dennis Ritchie spoke of the leave payments that are being abused and wants changes made when hiring in the future…Linda Ritchie spoke of the POA and the Hometown Hero for July 4th…Rules are you must be POA member to vote..$10 per year ..contact her at 954-784-9495 or linda.ritchie@comcast.net…Diane Boutin asked the Commission to pay attention to Capital Improvements …proper funding/fire assessment to fairly reflect Commercial/residential properties …Marie Chiarello spoke of the need for the Master Plan to move forward and questioned Comm. Clottey’s past words on an apology to former Int. TM Olinzock now that the TM Inquiry payout report was out…

BSO received commendation and a standing ovation for their recent man-hunt (prev. post) among other recent BSO activities… Although Comm. Vincent did not need to inform the “classic police work” after the Mayor had already said as much…(sand in the hourglass)…

VFD Chief Perkins was again questioned by VM Dodd on medical call…as they are still on almost every call with AMR…The Chief said they were using “the finger”..Now that does call for some sand to run….Perkins was alluding to the fingerprint computer program that will be put in place for the members to use when arriving to the station for a call…within a certain time they get paid after…no such luck…THe Chief had to follow up the “finger” comment with the fact it has not been implemented yet…(the 1st card idea was touted by the chief months ago pre-election)..OUCH!… Further rough going for Perkins when Comm. Clottey asked him about the $100,000 that was to be put in a special fund for apparatus yearly and inquired about the account total to date……. The Chief had to answer they had $60,000 adding they bought the ;ladder truck and the command car…This writer obtained the 2nd (Jan- Mar. 30) 2010 income/expense report from the VFD that states they put in $31,809.00 into the “future equip fund” …and the former TM said they had much more than that in a separate fund when questioned by former VM/VFD Dep. Chief McIntee prior to the election…OUCH!… Then it was Clottey again who threw out a rumor this writer heard last month when she said she had “heard from several people” the Chief “had a hard time making payroll”…The Chief said that was not so…( He is on the record…if a check shows otherwise the Chief could be in some serious hot water)… Comm. Sasser spoke about an incident at Benihana over the weekend when they were having trouble getting the key for their knoxbox and he called Danny Chavez…who made him look good in how fast the response was to get the situation fixed..while Comm. Sasser was still dining..The Chief said he has the keys 24/7 as well as others..OUCH!…Seems Danny ChavezVFD Fire Administrator is again the new go-to guy ion the VFD!…The Mayor stated she attended a training session..but the Chief was absent….OUCH!…

AMR- no discussion

All 3 were passed 5-0

The minutes were both approved after Comm Vincent pointed out a mistake in the April 20th stated he made a motion and made the second as well and VM Dodd complimented the Town on the major imporvement …Passes 5-0

Consent Agenda…item A & D passed with no discussion…cannot say the same for the ongoing saga of the block party for CIC Chair Liliana Pomareda (prev. post)…The backup provided a look at why this did not really fall under the special events category..thus the $100 dep. was not required per the Int. Asst. TM …who also included a need to move this to an administrative requirement in the future and stated along with the TM and TAtty. this was done in Fort Lauderdale…and the Town should do whatever it can to assist with such neighborhood gatherings… This was when the sand began to get stuck in the middle for a 2nd time on the same topic …Ms. Pomareda again proved that the CIC must not have had any other takers for the Chair position…she was rude and crass during her 2 times at the podium …stating she did not want to spend anymore time explaining her event…stating it was not a “mardi gras ” and the “blue devils” would not be flying overhead..It is a simple block party…In her 2nd time up to the mike she stated her original map adding “code enforcement led me down this rat hole” and not being able to pay “500 million-trillion on insurance.”… The Commission took multiple times to ask about the liability to the applicant and the Town..The TAtty. did not feel there was a great liability citing the other town’s that provide for block parties…The BSO said a off duty detail would need to be in place for any ongoing BSO presence during the 6 hour closing of North Tradewinds at $40-43 hours per for 2 officers… The concerns of Comm. Vincent and Mayor Minnet were public safety…VM Dodd and Comm. Sasser had those concerns but felt staff had it under control and there were still some specific guidelines that needed to be met before it took place…such as BSO approval…Comm. Clottey did not want the Commission to be “Scrooge” for the neighbors…It passed 3-2 (Vincent/Minnet voted no) after more than a half hour …Of concern to this writer is the following…Pomareda’s “flier” stats the following “notice” to her neighbors…

“YOU ARE INVITED TO THE…..

SUMMER IS HERE!!!!!!

NORTH TRADEWINDS

BLOCK PARTY

CALL LILIANA TO PARTICIPATE

AS SHE IS COORDINATING THE

MENU 954-494-9467

THIS SHALL SERVE AS THE

REQUIRED WRITTEN NOTICE

THAT PERMIT HAS BEEN

REQUESTED FOR THE CLOSURE OF

NORTHE TRADEWINDS ALLOWING

FOR LOCAL TRAFFIC ONLY

BRING YOUR BEACH CHAIRS AND

SMILES!!!!”

BC- as the Int. Asst. TM stated at the podium it had no info that informed the neighbors of the Commission meeting…or number to state any opposition…The neighbors at the end of Seagrape and West Tradewinds should have had input as well…2nd 6 hours to allow for kids to ride int he street…I grew up with block parties…helped with some in the past…never closed a street for them..and never saw kids ride in the street for 6 hours!.. The Commission should require staff and BSO to give progress reports on the “Newbie” event…with the preparation by BSO and the Town for it..what was required in time and cost for both…and a followup for the day of the event…how it turned out for traffic, public safety, impact on the neighbors and cost…in order to move forward as the Int. Asst. TM is recommending …

Consent Item 9c was clarified with the date being Sat. June 26th for the Cooperative Feeding Program’s Beach Party..passes 5-0..

Commissioner Comments..

Comm. Sasser spoke about his progress as the Comm. liaison for Choice Environmental …and offered his condolences to the Roberts family.

Comm. Clottey also offered condolences to Bob Roberts and family…hoped all would have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend and felt the need to answer an “erroneous comment made by a speaker” about JohnO and an apology stating she was not happy with him and voted to let him go…”I just needed to clean that up a little” she said…

Comm. Vincent thanked Daniel Chavez (the go-to guy in the VFD) for inviting him to a training session…said he had a “rush” riding in the truck for the first time…stating they were “a fine bunch of men and women”…He said his campaign promise for bathrooms would be looked into as we face the budget…and that staff is looking at the code of ethics in the near future

BC-1st draft was distributed to Comm. already along with the Code of Conduct…

The Mayor also offered condolences to the Roberts family and the Demko family (grandson of Anglin)…She acknowledged and thanked the supportive public speakers  and spoke of riding on the Pelican Hopper every 4th Tues for 2 hr. rides to support and encourage riding it..She spoke on July 4th and the events…also asking for people to join POA and vote for Hometown Hero who will be in parade..

BC- We hear many requested flag at half-stff for Mr Demko …a memo was sent from Int. TM to state the rules…(not followed in the past)…

HALF- STAFF RULES
“The flag, when flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag should be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. On Memorial Day the flag should be displayed at half-staff until noon only, then raised to the top of the staff. By order of the President, the flag shall be flown at half-staff upon the death of principal figures of the United States Government and the Governor of a State, territory, or possession, as a mark of respect to their memory. In the event of the death of other officials or foreign dignitaries, the flag is to be displayed at half-staff according to Presidential instructions or orders, or in accordance with recognized customs or practices not inconsistent with law. In the event of the death of a present or former official of the government of any State, territory, or possession of the United States, the Governor of that State, territory, or possession may proclaim that the National flag shall be flown at half-staff. The flag shall be flown at half-staff thirty days from the death of the President or a former President; ten days from the day of death of the Vice President, the Chief Justice or a retired Chief Justice of the United States, or the Speaker of the House of Representatives; from the day of death until interment of an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, a Secretary of an executive or military department, a former Vice President, or the Governor of a State, territory, or possession; and on the day of death and the following day for a Member of Congress. The flag shall be flown at half-staff on Peace Officers Memorial Day, unless that day is also Armed Forces Day. As used in this subsection -

(1) the term “half-staff” means the position of the flag when it is one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff,

(2) the term “executive or military department” means any agency listed under sections 101 and 102 of title 5; and

(3) the term “Member of Congress” means a Senator, a Representative, a Delegate, or the Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico.

(n) When the flag is used to cover a casket, it should be so placed that the union is at the head and over the left shoulder. The flag should not be lowered into the grave or allowed to touch the ground.

(o) When the flag is suspended across a corridor or lobby in a building with only one main entrance, it should be suspended vertically with the union of the flag to the observer’s left upon entering. If the building has more than one main entrance, the flag should be suspended vertically near the center of the corridor or lobby with the union to the north, when entrances are to the east and west or to the east when entrances are to the north and south. If there are entrances in more than two directions, the union should be to the east.”

BC- also, the July 4th “picnic” will have hotdogs/ burgers etc… available to buy at the event…

VM Dodd…Condolences to the Roberts family stating they were his neighbors and longtime residents..He stated Adrienne Roberts was cremated and there would be no service… He spoke of the April 20th and 26th meetings being the right thing to do…thanked the new administration stating “what a relief” with their way of running the Town.. and  spoke about Hillsboro Inlet District  meeting …. there was discussion on the new work boats and that minor modifications would be necessary to improve the stability for towing in rough water. The District accepted the suggestions from a naval architect and the manufacturer. Discussion was held on the steps to be taken to mitigate the impact of the pending oil problems…

Old Business was the calendar fro May thru Sept. meetings (prev. post) ..Roundtable was moved to Sept. 8th…passes 5-0 …

Discussion on Audit Committee and the RFP…much back and forth about a different makeup for an Audit Committee compared the the one former TM Colon put together (prev. post)…Some highlights…the Mayor got the word out with confirmation that the Audit Committee was supposed to be approved by the Commission per state statute! …Also the TM stated she did not prefer the method Colon used of  the committee being the TM, Finance Dirctor and outside Finance Director.. Her take the “Fox guarding the hen house”… In the end it will come back next meeting in June with Comms. recommending and appointing 3-5 members… The TAtty. stated the code for the audits are obsolete… VM Dodd wanted to coordinate a budget committee with the audit committee…the TM did not think there was time to do it this year but offered up the budget committee to come on board after budget was given to Comm. to go over…

BC-Please TM put all revisions and updates along with the justification sheets online for the duration then archived…

BC- Comm. “Clueless” Clottey wanted to recommend someone who is already on a board and inquired if it could be done…The answer was yes as the TAtty. previously answered (prev. post)…Could Clottey want former candidate and her MPSC appointee Marjorie Evans?… How so?..Ms. Evan has been MIA for all MPSC thus far!…

Westside warehouse… PIO d’Oliveira was the point man on this after the TM asked him to step outside his normal duties to take this on…way too much on this one as well..once the TM said it was to be brought back later due to leasing after hurricane season it should have been put aside…This would have been well suited for those prior to the meeting questions sent to the TM for d’oliveira to cut down on the time… The TM and Comm. Vincent were not up to speed on the prior Comm. and their reasons for no commissioned Realtor…The TM/Asst.TM talked them out of it!…A 6 mo. contract to try it their way was decided with an MLS (multiple listing services)etc…agreement…The terminated duo never came back…I do agree with Comm. Vincent the property dropped significantly …he was called on it from Clottey and he countered her with the only offer we received of $750,000 …Mr. d’Oliveira was questioned as well on the contract ..the time…and the recommendation to reduce the price by the VM who stated it seemed to come from the company not the former mgr…Active Assets the company JohnO added to the list was also responsible for the Bougainvilla parking lot acquisition according to d’Oliveira… Comm. Sasser jokingly told the TAtty. he wanted her to look into the contract for some recourse if it cost less than the $10,600 it cost us!….The Mayor ended by saying it may have been a blessing in disguise that it did not sell as we were told if we sold it we would need to rent elsewhere…We own it outright…Direction was to let TM address it after hurricane season…

Break time…

Old Business continued with Granicus…and the minutes…Steve d’Oliveira stated it was no extra cost for video streaming the board/committee meetings …already being done…He stated it was no cost to archive the meetings…not being done ….There would be cost for backup…not recommended by staff…passes 5-0

BC- Did not address e-mail alerts…done in other towns…something the TM should address as she stated she and staff were bringing municipal I.T. person to assess antiquated Town computer system and Granicus…June White was in left field when asked about using minute make..that too will be addressed later…

New Business..

Kaola King did what Comm. Sasser asked and did the budget thus far with comparisons to prior years…(prev. post) …questions again were far too long and should have been submitted to Ms. King prior to meeting and read aloud in a summary from each Comm….She was difficult to understand and it was apparent there is some “tug and war” going on with the TM and the Finance Director about having multiple bank accounts vs the TM’s idea of a ledger…Also according to King we have 11 million in the General Fund…The VM wants a balance sheet and Clottey being “Clottey” tried to insult the VM and added she too wanted an monthly balance sheet …the TM said she was working on a report to come in June and quarterly thereafter…

BC- note to TM on the municipal services costs…a look at the budget reports for 2008 after crappy hotel was purchased and the previous months in early 2010 including last month will show an exorbitant amount of worker hours in which this writer believes the former TM “jobbed” her numbers by using Town staff for movers…and renovating…

BC- The bill for the TAtty’s for April is $67,000…how much was Bert J. Harris after 2 court dates and 1 transcript…Mayor asked about a contract after 3 yrs of hrly charging…TM will seek info from other municipalities…This writer’s opinion…after new TM go out for TAtty with proper RFP and put out online etc…then hire a Town Atty. not a firm…keep Weiss for Bert J. and contract out for any special cases…

Status on the oil spill by Don Prince..(prev. post)…watch for tar balls on the beach… all clear for the next 72 hours…Asst. TM/Mayor attended workshops as well…

Town Manager Report…

Addressed former TM payout (prev. post)…which was followed by some disjointed back and forth from the Comm. with a Vincent motion and Clottey 2nd..VM Dodd wanted to know about the retirement vs. termination and the compensation privileges …He never received any answer…The TM did state there were other items being looked into such as employee inequities..(prev. post)…after mot back and forth the motion was to direct the recovery of the overpayment and to allow for any other items such as what the the VM wanted to be looked into and be rectified as well..

BC- What about JohnO?…What about suspended with pay HR/Risk Mgr. O’Brien?… Don’t drop the ball on these two  and Bob Baldwin…and perhaps Finance Director King…

BC- I disagree on the Cost of Living pay increase being a precedent historically without the Comm. voting..a look at the video for last year shows the former TM broke whatever perceived precedent by insisting and pushing for a vote for the 2.5% for Line Staff… I also disagree with the 377 comp. hrs prior to her TM position that suddenly showed up days before her promotion as it was stated in the report prior to that there was zero and the intent per the manual was for time not monies ..and Baldwin got it wrong!…

Town Manager progress report …was a big step forward for this town …kudos!..

ADD ON…added on another half hour!… The Mayor included the A1A project thinking the TM would simply give a short update…wrong!…It turned into a discussion that turned what was thought we knew about the funding on its ear yet again… Asst. TM Bentley informed us the $58,000 we were told was the Town’s portion is not!…The FDOT give that back to us when we finish the design…The preliminary 60% completed PBS&J design shows landscaping/ hard-scape pavers/ Right-of-Way small wall with seating caps/ crosswalks…He later added they included the Broward County bus shelters…and there was a possibility of a 3rd bus shelter… He added this project actually pre-dates El Mar Project and was in the works from the time of annexation …He will provide for the Committee and Commission a report…We have invested so far approx. $35,000 in the design…need to see if we stop now could we be reimbursed…then we need to decide is it worth $220,000 to do more to A1A north..

BC- This writer is sticking to my belief the answer at this time is no!…

The Town Atty. said she addressed the oil spill (prev. post)..

Adjourned at 10:23 pm…should have been 9:23 pm…if the sand was free flowing….

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … No, The Circus Isn’t Coming To Town …

May 25, 2010 by Barbara

LAUDERDALE-BY-THE-SEA
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE/
WELCOME CENTER
TO BE TENTED!!

Due to the tenting of the Chamber of Commerce/Welcome Center
we will be closed
Saturday, Sunday and Monday,
May 29th – 31st
and will re-open
Tuesday, June 1 at 8:30am.

If you need anything (visitors guides, etc.)
please let us know before Friday,
and of course, you can call us at
(954) 776-1000 if you have any questions!

Post Division
Older Posts »