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

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 [email protected]…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…

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