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Here’s The Scoop … The Last Gasp …Election 2010 …

October 31, 2009 by Barbara

RIP…

Dear Readers … unless they move it after this is is posted …out in front of this year’s 3 week , $4000 Halloween production at Jarvis Hall is a headstone that says “RIP Marc & Cristie”…. A few readers have made mention of it already wondering if it was a prank by the Mc-Furth opponents or if it means something else?… First of all it’s not new..it’s been on display in the back room among others with local names on them as well….found after going through the haunted hallway to where the coffin is… The placement this year, as of right now at least to this writer…may be another  “sign”…pun intended …. of the “Last Gasp” to retain the past they want at all costs….while knowing the tide is turning…

The Furths may be successful in their “Last Gasp” campaign which is how I will refer to the March 2010 election in LBTS…( the term is thanks to an observant pal, intuitive observation)…by getting the height referendum back on the ballot…That would be a shame…under the “guise” of “clarification” ..You heard that word come from the Furth commission “devotees” on the dais less than 24 hours after the Oct. 26th Referendum Workshop when it seemed the 3 (McIntee, Silverstone and Marc Furth besotted Clottey) were faltering from the 33 feet issue that THE FURTHS  NEED IN THIS ELECTION… If they can’t get it…they do not have an issue to run on, at least a tried and true  Furth issue….. So in what appears again to be totally a disregard of Sunshine  all 3 came to the dais on the 27th to say “clarify” the 33′ height limit in town…WOW!…

Ms. Furth spoke of  working with “co-sponsor” Oliver Parker…and all 3 commissioners were involved in the one or more past renditions of the same issue…and now they need it again?…Why?…..The Furth’s want it ..Cristie wants it…so is she wants it…Marc wants it and to keep Cristie happy…..Marc will besot Clottey and pal around with Jerry and Jimmy…same as in the past….that’s why!…

This writer, as readers know was a part of the last 2006 height campaign… and was caught up in delivering with fervor erroneous information “buried deep within” the backup of those 75 words on the ballot…We were told by certain  CIC tin charge to tell those in the south who really did not care about the north end’s  15 story height that if the south let it get passed then the commission would have a right with their majority  vote to raise the heights in our end of town..Eeeeks…. It was scary stuff….BUT…it was not true!… What will the CIC-Mc-Furths come up with this time?…And do they have anybody left to carry out erroneous information?….The numbers for their organization clearly show the CIC has indeed dwindled down to a membership of new members in January 2009 coming from a new members apartment building in the south and the VFD…along with a smattering of old timers …..very telling of the downfall from out in front watchdog group to cheerleading for Jerry’s tired tales …

There are some things that matter more than 33′ in this town…and that is the change in our demographics  and what Paul Novak President of the Chamber of Commerce, Chair of the Master Plan Steering Committee, and longtime hotelier in town brought out at the end of the Oct. 26th Referendum Workshop…with the 33′ feet we will have no more hotels…we will become a residential community …..

I moved to this town 10 years ago…We bought a 3 bedroom condo in Sea Ranch Club after living for 6 years in Pompano Beach on the Intercoastal …We had originally moved here from the North Shore of Chicago and missed terribly the ability to walk around …into town..to the store etc…to eat and to be entertained…something we could never do in Pompano… Lauderdale By The Sea in 1999 as a new resident was a wonder to behold ..It was vital…It was busy…It was beautiful…It was a sort of contagious bliss…and it came from the tourists who were here for however long days, weeks or months…… The hotels and motels were full…Mack Groves was bustling with longtime devotees as well as newcomers who sat lined up in chairs happily and contently observing the sunshine, feeling the ocean breezes and smugly acknowledging each other in this shared experience… It was really something…it was heaven…

Now we no longer have Mack Groves, no chairs…no congregating of tourists and locals alike in acknowledging anything close to what we had back then… It’s not because we have development of 3 taller buildings that have gone up on El Mar Drive… It’s a loss of vitality in the commercial areas that bring about the current dismay…and the ongoing construction that mucks up the marvelous vistas for those that chose this town for  their vacation destination…

I do disagree with my friend Commissioner Dodd  and others who believe 33′ or 44′  with no equipment or pools on the roofs…It’s too constricting and it can be done to keep it aesthetically pleasing……I disagree with getting rid of all of the “Overlay Districts” forever…and quickly realized as I have written before that the Mc-Furth CIC “sweep” of repealing them right after the CIC win on the dais in 2008 was not thought out well, ( former CIC board member John Thompson tried and was defeated in warning us of the fallout ) …but a “knee-jerk” reaction that was orchestrated by the Mc-Furths who had their own “agenda” to stack the town boards with CIC pals and thwart any and all attempts to fix the demolition of “overlays”  without realizing the consequences…

We need a “Hotel Hospitality District”…and we need business people like Mr. Novak to assure that tourism remains in our town…We need an “Entertainment Hospitality District” to ensure that business remains in this town…and that includes getting rid of the parking requirements as Mr Novak himself discussed at a MPSC meeting  months ago…(prev. post)…

It strikes me as really funny that the Mc-Furth- Silverstone -Clottey contingency of the dais with their pal Manager Colon want to have a “Recreation” program for “our kids”, our “families” …but will do nothing for the “entertainment” of the larger new group of residents in this town, the younger ( not seniors) home buyers without kids who are looking to dine in town…and spend money…

Without the parking requirements…Mr Novak has assured us the storefronts would be filled with coffee shops, cafes, galleries and more…and I  wholeheartedly believe him…

Last night we had dinner at the new Vietnamese restaurant in town, Basilic Vietnamese Grill on Commercial  Blvd.  (the old Tedesco location)…and by 7 pm it was full with patrons waiting outside..There would be no way they all parked by the restaurant…They came as we did, by foot…from home and from nearby parking lots…But it was not something they even mentioned…They came for the food…imagine that!.. That’s what I’m talking about…throughout the downtown…to the east and to the west of this new restaurant…We could be a destination for more scenes such as this…

We are headed into the most important juncture for this town 10 years since my arriving here…This 2010 election will lead to who decides who will sit on the Town boards and committees…and who will have the say of the 10 year Comprehensive Master Plan for what this town becomes…  Despite disingenuous accolades made a few meetings back by Vice Mayor McIntee to Sandra Booth…(The VM disparaged Mrs Booth’s reappointment to the MPSC in 2008, joined by Comm. Silverstone…despite the FACT that Mrs Booth as past  MPSC-Chair had brought so much to the town in that role… including the Art Institute students who provided the original Beach Pavilion ….Incredibly, Comm. Clottey and Town Manager Colon disparaged Mrs. Booth as well, when they prepared for the ribbon cutting of the Beach pavilion…both actions were “orchestrated” by the Furths)…If we maintain the “Broom Boys” majority  up on the dais…we will see 2 more years of the same…

The MPSC in the last 2 years have been a waste of time, 2 giant steps back in progress for this town….It was canceled for lack of participation in conflicts of scheduling whether it was the CIC-VFD 4th of July or a CIC monthly meeting…( most members on the board are old-time Mc-Furth CIC pals) and as for direction from the dais to get a move on a new Master Plan in 2008-2009 …to get the old plans down off the  “shelves” somewhere…forget about it.!..Despite Comm. Dodd’s many attempts to provide it,  by going to the meetings or directing staff from the dais….the Mc-Furths and the Town Manager ignored and criticized…even calling Dodd out of order for “going there” and “directing”on his own!……They got what they wanted in the end… the MPSC did nothing… The Planning and Zoning which could have met throughout the past 2 years…not just when an applicant required a ruling… …has met less than a half a dozen times…At this month’s meeting they approved the minutes from the last time they met …last April!….

Is that what the voters want?…Nahhhh…..

We, the voters  need to see that this really is the “Last Gasp” election for the small-minded selfish Mc-Furths…. It’s time now to get a healthy dose of new blood on the dais…who will provide from the new demographics in town new blood on the Town boards and committees as well …. It’s the only way to ensure that we find in 10 years time we again have a LBTS Tourist destination locale that makes us, the majority in town …. all realize the “Last Gasp” election in 2010….was just that …”The Last Gasp”…and we  the voters…banded together to stop the demise of what brought us here in the first place…

RIP Cristie & Marc…. RIP…..(politically that is)…

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Activism Through The Details …

October 10, 2009 by Barbara

THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS ….

Dear Readers … .. As we approach the March 9, 2010 election…everyone “plays” a role…whether candidate… new or incumbent…Supporters of the candidates… new or longtime .. And of course voters …new and uninformed or misinformed …or old and tired of it all….

One important role role of any election is that of “Activist”…

DEFINITION…..

“Activism, in a general sense, can be described as intentional action to bring about social change, political change, economic justice, or environmental wellbeing. This action is in support of, or opposition to, one side of an often controversial argument.

The word “activism” is often used synonymously with protest or dissent, but activism can stem from any number of political orientations and take a wide range of forms, from writing letters to newspapers or politicians, political campaigning, economic activism (such as boycotts or preferentially patronizing preferred businesses), rallies, street marches, strikes, both work stoppages and hunger strikes, or even guerrilla tactics.”

For this writer …my “activism” comes from writing all the details… Details are defined as “extended treatment of or attention to particular items”  More often than not those “particulars” are MIA  in our Town’s history…And they are becoming more so each passing week with this Colon-led  Town Administration and Mc-Furth- led  Town Commission at the helm…..

MIA details were found with the Town Manager Contract… the Town Manager Review….the Town Manager pre-payment penalties….the Town Manager RFP/Bids….the Town Manager hiring and firing….the Town Manager code sweeps…the Town Manager increase in Town fees…the Town Manager unprofessional behavior toward Commissioners/ Residents/Businesses…..The particulars found in the Vice Mayor McIntee deletion of 3 1/2 years of “Town business related ” e-mails..the Vice Mayor McIntee vendettas to Residents/Businesses….Staff members obediently following their Manager’s bad behavior toward Commissioners/Residents/Businesses….The utter lack of  details in financial information being provided to Commissioners/Residents…Late and lax response in Public Records Requests….Questionable charges for Public Records Requests…and now we add in the Commission Minutes…

For that reason, I must now change one piece of advice often posted …for readers to go through the Town minutes and read what is going on…DO NOT!…Unfortunately they are tainted…What you will find is a manufactured “whitewash” of the meetings and decisions …The growing discourse and the details are not included…(unless they  impugn those that run counter to the “Gang”)… What is left is a slanted view that is beneficial to those who are currently in control…All very calculated…

The Town Commissioners are notorious for not reviewing the minutes they approve…often passing them all together in just one vote …( 4 sets of minutes are to be passed Oct. 13th)… thus they become part of the permanent record….and that unfortunate fact is proving to be most disturbing…

Take a look at a few examples of the minutes… that will most likely pass in one fell swoop again next Tuesday evening…..

LBTS MINUTES

“Page 2 d. Presentation -Bank Structure (Shawn Sackman) 9/9/09”

“Commissioner Silverstone questioned how the prepayment penalties were calculated. Mr Harlow stated that when an interest rates went up the prepayment went down. Commissioner Silverstone thought it made sense to pay off the loan now rather than later as the interest loan rate would exceed the penalty. Mr. Harlow agreed. He said there were other options for a lower rate but it would be costly to pay it off.”

Vice Mayor McIntee asked whether all major banks were similar in their rates. Mr Harlow stated that across the board the major banks were the same.

Commissioner Silverstone asked what would be if the loan were taken out today? Mr. Harlow believed it was approximately 4,6% for 10 years and 4.75 for 15 year loan.”

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BCByTheSea  9/16/09 Post… WITH DETAILS…

“Mr Shackman -” Currently the Town is invested in two types of accounts, one’s a Municipal Now Account , the second is a Public Fund Certificate of Deposit and the funds range from 40 base points or 0.04% to 1.33% “…He said it was important to know that these accounts are secured by the Florida Statute Chap. 280 (a requirement for all public funds) and the FDIC secures both as well…”This is a little bit different than it was a year ago. About a year or so ago the Town was invested in a repurchase agreement and the repurchase agreement differs from a Now Account in that you invest overnight funds into triple A security. For example Fannie Mae.” Making the change picked up additional yield…the repurchase is 0.8% compared to the yield of 40 base points and above to what the Town’s earning….He showed a comparison between the rate of 5% in 2007 and today’s rate .19 …it’s what the Now Account or any “liquid fund” are based on…as rates go up and the economy is going up so will the Town’s earnings on these accounts…when they go up…The question is, was this change brought to the Commission before, during or after it was done last year?…

Mr. Shackman-  went on to discuss the 2 promissory note loans with details of what the payoff amounts are and some options…He said we saved over the last 5 years or when the loan originated  and it’s over $100,000 by getting this lower interest rate of origination because we CHOSE to have the present pre-payment penalty versus no pre- payment penalty …”The Town chose the present value pre-payment which says ultimately you got all those savings HOWEVER due to where the rates are today there is a pre-payment calculation if the Town chooses to pay it off today.”…He explained it varies per day with interest rates…The numbers are such that it will cost us approximately $300,000+  to pay of the Promissory 2 notes!…So the gamble the Town took …and the savings we earned …mean we did not earn $100,000 …it is costing us $200,000+ now and as the Town Manager pointed out in Report to keep it would end up costing us a approximately $600,000 more!. … Who take s a pre- payment penalty on loans?….The Town Manager’s “crystal ball” was pretty cloudy when it came to that decision!…Pound Foolish!….”

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LBTS MINUTES….

“Page 11 …11. Commissioner Comments September 9, 2009”

“Vice Mayor McIntee said he did not regularly do emails: maybe 10 or 12 a year. He added that he had the same right as any citizen to request emails.” Vice Mayor McIntee did not feel it was right to attack the Town Manager’s contract as it was the same contract as the previous Town Manager had. He reminded everyone that Lauderdale-By-The- Sea had one of the lowest property taxes in Broward County.”

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BCByTheSea …..9/10/09 post….

Vice Mayor McIntee…began “pounding”….” Ah, first of all I’m gonna clarify some things on this e-mail. Folks, I don’t do e-mails. (see below) Everybody that knows me knows that I have stayed away from e-mails since long before I became a commissioner. If I do ten or twenty e-mails a year it’s a big big number. I just don’t do e-mails. I have an AOL account. If I get an e-mail from somebody in the Town I READ IT. I HAVE ONE LINE I USUALLY USE WHICH SAYS THANK YOU FOR YOUR E-MAIL,Vice Mayor McIntee. I THEN DELETE IT. And it goes into a recently deleted file. Up until this date when I called about this I didn’t know that AOL was wiping them out on a wheel. ( under oath…whom did he call…it is recorded somewhere) Now I will be more than happy to ride my hard drive to any expert who wants to look at the e-mails if he can find then in AOL by God he can have them because I know there’s only about a handful. (big hands…little hands?) I just don’t do e-mails, I don’t know how to do e-mails. I don’t know how to do any of the sending and the other stuff. I just don’t do it. (see below) Now if you think I’m trying to hide e-mails , go for it. Because I’m gonna enjoy it when they go into my hard drive and find there’s probably eight or nine in the last four months. ( how many?) Just outrageous. That’s typical of the marching season. That’s the time, it’s election time try and make him look bad. Try and make him go down. I asked for e-mails from the mayor and Commissioner Dodd. THAT’S MY RIGHT! I WANT EM. He wants to give them to me that’s fine. IF HE DOESN’T THEN I’LL TAKE WHATEVER ACTION PEOPLE HAVE THE RIGHT TO TAKE when if they handed over I DO, BUT THAT’S MY RIGHT! I’m  the same citizen you are. I WANT THOSE E-MAILS, I HAVE A RIGHT TO THEM AND I’M GOING FOR THEM,OK!” (Thinking about Howard Beal in Network?)….

The e-mails were put aside for the moment …but the nailing didn’t stop……” Now the lifetime contract on the Town Manager this is being abused. It’s being run, being taken completely out of context. The contract this woman has is the same contract as our ex- Town Manager Baldwin had word for word except for one thing Baldwin got ten weeks off paid” (see scoops  cat. prev. posts…NO WAY…NO HOW!) ” She’s one of the greatest Town Managers this Town has ever seen. So we have a situation of a lifetime contract. She’s getting more than the Governor. I , folks you better call all the Town Managers in Broward County, She’s in the middle of pay.”(LBTS is one of the smallest in population and size) “And the other thing we all have to remember we’re the only, one of the few towns in Broward County that is in great fiscal positions. Taxes have gone down. The town looks great!” (flooding streets/infrastructure/ pavilion/ construction sites/ empty properties/ public safety complex) ” It just, it just she’s just done a great job and these continual attacks , I’m use to them, but I don’t think she is. I think they’re abusive and I think they’re way out of line.” (Early Town Manager Performance Review?)…

Nearing the end of the box…old nails used for old news…” I’m gonna close out with the attack on the VFD not helping the sailor (prev. post) disgusting! Those guys would jump into a ten foot wave to save somebody and they accused them of not helping a guy who ran his boat to the beach is just not fair and not acceptable. Just way out of line. I ah, I don’t know why it happens, I just don’t know.”  (Somebody that did know said so from the audience…the VFD came on scene  after the BSO..while the boat had an intact mast …despite a false claim it was broken in a Town press release …no water and never entered the water to guide it to the buoy)…

Back to the e-mails and the final blows…..” And in closing again, come and look at my e-mails. You can have them. I called AOL.( verification is a must) Any way I can get em I believe me, I want you to have them because there aren’t any and the people that know me know I don’t do e-mails. So I’m loving this folks. I’m looking forward to receiving Commissioner Dodd’s and the Mayors e-mails. IT WILL BE GREAT READING FOR ME!”…(He’ll have plenty of time in March!)”

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LBTS MINUTES

“page 7 -8c. Town Manager Report 9/9/09”

Selection of Halloween Chairperson

“Vice Mayor McIntee said he and Commissioner Silverstone and Commissioner Clottey had done a few events for the Town. He said if they do it they want guarantees that there would be no more “backdooring” and/or “sabotage” or questioning the budget. Commissioner Silverstone nominated Barbara Cole, who turned it down. Mayor Minnet nominated Lawrence Wick, who was not present to accept or reject. Vice Mayor McIntee saidf he would do it if mayor Minnet and Commissioner Dodd would give their guarantee that there would be no harassment and the kids could enjoy the event. Mayor Minnet would not give her guarantee as she pointed out there was no harassment, only questions. Commissioner Silverstone said he had been doing it for 15 years and it was time someone else stepped up to the plate. There were no volunteers. Mayor Minnet called for the next item  on the agenda. Vice Mayor McIntee said he could not do that to the kids and agreed to Chair the event.”

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BCByTheSea …past posts etc…….Commissioner Dodd Co-Chaired the 2008 July 4th event…He helped with the 2007 Halloween Town Event…(as did this writer)…Commissioner Dodd and this writer knew who the “event coordinators” would be the Furths…We have both “been there, done that”…no thanks!…

Funny isn’t it…no mention in the minutes of the “details” of $300,000+ paid out for the pre-payment penalties the Town Manager “chose” to attach to the promissory notes…No “details” about the illegal act the Vice Mayor admitted to (version #1) on the dais in deleting all emails….BUT…slanted “details” to disparage the Mayor and Commissioner Dodd over a Halloween event… that was in there!…Hmmmm……….

So, Dear Readers…my role in this election …is the same as it has been since January 2008…To post all those “details”…And though at times they may be long and rather intense……In this writer’s opinion they are sorely needed to fill in all those blanks… and make sure that I have done all I can to right the wrong I helped to create in this town with the Mc-Furth-Colon win in January 2008….( I was not privy to their “agenda”)….I will continue to expose what will be behind their 2010 campaign ruse…and not allow these perpetrators to win again by leaving out the details!……

more to come…..

Post Division