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Here’s The Scoop … $93,000 Found? … That is The Question …. Or Was It … Much Ado About Nothing ….

August 31, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers… The comments made last Wednesday by Commissioner Vincent regarding his concerns about the budget and stating  “There was a $93,000 overage” found in special events in 2009 were quite something and perked up the ears of many listening …including this writer… Especially this writer…due in part to the many times I have posted and looked at the special events budget over the last few years when comparing various events ….especially 4th of July.. after claims of a huge savings were being shouted out from those in pre- 2010 electioneering mode and now out of the picture in 2009 as well as looking at the justification sheets to see where monies were being steered to different departments only to end up in the unencumbered funds portion of the budget for the administration to use in any way it sees fit for the last 3 months of the governmental year, as we observed in those prior years …  I am told that others in the know, whether they themselves have looked into the same backup or participated over the years in the planning and execution of the Town’s special events were  baffled by Comm. Vincent’s assertions ….stating due to the known allotted amounts for each special event specifically being discussed in years 2008 and 2009  during  the budget process …(prev. posts/Town website archives)…. it could not be so ……there was a $93,000 overage that went unnoticed …. In my previous post on the meeting, I stated I made a request to the Town to check it out… and below are the requests made and the responses from town.. …Thus, the reference to the above plays from Shakespeare came to this writer as a result of those findings…


Commissioner Vincent verbatim – Commissioner Comments Aug. 25, 2010…

“In regards to the budget, I’d like Ms. Hoffmann to correct me if I don’t have this right, but ah, during my budget review with the staff last month one of the items of question of concern was a large amount of dollars that were budgeted for special events for the two previous years of 08,09. Roughly $125,000 one year and $140,000 in in 09. It raised my concern due to the fact that we budgeted less than half of that for the current year and next year year roughly $64,000. Although I’m happy with the lesser amount budgeted I still wanted to know why that huge difference. So I asked Ms. Hoffmann to investigate and explain the disparity to the years budgeted in the previous. What was found was the amended budget for 08 and 9 was $141,000 when it was actually $47,000. There was a $93,000 overage in that General Account, I believe, and could not be explained earlier when the budget review process started and that’s when we found it. This is just an example of one of the many things that the Commission and staff is dealing with and I would like to personally thank Ms. Hoffmann and Mr. Bentley for their continuing hard work and dedication in working with this Commission.”


My request below…

Hello, could you provide me with further explanation on Comm. Vincent’s comments made at the Aug. 25th Comm. mtg. concerning the “$93,000 overage” found in the “General Account” concerning the 2008 & 2009 “special events”..


The Town’s  response….

“He was talking about the special events account in the Recreation Department budget. If you look at the budget worksheet, it indicates that the actual expenditures in FY 2008/2009 were $141,173. Comm. Vincent asked me how the Town could have spent that much money on special events the year before, yet I was only asking for $64,000 next year. In researching the answer to his question, I found out that the $141,173 was the budgeted amount for that account, not the actual expense. The former Finance Director had apparently mislabeled the column when she prepared the worksheets. The actual expenses were only $47,450, a difference of $93,723 from the $141,173, so I believe that is what Comm. Vincent was referring to.”


This writer responded back to the Town the following…

“Ok, because I recall the special events were higher prior to 2008 due to the July 4th event which included lots of extras such as advertising a professional marketer and before that a barge as well as Zamboli w/ much more monies put in the fireworks
In 2008 Dodd/ Clottey did the 4th and it was cut down w/out those and then even moreso in 2009 and the beach fireworks
I will look and update thanks very much.”


The Town responded….

“Yes, the Town did spend $125,362 on special events in FY 2007/2008. That column had the correct header.”


My response….

“So, it was just an error in location not a found 93 thou as it appears he was indicating? I will re-watch his comments as well to refresh my take on his conclusion. thanks”


The Town Manager “did not think he was suggesting it was found money, just clarifying that there were sufficient funds to put on the Town’s traditional events.”


Upon watching the video once again, I must respectfully disagree …It appears to this writer that if you were not privy to what Comm. Vincent was talking about prior to his statements as the TM and staff were, it still sounds like a $93,000 overage was found in special events …… not that a header was wrong and that the bottom line was the $93,000 in that account which was the entire recreational account were correct…

In this writer’s opinion…this mistake found by Comm. Vincent ,while admirable and showing he was doing his homework on reading the budget (with the exception of looking for the correct distribution in the justification sheets )… should not have been used in his Comm. comments….. because the bottom line concerning the “$93,000 overage” in the Recreational Account was really just “much ado about nothing”… this time by the former Finance Director…OOPS!….

link to Comm. Comments 8/25/10 Town website …

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … August 25, 2010 Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Regular Commission Meeting Round-Up …

August 29, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers…The new Commission and this new administration whipped right through jam-packed agenda in record time …in one hour and fifty-nine seconds…This agenda that included once again a myriad of minutes to approve (7) and inordinate number of new or amended Ordinances …both first (2) and second readings (4) …as well as Resolutions (3)…along with approval of some uber-important choices that impact the Town going forth…(the Annual Audit Services vendor and Town Manager along with direction on renegotiating with the Town Atty. and the VFD)….Some on the dais that had been undoubtedly unprepared in the previous few months appeared to have gotten the hint that although this writer may still disagree on the subject matter… and will state that fact…criticism will be on the topic not on the lack of being prepared …Same goes for the staff’s /contractors presentations… That being said this meeting and the previous meeting at 5 pm (prev. post) prove the Commission is ready in October to make the anticipated change to Adventura style model presented to them when they first came together by Town Atty. Richard Weiss…One Commission meeting and One Roundtable meeting each month…This writer’s preference Commission Meeting the 2nd Tues. of the month followed by the Roundtable the 4th Tues. of the month…

The meeting began a few minutes late due to the previous Budget Workshop running long …After the pledge there was a moment of reflection due to the Town Chaplain not being in attendance…With no presentations…up first was Public Comments….At first the mayor thought there were none… but there were although limited in number…

MPSC Co-Chair Edmund Malkoon came to the podium as “resident” and commended both the Commission and Town Manager stating he purposely left off the interim from her title (she had not yet been voted on) for the Budget Workshop meeting and trying to retain the 3.999 but stated if they could not get there the 4.09 was really commendable when other communities are really increasing theirs…He again addressed the desire of having the Town purchase the Demko House due to it being a historic structure…

BC- Ms. Demko came before the Commission a few years back offering the same… It was a approx. a million …It fell on deaf ears and should do the same now as the Commission was just told they were looking for $153,000+ to keep the millage down and we are faced with major infrastructure issues …Ms. Demko and her family should donate the house if they want it to stay protected…. in this writer’s opinion, otherwise take a pass…

Joyce Murray came to speak about the St Vincent DePaul “Walk A Mile In My Shoes” for the poor and needy on Sept. 25, 2010 from 7-10 am … …..She stated the Community Church Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Community Church located on 4433 Bougainvilla Drive also had a Disability Awareness Fair from 9-noon the same day and recommended attending both events… Interested participants can call 954-943-9717 …

Diane Boutin came to speak about the previous budget meeting stating it was excellent and addressed as she has in the past the role the businesses and the residents play in big picture…

The Public Safety Reports were done as this was the sole meeting for August …

BSO was passed 5-0 with no discussion..

VFD was the first time up to the podium for newly elected Fire Chief Steve Paine (prev. posts) …The Mayor welcomed him and stated she knew he had been with the Town for a while and congratulated him on his new position …Vice Mayor Dodd  also gave his congratulations …and stated “Let me repeat myself publicly that I am 100% committed to having the most professional Volunteer Department serving the needs of the town. I have been patient with my requests for responsible cut backs which I’m happy to learn are no longer falling on deaf ears and I would like to thank the whole volunteer fire department for their dedication.” He added a question about the medical calls being marked cancelled and asked if that meant the VFD is still paying the staff but not adding the wear and tear on the vehicles?…Chief Paine answered that was correct…The VM also found a computer glitch with the times on pages 9-14 and Chief Paine will correct it…

Chief Paine went on to inform the VM and the Commission of some changed being made.. He said on Monday (8/29/10) there would be a conference call with Broward County to have the call cards adjusted and the software had been ordered to change the pagers…There is a station pager that will be reprogrammed and his pager, the Dep. Chief’s, one Batallion Chief and the Chief on-duty will be reprogrammed as well so that medical calls will come to them only…Then it will be up to the Chief on-duty’s decision to decide if the medical call needs to have VFD …as they will no longer go on those sick calls where as person was ill for 3 days since it is obvious the med unit (AMR) can take care of it…unless AMR needed assistance for an unusually large patient (as was done in the past …with a less than steller performance on the details from the dais from former Dep. Chief McIntee …prev. post)….. He went on to state a letter would go to AMR stating the VFD  would be automatically involved for certain criteria such as heart attack, strokes, drownings, respiratory failure and any child..He said it would be a trial and error with the software done after ordering overnight it should be up in the next month…He was congratulated by the VM…The report was passed 5-0

BC- This writer has heard a few additional questions that need answering…by the new Fire Chief… We heard the VFD went into Sea Ranch Plaza a few weeks back and did a drill without their consent, using their water and making the Mayor and SR Police furious…If true…How come?…. Second on the new medical calls… As the VM stated in the past the decision on VFD going on medical calls should fall under AMR to decide…Perhaps there was a disconnect in the exchange above or it was not stated correctly …but Chief Paine’s criteria takes much of what is still unnecessary med calls for VFD still in play… We also hear that a few nights ago only 5 VFD members showed up for a call and there was no backup truck that would have been available due to the no-shows…Again, if true what’s up within the department?… Are there some behind the scenes pre-negotiating for perks coming from the new Chief?… We hear he may be asking for a personal vehicle and other “leaders” want to follow suit… If this one is true…WOW!… Is this why Comm. Clottey (via Marc Furth?) declared the new lower $700,000 cost if the contract is renegotiated too high still without apparatus inclusion?…Hmmmm….

One person in the know suggests the following… Note to the new Administration…You may want to get the VFD consultant to take a look-see…. The site … … has the department listed as LAUDERDALE-BY-THE-SEA VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENT, INC. ….The department until annexation we are told was the Town’s fire department which changed with the contracting in of BSO to becoming a contractor as well …The question now is…Should the Town once again take back the VFD and forgo it as a contracted vendor?… It would lead to the oversight needed to get this VFD in order under the Town’s direction…with a yearly budget and a say in how the leadership is decided as well as where the taxpayers money is spent beyond the apparatus now headed into a Town controlled account… It might bring back the VFD of old where calls were voluntary and not income boosters …It might also further address the Pension issue…that got a little better with the following info passed along by the new Acting Finance Director and Town Manager Hoffmann (see below) by finding out why for so few members we pay $10,000 for an actuarial analysis for any year… This writer recommends the consultant and the Administration seek out and confer with the many old-timers (VFD) who are still in town and most critical of the current 2008 resurrected VFD ….
From: Finance Director
Sent: Monday, August 23, 2010 10:03 AM
To: Connie Hoffmann
Subject: VFD Board of Trustees Meeting – Thursday, August 19, 2010

Connie – I just wanted to give you a brief update re: I attended the above meeting last week. Three of the five members were present. The two not in attendance were the VFD representatives. The town’s request to have the actuarial report done ever two years was approved and the actuary from Gabriel Roeder Smith was there to support our request. Also, apparently this was the first time a representative from the town attended one of the board meetings.

FYI on another VFD topic. We received the payment from the state for the retirement plan in the amount of $73,507.15 and I notified Miguel and he picked it up this morning.

Doug Haag
Acting Finance Director
Town of Lauderdale-By-The-Sea

From: Connie Hoffmann
Sent: Fri 8/27/2010 7:23 PM
To: Birute Ann Clottey; Chris Vincent; Roseann Minnet; Scot Sasser; Stuart Dodd
Subject: FW: VFD Board of Trustees Meeting – Thursday, August 19, 2010
Wanted to let you know that Acting Finance Director Doug Haag found out that the Fire Pension Plan does not have to have an actuarial analysis done every year, we can go to every other year. The pension plan is a small one, yet the actuarial analysis was costing the Town $10,000 each year (paid by Fire Assessment Fees). So, as you can see from the email below, he asked the Pension Board to consider going to an every other year schedule and they approved it. So we’ll save $10k next year, then will have to budget for it again in the following fiscal year. Connie

AMR was represented by a member and Comm. Clottey stated she went to the FLOCities conference and was informed that EMS is used as a substitute for primary physicians …The AMR medic responded he did not understand her question (welcome to the club) …Clottey went on to describe the use of Emergency Rooms for regular medical care and she wanted to know if EMS was used in the same capacity…The AMR medic stated no ..that was not the case …with the exception of tourists …(of course)… The report then was passed 5-0….

The 7 sets of minutes from June 23, 2010-July 28, 2010 were approved in two votes…5 passed 5-0  after VM Dodd pulled a. & f. and instructed the Town Clerk of the changes including this funny…The VM informed June White that on page 12 of the June 23, 2010 minutes she had the word moral and it’s actually morale …”It’s not talking about the morals of the Town, it’s talking about the morale!”… Afterward those minutes were also passed 5-0…

The Consent Agenda was also passed with two votes… The Mayor pulled items a. & d. …leaving b. (budget amendment for projected unemployment costs FY 2009-10 $16,517) and c. (Budget amendment for Esther Colon payout- $74,611) both put on by Acting Finance Director Haag passed with no discussion 5-0… The Mayor wanted to make it clear she did not approve  the Audit Company (Grau &Assoc.) chosen for one-year at the prior meeting…(prev. post)….Comm. Sasser had recused himself at the prior meeting and did so again…When they voted Town Clerk White could not count and stated it was 4-1 Mayor Minnet voted no…She needed to be corrected due to Comm. Sasser’s recusal…Ms. White still could not process the vote for a moment …ARGHHH…….Item d. was pulled by Mayor Minnet to address for the public it was discussed prior and the laptops being replaced would be going to the Community Center…and it was necessary to upgrade the Commission’s laptops to work with the new system…The Town Manager stated it was not only the laptops for the amount being asked for…The Mayor stated she was not sure she would have approved this expenditure until she learned they would not work with the new system…Vice Mayor Dodd stated he wanted to make two comments …First that it is very refreshing to see the agenda forms being used correctly with the  financial impact filled out for the very first time and secondly he thought it was great to use for the town’s pre-owned lap tops and he was sure the Community center will be able to make good use of them…. These items passed 5-0..

On to the Ordinances …Development Director Jeff Bowman was at the podium ( a surprise after hearing he was at a FEMA conference all week) …He spoke after the item was read by the Mayor and the TAtty… Ord. 2010-11 (1st reading) went in front of the P & Z  Jan. 26,2010 and June 16, 2010 …was tabled until the July meeting and was approved (prev. posts) … He stated it made the mortgagee responsible for “abandoned real property” and staff concurs… There was no public comment and no Comm. discussion..It passed 5-0… Ord. 2010-13 (1st reading) was to change the code to allow one Comm.Mtg/one Roundtable Mtg. by amending the prior ord. for 2 each month…The TAtty. added also the clause to allow for not holding a meeting as was done in August …Public comment was made by Diane Boutin who commended them and supported the new technology …No Comm. discussion …passes 5-0…

Ordinances 2nd readings… Ord. 2010-03 was to allow the Town Manager to update the departments…The TAtty. stated the history and the versions that were considered by the prior administration and the current one …excess wording was removed and the Commission will approve any changes that impact the budget…Also the Town Clerk will assist in election matters per Comm. Sasser’s request (Ms. White dropped the ball at the last election in any substantive assistance to candidates …(and the one before that in this writer’s opinion)…as well as being found the “culprit” ie the responsible ( or irresponsible) person for UOT not being properly registered with the state. as a PAC .(prev. posts) … after former VM Mcintee’s wife, Maureen while serving as Vice- Chair of the CIC filed a complaint against the opposing organization)…There was no public comment and no Comm. discussion…passed 5-0…Ord. 2010-10 was the amended Choice Environmental changes made after some successful negotiations on mixed-use and suspension of service made with the “players” Choice…Int. Asst. TM Bud Bentley…TAtty. Trevarthen and liaison Comm. Scot Sasser …Asst. TM Bentley did want one minor change made to remove the word “single” which would make it less restrictive and asked for Sept. 13th date to give Choice time to get ready for the changes…The Mayor thanked staff and Comm. Sasser for getting this done…There was no public comment…Good thing the Mayor thanked Comm. Sasser…because he was unable to make the motion or the 2nd…which should have been the case…OOPS!… passed 5-0….Ord. 2010-12 was the fire hydrants…Again Bowman read the backup only and stated staff recommends this…There was no public comment…One snafu came as Comm. Sasser asked about the header including automated sprinkler systems and why…The Int. TM stated it the sprinkler system was not included and the header was not in it and they needed to find out why… Comm. Sasser began to make a motion without the sprinkler system in the header …Ms. Hoffmann stated she was wrong it was included in line 30…and Mr. Bowman stated it was for above ground sprinkler heads …Due to the confusion it was deferred to Sept. 14th…

BC- another question…we hear the fire code already has this in place and a Reader wonders why it will be done on top of that?…

Ord. 2009-35 was the pools and fencing of them…it began in 2009 went to 2nd reading ..but had to go back after coming in front of the both prior and present Commissions and P &Z boards due to the lack of information from Mr. Bowman or the prior administration that the P & Z did not want the pools in the front yards of any properties but corner lots…thus version 2 was the P & Z’s approved version and the one now being recommended by staff and up for 2nd reading…(all were prev. posted)…There was no public comment or Comm. comment and it passed 5-0…

Resolutions…2010-20 was the Comprehensive Plan Amendments …It was again explained by the TAtty. (see prev. P & Z  board cat. June/July meetings)…Public comment was made by Diane Boutin who asked if it was something cities regularly went through with no impact on construction…purely administrative…The TAtty. explained in more depth the procedure …but added it would impact those in process …as well as future construction… No Comm. discussion passed 5-0…Resolution 2010-22 was the retirement benefits for the Int. TM due to State Statute …The TAtty explained the necessity and Ms. Hoffmann again stated they looked into not taking it…Acting Finance Director Haag concurred it was required …The Mayor asked if it could be negotiated and he stated not for the Town Manager position was a legislative act…No discussion 5-0 …Resolution 2010-24 was the fire fees for less than 800 sq. ft.   …This was brought to the dais some time back from then-Comm. Dodd …and now there will be some relief from $144 to $75 for inspections…No public comment..No Comm. comment…passed 5-0….

Commissioner Comments…

Commissioner Clottey thanked the Town for the FLOCities conference she attended but stated she would not speak of that this evening and would use her time for the Artificial Reef Project…She read off a list of names of those who came forward to donate to Global Coral Reef Alliance  the vendor …(501(c)(3) non-profit organization)…(prev. post-Pompano Pelican article)…. Included in the names were former CIC Chair Bob Roberts for $6,000 in memory of his wife as well as Aruba, Ocean Reverie…Comm. Clottey and  the Int. Town Manager…($100 )…She said they donated to the vendor and would receive a tax deduction…

BC- Although Clottey stated she could not take the money herself…she did spearhead these donations and was asking people to contact her…While it may not be an ethics violation it is on its face disconcerting for her to be in this position after voting on this project and being in the position of voting on any re-negotiated contract due to the vendor presently being in breach of the current contract with the Town…Also it seems wrong for her to enlist and aid in the vendor going forth after three fellow dais members asked the Town to go back and renegotiate the contract as well as the Int.Town Manager /TAtty. questioning the permits…the Town’s liability for the project and the costs in the next 5 years for this research project…not to mention VM Dodd’s position that the vendor go ahead with the 1st buoy before building any others…as they now have stated they have done!…

The Mayor also stated she enjoyed the FLOCities conference and thanked staff and Buster Celestino for the newly installed Bocce Ball court (prev. post0..She spoke of the Trim Notices received and again stated it was advisable for taxpayers to see what other entities make up the costs…She recommended they contact those entities…She answered comments made earlier about the businesses vs. residents and the Chamber and stated information was required before committing taxpayer monies…

Commissioner Sasser … “Well, I agree with the Town Manager comments on her report that state it has been a very busy August. I am very grateful that we agreed to have this meeting rather than bypassing all the meetings this month. Updates, Halloween, we have made great strides with some great volunteers. I want to thank all of you who have worked thus far and thank you in advance for your efforts in the future. I want to give a quick shout out to Marie, Wayne, Ken, Bill and of course my wife Teresa who have worked very hard at creating from scratch the decorations for this years’ event. It is a daunting task when you start with nothing and I thank you very much. Choice, it has taken a while and August has been full of people vacationing but we finally have the data we need to make some determinations and propose solutions. I should have something for you by our next meeting, hopefully to accompany the Ordinance solution voted on tonight. Chamber of Commerce contract and funding request. After a couple of false starts we are moving forward with their vision and I have proposed their request to the Commissioners and staff tonight during our Workshop. Finally, We, as your Commission and Staff, seem to keep running across issues that have been long forgotten, ignored or plainly mismanaged. While we cannot sweep the past under the rug I, for one, want to personally assure you that my intentions are to get to the bottom of the issues while remaining fixed on moving forward. I will be searching for answers to these issues that are truthful, transparent, ethical and legal. You elected me to make the tough decisions that were the best for the town. Many of you told me often during my campaign, just be fair ,That is what I intend to do. While seeking our future we must sometimes be confronted with the past. I endeavor to confront the past and quickly move to solutions that get us on track for our future. I ask that you support the activity filled future of this sitting Commission and assist us with the same forward progression that I eagerly want to pursue. We have a wonderful town that we all want to preserve. In order to do this we must accept and agree on our plan, infrastructure, drainage, funding and, if we are honest with ourselves, change. Yes, sometimes change is needed to maintain and preserve that which we hold dear. All of this in a tough revenue season will bring about tough decisions. The Town Manager has proposed several public workshops to assist us in making some of these tough decisions. I urge you to participate. I urge you to keep an open mind to what is needed. I urge you to voice strongly your opinion. Finally, I urge you to, in the end, help move us forward in unity.”

Commissioner Vincent stated he too attended the FLOC conference, his first …that it was rewarding and interesting  and what it focused on …with the open roundtables…and discussion on revenue shortfalls and public comments… He spoke of finding in a budget meeting last month with staff a big mess-up with special events in the previous 2 years o8-09 of $125,000 & $140,000 …He stated it raised his concern due to it being half in the current year and next year being budgeted for $64,000 …While he was happy the cost was significantly less he wanted to know why…He asked Ms. Hoffmann to investigate the amended budgets and explain …He stated it was not $141,000 but was actually $47,000 and that there was a $93,000 overage in that General Account…He believed it could not be explained earlier when the budget review process started and that’s when they found it… He added this was just another one of the many things this Commission and staff is dealing with and thanked Hoffmann and Bentley …He also made a personal note of thanking all that volunteer and then made mention of BTSFuture Editor Mark Brown’s recent award from the International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors …(see BTSFuture July edition)… ….

BC- I have sent a PRR for the information on Comm. Vincent’s comments concerning the special events in 08 & 09 due to no backup included and no further explanation from the dais at the meeting…

Vice Mayor Dodd stated “I attended the Florida League of cities this past week and found it a very informative series of lectures. All sorts of topics were available but the most comforting feeling came from the realization we are not alone sitting up here. All 410 cities that make up the league are facing similar budget problems, how to cut costs without cutting essential services. I am waiting for a reply from the league on another statewide issue,  how can municipalities bring pressure to bear on the FPL monopoly to start charging a realistic price per pole for LED lighting. FPL would like to be considered Green with Biomass power stations and solar arrays when it suits them. LED street lighting is so much more efficient yet there is not a separate price per pole or any incentive for a municipality to install a cost effective lighting fixture with a true payback under five years. The second topic I brought back from the league of cities is recycling.  I have taken steps to obtain a copy of an Ordinance from Madeira beach where they have just introduced a recycling ordinance to allow them to let me euphemistically call it “encourage people” to get with the program. Governor Christ signed into law that the state has to achieve 75% recycling by 2020. The first step is 40 % by 2012. Currently Broward recycles 25%, Palm Beach 33%. We get a rebate from the recycling plant based on our tonnage. We need to start now and stop through money out with the trash. I will bring this back at the next round table for further discussion.
Hillsboro Inlet took over their two new work boats which have finally arrived. They will be put into service immediately.
Apologies to staff for the extra workload of an August meeting but I personally think we should aggressively work towards one Commission meeting and one round table per month and possibly consider only one December meeting if the workload will allow us the time off.”

Old Business was to be on the qualifications for a search firm to be enlisted to help with the search and the choice of a new Town Manager…It was not needed as the Commission made their choice as previously posted to retain and negotiate an agreement with Int. TM Connie Hoffmann …

New Business dealt first with the Town Commission approval of processing Proposed Regulatory Charges… Dev. Dir. Bowman came to the podium and stated it was 2010-16 Chapter 30 in the Code of Ord. … It included the changing of zoning for the Pet Groomers in the business district …accessory buildings and signs …All had been addressed prior at meetings…Comm. Clottey for unforeseen reason wanted it deferred until season and the return of residents…HUH?… She was ready to bend on the pet grooming portion (after Dir.Bowman stated the pet groomer would be stopped from opening his business)…but not the rest…until it was made clear once again by TAtty. Trevarthern the process of going to the P & Z on 9/15/10 and then to 1st & 2nd reading for public comment 3 times …. Comm. Clottey should know the process after 2+ years on the dais…She then withdrew her motion seeing no backing from the other Commissioners…Comm. Vincent asked if the pet groomer still wanted to come in and reiterated his stance on being diligent and expedient to move forward to help business… Comm. Sasser wanted to know if there “was a better way to build a mousetrap” when dealing with zoning items by making them more inclusive and wide ranging rather than having to add individual additions…TAtty. Trevarthen stated she had long asked for this and that is what is happening now…A motion was made to approve it….passing 5-0…Diane Boutin made the only public comment supporting it and stating we already had a dog groomer next to LaSpada’s… TAtty. Trevarthen stated it was a non-conforming business…

BC- Sorry but the Peter Principal still applies to our current Director of Development…in this writer’s opinion, as evidenced each time he is at the podium …I am hoping n the future for a Dir. who will be as qualified and fully able to apprise the Commission at the mike as we have had in the past…especially with an abundance of changes that will take place over the next year +….

Up next was LETF fund approval for an ATV and other equipment…Questions of LBTS-BSO Chief Llerena came from the Vice Mayor on what funds were available in the LETF and the Chief spoke of the $70,000 to come back from the questionable use last year by the former administration for the BSO’s new space in the public safety building leaving them with over $100,000 Comm. Vincent saw the justification and joked he wanted a ride after hearing the Inrt. TM state her nephew took a ride in a golf cart over July 4ht… Comm. Sasser asked about the security cameras …a line item and the company…Chief Llerena said they could add the cameras and he would go through the proper channels of BSO legal affairs first…It passed 5-0

BC- We have heard the security cameras at the entries of the Town are not as up to par as they could be…This writer suggests …replace them with the ones that can zone in on license plates…and use the old ones in the downtown area…

The next NB item was to schedule a September Roundtable…after some calendar juggling…it was decided Sept. 20th at 5 pm…so that VM Dodd could make his Hillsboro meeting at 7:30 pm…Meetings will be Sept. 13th Budget Mtg. millage/Fire assessment /Sept 14th Reg. Comm. Mtg./Sept 20th/Sept. 21st MPSC updates on A1A FDOT project with drawings/ Sept. 22 P & Z… codes etc…/Sept. 27th final Budget Mtg…Agendas will be posted as well as posts after each meeting …All are open to the public…on Comcast Ch. 78/ on Town website live-streamed and archived…

The final item of NB was to have a member of the Commission appointed as a liaison for renegotiating the current Town Law firm Weiss, Serota to be on retainer…They are currently on an hourly basis ….left over from there Special Meeting in 2008 (prev. post)… After discussion from the Mayor and Comm. Clottey on a retainer vs. hourly comparison …the Int. TM stated she would do some comparisons…TAtty. Trevarthen reminded them the firm used prior to them was on retainer for a portion of the work they did with additional charges as well…

The Town Manager report dealt primarily with the Artificial Reef Project …(prev. post) …The total disconnect in what was directed and desired by the majority on the Commission and what the vendor with the aid of Clottey and some donations went forward to do… There was quite a divide up there between the Mayor/Comm. Sasser and VM Dodd vs. Comm. Clottey and Comm. Vincent… It ended with a vote of 3-2 to send a letter and a new contract to the vendor, Global Coral Reef Alliance for being in breach and the need to address the contract as well as the viability of the first buoy ….A more in depth post will follow on the exchange and some additional info…Although most on the dais stated they did not need to see the contract and letter before it went out from the Town…we have been told Comm. Sasser “The Contract Guy” quickly informed the Town he definitely wants to see them…We have also heard VM Dodd has further looked into solar buoys and has requested from the Town a test of the buoy ASAP!….

One last piece of business was the approval of the Community Theater agreement.. With no discussion the vote was 4-1 …Mayor Minnet voted no…She did so due to covering the liability insurance to be done by the Town… as represented by the Int. Tm… The backup does not show that as the reason for the monies… From agreement in backup ….

“3.0 Services and Responsibilities of the Town
3.1 The Town agrees to provide funding for the term of this agreement in the
amount not to exceed ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS ($1000) annually to
assist in the funding of the performances payable in three 3 increments
THREE CENTS ($333.33). Each payment will be made after the
performance series for each play is completed.”

“5.0 Liability Insurance
5.1 CPAC shall not commence work under this Agreement until it has
obtained all insurance required by the Town and evidence of such insurance has been
provided to and approved by the TOWN All subcontractors of CPAC must also
provide evidence of insurance to the Town before providing any services. No
subcontractors may provide any services hereunder unless approved in advance by
5.2 Certificates of insurance reflecting evidence of the required insurance listed
below shall be filed with the TOWN prior to the commencement of services
hereunder .These certificates shall contain a provision that coverage afforded under
these policies will not be canceled until at least thirty 30 days prior written notice has
been given to the TOWN Policies shall be issued by companies authorized to do.”

BC- as much ass I am a proponent of the Community Theater…I agree with the Mayor, and cannot see how the TAtty. in the final recommendation will go along with the Town covering taxpayer’s monies for liability insurance…as it will lead to a precedent that could come back to bite us as Ms. Minnet stated at the 5 pm Budget Meeting (prev. post.)…

The Town Atty. had no report…Hmmm… seems she should have…updates would be nice on BJ Harris etc…

They were adjourned ….

Link to Town website backup ….

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Anglin’s Pier Went Hollywood Yesterday …

August 28, 2010 by Barbara

READY …SET ….ACTION …. August 27, 2010 LBTS Anglin’s Pier

Dear Readers…Lauderdale-By-The-Sea went all “Hollywood” yesterday when the A&E new series The Glades Came a calling…They pulled a permit and got down to business yesterday turning the Pier into the backdrop for the show!…

Maybe this will start a trend….permits for shooting movies and such in LBTS….Watch out Miami!….

Thanks to the Readers for their snapshots…We hear the BTSFuture was there and next month should provide us with some more shots we are sure….

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Lauderdale-By-The-Sea August 25, 2010 Budget Workshop … Money In … Money Out ….

August 27, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers … Wed. night the Commission came together for an August Budget Workshop to offer an opportunity for public comment and catch up after some delays imposed on the new administration due to changes within the Town with terminations and resignations …new hires and new disturbing “minefields” that met them at each juncture…

Up first was the return of the Community Theater which was tossed out in 2008 with a new majority on the dais…and a Town Manager that was only too happy to comply, or so it appeared in giving the theater group the heave-ho … After some false starts yet again over the funding ..would it be from the taxpayers and/or from the letter asking for donations which went out from this non-profit company before it came before the Commission?… Comm. Vincent did not do a steller job when championing it at that Roundtable and we the taxpayers were left to wonder what the dollar amount would be as he quoted in the neighborhood of $12,000 or more…The Int. TM said it was less… We hear some residents made phone calls to certain Commissioners after the exchange and stated no-way, no-how it should just be donations… This time the agreement which was included in the backup stated the cost to the Town will be approx. $1,000 to cover liability insurance which will be paid to the company after each of the 3 plays that are set …although the dates need to be double checked for any conflict in using Jarvis Hall…Mr. Ragusa came forward to answer question both the old re-hash of the theater groups demise…and new concerning accounting and the status of being up to date with the non-profit requirements from the state…Mr Ragusa answered he was up to date and could produce the paperwork and also he thought he had enough for each play although he did not know what each one would cost …Donations received were approx. $3,000 thus far …He is unable to pay for the liability ins. required and the Town would cover that with the $1,000 …The Vice Mayor stated he was really happy that with the change in the dais and the administration the residents and visitors may well get to experience local people engaging in local theater productions. He said he was sure Mr. Ragusa is aware of the heavy load placed on the use of this hall and that the town will do their best to ensure the theater group gets the necessary time to set up and rehearse….
Comm. Sasser asked about state statutes with the $1000 and non-profits …and the wanted to make sure we were covered …The TAtty. said she would review the agreement if they chose to go ahead…Ms. Hoffman stated she did not include that in the agreement because it was a small amount …Comm. Sasser responded the Town had problems in the past over $30…(Greenfest-prev. posts)…Comm. Sasser also addressed the accounting being done simply by using a spreadsheet ….Mr. Ragusa balked at that and said to do that last time meant hiring an accountant that charged him $2,000…He said he would turn his books over to the Town and they could do whatever they needed to… The Int. TM thought it would be easy to accommodate that… Comm. Clottey did make a comment stating it was 2 Commissions ago for the demise…not so…A look back shows that Commission tried for a years long agreement to stop any new Commission from pulling the plug …She also could not imagine the cost of an accountant being so high….The Mayor was concerned about the Town paying for liability insurance and that to do so would set a precedent and open the Town up to future similar requests … In the end the consensus was to move ahead to vote on at the 7 pm meeting…

Next up were the Sea Ranch Club sewer fees… and we understand a few SRC residents were in the hall… The Int. TM introduced her consultant, Ms Margoles  who provided the report (prev. post) and she came to the podium to answer any questions… Ms. Hoffmann added as she approached how complicated this whole issue is …that the more they find the more complicated it gets (prev posts) …Ms. Hoffman also stated the “struggled” with how to present it..and added the town has a fragmented sewer system …2 separate sewer rates …and spoke of the detailed report in the backup (link below)…This writer as previously posted, disagrees with Ms. Margoles on some of her facts and as VM Dodd stated from the podium, I too disagree with her to seek legal counsel to put SRC under the north’s agreement with Pompano Beach (higher rate …surcharge and availability per unit charges) which would most likely bring forth a litigation with the 4 SR annexed in condominiums in 1998…The Int. TM did bring forth before any discussion going to Pomp. Bch and getting a new townwide master sewer plan with them after more study ……Ms. Hoffman stated she had a “social lunch” with a Pompano Beach Administrator and did bring up the probability… She included that it is a given all sewer rates will need to be increase due to the south not paying passed on rate increases as well (prev. posts)…

VM Dodd stated …that the sewer situation is quite complex and he did not yet agree with the present staff recommendation of putting SRC with the north…. He went on to speak of the history …that in  1997 the four Sea Ranch buildings were annexed into town and they asked to pay the same rate as the residents at the south end of town. The main annexation for the north end in the year 2001 were covered by an agreement that they paid directly to Pompano Beach. He added that the south end of town enjoyed a large user agreement as a result of the 2007 agreement. The north end pays a higher rate because their infrastructure repairs and replacement is covered by Pompano whereas the south end enjoys a lower rate but no provision has been made to replace the pipes when they finally collapse. He stated that on top of this mess the residents of Sea Ranch and the annexation of the north has left both these groups of town residents out in the cold since neither was included in the master sewer plan agreement of 2007. His opinion was as we are to move forward the town has to re-evaluate and come up with a proposal to increase the sewer rate at the south End and include Sea Ranch so that money is put into a fund to cover the eventual replacement of the sewers. Additionally he directed the Town Manager to  enter negotiations with Pompano to bring everyone into the Master sewer plan since there is little point paying a 25% premium when the town has just spent 10 million putting in new sewers. He added to let the money remain in LBTS coffers rather than Pompano Beach. He would propose asking for further research to ensure Sea Ranch are not dumped into the agreement covering the north End and perhaps the manager can renegotiate a united town agreement that will take us forward for the next 20 years….Ms Margoles missed his point completely and reminded him of what he was well aware of …that the Town was paying for SRC when they paid Pompano Beach…UGH!…

Comm. Clottey stated it was worse than the VM said it was up north (the 2005 agreement) that made residents with new sewers pay PBeach an $800 hookup charge …She said that money went to new sewers in PBeach…She added that none of the present Commission had anything to do with that agreement (but her choice for a return to Hillsboro Inlet Commission, Oliver Parker to replace Dodd last year…sure did!)…She addressed through the chair the TAtty. and stated she personally did not think it was “fair” to assess SRC for the monies paid since 1998 but wanted to know if there was a legal responsibility for the Town to do just that…The TAtty. stated she had only made an innitial look into the situation…

Comm. Sasser stated there were a lot of questions and with the time constraints of this evening and the info still not known …the legalities and the agreements he thought the better way to handle this was to gather that information before asking the questions and he had plenty of questions as well…

Mayor Minnet agreed and asked him to get his questions to the Int. TM  …She said we need a better understanding before they can address it at a Commission meeting…

The Int. TM stated they “grappled” how far back to go and needed guidance from the dais…She added it won’t change anything…

The Mayor stated it was time to come together in an equitable way and move forward…

Comm. Sasser stated he wanted not to find blame but to find how those funds were allocated behind the scenes and the legalities involved with that…meaning in the former administrative actions not the SRC /SRLNorth /south customers… He stated it was in his opinion a “colossal mismanagement by this Town”…and wants everybody on the same agreement…

The VM agreed to go forward …and again stated his preference that any surcharge stayed in Town rather than going to Pompano Beach..

Comm. Clottey agreed to go forward and stated she had spoken to past Commissioners in Old Town (Parker/Furth?) who stated a bond was obtained for sewers there and assessed to the taxpayers…It was kept in place until approx. 2002 illegally and was taken off the books when challenged …This writer needs to check that claim out…She thought it was possible those were the funds used to pay for the difference……She asked the Int. TM to check that out …..This writer needs to check that claim out as well…

The Mayor said that would mean going back to the 1960’s!…Clottey said it stopped in 2002 …pre-annexation from 1998 with SRC and move forward was her direction to the Int. TM and make it equitable…

The Mayor added and asked the Int. TM and Ms. Margoles to concur that some information is simply not there…They concurred and Ms. Margoles held up a thick book of the report info thus far…She also thanked staff for their help…

Next was to be the FY2010-2011 budget…but Mayor Minnet asked that it be held to discuss the Chamber due to the funding being included in the budget and the decision of how much that will be needing to be decided…

The Chamber Board was in attendance after some back and forth meetings that took place formally and informally in the weeks prior along with the resignation from the board of Yann Brandt who was the Chamber liaison working with Comm. Sasser, the liaison for the Commission… The problem as this writer sees it from the information I have received is there are two distinct visions of the Chamber of Commerce/ Welcome Center ….One vision is the status quo…a small Chamber that operates with a full time administrator and a hand full of volunteers plus a full time employee for the Welcome Center and a part time employee …The lines between the Chamber and the Welcome Center become blurry at time and distinctly separate at times…and most of those times are when it comes to funds… for employees etc… The track that Mr. Brandt was on and was the same one seen by most of the Commission as well as past and present members and board members of the Chamber was to grow the Chamber to advertise more…increase membership …and hire a consultant to aid in the marketing over the long run…That “branding” being bandied about…last year by Comm. Clottey and others and this year by Comm. Vincent …It appears to this writer that the 27 year old Mr. Brandt brought back to the board what he said he would …and that may have caught some off guard with his accomplishment …The course proposed seemed overwhelming to some of those in charge and it sounds like they balked…Mr. Brandt who has limited time due to his career…his new appointment as P & Z Vice Chair …and of course becoming a new Dad resigned …In this writer’s opinion that was a huge loss for the Chamber…I can tell you first hand that in my experience with him, he has always delivered what he says he will…never exaggerates what that is …and not only has the ability to succeed …he has the contacts…the insight and resources to carry out any vision he is presented with…My concern with the “powers that be” inside the Chamber is the same as any other aging organization…the organizations and boards should not be afraid of new ideas …change and vision coming in with young people …They should be afraid only if no new blood comes in the doorto carry on …as they have one foot out of it!… The Chamber was concerned with too rapid of growth…overcrowding the small building…and the possibility of Ft. Lauderdale breathing down their necks if proposed changes were made…There is no way the growth was going to catapult them into any of these scenarios in year one… And a consultant could have prepared them for how to work with any such concerns…including a satellite office as suggested by a Reader (not former VM McIntee-prev. posts) to accommodate if need be…

The Chamber changed its need to separate the Welcome Center from the Chamber asking the Commission now to supply the added $20,000 for a full time Welcome Center employee …$10,000 would supply a part time employee …and no increase ($35,000 is an increase from the prior few years) would not supply either…But a break down shows the following…The front desk staff $12.00 per hour. $12.00 x 8 hours is $96.00/day or $35,040 annually for Veronica, (full time) and a former staff member’s replacement, (when they find one). Filling the part time position has become a problem for the Chamber. The Board of Directors believes they need to increase staffing to two full time people. This equates to 10 shifts per week instead of the current 7. ($96.00 per day x 10 shifts per week = $960 per week or $49,920 annually. They also feel the hourly rate might have to be increased if they want a higher quality individual who can take some of the work load off of Judy…The Chamber stated they as the Chamber would not be asking for anything…only for the Welcome Center which they have funded to cover any gaps of funding from the Town…Everything inside the Chamber remains the same and no consultant is needed or wanted…This writer has been told that a consultant should be hired by the Town directed by the Town for a business development plan that includes the Chambers input but not under the Chamber’s auspices …

As they came to the podium Comm. Sasser presented to the dais and the taxpayers what the Chamber ultimately was asking for the $55,000/$45,000/$35,000 scenarios described above …

Paul Novak the President of the Chamber stated Comm. Sasser had it correct from the last meeting they had (post Mr. Brandt) and spoke of the additional monies also adding to the ability to advertise as well (in the neighborhood of an additional $5,000 if a full time employee is hired)…This writer has been informed the Chambers advertising has dropped from pat years of $50,000…$20,000+ to approx. $2,000!…He too stated they needed to take much of the burden of of Judy ….

Diane Boutin from the Windjammer spoke not as a representative of the Chamber  of the importance of the Chamber and the dollars it and the Welcome Center bring in sales and real estate and stated the $55,000 was nothing in the scheme of an $11 million dollar Town budget …comparing the cost to 4th of July and other events…

Comm. Vincent thanked Comm. Sasser for his role and stated he couldn’t say it better than Ms. Boutin …adding hard economic times for Towns and again using his “branding” scenario …He summed up the status quo of $35,000 being  the equivalent of “going back square one” and $45,000 with a part time person not enough and a full time person with $55,000 the “catalyst” for moving forward…HUH?…

Comm. Clottey said the Mayor was correct at a past meeting stating we are the only ones supporting our Chamber (monetarily)…This writer is not so sure with that statement…Some others must be housed in Town owned buildings…etc…She stated the County should be more of a factor and bring down the Town’s contribution to the Welcome Center …She again brought up in town and out of town businesses…asking for the? time the percentage of members in the Chamber…she wants 50-50… Judy Swaggerty from the Chamber stated at the podium they ran the numbers a few weeks prior and it was 50-50 or 60/40 she was not sure…

Comm. Sasser asked for direction through the Mayor of what the Commission wanted..

Vice Mayor Dodd  stated he was disappointed that it appeared that  the chamber wants to maintain a status quo rather than move forward and become the marketing arm of the town. He said he  was prepared to authorize a payment of up to $55,000 if the chamber adopted a more aggressive marketing stance…but since they are happy with doing the same as last year then I believe in these times of financial restraint they too need to cut back …adding even the commission has chosen to forgo our raise so why shouldn’t the chamber if they only want to do what they did last year.. and add an employee  …he was having a problem with an increase…and wanted Broward County brought into the situation….He said he has always supported the chamber but am disappointed …and still did not have the realistic amounts ..

The Mayor asked the Int. TM for those actual fund amounts including the building …she understood they are two separate entities and was a proponent of both but spoke of the taxpayers funding it…wanting a plan presented…still…and of wanting to take it to the next level …asking for more information…and stating she was not ready to fund the $55,000…She thanked Comm. Sasser for this assistance …

Comm. Sasser spoke of the need for clarification he was hearing from some of the members of the dais on the financials again speaking of the new separation being asked for…just the Welcome Center…

Paul Novak clearly agitated said he did not know what they meant by a “higher level” and spoke of the problems stated above Ft. Lauderdale …the building size etc… He admonished the Mayor  and reminded her she had been in the position to know what happens in a Chamber from her time there on the board…(The Mayor was miffed at his hard hit)….He said Judy does the selling..and works hard…He enlisted resident and former Chamber board member Dick Clark to speak…stating he knows what’s what…

Dick Clark who we understand sat in on the first meeting with Mr. Brandt ..the Int. TM and Comm. Sasser was visibly uncomfortable and stated he should have watched from home …He said he was proud of the Chamber and gave some of his own professional history …he agreed with Comm. Vincent on the “branding” and the Chamber being a partner with the community …He states the visitor center is the only one on the beach and offered his time and help with a plan… It is our understanding he had many other ideas of how to move to that next level..but did not bring them to the podium this evening….

Comm. Vincent thanked Mr. Clark for volunteering his time  and asked Paul about the separation of the Chamber and Welcome Center adding it was valid to ask for the Town to reduce funds if Broward County funded some…Paul replied they cannot count on the County…

The Mayor was told by the Int. TM the cost budgeted was to be $18,000…but later corrected that to add the Town employees etc….so the total including them and the budgeted monies asked for would be approx. $86,000

Comm. Clottey asked why it was difficult to separate the two entities and costs…Judy answered it would be too time consuming to come up with the split of telephone…paper…staples and such…”a nightmare”… It seems to this writer if the funding goes through as separate funding to only the WC that will need to be the case for the next year’s audit…

The figures provided by the Int. TM made VM Dodd insist the County needs to be “kicking in” with funds…

Comm. Vincent did not understand his fellow dais members and broke it down …(as if they didn’t get it!)…adding it was to take the stress off of Judy…and if they closed down the Chamber the building would sit empty as it wouldn’t be rented for years…Quite a leap!…

The Mayor cut him off at the pass stating she wanted a business plan…still…and it was not too much to ask for…

Comm. Sasser said it was a conundrum and they clearly understood what the Chamber was asking for what they needed to decide was the number that would be given…

They agreed to decide after the millage and the budget presentation… (see below)…

The decision to keep the $55,000 or reduce it was again introduced and Comm. Sasser tied it all up with the commentary of the what the Chamber was asking for…and the desire for Broward County funds to lead to a deduction from the Town’s share…

The Mayor added now she was in favor of the $55,000 but done quarterly adding in the Broward deduction as a part of it if funds came in…

Comm. Vincent countered her requirement by stating this was an appropriation after asking if funding quarterly gave the Town to reserve the right not to fund it the reports were not done.. but he did agree with funding less if Broward funded…

Comm. Clottey said she was reserving her final decision until she sees a business plan and allocation …She added a personal statement that she did not want the Chamber to give public monies to a charity as a donation (as happened last Christmas)…

So it appeared the direction was to keep the line item for the Chamber …rather the Welcome Center? …at $55,000 until a business plan was received for a final decision next month… and the Town and/or the Chamber would enlist some funding for the full time employee from the County..

BC- after his win over Beverly Kennedy this week to run as the democratic candidate for another term Broward County Mayor Ken Keechl must know he needs to make something ongoing happen to try and fully fund the $55,000 as a separated out entity that sits inside the Town owned Chamber building….on an ongoing basis…After all Comm. Clottey stated he was interested in funding the Artificial Reef Project last month…Voters should call or e-mail him and other Broward County Commissioners to add their voice to the need for County funding…

On a personal note…it is the hope of this writer that the Town consider a business development plan that includes the next level of the Chamber of Commerce in whatever feasibility study we pursue as part of the strategic plan for the future of this Town and that Yann Brandt is a part of that committee…

Chamber/Welcome Center link …

As far as FY2010-2011 budget the Int. TM went over the backup provided …(link below)…She spoke of what they needed to do to retain the 3.999 millage the Commission wants kept in place… At the end of the discussions the Acting Finance Director, Doug Haag said we need to find another $153,330 dollars to get there …The Int. TM injected that figure stood only if the fire funds are legitimate as previously discussed (prev. post)….She covered the cuts in the cost of the auditor this next year …and having a portion for the fire department charged to the fire fund…The change in need for a Human Resources/Risk Management Manager (former HR Mgr. Kathy O’Brien’s position)…and that they were leaving $10,000 in for any consultant required …as well as the League of Cities cost of $2,000 for Risk management services …Town Topics was discussed and direction was given for 4 times a year…no more mailing…only at stores…Town buildings…Comm. Clottey stated she heard complaints about the last edition and the “glossy paper” being an extravagance..(Furths?)… Ms. Hoffmann said not so…and PIO D’Oliveira came to the podium as well to say no difference in the cost…Also direction came for Town e-alerts…(Include a Town Facebook as well) …Ms. Hoffmann spoke of the shift of funds from the Gen. Fund to the Fire fund …a new phone-I.T. system and new laptops for Commissioners to work with the new system…old ones would go to the Community Center…She touched on the agreeable interchanges with the VFD per President Ken Johnson and the cut in funding to $700,000 with the difference in an apparatus account…along with other contract changes such as percentage increases each year…all to be done after approval from the VFD members and re-negotiations…She spoke of the legalities in the funding of the beach patrol and EMS responses by VFD…She was incorrect in stating the VFD prevailed in instructing the Town it was allowable…That was done by Burton and Assoc. when inquired at last year’s fire assessment meeting… The gray area they touted was the VFD did not do medical procedures such as I.V.s …The beach patrol funds being in the Gen. Fund this year is confusing as Readers will remember the former TM being caught on this opened an account for paying that separately approx. 9 months after the fact at SunTrust ( and despite the fact that prev. VFD quarterly income/exp. reports (prev.VFD posts) showed the VFD was paying their members from fire assessment funds…On the donations from charities direction was given to have them show up and ask at the first meeting in Sept. as is customary…The Performing Arts was agreed to…and the TAtty. will proceed with what came up in the prior discussion…Comm Sasser had various questions on franchise fees and they were answered as a loss from people dealing in an ailing economy as well as legalities preventing any increase on the part of the Town…The improvements to the AC for the public safety building was accepted… The VFD was brought up once more… Rather funny that Comm. Clottey stated the cost was still too high without apparatus.(Hmmm…Furth-fed-led fallen out of favor w/ VFD?) …She directed a question of the contract being in place to the TAtty…. but the Mayor countered that for now both were at the table to possibly re-negotiate…On the subject of recreation the initial response was not to have a consultant (Ms. Margoles?) to help with the process behind the scenes as it was always done by volunteers… But 2010 Halloween Chair, Comm. Sasser disagreed and felt it would absolutely aid in the event’s volunteers to concentrate on the events… and was all for it..

BC- after the Greenfest fiasco…and the Furth’s packing up all the decorations for Easter and Halloween rather than donating them to the Town…Comm. Sasser is right on target… especially with Ms. Hoffmann’s ability to hire consultants and keep the budget in line as witnessed thus far…

The ending was as described above the dollars needed to keep the millage…and with 10 minutes left they began the Town Manager Application Workshop…and then decided after Comm. Clottey stated there was not enough time to discuss it…to move it to the meeting at 7 pm…(prev. post on the selection)…

The next Budget Meeting is on Sept. 14th…

Link to backup…

Link to meeting…

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Anglin Pier In LBTS Becomes The Backdrop For Filming “The Glades” Friday …

August 26, 2010 by Barbara


“From: Bud Bentley
Sent: Wed 8/25/2010 2:28 PM
To: Scot Sasser; Roseann Minnet; Connie Hoffmann; Stuart Dodd; Chris Vincent; Birute Ann Clottey; June White
Cc: Kim William; Joan Garrett; Fire Marshall; Sharina Gordon; Police Chief; Jeff Bowman; Don Prince; Colleen Tyrell; Daniel Chavez (FIRE);; Louis Marchelos (Pier); Peggy Mohler (Aruba Cafe); Judy Swaggerty (LBTS Chamber); [email protected]
Subject: Film shoot on Friday at the Pier – “The Glades”

The local production company for the TV show “The Glades” has pulled a film permit to shoot on Friday at the Pier. The permit covers the hours from 7 am to about 7 pm.

As you may remember they filmed at Aruba in June.

The BSO Liaison Officer assigned to the production company will coordinate with our police to ensure there are no logistic problems.”

Link to the series…

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Your Tax Dollars At Work ….

August 26, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers …Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Vice Mayor spoke at Commissioner Comments last night and gave his usual monthly update on the Hillsboro Inlet after attending the August meeting…”Hillsborough inlet took over their two new workboats which have finally arrived. They will be put into service immediately.”… At the July Commission meeting VM Dodd spoke of the purchase of new boats to move the dredger and other equipment…Photographed as they arrived to their destination on Monday Aug. 23, 2010…Your tax dollars at work…..

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Lauderdale-By-The- Sea Interim Town Manager Connie Hoffman Is #1 Pick For The Town Manager Position …

August 25, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers… the Town Commission after running late at the 5 pm Budget Meeting finally got around to the Town Manager applicants when the Commission was to discuss old business item 14a. addressing the qualifications for hiring a search firm to weed out the Commission’s choices of applicants… As expected there was no need for the item…(this writer thought it would be deleted at the start of the meeting if the TM was chosen at the prior workshop)… Ms. Hoffmann and Mr Bentley who also put in his resume’ in (prev. post) left the hall for the second time …as they did when they thought the discussion would follow after the budget portion of the workshop concluded and the Commission jumped right in…

Commissioner Sasser stated “in lieu of going through all of these”…he had spoken to the TAtty. and she said it was ok that a poll could take place of the dais members “for their top candidate” and if it was the clear who that was they could move on with the negotiations…

The Mayor wanted to hear from the others ….

Comm. Clottey stated there had been an outstanding number of candidates that fit the criteria of our Town charter and she concurred with Comm. Sasser that the Commission was very satisfied with the current Town Manager also agreeing if all agree to move forward…

Vice Mayor Dodd stated “I did my homework and reviewed all the applications and I have to say that there were many people out there that would I’m sure do an outstanding job of running our town. I mentioned when we appointed Ms. Hoffman to the post of Interim that I believed it was a win-win for the town since it provided that opportunity for both the commission and Ms. Hoffman to work together to solve some difficult problems. I have been thrilled to finally experience working with a true professional team. This town in my opinion is very lucky to have Ms. Hoffman and Bud Bentley working with this commission to move the town forward in the direction we need to go. The evidence is clear for all to see – 11 hour commission meetings down to two hours, public comments reduced from 30 people to a handful, round tables where we can have meaningful discussion. I believe this commission in conjunction with the town attorney should draw up a mutually acceptable contract that is fair to both the town and Ms. Hoffman. A salary that is commensurate with the responsibilities, comparable to other local municipalities along with a reasonable benefits and severance package. I would also like to thank all those who put in for the job and took the time and effort to come here today and that’s my position on this one.”…

Comm. Vincent said in jest “I trust Connie and Bud didn’t go to Town Hall and turn on the T.V.”… He said they had the pleasure of the best review by working with Ms. Hoffmann and Mr. Bentley …and they learned a lot during the time both were here .. and it was prudent to save the Town time and money…He said he read all the applications and that we probably have the best..

Mayor Minnet also concurred with her fellow Commissioners and stated there had been enough upheaval and the change started with this Commission and now the Town Manager…She too looked at all the applications…They had all done their due diligence and it was time to enter into negotiations…

Vice Mayor Dodd made a motion to negotiate …

The Mayor added the need for a liaison and offered herself to again serve in that capacity as she had done when Ms. Hoffmann became Interim TM…

VM Dodd amended his motion with the Mayor as liaison and Comm. Sasser seconded it…It passed 5-0

Comm. Sasser asked everyone to hold onto their top 3-5 choices just in case terms could not be met with Ms. Hoffmann …

But just when you thought she turned the corner on at least one item on the agenda……Comm. Clueless Clottey….did not disappoint those who expect her to crash and burn……She spoke to the Mayor and asked her in her duty as liaison to keep in mind the previous criticisms found in the last Town Manager’s contract…in her usual grating manner…

The Mayor quickly reiterated what she said so often on and off the dais throughout her reelection campaign…She would not do anything that would hold a future Commission hostage …

Comm. Vincent was completely disjointed as well in his delivery to the Town Manager once the Town Manager sat back down in trying to convey the residents have indicated at the podium and elsewhere the same sentiments as the Commission in their satisfaction with Ms. Hoffmann over the past months…

The Mayor added her thanks as well in addressing Ms. Hoffmann for the last 4 months and for making the decision to stay…She also concurred with the positive responses of residents and vendors who are very pleased with Ms. Hoffmann …giving Ms. Hoffmann all the credit and as she informed her formally they voted to accept her resume’…

Ms. Hoffmann asked to say a few words and stated as she had in her application introduction letter (prev. post) that the five Commissioners were what really made the difference …They were such a pleasure ….everything a Manager looks for in a city commission as a professional manager.” …

She made sure to point out Int. Asst. TM Bud Bentley stating he was invaluable and “saved her rear end” many times…with a giggle…adding that hopefully he will stay…

The Mayor quickly added they all hoped the “team” will stay…

Ms. Hoffmann spoke about discussing the position with her family as she was inclined not to stay…Her 13 year old nephew told her the day after 4th of July while spending the weekend in town with her and riding in the golf cart she was crazy not to take the job because the Town is so darn cute and he though riding around in a golf cart was cool!…

The negotiating will be done with Ms. Hoffmann…the Mayor and TAtty. Trevarthen who stated she will work with them and address the concerns of the Commission throughout the process…

BC- This Commission along Ms. Hoffmann and hopefully Mr. Bentley ….aka “The Team”  should be able to accomplish much together over the next year …especially after what they have already accomplished over the last 4 months …Kudos to all!…

It’s everything residents…business owners…taxpayers and this blogger looks for and asks for in government!….Transparency…….integrity …. and accountability …all the right ingredients to make a positive difference for the future of  our Town!….

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop …Energy Will Be Required Tonight ….Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Aug. 25, 2010 Reg. Commission Agenda …

August 25, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers…the “marathon” begins at 5 pm  with the Budget Workshop /Town Manager Workshop…Public comment allowed during the budget portion …(agenda & agenda items prev. posts)…A short intermission and it’s time for the only meeting in August thanks to VM Dodd… Good thing or the Sept. 14th meeting would have required a larger order of the energy boosters!… This writer has included below the agenda and the link to the backup on the Town website…No time once again to cover it all in depth ahead of time……. The monthly public safety reports will be updated if time allows later on if there are any major changes from the norm…The minutes are now being looked at more intensely by this new  Commissioners to double check their accuracy before becoming a record they pass as such…….Although mostly covered prior to this meeting let’s hope some discussion is done with the consent agenda items to make sure it is contained in the archived video and in the archived minutes so that a few years from now …this writer or whomever else decides to cover the Town can find the answers without finding big time contracts were passed in a “batch” without any comment…such as the recent Nov. 2007 Consent Agenda …no discussion passing of the Master Sewer Plan that did not include the annexed in areas of Town!…The Resolutions are self explanatory and include the Comp. Plan amendments discussed at the last P & Z  as well as adjusting Int. TM req. by statute retirement benefits and the direction from VM Dodd to address the smaller sq. footage for fire fees all have also been addressed prior…Under old business the search company for a Town Manager should be deleted at the start of the meeting if all goes well at the TM Workshop at 5 …And in new business ….the LETF funds to be used for another ATV should add to the successful use of the first one on our beaches etc…There is still a need for the Commission to decide on the prior use that was done improperly per VM Dodd’s Roundtable discussion item a few months back…It was to be decided at budget time…although it is listed for Sept. discussion per the TM 16a. project sheet in her report…whether to reimburse a portion back to the fund or not… Schedule Sept. Roundtable…should only need one…and there should have been a change at this meeting to make Oct. the month to start the new process for one Comm. Mtg/1 Rdtable each month after a req. code change…what happened to that one?… The last NB item seems out of place …”Public Hearing and Town Commission approval of processing Proposed Regulatory Changes”…from Dev Dir. Bowman who we understand is at a FEMA conference this week …as the explanation states…

EXPLANATION At the July 27, 2010 Commission meeting the Commission approved Resolution 2010-60 providing for
issuance of a Notice of Intent concerning pending amendments to Chapter 30 of the Code of Ordinances
to allow pet grooming in B1 and B1A/to provide Zoning relief procedures/Accessory Buildings and Structures/Chapter 30 Article VIII to provide severability provisions”…

Mayor Minnet has addressed the current TAtty. and the need for a contract needed to have them on retainer…She asks for a liaison …A report of a cost comparison should be done by the Finance Dir. to see which is the way to go…It’s likely the result will be renegotiate with Weiss, Serota FY 2010-2011 to be on retainer + for Bert j. and perhaps the sewer situation with SRC and/or Pompano Beach…(One problem if we go to court w/ PB…their TAtty. is our Spec. Magistrate, Gordon Linn…which is why this writer opposed the Colon recommendation in 2008!)…The Town Manager Report contained the prev. post concerning the disconnect between the Comm./Town and Dr. Goreau & his “associates”…which should also be addressed tonight by the TAtty….as well as new Acting Finance Dir. Haag  has passed his req. background checks etc…the former TM settlement being paid back to the Town by Colon 2 weeks back…as well as her deferred comp and Ret. benefits being processed for remittance per the settlement…In her projects list which she states was expanded as she said it would be at the last Comm. mtg. …is the inclusion…that the TAtty. budget ran over due to dismissals and the new atty. budget will be exceeded…Followups were done on new contracts per the Comm. direction on the recreation instructors in rev. sharing going forth…and updates on other directives…The TAtty. will hopefully address many items this evening before we adjourn until Sept. 14th…



WEDNESDAY, AUG. 25, 2010 AT 7 PM





3. INVOCATION – Reverend George Hunsaker





a. BSO Police Monthly Report – July 2010 (Chief Oscar Llerena)

b. VFD Fire Monthly Report – July 2010 (Chief Steve Paine)

c. AMR EMS Monthly Report – July 2010 (Chief Brooke Liddle)


a. June 23, 2010 Roundtable Meeting Minutes

b. July 14, 2010 Roundtable Meeting Minutes

c. July 27, 2010 Special Hearing (Budget) Meeting Minutes

d. July 27, 2010 Regular Commission Meeting Minutes

e. July 28, 2010 Special Meeting (Shade Session) Minutes

f. July 28, 2010 Workshop Meeting Minutes

g. July 28, 2010 Roundtable Meeting Minutes


a. Agreement with Grau & Associates for Annual Audit Services (Finance Director Doug Haag)

b. Budget amendment for projected unemployment costs for FY 2009-10 – $16,517 (Finance Director Doug Haag)

c. Budget amendment for Esther Colon payout – $74,611 (Finance Director Doug Haag)

d. Budget amendment for replacement computers and upgrades – $17,667 (Finance Director Doug Haag)


1. Ordinances 1st Reading



2. Ordinances 2nd Reading





11. RESOLUTION – “Public Comments”







a. Request for Qualifications for search firm for Town Manager (Town Attorney Susan Trevarthen)


a. Public Hearing and Town Commission approval of processing Proposed Regulatory Changes (Development Services Director Jeff Bowman)

b. Expenditure of $22,039.25 LETF funds for an ATV and other equipment (Chief Oscar Llerena)

c. Schedule for a Roundtable meeting in September (Town Clerk June White)

d. Appointment of a member of the Town Commission to negotiate a new contract with the Town Attorney (Mayor Roseann Minnet)




The meetings will be open to the public … public input/comment allowed except for the Town Manager portion of the workshop…Starts at 5 pm & 7 pm in Jarvis Hall …Will be shown on Comcast Ch, 78/ Town website live-streaming…and then archived…

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Judge Ken Gillespi Retained As Broward County Circuit Court Judge …. After He Trounces Former Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Mayor Oliver Parker … And Other Winners And Losers …

August 24, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers … Broward County voters have gotten it right!… They did not fall for the “experience” line thrown out by former Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Mayor Oliver Parker as he campaigned with annoying daily robo-calls…(this writer received 5!)….His story that he looked for the least experienced judge to run against as he touted his 32 years of practice vs his opponent’s 14!… (Youtube …prev. post)… didn’t pass the smell test from the beginning and his questioning the ethics of Judge Gillespi and his treasurer, Atty.Dave Bogenschutz….did nothing for him when all was said and done… He was trounced big time…and rightly so…in this writer’s opinion….


Circuit Judge Group 2
776 of 779 Precincts Reporting*
Candidate or Position Votes Vote %
Kenneth L. Gillespie 86445  70.74%
Oliver Parker 35763  29.26%



In other races….

Winners  & Losers…
County Commissioner District 4
100 of 100 Precincts Reporting*
Candidate or Position Votes Vote %
Ken Keechl (DEM) 5270 65.06%
Beverly B. Kennedy (DEM) 2830 34.94%
Circuit Judge Group 22
776 of 779 Precincts Reporting*
Candidate or Position Votes Vote %
Robert Bob” Nichols” 59206 49.6%
Carlos Rebollo 60166 50.4%
Circuit Judge Group 6
776 of 779 Precincts Reporting*
Candidate or Position Votes Vote %
Frieda M. Goldstein 52130 42.3%
Carlos A. Rodriguez 71115 57.7%
County Court Judge Group 4
776 of 779 Precincts Reporting*
Candidate or Position Votes Vote %
Lloyd Harris Golburgh 33600 29.76%
Edward H. Merrigan, Jr. 79303 70.24%
State House – District 91 – GOP Primary
August 25, 2010 – 12:17AM ET
Florida – 79 of 81 Precincts Reporting – 98%
Name Party Votes Vote %
Moraitis , George GOP 4,907 48%
Maymon , David GOP 4,661 46%
Postelnik , Yomin GOP 567 6%
State Senate – District 25 – GOP Primary
August 25, 2010 – 12:17AM ET
Florida – 235 of 286 Precincts Reporting – 82%
Name Party Votes Vote %
Bogdanoff , Ellyn GOP 14,223 58%
Domino , Carl GOP 10,288 42%
U.S. House – District 22 – Dem Primary
August 25, 2010 – 12:14AM ET
Florida – 359 of 423 Precincts Reporting – 85%
Name Party Votes Vote %
Klein , Ron (i) Dem 21,116 84%
Renneisen , Paul Dem 3,893 16%


U.S. House – District 22 – GOP Primary
August 25, 2010 – 12:14AM ET
Florida – 359 of 423 Precincts Reporting – 85%
Name Party Votes Vote %
West , Allen GOP 26,105 76%
Brady , David GOP 8,053 24%
Other winners… Rick Scott / Alex Sink /Rep. Ron Klein…….
more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … What’s Inside The “Pie” … Lauderdale-By-The-Sea August 25, 2010 Budget & Town Manager Workshop Agenda …

August 24, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers …Tomorrow night at 5 pm will be the Budget Workshop …The previous post covered the sewers…and this post will address the other items ….

Town Commission Meeting Room
4505 Ocean Drive
Wednesday August 25 2010
a Town Budget
i Community Theater (Interim Town Manager Connie Hoffmann)

Town Backup-

“EXPLANATION :The Community Theater group has reduced their planned performance schedule to three plays to be put
on at Jarvis Hall and as a result has reduced their request for funding from the Town. The Commission had requested that
staff meet with the theater group director and iron out an agreement that would define the responsibilities of the Town and the
Theater group A draft agreement is attached.
RECOMMENDATION: Commission to provide direction on acceptability of the schedule and the Town’s contribution to
the program.

Excerpts from draft agreement …

“CPAC shall provide 3 shows and 12 performances including a matinee on
Saturday The shows and dates are identified as follows
Murder at Howard Johnsons November 18-20 2010
Saint or Sinner February 3-5 2011
Horowitz and Mrs Washington April 5-9 2011”

The Town will provide the following…

“3.0 Services and Responsibilities of the Town
3.1 The Town agrees to provide funding for the term of this agreement in the
amount not to exceed ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS ($1,000) annually to
assist in the funding of the performances payable in three 3 increments
THREE CENTS ($333.33) Each payment will be made after the
performance series for each play is completed
3.2 Generally
3.2.1 The Town agrees to advertise in Town Topics and Channel 78
3.2.2 The Town agrees to provide storage space at the Town municipal site
of an amount not to exceed 100 square feet from November 1, 2010
to April 30, 2011
3.2.3 The Town agrees to provide Jarvis Hall at no charge and will provide
chairs for the performances
3.2.4 Town will provide year round storage for the set offsite during the
off season or until October 31, 2011
4.0 Term and Termination
4.1 The Term of the Agreement shall be one season starting November 1, 2010 and
ending October 31, 2011
4.2 The Agreement may be terminated for either party for convenience upon written
notice to the other party Upon receipt of such notice the Agreement shall be

They will also be required to have liability insurance prior /and the Town will be released of any and all liability in connection with the company/ and the rest of what is normally in contracts with independent contractors …

BC- The biggest change will be that this go-round the cost is minimal as compared to the past budget of the Company and what was represented by Comm. Vincent at the Roundtable… Hopefully this will be a win-win all the way around this time…
ii Sea Ranch Condos Sewer Fees Analysis (interim Town Manager Connie Hoffmann)

BC- See previous post….

iii Proposed FY 20101 Budget Updates (Interim Town Manager Connie Hoffmann)

Town Backup-

“Recommended Budget 2011
The following report is being submitted to let you know about developments that will affect next year budget and to outline suggested changes to the FY 2010/2011 budget in July. Once we have your direction on these changes, we will incorporate them into a revised budget document which will be available for the first public hearing on September 13, 2010. I want to thank Doug Haag and Bud Bentley who contributed immensely to the preparation of this memo.”

BC- There is a link below to the backup on the Town website…and it is well worth the read…the TM and her team made the long asked for and necessary changes to the budget that consistently fell on deaf ears during the last administration… Fire Funds will now be in the correct accounts …and cuts will come from areas such as Town Topics  (from the options presented by PIO D’Oliveira this writer’s choice is to go with 4 issues…with less pages as well as instituting an Town e-mail alert and a Town Facebook site)…The VFD will re-negotiate their contract and come down to $700,000 as long as their membership agrees and votes to do so before the Sept. 14, 2010 Budget Meeting…The difference from the $1,008,916 originally slated to fund the VFD will go into a special apparatus account…There will also be changes in the fire inspection fees concerning where those funds end up… The VFD recommendations from this administration are the very much in-line with 2008 recommendations we hear came from ousted former Battalion Chief Patrick Pointu …Perhaps with the change in the leadership of the VFD, due to the recent ouster of Chief Perkins and the election of Fire Marshal-Inspector Steve Paine who is expected win the Chief’s spot again at their Sept. meeting maybe it is also time for the VFD Executive Board to welcome back Pointu as well as former VFD member Paul Lacoursiere….and any others who left due to the former VFD leadership….The Town is making I.T. updates long needed to be to ensure a more efficient way of doing daily business …These changes may allow us to make some “outside the box” changes to the bloated number of Town employees in certain departments… Some personnel changes have already been enacted and will continue with those who employees being retained….A myriad of problems were identified over the last 4 months including surprisingly antiquated practices which thankfully are no more ….

iv Chamber of Commerce request for $55,000 in funding next year
(Commissioner Scot Sasser)

BC-There is no backup on this one… We have heard there may be some “growing pains” involved in the vision of the future of the Chamber of Commerce/ Welcome Center that have arisen in the process thus far… I will wait on this one until after the meeting to see what will be presented by the Chamber and by whom as well as what will be offered by the Commission and the Town …. after hearing from the representative(s) … How much of an “arm of the Town” will they be in FY 2010-2011? ….
b Town Manager Applications Applications previously distributed Town
Manager applicant ranking sheet (Town Clerk June White)

BC- See previous post…


Link to website-

more to come….

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