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September 16, 2021 by Barbara



Dear Readers…. whether you have lived in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea for years or just landed as a resident or tourist it must be because you fell in love with what you found…..A Town like no other as described by Martha Munser in her book that is still referred to on the Town website.

We have been here before with urban planners, Town administrations and staff that believe change is their task to accomplish and developers who look at our town as the last beachfront frontier to conquer!

They have all been held at bay and sent packing due to the mobilization of residents old and new who prevailed!

Here we are again!

Just when we thought El Mar Drive was off the redevelopment train with the demise of the overbuilt land grabbing luxury resort that was encouraged by those same change agents on the old Holiday Inn property and the massive design change pushed upon us for the El Mar Drive Project we are now faced with a massive McMansion Conditional Use application at 4112 El Mar Drive on a 50 foot lot that was a walkway to the beach!

Something nefarious, deceptive and/or ignorant has taken place as this application has moved through the Conditional Use process for a single family home in our hotel district, in this writer’s opinion!

Our Interim Town Manager Linda Conners was our Town Planner when the Town Commission made the Conditional Use requirement for single family homes their #2 priority in 2011. She presented it to the 2012 Planning and Zoning Board on March 21, 2012 emphasizing how important it was.

In November 2017 when single family homes were discussed while the Planning and Zoning Board was in the process of bringing the north end codes in-line with the south end, the current Chair of the Planning & Zoning who has been on the board since 2012 brought up single family homes on El Mar Drive and Linda Conners, Director of Development repeated the importance of not having them in our hotel district.

Here we are in 2021 and the first Single Family Home Condition Use application had been submitted for consideration  after it was removed from the original April 2021 Planning & Zoning hearing date. Suddenly it was not being presented on July 7, 2021 to the 2021 Planning and Zoning Board as the catalyst to build a single family home on El Mar Drive, rather it was being cast aside as non-essential in the board’s decision!

The Planning and Zoning Board made it clear they needed direction and history from the Interim Director of Development and the Town Attorney. They were given none! They were not provided backup to that March 21, 2012 Planning & Zoning meeting with the original backup provided for that meeting or the minutes and the video. They were not provided or informed that this 4112 El Mar Drive application was being based on it meeting the Conditional Use requirements to approve or deny it. They stated as a board they felt their hands were tied. They were correct!

The Planning and Zoning Board had their hands tied by being kept in the dark about their role as an advisory board and by not being provided the materials and the direction required to perform their appointed duties!

The last single family home application made prior to the 2012 Conditional Use requirement went to the Planning & Zoning Board multiple times requesting changes before it went to the commission.

That single family home that was never completed had heard the board loud and clear. The attorney for that applicant stated they had reconfigured their house to not impact the small hotel next door to their south!

It was the Seaward Hotel family owner and his attorney who came to the Planning & Zoning Quasi Judicial Hearing opposing the 4112 El Mar Drive Conditional Use applicant who intends to build this McMansion next door the Seaward that did the Town’s job!

Attorney Henry Handler , Seaward Hotel owner Jim Sellitti and their architect tried mightily to inform the board as well as the Interim Director of Development and Town Attorney James White of the purpose of the Single Family Conditional Use in their deliberations but they were summarily cast aside at every turn!

The board was reticent when they passed this applicant on to the commission 4-1 to a hearing set for July 27, 2021.

Between July 7, 2021 Planning & Zoning Board meeting and the July 27, 2021 commission meeting word spread about what took place and what was coming to the commission impacting El Mar Drive !

That Quasi Judicial Hearing in front of the commission was postponed as a result, in my opinion.

At the July 27,2021 commission meeting in Public Comments, Former Mayor Scot Sasser, Former Mayor Roseann Minnet and Former Vice Mayor Stuart Dodd made strong, impactful comments to stress the importance and significance of the Single Family Home Conditional Use requirement they instituted along with our current Mayor Chris Vincent. A large number of public comments were made at the podium and sent in to the Town Clerk from very concerned town people.

The Town Architect did a required architectural review in August after the applicants made a developmental review application right after the July 27, 2021 Quasi Judicial Hearing was canceled which is required for any development in RM25 zones.

On August 10, 2021 the architect stated in his review the modern mansion did not meet the architectural standards mirroring the adverse impact shown in the Conditional Use requirements to meet for approval and concluded with recommending the applicants should redesign and resubmit to not adversely impact the adjacent property or neighborhood. In fact, he lauded the Seaward as an example the Town used in its Architectural Design Standard to follow!
On Aug. 26, 2021 (according to an email sent to the commission on Sept. 7,2021 from the Acting Director of Development per Interim Town Manager Conner’s instruction to update them and inform them the Sept. 13, 2021 hearing was not going to be happening) , the applicant’s attorney found the review ‘insufficient and not specific enough’ and wanted to go forward to the hearing set for Sept. 13, 2021 and stated they  ( applicants) ‘refused to engage further on it.’
The Town instead of proceeding with the hearing, went back to the architect and on Sept, 4, 2021 and Sept. 7, 2021 in his amended reviews he stated ‘Since it is clearly not the intent of the applicant to adhere to the Mid-Century Modern principles’ he would focus on ‘the issue of the proposed alternative”Contemporary”style. He further pointed out the drastic differences with the same adverse, impactful outcome! He ended his final review recommending the applicant ‘study the Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Architectural Standard Carefully and propose changes that reflect that intention.’
On Sept.1, 2021 2021 the Planning & Zoning Board were given Ordinance 2021-09 to remove single family homes on El Mar Drive and the grandfathering option. The three Planning & Zoning Board members who voted against grandfathering the applicant did so to rectify the approval votes they said they would not have made on July 7, 2021 had they known what they learned afterward about the importance of the Conditional Use requirement.
In a most unusual move this writer has never seen prior the backup for the Sept. 13, 2021 First Reading for Ord. 2021-09  the Town staff countered the 3-2 vote against grandfathering Planning & Zoning Board vote stating Town staff ‘ deliberated’ and came up with 5 reasons to approve the grandfathering of 4112 El Mar Drive.
As the Seaward owner stated on Sept. 13, 2021 at the podium all 5 reason provided by the ‘deliberating’ Town staff were untrue to what has actually transpired with this application and the applicants as found in the minutes, documents,architectural reviews and the archived videos of the meetings.
At the Sept. 13, 2021 Lauderdale- By- The- Sea Commission meeting Ordinance 2021-09 First Reading took place to no longer allow single family homes on El Mar Drive (due to the debacle of not using the 2012 Conditional Use requirements with this application) and to decide to if they should approve this Conditional Use applicant wanting to build a modern mansion by grandfathering them in.
While the Commission voted 5-0 to approve Ord. 2021-09 to remove single family homes on El Mar Drive to protect our hotel district they greatly erred in approving the grandfathering in of 4112 El Mar Drive. It appears to this writer and many other well informed residents the Commission did not do their homework!
The applicants spoke of wanting to be a part of our town and the fairness they deserve. Thus far, those sentiments and charges made of being negatively labeled at the podium do not ring true when you look at what has actually transpired.
They stated for over the last 7 years they are familiar with our town expressing their  their desire to live here and having something to offer as residents but….
When your established and revered in Lauderdale- By- The- Sea architectural style ( per LBTS Architectural Standard and the Town Architect) next door neighbor, El Mar Drive neighbors, town residents, former elected town officials, town board members, hoteliers, restaurants,and businesses along with the Town Architect and the required Conditional Use and Architectural Review all agree your modern mansion dream home does not belong in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea on El Mar Drive it seems to this writer an applicant must decide whether to build a home that does as advised or build your modern mansion where other modern mansions are allowed!
The Commission on Sept. 28, 2021 at Second Reading must pass Ord. 2021-09 and must deny grandfathering of 4112 El Mar Drive based on actually watching both  Planning & Zoning Board meetings, the March 2012 Planning & Zoning Board meeting.
The Commission must read the 2012 Conditional Use requirements, the Town Architectural Review Standards and read all three reports from the Town Architect.
The Commission must honor their 2021 Mission/Vision pledge to preserve and protect our town!
More to come……
Post Division

….LBTS 6/8/2021 The Round Table Workshop …. That Was Not Well Rounded!….

June 9, 2021 by Barbara

Dear Readers-

Below is a copy of my email to the Mayor and Commissioners after the 6/8/2021 Workshop for the downtown businesses….

Any email sent or received is a public record so it is for public viewing….

My public comments, letters to the editor, comments on articles and blog posts  are made in order to inform my elected representatives and the Town staff as well as my friends and neighbors of my opinions and offer my input along with historical information on the topics being addressed in our town which impact us all….


‘Mayor, Commissioners,
How far we have fallen from our past productive successes!
The businesses came to you in a workshop forum and you did not even give them a seat at the table – literally!
Upon my arrival at Jarvis Hall my first question was where is the rest of the round table!
This turned out to be a visual for what this workshop would become with the Interim Town Manager looking uninterested in the discussions as more often the not she looking at her cell phone with the Town Attorney next to her on her laptop.
In the agenda were public comments made by Town Engineer Jay Flynn who made eerily the same Dead On Arrival projections for this downtown outdoor extension sidewalk improvement change project as he did for the El Mar Drive FDOT no need for a 6- foot buffer threat- only this was as a “resident”!
For this, the Town Engineer should be removed from this project as well as any future El Mar Drive improvements and some serious discussion should be made about the conflict of interest involved in having a Town Engineer who is also a resident, in my opinion.
Why was the Town Administration and staff knowing this workshop was setup not prepared to offer up their own presentation of what potentially could be done and what it would entail?
Why were 4 commissioners not advocating for our businesses and hotels instead of two commissioners falsely and inaccurately stating roadblocks that looked to be in lock- step with the administration and two commissioners staying mute?
Only the Mayor spoke up for his constituents and corrected the falsehoods being made while looking forward in a welcoming, constructive manner!
The Covid restrictions provided an unintended successful consequence in that we already know this outdoor seating extension works and is wanted by both residents and tourists as the restaurant owners and hoteliers stated.
The Covid pandemic may be over for now but anyone who thinks there is no chance of backtracking in the future of restrictions being enforced is being hopefully ignorant.
The negative comments were mostly addressing the barriers, fencing and non-uniformity of tents, umbrellas etc.. that were put forth in the business presentation to be remedied!
The biggest concerns in 2010 was to retain our town as a vibrant tourist destination and to not become a bedroom community.
These businesses and hotels have made that happen and they should be treated much better than they were at this workshop for that!
There is no reason to not expediently proceed making what has worked permanent including Aruba outdoor dining in the plaza to be equitable and fair.
Aruba is the anchor of this downtown as it always has been and will continue to be making it an asset to the plaza.
Most who are in the CH Plaza are there waiting to get in Aruba with their balloons thus it is already cohesive in its use!
This is not a full- out re-design of the downtown it is more akin to what was done in the west Commercial Plazas and the recent Bougainvilla Parking by Commercial Blvd. and those did not take years!
These businesses and hoteliers should receive an apology for what occurred last night and a second workshop with a full round table providing them their rightful seats should be setup asap!
Barbara Cole’

More to come…..

Post Division


June 8, 2021 by Barbara

Dear Readers-

This writer has retained this site due to the number of daily visits Google shows of visitors looking for different items of interest that unfortunately are no longer provided to the current commission and their constituents as backup as was once the norm!

I have looked back as well on a number of agenda items put forth to the commission to refresh my memory and to provide to those making the decisions what is required in order to make them correctly- at least that’s always my hope although more often then not of late- it has not been the case!

There has been a big change in LBTS since my last post in 2016 with the commission, administration and staff.

We have lost much of what made our town special with commissioners no longer leading our discussions and decisions as they are designated to do resulting in the administration, staff and consultant led agendas based on their urban planning views for over-development that runs counter to the specialness we all saw in our town when we chose to put down stakes here!

After an outstanding Town Manager hired in 2010 by a newly elected slate-majority commission and her assistant Town Manager (who was a candidate for the position) who took over as Town Manager when she retired we started a decline!

After that Town Manager retired a Town Manager that had red-flags from the get-go was hired and quickly fired  – but not before the damage was done!

The current commission with the exception of the Mayor, seem to be lulled in to believing their roles are below those they hired thus leading to continued poor decisions and votes under the present Interim Town Manager ( moved up from Director of Development) thus continuing the damaging results with shrugs of indifference and a lack of response to their constituents when contacted!

There have been 11th hour uprisings to protect and preserve El Mar Drive which proved successful with the removal of both the grandiose -town property land grab of the Old Holiday Inn development and the demise of the Administration, Town Engineer led re-design of El Mar Drive with Plans 1,2 & 3  when the outcry was for Plan 4- fix what needs fixing !

Now, we are facing more impactful changes with stores coming in to town that are not in keeping with our long-term desire to connect west Commercial Blvd. businesses with the successful east Commercial Blvd. businesses!

A major blunder was made, in this writer’s opinion, by the current administration leading to an even larger divide of both sides of our downtown with consequences that have and will negate all that has been done to improve our downtown since 2010!

Again, in this writer’s opinion, the commission needs to lead and fix it asap!

In the past, when a Town Manager (moved up from Finance Director) made similar blunders such as the erected Pavilion that was not the design the commission voted on- she was fired when  the new majority was elected in March 2010 ( see previous posts.)

Our commission chose to listen to a gentlemen brought in for what he might offer as a search consultant for Town Manager candidates who stated his opinion of not looking for a permanent Town Manager  during budget season, which the commission accepted with exception of the Mayor. Once again, without backup, research, or follow-up questions this commission accepted it as fact!

Nothing could be further from the truth for our LBTS history of having March elections leading to the change of administrations!

That needs to happen again, a search for Town Manager needs to be brought back on the agenda now and the Interim Town Manager as well as the other candidates still waiting in the wings need to be vetted and interviewed to once again have the administration in place so vital to the success of our town!

As titled, ‘ Nothing Is New’!

We have been here before and the only way we changed the trajectory is in the numbers of concerned residents and business owners showing up to meetings, contacting their elected representatives and being proactive to assure our town is protected and preserved!

The time has come!

Read the agendas,  watch and participate in person and with comments at the commission meetings and workshops as well as the board meetings!

All are on the Town website and on your government channels on whichever provided used for TV.

Tonight there are 2 meetings – Jarvis Hall

Workshop at 5 PM on Downtown.

6:30 PM Regular Commission Meeting

Start now- get involved- It’s your Town!

More to come……

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop …. Well Played ….Time To Move On …. To Other Things…. Barbara Cole Writes….

March 30, 2016 by Barbara

The 2016 LBTS Final Election Results – Broward Supervisor Of Elections

Dear Readers …. Last night the new 2016 Lauderdale- By- The- Sea Commission was sworn in after a celebratory 6:30 pm farewell to outgoing two- term Commissioner Stuart Dodd and retiring Town Manager Connie Hoffman … I believe the election results were read from the dais and congratulations were made ….This writer chose to take a pass on watching the proceedings …. I did look at the official election results sent by the Town Clerk prior to the meeting and saw some disturbing issues that will be swept under the rug as so much was during this incredibly strange 2016 LBTS municipal election….The Broward County SOE left in 16 votes for “Candidate Withdrawn” aka Candidate Dan Darnell who dropped out asap after the final day of declaring to run for the commission and the resulting mess that ensued when his name was included on the absentee ballots …( see prev. posts)…..The Broward County SOE had stated no ballots with Darnell’s name would be counted and that first batch of absentee ballots received would either be put aside or destroyed …depending on which week the answer was given by the Broward County SOE ….Besides the 16 “Candidate Withdrawn” shown on the final election results there is a “Total Votes” number discrepancy between the mayoral race and the one commission race for Commissioner Dodd’s seat representing the south end of town……The mayoral race shows a ‘Total Votes’ of 2063 votes and the commission race shows a ‘Total Votes’ of 1998 with the inclusion of 16 “Candidate Withdrawn” -Darnell votes…That’s a short of 65 votes in this race …add back in the 16 “Candidate Withdrawn”-Darnell votes that were not to be counted or shown in the results and the total difference between these two races is 81 votes that are unaccounted for! ….Can it really be that 81 voters either voted for “Candidate Withdrawn”-Darnell and the Broward County SOE chose to show only 16 of them in the final official results …. tossing aside the 65 other votes….or…. did 65 voters really decide not to vote in the commission race at all?…. Neither makes any sense and in any other year that I’ve been involved over the last 10 years …..this would have been a “Red Hot Issue” ….one that would beg for immediate answers from the Broward County SOE before the swearing in to assure this was a clean election result for the commission seat in the south….. with real verified numbers to assure those results….in my opinion….But alas….this is not any of those past years….and we will never know what happened  and why….

That being the case…the sad case…. and for all the reasons written in the last 2 previous posts on this election ….this writer…. like my friend Stu Dodd … is term limiting out…. self- term limiting out …. The voters/residents became happily complacent in the last 6 years and in the 2012 /2014 municipal elections with uncontested races for incumbents and small turnout for single commission races …. and in my opinion…… the “Old Guard” mainly left in the north end of town ….so many thought were long gone….bided their time and waited for that complacency and for all the major opposing players to be gone or termed out to pick up where they left off in 2007…. Well played!…… Time will tell just how far this “Old Guard” agendas ( sewers in Palm Club etc…prev. posts) will be back on track and come to fruition with the newly seated commission now so beholden to them….. ( look at the backers of the newly elected and where they reside contained  in the candidate treasury reports)….and time will also tell if the demographics of the town…especially in the south end of town will come forward to decry those old tactics once again or will simply accept it all ….lock, stock and barrel … was the case for many years in the past….until it became to blatant to sit back and do nothing…

And no…. Dear Readers ….there will NOT be an outgoing “How The Sausage Was Made…2010- 2016″….as many have requested or asked about ….

For this writer……. I am going to go back to blogging on other topics as I did in the beginning of BCbythesea in 2008 ….Those old non -LBTS posts are still making their way around the world- wide web sphere producing comments years later from far and wide… bringing forth much pleasure of how vast this world really is ….and how much world there is outside of LBTS politics and those political “bubbles” that remain the same….

Under BCWrites….. more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop ….Updated….The Real First Term Resume Of Former Commissioner Birute Ann Clottey …. Do We Really Want A Repeat Of 2008- 2012? …

February 24, 2014 by Barbara

Former Commissioner Birute Ann Clottey at the dedication of the Commercial Blvd. Pavilion with all those she fully supported before they were ousted from Town Hall and the employ of LBTS!…

Dear Readers- You may have fallen victim to campaign revisionist history on behalf of the motley crew of backers supporting Birute Ann Clottey to return to the dais for a second act!… (Some of these avid supporters vehemently opposed her and 99% of her decisions/votes in the first 2 years of her term!)…They are playing hard and fast with the truth in order to secure their final hurrah…their final foot in the door….their final chance to stop the peace and the progress made without their questionable actions over the past few years …They are so full of themselves…so locked in reviving their past power play years that resulted in the Town’s version of the Peter Principle on steroids! It came with the rise in ranks of incompetent Town commissioners such as Clottey and her pals….Jerry McIntee and Jim Silverstone! … All three were in cahoots with the El Mar headquarters of their puppeteers as well as their chosen Town Manager Esther Colon…Asst. Town Manager John Olinzock …and the heads of each of the Town’s department  such as Finance and Human Resources that imploded upon the win of their opposition in 2010 and a long list of the mess they made and hid behind those Town Hall doors uncovered daily at every turn !…

What former Commissioner Clottey and her backers are doing now is hoping the voters have very short memories and that she can run claiming she was successful… well informed…well spoken…and independent…all of which is quite the opposite!… Birute Ann Clottey won her seat in 2008 by 113 votes against Incumbent Chuck Clark  …and that was due to her riding in on the coattails of her CIC “slate” …As written about so long ago after her win this writer was a co-manager of that campaign (see How The Sausage Was Made in the sidebar)….  she was a reluctant candidate who presented us with huge mountains to climb in order to make her anywhere near viable!… Once in office this writer spoke to her before every meeting about the agendas just as this writer was front and center coaching her on every campaign event and debate in order to make her presentable and informed on the issues which she was not…. For former Commissioner Clottey to claim she was responsible for the return of the VFD is akin to Al Gore saying he invented the internet!… She was not involved in the issue until former Comm. Jerry McIntee persuaded her to run from the north end of town when he could find no one else!… She knew nothing of the VFD and what had transpired…. Did she vote them in along with other votes from the dais that brought AMR to town…yes… as she was told to do!… Has she ever voted independently as this writer was informed she has claimed 90% of the time in her term?…. If you believe that then as they say I have some swamp land you can build on….if you want to put her in for another term!… Former Comm. Clottey voted as she was told by her “partners” in “crime (s)” …(metaphor or reality…you decide!)…. whether it was the “broom boys” and/or the Furths!… She voted most often with the 2010 majority until her term ended due to a lack of wanting to stir anything up as well as a major defeat that put the brakes on her co-horts especially after the fallout of what real mess was left in the wake of ousting Clottey’s Town Hall staff pals…which she alone was on record for trying to keep in place as long as she could!….

Here are some excerpts of former Commissioner Clottey’s as the Town fired Esther Colon in the Sentinel …( link is below) ….

Lauderdale-by-the-Sea fires town manager

Esther Colon worked for the town for a decade

April 21, 2010|By Linda Trischitta, Sun Sentinel

LAUDERDALE-BY-THE-SEA — Town Manager Esther Colon was fired late Tuesday night with a 4-1 vote.

“I think that this was a foolish time to fire her,” Commissioner Birute Clottey said Wednesday. She cast the lone vote in support of Colon.

Commissioners gave no explanation Tuesday night for the dismissal.

But on Wednesday, Mayor Roseann Minnet said, “We fired her because the town is going in a new direction, and she wasn’t a part of that direction. We have a new commission and she served at the pleasure of the dais. We’re seeking unity, bringing the town together, working cohesively and respecting each other.”

“We needed her until August, and now it will be tough,” Clottey said. “She was a tough negotiator … and knew the system and how to get things done for us. We are now at a distinct disadvantage. I think this will result in higher taxes for our taxpayers.”

Colon’s departure was immediate. When the meeting ended, she turned in her cell phone and the keys to town hall and her municipal car, Town Spokesman Steve d’Oliveira said.

She worked for a decade for the town. Before she left, Colon thanked the residents who supported her.

When she became town manager in 2007, Colon’s contract listed a $146,743 annual salary. Despite a public records request, the town did not make available her current salary or severance amount.

Colon angered residents when she fired popular Broward Sheriff’s Chief Scott Gooding in July 2009.

Clottey said Colon was “a good public servant. What she lacked was a little bit of finesse in dealing with people. She treated everybody equally, and some people didn’t like that.”

Former Commissioner Clottey was once again on the wrong side as she was when she stood alongside her co-horts  when they backed the removal of former BSO Chief Scott Gooding which caused a huge uproar by the masses and required a meeting in Jarvis Hall to deal with the outcry !…. No taxes went up as former Commissioner Clottey predicted would occur from Colon being fired…quite the opposite!… The Interim Town Manager Connie Hoffman walked in to a 3- ring circus right after former Asst. Town Manager John Olinzock gave a big fat check to his former boss without being authorized to do so !… Readers can simply scroll to those times on this site or Google to see what transpired and to see that former Commissioner Clottey was drastically more often than she claims in her  present day election talking points on the wrong side with whom she aligned herself  with and chose to support as the giant scab came off and the mess left in the wake of those her allies fought to keep in place were escorted out of the building many with BSO officers by their side!….

Former Interim Town Manager John Olinzock and supporter Christie he was ousted from his duties…

Interim Town Manager Connie Hoffman walked into such a tangled web of boxes upon boxes,  important paperwork missing, bills unpaid and no organizational rhyme or reason that she and those she brought in to aid her worked non- stop to in order to afford LBTS the working government we deserved and did not have in place unbeknownst to most of us!…. The budget that year could not even be finalized and adjustments were ongoing as accounts and accountability were installed and updated to offer real transparency instead of bogus awards that were long touted as financial achievements but upon some  research by this writer and some on the commission turned out to be nothing more than an everyone gets one award to all that apply!…

As the race in 2012 began former Commissioner Clottey decided not to run…It is this writer’s opinion she chose not to run because she knew she had no chance to win against Mark Brown an opponent who would and could nail her on her deplorable dais record especially since there was no way to revise it as she is trying so hard to do in this race due to fresh memories being front and center …..She who had so often been an embarrassment as this writer blogged about whether dealing with vendors… residents…businesses (an ongoing opponent of downtown music/special  events as advised by her co-horts)…..and her misguided and incomprehensible grasp on those areas of finance she now claims is her expertise!….. Here are a few excerpts from the Sentinel about that 2012 race with the link to the full story below…as Clottey took a pass….

“January 8, 2012|By Larry Barszewski, Sun Sentinel

The election: On Jan. 31, town voters will choose a new Seat 3 commissioner. Commissioner Birute Ann Clottey is not seeking re-election.

The candidates: Mark Brown and Edmund Malkoon

The background: Warring factions were prevalent in town elections as recently as two years ago, but the feud has essentially disappeared in this year’s Lauderdale-by-the-Sea elections. Vice Mayor Stuart Dodd has been re-elected without opposition and the two candidates for Clottey’s seat share views similar to those of the commission majority.

Town affairs have quieted down considerably since a new commission majority took over in 2010. The commission quickly disposed of former Town Manager Esther Colon and brought in former Fort Lauderdale City Manager Connie Hoffman to take the reins of the town’s administration. Commission meetings have gone from combative to congenial.”

Concerning our current Town Manager Connie Hoffman…. It has come to this writer’s attention that the Clottey -CIC crew has decided to use some of the 2010 playbook of blame the Town Manager for being in control …If true it’s beyond crazy when you consider that there is absolutely no meat on the bone to do so…..Clottey herself gave TM Hoffman high marks when evaluating her in 2011  as excerpts show from the Pelican…(link to full article below)…..

“Commissioner Birute Ann Clottey said Hoffmann “jumped in and took off running and is to be commended for this. She is an analytical and strategic thinker with excellent people skills. LBTS has benefited from her outstanding leadership.” But Clottey said she is concerned about a rush to outsource some departmental functions and wants to see the long-term benefit to residents and businesses before these types of decisions are made.”

How they rated her

Mayor Minnet .. . .4.0

Vice Mayor Dodd . . . 4.3

Commissioner Clottey. . . . .4.2

Commissioner Sasser . . . . . 4.0

Commissioner Vincent . . . . 4.7

It was revealed to this writer that the Clottey- CIC crew are trying real hard to throw all the old Furth-CIC election playbook garbage out and see what sticks with the voters when it comes to declarations we are told were made concerning this commission’s agendas and the lack of  commissioner backed items as compared to their time at the helm… Come on!…The agendas back in the CIC led majority days were  tit- for tat commissioner items of war against opposing commissioners, constituents and businesses…They were used for fear and retribution as well as doing bad deeds and occasionally sometimes good ones for supporters and neighbors due to the utter lack of any staff assistance unless it was on the agenda and in the record  for agenda minutes …all courtesy of the Colon administration!…It resulted in overly long contentious meetings that sometimes went on for days …unnecessarily ….and ineffectively ….which by a way definitely helped in overturning that majority as most in town had simply had enough!… Town Manager Connie Hoffman quite literally took down the wall that prevented off the dais action by first removing the plate glass window in the reception area of Town Hall and making all departments and staff available and accountable as well as working with the commission to offer new web alternatives that  cut out the need for the old norms… Town Manager Hoffman and her staff have worked hard to keep the present commission fully informed of what is happening in real time throughout the weeks along with the successful liaison program introduced in 2010 so that agendas are much more streamlined and  manageable in content and time on the dais… and for those attending the meetings… This too was a big want of those who answered a 2009 survey hastily put out without a vote by the former administration pre- election!…On that point…this writer has repeatedly heard the old CIC line…”The people want…”… Please tell me who are “the people?”… For they have not and are not at the podium..armed with demands Clottey and her co-horts are using to make their minority views seem viable …Any excuses of fear to do so is a load of crap…as those who remember their past is a non-starter at best… They had no backing when they came to the Charter Review Board meeting despite claims being made in this campaign… A simple look on the town website at the videos of those meetings will prove the small number of Furth followers who answered the call to arms…Na da!….

There have been outrageous claims this writer has been told of made by Clottey and her supporters of 15-17 million dollars in reserves being used for the downtown project!… What?… Look at the numbers on the town website…look at our annual budget…This woman and her crowd have always been way off when it comes to budgets !… The accurate amount we are told is $4.475 million …Now compare that to what has been done in neighboring towns for the quality downtown project we received in an unheard amount of time for construction of 6 months!…  It’s overwhelmingly bizarre that the CIC and the Furths would go negative to any extent concerning the undeniably great results thus far when their organizations facebook page contains photos with nothing but positive captions of that very project!… The Furths did much the same in a mailer a few months back to advertise their motel!… Ha!…. Speaking of what we will get if former Commissioner Clottey is elected it has been called to this writer’s attention that even her campaign thus far has not met the requirements of the process itself in the candidate handbook!… She has had illegal signs that stated re-elect when she is not an incumbent…and did not provide the required information/disclosure and that it took quite a while to get straightened out…As if that was not enough from her first two financial reports she appears to be walking down the same path as former commissioners McIntee and Silverstone did which landed them in Tallahassee due to inaccurate or false claims and monies used  in ways that do not followed the required protocol such as who is paying what bills and with  what check/credit card and who may or may not be neglecting the $300 limit allowed to give a candidate which was the amount Clottey’s crew fought to introduce after lowering some years ago from $500!… If she cannot run her campaign and her campaign finances how can she possibly state she has the acumen to run ours?… From what this writer hears her campaign finances will not be overlooked and her accounting for them (pun intended) will continue most likely well after March11th!…

Former Commissioner Clottey has padded her accomplishments in her mailers …in my opinion …She places a spotlight on herself for what was basically going along with those she served with from 2010-2012… Her claims of getting grants were not done unilaterally by her and her statement of being “instrumental” in securing funds for improvements on El Mar Drive and A1A are greatly overinflated and delusional…again in my opinion… The MPO and Broward League of Cities appointments were and are routinely divvied up among those sitting on the dais…and she had her turn as did and do others …who don’t try to use it to flesh out a meager resume in order to get another term!…

It is so important that we don’t go backwards in this town…So important that we quash those who long for the days of being relevant and desiring of warring factions …calling the shots …on their whim and lack of knowledge…just because they can!… We as a town have another real opportunity on March 11th to continue the successes we have built on since the 2010 and 2012 elections….

That happens only …in this writer’s opinion ….with the election of candidate Elliot Sokolow who actually possesses the steller resume and acumen former Commissioner Clottey  covets! …… Candidate Eric Yankwitt may be that “good guy” (haven’t we been down that road before!)…as some have stated …but to me he is too much of an “I” man and was not in any way outstanding on the P & Z Board as far as this writer is concerned…and may be right where he belongs in our community serving up activities that impact us off the dais not on…

The voters have the opportunity over this last leg of the campaign to get the facts and check out those who are running and what they are espousing in their campaign literature and their responses at the upcoming debates… Don’t cast a vote on what you are hearing without checking who is behind the candidate as well as their claims!…. Who offers sincere and knowledgable unfettered by the past?… Elliot Sokolow does… Who offers accountability with a proven track record of  long term service with long term support from those who served alongside him as well as from those he represented? …Only one candidate in this 2014 race for seat 1…Elliot Sokolow!….

Don’t let former Commissioner Clottey  back on the dais …. because every seat up there is crucial to all of us and this town we love so much!….

VOTE 2 ELECT ELLIOT SOKOLOW …. he is # 2 on the ballot but # 1 in what he offers LBTS !…

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Downtown Re-development …Full Steam Ahead …

January 17, 2012 by Barbara


Dear Readers …this writer is short on time after watching the three and a half hour Special Meeting to discuss the conceptual designs for blocks one, two and three in downtown LBTS…  The plan is for redeveloping the blocks from Bougainvilla east to the Pavilion on Commercial Blvd… The design team we hired made a power point presentation which was made after some unnerving remarks from Mr. Corea to the Commission “I would hate to be in the position you are in. Why? Citizens don’t want to be told what they want to do. They will condemn public officials if they do it and if they don’t.”… His presentation was followed by public comment and questions followed by Commissioner questions with no opinions or comments as directed by the Mayor before the presentation began…. That was followed by a break for the design team to respond and then for the Commission to decide prompted by the Mayor to move forward or do nothing… The decision was to move forward … I encourage residents to take a look at the video which will be available on the Town’s website shortly … …. The Commission is on record in this video stating more meetings should be allowed for the public to have another chance for input… Unfortunately questions were not asked by the Commission on how that would happen and the cost involved… The Town Manager in the backup for this meeting … … stated according to the contract there were no more such public  meetings included …Hmmm…. The comments made from the public which was mostly businesses were the same comments and concerns they have had since the get-go…Those are vistas and views of the ocean and beach…The parking changes and a reduction of 40 spaces as well as handicapped spaces as well as replacing angled parking with parallel parking ( although the Urban Planner stated they would be large enough to front- in park) …The concerns were still over trees …birds and what they leave behind and lane consolidation along with alleyway changes as well as entrance into Aruba Beach Cafe and the Pier parking lot and a formal paved public seating area in the middle of block one with a crosswalk that goes across to the center of the pavilion….. Residents against the conceptual renderings and spending $2 million were old-time residents such as the Demko family members and Hannah Hempstead who spoke about the maintenance issues seen presently.. Candidate Mark Brown spoke first and spoke of personally supporting the project adding that while he does many others are not on board yet still having major reservations…Brown said there needed to be another public meeting ….He suggested as an alternative the Town consider the University of Miami’s suggestion to do one block offering up block 2 as he told the Commission there was no reason to rush forward… Later on the UM presenter made reference to Brown’s suggestion adding if they were to go that route he would expand it to the block west (block 3) as well… Another point not made in all this discussion was why the $2 million was set in stone thus making block 3 a streamlined improvement…That’s due the the competitive bid  requirements for projects over that price thus taking the project away from this group and putting it out for a wider response… Edmund Malkoon thanked the design group for such a detailed presentation and said he hoped they moved forward with it and included the west blocks adding he hoped for another meeting and said this project will carry out the uniqueness of our town. …. The Commission after a few false starts and a few digs by the Mayor to get with the program she wanted …questions only asked mostly the same questions as the public as well as Comm. Sasser asking about the lack of curbs presented with a plan of shared space with bikes…He wanted answers as well to lessening the percentage split of pedestrian/car in the blocks as well…The Vice Mayor addressed the parking and re-routing traffic south further west as a way to alleviate bottle-necking traffic as it proceeds east in less lanes…Time limits for parking were brought up by Comm. Clottey as well as alleyway changes and the legal problems with Oriana’s alleyway… Thy took a break for the design group to get together and address the comments and questions… Upon reconvening what took place was summed up by the Vice Mayor best… They returned with little change offering up  why this was such a great design… The traffic planner Ms. Hughs spoke of the influx of bikes over the weekend heading east…Residents know that is a one-time occurrence on the weekends and early morning for the speed riding teams… as well as the underutilized A1A parking lot …yep again…(will losing 40 spaces really make it more utilized?)…She spoke of the use of parking on block 1 and watching that area…This writer wonders how she can be recommending a crosswalk in the center of the turnaround if she has done so…Right now the traffic backs up all the way past El Mar with cars going in the parking lots and dropping people off at the beach…With a pedestrian walkway in the middle that seems a given for it to increase substantially… Another interesting point was that no one stated the influx of concern when the idea was going full force for the McIntee median walkways with opponents crying out about the dangers of pedestrians walking in and out of El Ma Dr. traffic to use the medians…using the downtown plaza and center crosswalk seems to this writer to be even more of a safety concern  with going in and out of traffic….(earlier the landscape designer commented that pavers will look like waves in the crosswalk and the plaza…Hmmm…isn’t that what Pompano Beach is doing?)…..The landscape presenter spoke of the trees and the roots answering Comm. Vincents concerns ..Then it was time for the Commission to make some decisions…

The Mayor was really off this evening …in this writer’s opinion… She said this meeting was like a mediation as she chose to speak first about her take on responses she received from businesses and residents …She egged the Commission on asking them to “have the courage to hear…spelling h e a r… stating that they needed do something or do nothing…Hoping they would do something… When Comm. Sasser pressed his button she was still on the courage bent citing the cowardly lion!…The consensus  was to move forward by all those on the dais with the caveat they have more meetings and address the changes discussed …parking…less percentage pedestrian/car….alleyways…sidewalks…trees… The Mayor restated many of the concerns the Commissioners finished up with and  stated this was a positive direction and the town was moving slowly which we are known to do ..She said “not everyone’s gonna be happy”…She also added she was sad that many were “catering” to cars not people citing the CO2 cars produced…going on to pontificate about pedestrians being good for business….Comm. Sasser interjected she had left off one important point he had made concerning the pavilion area roundabout and cutting down the plaza area in block 1 as well as the entrance to the Pier lot.. The Mayor not joking in this writer’s opinion said she did not do so because she did not agree …so therefor did not bring it up… Comm. Sasser never one to let such things fly in his direction responded …”Cars don’t drive themselves. People drive cars and spend money!”… The Town Manager summed up what they wanted …on block 1 …to lose less parking…reduce sidewalk on south side …access to Pier parking…and Comm. Clottey said the legality if using the egress of the Oriana alleyway…This point showed once again Clottey was stuck on the McIntee claims to keep the Pier alleyway closed ….Those assertions were dealt with long ago and verified by another face at the podium we have not seen in quite some time…resident and Oriana Atty. Susan Deleagal …who was all for the project as presented and said to move forward on it….She would meet with the design team to see if schematics could be done on some things and get back to the Commission…The Mayor allowed for more public comment which was comprised of further concern over alleyway changes… a comment to move forth and build a parking garage … a thumbs up from David Nixon saying we are 90% therea call for an animated computer presentation rather than a schematic and Paul Novak who stated we are heading toward being a restaurant downtown requiring the 20.5 ft sidewalks …(Yann  Brandt said that last year when calling for no parking requirements!) …With that they adjourned without voting which they were advised they could do in the backup from the TM due to calling a Special Meeting vs a workshop…Oops!…Looks like the Mayor dropped the ball on that one!……. Now it’s assured that this won’t come back until the newly elected Commissioner is sitting in seat 3 in Feb for a vote which gives any concerned taxapeyrs the time to voice any lack of contentment they see in the conceptual plans for the 3 downtown blocks they will end up paying for ….

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Candidate For Seat 3 In Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Edmund Malkoon Has Some Nose Growing Problems With His Resume And His Revisionist History On His Past Positions …

January 14, 2012 by Barbara


Dear Readers … this writer is more than a little concerned about this election between Candidate Mark Brown and Edmund Malkoon for seat 3 …First I posted there was the “staying neutral” Stepford Wife mentality around town due to those voters actually believing there was no real difference between these two candidates …Then there was the incredible amount of deference to Malkoon’s mother Rosalie as the reason so many are taking a back seat and taking Malkoon signs with or without ever intending to put them up in their yard while taking a pass on Brown signs as to not upset Mrs. Malkoon leading way to the extraordinary possibility of sympathy votes for Malkoon at the polls for the same reason! … Now comes the biggest concern of all in this strange…strange LBTS race… and it’s Malkoon himself and the incredulous claims he has made in order to win the seat he feels is owed to him! …He has put forth a resume that doesn’t add up…literally!…He stated on the dais during the LOWV Meet the Candidate Forum in his opening statement “As a licensed realtor for the past 17 years I have learned the value of differences of opinions as well as negotiation”.. Malkoon is 36 years old..That would mean he became a licensed Realtor at age 19…What kind of license was it ? ….According to his election materials he graduated from Ely High School and attended Broward College (otherwise know at that time as BCC a 2 yr. community college) and FAU majoring in International Finance and Marketing…In his Sentinel interview his resume states he graduated Ely in 1993 which would have made him 18 years old at the time.. He changed his resume to leave out the misleading majors in his election materials to state “undergraduate coursework at Broward College and FAU … giving his occupation as Realtor… ( as previously posted he is listed as a “sales assoc.” in his  Fl. licensee info …’License Information License Type: Real Estate Broker or Sales Rank: Sales Associate License Number: SL627358′ /sales associate is listed one of 4 categories which is not a broker …thus “licensed Realtor” is misleading to state without stating broker or not now or at 19 years old ) …He states in that same article that he has worked in “credit card, mortgage and real estate fields and says that business background will be a plus when overseeing the management of the Town’s finances”.. (as prev. posted in 2010 he encountered problems with his own property and mortgage) …In his Pompano Pelican interview Malkoon states he is a “Realtor and Insurance agent” and that he “attended Broward College and Florida Atlantic University, majoring in business, international finance and marketing”… We are told he made claims that he was 2 credit short of completing his major but left college to come home when his father died…Hmmm….rather hard to believe considering FAU is in Boca Raton which is less than 20 minutes from the Malkoon residence in LBTS … plus why would someone who claims to have been a licensed Realtor at 19 years old not finish 2 credit short of such a prestigious career in International Finance and Marketing rather than becoming a sales associate in a family business as well as working short stints in insurance, mortgage and credit cards if we are to believe those claims are true?… It was at this same forum Malkoon claimed to remember the beach re-nourishment done in the early 80’s when he would have been between 5-8 years old!…So his fantastical claims were a two-fer for voters in a span of fifty minutes!… In the Pelican article Malkoon stated “I have a long history with the Town and volunteering on town boards and with civic organizations…”… Unless the reporter erred Malkoon has only been appointed to one town board which happened in 2010 and was disbanded by those that appointed him well before his full term was realized and over his vocal objections …Malkoon has also played the pandering role of “Uniter” or “Unifier” to enlist votes of those who have preconceived ideas concerning his opponent…As stated previously voters need only to look at the archives on this site under boards or go the the Town website to see the archived MPSC meetings ( MPSC 2010 archived videos- ) see Malkoon was at the forefront for “the whole enchilada” mentality on and off the committee he became the first and only co-chair of!…(the real title was and should have remained vice-chair) … He was for 2-lanes on El Mar and thus usurping the CIC-Furth led change that led to the Commission in 2007 to backtrack and retain the 4 lanes …He was for a parking garage..a new Town Hall…and was right alongside 2 new members who wanted big time changes made throughout the town… To say his election-time stances are revisionist is an understatement!…

Now here’s the kicker … … Readers will remember Malkoon made quite a few attacks against his opponent stating Brown was for raising the millage in the past while he was opposed…Hmmm… not so fast!…

Below is the verbatim public comments made by both  from that Sept. 27, 2010 Town Commission Meeting … It clearly shows Malkoon’s election time pandering … Following the verbatim text is the link to that meeting as well as verbatim quotes of Candidate Malkoon supporting no change or even a raise in the millage not only at that Sept. 27, 2010 meeting which was the one and only time his opponent Mark Brown spoke on the millage but at public comments at the prior 2010 Commission Meeting on Aug. 25, 2010 with video link below it and yet again in 2011 on Sept. 26, 2011 at public comments at the Special Comm.Meeting with the link to that video as well …

The voters cannot allow a Candidate for Commission to embellish, exaggerate or rewrite his own history to get a seat on the dais…Revealing the discrepancies has stopped past candidates from succeeding to do so and this election should do the same!…


September 27, 2010 Regular Town Commission Meeting Public Comments…

Mark Brown was called first …

Mark Brown-  “I just want to quickly commend the commission first of all as well as the Town Manager, the Assistant Town Manager and the Finance Director for as much work as you’ve been able to put into this budget and as far as you’ve been able to come this year. But I also want to offer up maybe just sort of a commonsense opinion to you. You started this year with about a seven hundred thousand dollar shortfall because property tax revenues were down. Then you were hit with about a quarter of a million dollars in the payout to the former Town Manager that gave you a million dollar shortfall and it seems like every time you get close, I understand your goal is to not raise the millage rate at all this year but it seems like every time you get close to closing that gap something else comes up that keeps pushing the goal line away. As you mentioned you just found out you’ve got an eighty thousand dollar shortfall because the former Town Manager didn’t pay out one of the payrolls in the last fiscal year. We’ve found out that we lost thousands of dollars by not having the Town’s money, millions of dollars in interest paying bank accounts. The point I want to make is, it’s not the end of the world for you guys if the 3.999 millage rate is just a little farther than you can reach and you have to end up at 4.09 in a one tenth of a one percent higher in order to balance the budget this year. I don’t think the stigma of raising taxes is that bad given the circumstances that you’re having to deal with trying to close this budget gap.You look at what other communities around Broward County are doing and they’re raising their millage rates much higher than this both percentage wise and numerically. I’m afraid that. You know you’re digging a hole and there’s just no more dirt left to get out of the hole this year. So personally if you can make the 3.999 I think it’d be great but if you’re doing it in a way that’s going to really cause serious repercussions in next year’s budget or in this year’s budget and the alternative would be got with the 4.09 instead of the 3.999 I would encourage you to go with the 4.09. Just my personal opinion. I know you’re the ones that have to live with it. You’re the ones who are trying really hard to hold the line on the millage rate but it’s not your fault there’s just too much that’s been happening and I would understand and everybody else would understand if you come just this (pinching fingers together) close but can’t quite make it. I’d rather see you do that and avoid anything really drastic. Thank you.”

Edmund Malkoon was called up next…

Edmund Malkoon- ” Hi, Edmund Malkoon. I was really gonna say kinda the same thing and I want to thank you all for working so hard, so diligently um, despite all the curve balls you’ve been given lately. I think it’s very commendable that you’re even close to achieving that. Um, second I just wanted to give a personal, I just wanted to give my opinion when maybe you’re taking about next years budget the CIP program um, as you know the A1As gonna be completed next year ah, the pads are installed for the bus stops so maybe you should include the bus stops in the future CIP plan especially if you want conformity instead of just waiting for this grant one year or another grant the next time. Maybe do so. You have to be ready for when the project’s completed. Thank you.”

Video Town Comm. Mtg. Sept. 27, 2010 (public comments)

BC- So there you have it Candidate Malkoon who attacked Mark Brown on the dais Jan. 11th for wanting to raise the millage neglected to add it was 2010 …Mark Brown spoke of a 1/10th of 1% increase for that year only and that Malkoon himself is on video saying immediately after his opponent …”Hi, Edmund Malkoon. I was really gonna say kinda the same thing…”…WOW!…

Below are more examples to show it was Malkoon who was vocal in having no problem with an increase in the millage for future development in the town at the podium three times compared to Brown’s singular comment on Sept. 27, 2010 …


I Googled Malkoon and my own site popped up…below is an excerpt from a post on the Aug. 25, 2010 commission meeting…

Aug 25, 2010 Reg. Comm.Mtg.

“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…”

Malkoon verbatim Aug 25, 2010 public comments Town Comm. Mtg….

Edmund Malkkon- ” That’s fast. I just want to take the time to commend the um, Town Manager and yes I left the interim part off on purpose for all the hard work you’re doing on the budget and this commission, you’re making some really good suggestions to try to get us where we were um, with the last millage rate and honestly even at the 4.09 from the 3.999 that’s really commendable to just be able to do that when other communities are really increasing right now.”

Video Town Comm. Mtg. Aug 25, 2010 (public comments)


Sept. 26,2011 Town Minutes…

“Edmund Malkoon echoed commendations for the hard work put into the budget by the Town Commission and staff noting many needs of the community were finally being addressed. He believed that lowering the millage rate was always good but the monieswere needed for Town improvements.”

Edmund Malkoon vebatim public comments Sept. 26, 2011 Spec. Mtg after Ken Kuglar, Vito Chiarello, Ken Brenner and George Hunsaker spoke either against lowering the millage rate 3.999 or encouraging an increase for Town improvements…

Edmund Malkoon-“I just wanted to also commend the hard work that went into this budget, um, this is really the first time in such a long time that so many needs of our community are finally being addressed on according to plan which is what you guys have run on in the election regarding the planning and righting the things that needed to be done um, in our town. So many things need to be done um, the infrastructure is now being addressed the drainage, ah, we’re gonna get the sewer study situations are going to be discussed as well. It’s always great to lower the millage. I think there’s a disconnect in people, most of you pay taxes up there as well and I’m sure would like to pay less as well if, if you’re able do so but you also have the responsibility to continue to move this community forward and develop it and to address these really important needs that we have. So again thank you for your hard work.”

Video Spec. Comm. Mtg. Sept. 26, 2011 (public comments)


more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … The 2012 Lauderdale-By-The-Sea LOWV Meet The Candidate Forum … Mr Myagi And The Kid…

January 11, 2012 by Barbara


Dear Readers … the 2012 League of Women Voters Meet the Candidate Forum was over in less than hour in part because there were only 2 candidates vying for one seat and a lack of questions to answer although a lot of the questions came from the 35 this writer sent in to the moderator on Dec. 9, 2011  … I’m definitely going to go back and watch the exchange again .. Readers should do the same and will have countless opportunities to do so with the event being re-broadcast on the Town’s channel 78 Jan 12,13,14,15,16,25,26,28,29 at 7 and 9 pm as well as being available anytime on the Town’s website …..

That being said here are my impressions from the first viewing of this forum … I thought it was rather odd that the moderator prefaced the 2 minute opening statements would contain the candidates qualifications and volunteer activities…That’s a new one…Once again this moderator’s impartiality is being called into question by this writer (I questioned it at the last such forum) … It began with Mark Brown who gave the voters a detailed look at his impressive personal and professional biography which was so extensive he could not fit into just 2 minutes…His opponent Edmund Malkoon had quite the opposite problem due to not having much of a professional biography or qualifications to put forth to voters …The questions began and each taking turns in who answered first were allowed 1 minute …The first question was about the top 2 priorities each had for the Town if elected…Malkoon answered they were  high level public safety …scrutinizing finances …and actively engaging people to participate… Brown responded he wanted to continue what this Commission was doing while being careful with spending ..The second question was about the Town promoting local business and Brown was up first to respond…He said the Town should play a small role in it and not a whole lot of Town money should be used citing events the Town already puts on …Malkoon said that the Town has done a lot with the businesses bringing up the hotels and then went on to state what the Town has done legislatively to aid in the businesses …

BC-legislative measures are not promoting town businesses …

Question 3 was on the Charter changes that are necessary and Malkoon answering first stated they needed to answer the redistricting which he said was an issue due to what people voted for and what was not in the charter …

BC-this was discussed last night by the TAtty. who stated there was a discrepancy of what was on the ballot vs. the charter with the residency requirements of candidates ending in 2018 not being included in the Town Charter and the statute of limitations for it to be put in had passed in 2008 (under the CIC majority time on the dais) …thus making the residency requirement permanent if no change is made …The FAU study for extending the districts is still required due to that being in the Town Charter…

Mark Brown answered that this was “a more important issue than you realize” correctly citing the report Consultant Cecelia Ward brought forth to the Commission of many such instances of more issues not making it into the Town Charter…He added he was looking forward to the committee but did not want to impose on them or tie their hands … The question that followed was to ask the candidates where they would cut or increase the current budget …Brown responded that this Commission has done a good job with a lean budget during these economic times…He added that he would look into the Town Attorney’s budget as well as discussing capital improvements and keeping a line on the millage rate …Malkoon spoke of how lucky we are to have a town that is financially sound and spoke of keeping the 3.999 millage rate…He took a jab at his opponent by stating Brown was for raising the millage at budget time …

BC- Brown has stated he was for raising it slightly along with a few others during the budget hearings due to the unknowns in the budget leftover from the previous administration cited by the Administration at these meetings and it was for this millage hearing only…Readers may recall this is the same time that the sewer replacement in the south end of town was also looming as Malkoon will touch upon later in the forum…

The Candidates were asked if they were happy with the current Master Plan and it was Malkoon responding first to once again remind voters he was on the MPSC and was happy with the Master Plan stating it was not set in stone for the 5 years.. Brown shot back that he was “disappointed” with the MPSC and glad that the Town went out beyond the committee to accomplish the plan citing a lack of consensus on the committee…He also corrected Malkoon by stating that only one year of the Master Plan has a budgeted commitment of funding..

BC- Readers will recall (prev. posts boards) that the Comm. thought the MPSC was floundering as well and asked the TM to take over with guiding them through this process…TM Hoffmann came in with some planned committee group building exercises followed by introducing experts to produce outside the box ideas which ed to presentations and the UM study along with resident input to finalize the Master Plan…The Commission cut short the MPSC 5-0 over the objections voiced by Malkoon himself long before their 2-yr terms were up …

Up next was the question concerning the upcoming beach re-nourishment which was also discussed at a recent Town Reg. Comm. meeting… Brown responded that he had experience in beach re-nourishment while working with congress and stated it is imperative to do and he supports it with reservations ..Those include the impact on LBTS which he stated was nowhere as bad off as Galt Ocean Mile…He also stated his concerns about the proposed ideas such as the sand coming from mined areas on trucks and the impact of the trucks carrying it as well as the quality of the sand itself.. He reiterated he supports the project with reservations…  Malkoon responded after Brown that he remembered the beach re-nourishment of the early 1980’s and the problems at that time..

BC- Hmmm… Malkoon is 36 years old…so to remember the project in the early 80’s he would have been  5-8 years how much of a beach re-nourishment project would an 8 year old really recall…I am told that project was not done from the shore but rather brought in from the water although I have not checked it out… So who coached him?… Comm. Clottey who it is said was nodding throughout the forum as he looked toward her for reassurance?… Speaking of “Team Edmund” this writer was also informed that Cindy Geesey and Bob Fleishman made it their business to make faces at Mark Brown throughout such as putting their fingers down their throats when he responded and using the throat slash when it appeared he was running long on a response … Later on in Brown’s closing remarks he took aim at such actions which should send a message not only to these two but to voters …

Public bathrooms was the next topic… Malkoon responded once again that he was on the MPSC and this had come before them for the “80th” time…he did not think it was a top priority citing the sewers and drainage ..

BC- I think a look back at his time on the MPSC will show he was all in when it came to public bathrooms ..

Mark brown stood his ground saying he had written about the need for bathrooms and was not going to change his position now (as his opponent did) ..He spoke up about his idea to do a trial with a modular unit to see if it worked or not..If not then not much would be spent on the trial …He also spoke of walking around town often and the usage of restaurant bathrooms to cover this deficiency…

BC- A look back at this discussion which went on quite a long time with the MPSC will show that Brown’s idea was put forth on the dais by none other than Comm Clottey… Brown also recommended using El Prado as the test area …Talk about parking lots was brought up by others in town and met with concerns of pedestrian safety crossing  A1A or El Mar and using the Aruba alleyway which would put the pedestrians in danger from valeted cars…

A screwy question which was prefaced by the moderator as such but nevertheless still put forth by her concerned the Chamber of Commerce being funded by Town and County taxpayers and a charge of the Chamber paying “thousands” to an out of state contractor… Mark Brown said indeed the question was wrong … Ms. Smith, the moderator then asked if the Chamber should play a bigger role or no role at all in town… Brown responded that he is a big supporter of the Chamber citing what they bring to the town as well as the partnership required now more than ever between the two with what is planned as well as the Town not being able to hire more staff … Malkoon reminded voters once more that he is a Chamber board member ( he made a try for the Chamber board in 2010 but was not elected) …He said he owned a business in town and said we are one of two Welcome Centers in Broward and ours is well run…He then digressed into bids saying he is pro bids and putting forth the Town’s policy of local bids preferences …

BC- The Town’s bid policy has nothing to do with the Chamber bids policies…

The sewer/water fees increase question was finally asked and it was Malkoon’s to answer first… He said he spoke to the Town Manager on this issue and that there is an inequality as well as adding the sewer replacement would cost us about a million dollars which is not as bad as we thought it would be and we have $1.8 million in the sewer fund which “is more than enough needed” … He spoke of the water usage and Fort Lauderdale and the charges “going down” as well as looking at a rate decrease across the board..

BC- I find this disturbing because up til now it was my understanding we do not have the final figures for the cost of the sewers in the south…So where did Malkoon get the million figure from?… Did the TM inform him before the Commission?… The water usage I believe is slated to go up with another increase on the horizon as we only sent in by resolution our complaint concerning the fees…As far as a rate decrease across the board for south end properties under the PB-LBTS Master Sewer Agreement…I believe the only rate decrease to be discussed is concerning multi-family/hotel/condo properties…on Jan 19th..

Mark Brown responded that he supported the Commission’s decision to have everybody pay their fair share in order to maintain the sewers and build up reserves for repairs and replacement…He said if there is now a question of too much money being reserved then it needs to be addressed…but a continued fair share rate should apply …

The question was asked about the need and any support from the Candidates for a new Town Hall… Brown responded that the present Town Hall properties are underutilized and should be consolidated in the future citing the fire station as a component…He did not believe public monies should be used and said it was not a top priority… Malkoon agreed it was not a top priority…

BC- I believe at the time of Town Hall discussions Malkoon was for the “whole enchilada”…

The 5-year Capital Improvement Plan question was put to both and Malkoon responded it addressed the infrastructure adding it was not “set in concrete” so changes could be made…He stated we do not have to go out for monies and spoke of grants for improvements ..Brown stated he was happy we finally have a 5-year plan citing “piecemeal” projects …He added correctly that the projects funded thus far are from reserves and added he will not be voting for increasing taxes to fund projects… The moderator segwayed into the  millage rate and raising it… Brown said only if there was a disaster saying he saw no reason to raise the millage… Malkoon responded “being a taxpayer who wants to pay more”…He said we have $2.3 million in our emergency disaster fund as well as other avenues to cover such an event…

Outsourcing the Parking Dept. was the next question…Malkoon stated that the Parking Dept. has longtime residents as employees and stated it should be made known to taxpayers that it is funded by the Enterprise Fund not from the General Fund and he needed to look at it more …

BC- Malkoon was wrong… The Town employees are not paid from the Enterprise Fund…that funds the parking lots etc…but the department employees are paid for by the taxpayers…

Mark Brown hit right back by saying he has done a lot of knocking on doors and repeatedly heard “Do what you have to do to keep the cost down”…He said he would look at outsourcing case-by-case based on facts not emotion…Traffic flow was up next ..Brown cited the many traffic changes implemented by the Town (Consultant Hughs) and spoke of concerns with pedestrians at the intersection of A1A (and Commercial) as well as the turnaround at the Pavilion …Malkoon went green with agreeing with the A1A/Comm. Blvd. intersection adding that people should get out of their cars and use the Pelican Hopper/the new sharing bikes and walking…Then it was onto the “Does Lauderdale-By-The-Sea have a parking problem” question… Malkoon said no we don’t our parking is underutilized and that talk of a parking garage will be wonderful one day…done by a private entity…

BC- Again voters need to go back to Malkoon’s time on MPSC to see where he stood then vs. now…

Brown said we do have a parking problem because people want to park right in front of where they are going..He cited signage as well being a problem and added that after the recession is over the time will come to think about a garage or some  way to deal with it…No money for it right now… Next was the question of what if any changes the candidates would make in the bid process …large bids… Brown responded the Town under this Commission and Administration made big changes with a limit of $15,000 being kept and the Commissioners seeing all bids first… Malkoon added there has been a big increase in transparency in the last 2 years and he thinks we should bid as much as possible .. That was followed by a question concerning staffing in Town such as a Town Marketing person, Town Planner, Asst. TM and an Asst. To the TM… Malkoon said we should let the TM run the town… Brown stated that as a Chief of Staff he held a similar role to the TM in staffing …He went on to say as long as the TM was mindful of the overall budget it did not matter what title was affixed to the TM’s hires…He added that if the Commission became unhappy with the TM’s actions the TM could be removed… The second to last question was about the recreation/Senior Center and any changes… Brown responded he regularly participates in the program lauding its volunteers and saying he thought there was a need for more space and suggesting more usage of Jarvis Hall ….Malkoon stated it was now called the Community Center and he said Armilio (the director) was doing a “great job” …as far as youth programs he said we are “blessed” with programs in neighboring towns and it’s something we can look in to..

BC- Mark Brown was a big supporter and proponent to save Armilio Bien-Aime’s job and the center itself a few years ago when Malkoons “mentor” Comm. Clottey was in cahoots with former TM Colon to undermine the program and Armilio with Broward County!…Oops!…

The final question was about the Town employing a lobbyist …Malkoon’s response was a swift no …Brown said “we have a Congressman, State Representative, State Senator and County Commissioner, let them do the lobbying for us!”…

The closing came at 10 to 8 due to no one in the 3/4 filled hall coming forth with anymore questions for the candidates despite the moderator repeatedly asking them to do so… Each had 2 minutes…

Malkoon went first and said he was proud that LBTS is financially sound …he would be fiscally responsible and spoke of a cost benefit analysis…He then went on the attack one more time against his opponent and his experience in Washington pleading with the voters to vote for a local boy…

BC- This line of attack was a complete misfire in this writer’s opinion …It made it abundantly clear that Malkoon not being able to match Brown’s experience decided with his small, small cadre of pals to denigrate it!… Sad and pitiful….

Mark Brown had the last words and they were the reason this writer used the Karate Kid reference at the top of this post… Mark spoke of walking around the town over the past 3 months and what an amazing experience it has been…He spoke about the remarks he heard concerning happiness with the commission and the desire to move forward while keeping the uniqueness of out town intact… He followed that up by declaring that he had written hundreds of stories over the last five years (as a volunteer) which he signed his name to and took full responsibility for … He further declared that he would continue doing so when elected your commissioner…He then shot his final blow to those who sat menacingly in the front row as well as his opponent by emphatically stating “I’m not beholden to anyone” … He ended by just as emphatically telling the voters he will listen to the people, do what’s best for  the town and he won’t waste any money doing it!…

With that the meeting ended… As Myagi  said to the “kid” wax on…wax off… Voters…take a look at the forum…take a look at the differences experienced…methodical…factual man who is beholden to no one or a self proclaimed local boy who is apparently beholden to a cadre of supporters who let him believe he is owed a seat on the dais because he is a local boy!… Wax off!…..

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Candidates For Seat 3 Emails Really Shows Voters The Difference Between Them ….

January 10, 2012 by Barbara


Dear Readers …this writer obtained the emails sent today by both Candidates for seat 3 in the LBTS January 31st election concerning the LOWV Meet The Candidate Forum which was up in the air for well over a day after Candidate Edmund Malkoon contacted the Town to ask it be changed due to having a fever… (prev. posts) … The first email is from his opponent Mark Brown who was not contacted by the Town or the LOWV and under the impression that plans to accommodate Malkoon were proceeding without regard to him…He made the decision to send an email to the LOWV moderator Carol Smith with a copy going to the Town and the Commissioners in order to make it clear where he stood on this unnerving situation …Candidate Brown was unaware of the email Malkoon had already sent to the Town and Commissioners in the morning …(see below)… What should further make undecided LBTS voters stand up and take notice of is the alarming difference in the content of these two emails … Candidate Brown’s email is professional, structured as well as being coherent …Candidate Malkoons email is not only punctually deficient, it is in a style that should be reserved for “friends” on Facebook and Twitter!… Now we know why Malkoon’s campaign web page is on Facebook and what that bird is in the background of his green election materials!…The Twitter bird!…….

The emails…( personal email addresses of the candidates were x’d by this writer)…

‘From: Mark xxxx
To: [email protected]
CC: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]
Sent: 1/10/2012 12:04:43 P.M. Eastern Standard Time
Subj: candidate’s night in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea

Hi Carol. This is Mark Brown. I am a candidate for town commissioner in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea. I am scheduled to participate in the candidate’s forum which you and the League of Women voters will be moderating tomorrow night. However, I am hearing rumors now that the forum might be canceled because my opponent is ill. This has put me in an awkward position and I’d like to share my thoughts with you on this.

As I understand it, my opponent got sick over the weekend, following a fundraiser that he held on Saturday night. He is not in the hospital and wasn’t in a car crash or anything like that. He was home but running a fever of 102 as of Monday. I’m told that he started calling town commissioners on Monday morning to advise them that he would still be too ill to participate in the forum two nights later on Wednesday, and that he would like them to cancel or postpone it. I was further informed that the town commission might take this issue up this evening at its regularly scheduled meeting.

I feel bad that my opponent is not feeling well, but I do not believe that constitutes grounds for canceling tomorrow night’s forum. This event has been planned and promoted for two months. Residents have sent in their questions to you, they are ready to attend or view the event on local access TV, and I’ve been prepping and am ready to go as well. I don’t see why everyone in town should be inconvenienced because my opponent decided two days in advance that he will be too ill to take part in the forum.

In addition, I believe this is not a debate but a candidate’s forum, where people get to ask questions of the candidates. That’s how it was announced in the town’s newsletter and how it has been promoted. Since I am a candidate and I will be there, I feel the event should go on and I should be allowed to speak and answer questions, even if he doesn’t show up.

There is another option available to deal with this situation. I would be perfectly happy to adjust my schedule and take part in a second forum if the LWV and/or town commission choose to schedule one. At least that way we could have one opportunity to share the stage together. I think that would be fair to him while still being fair to me and to all the residents of the town.

I have to add one personal note because I am a little perturbed about this. I took one sick day in my 30 years of working. I had back surgery on a Friday morning and was back at my desk the following Monday. There were many times in my career that I didn’t feel well but I went to work anyway because I knew that if I didn’t, I might not have a job the next day. That’s the way it goes in the real world, and I’m sure most people went through their careers the same way. If the shoe was on the other foot, and I was the one feeling ill, I can assure you that I would drag myself into the forum tomorrow night and do the best I could, regardless of how I felt. It would show people that I am serious about serving in office, even if my physical condition put me at a disadvantage in the forum. I’m sure most other people would do the same.

Finally, I am a little concerned because I have not been contacted directly by anyone on this, even though I have a big stake in the matter. I called the town manager last night to discuss this, but she advised me that it’s out of her hands because it is a political matter and it’s up to the town commission. Accordingly, I intend to call each town commissioner today to try to find out what’s going on and to make sure that I have the opportunity give my input on the subject. I think it is only fair that my views be taken into consideration too.

Thank you for your consideration of this matter. I look forward to either hearing back from you or seeing you at the candidate’s forum on Wednesday night.

Mark Brown’
From: EM [mailto:emalkoonxxxxxx]
Sent: Tue 1/10/2012 9:41 AM
To: Connie Hoffmann; Chris Vincent; Scot Sasser; Roseann Minnet; Birute Ann Clottey; Stuart Dodd
Subject: Forum

Yesterday, I contacted several of you regarding Forum this Weds. I was running 103 fever and wanted to alert you as its a consideration of the Commission, and your meeting is tonight. Good news is my fever broke overnight. Its still high but much better. I am just going to rest and hope ill be ok for weds night.

Appreciate the well wishes,

Edmund Malkoon

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Looks Like The Cub Candidate Is Going To Suck It Up … January 31st LOWV Meet The Candidate Forum Is On! …

January 10, 2012 by Barbara


Dear Readers …here’s what we know so far one day after Cub Candidate Edmund Malkoon decided 48 hours in advance that he would be too sick to show up at the long planned for LBTS LOWV Meet The Candidate Forum Wed. night…(He had a fever) … As of this morning he was feeling a little better …We have been informed he will attend after all if he feels better or not!… We also know that two emails were sent out to the Commissioners by each candidate today…  This writer heard Mark Brown’s email was to let the LOWVoters, the Town Administration and the Commission know he wanted the event to go forward as publicized and planned for… As far as Malkoon’s email ….we have heard different versions of and will need to see what’s what before commenting on it…

In any event this has to put another nail in the Cub Candidate’s coffin for becoming the next Commissioner to occupy seat 3 for the next 4 years in my opinion… Come on …think about what Malkoon did in this situation and how poorly he handled a simple illness we all have to deal with …Rather than quietly taking whatever measures necessary to ensure he could attend the event he chose to instead call the Town Manager to say he was ill and would not be able to attend 48 hours ahead of time thus setting off a day+ of phone calls from the Town to Commissioners…Emails from candidates to those same Commissioners, the TM as well as the LOWVoters who were also contacted by the Town asking about a possible change!… That shows a real lack of maturity in Malkoon!…That shows Malkoon has a total lack of comprehension of what his selfish actions entail! …While some may brush it off as a “generational” thing …I won’t but will say you are so right!…I for one do not want a child on the dais making decisions on my behalf and this goes to show that’s exactly what LBTS will have in seat 3 with Cub Candidate Edmund Malkoon!…

We also heard that this decision not show up at events which included a decision not to show up last night at the UOT-PAC meeting led to quite row with an attack coming from Malkoon small cadre of supporters such as Louis Marchelos, Bob Fleishman, Cindy Geesey, Susie Glenn and a few others seated at one table against the present UOT President Ray Wolowicz after that group represented to those at the meeting that indeed Malkoon was “promised” the seat from UOT this time around … No such promise was made from the organizations full board or members according to those in the know…We understand Mark Brown made it a point to present a timeline of his decision to run which included as far back as September and a UOT meeting at which the President asked for possible candidates to come forth and none did…including his opponent Malkoon… Brown continued on to say he contacted commissioners, board members and other including his opponent and was encouraged with positive comments to proceed never once hearing the candidacy was already spoken for…He proceeded and has run a very independent,strategic,concise, informative as well as intensive campaign much like the ones we saw in 2008 and 2010 without the benefit of having the full UOT-PAC from the get-go… As one Reader said …this is not North Korea… There’s no dictatorship ….So what gives?…Sounds like the UOT has or is about to go the way of the CIC-PAC due to a few loudmouths not following the rules that govern such PACs …We saw if with the Furths and now we are seeing it with UOT with the demise of the PACs themselves… Once again this shows the Cub Candidate is a child …in this writer’s opinion …who really believed that he was owed something and he was going to slide right into a LBTS municipal position on the dais without having to any of the hard work his predecessors had to do as well as his opponent… Message to voters…get your coffin nails here… bang…bang!….

more to come…

Post Division
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