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Here’s The Scoop … July 4, 2011 Photos In Lauderdale-By-The-Sea … Red, White & Blue … #1 …

July 4, 2011 by Barbara


More to come…

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Here’s The Scoop …. July 4, 2011 Photos In Lauderdale-By-The-Sea … Red, White & Blue … #2 …

July 4, 2011 by Barbara


A special thanks to all those who chose to participate in this year’s event and those who provided the photos posted on this site ….A special thank you must be said to our Town’s three public safety providers … VFD/BSO/AMR for their quick response when faced with the tragedy they encountered this afternoon while preparing for their slated July 4th sea rescue demonstration … The BSO report put out tonight states that due to the timing of that July 4th demonstration more young lives were not lost today and for that we are all thankful…

more to come…..

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Here’s The Scoop … Further Updates On July 4th Tragedy In Lauderdale-By-The-Sea …

July 4, 2011 by Barbara

‘A 7-year-old boy, who has not been identified, apparently drowned in the ocean about 3:30 p.m. Monday during a holiday family gathering at El Prado Park on the 4500 block of North Ocean Drive, officials said. (Patrick Pointu, courtesy / July 4, 2011)


‘A 7-year-old boy drowned while swimming on the beach at Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Monday afternoon in the midst of a July 4 celebration.

The boy, Carrington Clarke of the Bahamas, apparently drowned about 3:30 p.m. during a family gathering at El Prado Park on the 4500 block of North Ocean Drive, officials said. Carrington and his brother had flown into Fort Lauderdale from the Bahamas Sunday to visit his uncle, Jameka Ferguson of Fort Lauderdale. Ferguson said the boy stays with him every summer.

The family went to the beach with friends Monday afternoon and had planned to watch the fireworks at night, Ferguson said.

The group included three adults and eight children. Around 3:27 p.m., Carrington and three other children attempted to swim to a sand bar about 50 yards from shore, Broward Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Dani Moschella said.

An 11-year-old girl made it, but when she turned around, she noticed the other three struggling in the water about half-way between the shoreline and the sand bar, Moschella said.

Adults jumped in to rescue the children, but 7-year-old Carrington slipped underwater, and the adults lost sight of him. About 10 to 15 minutes later, a BSO helicopter located him about 100 yards south of where he was last seen. A Lauderdale-by-the-Sea volunteer firefighter on a wave runner and lifeguards pulled him from the water. Paramedics performed CPR and transported Carrington to Holy Cross Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 4:28 p.m.

The drowning happened just before a planned rescue demonstration, so lifeguards, volunteer firefighters and American Medical Response were on scene when a lifeguard noticed several children in distress in the water, Moschella said.

The Broward County Medical Examiner will determine the cause of death.

The town was holding a Fourth of July celebration at the beach, featuring two giant waterslides from noon to 4 p.m. and a skim boarding competition from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., according to an event flyer.’,0,5157913.story


BSO website….


BSO Case Number: LB11-07-00044
PIO Number: 11-7-3
Date: July 4, 2011
Time: 4:28 p.m. Jurisdiction: Lauderdale-by-the-Sea
Place of Occurrence: 4510 El Mar Drive, Lauderdale-by-the-Sea


  • Carrington Clarke, age 7, Nassau, Bahamas (DECEASED)


  • n/a

Description of Incident:

A 7-year-old boy was visiting Florida for just a day before he drowned in the Atlantic Ocean as family, friends, lifeguards and firefighters frantically searched the water for him.

Carrington Clarke, 7, had flown into Fort Lauderdale from the Bahamas yesterday with his cousin to visit his uncle, Jameka Ferguson of Fort Lauderdale. The three went with friends to the beach Monday afternoon. The group included three adults and eight children. Around 3:27 p.m., four of the children – ages 7, 11, 13 and 14 – attempted to swim to a sand bar about 50 yards from shore. An 11-year-old girl made it, but when she turned around, she noticed the other three struggling in the water about half-way between the shoreline and the sand bar. Adults jumped in to rescue the children, but 7-year-old Carrington slipped underwater, and the adults lost sight of him. About 10-15 minutes later, the BSO helicopter located him about 100 yards south of where he was last seen. A Lauderdale-by-the-See volunteer firefighter on a wave runner and lifeguards pulled him from the water. American Medical Response (AMR) workers performed CPR and transported Carrington to Holy Cross Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 4:28 p.m.

Coincidentally, around the time of the incident, the city had planned a rescue demonstration that was to include a simulated drowning, so residents could witness how an ocean rescue might happen. Because of the demonstration, lifeguards, volunteer firefighters and AMR workers were already on scene.

The Broward County Medical Examiner will determine the cause of death.

INVESTIGATORS: Homicide Det. L. Rivera, Sgt. Glassman, Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Lauderdale-by-the-Sea
THIS REPORT BY: Dani Moschella/PIO 7/4/11 2010

more to come….

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Here’s The Scoop … Tragedy At The July 4th Event … A Rescue Demonstration Turns Into The Real Deal … Updated …

July 4, 2011 by Barbara

Dear Readers …this writer heard that as the VFD was set to do their scheduled July 4th sea rescue demonstration it turned from a rescue demonstration into a real sea rescue that involved three children …Two were rescued and the third we are told was spotted by the BSO helicopter …Tragically it was too late for the seven year old … Below is the 1st Sentinel two reports from online… Channel 10 news came on scene later on as well….We are also told that both the VFD and the BSO did a very commendable job on such an active and busy day in LBTS…

‘Boy reportedly drowns at beach during Lauderdale-by-the-Sea July 4 event

5:47 p.m. EDT, July 4, 2011
A 7-year-old boy has reportedly drowned while swimming on the beach at Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Monday afternoon in the midst of a July 4 celebration.

The incident happened about 3:40 p.m. at El Prado Park on the 4500 block of North Avenue, town spokesman Steve d’Oliveira said. The boy, who has not yet been identified, was transported to a local hospital where he died about 5 p.m., d’Oliveira said.

Broward County Sheriff’s Office
Broward County

D’Oliveira said the Broward County Sheriff’s Office is investigating. A Sheriff’s spokeswoman could not be immediately reached Monday evening.

The town was holding a Fourth of July celebration at the beach, featuring two giant waterslides from noon to 4 p.m. and a skim boarding competition from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., according to an event flyer. A sea rescue demonstration was scheduled from 3 p p.m. to 3:30 p.m., the flyer said.

It is unclear what was happening at the exact time of the drowning’,0,5157913.story


‘Boy drowns at beach during Lauderdale-by-the-Sea July 4 event

6:07 p.m. EDT, July 4, 2011

A 7-year-old boy drowned while swimming on the beach at Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Monday afternoon in the midst of a July 4 celebration.

The boy, who has not been identified, apparently drowned in the ocean about 3:30 p.m. during a holiday family gathering at El Prado Park on the 4500 block of North Avenue, officials said.

The drowning happened just before a planned rescue demonstration, so lifeguards, volunteer firefighters and American Medical Response were on scene when a lifeguard noticed several children in distress in the water, Broward Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Dani Moschella said.

After safely retrieving several children, the rescue workers realized one boy was still missing, Moschella said.

A BSO helicopter pilot immediately responded and located the boy in the water. He was transported to Holy Cross Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Homicide detectives are investigating.

The town was holding a Fourth of July celebration at the beach, featuring two giant waterslides from noon to 4 p.m. and a skim boarding competition from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., according to an event flyer.’,0,5157913.story

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Here’s The Scoop … July 4th, 2011 In Lauderdale-By-The-Sea …

June 30, 2011 by Barbara




On Monday, July 4,2011, the Town of Lauderdale-by-the-Sea will host it’s annual Independence Day Celebration parade along El Mar Drive. The parade will begin at approximately 10 AM and will last approximately one hour. El Mar Drive will be closed to vehicular traffic. There will be periodic road closures along SR A1A and Commercial Boulevard. Please seek alternate travel routes or expect delays.

If you have any questions, contact the BSO LBTS district office at (954) 491-3920.

On Monday, July 4, 2011 the Town of Lauderdale-by-the-Sea will host it’s annual Independence Day Celebration fireworks display in the area of Anglin’s Fishing Pier. The fireworks show will begin at approximately 9 PM and will last approximately one half hour.

Guests should remember that alcohol nor illegal fireworks are permitted on the beach.

There will be heavy traffic delays traveling westbound at the conclusion of the event. Motorists should use extreme caution and watch for pedestrians.

If you have any questions, contact the BSO LBTS district office at (954) 491-3920.


‘The Volunteer Fire Department in conjunction with BSO, AMR and Town staff assisted in the organization of the upcoming Independence Day celebration of July 4th. The Volunteer Fire Department celebrates our 50 year anniversary and we are aiming to provide the town with a fun and safe
environment for the residents of the town.’


More to come…..

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Here’s The Scoop …. The Lauderdale-By-The-Sea June 28, 2011 Commission Meeting … More Swoosh Than Sweat …

June 28, 2011 by Barbara

IN BY 7 … & OUT BY 10 …

Dear Readers …the Commission sans an excused Comm. Sasser showed more swoosh than sweat when it came to dealing with the items on tonight’s agenda … The pledge was said… A second eloquent invocation was given by Rabbi Singer … The Mayor added onto the agenda the need to vote for an excused absence for Comm. Sasser who let it be known at the budget meeting last week he would be unable to attend…The VM made the motion with a 2nd from Comm. Clottey…and a 4-0 vote… The Mayor added on more dates for Congressman West to visit Jarvis Hall at the end of new business… Presentations were made with a longer than 5 minute opener from Broward League of Cities Mayor Debby Eisenger who commended the BSO for their quick response dealing with a car break-in at her home prior to her arrival…The Mayor spoke of the league…and what it offers to all as well as their stand on the County ethics code and what they have offered up to the Broward Commission on its impact to cities…They feel positive that those suggestions were heard …The Mayor was excited that she came stating she did not think a visit of this type had occurred in the past… The 2nd presentation on Coral Reef education would be deferred …Next up was the presentation made by AMR Chief Brooke Liddle commending VFD personnel for lifesaving 2 victims that he said were clinically deceased before aid was given by both the VFD and AMR resulting in being brought back…Those in the room had their photo op and walked down the dais to shake hands and be congratulated… Public Comments consisted of  a woman from Port Royale in Fort Lauderdale (across the intercoastal) who explained the negative impact she felt the proposed development would have if built …She said she was going to commissions looking for support after finding none at the Fort Laud. P + Z Board… The President of the Bel-Air Residents Civic Association joined in on looking for support citing impact from the same development across from it for their neighbors…property values would take a dive..noise…debris and lack of sunshine plus binoculars peering down on Bel-Air Intercoastal fronted properties from those in the 8-15 ft. buildings being proposed to be built… Arthur Franczak came forward to speak about the millage and state the use of it being low may be producing a “hallow victory” when it is multiplied by property values… The results are “eye opening” he declared as he backed up his assertions by giving copies of his calculations to the Town Clerk for each member of the dais … Edmund Malkoon spoke of attending Diane Boutin’s memorial…reminiscing of his interactions with her and putting forth to go beyond the park furniture and sign put in place by her dear friend Sandra Booth in naming the public safety complex or the Chamber for her…He spoke of adding the north end portals to any plans to improve the portals as stated at the budget meeting as well as deal with the infrastructure …Rosalee Malkoon came to the podium after her son and stated she would not remain complacent as she stated she saw a lack of compassion for the widow of the hyperbaric chamber during her lien mitigation process from the Commission and felt the woman was owed an apology from them…(see previous post…no lack of compassion…just lack of stating the facts by both the widow and the gentleman who stood alongside her…in this writer’s opinion)… Bill Vitale came up to say don’t lower taxes…spend the Oriana million on the medians on El Mar…approve Tera Mar entry…kudos to AMR/VFD for their working together…and wanting the new sweeper to sweep residential streets 1x a month…The BSO report was next ..VM Dodd asked the Chief to explain the non-emergency number change in Aug. (see prev. post/Town website) …VMayor asked about the Communications Center cost FY 2011-12 …Chief Llerena said the cost will not be passed on to us… The VM also asked about the arrests made in report …The Chief responded (in backup)… passed 4-0….The VFD was up next …The VM asked about the FFII training shown in the report…The Chief explained it and said in Aug. 4 FFs will be FF IIs… VM Dodd also thanked the VFD for their involvement in the July 4th preparation…Comm. Vincent sounding more and more these days like a poor version (if that’s possible) of former VM McIntee spoke like he’s a buddy of the VFD about going on “mock up calls” with them …stating it was no surprise to him they did what they did to be awarded for their lifesaving awards..Comm. Clottey added her congrats and stated she was happy to have voted them back in as a Comm….passed 4-0…(electioneering hmmm….) …No questions AMR passed 4-0… Vincent said “Dittos to you as well”… The Town Manager was able to actually give the report and stated the update and problems with A1A …contract problems….cost …FDOT receiving an FDOT approved sub-contracted landscaping company ….BSO contract not proceeding in June…will do in July…Comm. bridge to be painted by FDOT…Coral Reef snafus …(prev. post)…bad weather as well as permits that ran out and besides the delays there are breaches again contractually …TAtty. involved…so more legal costs…OUCH!… Pat Himelberger…Asst. Muni Services Dir. found a cheaper alternative for phones in Town Hall etc…saves $18,000 but comes with a $3,5000 pre- payment penalty…Later on under item the cost is shown and what we get for the change..(seemed like a lot of money to change to accomplish what was desired)… TM met with VFD Chief Paine for new budget to be presented …spoke of new improved website …and asked for questions from Commissioners …Comm. Clottey wanted to know if service would be available for those to use their internet after a hurricane in the Town Hall area…The TM said if the the Town Hall/island were open it could be accessible at no cost …TM Hoffmann added that she had just found out there was a reduction in the tipping fees but we would have a problem seeing that reduction due to using Choice… The Mayor asked about the Choice contract  and the end of it being near…TM Hoffmann replied it has a year and required a 6 month heads up to Choice and a need to sit down as a Comm. to discuss before that in Sept/Oct….The VM wanted to know the recycling impact as well …TM will look into it…passed 4-0 …TAtty. Trevarthen was absent former TAtty. Dan Abbott was sitting in..He had no report and asked for questions…none were forthcoming at that time… The Consent agenda items passed without discussion included a new $60,000 sweeper for Don Prince and his dept. as well as a contract with a new company for A1A… It would have been more cost effective in this writer’s opinion to have the new company do it all and forgo the new sweeper…The Mayor had that one right…unfortunately no Comm.member revisited the purchase… Also no discussion on extending the contract for Grau & Assoc. for a 2nd year at the same rate…all passed 4-0…Item 11a. ranking the sanitary sewer evaluations was pulled by the VM to ask about Tele-vac and if their townwide videos of the system would be provided to the company hired…Both Don Prince and the TM said it would …No other questions passed 4-0… 11b Emergency debris removal ..VM took it separately to comment he hoped we never needed to use it…Don Prince said “Amen”…passed 4-0 …(we piggybacked off another muni_)…. 11 f. was Village Grilles Friday night special event for 1 year… VM Dodd wanted to thank Dave for all he does in bringing people to town with his events…and asked Asst. TM Bentley about the Jan-April inclusion of 101 Ocean on the event citing problems in the past for 101 being on another business’  permit…Bentley said that would be addressed with the TAtty. to cover insurances etc… The Mayor also thanked Dave and said she was happy to see the additional officer for crossing A1A at Comm. Blvd. being picked up by Dave…Apparently she did not read and/or remember that the backup stated Dave was open to the idea…it was not a done deal…yet…Comm. Clottey thanked Dave as well but thought both lanes (east and west El Mar) would not be shut down unless it was for public safety… Now it appeared it would be for season with 101 Ocean…The TM seemed to agree with Clottey and said that language could be added …Bentley said they met with the businesses as well as BSO and traffic engineers…It would depend on the band and the event…Clottey wanted public safety language inserted…The VM wanted to hear from the applicant first…Dave Gadsby came up and spoke as well on the walk around meeting that included the TM and staff and all involved were for both sides being closed due to the size of the crowds… The Mayor questioned if the valet would be moved (that was also in the backup)…The answer was yes… The outcome after Comm. Vincent corrected Dave on his directions (Dave said n/s instead of e/w) …and asked Bud Bentley who would make that decision…and Bentley said it would depend on the band…be done prior to the event and it would be trial and error …was a passing vote of 4-0 ….The Commission really went swoosh through the ordinances and the resolutions… The TAtty. read each one…sidewalk cafes…no pub comment…Mayor said it had been discussed a the Comm. comment passed 4-0…Same for the signage and bikes TAtty… Mayor stating a rep from the bikes was in the hall …no public comment…Rep was atty for the company from Coker and Feiner in Ft. Laud…Yep, Readers may recall the name Coker as in Atty. Richard Coker who had run-ins with former Comm. McIntee in 2007 in LBTS… (old names pop up often in this meeting… Craven + Thomas…Keith + Assoc)… The VM asked about the problems of full kiosks …Mr Feiner said they were monitored by personnel and alternative locked places could be used until the town was more “saturated” with kiosks in the future… He also addressed the cost…$5 1st 30 min….1st half hour free…surcharge of 50 cents after that and higher cost the longer bike used…swipe cards available…1 yr membership $45.00 …passed 4-0…Next was ordinance to change code requiring TAtty. to look at all contracts…TM stated now that will happen over $15,000…under that amount TM will take over with TAtty. approved forms.. The Mayor said they discussed it at roundtable …no pub/Comm. comments …passed 4-0…Use of Jarvis Hall …same drill TAtty..Mayor …No pub/Comm. comment…passed 4-0… Resolutions …Lowered fire permit  and inspection fees …lower by 50% …read by TAtty… Chief Paine addressed the changes…and TM said it was likely due to no full-time Fire Marshal ..only part-time (Chief Paine)… Comm. Vincent said he had call wanting to know if it meant 50% reduction in fire assess. fees…NO!… It was clarified …passed 4-0 after no pub comment…Reso for going back to 2 commission meetings a month…Reade by TAtty…Mayor stated roundtables were not working…no pub/ Comm. comment…passed 4-0 …Resolution for new purchasing manual…just as the others were done read by TAtty…Mayor said it was a long time coming…and discussed prior…TM spoke of 2 typos…adding a 0 to make one limit 2000.00 and a change to a paragraph on pg. 48…no pub/Comm. comment passes 4-0… Quasi Judicial Public Hearing was held for Diamonds and Doggies to pass a conditional use application for it to be located next to Kilwinns and Cocoyoghurt…The swoosh became a sweat for the owner/applicant when Comm. Vincent tried way too hard to micro-manage and help the guy out… It was downright comical…to minus or add to the 10 pound weight limit to thwart a potential “gotcha” if a puppy exceeded the limit… and the noise if the door was opened or closed …In the end the applicant looked like he was begging for Comm. Vincent to stop so the expected vote would go through… It did passed 4-0…amended to allow dogs to 12 lbs…The only public comment came after Bob Fleishman came up needed to be sworn in and said “Pass it now! We want this dog store!”… They took a break …Came back a 9 pm for Comm. Comments …Comm. Vincent was up first but was having difficulty pulling up his comments..Comm. Clottey went next …offered condolences to George Crossman’s family saying he would be missed as well as offering sympathy to Town Clerk White on the passing of her mother…. (White was not at the meeting)… She asked for all to come out for the 4th and meet your neighbors…get sweaty watching the parade and see fireworks at the beach…Comm. Vincent also offered condolences to both Town Clerk White and George Crossman’s family stating he was a neighbor as well…He then went off to do some PR for the Town staff as well as himself saying he promised to lead and he has done so…He asked all to thank the staff for what they have done …He cited also the Master Plan (Readers know where I stand on this one…polar opposite from Vincent) … The Mayor thanked all for the public comments made…spoke of the Beach clean-up on the 2nd and again on July 5th at 9 am …She thanked the Vice Mayor for taking on July 4th and hoped he had better weather than she encountered …She extended her condolences as well…and did the familiar we want to hear from you on the budget… The Vice Mayor discussed Hillsboro Inlet and thanked Aruba Beach cafe and Village Grille for adding 2 water slides at the beach for the 4th of July…from noon -4pm… He went through the activities offered  all day long on the 4th …(see prev. post/Town Website/Scoop site) …VM Dodd also spoke of the Master Plan and his desire to expedite the downtown area as well as to do one or more south end of town residential “blocks” to keep in-line with the UM “1 block” improvement…This balances out business and residential improvements…what UM called the common areas as well as your front doors…  Old Business went just as quick as the ordinances/Resos …Don Prince said it would not exceed $30,000 (it’s at $29,429)…Mayor said that was great asked about the liability/maintenance …Don said contract would be coming to Comm. to approve that… Comm. Vincent asked who would pull permit for project…Don said Town and sub-contractors would work under Town… TM said Don did a great job…passes 4-0…New Buisness was delegate for Floria League of Cities 85th Annual Conference…Clottey was going …The Mayor stated she was going…Clottey said Mayor should be delegate…VM 2nd it …passes 4-0…Fort Lauderdale’s Port Royale and the involvement of out Town was discussed much longer with only Comm. Clottey wanting to spend the $1,500 on Planner Cecelia Ward to pursue Fort Lauderdale’s Commission on going ahead with the buildings…The others had concerns over using taxpayer funds although Atty. Abbot aid if they deemed it a public benefit they could justify it… The Fort Lauderdale P + Z passed it 9-0 and now Bud Bentley explained it was up to one Fort laud. Comm. to put it on by July 15th to address it to move forth…have public input…approve…amend or deny it… Comm. Clottey said it could happen to other residents on the Intercoastal in  town….(Tall buildings are already across the water from residential properties in the south end) …The Mayor was concerned on the ICW for impact from more boats etc… She said they should contact Fort Laud Comm.s on their own as Comm. to Comm… Comm. Clottey made a motion to go ahead with paying the planner…received no 2nd…After the Mayor asked her if she wanted the Comm. to contact the Fort Laud Commissioners she did so although she did not follow the TM’s recommendation for the Mayor to send it…stating it should be from the whole Commission…passes 4-0 ….The telephone replacement was presented by Pat Himelberger the consultant turned Asst. Municipal Service Dir. who stated they will save alot over At&T …The TM added it will now allow for residents to leave voice messages after hours and contact separate employees…cost $31,225… The VM asked about any lines needing changing and was told it would be minimal …Seems alot of money for VMail …Selection of Continuing Professional Services for Municipal Construction, Repair & Maintenance Projects …Town Manager said 12 firms had all or some of the services …It would save time going out for services to have these companies on board …One company from 1st table was taken out due to lack of background info received..Dollar amounts also not included thus far…She would bring them back individually since this was the first time doing this in order for the Commission to see the contracts … No discussion passes 4-0…Last was a new ATV for the VFD …The VFD Chief explained the 2007 purchase was not his and did not know why they were chosen…He went on to state the uses and the need…The Mayor spoke of seeing one in the water …reporting it to the Chief with phone pics taken…He fired on e VFD member and the other was reprimanded for both the act and saying it did not happen…Comm. Vincent asked about monitoring use and unnecessary use on the beach… The Chief responded as expected …Vincent went on to talk about the dress code of those on ATVs and representing the Town and that he had spoken to “Danny” Chavez about it…The Chief said new manual requires dress code…Vincent perked up asking if that was after he implemented it… (This was brought to the VFD many times since 2007 by other commissioners)…VM Dodd asked if the sale proceeds from the old ATVs would go into the vehicle replacement fund and the TM stated it would depend on who bought the ATV which fund it would end up in…passes 4-0…Last item was Congressman West to come to Jarvis Hall …First the Mayor said they should wait for Comm. Sasser but they decided to go ahead…After some confusion on the Mayor’s part of when Labor Day is…The first choice was Sept. 28…then Oct. 17th…ending with a tentative Oct. 18th…which is a Tuesday…at night… They adjourned 4 minutes before 10 pm…More swoosh than sweat…

Link to video….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Something Marketing Research/Branding & A Marketing Director Can’t Fix In Lauderdale-By-The-Sea ..

June 28, 2011 by Barbara


Dear Readers … This writer received a series of e-mails from a blogger in Italy some months back…I briefly replied and offered up where she could contact those Town agencies and elected officials that could be of assistance….Thinking they should be interested in what she was bringing forth and would want absolutely want to know…or so I thought… As far as I am aware of …. although she followed through with contacting the Town Administration as well as the LBTS-VFD there was no response ..reaction..or action taken …When I saw that the Hyperbaric Chamber was on the May 24, 2011 agenda for a whopper of a lien for violations they wanted reduced I sent the information on to the blogger …She picked up from there…As Readers are aware …The Hyperbaric Chamber was closed a few years back due to a horrific fire that resulted in the death of a grandmother and her grandchild who was a patient from Italy … The Hyperbaric Chamber reopened this last January …It turned out it was approved to reopen by the Town (the Commission was unaware until the Sentinel article after the fact…prev. posts)…along with the LBTS-VFD and Broward County… So of course it was quite a surprise when low and behold the Hyperbaric Chamber liens were on the May 24,2011 Commission Agenda to mitigate over a half a million dollars in fines resulting from years of longstanding violations the Town was well aware of!….(prev. posts)…The Widow of the founder came with a gentleman and pleaded poverty as well as stating she has long been removed from the business operations …. The Commission reacted with sympathy but imposed a much larger amount than she wanted to pay …..It appears that both statements made by the Widow were untrue due to a quick payment received by the Town within 2 weeks for approx. $152,000 and the information contained in the blog that was sent to me showing the Widow’s involvement with the business ….(see link below) …Unfortunately the lien was done as a Consent Agenda item and not as a Quasi Judicial Hearing which would then have made any false statements made under oath actionable …Perhaps that needs to be looked into as well for lien mitigation…We face the 2011-12 budget and the “whole enchilada” desires of those who have the political pulpit at this point in time in LBTS to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on marketing and branding our town using a cadre of consultants and studies that beget studies along with creating the $100,000 a year full-time Marketing Director position when we have situations like this out there on the world- wide web and are we are saddled with mostly 2-star accommodations when “rating Lauderdale-By-The-Sea hotels” is  Googled  …I found out when I did a Google after reading her blog about the motel that many patients are “required” to stay in described in a manner that compared it to a third world country… (see link below) … The blogger wrote about the motel due to comments made by the Widow and the gentleman alongside her at the podium at the May 24th  Comm. Mtg. informing the Commission about patients who come for treatment and stay in town and spend money in our town during their extended stay…Once again it seems to be more of the same 2nd yr. “bubble” trouble for those in charge pre-2012 election…. We need to take care of these things before the marketing/branding research/campaign and a Marketing Director become line-items in the 5-year budget plans ….as they are destined to become…

The e-mail/link to blog…

marilisa rizzetto – Town of Lauderdale by the Sea
Tuesday, June 28, 2011 7:15 AM
“marilisa rizzetto”

“Barbara Cole”
Hi Barbara,
How are you?
Have a look at my last post please. The title is pinocchio at town of Lauderdale by the Sea.

Suggest this post of mine to the mayor, the manager and the whole commitee of the Town.

Have a good day


Marilisa Rizzetto
Via A. Volta, 4
30016 Jesolo Lido (Ve)
cell/mobile 335 xxxxxxx
skype marilisarizzetto
e-mail [email protected]
e-mail [email protected]


more to come……..

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Change Your Address Books/Rolodex/Posted Notes/Ipods/Blackberrys … August 1st Lauderdale- By- The-Sea BSO To Change Non-Emergency Number …

June 17, 2011 by Barbara

Dear Readers … Heads up to a press release and a campaign to get the word out by July 4th on a change on August 1, 2011 for the non-emergency number to call for BSO…

‘In order to improve and regionalize the Sheriff’s services to all Broward County communities, BSO LBTS, along with the police departments from several other nearby municipalities, will migrate communications services from the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) and dispatch center at the BSO Public Safety Building to the PSAP and dispatch center in Pompano Beach .

This move will have little to no impact on the affected law enforcement officers and general public with one important exception:

Effective August 1, 2011, the non-emergency dispatch contact number for use by LBTS residents will change from (954) 765-4321 to (954) 786-4200.’

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Keeping Notes & Mairzy Doats …

May 9, 2011 by Barbara


Dear Readers … a walking 1 year old Lilly who only wants to go…go …go …leaves limited time to stop and sit down to post or even finish posting in these seemingly endless hectic days that result from such milestones …There seems to be just enough extra moments to catch up with those out and about in town and to take a look and tag information received and retrieved on the internet … then jot it down on a posted note and stick it onto the pile that cover the left side of my laptop of posted notes to remember and refer to … Below is a fistful of those and should make it possible to make that imposing mound of posted notes near my left wrist a much less imposing mass …literally and figuratively for this writer …



“Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?

Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?

If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?

Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”


When it came to the assembly line of ordinances that came before the Commission at their last commission meeting for first reading and second reading along with the plethora of resolutions…thirteen in all …..the above song came to this writer’s mind as each one was read by the Town Attorney….. “If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey.”… “Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”…   All those ords and resos brought forth very little Commission discussion save one item that removed signage due to the Master Plan redevelopment plans in the works (after being approved prior in lengthy P +Z discussion as well as this Comm. and being written up by the TAtty.)  with no public comment on 12 of the items … This writer really wanted at least one of the Commission members to put the onus on the Town Atty. that these 13 ords and resos actually contained what had been agreed to and actually no longer contained what was directed to be no longer included because there is no way they all read through the 13 items before approving them especially after receiving them on the evening of the previous Friday or later depending on when they picked up their fob with the backup and actually opened it up before Wednesday night’s vote… There is reason for such a request being on the record in my opinion…We have seen in the past votes for ords and resos which did not contain either in the final approved product only to find out later on while facing a situation that came before them … I further wonder the cost for all these ords and resos from the Town’s contracted law firm as some of those newly passed this evening are still not correct and will need to be amended or totally redone after the Master Plan as well as the Comprehensive Plan and the Charter next year… According to the April TM Progress Report “costs running ahead of budget” with out attorney costs at this point in the fiscal year … in the Mid-Year Budget Report there was a current monthly charge that was included that included “Administration 52,730.03/ Legal Expense 44,859.00 with more resos wanted by Mayor Minnet at each Commission/Roundtable meeting to make the County/State know where we as a Town stand on different issues…The question is what does a reso cost?…What does such a reso do once it is received by the County or State? …(filed and forgotten?) …. Is it really necessary?… One such issue coming back on the next Roundtable Tues night besides the signs is conditional use parking program …It appears that it was not made clear to the Commission that conditional use was already in our code …which means for those who want to continue to use their parking lots for beach parking …. parking not needed to meet their parking requirements … “shared parking” … they must follow the steps in place which include a $900 application fee and they must appear in front of the P & Z …Hmmm… Again we are going to “stick it” to our two major tourist attractions in town Aruba Beach Cafe and the Pier … Shades of the fees former TM Colon collected in her administration…I don’t believe it was done in the same manner by any means by this Administration …but due to a lack of full information being presented to the Commission of the impact to add this parking program to the conditional use code which has now led to this most unfortunate outcome … “If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”….

Now to more from the pile …

The BSO contract is on tomorrow night’s Roundtable and contained in the backup on the Town website …As previously posted Comm. Sasser asked the question of going out for RFP after he stated he had been asked and assumed other Commissioners had as well… I have asked at least one other who has not been asked for an alternative to the BSO and when I have asked the question of others from both sides of the political divide in town …I too hear no desire for an alternative public safety provider nor our own department… The Commission after some lengthy disjointed discussion on the dais called for a workshop first per the Mayor but changed it to the Roundtable after the Town Manager stated they did not have much on the agenda … According to the backup 3e BSO informed the Town that the State Attorney General in an opinion concerning Hallandale Beach found that no public safety provider can cross over to another municipality to supply service except by mutual aid…The TAtty. concurred …That leaves one option…our own police force …That option was a loser in the last election…big time!… In the meantime further numbers came to  the negotiations last week as the TM said they would…According to the backup from a May 5,2011 meme the TAtty. states the increase will be $545,000 more than last year …which avid readers will recall this writer posted previously would be the case…I have been hearing this since last fall …. a line item budget has been requested …. The regional costs are not included in that price as we were told would be the case going forth with services such as the call center ..The TM added the cost for that was $132,000 not $125,000 as stated at the 4/27/11 meeting… There are grant programs that would possibly allow some aid for a police staff position as well as using some of the LETF …(not sure how that one works?) … Also the backup states the cost for the crime lab being tacked on separately to municipalities has not arisen to date… This writer is still of the opinion that the current BSO Police are our town police department …Public Safety is always the largest piece of the budget pie in any municipality and the actual cost now known in black and white when compared to what we were expecting we would be hit with is half or a quarter of what was long believed to be coming our way after our “subsidy” ran out! … Commissioners should now move forward with the BSO …working with them to deal with the County… “If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”….

Looks like the Municipal Election will come a few months early next year just as it did in 2008.. Backup 3ai states it is an option just as it was then and will save the Town $11,412 …If Mayor Minnet, Vice Mayor Dodd and Comm. Clottey decide to make another run as all are allowed to do under the term limits… they have to go along with the earlier election… not only due to a precedent set but for fiscal responsibility… The date could be January 3 or 31, 2012 … qualifying date for candidates mid-Nov. (no set date as of yet) … That leads to the next item on the agenda put on by VM Dodd …item 3aii Referendum Ballot items on the big ticket items that will result from the Master Plan Redevelopment Plan in progress… Included in the above item 3ai was the timeline to make that happen…
‘January 3, 2012 Election Ballot Deadline- Approximately late October or early November, 2012
Ordinance on 1St reading August 23, 2011
Ordinance on 2d reading September 27, 2011
Send to Supervisor of Elections Early October 2011
January 31 2012 Election Ballot Deadline- Mid November, 2012
Ordinance on 1St reading September 27, 2011
Ordinance on 2d reading October 25, 2011
Send Ballot to Supervisor of Elections Mid October, 2011

When covering this item it is imperative due to the expected change in the date of the election for the Commission to move ahead and get the referendum items on …for financing the undergrounding of El Mar Drive/ Town Hall Complex and Plaza Redevelopment (El Prado parking lot) /public parking garages …It is this writer’s opinion that any elected official running for another term and chooses not vote to allow for these referendum items to be on the ballot in January should seriously reconsider running again… This writer has heard from many in the south end of town as well as SRC and they will seal the fate of 2-4 more years based on that decision… These taxpayers are not stupid…They do vote with their pocketbooks and do not believe these items are moot after the 2012 election unless they the voters make it clear they are moot… SRC  year after year has overwhelmingly voted no to reserves wanting to hold onto their own money and then be assessed at the time additional funds are required and votes are required on the projects …Building B which is my building has a new assessment of $4000+ based on my apartment size for this year … Add to that the fees that have increased for sewer…water…and other utilities as well as gas going up…groceries going up and those who have seen their savings take a hit… Others who missed the “hit” personally last time are feeling it now… They want to vote on the redevelopment…These return candidates know they cannot win without SRC and the voters in the south end of town…  VM Dodd should not close out this item until he has consensus one way or the either with each member on the record… Add to that the Mayor has an item 3b to address whether to have an Aug. meeting as VM Dodd wants to stop the avalanche that arises each year in September when the Comm. forgoes Aug. altogether …More important now would be the required 1st ord. reading for the ballot items in Jan!… “If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”….

Item 3f is the Parking System Debt … and paying it off… The Town as expected wants to keep it… We  borrowed $2 million dollars at 3.95% in 2005  compounded monthly from Sun Trust … Annual principal payments are $146,000 with annual interest payments at $31,000 … The Parking Fund pays the costs… as of May 3, 2012 …

‘The payoff amount of the loan is as follows
$1,396,965.27 Principal
112,223 Pre-payment fee
4904.90 Interest
$1,514,094.07 Total’
The Finance Director answered the question of the pre-payment penalty reiterating what he stated on April 27, 2011 that it was standard language in these type of contracts offering protection to the bank… He went on to give some ways to pay off the loan after saying he had spoken to Sun Trust about the penalty cost and they are looking into it (Comm. Sasser asked that be done) .. adding the penalty cost is too high at the present time for prime rate interest rates are at the lowest we have seen them in “modern times”… He said if we pay off the loan it will take 2-2&1/2 years to recover the pre-penalty costs (if not reduced) by avoiding the int. payments we would make… He again stated the Parking Fund does not have the funds to pay off the debt …adding the Gen Fund has $3 million and to take it from there would cut into projects …(Hmmm…how much was transferred to CDs in the last few months for 12-18 a really low return rate?) … Finally Mr Haag states we could refinance the loan… which may or may not cost us depending on the bank we deal with (requires an RFP or SunTrust negotiations) … This item ends with the desire to have the funds to expand the parking …signage …location and pay stations  over the next 3-5 years… This writer says…pay off the debt…What does it cost for the Parking Dept. vs. what we get back? .. You bet parking garages better be on the ballot… “If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”….

Is LBTS growing government… Is patronage a word that’s very familiar in Chicago becoming the norm in LBTS?… We have a list consultants …some with ties to our Town Manager in her capacity as a headhunter for Town Manager positions as previously posted with the hiring for one month at $6,500 of ousted Davie TM Gary Shimun (similar to LBTS Colon ouster) …simplify the permit fee schedule and keep permit fees for small jobs reasonable… Now we hear a consultant Pat Himelberger has been placed into the budgeted position of Asst Municipal Services Director for the remainder of the fiscal year. …working 25-30 hours a week on an interim basis in this position. …(maxed out under the $15,000 TM no Comm. required allowance?) ….She is taking over some projects such as the new telephone system, parking operations RFP and will help to review all of the responses we will be getting to various RFPS and RFQs. …TM Hoffmann knows her through work she did at the City of Oakland Park where she progressed through the ranks from Special Projects Coordinator to Assistant to the City Manager, and Assistant City Manager. Pat is a certified Project Manager….Perhaps this is a “stepping stone”…for the Master Plan Redevelopment position coordinator to come?… To this writer it seems a strange title for work being done… budgeted position or not…  I believe in the past that position showed up in front of the individual who is now the  head of Community Standards… In the TM April Report Ms. Hoffmann stated she was not going to replace the part time position of a finance employee who resigned …and was increasing the salary for further employment of a new Finance Director… Now we have a new part time employee…no mention of the salary…  An RFQ  for a variety of professional services is set to go out as early as the 18th …most covers services that we would need for redevelopment projects …(studies/designs/redesigns and coordinating companies used) …”If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”….

The Halloween investigation has ended with nada!… We heard the BSO took their investigation report to the States Atty. and was turned down by more than one due to the insufficient evidence of the items… Also it appears that the person with the answers of what was in the warehouse and what was removed…Marc Furth would not be interviewed saying it was only to give him “grief” and any further information would have to be done through his attorney.. That appears to have been the extent of that portion of the investigation… There was a “hand-off” of blame through the ranks of the previous Administration when asked about the contents missing and who gave the go ahead for Furth to remove his items from the west warehouse… We hear  former TM Colon responded that she asked Municipal Dir. Prince to personally assist the move with Furth of only Furth’s items…Prince passed the job on and does not state he was told not to… The employee who went with Furth saw Furth discard items into a dumpster stating they were ruined from the bad weather at the previous Halloween…He took a “mummy” with him… That employee and another employee said they were not bothered by the items going in the dumpster believing they belonged to Furth… They said they passed that information up through the ranks after the fact… Others in town were interviewed on the weather and the items..They discounted bad weather ..No weather report was included in the report to clear that up…(This writer was there that year and posted…no bad weather is correct)… The receipts for the Furths added up to approx. $500 and total of items is said to be well above that… The outcome for the Town…we now keep a current inventory…which is good…The outcome for the former Haunted House / Special Event Coordinators Furth … is bad…leaving a bad taste in the mouth of anyone who reads the actions and the outcome of this report …Hmmm… will that come up on May 15th as the CIC meets to vote in new board members?…”If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”….

Speaking of Furth… takes me to the coral reef project still not in the water after all these years and monies spent… The Town Manager informed the Commission a few months ago about trying to get a grant for the project and signage… Last week the Town learned it would most likely not get any funding… After asking for feedback one reason that came back for no funding we hear was due to the feasibility of Biorock technology…This writer posted about that long ago when we were at odds with the vendor and I Googled to research the issue… The outcome though …this Commission chose to go ahead and provide further funding for future maintenance…”If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”….

This writer was sent some pics of the new benches and Adirondack chairs the Town Manager purchased for the pavilion and El Prado Park …colorful pinks, yellows etc …with a Key West feel … Like em? … Cost not disclosed ..yet …

The Town consultant for traffic engineering looked into our contract with Broward County after they turned us down for re-striping some roads in the south end of town…She told us to appeal and after doing so the County is going to that and more …saving us approx. $5,000 if we had to do it ourselves… Hopefully the Town will look townwide for other areas in need of work as well …

A few months ago it was the return of the issue of speedbumps on south Seagrape a subject hashed out long ago by the Town …Now it is the issue of Terra Mar and beach access … 100 signatures were given from residents wanting access… The Mayor put it on the Roundtable… The Mayor should have already been well acquainted with the answer the TAtty. gave on the issue once again… There is no statute requiring access to the beach …The problem for Terra mar is still the same one …only a portion of Terra Mar homes have access through a beach private access entryway that goes along with the property… Tera Mar is certainly asking for a lot these days… ala Bel Air pre- 2010 …

The County has saved millions to fight redistricting which will impact our County Comm. Chip LaMarca the most… upwards of $30 million …Funny how money is saved for items that impact future elected positions… This writer is not for redistricting … Broward County’s new Ethics Ord. is on the Roundtable for tomorrow night.. It is quite “enhanced” and overwhelming to municipalities …Question is can they adhere to it themselves? …

Save The Date …May 19, 2011 9 am-4 pm Broward SR A1A Highway Day & Municipal Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) Roundtable and Expo at the Wyndham Sea Gardens Beach and Tennis Resort 615 N. Ocean Blvd. Pompano Beach… Network & Expo displays from various local municipalities and businesses along the A1A corridor. More info…call 954-946-7195/954-401-0932/954-786-4048…CME Representatives Deerfield Beach, Hillsboro Beach, Pompano Beach, Sea Ranch Lakes, Lauderdale By The Sea, Fort Lauderdale, Dania Beach, Hollywood and Hallandale Beach …RSVP by May 13, 2011…

The new calendar for May is on the Town website…so small it is hard to make out the dates to save for in-town events in Jarvis Hall … Hope the banners are up and the publicity is large-scale for the May 21, 2011 U of Miamai Design Charette 9am-noon as well as the days to follow open to the public … 5/22 10am-5 pm …5/23 9am-5pm …. 5/24 9am-5pm…5/25 9am-5pm…5/26 9am-5pm with a 6 pm Commission Workshop -Review UM Designs…

The knock on the door means Lilly is ready to go…The mound of posted notes is at a much more comfortable level now …and this writer will stop for now ….  with …

more to come….

“If the words sound queer and funny to your ear, A little bit jumbled and jivey. Say, Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy. Oh, mairzy doats and dozy doats and little lambsy divey A kiddle divey, too. Wouldn’t you?”….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … The April 27,2011 Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Commission Meeting … The April Town Manager Report … Sugar Coated With A Wrench Thrown In The Mix …

May 1, 2011 by Barbara


Dear Readers … the Town Manager monthly report was moved up in the agenda …It was moved to the end after the new Commission took over …Over the last 4 months though the TM continuously took take a pass along with the Commission on discussing the content due to the late hour placement …Unfortunately this earlier placement did not fix that ongoing problem after the Commission went off the reservation following a question asked by Comm. Sasser after the TM spoke about the first item in her report concerning the BSO contract negotiations…

The Town Manager began her report after the Mid-Year Budget Report (see prev. post) …and she would “run through these items really quickly.”… She stated she knew everybody was most interested in the BSO negotiations and proceeded to describe having the first meeting with the BSO (and the  “Interim” Finance Director according to the backup) … She went through what was contained in the backup explaining “The BSO is going to a very standardized contract with all the cities they renegotiate with.” …She went on to say she agrees with this type of contract as do most city managers which she further explained stops what had happened in the past when “people were basically looking at other people’s contracts and saying I want that, I don’t want this.”…She said it made alot more sense ….adding it is much more transparent contract where we know what is the costs to provide police services in your town and that is what BSO is charging you… She said they identified what services are considered regional and should not be charged to the contract cities and so far the County has agreed to that…She anticipated questioning of why the County is involved and informed all that it is the County that funds the Sheriff’s office ( The Sheriff’s audit was given to the County Comm. last month) …The County has been approving contracts like ours …TM Hoffmann stated she had suggested some changes to the contract but did not expand on what those changes were and was never asked by the Commission throughout their discussion to address those changes that the TM stated would be brought back with a formal response at the next meeting to take place this week …In the backup the TM wrote they had ‘informal agreement on most of those suggestions’….After that TM Hoffmann said the big question was what will it cost and she did not give a figure (again, we have been told it would be around $500,000+) but said that figure was promised “or at least what they are going to propose as the cost to continue services at the same level” …BSO Chief Llerena came to the podium to state it was slated to be released on May 1st for all municipalities after the County and the Sheriff get together on the proposed budget…The Mayor asked him to remain at the podium to answer any further questions… The TM went on to state that she would take a look at the numbers and that they had talked about a line item budget which was not received in the past negotiations…She did make a point to say that the Chief had been sharing such a report with her on a monthly basis…as well as to state “I have to say I have sat in negotiations with BSO on municipal contracts in another city in the past and it has been such a pleasure. Things have changed dramatically in the way BSO sits down and negotiates. It’s very transparent and it’s very friendly.”…She said she would be back with the numbers after she looks at them and then they will see how they it fits into the new budget… TM Hoffmann said the BSO is only interested in recouping their direct costs from the cities they contract with and if a city determines that cost is not affordable then the city sits down with the BSO to talk about adjustments in staffing in order to reduce the costs… She stated those are discussions the Commission/Administration will be having at a policy level as they go through the budget process…

BC-This is when the proverbial wrench came in and started to turn the nuts and bolts of this LBTS-BSO re-negotiation for the new contract slated according to the TM report backup to be completed no later than June 30th counter clockwise …

Comm. Sasser started out with a joke as BSO Chief Oscar Llerena stood at the podium ..”I first wanted to dispel the rumor we were trading Lt. Cedeno with one one of the police women of Broward County!”… It received a warm chuckle from all…and this writer wishes Comm. Sasser would have left it at that…He went on to ask the Town Manager a question he said he had been asked …”Are we not getting any other bids other than negotiating with BSO?”… The TM responded she “has no direction to do so.”… There was an uncomfortably long silence that followed that response and for some reason the TM chose to fill it… in my opinion …. as the nuts and bolts began to loosen … “If the Commission chooses to send me down that course we can do that.”…She continued on to inform them that if they were thinking of going to contract with Fort Lauderdale or Pompano Beach (PB is BSO so that leaves Fort Lauderdale) the Sheriff has to approve it because he would have to deputize the new police officers to work outside their municipality  (I do not recall that from the current contract or addendum) …as she added “Then there is obviously another option to form our own police department.”…She reiterated her direction thus far was to negotiate with BSO…

BC- The wrench…the nuts and the bolts…. We had many such discussions about other options prior to the 2010 LBTS Municipal election and this writer posted all of it… The highest priority this writer and the candidates heard out on the campaign trail after former Town Manager Colon and her contract was to retain the BSO police in LBTS!…  To go down this road at this juncture is mind boggling to say the least …

Commissioner Sasser stated again he just wanted to “get it out there”…and he said he would leave it to the Mayor on how “handle that”… He said “If everyone is ok whatever”…reiterating it was a question he gets and was sure other Commissioners had been asked as well.. From there he asked about the “writeup” and as they look at the budget each or use it as a budget item he wondered if they cannot afford it would they have the right to terminate at that point and asked about our rights… The TM there would be no agreement on a budget or the Town determines costs to be too expensive…confirming the contract provides us the option not to proceed and the notice time was not long to get out of it… Comm. Sasser said his concern was if we enacted the termination would we still have time under old costs to find another solution…The Town Manager said the contract anticipates that kind of situation and the Sheriff in the contract affirms he will provide services for as long as it takes the Town to start with a new provider or own force… Comm. Sasser asked it that would be under the new or old price … TM Hoffmann said it would be negotiated…

BC- From what I remember the contract says a price will be negotiated I believe month to month and the Sheriff will stay on until he is sure they are leaving us with the same level of service they provide…I also believe that would mean we are going to pay two police departments…. for an uncertain length of time…Also I recall that we found out after a long period of being led to believe we own all the police vehicles that we only own one or two…Add to that the equipment we supplied at the time BSO took over will be given back to the Town but I do not think the contract states it needs to be anything other than what they started out with all those years ago…not any new equipment replacements…

Vice Mayor Dodd was up next and he thanked the TM for “an absolutely terrific report”…and said he appreciated how much work goes into it… This writer will delve more into that report and must respectfully disagree with the VM) … He went on to say he questioned the regional services portion of the contract saying he could see “the thin end of the wedge here” for our town as he went on to describe the costs for the call center (911) and other such services which will now split off just like airlines who charge for bag service …The TM said that absolutely is going to happen and we’ve been put on notice from the County that they will no longer fund cities receiving emergency call service…She said the Sheriff doesn’t agree with it and the Town as well as as all municipalities in Broward County in the same situation do not agree …She said the County Manager sent out letters to every city saying this is what your costs will be next year and ours is around $125,000…She said  the Broward City Managers Assoc. put together a task force last fall and studied this issue of the call centers and concluded they should be consolidated down to four that can serve the entire county leading to a substantial savings… While that was the conclusion she added no one is pushing for it…She said the Mayor sent her a copy of a letter from the Mayor of Sunrise to have the Broward League of Cities take this issue on …The VM asked “So we can expect some increases coming down the line?”… The TM responded that starting Oct. 1st we can expect to be charged $125,000 for emergency call services …adding that’s not a BSO charge that it’s a County charge …VM Dodd asked if we are “Obliged to go with that call service “..asking if there other options for municipalities… The TM responded yes and many cities have there own call centers which led to the problem and why the County doesn’t want to keep doing it after those cities complained about those contracted with BSO receiving the services…She mentioned Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood as two that run their own at huge cost and went to the County about LBTS and Pompano Beach… VM Dodd asked if we could go to Fort Lauderdale to see if we could do it for less than $125,000 …The TM said yes…VM Dodd said we should do so and send Broward a message …The TM backed off a little and asked Chief Llerena about Pompano Beach having their own call center …He responded that BSO communications is used for both and that Pompano Beach has BSO for police services ..The TM asked if cities are paying the capital costs and BSO is paying for the staffing…The Chief did not know …The Town Manager said if the Commission wanted her to look into this they would and also explore consolidating the centers as well..

The Mayor asked the TAtty. to give the history of the County’s past stance on wanting to provide this service and that it was not to charge the municipalities …She added she knew she was catching the TAtty. off guard…Town Atty. Trevarthen responded she didn’t have the details but had the same recollection ….The Mayor went to say  these are fees we pay through Broward County and that everyone should call their Broward County elected officials which for us would be Comm. Chip LaMarca to say we are not for this change…adding the Sheriff is not for it either …She went on to say that before she recognized Comms. Clottey and Vincent she wanted to “follow up Commissioner Sasser’s discussion that would would take us in a whole other direction. He had asked a question does this Commission and we had not discussed this prior, we asked the Town Manager to go into negotiations with the Sheriff.That was then direction you received from this Commission is that correct”…asking the TM…The TM replied yes and that was what she has on her priority list…The Mayor reiterated it and TM Hoffmann said yes again…The Mayor went to say “Are we changing our mind? I think that’s what we need to determine right now because if we do we need to, I think have a workshop so that we understand what direction we’re going in. Are we going to change direction and therefore go out and try and contract with another municipality or start our, if it is the intention of this Commission to look for, get an RFP out to the city of Fort Lauderdale or start our own police department. I think before we continue we need to hear what this Commission’s decision is”… She threw it over to Comm. Sasser who she said made the initial  “request”  asking him if he wanted to request a workshop to discuss those three measures…

BC- Before Comm. Sasser’s response this writer asks the all important question…What happened to the Mayor showing some leadership and nipping this in the bud by stating the obvious that this is not the right direction to go in… That avenue was open to her when Comm. Sasser originally ended his first bite at the apple and said he would leave it for her to “handle that”…

Comm. Sasser said he would like a workshop to discuss it “sure”..He added he thought it should be “vetted”…He went on to say he thinks in any situation or negotiation it’s always better to have competition and he would like to know what the options are and whether it is Fort Lauderdale or someone else …He quickly added “I’m not keen on building our own” police department but he “wanted to at least judge the interest of other police departments that could do the job and possibly help us with out negotiations, yes.”…

BC- I respectfully disagree with Comm. Sasser and do hope the prior Commission backup on other options is supplied to all to quickly be able to see it will …in this writer’s opinion…. not help the negotiations with BSO who are our Town Police Department in most of his constituent’s opinion …but just slow down the process unnecessarily …

The Mayor asked for consensus and threw it over to the Vice Mayor  if he wanted a workshop scheduled…  The VM said he just wanted the public to be aware of BSO taking one part of the new contract and saying that was what they are negotiating as their new price while Broward is going to be “saddling us with extra fees for an area that used to be part of BSO’s contract”…He added we don’t have alot of options …He wanted to be “on the record” for saying BSO is doing a terrific job and there are absolutely no complaints..But he added he has to be responsible to the taxpayers and try to “educate them how negotiations are going at the moment is that BSO will do policing but Broward has the regional component.”…The Mayor tried to cut him off… The VM continued saying he has “a big problem with it. We are paying a certain figure all encompassing but was sure BSO figure has not gone down with all the regional figures Broward is now providing. It’s a way of inflating every municipality and I’m pretty much against it.”…The Mayor said her question was if there should be a workshop for other options for police service in town… The Vice mayor responded “No, I’m very happy with BSO but we should look at other options for the stuff that BSO don’t want to do to send a message to Broward.”.. The Mayor said she agreed with him completely …

Comm. Vincent was asked next but said he had other comments and would wait his turn..

The Mayor acknowledged Comm. Clottey who said “I agree with Commissioner Sasser that we have an obligation to the taxpayers of this town to explore all avenues. I have my own personal choice. I wold like to stay with BSO but if they price themselves out of the market then we have to think about the taxpayers also.”…She then asked the Town Manager about the “lab fees” as part of the “regional stuff”…She was speaking of the criminal lab fees being passed on as well…(This too was brought up by the prior Comm. by former VM McIntee) …The TM said they had not talked about this and she did not recall  where that “sat on the list”..She would get the answer and asked Chief Llerena if he knew… The Chief responded no but added it is a major budget issue with the County Commissioners as well and “the Sheriff obviously feels it’s a terrible mistake to close the lab down.”..He said he was not sure where it stands as of now… Comm. Clottey asked what kind of additional fees there would be to BSO’s fixed charges…The TM asked if she was inquiring about BSO’s direct services…Comm. Clottey replied that up til now there was a fixed charge which is the County is now “unbundling” and said that when the TM is negotiating it will be that “flat rate plus whatever additional fees the Town is going to be stuck paying.”…The Town Manager again stated the only addition know right now is for the communications center …Comm. Clottey added the criminal lab fees to which the TM said that had not come down to her at this time for us to pay… we haven’t been told that and she reminded all that the Sheriff fought against it last year and prevailed …although it is not known if he will prevail again… She said they all need to consider as well that the Sheriff’s budget has to be approved by the County Commission..all agreements say the County has to approve them….

Comm. Vincent asked the Chief a question …”on the 125,000 additional fee is that proportionate charge that is figured for services for our town in respect to other sizes of cities?”… The Chief said he couldn’t definitively answer that but he could tell him that all cities are paying  different fees and it seems they may be based on population or maybe based on calls for service..He was not sure what criteria it is but did know there was not one set fee for every municipality… Comm. Vincent said that made sense and would like to know that information and was sure “Connie can get that.”… He went on to ask if the services we received prior to this change were a benefit this town was getting that other municipalities may have been paying for in the past… (This too was covered by the previous Commission and in the Sentinel ) … The Chief responded in terms of a “subsidy” there was one with LBTS saying it meant it cost more to operate the district than the Sheriff was collecting from us..He said unlike the private sector those costs were passed on to the County taxpayers which was why the County Commission started cracking down on the Sheriff to organize the new contracts making them more balanced…He said it was due to prior administrations ..He added that other municipalities have monetary issues..LBTS does not an has paid “every penny they were obligated to. The issue is just the balance of revenue post expenditures.”… Comm. Vincent said “There’ve been some inequities at some time with different municipalities for those services basically.”…The Chief said yes…

The Mayor asked again for the need to “clarify the direction to the Town Manager because we’re entering budget time. If we look at getting out RFPs …so we need to…There’s been a recommendation by Commissioner Sasser to put a workshop together to see what other opportunities we have for police services her in the town of Lauderdale-By-The-Sea.” …

BC- It was the Mayor who first said said they needed a workshop (see above) …

The Mayor said to the VM that he said “the workshop would be more to an understanding of the costs that Broward County is now adding on, would that workshop be also to determine whether we would look to our own police department or other services as well”… The VM said no he didn’t want to go in that direction and reiterated wanting inform the public of the add ons coming from the County with more to come such for any extra services provided over and beyond local protection provided by BSO although he would be happy to have a workshop to talk about that and try and put pressure on Broward “… The Mayor said they could put together a resolution as Sunrise has to let the County Commission know our displeasure and discuss it at a workshop “along with what Commissioner Sasser wants to do”…saying they should set the meeting up…

Comm. Vincent wanted to weigh in again and said “I’m just thinking back in recent history that I appreciate what Pompano Beach did for us as they went out and looked into and investigated the possibility of either going to another municipality, another department, I’m sorry I think starting their own and they spent alot on that in the millions I believe and it just panned out and they’re a bigger city than we are with alot more money and they didn’t think it would be financially sound for them to do that especially at this time and I believe they put a stop to that and continued to contract with services of BSO. So with that and Pompano doing the homework for us to go down that road at this time so I’m not in favor of the Roundtable discussion”… The Mayor informed him it was for a workshop to discuss giving the TM direction … True to form for Comm. Vincent he then said the following “Correct, unless there are some issues that we need to address within the contract if we can do so legally have a separation from other cities so yeah, I mean, I think we need to look at that.”…

Comm. Clottey said she believed Pompano Beach found they would save alot of money (she is correct) and that it was the people that did not want the city to change from BSO (correct again) ….She again stated her preference for BSO (quite a turn around after everything she said about them early in her term..prev. posts 2008-2009) … But she still thought they needed to consider other options because she understood we would be paying $434,000 more due to not paying our “fair share”… She asked the TM to respond…TM Hoffmann said there was a study done and LBTS was the most subsidized city ion Broward County and the cost increase would be “$400 and something thousand dollars a year”…

Comm. Vincent never knowing when to remain silent addressed Comm. Clottey to say he believed Pompano’s conclusion was the start-up costs for their own department would take 7 years to “break even with the initial startup and the savings on that and the setup on that was so high that would come out of pocket for that I don’t think this town could afford it.”…

The Mayor said it “sounds like a workshop “ well as “what level the County will charge us”…. “plus the other options” thanking Comm. Sasser… The TM said the Commission had a light Roundtable scheduled and they could have the discussion then…It was agreed upon to have it at that time…

BC- this writer chalks this up to too many meetings on the Master Plan and the Master Plan redo taking all of the members up on the dais way off track on the priorities they were elected to address over the first 2 years of the new majority’s term and the priorities they started out with in 2010 and gave direction to the Town Manager to go forward with… The BSO contract was at the top with the drainage downtown and the drainage in the residential areas  as well as the sewers in the south … For certain Commissioners and members of the staff to speak of money woes when it comes to retaining the BSO police is unacceptable!… We were under the impression that a new contract could be a million + and still the overwhelming response from voters was keep them…Now we know it will be nowhere near that amount… To question our ability when we have spent well over $150,000 which most likely will be close to $200,000 on consultants is embarrassing… The Town Manager made it clear the regional costs will be coming our way no matter who we use for public safety in LBTS… Last but not least as the TM has stated along with this writer and so many others …the BSO of LBTS is our own Town police department under Chief Llerena and Lt. Cedeno (as it was under former Chief Scott Gooding) and that final point along with remembering it was not so long ago each Commissioner and the TM went on the offensive to keep Lt. Cedeno here in order to maintain the unique partnership we have with BSO!…

My opinion, Commissioners… at the next Roundtable ….. with the expected discussion taking place…do your homework ahead of time and then drop any direction at this time to look elsewhere and choose to work with the Sheriff to counter the County Commission’s regional fee plans along with other municipalities… To the TM and the Mayor there are times when it is time to step in on topics on the dais…this was one of them….

After that the Mayor asked for any other questions for the TM…Comm. Sasser was the only one to respond and asked about the Coral Reef project that was written up to start in late April as they were now just a few days away from May… The TM said she included they told the permitting agency they “hoped” to start in late April and had indicated it would be “in place” in late May…With that the TM report was passed 5-0 after a motion was made by VM Dodd and seconded by Comm. Vincent…

BC- here is what was not discussed in the report… The very next item in the report after BSO stated the TM had hire yet another consultant..This time it is the former Davie City Manager, Gary Shimun who was recently fired by the Commission of Davie and walked out before the full vote was completed…Mr Shimun according to Google searches eerily mirrored our ousted former TM Colon in the reasons for his dismissal …. in this writer’s opinion…. and walked away with a severance package after 4 years that mirrored it as well… According to the backup he will receive $6,500 dollars for one month’s worth of work to “develop a new building permit fee schedule” to use for an RFP for building services… TM Hoffmann vetted Mr Shimun for the Pompano Beach Manager position according to articles … I’m all for hiring and thinking outside the box for certain jobs but come on…why wouldn’t we look online at what smaller towns of similar size charge (I believe this was done not long ago by the previous Commission) as well as taking advantage of the many retired residents we have in out small town who could volunteer to do the same in far less time for far less money… That’s why we are known as a Town and not as a City… small town ways … MIA in the report an update of the consultant costs to date as well as listing what they have done and are doing at the present time…

Up next and not addressed was the Finance Director “Recruitment” which the TM said was advertised online at the Florida League of Cities in their “Datagram”..This writer repeatedly looked due to it being a bone of contention with the prev. TM not using it for positions…I never saw it online…A Google only produced the 2007 LBTS  position (I have seen one before)..A search on the FLOCiities site produced “no data” …The TM wrote in her report the starting salary of $80,000-$90,000 was a “fairly strenuous process” they used including multiple tests and lengthy interview to narrow the field o qualified applicants to two…One did not pass and the other did not want to move from Ohio… The Town Auditor and Doug Haag assisted Ms. Hoffmann and offered the opinion that our salary range is to low and “hindering” the ability to recruit “stronger candidates”… The suggested increasing it to $100,000 to “attract the caliber of person”  she wants to hire..She said the position was budgeted for $85,000 based on the former Dir. (King) but that the Town’s salary range for that position is $82,028-$123,044 and that former Finance Director Colon was earning $104,576 before she became TM …TM Hoffmann reiterated that she was eliminating one position in the department of a recent employee that resigned and would reassign that work to 2 part-time employees thus freeing up “some savings that can be used to offer a higher starting salary to the Director.”…She stated unless the Comm. objected she would go ahead and re advertise…There was no discussion and no direction given at this meeting…

Next item not discussed was he attached Cash & Investment Quarterly Report which ended on March 31st …In it she informed them that another $1.5 million had been moved into 20 month CDs ($1 million  in one CD/$500,00 in a second CD) “at BB&T Bank at an interest rate 3x higher than we were receiving at Sun Trust …(THe Manager of BB & T Bank is the new LBTS Chamber of Commerce President) …The attached showed it was at 75 basis points  (.75%) … The good news is they can be liquidated all or part for any reason with only the loss of interest not principal…This is what an Avid Reader was  talking to me about in terms of getting rid of the $1.4or $1.5 million parking lot debt we have that will cost us an additional $200,000+ if we do not pay it off… What is the difference in what we get for this latest move of Town monies as compared to keeping that loan on the books until 2020?…. (prev. post)…

After that item was the code inspection and the shut down of the Little Inn Too on April 18th…Again no discussion… save kudos to the VFD Chief and Town Fire Marshall from Comm. Vincent at the VFD monthly report earlier in the evening (prev. post) …

The TM stated she had brought the assignment status list to date and color coded it (perhaps this was what the VM was giving high marks to?)…

I believe that the Commissioners are all (with one exception?) meeting with the Town Manager before every scheduled Roundtable/Commission meeting and may be going over all these items on the report and more… At least that is my hope… If so I suggest that at Commissioner comments the dais members take that time to address any discussion and give their take on it as well as anything they do for constituents in the time between meetings…  That way we will all know in a condensed amount of time who has done their homework and who has served their constituents leaving no doubt that both the Commission and the Administration is in sync so direction or a lack thereof is not seen on the dais at the 11th hour as we saw at this meeting under the Town Manager’s report…

More to come….

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