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Here’s The Scoop…2/24/09….LBTS Commission Meeting …#6….Commissioner Comments… It’s How You Say It….

GUESS IT’S WHERE YOU COME FROM….

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Commissioner Comments …were up first at the continuation meeting …on 2/25/09…in the afternoon at Jarvis Hall…another “marathon” and much more than “comments”…Time to rein them in…start the clock…Madam Mayor…next time around…start the clock!…..

Some verbatim…(can’t top what comes flying out of our elected official own mouths…at times)…and some overview…( some comments were included in previous posts for the 2/24/09 meeting)….to keep us all from eyestrain….

The Mayor began….short and succinct Mayor Minnet thanked all for coming to the meeting the evening before…the full room showed “the will of the people”…She spoke of the Calypso being D.O.A….thanks to Gov. Crist’s announcement at the Galt afternoon meeting she attended and felt that the resolution from the LBTS Commission played a role…calling Crist the “people’s Governor” for listening to the people…Thanks were given to fellow Commissioner Dodd and the round table meetings he put forth…asking to continue them with a 6 month calendar of dates …(no dates were discussed)…As she thanked Comm. Clottey for her help with trying to increase ridership on the Pelican Hopper…she informed all that we fell short of the required riders to keep the Hopper running under the Broward County criteria…stating the Manager would address the consequences and/or alternatives to deal with the result….She thanked the Town’s law firm for a seminar she attended…and touched on the beach parking permit issue…saying it would be addressed later…( it was and 2 CIC Mc-pals prevailed to secure beach parking once again whether you call it residential or beach parking…it’s preferential parking for a few…ready to shell out an extra $50 annually)…thanking all she rested…

Commissioner Clottey…..”I want to start by apologizing to you Commissioner Dodd. When I get excited I raise my voice. I had no right to raise my voice to you. There’s differences of opinion.” Comm. Clottey the continued on with her “right hand of Marc Furth” actions …seen the previous evening with the whole Pavilion electrical scenario..(previous post 2/24/09…LBTS agenda/meeting category…Town Manager report)…as she asked the Town Manager about some median issues with Minto…and the Town Manager responded that Marc Furth was well aware of the staff’s position…and the staff was waiting for Minto to provide in writing the plans …so that it could be put on the March agenda …and go through the proper channel…The Town Manager looked  perturbed at the “messenger”…After that the Comm. went into her “spiteful” comment pertaining to Patrick Pointu’s public comments the previous evening..(previous post…2/24/09 LBTS agenda/meetings category…Public comment)…On a lighter note…pun intended she spoke of what she had been doing behind the scenes…trying to bring some music to LBTS …and it looks like a winner…with the Town being the recipient of a concert series and a “dazzling” grand opening brass musical experience at the Pavilion with  Lynn University bringing us their talents…courtesy of the Dean of the university’s conservatory….the details will be forthcoming!….http://www.lynn.edu/academics/colleges/conservatory-of-music

No sooner does Comm. Clottey finish with her plans…followed by some pre-details at the podium from Assist. Manager Olinzock…then Commissioner Silverstone takes a page out of her “playbook” by doing an “instant replay” of what was just discussed with the Pavilion ribbon cutting…suggesting an alternative or addition…the Florida Youth Orchestra….after having “one of those little miracles that happen once in a while regarding to ah, what Commissioner Clottey ah, is proposing .”…going on to describe the circumstances of this “miracle”…that occurred when the Director of the FYO turned out to be one of the speakers that came to oppose the boats in the north…and a longtime acquaintance of the Commissioner’s…He handed over a card to John Olinzock to proceed with contacting the Director….http://www.floridayouthorchestra.org/about_us.html…..Then we receive a dissertation Silverstone style…of the “trouble” on and off the dais and how this Town’s suppose to work…”Um, I just want to briefly talk about choices that we make up here. Ah, our job as being your Commissioner . There’s trouble up here ah, there’s trouble out there and symptoms are popping up constantly as shown by people, ah, the residents comments at times and the general feeling of, of ah, this Town. I try to find solutions. I love difficult problems ah, I’ve been working on this since since I’ve, annexation ah, in 2001 which I think is really the origin of a lot of our problems that we have currently. Promises were made, some of these promises should have never been made and a lot of these promises were not kept. And it’s causing a lot of frustration within the residents and so forth. But that’s something we can deal about that ah, that’s the past. Currently we can try to solve the problems that are before us. One of those problems I think is the definition of what we do up here. Our job as Commissioners we have Um, a Charter that defines our, our job. I got an e-mail from  Esther regarding an issue  Commissioner Dodd brought up ah, regarding  the agenda process.” Commissioner Silverstone picked out portions of the e-mail…and skewed the content…following up with his take …saying he found it “troublesome”…and calling on a return to the “fundamentals” of what we do, something I teach the kids in basketball “fundamentals”, you have to know what the “essence” of what you are doing out there is. The “essence “of our job is to direct the Town Manager to set procedures , set policies.”

1fun·da·men·tal Listen to the pronunciation of 1fundamental
Pronunciation:
\ˌfən-də-ˈmen-təl\
Function:
adjective
Date:
15th century

1 a: serving as an original or generating source : primary <a discovery fundamental to modern computers> b: serving as a basis supporting existence or determining essential structure or function : basic2 a: of or relating to essential structure, function, or facts : radical <fundamental change> ; also : of or dealing with general principles rather than practical application <fundamental science> b: adhering to fundamentalism3: of, relating to, or produced by the lowest component of a complex vibration4: of central importance : principal <fundamental purpose>5: belonging to one’s innate or ingrained characteristics : deep-rooted <her fundamental good humor>

BC- Fundamentals…HMMM…VFD Bylaws…Deputy Chief-Elected Official…not allowed…but Comm. Silverstone…voted in his BFF  McIntee anyway….ignoring the VFD Bylaw……So much for following the “fundamentals”…that’s a big time out Coach…with penalties!…(Nahh…no penalty!)…

es·sence Listen to the pronunciation of essence
Pronunciation:
\ˈe-sən(t)s\
Function:
noun
Etymology:
Middle English essencia, from Latin essentia, from esse to be — more at is
Date:
14th century

1 a: the permanent as contrasted with the accidental element of being b: the individual, real, or ultimate nature of a thing especially as opposed to its existence <a painting that captures the essence of the land> c: the properties or attributes by means of which something can be placed in its proper class or identified as being what it is2: something that exists : entity3 a (1): a volatile substance or constituent (as of perfume) (2): a constituent or derivative possessing the special qualities (as of a plant or drug) in concentrated form ; also : a preparation of such an essence or a synthetic substitute b: odor , perfume4: one that possesses or exhibits a quality in abundance as if in concentrated form <she was the essence of punctuality>5: the most significant element, quality, or aspect of a thing or person <the essence of the issue>
— in essence
: in or by its very nature : essentially , basically <was in essence an honest person>
— of the essence
: of the utmost importance <time is of the essence>

C.S.-” It is not our job to run things that’s her job. That’s why we hired a professional Town Manager. This is how this works .We are not professionals. We don’t, we’re not educated in that area. That’s not our job. Our job is to represent the needs of the people to make sure the needs of the people out there are met and ah, follow through. So I am advocating strongly that we let the Town manger  and the staff do their job and we do our job and I think that would be the beginning of Um, ah, a smoother transition towards a future up here. And if any Commissioner up here has any question how it’s suppose to work , I’m not going to ah, I’m not a lawyer but I think it’d be a good idea to maybe as I mentioned before about a facilitator up here or somebody up here to give us a little overview of what’s exactly expected of us and what we can do and what we can’t do to make this process go a little smother here cause it’s obviously not working as well as it can work, and that’s all I have, thanks.”

Commissioner Dodd….”Um, thanks Jim I was actually going to start off by saying we should hold our meetings at this time of day since everybody seems to be in such a happy mood. Ah, the fundamentals of what we do up here is based on the information that we’re given in order to make that direction work. We represent the people and we need information to make that happen and I’m going to put forward a couple of them.”…Commissioner Dodd spoke about the Waste Management RFP and the lack of input provided by the Commission before it went out for bid…(previous post…scoops category ..Bid conference)…and the resulting back and forth with whether the request for input was  or was not made known…resulting in the appearance on the dais it was…and an after meeting Town response it was not…Commissioner Dodd went on to talk on “my favorite subject the VFD and AMR”….speaking of the differences between the structure of Fort Lauderdale/Pompano Beach as departments much like BSO fire…and not using comparisons of procedures used by towns that have VFD providers…after this he spoke of the Pavilion …and the oversight once more found on the electrical…which was passed with a vote the previous evening…again incorrectly…(previous posts…scoops…LBTS agenda/meetings…Town Manager report/20 trees)… Quite emphatically …the Commissioner again spoke of the last minute “surprises” received with regularity…resulting in such problems…the desire for information received fairly among all the Commissioners and his ability to make himself available at any time to alleviate this continuing on…

Vice Mayor McIntee…The Vice Mayor began his comments speaking again about the Pavilion and the Town Manager’s response to Comm. Clottey’s request…saying  the changes were moved on as fast as possible and although he had not planned on discussing it he felt the need to due to the Town Manager getting blamed as she “moved some hurdles and got them done” The VM said she (TM) was being “castrated” for doing what the Commissioner had asked her to do…”That’s not fair, that isn’t fair.”…

BC- once more the VM missed the point…so to counter his “Protector Hat”…would be a waste of time….

VM- ” Second of all I owe the Mayor an apology.”…he went on to relate a story…of a drowning that occurred and the Mayor unaware came to a VFD group in the throes of debriefing…”very bubbly” …introducing herself…and he (VM) was not responsive…not only because of the drowning…but he had an hour before  read an e-mail…calling the VFD “ambulance chasers”…”Ambulance chasers in the public safety world is a very sleazy term. It refers to tow truck drivers that are stealing cars and charging double tows and storage and sleazy lawyers that are trying to drop cards in injured people’s hands and things.”

VM-” I look at the 68 members (thought it was 80?) over there and they are not ambulance chasers and if somebody accuses somebody of who get out of bed a t 3 o’clock in the morning (the VFD is not going on overnight medical calls) to come and help their fellow citizens an ambulance chaser, I just can’t take it.” The VM said he spoke to the Mayor and told her these men at the the debriefing were not ambulance chasers…thinking she knew they had been called that…she did not…he apologized again…the Mayor accepted…

VM-” The next thing that triggered a great deal of unhappiness in the whole fire department, Commissioner Dodd left a message saying we were acting stupid. I consider that a personal insult against every member of the VFD.”…

BC-Comm. Dodd left a message for the Town Manager with her secretary that the VFD had done something stupid…not to the VFD…but the Esther/Jerry one and the same intertwined I have your back …in your pocket relationship is once more in play….

The VM  went on to speak of the VFD making mistakes…not being perfect…and “defending my troops and my firefighters ….” On to the Pointu public comments…(previous post…scoops…2/24/09 LBTS agenda/meeting public comments)…not done yet…the Town…the Manager the unhappiness…being overwhelmed…in his own words….

VM-” Now let’s talk about another major problem. The Town staff is in crisis. I see it when I see moral down. I see unhappiness. I see an overwhelming demand for information that one Commissioner is, is pushing for and I’ll give you an example of how that works. If a Commissioner sends in an e-mail requesting a,b,c or d then the Town Management have to stop and start making answers and it’s getting reports back and then all the other work stops and all of the sudden they’re all bogged down with stuff that could be trivial could have been solved with a phone call.”…

BC- HUH?…Trivial information requested causes the Town Management to become “bogged down” to stop functioning…quick call an ambulance!…

The VM went into problems of required information from the VFD costing time and money……(previous post…2/24/09 LBTS agenda/meeting VFD report)…

Next the VM went over the Financial Auditor’s finding again……the high marks for “bean counting” and how that should say it all…”I mean we  just can’t continually drive staff like a herd of cattle. We can’ do that, they have to be shown respect. They have to be given opportunity and quite frankly to do all this additional work I think we need to hire somebody to do all this additional work. It’s gonna cost us about $30 to $40 thousand dollars but maybe it will save the moral and give the staff some peace because right now they do not have any peace.”

BC- Does the VM ever have an idea of his own?….this is a portion of the e-mail referred to by Comm. Silverstone received by the TM and distributed to the Commissioners…days ahead of this meeting…including the VM…

‘I also have an issue with the requirement that the town staff produces a draft agenda for circulation to be sent out on a Tuesday afternoon at 17.00 and the commissioners are required to pull any items by Wednesday noon.    I could suggest a round table with the Town Manager might be a good way to resolve the issues of the agenda preparation.  Before the round table it would behold the staff to contact the municipalities that run smoothly ( in Mr. Weiss’s opinion) and learn how they control their agenda.  If they close their agendas earlier to give town staff more time then I will fully support this proposal.  If they have research assistants to ease the burden of the Town Clerk and Town Manager then I will also support that proposal provided a reasonable cost justification is made.  I can not and am not prepared to make decisions based on inadequate or insufficient back-up material.’…..’ Maybe another solution is to employ an assistant to handle the agenda if the town clerk is swamped. ‘

Respectfully

Stuart Dodd

BC-HMMMM…………..

The VM…then finished with his further tales of the “Cockroach” story…(previous post…2/24/09…LBTS agenda/meetings category)…

On this one dear readers…a faithful reader reminded this writer…Louis Marchelos never actually “called”  Maureen McIntee a “Cockroach”…Louis Marchelos said Maureen McIntee’s hissing…” SOUNDED like a roach ….a Cockroach”…….

And on that high moral ground…Commissioner comments…came to an end…

more to come…….

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