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Here’s The Scoop … Four Questions To Relentlessly Ask About Everything Lauderdale-By-The-Sea Town Hall Does …

May 17, 2011 by Barbara

HIGH HOPES ….

Dear Readers … I pay no attention to what is written by those who refuse to reveal who they are and own up to their opinions when they blog… I do hear about it from time to time when someone sends me a text or mention they scanned a look from time to time to see what the dwindling participants are ranting about …. I find it amusing and more often than not devoid of fact and validity… This time I am told I am being portrayed as being thrown out by the CIC as a traitor… Come on, I resigned due to it becoming a cheerleading group rather than a watchdog PAC as written in numerous posts from the start of this site… Now I am told it is being posted I was duped and used by UOT and have suddenly realized it …I have never belonged to UOT…I attended by invitation only and then came back a few times during the campaign to update the group on the election for the slate of candidates they were supporting and I was managing … Sometimes it is hardest for those “conspiracy pontificators” to wrap their heads around the simple truth which is much less interesting and lacks any footing in order to spin a wild tale to tell online or while making the rounds in town … I was the campaign manager and backed the Mayor because I felt she was doing a good job in her first term and deserved another 2 years..I was the campaign manager and backed the UOT supported candidates because I believed they could accomplish what I thought the previous CIC supported candidates I co-managed in 2007/2008 and backed did not … I made it clear early on to these new candidates …their supporters and the readers of this site that after the election my role changes… After taking some months off and it being well over a year since  the Mayor, Comm.Sasser and Comm. Vincent were sworn in and after watching the early hits and then miss after miss after miss made with the priorities set during the campaign and as well as after with the next municipal election most likely occurring a few months early in January…(could be on the 4th )… I made my opinion known that this time around based on the last year+ ……I do not believe Mayor Minnet deserves a third term …I do not believe Commissioner Clottey deserves a second term based on her first term and I do believe Vice Mayor Dodd deserves re-election as a Commissioner based as well on his first term…He made it clear he did not want to run for Mayor when asked to do so previously and maintains that stance still….I am hoping this election returns to the type I heard was the norm prior to my time of involvement with independents who run on their own ….Especially after watching the apathy inside of Jarvis Hall and from what I hear about both Town PACs …. UOT is received the usual core members only at their  meetings  …. The CIC meeting held Sunday night produced an even smaller response and the Surf & Yacht Club parking lot on Palm Ave. had a paltry 14 cars parked there about a half hour after the meeting was called… This was after a letter as well as phone calls were made to all those who were once members including many who have not re-upped in years and contacted me to say so …(The membership fee is now $20 and the meeting was to replace the entire board ) …

The reasons I am ready for yet another change on the dais keep mounting ….The latest reason was my surprise to see the recent RFPs on the Town website for the sewers in the south which went out last month and are to be opened on May 19, 2011 …The RFP states the studies can exceed $200,000 and the project can exceed $2 million…The decision on who get the evaluation,analysis and engineering services job will be made by the Town Manager or a selected committee..(who will that be comprised of?) … The other RFP went out at the beginning of the May for providing drainage improvements in the Right-Of-Way…for West Tradewinds  Ave. south of Commercial… There was a pre-bid conference on May 12th and bids are due by June 2, 2011…It is a 258 page RFP with drawings done by Chen in April 2011… What stops me in my tracks is this…The Commission met on May 10, 2010 …one year ago in a workshop to discuss the drainage issue in town as well as the Capital Improvements …(a strategic meeting was held on Nov. 15, 2010) ..At that time the worst areas were discussed for drainage …West Tradewinds Ave. was #12 on the list for cost estimates in the backup with an estimate of $250,754 in 2011 & $268,307 in 2012… The Commissioners were told there were 13 areas considered the worst and it was up to them to determine the order of importance according to the minutes …The next item on the agenda was the CIP and it was Mayor Minnet according to the minutes who stated residential streetscape was a low priority until the sewers and drainage problems were addressed … After that was discussion ranking priorities such as with a parking garage …The Mayor said low priority not needed no parking problem…others agreed…Town Hall expansion the the Mayor said the previous Commission did not want but seemed to ponder it and impact on extension for Senior Center …and so and so forth…Talk included a revision verses full Master Plan $50,00 vs. $175,000 …and so and so forth…( we will exceed that amount) …Yet within the last year we spent extensive time and money hiring consultants and having meetings up the wazoo to discuss all  three ad nauseum ….So as a result here we sit one year later and watch on May 10, 2010 the same Mayor saying we don’t need a referendum on some of these items … they are not on the radar and a vote could “sabotage” the plans for change ….It took a whole year for an RFP to go out for a drainage project for a road which was certainly not at the top of the list for worst area!… Here we are one year later “piecemealing” a 3 block area rather than a whole section or sections knowing there is a list that needs to be done…which according to the agenda at the May 10, 2010 meeting will require “pay as you go”/”debt” including revenue bonds  and grants …This long year of nothing but “window dressing”  happened under her lack of leadership…as well as a shift in the majority on the dais that leaves this writer thinking it’s time for someone else to be sitting in that center seat… who is fiscally responsible in actions not just words spewed for cover or as a fallback left over from electioneering…

Yesterday Rahm Emanual was sworn in and his speech included these four questions…

‘Crucial to Emanuel’s solution, he said Monday, is to relentlessly ask four questions about everything City Hall does:

• “Do we need it?

• “Is it worth it?

• “Can we afford it?

• “Is there a better deal?”

Each time the answer is “no,” and that often needs to be the answer, some payroller or contractor or alderman or formerly protected constituency will squawk. The expectation that Emanuel won’t be frightened by those squawks is one reason, we suspect, why Chicagoans elected him in a landslide.’

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-edit-mayor-20110516,0,5290133.story

BC-I am sure Chicago has the same high hopes we had when this Mayor and her fellow Commissioners were sworn in in 2010 …. I just hope they have a better outcome…

more to come….

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