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Here’s The Scoop …. Town Managers Going For The Next “Brass Ring”… Part 2 …

May 5, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers… As the former Town Manager and her trusty side-kick JohnO look for yet another municipality to conquer …they are not alone in their quest for “catching the brass ring” of big bucks in salary-benefits- and accrued and unused holiday/sick leave to add to their growing nest eggs…the perks that most certainly leave these government workers sitting pretty in their twilight years…courtesy of the taxpayers, many of whom will be struggling themselves when able to retire and not knowing what was offered up to those who ride the merry-go-round of a Town Administrator’s professional life by way of their elected officials when the dotted line of those brand new contracts are signed!…

In part 1 (prev. post) was the newest Town Managers to hop back on board their solitary gold horses and take another spin…In part 2 we will look at a few more of the recent firings and hirings…and what was offered to get them out the door… or in ….along with who take the merry-g0-round …It makes one wonder if they have a special pass …reserved “horses …and get added miles credited for the number of times they gone round and round!….


“Cape Coral city manager job pulls a pile of interest 75 applications arrive for manager position — There may be a bargain out there waiting to be picked as the next city manager in Cape Coral. The city has received 75 applications for the seat resigned by Terry Stewart last November, but an initial review has reduced the stack to 29 applicants. The application period ends April 30. Many of the applicants listed a preferred salary. Stewart’s pay was $165,000 a year, and he worked up to that over an eight-year period. Only two of the dozen applicants who listed a preferred pay level put down a number higher than Stewart’s. Applicants from Cape Coral are Interim city manager Carl Schwing, retired financial services executive Gary King and former international executives Michael Siegel and Thomas Leipold. Previously, City Councilman Peter Brandt said he’d like to see someone from the private sector get the job. But so far the search has turned up candidates mostly with government careers and a few from the business sector, according to a review of the resumes Tuesday by The News-Press. Someone who can get projects completed would be good for the city, said resident Tony Sanderlin, 30. “It seems like these roads are always under construction,” Sanderlin said, gesturing toward Santa Barbara Boulevard and Hancock Bridge Parkway. Two-thirds of the applications come from southeastern states and the remainder from as far away as California. Almost all applicants have a master’s degree, often in public administration. The most distant applicant appears to be Deborah Edgerly, former city manager of Oakland, Calif. She served under former Mayor Jerry Brown, but was removed when a new administration came into power, according to her application. City council members will start their discussion after the application period closes. They made a false start Monday on the impression the period had closed April 15. But Mayor John Sullivan explained in a memo to council members that the city had already paid to advertise the position through April 30 and will keep the job posting active to get the most return for its money. Cape Coral businessman Jerry Valchine said he hopes the city finds someone with the qualities of Ronald Reagan, including fiscal conservatism and an ability to work hard and be a visionary. Valchine, who owns Pack & Send Gifts on Hancock Bridge Parkway, said he wants a manager who can produce a conservative, balanced budget.”

BC- Below are two of the applicants that also put their names in for the Interim TM position on April 26th (prev. post)…

“Mark Lauzier – Coral Springs
•Experience: president, owner The Budget Experts
•Education: master’s in public administration, University of New Haven
•Other: assistant city manager Pompano Beach for nine years

Michael Mahaney, Deerfield Beach
•Experience: Deerfield Beach city manager until last January
•Education: MBA, James Madison University
•Other: Nassau County administrator, Fernandina Beach, three years”



“Unpopular Pompano Beach manager gets $140k for quitting The Pompano Beach City Commission wasn’t too impressed with their manager of about two years, Keith Chadwell. But he’s getting a nice parting paycheck even though his contract didn’t call for it. Chadwell submitted a letter of resignation at last night’s city commission meeting. He proposed that he leave June 12, be paid nine months salary (that equals about $140,000) in exchange for agreeing not to sue. The commission quickly agreed despite the fact that his contract calls for that sum if he was fired — not if he qui. Asked if the deal was a good deal for taxpayers, Mayor Lamar Fisher said: “No comment. I think the action by the city commission was in the best interests of the city of Pompano Beach.” Earlier this year, City Commissioner Rex Hardin made a motion to fire Chadwell but it failed on a 3-3 vote, he said. Commissioners have said that Chadwell failed to follow through on their direction and when interacting with the public. Hardin said he was the only commissioner to reject the severance last night. “I didn’t feel it was appropriate to dole out taxpayer dollars in that manner as basically a bonus for leaving,” he said. Word had spread to commissioners that Chadwell might resign. But City Commissioner George Brummer questions whether someone nudged Chadwell to quit. “It certainly looked like this thing was staged,” he said. “Somebody worked this thing out.” Chadwell said in an interview that he has another ”opportunity” in the public sector but declined to be specific except to say that it isn’t in Broward. He said that people on behalf of the mayor — he wouldn’t say who — negotiated with him for his departure. “The arrangement under which I am leaving was certainly negotiated — there was an amicable quid pro quo,” Chadwell said. ”

BC- Tells those in LBTS who really believed our former TM would have left w/out her big payola severance they are working with a few too many screws loose!…Again, originally TM Colon wanted a 5 yrs severance!..



New Pompano Beach City Manager Could Be At Work by December  And then there were four. Next month Pompano Beach commissioners will interview the final round of four candidates vetted by The Mercer Group for the city manager position that could pay $175,000 to $195,000. They are: –Dennis Beach, who has served as city manager in Fort Pierce for over 13 years; –T.C. Broadnax, a former Pompano Beach assistant and deputy city manager and currently one of the assistant city managers in San Antonio, Texas; –Gary Shimun, Davie Town Administrator and former assistant city manager in Pembroke Pines; –James Twombly, former city manager in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Connie Hoffman, senior vice president of the consulting firm, will bring the four finalists to city hall for interviews for one-on-one meetings with each commissioner as well as one at a time before the full commission on Nov. 2 and Nov. 3. Hoffman also will have the candidates meet with senior staffers, take them on a tour of the city and hold a public reception on a date to be determined. Hoffman said the new hire could begin working by December or January, depending upon whether they are leaving a job or selling a home. “The commission had said they would do an independent background check on the candidate they select, so that will add some time to the selection process,” Hoffman said. Despite the economy, Hoffman said it’s not a buyer’s market for cities looking for new chief executives. “People who have a job they are secure in tend to be more conservative about looking right now,” she said. “When you are a city manager and put your name out as looking for a job, your city commission can get upset about that and it can cause rifts. The other issue is people are afraid they can’t sell their homes to move to a new community. It’s affecting the market for recruiting.” Hoffman said despite those issues she is confident about the four candidates city leaders are considering and called them “excellent.” The winner of the job will replace Keith Chadwell, who resigned in June, two years into a five year contract, to become one of three deputy city managers in Durham, North Carolina. Chadwell’s replacement will oversee 716 employees and a $215 million budget.”

BC- $175-195,000 for 716 employees and a $215 mil. budget… former TM Colon $162,000+ for a town with 20+ employees and a budget of less than $15 mil!….



Last time this writer posted in any length about Bob Baldwin it was to post his attempts to find another top spot outside of his Lake Worth gig…(the town LBTS Human Resources Mgr. Kathy O’Brien/TM Esther Colon said he was compensated for while working in “on leave” to the tune of $30,000+ despite his memos/contract stipulating his “consulting” stints “up to 10 weeks” were to be unpaid) …He tried for Pompano Beach…and Dania Beach …and ?….. According to the Lake Worth blogger Baldwin had some issues as she described the new City Manager….

“As an objective of performance reviews is to compare one person to another at the same job level–who do we compare her to? Bob Baldwin in Dania? Susan Stanton is paid $150,000 a year. Bob Baldwin was paid $170,000 when he was city manager in Lake Worth, a guy who never showed up for work and one of a few for whom I hold responsible for the state of our City today. Doesn’t Susan deserve better? I propose a two or three year contract with a raise. Not only is she underpaid in this job but Lake Worth has one extra component most cities do not have–a Utility department. For a city of this size, her pay is under the scale. She informs the Commission on everything she knows that is going on in this City working unbelievable hours to turn it all around.”

“City Attorney Larry Karns will negotiate a contract with Stanton. The city is offering Stanton an annual salary of $150,000, a $500-a-month car allowance and other benefits.

Stanton could not be reached for comment today.

She has offered to start work two weeks after her contract is final, said Connie Hoffmann, vice president of The Mercer Group, which conducted the city manager search.”

BC- According to the Commission minutes from Nov. 25, 2008 in Dania Beach when their City Manager Plato wanted out, the Manager asked to move his retirement up to Dec.31, 2008 and keep his severance package until April 30, 2009. He would continue on the payroll until that date…The Commission concurred with his request to retire and the date…and mention was made for the payments of unused sick and vacation time…and added the the Manager would continue to accrue more vacation sick and vacation time between Dec. 31st and April 30th…One Comm. agreed to health ins. benefits but not to continuing to accrue the sick/vacation time…With that the City Manager withdrew his Dec. 31st request if he could not receive his benefits..but offered to forgo only the sick leave accrual … Another Comm. thought all benefits should continue …while another thought the pension benefits were ok…but not the accrued sick/ vacation ..citing salary, retirement and health ins….In the end the Commission approve the Dec. 31st retirement without the accrued sick/vacation accrued from Jan 1, 2009-April 30, 2009 ….

On Jan 17,2009 Dania Beach had a City Manager Interview Workshop…at 1:15 pm…

Bob Baldwin ….portions of the interview….

“Robert Baldwin, applicant for city manager, provided an overview of his work experience. He said he has identified and dealt with complex problems in both service delivery and administration. Mr. Baldwin keeps the Commission informed and treats them all the same. He indicated that staff and elected officials think he is loyal, ethical and professional. A single event he is proud of is the annexation in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea; however he was unable to bring the city together, in spite of charter changes he suggested. He indicated once they started communicating with the residents they began to come around and become part of the city.”

“He said he would be accessible to the public and Commission, and that he returns calls and tries to solve problems.”

“Mr. Baldwin advised his career has been in Broward County, and he is familiar with the players, which would help in dealing with the county. He commented that in order to get things done, you have to have confidence in your staff and delegate. Department Heads are hired to do a job and should be allowed to do it; you can be hands- on in a small city, but not a large city. Mr.Baldwin said Lake Worth is a great community but it is a city in chaos. He noted that one of his weaknesses is he gets close to employees and it is hard to leave someone without a job.”

“He is currently working on a policy manual for green initiatives which he will completer before he leaves lake Worth.”

“Mr. Baldwin would like to see a community work together, and the only thing you can do is to reach out and make them feel like part of the community.”

“He said code compliance officers are going to customer service training because they need to put a better face on code compliance and how they enforce the code”

“Mr. Baldwin believes he has a record of getting the job done with integrity and respect and he will use these same qualities in Dania Beach. If selected he wants to work as a part of a team with Commission, staff and citizens.”

BC- Quite something…when you compare the Lake Worth bloggers of the outgoing Manager Baldwin and his presentation for a new position… and what we here in LBTS recall…from him and his “hire” former TM Colon….

On Jan.20, 2009,  the Dania Beach City Manager Selection meeting took place at 7 pm…according to the minutes the firm of Colin Baenzinger & Assoc. were the chosen search firm …the same firm that was used for Pompano Beach when Baldwin was in the running for the job ..(prev. posts)…and neglected to do a full background check according to a series by JP Bender of the Pompano Sentry on the Manager hired (Cadwell)… The candidates were read aloud with the Comms. votes…Robert Baldwin was ranked 4 Comm. votes… seeing Baldwin as the most experienced…

BC- The question now for the newest merry-go-round “riders”…murmurs that City Manager Bob Baldwin will hire Colon/Olinzock in Dania Beach?….. Or will Colon/Olinzock (some are surmising they must be a team…with promises made….due to his actions as Int. TM with her payout and his own termination with no payout until a full inquiry is done and reviewed by the Commission)….head for Miami Lakes… North Bay…Hallandale…Fort Lauderdale…etc…etc…etc…. And of course…who will “catch the LBTS brass ring”…

Note to all those “brass ring” municipalities …..GOOGLE!….

Part 3 is next….

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Scene And Heard Around Town …

April 14, 2010 by Barbara

‘THIS IS TOO MUCH”…Town Manager Esther Colon 4/13/10…

Dear Readers … one day after the April 13th Regular Commission Meeting and there’s a buzz going around…Last night Town Manager Esther Colon became the “Incredible Shrinking Woman”…on the dais…She tried all her bag of tricks……she was evasive…she passed the buck onto her staff……she played the victim…and she got combative…but still she had no traction…This time she was not in the cat bird seat this night…She certainly wasn’t the cat that ate the canary…if anything she was finally “caged” and made to face the music…in needing to respond to questions asked!…. As the evening wore on it was as though she was shrinking in her seat at the far end of the dais…right before our eyes…no longer in control!…Last time we saw this happen was with the demise of her pals McIntee…Silverstone…and Furth….It’s time for her to go…in this writer’s opinion … with these latest revelations…revealed the Audit Committee…the Audit RFP…and the Consultant’s Competitive Negotiation Act….. one month into the new commission’s term!…

No response yet from the newly named “external Finance Director” who was said to be the 3rd participating member of the LBTS Audit Committee for the Audit RFQ…(Finance Director Christopher Wallace of West Park)…A PRR must be answered and from his Town bio…(prev. post)…I cannot believe he would disregard it…

Also in the aftermath… we heard lots of questions about the Public Safety statements made by Steve Paine VFD Volly-Code Official-Fire Inspector-Marshal…and VFD Chief Bob Perkins…along with the report concerning the gas leak on April 7th…Some in the know say Chief Perkins may have gotten himself in hot water by stating at the podium he passed on command to Paine during the Hazmat call…We are being told that it is required that the senior officer is the highest ranking officer in a Hazmat event!… Other questions arising from the presentation were on the Hazmat call itself…Was it an over reaction to a smell?..Why no report of the level of gas found by the Hazmat team and no BSO Hazmat report?… What kind of gas was it?..First it was propane according to the LBTS “Media Release”..and then it was methane according to Inspector Paine last night…We are being told the building would have natural gas … As for the chained doors we are told that  should never be allowed …that there is a principal in fire inspections that even burglars and arsonists should be able to open an exit door!…There should have been a key located in a knox box as required by code…(the VFD is supposed to have a list with such entry infofor all buildings in town)…The flimsy cardboard left on the broken door was also wrong to allow when securing a building..Tthere are contractors on call with a rotating list like tow trucks who come and board up a scene…And finally those who know say the VFD and the Fire Marshal need to be required to show the Commission the protocol they are operating under …as a department…along with Town and County protocol …None of that was forthcoming in the presentation…… The Davie incident Paine spoke about was from welding gasses, acetylene and oxygen…  Oversight should have been in place from the non-voting member of the VFD Board…Town Manager Colon…

Speaking of the VFD …it was sad to hear today that a longtime former member and former Chief wanted to return and we are told some leftover McIntee followers voted to keep him out…It is a loss for the department …a loss for the Town and a loss of confidence to those who support and donate to the VFD…who believed them when they said all are welcome to join and serve their Town…Where was former Comm. Silverstone when this went down?… It was he who spoke loudest of giving back to the Town….Reconsideration should be done on this one!…….


Tomorrow is the funeral for Costantino Marchelos….

“Marchelos, Costantino, of Lauderdale by the Sea, FL, passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family April 10. 2010. Constantine was known as Costas, Gus, and Papou, Charlie, Taki. Costas was born on the beautiful Island of Cephallonia, Greece, July 26, 1926. He was the breadwinner and protector of his family since he was 10 years old. Costas survived the German invasion of Hitler and the Italian invasion of Mussolini on Cephallonia. Constantinos was a freedom fighter and transported ammunition and supplies in the night to save his island from the German invasion. Costas was a superior tank commander training to be a captain at sea. Costas decided to start a new life in America. Costas was a master chef, owner and operator of numerous restaurants in the metropolitan area of NYC. Retired to Lauderdale by the sea. After 40 days in retirement he decided to use his expertise and knowledge and opened the Sea Ranch Diner with the help of family and tradition continued in the family business. The expansion contributed to the opening of Athena by the Sea, with his expertise in cooking and knowledge of training his family the secrets of cooking and caring for his customers, Costas legacy will survive in the New Anglins Beach Caf located on the Anglins fishing pier. Costas is survived by his wife, Vasiliki, of 55 years; and his children, Adrianne, son-in-law, Nick, Spiro and Nikki, Elias and Martha; grandchildren, Irene and Tommy, Vasiliki Victoria, Marionna and Stephanie; and his brothers, in Greece, Captain Gerassimos his wife Eftrepi; Vasilios and wife Joya, Panagis and Popi; his brothers-in-law, John and Jerry Bekios and his sister-in-law, Helen Vasilakis; and extended family throughout New York and Greece. Gus will be greatly missed by his whole family and all his close friends. Viewing April 15, 2010, 9 to 11 a.m., at the Baird Case Funeral Home, 4343 N. Federal Hwy., Oakland, FL 33308. Prayer service and funeral to follow at St. Demetrios Church, 815 15th Ave., Fort Lauderdale, FL. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to St. Constantine & Helen Church in Karavados, Kefallonia, Greece. Please send donations to Athena by the Sea, 4400 Ocean Dr., Lauderdale by the Sea FL 33308, so we can process it and send it to Kefalonia, Greece.”

more to come…..

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … LBTS-BSO Chief Llerena Responds ….

April 9, 2010 by Barbara

Dear Readers… Chief Llerena responded to the Public Records Request this writer made and posted yesterday …(4/8/10)….The previous request was in response to the letter Town Manager Esther Colon sent on April 7, 2010 to Fl. Attorney General McCollum…Her letter included the chair and shackle used in the previous BSO quarters and insinuated, in this writer’s opinion, that use of it was endangering the welfare and the human respect of detainees…The Chief has responded just as I recalled and posted, that the chair and shackle were in compliance…He went on to add that I needed to contact the Town Manager to respond to my question of why if she were so concerned over the use of it she did not do something to remedy the situation such as restore, retrofit or replace the old holding cell …I have sent a inquiry to ask that question of the Town Manager (see below)… As for my suggestion that the BSO may want to send in their own letter to the AG about the chair and shackle, the Chief has sent that on to BSO “chain of command”…and I will post their response when received…


From: “LLerena, Oscar”
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 2010 14:09:32 -0400
To: Barbara Cole
Cc: Cedeno, Angelo
Subject: RE: Public Record Request

Please see below in blue. …(separated the response out for post)…

Chief Oscar Llerena
Lauderdale-by-the-Sea District
Broward Sheriff’s Office
(954) 491-3920 Office

Please note that Florida has a broad public records law, and that all correspondence sent to me via email may be subject to disclosure.

From: Barbara Cole [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: Thursday, April 08, 2010 1:18 PM
To: LLerena, Oscar
Cc: [email protected]
Subject: Public Record Request

Dear Chief Llerena;
It has come to my attention that the Town Manager sent a letter to Attorney General Bill McCollum yesterday (4/7/10) to clarify her actions in the termination of Chief Scott Gooding.
Included in her letter to AG McCollum was the following statement by Manager Colon -“Public Safety is my prime concern not only to the employees, citizens and visitors of our Town, but also the welfare and human respect of a detainee. Attached are photos of the before and after holding cell.”
It was my understanding in visiting the BSO office shortly after the termination of Chief Gooding that the chair and the “shackle” were not in any violation and BSO was operating within the laws of “welfare and human respect for a detainee”.
Please verify this for me along with any documentation stating this as factual.



The previous Temporary Detention Area, while not ideal, was maintained in compliance with Chapter 11 of the BSO Department of Law Enforcement Standard Operating Procedures as well as state and national law enforcement accreditation standards. Unlike our regular policy manual, the DLE SOP may be exempt from public records requests, so any request for that document must be made directly to our Staff Services division.


While in the BSO office that day I also saw the old holding cell. Can you tell me why the Town never upgraded that cell if the Town Manager was so concerned about the “welfare and human respect for a detainee”?


This question may be better addressed directly through the Town Manager.


I feel that if the BSO was acting within the proper guidelines, the BSO might also want to contact AG McCollum to clear up any misrepresentation of improper actions being done by the BSO in LBTS over the years in using the chair in question and possibly leaving the BSO and the Town open to litigation by any former detainees after reading the Town Manager’s statement sent to the AG.
If this is done, I also request a copy of that letter and any correspondence to and from the Town Manager on this subject.


BSO has always operated all temporary detention areas within accepted policy and law enforcement accreditation standards. This concern has been relayed through the BSO chain of command for their attention.


I await your response, Thank you Barbara Cole

Re: Public Record Request
Friday, April 9, 2010 2:14 PM
[email protected]
“Oscar Llerena”
[email protected]
Thank you for your response. When you receive a response from “the chain of command” please send it as well.
Barbara Cole

Inquiry To The Town Manager
Friday, April 9, 2010 4:37 PM
“Barbara Cole”
[email protected]
[email protected], [email protected]
Madam Town Manager,
I read your letter of April 7, 2010 to Fl. AG McCollum.
In your letter you included the following paragraph “Public safety is my prime concern not only to the employees, citizens and visitors of out Town, but also the welfare and human respect of a detainee. Attached are photos of before and after holding cell.”
I am aware there was actually a cell on the premises, although it was in disrepair and being used to store items.
Did you as Acting Town Manager or Town Manager over the last 3+ years ever attempt to look into and present to the Commission the possibility of either repairing, retrofitting or replacing that holding cell due to your statement to the AG of your “prime concern” being the “welfare and human respect of a detainee”?
If so please provide me that information.
If not, why not?
I await your response.
Thank you, Barbara Cole


more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … This Town Manager’s Answer … Should Start The Dominoe Effect ….

April 1, 2010 by Barbara


“The domino effect is a chain reaction that occurs when a small change causes a similar change nearby, which then will cause another similar change, and so on in linear sequence. The term is best known as a mechanical effect, and is used as an analogy to a falling row of dominoes.”

Dear Readers… From the Daily Pulp online…

Excerpts …

“City manager at work

“Payton able to unilaterally award the contract legally because Miramar permits construction jobs under $50,000 to be awarded without public bids and votes. “….

“The reason Payton was in the clear was that even though he facilitated the corrupt deal, he didn’t take money for it. You see, a city manager can do the wrong thing, like hand out insider contracts to dubious companies for selfish and political reasons, but he can never ever take money.”


In Lauderdale-By- The-Sea Town Manager Esther Colon has been digging her heels in for quite some time now during her “reign” .. Her way of managing the town could also be called “weak and ineffectual”…Over the last 2 + years this writer posted questions and concerns over purchases that fall below the threshold of needing Commission approval…from the end of the year “unencumbered” funds to the  latest one to purchase a metal Chamber roof …I posted when she did a 180 with her requirement of the Town owning all public safety apparatus….I posted when vendors were no longer read RFPs aloud and when new vendors who came to town to pursue a contract were treated with disdain…In one case one bidder was publicly humiliated by the Town Manager and her past majority on the dais as they sat back and repeatedly allowed her to have whomever she wanted …no matter if the cost was higher or the services were inferior or antiquated in comparison…

Many Readers might have been around when the Beach Pavilion was in its early stages in 2007 and the Master Plan Steering Committee was asked to come up with their recommendations for an architect…(prev. posts)…The MPSC did so…but the then-acting Town Manager Colon asked that Commission to hold off for someone she had who could do the job for less…They agreed and so it began…in this writer’s opinion, …the beginning of this Manager’s unilateral control over the Pavilion project…and the debacle this writer uncovered (with plenty of tips from “Avid Readers”)….when we suddenly found out at the 11th hour we would have a Commercial Blvd. Beach Pavilion with no walls!… It took months and multiple lame attempts by the Town Manager and staff to divert attention away from the changes she alone made without input from the Commission until the facts came to light that she had indeed made changes …She was had “cover” from the majority on the dais at the time (McIntee/Silverstone/Clottey) and never did take any heat for how wrong this was or how this went down ….and still there were no ramifications for not only the unilateral decisions made…or the important details hidden…but the ongoing major problems that have resulted in the project…and continue to this day… Same goes for her $300,000 pre-penalty payment on the loans when she made absolutely no attempt to inform the Commission that she would be taking that fiscally responsible action with our longtime bank….. instead she stuck to her “standard” reply of having no direction from the dais to do so!…

It is this writer’s opinion that Town Manager Colon’s ” Power”…her “adrenalin rush” come from wheeling and dealing with her chosen vendors…And just as the article from Bob Norman states …”You see, a city manager can do the wrong thing, like hand out insider contracts to dubious companies for selfish and political reasons, but he can never ever take money.” … While the companies our Town Manager is doing business with are not “dubious” to my knowledge….. When it comes to who gets a contract in LBTS …… and who gets thrown under the bus….with all I have seen from Town Manager Colon…to quote her longtime “protector” former VM McIntee…”If it walks like a duck…… Quack…quack…

We have als0 seen in the last few years an increase in consultants…which in itself is mind blowing…due to the the old “Broom Boys” campaign in 2006 that they were getting rid of that practice…It was a holdover they insisted from the “Old Guard” practices …It became a real shell game…again in this writer’s opinion…much like how certain Town employees such as the Asst. Town Manager were no longer listed under the Administration but under “Community Standards” therefore taking his salary and others out of the limelight… thus allowing certain Commissioner/candidates to make erroneous claims that Administration salaries had been cut substantially over the years…

A look at the current monthly financial reports …from this years budget shows a big increase in “Professional Consultants” … and the bulk of it seems to be Chen & Assoc. and Ocampo…for a multitude of “studies”…and projects… The Town law firm has seen a substantial increase as well and that fact now wipes at out any prior claims of savings we were told we would have no longer employing  former Town Attorney Cherof’s firm on retainer…

One item recently came to light with the latest Town project to go south under this Manager’s watch…the El Mar Drive Beautification project…and how the million dollar job was acquired by the Manager’s chosen vendor with no RFP/RFQ going out…

It was a question first asked of this writer when we were faced with the Furth-led “McIntee Memorial Median Walkway” down the center of the new medians in the south end of El Mar Drive… Many asked if it had gone out to bid…I responded it had not…Those questions remained in the background as we dealt with Ms. Furth and her stand to get on with this unwanted project …She was backed by only those candidates she and her husband were managing in their campaigns for the commission… After her 3 candidates finally saw the “political” light …and realized they had no choice but to do an about face …(I would have loved to been a fly on the wall for that Town Hall East exchange guaranteed to have taken place long after the daily siesta)…. the question was still dormant …until…I received an e-mail asking about the lack of an RFP (Request for Proposal) or an RFQ (Request for Qualification)… I asked then Comm. Dodd if he was aware of any such bid…He was not…Comm. Dodd decided to put it on the February 23, 2010 agenda as one of his 6 question for the Town Manager under NB item 16C …This was in planned response to the deplorable display the Town Manager made during her Town Manager Report at the prior Commission Meeting on Feb 9, 2010 ..(prev. post)…Below is the question….asked that night …

Comm. Dodd-
“#6) While this town employs Chen and Associates as the engineer of record can I ask the town manager whether the town complied with all the requirements of the Florida statute

287.055 Acquisition of professional architectural, engineering, landscape architectural, or surveying and mapping services; definitions; procedures; contingent fees prohibited; penalties.—otherwise known as the Consultants Competitive Negotiation Act.

My question is simple – Should this town have gone out for an RFQ knowing the size of the project to be $1,000,000 in order to comply with the terms of the act.”

The Town Manager verbatim reply …as posted on Feb 26,2010 ….(prev. post)…along with former Comm. Silverstone’s  and Mayor Minnet’s responses to then-Comm. Dodd’s inquiry… (Again, Readers can see why there was a “landslide”on March 9th, 2010)….

TM Colon-“Um, as far as section 287.155. I know we’re abidin’ by it. I, I know the competitive act but I will respond to your memo and I will attach the same memos that I already supplied you and every Commission member. But I will respond to the inquiries.”

Commissioner Silverstone” I just want to say I’m disappointed. This is no way to ah, transact Town business. Um, these issues are important. I remember getting these memos. We discussed these. Um, why are we wasting time on this. I don’t know. It’s not the way we do things. To get the business done of the people and um, I just want to make sure that I stand cause it’s not the way we do business here. I yield.”

Mayor Minnet” Thank you Commissioner Dodd for bringing that up.”

The Manager decided to respond in a memo (yep, a memo..the TM’s M.O.)…on March 11, 2010… Why the delay?…Was she waiting for the election outcome to see if her status quo would continue and there would be no need to reply?…Was she trying to see how to get out yet another unilateral mess up?… In any event this writer knew there was something to this one…due to any delay from Ms. Colon…

The reply…was deja vu for me  (Beach pavilion) with the TM trying to squirm out it by adding a few memo pages with the time line… and putting the onus on the Commission and others for again dropping the ball…(Wait til you see who she blames!)..


Date: March 11,2010

To” Commissioner Dodd

From: Esther Colon, Town Manager

Subject: 2/23/2010-16-C Agenda Item-Question #6

Attached please find the chronology of Town Public meetings taking place for the project that is known as the El Mar Drive Streetscape Project.

Ordinance 2005-005, adopted by the Town provided for a streetscape plan for El Mar Drive from Palm Avenue to Pine Avenue, requiring conformity as a condition of any future site plan approvals for the adjacent private properties. In 2008, the Commission canceled the El Mar Streetscape Ordinance. This altered the course of development of streetscapes on this particular Town Street considered an important asset of the Town Future changes to Town Right-of-Way adjacent to private properties on El Mar Drive are inevitable. It is important to realize that after the cancellation of the ordinance, reestablishing and maintaining a policy for a streetscape design has been paramount to the current Administration, and it assumed that it is the same for the Town.Commission. An adopted streetscape provides for the continuity of design, allows cost estimates and time schedules to be established, budgets to be determined, grant applications submitted, presentations made to the elected officials and the public, and finally allows for reviews by regulatory agencies, if applicable.

In response to your question, the Town Commission at a properly noticed public meeting on 08 December 2010 with the Town Attorney present, voted on moving forward with the project design and its expenditures., and gave authorization for the Town Manager to proceed with the project. Only the Town Commission can waive purchasing requirements established by the Town expending Town funds.

I am aware that if the Town Commission had utilized the services of the Town Engineer, Chen and Associates, the services would be exempt from the statute because a continuing contract being in place between the Town and Chen. This is one of the reasons for having an ongoing agreement in place.

If the Town Commission had authorized Town Administration with providing management of the the project from conceptual design to construction, the Commission would have been assured that all the regulations would have been adhered to due to departmental reviews of the process.

The workshops, roundtable, public meetings, have all been processes to empower the advisory committees , the public and the Town Commission as to direction to take for the streetscape design. Town Administration is not a voice in any part of the mentioned process, and does not vote, but merely takes direction from the Town Commission in implement the desired project.

Town Commission may have been exempt from probably should have sought RFQ for the consultant design component, as Statute 287.055 requires when design fees exceed $25,000.00 or construction costs exceed $250,000.00.

Respectfully submitted EC/mi”

BC- In other words the Town Manager and her staff should have gone out for bid…..First be aware that in her response the Town Manager has rewritten history…The Town Manager was definitely involved in the process and it was she that circumvented and included designs on her own with no direction from the Commission or the MPSC after the AI students designs were done from her chosen vendors Chen and Ocampo…. Both vendors were right alongside a very invested Town Administration in this process with the MPSC/ P&Z and the Commission….

This one is a new low even for Town Manager Colon…She not only blames the Commission …but this time blames the Advisory Boards…She “uses” their involvement to get he and her staff off the hook!…YIKES…Her assertion that the El Mar Streetscape Ordinance was canceled due to the repeal of the Overlay Districts…is a new one…It’s a stretch at best and needs further investigation…Not that it has anything to do with the present project or the question being asked about the statute required bids for a project this size in this price range……Any authorization that was given from the Commission was done with the information provided by Administration, staff and the Town Atty…The Commission is not supposed to know all the statute requirements…….Even the vendors …Chen and Ocampo, who received the contracts should have pointed out the statute requirements to staff and the Commission….It was their duty to inform the Commission of the statute …not the other way around… Give me a break!…..

This Town Manager has really gone off the deep end with this one… big time! ….If the Town Attorney had any input in it…she too has proven it time to go out for new representation … and as for the vendors…they would be crossed off my list if I was looking at the bidders for any future projects after this March 11th, 2010 memo!….

Bottom line…read again the Manager’s reply on the dais Feb 23, 2010….”Um, as far as section 287.155. I know we’re abidin’ by it. I, I know the competitive act but I will respond to your memo and I will attach the same memos that I already supplied you and every Commission member. But I will respond to the inquiries.”

We now know she was not “abidin’ by it”….. and if she knew the “competitive act” as she claimed…..she certainly kept it to herself!…

Time for dominoes….

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Did The Town Administration Delay The Swearing In Of The 2010 Commission?…

March 13, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers…. In the prior post this writer wrote about the Chamber’s Craft Fair that almost wasn’t when Commissioner Dodd was called to assist with the Town Administration who was about to quash the weekend event after the company rep. was held up and treated poorly by the an employee in the development trailer for hours was deemed to be too late in picking up the permit afterward in Town Hall…Asst. John Olinzock, it is said tried to impose a $370 “late fee” in order to punish her tardiness!…

In looking to see if such a “late fee” does in fact exist… the following code was found  concerning the election and the swearing in of the newly elected commissioners!…

From the Town website-muni-codes…(link before)…


*Cross references: Elections, Ch. 7.

Sec. 2-17. Meeting to seat new members.
On the Friday following the regular election at which a Town Commissioner shall be elected in accordance with Section 6.1 of the Town Charter, the Town Commission shall meet at the usual place for holding meetings of the legislative body of the Town, at which time the newly elected Town Commissioner(s) shall assume the duties of his or her office.
(Sp. Acts 1951, Ch. 27675, Pt. II, Art. 7, §§ 1, 2; Charter Amendment, June 3, 1952)
Cross Ref.
Chapter 7 ELECTIONS*

Sec. 7-4. Manner of election and taking office.
(a) The candidate or candidates, depending upon the number to be elected, receiving the highest number of votes in the election, shall be the winner or winners.
(b) Such duly-elected municipal officers shall take office within 14 days after the election, the specific day to be decided by ordinance.
(Code 1962, § 8-4)

(The Town website showed the tallied votes on Friday from the SOE)…

OOPS!….According to the above  Article 2-17/Chap. 7-4….. The New Commission should have been sworn in yesterday, March 12, 2010…not Monday March 15, 2010!….

What’s up with this?….Looks like someone has some explainin’  to do!….And it better not start out with “As you recall!”….

By the way…there does not appear to be a “late fee” for being tardy in picking up a permit!….Here we go again …why would the Asst. Town Manager act in such a manner?…Why wouldn’t the Asst. Town Manager offer to assist and expedite in order to ensure this wonderful event that only helps our Town in every way?… Looks like someone else has some explainin’ to do as well!…

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … 3/4/2010 LBTS Commission Meeting #1 …. Furth-er Finger Lickin’ Good …. Fear-mongering …

March 5, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers… Did the Roosters come home to roost?… The last meeting of the current majority was a fully orchestrated event…It had all the “Mc-Furth Gang”members in Jarvis Hall….(including Moe McIntee) all their assigned roles fulfill a last ditch effort to bring the voters of LBTS “pure propaganda of fear”… It must have been “hatched”at Town Hall East… and all in hopes that you the voters are ready to buy what they are selling …It was cheap and plentiful!……Tonight the white gloves were off…This was to be no fancy table cloth affair…This was a down and dirty…greasy and grubby …roll up your sleeves and prepare to need a bath just to get the scum off back door”Barbs”-on- cue!….CIC “Newbie” Liliana Pomareda was “sitting in wait” to sign up first before half past 6…Cristie Furth arrived looking like she hadn’t bathed in weeks…(Familiar- 2008) …A small but vocal contingency of CIC members were seated in a pack on the left side in order to boo as directed…and boo and hiss they did (who’s the real mob?)… Cristie sat next to Louis Dvorak, the man Marc Furth and Jerry McIntee told this writer long ago was responsible for many after midnight runs of mischief and supposed vandalism alongside them in the Parker days…( I asked him to leave my house alone as I left)…Christie Furth could hardly contain her glee when off camera… (On camera was another “Oscar” worthy cameo)…She was ready …”Smackin her lips”…like she had a big old bucket of KFC…She would tell this writer to shut up…she would boo…she was full of such cackling laughter  (like the cat who ate the canary…fried?)…as she watched what she designed,…..the most orchestrated meeting we have seen in this town since the orchestrated VFD Fire Dept. meeting …. …. Cristie sat down when one of her “Swedish” minions came forth to recreate more hearsay …She was practically playing patty-cake with Louis when heard one by one tell their story…and what stories they were…Liliana acting all concerned about her children being on Youtube…(we hear earlier in the day the “concerned ” mother practically had her child running in the road)… The Youtube-child predator “angle” was  a last ditch effort to thwart the mess she put herself in with the camera putting a damper on her exploits!… The McIntee- Silverstone-Clottey majority stopped the DVD from being shown knowing it would contradict her claims of intimidation and fear after resident Diana Kugler stepped up to counter her claims and asked for it to be shown to put this matter to rest and let the viewers decide……. …..(I can guarantee you if the time had been 2 years prior and it was a help to McIntee-Silverstone-Clottey and Furth…it would have been shown at least twice!)…..Liliana Pomareda broke the rules of the hall as she came back up to try and stop the DVD…as she used “politics” in the process….going after the Mayor…The CIC group had by all accounts “baited” their opposition…as they positioned their Mayoral candidate Couriel to set-up what happened on Monday night……Both sides provided the LBTS Police with reports…and it is an ongoing investigation……. What a proud “Den mother” Cristie was as she gave me smirked and smiled with zeal……overjoyed with what she…her husband …the McIntees…Silverstone…and Clottey created all in the comfort of her Hacienda …..Undoubtedly they were deep in planning it all when the residents would see their cars there 24-7…. (Sunshine be damned…the rules do not apply to them)… She had Hannah Hempstead, a nasty piece of work in this writer’s opinion taking videos of this writer and others in the hall …(Youtube bound no doubt)…Many in the hall spoke to me of their discomfort being around her at the break…Cristie herself  took to the podium to pounce and spew out a one sided “woe is me” type fairy tales as she stuck it to the Mayor (the Mayor let Cristie go on the attack much further than any other speaker in recent memory)….The residents who observed the incidents countered the claims  tit for tat with yet another resident stepping forward to say he was “assaulted” in the hall by “Newbie” Liliana Pomareda…This time with her glasses!…( On Feb. 9th it was paper)…YIKES!…They had their “Golden Parachute” Town Manager Esther Colon fully engaged as she falsely claimed (As you recall) with the assistance of Jim “He’s not a nice guy” Silverstone that her “Commission & Staff Past & Present Accomplishments” were done routinely as the commission observed its last meeting before an election… A look at agendas in 2006 and 2008 show it was false to state it as fact…and Jim Silverstone was dishonest to claim it was so!… (He is so easily led in her “recollections”)….

The Manager did a power point that was as political as it gets…She is very secure in her declarations of this being a Town Manager form of government and after witnessing this type of behavior she is right!……She  spoke of herself in the 3rd person…saying Esther Colon was responsible for so much all on her own…(disturbingly slanted and distorted)…She went head on in her politically pointed arrows at those candidates running against her choice of Furth-CIC endorsed candidates…knowing these candidates will offer her unparalleled job security and a Town Manager form of government that’s here to stay if they win!… She was rude to the Mayor..and equally nasty to Commissioner Dodd…and no one…put a stop to it… Cristie could not have been prouder!…She glossed over the fact that we had $18 million dollars  (now down to $12+ million) and could have built our Town Hall Complex…and our El Mar Project…and our drainage townwide…forgoing a crappy $ 2million dollar motel…and piecemealing McIntee Memorial “median walkways”…and we could have lowered the millage rate… She did not address all the big projects she miserably directed unilaterally…( Beach Pavilion/Public Safety Motel/ Off-site warehouse) the below the belt tactics of going after the Fire Marshal after she terminated him……the ongoing denigrating and out and out attempt to replace the Senior Center Director… and stopping RFPs from being read aloud as she claimed to be above reproach for opening sealed bids …not reading them aloud and taking them to the back room…….She did not point out her termination of  BSO Polcie Chief Gooding or leading on the BSO for months over their new offices…She did not talk of her thwarting public records requests and financial statements….looking the other way on VFD oversight…or anything McIntee-Silverstone related….Her payback actions to those residents and businesses that dared to call her on her actions……She left off the presentation her shorting the Chamber /Welcome Center and sullying their personnel…All this was aided and abetted by the current majority…They sat mute as she denigrated CPAs and hurled insults and innuendo to residents and businesses…. Silverstone/ McIntee love to  talk of her sterling reputation…her being highly regarded everywhere she goes… This writer hears of her other reputation that counters their claims from those who have felt her wrath… She and Silverstone and McIntee were responsible for keeping it quiet for 2 years that she gave herself a years severance if she is ever terminated……..and so much more…(prev. posts)….But tonight it was a last ditch effort to hold on to their power…… Yes, it’s nice to have a healthy budget…but you can have that with a Manager that understands her place in on the dais…and her place in the LBTS Commissioner-manager form of government mandated by the Charter!…

The Public Safety item was odd with McIntee and Silverstone “going after” the VFD Fire Chief for the Beach Patrol ATVs not saying “Volunteer”..The Chief was short and stood his ground and the BFF “Broom Boys”…were left with nothin’… (This writer has heard the VFD is not on board with this Silverstone re-e-lection…guess those who said so, were not speaking out of turn)….

Commissioner Comments was the most disgusting display we have ever witnessed in this town…thanks in large part with “Besotted” Clueless” “Classless” “Crazy” Clottey…She should be removed from office!…It was shameful…She lied and perpetrated false statements of racial slurs that she says took place in the hall…False!…A look at the Feb 9 2010 public comments (yes, again proves it did not happen!… She made statements to incite…and distort and then crossed the line further with references Nazi Germany… Going so far as to say her candidate received a threat to “kill” him.!….I am told the majority of voters (this voter is among them) feel worse about voting Clottey in than they do about McIntee or Silverstone!…WOW!…I could take it no longer and told her “Shame on you!”… She answered and asked if I wanted to speak since I know more… That was the only honest thing that came out of her mouth in this whole despicable diatribe!… Commissioner Jim “He’s not a nice guy” Silverstone lied about this writer when he said I said drivers that honked were “stupid voters”… I said they were “misinformed”…perhaps Silverstone does not understand what “misinformed” means!…Pecifically!… I said it was a lie…and I was given a warning…I took it gladly to right his wrong…… Vice Mayor McIntee seized his opportunity…He called for me to be removed and said it was a 2nd warning… A vote was taken and surprise, surprise…these three “led by the nose” Furth Commissioners voted 3-2 to remove me… I took the parting shot at the door to say “Shame” on them…and tell them they were “lying” …”propaganda”…”fear-mongering”… I am told the CIC- Furth “pack” clapped at my removal…and a call to give them a second warning and removal by the Mayor was voted down…3-2 by “led by the nose” Furth Commissioners Silverstone- Clottey-McIntee…It figures!… I am told Jimmy campaigned big time on false statements…and false attacks he said he received……and of course he steered clear  on his McIntee-like voting record!…I missed Comm. Dodd’s comments…and heard a small portion of Mcintee’s swan song…No matter…it was the same old tired stuff…No mention that he is leaving a despised man…who was given the heave-ho by the VFD  (who now says it’s our turn …meaning the voters …and the CIC and is slinking out of town… (Pod and all)…The Mayor finally broke down……Town Manager Colon was seen and heard chuckling at the Mayor’s pained reaction to what she has been in receipt of over the last 2 years and the last 2 hours of this evenings “game plan”…….. The Mayor shot back at outgoing, disgraced Vice Mayor McIntee that he finally succeeded after 2 years…He made her cry!… What a fitting way for such a “pox” on our town to exit!…The “bully” made an elected official cry!…Sums up the Vice Mayor’s..M.O.”Quack, Quack”…In the line of fire …the Mayor still called the present majority to task for all their bad acts…and said it was the voters…the taxpayers who paid the the long run..not she!… This writer agrees…not she!…

Did they pull off this dastardly planned parting night of propaganda?… We shall see…Next Tuesday…after 7 pm…

Are the voters still uninformed in 2010?…Are the voters gullible in 2010 ?…Are the voters so complacent that it matters not as long as the ends justify the means in 2010?…

I certainly hope there is an  overwhelming number of informed voters this year and they are ready to say enough is enough to this type of shameful orchestrated fear-mongering….I must hold on to the hope that they will not fall prey to orchestrated race baiting being spewed as we saw last night in order to retain Furth-er Colon Silverstone-Clottey-Evans-Couriel style power over the next 4 years…Because it we are so easily deceived…so disengaged that we allow it to go on…heaven help us all!…

Time to come clean in 2010….. napkins …silverware…. table manners …and properly attired…. Leave the buckets outside the door in 2010!…

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … Holding On For Dear Life …

March 1, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers … One of the many problems this writer has been on record addressing with the Town Manager is her lack of getting important public information out whether it be announcing “Special Meetings”….. both hers and “committees”…meaning her ill-fated “Forum” on Special Events and Street Closures…Scott Gooding…or the Silverstone-McIntee-Furth July 4th meetings…(prev. posts) Add to that her lack of advertising for Invitation To Bid/ Requests For Proposals/ Requests For Qualifications …(she has put in thumbnail size ads in the Sentinel that while  “legally acceptable” were an obvious attempt to thwart the process in this writer’s opinion…She has neglected to advertise correctly for job positions …and now this…

As of today, one week before the March 9th, 2010 Municipal Election in LBTS there is still no ad in the Sentinel and still no sample ballot!… The other neighboring municipalities have done theirs!…

We hear the Town Clerk has said she follows the Town Charter and if there is nothing in the Charter she follows Broward County…

The Town of LBTS will be holding off on our ad in the Sentinel until Sunday March 7th!…According to the Town Clerk…2 days prior to the election!….

Again, while “legally acceptable”….why?… To keep a “Vice Grip” on the election and hope a low turnout helps Town Manager Esther Colon to keep current majority in place thus ensuring her at least 2 more years of the same antics under her self proclaimed “Town Manager form of government?…


At the Feb 25, 2010 Meet The Candidate’s Night Candidates were asked what they would do once elected…their first piece of legislation…

Here’s one—An Ordinance that says public notices /sample ballots announcing elections must be in the Sun-Sentinel 2 weeks prior to an election…YIKES!…

Add this to the long,long, long list of reasons this Town Manager- current majority  must go!…

More to come…..

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … 2/23/10 LBTS Commission Meeting … #2 …. Saving The Best For The End … Totally ….

February 26, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers…as you know full well by now whenever the Town Manager says “As you recall”…It means antenna alert…and don’t fall for it …We have been seeing it a a record pace lately as it appears the Town Manager is chasing her tale (not a spelling error) and is falling behind in trying to clear up her major mishaps due to unilateral decisions…and keeping the Commission and the taxpayers in the dark…essentially waiting for the other shoe to drop…

At the Feb. 23, 2010 Commission meeting Commissioner Dodd decided to give the Town Manager a dose of her own medicine …(she had put under TM Report at the Feb 9th meeting 8. TOWN MANAGER REPORT a. Clarification of recent issues)… So he put on…16c “Discussion and/or action on Town related business items.”…

Commissioner Dodd began with informing the Town Manager he had a copy of his questions for her and to enter into the minutes (good luck with that)…Here is what he submitted…

“16c)  I put this on the agenda since the last time I went to see the manager and ask about her item – Clarification of Recent issues I received the answer – I’ll tell you tomorrow. I decided to publically ask for an update to be available at the next commission meeting on the following topics.

1)      Please produce a time line over the negotiations from the first complaint to the final projected resolution date with Choice on the multi family and the mixed commercial/residential issues.  I first placed this on an agenda on Oct 13th long after the first complaint was received. – At that time the manager stated we had to change the ordinance before she could go and talk to Choice.  An Ordinance was drawn up but put on hold.  The manager changed her stance because there was no point in doing an ordinance if Choice wasn’t willing to negotiate. The manager was then instructed to go and negotiate and if successful the commission would then change the code.. Where have those negotiations stalled and why?   I will be asking for those affected to receive a rebate based on the date the contract was given to Choice.  I find it surprising this has taken so long when we can put through plans, approvals, permits and complete drainage repairs in Bel Air outside a commissioner’s house and yet picking up the phone and resolving two small issues in a contract is dragging out into months and months.

2)      Sale of the Dixie property – Why did the town manager not bring this back to the commission once the six months had expired.  According to the video the commission granted Asset Management the right to sell and promote the property for a very low commission for six months.  You get what you pay for and nearly 18 months later we still own the site – it doesn’t appear to have been advertised properly on the MLS and we still own it and it’s costing us money.  Why wasn’t this added to the famous “tickler” or “brought forward” scheme that I was informed about when I first became a commissioner – I guess it fell through the cracks?  We need to place this commercial property in the hand of the best commercial real estate broker and alter the price to reflect the current market.

3)      Turtle lighting – Could you please refresh my memory as to when the commission passed the expense to put up the shields or did the manager make the decision and keep the cost under $15,000?

4)      What action would town staff recommend to resolve the lighting at the Minto parking lot.  I don’t propose to ask why were the wrong lights installed in the first place or who was responsible since that’s unproductive.  I would like to ask staff to bring a solution back to this dais because the town could be liable if someone falls over because we have to turn off all the lights again this year.  I personally feel this should be a higher priority than the tennis court lighting and want to ask the manager whether there is enough money in the budget to resolve both issues.

5)      Please confirm the funding for the senior center to Bien Aime has not been stopped as stated in a recent memo and that Amelio will be present at the proposed audit by Broward County . He is primarily responsible for the wonderful senior center support and success over the past few years and knows more about the internal workings than town staff since he deals with the members every day.  I have stated on record if the terms of the grant can’t be met because they are too onerous I am publicly asking the town manager to bring it back to the dais before taking any unilateral actions of her own. It is up to the dais to make the decision if they wish to fund the centre from other sources and not the managers.

6)      While this town employs Chen and Associates as the engineer of record can I ask the town manager whether the town complied with all the requirements of the Florida statute

287.055 Acquisition of professional architectural, engineering, landscape architectural, or surveying and mapping services; definitions; procedures; contingent fees prohibited; penalties.—otherwise known as the Consultants Competitive Negotiation Act.

My question is simple – Should this town have gone out for an RFQ knowing the size of the project to be $1,000,000 in order to comply with the terms of the act.

I feel compelled to ask these questions publicly and to ask this copy of my questions be placed in the minutes as a record.”


The Town Manager ” I believe I have responded to three of these items in writing via memo. I have met with Choice. I have provided the information that they have requested. At the second meeting they came with their attorney. I told em I would not meet with their attorney unless my attorney was present. The attorney stayed out in the lobby. You both got copies of the letters I sent. It is in the hands of Choice to come back and tell us what they want to negotiate. I cannot do anything else but provide you with the information they provided me.

As far as the sale of the property. I gave you a memo of that. You are correct you have all the dates right. I gave you a chronological event of what happened and IF YOU RECALL when I attached the documents to the memo purposely because we had over 25 Realtors, most of them came from the ah, our tourist guide and we had some local Realtors. I believe one was called By The Sea. One was called Sandy Stella and it appeared that we had a lot of local competition with different rates and The Commission chose not to go that route. I sent  the memo for that reason. The Commission has not given me direction. If they want me to RFP it or what they want me to to do.

The turtle lighting. We had a workshop the other day. FPL is workin’ with Florida Wildlife and staff.They are trying a sample cover for the light. It’s some creative thing that they did for us and if they accept that those shields will be going up.

Minto parking , I’m surprised you aksd (asked) me that question. I wrote you a memo. I also informed you that Minot gave me a couple of thousands of dollars to put shields those lights. What happened was FPL put in the wrong lights. So I do have the money in the bank. FPL, the manufacturer, Mintos and the Florida Wildlife are currently workin’ with us to see if the shield that they came up with will adapt to the lights that are there. If they do we’ll probably be givin’ some of the funds back to Mintos because they gave us a little bit extra than we needed.

As far as the Senior Center  audit we have been put on notice um. the auditors like any other auditor of the county. They have informed us that when they’re ready to come in and do an audit they will pick up the phone and say we will be here on x date and they will perform the audit.

Um as far as section 287.155. I know we’re abidin’ by it. I, I know the competitive act but I will respond to your memo and I will attach the same memos that I already supplied you and every Commission member. But I will respond to the inquiries.”

Commissioner Silverstone” I just want to say I’m disappointed. This is no way to ah, transact Town business. Um these issues are important. I remember getting these memos. We discussed theses. Um, why are we wasting time on this. I don’t know. It’s not the way we do things. To get the business done of the people and um, I just want to make sure that I stand cause it’s not the way we do business here. I yield.”

Mayor Minnet” Thank you Commissioner Dodd for bringing that up.”


Here we go… Choice is at a standstill and the residents are suffering…Commissioner Silverstone thinks it’s wasting time…just hours after yet another resident came at public comments looking for a solution…OUCH!… Yesterday the Town Manager reissued the contract and a time-line

The warehouse property…(prev. post) according to the July 2008 meeting the Commissioners gave the Town Manager direction..a 6 month contract after the Manager and Asst. TM Olinzock added to the packet Advanced Assets Management without informing the Commission of prior contracts with the company…The Mayor read aloud what the company would do…and according to the memos a year and a half later …most of that was not done…Now the TM is saying she had no direction?…Come on!… Her recollection of “I believe one was called By The Sea ” was disingenuous at best…

The lights and the shields…we first heard about shields being installed at the 2/17/10 MPSC meeting when Comm. Silverstone stood up and told us they were being installed he saw the plans from Don Prince  (Municipal Works Director)… The shields the TM says will go up “if they accept ” have been put up on every other or every their light pole on El mar last week…So why no advance notice or update at the prior meetings and the workshop as many residents spoke up?.. Since when did FPL do any shields for free?…

The wrong lights were put up in the Minto /El Prado Parking lot…we all knew that…but that it was FPL that did it…that’s sure a new one!…I want to see that memo ..the date and some proof from FPL and Minto…”who gave me a couple of thousands dollars”…and just where in the financial reports did it show it in the bank?…

The Senior Center …Who called whom for the audit…We heard the hard worked and much admired Director has been treated badly by this Manager …The Manger we heard has all his books after she demanded they be turned over…We were told the Town Manager said a staff member would g to the audit and not the Director…who was also informed his payments have been stopped…Someone needs to call the county to see if they are aware of the Town Manger’s strong-arming…

As for the Million dollar project without an RFP…this one should be quite interesting…as many questioned the size and thes cope with no RFP early on in the process…Just one more big ticket project that it look like this Town Manager may have bungled…

Commissioner Silverstone says he remembers all the above, read the memos…perhaps he remembers it the same way he remembers the Kite surfing Ordinance he tried to pass off as instituted by him…only to find out it never happened…and he wrongly stated at the 2nd debate it was “tabled”…after declaring if elected it would be the first thing he brings back… A memo came on February 23, 2010

“Kite surfing

We received phone calls pertaining to Kite Surfing and both Police and Code Enforcement departments are monitoring the area. The above subject has been the topic of discussion since April 28, 2009. This discussion was deferred to July 29, 2009 as a presentation was made by supporters of Kite Surfing, but they never came to the meeting so Vice mayor McIntee withdrew the item

Respectfully submitted EC”

Just as I said when I was so rudely told to “shut up” and told it was “Tabled” at SRClub the evening before…I said exactly what TM Colon states in her memo…So when Jimmy-boy says he remembers something…it’s akin to Town Manager Colon’s “as you will recall”…”Total Recall?” ….Totally unbelievable!…..

more to come….

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop … The West Warehouse …. From A Wash To A Washout! ……

February 21, 2010 by Barbara


“Subject: 5421-23 NE 14th Ave. -LBTS Property”

“I have attached a twelve month status report and will update accordingly.

Respectfully submitted. EC/mi”


Town Of Lauderdale By The Sea Office Of The Town Manager


FEBRUARY 10, 2010

To Mayor Roseann Minnet

Vice Mayor Jerry McIntee

Commissioner Stuart Dodd

Commissioner Birute Clottey

Commissioner Jim Silverstone

From Esther Colon, Town Manager

Subject: Status Report on 5421-23 NE- 14th Avenue- LBTS Property For Sale

“Following is a list of work in progress regarding the potential sale of the above Town property beginning with the most current date:

01/11/09-07/10/09 >Within the prior 180 days. One (1) showing scheduled despite efforts made to show interested prospects.

> Local Brokers have been attempting to locate buyers as well.

>Several calls were received from prior prospects inquitring about any list price reduction.

> Prospect discussions revealed that their estimated maximum offers would be less than 50% of the asking proice.

> Efforts were made to follow up with other prior prospects but were unsuccessful in promoting any offers. Several prospects referenced that a difficulty in obtaining financing would hinder their ability to purchase at this time.

10/11/08-01/10/09 > Five (5) inquiries were received in January. Most p[rospects still have the same concern regarding what to do excess unneeded space.

> A few prospects have called back about a reduction in listing price. Creative attempts have been made to team prospects together for joint purchase or to encourage those waiting for a price reduction to make an offer but these have been unsuccessful to date.

> The current listing price is at the higher of the two appraisals, $2,075,000 and the lower is at $1,850,000. It is recommended that the Town consider listing reduction closer tho the lower appraisal perhaps at $1,900,000.

> A significant number of prospects have called or have been shown the property and only one unrealistic low offer has been received to date.

9/11/08- 10/10/08 > Over the last 30 days the property has been shown three (3) times.

> Several calls have been received for more information and everyone has been provided with details on the property.

>The prevailing response from interested parties has been that the space is too large for their intended use.

> We have attempted to combine prospects together to encourage one party to purchase with another party to sign a long term lease, and have not found the right two parties to date.

> We will continue to seek a buyer through follow-up, advertising and mail-outs.

09/11/08> T/C with Sandy Dunn, rep for Jack Abda. Mr. Dunn stated that his client thought the building would need to be a tear down and that the maximum he would pay for the property would be $750k.

> Discussion value issues and Mr. Dunn stated their purchase and use would require redevelopment of the site, and therefore, the acquisition cost was a maximum of 750k.

08/10/08 > Met LBTS staff on site and showed property to prospective buyer. Boat sales and repair use. Buyer thought the price was in line with other properties he had looked at and liked the location.

> T/C with regarding Chapman purchase. Chapman hopes to have an answer on Monday, whether to move forward. Current concern over too large of a building and would need to look into leasing 10,000 sq. ft. of space out. May agree to partner with other buyer in same predicament.

09/09/09 > Met with LBTS staff on site and showed property to prospective buyer (Jack Abdo, Representd by Sandy Dunn)

08/28/08 > T/C with heavy equipment contractor, (Big T Group) faxed property information.

08/26/08 > T/C and faxed property info out, neighboring property owner.

08/21/08 > T/C with Bob’s T-Birds neighboring property owner and discussed building. Met with Bob and went over details of propery in person. Met with LBTS staff on site and showed property to perspective buyer (Teery).

08/12/08> Met LBTS staff on site and showed property to prospective buyer.

08/05/08> T/C with prospective buyer, Frank Chapman.

07/31/08> Emailed and faxed property info to contact list of potential buyers.

07/24/08 > Met on site with LBTS and Holy Cross, tenant, to preview property and take photographs for brochure.

07/21/08> T/C with interested party and faxed info.

07/18/08 > For sale sign was installed on property.

> T/C with tenant (Holy Cross) and discussed showing unit and phone contacts.

> Tenant passed along complaint for AC units in warehouse.

> T/C with  Marta, LBTS and Don Prince re: tenant issues.

>07/16/08> Received executed agreement from Town of Lauderdale-By-The-Sea for listing Parcel.

Thank you, EC/MI

Cc John Olinzock Assistant Town Manager

June White, Town Clerk”


There you have it LBTS Readers and Taxpayers…the warehouse out west…the one that Town Manager Esther Colon…Commissioner Jim Silverstone and Vice Mayor Jerry McIntee  said would “be a wash” and pay for the public safety building was a WASHOUT”!…

The Town Manager has shown once again she is unqualified for her position…and has again kept the Commission out of the loop acting unilaterally ….

The warehouse as previously posted was passed 5-0 on July 8, 2008 for a 6 month contract….and here we are on February 21, 2010 with a languishing building…no prospects …worth less than 50%  as of 8 months ago….

Each and every month the Municipal backup shows hours of salaried time spent there…we pay taxes on it…Holy Cross moved out long ago…and we are still listed with a broker who it appears never listed it as it on the MLS as it was contracted  …per the Mayor at that July 8, 2008 meeting!…

This is just one more big ticket item the Town Manager has blown big time…The Commercial Blvd.Pavilion…The Public Safety Building…. The warehouse… The garbage contract…. Her cover-up of her contract’s severance pay…The firing of Chief Scott Gooding…The firing of the Fire Marshal Alex Stevenson  and then going after his benefits…and appealing the ruling two times…The all out war on the Director of the Senior Center… The verbal disrespect of the Mayor and Commissioner Dodd…The attack from the dais on a local newspaper and LBTS taxpayers who edit, write  and own it……The attack on the Chamber of Commerce and the Welcome Center… No RFP on the El Mar Drive Project… The Interference and possible sending in of a question to the League of Women Voters for the first Meet the Candidates Night… The false assertion of racism at the Feb. 9, 2010 Commission Meeting… The fighting not to be reviewed annually as required in her contract……The no oversight of Vice Mayor McIntee when he was accused by Patrick Pointu….The no oversight of the VFD as Vice Mayor McIntee spent on extensive VFD  apparatus …. The end of RFPs being read aloud….The public records being overcharged and not being received… The stalling on releasing bank statements…The pre-penalty loans and the non- negotiating with Sun-Trust Bank…The no oversight of Vice Mayor McIntee deleting 3 1/2 of Town related email…The going after businesses with Broward County…The badmouthing of taxpayers in Town Hall when they were not there to defend themselves… The hiring under-qualified staff instead of advertising for qualified department heads… The unilateral Town-wide survey that was copied from Wilton Manors… The code sweeps in neighborhoods and businesses… The less than 1 full year for 5% increase on fees….The unprofessional behavior towards vendors… The leading the BSO on for improvements done at the hotel… The interference of keeping a VFD firefighter from rejoining the department while not asking the same of VM McIntee in his suicide investigation… The 3 yr. $200,000+ Audit contract done without Commission approval…….Unilaterally getting shields on the lights on El Mar Drive…Unilaterally not getting the right lights for El Prado Parking lot…Unilaterally getting the wrong kind of parking ticket kiosk in El Prado… Unilaterally sending out letters and ending the boards before the Commission could decide… Unilaterally deciding to use a metal roof on the Chamber and then feigning ignorance…. And that’s just off the top of my head from memory…over the past 2+ years…..and ….unfortunately….one more  biggie to come….It will be revealed tomorrow….

Dear Voters…Dear Taxpayers…can we really afford 4 more years of Town mismanagement by Town Manager Esther Colon …with Silverstone/ Evans/ Couriel…she will have carte blanch to carry on with their support and  their blessing…YIKES!…

more to come…

Post Division

Here’s The Scoop …. “As You Recall” … The West Warehouse …

February 19, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers … above are recent photos of the “Off-site” “Dixie” “West” Warehouse… The Town Manager was asked by Mayor Minnet on Feb 9th during her Town Manager report the status of the warehouse sale…This writer has posted often over the last 2 years that this too fell off the radar and was never brought back to the dais by the Manager for the Commission to address and direct her on…It has long been a major bone of contention to me as a taxpayer that this Town Manager does not use her Town Manager Report time to update and address these type of issues….She has consistently done this…She did it with the Commercial Blvd. Pavilion…and she is doing it with the warehouse…

At the Commission meeting on Feb 9th she still did not address it and said an update would be coming..

She sent a memo to the Commission on Feb 11,2010 that said the following…

“Subject: 5421-23 NE 14th Ave. -LBTS Property”

“If you recall at the July 8, 2008 Commission meeting the Commission decided not to pay a Commission to a Realtor to sell the above property.

If the Commission now has a desire to contract with a Realtor and list the property staff will prepare an RFP upon Commission approval.

I have attached a twelve month status report and will update accordingly.

Respectfully submitted.



Included was also …

The front page for the July 8, 2008 agenda item 15L

“Discussion and or Action by Commission on use of Agency for Real Estate Marketing and Sale of Town Off-Site Works Facility, 5423 NE 14 Ave. Fort Lauderdale.”

Memorandum from June 27,2008 FRP -Real Estate Marketing Service from John Olinzock to TM Ester Colon

“As requested by the Town Commission, I solicited an RFP to twenty-four (24) real estate agents within the 2008 Lauderdale-By-The Sea Visito’s guide. Below is a summary of the four (4) proposals received:

1. Earthrise Realty, Shirley Rossotti 6% Commission

2. By-The-Sea- Realty, Inc. , John MacMillan 5% Commission

3. Coldwell Banker Commercial NRT, Steven Weil No Commission provided/Marketing Plan Provided

4. Distinctive Realty, Cindi Morgano No Commission Provided/ Requesting Appointment

There are two appraisal that have been prepared for the property, and place market value at $1,850,000.00 and $2,075.000.00. As the Town would not accept less than the minimum appraisal value, 5% and 6% commissions would be $92,500.00 and $111,000.00 respectively.

Please let me know if you need additional information.”


The minutes from July 8, 2008 state the following on pg. 13


“Discussion and or Action by Commission on use of Agency for Real Estate Marketing and Sale of Town Off-Site Works Facility, 5423 NE 14 Ave. Fort Lauderdale.”(Assistant Olinzock)

Assistant Olinzock explained the steps he took to obtain letters or response and noted the commission rate requested for each response.

The Commission discussed the length of time for the contract with a preference of the Commission for a 6 month contract.

Vice Mayor McIntee made a motion to accept the lowest figure submitted by Advance Asset Management for a term of six (6) months. Commissioner Silverstone seconded the motion. In a roll call, the motion passed 5-0.”


A look at the Town video on July 8, 2008 show the following on item 15L. 4 :12:58 in…

The Mayor reads the item…The Town Manager  states “That’s the off-site building”…Asst. TM Olonzock repeats the memo from June 27,2008 (above) ..He adds “And I also included in the packet a proposal from Advanced Asset Management which is a company used by many municipalities in the process of selling real estate”Vice Mayor McIntee asks again about only 2 giving figures and says he will make a motion to go with the lowest figure. The Mayor asks if that is Advanced Asset Management. The Town Manager is heard too state “That’s Advanced Management”…Olinzock “Yes, it would be.”…The TM “And that’s a savings of how much from the lowest quote? 5% or something that you received?” Olinzock “The two proposals I received are based on a sales commission. 5% of the lowest price received on appraisals. $1,850,000 that would be $92,500. 6% 11,000.00 This proposal by Advanced Asset Management is for $18,750” Mayor Minnet asked him to repeat who the lowest was and Olinzock said “The lowest is Advanced Asset Management Inc.” The Mayo asks the Vice Mayor if his motion to accept the lowest….The VM “It just seems almost too good. Can a Real estate person go that low on a sales? That’s not even 1%…The Town Manager “Well, because they’re a seller broker and they work for municipalities and this is how they work.”…The VM says “who’s ever the cheapest we have to go with that’s my motion.” TM Colon “They’ve worked with other municipalities. How they do it I’m assuming they work with the seller. I know that our cost is no more than 20 thousand.” …The Mayor “A motion by Vice Mayor McIntee to accept the Advanced Asset Management contract for the sale of 5423 NE 14th Avenue site. Is there a second?”…Comm. Clottey said she had a question “Are we talking, how long we gonna give them an exclusive rights, for how long?”…The Manager “Well, if it’s a savings of 70,000 commission and the other ones that represent the other municipalities obviously you know it’s not a good economy. So you wanna give them x time it’s either x time of 20,000 or x time of 90,000….Comm. Clottey said she was just asking…The Town Manager “Oh no, I don’t know” …Olinzock “You only need one buyer, how long it takes for you to get that buyer is the unknown.”…TM Colon ” But you have to deal with them, whoever. They’re going to market the building and they’re going to do all the work. Nobody will be contacting me. Nobody will be contacting the Town Attorney. Everybody will be contacting the company Asset Management.”… Mayor Minnet then said “Right now in the the proposal it does say that it will list the property in local media, print, website MLS. Will review the terms of lease and purchase agreements and negotiates with the attorney per negotiations with the client’s goals. So they are a company that are familiar with Real estate needs of municipalities.”…The VM said “I guess I have to ask the question, although the cheapest is obviously the one I would go for but how long do they have to do this? We give them a contract, they get 5 years?”…Comm. Clottey could be heard “That’s what I just asked.” TM Colon ” No, well how, what kind of a guarantee are you gonna get from a Realtor that they’re gonna sell the building in?”…The VM “I’m gonna sell the building with a Realtor, 3 months or 6 months, hasn’t done it, go to another Real estate person. Are we locked into this person forever?”…TM “No, No! We just finished askin’ do you want it for 3 months? Do you want it for 6 months? What do you want it for?”…The VM “6 months. My motion is for the lowest with a 6 month contract. Cause Shirley (Russotti) says that’s the best way to go.”…Comm. Dodd “Second.” (The minutes incorrectly have Silverstone as 2nd) …Comm. Clottey then asked “Are they gonna accept a 6 month contract because I’ve had some dealings with Commercial property and they usually want something longer if they invest money to advertise and everything else.”…TM Colon “Um, we’ll ask Commissioner.”.. The Mayor repeated the motion…a roll call was taken and it passed 5-0…


That was on July 8, 2008…a 5-0 vote for a 6 month contract…and it never came back …

Here’s what was missing from the Town Manager and the Assistant Manager at the July 8, 2008 meeting …that reminds this writer of so many other time this Town Manager has not been forthcoming with her full disclosure to the Commission and the residents…

In the video she and Olinzock state Advance Asset Management works for OTHER municipalities…She gives the appearance she does not know them…and Asst. TM Olinzock never says why he “added” Advanced Asset Management to the package of proposal….(unless it was in the backup)…
Town Commission Regular Meeting Minutes April 12, 2005
Page 4-10 “D. SITE ACQUISITION: Proposal for services with Advanced Asset Management, Inc.
Vice Mayor Kennedy made a motion, seconded by Mayor Pro Tem Clark, to approve the Consent Agenda. In a roll call vote, all voted in favor. The motion carried 5-0. ”

Town Commission Regular Meeting Minutes January 24, 2006


B. CONTRACT: with Advanced Asset Management, Inc., for real estate consulting services”


The Town Manager was employed in 2005 and in 2006 in LBTS and she must have known and worked with Advanced Asset Management … Why, no disclosing a history with the town? …

A recent look at the company…”Incorporated by James J Nardi, Advanced Asset Management, Inc. is located at 5400 S University Dr Ste 301 Davie, FL 33328. Advanced Asset Management, Inc. was incorporated on Tuesday, December 09, 2003 in the State of FL and is currently active. James J Nardi represents Advanced Asset Management, Inc. as their registered agent.

Source: Public Record data – Department of State – Division of Corporations * Co”

No website …No MLS found for the property…or in the history of MLS….per a Realtor …

Both were in the proposal read by Mayor Minnet on July 8, 2008…….


What were the terms of this 6 month contract?… Did the Town pay Advanced Asset Management any portion of the $18,750…

Finally, The Town Manager has once again practiced her self imposed Town Manager form of government with her purposeful action of not following the Commission’s vote for a 6 month contract made on July 8, 2008 and allowing a $1.8 million dollar building to languish for over a year and a half…with no oversight!…


“As you recall”…Readers…When you hear that from Town Manager Esther Colon that is means….you better do some checking!…

Just add it to the list of why this March 9, 2010 election is so important…

Do you want a Town Manager who operates under the direction and the vote of the Commission …following the LBTS Town Charter of a Commission-Manager form of government of do you want 4 more years of “As you recall” …. costing us the big $,$$$,$$$,?….

more  to come….

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