Saturday, August 19, 2017

Press Release: Cultural Council of Palm Beach County, “Come On Inside, The Culture’s Fine In The Palm Beaches”.


LAKE WORTH, Fla., Aug. 16, 2017 /USNewswire/ Travelers who want a sunny vacation with a dose of culture, and those looking for a beach break that’s fun in any weather, are seeking out The Palm Beaches for the best of both worlds.
     More and more travelers are choosing to visit Palm Beach County year round, as a destination with as many indoor delights as there are outdoor diversions. A vacation to The Palm Beaches is a feast for the senses and for the soul, with lush natural beauty and pristine shores, plus indoor exhibitions and cultural experiences that guarantee a memorable visit in any weather — for beachgoers and the sun-shy alike.

For more information contact:

  • Judith Czelusniak
  • 561-471-1602
  • Email: Judith@palmbeachculture.com
The Cultural Council of Palm Beach County* is located at 601 Lake Ave. in the City of Lake Worth’s vibrant Downtown. The Cultural Council galleries, visitor information center and Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store are open 10 a.m.–5 p.m., Tuesday–Saturday.

Across ‘L’ Street is a public parking lot and plenty of FREE street parking nearby.
The Cultural Council presents exhibitions featuring Palm Beach County artists and additional programming at its headquarters in the historic Robert M. Montgomery, Jr. Building, an iconic Streamline Moderne former movie theater in Downtown Lake Worth.

Currently at the Cultural Council of Palm Beach County in City of Lake Worth:

The Cultural Council Biennial 2017, a juried exhibition of works by Palm Beach County artists, is on view through September 2. Through September 23, the Council is exhibiting the works of nine Palm Beach County artists/members of the prestigious Florida Artists Group (FLAG).
     Be sure to explore the Council’s Roe Green Uniquely Palm Beach Store for artist-made jewelry, whimsical and practical items, books and more, produced in Palm Beach County.

*For a complete calendar of cultural activities in The Palm Beaches, connect with the Cultural Council of Palm Beach County or call 561-471-2901. To plan your own personalized cultural itinerary and explore options curated just for you, connect with the Cultural Concierge.

Save The Date: Wednesday, August 30th from 6:30–8:00.

To RSVP Erica Whitfield’s Re-Election Kick-Off call 561-329-0310 or email: ericazwhitfield@gmail.com

Click on image to enlarge:
To volunteer for the campaign or make a monetary contribution visit Erica4Schools.com

“Hmmm. I heard about something called the Sunset property. Where is it?”


Many long-time residents of the City of Lake Worth will remember the “Sunset property” (see image below). For a stroll down memory lane or to learn more read this blog post from June 2006. This property — still underutilized — is located west of I-95 in the southwestern area of the City very near the County’s John Prince Park (now home of the World’s largest dog park).

Interestingly, just east of I-95 in the northwestern part of the City, another long-time vacant property will be developed near Vernon Heights for new single-family houses: Meritage Homes’ Lake Cove Residential Development was unanimously approved by the City Commission.

If you’re interested, use this link and check out the City of Lake Worth’s Zoning Map, Future Land Use maps, and Land Development Regulations. Without further ado. . .

Image from The Lake Worth Herald, October 13th, 2005.
Click on image to enlarge:
Opening paragraph in the Herald about this City Commission meeting back in 2005: “When the tumult and shouting died down Tuesday night, Lake Worth was still without a decision on the number of townhouses the city would allow at 826 Sunset Dr.

Unsolved. Jose Aguilar Juarez murdered in City of Lake Worth. Robert Adams murdered in West Palm Beach.


Both of these homicides (details below) remain unsolved. If you have have any information about these crimes — or any other crime — you can remain anonymous and receive a reward.

“No tip is too small”.

Click on image to enlarge:
To learn more about CrimeStoppers use this link.

The murder of Robert Adams was the 14th homicide in West Palm Beach in 2017. To this date the number of homicides in WPB stands at 21 (a 600% increase from this time last year [August 2016]):

BEACH — A man was found shot to death on a sidewalk in the city’s north end late Wednesday [June 7th].

Officers received a 911 call just after 11 p.m. Wednesday and found a white male victim with a gunshot wound on a sidewalk in the 2800 block of Spruce Avenue, between Broadway and Flagler Drive north of Good Samaritan Medical Center. He died at the scene, police said.

Jose Aguilar Juarez was murdered on June 17th in the City of Lake Worth (the 2nd of four homicides in the City this year). Two excerpts from the beat reporter:

ORTH — ■■■■■■ ■■■■■■■■■■ was watching “Orange Is The New Black” when he heard four gunshots in the early Saturday morning hours where he lives on North F Street in Lake Worth.

While ■■■■■■■■■■ was checking out the popular Netflix series, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office said a man was shot and killed at 914 North F Street.

The moment you hear gunshots TURN OFF THE TV!

Call 911 and DO NOT GO OUTSIDE.
Let PBSO District 14 handle the situation.
Make the Call Y’all, “¡Haga la Llamada!”,
and “An Nou Tout Rele!”

Proud of your ‘Confederate flag’? Know the difference between the “Stars and Bars” and “Southern Cross”?

Learn more about the difference below.

Most people running around with flags and banners in support of the ‘Confederacy’ don’t know the difference either.

The Post’s Eliot Kleinberg posted this information in June 2015. It’s a lengthy article about the Confederate flag and what is causing so much confusion. Two flags are in question (both images below are from Wikipedia):

Note the stars and bars:
This is the official flag of the Confederacy, called the “stars and bars”.

This flag IS NOT the flag of the Confederate army:
This flag is confused as the ‘Confederate’ flag.
It
’s not. This is the “Southern Cross”, also
called the Confederate Battle flag.

Here is an excerpt from Kleinberg’s article:

The first casualty of any war, it often has been said, is the truth.
     First, this [the “Southern Cross”] is not the official flag of the Confederate States of America. [emphasis added] That flag, the real “stars and bars,” had a circle of stripes on a blue bed in the upper left corner, with two half-stripes alongside, red and white, and a full red stripe along the bottom.
     The flag that’s drawn all the attention, the “Southern Cross,” is a square banner showing diagonal blue bars and white stars on a sea of red. It started as a battle flag.
     In the last two years of the Confederacy, it created what later was called “the Stainless Banner.” It placed the “cross” in the upper left corner of a white flag. In the closing weeks of the war, to avoid the appearance of surrender, the Confederacy added a vertical red stripe on the far right.
     The “Southern Cross” spent 100 years in obscurity, then sprang to prominence in the 1950s. It was part of a movement scholars say had nothing to do with heritage and was instead an act of defiance to federal civil rights efforts.
     A big part of the problem is ignorance of the complexity of the Civil War and its causes, said Irvin Winsboro, a professor of history at Florida Gulf Coast University and author of “Florida’s Civil War: Explorations into Conflict, Interpretations, and Memory.”
     “The event is fact,” Winsboro said of the Civil War. “The causation is open to interpretation.”
     Many Floridians now are Northern transplants. But Florida in the 1860s had more black slaves than white people and was the third state to secede from the Union. And brutal Jim Crow practices continued for decades.

The “Southern Cross” is an act of defiance, not against ‘Northern aggression’ but against the civil rights movement in the 1950s.

Period. End of story.

At a ‘Confederate flag’ rally in Loxahatchee in July 2015 the attendees rallied around the wrong flag.

Here is a picture from the rally taken by Bruce Bennett (including caption) from The Palm Beach Post:
“If the south would’ve won, we would’ve had it made”. Who exactly is “we”?

Whatever happened to “Gentrification!” in the City of Lake Worth? More on the “Politics of Fear” plus something called, “The Gentrification Paradox”.


The word gentrification, once a favorite “loaded word” to create fear and instability in neighborhoods throughout the City of Lake Worth in years past has disappeared from the lexicon. Why? We’ll examine that a little later. But first:

A loaded word is one, 

[T]hat attempts to influence an audience by using appeal to emotion or stereotypes. Such wording is also known as high-inference language or language persuasive techniques.

Do you know what gentrification is? No one does.

There is no accepted definition. Another interesting thing is how this word can show up in the strangest of places, even when there are much better words to choose from, like in this article about The Cottages of Lake Worth.

Emily Badger at The Washington Post wrote an article titled: “It’s time to give up the most loaded, least understood word in urban policy: gentrification”:

These questions get at a fundamental problem with one of the most controversial (and fuzzy) concepts in urban policy: Even researchers don’t agree on what ‘gentrification’ means, let alone how to identify it. (And this is to say nothing of its even more problematic derivative, the “gentrifier.”)

Think about this, since urban gardens are so popular with some, are they actually promoting gentrification? Because developers love urban gardens. Have you read this article, “Urban farmers find that success leads to eviction”? This is called “The Gentrification Paradox” (read more about that below).

One last question, a very troubling one: Is it possible there were people or groups here in Lake Worth intentionally using tactics like “Gentrification!” to suppress neighborhood improvements, increase the crime rate, and create fear for political objectives? A shocking thought isn’t it? Or maybe not so much for others.

Everyone knows the naysayers and malcontents here in Lake Worth. The ones that have nothing good to say about the City Commission first swept into office in 2012. Finally this year the last of the holdouts (see image below), lost his District 2 seat held since 2010. Some of those naysayers, once upon a time, were in control of this City and you may be wondering how such negative people ever got into positions of power. They accomplished that with the politics of fear, also called “The Wolf at the Door”.

Photo taken of prior administration in 2012 at the Lake Worth Casino:

“Gentrification!” was a word Cara Jennings (on right, facing) was fond of using. Chris McVoy, PhD (beaming, blue shirt) managed to hold on for a while but lost his re-election bid last March. Recognize anyone else?

The public in Lake Worth woke up one day 5½ years ago and realized there was no “Wolf at the Door”, or “Vulture at the Door” if you will. The real problem was a few commissioners in City Hall. Unsurprisingly, the mood in this City began to change beginning back in 2012 and despite some setbacks and disappointments, the outlook going forward is mostly positive about our City’s future. The passing of the Neighborhood Road Bond last year by a “whopping 69%” was proof a new positive attitude had swept over the City.

So. . . why did the cry of “Gentrification!”
stop working?

Also in this blog post are more of the tactics used to stop neighborhood improvements and ways to discourage people from being more involved in their communities. And. . . why blaming elected officials for ‘gentrification’ is a fallacy, merely a tactic to gain political advantage.

Gentrification is one of the most misunderstood phenomenons in American culture. It’s a term that’s derogatory to some and a very hopeful one for others who live in persistently blighted areas. The logic by some is a certain level of blight is ‘charming’ because it makes the area undesirable to investors or ‘outsiders’.

People who rail and frighten a neighborhood against gentrification (G) are then in the unenviable position of having to balance how much blight is good to deter more people from moving in but still keep the area in a state of limbo: not getting better and not getting worse either. Because if the neighborhood gets too blighted the people who live there will move out.

On the other hand, if one person decides to do a home renovation and improve his or her home, another home will have to decay further to maintain that balance. And what if, God forbid, a homeowner decides to replace the roof!

If one property increases in value, the anti-G logic is, then that is a threat to all the other homes on the street. Then to show the neighborhood how enlightened, resilient, and sustainable they are, then they encourage urban farms and urban gardens which leads to what? Less blight. A bland, unkempt home doesn’t look as bad when surrounded by a garden or a farm. Welcome to what’s called the Gentrification Paradox.

Here is one explanation of this phenomenon from the Strong Towns blog. To put it very simply: Some tactics to stop ‘gentrification’ actually do the opposite. They make neighborhoods, towns and cities more attractive rather than less.

However, the ‘anti-G’ folks have other tactics from the grab-bag to try and stop, or at least slow down, the process of a neighborhood improving that do terrible long-term damage and truly affect people’s lives in a negative way:
  • Upzoning (destabilize residential neighborhoods).
  • Increase the crime rate (or the perception of crime in an area).
  • Encourage the homeless to take over a “space”, like the Cultural Plaza downtown.
  • Promote needle exchange programs to attract more drug addicts (another tactic in Lake Worth from the bag of tricks).
  • Try to make it easier for sober homes to operate without supervision and less scrutiny.
  • Under-fund or obstruct education initiatives for children and recent immigrants.
All of these tactics, and there are many others, are ultimately unsuccessful. Why? Because the process is market-driven and as the economy improves people want a better quality of life. Those who who live in blighted areas will do things like paint a house, clean up the front yard, remove abandoned cars, and engage in activities like forming neighborhood groups, request bike lanes, and become interested in things like community policing. All these changes increase real estate value over time.

In the City of Lake Worth is the Grey Mockingbird Community Garden (GMCG). This garden located at the Scottish Masonic Temple has greatly increased visitors and interest in the area not only due to the garden but also with their educational and entertainment activities. The GMCG is discouraging blight and encouraging neighborhood improvements. How many people have visited the garden and decided to look around the City, liked what they saw and either decided to invest in or move to Lake Worth? That is hard to gauge but it certainly has happened.

In the 2015 election cycle the word “gentrification” was used almost constantly by the ‘anti-G’ faction who knocked on doors to frighten certain neighborhoods in Lake Worth. They blamed some politicians for promoting it and others were praised for trying to stop it which is all nonsense, but it did play well ‘at the door’ to some degree but was much less effective than in previous elections.

However, the tactic was completely ineffective in the 2016 elections and not used at all in the 2017 elections. Why?

The answer is easy: They simply overplayed their hand and ‘crying Wolf!’ had lost its effectiveness.

In conclusion, if someone tells you that your commissioner, mayor, or state representative is responsible for ‘gentrification’ they are lying to you.

And on the issue of trust:

Why would you ever trust anyone who told you that your neighborhood can’t aspire to be better for your children, friends, and family?

Just in case you missed this from yesterday: Natural gas service and the little City of Lake Worth.

The uncertainty and fear about spiking
electric rates is over.

However, still thinking about converting to
natural gas in your home?

The election results last March here in the City of Lake Worth put a lot of people’s minds at rest about the future of electric rates, including many customers who live outside the City limits. However, it wasn’t too long ago when many were seeking relief from spiking rates and switching to natural gas (NG). Below is a brief history about that.

One of the benefits of NG is during long electric outages, after a hurricane for example, you can still cook and boil water if a “boil water notice” is issued and 9 out of 10 professional cooks prefer NG as well.

Learn more below how to switch over to NG. Gas is “cheap, clean, affordable, and plentiful”.

When the Lake Worth Electric Utility rates were sky high prior to 2012 and some elected’s continued to hint they wanted the rates to go even higher, that set off a panic in this City. Residents who lived in areas with NG service lines, who were fortunate enough to be able to afford the initial investment, began switching over or “hooking up” new or pre-owned appliances to NG provided by Florida Public Utilities, e.g., stoves, cloth dryers, and water heaters.

Homeowners previously on full-electric in their homes in NG service areas, who later converted over to gas, saw their utility bills drop significantly — but others in areas without NG service available were out of luck — it came as a surprise to many when they found out their neighborhood didn’t have gas lines but other areas in the City did.

Prior to 2012, City administrations used the Electric Utility to fund their wish lists, ergo the term “cash cow” that our City’s Electric Utility used to be called. Then in September 2015, well, all hell broke loose again when this news broke.

After all the work to lower electric rates since 2012, two commissioners wanted to spike up rates again in 2015.
Of course, this “push” came as the Summer heat was winding down. Later, then-District 2 commissioner, Chris McVoy, PhD, lost his bid for re-election and then-District 4 Commissioner Ryan Maier
opted not to run again.

Anyway. Enough of the history how we got here. Interested in finding out more about NG?

Call 888-765-4601 to contact Florida Public Utilities or use this link and “Ask4Gas”.
Ask4Gas! “Better meals. Longer baths.
Softer laundry.”

Here are more benefits:

  • NG is cheap, clean, affordable, and plentiful.
  • NG is extremely safe. Remember to “Call 811 Before You Dig!” or use this link.
  • Nine out of 10 professional chefs prefer cooking with NG.
  • NG is the “Green” choice.
In the video below, a Florida Public Utility expert explains the benefits of switching over to a NG range/oven.

Remember, 9 out of 10 professional chefs
prefer natural gas.

From Post staff writer Nicole Janok, “Lake Worth moving to rebuild pier”.

Article subtitled, “The $2.8 million project is slated to begin in January and take approximately 10 months”.

LAKE WORTH — Longtime surfer James Linkins remembers the days when Lake Worth Beach had sandbars that produced killer waves. But ever since Hurricanes Frances and Jeanne destroyed the William O. Lockhart Municipal Pier two years ago, the waves haven’t been the same.”

Clipping from The Palm Beach Post,
October 28th, 2006.

Click on image to enlarge:
In 2004, on Sept. 4th, Hurricane Frances pummeled Lake Worth — then just two weeks later we got hit again by Hurricane Jeanne — winds estimated at 120 mph. To learn more about what it was like back then use this link.

Keep your fingers crossed!

At the City Commission meeting last July 11th, Asst. City Manager Juan Ruiz said there is an issue with “spalling concrete” (also called scaling) at the City Pier. On July 18th and 19th a crew of divers inspected the pier and an engineering report will be issued. The “new” pier, if you didn’t know, was raised 5′ for more protection from storm waves.

Ruiz said, “don’t want to alarm the public” and then explained the Pier may need major concrete replacement.

BONUS! More City of Lake Worth history.

Do you remember the original “Benny’s on the Beach”?

In November of 2013 the 28-year-old Benny’s closed down, “the time has now come for us to say goodbye.” And the rest is history, as they say. Benny’s later reopened under new management and in August 2014 the Post’s Liz Balmaseda penned this article titled, “Benny’s on the Beach chef has new flavors to match killer view”.

Have you been yet? If you plan on going to Benny’s would highly recommend the Tuna Tostada. Excellent!

The owner of Benny’s is Lee Lipton; he has strong opinions about the Lake Worth Beach property, the Casino Complex, and particularly the since-closed and now-condemned municipal pool.

It would be a very good idea — when you’re planning to visit Benny’s — to make reservations. Avoid a long wait: call 561-582-9001.
The Tuna Tostada: Enjoy sushi-grade quality tuna with a “killer view” of our LAKE WORTH BEACH while watching the “killer waves” roll in!

PART ONE: “IT’S ALL ABOUT RISK”!


The blog post following this one is PART TWO: REMEMBER! “IT’S ALL ABOUT RISK”! (Do you remember where you put your gasmask?)

From Post reporter Jennifer Sorentrue about “Brightline foes’ new twist”.

About halfway through reading this article checked the date to make sure it wasn’t April 1st. Would guess Jennifer Sorentrue wasn’t the least surprised to hear:
Brightline officials on Wednesday declined to comment on the attorneys’ letter.

Another excerpt from the news story:

In a 6-page letter sent to federal transportation officials on Monday, attorneys for Martin and Indian River counties and the anti-rail group CARE FL argue a loan from the Federal Railroad Administration to help pay for the Brightline project would create “unique financial concerns” for the [President] Trump administration.

Let’s take a stroll down memory lane!

“It’s All About Risk”

Below is a blog post from November 2015.

How far along is All Aboard Florida [AAF; now Brightline]? When they’re ordering seats for the trains that’s a good indication how far. Only three months ago when the anti-AAF fever was at its highest pitch this full-page ad appeared in The Palm Beach Post [August 2015], last page of the ‘B’ section:

Part of full-page ad in image below,
“. . . wrecks like this one in Philadelphia.”
Everyone knows, “It’s All About Risk”!

The Guardians of Martin County tried to make the intellectual argument that AAF is too risky because there was a train wreck in Philadelphia.

Profound.

Planes and cars crash, ships sink, and satellite launches fail. . . are all those to be abandoned due to risk? Surely Henry Flagler was informed of the risks and he decided to go ahead anyway with his railway project into the “backwater swamp”.

The Guardians in the ad went on with a laundry list of risks from AAF: Financial RISK, Ridership RISK, and the Funding RISK

What the Guardians didn’t do was provide any solutions for the future of Florida. Are we to presume they want more lanes and more cars using I-95 and the Turnpike?

How wide does I-95 have to be in the future? 6 lanes each way? Or maybe just make it 8?

Or maybe study once again the “fundamental rule”?
Learn more about the fundamental rule” of traffic: Building new lanes for cars and trucks just creates more traffic.

PART TWO: REMEMBER! “IT’S ALL ABOUT RISK”!

What happened to all the angst and hand-wringing over trash being hauled to the County’s incinerator? 

“Toxic capitalism hurts my family”. The image below is from a newspaper ad at the height of the trash hauling debate vis-à-vis the County incinerator back in 2015:
“IT’S ALL ABOUT RISK”!
Does the Loxahatchee Sierra Club have any gas masks in children’s sizes too? The one shown above is way too loose-fitting to provide any health benefit.

Anyhow, learn more about the County’s Solid Waste Authority using this link and below is a Sun Sentinel article about the incinerator that is burning trash, turning that waste into energy, and extending the life of landfills. Here is an excerpt from the article:

     Nearly a decade in the making, the incinerator on Jog Road will reduce the amount of waste dumped in the county's landfill by more than 90 percent. It’s expected to extend the life of the landfill by about 30 years and, at the same time, generate electricity to be sold to FP&L, officials said.
     In an average day, the incinerator will burn more than 3,000 tons of trash. That’s in addition to the 2,000 tons already incinerated at the county’s existing waste-to-energy plant, built in 1989.
     Between the two facilities, the Solid Waste Authority expects to annually generate enough electricity to power about 40,000 homes for a year.
     Though some environmental groups have raised concerns about potential air pollution, officials say the incinerators are a clean and safe alternative to landfills.

and. . .  

In addition to reducing the garbage put in the county landfill, their use will reduce greenhouse gases.

Explore YouTube videos about the little City of Lake Worth.

For the most-viewed videos on my Lake Worth YouTube channel use this link. Along with each video is a red “Subscribe” button. Subscribers get an email when new videos have been uploaded.

Coming in at #10 of the most-popular is “Art on the Water: Can you do the Can Can? Yes we can!”, a performance prior to the City’s July 4th Raft Race a few years back. At #16 is a former Lake Worth City Commissioner during “Break” to the music, The Love For Three Oranges Suite by composer Lutz Kohler (Op. 33bis: III. March, Arr. F. Tull for Brass Ensemble).

And hope you enjoy this one as well — at #24 the ever-popular visit to City Hall by ‘Weetha Peebull’ — “Why it’s generally unwise to be disrespectful to City employees”.

Hope you enjoy the video below as well. Whilst everyone awaits the end of all the talk and actual work begins to renovate our historic Gulfstream Hotel. . . this video is from February 2016 when the public was very excited about the rezoning of the Gulfstream property believing progress was finally on the horizon:

Friday, August 18, 2017

Be part of the quirky, vibrant Lake Worth lifestyle in Andalucía! Hundreds new homes (10 floor plans!) coming soon. Feel what the French call, “LéDûb”!

“C′est si bon, Mademoiselle, Monsieur en charmant excentrique LéDûb!”

The Spanish from Europe say, “Andalucía por sí, para Lake Worth y la humanidad”!

Andalucía in Lake Worth, “A stunning new community. . .

. . . offering 10 new single-family floor plans in Palm Beach County’s highly desirable, master-planned community in Lake Worth”.

To learn more about Andalucía in Lake Worth:
  • Call 561-409-5415.
  • Visit the Sales Center at 8926 Kingsmoor Way, Lake Worth, FL 33467 (see map below).
  • For more information, visit www.calatlantichomes.com.
Where is this new community of homes located? How many people woke up one day and found out they weren’t in the quirky little City of Lake Worth after all?

Where is that “stunning new community” in
Lake Worth? Can you find Zip Code 33467?
If you buy a home in Andalucía — out west near the Everglades somewhere — you’re nowhere near the Beach that’s really in Lake Worth.

Press Release titled: “CalAtlantic Homes Unveils 10 New Home Designs At Gated Community of Andalucia in Lake Worth, FL

LAKE WORTH, Fla., June 2, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- CalAtlantic Homes, one of the nation’s largest homebuilders, today announced the Grand Opening of Andalucia, a stunning new community offering 10 new single-family floor plans in Palm Beach County’s highly desirable, master-planned community in Lake Worth. The public is invited to tour four new single-family model homes during a Grand Opening celebration being held on Sunday, June 4 from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. 

and. . .

Residents will enjoy nearby shopping, dining and entertainment venues including The Mall at Wellington Green, Lion Country Safari and the International Polo Club. Children living within Andalucia are eligible to attend Palm Beach County School District.
     To learn more about Andalucia, please call (561) 409-5415 or visit the Sales Center at 8926 Kingsmoor Way, Lake Worth, FL 33467. For more information, visit www.calatlantichomes.com.

When are we really going to get serious about distinguishing the City of Lake Worth from all those areas in PBC with a ‘Lake Worth’ Zip Code?
We need to talk about “municipal branding”.
In white on the map are unincorporated PBC areas
and the Lake Worth Corridor, many areas using
‘Lake Worth’ Zip Codes.

The City of “Lake Worth Beach”?

Was Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell a visionary,
ahead of his time back in 2012?

So. Is anyone ready to talk about “municipal branding”? Maybe a good start would be talking about changing the name of our City? Remember this by Post reporter Willie Howard?

Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell is suggesting changing the city’s name to Lake Worth Beach to help distinguish Lake Worth from parts of unincorporated Palm Beach County that have Lake Worth mailing addresses. According to postal officials, places as far west as Wellington can use Lake Worth mailing addresses. [emphasis added]
     In a memo to the commission about the name change, Maxwell notes that crimes committed west of the city in unincorporated parts of Palm Beach County are sometimes reported by the media as happening in Lake Worth. Residents with Lake Worth mailing addresses who live west of the city mistakenly come to city hall seeking solutions to their problems.
     Maxwell said Lake Worth is distinctive, with its walkable downtown and beach, and that the new name would create an “instantly recognizable brand for the city.”

and. . .

“The timing is just about right,” Maxwell said. “It kind of gives us a renewed since of pride for the next 100 years.”

Just a reminder. From Rick Christie, the editor at The Palm Beach Post.

The words (see below) by Mr. Christie are suitable for framing, place where everyone can see it as a reminder: Stay focused on fixing our roads, potholes, and infrastructure.

The public spoke last year. The public didn’t vote to plant more trees, or “beautification”, and the public didn’t vote for more green space either. The public said,

“FIX OUR STREETS
AND POTHOLES”.

“Tired about the condition of your
neighborhood roads?”
Ballot LANGUAGE is very important. Use this link for the wording of the Lake Worth Neighborhood Road Bond and County ¢1 Sales Tax increase.

Remember the words below (copy, paste, then send to printer) next time someone tries to convince you, for example, a new pool at the Beach or tree-lined avenues is THE most important issue in our City of Lake Worth. It’s not.

From Palm Beach Post editor Rick Christie, “A few quick takeaways from 2016 election”:

Lake Worth is poised for some major upgrades following residents’ approval — by a whopping 69 percent [emphasis added] — of a $40 million road repair bond; and a little help from the sales tax hike.” . . .

“But the other reason city residents may soon be dancing in those repaired streets is because of the penny increase in the sales tax. Part of the proceeds — about $540 million — over the next decade will be split among the county’s 39 municipalities.
     That could be another $10 million toward roads, parks and other infrastructure repair in the city. While officials in cities like Palm Beach Gardens and Boca Raton snubbed the sales tax largesse, Lake Worth did no such thing. And residents should reap the benefits.”

And don’t forget the observations from the Post editorial board from back in 2014 about how badly a previous City administration neglected the needs of so many neighborhoods.

“[T]his is a testament. . .”:
“. . . to just how long previous commissions have ignored the city’s basic needs.”

Whilst roads in the City crumbled, “previous commissions” wasted millio
ns of dollars on shiny objects and ignored our roads and sidewalks.

“People are crying for some type of relief.” And, “Every single day hear the problems.”

Here are more quotes from the Lake Worth City Commission meeting last Tuesday, August 16th, about the City’s historic preservation program:

  • “We need to clean this mess up . . . we have egg on our faces.”
  • “Subjective use of guidelines.”
  • “Think this effort is to thwart the will of the Commission.”

Now you be the judge.

Let’s take a look back to June 2016 when this issue was once again at the “boiling point”.

The problems with historic preservation here in the City of Lake Worth “came to a head” in early January 2016. The public had had enough. Because of what happened in the City’s South Palm Park neighborhood the City couldn’t ignore any longer the public mood: angst, frustration, and yes, anger as well. Meetings were then scheduled by the City coordinated with neighborhood groups to hear (and listen?) to the public provide input. And they, the public, did turn out.

Question: Do you think anything will be different in 2018? Are you confident? Yes or no?

Let’s take a look back to June 2016, a blog post titled,

“Notes and observations [with emphasis added] from last Monday’s [June 20th, 2016] meeting on future of Lake Worth’s Historic Preservation efforts”

These community meetings are the result of much negative feedback towards the historic preservation program and its enforcement in Lake Worth. Input is being accepted from the public which will hopefully result in changes to the program. The information collected will be integrated into a report and be the basis for improvements to the code and administration of the program to be reviewed by the Historic Resource Preservation Board (HRPB) and ultimately the City Commission.

A large crowd showed up on a Monday night.
Sizeable turnout. Note there is a news blackout at the Post about this situation despite the “special attention” we get each and every
week.

The staff interacted with the audience and took questions. Here are a few questions from the Parrot Cove/Mango Groves workshop agenda last Monday:
  • Why did you choose to move to Lake Worth and make it your home?
  • What do you like/dislike about your neighborhood?
  • What would you like to see the City do to help improve your neighborhood?
Due to a scheduling conflict I missed the first half of the meeting but several in attendance took notes and forwarded those to me. What follows is a summary from that information and my observations:

Many of the complaints were about the length of time it takes to get a permit within a historic district. There was also discussion about the relative importance of the program in light of other factors such as the need for modern impact windows and doors (for storms and security as well), roofs, and our precarious property insurance situation. Many people expressed frustration about the economic impact of living in a historic district. Too many suggestions by City staff are very expensive alternatives that break the budget of many homeowners.

Those in attendance were informed that the historic districts will be resurveyed. The last time this was done was about fifteen years ago. As time passed structures considered non-contributing 15 years ago may now be contributing in next survey. It’s my personal opinion that City staffs’ approach to non-contributing structures within a historic district is a big reason for the pushback on the entire historic preservation program.

One of the most disturbing things to hear is more grumbling from homeowners wanting to “opt out” of historic districts in the City. A historic preservation program with community support wouldn’t be hearing this from its residents. Instead, if the program did have broad public support there would be more talk from other neighborhoods in Lake Worth to “opt in”. That is not happening.

Here is a comment from one of those about the meeting:
“Nothing was said that hasn't been said 1000 times. Everything is slow. Nobody calls me back. This thing about having to use more expensive materials is stupid for Lake Worth. ‘We’re not doing Monticello in Mount Vernon.’ Wish I could say that there was something that stood out but it was just the same things we have heard for a long time here.
Besides the time it takes to process an application many expressed how difficult it is to talk to staff and get a dialogue going about alternatives to improve historic homes. There was also a lot of discussion about the ambiguity of the decision-making process and the lack of consistency. William Waters, the City’s Director of Community Sustainability, brought up the fact that we don’t have a coherent set of design guidelines for our historic districts and that is huge weakness.

Unfortunately, too many times people have bought a property in the City and later learn they’re in a historic district. I believe more efforts have to be taken to educate the public (and Realtors!) about the benefits of owning property within a historic district but flexibility is necessary to reach a win-win situation to preserve historic elements without heaping what can be extraordinarily high costs on the homeowner.

In short, a balanced approach.

Don’t misunderstand, there are also many positive stories about people’s experience with the City and its historic preservation program. There are permits that have a short turnaround time, reports of a two- to three-week time period, but these are the exception rather than the rule.

And lastly: I am optimistic this community discussion will bring about much needed changes. Too many residents are frustrated and yes, angry, with what’s happening. For years this situation has been one always close to the “tipping point” and now that has occurred. Ultimately I believe this important program will become a stronger one with community support with just a few talking about “opting out”.

Remember, what you read above
is from 2016.

From August 2nd of this year at the City Commission is this quote:

Mayor Pam Triolo asked City Manager Michael Bornstein, “You live in College Park. You don’t live in a historic district do you?”

Bornstein responded, “I intentionally did it that way.”

Very sad.

The comments that follow are from the blog post in June of 2016 as well:

Attention moviemakers: “Submit Your Work for the L-DUB Film Festival”.

Exciting news in this week’s Lake Worth Herald.

The L-DUB Film Festival will be held
September 22nd–24th this year.
The L-DUB Film Festival is now accepting submissions. Deadline for submissions is
September 11th. More details below.

First, a short discussion about the oft-used and somewhat confusing term (or slang if you will), “L-DUB”. If you already know all about this subject, Thank You for visiting today and please scroll down for the exciting news in the Herald this week.

Other variations of the term “L-DUB” referring to the actual City of Lake Worth (not to be confused with those cookie-cutter boring western suburbs) are:
  • “L-Dub” can be used upper/lowercase; ALL CAPS is also acceptable (“L-DUB” is sometimes called the ‘Dee’ or ‘Twiddle-Dee’ variant).
  • There is the Hipster feminine, “ElleDub” [informal; Hipster male, “ElDub”].
  • “LDub”, sans the hyphen, a British (199-) variant [informal, familiar].
  • The French/European Union variant [formal, proper], “LéDûb”; used in a sentence, “C′est si bon, Mademoiselle, Monsieur en charmant LéDûb.”

Defined, use in speech, and an everyday example:

  • The L is short for “Lake”.
  • DUB is short for double-“u” as in the letter “w”.
  • Hence the term L-DUB, slang for “Lake Worth”; once again, the actual City of Lake Worth.

An example in speech:

“Welcome to LDub! Have you been to World Thrift yet? It is soooooo cool and prices you won’t believe. And get this, there’s a new Tacos Al Carbon L-DUB location opening up across the street. You made the right choice moving to LéDûb. Nobody cares about Delray any more. ElleDub is where it’s at.”

Now for news in The Lake
Worth Herald
:

The film festival will be held September 22–24 at the Lake Worth Playhouse Stonzek Theatre, 713 Lake Avenue. Submissions of music videos, shorts, documentaries and full length features are welcome.
     All films 30 minutes or less require a $20 entry fee. Longer than 30 minutes, $30. Payments must be made to payable to Lake Worth Playhouse and are non-fundable.

and. . .

     Jury awards will be given for Best Feature, Best Documentary, Best Short, Best Music Video, Best Student Film and others. Audience Choice Award categories include: Best Foreign Film (English subtitles are required when applicable), Best Feature, Best Documentary, Best Short, Best Music Video, Best Student Film.

Send inquires to:

L-DUB Film Festival
ATTN: Director Charlie Birnbaum
Lake Worth Playhouse
713 Lake Ave.
Lake Worth, FL 33460

Email: ldubfestival@lakeworthplayhouse.org

Use this link for more information about the festival and submission information. 

Good Luck everyone!