Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Around Lake Worth this weekend | Lake Worth every minute

Don't miss this! AnnaMaria Windisch-Hunt's schedule of this weekend's upcoming events. Click title for link.

Hurricane survey: Water’s the threat, but most still fear wind | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

A national survey of people's knowledge about the destructive power of hurricanes yields some broadly believed myths about their destructive power. Click title for link to the article by Eliot Kleinberg.
Despite all the public education, a staggering 84 percent of people surveyed still believe wind, not water, is the greatest threat to their safety, and base their evacuation decisions on wind speed or a storm’s category, the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes said this week.
The national Harris Interactive Survey, commissioned by the nonprofit group FLASH, revealed “frightening perceptions,” FLASH said Tuesday in a release.
The survey clashes with the reality that hurricane evacuation zones are based on the threat of water, not wind, and nearly all evacuation orders reflect the threat of inland flooding and storm surge.

Proclamation of Autism Awareness Month - April 2014

Lake Worth Water Utilities Director Larry Johnson - Radio-read Water Meters and Condition of Water Lines in the City.


This presentation followed the discussion on the natural gas line replacement at the special College Park Neighborhood meeting last night (4/15/14). This is a two video playlist that lasts about 18 minutes.

From last night's special College Park NA meeting - Natural Gas Line Replacement Project


Not quite as "peppy" a presentation as the old school natural gas advertisement from the 1960s, but informative none-the-less. This is a series of three, ten minute videos done in succession that capture what was said at last night's special neighborhood meeting on the replacement of natural gas lines going on in College Park and around the city.

You really owe it to yourself to watch this as you will likely have to interact with the contractors as they attach the new line to your house. If you don't currently have natural gas service, now is a good time to look into it. You do that by calling Florida Public Utilities and they will tell you the details. Also note that the loose asphalt patches are temporary and a restoration crew will follow after the work is done. The group assembled last night was given assurance that this would be done professionally and with the same material that was there before the work.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

From the draft City Commission minutes of 4/1/14


Today's Sunrise - from James Stafford Photography


President Obama statement marking one year since the Boston Marathon bombing


A modern take on Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs:


“Dead End: Suburban Sprawl and the Rebirth of American Urbanism” book talk Thursday, April 17th


REMINDER College Park Special Meeting Tonight, Tuesday April 15

Friends and Neighbors, A reminder that we will be hosting a Special Meeting tonight with our guest, Mr. Michael Pence from Mears Group Inc. who will be taking concerns and answering questions about the work Florida Public Utilities is doing laying new gas lines all over College Park and other parts of the City. Neighbors from anywhere in Lake Worth are very welcome to join us.

Also - In response to questions and concerns that have come in regarding the installation of radio read transmitters being installed on water meters in College Park, we will have information about this pilot program and a letter from the City Water Utilities to share with everyone.

The meeting is tonight
Tuesday, April 15th
6:30
First Congregational Church
1415 North K Street.

We will be meeting in the sanctuary instead of the Fellowship Hall. Just follow the signs from the parking lot. Please share this information with friends and neighbors who may not be on our email distribution list. Thank You.

Mary Lindsey, President CPNA

Bike Friendly | West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority

Active promotion by West Palm Beach as a bicycle-friendly destination put out by its DDA. A favorite bike ride of mine is from my house in College Park, along Flagler Drive, to downtown West Palm Beach and back. The round trip is between 13 and 14 miles. Check out the map of where you can find bike storage facilities, including bike lockers. We noticed that the Lake Worth Tri-Rail station has enclosed bike locker facilities this past week. Click title for link to more information. You can see what the bike lockers at the Tri-Rail station look like in this picture:
Here is some of the content from the link:
You'll find plenty of permanent bike racks throughout downtown in addition to the temporary bike parking at large-scale events such as Sunfest. We even have bike lockers located in the Banyan Garage for a one time, non-refundable deposit of only $20. Find bicycle rack and locker locations, here. For questions or additional information about bicycle locker rentals in Downtown West Palm Beach, please call 1-800-234-7433.
For more information on how to commute on your bicycle with style,click here.

West Palm Beach alleys come alive

Eliot Kleinberg writes about the place-making event that happened in downtown West Palm Beach over the weekend. It moved entertainment to the alleys and challenged people to look at the public spaces differently. The city has increased garbage pick-up to twice a day, up from once a day, to better deal with waste generated from restaurants. Click title for link.
In November, the city said it was creating a task force to eliminate eyesores and health hazards that lurk in the downtown alleys behind its popular shops and restaurants.
Right away, it changed garbage pickup from once a day to twice a day and sent workers into alleys to do “housekeeping.” It also was considering supplementing pickup with private firms or installing a centralized cardboard compactor somewhere downtown.

No ‘Good-time Charlie’ in West Palm, Crist hits hard at Scott...

Charlie Crist was in West Palm Beach yesterday and spoke to the Forum Club. Almost 700 were in attendance. He is attempting to paint himself as an everyday guy, without a private plane, that lives "paycheck to paycheck." Hmmm. O.K. Click title for link to the Palm Beach Post article that describes his speech. Here is some of it:
In his speech, Crist blasted Scott’s record on education, the environment and renewable energy and criticized his refusal in 2011 to accept federal money for a high-speed rail project between Orlando and Tampa. Turning down the rail money made sense “only if you fly around in a private jet and don’t drive on I-4.”
Crist also brought up Scott’s private jet to attack the governor on the economy.
“Right now Florida doesn’t have an economic plan unless you count flying around in your private plane and holding press conferences and giving away taxpayer money to your buddies a plan. That may be a great way to take care of your friends and raise campaign dollars, but that’s no way to create an economy that’s built to last,” Crist said.

Detroit to launch website to auction houses for rehab | The Detroit News

Of course, Detroit's problems with slum, blight and vacant homes is on a much larger scale than what we face in Lake Worth. However, some of the ideas about repopulating vacant homes and blighted neighborhoods that work there, may work here as well.. Click title for link for the Detroit News article:
Last week, Duggan announced a neighborhood rebuilding program using federal funds in which owners are put on notice that the land bank intends to seize the homes through legal action unless they make arrangements to fix them up. The land bank will get the title in about 90 days and then auction homes that are salvageable.
The program is modeled after a similar program Duggan ran when he was the Wayne County prosecutor from 2001-03. Duggan pledged to create the program while running for mayor last summer. The initiative had 1,000 abandoned homes fixed up.
Talmer Bank also has committed $1 million to those who buy houses in the land bank auction. Talmer will provide homeowners who win the bids with a $25,000 loan forgivable at the rate of $5,000 per year. The loan forgiveness is up to a maximum of five years for each year the buyer continues to live in the home.
On Wednesday, the Detroit Land Bank Authority posted notices on 79 vacant homes in a roughly 16-block area on the city’s northwest side in the area bounded by Marygrove to the north, Puritan on the south, Greenlawn to the east and Wyoming on the west.
During the announcement, Duggan called the initiative a “bold experiment” to fix city neighborhoods and pledged the area will be noticeably different in 90 days.
“This is a historic change in Detroit’s strategy in fighting blight,” Duggan said. “We are getting away from this mindless process of demolishing everything that’s vacant. What’s different is we are attacking the entire neighborhood at once.”

Florida – Long-term predictions for Miami sea level rise could be available relatively soon | Coastal Engineering News & Subscription List

Scientists are dialing in predictions over the next 90 years about the pace and extent of sea level rise. They may come up with a solid picture by 2020 or later, which will help in planning for various infrastructure changes and impacts on the natural environment. A one meter increase over that time would have Miami streets in near constant flooding conditions. From the article, click title for link.
“That means we’ll know what to expect and have 70 years to plan. In a subject that has so much uncertainty, this gives us the gift of long-term planning.”
Conservative projections suggest that sea level could rise by .3 meters by 2100, but with acceleration, some scientists believe that number will be closer to 1 meter.
“Areas of Miami Beach could experience constant flooding,” says Price.
“The Everglades and mangroves may not be able to keep up. Mangroves are very important to South Florida, and their loss would likely mean more land erosion.
“We could see large portions of the Everglades taken over by the ocean. Areas that are freshwater today could become saltwater by 2100.”
As cities, including Miami, continue to plan for long-term solutions to sea level rise, Price says she was surprised to discover that in the span of 20 years, scientists would be in a position to predict the long-term situation for Miami and other coastal areas across the planet.
Scientists should continue to crunch the numbers every decade, says Price, creating more certainty in long-term planning–and helping develop solutions for a changing planet.

"Remembering Pete and Toshi Seeger: A Musical Tribute."

South Florida Seeger fans and comrades are “Remembering Pete and Toshi Seeger: A Musical Tribute.”
That's Sunday, May 4 at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Ft. Lauderdale, 3970 NW 21st Avenue, Oakland Park, FL 33309. Doors open at 1:30 for the 2 p.m. performance by many folk  and other artists, with opportunities for audience members to get involved in local causes such as those that dominated the lives of Pete and Toshi.
Folksinger and educator Rod MacDonald, event initiator and co-producer, announced that to date the following artists who have volunteered to donate their talents will be on the program Allan Aunapu, Amy Carol Webb (www.amycarolwebb.com), Annie Wenz (www.anniewenz.com), Ellen Bukstel (www.ellenbukstel.com), Grant Livingston (www.grantlivingston.com),  Laurie Jennings (www.jenningsandkeller.com), Marie Nofsinger, Rod Koppelman, Rod MacDonald (www.rodmacdonald.net), Tracy Sands (www.tracysands.com), Vanessa Gilyard.
Net ticket proceeds will be donated to furthering Seeger-aura social changes.                             
Pete Seeger's life and career carried him from singing in support of the Spanish Republicans and CIO organizing in the prelude to World War II to initiating hootananies as rent-pay parties. From warding off fascist and vigilante attacks at a Paul Robeson concert in Peekskill, NY, to the Top Ten on the Hit Parade with the Weavers.  From college auditoriums, summer camps and folk festivals to building an environmentally-correct log cabin on the Hudson River.  From a conviction (overturned) for Contempt of Congress for invoking the First Amendment in front of the House Un-American Activities Committee to becaming the backbone of the 1950's folk revival. While being blacklisted for decades, he popularized We Shall Overcome in the civil rights movement, initiated a remarkable environmental movement to reclaim the Hudson River, finally receiving public acclaim, remaining active in local Beacon musical and civic causes. He performed on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial with Bruce Springsteen at a Barack Obama inauguration concert.
He  will be remembered and revered for his inimitable capacity throughout his life successfully to elicit the Meek and the Mute of all ages, races, religions and politics, in and out of tune and key, to sound  out lustily and sometimes courageously, in multi-part harmony, for Peace, Justice, Ecology, Equality and Internationalism.
He was the posthumous recipient of the first Woody Guthrie Prize for best exemplifying Woody's spirit and life's work by speaking, and singing, and organizing for and with the less fortunate through music… and serving as a positive force for social change.
Pete was recognized with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, Harvard Arts Medal, Kennedy Center Award, Presidential Medal of the Arts and membership in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
As important – and hopefully as a basis finally for that recognition, Pete with and without Toshi, appeared at a myriad – over 3000- small group meetings, demonstrations and concerts pro bono public around the world  to promote social justice causes. Until well into his 90s, he hand-wrote responses regularly to his thousands of contacts.
Behind, ahead of, and next to him for almost all his adult life was Toshi Aline Ohta Seeger- dancer, manager, filmmaker specializing in folk music, producer and environmental activist.
Toshi attended Manhattan's Little Red Schoolhouse and graduated from NYC's The High School of Music and Art in 1940. Six years into their marriage she and Pete moved in 1949 from Manhattan to Beacon, New York to a log cabin without running water or electricity. The foundation of Pete's personal and professional success, she took part in the 1965 march from Selma to Montgomery Alabama. In 1965-66 she produced and directed -”Chief Cook and Bottle Washer”- a public tv series Rainbow Quest, hosted by Pete, and in 2007 executive produced the PVS documentary Pete Seeger: The Power of Song, an Academy Award recipient.
Toshi and Pete in 1966 co-founded The Hudson River Sloop Clearwater and its annual Great Hudson River Revival/Clearwater Festival, to rally public support for cleaning up the Hudson River. Under Toshi's direction, of course with a cohort of activist supporters, the festival's innovations included providing sign language interpreters, wheelchair access, recycling programs, massive volunteer participation and a prominent Activist area. The festival, this year June 21-22, started as picnics to fundraise to build the Sloop Clearwater.
Some Performer (per 4/14/14) bio’s
Alan Aunapu
Amy Carol Webb
Annie Wenz: Activist Singer/Songwrier/RN has stomped her dusty musical boots in 25 countries. Her journeys are all about community, the heart of music and the little things that bring us together in  celebration.
Ellen Bukstel: An activist in the truest sense, her fundraising music videos have collectively helped to raise close to $100m for community causes such as Housing the Homeless and Assisting Victims of Domestic Violence and Human Rights.
Grant Livingston: With four CDs of original songs to his credit, Grant also teaches songwriting at Miami-Dade College and helps to coordinate the South Florida chapter of the Nashville Songwriters Association.
Grant  was recently part of the Lake Worth Theatre's tribute to Pete Seeger.
www.GrantLivingston.com.
Laurie Jennings
Marie Nofsinger
Rod MacDonald
Ron Koppelman
Tracy SandsVanessa Gilyard: is a native Floridian and has been a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Ft. Lauderdale and its choir  since 2007. She's  been influenced by Pete Seeger's music since she was five years old as a former member of the United Methodist Church, and has been performing and competing in singing competitions and performing in the orchestra since middle school. fallenangel3769@hotmail.com and 954-683-0498

Monday, April 14, 2014

Raft Race Announcement - Mango Groves Neighborhood Association

Hi All-

The Raft Race is coming up, and  for the first time,this year, we have the opportunity to get T-Shirts!

The NAPC is allowing sponsorship of the T-Shirts, in the form of a large or a small logo on the back of the shirt.   The cost would be $300/$150 respectively.  You may also pre-order the shirts at a lower cost than 'day of' sales.  If you would like to purchase either or both, please contact the NAPC at www.lwnapc.com.

We are also looking for participants to help build, decorate, design, and generally help in making our raft this year.   The theme is Art on the Water, and the Mangos have chosen Toulouse Lautrec as their artist, with a "Moulin Rouge-esque" theme.   We need people to help.  this is just about the most fun thing that happens all year. July 4th is the date, and it is only 11 weeks away!

Bryant Park's Kentucky Derby Party is also happening the first Saturday in May, and as always, it is being held at Mango Grove's own favorite SouthShore's Tavern.   Tickets are available now!   Don't miss it!  For the ladies....your best hat, and for the gentlemen....your wildest shirt...   Be there!

Monthly meeting this Thursday at Compass 7pm, and for anyone who would like to meet afterwards for a bevvie at SouthShore's

Best,
Mango Groves Neighborhood Association

Larry the Lenz - On patrol for the six prototype redevelopment sites...

My roving photographer, Larry the Lenz, was inspired by Eliot Kleinberg's article in the Palm Beach Post titled “Six plans to make Lake Worth a better place” published on April 11, 2014. In the article six sites in the City were chosen for consideration for development. Larry the Lenz thought it would be helpful to give the story some context, real world pictures of the sites if you will.

Thank you Larry for all your work! Not sure all the "selfies" are appropriate, but we admire your efforts!

Here we go. Below are the sites that were highlighted during the presentation at the Casino building.

Redevelopment Site #1




Redevelopment Site #2


Redevelopment Site #3


Redevelopment Site #4

Redevelopment Site #5

Redevelopment Site #6

Over the coming days, we will explore each one of these more thoroughly. Thanks Larry the Lenz for sacking these photos, but you might want to confine your selfies to ones taken in the bathroom mirror.

Charlie Crist to address West Palm Beach crowd - SaintPetersBlog

"Former Gov. Charlie Crist is due to speak before a large crowd in South Florida as he fights to reclaim his former office.
Crist addresses the Forum Club of the Palm Beaches on Monday." Click title for link to article.

One of West Palm Beach's promotional efforts...


This comes from 2011 and is already dated. In the middle of the pieces, we see a rendering of the ill-fated Digital Domain building. The video was probably done upon completion of their downtown's waterfront project.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

From a concerned reader: Using Bryant Park for festivals

Dear Mr. Blackman,

    I love this little town, but why do we as residents who live across the street and also a LARGE
surrounding area have to put up with the PUBLIC PARK  being used and fenced in for a festival for two weekends out of three.  Not only that, but from the photos it has become a parking lot for overnighters.  These musicians do not understand or care that the music bounces off these buildings making it almost impossible for me to sit in my condo with the sliders closed to hear TV.  Last of all I am basically a prisoner in my own home for the weekend.  Yes, I can pay $5.00 for someone to valet park my car in the boat trailer area which also is taken away from the boaters for those two weekends.  If I choose not to pay $5.00 I then park 5 blocks away and walk home with my groceries.   I believe the homeowners and surrounding area deserve a little respect.

Thank you,
Darlene Tebbe
15 S. Golfview Rd.
Lake Worth, Fl.  33460



In Palm Beach, all that glitters is not gold...

Click here for a story by Jose Lambiet on a prominent art gallery facing eviction. Click here for news about a jeweler facing lawsuits from his customers to retrieve promised cash.

Group challenges “Chapel” developer joining suit

From Eliot Kleinberg's blog, the prospective developer of the Chapel-on-the-Lake property is joining the city in defense of a lawsuit filed by a citizen group. Click title for link.
The group suing West Palm Beach to try to block construction of the controversial waterfront condominium at the Chapel-by-the-Lake site has challenged a bid by developer G.A.K. Partners to be a party in the suit.

County poised to raise tourist tax: Who should get $7 million? | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

The point of contention is whether the extra money should go for beach renourishment, which some think is the major reason tourists come here to Palm Beach County in the first place. Or, should it go for more promotion and advertising, which would increase the numbers and thereby increase the total amount collected by the bed tax. Of course, since we have no decent hotel space within the city limits, with the exception of the Ixora and Silver Lions motels, it really doesn't impact Lake Worth one way or the other. By the way, included in the beach renourishment plans is $25 million for the Town of Palm Beach, one of our municipal neighbors. Click title for link to article.
Tourism is the county’s No. 1 industry with 5.5 million visitors in 2012, and it was the first sector to recover from the Great Recession. Pesquera [Jorge Pesquera, president and CEO of Discover Palm Beach County] wants more than the agency’s current $10 million for traditional advertising and marketing to compete with Fort Lauderdale, Miami Beach and the Keys.
But what if Palm Beach County sells an inferior product?
“One of the main attractions to Palm Beach County is our beaches,” Deputy County Administrator Verdenia Baker said. And federal and state money is always in jeopardy and currently shrinking, she said.

Talkers, dividers, & doing the FBI’s work: New Statement from Kevin | Support Kevin Olliff And Tyler Lang, jailed animal rights activists

Click title for a link to a letter from prison. Kevin is an animal rights activist that was put in jail for being in possession of a large bolt cutter. He is serving a 2.5 year sentence in an Illinois prison. The isolation of his situation causes one to think about the world of activism. In this piece, which I found here of all places, he notes that people in the movement are more interested in tearing apart their own than actually focusing on the cause. Being an activist seems to require allegiance to a whole set of labyrinthine rules, that after a while, turns people bitter and mean. Well, that seems to be what we have left standing in Lake Worth now. It's an interesting read from a person who is presented with the gift of involuntary self-reflection. Click title for link.
 I am lucky that I will never know a fraction of those animals’ hardships, but I do know that one of the hardest aspects of life in a human prison is the constant feeling of others looking over my shoulder. Guards look over my shoulder for adherence to prison regulations, inmates look over my shoulder for conformity to their culture, feds look over my shoulder to catch me slipping on recorded phone calls and visits. There is no escape.
And yet, regrettably, this problem will not end with my incarceration. That is because the talkers and dividers in my own movement love looking over the shoulders of others. I prefer my animal rights with only four guidelines, but these people have more rules than a parole officer. They insert themselves into activist’s private lives without a warrant or probable cause. And they insist on ideological rigors unrivaled by the FBI. When it comes to taking the focus off the animals, they are better cops than the cops.
Ever hear our local band of activists talk about the evils of conformity? If you take a look at them as a group, they are almost Amish-like in their conformist zeal.

From the Discover the Palm Beaches YouTube Channel

If you're interested in viewing The Palm Beaches in a fun and engaging way, you must visit Palm Beach Segway Tours. Named #1 tour attraction on TripAdvisor, Palm Beach Segway Tours takes you on a scenic guided tour filled with interesting facts and beautiful sights. From West Palm Beach to the island of Palm Beach you will see extravagant homes and landscapes along the Lake Trail, as well as historical sites like the Flagler Museum. The Best Way to Experience Florida is via a segway tour. For more information on Palm Beach County, visit http://www.palmbeachfl.com/segway

Saturday, April 12, 2014

More reasons to visit the Taco Lady!

Scrabble Anyone?

Love Scrabble? Come and Play with us on the NAPC "Front Porch! Friday, April 18th at Evening on the Avenues. $5 a game - Pay once - Winners keep playing! Two boards going at the same time! Proceeds go to help fund the July 4th Raft Race! Hosted this week by the Nice Neighbors from Bryant Park! Derby Day Tickets also available!

Joseph Campbell, The Masks of God, Vol. III: Occidental Mythology, p. 522

"The adventure of the Grail––the quest within for those creative values by which the Waste Land is redeemed––has become today for each the unavoidable task; for, as there is no more any fixed horizon, there is no more any fixed center, any Mecca, Rome, or Jerusalem. Our circle today is that announced, c. 1450, by Nicholas Cusanus: whose circumference is nowhere and whose center is everywhere; the circle of infinite radius, which is also a straight line."

From the City of Deerfield Beach's YouTube Channel promoting Quiet Waters Park

PBC advisory board sends ‘message’ — No 6,500-home Minto... | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

A large group of Acreage residents attended a Palm Beach County Planning Commission meeting yesterday (4/11) to voice opposition to the large Minto development planned for the former Callery-Judge Groves property. They are seeking to double the number of residential units approved, and increase the amount of commercial and institutional space. The Planning Commission voted unanimously to deny their requests, but this is an advisory board and only the first of many meetings that will discuss the project. People in the Acreage enjoy a rural lifestyle and fear being over-run by increased traffic and other impacts caused by the project. Click title for link to article.

This is how one person described the impact of the project:
Tracy Grudzielanek, one of more than 30 speakers, quoted from the Bible to emphasize her fears that Minto West will ruin the rural character of the area.
“The gates of hell shall open up and hordes of locusts shall descend upon, devouring everything in sight. That is what Minto will be doing,’’ she said.
Lake Worth is in the unfortunate position of having to compete for a slice of the growth represented by these large western projects, while keeping our existing character. To a large extent, we have accomplished that with re-writing our development regulations. But the market forces still push development to western areas of the county where land is less expensive and dependent on the automobile for the great majority of transportation needs.

Six plans to make Lake Worth a better place | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

This symposium was held two Thursday nights ago (4/3) at the Casino Building ballroom. Staff invited people that are design professionals, urban planners, land use attorneys and others in real estate projects. They were brought together to show a selection of six (6) different locations in Lake Worth could accommodate redevelopment. The highlight was showing how to work with our new land development regulations and how Lake Worth has built a review process that is one of the shortest in Palm Beach County. 

I heard that the event was well attended. I am coordinating with Mr. Waters on the best way to deliver the information dispensed in the PowerPoint presentation. It is a very large file. The presentation lasted about an hour and a half. Click title for link to Eliot Kleinberg's review of the meeting and the various prototype locations.
The city had mapped out all of its clusters of unimproved property, then hired a consultant group, showed them six sites, and directed them to use their imagination, said William Waters, the city’s director for community sustainability.
“Let’s say a developer came and said, ‘Let me know what I can do on this property,’ ” Waters said this week. “We gave them (consultants) free rein.”

Reinventing the Cultural Scene in South Florida April 23, 2014, 11 am-2 pm

The Colony Hotel, 155 Hammon Avenue, Palm Beach, FL 33480

JoAnne Berkow, also known as JB, is an artist, entrepreneur, poet and philanthropist. She has written several books including "Painted Poetry" and "What They Didn't Teach You in Art School". The first is an illustrated collection of philosophical poetry and the second is a book on how to become a more successful professional artist. She owns Rosetta Stone Fine Art Gallery. In the past she also founded the Touchstone Gallery, one of the most successful cooperative galleries in Washington, D.C. and Frenchman's Art Gallery and Studios, Inc. a membership gallery in Juno Beach. She is now taking on her most challenging project, Benzaiten Center for Creative Arts, which will be a 18,000 sf complex housing a fine art metal foundry, glass art studio and a ceramic studio in the City of Lake Worth.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Lake Worth's Mayor and City Commissioners getting a jump on things...

Frida Kahlo

“I used to think I was the strangest person in the world but then I thought there are so many people in the world, there must be someone just like me who feels bizarre and flawed in the same ways I do. I would imagine her, and imagine that she must be out there thinking of me too. Well, I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it's true I'm here, and I'm just as strange as you.” 

Some pics from last night's fun at E.R. Bradley's Beach Club...

This was a fundraiser put on by the Lake Worth Recreation Board for next weekend's Easter-related festivities. It was well attended and the musicians, including Mel and Vinnie, kept everyone in high spirits.


Austin Brookley and AnnaMaria Windisch-Hunt of the Recreation Board

Mayor Muoio supports making Okeechobee Boulevard better for pedestrians | WalkableWPB

From the WalkableWPB blog comes this post about Mayor Muoio's support for a more pedestrian friendly Okeechobee Boulevard east of Parker. The city has brought in recent High Noon in Lake Worth guest Jeff Speck as a consultant and assembled a team to start making this happen.. Click title for link. Check out the video of the Mayor that is included in the link. Here is a bit:
At Mayor Muoio’s media briefing on April 2nd, reporters asked the Mayor about her thoughts around the idea of making Okeechobee Boulevard a multiway boulevard or something more pedestrian friendly [minute 16:20].
Muoio: “One of the focuses of both Jeff Speck and CNU and our downtown is ‘how do we make Okeechobee more walkable?’ So any effort to do that I would applaud and would like to be a part of."
We thank the Mayor for endorsing this idea. She has touted the benefits of walkability publicly and often, supporting Jeff Speck’s walkability study, bringing in Peter Kageyama (“For the Love of Cities”) for a lecture, and conducting the Mayor’s walk.

Editorial: In Palm Beach Gardens, let residents watch meetings... | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

This Palm Beach Post editorial rightly takes Palm Beach Gardens to task for reluctantly agreeing to provide video of their meetings, but only available the day after the meeting. In fact, the decision of whether or not to do it came at the end of a meeting, with no public comment. This is not exactly a model of transparency. And the Post rightly points out that doing this should not be based on the number of people who would watch, just as elections are held regardless of the turnout. I would take that even further and suggest that having more ways for people to be aware of what their local government is doing is a good thing that might bring more people out for municipal elections. Click title for link. From the editorial:
"Such a move would have been a bold gesture a decade ago. But it is 2014, and in Palm Beach County every other city of Palm Beach Gardens’ size already allows residents to watch public meetings online, as do the county government and the school board.

For years Palm Beach Gardens has held out, rationalizing and equivocating whenever residents demanded greater access. It’s well past time for this affluent city to incur the minimal cost involved in this fundamental accommodation.

Yet even now, Palm Beach Gardens is only planning a half-measure – making meetings available a day after they take place. Watching meetings live will still be impossible online. Residents who can’t make it in person are still relegated to listening to audio-only recordings, a poor substitute that makes it difficult to follow what is happening."

Water district OKs $1.9 billion Everglades plan, starting... | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

That's a lot of money and it will spent over a period of ten years. It is also dependent upon consistent funding from Congress over that period of time to keep things moving. There are some doubts about whether or not that will happen. But, for now, it seems as though various stakeholders are happy with this step to get more water running south from Lake Okeechobee. Click title for link. And, yes, Drew Martin is quoted again.
The corps will now present the project to its Civil Works Review Board. If approved, other federal and state agencies will be asked to review CEPP. The corps hopes to respond to any agency recommendations and submit the final project plan to the corps’ Chief of Engineers by the end of July. With the chief’s report, the corps can then include CEPP in the funding bill.
Thirty-five speakers were given two minutes each to comment on the project Thursday. No one spoke against it. Praise for the vote came in press releases from the governor’s office, U.S. Sugar and many environmental groups throughout the state.
“Today is the day we need to make this decision,” said Drew Martin, a member of the Palm Beach Soil & Water Conservation District and spokesman for the Sierra Club said during public comments. “It isn’t enough but it’s something.”

Thursday, April 10, 2014

April activities - Tropical Ridge Neighborhood Association

Greetings Friends and Neighbors,

Let me start by thanking Mark Woods (Lake Worth's new Code Compliance Manager) for speaking at our March meeting. He is an overdue breath of fresh air. If you have any questions concerning code in this city he is the one to talk to as he is clear, concise and extremely well informed. Once again thank you Mr. Woods.

We have a busy month this month  -  especially for those who like to help take care of their city.

This Saturday, April 12th the Royal Poinciana Neighborhood Association is hosting a neighborhood cleanup. Meeting place is 404 S. C street at 8:00am. All are welcome.

The following Saturday, April 19th, Highland Elementary is again cleaning up the Lake Worth Beach area for Earthday. They will have free parking from 6:00-9:00am - those staying later will have to purchase a parking ticket. At 10:00am. the City of Lake Worth is holding their Easter Egg Hunt at Bryant Park.

On Saturday April 26th Lake Worth's CRA, along with many others, will be enhancing the TRNA area. Activities include putting the finishing touches on a kiddie playground behind the TRNA Fitness Park in the 200 block of N. H street. Volunteers will also be clean up TRNA neighborhoods. Activities start at 8:00am and finish at 1:30 with the ribbon cutting etc. Meanwhile there are other activities going on in the Cultural Plaza all day.

Hope we have something there to interest you.

Carolyn

Tonight - E.R. Bradley's on the Beach - Lake Worth Golf Course Clubhouse


Riding the Sunshine State With All Aboard Florida | TravelPulse

Click title for link to a travel industry website for more details on All Aboard Florida.

What's happenning with Channel 12?

Well, the video on Lake Worth City Commission travel expenses is scrubbed from the website, but the article remains. And this one from April 8th on the demolitions that happened this week along Lucerne. Check out the video. Michael Buczyner interviews Mayor Triolo. He keeps asking where the money is coming from and answers his own question twice that it is coming from federal grant dollars. It is good to see Commissioner McVoy standing next to the Mayor in this video.

It is worth pointing out that according to an informed source, the average price for a demo is $7k. There were 3 units on the properties at Lucerne and D. It was not $14 k per unit. If you watch the video, you might be left with that impression.

Advertising Opportunities for the Great American Raft Race T-shirt - Deadline is April 15th


Irony of it all: Rare bird’s nest in Lake Worth complicates... | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

Click title for link to a Palm Beach Post article by Joe Capozzi (click title for link) about the American oystercatchers that have taken up residence around the western end of the Lake Worth bridge. There is a bit of a circular situation here. The oystercatchers were spotted earlier in the already completed, man-made Snook Islands project. There was talk last year of how, due to heavy rains and the incoming fresh water coming from the C-51 canal and other sources, that the oyster habitat was destroyed in the Lake Worth Lagoon. Oysters, it was thought, would take at least three years to regenerate assuming there was no massive influx of fresh water again into the Lagoon's estuarine system.

Without the oysters, it would follow that oystercatchers would have nothing to eat and go elsewhere. Blog reader Mike Lynch took pictures of the birds when they first appeared and sent me this picture which I have previously posted on the blog.
Two American oystercatchers shown on the Snook Island area north of the Lake Worth bridge.
Now comes the pleasant surprise that they have returned to the recently created nesting ground and have even jumped south of the bridge. That is the area that is currently "under construction" to expand the Snook Islands area east of Byrant Park. Two Lake Worth "birders" are featured in the article. Here is what one of them says.
Bulldozers would have continued work this week — and possibly destroyed the nest — if not for Gael Silverblatt, a Lake Worth resident who has been photographing Snook Island oystercatchers on almost daily visits to the north end of the Lake Worth bridge over the past few years.

“I’m just enthralled with them, with their red beaks and black and white feathers, the way they mimic each other,’’ said Silverblatt.

“You know that song ‘Walk Like an Egyptian’? That’s what oystercatchers do. One will face left, and the other will face left. One faces right, the other will face right. They’re so elegant.’’

On March 25, Silverblatt said, she photographed little blue herons on the shoreline just south of the bridge. A week later, she finally looked at the images on her computer and was startled by what she saw in the background of a photo — a female oystercatcher on the unfinished island off Bryant Park.

“I could tell by the way she was positioned, she was sitting on a nest,’’ Silverblatt said.

Silverblatt went back to Bryant Park that day and walked on the bridge for a better
look. “You could see her (the female bird) stand up and reposition the rocks (around the nest) with the male beside her trying to look important,’’ she said.
The irony, of course, is that but for the act of humans in establishing these habitats, we would not be seeing these birds in the first place. And, if you go way back, the lagoon was a fresh water habitat until the later part of the 19th century when the first inlet was cut from the ocean. As an aside, the last sentence above says a lot more about someone's world view, if you think about it, than just observing birds. Just sayin'.

People interested in wildlife, photography and the way wildlife migrates through the state of Florida might be interested in a talk to be given by Carlton Ward. He will be speaking on the Florida wildlife corridor tonight from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society as part of its Conservation Society lecture series. The cost is $20. For more information on the lecture series, you can call 561 547 9453, extension 285. Click here for an overview of Mr. Ward's work that appears in the April 10 edition of the Shiny Sheet.

And here is the perky, ear worm song by the Bangles referenced in the article:

Gas Line Project Information - Next Tuesday (4/15)


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Pinkie with the Missing Linkie...


Look for the face that sunk 1,000 ships. See if you can find it.


This was in response to a simple question about the size of signs one can have for a business.

Three Local Mayors Help Meals on Wheels of the Palm Beaches Deliver Meals to Homebound Seniors

Deliveries Part of Annual March for Meals Campaign
 

Three mayors of Palm Beach County communities joined Meals on Wheels of the Palm Beaches in delivering meals to homebound seniors last month as part of the annual March for Meals, a national campaign designed to bring attention to the senior hunger crisis in America.

Joining the local Meals on Wheels volunteers in delivering were West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio, Palm Beach County Mayor Priscilla Taylor and Lake Worth Mayor Pam Triolo. The mayors represent all three communities currently served by Meals on Wheels of the Palm Beaches. 

Lake Worth Mayor Pam Triolo (right) with Lana Waldner
“We very grateful to the three mayors for taking time out of their busy schedules to help us deliver meals,” said Executive Director Charlie Ring. “Through their visits, the mayors saw first hand just how much homebound seniors in our community appreciate the efforts of our volunteers, who bring nutritious noon-time meals and a bit of companionship five days a week.”

A national initiative of the Meals on Wheels Association of America, March for Meals is designed to bring attention to the 6.5 million seniors in the country who are in need of daily nutritious meals. Meals on Wheels of the Palm Beaches is a local affiliate of the national organization, serving residents in the West Palm Beach and Lake Worth areas.

The Mayors March for Meals in Palm Beach County was featured in local newspaper coverage as well as in segments on two local television stations.

About Meals on Wheels of the Palm Beaches
Meals on Wheels of the Palm Beaches is a non-profit organization dedicated to nourishing and enriching the lives of the homebound in the West Palm Beach and Lake Worth areas. An affiliate of the Meals on Wheels Association of America, the organization provides nutritious mid-day meals to those who are unable prepare their own.  A community-based organization, Meals on Wheels of the Palm Beaches relies on local residents for both financial support and for volunteers, and operates without government funding.

When doing an interview in any language, be careful of that which you grab...


I'm not sure that trying to "save" her with the microphone was the best idea either.

EXCLUSIVE — Palm Beach Billionaire Jeff Greene Sued . . . Contractors Seek Foreclosure on Mansion!

Previous High Noon in Lake Worth guest Jose Lambiet points out that "the next Henry Flagler", a title recently dubbed Jeff Greene by the Palm Beach Post, has a few billing disputes with people who worked on his Palm Beach estate. Click title for link to article.

Appointment of Wellington vice-mayor further divides council |... | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

A brouhaha erupts in Wellington over a largely ceremonial appointment of a council member as "Vice-Mayor." According to tradition, the council member with the most seniority gets tapped for that position. In this case, on a 3-2 vote, it went to the council member with the least. Check out the video at the beginning of the article. Click title for link.
The appointment is largely ceremonial, but the title typically goes to whomever is the most-senior member of the council yet to hold the post.

If tradition held Tuesday, Gerwig would have been appointed — not Greene, who is the most junior of the five council members. He was first elected in 2012.

“I think it’s an affront to me personally and an affront to women in general that the three of you would not designate me as vice-mayor,” Gerwig said at the close of Tuesday’s otherwise routine meeting. “I would think you would be smarter than this: to declare war on me and declare war on women.”

North bridge to close May 12 to Nov. 1 | www.palmbeachdailynews.com

Plans call for the north bridge to be closed over the summer. It turns out to be a complicated scenario as they are working to avoid further damage to the old bridge so that it can be used as the interim bridge. If not, then a temporary bridge will need to be built while the new one is underway. Such was the story for the Royal Palm (middle) bridge. Over $9 million was spent last fall in an attempt to repair the old bridge after damage from vibration. The Town is concerned about the short and long impact on traffic and has pulled back on some other public works projects in the north end. Click title for link.

Coniglio said residents have called her saying they’ve seen no work done on the new bridge.

“I’m hopeful that when we drive up and down Flagler, and up and down Cocoanut Row, that there will be so many people that I will hardly see the roadway,” Coniglio said. The project has generated significant anxiety and difficult conditions in the community, she said.

“We are going to partner with you shoulder to shoulder, but at the end of the day, the expectation is that you will deliver,” Coniglio said.

“We will do it,” Hamrick said.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Walter Scott

"O, what a tangled web we weave when first we practise to deceive!"

William Waters addresses the Lake Worth MOD Squad meeting this morning (4/8)


The MOD Squad is a group of downtown Lake Worth merchants. This meeting took place at Brogue's this morning. I highly recommend that you watch it as it contains a lot of information about how the city is coming around and how some things still remain difficult. There are some interesting revelations here and it really is worth the watch. These are two sequential videos, linked together as a playlist.

BREAKING NEWS: Town of Palm Beach Dismisses Landmarks and Zoning Commissions

This is in the wake of the failure of the PUD-5 zoning ordinance to pass at the recent special election. The Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach sent this e-mail out this afternoon. Click the link to the Shiny Sheet's shorthand notes of what happened during that part of the Council meeting. This is a MAJOR power play, to say the least.
Today, Tuesday April 8, 2014 the Town Council dismissed the Landmarks Preservation Commission and Planning and Zoning Commission.

This occurred under an agenda item placed by Councilman Bill Diamond titled “Discussion of Town Boards and Commissions.”

No backup, supporting documents or studies were presented.

Councilman Diamond made the motion which was seconded by Councilwoman Penny Townsend.  With Town Councilmen Richard Kleid and Michael Pucillo opposing, Town Councilpersons Diamond, Townsend, and Bob Wildrick moved forward with the full dismissal of all persons on the Landmarks Preservation Commission and Planning and Zoning Commission.

As such, the April Landmarks Preservation Commission and Planning and Zoning Commission meetings have been cancelled.

The project to fix Memorial Fountain was to be heard at the April Landmarks Preservation Commission and now will be delayed.

It was also announced today that a demolition application to demolish all buildings on the Testa property along Royal Poinciana Way was filed.  This demolition application will be heard by the Architectural Review Commission. By law, the Architectural Review Commission cannot deny any demolition application.
Click here for link to the Shiny Sheet piece.

12th Annual Raft Race ~ "Art on the Water"

The 12th Annual Great American Raft Race in the Lake Worth Lagoon is right around the corner! The theme for this year's race is "Art on the Water". Neighborhoods in Lake Worth will be choosing a well known artist or work of art to depict on their rafts as they race for the coveted "Grunge Cup" and bragging rights for a whole year!
The NAPC is offering 2014 Raft Race T-shirts, featuring artist Aviva Brueckner's charming interpretation of Washington Crossing the Delaware to raise money to provide mini-grants for NAPC Neighborhoods to help with the cost of raft construction.

6 large and 12 smaller logo spots in full color on the back will be offered to local business and service providers on a first come - first served basis at $300 and $150. Artwork and payment absolutely, positively MUST be received by April 15th and that REALLY is right around the corner! Contact the NAPC at napcinfo@gmail.com or call Mary Lindsey at 585-6035.

T-shirts will go on sale beginning May 2nd at the NAPC "Front Porch" at Evening on the Avenues. T-shirts are $10 in advance and $15 on July 4th - Race Day! Shirts can be pre-purchased and reserved now through NAPC Member Associations. Sizes are Small through XXLarge.

Billboard bill advances in Florida Legislature without clause... | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

It's a little unclear about the scope of this bill. It reads as though this would apply only to South Florida Water Management land, but other provisions are quite sweeping. Luckily, the bill is having a hard time gaining traction in the house. This is part of a sneaky bill from 2012 that gave wholesale access to the same sorts of land for "public information systems." Click title for link to the article.
The 56-page bill proposes numerous changes to various duties of the Department of Transportation, including the regulation of billboards, leasing land for wireless communication towers on property owned by the department and extending a pilot program that allows the Palm Beach County School District to display ads of corporate sponsors on school property in unincorporated areas.

Among the changes to billboard regulations, the bill would reduce the distance between billboards on certain roadways and allow billboards that would be blocked by the construction of sound walls to be elevated or moved.

The Florida League of Cities — which wants power restored to local governments — was “blind-sided” by “eleventh hour” changes made in 2012, said Ryan Padgett, spokesman for the league, which represents more than 400 cities, towns and villages.

Billboards on any other type of property are subject not only to federal and state regulations, but also local ordinances, Padgett told the Transportation Committee.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Mining Exec’s North Vancouver Home Sprayed by Gunfire | Earth First! Newswire

The power of suggestion? Click title for link.

Special Meeting About New Gas Lines Confirmed

Everyone from any Neighborhood is welcome to join the Neighbors of College Park as we hear Mr. Mike Pence from Mears Group, Inc., address questions and concerns regarding the new gas lines that are being installed all over our neighborhoods. Thank You to Pastor Fairbanks for confirming our location for this Special Meeting at the First Congregational Church, 1415 North K Street. The meeting is next Tuesday, April 15th at 6:30.

For those unable to attend due to the Passover holidays, a recap of the meeting will be posted on the College Park website the day after. www.collegeparklakeworth.com

[CPNA] Special Meeting to Answer Questions and Concerns About the New Gas Lines

Dear Friends and Neighbors, Many of you have contacted the College Park Neighborhood Association with questions and concerns about the work being done all over the City by Florida Public Utilities regarding new gas lines. Mr. Mike Pence, from the Mears Group Inc., who are the contractors hired by Florida Public Utilities, has graciously agreed to answer questions and concerns at a Special Meeting in College Park to be held next week on Tuesday, April 15th at 6:30 PM. We hope to have this meeting at our regular meeting place - the First Congregational Church at 1415 North K St. but that location has not yet been confirmed. As soon as we receive confirmation, another email will go out to remind everyone.

If for some reason the church is not available next Tuesday at 6:30 PM, we do have a nearby back-up location. Please save the date, and please let your friends and neighbors who may not be on our email distribution list know about this important meeting. Everyone, from anywhere in the City, is very welcome to attend. We will confirm the location with an announcement on the College Park website, www.collegeparklakeworth.com, on the Neighborhood Association Presidents' Council website at lwnapc.com and on facebook via the Lake Worth Voice page, the College Park Neighborhood Association page and the NAPC page. Notices will also be sent to all the other Neighborhood Association Presidents so that they may inform their members via their own email distribution lists.

Thank You
Mary Lindsey, President CPNA

Deadline mix-up: Congressional candidate falls 521 signatures short but says she had 700 more in car | Post on Politics

I'd like to see someone decent run against Alcee Hastings, but I'm not sure this is the best choice given this incident. Click title for link.
Port of Palm Beach Commissioner Jean Enright, who has launched a Democratic primary challenge against 11-term U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, will have to pay a $10,440 filing fee to get on the ballot after falling 521 signatures short of qualifying by petition last week.

A “devastated” Enright said she thought the deadline to submit signatures was 5 p.m. last Monday. In fact, the deadline was noon. Enright said Friday that she had about 700 unsubmitted signatures in her car when the deadline passed and other campaign volunteers also had more signatures that didn’t get turned in on time.

Federal rail official blasts All Aboard Florida’s safety... | www.mypalmbeachpost.com

Click title for link to article on the federal safety requirements for crossings for the All Aboard Florida fast train project. Standards for higher speed trains, this one will go 110 miles per hour north of West Palm Beach. The federal "guidelines" are much stricter than state guidelines. This is part of the broader process of assessing the impact of beginning such a passenger service on these tracks. From the article, Mr. Frey is a federal rail safety official:
“In my professional opinion, I respectfully disagree with the Project’s approach in that they are not exercising appropriate safety practices and reasonable care when designing for High Speed Passenger Rail service,” Frey said in a report dated March 20 and recently shared with local planning officials.

All Aboard Florida officials are aiming for a lower level of safety standards, he wrote. Florida Department of Transportation actually sets safety standards for the rail lines, and its requirements are lower than FRA’s 2009 highway-rail grade crossing guidelines for high-speed passenger rail.

Are Mangroves the Answer Against Global Warming Vulnerability to Disaster? - Kansas City infoZine

 
Click title for link to article which was originally sourced from Rueters, but appears in the Kansas City Infozine piece. Click title for link. I don't think that Kansas City has many mangroves, but our coastal areas do and are protected through the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. Snook Islands is an example of coastal mangrove restoration. They are now realizing that not only do mangroves stabilize coastal areas and provide valuable habitat for fish and other wildlife, older stands actually contain carbon deposits that may be thousands of years old. Check out the video for a quick overview.
"Our coasts are more vulnerable now to these natural disasters, whether they be from hurricanes, tsunamis or wave surges because of the loss of natural coastal barriers, such as mangroves, sea grasses, corals, salt marshes or other coastal wetlands. Even sand dunes play an important part in acting as natural barriers against the occasional, but devastating ravages of Nature.

"Mangroves are especially important today in reducing the adverse effects from climate change, because they sequester more carbon dioxide and store more carbon than any other plant species. They can store carbon in their peat soils for millennia if left undisturbed. Mangroves also are the last line of defense against the present rising sea levels that pose immense threats to coastal cities, towns, and villages. Mangroves actually accrue sediments, thus building up the shoreline, which itself is a vital defense against rising sea levels.