Saturday, August 4, 2007

Mars and Venus Take Five...

I caught my kids taking a cat nap (?) this afternoon, both in similar comfortable positions. Mars is on the couch; Venus is on the floor. These are the dog days of summer.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Highlights from Tom Twyford's Presentation at the Lake Worth Lagoon Symposium

You know, my favorite presentation of the Symposium held in May was Tom Twyford's. If you have been around here a while, you might remember Tom from his segments he did for Channel 12 News called "Tight Lines". He's the Executive Director of the West Palm Beach Fishing Club, which was founded in 1934.

His presentation gave a great historical perspective on the importance of recreational fishing to the area's early development and quality of life. His pictures clearly showed the popularity of this pastime. It made me realize that due to misuse and abuse of this resource - through run-off from the C-51 canal, sewage outfalls, etc. we essentially eliminated recreational fishing as part of what our region has to offer. The good news is that fishing is coming back, especially around areas that have been enhanced or restored with Mangroves (our Snook Islands being a prime example).

What I want to do here is present the essence of his talk with some of the images he used. I'll make some commentary here and there. Below is the abstract of his presentation:

Keynote Address – Expanded Transcript - Lake Worth Lagoon Symposium

This was such a fantastic opening to the Symposium. It was the keynote address and it was given by Duane E. De Freese, Ph.D., Vice President of Research, Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute. You can find their website at the following address:

His address is significant in that it identifies the importance that the Lake Worth Lagoon has to our immediate region, but also the importance it has as a national resource. Dr. De Freese talks about the importance of public awareness of this resource and role surrounding communities can play in the sharing of information in the protection and restoration of the resource. He mentions how land use decisions cannot be made without balancing the needs and the impact to the estuary. He also clearly defines the Lake Worth Lagoon as an urban estuary.

I present it here just so that it is accessible as possible. You can go to the ERM website for all of the abstracts and presentations made at the Symposium. Remember, click on the images and they will be revealed in a new window, in a larger format, for easier reading. Highlighting is mine.

Follow-up: Lake Worth Lagoon Symposium

Expect a lot of posts coming up regarding the Lake Worth Lagoon Symposium held in May by Palm Beach County Environmental Resource Management (ERM). I have visited their website and collected many presentations that were made the day of symposium. As a reminder, ERM is also in the process of creating a 2007 up-date to the Lake Worth Lagoon Management Plan. You can click here for a link that will take you directly to their website for more information on the Management Plan update.

And, finally, there is another planning effort underway by a number of agencies, including the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council, League of Cities, Metropolitan Planning Organization, Inland Navigation District, among others which will be looking at the redevelopment and planning issues surrounding the Lake Worth Lagoon. More on this effort later.

If you want to browse through the Symposium presentations, please click here for direct access to the ERM website. I will be highlighting presentations made at the symposium in this blog, but they will be samplings and not the entire presentations.

Hooray!! Better Late than Never...

Look at what's on Tuesday night's agenda! This is a follow-up from the June 19, 2007 meeting where the Commission discussed the need to have a fact sheet put out containing information on the beach redevelopment project. My concern is that this is coming very late - almost a year after the City entered into the agreement with Greater Bay to redevelop the beach. I say this because, according to the transmittal memo issued by the Interim City Manager, the soonest that this could go out in the utility bills would be November of this year. The development agreement was executed in October of last year.

In the mean time, due to the void of information coming from the City, enterprising individuals have filled the vacuum with frightening visions of what would be physically built at the beach, the fiscal implications and environmental consequences resulting from the project. This spread of misinformation manifested itself at resident's front doors and grocery store parking lots in the form of petition gathering efforts to repeal the land use and zoning changes made necessary to enable the project to go forward.

I am not inferring that everyone involved in the signature gathering effort was doing this. One gentleman who came to my door was well-informed and concerned about getting the information right (Fate played a role). We had a long and frank discussion. However, I have heard that there were others that used the opportunity of not having the correct information to create realities that didn't or that will not exist.

One wishes that this information could have gotten out from the City - the final, official source of facts related to the project - much sooner. I attempted as best I could to do the same through this blog, but that really cannot take the place of an official pronouncement from the City itself.

Below, find a portion of the City Commission agenda for next Tuesday night and images of the transmittal letter and, most importantly, the list of facts that are proposed for the official publication. We can be sure that the usual suspects will be there to debate the facts presented, but "facts is facts."

You might want to click on the last page especially and bring it up in a new window for easier reading. But, I would also highly recommend that you print it out and keep in your pocket or purse. Make some additional copies and give it to those people who may have been given the incorrect information while being solicited for their signature on the petitions.

Or, you can click here for the entire item as stored on the City's website (in .pdf form).

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Interim City Manager's Proposed 2007-2008 Budget

Below is a highlighted copy of the letter from the Interim City Manager regarding the proposed FY 2007-2008 budget. I attended the meeting last night. Mr. Baldwin read this as his presentation to the Mayor, Commissioners, staff and public present.

The letter, contained in the proposed budget document, is a good summary of the basic guiding philosophies that were used in its preparation. The document contains a series of organizational charts and it is clear that the City will undergo a restructuring over the next year, resulting in changes to many departments. Hopefully, this will result in improved delivery of municipal services.

The next workshop where the Commission will discuss the proposed budget is scheduled for August 15. Between now and then, I'll be posting items that I discover in review of the proposed budget. I'll also deal with them on my Truth Matters show on Sundays.

CLICK HERE for your own copy of the proposed budget document from the City's website. You can review it on line, or save a copy to your hard drive.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Special City Commission Meeting - Proposed FY 2007-2008 Budget 7/31/07 - 5:30 p.m.

No back up provided on line. It says that it will be provided at the meeting, but not for general public distribution, I am sure. I'll attempt to hunt down an electronic copy and let you know when I am successful.

Update: I attended the meeting last night and the proposed budget is supposed to be posted on the City's website today (8/1/07).

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Supply and Demand - Real Estate

(This entry is designed to accompany the Truth Matters show of 7/29/07 on Lake Worth - Click Here for link to archived show)

P - price
  • Q - quantity of good
  • S - supply
  • D - demand
(Remember, clicking on the images brings it up in a new window for easier viewing)