Friday, September 29, 2017

“Lake Worth Historic Preservation Design Guidelines”: Request For Proposal (RFP) 17-211. Deadline is next Tuesday (Oct. 3rd).


First, here are are some quotes from last August 16th by the mayor and City commissioners as well about our City of Lake Worth’s historic preservation program:
  • “We need to clean this mess up . . . we have egg on our faces.”
  • “Every single day hear the problems.”
  • “People are crying for some type of relief.”
  • “Think this effort is to thwart the will of the Commission.”
  • “Subjective use of guidelines.”
  • “Status quo is not acceptable.”
  • “Empower our local government.”

Without further ado, here’s something “flying
under the radar” so to speak:

 “The City of Lake Worth, Florida, is requesting proposals from qualified consultants for the Lake Worth Historic Preservation Design Guidelines. The goods and/or services being sought include, but are not limited to, researching, planning, designing, and writing a comprehensive historic preservation design guideline document, in compliance with the State Grant Agreement and Chapter 1A-46 of the Florida Administrative Code.
     Time is of the essence and any proposal received after 3:00 PM, Monday, October 2, 2017, whether by mail or otherwise may be rejected by the City. Proposals shall be placed in a sealed envelope, marked in the lower left-hand corner with the Request For Proposal (RFP) number, title, and date and hour proposals are scheduled to be received. Proposers are responsible for insuring that their proposal is delivered and stamped by the City’s Financial Services office personnel by the deadline indicated.”

and. . . 

     Interested parties may obtain a copy of the RFP by contacting the Financial Services office at 561-586-1654 or from the City’s website, Services & Departments, Bids & Proposals. All proposals must be hand-delivered or mailed to:

City of Lake Worth
Financial Services
7 North Dixie Highway, 2nd Floor
Lake Worth, FL 33460

Envelope must be identified as ‘RFP 17-211’. Small Business participation is strongly encouraged.”

Remember when a former Lake Worth commissioner suggested potholes shouldn’t be fixed, we need potholes for “traffic calming”?


It’s hard to believe now, but last year prior to the Neighborhood Road Program bond referendum, one of the illogical leaps by a former commissioner was that fixing potholes would make the public less safe and increase the number of vehicle crashes. Don’t believe it? Continue reading.

And this same commissioner, when the public here in the City was confused, worried, and upset about cryptic comments concerning his personal safety, when asked to explain said:
“I think I’ll pass. I think people will figure it out on their own.”
Saying “I think I’ll pass” was nothing new for this former commissioner, Chris McVoy, PhD. He said close the same thing in August 2014, the day after the first bond vote failed by just 25 votes. Whilst everyone else kept working hard and find ways to fix our roads, this commissioner just sat on his hands and did nothing for over 2 years, until he was booted out of office in March of this year.

Then leading up to the Neighborhood Road Bond referendum last November he played the role of obstructionist once again. After the referendum passed (by an overwhelming margin) he still tried to scuttle progress with all kinds of tactics and twisted logic. One of those illogical leaps is that potholes serve an important function: traffic calming? Ludicrous.

Even more absurd was suggesting the City isn’t considering a traffic calming component for the upcoming road improvements. Simply not true at all.

Now back to those cryptic comments McVoy made about his personal safety. You can hear McVoy for yourself say, “I think I’ll pass” at the 1:40 mark in the video (see below). Here’s the transcript:

Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell: “Before I begin my comments I guess I’d like to ask [former commissioner] McVoy to speak with a more specific level of detail because it seems like something is weighing on his mind and I’d like to know what it is.” 

Mayor Pam Triolo: “If you would like to Commissioner McVoy. You don’t have to.” 

Chris McVoy, PhD:I think I’ll pass. I think people will figure it out on their own.”

[then an audible mumbling can be heard from throughout the Commission chambers]



This discussion occurred in 2016. The public was left on their own to figure out what McVoy was referring to and some speculated it was about how he thought he’d been treated disrespectfully or unfairly. Later on responded with this blog post titled, More on “civility” and a stroll down memory lane: A mayor burned in effigy and names on bullets:

An image of Mayor Pam Triolo after the first bond vote to fix our roads failed, by just 25 votes, in August 2014. Not very “charming” is it?

Who exactly were the “Special interests” back in 2014? And if you would like to talk about civility, please, be my guest. Ever get your name on a bullet?

Blueway Trail and rumors in Lake Worth: Beware marauding bands of looters and “bad people” from Lake Clarke Shores.

First, what’s the latest rumor you heard about the Blueway Trail project?

This project is still in the design phase and no work will commence for 3–5 years, minimum. Commissioner Omari Hardy wants the political paralysis and hand-wringing to stop, once again calling for a resolution of support for this project like the County has done so already. Many other cities have “Resolutions of Support” as well.

But the City of Lake Worth, famous for bandying about the word “Potential” with great frequency,
has so far sat on its hands.

Is anyone surprised?

Anyhow, if you’ve heard another rumor about the Blueway Trail below you’ll find a way to verify whether or not what you heard was true.

Ever been to Spillway Park in the City of Lake Worth? Take Maryland Drive off Federal Hwy. and the park is at the end of the street.
Only in Lake Worth: Rumors about “bad people” and hoards of looters from Lake Clarke Shores
using the C-51 Canal to maraud neighborhoods in
our City of Lake Worth.

Below is a not-so-subtle observation by Pelican Pete, a bird with an attitude at the Lake Worth Herald, referring to the Blueway Trail at the S-155 Spillway on the C-51 Canal between the cities of Lake Worth and West Palm Beach:

What are all the people doing at the spillway? I know. . . they’re measuring for new “Blueway”. . .

You know, the one Mayor Shalhoub has worked so hard to get for his community. . .

. . . and the one star on the east side of the locks says she doesn’t want. . . All those bad people will be on the water now. . . You know, all those that live in Lake Clarke Shores. . . sometimes people fight the good just to fight.

Guess who was a very early proponent of water access bypassing the Spillway? That would be none other than former Lake Worth City Commissioner Suzanne Mulvehill. Would she be considered a “visionary” now?

“Come on Lake Worth”. The image below is from the inimitable former blogger-extraordinaire, Tom McGow.
The Blueway Trail is a “game-changer” not only
for our City but for the entire region as well.
Have you heard a rumor about the Blueway Trail?
To get the facts use this link.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

ADDENDUM [Due to Hurricane Irma; deadline, October 3rd]: Invitation For Bid: “Spillway Park Fishing Pier Demolition Project”.

Contact Financial Services, City of Lake Worth, City Hall, 7 North Dixie Hwy., 2nd floor (561-586-1654).

This addendum shall modify, clarify, change or add information and clarification and become part of the above referenced Invitation For Bid (IFB).

CLARIFICATION:

  • The deadline to answer questions HAS NOW PASSED.
  • The due date for proposals has been extended to Tuesday, October 3, 2017 at 3:00 PM.
The City of Lake Worth is soliciting bids from responsible and experienced Marine Construction OR Demolition contractors to provide demolition services for the Spillway Park Fishing Pier Demolition Project. The scope of work is generally described as follows: All permitting, demolition work, cleanup, restoration, haul off and closeout necessary to complete the demolition of the fishing pier.
     Bid documents may be downloaded at the City’s website. Hard copies of bid documents may also be acquired from the Financial Services Office at 7 North Dixie Hwy.
     Time is of the essence. Any bid received after 3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 3, whether by mail or otherwise, will be returned unopened.

Just in case you may have missed this. . .


UPDATE: The “Showdown” at the City of Lake Worth’s “Special Commission Meeting” on the budget.

First off, something needs to be said
and made very clear.

The City of Lake Worth holds what are called “non-partisan elections”. All candidates seeking either election or re-election need to steer well clear of introducing the national political dysfunction into our local City politics. One only need ask a former commissioner, the one with a PhD, about what happens when one tries to “nationalize” our local politics.

In short, all candidates (including incumbents) need to keep our local politics local. Focus on local issues of local importance to our citizens:

“Keep It Local!”

Meet your City of Lake Worth mayor, vice mayor, and City commissioners:
Now, about what happened at the Commission “Special Meeting” on the budget last night.

It was a short meeting as was expected and a small crowd from the public showed up. Many from the City staff were in attendance just in case there were questions that needed to be answered.

To learn more about the background of this
kerfuffle beginning with First Reading of
the budget on Sept. 19th use this link.

Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell tried to pull off a procedural move and get his 0.25 mil reduction in the millage rate through, but it didn’t work. He made a motion citing the millage rate minus the 0.25 mils and not the actual millage rate as it presently is.

Unfortunately, Commissioner Herman Robinson seconded the motion and a little later rescinded his second. Maxwell tried to get Mayor Pam Triolo to “pass the gavel” but that didn’t work either.

Maxwell’s efforts to lower the City’s millage rate
was a valiant one.

To look at Maxwell’s ‘loss’ is the wrong way to look at this. Almost everyone agrees lowering the millage rate is a very good idea and that will likely happen next year. Maxwell succeeded in changing the conversation and his idea will move forward. Just not this year. Now it’s time to move on.

Mayor Triolo, who voted with Maxwell last week, switched sides and voted with the majority (commissioners Robinson, Andy Amoroso, and Omari Hardy) — whose argument was winning the day anyhow — that it was “not the right time” for a millage rate reduction considering the issues with FEMA, possible upcoming hidden costs from Hurricane Irma, cautioning about dipping into reserve funds, etc.

So on the first two big agenda items, 5A and B (“Fiscal Year 2017-2018 final general City millage rate” and “adopt the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 budget”), the vote was 4-1 with Maxwell the lone “No” vote this time.

Interestingly, on item C, “Second Public Hearing - establish the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 final Debt Service millage rate” the vote was a unanimous “Yes” this time, 5-0. At First Reading on Sept. 19th the vote was 3-2 with Triolo and Maxwell the two “No” votes. It was good to see a consensus on our City Commission on one of these very important and required budget meetings.

Next Tuesday, October 3rd, is the next Regular City Commission meeting and it will probably be a very long agenda and remember, a lot of other meetings were cancelled due to Hurricane Irma: September’s P&Z Board meeting, Historic Resource Preservation Board, Tree Board, and many others.

Stay tuned, as they say.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Today: News from Mary Lindsey about Lake Worth’s Little Free Libraries and PBC League of Cities meeting at our Casino on the Beach.


Remember, “Take a Book  ~  Leave a Book”.
And did you know the City of Greenacres is working with Lake Worth and starting their own Little Free Library program too? It’s true. For more about
that read the blog post that follows this one.

The Palm Beach County League of Cities (PBCLOC) is a non-partisan, non-profit membership organization that represents all thirty-nine municipalities of Palm Beach County and over 100 Associate government, non-profits & business organizations:

“Shared visions and best practices make
for better communities.”

The PBCLOC Board of Directors meeting will be held at the Lake Worth Casino building today starting at 9:30; the General Membership meeting will begin at noon.

The news from Mary Lindsey:

Grateful Shout Out to Felipe Lofaso and the guys from Lake Worth Public Services.
     Tomorrow is the League of Cities luncheon for all 39 municipalities in Palm Beach County. It’s being hosted by the City of Lake Work and will be held at the Casino Ballroom.
     The City has chosen the Lake Worth Little Free Libraries (LFLs) project to highlight at the event as an example of the amazing community spirit in our City. There will be lots of LFLs on display (since they’re not all back up yet from the hurricane) and lots of display material including 48 little-mini LFLs created as centerpieces.
     What that means is 14 full-size LFLs, 12 boxes of books and 10 boxes of display material. Felipe has arranged to have a couple of guys from his department come and give me a hand getting all this loaded, transported, and then unloaded.
     Hurray and Hallelujah!

Here’s what the little-mini LFLs look like:
Built by the prolific Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell.
Stay tuned for pics from the event afterwards!

With the February 15th deadline approaching, what is the status of the Casino settlement?


If you recall, the settlement between the City and Morganti/REG was reached on August 1st and the “fix” was promised to be completed by February 15th, 2018. That sounds a long way away, but it’s only about 4½ months. A lot of people are hoping to get this over with before “The Season” is completely over so Casino Ballroom events won’t be too negatively affected (the City staff has suffered enough).

And of course, Mulligan’s and the other businesses at the Casino will not be all that thrilled to have dust flying around, construction noise, trucks, air compressors and hoses, and orange traffic cones everywhere (the good people at Mulligan’s have suffered enough too). Will they have to eliminate outdoor seating during this time? We’ll have to wait and see.

So. Eight weeks after the settlement how
are things progressing?

As of last week, they’re not. Here are some photos during the Great Eclipse last month:

View of 2nd floor balcony above Mulligan’s looking north. You can see the previous “fix” in the far corner.
Inside this area of the Casino 2nd floor are
offices and storage for City staff. Remember,
this was supposed to be an upscale restaurant
“with a killer view”.

A closer look at the north corner above Mulligan’s.
This construction project, the ‘renovated’ Casino, was delivered to the City in 2012.

A wide view.
During heavy storms water seeps inside the structure when it should drain away. How much water and salt damage since 2012? No one really knows for certain.

A major problem from the beginning. Rust.
This appears to be previous work to fix
drainage problems. Note the rust.

A closer look.
The City will need to have its own representative overseeing and inspecting work that hopefully will commence and finish prior to Feb. 15th.

However, even after the work is completed, there are many unanswered questions. Will the City ever reclaim lost revenue from the 2nd floor vacant space? After the “fix” will the Casino be LEED certified? Will the Casino structure receive a permanent Certificate of Occupancy (CO)? Will the City be protected if water continues to leak into the structure?

We’ll have to wait and see.

Commissioner Omari Hardy deserves an answer: Yes or No. If the answer is “No”, need a clear explanation as to why.


On August 15th, the last regular meeting of the Lake Worth City Commission prior to Hurricane Irma, District 2 Commissioner Omari Hardy once again called for a “Resolution of Support” for the Blueway Trail project. Hardy is impatient and so are a lot of other people.

This issue was not addressed at the Commission meeting on September 19th, post-Irma, and that’s completely understandable. However, the next regularly scheduled City Commission meeting is on Tuesday, October 3rd.

The County and many other municipalities have already passed resolutions in support of the Blueway Trail project and it’s time for the City of Lake Worth to do so as well.

The Blueway Trail is serious business: a resolution in support of this project (for example, see the City of Greenacres“Resolution No. 2016-04” below) shows a willingness and a commitment to work with our neighbors here in Central Palm Beach County:

“[C]onnection between the ICW [Intracoastal] and the C-51 Canal at the S155 [Spillway] Control Structure would provide for economic development, job creation and recreational enhancement.”

Any actual construction of the Blueway Trail is at least 3–5 years away. The “potential” (commonly referred to as “the ‘P’ word in Lake Worth) of the Blueway Trail project is clear. A resolution in support is just that: a resolution “in support” of the concept and “in support” of exploring new ideas and working with our neighboring communities, cities and towns, the business community, and many other entities.

From the City of Greenacres (with highlights added):

Resolution No. 2016-04

A resolution adopted by the City Council of the City of Greenacres, Florida, supporting efforts by the Town of Lake Clarke Shores and neighboring municipalities to undertake development of a boat connection between the C-51 Canal and the Intracoastal Waterway.

WHEREAS, Section 163.01, Florida Statutes, known as the “Florida Interlocal Cooperation Act of 1969,” authorizes local governments to make the most efficient use of their powers by enabling them to cooperate with other localities on a basis of mutual advantage and thereby to provide services and facilities that will harmonize geographic, economic, population and other factors influencing the needs and development of local communities; and
WHEREAS, the desire of local governments to develop recreational opportunities, encourage economic development, and create new jobs within our central portion of Palm Beach County while enhancing the environmental attributes of the community should be commended; and
WHEREAS, the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council (TCRPC) created The Intracoastal Waterway Plan for Palm Beach County: Charting a Course for the Future for the Palm Beach County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) published in January 2009; and
WHEREAS, the 2009 Charrette participants identified six core public themes including increasing public access to the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW), protecting natural resources, expanding all forms of water based transportation, and promoting sustainable economics; and
WHEREAS, the MPO requested the 2009 Charrette be updated by TCRPC and their report was published in January 2015 which documented that a connection to the ICW at the S155 Control Structure on the C- 51 Canal would have significant economic and recreational benefits; and
WHEREAS, the C-51 Canal is connected to a 26 mile chain of freshwater lakes (Pine Lake, Lake Clark, Lake Osborne, Lake Eden and Lake Ida) and navigable canals within the central portion of Palm Beach County; and
WHEREAS, the City of Greenacres supports improvements to the C-51 Canal that would enhance the recreational uses of the ICW, C-51 Canal, and the Chain of Lakes and provide for new economic opportunities and job creation because these opportunities could benefit residents and businesses in Greenacres; and
WHEREAS, the City of Greenacres recognizes a significant environmental resource in the canals and lakes that must be protected and improved; and
WHEREAS, a connection between the ICW and the C-51 Canal at the S155 Control Structure would provide for economic development, job creation and recreational enhancement. The connection, referred to as the “Boat Lift”, is estimated to provide significant economic benefit to the central portion of Palm Beach County well beyond its cost; and
WHEREAS, the Boat Lift project provides for environmental enhancement to the waterways and safe and effective portage opportunities for non-motorized recreational watercraft and small motorized boats to access the ICW.

Now, Therefore, Be it Resolved by the City Council of the City of Greenacres. . .

Heard something about the Blueway Trail and want
to verify whether it is true or not? Then click this link to find out who to contact.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

“2017 Justice Assistance Grant Program Application”: Notice of availability for public review and comment.


“The City of Lake Worth intends to submit
an application to the U.S. Department of
Justice, Office of Justice Programs.”
“Bureau of Justice Assistance for $31,136 in funds made available under Fiscal Year 2017 Justice Assistance Grant Program.

“Based on input from a public meeting held on August 24, 2017 and staff recommendation, the City will request that these funds be made available to retain the Recreation Leader position to provide individual case management for at-risk youth participating in the After-school and Crime Prevention programs that are being conducted at the City’s Youth Empowerment Centers, which are located at the Osborne Center and the Norman Wimbley Gymnasium.
     The City Commission authorized the submission of this application at its Regular Meeting of September 19, 2017. The proposed application is currently available for review and comment by the public at the City Manager’s Office, First Floor, City Hall, 7 North Dixie Highway during regular business hours. Public review and comment of the grant application will be made available through October 19, 2017. For further information please contact Jerry Kelly, Grants Analyst, at 561-533-7358.”

Showdown begins at 6:00 tonight, City of Lake Worth’s “Special Commission Meeting” on the budget.


Did you know you can watch this meeting Live Streaming? You can. At 6:00 tonight go to the City’s website (www.LakeWorth.org) and scroll down for the YouTube video feed. To look over the agenda use this link to download the “Agenda & Backup” for today’s “Special Meeting” on the City budget.

Will tomorrow be another split vote, 3-2, on our
City budget? Maybe 4-1? Or unanimous, 5-0?
Who stands where on the issue of lowering the City’s millage rate by 0.25 mils? Find out below.

This meeting could be called, “The Clash of Principles” or “To Pontificate Or Not To Pontificate” vis-à-vis lowering the City’s millage rate by 0.25 mils or keep the general millage rate where it is now: at 5.4945 ($5.4945 per $1,000 assessed valuation by the PBC Property Appraiser).

To learn more about this situation use this link for the blog post titled, “Is it time to table the 0.25 millage rate reduction? Stop the ‘pontificating’?”

So. How will this play out?

  • Commissioners Andy Amoroso, Herman Robinson, and Omari Hardy can stand firm and say, “No. This is not the right time. Maybe next year.”
  • Mayor Pam Triolo and Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell can stay firm as well and vote “No” on agenda items 5A–C (see below).
  • Or. . . possibly Amoroso, Robinson, or Hardy can switch sides (but that seems highly unlikely).
Here is part of the agenda for tomorrow’s meeting including the three very important “Second Public Hearing” items:
  • First agenda item: Roll Call.
  • Invocation or Moment of Silence on behalf of Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell.
  • Pledge of Allegiance led by Commissioner Omari Hardy.
  • Agenda: Additions/Deletions/Reordering.
  • Item 5, “Public Hearings”: A. Resolution No. 43-2017 - Second Public Hearing - establish the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 final general City millage rate. B. Resolution No. 44-2017 - Second Public Hearing - adopt the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 budget. C. Resolution No. 45-2017 - Second Public Hearing - establish the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 final Debt Service millage rate.
Just to be clear, the vote last week (at “First Reading”) was a split vote, 3-2. Commissioners Amoroso, Robinson, and Hardy voted “Yes” on agenda items 5A–C; Mayor Triolo and Vice Mayor Maxwell both voted “No” on all three budget items. Commissioner Amoroso made the motion on all three items and Hardy seconded on each one as well.

Get that?

Anyhow. Stay tuned as they say. This is the City of Lake Worth so anything is possible, especially when it comes to politics.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Another error by the editor (not a “reporter error”) in The Palm Beach Post, this time on the front page.


UPDATE: The answer to the question posed last Saturday is below, “Where exactly is Signature HealthCare of Palm Beach located?” The editor reported this company is located “in Lake Worth”; that is not true. Find out the correct location following the blog post from two days ago:

This latest editing error appeared on page A1 of Saturday’s (Sept. 23rd) print edition in the caption accompanying a photo:
“. . . she was fired by Signature Health Care Palm Beach [sic] in Lake Worth [sic] . . .”
Besides the editor getting the company name wrong, “Signature HealthCare of Palm Beach” is not “in Lake Worth”.

As reported by Post reporter Joe Capozzi in last Saturday’s front page story (name obscured):

The day after Hurricane Irma roared through South Florida, was called in to work to her part-time job as a nursing assistant at Signature HealthCare of Palm Beach, a 120-bed nursing home off Lake Worth Road near Greenacres.

Now to the question: Where exactly is Signature HealthCare of Palm Beach located? Near Greenacres or in another city? In suburban Lake Worth?

The answer is below.

Once again, here is a map courtesy of your
government here in PBC:
Use this link to learn more about municipal borders, unincorporated PBC, the “Lake Worth Corridor”, and suburban Lake Worth.

ANSWER:

The company Signature HealthCare of Palm Beach is not “in Lake Worth” as reported by the editor in Saturday’s photo caption. The company is not in suburban (unincorporated) Lake Worth either. The reporter in Saturday’s story wrote Signature HealthCare of Palm Beach is “near Greenacres” and he’s very close; that company is “near” the City of Greenacres, but is it in Greenacres? No.

Signature HealthCare of Palm Beach is also near the Great Walled City of Atlantis too (shaded royal purple in map below). But is it within that Great Wall?

No! Then where is it?
Signature HealthCare of Palm Beach is located
in the Village of Palm Springs!

New telecommunication towers: News in The Lake Worth Herald.


News is below about our neighboring and good friends
in the City of Greenacres.*
To learn more about the Herald use this link or
call 561-585-9387. Pick up the latest print edition for just ¢50 at the City’s newsstand, 600 Lake Ave. in Downtown Lake Worth.

Here’s the news reported in the Herald:

“AT&T Mobility LLC is proposing to construct four new telecommunications tower facilities in Greenacres, Palm Beach County, FL. Four concrete poles with small cell nodes at a top height of 38.5 feet will be installed at the following locations: 3400 Biscayne Drive, 4100 South 57th Ave, 331 Pine Ridge Circle, and South 57th Ave (near the intersection of 30th Ln). Any interested party wishing to submit comments regarding the potential effects the proposed facility may have on any historic property may do so by sending comments to:

Project 6117004362-SF
c/o EBI Consulting
6876 Susquehanna Trail S, York, PA 17403
Or via telephone at 781-273-2500.”

*For the official City of Greenacres’ website use this link.

Editor at Palm Beach Post needs to apologize to Lake Worth City Manager Michael Bornstein.


For more on this topic scroll down for, “We [the City] are held to a higher standard, they [the press] should hold themselves to a higher standard”, a quote by Bornstein earlier this year in reference to another “incompetent” article published in the Post.

Now here’s the latest. . .

From Facebook by Carl Stoveland, president of the Eden Place Neighborhood Assoc., responding to this inaccurate and misleading article the editor at the Post allowed to be published:

Kevin D. Thompson [Post beat reporter] - You got this one all wrong. Kim’s [Lake Worth resident Kim Lingle’s] intent in speaking to you was to highlight the great people and businesses of Lake Worth who wanted to show our appreciation for the out of state linesmen. It was never meant to throw shade on the City Manager or the commission. We (Eden Place) tried to put together an event with the best of intentions, but an impossible deadline. I think you owe City Manager Michael Bornstein an apology. I for one apologize on behalf of the Eden Place Neighborhood Association.

Our City of Lake Worth deserves better than this.
Instead of asking if we need a new beat reporter from the Post, the better question is whether or not we need a beat reporter from the Post at all.

“We [the City] are held to a higher standard,
they [the press] should hold themselves
to a higher standard” too.

It’s rare for any city manager to do what Michael Bornstein did, calling a Post beat reporter “incompetent” and his article, “egregious” (watch video below). But that’s what happens when the City keeps being put on the ‘hot seat’ and have to defend itself but the people who cause the trouble in the first place skip away whistling, “What? I didn’t do anything!”.

Interestingly, the link to the article that Bornstein reacted to so strongly was later deleted. And also interesting, not long after this incident, the City hired a “Communications Specialist” (now our Public Information Officer Mr. Ben Kerr) to issue press releases and get the City’s information out to the public without having to rely solely on the press.

Bornstein became “infinitely aggravated” and he let everyone know it:

“We [the City] are held to a higher standard, they [the press] should hold themselves to a higher standard” too.

And. . .

“I don’t normally do this. . .”: 

Learn how to become a “Guardian Angel” for our City of Lake Worth.

Free Training.
Learn more below.

Patrol Dixie Hwy., protect the schools, and
our medical marijuana dispensaries too!

To become a “Guardian Angel” wearing the iconic
red beret call 561-582-7755 or 954-881-7068.

As reported by CBS12 reporter Luli Ortiz (then a follow-up report) is news on ways to help protect your charter school and medical marijuana dispensaries too in your Lake Worth neighborhood. Here are excerpts from another press report:

Recruitment is ongoing to join the Guardian Angels. Contact Lake Worth Chapter Leader Cobra at 954-881-7068. The program includes free martial arts, CPR, and a course in basic law. Patrol may be a bike patrol, foot patrol, or mobile patrol. “The Presbyterian Church [231 N. Federal Hwy.] is doing their part to make our community safer.” 

and. . .

Because of problems experienced in and around the First Presbyterian Church of Lake Worth, Rev. Joan Abell, Pastor and the congregation invited the Guardian Angels Safety Patrol, to be part of their church campus.
     FPC provides the space and electricity for them to work from. It is from this area that they will patrol the area.

and. . .

The uniform includes black pants, white shirts with the Guardian Angel Safety logo, black shoes and a red beret. Members are required to maintain a neat appearance.
     “At no time, does the Guardian Angels wish to replace the authority of the Police/Sheriff Department. We are the unarmed eyes and ears of the Police/Sheriff Department.”

Once again, Cobra’s phone number is 954-881-7068. Here is the contact information for the First Presbyterian Church:
  • Phone: 561-582-7755
  • Email: firstpresby60107@bellsouth.net
  • Location: 231 North Federal Hwy., Lake Worth, 33460
If you are in need of immediate assistance contact Lake Worth’s PBSO District 14. Call 911 or 561-688-3400.

From reporter Amanda Rabines, “Silverman Group buys two industrial buildings in Lake Worth”.


The article in The Real Deal is subtitled, “The trade breaks down to about $122 psf ”. Here are two excerpts from the article:

“Two affiliates of the Short Hills, New Jersey-based Silverman Group just paid $30.7 million for two industrial buildings in Lake Worth, property records show.
     The two buildings at 701 Boutwell Road span 252,000 square feet combined, meaning the trade breaks down to about $122 per square foot.”

and. . .

     CBRE’s Robert Smith, Jeff Kelly and Kirk Nelson handled the sale. Warehouse spaces range from 15,750 square feet to 166,267 square feet, with asking rents at $7.95 per square foot, according to a CBRE listing. The buildings are 35 percent leased.
     The Silverman Group is a family owned private equity and development firm focused on commercial and industrial real estate, according to its website. It has an office in Palm Beach.”

To learn more about the City of Lake Worth’s Park of Commerce, where it’s located, the history and its unrealized ‘potential’ by so many past City administrations, use this link.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Pontificate (verb), “to speak or behave in a pompous or dogmatic manner”. Also (less commonly) to “pontify”.

Just in case you may have missed this from
yesterday, a blog post titled:

“Is it time to table the 0.25 millage rate reduction? Stop the ‘pontificating’?”

And also check out the blog post following this one (or use this link). Do you remember when addressing the problems with our historic preservation efforts in this City was seen as one of the biggest hindrances to our local economy and public perception? Anyhow. . .

Remember the multitude of complaints and grievances against a former Lake Worth commissioner — the one with a PhD and a fondness for pontificating and wedge (divisive) politics — should be vividly recalled as we near the end of another budget process here in our City.

Because in the end, it was because of Hurricane Irma and Mayor Triolo’s unfortunate absence from a meeting on August 22nd, not politics, that the public didn’t have the opportunity to learn more about Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell’s idea — an idea almost everyone agrees is a good one — but now most certainly is “not the right time” as commissioners Andy Amoroso, Herman Robinson, and Omari Hardy all are in agreement.*

Mayor Pam Triolo and Maxwell need to listen
to Amoroso, Robinson, and Hardy. . .
because they’re right.

Why? Because of what happened on August 22nd and September 12th. Let’s take a look back to the Budget Work Session on August 8th as reported on this blog when lowering of the millage rate was first brought up:

     This meeting was short. It began at 6:00 and ended at 7:15. However, there was one idea that took everyone by surprise. We’ll learn more about this later in the budget process because Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell’s idea of lowering the residential millage rate by 0.25 mils was taken seriously by commissioners Andy Amoroso and Omari Hardy but they both want to see how that affects the budget first.
     According to Maxwell there hasn’t been a lowering of the millage rate in 10 years. Although 0.25 mils is not substantial it would send a strong signal to Realtors, those considering relocating here to the City of Lake Worth, and City residents as well.

Now let’s proceed to the City Commission meeting
on August 15th, from the Action Agenda, the
meeting on Sept. 12th begins to loom important
:

Item 10E. Ordinance No, 2017-22 - First Reading - designate the restricted/committed/assigned fund balances for Fiscal Year 2017 in accordance with GASB 54 and schedule the public hearing date for September 12, 2017

and. . .

Vote: Voice vote showed: AYES: Mayor Triolo, Vice Mayor Maxwell, and Commissioners Hardy, Amoroso and Robinson. NAYS: None

Note, very important, the “public hearing date” on Sept. 12th was cancelled due to Hurricane Irma. More about that later.

Now let’s proceed to August 22nd, excerpts
from this blog
:

This was the last meeting prior to the process of actually adopting a City budget which will happen at two meetings next month, according to Finance Dir. Marie Elianor. Mayor Pam Triolo was absent; Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell officiated the meeting which ended before 7:00, less than an hour.

and. . .

     Maxwell’s push for a 0.25 reduction in the millage rate appears dead in its tracks (it would turn out to be $211,000 in the budget). There was talk of giving Triolo a chance to chime in but with commissioners Amoroso, Herman Robinson, and Omari Hardy opposed there’s little to be gained it would seem.
     Hardy said this fiscal year is “not the right time”, and Robinson added a millage rate reduction “would indicate a [City] management success” but next year would consider a reduction in the millage instead of this year. Amoroso, “Agree with lowering the rate but not right now”.

It was at this August 22nd meeting, Mayor Pam Triolo was absent, that Maxwell stated the mayor should have a chance to speak on this topic of lowering the millage rate.

That would have been the budget “Special Meeting” on Sept. 12th. Again, cancelled due to Irma.

Now let’s proceed to September 19th, from
the City’s “Action Agenda”:

SECTION 5. PUBLIC HEARINGS:
Item A. Resolution No. 43-2017 - First Public Hearing - establish the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 tentative general City millage rate and set the second public hearing for September 26, 2017
Action: Motion made by Commissioner Amoroso and seconded by Commissioner Hardy to approve Resolution No. 43-2017 on first hearing to establish the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 tentative general City millage rate and set the second public hearing for September 26, 2017.
Vote: Voice vote showed: AYES: Commissioners Hardy, Amoroso and Robinson. NAYS: Mayor Triolo and Vice Mayor Maxwell.
Item B. Resolution No. 44-2017 - First Public Hearing - adopt the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 proposed City budget and set the second public hearing for September 26, 2017
Action: Motion made by Commissioner Hardy and seconded by Commissioner Amoroso to approve Resolution No. 44-2017 on first hearing to adopt the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 proposed City budget and set the second public hearing for September 26, 2017.
Vote: Voice vote showed: AYES: Commissioners Hardy, Amoroso and Robinson. NAYS: Mayor Triolo and Vice Mayor Maxwell.
Item C. Resolution No. 45-2017 - First Public Hearing - adopt the debt service rate and set the second public hearing for September 26, 2017
Action: Motion made by Commissioner Amoroso and seconded by Commissioner Hardy to approve Resolution No. 45-2017 on first hearing to adopt the debt service rate and set the second public hearing for September 26, 2017.
Vote: Voice vote showed: AYES: Commissioners Hardy, Amoroso and Robinson. NAYS: Mayor Triolo and Vice Mayor Maxwell.

Now, let’s recap the meetings vis-à-vis Maxwell’s idea of lowering the millage rate by 0.25 mils:

  • August 8th budget Work Session: Maxwell brings up his proposal for the first time.
  • August 15th regular Commission meeting: Upcoming budget Special Meeting on Sept. 12th (later cancelled) looms very important in the City’s budget process.
  • August 22nd budget Work Session: Mayor Triolo absent.
  • September 12th budget Special Meeting: “CANCELLED”.
  • Sept. 19th: First public hearings on the City budget. Split votes (3-2) on budget items 5A–C. Mayor Triolo and Vice Mayor Maxwell the “No’s” on all three votes.
  • Sept. 26th (next week): Second public hearings on the budget.

Now you decide.

Whether you think lowering the millage rate is a good idea or not, do you think there has been enough public input? Or, “It’s just not the right time”?

And lastly, this is not about politics. This is about the untimely arrival of Hurricane Irma and the mayor’s unfortunate absence from a crucial City meeting. Had neither of these things happened we may very well have been seeing a 0.25 mil reduction in the millage rate this year.

But this year? No. Maybe next year.

Let’s hope there’s a 5-0 unanimous vote at next week’s “Special Meeting” on the budget and no more ‘pontificating’. Especially after Hurricane Irma, in the opinion of Yours Truly, this is a time for healing and unity on our City Commission.

So. What do you think?
Use this link to contact the mayor, vice mayor, and City commissioners. Make your voice heard, one way or the other, and remember to be polite and don’t forget to ask, “What can I do to help our City?”

*One of the more serious concerns going forward is “the proverbial Elephant in the Room”; here’s an excerpt from this blog posted on Sept. 20th:

“Despite Finance Dir. Marie Elianor stating there will be no reduction in service levels in this year’s budget we also learned from City Attorney Glen Torcivia that the FEMA issues from past years are still out there. This is very significant.
     There is still approximately $4M in question in years past from previous hurricanes and there is ≈$9M for “risk management” the City has available. Hardy pointed out until we know what is going to happen, and what FEMA is going to do, lowering the millage rate now is not the right time. Torcivia also alluded to the fact FEMA could withhold sending the City any assistance for Hurricane Irma to make up for past, well, let’s call them ‘accounting’ or ‘rounding’ errors by past administrations.”