Friday, December 14, 2018

Unanimous at the City Commission, 5-0. Referendum on “Lake Worth Beach” to be decided by voters, March 12th, 2019.

And Vice Mayor Pro Tem Scott Maxwell had some very strong words for a critic last night (see video below).

At last night’s City Commission Special Meeting the referendum on the sale of public property in the Downtown, 501 Lake Ave., also passed unanimously.

This City has a sad legacy.

That is instead of educating the public to defeat a referendum, for critics of this City the objective was instead to confuse and misinform the public. One example is what happened in August 2014. Because of fear-mongering and confusion the Lake Worth 2020 Bond vote failed. By just twenty-five votes. A man with a PhD had a lot to do with that bond vote failing.

It took almost two years to educate the public about the facts. Then in November 2016 the Neighborhood Road Bond passed by sixty-nine percent. More about that at a later time.

Once again, as happens all too often, some critics of renaming this City as “Lake Worth Beach” have suddenly come up with other plans to fix the problem. Like working with the U.S. Post Office. But that will never solve the problem. Unless you’re a demographer, work for Fed-Ex or deliver mail most don’t look at a place and see a zip code; they see a place and see a name. As it is now “Lake Worth” almost reaches the Florida Everglades.

Stay tuned. Soon we’ll examine what happened in September 2014 at a Joint City-County Workshop.

Interviewed were former (term-limited) County Commissioner Shelley Vana, experts from the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council, the PBC Business Development Board, the PBC School District and Dept. of Economic Sustainability, the president of Palm Beach State College, and representatives from the municipalities of Atlantis, Lantana, Boynton Beach, Palm Springs, Lake Clarke Shores, Greenacres, and others.

When asked what the City of Lake Worth’s challenges and opportunities were they concluded:

Have more community redevelopment; work with other cities to find grant initiatives; provide more housing availability; more business investment. Branding is important [emphasis added].

These experts did not mention zip codes.

They said, “Branding is important.” And interestingly, they did not mention “The Arts” either.

In short, what is “Lake Worth Beach”? It’s called branding. It makes us unique. Every city, town and village in Florida has a zip code. But how many have a beach?

From my seat, the view in
City Hall chambers last night:

We needed new ideas many years ago. Not eighty-eight days before Election Day on March 12th, 2019.

The video. Commissioner Maxwell speaks his mind: