Saturday, August 18, 2018

City of Lake Worth history: Hurricanes and the original Benny’s on the Beach.


Find out more about the original Benny’s below. And take note: When you go visit Benny’s you just never know when Bon Jovi and other celebrities will show up for the World Famous Tuna Tostada (see photo below) and delicious items on the breakfast, lunch and dinner menu at this surfside gem at the Lake Worth Beach.

According to Palm Beach Post journalists Julius Whigham II and Meryl Kornfield:


Bon Jovi and Peddie [Richard Peddie, owner of the Toronto Raptors NBA basketball team] are not the first celebrities to visit the oceanside seafood restaurant [click on this link menu portfolio]. Lipton [owner Lee Lipton] said Fabio, Dr. Oz, Bob Saget and Serena Williams have frequented Benny’s. Last month, Vanilla Ice came for a meal.
     “We have a decent amount of well-known people who come through here,” Lipton said.

Now to those terrible hurricanes back in 2004:


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

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



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

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

Click on image to enlarge:

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

BONUS! More City of Lake Worth history.

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

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

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

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


It would be a very good idea — when you’re planning to visit Benny’s — to make reservations. Avoid a long wait: call 561-582-9001.

The Tuna Tostada: Enjoy sushi-grade quality tuna with a “killer view” of our LAKE WORTH BEACH while watching the “killer waves” roll in!

Lake Okeechobee, the Herbert Hoover Dike, and Peter Schorsch warned of “Godwin’s Law” two years ago.


“When forced to choose between living with humans or going down with Mother Nature, I may be selfish, but I’ll side with humans.”

Quote by journalist Peter Schorsch.

At the end of this blog post is the definition of Godwin’s Law.


It sounds inconceivable anyone would think a breach and resulting collapse of the Herbert Hoover Dike would “fix everything”, but that is exactly what one ‘environmentalist’ suggested. If you didn’t know, there is a mass grave in West Palm Beach with bodies recovered when the previous dike collapsed. You can learn more about that using this link.

Am reminded of a quote by Michael Busha, the former Executive Dir. of the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council, who summed up the ideal way to solve vexing problems:

“Get everyone in the same room and not leave until you have a solution.”

Why? Because if this debate doesn’t settle down, and very soon, this is what will happen. Again.

Peter Schorsch at the Florida Politics blog originally broke this story in February 2016; here are some excerpts:


For those of you paying attention, however, they [radical environmentalists] have no doubt been aware of the release of excess water [east and west] from Lake Okeechobee, a result of historically high El Niño rainfall in South Florida.
     Unsurprisingly, environmentalists have been vocal in opposition. But this time, the rhetoric may be getting out of hand.

and. . .

     In one email, an activist named ■■■■ ■■■■■■■■■ goes beyond the pale.
     ■■■■■■■■■, in an especially nasty rant, wishes death via a disastrous Herbert Hoover Dike failure, resulting in the death of thousands of South Floridians. Such a catastrophe would “fix everything,” [emphasis added] noting the human toll would be “inconceivable.”
     But the benefits to the environment would be “immeasurable,” he concludes, drawing a line in the sand. “Question is … Which side are you on? Human or nature?

Lastly, Mr. Schorsch has this observation. . .

     It may seem passe to say so, but wishing death on opponents is not the most efficient way of winning hearts and minds.
     When forced to choose between living with humans or going down with Mother Nature, I may be selfish, but I’ll side with humans.


Understandably, there is a lot of frustration about Lake Okeechobee, “Send It South!”, water storage and water releases, but there needs to be some perspective as well.

In the article cited above by Peter Schorsch is a reference to Godwin’s Law: What happens when the debate gets completely out of control and the likelihood “of inappropriate hyperbolic comparisons” increases exponentially and all reason and reasonable debate on the issues is lost.

Good advice.

“I swear! We got the plan that will work this time. You just need to trust us!”


Back in 2007 was one of the worst droughts in modern South Florida history (see images below). But for some people their only concern is when it rains too much. . .

“Send It [water from Lake
Okeechobee] South!”


and the latest mantra. . .

“Lower Lake O!”


But there is a big problem with ‘Lower Lake O!’ as you’ll learn about below.

Fingers are crossed the U.S. Congress will authorize ± $500M for a brand new reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee. Sounds like a bargain, right? Especially when the dike surrounding Lake Okeechobee is in such need of repair.

And guess all those other millions and billions of dollars that was spent in the past just proves this latest $500M from the Feds and another $500M from the State of Florida is the right way to go? Sounds like a great plan. Until you consider what happened eleven years ago.



And the beat goes on. . .

Newspaper clipping from May 2007.

Click on image to enlarge:

How much progress has been made in the last eleven years getting Martin County off septic and hooked up to municipal sewer?


Another plan by the experts. . .

And all the while the experts knew the Herbert Hoover Dike was a great risk of being breached and flooding Palm Beach County. But instead, the experts are thrilled with a new ‘shiny object’, a brand new reservoir. And it will only cost about $1B.

Friday, August 17, 2018

The Explainer: Lake Osborne Estates. “Suburban Lake Worth Fire Hydrants” vs. “Lake Worth Fire Hydrants”.


And if you happen to live in unincorporated Lake Osborne Estates the topic of annexation may be one scheme in particular you will want to learn more about.

For example. . .

Briefly, within the City of Lake Worth is a “pocket” (also called a ‘finger’) of unincorporated Palm Beach County. Some day this area between Sunset Dr. and Grove St. will be annexed into the City of Lake Worth.


Click on image to enlarge:

Palm Springs Village Manager Richard Reade explained this process very well. The “[I]nvoluntary annexation process is critical . . . because within these pockets there are code enforcement and policing issues that the municipality cannot handle until the areas are made part of the city.”


Now back to Lake Osborne Estates: “Suburban Lake Worth Fire Hydrants” vs. “Lake Worth Fire Hydrants”.

Did you see the headline in The Palm Beach Post today? The headline reads, “Lake Worth Fire Hydrants” referring to Lake Erie and Crest drives but that is very misleading; Suburban Lake Worth Fire Hydrants would have much more accurate. And also part of this blog post is a map which is more educational than the map provided by the editor(s) at the Post.

The most land area of Lake Osborne Estates
IS NOT in the City of Lake Worth.


However, there is a very small area of Lake Osborne Estates (LOE) within the City of Lake Worth between Lake Geneva Dr. and Nanette Ct. (see map below) and part of LOE is within the Town of Lantana as well. But mostly LOE is unincorporated (“suburban”) Lake Worth.

By the way, last week “Suburban Lake Worth” was officially recognized by the editor(s) at the Post so maybe a clarification or a correction will be published in tomorrow’s print edition. So stay tuned for that.

Educating the public about municipalities and unincorporated areas in Palm Beach County is an important function of the press and news media. Why? Because some day in the future more land area in LOE will be annexed by either the Town of Lantana or the City of Lake Worth and this process can be very confusing for the public.

Before we proceed, you may recall in 2016 there was shocking news about Lake Osborne Estates when they were getting their water from a different water utility, from reporter Alyssa Hyman at NBC5/WPTV:

E. coli found in Lake Osborne Estates Water


Later in 2016 was this news:

Boil-water order lifted for Lake Osborne [Estates] after E. coli bacteria scare


In the print edition of the Post today is this line:


Lake Worth has scheduled to replace the [fire] hydrants at the corner of Lake Erie [Drive] and Crest Drive [emphasis added] this week, Kerr [Public Information Officer Ben Kerr] said, but will install the rest as the work week permits.


Note that following that shocking news about E. coli in LOE they switched over to the Lake Worth Water Utility. A very good decision on their part.


Note the image of the LOE area below, take note of Lake Geneva Dr. and Nanette Ct. (top center). City of Lake Worth is shaded green.

Click on image to enlarge.

In lower left is ‘Lake Erie [Drive] and Crest Drive’ as quoted in the Post. This area is located in suburban Lake Worth. The Town of Lantana (shaded red) is to the east and the City of Lake Worth is to the north of unincorporated LOE.


However, it is very important to note a significant area of LOE is located IN THE LAKE WORTH WATER UTILITIES SERVICE AREA.


Whilst on the topic of
Lake Worth utilities. . .


Let’s briefly discuss the Lake Worth Electric Utility.

In the continuing effort to educate the public, press and news media about the Lake Worth Electric Utility and answering the question, “Where the hell is Lake Worth!” please continue reading and hopefully this information will help.

You may have read or heard something about
Jon Smith Subs in The Palm Beach Post,
a very puzzling story indeed:


It was a story about Mr. Jon Smith — the owner of Jon Smith Subs on Congress Ave. in the Village of Palm Springs — and an unfortunate and major electrical incident created by the high winds of Hurricane Irma in September 2017:


“There was a giant billboard on the property in one corner and it just fell on top of our building and wiped out the roof . . . I thought we missed the bullet but I guess we didn’t.”
     Smith said he paid about $160,000 in repairs and was closed for 17 days. “We lost about $150,000, maybe a little less,” he said.

Here’s where it gets confusing. . .

     He [Mr. Smith] owns eight sub shops in the county in Lake Worth [sic; emphasis added], West Palm Beach, Jupiter, Royal Palm Beach, Lake Park and Boca Raton.
     The suburban Lake Worth store has been in business for 29 years, Smith said.
     “The city of Lake Worth was extremely helpful to us,” he said. “They understood the damage and were very helpful so we could get back open. The site looks great.”

So you’re asking yourself,
“What the heck is going on here!”

The answer is below.

First of all, sadly, there is not a Jon Smith Subs
location in the City of Lake Worth.

But you can call Mr. Smith at 561-642-4300 and say, “I want Jon Smith Subs in my City of Lake Worth too!”

Jon Smith Subs is located at 3900 S. Congress Ave. in Palm Springs. But guess what? Jon Smith Subs IS in the Lake Worth Electric Utility service area. That area is not FPL territory.

In other words: Just because your electric bill comes from the City of Lake Worth doesn’t necessarily mean you are a resident or have a business in the City. So. Did “The Explainer” help?


Thank you for visiting today and hope you found this information helpful.

Did you see the news about the Lake Worth Rotary and LFL yesterday?


Support LOCAL small town journalism and
LOCAL small town newspapers.


This week’s Lake Worth Herald and Coastal & Greenacres Observer are out. And there is new news about the Lake Worth Rotary Club (see below).


Click on this link to see this week’s front page news.

The Herald is still ¢50! To contact the editor call 561-585-9387 or email: Editor@lwherald.com


The Coastal & Greenacres Observer is FREE and also published by the Lake Worth Herald Press, Inc.: 

To read the Observer click on this link, go to “Options” menu and click on “Download as PDF”.


Headline in today’s paper:
“LW Rotary Sponsors New LFL”.

Click on image to enlarge:

“Members of the Rotary Club of Lake Worth dedicated a new Little Free Library in front of
Dr. Dennis Hernandez’s dental office on
Federal Highway.”


Pictured above is Rotary Club Treasurer Lorraine Hernandez and Rotary President Harry Wolin,


“[O]fficially opening the Little Free Library to the public as Rotarians look on. LFL Director Mary Lindsey stocked the LFL with children’s books and a few books for adults to get things started. Lorriaine will be the steward of this LFL.”


If you are interested in learning more, the Lake Worth Rotary meets every Wednesday at noon in Downtown Lake Worth:


“We meet at Brogues DownUnder for lunch every Wednesday [621 Lake Ave. in Downtown Lake Worth]. It is always an honor to have a new guest to share a joyful experience including a beautiful lunch while our weekly guest speaker shares productive information regarding current events. We want our guests to feel comfortable and among friends.” 

Thursday, August 16, 2018

“I decry it as an evil thing, whipped up by the demagogues and carried on the hot and erratic winds of passion, prejudice, and hysteria.”


The quote above is from former Florida
Governor LeRoy Collins.

In March 2017 the editor at the Post chose to publish this absurd letter with the unfortunate heading, “Ideological divide driving us to war?” Mind you, this open-ended question was published just two days prior to the run-off elections whilst the “hot and erratic winds” of politics were whirling in Boynton Beach, Jupiter, and Palm Beach Gardens. Here are two excerpts from that letter that somehow made it past the editorial board:

Our country is divided by deep-seated ideological beliefs.
and. . .
This divide is wide and growing wider. If a solution isn’t found, I fear we may be headed for another civil war.

Yes. Politics is very divided in our country. But America had a civil war once and the scars are still present everywhere. However. . .

Sixty years ago Florida was
in full crisis
.


A major one that could have sparked a second Civil War. It could have happened — but it didn’t — because of then-Florida Governor LeRoy Collins. In 1957 the Florida legislature wanted to declare the Brown v Board of Education decision “null and void”.

Gov. Collins stood up to the legislature’s ‘interposition’ which was “whipped up by the demagogues”. Gov. Collins did not agree with the decision by the Supreme Court but he rightfully saw the role of the court and each state’s responsibility under the Constitution.

Were it not for Gov. Collins would the history books have a chapter on America’s Civil War II? A frightening thought. But Gov. Collins did not cave in to the demagogues and we moved on as a society and most people can agree for the better.

Meet Florida Gov. LeRoy Collins:

Image from Wikipedia.

Here is an excerpt from the State of Florida archives, a quote by Gov. Collins*: 

“I feel that the U. S. Supreme Court has improperly usurped powers reserved to the states under the constitution. I have joined in protesting such and in seeking legal means of avoidance. But if this resolution declaring the decisions of the court to be ‘null and void’ is to be taken seriously, it is anarchy and rebellion against the nation which must remain ‘indivisible under God’ if it is to survive. Not only will I not condone ‘interposition’ as so many have sought me to do, I decry it as an evil thing, whipped up by the demagogues and carried on the hot and erratic winds of passion, prejudice, and hysteria. If history judges me right this day, I want it known that I did my best to avert this blot. If I am judged wrong, then here in my own handwriting and over my signature is the proof of guilt to support my conviction.

LeRoy Collins, Governor.

May 2, 1957.”

*From Florida Memory, State Library & Archives of Florida.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Please share.


There are so many misconceptions, untruths, and mis- and disinformation about blue-green algae and infections that may or may not result from being near or in the area of toxic algae. Did you know that not all blue-green algae is toxic? Please take note of the image below, “DEP Algal Bloom and Response”.

But still many in the public remain in the dark after reading press and news media reports.

The US Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District, which manages Lake Okeechobee, and the South Florida Water Management District whose main responsibility is flood control, and the Florida Dept. of Environmental Protection are all doing their best to get the word out. At the end of this blog post is each organizations’ website addressing the issue of algal blooms.

For more very important information from a public meeting held last week in suburban West Palm Beach please click on this link to learn more,


How many of you reading this blog post have heard about this news in the press and news media?

Click on image to enlarge:

Note: “29 of 35 exceedances in Lee County [in southwest Florida] . . . 4 in Martin County”


Official information about algal blooms, click on links:

Common FAQs: Traffic calming and slowing down traffic in this vibrant, little City of Lake Worth.


But first, before we get to the FAQs. . .

About the ribbon cutting yesterday for the long-awaited 2nd Ave. South roadway project using Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds from the County. Please take note of highlighted “ADA ramps” which is explained later:


This extensive project will involve a full roadway reconstruction including the sidewalks, ADA ramps, traffic calming measures, decorative pavement and more . . . This project was funded by a Community Development Block Grant from the Palm Beach County Department of Economic Sustainability. If you have any questions regarding the project please feel free to contact [Lake Worth] Public Services at 561-586-1720.

Press release issued by the City of Lake Worth, January 2016.


It’s interesting to note the City press release issued 2½ years ago cited “ADA ramps” but the words “boaters” and “boat ramps” are not. ADA  =  Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

Why should this be important for the public to know? Because there is a very misleading headline by the editor in The Palm Beach Post print edition today:

City paves, makes 2nd Avenue South
one-way street for boaters


And then to make matters even more confusing, the article starts off with this line:

To help boaters get into Bryant Park’s boat ramp, Lake Worth used a community development block grant. . .

The 2nd Ave. South project is a COMMUNITY project.

Note that the ‘C’ in CDBG stands for “COMMUNITY”.

If the 2nd Ave. South project was just for boaters think it would be highly unlikely the CDBG funds would have ever been issued for this project in the first place. One would hope this misconception doesn’t put at risk further CDBG funding for a project next year.

Everyone in this City of Lake Worth should contact the Palm Beach County Dept. of Economic Sustainability and thank them for all the hard work they did to make the 2nd Ave. South COMMUNITY project happen. Contact information:


PBC Dept. of Economic Sustainability, 100 Australian Ave., Suite 500, West Palm Beach, FL 33406. Phone number is 561-233-3600. The director of this County department is Carlos Serrano, email: cserrano@pbcgov.org

Now back to “Common FAQs: Traffic calming and slowing
down traffic. . .”


Below is a very helpful video produced by the City with a facilitator that really grabs the attention of the public in a sunny and cheerful way.

However, very briefly, there was and remains much confusion about CDBG funds from the County and the City of Lake Worth’s Neighborhood Road Bond, take for example the 2nd Ave. South road project, officially unveiled just yesterday.

But prior to this year’s Street Painting Festival last February a story in the Post muddled the issue even more, confusing the public and forcing a response from the City:


“Just a point of clarification and I hope people understand, 2nd Ave. South is not part of the Neighborhood Road Program. It’s not part of the bond issue.”

Quote by Lake Worth City Manager Michael Bornstein at a City Commission meeting on January 16th.


Now to the City’s Neighborhood Road Bond. Do you have any questions, e.g., like about traffic calming? Upcoming schemes? All that information and much more can be found by clicking on this link.

And without further ado, the video from the City. A facilitator grabs the attention of the public in attendance at City Hall and later two consultants begin informing the public about many issues, including how to slow down traffic with traffic calming.

At any point in the video, if you wish, go back and watch from the beginning. Just in case you may have missed anything.

Enjoy!

Curb Cuts: One of the great social victories in modern American history.


The National Museum of American History (Smithsonian) has this article titled, “Smashing barriers to access: Disability activism and curb cuts”. Curb cuts are everywhere now and taken for granted. After World War II though they were still very rare in America. Curbs were typically 6″ high and very difficult for those in wheelchairs and for others with mobility issues to go up and down.

The high number of handicapped veterans returning from WWII demanded change. Here is an excerpt from Julie Peterson's article:


Today, this seems like an odd thing to rejoice about, since curb cuts are now so commonplace in cities throughout the U.S. However, sidewalks and public spaces in the built environment were not always so accessible to people with disabilities. The development of curb cuts and the concept of accessible public spaces has been long in the making and has only become possible through the hard work of activists like Mr. Fisher [Jack Fisher of Kalamazoo, Michigan], the passage of federal legislation on accessibility requirements, and developments in design.
     Wheelchair-using individuals have navigated obstacles in the built environment since the first wheelchairs. In the 1940s and 1950s, a large contingency of veterans returned from World War II with mobility-related injuries. Many of these individuals pushed for changes to the built environment to make college campuses and public spaces more accessible to wheelchair users and other disabled people.


Click on image to enlarge:

This image is from the article by Julie Peterson
in the Smithsonian.

This Friday Night: Get Ready for Lake Worth High School Trojans Football, Marching Band and Guard!


Support head coach Don Hanna, the new Trojans football team, and the band: Trojan Sound.



UPDATE: The Lake Worth Trojans 2018 football season “Kickoff” game is this coming Friday (August 17th) at 7:00 against Everglades High. More details about this game is below. Start getting excited!

And have your heard about the big news in The Lake Worth Herald? It’s news about Lake Worth High School educators Ms. Tiffany Cox and Mr. John Weatherspoon: “Two LWHS Educators Nominated for GRAMMY Awards”. 


In support of coach Hanna and Trojans football:

Trojan Sound: The Marching Band & Guard.
First official game of the season is Away on August 31st. First game Home is September 14th.

The time to get involved and support
Trojans football IS NOW.


Who is coach Hanna? Where did he coach last? Below are excerpts from an article by sports reporter Wells Dusenbury in the Sun Sentinel datelined March 8th.

The time is now to show your support for the Trojans, Lake Worth High School football, and the new coach in preparation for 2018 Football Season.


Coach Hanna needs partners and support for the Lake Worth High School Trojans football program. Send an email to the coach:

LWTrojansFootball2018@gmail.com

You can also show your support for Trojans Football by following coach Hanna and the Lake Worth Trojans football team on Twitter:

@LakeWorthFBall 

The 2018 Trojans football schedule is below.


Following no wins and ten (10) losses in the 2017 football season, Lake Worth High School’s football coach, according to Dusenbury at the Sun Sentinel, Don Hanna is:

The longest-tenured coach in the [Village Academy Football] Tigers’ short history, Hanna spent eight seasons leading the Delray Beach school. After serving as the defensive coordinator during Village Academy’s inaugural season in 2008, Hanna was promoted to head coaching position the following year and led the program for nearly a decade.

and. . .

     Hanna will have his work cut out for him in his new gig. While there’s plenty of talent in the Lake Worth area, the school has never been able to put it all together on the field. [emphasis added] The program has won just two playoff games and last made the postseason in 2010.


2018 Lake Worth High School Trojans football season schedule, Weeks 1 to 11, is below.


On May 18th was a “Spring” game with Seminole Ridge Hawks (Class 8A); an Away jamboree game with West Boca. For the results read this article in The Town-Crier by sports reporter Gene Nardi.

The 2018 Season “Kickoff” game is on August 17th at 7:00 against Everglades High (Miramar; Class 8A). This is an Away game as well. Then the Official 2018 High School Football Season begins on Friday, August 24th when the Trojans start off with their bye week.


Please take note:

All games are played on Friday evening.
All start times are 7:00 p.m.

Home games are indicated in red.
District games are indicated in yellow.


Week 1, August 24th

Bye Week.

Week 2, August 31st

Palm Beach Lakes (Class 7A).

Week 3, September 7th

Palm Beach Gardens (8A).

Week 4, September 14th

Park Vista (8A; district game).

Week 5, September 21st

Spanish River (8A; district game).

Week 6, September 28th

Santaluces (8A; district game).

Week 7, October 5th

Glades Central (4A).

Week 8, October 12th

Boca Raton (8A; district game).

Week 9, October 19th

Atlantic High (8A; district game).

Week 10, October 26th

Homecoming Game against John I. Leonard (8A; district game).

Week 11, November 2nd

Senior Night/Beach Bowl Game against Boynton Beach (6A).

Here is a blast from the past!


At Lake Worth’s Evening on the Avenues in August 2009 the Trojan cheerleaders rally the crowd in support
of the football team. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Video is up: August meeting of the Governing Board of the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD).


[NOTE: This blog post was posted on August 13th. Reading this will give you a good idea what to expect next month following the September Governing Board meeting which will include the the updates, guidance and information from WRAC (see below) on Sept. 6th.]


The link to the video is below of the previous SFWMD Governing Board meeting held on August 9th at the headquarters in suburban West Palm Beach. First, this is very important:

Note that beneath the video of this SFWMD meeting is the actual agenda and within that agenda are links to specific agenda items. For example, when you scroll down to agenda Item 19 and click on “Technical Reports” you will go directly to that point in the video and watch the latest updates from the SFWMD Executive Management team consisting of Chief District Engineer John Mitnik, P.E., Water Resources Director Terri Bates, et al.

The meeting officially begins at the two-minute mark. Click on this link to begin watching from the start.

At several points during this meeting of the Governing Board the role of the press and news media was discussed and specifically how little news is reported about successful and ongoing projects to move clean water south and all the work to protect the environment.

One item in particular that stands out here in Palm Beach County is Item 23 in the video, the “Loxahatchee River Watershed Restoration Project Update”.

And Item 19B is the “Ecological Conditions Report” by Dir. Terri Bates (see image below).


FYI: The next meeting of the Water Resources Analysis Coalition (WRAC) is on September 6th. The next regularly scheduled SFWMD Governing Board meeting is on September 13th. Both meetings begin at 9:00 a.m. and are held at SFWMD headquarters located at 3301 Gun Club Rd. in suburban West Palm Beach.     


By the way, have you seen this news
in the press and news media?

Click on image to enlarge:

For all the latest press releases issued by SFWMD click on this link. If you have any questions or would like more information use this link to contact SFWMD directly.

Remember the 90s original Christian Rock Band called the “Newsboys”?


Here is their most famous song from 1996, titled,
“Take Me to Your Leader”:




Interesting facts about what happened to the original Newsboys:

  • Lead singer John James (singer in video above) left the band in 1997 to “start a ministry”. The real reason was due to drug and alcohol addiction as he admitted later
  • Newsboys co-founder George Perdikis has denounced Christianity and is now a committed Atheist
  • The Newsboys are still around today but not the original band; their current lead singer is Michael Tait.
  • The Newsboys band today is much different than the original band in the 1990s. 

You can find out more about the current Newsboys band at their Facebook page. Maybe some day they’ll come to play at the Bamboo Room when it becomes a popular destination once again like it was back in the day.

Monday, August 13, 2018

A reminder: The Lake Worth CRA monthly meeting is tomorrow.


The Lake Worth Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) meets at The HATCH located at 1121 Lucerne Ave. The meeting begins at 6:00. Meetings are open to the public and everyone is encouraged to follow the rules and be charming. More details about this meeting follow.

Oooops.
“Due to unforeseen
requirements from FDOT. . .”


Please! Before we proceed. The Lake Worth CRA does a spectacular job. Kudos to Executive Director Joan Oliva, the dedicated staff, appointed liaison Vice Mayor Andy Amoroso, and all the volunteers that serve on the board.

For just one example of their efforts is what will soon become major real estate news in Central Palm Beach County, a housing project called “The Mid” on N. Dixie Hwy.

But sometimes as they say, ■■■■ happens. Read more about that below, an item on next Tuesday’s CRA board meeting agenda. This is an excellent example of how complicated work can be to change and upgrade arterial roads like Dixie Hwy. and delves in nicely to Lake Worth Commissioner Omary Hardy’s observations at the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council about “our City’s ‘good grid system’ and ‘arterial’ challenges”.



But unfortunately, it’s going to take a bit longer
to find our way to “Wayfinding”:

 Click on image below of Wayfinding
in this little City of Lake Worth:

Wayfinding is “branding”. It defines for the public, visitors, investors, and consumers WHAT and WHERE the unique City of Lake Worth IS.


And very briefly — before we get to the “Ooooops” and about when “■■■■ happens” and finding our way to Wayfinding too — Guess what! There has been a major development at The Palm Beach Post. The editor(s) have officially recognized “suburban Lake Worth”, that vast area in Central Palm Beach County, a region with many communities and neighborhoods that lie west of this City of Lake Worth:


Click on map of eastern coastal
Central Palm Beach County to enlarge:

To learn more about this latest development by the editor(s) at the Post click on this link.

Back to the Lake Worth CRA, finding our way to Wayfinding and about their monthly public meetings:

Regular meetings of the Lake Worth CRA are the second Tuesday of every month and are held at The Hatch.* The CRA is,


[R]esponsible for formulating and implementing projects to assist in revitalizing and redeveloping portions of the City of Lake Worth. As an independent board, the CRA maintains its own website which may be viewed by clicking here. Volunteer members of the CRA board serve four year terms.

Without further ado. . .


Item V. Consent Agenda: Wayfinding — Extend Contract with Don Bell Signs, LLC.


Memorandum.

To: Chair, Vice Chair and Members of the CRA Board.
From: Chris Dabros, Deputy Director.
Date: August 14, 2018.
Subject: Wayfinding — Extend Contract with Don Bell Signs, LLC.


Explanation: In 2017, City and CRA Commissioners reached consensus to allow the fabrication and installation of new Wayfinding signage throughout the City with a design that incorporates water, sun, vibrant colors and an art deco style typeface. The purpose of a good Wayfinding signage program is not only to provide attractive welcome signs, but also to guide individuals from Point A to Point B in the quickest, safest and most efficient way possible.

In November 2017, the CRA and City advertised IFB #18-108 [Wayfinding Signage Project] to provide professional signage companies the opportunity to fabricate and install new signage throughout Lake Worth. The scope of this bid included up to 150 new signs of varying shapes and sizes that will be placed along major thoroughfares and in neighborhoods within the City. The IFB resulted in seven bids being received from local and national sign manufacturing companies.

After thorough review and consideration, CRA and City Staff selected low-bidder, Don Bell Signs, LLC, to enter into a construction agreement for signage services, not to exceed $561,069. Funding of this project has been budgeted by both the CRA and City of Lake Worth Public Works Department prior to the start of this fiscal year.

The consultants and Staff have been carefully reviewing each sign and value engineering the project. This should result in a significant reduction of signs and overall savings to both the City and CRA. Unfortunately, the original agreement with Don Bell Signs will expire at end of this month [August 2018]. Due to unforeseen requirements from FDOT we have not been able to obtain all necessary permits to begin fabrication. [emphasis added] For example, FDOT has requested an increase in the size of the sign text lettering, elimination of ‘butterfly’-type signs along FDOT streets and the need to enter into Community Aesthetic Feature (CAF) agreements for all welcome signs.


Florida Dept. of Transportation (FDOT) District 4 oversees Palm Beach, Broward, Martin, St. Lucie, and Indian River counties.

SHS  =  State Highway System. For more information about FDOT and CAF click on this link. Dixie Hwy. is part of FDOT’s SHS.


[Memorandum continues. . .]


These conditions did not come to the attention of the CRA, City or our consultants until immediately after we executed the contract with Don Bell Signs in February. Regrettably, we cannot with assurance know how long FDOT will approve the complete Wayfinding signage package.

This first extension [Exhibit A] to the agreement will give Don Bell Signs until the Summer of 2019 to have the project substantially completed.

Request: Staff recommends the Board allow Staff to extend the agreement with Don Bell Signs, LLC to provide fabrication and installation of City-wide Wayfinding signage. The price of the contract will continue to not exceed the original agreed price of $561,069.

End of memorandum.


*Note: Public comment at the CRA is limited to three (3) minutes. Please remember, always be nice, charming and respectful to the officials and CRA volunteer board members.
For more information about the CRA board meeting on February 13th, 2017 and IFB #18-108, “Wayfinding Signage Project” click on this link.
Attend the upcoming CRA board meeting (Tues., August 14th) to examine Exhibit A. 

Support LOCAL small town journalism in Central Palm Beach County: Little Free Libraries are expanding westward!


The editor of The Lake Worth Herald also publishes the FREE weekly Coastal and Greenacres Observer. News this week in the Observer is about “Deserving Kids Get Bikes From PBSO [Greenacres] District 16”* and “Greenacres Block Party No Longer a Best Kept Secret”.

To look over the front page headlines in the Herald and the Observer click on this link. To contact the editor call 561-585-9387 or send an email to: Editor@lwherald.com†

And there is more big news! Lake Worth’s very own Mary Lindsey and Little Free Libraries are expanding westward. Below is a newspaper clipping from this week’s Observer.

Following the news about Senior Scouts from Troop 21127 at Greenacres City Hall and their project to build a Little Free Library from a recycled newspaper rack is this news:


Greenacres Mayor Joel Flores
presents Carol Glasser a plaque from Little
Free Libraries for her stewardship”:


Click on newspaper clipping to enlarge:

From L to R: Mayor Flores, Mary Lindsey, Carol and husband Bob Glasser. The City of Greenacres now has ten Little Free Libraries for the residents to “Take a book, leave a book”.


Whilst on the topic of “Take a book, leave a book” in the little City of Lake Worth here is a little more information: Read about “One Small Town, Over 100 Little Libraries”.


Always remember in the cities of
Greenacres and Lake Worth:


“Take a Book  ~  Leave a Book”.

Books, especially children’s books, are always in need. Have a book or books to donate? Call 561-585-6035 or email: LakeWorthLFL@gmail.com

Here are three messages from the Little Free Libraries in English, Spanish, and Creole:


Hey Neighbor! — Have you visited the Little Free Library in your neighborhood? Did you know that these little book exchange boxes belong to all our neighbors in Lake Worth? Everyone is invited to open the door and look inside. If you see a book you or your children might enjoy, take it. You may keep it as long as you like. When you are finished with the book, we hope you will pass it on to a friend or just place it back in any of the Little Free Libraries you happen to come across. You do not have to leave a book in order to take one, but we hope you will next time you visit.

and. . .

Atención vecinos: ¿Han visto las pequeñas bibliotecas gratuitas localizadas en su vecindad? ¿Sabía que estas pequeñas cajas de intercambio de libros pertenecen a todos nuestros vecinos? Los invitamos a que abran la puerta y vean los libros que se encuentran dentro. Si hay algún libro que les interese a ustedes o a sus niños, llévenselo y disfrútenlo por el tiempo que quieran. Cuando terminen de leer el libro, esperamos que lo compartan con un amigo o lo puede devolverlo a cualquiera de las bibliotecas pequeñas que encuentren. Aunque no se requiere dejar un libro para tomar uno, si se agradece que dejen uno en su próxima visita.

and. . .

Vwazen yo! ~ Èske nou te pase nan Ti Bibliyotèk Gratis ki sou katye’nou an? Èsken nou te konnen ti bwat pou echanj liv sa yo se pou tout vwazen nou yo nan Lake Worth la ? Tout moun envite pou louvri pòt gade sa k gen anndan yo. Si je ou tonbe sou yon liv ou menm osnon pitit nou ka li ak kè kontan, pran’l. Ou ka kenbe l toutotan w vle. Lè w fini ak yon liv, nou espere w’ap pase l bay yon zanmi osnon remete li nan nenpòt ki Ti Bibliyotèk Gratis ki sou chemen’w. Ou pa oblije mete youn liv lè’w pran youn, men ou ka toujou fè sa pwochenn fwa ou pase.

Once again, do you have a book or books to donate? Call 561-585-6035 or email: LakeWorthLFL@gmail.com


*Three years ago the editor(s) at The Palm Beach Post pulled their reporter from the Greenacres beat. This happened shortly after PBSO merged with the Greenacres PD. Ever since 2015 news coverage in the Post about politics, law enforcement and government in the fine City of Greenacres has been spotty at best.
     However, in March 2018 the editor(s) acknowledged the overwhelming success of PBSO. The editor(s) wrote, “[T]here is no debate about the result [in City of Greenacres]. Overall crime is down and available law-enforcement resources are far better.”

To become a subscriber to The Lake Worth Herald click on this link.
     To download the FREE Coastal and Greenacres Observer use this link, select “Options”, and then click on “Download as PDF”.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Worth Noting: Press Release from little City of Lake Worth.


Another Upcoming Ribbon Cutting Ceremony.
Public invitation. Everyone is invited.

Media/press contact: Suzanne Rosales at Public Services Administration. Call 561-586-1720; email: SRosales@lakeworth.org


Press release follows.


Lake Worth, Florida* — Please join the Mayor and City Commission on August 14th at 1:00 for the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony of 2nd Ave. South, the ceremony will take place at the corner of South L Street.

The City of Lake Worth received Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding to improve the 2nd Ave. South roadway between Dixie Highway and Federal Highway. The streetscape improvements undertaken as part of this project included: replacement of the existing roadway section, new sidewalk for pedestrians, new roadway curbing as well as improved traffic signage and striping.

This Ribbon Cutting Ceremony provides a chance for the public, press and project team to celebrate the successful completion of this important project.


*“Located in central Palm Beach County, Lake Worth is a dynamic, multi-cultural City with an individualistic style. People are drawn to the City by its acceptance of different cultures and lifestyles, historic districts, hip downtown and colorful arts district.”

“Send the Water South!”, they said. But why? For more water storage or for something else?


“It may seem passe to say so, but wishing death on opponents is not the most efficient way of winning hearts and minds.”

Quote by journalist Peter Schorsch in article headlined, “Beyond the pale: Enviro activist calls for ‘death of thousands’ in Lake O discharge controversy”.



“The thing to remember about the reservoir in particular and Everglades restoration in general, he [Chris McVoy, PhD] added, is that ‘this whole thing is part science and part what you can get politically.’ ”

Quote by environmental reporter Craig Pittman in the Tampa Bay Times (the winner of 12 Pulitzer Prizes).


In context, continue reading to learn more about the two quotes above. And think about this, was the objective of supporters to “Send the Water South!” really about water storage or to take more farmland out of production in Palm Beach County as was suggested by a Governing Board member of SFWMD last week?

The regularly scheduled monthly meeting of the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) was held last Thursday at their headquarters in suburban West Palm Beach. The video of this meeting will be available soon (for “Public Meetings and Forums” click on this link).

From that meeting a press release was issued dated August 10th and headlined, “Governing Board Approves New Structure to Move More Water South”.


West Palm Beach, FL — The South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) Governing Board yesterday approved building a major component of the Congressionally authorized Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP) needed to move additional water south. [emphasis added]
     SFWMD will build the new S-333N water control structure in western Miami-Dade County adjacent to the existing S-333 structure, which releases clean fresh water south from Water Conservation Area 3A into the L-29 Canal. This additional structure will nearly double the amount of water that can be moved south from S-333 out of Water Conservation Area 3A to about 2,500 cubic feet per second (cfs).


Have you seen this news in the press or news media? Most probably not. Good news like this rarely makes the news.


Or have you seen this news in the
press or news media?

Click on image to enlarge:

For the SFWMD Ecological Conditions Update dated August 9th by Water Resources Dir. Terrie Bates click on this link.


Do you remember back when “Send the Water South!” from Lake Okeechobee was the cry by supporters of constructing a new $1B reservoir in Palm Beach County to stop discharges to the east into the St. Lucie River and estuary?

But don’t forget: A reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee “was never the primary strategy for reducing discharges.”

And. . .

“To say that the reservoir will save the Everglades and prevent coastal discharges is wishful thinking that can’t be backed by science.”

—Quotes by Melissa Meeker, CEO, Water Environment & Reuse Foundation and former executive director, governing board member of the South Florida Water Management District.


Read more below, including what former State Sen. Jeff Clemens wrote, more quotes from Melissa Meeker in The Palm Beach Post, and the very enlightening position taken by Chris McVoy, PhD, an expert on Everglades restoration.

Then afterwards are two questions: “What’s your Point of View now?” about a new reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee in Palm Beach County. And what about the Herbert Hoover Dike?


John L. Hundley wrote, “Taking our farmlands out of production to pursue a plan that is not science-based will not fix the problems in the coastal estuaries.”

“Send The Water South!” and constructing another reservoir without fixing the Herbert Hoover Dike was a bad idea from the very beginning. But it took a large, vocal group of citizens in PBC to get everyone’s attention.



Below are two more excerpts from Melissa Meeker’s “Point of View” in the Post. Interestingly, was reminded of what former State Senator Jeff Clemens wrote leading up to the vote to build a reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee. Remember, “Send The Water South!” Here’s what Sen. Clemens wrote:


My opinion is that this bill will not result in a fix for the problem. Instead of using this bond money to accelerate planned and approved environmental projects, it is dedicated to projects that have not been appropriately studied, because the push for southern storage has become more political than science-driven.


Also interesting, a former City of Lake Worth commissioner, a big proponent of building a reservoir later came around and rethought his position. This is from a Tampa Bay Times article:


McVoy [Chris McVoy, PhD] also questioned how the new reservoir will release unpolluted water into the Everglades when the state’s current treatment areas for stormwater are already at capacity.
     He noted that Negron’s bill didn’t specify where the water will flow out of the reservoir, and pointed out that both the Everglades and the sugar companies may wind up fighting over who gets that flow in dry times.
     “That’s a barn-door size loophole,” McVoy said.
     The thing to remember about the reservoir in particular and Everglades restoration in general, he added, is that “this whole thing is part science and part what you can get politically.


Now for the two excerpts from the “Point of View” by Melissa Meeker cited above:


As a Treasure Coast resident for more than 20 years, I have seen firsthand the damage caused by the discharges. While the recently approved Everglades reservoir bill may help alleviate them, the reservoir is far from a panacea and it’s important to set expectations about what it will accomplish.

and. . .

     Even if construction on the reservoir had proceeded as planned [in 2004], it was never designed to handle massive discharges from Lake Okeechobee, which dumped more than a total of 2.3 million acre feet of water to the Caloosahatchee River and St. Lucie estuaries in 2016. It would have stored only a fraction – up to 360,000 acre feet – of what was released last year and would not have treated the nutrient-laden water from the local basins that worsened the summer’s algae blooms in Martin County.
     To say that the reservoir will save the Everglades and prevent coastal discharges is wishful thinking that can’t be backed by science. We need to stay focused on the two objectives at hand: storing and treating water north of the lake and getting more freshwater to the Everglades.


Now a question: Was “Send the Water South!” into a new reservoir for water storage the actual goal?



And in conclusion. . .

Don’t forget about the Herbert Hoover Dike that surrounds
Lake Okeechobee:


“Since the construction of the dyke, the land outside
of the dyke has been eroding, particularly on
the south side of the lake.

Read the risk report from Lloyd’s of London: “A Discussion of the Vulnerability of Lake Okeechobee to Levee Failure, Cause, Effect and the Future.”