Saturday, October 20, 2018

“Who Relies on Lake Okeechobee?” Answer is everyone in South Florida.


Must watch video from the South Florida Water Management District. About the video and the “Liquid Heart of Florida” called Lake Okeechobee:


“The ‘Liquid Heart of Florida’ is a critical part of South Florida's flood control and water supply system. Millions of people, businesses, tribal interests and the environment depend on the lake to help protect them from floods and ensure they have enough water.”


Please share this video:

People want to know, “How can a crematorium be allowed just down the street from an elementary charter school in Lake Worth?”


First, it’s very important to understand that crematoriums are regulated by the Dept. of Health, not local city governments.

Later in this blog post are excerpts from an article published in the Post titled, “Smoke complaint at Lake Worth Crematorium gets health review”; it’s this news that had people wondering:
How can a crematorium be allowed just 0.4 miles (about 2000′) from an elementary charter school?

Why? Because the crematorium was there first.

That charter school located at 1200 N. Dixie Hwy. (for reference the school located across the street from the medical marijuana dispensary Curaleaf Lake Worth and the Marijuana Doctor next door) is a school that opened up many years after a crematorium was constructed at 730 N. Dixie Hwy. If the people who opened that charter school back then were concerned about a crematorium nearby they could have found another location on Dixie Hwy. or maybe another site in the City.

Crematoriums are in the City of Lake Worth because, at one point in our City’s history, there was nothing stopping crematoriums to operate a business in Lake Worth.


The zoning has been changed and crematoriums are no longer permissible under our zoning code.


However, crematoriums already in operation at the time were “grandfathered in”, meaning they can operate only as long as they continue to pay their tax bill, utility bill, etc., keeping up-to-date with the City in general. If the business fails to comply they will lose their business license.

Back to the issue of smoke coming from a crematorium, an article by Post reporter Julius Whigham published in March 2017.


The operators of the facility at North Dixie Highway and Eighth Avenue North, were asked to provide the health department with a report about a malfunction at the crematory. Comments posted on on Facebook said that black smoke could be seen from outside the facility Wednesday afternoon [3/22/17].

and. . .

     “I’ve gone out there and pounded their door down,” he [City resident ] said. “There’s something profoundly wrong when (the crematories) emit that much smoke. … It’s a public safety hazard.”


Below is what another very creative Post reporter wrote back in 2015 about smoke coming from a crematorium. But unlike reporter Julius Whigham’s approach, this reporter took a more stirring, thrilling, quite lively, captivating, and quite entertaining view of that particular incident:


“The thick black smoke was hard to miss. It curled into the sky, swallowing the tops of palm trees and tumbling down like a shroud over the downtown streets. . .”.

So. Anyhow. . .

If you see any smoke at all coming from a crematorium or are concerned about a local crematory call 561-840-4500 or contact the Palm Beach County, Florida, Dept. of Health. If you wish to schedule an appointment to discuss this matter, call 1-855-438-2778, or use this link. Another option is to write a letter to:


Palm Beach County Dept. of Health
800 Clematis St.
West Palm Beach, Florida
33401

I hope you found this information helpful.

TODAY: The Fall/Halloween Block Party in College Park: Fun for entire family.


Join the College Park Neighborhood Assoc. (CPNA) from 4:30–10:00 on Pennsylvania Drive between Fordham and Dartmouth.


Where is the College Park neighborhood in the City of Lake Worth? That and more information is below.

About the CPNA event tomorrow. . .


For the kids will be a coloring station, street painting with sidewalk chalk, a candy stuffed piñata and a costume contest at 6:30 for children under twelve.

Bring a prepared dish to share (either hot or cold), coolers with your own beverages, folding table and chairs and a grill if you can. Everyone is welcome to bring games and activities such as Karaoke and musical talents. At 7:00 is the adult costume contest and a prize for best costume.

The CPNA will provide ice, napkins, plates, and flatware. If you have any questions send an email to: collegeparkboard@collegeparklakeworth.com

Please note: The CPNA is raising funds to replace the neighborhood banners and will host a raffle and contests. Raffle tickets are ¢50 or three for $1 and ticket holders must be present to win a prize.

More information about the CPNA within the greater Neighborhood Assoc. Presidents’ Council.


This historic neighborhood in the City extends from Dixie Hwy. east to the Lake Worth Lagoon and north from Wellesley Drive (north side of street) to the C-51 Canal which includes the City’s Spillway Park. The C-51 Canal, by the way, is the historical border between the City of Lake Worth and our neighbor to the north, West Palm Beach.


Click on image to enlarge:

“The College Park subdivision was created by plats filed between December 1924 and May 1925. Edgewood Realty Co. of West Palm Beach opened the College Park development.”


College Park within the six-square-mile City of Lake Worth is, “Between the Dixie and the Lake, South of the Palm Beach Canal”:

The “Dixie” is now a major thoroughfare (U.S. 1; Dixie Hwy.), the freshwater “Lake” is now the Intracoastal and “the Palm Beach Canal” is now the C-51 Canal managed by the South Florida Water Management District.


The C-51 Canal will be undergoing major changes on both sides of the canal — in the City of Lake Worth and in the City of West Palm Beach too — in addition to the future Blueway Trail project bypassing the S-155 Spillway structure, creating more access for the public between the Inland Chain of Lakes and the Intracoastal (Lake Worth Lagoon).


Back to the CPNA. . .


Our goal is to protect and improve the neighborhood by building strong relationships among neighbors, our neighborhood merchants, our City government, local law enforcement [PBSO] and other neighborhood associations throughout the City of Lake Worth.

Why is this neighborhood called College Park?

Unique to College Park is the naming of each street after prominent American colleges and universities. From Wellesley to Maryland; from Holy Cross to Vanderbilt, and from Carolina to Notre Dame.

About one of the College Park neighborhood’s biggest challenges. . .


A vacant eyesore which could be a nice addition to the neighborhood when it finally catches the eye of a developer some day. That empty lot on one of our major thoroughfares entering the City — actually made up of three lots on the east side of Dixie which include 2302, 2314, and 2318 N. Dixie Hwy. — was once a thriving part of this region in coastal Central Palm Beach County:


The former Patio Coffee Shop.

Across the street from the Patio (at 2401 N. Dixie Hwy.) is where the former Park Avenue BBQ once stood.

Where the Park Avenue BBQ was is now a parking lot for World Thrift, a very nice parking lot, it’s nicely landscaped and kept clean and tidy. Unlike the unkempt lots on the east side of Dixie Hwy.


Those empty lots which make up the frontage of an entire block are in the Lake Worth Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) district. It was once a popular destination for residents and visitors just like World Thrift is today here in this City. Having a parking lot on the west side of Dixie isn’t my dream for that location but World Thrift is a very good neighbor. They keep their parking lot clean and well lit up at night in addition to the new signage. A very big improvement.

Who would have thought when World Thrift opened it would attract so many customers from the Town of Palm Beach and West Palm Beach too?

And hopefully some day soon that vacant block on the east side of Dixie Hwy., on one of our major thoroughfares entering this City of Lake Worth, will once again become a destination.

And maybe even a place where the CPNA can hold their monthly meetings in the future, a prominent place actually located in the College Park neighborhood.

Friday, October 19, 2018

At end of this blog post. Video of last night’s Lake Worth City Commission Work Session: 2019 ballot question(s).


But first, let’s address a topic that came up last night: About long, narrow tubes.


Not a long, narrow tube like a microscope for examining things closely. Or a long, narrow tube like a telescope for examining things far away. But more like looking through the long, narrow tube of a plastic straw.

It would seem the “Plastic Straw Ban Platoon” is still twisting the arms of our elected officials here in this City. Apparently, and have not watched the entire video yet, there is talk of putting some sort of plastic ban initiative or plastic straw ban language on the ballot next year, the municipal elections to be held on March 12th, 2019.

If you recall, the Straw Ban Platoon followed in the steps of the ‘Balloon Police’. A political distraction in this little City of Lake Worth but it did frighten the bejesus out of little children thinking their parents would get thrown in jail for “possession of a balloon”.

The Plastic Straw Ban Platoon (PSBP) is myopically-focused looking at the world like looking out the tube of a straw whilst the rest of this City is looking at our issues and problems like using a microscope or a telescope. A microscope can help. And so can a telescope. That straw won’t help much except if you enjoy walking around in circles and bumping into things.

The real focus of course for members of
the PSBP is the Lake Worth Beach.


For some, for some reason, the Lake Worth Beach holds great significance on Planet Earth. But when looked at in perspective — at just 0.26 miles, just 1,280 feet long — our Beach is relatively insignificant. For example, the Lake Worth Beach makes up 0.072 of all Atlantic coastal beaches and just 0.032 of all Florida beaches.

Using the all-important March 2019 ballot to address an issue this City cannot regulate takes away from the substantive issues that truly need to be addressed.

The following issues have been mentioned publicly by the Commission as well as during individual discussions with the City Manager as potential ballot questions. These include, but are not limited to:
  • Authorization to sell City owned property(ies) per City Charter.
  • Change the name of the City of Lake Worth to include “Beach” [or name this City “Jewell”, or “Jewel” or “Lake Worth City”? For background click on this link.]
  • Authorize a long term lease with County for the Jewell Cove/Steinhardt properties.

And there could be other questions on the ballot too. Like as suggested on this blog, eliminating run-off elections.

Hopefully the ‘plastic straw ban platoon’ will reconsider and take their all-important issue somewhere else for the voters to grapple with. For example, here is a question being dealt with now as reported by Larry Barszewski at the Sun Sentinel:

“Are you willing to pay price to reverse Broward’s dramatic drop in recycling?”


But anyhow. . .


To the video. Last night’s Commission meeting was a Work Session meaning no official action or votes were taken. Commissioner Scott Maxwell was absent so the topic of abandoned shopping carts was probably not discussed.

But if the Plastic Straw Ban Platoon is looking for something helpful to do they can go grab all those abandoned shopping carts and fill them all up with water bottled with light-weight plastic, just in case we get hit by a hurricane or a major storm this year. The PSBP can hand out plastic-bottled water to everyone in need.

And, of course, warn everyone not to use a plastic straw.


Enjoy watching this meeting courtesy
of Lake Worth Beach!

Footage of Downtown Lake Worth eighty-nine years ago.


If you are familiar with the City of Lake Worth, specifically along Federal Hwy. in the Downtown, you’ll recognize a church structure that still exists to this day. The short film below is a,

“Compilation of sound interviews with some of the oldest people living in the United States in 1929. Footage is from the early Movietone sound cameras.”

For some perspective, one man in the video (see below) says he is 84 years old, the man next to him is 94 years old. That would mean at the start of the Civil War in 1861 they were both 16 and 26 years old, respectively.

Briefly, the Civil War ended in 1865. After the war one of the big draws to Florida for former soldiers was construction of Henry Flagler’s railroad in the early 1880s to lay track, build bridges, and provide security. The Florida East Coast (FEC) railroad formed “Palm Beach” in 1894, then Flagler continued south towards a place that would later come to be called Miami building railroad stations along the way. In 1912 a small station was constructed south of West Palm Beach and would become the “Town of Lake Worth” in 1913.

This video is an interesting look back to the pre-Depression era in South Florida. The segment about the City of Lake Worth ends at the 3:30 minute mark.


Click on play and see if you can recognize a very prominent structure that still exists to this day in this City of Lake Worth:

A reminder. As a public service.


If you ever happen to receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from the Lake Worth Electric Utility and threatening to “shut the power off unless a payment is made immediately”:

“It’s a SCAM!”

Hang up immediately!

See your instructions below.


If you did happen to get one of these scam phone calls and you do get scammed, hopefully your first call wasn’t to the press or news media. Why? Because they cannot help you.


Here is what to do:

If someone calls saying they’re from the Lake Worth Electric Utility and threatens to “shut the power off unless a payment is made immediately with a Green Dot MoneyPak card or personal credit card” HANG UP THE PHONE IMMEDIATELY AND CALL 561-533-7300 (or make a Suspicious Incident Report with PBSO: call 561-688-3400.

More good advice (please refer to
newspaper clipping below):


Do you ride a stolen scooter? Warning: Do Not call PBSO for help or use a screwdriver to tinker with the engine. The one caveat is, unless you have a fire extinguisher very close nearby with the arrow in the indicator pointing to the green. If it’s pointing to the red it won’t do much good if the scooter catches fire.

And please be suspicious of emails or phone calls from somebody in Africa or Turkey, or anyone with an odd name like “Gooz” asking for money. Why?

It’s a SCAM!

Also. . .

  • Don’t let “a homegirl” you meet at McDonald’s take car keys for a vehicle you don’t own.
  • Don’t engage mentally-ill neighbors. Just walk away.
  • Have someone watch your home while on vacation for a week.
  • Leaving windows open while you take a stroll to the park with your children is also not advised.

Also good advice is this: If someone named “Gooz Adalwin Kenneth” sends you an email from Turkey asking for money there are better options than taking a PBSO deputy off the street to handle your issue. Like learning how to screen your emails and phone calls better.

The ‘crimes’ in the image below are from an actual “Lake Worth Crime Blotter” published in a former tabloid that littered our City three years ago.



Hard to believe but it’s true!

Click on image to enlarge.

Note: This tabloid is not to be confused with
The Lake Worth Herald, the City’s newspaper “Established in 1912”
.

Debate continues in City of Lake Worth: Allow artists to open up work/retail shops in residential neighborhoods?


When the debate raged back in 2015. . .

Newspaper clipping from former tabloid (redacted version), click on image to enlarge:

And three years later the question remains: “Is ‘The Arts’ the answer for this City of Lake Worth?

Thursday, October 18, 2018

“IN CASE OF EMERGENCY BREAK GLASS”


Is it time to “Break Glass” here in the City of Lake Worth?


No. Put the hammer down.


But after watching the YouTube video of the City Commission at work last Tuesday night some may come away thinking there is indeed a very serious ‘CASE OF EMERGENCY’ in this little City. That video is at the end of this blog post. But let’s pause briefly and make something very clear.


VERY IMPORTANT: There are two things going on right now.

One is about Ordinance 2018-16 which is explained below. And the other is Community Development Block funding “[F]or increased code enforcement activities within the CDBG Target Area.”

The recent news in The Lake Worth Herald about “what is arguably the worst area in Lake Worth” is not to be confused with the ordinance discussed below. The problem with Ordinance 2018-16 is it lumps the “good players” in with the “bad actors”. The increased funding for Code Enforcement is to establish what conditions are no longer acceptable in this City, e.g., substandard housing, conditions that pose public safety and health concerns, and ensuring the process for permits and inspections are followed.


Now back on topic, what happened at
City Hall last Tuesday.


It’s certainly not time for ‘breaking glass’ but that’s not to say there aren’t serious problems at City Hall, a real ‘disconnect’ as was displayed quite clearly at the City Commission last Tuesday evening. Watching discussion on ordinances 2018-15 and 2018-16 was indeed cringe-worthy, especially so for Ordinance 2018-16.

And a citizen at public comment forewarned the City Commission of what is to come. The issue of “minutes” from public City meetings needs to be addressed. And quickly. Read more about that below.

Get ready to hear the term “Workshop” a lot.


The City staff received a message loud and clear from the Commission last Tuesday, about as subtle as an engineer on a Brightline train signaling with that piercing air horn. The message was, to paraphrase Commissioner Scott Maxwell, “You got things backwards”.

And to hammer the message home, when it comes to creating new rules and ordinances at the staff level and review at the volunteer advisory boards, the message is simply this from Mayor Pam Triolo, a direct quote:

“Encourage. Educate.
Don’t legislate.”


Or put another way, to paraphrase the mayor:

“We cannot legislate our way out of every problem.”


Below is more about those two ordinances, both of which failed ingloriously. And Thank You to all the public who showed up and made your voices heard. Maybe City staff has not been listening to you. But the City Commission is. And they are the ones who really matter.

The City staff has many ‘sticks’ to use and get the attention from the public. But the message from the City Commission and the public in attendance last Tuesday night was very clear: Put the stick down and start using some carrots instead.

We’re at a very important point, one could call it the “tipping point” in our City’s future and certainly not the time to be overbearing and sending mixed messages to future homeowners, investors and the business community.

And no. Our volunteer advisory boards should never be able to levy fines. That is the job of code enforcement.

And there is another major problem that needs to be quickly addressed as City resident Peggy Fisher noted at public comment: the lack of meeting minutes. For example, click on this link and scroll down to “Other Boards” following the list of City Commission meetings.

There are no minutes for public review from the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) or Electric Utility Advisory Board going back to July. No minutes for the Finance Advisory Board meetings at all this year. And there is a dearth of minutes from the Tree Board too.

It’s quite possible many of these meetings had no quorum and everyone went home. But there still needs to be minutes anyhow. Was a roll call taken? Was a work session held? What was on the agenda?

Now to ordinances 2018-15 and -16. Proposed ordinances that both failed.


First up, Item 10A at Public Hearing:


Ordinance No. 2018-16 - Second Reading - Amending Chapter 2 “Administration”, Article VII “Abatement of Nuisance”, Section 2-75.11 “Foreclosed, Vacant and Unimproved Property Registration Program” and to require additional requirements for vacant and unimproved property.


This ordinance will be explained in more detail at a later time. But suffice to say expect a City workshop in the near future on “Robert’s Rules of Order”.

Briefly, the City Commission is worried and the public is worried too. They are concerned about giving volunteer advisory boards the ability to levy fines. They are worried about burdensome over-regulation and they are worried that the approach and direction we’re heading is the wrong one, relying on legislation and fines at a time when we’re trying to encourage public participation and more investment.

Fore example, under “Maintenance requirements, unimproved property” is this about fencing of unimproved property:


“[S]urrounded with a vinyl coated four (4) feet tall chain linked fence which shall be installed around the entire property area, unless the city’s DRO waives or alters the requirement; provided with signage attached to the fencing that lists the responsible party for the property including address, phone number and email address. . .”


And into the acronym swamp we go. A “DRO” is a ‘Designated Regulatory Official’.

Ordinance 2018-16 got caught up in a silly procedural debate but at the end it failed unanimously at Second Reading. Now back to the drawing board. As Mayor Triolo said,

“Encourage. Educate. Don’t legislate.”


Next up, Ordinance 2018-15, item 12B
under New Business:


B. Ordinance No. 2018-15 - First Reading - Amending Chapter 23 “Land Development Regulations” Section 23.6-1, “Landscape Regulations” and setting the Second Reading and Public Hearing for November 13, 2018.


No. There will not be a “Second Reading” on Nov. 13th.

What a mess. At one point during this agenda item the staff asked for direction going forward and all they got back was blank stares from the City Commission. Basically the electeds said go back to square one and start all over. The video of this portion of the meeting is below.

In short. . .

This agenda item should never have gotten on the agenda. This should have gone to a scheduled City Workshop first and then sent to the City Commission for consideration at First Reading. The vote was against moving Ordinance 2018-15 to Second Reading. What will happen now? Probably to a Workshop where it should have gone in the first place.

As was explained by City staff, there was no need to quickly move this item forward. There is no project in the pipeline that needs any of these new rules or direction. After forty-nine minutes of debate it was approaching 11:00 o’clock at night.

A City Workshop on Robert’s Rules of Order cannot happen soon enough.

Without further ado. . .


Sad news.


“We have difficult news to share with all our Lake Worth Little Free Libraries friends.”


The message from Mary Lindsey.


“Todd Bol, the creator and founder of the Little Free Library worldwide book sharing network has entered hospice care in Minnesota. In early October, barely two weeks ago, Todd was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Following the first (and only) treatment with chemotherapy, peritoneal cancer was also discovered.

“Todd created the first Little Free Library in 2009 as a tribute to his late mother who had been a teacher for many years. He built a small replica of a one room school house, put a door on it and filled it with books. He put it on a post pounded into his front yard with a sign on the door announcing Free Books! In the next few years he built lots of Little Book boxes for his neighbors and in 2012 he formed the nonprofit organization, Little Free Library.

“Today there are more than 75,000 Little Free Libraries planted in neighborhoods across more than 88 countries around the world.

“Todd gave an interview following the initial diagnosis with his hometown newspaper, The Minnesota Star Tribune headlined: After cancer diagnosis, Little Free Library founder feels like ‘most successful person I know’.

“We in Lake Worth are feeling so blessed that we had the opportunity to meet Todd and his brother Tony as well as board member Margaret Bernstein when they came here last April and spent a week with us celebrating BiblioArte!

In conclusion Mary writes,


“We remain committed to continuing Todd’s legacy of building community and sharing books.”


To send a message to Todd Bol click on this link
or send a letter to:


Todd H. Bol
C/O Little Free Library
573 County Road A, Suite 106
Hudson, WI 54016


Below, just by coincidence. . .


Prior to learning the latest sad news is a blog post from earlier this month about Todd Bol and his recent visit to this City of Lake Worth for the BiblioArte! festival, the work done by Mary Lindsey to promote Little Free Libraries here in Palm Beach County, and all those critics, malcontents and ankle-biters who are never far behind.


What follows is the most-read blog post the month of October. And per the tracking stats shows no signs of slowing down.

And important information: If you reside in the City of Lake Worth, suburban metropolitan areas, or further west to the fine City of Greenacres and have books you would like to donate (especially children’s books!) please call 561-585-6035 or email: LakeWorthLFL@gmail.com

Without further ado. . .


Todd Bol, the founder of Little Free Libraries, takes on the divisive critics and those derisive malcontents too.


The news published in the School Library Journal (SLJ) by journalist Taryn Venner Ashe is a must-read. Below are several excerpts. At the end of this blog post is more information about the writer of this piece in SLJ and the link to read the entire account.

Of special note: Lake Worth resident Mary Lindsey is quoted in the SLJ, the news datelined Sept. 26th. Lindsey, if you didn’t know, first introduced LFLs to Central Palm Beach County in 2015 (read more about that below). The LFLs are now literately and literally spreading all over the County now. A lot faster than ‘red tide’ ever will and will stay around a whole lot longer too.

Before we go forward, let’s take a step back.


So why are people criticizing Todd Bol, as reported in SLJ “[T]he vitriol aimed at the organization, much of it coming from literacy advocates?” Why are the skeptics asking open-ended carping questions about the LFLs?

Because Bol is effective. That’s why. He is changing the world for the better one day at a time. And that’s what has all the malcontents tied up in knots.

For example, from April of this year is an excerpt from The Lake Worth Herald about Todd Bol and the BiblioArte! Festival in Downtown Lake Worth:


BiblioArte! celebrates Little Free Libraries with hands on activities, music, a walk through a Little Free Library Village, and a presentation by Todd Bol, founder of the Little Free Library movement.
     The festival marks the end of Little Free Library week in Palm Beach County. This special week is celebrated through personal appearances Todd Bol will be making in Lake Worth schools and events around the City. Home to more than 100 Little Free Libraries, all hand painted by local artists, Lake Worth is an example of how community volunteers can come together to encourage reading through book sharing in their neighborhoods. [emphasis added]


Makes one wonder, doesn’t it? What exactly do the critics have a problem with? But enough about them.


Click on image to enlarge:

Outside Lake Worth City Hall during the annual BiblioArte! Festival, flags flying full mast: Furthest is flag for State of Florida, flag of United States of America and closest is the Little Free Library flag.


The Little Free Libraries in Central Palm Beach County first got started in January 2015 in the City of Lake Worth by Lake Worth resident Mary Lindsey. Read more about Mary Lindsey’s efforts, an article published in the LFLs official website titled, “One Small Town, Over 100 Little Free Libraries” by reporter Megan Blake-Horst.

Since 2015 the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office has partnered with the LFLs and they have spread west as well, for example, the City of Greenacres now has a LFL program and it’s gotten much encouragement from government and community leaders.


Without further ado. . .

Excerpts from feature
story in SLJ:


There are over 70,000 registered Little Free Libraries (LFL) in all 50 U.S. states and in more than 80 countries. The tiny boxes full of books are sometimes mistaken for miniature dollhouses and birdhouses. Some are constructed from scratch, others born from recycled materials. They can be found in front yards, public parks, and elsewhere.

and. . . 


However, there have been quite a few derisive portrayals of LFL stewards as privileged do-gooders who do nothing but promote their own book collections. I could not believe the vitriol aimed at the organization, much of it coming from literacy advocates. [emphasis added] Some public librarians have complained that LFLs mostly appear in wealthy neighborhoods that already have free books available through public library systems. I wanted to know how the company responded to such negativity, so I contacted the headquarters. A few days later, founder Todd Bol spent an hour on the phone chatting with me.

Bol admits the LFLs will never be enough in some critics’ eyes. Even though they are recognized by the Library of Congress, they do not exist to replace public libraries; in fact, many public schools and libraries sponsor LFLs in their communities.

Pull Quote:

Bol sees LFL stewards across the globe as watchers — they don’t aim to eradicate illiteracy on their own, but to support literacy where they can.

the final excerpt. . .


Bol believes that the strength of LFL lies in its stewards, particularly in cities such as Lake Worth, FL, where there are 30,000 residents and more than 100 LFLs in seven square miles. The broader Lake Worth literacy success story lies in its community involvement, according to lead steward Mary Lindsey. Begun in 2015, the literacy initiative has support from the city’s Vice Mayor, the Palm Beach County School District, which donates books annually to LFLs, and the Palm Beach County Sheriffs, who run a mobile book program. Lindsey’s exuberance traveled over the phone as she told me how the Lake Worth community was “fertile ground already with the generosity of neighbors. What our LFLs did was take away the boundaries that existed in neighborhoods.”


More information about the author and the publication called “School Library Journal”:

  • The author Taryn Venner Ashe, “is a mom, a high school English teacher, and a writer, who is learning to juggle all three jobs gracefully.”
  • To read the entire article by Ashe click on this link.
  • Information from Wikipedia: “The School Library Journal was founded in 1954 as Junior Libraries after breaking off from Library Journal. The first issue was published on September 15, 1954. Gertrude Wolff was the first editor.”


Another thing about LFLs. . .


Always remember!
“Take a Book  ~  Leave a Book”.

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

District 4 Commissioner Herman C. Robinson is running for re-election.


Running a campaign needs money. The instructions how and where to send your contribution are below.


But a political campaign needs a lot more than money.


There are many ways to show your support. You can sign up to be a door-knocker in your neighborhood for an hour or two a week, help volunteer putting signs together or be sign patrol (keep up-to-date with location and number of signs), be a sign waver, deliver water, food and supplies to teams out in the field or help out at the Victory Party on March 12th, 2019.

One can also help by hosting or help organize neighborhood meet-and-greets or campaign fundraisers like this one held recently.


An event held at Mathew’s Brewing Co. last week:

One attendee arrived with great aplomb and style.


Would you like to help out the campaign?
Learn more about Herman?

Call 561-651-1499 or send email to: ForTheLoveOfLakeWorth@gmail.com


To follow Commissioner Herman C. Robinson on Facebook click on this link. If you would like to make a contribution, send a check payable to “Herman Robinson Campaign Account” to:


Campaign of Herman Robinson
114 Ocean Breeze St.
Lake Worth, FL 33460


Suggested contributions: $25, $50 or $100. You can also make a secure contribution online using this link.


From the event held at Mathew’s Brewing Co. below are two more photos.

This was the official campaign kickoff. However, Commissioner Robinson filed his papers 6½ months ago with the City Clerk to run for re-election.


A view of the crowd outside.

It was a big crowd of supporters, campaign staff, and there were new faces too.


One of the featured speakers.

Mr. Jon Faust (right), a long-time Realtor in the City of Lake Worth, alongside Commissioner Robinson.

“To this end, the proposed Ordinance simply acknowledges the State Legislature’s preemption of this area of the law.”


The quote above is from an executive brief provided to the Lake Worth City Commission and is explained in detail below.

Lake Worth City Hall and our elected officials will be thrown off course and distracted from stated objectives and goals.


It’s inevitable. Only a matter of time. It could be for just a brief period of time or even weeks and months. It could be a political crisis that throws our City “off the rails”. It could be a tragedy. It could be public angst over any issue.

It could even be something mundane as balloons at the Beach or a proposed ban on ‘plastic straws’ to get the public all riled up on both sides, pitting the business community against the enviros.

Or it could be bees. Yes. Bees. That actually happened in this City. Read more about that below.


The big question is how long it will take to get back on focus once again when reason and public confidence is restored.

An example given many times before was the Pulse Nightclub shootings. This City reacted very quickly in June 2016 to restore calm doing everything and anything they could. And it worked. Everyone, including all of the electeds, rallied together to show support for the victims and the city of Orlando.

On a local level, within municipal borders, it’s very important for a city’s elected leaders to voice concerns over any issue, especially one of great concern to the community or a neighborhood. But when trying to set policy — suggesting or leading the public to believe one can set policy — is when things can go very, very wrong. Specifically, what a local elected body can control and what they can’t.

And just as important about policy is educating the public about what a city can do and cannot do, e.g., what our Lake Worth City Commission can regulate and what they cannot regulate: overstep the authority of County, the State, and Federal governments. The rules were laid out in the United States Constitution.

One of the best examples of this is the problem with sober homes and the heroin/opioid epidemic. Local and County officials can do everything they can but if Federal laws, like the ADA, protect the ‘bad players’ in many cases there is nothing local governments can do. The good news is there have been many positive changes since 2015–2016 when our local, County, State, and elected officials in Washington, D.C. all got to work to put new policies in place.

This is important to understand because if our local officials, elected or otherwise, makes the mistake of overstepping their authority they could very well send the City of Lake Worth into court.

However, this “veering off course” can happen on a much smaller scale, confusing the public and potentially distracting the Commission off the issues and concerns that got them elected and the goals set forward at the beginning, leaving the public to think their elected officials have more power than they actually do.

Many of you will recall this classic example, what happened after smoke was spotted coming from a crematorium, a business on Dixie Hwy. here in the City of Lake Worth. Crematoriums are regulated by the State, not local governments.

Two more examples: Like when former Commissioner Ryan Maier suggested trying to regulate the volume of train horns. Those pitch and volume levels are set by the Federal government. Even the State of Florida cannot regulate the sound levels of train horns. But now we have Quiet Zones on the Florida East Coast railway. Problem solved.

Now to bees. Another example of what happened back in 2015.

If you didn’t know any better you would have thought back then the 6-square-mile City of Lake Worth took a major step forward in the protection of the honeybee colonies. Nothing of the sort happened. The first reading of Ordinance No. 2015-17, “to regulate, inspect, and permit managed honeybee colonies” is already regulated by state law and there’s nothing anyone in Lake Worth can do to supersede that.

This was city government looking like it was trying to do something, something that the City can’t do anything about at all. However, that doesn’t mean officials can’t look for help from other electeds in the County or State with more power to change things or fix a problem.

But “I’m protecting bees” does play well with certain constituents that can be confused or convinced into believing otherwise that one can do more to regulate an issue. I believe the item below (see image) was brought forward by then-District 2 Commissioner Ryan Maier.

The problem, once again, with taking on any issue of concern for the community is leaving constituents thinking you have some special powers you don’t have. In many ways, the little City of Lake Worth has very little control over what happens within our borders, but when they concentrate and focus on the things they can change, remarkable things can happen. But. . .


Click on image to enlarge:
“To this end, the proposed Ordinance simply acknowledges the State Legislature’s preemption of this area of the law.”

And lastly, how much staff time and taxpayer money was used
to “simply” acknowledge State law?

Tonight: City Commission Work Session at City Hall.


Once again. . .


WARNING. Citizenry of Lake Worth: Get ready for ‘fireworks’
in the L-Dub! 



Please pause here momentarily. This is very important.

Below is a YouTube video of an actual fireworks display here in this little City of Lake Worth. The word ‘fireworks’ in the blog post title above (in ‘finger quotes’) is called a metaphor (or some might call a euphemism). A metaphor is a noun meaning, “[A] figure of speech in which a term or phrase is applied to something to which it is not literally applicable in order to suggest a resemblance, as in ‘A mighty fortress is our God.’ ”

Simply put: Expect to hear and read a whole lot of stuff about a public meeting coming up soon. How big is this news? It’s very possible this news may actually get reported in The Palm Beach Post.

Thank You for your patience. Now let’s proceed to our regularly scheduled program today.


HOLD ON!
It’s gonna be a fun show!


At Work Session tonight (Thurs., Oct. 18th) is Item 3B:


Discussion regarding Potential Ballot Questions for the March [2019] Municipal Elections.


More information from the “Executive Brief ”:


Summary:

The Commission may consider placing items on the March 12, 2019 ballot for the citizens of Lake Worth to vote on as part of the regular Municipal Election cycle.

Background and Justification:

The upcoming March 12th Municipal Election ballot offers the Commission the opportunity to place questions on the ballot for consideration by the Citizens of Lake Worth. The deadline for submittal of ballot questions by the City to the Supervisor of Elections is January 11, 2019. Additionally, the actual ballot language for each question must be finalized and voted on by the Commission prior to this submittal date.

The following issues have been mentioned publicly by the Commission as well as during individual discussions with the City Manager as potential ballot questions. These include, but are not limited to:
  • Authorization to sell City owned property(ies) per City Charter.
  • Change the name of the City of Lake Worth to include “Beach”.
  • Authorize a long term lease with County for the Jewell Cove/Steinhardt properties.

This discussion will provide much needed input for staff necessary for the development of any subsequent Commission Agenda Items for public review and Commission consideration before potentially being placed on March ballot for vote by the Citizenry.


Once again. Please pause here momentarily.

Scroll back up and look over the bullet list from agenda Item 3B at the City Commission tonight.

“Lake Worth Beach” will be a big topic of discussion and one that’s taken a long time to finally move forward. A lot of people are very excited about adding the “Beach”. To learn more consider, “Making the case: The City of Lake Worth needs a name change.”

The item “Jewell Cove/Steinhardt properties” will take a while to explain. An entire blog post all its own, an issue that goes way back. So stay tuned for more about that.

However. . .


Expect a lot of ‘fireworks’ too over another item. The ballot question, “[T]o sell City owned property(ies) per City Charter”!


You were warned.
Get ready for the ‘fireworks’ tomorrow.

 
Of course, speaking metaphorically and/or euphemistically about “fireworks”.

 Here are actual firework from ten years ago.
Enjoy the show from Lake Worth BEACH!




More information about the Work Session tonight, information per the City’s website:

“Backup [information] will be provided at the meeting.”

And as always, Thank You for visiting today.

More history about the Luddites in Martin and Palm Beach counties.


From Palm Beaches Remembered
on Facebook (see photo below):

After much opposition from the NIMBY residents of Jupiter (in northern Palm Beach County) and much of Martin County where the highway path would be, the LAST segment of I-95 was completed in 1988 with the link to Ft Pierce.


The opposition in Martin County to Brightline and the future of passenger rail in Florida makes more sense now doesn’t it? It’s not the train the Luddites in Martin County oppose. They just oppose progress. Progress of any kind is a threat to them. And they constructed and maintain a line of defense against progress: a line of septic tanks from Lake Okeechobee to the Atlantic Ocean (read more about that below).


Looking East: I-95 ending at PGA Blvd in 1976.

Click on image to enlarge.

And then thirty years later is this,
IT’S ALL ABOUT RISK!


Here is actual news from July 2017 by Jennifer Sorentrue* at the Post which reads more like an April Fools’ joke than an actual news story (no fault of the reporter who was just tasked with reporting this nonsense):


In a 6-page letter sent to federal transportation officials on Monday, attorneys for Martin and Indian River counties and the anti-rail group CARE FL argue a loan from the Federal Railroad Administration to help pay for the Brightline project would create “unique financial concerns” for the Trump administration.

And get this!

The attorneys [for CARE FL] also argue that the location of the Florida East Cost Railway tracks, where Brightline will operate its passenger trains alongside other freight traffic, could create a safety hazard for the president [President Trump]. The tracks are located about 1.5 miles west of the Mar-a-Lago club.


And lastly, as far back as the administration of President John Kennedy, developing “new methods of sewage treatment” was a major concern.

His brother, Robert F. Kennedy said. . .

Published in Martin County Currents, “The time is long overdue for residents and communities to do their part by addressing the significant threat to public safety posed by septic system pollution. There are still thousands of septic tanks within the urban services boundary in Martin County.”


*UPDATE: Jennifer Sorentrue is no longer a reporter at the Post. To follow Sorentrue on Twitter click on this link to find out about her latest endeavors.

Vintage postcards: Visitors to the City of Lake Worth from “back in the day”


A special thanks to Frank Palen for allowing me to borrow and scan these historical postcards:


Click on images to enlarge.









































Two updates: From PBSO and City of Greenacres too: They made LOCAL news section in Palm Beach Post!


This is truly exciting. Much more exciting than what’s reported in today’s Lake Worth Very Very Special Monday Cursory Print Edition (LWVVSMCPE). The two recent updates are below.

Usually the only stuff about Greenacres that makes news in the Post is about the latest sweet offering from Hoffman’s Chocolate at 5190 Lake Worth Rd., the listings in the Real Estate section, trouble and mayhem at a trailer park just east outside the municipal limits, vehicle crashes and the occasional crime. To actually see real news reported in the Post about the work of government in Greenacres should interest everyone in Central Palm Beach County.

FYI: November 1st will mark 6 months since Gatehouse Media bought the Post. So maybe going forward there will be less focus on this City of Lake Worth and more focus on other nearby municipalities, e.g., Palm Springs, Lake Clarke Shores, Lantana and maybe even the Great Walled City of Atlantis too. After three years — every single Monday in the Post — it’s about time to hang up that LWVVSMCPE and let other municipalities be the star.

Without further ado . . . to the updates!


UPDATE #1: The City of Greenacres finally got their beat reporter back from the Post after nearly a three-year hiatus covering their local government and public policy news. This is a huge development and may be a signal the City of Lake Worth will be getting a new beat reporter like Boynton Beach and Jupiter did. It’s not unusual for the Post to switch out beat reporters and maybe the City of Lake Worth will get a female reporter since it’s been so long this City had a female perspective.

And this may also mean the long-expected update about the Greenacres police dept. merge with PBSO back in 2015 will be a major news story some day soon as well. Learn more about that following Update #2.

Here are the two opening paragraphs in the print edition of the Post today on p. B3 above the fold by beat reporter Kevin Thompson:


GREENACRES — In hopes of creating a better Greenacres, the city on Saturday is hosting its first public input meeting to gets residents’ thoughts on how Palm Beach County’s eighth largest city can grow.

“We want to know from residents what they think Greenacres should look like and what our strong points are,” Greenacres City Manager Andrea McCue said. “We want to use that information… to come up with a strategic plan for the city we’re hoping turns into an economic development plan for us.”


Unfortunately, Greenacres Mayor Joel Flores did not get quoted in the Post but to learn more about City Manager Andrea McCue click on this link.


UPDATE #2. Please pause for Tweet to load from PBSO.


To watch video click on play icon:


Whilst on the topic. . .

Recent front page news in Lake Worth Herald, “PBSO Celebrates 10 Years Serving Lake Worth”. This is very important as well:


Support LOCAL newspapers and LOCAL small town journalism.


See newspaper clipping below from last week; Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw with elected officials from the City of Lake Worth.


The news about PBSO District 14 was big LOCAL news in The Lake Worth Herald and also a top story reported in The Coastal & Greenacres Observer as well.

Please note the three-year anniversary of PBSO District 16 in the City of Greenacres is very soon and one would expect The Palm Beach Post to dedicate a beat reporter to cover this very worthy news about public safety and public policy in Central Palm Beach County.

To see this week’s front page headlines in the Herald and the Observer click on this link. Following the newspaper clipping are excerpts from the account in the Herald, where to pick up the print edition, how to become a subscriber and contact the editor.


Newspaper clipping from the Observer.

The scene at PBSO headquarters
on Monday, October 1st:

Left to right: District 4 Commissioner Herman C. Robinson, Vice Mayor Pro Tem Scott Maxwell, Sheriff Ric Bradshaw and Mayor Pam Triolo.


[FYI. In newspaper clipping above, two notable notables not in attendance: Lake Worth Vice Mayor Andy Amoroso was in Washington, D.C. all week with the Palm Beach County League of Cities’ “Fast Fly-In Team” meeting with Congressional elected officials and staff representing Palm Beach County. District 2 Commissioner Omari Hardy, of course, had a very good reason to be absent as well. Hardy is a public school teacher during the day, a crucial public service.]

Two excerpts from the front page news in the Herald:


It hardly seems like it has been ten years since the Lake Worth Police Department merged with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office.

At the time, all but one or two of the Lake Worth officers were hired by PBSO and stayed in PBSO District 14 performing the duties of law enforcement in an area they were familiar with. Residents also appreciated having familiar officers, even with a different color uniform.

and. . .


Bradshaw [Sheriff Ric Bradshaw] grew up in Lake Worth and expressed the special place in his heart the city has always held.

When Bradshaw was in High School he participated in Government Take Over Day, acting as, you guessed it, Police Chief of Lake Worth.

Bradshaw talked about progress made in Lake Worth through the years.

Lake Worth Mayor Pam Triolo said the City has enacted over 140 Ordinances since the merger to give PBSO the ability to enforce laws and protect the citizens of Lake Worth.


About The Lake Worth Herald and Coastal & Greenacres Observer:



The weekly Herald is by subscription.

The Observer is FREE: To download as PDF click on this link and look for “Options” tab.


Not a Herald subscriber? Go pick up the print edition for just ¢50 at the City’s newsstand!

Click on image to enlarge:

Meet Lake Worth Vice Mayor Andy Amoroso at his new newsstand located at 205 N. Federal Hwy.
The shop is called
Studio 205. Stop by just for ‘kicks’ and see the kitchen, scrumptious menu and Andys exceptional team.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Tonight: Join Commissioner Herman C. Robinson at monthly Recreation Advisory Board (RAB) meeting.


At end of this blog post is the RAB agenda.

Note the RAB is a public meeting open
to everyone from the public.


The City’s Recreation Advisory Board meetings are held at 6:15 on the third Wednesday of each month and meet at the City’s Recreation Dept. building located at 501 Lake Ave. across from the Cultural Plaza.

The staff liaison to the RAB is the resourceful, ingenious and incredibly talented Lauren Bennett. To contact Bennett at the office call 561-533-7363 or send an email to: lbennett@lakeworth.org

About the RAB:


The Board assists in promoting awareness and involvement in City’s recreation programs. The Board also serves as advisors in policy, schemes, programming, finances, future land acquisition, and facility capital projects relating to recreational needs of the citizens (members serve three year terms).


Resurrecting the RAB was one of Herman’s promises when he campaigned for a seat on the City Commission in March 2017. Do you have ideas to share? Maybe thinking of becoming a City volunteer? Then please contact Commissioner Robinson:

  • Cell: 561-707-2759
  • Office: 561-586-1734
  • Email: hrobinson@lakeworth.org

Everyone is invited to make your way out this evening at the RAB and show your support for the continuing efforts of Commissioner Robinson, Lauren Bennett and the volunteer board.

Agenda:


Roll call: Chair Faith Watson, Vice Chair Staff Liaison Lauren Bennett, Secretary Deborah Null, Angel Alvarez, Evan Cabrera, Gary Antieau, Karla Engel.

Additions, deletions, reordering.

Presentations (no public comment):
  • Meeting etiquette.
  • Lake Worth Jaguars Football and Cheer Update.
Public participation of non-agendaed items (three minute time limit).

Approval of minutes: August 15th.

New business:
  • Recreation survey results.
  • Marketing strategy.
  • Rec2Go.
  • Northwest ball field baseball update.
  • Piano lessons update.
  • Sunset Ridge Park discussion/overview of open play importance.
  • Recreation Advisory Board letter.
  • Holiday Bike Giveaway; bike donations.
Unfinished business: Next meeting, Wednesday, December 12, 2018.

Board comments.

Board liaison report and comments.

Adjournment.

Note: One or more members of the City Commission or advisory board may attend and speak.