Saturday, February 24, 2007

Fraternal Order of Police, Lake Worth Lodge #1 Endorses my Campaign!

"Political advertisement paid for and approved by Wes Blackman for Commissioner – District #3"

Sunset Ridge - 17th Avenue North Clean-up

Wow! What a busy day. It started around 8:30 this morning when I gathered some equipment to help the nice Sunset Ridge folks. Borrowing a bucket and a "picker-upper" from the Mad Hatter, along with some garbage bags - thanks Broward and Kelley, I then walked to the Regency Party Rental parking lot, south of the 17th Avenue North right-of-way. That's where I met up with the group from the neighborhood.

I had read about the venture yesterday on Lake Worth and the neighborhood planned a clean-up of 17th Avenue North from Dixie Hwy to D St. So, the group pictured below started out and worked our way west. Lots of glass, plastic, bits of flags from the big parking lot, Styrofoam, cardboard and assorted debris (some from the hurricanes) were all gathered into trash bags and taken away. Most of the effort was spent on the area by the FEC railroad tracks. The picture below was taken when all was said and done - You can see me in the back row.

The officers of the Sunset Ridge Neighborhood Association appear in the above photo. From left to right: President, Chris Erhard; Treasurer, Barbara Ringhiser; Secretary, Christine Velez; and Vice-President, Ryan Oblander.
Thanks for the great commitment you have to your neighborhood and City - glad that I could lend a helping hand!
After that, I grabbed my dogs and headed down to the Street Painting Festival. Worked the crowd and spent much of the middle part of the day in our downtown. I talked to a lot of merchants and residents. Such great weather contributed to what will probably be a record crowd. I'll go back tomorrow and concentrate more on the art being created and will share some pictures here.
Then, off I went to the ALF-CIO endorsement screening up in Riviera Beach. I guess I just missed Retha Lowe, but got to chat a while with Mayoral candidate Mary Lindsey while we waited our turn. After a bit, Jo Ann Golden appeared and soon after Mayoral candidate Jeff Clemens showed. Then, it was back home to dust off, rest, etc.
We'll be back at it tomorrow. Remember, this week we have the presentation by Warren Newell at the Golfcourse Clubhouse, the Parrot Cove candidate forum on Tuesday and then the College Park candidate forum on Thursday.
"Political advertisement paid for and approved by Wes Blackman for Commissioner – District #3"

Friday, February 23, 2007

Good Times in Vernon Heights

We had a great time at 1716 N. 22nd Avenue tonight with Carla, Terry and Micheal hosting a great event for District #1 Retha Lowe and District #3 Wes Blackman candidates. Mayoral candidate Jeff Clemens also attended. It's all a part of getting the word out and letting Lake Worth know what a great future it has in store. Here are some pictures from tonight. Enjoy!

"Political advertisement paid for and approved by Wes Blackman for Commissioner – District #3"

Professional Firefighters/Paramedics of Palm Beach County Endorse my Campaign!

"Political advertisement paid for and approved by Wes Blackman for Commissioner – District #3"

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Pics from Jonathan and Ruben's Get Together and a Possible re-do of 431 N. L Street - WOW

Thanks to Jonathan and Ruben for opening their home for a campaign gathering. They have done a great job with their house on N. Palmway, with a fantastic backyard and pool area. It was a blustery day, but the winds calmed as the day drew to a close.

I gave an update on the status of the campaign to the group. We just got through a week of screenings by various groups that will be endorsing candidates in the municipal elections. The big push now is getting volunteer group together and oriented toward our mission. Things are looking good in that regard. Mayoral candidate Jeff Clemens came by for a visit too.

Afterwards, we adjourned to the Mad Hatter and bumped into Paul Landrigan, who is currently playing a major role in the Lake Worth Playhouse production of Arthur Miller's "A View from the Bridge". As I was chatting with Jonathan and Ruben, they mentioned their desire to find a property near the downtown, preferably north. They have a significant amount of experience in rehabilitation of historic properties in Miami Beach and want to turn their efforts towards a Lake Worth property.

Immediately I thought of 431 N. L. Street. This is a property that the Planning, Zoning and Historic Resource Preservation Board saw last September. It is a City-owned property that was shut down through the nuisance abatement process (the members PZHRPB serve on the Nuisance Abatement Board as well) - a former Joe Dimauro property that plagued the neighborhood for years. The City wanted to demolish the entire structure and therefore applied for permission to demolish the building.

Through some excellent work performed by Darrin Engel, the City's Historic Preservation planner (see below), he put together the following staff report/recommendation and the Board ended up denying the request. The board did express concern regarding the future of the property and the chances of whether or not it was realistic to think that the existing ten units in the building could be converted back to the original four units as the building was originally designed.

As you can see from the staff report, the building was designed by G. Sherman Childs - who was the architect of the Municipal Auditorium (current City Hall), the City Hall annex, etc.

So, this is one important structure in our City's history that deserves to be saved and it is good to know that there ARE people interested in returning it to a positive, contributing factor in the neighborhood Of course, any exchange of this property from City to private hands would be through the RFP - Request for Proposal process and might trigger a referendum and it might have to be affordable housing, base upon the recent State law. I am looking into the process now and will get with some answers.

If you have trouble viewing the staff report, I can e-mail you a copy. I also have the powerpoint presentation available:

"Political advertisement paid for and approved by Wes Blackman for Commissioner – District #3"