Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Palm Beach District Schools - Earth Day Celebration - 4/22

Free Legal and Educational Programs Sponsored by the PBC Bar Associations during "Law Week"

The Palm Beach County Bar Association will be sponsoring “Law Week” starting April 28 offering four days of free legal and educational programs. Some of the new programs this year will focus on foreclosures and the area’s first expungement and civil rights restoration project. Other seminars will provide information on small-claims lawsuits and mediation, estate and probate, and condominium and homeowner associations.

Law Week will also include some programs for schoolchildren including mock trials and a shadowing program. In addition, anyone with a legal question can talk to a lawyer on the phone from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm from April 28 - 30. For more details on these and other programs being offered, please visit the Palm Beach County Bar’s Web site at or call 561-687-2800.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Items of Interest on the City Commission Agenda - 4/1

The following items jumped off the page on tomorrow night's agenda. It is April Fools Day, so I wonder if anything commemorating the occasion will take place. Wouldn't that be exciting! Here is the agenda, with some commentary afterward:

The first item that will be interesting is the report from the Climate Protection Task Force and their recommendations to the Commission. You have been able to read their recommendations here and there is a link directly to the full report in an earlier post. I am disappointed that there aren't land use recommendations that talk about pursuit of Transit Oriented Development options, supporting mass transit initiatives, etc. Other than recommending that people use transit more frequently, it really doesn't register much in their recommendations. Our Comprehensive Plan will contain recommendations for these items once they emerge from the Planning and Zoning Board. But, I think it would be important to put some of the ideas, modeled for our purposes that support green-think land use decisions. I've provided this link before, but if you haven't been to Vancouver, British Columbia's website, it is worth going. They really have nailed the concept of eco-density and are promoting it in unique and novel ways. Click here to check it out.

Next item that garnered my attention was the contract extension for PLACE consultants (Item F on the Consent Agenda). This is for Corey O'Gorman to continue his work watching over the progress of the beach redevelopment project. It usually gets pulled since everyone is polarized on the beach project. I understand that it is hard to determine an actual not to exceed cost for his work, so we end up just extending the contract every three or so months. It looks like the City Manager wants to pare back the rate at which the monthly expense adds up from now on. With a complicated project like the beach, I believe that a report from Mr. O'Gorman should be made at every Commission meeting until the end of the project.

Item H on the agenda concerns the appointment of Mark Rickards and Brendan Lynch as Chairman and Vice-Chairman, respectively. The CRA makes a recommendation to the Commission regarding the Chair and then the Commission makes the actual appointment. The Planning and Zoning Board does it differently. There it is simply a vote of the members of the board. There might be an unusual requirement in the state statutes that requires this separate step for CRAs and their relation to the Commission they report to. Given all the discussion about the CRA of late, I would not be surprised if this is pulled. I am not sure why though, both of these gentleman are good people that have a strong business and economic redevelopment sense. We'll see how it goes tomorrow night.

Under unfinished business, we have the item related to the possible dismissal of a member of the CRA board for excessive absences. This is really a by-product or cause (depending on your point of view) of the CRA revolution and resulting discussions. At the last regular Commission meeting, Commissioner Lowe asked that a special meeting (where the Commission could vote) be held at the end of the workshop to discuss this very topic. That never happened. But, there is in deed still unfinished business here and the discussion should prove to be interesting. When I was chair of Planning and Zoning, I always warned members that if they miss meetings they were in jeopardy of losing their seat. And it's a little bit tricky too. The total amount of absences relates to the last 12 months - which is always a moving target. The standard is missing three consecutive meetings or 25% of meetings over the past 12 month period. Note to self if you are on a board - attend the meetings. There were extenuating circumstances here as the person in question had an obligation on the west coast of Florida and couldn't make all of the meetings called, not just the regular meetings. Anyway, it should continue to be an animated discussion.

Under new business, Commissioner Vespo is asking for an additional 60 days for further negotiations with the County Sheriff's department to take over the City's police function. And then Commissioner Jennings is asking for an explanation of how the Mr. Faried gets his direction from the City Commission to represent the City with the regional waste water treatment authority. Including in the item is a 130 plus page back-up related to the interlocal agreement. This one looks like an all nighter.

Lastly, Greater Bay is on the agenda for an amendment to their development agreement. Need we say more.

Another All-time Record Set Today!

Thanks for visiting. Today's number of visitors tops any other day since the blog began in May 2006!

Don't forget you can sing Karaoke at Club A.J.s from 9 to 12 p.m. on Wednesday nights. You'll see a familiar face or two or three!


This was part of the Michael Brown memorial yesterday. It was introduced as the "Paradoxical Commandments." I have posted it previously, but thought it important to share again at this time.

The verses below reportedly were written on the wall of Mother Teresa's home for children in Calcutta, and are widely attributed to her.

Some sources say that the words below were written on the wall in Mother Teresa's own room. In any case, their association with Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity has made them popular worldwide, expressing as they do, the spirit in which they lived their lives.

People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.

What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.

Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.

In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.