Saturday, September 19, 2009

Outrageous handbill being distributed by Jo-Ann Golden - "Boosting the Local Economy"

Last night, I just got back from Park(ing) Day in downtown and happened to look down the street. Who did I see but Jo-Ann Golden with someone else going door-to-door on my street. I waved at them and asked if I could see what they were passing out. Jo-Ann agreed and we met in front of my house. I also gave her the handbill that I am using. She commented on my loquat tree - the largest she had ever seen and we talked about the two lychee trees across the street.

Now, I am not going to show all the handbill here, but there are parts that I just can't believe a sitting Commissioner in this economy would put in her literature. There is another item that is an out-and-out fabrication - and actually attempts to take credit for something that I did while on the CRA.

This is part of her statement on the front of the piece - which also features City Hall. I thought we couldn't use city buildings on our campaign materials, but I'll let that slide. Look at the quote. How has she been the driving force for new jobs? Has she seen the vacant stores in our downtown, the vacant property along Dixie Hwy or our languishing Park of Commerce? Does she not know that we have been through what amounts to a depression and record rates of foreclosures while she was in office? Does she realize the city lost 24% of its taxable property value last year - the second highest rate of any municipality in Palm Beach County? I'm not suggesting she is to blame for our national, even worldwide, recession but to refer to our "vibrant economy?" Where has she been living?
Then we have what appears on the back under the heading "Commissioner Jo-Ann Golden LEADING THE WAY..." This is so outrageous - she claims taking the lead in the $25 million grant money from the Neighborhood Stabilization Program - 2. She even got the amount wrong. This is the grant the CRA applied for since THE CITY COMMISSION WOULDN'T! Click the title of this post for the CRA meeting minutes from July 7, 2009 for a full account. Here are some excerpts:

I actually was one person that acted to approve the $25 million grant application while on the CRA. The city barely lifted a finger and none of the commissioners or Mayor were there for input, support or comment.

Then, later, at the City Commission's July 20th meeting when the discussion took place surrounding the disposition of the CRA, Commissioner Golden commented that she wasn't sure the NSP-2 grant was a good idea, since we'd have the federal government telling us how to spend the money and that the city knows better. Strangely, the minutes from July 20th are missing on the city's website - which might even be a Sunshine Law violation, since minutes need to be kept for all meetings. I'll look into that more - meanwhile, I am going through the audio of the July 20th Commission meeting and I invite you to as well.

Where is July 20?

Political Advertisement Paid for and Approved by Wes Blackman for City Commissioner District #3

Friday, September 18, 2009

For entertainment purposes only...

Had fun today at Park(ing) Day in downtown LW

This is a charactiture of me done while lounging around in my "park" with other attendees. Had a great time. Enjoy - those are stickers I was handing out. Oh, and the artist admitted that my nose is not that pointy :)

CRA Neighborhood Newsletter - Fall/Winter

Click title for link. This is the write-up that I did on the Small Business Week workshop which appears in this edition of the newsletter:

On May 15, a group of 75 small business entrepreneurs in and around Lake
Worth gathered in the city's Golf Course clubhouse for a day-long small business
workshop. Lake Worth CRA Former Vice Chair Brendan Lynch welcomed
those assembled and the Greater Lake Worth Chamber of Commerce
President Tom Ramiccio talked about the coming National Small Business
Week. He also reviewed the various Chamber services available for small
business owners. Wes Blackman, former Lake Worth CRA Board Member,
served as the Master of Ceremonies for this event.

A number of small business development professionals gathered to inform the
group on ways to establish, grow and sustain their businesses – including
information on how to access Small Business Administration (SBA) programs
and how to become vendors to the Federal government. Adrian Salee,
SCORE Business Counselor gave pointers on preparing a business plan and
stressed its importance. Laurence Davenport, Executive Director of the Business
Loan Fund of the Palm Beaches, addressed the group. He said that his
organization specializes in smaller loans to businesses that are otherwise not
"bankable" or where physical access to credit sources is a problem.

Additional workshops will be held throughout the year in Lake Worth. Information
will be provided on the CRA website. For more information on the SBDC
at Palm Beach Community College please call 561.862.4725.

G1 - Campaign Treasurer's Report - 09 18 09

Signed copy to be turned in to City Clerk this afternoon.

News from St. Petersburg: Sad hotel turns into gay resort, the Flamingo, on 34th Street S

Click title for link. An excerpt:

Reinhardt and Baker say transforming the rundown property was made easier with help from the city. The former JMS Hotel made news last fall when city officials declared it unsafe for the more than a dozen families, including 24 children, who made it their home. The hotel's electricity had been shut off because of unpaid bills, and the water was about to be turned off. While the residents found places to live with help from city and county social services agencies, the property, which had been going through foreclosure proceedings, appeared destined to sit empty into the foreseeable future.

For that reason, when Baker and Reinhardt announced plans to renovate it, the city supported the project, Deputy Mayor Dave Metz said.

"We knew that these are tough economic times,'' he said. "We gave them a little extra effort and attention. It's very nice to see this project come to fruition.''

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Sorry for the lack of recent postings...

I find myself in the midst of non-stop campaigning - which is a good thing, but there are only so many hours in a day. On the campaign propaganda front, handbills and stickers are IN. Shoot me your order at Also be sure to stop by the parking lot across from the Post Office tomorrow to say "Hi" at my park-for-a-day parking space. I'll have an easel there where you can jot down whatever you want about what Lake Worth means to you. I plan to share some or all of those recollections here later on.

More campaign info: Signs come in tomorrow. We are numbering and registering signs. This means you will have to sign a permission form that indicates the address where the sign will be placed. There are three reasons for this 1) so that we have documented permission from the property owner or tenant that it's o.k. for a Wes Blackman sign to be there, 2) so that we have a record of a sign being placed if it comes up missing and 3) so that we can retrieve and recycle signs after the November 3 election. That way, stealing signs will be a crime against nature, not just against the law. A little more paperwork, but I think it will help solve a lot of the problems that we have had in the past.

Click here for more information on Park(ing) Day! Hope to see you tomorrow!

Political Advertisement Paid for and Approved by Wes Blackman for City Commissioner District #3

Advice to the City Commission: Please Avoid the Third Rail

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

From my BlackBerry:

Thirteen calls today regarding a class action lawsuit against the city of Lake Worth re change in building height - FYI

Lake Worth to consider limiting most buildings to 35 feet tall

Click title for link to PB Post article on 9/14 meeting.

Charles R. Brown

The white light streams down to be broken up by those human prisms into all the colors of the rainbow. Take your own color in the pattern and be just that.

Click here for link to javier del sol's archived UTalkNews interview from last Sunday

EDITORIAL: Take the deal, Lake Worth

Please click title for link to PB Post editorial. An excerpt:

"Commissioners Cara Jennings, Jo Ann Golden and Suzanne Mulvehill hope that the county will go for a greener design. [The degree to which this latest design is "green" is subject to interpretation] Sure, green space is great. And maybe if this weren't a last-minute deal, it would be a good point to negotiate. But the appeal of the beach is the ocean. The amount of nearby grass and shrubs is secondary. And while Lake Worth residents always have wanted somebody else to pay for "their" beach while retaining all control and access, that isn't going to happen.

The county, with good reason, is losing patience. The city should take the money and provide the open parking spaces. Lake Worth and its residents still will benefit tremendously. The city is figuring out how many decal users are likely to be at the beach at one time. If it's high, and the county agrees to set aside a few more decal spaces, that would be generous. But passing on $5 million for the sake of a few parking spaces would be another example of Lake Worth missing an opportunity to improve the beach."

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Stickers are IN! Let me know if you want a handful...

This past Sunday night...

I was reminded again how important a decision it was to go with the Sheriff's department and dissolve our own police force. I was out at a local establishment watching the Packers/Bears football game. That's still o.k. to do that in Lake Worth, isn't it? Anyway, after being there a while, a patron went out into the parking lot to get something out her car, when she immediately came back in and yelled that someone had just broken into a certain car in the parking lot. I was initially relieved that the description of the car was not mine. Apparently, she had caught the guy in the act and he ran away. At that point, the owner of the vehicle and others in their group ran out and chased the guy (not recommended) while the bartender called 911.

In minutes, the Sheriff arrived in force (dogs, cars and chopper) and within 45 minutes, they actually caught the perpetrator and he was in the back of one of the cars.

Apparently, this had happened two nights before - both times cars were cleaned out of any valuable contents. Moral to the story: Do not leave anything visible inside your car.

It made me wonder how this might have transpired differently if our own police department was still in place. It's important to note that the increase in cost of our Sheriff's department contract is less this year than the annual increases for the city's police department from 06-07 on. This fact was stated by Administrative Services Director Bates at the 9/10 Commission meeting. Commissioner Jennings was going on about how expensive Sheriff was compared to our police department - in reality, we'd be paying more and getting less. I guess she is very o.k. with the getting less part but it's the lack of control, I think, that bothers her the most.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Lessons in Grandstanding:


Verb1.grandstand - perform ostentatiously in order to impress the audience and with an eye to the applause; "She never misses a chance to grandstand"
performing arts - arts or skills that require public performance
perform - give a performance (of something); "Horowitz is performing at Carnegie Hall tonight"; "We performed a popular Gilbert and Sullivan opera"

What is "grandstanding?"

"Political grandstanding in particular can be quite dangerous, especially when a talented orator uses exaggerated techniques to get a point across. It is often easy to sway the will and ideas of the public with a few well-chosen words, so a politician could have undue influence over a situation simply by speaking well, and grandstanding tactics could be used to push citizens into a particular opinion, rather than allowing them to draw their own conclusions."

Or you could have attended or listened to the 9/14 Lake Worth City Commission meeting.

Don't Forget - Surprise Meeting tonight on Comp Plan - Height

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Listening to javier del sol's interview on - Click here for live stream - 9/13 - 7 to 8 p.m.

I will be on the show next week from 7 to 8 p.m., September 20th. Please tune in!

For your information, my opponent Commissioner Jo-Ann Golden, refused to return calls placed to her inviting her to participate. We have yet to know what she believes her accomplishments were during her two year and eight month term, as well as her plans for a second term.

Political Advertisement Paid for and Approved by Wes Blackman for City Commissioner District #3

Handbills - Coming out this week - Let me know if you want a stack to take around!