Saturday, December 17, 2011

Click here for live audio from Special City Commission meeting on City Manager recruitment

Mr. Bressner is there.  Click here for meeting back-up material.

I did not listen intently to the entire meeting - it started at 10 and was going on at least until 1 p.m.  The voted down a national search - both McVoy and Mulvehill wanted one.  They voted down Kathleen Margoles becoming an interim - McVoy and Mulvehill wanted that.  The voted to go with the "range rider" assistance through the ICMA in recruiting a City Manager and are looking for an interim City Manager until a permanent one is found who will not be eligible for the final position.

Correct me if I am mistaken, please.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Let the people pee!

Click title for link to Shiny Sheet article. Palm Beach is ponying up for bathrooms at Midtown Beach.

"Sounds of the Season"

Tomorrow night in the Cultural Plaza, yours truly will be hosting the "Sounds of the Season" holiday event starting at 6 p.m. dressed sort of like this (pic from last year.)  I'll be reading "When the Grinch Stole Christmas" and sing "You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch" during the evening.  Hope to see you there!

Pics from my bike ride to the beach today...

I went on a bike ride today from my house to Southern Boulevard, down South Ocean to our beach and then back to my house - about 12 miles.  I stuffed my camera in my pocket in order to get some pictures of our beach, the casino building construction and miscellaneous other things.

I think these two pictures, above and below point out something that I think is a missed opportunity. In our rush to save the building with Suzanne Meulvehill's "Circle of Light" - which we ended up not doing in practice but only remains in the minds of a few people - we forfeited the chance to open up a view of the ocean as you come over the bridge.  We have essentially walled off the ocean from public view which is what developers have been doing since the early 20th Century in South Florida.  Where can you get an unobstructed view of the ocean as you head east?  If you know, please share.  I am having trouble thinking of one nearby.  We had what could have been a "blank slate" and placed the building anywhere on the 19 acre property and still have the required parking according to the County grant.  And, Commissioner McVoy, the almost 700 parking spaces make this more of a public parking lot for the beach, rather than 19 acres of park property.
Coincidentally, I am reading Genius of Place: The Life of Frederick Law Olmstead by Justin Martin.  Mr. Olmstead, rather serendipitously, was one of the main designers and integral in the development of Central Park in New York City.  He also established the notion of landscape architecture as a profession.  I encourage you to read it if you are interested.  I just read a part last night how in 1859 he had to figure out how to plan for space for the horse carriages that would traverse the park when they weren't being used.  He assigned a paved area that he referred to as "carriage rests" which was the precursor to the ubiquitous "parking space" of the future.
I have always liked these coconut palms in the median leading to the beach.  A city crew was there today trimming them back.
This storage container lays in "Ye Olde Bridge Parking Lot" and is apparently part of the GreenMarket that operates there on Saturdays.  With this sort of signage, it would make the general public ask what is exactly open this Saturday.  The storage container?
I would like an explanation from the project architect on how the building will meet the city's current height restrictions.  The height definition is to the highest point of the building, including any ornamentation.

Interesting pieces of history within staff report on Casino-related expenses...

In a December 13, 2011 memo from Steven Carr and Kathleen Margoles that is part of the item related to casino expenses which will appear on the 12/20 City Commission agenda, some puzzle pieces are put in place about the progression of development on our beach property - as well as this particular section of the barrier island.  It also details the the situation regarding West Palm Beach water utilities and the previous arrangement with our former tenants.  From the memo:


While no drawings exist from the installation of the water lines at the Beach Casino, a review of
events at this site give a fairly good picture of when the lines were installed. The Lake Worth
Beach was originally developed in 1912, with no potable water facilities. When the Beach
Casino was constructed in 1922 (opened 1923) the pool was salt water (filled from Atlantic and
drained to Intracoastal). There are no records to indicate from where, or if, drinking water was
available at this time. However, since at that time the Casino was the only structure from what
is now Sloan’s curve to Manalapan, it was likely supplied by an onsite well.

In 1937 the old wooden bridge that connected the mainland to the beach was replaced by a
concrete bridge. At the same time this bridge was being constructed, Lake Worth was moving
the water facilities (one well and a tower) from the Shuffleboard Court site to the Utility
Campus off A Street. The new site had pumping facilities and an assumption can be made that
the construction of a bridge attached 6-inch cast iron water main was installed at with the bridge
construction. This also correlates to the Casino rebuild of 1938. This 6-inch main ran up the old
route of Lake Avenue into the Casino property and then down the west side along what I now
the western part of the loop road.

In 1971 The City started the replacement of the old saltwater pool with the current pool. At the
same time FDOT was replacing the old concrete bridge with the current Bastille Bridge (done in
1973). Because of the latter the water line that crossed the old bridge needed to be abandoned.
By this time there was another source of water along the barrier island that was operated by
West Palm Beach and supplied water down to South Palm Beach. With the abandonment of the
City of Lake Worth water source, a connection to the property from West Palm Beach was

In 1979 the concession stand / bait shop on the pier were expanded to what now houses Benny’s
When this was done, a 2-inch line was run to the pier to supply water to the restaurant and to the
showers along the sea wall. These lines were installed by Public Services staff.

Based on these dates, the 6-inch cast iron lines on the beach property date from 1938-1940 and
the 2-inch PVC and galvanized steel are lines from 1979. West Palm Beach’s main from A1A
and the meter were installed in 1971. At around 70 years of age the cast iron lines are due for
replacement especially in the corrosive salt water ground that they sit in at the beach.
To ensure adequate service and proper fire protection, both of which are goals of long range
water supply planning, the water lines at the beach / casino are candidates for replacement. The
estimated cost of replacement, in conjunction with the ongoing project is $400,000. Since the
water is supplied by a third party (West Palm Beach), the rate structure developed for Citysupplied
service is not a viable alternative for costing water service for the beach. Previous
tenants received water and sewer service as part of the rental agreements and the West Palm
Beach water cost were paid by the General Fund. In order to adequately collect in the future, all
facilities will be individually metered and billed by the utility. Consequently, the Utility will
assume payment of the WPB water costs. The rate consultant has been asked to develop a
special overlay district for the beach / casino water. This cost will cover the cost of service
incurred by the utility for O&M and billing, the cost of the WPB water service, and the capital
improvement necessary to ensure a high standard of service. The rate development kick off
meeting is scheduled for January 2012 and the Beach overlay district will be the first task to

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Lake Worth Municipal Golf Course

Here, here! I am not a golfer, but it's nice to read a positive write-up on the Golf Course. Click title for link.

Peter Elwell reappointed town manager

Click title for link to Shiny Sheet article. Believe me, there are GOOD city managers out there and Mr. Elwell is one of them. I had positive interactions with him during my tenure at Mar-a-Lago - many of them sensitive situations. I could always count on his unflinching professional and polite demeanor - apparently his bosses recognize this too.

"Mad Dash Food Collection"

Dear Friends of Lake Worth and our Charitable Partners,
The Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martine Counties collected this box of food for a neighbor in need and has graciously allowed us to distribute. We currently have two families that could use a basket of Non-Perishalbe foods to ease the financial burden and keep their cupboards full, hopefully making their holiday a more Joyous Occasion. 
So we would like to ask our Local friends to help us Double this box so we can give a great gift to both families! If you would like to participate please send email to for the Lake Worth area or call 909-8708 and I can pick up. if you want to help with pick up and bring to Lake Worth that is greatly appreciated! This is the "mad dash food collection" as we want to distribute this This Sunday December 18th. Thank you to all our friends at Community Foundation for your generous donation!
Thank all of our wonderful volunteers and partners for the many blessings that you have given us through your charitable hearts and giving all year long!
Please note that we have one family that does not even have a stove in thier home.  If you have a used gas stove that can be is the message back from our family.
"the space can take an apartment sized stove up to a regular sized - 36" I believe.  The gas hook up is about 5 inches out from the wall by the kickboard.  I hope that helps you in determining the stove. "

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Look no further for shiny objects...

Portion of City Commission Work Session 12/13

This is regarding the elimination of the fire assessment and other possible adjustments to the current fiscal year's budget.

South Palm Park Neighborhood


The Miami Bike Scene: Broward B-cycle launches in three cities December 14

Click title for link. Information on Broward County's new bike rental service.

Signed Stanton, McVoy, Mulvehill, Jennings, Karson, etc.

What "we" thought about last night...

There really was no protest last night.  Someone did work the phones to get the media there so they thought there was a story here.  I am sure that transgender peppered every other sentence in their delivery.  I had a talk with one of the protesters who thought that Ms. Stanton should have had a review and been written up if there were things that the Commission didn't like.  I pointed out that would have been to fire her "for cause" and that the Commission's action was just to change course - and according to her contract, she could be let go for no reason.  This protester thought it was good how Ms. Stanton kept the developers at bay to which I responded there were no developers during her tenure.  Then we got in to the beach and this protester thought that the beach was the greatest thing.  I pointed out the Greater Bay lawsuit that the city has spent, at least, $600,000 in an attempt to defend its position and still could be required to pay millions in the form of a judgement.  I also pointed out the the City Manager did her best to hide the real cost of the beach project.  She thought that this was all spawned from Maxwell's aversion to the City Manager and that somehow this represented a bigoted act.  At this point in the conversation, I said that I was gay and am offended by the insinuation that this was somehow about the former City Manager's gender.  It had nothing to do with it.

The "protesters" didn't make it to the actual meeting, that I could see.  Once the meeting got started, we were treated to the grim history of the Park of Commerce.  We were told about all the potential there (see my blog from the meeting) and how the whole notion has been plagued by fits and starts over the past 15 or so years.  The CDM group, who prepared the latest study on infrastructure needs for the Park of Commerce, was there for free last night.  The study was paid for by an Economic Development Administration matching grant of $250,000, with $250,000 from the City.  This grant was issued with great fanfare two years ago but our most recent and former City Manager did all that she could to not put up the matching money, until she finally caved.  It appeared that it wasn't exactly the current City Commission's priority and that she had other things that could be done with $250,000.  She eventually saw the light, but the city was in jeopardy of losing the grant.  Now the study "sits on the shelf" and the property owners in the Park of Commerce are getting tired of empty promises from the city.  It is clear that whatever happens next has to mean something tangible or the whole notion could be abandoned.

What I found striking about the budget discussion is this point was danced around, but missed.  That is the former City Manager and the previous City Commission had made their mind up that they would have an assessment for fire pension BEFORE any examination of the budget realities.  That is what Commissioner Maxwell was getting at.  And it points to the weakness of the former City Manager's it-is-my-way-or-else attitude.  That, in the end, was the source of her demise - nothing else.

I will have a video later of some of the feistier discussion during the budget cut portion of the agenda.  It became clear that the former City Manager had not integrated information requested by the new members of the City Commission in these budget cut recommendations and I am sure that contributed to the last week's outcome as well.  The Mayor made a point about looking at Commission and senior staff salaries to see what money would be generated by a 10% cut in each area.  McVoy ridiculed the notion saying that a 10% cut in Commission salaries would amount to $7,000 and that we had $1.4 million to go.  Commissioner McVoy -  have you heard of the concept of a symbolic gesture?  You are asking the public to make a sacrifice so you, in turn, make a sacrifice.  While not materially important, it is symbolically important.  And many times when the Mayor would mention items that she had asked the City Manager to prepare - for informational purposes - both McVoy and Mulvehill made it seem like her mind was made up to go through with those suggestions when she maintained she needed to see that information BEFORE she made any decision.

One of the most telling parts of the meeting last night was when Mr. Bressner with the ICMA mentioned that being fired on a 3-2 vote, something that he experienced, is a difficult thing.  But he said that it is also difficult for the community and for staff.  He implored this Commission that "it was time to come together."  I didn't see much evidence of that last night.  I thought that lip service might be paid to the notion, but I didn't hear that either.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Commissioner McVoy chatting it up with the media while the meeting goes on...

Live at 12 13 City Commission Work Session

Park of Commerce

Commissioner McVoy not here.  Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council presentation on the Park of Commerce economic development potential.  There is a PowerPoint.  Showing aerial, good sized 390 acres.  He says the area can be a focus of redevelopment for the city.  Centrally located in the County and region.  He thnks there are some regional interests here too.  Can help diversify the regional economy.  Access to existing transportation is in place and can be an incentive for redevelopment and the establishment of light industry, warehousing and manufacturing.  Fifteen year planning history for this park,  Many interested in the Park of Commerce's potential.  Reviewing TCRPC plan from ten years ago - largest assemblage of land in Palm Beach County.  Quote from slide "Lake Worth: Best City to do business in South Florida" - McVoy arrived.

Park needs a center, to be self-sufficient, walkable streets, entrance features and infrastructure.  Infrastructure needs assessment.  Three phases spread over 15 years 1-3 years, 4-7 years and 8-15 years.  Transportation systems, stormwater, water, sewer, power and telecommunications improvements. 650,000 additional square feet of industrial and office possible,.  The infrastructure report is very technical.  Good access to major roads. Tri-rail station, intricate network of roads throughout the park.  Rights of way are there and becomes the structure to route the infrastructure.  Boutwell Road became the priority for transportation improvements for Phase 1.  Turning movements need improvement at intersections, underground utilities, telecommunications duct bank, gateway identification, streetlights, pedestrian and bicycle friendly, Palm Tran and street trees.  Review existing conditions.  Looking at typical future street cross section.  Looked at entry feature locations.

Stormwater was a big issue to allow future redevelopment of the park.  Had to look at SFWMD and Lake Worth Drainage district requirements. Water treatment was examined.  Not feasible to rely on a regional system, need to go to the parcel to parcel approach where each property owner provides for their own system.  Green stormwater management systems were employed.  Treatment and storage were addressed.

Water, sewer, electric and telecommunications next.  Looked at future use of land and generation rates according to demand and future tenants.  Looked at potable water and fire flows - phased improvements.  Looked at eight new sanitary sewer pump stations phased over time.  Electrical - underground a priority, along with the transportation improvements.  Telecommunications and high-speed Internet - what is there and what you can do with what is existing.  FPL could bring in their fibernet in which is 50 mps.  Fiber optics can go up to 10 gbps.  Review of alternatives.  Comcast only covers a quarter of the park.  Must have return on investment.  City may have to put a "dark grid" in and then access by local ports.  $250,000 initial investment for would make park more attractive.  Cost - first phase under $6 million.  Second phase - $2 million.  Phase 3 $3.3 million.  Total $11.05 million infrastructure investment.

Funding options:  Grants, local state and federal.  Grants are moving towards a systematic approach - getting at all the things that are necessary not just one item.  Economic Development Administration funding would require a clear and concise vision from the city.  One of them is the Public Words and Economic Assistance programs.  Land owners need to be tapped to help articulate that vision.  Donna Brosemer is giving some history of how we got where we are.  She had a lot of interaction with individual property owners to encourage them to be annexed - most of park was in unincorporated PBC.  Supported by every Commission she has worked for, but not by every staff.  Much turnover and credibility suffered.  70 property owners.  She arrived at an industrial taxing district - a dependent district can be created by the city.  Owners wanted some assurance that is was not just another tax.  Lake Worth Park of Commerce Industrial Development Authority - name chosen.  Board of Directors can be City Commission, property owners or a hybrid of the two.  They recommended that the property owners would have the majority - most workable option.  Retrofitting structure over an established conglomeration.  Largest industrial area along the east coast of south Florida - transportation right there.  Can be a regional economic engine. This would be created as a tax increment financing district and would only be within Lake Worth's boundaries.  Would capture future increases in property values.  Must re-establish and maintain trust with property owners overtime.

McVoy sees the potential, know what we need, we have innovative ideas and grants available, especially if we have an environmental edge to it - but the property owners are skeptical.  Where is the money gong to come from - implementation?  Any movement?  Put on shelf and there has been no movement - all here as a favor tonight, none are currently under contract.  NOTHING HAS HAPPENED.  There was an application made to EDA but it was rejected.  Chicken or egg scenario.  Everything has to be in place institutionally first, if you don't have it, you "can ask for the moon and not get it."  McVoy asks if one of the things a granting agency looks at if we have anyone on staff to put this together?  The internal capacity of the city is critical.  Must partner with other entities.

Maxwell asked for everyone to come tonight to establish what were the first steps that we can take as a city.  Where are we going to get the money?  He'd like to give a presentation on how to come up with the initial money.  15 year timeline - to date - how much we have spent on studies to date.  Brosemer went to the legislature and everyone asked for a plan.  The EDA grant was a way to get a plan, but we were turned down for it.  Cost of CDM study - $250,000.  Physical improvements need to be made or things and occupants will be less quality.  Mulvehill pushes for an economic development staff person and that is part of this fiscal year's budget.  There is some kind of association with the county regarding telecommunications.  She thinks that position is critical and so is the marketing manager position.  She says that the models have changed - sustainability efforts.  She is campaigning already.

Maxwell asks if there is any cost efficiency if we attack all three phases - if we had the money?  The answer is yes.  How much of a timeline would there be if we could just write a check for all of it - land acquisition will take time for right of way acquisition.  Have to be happening with construction and design.  Need to do better with the property owners - hard to go back to them at one time.Can't piecemeal this anymore - what do we have to do to make it a reality and not a fantasy.  Can TIF be sunsetted?  Yes, after a number of years.  Even if we were to right that check, we would have to get our internal structure together but must also promote this land.  He will be hosting a meeting later this week - with the BDB, economic development organizations, etc, - what are the options to make this plan a reality.  He will report back to the Commission.  Marketing efforts need actions, not words.  Need to be taken seriously this time.

Amoroso thanks everyone for taking their own time to come.  Are you able to work with staff?  Did you get a response from our past city manager?  Didn't want it like the other city manager's we had.  She didn't want to advance it.  She had other priorities.  Where are we now with the 70 owners?  15 or 20 engage at any one time.  It has been a while.  Need vision to move it forward - 12 to 15 years is enough, wants to look for other funding.

McVoy what is the step that the property owners would need to see the city take - do more annexations, get the structure in place, details can be worked on that don't entail spending a lot of money.  Need to commit to spend some money on this.

Recruitment of City Manager

Kurt Bressner - range rider for International City Manager's Association - he is one of eight range riders - 73 nationwide.  His territory is southeast Florida.  He is here to present options regarding the replacement of the city manager.  There was additional information sent this morning.  Interim from city staff - advantages for continuity, might be most cost effective.  Dual function manager/department head might be a problem and both jobs could suffer.  May not have the broad based experience that is needed.  Can be done for a short period of time.  Go forward and hire a manager while recruiting for a permanent one is another option - retired military could be a possible with staffing and command experience.  He cited Bill Horn in Clearwater.  Operational changes can be made during the interim period.  Outside the organization - no vested interest.. More cost with this option.  There is the interim period - holiday period, things are flat until after the first of the year.  Can utilize the services of the range riders and he has alerted them to the possibility. Search firm has access to candidates that we don't have access to locally.   They have some in-house knowledge and connections that can help - range riders too - a savvy bunch.  Cost of search firm would be in addition to severance payments - he was fired on a 3-2 vote in Illinois.  He says that it is very important to come together and to move forward now.  Very difficult decision to make and a 3-2 vote is tough on a decision like this.  They need to put it behind you now.  Care has to be taken now related to the Commission's interaction with staff - cannot direct staff to do things - particularly during this interim time - has to be by the book.  They need one direction and it has to come from the City Manager - not five commissioners.

Charter contains a good job description for a city manager.  He can help write one or create one that matches the Charter. He thinks that the position would be attractive on a national basis - can consider an assistant or deputy manager as well.  Need someone with seasoned decision-making ability - Commission should act soon on this decision for community stability.  Just travel cost and copy costs - their service is free.  

McVoy thanks him for stepping up and helping us out.  Concerned about losing professional staff.  Mulvehill's glasses are all the way down her nose during this presentation.  Carr asks if the Commission wants an item put on the next agenda.  Maxwell says this could be a stand alone topic for discussion - might need to be a separate meeting.  McVoy says he would like to be there - someone thought that he was outside protesting at the beginning.  Mulvehill is talking about the 3-2 vote and that we have lost one person already - she inferred that the others might have not been surprised by the decision.  What timeframe is it going to take in filling this position.  He says at least 4 months for a nationwide recruitment.  Can the interim do the dual function for a four month period or does it make sense to bring someone new in - can't just be a placeholder.  Salary for the interim, could be for the current pay and that is negotiable.

They might meet this Saturday to make decisions on this topic.He would like to review the file on the previous search firm.  Saturday would be a special meeting.  Sounds like it is at 10 a.m. - Mulvehill wants the Mayor to elaborate what the new direction that we are taking with a new city manager at the meeting on Saturday.

Budget Reduction Plan

Carr introduces the topic.  Fry is doing the presentation.  He announced that he was leaving today and is taking a job at the City of Port St. Lucie and will be here another month.  It would be good to get these changes done before he leaves.  Mayor says some of the items were discussed in one on one meetings with the former City Manager - these are just suggestions from city manager Stanton.  Mulvehill says that these suggestions were made since they wanted to repeal the fire assessment.  Those options were not necessarily at the current Mayor's direction.  Carr says they result from discussions with department heads - so it is more of a collaborative staff proposal.  "The City organization is waiting for the decision in order to know if there is enough money, etc."  Maxwell, when he looked at this, saw the same 200 pages but it is devoid of the fluff from the previous back-up material.  There were items that the Mayor wanted that didn't appear in the report.  Amoroso had some suggestions that he didn't see included.  Mulvehill says that we are setting ourselves up for moving backward - look at this with a lot of caution.  The Mayor says they made need to take time to meet with the interim to make sure their suggestions are taken into account.  The Mayor wants to eliminate the fire assessment as a goal, that is not Mulvehill's goal.  She thinks this is extreme and dangerous.  Staff is waiting for an answer.  Amoroso says staff is held up, but he has some issues with things - he is seeing someone being demoted but is getting  $9,000 raise and a secretary that seems high.

I promised myself that I would be leaving at 8:30 p.m. - check out the stream 

Pics of "Protest" up until 5:45 p.m.

Lake Worth Residents To Protest Firing Of Transsexual City Manager - Politics News Story - WPBF West Palm Beach

Opportunists looking to make an "issue" where there isn't one. Have you no shame? Click title for link.

And then there is this odd e-mail from Ms. Stanton to Loretta Sharpe.  Did anyone else get one of these?
The attachment is this document.
Brought to us by the same people who were against the "politics of division" and for "One City, One Future." - Right.

From CBS 12 News on FaceBook this morning:

"Outrage is growing over a pair of proposed towers in South Korea.. because some say they mimic the World Trade Center exploding. The Dutch architects behind the project say what they're trying to show is a cloud.. connecting two luxury apartment buildings. They apologized.. but said they will not alter the design." Thoughts?
Note:  Not intended for those offended by buildings three stories or higher, the word "luxury" or anything beyond the borders of Lake Worth.

Agnes M. Pahro

"What is Christmas? It is tenderness for the past, courage for the present, hope for the future. It is a fervent wish that every cup may overflow with blessings rich and eternal, and that every path may lead to peace."

I know, I know, we don't want to be another Delray, but...

I received this from an alert reader this morning:

This press release concerns one of Delray Beach’s rough neighborhoods. They are spending a lot of money to clean up this part of town and make it more business and resident friendly. There is a proposal for a hotel to be built on Atlantic Ave in between I95 and downtown too. The hotel will be pretty close to I95 and in the same general area – which they are referring to as the Southwest Area Neighborhood. I’ve said before that I am not a big fan of Delray Beach, but they sure know what the heck they are doing when it comes to these kinds of things. LW could learn a thing or too.

Southwest Area Neighborhood
Road & Utility Infrastructure Improvement Projects
December 12, 2011: The City of Delray Beach, in partnership with the Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA), Palm Beach County and the State of Florida, is currently working to complete roadway and infrastructure improvements that are part of the Southwest Area Neighborhood Redevelopment Plan.
Auburn Avenue
This $1,276,201 improvement project will be completed on Auburn Avenue (Auburn Drive to SW 8th Street), SW 12th and 13th Avenues (SW 8th Street to SW 10th Street), SW 8th Street (SW 14th Avenue to SW 12th Avenue) and SW 10th Street (SW 14th Avenue to SW 12th Avenue).
The project includes design, roadway resurfacing and reconstruction, sidewalks, landscaping and irrigation, paver crosswalks, drainage improvements, on-street parking and new bus shelters. In addition, new water and sewer infrastructure will be installed throughout sections of the project area which will replace old clay piping with ductile iron and PVC piping, ensuring the safe delivery of potable (drinking) water and wastewater collection.
Partial funding will be provided under a grant from the State of Florida's Disaster Recovery Initiative (DRI) Program and will reimburse the City up to $790,059 for construction improvements. Remaining funds will be provided by the Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency ($104,305 - design) and the City's Public Utilities Funds ($381,837 - design & construction).
This project, which is expected to begin in January, is estimated to be completed by June 2012.
SW 12th Avenue - Auburn Avenue - SW 14th Avenue
This $1,773,984 project will be completed along SW 12th Avenue (SW 4th Street to West Atlantic Avenue), Auburn Avenue (SW 8th Street to SW 4th Street) and SW 14th Avenue (SW 10th Street to SW 8th Street).
The project includes design, resurfacing, curbing, sidewalks, on-street parking, drainage (including swales), water main upgrades, landscaping and irrigation, paver crosswalks, decorative street lights (SW 1st Street to West Atlantic Avenue), roadway signage and new bus shelters.
The large majority of construction funding for this project is provided by a Palm Beach County grant for $1,000,000. Remaining funds are being provided by the Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency ($449,620 - design & construction) and the City of Delray Beach's Public Utilities Funds ($324,364 - construction).
This project is currently under construction and is expected to be completed by the end of January 2012.
NOTE: On December 6, 2011, the City Commission approved a Contract Addition in the amount of $55,674.20 to support the reconstruction of existing parking spaces within the area and potable water service (i.e., meters and associated piping) relocations. Funding for these projects will be provided by the CRA ($47,574.20) and the City's Public Utilities Fund ($8,100). To view the City Commission's Agenda and/or the pre-recorded video of the December 6, 2011 City Commission meeting, visit and select Video and Audio under City at a Glance.
City of Delray Beach
Public Information Office
(561) 243-7190
City Commission:
Nelson S. "Woodie" McDuffie, Mayor
Angeleta Gray, Vice-Mayor
Thomas Carney, Deputy Vice-Mayor
Adam Frankel, Commissioner
Dr. Jay Alperin, Commissioner
Follow CityDelrayBeach on Twitter


Monday, December 12, 2011

W. Clement Stone

“Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity.”

The latest from the loyal opposition...

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We need your help and support this Tuesday to show the new Commission that we are paying attention and do not support what they are doing.  Gather at City Hall at 5:30 p.m. this Tuesday, when they will be discussing the hiring of a new City Manager.
After just three weeks on the dais the newly-elected majority of the city commission fired city manager Susan Stanton. This was a poor decision, hastily made ( see link to the Palm Beach Post editorial:
Even more important, the process was secretive and undemocratic.  The motion to fire was not on the agenda.  Neither the opposing commissioners nor the public were prepared to present counter arguments or express dissent.

To many who witnessed the event, it appeared that the decision was made outside of and prior to the Commission meeting, under the direction of vice mayor Scott Maxwell. Newly elected commissioner Andy Amoroso immediately seconded Maxwell's motion to fire Stanton and when asked for his reason, his response was "My motion is reason enough."
Even those who dislike or disagreed with Stanton should question a decison that will cost the city $125,000 for breaking her contract plus the expense and time of finding a new city manager. At no point in the meeting was the cost of the decision even discussed.
Is this a sign of things to come?  We need to support Commissioners McVoy and Mulvehill and let the Maxwell Cabal know that at the very least, they must put such decisions on the agenda and allow for public input. The citizens of Lake Worth deserve no less.
Please join us on Tuesday Dec. 13, 5:30 pm at City Hall to show the new commission we are paying attention!
We hope to see you there!

Aerial Photos of Casino Building Construction - November Morganti Report

Downtowns define cities but making them thrive is tricky

Sun-Sentinel article on some south Florida downtown areas and Lake Worth gets a few nice mentions. Click title for link.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

More Lake Worth Holiday Parade 2011 Videos

November's Progress Report from Morganti - Casino Building

Click title for link. This is from the report:
You can't get a C of O without sewer, water and permanent electric.  The "Owner" referenced above is, in another word, "us."  The beach redevelopment part of the project needs to catch up - when is the building opening again?

Pics from the week of 12/9/11:
East side of Ballroom area

Retail area

Second Floor - looking south

Second Floor - looking west

You never know who you are going to bump into...

After the Holiday Parade, I wandered out to a local watering hole and soon began talking to two gentlemen.  One happened to be a former two-term City Commission Craig Sherrit from Wilton Manors.  We began the conversation as I overheard him refer to our lovely City as "Lake Worth-less" - sort of like waving a red cape at a bull.  When I mentioned my involvement in Lake Worth and two attempts to run for a Commission seat, he admitted that Lake Worth did have some nice neighborhoods.  I mentioned that I had been on the Planning and Zoning Board for eight years and he immediately said, "I didn't do any of that - that is political death if you want to run for anything.  It's best not to be on those boards cause you build up a lot of enemies."  I told him the damage had already been done and he may indeed be correct.  We got talking about the firing of our City Manager last week and he said that they have had the same City Manager in Wilton Manors since 1998.  Everyone seems to be happy with how the City is run - for the most part.  They have the same basic government as we do - a Commissioner/Manager form with a weak Mayor.  The Commission seats carry four year terms, but the Mayor is elected every two years.  He liked the longer terms.  His two terms then means he was on the Commission for eight years - and he just got tired of the grind of meetings after meetings and chose not to run again.  They also moved their elections from March to November while he was in office, so he gained an extra eight months like one of our past Commissions.  He invited me down for a full tour and I just may take him up on it.  Thought you'd be interested in the exchange.

Lake Worth marches to its own drummer

Click title for link to PBP article on the Holiday Parade. The video above is of the City Commission float. Commissioner McVoy absent.