Saturday, January 18, 2014

Madison, Wisconsin Targets Hugs And Snugglers

Re-Posted tonight (1/18/14) as this is getting a lot of attention, given our low temperatures tonight. Find a snuggle party near you!

Midwestern problem, to be sure. I've been reading about how "snuggling" is turning into something big. Sort of like being a "life coach" or "inner child healer," of which we have many in Lake Worth. Madison seems preoccupied with "snuggling" as a gateway to prostitution and worse. Not sure how one would regulate this sort of business. Click title for link. From the article:
The nonprofit organization Cuddle Party has trained about 100 people across five continents to run group snuggle sessions, said Len Daley, a psychologist who serves as executive director at Cuddle Party headquarters in Montgomery, Ala. Betty Martin, a Seattle-based sex educator who facilities cuddle parties in that city, said she's never had problems with government officials or police. Cuddle Party participants must keep their clothes on and go through a pre-session workshop on how to say "no," she said.

Federal Appeals Court Rules that Bloggers have the same Freedom of Speech rights as reporters.

Click title for link to article.
The appeals court ruled that the trustee was not a public figure, which could have invoked an even higher standard of showing the writer acted with malice, but the issue was of public concern, so the negligence standard applied.
Gregg Leslie of the Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press said the ruling affirms what many have long argued: Standards set by a 1974 U.S. Supreme Court ruling, Gertz v. Robert Welch Inc., apply to everyone, not just journalists.
"It's not a special right to the news media," he said. "So it's a good thing for bloggers and citizen journalists and others."

Festival Trees - Lake Worth, Florida - 2014 - Little Video

Temperature Forecast for Tonight - South Florida

Festival of Trees 2014 - Cultural Plaza - 1/18/14

China starts televising the sunrise on giant TV screens because Beijing is so clouded in smog | DailyMail on Facebook

Welcome to the future. People have to be reminded what the sun looks like through giant digital TV screens.

South Ocean lions must be tamed or removed |

Clutch the pearls Doris, the majestic lions at the end of the driveway are six inches too high! Perhaps another solution would be to remove the top six inches of their skulls. Only in Palm Beach - inches matter! Click title for link.
Rinker, owner of 1720 S. Ocean Blvd., is under fire for two 6-foot, 6-inch lion statues guarding the entrance to her driveway. Although the statues have been there for about 15 years, the town recently discovered a setback violation — they’re a little bit too tall — after a resident complained.
Rinker said she bought the house last summer and the lions were part of the deal.
“I think they’re a nice statement when you come into my driveway,” she said. “I don’t want to move them. I don’t want to destroy them. They were expensive.”

Greenfield, California is experiencing Lake Worth's former woes...

From radio station KRKC Facebook page. Stanton is in the middle of another police related crisis which appears to be of her own making.

From KRKC News facebook page:

Soledad’s Police Chief fires back at Greenfield’s City Manager. Soledad Police Chief Eric Sills clarifies what his duties were in Greenfield before shared services were terminated. "I provided administrative services. I built two budgets for the police department, I handled internal affairs investigations, I hired personal for them, so it was not just simply answering 9-11 calls." Sills comments were in response to Greenfield City Manager, Susan Stanton, claiming that Chief Sills was not retained as a shared chief due to being limited to handling only the 9-11 response.


Tamera Marie Hurley: Chief Eric Sills is a man of Character & Integrity. He did an excellent job for the City of Greenfield, he went above and beyond. His accomplishments are to [sic] numerous to mention and Greenfield lost a great Chief, in my opinion, irreplaceable! This was done in the midst of part of the community harassing him in various ways to get their way, he never wavered in spite of them....he stood tall and carried on with excellence! It has never been about Eric Sills, it has been about a group of people in the community that cannot see truth when it slaps them in the face, a contract that needed clarification and city staff (upper management) from Greenfield & Soledad that could not agree to disagree agreeably to see their way clearly for the benefit of both cities, creating misleading communication and an environment of NO trust......hence out the door with transparency! In the end both cities lost in many ways and to the ones that were responsible for creating the circumstances that caused the decision to end the contract between the two careful what you ask for you may be sorry for what you get! Again it has never been about Chief Eric Sills......unfortunately he has become the pawn and yet he still continues to move forward as a man of integrity does!

Tia Rachel: Open mouth insert the size 10 1/2 and just keep it there . That should at least muffle such ridiculous claims.

Tamera Marie Hurley: KRKC's January 13th post quoting Greenfield CM states the "management contract" dealt with 9-11 calls & administrative duties, which was the issue for ending the contract not Chief Eric Sills. The CM's could not agree to how the contract should be written and the Mayors would not provide direction. Results both cities loose [sic]!

Our 15 Favorite FLOTUS Moments for the First Lady’s 50th Birthday | The White House

Happy belated birthday to Michelle Obama. She turned 50 yesterday. The White House website put up a collection of pictures celebrating the event and some of the big moments in her life. Click title for link.

Fore! Par 3 golf clubhouse dedicated |

More coverage of the opening of the Palm Beach Par 3 Clubhouse will be coming tomorrow in that edition of the Shiny Sheet. Click title for link for story on the dedication that happened yesterday.

Progress in Lozman case: He drops 7 Riviera officials from... |

Judge Hurley tries to make both parties play nice, nice. Fane  Lozman, the gentleman with the houseboat seized by the city of Riviera Beach and a Supreme Court victory behind him, gets to amend his lawsuit. The city will let him review tapes of city commission meetings - the ones where he was escorted out the door. Look for a big hearing coming up this October. Click title for link. From the article:
This week, Hurley rejected Hopkins’ advice to dismiss Lozman’s lawsuit. Then, in hopes of putting an end to the escalating paper war, Hurley scheduled Friday’s hearing which, he said, turned out to be surprisingly productive.
Before it ended, Lozman agreed to drop seven city commissioners from the lawsuit and instead sue only the city for allegedly punishing him for speaking out against the city’s redevelopment efforts. In exchange, city officials agreed Lozman could amend his lawsuit to include more recent events, including last year’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in which the high court ruled the city shouldn’t have used maritime law to destroy Lozman’s floating home that was docked at the city marina.

Friday, January 17, 2014

City of Lake Worth - Notice of General Election

NOTICE is hereby given that a General Election will be held in the City of Lake Worth, Florida, on Tuesday, March 11, 2014, (with a Run-Off Election on Tuesday, March 25, 2014, if necessary), for the purpose of electing a Mayor, Commissioner from District #1 and Commissioner from District #3, each for a two (2) year term.

Persons seeking election may qualify with the City Clerk from noon, Tuesday, January 28, 2014, until noon, Tuesday, February 11, 2014.

All citizens qualified by the Charter of the City of Lake Worth, Constitution, and laws of Florida who are registered voters in Palm Beach County and whose principal place of residence is the City of Lake Worth shall be electors.

The election shall be held in accordance with the Charter of the City of Lake Worth, Florida and the State of Florida Election Laws.


Con la presente se NOTIFICA que el martes 11 de marzo de 2014, se llevarán a cabo los comicios generales en la Ciudad de Lake Worth (y en caso necesario, votación para desempate, el martes 25 de marzo de 2014) con el propósito de elegir un Alcalde, el Comisionado del Distrito #1 y el Comisionado del Distrito #3 por un período de dos (2) años cada uno.

Las personas que deseen postularse pueden calificarse con la Escribiente de la Ciudad, desde el mediodía del martes 28 de enero de 2014 hasta el mediodía del martes, 11 de febrero de 2014.

Los electores serán todos los ciudadanos calificados por los estatutos de la Ciudad de Lake Worth, la Constitución, y las leyes de la Florida que sean votantes inscritos en el Condado de Palm Beach y con residencia principal en la Ciudad de Lake Worth.

Los comicios se realizarán conforme a los estatutos de la Ciudad de Lake Worth, Florida, y las Leyes Electorales del Estado de la Florida.

I found Commissioner McVoy's "bike/push cart" - This one is designed for meat!

This is made in Denmark for Copenhagen's meatpacking district. Under a new ordinance, these sorts of vendors could get a license from the city, but would have to stay in one location. Here is the conversation that took place at the 1/7/14 City Commission meeting. Click here for a little more information.

Cottages of Lake Work General Meeting

Of Lake Worth

 Cottages of Lake Work General Meeting

WhenWednesday January 22 at 6:30 PM

Speaker: Author Ted Brownstein will speak about history of Lake Worth and our Cottages

LocationCompass Center meeting room
                     201 N. Dixie Highway Lake Worth, FL  33460   

We will be updating you on what progress we have made and hear from our committee chairman.

City using "hot patch" method on some of the worst potholes...

I took this yesterday at the corner of K Street and Lucerne Avenue. It had been an area with a bad patch of potholes. It turns out that the city called the press in today to show how the city is addressing the issue. I'll post a link to that article/video when it comes out.

Judge: Playhouse lease emails are not public records |

The Shiny Sheet loses its bid to gain access to communications by Town Council President Rosow, claiming they were public records. Not so, says the judge. Click title for link. Here is their reaction to the ruling.
Said Joyce Reingold, editor and publisher of the newspaper: “I am disappointed by the ruling but respect the court’s decision. We hold our heads high for challenging the notion that the Town Council president can act in a private capacity as a mediator between parties who have business before the council. That is not the right way to conduct the public’s business but unfortunately, the judge did not agree.”

The best state capitol reporters in America

Click title for link for whom readers of the Washington Post think are the best state legislature reporters in the nation, broken down by state. This is the group selected that works in Tallahassee.
Florida: Miami Herald bureau chief Mary Ellen Klas, Tampa Bay Times bureau chiefSteve Bousquet, TBT’s Michael Van Sickler, AP’s Brendan Farrington and Gary Fineout, Florida Times-Union reporter Matt Dixon, Orlando Sentinel’s Aaron Deslatte, Palm Beach Post’s John Kennedy, Sarasota Herald Tribune’s Lloyd Dunkelberger, News Service of Florida’s Brandon Larrabee

College Park Neighborhood Association - SPECIAL MEETING January 27, 2014

Dear College Park Friends and Neighbors,

The College Park Neighborhood Association will hold a Special Meeting on Monday, January 27th at 6:30 PM at the First Congregational Church, 1415 North K Street.

Our speakers at the meeting will be John Kuntzman, speaking on the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and the Community Rating System (CRS). Also speaking will be Kim McEvers, sharing important information on Citizens and other homeowner insurance concerns.

At this meeting we will elect our Board of Directors and Officers for 2014. Nominees include: John Pickett, Kim McEvers, Terry Brokovich, Mary Lindsey, Charlotte Keshian, Wes Blackman, Rick Dytrych, Scott Eller, Kristine Olson. Nominations will also be accepted at the meeting prior to the election. Nominees must be present to accept.

College Park neighbors may pay their dues for 2014 at the meeting or online using PayPal ($25 per person or $50 per household).

Friends and Neighbors from anywhere in Lake Worth are welcome at our meetings, but you must be a College Park Resident and current with your dues to vote in our election.

Thank You to our 2013 Board of Directors; John Pickett, Kim McEvers, Russell Yorston, Kristine Olson, Wes Blackman and Mike Russell for their exceptional service to College Park. A Special Thank you to Ian Esplin for another year of excellence maintaining our website and for keeping our email distribution list up to date.

A reminder that College Park also maintains a Facebook page with timely announcements and news for College Park Neighbors and may be accessed at:

College Park meetings are always held at the First Congregational Church, 1415 North K Street - Map and start at 6:30 PM. Meetings for the remainder of 2014 are as follows:

Monday, March 24th
Monday, June 23rd
Monday, September 22nd
Monday, December 8th

Thank you for supporting the College Park Neighborhood Association.

Mary Lindsey,
CPNA President 2013

Bill to increase Florida speed limits clears first committee,... |

This news is what I shared yesterday about the bill coming out of the transportation committee. It won't be clear sailing after this. The measure is getting some push-back. Click title for link to article. Here is some of the argument against.
Sen. Jeff Clemens, D-Lake Worth, is a co-sponsor and called it “a common sense approach to raising speed limits.”
But Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, the lone vote against the measure, called it a step in the direction of turning Florida highways into the speed-limit free German Autobahn.
“I hope it doesn’t have a clean sail, I’ll be fighting it all the way,” Joyner said, adding, “People now don’t give you an inch. People now drive 5 or 6 miles over the speed limit. Now you’re going to push it up to 80.”

Newest design for Chapel-by-the-Lake condo tower doesn’t... |

Seems like the latest town hall meeting on the Chapel-by-the-Lake project got a little testy at times. The developer has come up with two alternatives and most people seem to not like both of them. The church who owns the property has apparently lowered the sales price on the land which reduces the pressure for a larger building. But there is no denying this is still a large building. Click title for link to article.
A “suspicious Northerner” who later refused to give a reporter his name said he’s heard “Florida is for sale” and asked if developers had contributed heavily to elected city officials’ campaigns. That raised Adelson’s dander.
“I wouldn’t assume to insult you, and I don’t appreciate being insulted,” Adelson told the man. He said city commissioners “have been 100 percent doing their job, forcing us to do what’s best on your behalf.”

Thursday, January 16, 2014

From a blog reader, a picture of the Oyster Catchers at Snook Islands, taken last June...

"I was kinda sad to read in one of todays blog posts that the Oyster Catchers have in fact departed to a more productive habitat. I figured they might. Last June I got close to the breeding pair when they were hanging out with a couple of their duck buddies while out kayaking and managed to get a few pics. The fun part was that they were calling and I was able to come close to matching their call and for a while it seemed like we were conversing." by Mike Lynch

Claire Conner, Author of Wrapped in the Flag; 01/17 by High Noon in Lake Worth | Politics Podcasts

Claire Conner
Join your host Wes Blackman as he welcomes Claire Conner to the High Noon in Lake Worth studios.

Claire was twelve years old when her parents dove into the world of paranoid politics, a world dominated by the John Birch Society, an anti-Communist, anti-federal government movement.

Her parents were the first two Birch members in the city of Chicago. Her father, Stillwell J. Conner, became a National Council member and remained in top leadership for thirty-two years. Her mother was a partner in all things Birch.

At first, eager to gain the approval of her parents, Claire embraced everything they embraced. As she matured, however, she began to disagree. At first, it was just a whisper here and a tiny “no” there, but every little rebellion made her stronger.

The final break from her parents caused tremendous upheaval, leaving a rift that never healed.

“Extremism broke my family,” Claire says. “I don’t want it to break my country.”

In her new book Wrapped in the Flag, Claire introduces us to the extreme ideas of a powerful political fringe group dispensing radical solutions to America’s problems. Moving seamlessly between memoir and history, humor and pain, past and present, Wrapped in the Flag serves up keen insight into the impact of extremism on one woman, her family and, if unchecked, on our country.

Claire Conner holds a degree in English with honors from the University of Dallas and a graduate degree from the University of Wisconsin. She lives in Dunedin, Florida. She speaks widely on the John Birch Society and the impact of the radical Right.   

I am reading her book this week in preparation for the show. Click title for link to live show between 12 and 1 p.m. Friday, or afterwards for the archived version of the show. Leave questions as comments below.

As Walkers and Cyclists Complain of Predatory Drivers at Belle Terre and SR100, Officials Call For More Education | FlaglerLive

In this article, click title for link, we learn about the hazards pedestrians and cyclist encounter at one Palm Coast intersection. Increased enforcement and driver education is part of the solution. We are reminded of Florida's atrocious level of pedestrian and bicycle accidents. This is one of the more radical solutions proposed by the Palm Coast mayor.
The answer is more obvious to some than to others. “Probably, short of putting a traffic officer there 24/7,” Netts said, “the only real, long-term, functional solution is four-way red with a pedestrian walk, no right on red. Stop all traffic, let the pedestrians go, then let the traffic have at it. But that’s very difficult to get DOT to approve.”

Heart of Boynton to get first store in 50 years - Sun Sentinel

Desperation hits the Boynton Beach CRA as they fall all over themselves to lure a Family Dollar to their downtown. The store will be all of 8,000 square feet. I would have saved the money for something a little more desirable. Have you been to the Family Dollar in Lake Worth? Click title for link.
On Tuesday, the Boynton Beach Community Redevelopment Agency board unanimously voted to start drafting development and purchasing contracts with Boos Development Group to bring a Family Dollar store to the Heart of Boynton.
The Heart of Boynton is the city's impoverished downtown. A Family Dollar will bring jobs, food and commerce to the area, city officials say.
"I feel that this has been a long time coming," said CRA Board Chairman Jerry Taylor. "The area was drug-infested with constant police calls. We've been working so hard to put this [store] in the community."
As part of the deal agreed upon on Tuesday, the CRA will give the developer grants, demolish a church, bury power lines and donate two properties with a combined appraisal of $126,000 to get the project started.

Palm Beach County officials tell COBWRA flooding was a... |

County Administrator Bob Weisman, along with County Commissioners Berger and Vanna, talk to a group of west Boynton residents about flooding from last week's deluge. I heard from one source that this storm, which no meteorologist predicted, was considered a one in 1,000 year event. One wonders though if that is an accurate gauge now given the vagaries of climate change and its effects. Click title for link.
Palm Beach County Administrator Bob Weisman, speaking before delegates of the Coalition of Boynton West Residential Associations, told the crowd that last week’s “freak rainfalls” could not be predicted, but individual neighborhoods should work with local water officials routinely to ensure lake levels are low enough and drains are clear in the event that the area gets hit with 20 inches of rain in just a few hours.
“It’s your responsibility to work with the Lake Worth Drainage District. That did not happen in some places. Some developments did not have their (drainage systems) functioning the right way,” Weisman said. “People have to work together always.”
Flooding and other water related issues are part of our county's future. We watched the WPTV/Florida International University production called South Florida's Rising Seas last night. Click here for the full episode about how the region is adapting to expectations of rising sea levels. 

Bridge fears lead council to delay projects |

I had a meeting yesterday at Phipps Plaza in Palm Beach which happens to be right next to the north bridge. People in the office where the meeting was taking place were concerned about the fate and future operation of the bridge. The Palm Beach Town Council yesterday agreed to pull back on some other projects in the northern part of the island in case the bridge becomes unusable during the coming summer. Work on the area around the bridge's foundations will begin again in the beginning of May.
Concerns about the uncertain future of the Flagler Memorial Bridge — and resulting traffic snarls should it fail after construction picks up later this year — prompted the Town Council on Tuesday to postpone some construction projects planned for this summer and to watch others closely.
Public Works Director Paul Brazil sounded a word of caution to the council: “Please realize the DOT will be driving piles near the existing bascule span sometime this summer.”
“We may not have a bridge,” he said.

Officials: Fix water before restoration | FLORIDA TODAY |

The Senate General Appropriations Committee continues to review a package of $220 million worth of state money to fund "scientific fixes" to the ailing Indian River Lagoon system. That seems to be their priority over establishment of oyster beds in places like the Lake Worth Lagoon. They seem to understand that we have to fix water quality issues before we spend money on things that rely on that higher water quality. After all the fresh water that poured into the Lagoon last year, the oyster beds that were taking shape disappeared, along with the Oyster Catchers. It will be years before we see them again. Click title for link to article.
As the Senate continues to review a $220 million package to reduce pollutants flowing out of Lake Okeechobee, scientific fixes to the system will take priority over research, the head of the Senate General Government Appropriations Subcommittee said Wednesday.
That could mean the package will continue to include the removal of muck from waterways in the Indian River Lagoon along the Space Coast and Treasure Coast. For now, proposals to improve oyster beds and seagrass in southeast Florida would be pushed aside.
“We’re not going to pay money to put any restoration efforts out there when we know they are likely to fail,” said Sen. Alan Hays, R-Umatilla. “If the current water environment is not conductive to that kind of growth, whether it be seagrasses, oysters, or any other type of thing, I’m not in favor of spending money in trying to establish that part of the habitat again. It’s wasteful. So let’s get the water chemistry right first and then put the proper organisms back in.”

Senate committee green-lights bill allowing for increased speed limits |

The Senate Transportation Committee approves the Senator Jeff Clemens co-sponsored bill that would increase speed limits on some state roads. This is the first step before making it to the floor. Click title for link.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Check out the NAPC Front Porch at the Festival of Trees!

Neighborhood Clean-up - This Saturday 1/18/14

Royal Poinciana zoning model to go before voters |

Palm Beach will have an election on the PUD-5 ordinance in March. This is the more permissive land use and zoning designation which can be used in redevelopment along Royal Poinciana Way. There still seems to be much intrigue in the background about this, but the Town's attorney says everything is on the up and up. Click title for link to Shiny Sheet article. 
Under town law, the certification required the council to vote either to repeal the zoning ordinance enacting the planned unit development, known as the PUD-5, or to schedule the referendum. Councilman Bill Diamond’s motion to repeal it failed to come to a vote.
All three councilmen then said they favored letting voters decide the matter.

PBC tax collector gets tough in collecting bed tax owed for... |

People can't hide from the tax collector if they are running short-term rentals. This should make some legitimate bed and breakfast owners happy. Click title for link.
Gannon said her staff has been canvassing the county and going neighborhood to neighborhood looking for condominiums and vacation rental properties.
Over a roughly 45 day period, her staff was able to register 15 new rental dealers in the Wellington area. Those landlords and property managers will now be required to remit monthly tourist tax payments to the county.
“We have gotten very aggressive,” Gannon said.
Gannon said her office also plans to take legal action against property managers and landlords who do not submit detailed information about each individual tax transaction, including the length of stay and the property’s address.

Commentary: All Aboard Florida a long-awaited,... |

Dennis Grady, CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches, writes a strong op-ed piece in favor of rail transit improvements in south Florida, particularly All Aboard Florida. Click title for link.
While it seems there are issues to be resolved, such as how our communities will fund their desire for quiet zones, it is most important that we do not lose sight of what this transformational project will mean for Palm Beach County.
I am on board with All Aboard Florida and all of Palm Beach County should be, too.

Gayle Harrell Unveils Memorial to Light a Fire Under Congress for Everglades Restoration | Sunshine State News

A member of the House of Representatives from Port St. Lucie has put together a Memorial bill to urge Congress to have Everglades restoration projects to be a priority. This is a type of bill that urges action, but is more symbolic of the urgency that Floridians require as it relates to our water control and supply issues. There are many projects in the pipeline. One of them, of course, is the shoring up of the Herbert Hoover Dike. Click title for link. From the article:
Construction on the 143-mile Herbert Hoover Dike around the lake began in the 1930s after hurricanes killed more than 2,000 people and swamped much of the lower part of the state. It is now in such poor condition that it is ranked among the most likely to fail in the United States. Higher water levels put more pressure on the dike and because water can flow into the lake six times faster than it leaves the lake, the Corps tries to keep the lake level between 12.5 and 15.5 feet during the rainy season.

Independent special districts: Where lobbyists ride free and the public is in the dark | Broward Bulldog

Excellent review of the unique governmental species known collectively as "special districts." It turns out the lobbyist registration laws do not apply to many of the districts in the state. Lake Worth resident and attorney for special districts is quoted in the rather lengthy article. Here are some of his remarks. Click title for link to the article by Dan Christiansen.
“The issue is transparency: who is getting the benefit of governmental largess,” said Frank S. Palen, a West Palm Beach attorney who specializes in government law and special districts.  “If people don’t have knowledge it undermines legitimacy, but as a practical matter it would depend on the scale of the entities.”
Independent special districts have been around for 100 years. The oldest, the Hastings Drainage District in Putnam and St. Johns counties, was created July 1, 1913, according to Jack Gaskins Jr., who runs the state’s Special District Information Program.
Today, these agencies offer dozens of specialized governmental services – from water management, mosquito control and community development to public hospitals, children’s services, ports and airports.

Dateline "Lake Park, FL"...another Channel 12 story...

This is the copy from the Channel 12 website. We are fortunate that the dateline identified is "Lake Park", but not so in the video. Watch the video - you will see William Waters making an appearance and confirming that there are code issues that need to be addressed. If they aren't, then all the people in the building may have to be evicted. Not just the person who is not paying their rent due to the landlord not making the repairs. The landlord didn't know about the problems. Oh, well, another day in "Lake Park."

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

BREAKING NEWS: Incumbent West Palm Beach Commissioners Granted Two Year Terms

The end of West Palm Beach's qualifying period was today, 1/14/14 at noon, and none of the incumbent commissioners (Materio, Mitchell and Moffet) drew an opponent. So that means no municipal elections in West Palm Beach this year and the three will serve two year terms.

This probably comes as a relief to all of them, but especially for Shanon Materio since she just ran a year ago to secure her formerly appointed seat through an election.

Congratulations Shanon!

2014 Festival of Trees - Saturday, January 18, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Cultural Plaza

Contact David McGrew

City of Lake Worth Annual Tree Festival

Lake Worth, FL – January 13, 2014 – The Lake Worth City Tree Board announces the 9th Annual Festival of Trees on Saturday, January 18, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Cultural Plaza, 414 Lake Avenue between Lake and Lucerne Avenues. Admission is free and everyone is welcome.

The event will commence at 10 a.m. with a very special all-level yoga class led by Monica Hornung (, who teaches at Moksha Studio in Wellington and Bee Organics in West Palm Beach and presentations by representatives of the Native Plant Society (Rufino Osorio, author of “A Gardener’s Guide to Florida’s Native Plants,”) the Audubon Society of the Everglades (Phil Weinrich, Jupiter High School biology teacher), League of Women Voters of Palm Beach County (Barbara Eriv, co-chair of the League’s Climate Change Working Group) and Environmental Resource Management of Palm Beach County (Carman Vare, Environmental Program Supervisor).

Mayor Pam Triolo will read a proclamation declaring January 18, 2014 - Lake Worth Arbor Day between 12 and 1 p.m. After reading the proclamation, Mayor Triolo will dedicate an East Palatka Holly that will be planted on the Lake Avenue side of City Hall Annex. The memorial tree is in honor of Josette Kaufman, late Chair of the City Tree Board and Executive Director of the Arthur R. Marshall Foundation for The Everglades. Josette is the daughter of Nancy Marshall, President of the Arthur R Marshall Foundation for The Everglades and step daughter of John Marshall, Chairman and Founder of the organization. They will both will be present at the dedication.

The annual Festival of Trees is always a big draw for the downtown,” said City of Lake Worth Horticulturalist, David McGrew, staff liaison to the board. “It’s a festive day for families, locals, and out-of-town visitors to enjoy our beautiful park, learn about trees and plants and visit our restaurants and shops.” Home Depot will provide an activities tent for children all day.

Exhibitors will provide demonstrations and plants and trees will be for sale,” added Richard Stowe, Tree Board Chair. “We’ll have specialists in native trees, plants, xeriscape, pruning and more.”

Music, provided by Afinka Funk, featuring Tom Regis (, Raul Hernandez, Tommy Benson, Nelson Colon, Jon Zeeman, Phil MacArthur and special guests, will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

Paying for parking in downtown Delray up for discussion - Sun Sentinel

Parking meters and pay parking look like they are headed for downtown Delray Beach. What is being discussed is having day parking still be free and have the pay parking start in the evening. Adjustments would be made where store and restaurant employees park. It sounds like they are looking at the problem holistically. Click title for link.
The proposed fees range from $5 a day maximum in a garage to $2 an hour on the main strip, and they wouldn't start until 5 p.m. There would be meters on the street and pay stations in the garages. So morning coffee runs, lunch meetings and quick afternoon shopping trips on Atlantic Avenue would still be free, which pleases some downtown merchants.
"It's called parking management," said Bruce Gimmy, who owns the Trouser Shop downtown and serves on Delray's Parking Management Advisory Board. "The plan is not just to charge for parking."
Commissioner McVoy - look, they have a men's pant store in Delray!

Editorial: Flood waters have fallen, but raise awareness of... |

Much of the build up of rainwater from last week's epic storm depends on maintenance of local swales and drains. This may be the case for some of the hard hit areas of Lake Worth. Click title for link to article. Here is what they are doing now.
Last year, Bob Brown became director of the Lake Worth Drainage District, which includes southeastern Palm Beach County and last week got the heaviest rains — 22 inches in Boynton Beach. Brown spent 26 years at the water management district, and Monday he said the drainage district was conducting its “post-storm assessment,” focusing on areas where flooding lasted the longest. The district “is OK,” Brown said, if communities “can get the water to us.”
Many reasons can explain why communities can’t always move the water. Lawn crews can blow clippings into the wrong places and clog drainage systems. Homeowners associations or property management companies can let maintenance slip. Some HOAs may not know the flood control system beyond those lines on the property tax bill for the water management and drainage districts. Brown said his agency conducted 60 slide shows last year for communities.
Click here for recent High Noon in Lake Worth guest Jose Lambiet's article on how wrong our local TV weather persons were on that night. 

Video: Bill Gates says GM traits critical to improve drought resistance seeds, feed developing world | Genetic Literacy Project

Check out this video. He has the money to help do this.

David Beckham, investors hire Tallahassee lobbyist for Miami soccer push - Miami-Dade -

Many financing obstacles before this new Miami soccer team reaches its goal. The County has agreed to help the franchise look for a stadium site, but the County was clear that any site it owns would carry annual rent payments, not a token amount like $1 a year. There are other hurdles in Tallahassee where the environment for these sorts of stadium deals has soured after the Dolphin's escapade last year. Click title for link. Here are some of the details that have to be worked out.
For Beckham’s team to obtain funding, lawmakers would first have to add Major League Soccer to the state’s list of professional sports teams. A state representative tried to make the change last year — and secure a subsidy of up to $2 million a year for 20 years for an Orlando franchise — but the effort stalled.
Last year, MLS announced an expansion Orlando team. The league has also sounded supportive of a Miami rival owned by Beckham, who retired from MLS last year with an option in his contract to purchase a franchise for a discounted $25 million.
After adding soccer to the list of sports, legislators would have to craft a competitive funding mechanism for new franchises to apply for the sales-tax funds, Ballard said. If a soccer franchise makes the case that it’s going to generate more money than it would receive in its subsidy, then legislators have an incentive to grant the funding.

Don't blame state woes on growth management - Sun Sentinel

Former Governor Bob Graham, who was in office at the time of the landmark 1985 growth management legislation shoots down the notion that Florida's current "recovery" is due to repeal of many of those laws and the gutting of the Department of Community Affairs. That agency is now the Office of Economic Opportunity. Furthermore, he shoots holes in the notion that the original growth management laws somehow created our housing bubble and resulting recession. Click title for link. Here are some major points:
The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, which investigated the great recession, did not find that growth-management policies such as Florida's were the cause of the collapse. Rather, the collapse of Florida's housing market — like those in other Sunbelt states such as Arizona, California and Nevada— was driven by a variety of factors including rampant speculation, lax regulatory policies, weak underwriting standards and old-fashioned greed and fraud. These were the same causes of Florida's crashes in the 20th century, before the state's growth-management laws were enacted.
From 1990 to 2000, Florida added, on average, more than 100,000 housing units per year. But in the years leading up to 2007, housing starts exceeded 200,000 units per year. On top of this, between 2007 and 2010, 660,000 more residences of all types were authorized to be constructed, as well as more than 6 billion square feet of commercial and institutional space, most of which has not been built.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Tropical Ridge Neighborhood Association Happenings

We have a fun, busy week ahead of us.

Friday (17th) evening TRNA is manning the Front Porch at the evening on the avenues.

Saturday (18th) morning NET and TRNA is teaming up for a neighborhood cleanup at the TRNA Fitness Park on N. H street between 2nd and 3rd Ave N. from 8:30-11:00am.

Also on Saturday (18th) from 10:00-4:00 Lake Worth is celebrating Florida's Arbor Day with the Festival of Trees in the Cultural Plaza across from Lake Worth Library. The festival will include demonstrations, activities for kids, plants for sale and great music.

Then on Monday (20th) TRNA is presenting its new Mid Month Mixer. This will be a social get together held at Clary's in the Lake Worth Towers. The Mixer starts at 7:00. We are asking that for this first meeting if you could please RSVP to this email address, by Friday, so we have an idea of numbers.  



Obituary – Tim O’Meilia: 1948-2014 - The Coastal Star

Another great piece about Post reporter Tim O'Meilia's passing by a colleague of his through the years. Very well done. Click title for link.

Under Construction: South Dixie Hwy. in West Palm Beach

1/13/14 - This was last posted in late August of 2013 after discovering that the Lake Worth Dunkin' Donuts was closing and a new one was being built on South Dixie Hwy. in West Palm Beach. It also was around the same time that we learned about the closing of Park Avenue Barbeque in Lake Worth. I am re-posting it now as it is getting a lot of hits today.

Dunkin' Donuts is open now and has been for about two weeks. The former location in Lake Worth is dark. There is activity across the street to the south. The former "Pet Shop" building is opening as a coffee shop I hear.

The former Park Avenue Barbeque property is being used for World Thrift customer parking. The arrangement is make-shift at best. People coming from World Thrift have to physically lift their shopping carts over curb stops and other barriers between the two properties. Most people continue to park in the Arbor Plaza shopping center immediately to the north of World Thrift.

Dunkin' Donuts w/ drive-thru

 Across from:
Walgreen's - Southern Blvd. and South Dixie

Villas of Antique Row - Monroe and South Dixie