Saturday, March 17, 2018

“I’m not going to take the sunshine away”, said Lake Worth Commissioner Scott Maxwell in 2011.

Within the 2011 Willdan Report (more details and a video below) there were clues a previous City administration’s effort to try and scuttle the contract with PBSO wasn’t the smartest of things to do.

The Willdan Report.
Click on image to enlarge:
“PBSO responded to the public’s demands
for better law enforcement.”

And below is an excerpt from an oft-cited 2012 blog post titled, “Why does Lake Worth have PBSO and not its own police department?”

Commissioner [now recently re-elected Vice Mayor] Scott Maxwell, who voted against the study in January, said he will continue to support the sheriff’s contract because the sheriff’s District 14 office has helped reduce gangs and the crime rate in Lake Worth.
     “The PBSO is the best thing that’s happened to Lake Worth since sunshine,” Maxwell said. “I’m not going to take the sunshine away.

The Willdan Report was a huge topic in the City of Lake Worth and well-chronicled on this blog back in 2011. To learn more about this history in our City click on this link to read, “It’s not about the money; it’s about control” and about a City Commission Work Session in May of 2011 when,

“I [Wes Blackman] was one of the moderators at last Saturday’s “Voice of the Choice” meeting, along with Bob Lepa and Karri Casper. The major weakness of the Willdan report was the complete lack of public input in its creation. The meeting we organized Saturday to fill that void.
     We designed the meeting to be informational and friendly to all points of view. We included ways to contact all of you and talked about future meeting dates. There was overwhelming support for the sheriff by the over two hundred people in attendance.”

You see, a whole lot of people ‘back in the day’ didn’t appreciate one bit a previous administration’s efforts to,

“[T]ake the sunshine away.”

The video below is from May 2011. Yours Truly was there that day for this press conference and asked two questions at the 6:15 mark you can hear and see for yourself.

On the left at this presser is a former District 4 commissioner, Suzanne Mulvehill, along with Susan Stanton who was the former city manager. Stanton was fired later that year, in December 2011.

Enjoy the video.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

On ‘white elephants’: An Olympic-
sized lap swimming pool at the
Lake Worth Beach.

Who was the first to call a lap swimming pool at
the Lake Worth Beach a “white elephant”? The answer may surprise you. Find out below.

And many of the people who say they want a brand new lap swimming Olympic-sized pool at the Beach didn’t even use the now-condemned pool when it was open.

Don’t you think it would be “repugnant” — as one current City commissioner said this year at a budget workshop — to construct another ‘white elephant’ at the Lake Worth Beach? Also, as the editor at the Herald wrote, “Does it have to be there?” The headline of that editorial earlier this year was “Stop the bleeding”:

     Lake Worth needs a pool, but they also need some Staffers with some creativity. How many times do we have to fail at the same thing before we realize it is the taxpayers who suffer in other areas so we can keep failing?
     If staff won’t get creative, maybe the electeds should take take the wheel and not just take staff’s worn out ideas that have proven time and again to be extremely expensive to the taxpayer.

So. Who was the first to call an Olympic-sized lap pool at the Beach a “white elephant”? It was Mr. Tom McGow back in 2010:
“Commissioners need to take a hard look at
the economic realities of our pool and the national trend towards municipal aquatic parks.”

Fast-forward to 2017. . .

“[T]o subsidize what’s happening at the Beach is repugnant to me on many levels.”
Quote. Lake Worth Commissioner Omari Hardy
at a City budget workshop, July 11th, 2017
(see entire quote below).

We know. . .

  • A new 50-M lap pool at the Lake Worth Beach and Casino complex will need to be subsidized using City taxes. 
  • Why subsidize a new lap pool when so many of the people who will be using it are not even Lake Worth residents?
  • Many of the people who say they want a new pool didnt even use the former pool at the Beach when it was open. 
  • When the next recession hits, and it will, we’ll be left with a pool the City will not be able to maintain. Back to square one. . .
  • Our City can have a pool for the public — for swimming lessons, lap swimming, and exercise — in any number of locations in the City.
  • A pool at the Beach, we know, is an amenity that will never make a profit or even break even (budget neutral).
  • If a new lap pool at the Beach is constructed, it will continue on the failed business model from back in 2010.
  • However, a small aquatic complex would be an attraction for visitors and tourists (fewer lifeguards, less maintenance).

The entire quote from Commissioner Hardy:

“When this line [Hardy referencing Beach Fund graph] gets to zero in Fiscal Year 2018 that means we’re taking money out of the General Fund. As far as I understand, it’s not like we have a lot of money from the General Fund to spare.
     For me, the idea of taking any money out of the General Fund when we’re barely able to afford the services we’re providing for our residents right now, and when we need to fund additional services, and we’re unable to do that, the idea of taking money out of the General Fund to subsidize what’s happening at the Beach is repugnant to me on many levels.
     I don’t think that we should ever allow ourselves to get to that point, and if we do, we need to make hard decisions about what’s important and what’s not.”

Think this comment is hard-hitting? Then click on this link for another quote by Commissioner
Omari Hardy from another budget workshop
earlier this year.

Have thoughts on this issue?
Click on this link to contact your
“Mayor and Commissioners”.

UPDATE: No letters got published so far. But don’t be discouraged!

Stay positive! Some time soon contact the editor by phone, email, fax or snail mail. All that information is below.

Contact the editor and politely ask, “Are you planning to publish my letter any time soon?”

Three days later there have still not been any letters published in The Palm Beach Post from Lake Worth in response to a silly malcontent from Greenacres who got his letter published on the editorial page in the paper last Sunday.

Here’s an excerpt from that nonsense about the City of Lake Worth:
[I]t’s like one huge cheap biker bar. [emphasis added] Other than Paradiso, I drive right through on the way to the bridge. And the city parking lot adjacent to the restaurant looks like a block in Syria.

So. If you wrote a positive letter about the City of Lake Worth stay upbeat and keep trying! It may get published in the upcoming Sunday edition. For more about, “We’re fine, now quit complaining” and the ways to contact the editor at the Post please click on this link.

By the way, Dear resident of Greenacres: You can’t drive past the elegant Paradiso Ristorante “on the way to the [Robert Harris] bridge.”

You take Lake Ave. — a one-way avenue — when you drive to the bridge. Paradiso’s is on Lucerne Ave., not Lake Ave. Try contacting one of these people some time and maybe they’ll take you for a short stroll around the Downtown, show you where Paradiso’s is located, and then show you this City is not ‘like one huge cheap biker bar.’

Now get cracking on those letters!

Maybe write something positive and uplifting about the mayor of Lake Worth!

Meet Lake Worth Mayor Pam Triolo, City Manager Michael Bornstein (center), and Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell:
And by the way, Dear resident of Greenacres, have you heard the latest about PBSO District 16.

The City of Lake Worth and District 14 PBSO need your help to get the facts out.

Here’s the latest. . .

A reporter claiming to be a “veteran journalist living in Tampa, Florida” using information “prepared by NeighborhoodScout” is once again recycling garbage news about crime here in the City of Lake Worth.

Garbage news is called GIGO:
“Garbage In Garbage Out”:

ORLANDO, FL - Two Florida cities have been listed as “Murder Capitals of America” for 2018. Orlando ranked 20th on the list and Lake Worth made the list at No. 30. The list was prepared by NeighborhoodScout, a web-based platform from Location, Inc. . . . In Lake Worth, a city with about 37,800 people, there were 10 murders in 2016 [TWO YEARS AGO!] for a murder rate of 0.26 per 1,000 residents. The safest neighborhood in Lake Worth: Hagen Ranch Road and Northtree Club Drive.

Hagen Ranch Rd. is way out near the Florida Turnpike. Nowhere near the City of Lake Worth.

Now. For the facts about crime in the City of Lake Worth. . .

Did you happen to read an article recently in The Palm Beach Post about crime in this City of Lake Worth? Because, if you did, there is a lot of information that was missing from the story.

There are images and a video of PBSO Cpt. Baer’s presentation given to the Lake Worth City Commission below. Much, much more information was presented than was reported in the Post article.

The story last month was about PBSO Cpt. Baer’s District 14 update to the City Commission. The subtitle on page B1 was, “Number of homicides fell, but sexual assaults increased, data show.” Note that on the issue of sexual assaults Cpt. Baer said:

Sexual assault reports, I read all of them. No sexual assaults are good but they were mostly known offenders. There were no cases where the victim was sexually battered and didn’t know their offender. It was usually familial, unfortunately, or a dating situation. Not that that is good but that’s incredibly difficult to prevent because it’s in their households and whatnot. It’s not out at a bar and things like that.

Cpt. Baer went on to point out. . .

But otherwise all the [crime data] arrows are down including every single property crime. So that’s a good thing. So overall I would be happy to have double-digit decreases. We play a role in that but there’s much more to it as you [Lake Worth City Commission] all know. The City plays a huge role, the economy, so many other factors but it’s encouraging to see [crime decrease]. So I wanted to make sure you are aware.

Note that in one particular “Persons Crimes”, in comparison, West Palm Beach had twenty-seven (27) homicides last year.

If you recall, it was Lieutenant Anthony Johnson who reported the City of Lake Worth will see a 11–13% drop in crime for 2017. Click on this link to learn more
about that City meeting on Jan. 11th.
To learn more about PBSO District 14 and contact information click on this link.

Here are the topics discussed on Jan. 16th.
As you can see, much more was discussed than
just the issue of crime.

What Cpt. Baer referred to as a “regional issue”,
overdose cases (click on image to enlarge):

Click ‘Play’ to watch the entire 22-minute
presentation by Cpt. Baer:

Hope you found this information helpful. Please share this information with all your friends and neighbors.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

On the City of Greenacres and police dept. merge with PBSO 2½ years ago.

“Through it all, Councilwoman [Judith] Dugo . . . has maintained a singular focus on making the city safer. With that, she was a key voice for the city’s 51-member police force merging with PBSO. . . . [T]here is no debate about the result. Overall crime is down, and available law-enforcement resources are far better.” [emphasis added]

Quote. Editor at The Palm Beach Post, March 10th, 2018. Click on this link to learn more about this very important public policy and law enforcement topic.

In the elections today in Greenacres, The Coastal/Greenacres Observer, The Lake Worth Herald, and The Palm Beach Post all endorsed District 3 Councilwoman Dugo. However, the endorsements in the District 4 race between Councilman Anderson Thelusme and a former councilman, Johnathan Pearce, the newspaper endorsements are split. Use this link to read more about that race

Monday, March 12, 2018

District 1 Commissioner Scott Maxwell “in his own words” setting the record straight and dispelling myths.

Below are three very short videos from the Bryant Park Neighborhood Assoc. candidate forum
held two weeks ago.

Not enough infrastructure spending in District 1?

Commissioner Scott Maxwell said,

“That’s a boldface . . . well, it’s just not true.”

Then Maxwell goes on to explain that his district, District 1, received many millions of dollars in infrastructure spending and more details
in this first video:

About the neighborhood associations, the NAPC,
new home construction and “Green Energy”:

Scott Maxwell said,

“Thirty years ago when I came to Palm Beach County and needed a place to live the first three things people told me was:
‘Don’t go to Lake Worth. Stay away from Lake Worth. Avoid Lake Worth like the plague.’
   I didn’t take their advice. I’m glad I didn’t take their advice.”

In this video Maxwell talks about the beginning of the Neighborhood Assoc. Presidents’ Council in the
City of Lake Worth as well:

The closing statement:

Maxwell said,

“There was a time when your property taxes were the only primary ad valorem resource we had in the City.”

“Once again, I want to thank all of you for coming out tonight. . . . I believe in my heart that Lake Worth is much better off today than it was when I first
took office some years ago.”

Thank You for visiting today and hope this information helps.