Thursday, May 31, 2007

A Thank You...

John, Thanks for standing up to the Commission and Administration.

I am now getting all kinds of literature from Comcast to REDUCE my cable bill , including a digital starter package at no increase in rates and literature from ATT and Bell South to give me better rates and more channels etc. Competition is GREAT !!!

Bart

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The Ugly Antenna Pole is History

FYI...Trevor Thomas from BECON did a probe at Griffin Elementary this morning to find a new location for the antenna pole. They were able to find an adequate signal in a new location adjacent to the side parking lot on the north side of the school. It is not near any homes and should be a good resolution to the problem, providing the new location passes soil boring testing and does not conflict with existing underground utilities. Mrs. Novotny was present and agreed that the new location was suitable. The old adage applies here...do it right the first time! I am glad I was able to resolve this issue. I want to thank the homeowners in the area for attending my town hall meeting and placing their trust and confidence in me to get the job done forthwith. I will continue to monitor the issue!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

The obsessive authority...

The Mayor is only supposed to control the meeting, not the agenda. The residents and public, along with other commission members, must control the agenda. The only way to reinforce meaningful reform is to see if this mayor allows the aforesaid. I am up to the challenge and committed to wipe out control of the agenda by one person.

Based on the 'new' attitude by the mayor, after stressing the issue in the workshop, which stemmed from my town hall meeting, the following is now reality...

"Presentations will be limited to three minutes. Comments may address any issue including items on this agenda, provided that if a person wishes to speak on an item designated for public hearing, their comments should be held until the public hearing is opened by the Mayor. There will be a thirty-minute aggregate time limit for this item. Other public discussion will be permitted under "Open Public Meeting." Public input during Public Hearings shall be limited to three minutes per person."

At least its a political step in the right direction, albeit a small one...

Sunday, May 20, 2007

More Landmark Changes Made At City Hall...



As you will notice, there are some more positive changes being made to the way we conduct our commission meetings. From Tuesday night on, citizens comments will be allowed to address any issue including items on both the consent agenda and the regular agenda.

This was an idea of mine which stemmed from my Town Hall Meeting agenda that I am glad to see the mayor has instituted. I am sure you will be glad too! This is a tremendous step in the right direction for our residents, business owners, investors and developers to be heard on any and all issues. This is just one small step in the right direction of turning our meetings back to the citizen's to whom they belong.

The fact that a few recent landmark and stunning changes have been made due to my pressure, leads me to believe that this administration is outright grasping for approval. Hopefully this change was not a mere political move by the 'old administration' in preparation for the upcoming election.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Expense Reports...


The Cooper City staff should compile a report of credit card usage and/or reimbursement by elected officials and city staff and employees, and post it on the city website. In the interest of making this public record available to the public as soon as possible, I'm giving you exactly what you asked for without the benefit of any particular analysis...accountability. All of the charges which are called into question should have a logical explanation.

There should be a few apparent lapses which are for the most part where I expect they might be, for example: the wining and dining on the taxpayer's dime for the past fifteen years before Commission meetings.

But, not taking into consideration the errors and omissions dealing with the administration and elected officials, the rest of the department reports should, for the most part, be pretty mundane. I think the city needs to reconsider whether our policies are appropriate of providing food for public events and meals while employees and elected officials work or meet under any circumstance. Also, we need to look at whether our policy for paying for meals during which city business is conducted at any function whatsoever needs to be changed and omitted. The 'slush fund' must be destroyed...

My conclusion for moving forward is that we need to change procedures so that future public records requests can be filled immediately without delay or excuses, and a detailed list of those requests should also be posted on the city website for all to see. A detailed explanation should be immediately available, with supporting documentation, including those requested by anyone outside of law enforcement. Every charge must be explained in the detailed report even if it takes several weeks, and hundreds of staff hours to produce the report. City leadership also needs to lead by example, and reform our method of operation as well. We shall see if the city is willing to be an open and honest government.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Agenda Items Now Have Associated Info Available


FINALLY! The 'webmaster' put links to the supporting Commission Agenda information on the Cooper City Website based on my comments, pressure and residents concerns regarding the lack of communication and information, which stemmed from my Town Hall Meeting.
Now...that wasn't so difficult was it?