Thursday, April 30, 2009

Cooper City BSO Advisory System Press Release

DATE: April 30, 2009 PIO NUMBER: 09-4-36

RESIDENTS ATWITTER OVER CYBERVISOR, THE BSO COMMUNITY ADVISORY SYSTEM

If you live or work in Broward County, the Broward Sheriff’s Office has something important to tell you. Thanks to a new ground-breaking online community advisory system, it can.

By simply registering online for CyberVisor, residents can receive important e-mails or text messages from the nation’s largest fully-accredited sheriff’s office about their safety, their neighborhoods and their commutes including:

* criminal activity, such as vehicle or home burglaries
* traffic information, including road closures and construction zones
* upcoming events, like car safety seat inspections or Shred-a-Thons
* important safety tips to keep your home, business and property safe
* be-on-the-lookout (BOLO) alerts for wanted suspects or missing children

BSO has always used technology to stay connected to the people it serves. Now it has created its own, secure, no-cost advisory system to communicate with the public. CyberVisor is the first advisory system of its kind created only for public safety news and information.

Similar to Twitter, CyberVisor allows the commands in BSO’s multiple jurisdictions to communicate with the residents and businesses they serve.

“Given the state of our economy, those of us in public safety must take advantage of every opportunity to keep residents informed,” Sheriff Al Lamberti said. “CyberVisor gives us a way to do this at virtually no cost. The more information people have, the safer they are.”

You can find BSO online at www.sheriff.org and on the agency’s Facebook fan page, where you can see important public safety messages, agency photos, check out job opportunities and monitor wanted criminals. To sign up for CyberVisor, “The BSO Community Advisory System,” visit www.sheriff.org/cybervisor.

This report by Dani Moschella 4/30/2009 1000

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Cooper City - Celebrating Our Past Event was a HUGE Success

On Sunday, April 19th the Celebrating Our Past event was held from 3 - 5 p.m. at the Pool and Tennis Center. Recognition of past city commissioners, city advisory board members, clubs and organizations that have contributed to the city was the highlight of the event, with group pictures taken for the time capsule.

In addition, there was superb food and refreshments served. There were also plenty of historical photos and memorabilia throughout the center, and the classroom sponsored a video presentation. All in all, it was a fantastic gathering filled with happiness, comeraderie and great opportunities to meet again with both new and old friends.





Photos courtesy of the Wooley family

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Special Magistrate in Cooper City...a done deal before it was started?

It is unfortunate that the special magistrate ordinance passed 4-1 last Tuesday night. Only 27 cases, none of which were code enforcement related as per the attached memo to the ordinance, went to county court last year. I made my amendments without so much as a second (With one commissioner stating "I didn't know..." in regards to a second being required for discussion), and was dismayed at the ‘done deal’ attitude of the rest of the Commission, which has transpired a lot lately.

The ordinance is not fully vetted nor properly written, in my opinion, and I have placed it on the next agenda for further discussion. It also shouldn't have been written based on politically favored reactions to recent and few abuses, but on what is "reasonably expected" of the residents and public officials. If future discretions are found to occur, and are outside of those ‘unwritten’ standards (similar to the unwritten rules that continually arise on an as needed basis), then clear and actionable severe repercussions could be available. Not a good way to treat our valued shareholders, I'd say.

The majority of the Commission has not acted like true professionals on this issue, but more like unskilled amateurs, particularly in Parliamentary procedure, and are no longer interested in any meaningful dialogue, nor have they been intent on listening to each other’s opinions outside of their own in a meaningful manner in its recent agenda discussions. There is no real leadership at city hall, so I guess that means that this is the way we will continue to operate.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Cooper City's new Judge, Jury and Executioner

Cooper City Commissioners want to implement a Magistrate system in our city at tonight's commission meeting, apparently to “ensure compliance” per the direct quote of the City Manager. Funny…The Ordinance says it is to be “a more efficient, effective and inexpensive method”. Hogwash! They can do that now without a judge, jury and executioner deceitfully named a Magistrate. Take out the Code Enforcement provision and you’re pouring money into a black hole. This needs to be BID OUT. The law firm’s agenda is to be profitable. There is no reason to rush to implement this. Per experts, including the Clerk of Courts, this will cost the city more money and be paid out to the city attorney and the Magistrate and is not necessary in the time of a budget crisis.

Many have said to me that they believe the Ordinance was developed to funnel the new city attorney and his law firm more money in exchange for campaign donations and other ‘favors’. Their nickname apparently has now become 'Rainmaker', and the way the Ordinance was written, the contractor-magistrate will be held accountable to absolutely NO ONE! Not even the Commission. The city attorney will also be the Magistrate’s "legal advisor" along with having the title of 'city prosecutor'. Also, the way the Ordinance is written, any violations will be adjudicated by a city contractor-vendor who will be paid directly from the proceeds of his or her fines and assessment adjudications. Can you say “conflict of interest”?

The Special Magistrate is an attorney and member of the Florida Bar who is appointed by the majority of the City Council to preside over Code Enforcement matters. The Special Magistrate has the jurisdiction and authority to hear and decide alleged violations and exercise the powers of a Code Enforcement Board as provided in chapter 162, Florida Statutes.

The Special Magistrate also has the authority to subpoena people and records, hear cases involving suspected violations, order rulings on violations, assess fines and order liens to be placed upon property. There would be less of an appearance of impropriety with a Code Enforcement Board than a Special Magistrate. Accountability is so important to this city, and all of us campaigned on the issue, yet none of the other commission members have been accountable in their actions on this particular issue, more particularly accountable toward the residents.

Why do they think we need this? Cooper City used to have this system in place, and it was deemed to be bad for the city. Cooper City doesn't seem the type of city that is in need of such a hastily prepared legal ‘set up’, after all, that's why we all live here. We're basically a bedroom community with minor crime and code problems. Unfortunately, the rest of the commission supports this debacle with no solid facts or data to justify it, no valid or substantial cost-benefit analysis, no offered justifiable facts or data for reasons other than stated in the Ordinance and no set of valid figures on which to base a future review other than a 'best guess'.

We don't need this ordinance, and we don’t want it! Why potentially spend more money on more lawyers, and fix something that currently isn't broken? If it is broken, why hasn't it been delineated in black and white by the City Manager? If it costs less, then show me the cold hard cash. If it’s better, show me why, not just take the word of the City Attorney on the matter, with all due respect. If the County Court Judge’s aren’t doing their job as alluded to, why aren’t they being held accountable? Apparently, the “inform, warn and cite” practice that this city has supported for so long, will no longer be available to its shareholders upon passing of this hastily initiated Ordinance. This is another non-issue that's bad for the city, bad for our image, and bad for you...if you agree, show up Tuesday at the Commission meeting and voice your objections.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Easter Festivities in Cooper City

The Easter weekend in East Cooper City got off to a great start with the Country Address Easter Egg Hunt this afternoon. Many residents and their children arrived and were greeted by the Easter Bunny, along with lot's of games and festivities planned by the Country Address homeowners.

There were lot's of prizes, two egg hunts and many fun filled games.
The kids as well as the adults had a great time!

Again, Sherri was the MC and as always, managed to run a great event! I think she had more fun than the kids! Every one who attended fully enjoyed the comeraderie along with the beautiful weather, and the neighbors were very happy for the kids and the fact that it was such a beautiful day!

Somewhere in all of those eggs is the "Grand Prize"...

We hope to see all of you agin next year at the Easter Egg hunt in Country Address! Have a great Easter everyone!