….. A lot of my friends are wondering why I haven’t blogged on the Cindi Hutchinson matter……
…..You say you’re looking for answers….you want me to weigh in….. I get it ….. but truthfully,
….I really haven’t known what to say!
… I’d like to have some brilliant thoughts on why these things happen, why humans can be so weak….. why …… just why…..but this is all I have ………
….. some very unsolicited advice for Cindi…..
I served with Cindi on the Fort Lauderdale City Commission for 3 years, from 2000, to 2003, so I do have standing…..
…. I was a City Commissioner from 1997 to 2003….. Cindi had beat Commissioner Jack Latona in 2000 for the southern side of the city, and I served with Cindi for those last three years of my service…
… she had earned her election….. and she was a damn good neighborhood president before that….
……. when I first met her, back in the 1980’s, we were both neighborhood presidents, neighborhood activists, ( in the best sense of the word) ……. we served on the Council of Neighborhoods together….we fought for our friends and neighbors …. her heart was pure….
….. so what happened?
…… this much I can tell you, this much I know … when you get elected to the Fort Lauderdale City Commission, you become a real bigshot, overnight,…… the richest, most important people in the City come out of the woodwork to kiss your behind…….
… if you aren’t careful, you might start to think that your behind is special, but it’s really not…it’s just a behind… I’m thinking Cindi missed that……
Here’s my completely humble advice for Cindi Hutchinson
You made some serious mistakes…..you’re screwed …. don’t do what the others did, what human nature will tell you to do….deny ! … fight …. deny !!
NO ….. don’t do it !!!
….. you know what’s ahead….. just throw yourself on the mercy of the court …… on the mercy of your fellow citizens…. apologize… fire the lawyers ….. .do your time….live again…
Good luck………… Tim
By the time George Gretsas left as the Fort Lauderdale City Manager last summer, the only question remaining was ……..
” how many of his upper management will he take with him?”
Gretsas’s new City of Homestead picture
Gretsas surrounded himself with loyal underlings from the day he came to Fort Lauderdale.
Many of those loyalists came from his old job in White Plains, N.Y. ( as Assistant to the Mayor there), and criticism of those high paid assistants he brought with him dogged Gretsas throughout his tenure with the City.
Word leaked out today that the first of those assistants, Assistant City Manager Ted Lawson, would be leaving at the end of February. The short, one paragraph city memo said Lawson would be leaving to accept a position as Director of Operations and Support at the Cleveland Clinic. The memo said one of Gretsas’s other insiders that still remains, Kathleen Gunn, would be serving “temporarily” in Lawson’s spot.
Fort Lauderdale City Hall
City Hall insiders, (who spoke anonymously, of course) say they expect the rest of the “Gretsas Mafia”, (as they were sometimes referred), would most probably go soon… A hunt for a new permanent City Manager is in high gear, and most people expect the person chosen would arrive in the city with a clean slate.
Dateline – January 20, 2014
Mayor John P. “Jack” Seiler and his entire Fort Lauderdale City Commission received the prestigious Real Solutions Award today at a White House recognition ceremony from President Barack Obama.
Obama yucks it up with Jack,Bruce,Charlotte,Bobby, and Romney
The award was bestowed after the Fort Lauderdale Commission was the first in the Nation to find a solution to the chronically homeless, hard to reach homeless population that had taken over parts of their Downtown.
Commission swearing to continue providing “Real Solutions”
The homeless had taken over Stranhan Park, which sits next to the Woman’s Club,
which is in the heart of the Downtown.
The ingenius, celebrated program found a way to deal with this difficult group of homeless that had proved very hard to help.
The Commission determined that these homeless were left out of the already successful Homeless Assistance Center on Sunrise Blvd. due to several reasons. A large percentage had mental health needs, many were current alcoholics and drug abusers, and some were wanted by the law. This left them unqualified for the help doled out at the HAC.
The Commission developed their ” City Without Any Homeless Plan” or CWAHP and against all odds, it worked!
This is how it went down –
The Commission started by commandering the Police Department’s Mobile Command Unit”, and parked it next to Stranahan Park. They put up a big banner on it that said “We’re Here To Help”, and filled it with Mental Health Professionals, Substance Abuse Counselors, VA specialists, Apartment Finders and security.
Chief Adderley gets word he’d be loaning out his Command Unit
The professionals, many who donated their services, moved among the population and found solutions to their situations. The Commission had sought out private sector help for the initial funding, and two very respected small developers, R. Opine, and Elaine Pooper, stepped up to the plate and donated $10,000 in seed money for the project to begin. (They were at the White House Thursday with the Commission, and were expected to receive other local recognition next week at the Commission meeting).
Hundreds of the homeless that had been considered “nomads”, and unhelpable, found relief and a new life due to the brave Commission’s actions, and the City got back their parks!
…. ( this doesn’t have to be a work of fiction, does it? ) ….Tim
Last night’s meeting of the Progresso Village Civic Association in Fort Lauderdale degraded into a profanity screaming free- for- all.
The volatile melee was all over the much discussed Homeless Feeding Camps the City is trying to place.
This is Progresso Village Civic –
And this is Progresso Village Civic –
It’s a neighborhood that had started it’s comeback when the bottom fell out of the economy a few years back.
Now, it’s mostly known as the neighborhood by Sunrise Boulevard that the City originally proposed to move the troublesome hardcore homeless into, in order to get them out of the downtown parks.
That proposal died on the vine last month, but the tension in the Progresso Civic group hasn’t died.
Here’s the problem …..the five members on the Board of Directors had quietly told the City that they could put the feeding center in Progresso. The problem was, most of them owned rental houses there and lived elsewhere.
To make matters worse, one Board member, Ron Centamore, actually is the President of the Downtown Residents group that is pushing to have the vagrants moved out of the downtown! Talk about a rotten cauldron !
Mayor Jack Seiler came to last night’s meeting in hopes of calming the situation.
Seiler in front of room trying to calm the situation
The Mayor was not successful.
The meeting built to a boil.
The residents were mad. They felt they had been poorly represented by their non-resident Board and were strongly taking the Board to task, when one Board Member, developer Renee Lepine, who was unfairly shouldering much of the blame for the Board’s action, banged on the table in front of him, lept up, and yelled
Go F_ _ _ Yourselves (Renee filled in the blanks!)
As he fled the room, he added, you can all go to hell.
So much for kinder political discourse!
Riverside Hotel …… tonight – 6 p.m.- Friday, January 7th 2011. They came to honor Gerry Cooper, officially named – E. Gerald Cooper.
Many of you knew Gerry Cooper. He built an vast empire of residential rental buildings in Fort Lauderdale over the last three decades. Ask him how many rental units he owned, he would chuckle and say “- “oh, I don’t know, quite a few”. ( I’m sure it numbered in the many thousands!)
What I’m quite sure of – and is quite an accomplishment – he was the largest individual tax payer in the City of Fort Lauderdale.
But it also should be mentioned – he was one tough son of a bitch. But one thing I respected about Gerry, if he told you he was going to do something, you could take it to the bank.
The room was packed……. most everyone that was anyone was there…. Mayor Seiler read a formal City Proclamation.
There were current City Commissioners one County Commissioner ( Lieberman was missing?), former City Commissioners, a former City Manager, big Law Firm principals, all sorts of important City Advisory Board members, the Police Chief, Fire Chief, the Chief Planning Official, Downtown Development Officials, ….etc. etc. etc. I half expected Obama to walk in…..
If Gerry was watching, he would have been pleased…..
Stay with me now!
Not only is Mayor John P. “Jack” Seiler running, he’s running.
Jack is running
Yes, you remember that Seiler is trying to get back to his old fighting shape. He’s been on a public jog/walk program throughout the City, exercising in each political district ( more about that in a minute).
But what you don’t know until now, Seiler is definitely running for re-election as Mayor.
and Jack is running
Rumors have run rampant since Seiler was elected in February 2009. Many people suspected Seiler would be using the Fort Lauderdale Mayorship as a building block to higher office. Many see Seiler staying in elected office, but ultimately moving his way up for a run to become Florida’s Governor.
The first rumor that surfaced that Jack would be a short timer in Fort Lauderdale came last fall. Stories began to circulate that Seiler would run as Lieutenant Governor on the Democratic ticket with Alex Sink . I do have it on good authority that he was approached for that job, but turned it down.
Now, rumors are circulating that Seiler will run for Congress, taking on newly elected Representative Allen West.
Seiler debunked all such rumors in a phone call with me earlier. “I’m running for re-election as Mayor of Fort Lauderdale”, Seiler said. He wasn’t sure when he would open his re-election effort, but said it will probably be “very soon”.
Seiler said he is enjoying the job of Mayor, feels as though progress is being made on the city’s economy and budget, and says his family is loving having him home for soccer car pooling, football coaching and the like.
No word yet on who the competition will be.
…….. and, as far as Jack’s other running, he’d like everyone to meet up with him at the Beach Community Center, Monday, January 10th, at 6:00 p.m. for a jog walk along the Galt Ocean Mile …… you’ll have his ear …. and ….
…… no campaign contributions are necessary ! ..
…..( call his assistant, Safeea, at 954-828-5003 if you have any questions)…
P.S. Happy New Year !