Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Rest of The Meeting

Other than the strip club, there was really only one other significant item on the agenda. It was an ordinance to create a "Re Occupancy" certificate. In a nutshell, it would require a $250 city inspection when a property is sold to certify that the property meets code.

Connie Leon-Kreps was against it, strongly, and the acting city manager withdrew the item.

This was the right thing to do. A Re-Occupancy certificate is a good idea that could quickly fall into bad company and become a major obstacle to home sales.

In North Bay Village, most of the single family homes were built in the 1950's and many of the condos were built in the 1980's. Code has changed dramatically and simple observation shows that many modifications have been made. Establishing whether these changes were to code at the time is difficult in most places and could be impossible in North Bay Village. Many of our city records were destroyed in 2005 following Hurricane Wilma and anyone who has lived here a while knows that Coding has been an erratic function.

The challenge facing the new city manager is going to be put together a full coding revision including an inspection program, an "amnesty" of some sort to establish a baseline, professionalize the city planning, educate the public, and then, if it is still a good idea, consider a time of sale re-occupancy certificate. But right now, it would just add one more obstacle in a seriously depressed real estate market.

Eddie Lim and Richard Chervony spoke in favor of the ordinance, Lim mentioning that it raises money for the city and Chervony that it would only hurt people who had something to fear, which he seemed to think was the purpose. These two have an odd philosophy of governance.

In a related situation, Al Coletta spoke about how the city planning department created so many obstacles on a clearly zoned marina that it drove out a small business. This is the same city planning department that could not find anything wrong with the strip club plans. Something is not right.

Kevin Vericker
December 15, 2011

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