Saturday, March 16, 2013

Hitting the Streets Last Tuesday

For a short commission meeting, Tuesday March 12 was jam packed with the fundamental issues that plague our village.   Let's start out with the litter and Harbor Island issues.  

Commissioner Eddie Lim has been talking about the litter for months now.  It's been in every report he's made.  This month he was even more forceful and has been sharing the pictures posted in the information Facebook Group, North Bay Village Residents Speak.  Additionally Commissioners Gonzalez and Chervony have engaged on the subject of Harbor Island speeders, the abuse of the park and the condition of the streets.  

The village administration has decided to send street sweeping crews twice a week to Harbor Island which should help, and Chief Daniels was instructed to increase patrols in the neighborhood, which he won't do because, well the community is his last concern.   

So that's on the plus side.  On the down side is that not one single Harbor Island resident showed up to the meeting.  I've heard all the excuses - don't have time, shouldn't have to etc but the truth in politics is you got to qualify to signify.  Our commissioners are volunteers not professionals and running the municipality is a shared responsibility.  The people who show up will be heard.  I'm pretty sure there will be some activity on Harbor Island but quickly it will return to the status quo.  

I mentioned fundamental issues and the problem with the Village Hall is the clearest point.  The Village is improvising how to deal with the evacuation of the existing site.  Lidia Dinkova of the Herald covers the surface problem well in her article here but makes no note that the village was not able to execute an emergency continuity plan when the hall was shut down.  

The Village Manager offered that there was a plan for hurricanes and for terrorism but they had not considered "sick buildings".   This is a lame excuse as both terrorism and storm damage have an access component and that is the part that mattered.  It didn't happen.  

Our head public safety officer is responsible to creating those plans while the manager is responsible for implementing them.  The Chief did not speak to the emergency plans but used it as yet another excuse not to provide the basic information to the commission.   

Mario Garcia, in his blog, talks about some of the other issues - the impending deficit, the boardwalk and several other issues.  To read about those, click here

We're not in great shape.  

Kevin Vericker
March 16, 2013

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