February 12th and 13th CRA/City Council’s Agenda Deserves Resident Attention!

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Boca Raton agenda for the last few months seem to demand that the Council meet weekly and avoid skipping Council workshops and meeting unless to accommodate an urgent demand.

This Monday and Tuesday’s meetings are no exception.  Residents can expect these meeting to take hours with twists and turns unpredictable in advance of the actual public interaction and discussion.

Of great importance in Monday’s City Council workshop were the following items:

  • A Comprehensive Waterfront Master Plan Update;
  • A Northwest Corridor Transit Funding Program Study; and,
  • The Midtown Small Area Plan Outline.

Residents have had significant concerns with these items and must remain diligent as to the proposed outcomes.  Elected officials are not necessarily in tune with the residents’ wants and desires.

Without public participation, developer interests will insert pressures designed to achieve ‘developer friendly’ outcomes opposed to ‘resident friendly’ ones.  These workshops seem informational in nature but it has been known to happen that directional decisions are taken by the council in these workshop, directions that move an agenda forward.  Stay informed….

Tuesday evening’s City Council meeting presents even more concerning action.  Items scheduled for council actions are:

  • Ordinance 5436 –  ( second of two hearings) having to do with streamlining the City process for restaurants in numerous zoning areas citywide;
  • Ordinance 5441 –  amending the city’s fiscal year 2017-2018 to accommodate the Ocean Breeze Budget amendment;
  • Ordinance 5442 –  authorizing the issuance of a revenue bond by the city in an amount not to exceed $20,000,000.00 for the purpose of providing funds to the Greater Beach and Park District to acquire the Ocean Breeze property for development of recreational and related facilities.
  • Resolution 15-2018 – authorizing the issuance of a Revenue bond as described above.
  • Introduction of Ordinance 5444 – considering amendments to the Transportation Element of the Comp Plan effecting traffic concurrency in the Northeast corridor;
  • Introduction of Ordinance 5447 – authorizing a first amendment to the agreement for purchase and sale of the City’s Municipal Golf Course.

As always at the end of the City Council meetings there are City Manager, City Attorney and City Councilmember reports.

Be careful…there is often discussion in these reports that lead to action without proper notice to the public.  A prime example of this was the recent discussion to adopt a resolution that Boca Raton adopt language using the phrase ‘welcoming city’.  Welcoming city is code for ‘Sanctuary city’.  The phrase ‘welcoming city’ was extracted from the resolution but only by sheer luck.  West Palm Beach is currently embroiled in legal action with the Department of Justice for announcing itself as a ‘welcoming city’.   Of course the originator of the ordinance embracing the ‘welcoming city’ language was WPB City Commissioner Keith James through his role as the Chairperson of the Palm Beach County League of Cities.  The resolution was introduced in Boca Raton by City Councilman Robert Weinroth in a council member report leading to the adoption of a resolution without public notice or public participation .

Caveat emptor residents….Actions like these are bad governance; actions taken without notice and in the dark of night….actions that should not be condoned.

Stay tuned; stay alert and vote the ‘resident friendly’ vote on March 13th to protect the interests of the resident not those of the special interests….

Al Zucaro

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Alfred Zucaro has resided in Palm Beach County since 1982 and has been a resident of Boca Raton since 2008. A graduate of Fordham University, he holds a Magna Cum Laude degree in Economics. Mr. Zucaro attended Nova University receiving a Juris Doctorate Law Degree in 1986. He is a member in good standing with the Florida Bar, practicing in the area of Immigration Law for the majority of his career. Currently he is manager/member of Palm Beach Investment and Finance LLC, a USCIS approved regional center identifying foreign investment leading to permanent resident status. Mr. Zucaro served as a City Commissioner in West Palm Beach from 1995 to 2002 and as the President of the City Commission in 2000/2001. He has also been a member of and/or served on the Economic Council, the Business Development Board, the Film and Television Commission, the Tourist Development Council, the Workforce Alliance and the Palm Beach International Film Festival. Of particular interest is his founding of the World Trade Center Palm Beach, an organization that focuses on international economic development. Married to Yvonne Boice, they are avid world travelers having visited 6 continents and dozens of countries since their 2008 nuptials.

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