Sunday, May 6, 2012

Palmetto Bay council is working to create a local recession through Item 9H – The Zoning In Progress / moratorium Resolutions – the bullet points on collateral damage from the Neighborhood Preservation and Compatibility moratorium or should it be called the “Neighborhood Stagnation and Repression Moratorium”?

There is one significant item of profound impact on Palmetto Bay in property rights and your tax dollars, short term, not advertised in the newspaper, but you can find on the agenda current posted online, agenda item 9H.   Read my prior bog article: “The devil is always in the details of anyPalmetto Bay legislative effort. Agenda item 9H for consideration this Monday,May 7– a moratorium may soon be imposed for the residential areas. This mayhave a profound impact on both your property rights and tax dollars. A detailedmust read." posted May 2, 2012, for more background.

Be sure not to miss the listings of “Unintended consequences” or the surprise of “Who is not affected” at the end of this article.  These categories help define the collateral damage risk of this unnecessary and overreaching moratorium.

Note that residential sales are often time specific and delays can hurt anyone and everyone.  I know from experience that no one with school aged children likes to move, in or out, when school is in session.  The moving season often runs from end of May through early September.  The peak of this moratorium will cover this entire period. Let’s hope people will not be required to put off a move for an entire year.  That will affect the sales price.  A rise or fall in sales pricing is only good or bad depending upon whether you are a buyer of a seller. 
A list of who is at risk for feeling the pain of a moratorium:
* Home sellers who need to pull a permit to “open and close” outstanding open permits in order to sell their home (there are many of these open permit landmines sitting out there, far too often not discovered until a buyer does his or her due diligence)
* Home buyers who want to be able to close on their new home, but can’t because of the open permits situation listed above.
* Realty companies, their principals and employees dependent upon the home sales market.
* Real Estate lawyers and/or Title Companies and their employees. 
* Home inspection companies, dependent upon the home sales market.
* Banks and its employees who want to close on loans and both provide for home ownership as well as employee its employees.
* Present owners of existing homes who find that they want to enlarge their home to:
            1. Provide for a new arrival such as a:
                        A. New baby; or
                        B. An elderly or disabled family member who required family attendant support.
                        C. Need to add room for an attendant for a family member.
            2. Would simply like more room such as a den, pool deck, pool, enlarged kitchen or additional bedroom (situations not requiring a variance).
* Area contractors who do make their money on resident work and who refuse to work without permits.
* Employees of the above mentioned area contractors.
* Homeowners who may fall victim to unscrupulous contractors who convince them that the work can and should be done without going through Palmetto Bay’s Building and Permitting Department.
* Homeowners who live next door to homeowners who fall prey to the above, especially when the next storm comes and who knows whether things were properly fastened down or what is holding up that roof.
* Architects and their firms who make their living on residential construction.
* Engineers and their firms who make their living on residential construction.
* Employees (not the principals or partners, I am talking the staffers) of Architect and engineering firms who make their living on residential construction (staff is always first to get pink slipped before owners). 
^ Vendors and other business owners who serve the above listed business.
* Local businesses that provide meals to people working in the area.
*Area non-residential users such as Westminster school who have their zoning in place, their plans complete based upon the existing codes and are just getting ready to pull its permits. 
* Resident and business taxpayers who will be called upon to subsidize the loss of revenue to the building department. 

As far as the above, this is not a matter of simply pushing off business for a few months and then making it up.  Payroll is due each period.  Bills are due each period.  Many businesses, especially those teetering on the brink now, simply won’t survive the delay caused by a moratorium.

Who “profits” from this moratorium?
*  Unscrupulous or desperate construction contractors who will or will be forced to work without pulling permits.  This weeds out the honest business and home owners.
* Palmetto Bay council who will “rake in” significant fine money from all the code enforcement proceedings resulting from the needed crackdown on people having to go underground to make moratorium affected improvements.

Unintended consequences:
* May teach some that they can get away without the expense of permits and hindrance of inspection, thus leading to a culture of avoidance of permits in the future even when the moratorium is lifted.

The Unaffected:
The “targeted” land presently owned by non-residential entities that presently have no plans or the ability to throw plans together in the next four months or even the next year.  They will remain status quo while those known as ‘collateral damage’ suffer the pains of moratorium.’

Collateral Damage:
Taken from Business, collateral damage has been defined as a:
Euphemism used by the US military during the second Persian Gulf War (August 2, 1990 - March 3, 1991) as a casual description of civilian deaths caused by the Allied forces bombings. It was widely quoted as an example of insensitive doublespeak because of the underlying callous assumption that a killing called by another name is not a killing. It gained greater notoriety when the US terrorist Timothy McVeigh used it to brush aside the death of 19 young children by his bomb on April 19, 1995 in Oklahoma City in which 149 adults were also killed. In common usage, it means unexpected, unintentional, and/or unavoidable loss(es) accompanying or following an accident or failure.

Palmetto Bay Council is creating a localized recession:
Why, is this council even considering a moratorium just when the local economy, particularly the residential housing market, is just starting to see an uptick?  The timing could not be any worse.

A recession is generally defined as a period of general economic decline, usually marked by a contraction in the GDP for two consecutive quarters (6 month).

Governments usually work hard to prevent economic recessions on any level. 

The Palmetto Bay is unique as it is actually working to create a defined recession.  The question is whether they are intentionally doing this or fail to see the big picture that their actions have on the community. 

1 comment:

  1. AnonymousMay 07, 2012

    Also at risk of pain: those kids who thought they would be attending Westminster after the expansion; they have to wait at least another year.