Sunday, May 6, 2012

Why does the Mayor and Palmetto Bay Council refuse to work with its sister cities on items of regional concern? Another example of bad leadership in refusal to participate in ongoing public debates

Debate of ongoing issues is more important sometimes than the result.  Rather than talk, Palmetto Bay continues to wall itself off from partnerships with its surrounding sister cities, specifically South Miami, Pinecrest and Cutler Bay.  There are two issues (out of many) pending that I am focusing on here.  The first is a resolution passed by South Miami and Pinecrest (a statement of intention, legally non-binding) opposing an upcoming proposed FPL rate increase.  The second is an environmental matter relating to ongoing use of plastic grocery bags.

Proposed FPL Rate Hike
Neither topic are within the legislative control of local government, but as explained in the Miami Herald article, SouthMiami opposes FPL rate hike, By Andrea Torres, Leaders and agencies listem.  Note that on the FPL rate increase, PSC commissioners are scheduled to host several public hearings in South Florida.  The important part is as follows:

“I’m not familiar with any other cities that have done this,” Cindy Muir, PSC’s director of public information, said. “Commissioners will take all of the feedback from the community into consideration before making a decision.”

I applaud the transparency of South Miami and Pinecrest in discussing the issues and making its residents aware of the issues. 

The South Miami resolution against the rate hike passed only by a 3-2 margin, but this is the same margin that many items pass by in Palmetto Bay.  It can also be noted that FPL called the resolution and a similar one that passed recently in the Village of Pinecrest as “misleading.” The Herald article quotes an FPL spokeswoman, Alys Daly, who stated that some of the ‘…characterization was misleading, because it ignored the power company’s past efforts to “sustain the company financially without raising customer rates.”’ Regardless, the issue got discussed in a public form and residents are educated on the issues, regardless of which side you are on, this is called transparency. 

Is Palmetto Bay pro FPL rate hike?  Is there other information out there that should be discussed?

Proposal to have the Fla Legislature ban the use of Plastic Bags
Read online Community Newspapers, Cutler Bay News, Mayor and students connect in drive to ban plastic bags, By Gary Alan Ruse:

In an innovative partnership between the Cutler Bay Mayor Edward MacDougall and area students, an effort is being launched finally to do something about plastic bags that are clogging waterways and endangering wildlife in South Florida.  The article goes on to describe efforts made in this environmental concern to address an issue locally that requires State legislative action.   This is about taking action and the bully pulpit and making your voices heard. 

The article continues on that: “The United States is sitting here virtually doing nothing,” MacDougall said. “Only one bill was filed in the 2011 legislature to try to do something about it and it never made it past the House. Nothing was filed this year. I’ve spoken to our lobbyists and they’ve said that nothing can be done — that the lobbyists for the Retail Federation are too strong and it will just never happen.”

Pinecrest, through Mayor Cindy Lerner and the council shares these concerns.  There is an agenda item for the Pinecrest Village Council, May 8, 2012, regular council meeting.

See the Pinecrest resolution by CLICKING HERE (Scroll to page 4 and click on tab 14).

No such item is posted on the Palmetto Bay agenda and this is a shame. Regardless of which side you are on, the issue is currently raging locally and at least the Palmetto Bay council should state whether they are pro-plastic bag and anti-environment. 

The original Village Council make free reusable grocery bags available, many of which can still be seen in local grocery stores today.  There is a difference between taking those actions (some may even be painful) to be green and simply proclaiming that one is “Green.”  Talk is cheap.

Times have changed.  This present Mayor and Vice Mayor appear to me to be focused solely on its own agenda and appear oblivious to other important items of concern of the day – as well as failing to cooperate with its sister cities. 


  1. AnonymousMay 06, 2012

    Simple, b/c Mayor Lindsay has limited the Palmetto Bay government to one issue and one issue only: driving the Palmer Trinity School into the ground regardless of how much it costs in tax dollars, time or energy.

  2. AnonymousMay 06, 2012

    Why is it a problem? I thought all the local cities were working together for the common good. I can see avoiding the plastic bag issue. No one wants to mess with shoppers, like what do I do if I forget my reusable nags? But the FPL rate increase should be something we all can get behind. Most people pay more in electric bills than they pay in city taxes. I would sure like to meet someone who would not like to save money. Its a no-brainier.