Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Palmetto Bay Committee of the Whole – Wed 1/16 7:00 PM. Finally, some discussion of the Legislative Agenda.

The Palmetto Bay council will meet this Wed, 1/16 at 7 PM to discuss 7 items. The item of interest to me is # 3 – Legislative Agenda.  CLICK HERE to view the agenda.  I am providing some friendly suggestions to this Palmetto Bay council on developing the effort and what it takes to bring important infrastructure needs and appropriations.  I may cover suggested policy initiatives at a later date.  Specific ideas will also be posted in a later post.  

No legislative agenda moves forward to a successful conclusion without hard work.  Lack of proper groundwork turns the trip to Tallahassee into an expensive ego-building junket for the council members rather than a successful search for appropriations to benefit the Palmetto Bay taxpayers.

Palmetto Bay did very well for the period from incorporation (2002) up through 2010. Well over $18 million was brought in to stretch your municipal tax dollars.  Value was added to our community by the solid investments in infrastructure such as the ongoing road resurfacing and Storm Water programs; the solar powered entryway signs, street sign program, purchase of new park land and the huge investment in park facility buildings were all at least kick started through the grant process.  Village Hall itself received over $1.4 million in grants/appropriations. 

The point is that this millions of dollars were brought in by the original council.  Monies include over $4 million for Thalatta ($3.6+ from the Florida Communities Trust alone, plus FRDAP and SFWMD dollars).  We brought in a high of $800,000 in a single year for our storm water projects; those are the projects that reduce flooding and hopefully positive impact your flood insurance rates. 

Success in Tallahassee (and Federally) starts with local vision and leadership.  That is why I previously suggested to the council members to work to get on the same page. (suggestion 4.It is time again for a village-wide strategy session. Goals need to be set. ... Pinecrest recently completed a major update to its strategic plan. It is time for Palmetto Bay to do the same. ) – see: A holiday wish list for the new Palmetto Bay council | Palmetto Bay. The 2013 Palmetto Bay council has a chance to go positive this upcoming year. 

Being successful in the fight for a diminished funding source in Tallahassee cannot be achieved by slap dash last minute paper resolutions.  Money is scarce. Work needs to be done to identify any potential money.  This council needs to demonstrate that the money for the proposed projects will be put to better use than competing projects and that if granted; that this team is serious about follow through.

This council needs to come up with some vision, planning, coordination with the lobbying team, and teamwork with our legislators. Projects like the traffic circles and improvements to the Old Cutler/152 intersection arose out of good vision, proper planning, teamwork and follow through.

You don’t demonstrate follow through when there are so many projects still hanging – items such as the 2009 as well as Building and Permitting Advisory Committee Final Committee Report - see 4/14/12 post: Palmetto Bay's Building and Permitting Advisory Committee Final Committee Report has been completed and submitted to the Village Council. Where does it go from here?  Why are the recommendations from the short term (5 year) plan from the Bicycle Pedestrian Master Plan (completed in 2009) also not being implemented?  I will have suggestions regarding this specific item in the next post.

Palmetto Bay is now a new council with 2 new faces. Can these two kick start an aggressive identification and acquisition program for this year or will the next two years be as fruitless as the last two? 

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