Sunday, January 22, 2017

Presenting the full text - and transpaency protection - Palmetto Bay's 2017 Legislative Priorities

Palmetto Bay has put together a unified legislative agenda.  Note that this plan passed unanimously - 5-0.  Each and every council member had input and no request as denied (meaning we had clear consensus, not that we simply tacked anything and everything onto our legislative agenda). 

Items make come up during the year, but this is what each and every member of the village council should be lobbying for - no hidden agenda.  I am pleased to work with neighbors/concerned residents to provide clear assurance that there is to be no hidden efforts or secret deals being cut.  

Transparency takes work.  I am pleased to continue to address any issues that arise as they arise.

I am presenting our 2017 Palmetto Bay Legislative agenda - in its full unedited form:

Section 1.        The Village Council hereby approves its 2017 Legislative Agenda, as further detailed in Sections 2, 3, and 4 below.
Section 2:        The Village Council hereby supports and approves the Miami Dade County Public Schools 2017 State Legislative priorities, as follows:
A.        Increase the state’s investment in K-12 education with a higher Base Student Allocation (BAS) of five percent annually to allow school districts to enhance teacher salaries;
B.         Conduct an impartial third-party study to develop a cost of education index which focuses on cost differences integral to educational institutions’ operations reflecting such costs as average teacher salaries, health insurance for employees, property insurance per FTE, and transportation costs per FTE;
C.         Oppose any diversion of the Local Discretionary Capital Levy revenue from traditional public schools to charter schools;
D.        Implement and fund strategies to encourage and attract talented students to enter into the field of education, such as teacher fellowships and loan forgiveness programs;
E.         Establish a perimeter of safety around schools and increase penalties for the unlawful firing of a firearm within 1,000 feet of a school.
Section 3:  The Village Council hereby supports and approves the following priorities for funding and takes positions to support certain legislative policies as follows:
A.        Urging the Florida Legislature to enact legislation that would make texting while driving a primary offense;
B.         Supporting any legislation that would provide funding for traffic calming projects and public transit improvements and extensions, to include Miami Dade County Smart Plan – Southern Corridor within the Village;
C.         Supporting any legislation and requesting funding assistance and partnership opportunities that support the age friendly city initiatives and the development of unique opportunities for individuals with special needs;
D.        Supporting the legislative funding requesting and the efforts of the Deering Estate Foundation to continue the planning and improvements to the properties within the Deering Estate;
E.         Maximizing all available appropriation and funding opportunities to implement storm water and other needed infrastructure projects throughout the Village;
            F.         Requesting funding for South Florida Water Management District specifically for canal bank restoration to address the critical erosion needs in the Village of Palmetto Bay;
G.        Support any legislation requesting funding assistance and partnership opportunities for projects that enhance mobility and create a network of interconnected lanes in support of bicycle and pedestrian activity within the Village, with opportunities for possible expansion outside Village boundaries;
H.        Seeking funding assistance for the Village’s FRDAP projects to address park capital improvements.
I.          Seek funding through Amendment 1 for park properties in the Village.
Section 4.        Transparency, limitation of solicitation provision:  The Village of Palmetto Bay uses a transparent process for its parks investment and development for its parks master plan process.  All legislative requests go through a public process -- codified through resolution --  and that no person or representative of the Village of Palmetto Bay (including, but not limited to, elected officials, charter officers, directors, staff, consultants, and/or lobbyists) may advocate for, solicit, lobby, represent that s/he has authority to request, or accept, if offered, legislative grants, appropriations or even private donations without prior notification and approval of that money before the Village Council, with requisite notice to its residents/stakeholders. 

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