Friday, August 10, 2018

Documenting the facts: Charter school was imminent – presenting facts over campaign rumors

Facts presented to debunk door to door rumors.  Political season can be so ugly.  Candidates think that they can get away with planting false rumors through individual comments to individuals they speak to at the door. Those candidates are mistaken if they think residents don't ask others to confirm or deny.  I thank those who call to verify.  This is another one of my, "don't just accept, my word, read up on the facts, available online":

I am proud of my record on transparency and placing documents online.  Significant research can be done at home by those who would like to see what the actual votes were or the details contained in any resolutions or ordinances.  This is also why I have fought hard for on-line permitting – the ability to track your permit status without having to rely upon a return phone call (though everyone is certainly able to call live, during business hours, if that is your preference).

The facts are undisputed that David Singer, Larissa Seigel Lara and I removed that legal Charter School through the only legal means possible: we purchased the property out from under them and negotiated a private (and enforceable) covenant with the owner of the remaining property that no school would go on the remaining property.

So what are the facts about the Charter School? Consider this as part of my rumor control. I am posting the zoning resolution, 2014-30, approved March 17, 2014, that cleared the way for a 1,400 seat Charter School to be located at the "third parcel from the NE corner of SW 97th Avenue and SW 180th Street, Palmetto Bay" - that's legalese for identifying the Shores property.  (CLICK HERE and review in detail)

Note the findings made by Mayor Stanczyk and the Council regarding the Charter School:
"That the Mayor and Village Council find, based on substantial competent evidence in the record, that the application for the charter School is consistent with the Village of Palmetto Bay's Comprehensive Plan and the applicable Land Development Regulations."
Page 1, lines 20 - 22 & 34 - 35. 
'b. The rules that govern the conditions upon which a charter school is permitted to be configured and operated are found at Section 30-120 of the LDC "Public Charter School Facilities." After hearing the applicant and the applicant's experts, the Village Council finds the charter school request consistent with those standards.'  
Page 1, lines 37 - 40. 
 "c. The Applicant’s traffic study indicates that the number of trips generated by the proposed use does not cause the adjacent roadway to exceed the maximum capacity thresholds establish by Miami-Dade County. The Village's traffic engineering consultant and the Traffic Engineering Division of Miami-Dade County accept this finding with conditions as noted in the staff report."  
Page 1, lines 42 - 46. 
I continue to be transparent and provide the facts to address and resolve rumors and properly correct the record.

Read the Miami Herald article: April 9, 2018, by Monique Madan, "This city feared traffic so much, it wrote a $2.9 million check"
"A charter school would have completely and literally destroyed that area," said Palmetto Bay councilman David Singer. "All these people who don't live here would come, not pay taxes, increase traffic and use our services. There were no benefits at all, so we had to do something."

What would benefit Palmetto Bay's citizens, Singer said, is a community center. Earlier this year, the village council voted 3-2 to scrap the charter school by scrambling to buy the land. Their hope? Building a facility that would feature anything from a pool to classrooms and a gym.

Florida Charter School Alliance Executive Director Lynn Norman-Teck has commented on the status of the status of the Charter School proposed for Palmetto Bay . 
"Somerset Academy was progressing through this process," Norman-Teck said, "when the village swept in and took it from them." 
(Translation, when Councilman Singer proposed and set the action in motion to take it way from them)  
“[Somerset Academy] had gone before zoning folks and had a couple of community outreach meetings together, feedback and they were looking at that property, but before anything could be finalized, the property owner sold it to the village,” Norman-Teck said.

Thank you for your interest.

Your Mayor,

Eugene Flinn

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