Monday, July 15, 2019

The Village of Palmetto Bay is not legally or morally required to enter into/accept or otherwise continue to entertain this P3 proposal for the Franjo Road area.

The discretion rests with this current Mayor and Village Council – and with no other past, present, or future people or entities.

Would you like additional resources before the decision is made on the pending Public Private Partnership (P3) unsolicited bid presently pending before the Palmetto Bay Village Council? The City of South Miami has published its own guidelines for Public/Private Partnerships, Solicited and Unsolicited Proposals and Evaluation Process.


See the 24 page document created by the City of South Miami:

(Revised 4-10-2017)

*Note – as conspicuously stated within the guidelines promulgated by the City of South Miami;
The City reserves the right at all times to reject any or all bids/proposals at any time before signing a Comprehensive Agreement for any reason and may decline to pursue the Proposed Project. In the latter event, the City may accept new proposals for the Proposed Project should the City choose to restart the process at a later date. Discussions between the City and Private Entities about needed infrastructure, improvements, or services shall not limit the ability of the City to later decide to use standard procurement procedures to meet its infrastructure needs, whether the project will be a public/private partnership or not. 

QUESTION: are the Mayor and Village Council required to enter into the pending P3 proposal?

SHORT ANSWER FOR PALMETTO BAY:  NO. The Village of Palmetto Bay is not legally or morally required to enter into/accept or otherwise continue to entertain this P3 proposal for the downtown/Franjo Road area.

The discretion to move forward with approval or to deny (or anything in between) rests with this current Mayor and Village Council – and with no other past, present, or future people or entities.

CLICK HERE for 12 prior relevant posts providing significant details as to the Palmetto Bay Downtown Unsolicited Bid development issue.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Removing even the bark from Palmetto Bay Tree Board - nothing was said in legislative updates, so apparently the Palmetto Bay Council failed to act to protect our trees.

There is so much here; so many directions to go. No warning from our local officials who spent significant time in Tallahassee. More fall out from the 2019 legislative session. Not only did Palmetto Bay strike out on legislative requests (See June 21, 2019, Governor DeSantis issues his very first budget vetoes. Cutler Bay and Deering Estate budget appropriations appear safe.  as well as May 4, 2019, Legislative asks - Legislature completes budget. Now waiting for Gov DeSantis' line item veto. 2019 score card), was our voice heard in Tallahassee on important policy issues such as protecting our local rights to protect our local environment? It really does appear that the Mayor and Council were either oblivious or complacent (through failure to act) in the enactment of CS / HB 1159.  CLICK HERE to view prior relevant posts relating to the 2019 Legislative session, but be sure not to miss the post of April 26, 2019, Transparency - is the Palmetto Bay Council placing the cart before the horse or is the fix in on the multimodal?


Back to our trees: CS/HB 1159 passed the House on April 25, 2019, and subsequently passed the Senate on April 26, 2019. The bill was approved by the Governor on June 26, 2019, ch. 2019-155, L.O.F., and became effective on July 1, 2019.

In short, CS/HB 1159 - titled "Private Property Rights" - strips the bark off the rights of local government to protect our Trees.

The following is from the State of Florida Summary Analysis (CLICK HERE to read from source - 7 pages):
SUMMARY ANALYSIS 
CS/HB 1159 passed the House on April 25, 2019, and subsequently passed the Senate on April 26, 2019.
Counties and municipalities develop and implement land use comprehensive plans and ordinances to manage growth within their jurisdictions. 
Comprehensive plans must be sensitive to private property rights and not inordinately burden property owners. The “Bert Harris, Jr., Private Property Rights Protection Act” entitles property owners to relief when government action inordinately burdens their existing use of real property or any vested right to a specific use of real property. 
Local government vegetation and tree maintenance regulations vary but can require property owners to obtain permits before pruning, trimming, or removing any tree. Property owners with native mangrove trees on their property are subject to additional state or, in certain instances, local regulation. Electric utilities are also subject to federal requirements when maintaining vegetation in utility rights-of-way.
The bill prohibits local governments from requiring a permit, application, notice, fee, approval, or mitigation for the pruning, trimming, or removal of a dangerous tree on residential property upon documentation by a certified arborist or licensed landscape architect, and prohibits local governments from requiring a property owner to replant a tree that is maintained under the specified conditions. The bill does not affect authority delegated under the state’s mangrove protection laws. The bill also allows a property owner adjacent to an electric utility right-of-way to request an electric utility perform vegetation maintenance in the right-of-way without approval from the local government.   
The bill requires county property appraisers to post a Property Owner Bill of Rights on their websites, which lists a property owner’s right to acquire, possess, and protect property; use and enjoy property; exclude others from property; dispose of property; due process; just compensation for property taken for a public purpose; and relief when a new state or local government law, rule, regulation, or ordinance unfairly affects property. The website must state the Bill of Rights is not comprehensive and does not represent all property rights under Florida law. 
The bill may have a negative, insignificant fiscal impact to local governments. (Editor's Note - all boldface emphasis added)

FUTURE POST: What is the impact on Palmetto Bay's Tree Board? Can our Tree Board be used to regulate and protect trees in Palmetto Bay or is its power now forever diluted to merely choosing tree types, seeking proper maintenance and care, watching over tree inventory.  I am looking into this issue and I strongly suggest that our current electeds do the same - and communicate about it (substantively, not merely in mention) to our residents.  

Snip of Official Village website as of 11:40 AM 7-12-19
ASIDE - the Village Website (this apparently is not barred by threat of lawsuit*) lists two vacancies for the tree board. Perhaps those interested should contact the two council members who have open appointments (and I suggest that the website be updated to provide correct information if these positions are in fact filled).  My money is that the positions have been filled, but without updating the information that the Village carefully doles out to the masses. You simply can no longer rely upon the accuracy of the website any longer.

Update post release: A FOSDU in the know advises that the Tree Advisory Board positions are filled, that the information posted as of 7/12/2019 is incorrect. This makes my point that incorrect information is far worse than no information at all.

First the Media reaction: See Tampa Bay Times, June 27, 2019: DeSantis signs bill weakening Tampa’s tree ordinance, by Charlie Frago, The state law undercuts many of the protections approved by the City Council after years of conflicts, then hard-won compromises between builders and advocates.
TAMPA--The word spread through Tampa’s tree loving community quickly Thursday: The city’s tree ordinance had been buzzed way back by the stroke of Gov. Ron DeSantis’ pen.
The governor signed a new law that bans cities from regulating the removal, replanting, pruning or trimming of a tree on private property if a licensed arborist determines the tree poses a danger. Tampa city attorneys said the legislation removes the city’s arborists from the role of verifying dangerous trees and being involved in the pruning of trees through the permitting process.
They also fear that trees will be allowed to be cut down without any recourse from the city. 
READ MORE: Tampa’s tree ordinance in peril

ONCE AGAIN, TRANSPARENCY IS DEAD IN PALMETTO BAY

I went to look for the 2019 legislative agenda for Palmetto Bay, which passed on February 4, 2019, but surprise - all the resolutions remain down (note that the posting of the official executed resolutions were up to date on the Village website, up to October 15, 2019, when I left office). Palmetto Bay's sudden and fear of transparency continues to strike - the resolutions, posted online for well over 15 years are now taken down the excuse of "violation of ADA/risk of lawsuit" needs to be called out for what it is "poppycock" or one of my personal favs, "balderdash", as the website isn't restrained from posting all the self-promoting news and photo ops, more than ever before. 

It appears that you will have to take time and effort to make an official public records request if you want to see the actual legislative agenda, Resolution 2019-019. (And no wonder the Village is overwhelmed with public records request; the information is no longer freely accessible on our website.)


Policy failure.  Money is one thing, but protecting Home Rule and advocating on policy initiatives are important.  All that money spent in travel to Tallahassee, nothing to show for it.  I recall no record from the Village Facebook photo op page or any e-blasts mentioning anything regarding opposing CS / HB 1159 particularly in the legislative agenda or at any meetings in Tallahassee relating to our locals.  FOSDUs may feel free to direct me to any such confirmation of our Village Mayor and Council focusing any attention on CS / HB 1159.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

The BBV - the Better Bat Videos - additional higher quality videos of Singer's Bats

I am posting 2 new higher quality videos of the Bats who have set up neighborhood pest control at the home of Council Member David Singer.

PRIOR RELATED POSTS: (CLICK HERE) to review prior posts relating to these bats.



The above is one of a series of videos recorded on Monday, July 8, 2019, by Hal Feldman with equipment supplied by David Singer. The equipment used included a wireless Endoscope Inspection Camera Borescope for iPhone.  

Stay tuned for more events at this home - requests have been made and there will be an open event soon.  

Watch this blog for more information.

One more video:



Monday, July 8, 2019

Update on the Palmetto Bay Bats - here is a view of inside the 'bat cave'

The bat video in in and I am posting it here for all to enjoy. Some voyeuristic views of nature and what is going on in Council Member David Singer's "belfry". 

Please review my PRIOR RELATED POST of Friday, June 7, 2019, "June 6, 2019 - Looking in on a colony of Mexican / Brazilian Free-Tailed Bats who call Palmetto Bay their home."


 
Nature is certainly interesting and we see these guys trying to make a go of it here in Palmetto Bay.  Be pleased that these bats are here as they are a big part of Nature's natural method of controlling parasitic pests such as mosquitoes. 

They can fly as high as 10,000 feet and forage on tons of harmful pest insects daily.

These bats are communal. They are known to form mega colonies that number in the hundreds of thousands, with the largest known maternity colony reaching nearly 20 million bats.

We are fortunate to have a colony of the Mexican / Brazilian Free-Tailed Bat here in Palmetto Bay - we welcome their evening feasts on pests such as mosquitoes.

CLICK HERE to read more about the Mexican / Brazilian Free-Tailed Bat on the National Park Service Everglades website.

Here is the link to the page of Bat Conservation International, specific to this Mexican / Free-Tailed Bat subspecies: http://www.batcon.org/resources/media-education/species-profiles/detail/1738

Please visit the respective web sites posted above - support our local environment including preserving the 22 acres on Old Cutler Road.

SPECIAL NOTE: Thank you Palmetto Bay Council Member David Singer and family for being great hosts, both on Thursday, June 6, as well hosts to our Bat-friends who are trying to make a go of it here in suburban Palmetto Bay - I can check Bats off my list of the wide range of creatures that call Palmetto Bay home.

I promised this video. It is in and uploaded.  Enjoy.

Friday, July 5, 2019

Lost pet? Act now. Time is of the essence. Please assist friends and neighbors reunite with their companion.

Pets are important. For some, their pet is everything. Pets depend upon their human companion.

Unfortunately, Business Is A-Boomin this time of year for animal shelters. This is no joke.

UPDATE (from reader Craig Merwitzer): 
If a pet is not microchipped, get it done.  Any vet can do it. The microchip is useless unless registered.  The website used by most vets is homeagain.com  
Also register with the information found on the tag issued by the county

CLICK HERE to view the Miami-Dade Animal Services lost pet page. As posted today, July 5, 2019, by Miami-Dade Animal Services:
Today is one of the busiest days of the year for animal shelters. If you lost your pet during yesterday’s festivities, here’s what you should do.
- Visit our adoption center on a daily basis. We receive about 80-100 dogs and cats every day. Our Lost and Found office will try to reunite you with your pet and will help you search for your pet in all areas of our facility.
- Use the Finding Rover app to upload a photo of your pet. This site uses facial recognition to reunite lost pets with their families.
- Register your lost pet on Petharbor.com and search through the photos of pets we have at our shelter.
- Post photos of your pet to Facebook, Nextdoor or other social media groups.
- Make flyers and post them around your neighborhood and at our adoption center.
- Check with other South Florida shelters, veterinarians and pet stores.
Please pass this information on to anyone who may have become separated from their pet. And please, keep an eye out and assist in reuniting any stray you may find. Not everyone has the same resources, the same ability to search for their lost pet. They may even not yet recognize that it is missing.  

Thank you,

Eugene Flinn

Palmetto Bay resident Mike Estevez and his fellow cyclist - first reported the bear sighting.

The Bear sightings have increased and some are worried. Palmetto Bay resident Mike Estevez and his fellow cyclists broke the bear sighting Sunday, June 30, 2019, see my post of same date: Why I bike - local nature seen via cycling South Miami-Dade County. Bears, tortoises, fish and Iguanas

In the meantime, please take precautions to avoid enticing bears into your neighborhood, where it becomes at risk for an encounter with humans. Some bear advocates recommend the following:

  • Properly store garbage and recycling.
  • Properly maintain bird feeders
  • Avoid smelly compost, and other enticing non-natural attractants
It is mango season, so please, 
  • Pick ripe fruit from your trees



More information is available about The Florida Black Bear on the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) website (CLICK HERE).

Please, please - do not molest or entice the bear. Hopefully it will go back into obscurity at its earliest opportunity never to be heard from again. 

Monday, July 1, 2019

TAX ALERT - Property Appraiser Pedro J. Garcia issues July 1, 2019, 2019 Taxable Values by Taxing Authority. What this means for Palmetto Bay and surrounding communities.

The July 1st tax roll was released today, Monday, July 1. The numbers represent a slight change for local taxing authorities such as Palmetto Bay.


For more information and a comparison of the June 1, Estimate, see my prior related post of Sunday, June 2, 2019, Property Taxes will increase in the next budget year. The question is how much. Property Appraiser Pedro J. Garcia issues June 1, 2019, Estimates of Taxable Value.

The numbers listed in the July 1st roll (photo left) and as listed below demonstrate why it was smart to lower taxes in Palmetto Bay in 2016 and again in 2018: future taxes will be going up and not everyone is able to simply reach deeper into their pockets and pay an increased bill. 

CURRENT TAX INCREASES under the Current Mayor and Council (initiated 2019).

The current mayor and council have acted to increase taxes since the latest terms of office began December 5, 2018.  This current Mayor and Council have moved to increase Park User Fees as well as voted to institute Palmetto Bay's first ever franchise fee to replace the one that we voted on in 1992 under Miami-Dade County. The voters of Unincorporated Miami-Dade County (this was years prior to Palmetto Bay) approved a 30 year limited agreement, with an expiration. The rules and rights differ for the Current Palmetto Bay Mayor and Council as there was no such referendum put to Palmetto Bay voters.  Here in Palmetto Bay, this Franchise Fee, this 30 year tax collected through your electric bill, was initiated and passed by Ordinance without voter approval.

For complete information, see my PRIOR RELATED POST of Thursday, April 25, 2019, Palmetto Bay - Transparency - on sale to those who can afford it: which noted, among other issues, Tax, Tax, Tax. This current Village Council has recently conspired to raise park user fees and now the Village Council is churning its way to enacting a 30 year tax on our electric bills - just in time to take over for the expiration of the 30 year County agreement (can we never let a tax expire??).

Budget time is ongoing in the Village of Palmetto Bay and the bill will be coming soon for so many of those campaign promises of government entitlement. So make sure you are not left out of the promised gravy. The new taxes, and increased taxes that come on line for the 2019/2020 fiscal year will certainly amount to much more than a dinner out for many people, hitting those on a fixed income the hardest.

Here are the revised numbers from the July 1, 2019 update:


PROPERTY TAX ROLL

I have posted the final July numbers, followed by the June 1 preliminary tax roll numbers for Palmetto Bay as well as some of our comparable municipalities. Palmetto Bay Council members may feel free to review my numbers and provide their own assessments or advisement.

Source: MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, PROPERTY APPRAISER

Released July 1, 2019

(CLICK HERE) to view the full document, available on the M-D Property Appraiser web page.

July          June
FINAL     ESTIMATE   Taxing Authority 
5.7%         5.0%                 Coral Gables
5.3%         5.6%                 Cutler Bay
10.0%      9.0%                 Homestead
4.7%        4.6%                 Miami Lakes
4.5%        4.4%                 Pinecrest
4.2%        4.2%                 Palmetto Bay
3.6%        3.9%                 South Miami
7.3%        6.4%                 Unincorporated Miami-Dade (UMSA)

6.4%        5.9%                 Countywide (will affect your countywide portion of your tax bill)
5.4%        4.8%                 School Board (will affect your School Board portion of your tax bill)

Here are the facts for the upcoming property taxes:

1. Your tax bill will go up (at least) 3%, the maximum allowable under the Save Our Homes Amendment (SOH) protection, unless the applicable property tax mileage rates are reduced in order to adjust for the increase in revenue. This is due to the fact that each and every taxing district, each municipality as well as unincorporated Miami-Dade County saw an increase in value above 3.0.

2. All property tax payers will see an increase in their property tax bills in 2019/2020 as approved by the voters in November 2018: #362. This tax is known in part as “Secure Our Future” – and will be collected from your property tax bills for the next 4 years. This is a new tax and is not covered by the Save Our Homes protection. Property owners will soon see a tax increase of $75 for every $100,000 in assessed taxable value, regardless of residential or commercial. About $232 million stands to be collected in Miami-Dade County, by July 2019 for the referendum’s first year.

This means that a home with an assessed taxable value of $400,000 will pay an additional $300.00 in property taxes for the upcoming property tax year. You can review your tax bill to locate your own assessed taxable value.

More information will follow as it becomes available.

Sunday, June 30, 2019

Why I bike - local nature seen via cycling South Miami-Dade County. Bears, tortoises, fish and Iguanas

Sunday, June 30, 2019, was a big day for nature sightings while bike riding in South Miami-Dade County.
Cyclists stop for many reasons including traffic stops, mechanical breakdowns, as well as rest and bathroom breaks, but Palmetto Bay resident Palmetto Bay resident (and Triathlete) Mike Estevez who had the experience of the day for Sunday, June 30, 2019

This blog post is to document another of the many reasons why I ride. It is not just the health reasons, but so many interesting items of nature can be seen while biking any of the numerous trails and back roads of South Miami-Dade County.

But the big sighting of the day, and unfortunately I was not blessed with my own personal sighting (but I will be in the look out when bicycling in this area in the future):

A native bear! That's right, a BEAR (location not disclosed).













Thankfully the cyclists who were fortunate to see the bear in person did take photos, from a safe distance, without risk to themselves or the bear. Thank you to Mike Estevez and team mates for the photos (and for permission to publish here).

Please note that the Bear was spotted in a very secluded are of South Miami-Dade County, few people would have an opportunity to come across this bear - so fear not.

Posted below is the list of reported nature observations for Sunday, June 30, 2019:


Iguanas (lots of them, especially along 87th Avenue in Cutler Bay on the way to Black Point) - Biscayne Trail

Turtles (in the drainage canal along 87th Avenue in Cutler Bay) - Biscayne Trail.

Many fish were visible today in that same canal, same Biscayne Trail, some quite large. I am thinking some of the fish could be Snook.

A Gopher Tortoise - (I haven't seen this guy in a while, felt released to see it) in the Deering Area. Old Cutler Trail area

RELEVANT PRIOR POSTS:  I have documented much of the local nature on this blog, much of it observed due to biking, e.g., Saturday, June 20, 2015, Photos of the Day - Mainland Marsh Rabbit.

Local nature has been documented throughout this blog, including crocodiles at the Palmetto Bay Village Center.

I remain proud of my sponsorship of Palmetto Bay resolution 2015-105, opposing the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission's action to permit Bear hunting in Florida .... (Sponsored by Mayor Eugene Flinn)
FOR MORE INFORMATION:  There are significant materials available online relating to the Miami-Dade County Trails (CLICK HERE).

Monday, June 24, 2019

US Supreme Court provides a Federal right to contest local government action affecting property rights. Knick v. Township of Scott, Pennsylvania - From the SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES BLOG (SCOTUSblog)

Most failed to notice a Supreme Court decision published Friday, June 21, 2019: Knick v. Township of Scott, 588 U.S. _____ (2019).* The US Supreme Court expressly overruled the legal precedent of Williamson Planning Comm'n v. Hamilton Bank, 473 U.S. 172 (1985), extending Federal Civil Rights, 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1983, to land use actions by local governments. 

WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT: Federal court litigation and rights under 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1983 may provide much greater property rights to aggrieved land owners than the State remedies. My thanks to Palmetto Bay Council Member David Singer who does his research and stays abreast of developing issues and the law. Preparation is invaluable.

RELATED PRIOR POST: I invite readers to review my prior post of March 31, 2019, Update on DUV revisions. Reviewing attorneys' opinions and considering in light of transparency in the Village. Do these detailed legal opinions require updates in light of the Knick v. Township of Scott, US Supreme Court decision?

The "Ku Klux Klan Act": Section 1983 was enacted on April 20, 1871 as part of the Civil Rights Act of 1871. It is also known as the "Ku Klux Klan Act" as one of its primary purposes was to provide a civil remedy in Federal Court against the abuses that were being committed in the southern states, especially by the Ku Klux Klan. This action provides a Federal remedy to provide protection, the only remedy in some local areas, where laws may have existed to protect citizens in theory, but protection in practice was non-existent to some because those persons charged with the enforcement of the laws were unable or unwilling to do so. Section 1983 was intended to provide a private remedy for such violations of Federal law.

In land-use cases, the federal statute 42 U.S.C. § 1983 protects property owners against municipal actions that violate a property owner's constitutional rights, including actions that violate a property owner's rights to due process, equal protection of laws and just compensation for the taking of property under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

Impact to bringing claims in Federal Court: Prior to last Friday (June 21, 2019), aggrieved property owners were expected to litigate state claims, such as inverse compensation claims, before they could take their federal property rights claims to federal courts.  The US Supreme Court rendered a 5-4 decision on Friday, June 21, 2019, that overturned this existing precedent and it will have major impact on property right litigation filed by property owners against local governments for ordinances that impact their property.  

It appears that under the Knick v. Township of Scott, 588 U.S. _____ (2019) decision, government regulation can be considered a "taking" within the meaning of the Fifth Amendment overruling a prior decision, the president set by a prior US Supreme Court in Williamson Planning Comm'n v. Hamilton Bank, 473 U.S. 172 (1985)

Please note that the immediate information posted below is taken verbatim from the SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES BLOG (SCOTUSblog):

Knick v. Township of Scott, Pennsylvania

Docket No.Op. BelowArgumentOpinionVoteAuthorTerm
17-6473d Cir.Jan 16, 2019
Tr.Aud.
Jun 21, 20195-4RobertsOT 2018
Holding: A government violates the takings clause when it takes property without compensation, and a property owner may bring a Fifth Amendment claim under 42 U. S. C. §1983 at that time; the state-litigation requirement of Williamson County Regional Planning Comm’n v. Hamilton Bank of Johnson City, is overruled.
JudgmentVacated and remanded, 5-4, in an opinion by Chief Justice Roberts on June 21, 2019. Justice Thomas filed a concurring opinion. Justice Kagan filed a dissenting opinion, in which Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, and Sotomayor joined.
SCOTUSblog Coverage
________________________________________
OTHER NEWS SOURCES/INTERPRETING THE KNICK DECISION

National Public Radio (NPR) and its report of this decision and potential impact: NPR - LAW - Supreme Court Overturns Precedent In Property Rights Case — A Sign Of Things To Come?, by Nina Totenberg, June 22, 2019:

As reported:
A sharply divided U.S. Supreme Court ruled Friday that property owners can go directly to federal court with claims that state and local regulations effectively deprive landowners of the use of their property.
The 5-4 decision overturned decades of precedent that barred property owners from going to federal court until their claims had been denied in state court.
Federal courts are often viewed as friendlier than state courts for such property claims. The decision, with all five of the court's conservatives in the majority, may have particular effects in cities and coastal areas that have strict regulations for development.
Property owners and developers often have complained that zoning rules and other state and local regulations effectively take their property for public benefit, and that the Constitution requires that they be paid just compensation.
          CLICK HERE to read the full NPR article

More to come on what, if any, impact this will have upon Palmetto Bay & Cutler Bay pending land use issues.

GOVERNMENT TAKING OF A PROPERTY RIGHT:
What is a taking? That can be an issue decided on a case by case basis, but let’s look at the simple facts of this case, now known as Knick v. Township of Scott, 588 U.S. _____ (2019). The property owner, Rose Knick, was contesting a local ordinance that forced her to allow public access to her private farmland due to the fact that her 90 acre outlying property has a family graveyard – a family, not a commercial public graveyard.

OFFENDING ORDINANCE:
The Ordinance itself is simple. The Township of Scott, Pennsylvania, passed an ordinance requiring that 
“[a]ll cemeteries . . . be kept open and accessible to the general public during daylight hours.” 
The Township of Scott, Pennsylvania, passed an ordinance requiring that “[a]ll cemeteries . . . be kept open and accessible to the general public during daylight hours.” Rose Mary Knick, the property owner of a 90-acre rural property with a small family graveyard, was notified that she was violating the ordinance. Ms. Knick sought declaratory and injunctive relief in state court on the ground that the ordinance effected a taking of her property, but she did not bring an inverse condemnation action under state law seeking compensation. 

ORDINANCE WITHDRAWN – NO PENDING ENFORCEMENT – NOT MOOT:
What I find interesting is the fact that the Township responded by withdrawing the violation notice and staying enforcement of the ordinance. Without an ongoing enforcement action, the lower court held that Ms. Knick could not demonstrate the irreparable harm necessary for equitable relief, so it declined to rule on her request. 

FEDERAL COURT ACTION FOR VIOLATION OF CIVIL RIGHTS – THE “1983” ACTION:
Ms. Knick also filed an action in Federal District Court under 42 U. S. C. §1983, alleging that the ordinance violated the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment. 

US SUPREME COURT DECISION:
Decided on Friday, June 21, 2019, reported as Knick v. Township of Scott, 588 U.S. _____ (2019) No. 17–647. Argued October 3, 2018—Reargued January 16, 2019 CLICK HERE to view the official published opinion.
_________________________________
* As listed in the Opinion Syllabus; ROBERTS, C. J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which THOMAS, ALITO, GORSUCH, and KAVANAUGH, JJ., joined. THOMAS, J., filed a concurring opinion. KAGAN, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which GINSBURG, BREYER, and SOTOMAYOR, JJ., joined. 

Friday, June 21, 2019

Governor DeSantis issues his very first budget vetoes. Cutler Bay and Deering Estate budget appropriations appear safe. Link to entire list provided.

The veto list is out and the news appears better for Miami-Dade Locals that other areas of the State, that is for those municipalities who had their requests make it into the State of Florida budget submitted to the Governor.

Here is the link to the 2019 veto list:

So how did the budget items do in the first budget for Governor DeSantis?

Incredibly, it appears that only a single local item I reported in my May 4, 2019 post listing highlights for our fellow Miami-Dade County municipals (& Deering Estate) was vetoed (indicated in red strike through text). Making it through appears to be $200,000.00 for Deering Estate Field Research Center and $200,000.00 for Cutler Bay-Drainage Improvement Cutler Ridge Section 3

Great work Deering! The list below is a final sampling of some of the local projects that will be funded by the State, as indicated. Check my math [review the official veto list (link provided) to confirm my review]:
$1,500,000.00 for City of Miami Biscayne Bay Tidal Valves and Stormwater Improvements (HB 3729)
$   985,210.00 for West Miami Potable Water System (HB 3775)
$   850,000.00 for City of Miami Springs Senior Center - New Building (Senate Form 1456)
$   750,000.00 for City of Miami Springs: South Royal Poinciana Median (Senate Form 1448) VETOED - Line # 1989, A Project 13
$   250,000.00 for Bay Harbor Islands Sewer Lateral Lining Project (HB 2151)
$   200,000.00 for Deering Estate Field Research Center - from Gen Rev Fund (HB 4055) (1639A)
$   200,000.00 for Cutler Bay-Drainage Improvement Cutler Ridge Section 3 (HB 3769)
$   200,000.00 for Doral Stormwater Improvements NW 114 Ave./50th St (HB 4499)
$   200,000.00 for North Bay Village Stormwater Pump Station (HB 2773)
$     30,000.00 for Miami Gardens Canal Erosion Protection Project (HB 2239)

Palmetto Bay requests submitted that were DENIED (not placed into the budget submitted t Gov. DeSantis:

$   745,900.00 requested for Palmetto Bay Multimodal Transit Station (HB 3763)
                             (total cost of project est.: $3,245,900)
$   745,900.00 requested for Palmetto Bay Nature Education Center (HB 4081)
                              (total cost of project est.: $2,245,900)
$   299,000.00 requested for Palmetto Bay Drainage Sub-Basin #61 Construction (HB 4069)
    (standard Stormwater % 50% of total project cost)

More will follow on breakdown down what the vetoes mean for South Dade, but I wanted to get this breaking news out to the community.

PRIOR RELATED POST: May 4, 2019, Legislativeasks - Legislature completes budget. Now waiting for Gov DeSantis' line itemveto. 2019 score card: Each year is different and 2019 was not a good budgetyear in Tallahassee for Palmetto Bay as the 3 requests failed to make it intothe budget. The three requests totaled $1,790,800.00 that the Mayor and council were seeking to offset $6,089,800.00 in proposed projects – specifics discussed (in the blog post)

Thursday, June 20, 2019

POD - new business opens on Old Cutler Road - just for fun. I passed.

Who says the current administration in Palmetto Bay is not business friendly? 

A kind reader send in a photo that proves that allegation wrong! 

A new business is an operation on old Cutler Road. Just in time for your summer reading. Also advertised are the sale of "Marvel Comic Books" but the banner advertisement would be an impediment to my stopping by to look for classic comic books. An example of a business decision that affect customers.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Troubling: No explanation forthcoming from Palmetto Bay officials - County explanation offers more issues, than answers

I found this post this morning on Carol's "Village of Palmetto Bay for Real" Page. It creates more issues than answers.  And I would like answers.

But first, let's be clear: No one ever suggested that this was the decision of our district commissioner, however, based upon this answer, I do want to know who ordered the signs now that we hear that these signs are being ordered down. I ask that our Commissioner discuss whether she was involved in these discussions between Cutler Bay, Palmetto Bay and Miami-Dade, including at any of her "MOM" Meetings (Meetings of the Mayors). Answers would go far in providing the back story on how this all fell into place.

Let's not overreact, but also troubling is how everyone seems to be scurrying when the Sunshine is cast on clear, conspicuous and clearly intentionally created (and posted) signs are revealed by my blog to a broad general audience. The signs are being removed "taken down" - so there will be no notice to anyone as to the relocation of this event? (I am thankful that I have the photos documenting that the signs were in fact placed there.)

This is troubling.  Now we are being told that PB and CB "decided" to work together for an event in Palmetto Bay. 

This is an open request for anyone with information on any meetings or agreements, information as to how two local governments made this decision out of view of their residents, to forward such information to me at eugeneflinn@bellsouth.net

I have so many concerns, so many questions that I do not even know where to begin, but I will collect my thoughts and begin after my morning hearings.

FYI - once again, I post the photo of the County Banner that appears to be very specific - self explanatory:

I personally cannot recall any meeting or discussion in held public view or any advisement of the public, but then again, I am a very busy person so I cannot monitor everything. I depend upon the watchful eye of many other interested residents to assist. This requires further investigation.

RELATED POST: Background information can be found on the initial post relating to this situation, posted 6-17-2019: Half the story - leaving out a very important detail - the Truth: Palmetto Bay is hosting a regional MEGA Fourth of July event. Black Point's celebration moves to Palmetto Bay