Tuesday, October 16, 2018

About last night (Mon. 10/15/2018) - I continue to work for you to reduce development. The council votes best tell the story.

Being Mayor means putting politics aside. It means taking the political criticism for standing up on behalf of our fellow Palmetto Bay residents and our environment as I did Monday, Oct 15!

I do what I always do, fight for our residents, irrespective of the political fallout.  I voted to reduce development. That is responsibility.  My responsibility to you.

It is important to me that we save the 22 acres of the threatened Pine Rocklands from development.

Karyn Cunningham now takes ownership of the 485. Her votes confirm it. This is significant as the Vice Mayor and Karyn Cunningham fell one vote short of undoing this alleged "485" at a special council meeting set for Saturday morning July 3, 2017, yes, the fourth of July holiday. Now they have flipped and voted to keep 485. Her campaign depends upon preserving this number. Karyn Cunningham is putting politics over our environment.

She is ignoring her responsibilities to you and is playing the "oh so tired" political games. She voted AGAINST an opportunity to scale back the development at the Palmetto Bay Village Center. She voted to keep development at the "needless 485" that she keeps criticizing. Once again, my opponent has no plan other than to criticize.

Last night, the Council held a vote on the Palmetto Bay Village Center. We had the opportunity to reduce development. This was the time for a united council to tell developers that we expect cooperation and reduction. Instead, my opponent and her ally voted against a clarifying ordinance that defines the rights of the development at the Palmetto Bay Village Center, reducing it from their political catchphrase of 485 down to 389. You can view the meeting video by CLICKING HERE.

There has never been and never will be 485- based upon the traffic chokeholds that we placed in the ordinance we passed 3-2 in 2016.  We are in some serious negotiations, and those negotiations are delicate. The negotiations require that politics be put aside and we speak in a unified voice.

So far these negotiations are playing out as expected at the Monday hearing as the PBVC owners:

  • Objected to this ordinance, also alleging the timing is premature.
  • Threatened to not deed over the 22 acres (actually 40 acres) unless they get their way.

Strong leadership stands up to threats.  We countered with the fact that the PBVC loses all of their rights of the 2016 ordinance if they walk away, reverting back to the 2008 rights. The owners of the PBVC don't want this.

We can also compare the plans, Council Member David Singer's Current legislation as opposed to the only plan pursued by our Vice Mayor and Councilwoman Cunningham (heard at the special council hearing set by the Vice Mayor on Saturday, July 3, 2017 )

Our position is strong under my leadership, but it would be even stronger if Karyn would put her politics aside and work with me as a team. Each council member has one vote, and each vote is equally important. She didn't vote the right way because she wanted to twist what happened to suit her lie that she is anti-development and I am pro. But regardless here are some of the early concessions I achieved Monday night:

  • The owners admitted that the final number will not be "485" and in fact offered up a compromise number of 450 - 470. I contend that this is their starting point in these negotiations and the unit numbers will drop further. 
  • The representative for the PBVC mentioned that negotiations are ongoing for 200 -- half of the units -- to be Senior housing units. That's a HUGE offer in regard to traffic reduction.

The Village Manager and our Village Attorney will now enter into negotiations that should result in a significant reduction of the overall impact of this property AND obtaining endangered Pine Rocklands.

None of the above would have happened if Councilman Singer had not brought this ordinance forward. None of this will happen, or our final results will be reduced if we don't stand together.

Being mayor is a special responsibility that I take very seriously. I have to continue to work hard and represent the best interest of the Village. Contrast this with a candidate who undermines the negotiations for her own political gain.

It is unfortunate that Karyn Cunningham is playing politics, on these very important issues, putting her political career ahead of our village. 

As your Mayor, I have worked hard to deliver on commitments while others simply make promises. I choose to remain focused in delivering quality service to our community and remaining true to my commitment to running a clean, positive issue focused campaign which points out my accomplishments to date, along with presenting a solid positive vision for the future.

Your, Mayor,

Eugene Flinn

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