out across the transom late Friday night
to interested parties across the Sunshine
State concerned whether or not Rep.
Kendrick Meek would actually be making
what amounts to an in-store appearance
at Hallandale Beach City Hall on Saturday
morning, or go the route chosen by
Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
And therein lies the mystery...
This is an edited version of that email.
Friday September 11th, 2009
Last Wednesday afternoon while up at Hollywood
City Hall for their City Commission meeting on the
explosive Police pension issue, I saw the flyer below
on their public notice board near the City Clerk's
office and snapped a shot of it.
So Congressman Meek will hold a Town Hall
meeting pertaining to Health Insurance Reform
at David Park Community Center, 108 N. Park
Road in Hollywood on Saturday the 12th from
Not to discuss the issue of "health care reform" that
everyone originally bought into for reasons of logic,
compassion and economics, but health insurance
reform, the new tact taken by Obama in his effort
to sell a program that doesn't really seem to exist
on paper so much as in the hands and heads of
Senator Max Baucus's Senate Finance Committee
and staffers. http://finance.senate.gov/
(See Proposed Framework for Health Care Reform,
from Sept. 9th
Also, see various Baucus, Grassley Policy Options
for Financing Comprehensive Health Care Reform
listed at http://finance.senate.gov/sitepages/legislation.htm )
So, having been surprised at coming across this
news nine days ago without having read anywhere
else about it, I made a mental note to myself to use
the photo and mention it on the blog as the date
drew near, which was going to be Thursday.
But literally as I was in the middle of writing about it,
with my list of health care articles and links at the ready
to sprinkle here, I decided to take a break and take
a spin over to the Sun-Sentinel's Broward Politics
blog to see if there was anything percolating over there.
In retrospect, I'm glad I did because it prevented me
from writing and posting something I'd immediately
have had to pull down and make surgical edits to.
What I saw there shocked me:
Congressman Kendrick Meek plans health
care town hall in Broward
My first thought: Isn't that the same time that
he's supposed to be in Hollywood?
And my second was why is it being held there,
in such a small facility?
I immediately started wondering whether Meek
& Co. would pull a phony Town Hall like another
South Florida gerrymandered congressperson
who's never had to run a competitive race for
their seat, Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
You'll recall that she recently had a pre-digested
Tele-Town Hall, which has all the civic charm
and spontaneity of a car maintenance manual.
Where seldom is heard a discouraging word...
Then, this morning, the Herald ran a similar
version on page 3B, which is what I had in my
email to you all this morning, at bottom.
This afternoon, I swung by the HB Cultural
Center to find out why this event was being
held Saturday morning in a facility that barely
holds 100 people, when the Cultural Center
behind City Hall can hold many times that
Well, it turns out the HB PAL is having their
abbual antique sale there the whole weekend,
so that's out, unfortunately.
But still rather curious about how the whole
event seemed to spring up overnight, since
neither I nor any of my well-informed friends
had heard anything at all about Meek actually
coming here until Thursday's Sun-Sentinel blog
post, I asked a someone in a position to know
whether or not an effort had been made to have
it in the Cultural Center in the past few weeks,
or, at a future date, when more citizens could
You might recall that during the recent
congressional recess of several weeks,
the deadest and warmest weeks of the
year in Washington, trust me, rather
than taking advantage of that time to
cross the countyline and have a health
care meeting at the HB Cultural Center,
Meek was campaigning all over the state
for the U.S. Senate.
Tonight, around 8:15, I walked by HB City Hall
and was surprised to see that a barricade had
already been erected in the parking lot near
the entrance off U.S.-1.
Looking north towards the barricade from
in front of HB City Hall, with U.S.-1 to the right.
This, of course, was the 'one trick pony' they
employed for many years, to no positive effect,
at the city's public beach, as a substitute for
their actually patrolling the beach areas like
other South Florida oceanfront cities do,
esp. on busy three-day holiday weekends like
But in Hallandale Beach, under this particular
mayor, this particular city manager and this
particular police chief, that's not the way they
Which doubtless explains why there are always
so many dozens of police cars glued to the
HB Police Dept. parking lot that are never seen
on the city's roads.
But then what am I saying, you already know that,
As you may recall, the real tip-off to potential
miscreants arriving at North Beach, with mischief
on their mind, that they had no reason to fear the
police were those bowls of cat food and water
that were placed directly in front of either the
police car's tires or underneath the chassis.
One of the three empty Hallandale Beach
police cars parked near the public entrance
to HB City Hall tonight.
Can't say for sure if it's one of the many
that's been growing roots over near the
Old Dixie Highway entrance to City Hall
the past few years, that were caked with
months worth of dirt.
It was too dark to tell since the three parking
lot lights closest to the entrance -shocker-
Just like last week and last month and...
The ruse is now in place tonight at HB City
Hall as I write this, and as you can also see,
the Meek folks don't want you taking flash
Perhaps he thinks he's Amish
Please don't take photos of the Congressman
in the building that your taxes paid for -he's
Why do I have a bad feeling that many
of the Hallandale Beach 108 will be plants?
Hey, what do you know, the parking lot light
closest to the public entrance of HB City Hall
is STILL out.
And, the very light that's closest to the one
and only HB Police Dept.-controlled security
camera in front of that side of City Hall.
The light that has NOT worked for 18 of the
21 months since the cameras first went up.
The light that HB Police Chief Magill could
apparently care less about seeing fixed,
judging by his pathetic excuses many months
ago when I reminded the whole Commission
during public comments of a night meeting
he was present at, how poorly the City Hall
area has lit at night for years, and if they
doubted it, they could just step outside and
see for themselves.
There are many cities in this country where
my comments would've led to it being fixed
the next day, if out of embarrassment more
But not here in HB.
Months later, that light just keeps on snoozing
thru the night.
That's your Hallandale Beach City Hall in action!
Meanwhile, down the street a few blocks,
on the median of U.S.-1 & S.E. 9th Street,
I said hello again to our old friend
-the HB sign.
Moved a few hundred feet north many months
ago because of FDOT road construction, despite
its new location, its light STILL doesn't work,
extending its previous futile record of being out
of commission to well over five years
-longer than the U.S. fought in WWII.
Another Mike Good/Joy Cooper success story.
Now that I've added a big memory card to my
digital camera, I can shoot video and plan on
doing so Saturday morning, to capture whatever
happens, if anything.
I strongly suggest that those of you with an
interest in attending bring along your own
camcorder to record the action,
such as it may be.
See photo at:
This weekend, I'll be posting something I've already
written about Meek and the candidates who are
seeking to replace him in Congress, and why they've
been so curiously AWOL in Hallandale Beach,
as well as the pages of the Herald and the
Sun-Sentinel, but for now, I just wanted to pass
this along in case you're up to the idea of asking
about arcane provisions of 3200 at 9 am on a
I'll be there with my camera and writing pad at the
ready, hoping for either insight or group dynamic
hijinks, but not really expecting to see either.
Meek to hold town hall on Saturday in Hallandale Beach
Meek, D-Miami, represents part of South Broward. He is also running for his party's nomination for the U.S. Senate next year.
The event will begin at 9 a.m. in the City Commission Chambers, 400 S. Federal Hwy., Hallandale Beach.
Doors will open at 8:30 a.m. Space is limited and will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis, Meek's office said.
-- SUN SENTINEL