Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida and Europe, especially the UK and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura. Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The true costs of 'pet' legislation & the misplaced priorities of Joy Cooper, Hallandale Beach City Comm.; Ted Deutch's bill to overturn SCOTUS ruling

RT America video: The Big Picture host Thom Hartmann mentions FL-19's Ted Deutch's proposal to overturn the Supreme Court's First Amendment ruling thru -yes- a Constitutional Amendment. November 22, 2011.

This email of mine below was sent this morning to the Hallandale Beach City Clerk's Office.
It concerns a preposterous agenda item that was deemed so important by the powers-that-be in this city about the future of the city, that it was deemed a priority and discussed Wednesday night at the Hallandale Beach City Commission -a proposal to overturn a 2010 Supreme Court ruling.
What, nothing new was available to discuss and debate regarding Syria, global warming or the situation in the Mid-East, or, you know, something about what's actually going on IN this city right now?

On the chance that you mis-read my intent here, let me state it clearly: the City of Hallandale Beach City Hall can NOT chew its food and walk at the same time.
Yet it imagines itself a Think Tank, dispensing wisdom and insight to all who will listen.

It's the epitome of inefficient and incompetent and yet under Joy Cooper, HB City Commission meetings that should take two hours at most, instead, consistently take 5-6 hours, as they range far-afield from the actual duties of the commission, while completely ignoring the dreadful self-evident state of the city under the current (and previous) highly-paid City Manager and their high-paid staff.
This repels citizen interest and activity at these meetings, which is precisely Cooper's intent.
It's no accident.

Cooper's Rubber Stamp Crew is oblivious to almost everything going on here -and almost always the last to know anything important that's common knowledge to others in the community- and consistently ignores its proper oversight role of the City Manager and his staff, spelled out in the charter of , resulting in ZERO scrutiny.

This lack of seriousness and diligence by the mayor and the City Commission was proven by the recent audit that was much-discussed here on the blog, where evidence shows that problems were allowed to grow larger and worse for years-and-years while Cooper was mayor, as the city failed to perform basic aspects of sound governance while the city's budget nearly doubled.

Read the information about the city's resolution and Ted Deutch's H.J. RES 90 at the links below and make up your own mind about what sort of priority this ought to be in the city in December of 2011.

December 8th, 2011

To Whom It May Concern:

Regarding last night's Hallandale Beach City Commission meeting and agenda item, 12-E, a resolution to overturn a decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, to wit, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission,
A Resolution of the City of Hallandale Beach, Florida, Supporting Congressman Ted Deutch's Proposed Amendment to the Constitution of the United States to Exclude For-Profit Corporations from the Rights Given to Natural Person by the Constitution, Prohibiting Corporate Spending in all Elections, and Affirming the Authority of Congress to Regulate and Set Limits on all Election Contributions and Expenditures. (Mayor Joy F. Cooper) (See Backup) CAD#008/12

please provide me with the following information within the next ten business days.

a.) The names of City employees and elected officials involved in the drafting and construction of this resolution, from beginning until its presentation on Wednesday night.
b.) The total amount of work-time billed to the City of Hallandale Beach on this matter by each germane employee, contractor or consultant, from beginning-to-end, and,
c.) The total cost to the City of Hallandale Beach for this activity, from beginning-to-end, by way of salaries, supplies and fees to contractors or consultants.

Additionally, I request
d.) All resolution-related correspondence and documents sent to and from the City of Hallandale Beach and its elected officials and administrators.
e.) The total amount of time devoted to this specific agenda item on Wednesday night, December 7, 2011 according to the HB City Clerk's office.

My intent is clear: I want to find out how much time, effort and resources have been wasted on this non-germane matter at a HB City Commission meeting, and the costs associated with that effort.
This, even while the longstanding, self-evident graffiti all throughout the city, including along U.S.-1 and directly in front of HB City Hall itself, continues to be COMPLETELY IGNORED by HB City Hall, the HB Police Dept. and the HB Chamber of Commerce.

Meanwhile, routine safety maintenance of city-owned parks and facilities that effectively renders some of them -or large parts of them- completely unsafe to the public at night because of the city's longstanding pattern of benign neglect, year-after-year.
This includes the city's largest park, Bluesten Park, located only two blocks from HB City Hall and the HB Police Dept.

I'll soon be submitting a Public Records Request to the city about the latter matter to find out why it is that the safety of the HB community seems to consistently have a MUCH-LOWER priority right now at HB City Hall, than 'pet' legislation that has NOTHING to do with the proper governance or maintenance of this city according to the city's own charter.


“If the First Amendment has any force, it prohibits Congress from fining or jailing citizens, or associations of citizens, for simply engaging in political speech.”
-Justice Anthony Kennedy writing for the majority in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission
Press release from FL-19 Rep. Ted Deutch's office re his proposed Constitutional Amendment overturning the Supreme Court's First Amendment ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission:

Rep. Deutch Unveils OCCUPIED Constitutional Amendment

Bill Summary and Status of H.J. RES 90, according to Library of Congress' THOMAS website:

As you can see for yourself above, as of today, despite how much you may occasionally hear on TV or read about this effort in newspapers, blogs or websites, esp. in South Florida, this liberal pipe-dream of Ted Deutch that clearly will never come to fruition, has the support of exactly 4 very liberal members of the 435-member House of Representatives:
Deutch, Alcee Hastings of next-door FL-23, Peter DeFazio of Oregon and Jim McDermott of Washington.
Hmm-m... not exactly what you'd call a rolling bandwagon, eh?

It's been referred to the House Subcommittee on the Constitution, currently chaired by Arizona's Trent Franks.

The other members of the subcommittee from Florida, besides Deutch, are Republicans Sandy Adams of FL-24, representing Orlando to the ocean, and Dennis Ross of FL-12, representing the area east of Tampa reaching towards the central part of the state, where my mother lives.
(The outline of FL-12 sort of looks like the State of Virginia.)

FL-12 was formerly represented for ten years by Adam Putnam, current FL Sec. of Agriculture, where he was Chairman of the House Republican Conference.
Putnam was considerably more important in the larger scheme of things in the House than you would have ever realized judging by how infrequently he was mentioned in the Miami Herald, Sun-Sentinel or on local Miami-based TV newscasts. Surprise!


NB: About the subject header - I realize that it's actually a resolution not a bill, but "resolution" at ten spaces wouldn't fit into the space, while "bill" at four would.

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