Csaba Kulin on City of Hallandale Beach's upside-down understanding of FL's Sunshine Laws, their pattern of intimidation re Public Records Requests; the city's abject failure to provide timely info on CRC meetings for the ENTIRETY of its existence -6 months!
Yes, Assistant City Managers pulling THAT in a city of under 40,000 residents.
Csaba's email concerns how this small ocean-side city REALLY operates, and frequently attempts to use all manner of obfuscation and intimidation to prevent citizens and other interested parties from gaining access to information they are legally entitled to, including, as I've demonstrated here a few times in the past thru personal experience, via email responses with City Hall with inflated and absurd costs for actually providing the PUBLIC INFORMATION, in an attempt to dissuade residents from actually filing.
More recently, we have the case of Comm. Alexander Lewy, who publicly steamed-up up on the dais during a City Commission meeting when someone spoke up to say that they were STILL waiting for requested answers from the city, and then Lewy showed bad judgment and lack of self-awareness by commenting publicly that he wanted to know why the citizen of his own city wanted it.
Instead of taking his oversight responsibility seriously, and asking/directing the City Manager to crack the whip and figure out why this continues to be such a problem, Lewy "killed the messenger."
See my previous post of on Dr. Selz here, Dr. Judy Selz zeroes-in on wasteful city spending, angering Comm. Lewy; Keith London's take on Hallandale Beach City Comm. meeting of Dec, 7 2011
It's all pretense, a charade.
That's why we need big changes here in Hallandale Beach when election time comes in November, just 33 weeks away.
Trust me, given their disastrous voting records against the best long-term interests of this city's taxpayers, their complete lack of effort to provide genuine oversight, and consistently oblivious feeling for what's really going on in this city while serving on the HB City Commission, Anthony A. Sanders and William "Bill" Julian, have absolutely failed to earn the trust or respect of the WHOLE community, and do NOT deserve another chance to keep the status quo Rubber Stamp Crew of Joy Cooper in charge, ruining this city's future.
They need to be rejected in November in the strongest possible terms.
Sent: Fri 9/2/2011 12:47 PM
Subject: CRC - Sept. 2, 2011
Dear Charter Review Committee Members,
After two months of your existence I cannot find any information about your committee on the city's web site so I have to use only the names of the members I had some previous contact with. In my future correspondence if you like me to add the names of the rest of members, delete the name of some of the members or use a different e-mail address, please let me know.
During your last meeting, you mentioned the lack of interest of the residents in the work of the Committee. To some extent you are right but the lack of information available on the city's web site and the summer season can explain some of it. If you add to it the general belief of the residents that your recommendations can be and will be ignored by the City Commission, it is difficult to get real exited. I am an optimist, I will follow your meetings. I hope that you save the more important issues like districting, FOIA, recall any elected official and others for October, when most of our residents return from summer vacation.
During your August 31, 2011 meeting you talked about the City Clerk and his/her responsibility to honor public record requests. In my opinion, timeliness is an issue but there are bigger issues than that. Intimidation and the lack of co-operation are more important.
If I go the City Clerk and I request some information I have good reason to be "public record", the Clerk should have the following options:
* "Black out" part of the record that is not public record
* Deny the request with explanation (pending law suit, not in existence etc).
If I am not happy with explanation, I have a right to go to court and sue. As far as I know, in one case (09-22405 (03)) just the opposite happened. HB decided to sue the resident using the resources of the City instead of just "denying" the request. Of course the resident had to use his money to defend himself. The the way I look at it, this intimates me and many other residents.
Lack of co-operation comes in when I request some public record but I do not have the exact name of the items I requested. The City may call it a different name or give an extremely high cost for the request without proper explanation or ways to deduce the costs.
I hope you get a chance to read my e-mail prior to this afternoon's meeting.