Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, government, public policy, sports scene and pop culture of Europe, Sweden, the U.S. & South Florida. 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 South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Ethics? Not for us! Follow-up to my post re Hallandale Beach's unethical "business as usual" attitude, with "special rules for special people" if they are named Joy Cooper, Bill Julian and Anthony A. Sanders; What ethics? What rules? @MayorCooper, @SandersHB

In twenty-two more days, you'll get the chance you've wanted to take Hallandale Beach City Hall back and completely change the consistently anti-democratic, anti-taxpayer attitudes, words and policies that have emanated from there for the past ten years. Please don't waste the opportunity to finally change this city for the better and undo the YEARS of serious financial and civic damage that has been done to this city's residents and small-business owners by the ruinous policies of Joy Cooper, Bill Julian and Anthony A. Sanders. They and their unsound policies have to be defeated! October 3rd, 2012 photos by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved
Just a short follow-up to my email and blog post of ten days ago on October 5th, titled,  Look what I found? More photographic proof of Hallandale Beach's "business as usual" attitude. Special rules for special people named Joy Cooper, Bill Julian and Anthony A. Sanders -once again they break the rules everyone else HAS to follow; Ethics @MayorCooper, @SandersHB, @AlexLewy
There's also an attached video there, too, at: 
Well, the problem of Mayor Joy CooperComm. Anthony A. Sanders and former
Comm. Bill Julian illegally placing their campaign yard signs on city property, at 501 N.W. First Avenue -the property sold to the city in 2009 by Sanders for $85k more than it was worth, and which he has refused to discuss publicly with HB taxpayers for over three years- the subject of that Friday email, was finally resolved. 
At least for now...

Above, October 3rd, 2012 photos by South Beach Hoosier of 501 N.W. First Avenue, a property owned since 2009 by the City of Hallandale Beach and its beleaguered taxpayers, thus making it a building that is NOT supposed to have political campaign activity in it, or campaign signs on it. And yet it does, doesn't it, and for quite some time, too, courtesy of Joy Cooper, Bill Julian and Anthony A. Sanders. The latter sold it to the city for $235,000, more than it was actually worth, for a purpose the city didn't have then and STILL doesn't have three years later, under longtime Mayor Joy Cooper. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved
They say that justice delayed is justice denied, but who's talking about justice? 
Nobody reasonably expects anything to happen to the three of them soon in the way of meaningful punishment that would cause them to NOT keep taking us all for granted and willfully ignore the rules yet again if they thought they could get away with it.

The three of them got to do exactly what they wanted -throw their weight around and bend the rules to their own benefit, despite what the city's own rules are.
Rules they already know.

Yes, it only took the City of Hallandale Beach OVER TEN DAYS to do something they should've never had to do in the first place if Cooper, Sanders and Julian had simply shown some integrity and followed the rules in the first place. 
I went by the location mid-Tuesday afternoon, more than ten days after the signs were first illegally erected there, and they'd been removed. 
For now...

And the ones I'd seen for quite some time at two different locations at old HB City Hall were also finally gone, too.

But this being Hallandale Beach, naturally, something else shady soon caught my eye -each of them had political yard signs on church property.
Specifically, the S.W. corner of Chuch of Christ at Hallandale Beach, and the intersection of First Avenue & S.W. 3rd Street, a well-traveled east-west secondary road.

Inline image 2

Above and below, October 3rd, 2012 photos by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved
Inline image 4
Yes, on the inside of the sidewalk. On church property.
More than two weeks ago, like many of you, I heard thru the grapevine about yet another example of Bill Julian pretending that he didn't know the city's rules on signage, and, if you can believe this, there were a number of his yard signs up in a tree in a residential neighborhood, on a busy corner of N.E. 10th Avenue and N.E. 5th Street.
Like THAT was normal!

After hearing about it a second time I drove by and sure enough, there they were, a bunch of Julian signs up in a tree in a residential neighborhood. 
It was patently ridiculous, of course, and thus, sheer Julian nerve. 
Unfortunately, when I drove over there, it was too dark to snap any good photos that I can share here on my blog.

Last week, I heard from a reliable person in S.W. about yet another Julian sign problem, writ large, so last Friday, the 5th, I drove over and snapped this photo of a large over-sized campaign signs nailed to a tree at 640 S.W. First Street. Really!

Inline image 1
It looks even bigger in person, too. And where is the legally-required disclaimer on the bottom of the sign about who's responsible for it? As big as the sign is, it's MISSING. Oops! Classic Julian! October 3rd, 2012 photos by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Yes, once again, HB City Commission candidate Bill Julian, infamous for his bad judgment and myopia during his almost ten years previously on the City Commission, shows that he STILL thinks he gets to operate outside the rules, laws, and norms that everyone else in this city has to live within. 
Or in this case, city ordinances -campaign signs DON'T belong in trees in residential neighborhoods
No, Hallandale Beach in the year 2012 is not Davie circa 1974.

And yet even in the best of times, Bill Julian couldn't help being who he is, someone who routinely crossed ethical lines as routinely as he showed no common sense on the dais and made this city a media laughingstock.
And now, Bill Julian is DESPERATE 

Desperate to get back into power and once again be able to have people genuflect to him, since we know desperation causes even a lot of reasonable people who know better to sometimes ignore the rules, so imagine what it causes a loose cannon like Julian who didn't care about the rules to begin, to do.
Oh, that's right, we DON'T have to imagine it, we see it!

Just as was the case in NW HB, Julian is again daring the city to try to stop him from doing what he wants.

Actually, we don't want Bill Julian back, we want him and his unethical mindset and grand sense of entitlement gone for good! October 3, 2012 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved
The truth of the matter is that despite what his large signs say, nobody with any common sense in this city wants to "Bring Bill BACK."

Well, now that I think about it, nobody wants "Bill Back" other than the myriad City of Hallandale Beach employees unions, whose members did so amazingly well for years despite their lack of increased productivity and efficiency, since they are the ones who received the vast majority of that huge increase in the city budget that nearly doubled over the past six years.

At when lapdog Julian was around and had a vote, City Hall employees benefited completely out of proportion to reality, since the quality of city services to residents and small-business owners had actually gotten worse under Joy Cooper and her Rubber Stamp Crew, especially maintenance, as the parks and the beach became dirty, ugly and unattractive.

But now with an election in 22 days, Julian is strangely silent about all that money that was flowing out of City Hall while he was around and an official member of the Rubber Stamp Crew, just as he is silent about what taxpayers in this city have to show for all that additional money that went to City Hall that he consistently decided to waste on crony capitalism, unsound policies and overly-compensated city employees, all of whom seem to have their own city car.
I'll tell you what taxpayers have received - nothing.

Julian, like Cooper and Sanders, is a bad ending that never quite goes away.
That said, what possible reason could we have to want to re-visit and repeat the city's troubled and embarrassing history the past few years with these three characters in power, and have to put up with their personal hijinks and ethical tomfoolery, even as they have nearly emptied the city's Reserves?

Caveat emptor? 
You bet! 

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Hallandale Beach Blog is where I try to inject or superimpose a degree of accountability, transparency and insight onto Florida and local Broward County government and public policy issues, which I feel is sorely lacking in local media now. On this blog, locally, I concentrate my energy, enthusiasm, anger and laser-like attention on the coastal cities of Hallandale Beach and Hollywood.
If you lived in this part of South Florida, you'd ALREADY be stuck in stultifying traffic, paying higher-than-necessary taxes and continually musing about the chronic lack of accountability among not only elected govt. officials, but also of city, county and state employees as well. Collectively, with a few rare exceptions, they couldn't be farther from the sort of strong results-oriented, eager work-ethic mentality that local residents deserve and expect.
This is particularly true in the town I live in, the City of Hallandale Beach, just north of Aventura and south of Hollywood. There, the "Perfect Storm" of years of apathy, incompetency and cronyism are all too readily apparent.
Sadly for its residents, HB is where even easily-solved, quality-of-life problems are left to fester for YEARS on end, because of myopia, lack of common sense and ineffective supervisory management. It's a city with lots of potential because of its terrific location, yet its citizens have become numb to its outrages and screw-ups after years of the worst kind of mismanagement and lack of foresight. On a daily basis, they wake up and see the same old problems that have never being adequately resolved by the city in a logical and responsible fashion, merely kicked -once again- further down the road.
I used to ask myself, not always rhetorically, "Where are all the enterprising young reporters who want to show that through their own hard work and enterprise, what REAL investigative reporting can produce?" Hearing no response, I decided to start a blog that could do some of these things, taking the p.o.v. of a reasonable but skeptical person seeing the situation for the first time, and wanting questions answered in a honest and logical way that citizens have the right to expect.

Hallandale Beach Blog intends to be a catalyst for positive change. If there's one constant gripe in South Florida, regardless of your age, race, nationality or political persuasion, it's about the fundamental lack of PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY here among Florida's state, regional and local govt./agency officials. Hallandale Beach Blog aims to be a small step towards regaining some of that needed accountability, whether it's thru simple public scrutiny, or requires a degree of follow-up investigation and public exposure of incompetency, cronyism or simple negligence -South Florida's usual governing style.
Unless otherwise indicated, all ORIGINAL photos appearing here were taken by myself. © 2014 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. The use or modification of original photos or original images appearing on this blog WITHOUT the written permission of the author is expressly prohibited. DO NOT modify or alter any original photo/image on this blog and use it in any other media, whether for commercial advertising, marketing purposes, political campaign advertising, or on any Social Media platform or digital media forum. Do NOT modify or alter the photos or use them in a confusing way that suggests sponsorship or endorsement, or in a way that seeks to confuse Hallandale Beach Blog with another blog. This includes but is not limited to sites such as Dipity, Facebook, flickr, MySpace, Pinterest, Posterous, Topsy, Twitter, YouTube or VIMEO. Original photos and images also can NOT be used as avatars or icons on website forums.
Some older elements and building blocks formerly seen at Hallandale Beach Blog, such as photos, graphics and videos have been moved into cold storage. Visit them again or see what you've missed at: http://hallandale-beach-blog.blogspot.com/

New this year: you!

New this year: you!
Close-up photo of the cute head-turning window display at the Apotek Hjärtat -Sweden's largest independent pharmacy chain- located at Ringvägen 113, near the Skanstull T-bana in Södermalm, Stockholm. Sign reads, "Årets nyhet: du! Ett helt nytt och obrukat år är här. Just nu känns det lite lättare att välja om, förändra vanor och bryta gamla mönster. Vi hjälper gärna till. Du vill, du kan, du törs!' (New this year: you! A brand new and unused year is here. Right now it feels a little easier to choose, change habits and break old patterns. We're happy to help. You want to, you can, you dare!) Sounds like good advice that I ought to be following, too! January 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Paradise Lost? South Florida

Paradise Lost? South Florida
TIME magazine of November 23, 1981: Paradise Lost? South Florida . Click photo to see original article.

A fish rots from the head down, and so does local government in Hallandale Beach, FL

A fish rots from the head down, and so does local government in Hallandale Beach, FL
City of Hallandale Beach Municipal Complex, 400 S. Federal Highway. The City of Hallandale Beach Municipal Complex: If it's true that a fish rots from the head down, so it does in local government in Broward County, FL. This monument sign on the west side of the intersection of U.S.-1 and S.E. 5th Street, across from Gulfstream Park Race Track & Casino and the Village at Gulfstream Park retail complex, alerts you to your proximity to HB City Hall and the HB Police Department HQ. It's a place and culture whose very own words and actions have made clear to taxpayers of this city -regardless of age, race or income- that it holds itself apart from and above from the very citizens it's supposed to serve, often acting like they don't have to follow the same laws that govern everyone else in the state of Florida and the U.S., whether of logic, reason or contracts. (More to the point of this blog, the Florida Statutes on Sunshine Laws and Public Records.) City employees in Hallandale Beach routinely refuse to answer perfectly reasonable questions posed to them by taxpayers, and as I have found out myself and witnessed, are not above berating you for even having the nerve to ask! As it happens, it's also not a very safe area, despite who operates here, and over the past nine years, the public parking lots have often been pitch-black for 6-9 months at a time, including in front of the HB Police Dept. HQ. Then-Police Chief Thomas Magill even shrugged his shoulders at City Comm. meetings when told about this a few times. As if they couldn't make a worse first impression, at one point, even the spotlights shining on this sign didn't work at night for over FOUR YEARS, either. October 13, 2012 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Palm tree, Stars & Stripes

Palm tree, Stars & Stripes
Palm tree obstructing the sun at Hallandale Beach City Hall, May 28, 2012 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Gulfstream Park Race Track & Casino and Village at GP retail complex, Hallandale Beach, FL

Gulfstream Park Race Track & Casino and Village at GP retail complex, Hallandale Beach, FL
Entrance monument to Gulfstream Park Race Track & Casino and The Village at Gulfstream Park retail complex on U.S.-1 & SE 3rd St. Hallandale Beach, FL. October 5, 2010 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Hallandale Beach Water Tower, looking east from State Road A1A/South Ocean Drive; May 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Singer/songwriter Full of Keys (Anni Bernhard)

Singer/songwriter Full of Keys (Anni Bernhard)
Singer/songwriter Full of Keys (Anni Bernhard) wearing the teal-colored Miami Dolphins cap I gave her in January 2013 (in Stockholm) while recording her 2nd album, "The Grazing Grounds" at Sandkvie Studios in Visby, Gotland, Sweden. Also pictured here are sound engineer and co-producer Linus Larsson and musician/DJ/co-producer Mats Jönsson, April 12, 2013.Click the photo to see her videos, read my blog posts and Tweets about her and learn more about this dynamic and original talent with personality to spare!

North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers

North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers
Before I was a Hoosier, I was an NMB Charger, Class of 1979.

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation
"In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation." -South Beach Hoosier, 2007.

Let's end the 28-year NCAA title drought!

Let's end the 28-year NCAA title drought!
IU All-American and U.S. Olympian Steve Alford on the cover of the 1987 Indiana University basketball media guide, months after IU won the NCAA basketball title.

The NCAA Championship Banners

The NCAA Championship Banners
Assembly Hall, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana. I was there in 1981 for NCAA Title #4 vs. North Carolina. Click on photo to go to the IU Basketball homepage.

Sebastian the Ibis, the U-M mascot

Sebastian the Ibis, the U-M mascot
Like longtime U-M fans everywhere, including me, Sebastian the Ibis, the U-M mascot, hasn't had very much to cheer about lately, given the general state of mediocrity and underwhelming performances coming from the Hurricanes. Isn't it about time for fans to finally see some tangible signs that the new AD is moving things in the right direction? Where are the signs? I'm NOT seeing them. The woeful U-M Women's program is largely composed of teams that are NOT even close to being competitive for NCAA titles like their ACC competition, and they don't even field Women's Lacrosse or Field Hockey teams. It's embarrassing! Click on Sebastian for retrospective photo gallery of The Orange Bowl


The welcoming party that greeted me at the luggage carousel at Arlanda Stockholm Airport in January of 2013 was... ABBA. As seen in my May 7, 2013 blog post. Click photo to see that post!

Congratulations Sweden - 200 years of peace! Solveig Rundquist (@RundquistS)


Hej #STHLM, jag saknar dig, hejdå. So wish I was there RIGHT NOW!

Using a map of Stockholm and my Samsung mobile's Latitude app to find out where some friends and contacts in Stockholm were before I called to let them know I'd arrived from Arlanda Airport and had checked into the B&B in Södermalm. If only it had been an OpenStreetMap! January 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved; Click the photo to see OpenStreetMap's amazing map of Stockholm and a whole world of useful maps you never even knew existed

Solrea - Sveriges bästa resesök

Solrea - Sveriges bästa resesök
The colder and snowier it got in Stockholm, the more this simple ad seemed like genius. Sometimes, you don't have to reinvent the advertising wheel. When you're a travel agency and it's cold and snowing, make your target audience think of summers and traveling to an inviting warm beach. Above, one of the many Sistaminuten.se display ads I saw on the side of pay phones throughout Stockholm. This one was located on Ringvägen, across the street from the Åhléns Dept. store (with the Hemköp grocery store in the basement that I frequented) west of busy Götgatan and the Skanstull T-bana, the southern commercial heart of trendy and fun Södermalm. January 11, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. I used this photo in my April 22, 2013 blog post titled, Tourism game-changer for South Florida travelers & Fort Lauderdale-area businesses -but only if they're smart and start planning now. Ruminations on the upcoming Norwegian.com flights b/w Ft. Lauderdale and Oslo, Stockholm & Copenhagen, and the need for Broward's hospitality industry to take full-advantage of the opportunity; @Oslo, @norway, @stockholm, @sweden, @copenhagen, @denmark. Click photo to see that post

More travel advertising in Stockholm

More travel advertising in Stockholm
Speaking of advertising, only two blocks from the wonderful 4trappor B&B I stayed at in Södermalm, Stockholm on my trip -and also located on Ringvägen- were two more display ads promoting travel. The one in the distance is for SAS, Scandinavian Airlines Systems, which I flew on to Stockholm, and the one in the foreground, on a public telephone booth, is the "Holiday is where the Heart is" ad campaign for VING. January 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. Click the photo to see their TV ad!

Risk för snöras, istappar

Risk för snöras, istappar
One of the many such warning signs that I saw on buildings and on sidewalk barricades while in Stockholm in mid-January 2013, alerting you to the possibility of falling snow and ice, often by men shoveling it off roofs. This one was spotted on a residential building in the Södermalm area of Stockholm, on Ringvägen, while I was walking over to the Åhléns Department store on Götgatan. It wasn't until I was walking back later to the B&B that I noticed the inflated Santa that some resident had intentionally placed outside of their window, so it looked like Santa was falling! January 13, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Ringvägen, Stockholm, Sweden

Ringvägen, Stockholm, Sweden
Poster display on Ringvägen, Stockholm, Sweden. January 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. The Affischplats plan in Stockholm, while not perfect, strikes me as a pretty good compromise in helping cultural and civic groups catch the public's eye in a way that's better than a free-for-all of groups plastering posters on the sides of buildings and utility boxes, and watching as the weather makes a mess of them. The tangible effort the city makes to get the public involved in a genuine and meaningful conversation about what is going on long-term for the city as a whole, or in a particular neighborhood, is very impressive, and made me wishful that the local government employees and planners where I live and write about regularly in my blog and in conversations with other concerned civic activists did even one-third of what Stockholm's planning employees seem to do as a starting-point.