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, Europe 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.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Transportation Odds & Ends: Is the news that Ray LaHood is staying on as U.S. Transportation Secretary good or bad for Florida? Especially now that straight-shooter John Mica is no longer chair of House Transport. Comm.?; SFRTA's current Fast Start plan for "Tri-Rail Coastal" completely ignores and skips over Hallandale Beach and Gulfstream Park Race Track & Casino, Village at Gulfstream Park retail complex

SFRTA Fast Start Plan from SFRTA IT on Vimeo.
SFRTA IT Vimeo video: SFRTA Fast Start Plan for Tri-Rail Coastal, Uploaded June 2012. This is one of the two competing proposals for a commuter line on the FEC railroad tracks connecting downtown Miami and Palm Beach County, but this plan as written does NOT currently envision a stop where I live -and where Gulfstream Park Race Track & Casino and the Village at Gulfstream Park retail complex are located - Hallandale Beach. Not that you've read that anywhere in any of the local newspapers or heard it mentioned on local TV newscasts. Or even heard it publicly discussed at HB City Hall. Well, now you know! As planned, we are completely skipped-over and screwed! 
Transportation Odds & Ends: Is the news that Ray LaHood is staying on as U.S. Transportation Secretary good or bad for Florida? Especially now that straight-shooter John Mica is no longer chair of House Transport. Comm.?; SFRTA's current Fast Start plan for "Tri-Rail Coastal" completely ignores and skips over Hallandale Beach and Gulfstream Park Race Track & Casino, Village at Gulfstream Park retail complex
Bloomberg News
LaHood Says He’s Staying On as Transportation Secretary
By Jeff Plungis - Jan 22, 2013 11:25 AM ET
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-01-22/lahood-says-he-s-staying-on-as-transportation-secretary.html

Transportation Nation 
Mica Gets Transportation Subcommittee Posts 
By Matthew Peddie | 01/23/2013 – 4:06 pm

POLITICO.com 
A picture-perfect end to John Mica's chairmanship
December 5, 2012 04:38 AM EST
By Burgess Everett

Meanwhile, this email was sent to you from a city where the most-popular place on the city's 4 FREE Mini-bus routes, the Publix on Hallandale Beach Blvd. & S.E. 14th Avenue, does NOT and has never had a simple timetable posted there so that riders would actually know when the bus departs. 

Yes, as most of you know, I'm a big, longtime supporter of transit, esp. the South Florida East FEC Corridor study effort, have gone to all manner of transit-oriented forums in South Florida  since moving here nine years ago from the Washington, D.C. area, where I rode the DC Metro twice a day, 6 days out of 7.

I'm all for thinking globally and acting locally, but what if your city's elected officials and highly-paid city administrators are, simply put, stone-cold incompetent?
What then?

Then, all the clever and punchy public policy platitudes in the world, and attending or watching all the seven50.org forums in the world, can't help you.

That seems to be one of the South Florida news media's remaining no-no's.
You can't publicly talk about certain cities or pols having devolved into -accurately- becoming labeled as incompetent until further notice, unless they do something to show that they have applied remediation efforts and succeeded.

And besides, why would Hallandale Beach actually want to let riders know when the bus actually departs the most popular destination, when they can, instead, erect those useful timetables at numerous sites throughout the city where no riders are ever present in large part because of the chronic lack of bus shelters to keep the sun and the rain off of riders?
The ones we have less of now than we did three years ago.

The city-controlled bus shelters that were nearly 90% dark at night for YEARS because the city was so damn negligent in properly maintaining them, something that Mayor Joy Cooper did not like my reminding people of at transit forums throughout the area where important people were in attendance.
My fact-telling ruined the illusion of the city she wanted to create and foster.

Just another small reminder why there is no street in Hallandale Beach where logic and reason intersect.

I sure hope that your outreach efforts to the public and the pro-transit populace will be better than it has been in the past.

http://www.tri-railcoastalservice.com/

I will have more news next week about SFRTA's Fast Start plan and what it would mean to Hallandale Beach if the city is intentionally passed-over and does not get a train station on the FEC tracks, despite the fact that it would do more for this city -more quickly- than any other city in Broward on the route, in part because there is so much space. 

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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, Hollywood and Aventura.

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. But seldom if ever see...

This is particularly true in the Broward County city I live in, the City of Hallandale Beach, north of Aventura and south of Hollywood and right on the Atlantic Ocean. Here, the "Perfect Storm" of years of apathy, incompetency and cronyism are all too readily apparent. Sadly for its beleaguered 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 tremendous potential because of its terrific location and well-educated populace, yet its citizens have almost become numb to HB City Hall's frequent outrages and screw-ups, the result of YEARS of the worst kind of mismanagement and lack of foresight. On a daily basis, residents and Small Business owners 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 for others to solve in the future.

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 of my own that could try to do some of these things, taking the p.o.v. of a reasonable-but-skeptical person seeing the situation for the first time with fresh eyes, 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 in public policy and goivernment engagement. 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 of Florida's state, regional and local govt./agency officials, elected and otherwise. Hallandale Beach Blog aims to be a small step towards regaining some of that needed accountability, whether it's thru shining some well-needed public scrutiny on the issue or pol, or requires a higher degree of follow-up investigation and public exposure of the incompetency, cronyism or negligence -South Florida's usual governing style.
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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.