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. Photo in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A, September 2008; March 2018 photo below of North Beach, looking left-to-right, looking north, HYDE Condominium, Etaru Japanese Robatayaki restaurant, and Hollywood Beach in the distance, with umbrellas. All photos by me, © Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Csaba Kulin sounds the alarm over Hallandale Beach City Hall's aggressive attempts to prevent HB citizens from knowing just how much taxpayers will be paying the Police under their new union contract and how they arrived at those figures; HB City Commission's First Reading on this item is tonight at 6:30 p.m.; decision on waiver of $450k in fines owed by Florida East Coast Realty to be decided tonight

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Today, courtesy of an email from my friend and fellow Hallandale Beach and Broward County civic activist Csaba Kulin to City of Hallandale Beach Attorney V. Lynn Whitfield, City Manager Renee C. Miller, City Clerk Sheena James and the five members of the HB City Commission, plus others,  I have some amazing information to share with you regarding Hallandale Beach City Hall's aggressive attempts to prevent HB citizens  from knowing just how much taxpayers will be paying the Police under their new union contract, and how  they arrived at those figures. As per usual, I've deleted the email addresses for obvious reasons.

Also on tonight's agenda, 
will be the continuing debacle of a real estate developer trying to get out of paying $450,000 in fines it owes HB taxpayers, namely, Jerome Hollo and Florida East Coast Realty and its property next to the Mardi Gras on U.S.-1, which I've previously discussed here at the blog

You need to show-up and let your voice be heard -no handout$ to developers with no tangible plans to do anything with land but let it sit idle.

HB City Commission meets tonight at 6:30 p.m.


March 19, 2013
Dear City Manager Mrs. Miller, City Clerk Mrs. James and City Attorney Ms. Whitfield:
The printed Agenda of the City of Hallandale Beach's City Commission meeting for March 20, 2013 at 6:30 PM lists item #14-B as Resolution to Ratify a Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Hallandale Beach and the Broward County Police Benevolent Association.
In reading the Supporting Documents of Item 14-B, I noticed that a part of the Agreement refers to modifications, i.e. additions to the existing and new pension systems.

The Florida Constitution and Florida Statutes (Exhibit 1) explicitly require an “actuarial review, and has furnished a copy of such statement to the division” prior to the last public hearing on retirement systems benefit changes.

I submitted a Public Record Request (Exhibit 2) on March 7, 2013 to inspect ALL actuarial reviews -and have reason to believe there is more than one- related to the current pension changes to see if the changes are being made on a sound actuarial basis. Taxpayer dollars paid for the report and taxpayers have a legal right under the Florida Constitution to see the public information BEFORE a vote of the City Commission is made, to ensure that the city is being diligent and following applicable state laws.

Exhibit 3 is the response I received from Mr. George Amiraian, the City of Hallandale Beach's Director of Human Resources on March 15th, 2013.
Item 1 of Mr. Amiraian’s e-mail refers to an Annual Actuarial Report prepared for an entirely different purpose, NOT for the current pension changes.In Item 2 of Mr. Amiraian’s e-mail he makes the claim that the City of Hallandale Beach is “exempt from public records disclosure” on account of ongoing negotiations with the Hallandale Beach Fire Dept., a separate unit, and for which a separate Annual Actuarial Report will eventually be provided to the city for their specific use in THOSE negotiations, a fact that Mr. Amiraian knows well, since he is a person who has been directly dealing with these issues for many years.

The claim of immunity would thus seem to be false because one Actuarial Report has nothing to do with another legally-mandated, taxpayer-paid for Actuarial Report, otherwise, there would be no need for the city to eventually receive a second Actuarial Report at the appropriate time that deals exclusively with HBFD. This is yet another fact well-known to Mr. Amiraian.

Since I attended the February 25, 2013 meeting of the Hallandale Beach Police and Firefighters’ Personnel Retirement Trust and Mr. Adam Levinson reported on the “Ratification of Actuarial Study Regarding Proposed Police CBA”. Mr. Adam Levinson, attorney representing the Trust, told me after the meeting that the “Actuarial Study” is a public document as of that time.

There was a mention that there are two additional Actuarial Reports, but they are not public records as of February 25, 2013. Further evidence of an existing Actuarial Report is the City Manager’s reference to the total dollar amount of savings without any detail as how she arrived at that number.  I'd like for you to review the entire issue of immunity in this case and notify me in a timely fashion why the City of Hallandale Beach is NOT required to adhere to the current applicable Florida state laws.

Additionally, I'd like for you to explain to me why the official “Actuarial Study” is NOT part of the publicly-disclosed "Supporting Documents" available to the public in sufficient time BEFORE Wednesday night's City Commission meeting to analyze its financial impact on their city's futures, since it's THE most-germane document there is. http://www.hallandalebeachfl.gov/files/2013-03-20/Item%2014B/index.html

I believe I'm being entirely consistent when I insist that the citizens of this city have the right under Florida's Constitution to know ALL the pertinent facts in this important matter and know exactly much money the elected City Commission will be spending as well as how they will be making allowances for those particular costs in the future. In short, show the public how those specific costs figures were arrived at.

They have a right to know these facts BEFORE the Hallandale Beach City Commission votes on it, NOT months after the fact.
Given these facts, I'd like you to explain to me why Agenda Item 10-B should not be postponed to a future date until all these issues have been properly resolved and the city is in compliance with the letter and spirit of Florida's laws and Constitution.

Csaba Kulin
Exhibit 1.
Florida Constitution
SECTION 14.  State retirement systems benefit changes.
SECTION 14. State retirement systems benefit changes.—A governmental unit responsible for any retirement or pension system supported in whole or in part by public funds shall not after January 1, 1977, provide any increase in the benefits to the members or beneficiaries of such system unless such unit has made or concurrently makes provision for the funding of the increase in benefits on a sound actuarial basis.
History.—Added, H.J.R. 291, 1975; adopted 1976.
2012 Florida Statutes
112.63 Actuarial reports and statements of actuarial impact; review.
 (3) No unit of local government shall agree to a proposed change in retirement benefits unless the administrator of the system, prior to adoption of the change by the governing body, and prior to the last public hearing thereon, has issued a statement of the actuarial impact of the proposed change upon the local retirement system, consistent with the actuarial review, and has furnished a copy of such statement to the division. Such statement shall also indicate whether the proposed changes are in compliance with s. 14, Art. X of the State Constitution and with s. 112.64.
Exhibit 2.
March 7, 2013
Dear Hallandale Beach City Clerk,
I request to inspect the following documents under Florida Statue 119 from the City of Hallandale Beach Police Officers’ and Firefighters’ Personnel Retirement Trust and the City of Hallandale Beach.

If for any reason you believe any of the requested material is exempt from Florida Statue 119 please list the exemption and fulfill the remainder of this request.
I would like to inspect the following documents:
1.    Copy of the Actuarial Study Regarding Proposed Police CBA.
2.    Copy of the Actuarial Study the City of Hallandale Beach has in its possession.
3.    Draft of the Pension Ordinance which will be presented to the City Commission and the residents in the near future.
After inspection, I will decide the documents I wish to have a copy of.
Please acknowledge my request and notify me with an estimate of the cost, if any, and when the records requested will be available for my inspection.
Csaba Kulin

Exhibit 3.

"Amiraian, George" 
"Kulin, Csaba" 
Public Records Request
Fri 03/15/13 05:09 PM
Part 1
Part 2
Csaba, I have listed below the answers in writing to your Public Records Request received on March 7 2013
1. Copy of the Actuarial Study regarding Proposed Police CBA.
As previous discussed, the latest Actuary Study can be found on the City’s website www.hallandalebeachfl.gov
2. Copy of the Actuarial Study the City of Hallandale Beach has in its possession.
Also discussed, the Actuary Study that the City of Hallandale Beach has in its possession is exempt from public records disclosure due to ongoing negotiations with the Fire Union.
I hope this answers your questions.
George Amiraian
Director of Human Resources
City of Hallandale Beach
400 South Federal Hwy
Hallandale Beach, Florida 33009

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#HollywoodFL based photographer/entrepreneur Esther Chuang

#HOLLYWOODFL based photographer and entrepreneur Esther Chuang with Hollywood Mayor-elect Josh Levy
Thumbs up! What a night! #HOLLYWOODFL based photographer and entrepreneur Esther Chuang with a very elated Hollywood Mayor-elect Josh Levy at his Victory Party, held at Leo Anato's Atelier3/AT3 on Harrison Street & S. 19th Avenue, Hollywood. AT3's great environment and the amazing variety of food prepared by chef Kevin Dreifuss, former owner/chef of now-closed ENDS MEAT restaurant, was SUPERB! November 8, 2016 Esther Chuang, Morro Dois Irmãos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2015
Above, perhaps my most-favorite photo ever of Esther, which is really saying something considering the THOUSANDS that I've actually seen of her, from all over the world. But despite the fact that you can't actually see it here, trust me, her amazing smile and inner and external beauty are there. This photo is an even more amazing achievement when you know the backstory of what it took for Esther to get to the top of the mountain, since it's NOT for the faint of heart. Next time you see her, ask her about that! Morro Dois Irmãos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on her birthday, July 10, 2015. That's the Christ The Redeemer statue atop Mount Corcovado way out in the horizon on the top of another mountain, to the left of her head. To the right is the world famous beach of Ipanema and to the left is the equally famous beach of Copacabana. In case you forgot what the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio looks like, up close, plus the Amazon area of Brazil that Esther grew up near in Manaus, here's another Brazilian beauty to connect-the-dots for you: Gisele Bündchen, aka @Gisele.

Abençoado por Deus e bonito por natureza!✨ ������

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A floresta Amazônica tem um papel fundamental no equilíbrio do clima na Terra e, portanto, na vida de cada um de nós. Nos últimos anos a proteção diminuiu e o desmatamento aumentou drasticamente. E o que já era ruim, pode ficar ainda pior. Se as medidas que o governo vem tomando não forem vetadas, nosso futuro estará ameaçado. Diga NÃO à diminuição da proteção da Floresta do Jamanxim! Diga NÃO à exploração de minério no coração da floresta! #TodosPelaAmazônia #342Amazonia #TodosPelaAmazonia Assine a petição: link na bio. ������✨���� The Amazon Rainforest plays a key role in balancing the climate on the Earth and therefore in each of our lives. In recent years, protection has decreased and deforestation has increased sharply. And what was already bad can get even worse. If the measures that the government has been taking are not vetoed, our future will be threatened. Say NO to the reduction of the Jamanxim Forest´s protection! Say NO to ore mining in the heart of the Forest! #togetherfortheAmazon

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