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.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Is Hallandale Beach Comm. Alexander Lewy -Lewy the Liar- running for FL House 100 in 2014? Yes, but opponents/voters have a treasure trove of evidence to show why he's a poor choice to represent anyone anywhere, given his uncontrollable know-it-all personality and pro-govt. mindset, and penchant for always thinking he knows best, even when self-evident facts show why he's wrong; Friends Helping Friends Dept.: Last Tuesday Lewy was honored by group at the same address he voted to give $200k CRA loan to (that still owed taxpayers money for previous loan) and voted $50k to just weeks ago. Plus, another deal for Rabbi Tennenhaus; @AlexLewy

Today, after being in cold storage for a week, I'm posting an expanded and corrected version of my email of last Tuesday to some folks in and around South Florida who like knowing what's really going on around here, instead of waiting for the South Florida news media to stumble across it.

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If it's not too much trouble, could someone from the South Florida news media please ask Hallandale Beach Comm. Lewy what specific day he's going to make it official and file his paperwork with the Broward Supervisor of Election's office to run for FL House District 100 next year against Joe Geller?

I mention this because Lewy the Liar doesn't do coy very well.

With lobbyists like Bernie Friedman in attendance last Tueday night, Alexander Lewy could well have chosen to make that expected announcement then, with everyone saying what a great guy he is, notwithstanding all evidence to the contrary -like his own words and actions, in and out of office.

Like, well to name but five or 7 anti-Hallandale Beach taxpayer and anti-HB homeowner issues I can think of off the top of my head:

a.) Lewy supported the Joy Cooper-led HB City Commission in their vote for the Diplomat LAC in 2009 over the neighborhood's strenuous objections, which is part of why he received campaign contributions from the Westin Diplomat's law firm when he ran for the City Commission a second time after the Broward County Commission killed the incompatible plan in early 2010. 

b.) Despite Northeast HB neighborhood residents being overwhelming AGAINST Mayor's Cooper's absurd and un-safe proposal to make two-way streets out of N.E. 8th & 10th Avenues between Hallandale beach Blvd. and atlatic Shores Blvd., Lewy initially supported it
and chastised NE HB residents who opposed it. 
But the plan was so lacking in both common sense and safety that in the end it wasn't just the NE neighborhood residents who were AGAINST it, but even the sleepwalking geniuses over at Gulfstream Park, who woke-up long enough to feel obliged to publicly speak out AGAINST what he and the mayor wanted;

c.) Lewy has supported the expansion of the city's VERY, VERY unpopular Red-Light Camera operation, a policy that is so unpopular in this city that it was the number-one cited complaint on a questionnaire for HB residents according to an independently-run survey the city paid for. But he didn't care and has continued to support the policy, 

d.) Lewy supported the Ben Gamla Hebrew Charter School being placed in a largely single-family NE Hallandale Beach neighborhood over the neighborhood's reasonable and common sense objections, despite the fact that students from HB would've been in the strong minority of overall students attending, meaning that it would not have been a neighborhood school but a drop-off site for out-of-town people, with the neighborhood getting all the problems and little positive in exchange, 

e.) Last summer Lewy saw nothing at all wrong with voting on The Beachwalk development project next to the Intracoastal Bridge in August -a project which the city's Planning & Zoning Advisory Board unanimously rejected- despite the fact that most of the affected homeowners in the neighborhood were out-of-town, rather than simply wait 2-4 weeks, so they could actually show-up in-person and have their say about what they and their families will have to live with forever -a 31-story building.

f.) Lewy has publicly stated that despite the fact that the entirety of the city's CRA District does NOT reside within Northwest HB, he DOES believe that almost all of the city's the CRA funds should go there.


That this would be contrary to state law and sound public policy and likely lead to lawsuits the city would lose probably makes no difference to him, seeing as how he's consistently shown thru his actions that he believes that it's his job for as much of Hallandale Beach taxpayer and CRA funds to wind-up in northwest HB.

g.) Who can forget Lewy's attempt in July of 2011 to funnel $200,000 to Comm. Anthony A. Sanders' group, Eagles Wings, after midnight at a meeting with few members of the public present and WITHOUT his actually saying their name?

You remember, don't you?

August 27, 2012

To prevent repeat performances of Hallandale Beach Comm. Alexander Lewy's egregious post-Midnight gambit last July to funnel over $200k to Comm. Anthony A. Sanders' Eagles Wings, the new process for funding community nonprofit groups in a suburban Beltway county is precisely what Hallandale Beach needs to emulate; Jeremy Borden in Wash. Post: Prince William changes how it will fund nonprofit groups
http://hallandalebeachblog.blogspot.com/2012/08/to-prevent-repeat-performances-of.html

Time after time, Lewy has proven that Hallandale Beach residents and small business owners' initial negative feelings and perceptions of him were correct all along -he was exactly what he seemed to them: a career politician in-training who planned on using them as a stepping-stone.

This fact has been proven repeatedly as concerned residents found themselves face-to-face with him on public policy matters,
As the concerned residents from Northeast HB can attest to, more times than they could count, they've been condescendingly told by Lewy that THEY had "their facts all wrong" when it was actually Lewy who was wrong.

That refusal of Lewy's last August to even consider delaying the first hearing on The Beachwalk for less than a month, something that I honestly thought that even he would be smart enough to see the wisdom of, really left a bitter taste in the mouths of many Hallandale Beach residents who live in that area.

But what Lewy and his band of acolytes fails to understand is how much other concerned HB residents see that refusal to do the right thing as yet another piece of the puzzle in revealing Lewy's true nature, and the larger picture that is his CONSISTENT unwillingness to put the interests of HB residents and homeowners first -and above real estate developers.

In every case, Alexander Lewy has supported real estate developers, NOT the interests of Hallandale Beach residents, parents, home owners and small business owners.
Those were his votes and his opinions and he now owns them for posterity.

It's hard not to notice who almost always seems to come in second with him.
It's also hard not to notice over time that he seems to prefer the momentary flash and illusory pretense that he's an important player who gets to make important decisions, instead of the more low-key and more important role of one of five people in this city entrusted to provide genuine oversight over an unwieldy and generally poorly-performing city bureaucracy that fails too consistently taxpayers.
But we know why, and that's because Lewy genuinely loves government bureaucracy.

In my view and that of many others in this community, Lewy keeps making the wrong decision and keep putting the wrong parties first in part because Alexander Lewy is as stridently pro-government and anti-taxpayer and resident as any politician in South Florida could possibly be in the year 2013.

That strikes me as a very poor starting-point for a candidacy, especially for someone who's actually done very little of consequence or accomplishment in two years in office, and something which even an opponent of average intelligence will no doubt exploit to the fullest.
Lewy has certainly provided the public and any 2014 opponent with an overwhelming mountain of evidence to prove just that.  

-----

In 2011, a group at the same address as last Tuesday's get-together, Chaya Aydel Seminary, was given a $200k loan for property improvements on property that they didn't even own themselves, under the guise of it creating "jobs."

NOT that the city has ever checked to see how many jobs, if any, were actually "created" as a result of CRA loans, as last week's Broward Inspector General report mentioned.
http://hallandalebeachblog.blogspot.com/2011/05/why-joy-coopers-rubber-stamp-crew-set.html

This, even though this organization STILL hadn't entirely repaid a previous loan from the city.
Must be nice to have such good friends with money to lend! 
And with such generous 15% forgiveness terms!  

The first link is to the city's staff report, the second is to their support documents.


See my May 23, 2011 blog post on that agenda item: 
Why? Joy Cooper's Rubber Stamp Crew set to give $200k in CRA loan to entity that fails to meet city's OWN RULES; may already owe $170K from past loan!
http://hallandalebeachblog.blogspot.com/2011/05/why-joy-coopers-rubber-stamp-crew-set.html


Just a few short weeks ago, Rabbi Raphael Tennenhaus, the person who, in all reality, was  the real host of last Tuesday's event, was the recipient of CRA largess to the tune of $50k for purposes that many if not most in this city have a hard time wrapping their heads around.

Which is to say, is there's really THAT MUCH drug abuse going on among Senior Citizens in HB, and it's such a problem, why has it never been publicly mentioned before at a City Commission or CRA meeting?
Very curious...

Should the HB City Commission, acting as the HB CRA, really be giving money to yet another group, for a problem that few who here really thinks exists, and to quote the city's own documents, "However, the statistical impact on Hallandale Beach/HBCRA District

specifically was not provided."

On the face of their own documents, they seem to have almost nobody with either a medical or Social Work background involved:

More recently, just two weeks ago, yet another Rabbi named Tennenhaus, Levi Tennenhauswho is also associated with that very same address, was the name party in another CRA agenda item, one that gave him and his wife a real financial break, too.

Below, in blue, are some excerpts from a Draft of comments written by my friend and HB civic activist Csaba Kulin, who was at that CRA meeting, who wrote his thoughts down for the benefit of myself and others who didn't attend the meeting.
I've slightly tightened it up here-and-there for grammatical and syntax purposes, but it's well over 99.99% Csaba's hard work.

The points Csaba makes are just as fundamentally sound now as they were when he first wrote them down, and echo many of the very same points that he and I and many others in this community have been making for many years regarding how things are routinely done in Hallandale Beach. 

Which is to say, why do so many things involving financial grants and loans from the city's CRA and City Commission seem to only benefit a small handful of people, and not just any people, but rather ones who are 'connected' and who have some degree of either social, financial or political pull in this community, especially the latter?

And why is it that the average Hallandale Beach taxpayer and small business owner always seems to come up last on the Totem Pole when it comes to the City Commission/CRA's priorities, compared to their friends and political allies?

Comm. Julian wanted to ask questions about 9 A, the Levi Tenenhaus item. Julian said that he has not seen that as one of the entities getting a grant. He was 100% right to ask questions. I have never seen the Tennenhaus item before, it was not part of the other items. Julian just asked for a simple explanation and he did not get a straight answer. I would love to hear a bit more about it.
 
The way I understand, the applicant got the $40,000 First-time homeowner loan in 2010 to purchase a $215,000 house. The questions in 2010 should have been, was he a first time home owner or just a first time home buyer in HB? Did he really in need the $40,000 or it was just nice to get it? That is water under the bridge, we cannot talk about it, but I'd like to know. It was probably one of the 350 “exceptions” mentioned in the last audit.
 The City/CRA had a second mortgage, on the property to insure that the City/CRA gets re-paid in case of a default. Mr. Tennenhaus wants to expend the house and in order to get a loan he wants HB/HBCRA to "subordinate" its claim to the lender giving the loan. With the construction loan added, the loan amount exceeds 80% of the appraised value and it is NOT allowed.
 
Now, here comes HB/HBCRA to the rescue. We do NOT care if HB/HBCRA gets repaid, as long as the lender of the construction loan gets repaid.

The CM/ED said "no fiscal impact at THIS time". True, but do you think a "second" mortgage is worth as much as a "third" mortgage? I do NOT think so. We will see it in the future.
Just some things to think about today as you wonder why this city that clearly ought to be so much better and attractive than it is now, remains in such state of funk and confusion.

In case you have problems with the link below, which is how I found out about this
event, it's at 

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