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. 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.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

More Flooding & Operation Sandbag in Hallandale Beach: HB gets drenched-to-the-bone with 8 inches of rain by powerful trailing storms of T.S. Andrea, but the city and Mayor Joy Cooper still act like ostriches when it comes to simple tasks that would serve the largest number of residents in the most-efficient manner possible when they need help. Why? Because that's the way things get done here with her as mayor; Flood relief project is 2 years late; #Hallandale, #andrea, #susierusso, @FanSusieQ


Local10 News, Miami, WPLG-TV
Floodwaters strand drivers in South Florida
Floodwaters left by Tropical Storm Andrea turn roads into rivers
Local10 reporter Baron James is on the ground and in the water as northeast Hallandale Beach is yet again the scene of standing floodwater after the remnants of Tropical Storm Andrea pass thru northeast Miami-Dade County and southeast Broward County on Friday afternoon and evening, after many days of rain and with the ground already saturated. 
Published On: June 7, 2013 11:06:31 PM EDT, Updated On: June 8 2013 12:11:20 AM EDT

High-tech in Hallandale Beach, 2013 -Orange safety cones! May 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier. (c) 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.
More Flooding & Operation Sandbag in Hallandale Beach: HB gets drenched-to-the-bone with 8 inches of rain by powerful trailing storms of T.S. Andrea, but the city and Mayor Joy Cooper still act like ostriches when it comes to simple tasks that would serve the largest number of residents in the most-efficient manner possible when they need help. Why? Because that's the way things get done here with her as mayor; Flood relief project is 2 years late; #Hallandale, #andrea, #susierusso, @FanSusieQ







The Dept. of Public Works (DPW) location that the City of Hallandale Beach is telling residents to go to in order to pick up sand bags if they need them due to flooding, 630 N.W. 2nd Street, is adjacent to one of the great exercises in make-work that any South Florida government is currently engaged in, in this case, the so-called Historic School House Restoration that is taking years longer to do than it'd have taken to build from scratch.

Almost everyone who knows me reasonably well knows how much I revere history as well as my longtime concern for historical preservation, a fact buttressed by my stack of ten years worth of the National Trust for Historic Preservation's Preservation magazine in banker's boxes in my garage, back when I lived in Arlington County, VA for 15 years, something I've mentioned here previously.

http://www.preservationnation.org/magazine/#.UbLhwefVCSo

But as for this particular building, well, it's the proverbial exception to the rule.
It's preposterous on its face and nobody I know here has any idea if there's even an actual meaningful deadline for the rehab of this school, or where it will be located for good when it's finished, to say nothing of who'd actually come visit it, given how the city has treated other publicly-owned properties over the years, to say nothing of the deplorable condition of the beach.
(Like the North Beach Building on State Road A1A that the taxpayers of this city own but are NOT allowed to use unless they pay for it, unlike city employees in the past few years who've used it as the site for holiday parties, though most of you reading this already know all this very well.)

In short, this out-of-the-way, nothing little building that is barely thought about is already a White Elephant before it's even finished.

Lack of attention to detail, lack of accountability, lack of...

May 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier. (c) 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Trust me when I tell you that it looks the same now as it did six months ago and nine months ago, and that I have the photos to prove it.
I also have friends who can confirm this who also share my anger at what this place represents, since it's a place I drive by at least once every ten days to see how much time is going by without anything tangible actually getting done.
Therefore it serves as the perfect example of how things really get done here.
They don't.

That's the mediocre neighborhood where the city's sand bag operation calls home.
That too is an eye-opening experience to behold, and a case study in how simple things have been botched and remain half-assed in Hallandale Beach for so long, that some citizens choose apathy instead of normal civic engagement because it's easier than dealing with the mind-set at City Hall.

It's long been perfectly clear that the sandbag operation is now so unsatisfactory that it no longer meets many residents's basic expectations because it's neither well-organized nor well-managed, and so is actually bypassed by many residents who prefer to buy sand bags at retail shops because it's more predictable and organized.
Yet the city persists in acting like it's actually accomplishing something.

This operation has for years been one of the five most-widely told HB anecdotes by both myself and my friends in explaining to new residents, outsiders and the news media how much this city genuinely seems to be run more for the benefit of the city's employees rather than for the benefit of residents, since nothing else explains the level of absurdity that's apparent to the naked eye.

If you were starting such a program from scratch in your own town, there are any number of things that you would want to ensure were done and in place before a storm in order to satisfy the residents of this city -your customers!
However fascinating and original that list in your head is, though, frankly, it doesn't matter, since those are NOT now the primary considerations of the City of Hallandale Beach, nor have they been in the nine years that I have lived here.

Here in Hallandale Beach, 
a.) The sand is dumped inside a fence and on the side of a two-lane road
b.) Both the immediate area and the sand itself are uncovered, not even by a tarp
c.) The sand is deposited in an unlit area
d.) They use large orange safety cones as funnels.
Really


May 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier. (c) 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.


May 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier. (c) 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

May 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier. (c) 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.


For many years I've asked a number of common sense questions of the city about how this particular set-up could possibly be anything but a Keystone Kops routine-in-the-rain given all the above parameters.

I've asked why people who live in low-lying areas that are always hit hard -mostly in northeastern HB- are, from what I hear, NOT able to get sandbags in the weeks before hurricane season starts, and even more importantly, why the city adamantly refuses to fix these self-evident problems, or at least relocate the sand prior to approaching storms or once it's clear that clouds bringing downpours are static, like what we had here a week before Christmas in 2009, Dec, 18th and 19th, that left much of NE HB under water.

The city already has the necessary resources it needs to show some common sense and relocate the sand, the bags and the shovels to a better location that is well-lit, has some cover, and that makes it easier to distribute, no matter the weather.
Even a place that can do two of the three tasks is greatly preferable to continuing to have it in a location that has none of them. 

Despite the city patting themselves on the back afterwards, the city was judged by the people I know in that area to have responded very slowly, and actually made things much worse in some cases by needlessly driving their city trucks thru streets like NE 8th and 10th Avenue where the wakes that were created went straight into residents homes.
People were irate!!!

(Because it's HB, once the city finally erected some small warning signs on the north side of Hallandale Beach Blvd., near NE 10th and 12th Avenue, in one case, they actually left some of the signs up for more than four months, which confused drivers, esp. out-of-town visitors coming out of Gulfstream Park's northern entrance at HBB, many of whom go north on NE 10th up to Atlantic Shores Blvd. to avoid the heavy U.S.-1 traffic to the west.)

The whole scene is embarrassing and completely counter-intuitive to helping the largest
number of residents as quickly as possible.
But the city won't budge despite how ridiculous it is and needs a more sane and logical operation.

Just so you know, this is one of the many dozens of problems in the city -and constructive suggestions- I spoke to Assistant HB City Manager Jennifer Frastai about four-and-a-half-years ago that she never followed-up on, and never contacted me about which flowed from our infamous one-hour meeting at City Hall in the City Manager's conference room, mentioned most recently on the blog on April 29th:
http://hallandalebeachblog.blogspot.com/2013/04/having-long-tradition-of-white-flight.html

If some of this sounds familiar it should, as I previously wrote about this problem on the blog in my post of  August 25, 2012 titled, 
As "Isaac" approaches South Florida, key differences re-emerge between how Hollywood and Hallandale Beach cope: Hollywood Residents, Business Owners Can Fill Their Own Free Sandbags; Hallandale Beach residents can once again get sand-bagged and dumb-founded

*By the way, I noticed Friday night that the street on the west side of HB City Hall that the HB Police Dept. regularly uses was completely impassable, even while U.S.-1 in front of HB City Hall was bumper-to-bumper from HBB south to Ives Dairy Road until about 9:30 p.m., making for a very unsafe scenario for ambulances trying to reach Aventura Hospital on U.S.-1 and N.E. 209th Street.

I know because I live near HB City Hall and ended-up walking along U.S.-1 to the Aventura Target on N.E. 213th Street to get some things because the traffic was so bad.

** Oh, and as usual, as I found out around 8:30 p.m., ALL the street lights on S.E./S.W. 3rd Street near the FEC Railroad tracks were out, AGAIN -and all the ones from Bluesten park north to 3rd Street- meaning during a downpour there, you are literally taking your life into your hands at night!
Even if your car's defrost is on overdrive!

HB comes up at 6:57 in this Channel 7 video:






No comments:

Post a Comment

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/
Unless otherwise indicated, all ORIGINAL photos appearing here were taken by myself. 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.

Me in the Summer of 2016

Me in the Summer of 2016
Above, me in June, pre-recent haircut, near acres and acres of orange groves off Scenic U.S. #17 in Frostproof, FL, while visiting hot/humid Central Florida, which I'm convinced is where heat/humidity goes in the Summer to get away from it all... The oppressive heat & humidity there is literally everywhere you go. :-(

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.

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.