“Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!” A classic line from The Wizard of Oz scene where Dorothy, the Tin Man, and the Scarecrow are fearful of the forest because of the unseen (and imagined) dangers that must lie within it.
Lately, it seems that Miami Springs has been ground zero for the same kind of hand-wringing, rumor-induced speculation that Dorothy confronted outside the forest. While I’m always glad to listen to the opinion of a fellow citizen -- it is distressing to hear so many that are based on incomplete information at best -- and rhetoric, speculation or plain old gossip at worst.
In reality, sometimes we simply don’t have all the facts. And, that is OK. But, rushing to judgment and opining with little in the way of concrete evidence does not do anyone any good. Worse, it distracts attention from the important business of the city -- and we have a lot of important business to attend to here in Miami Springs.
I do not speak for the Council, only myself, but I do not want to stand by while the rumor mill continues to dominate public discussion of the issues we all face.
Therefore, I am going to use this blog as a means to address some of the current “hot topics” of discussion here in Miami Springs over the next week or so by responding to questions I’ve been asked in various conversations:
Why am I letter Jim Borgmann stay on as City Manager when he has already resigned (effective January 1, 2012)?
Why am I concerned for the City about the initial proposal by CMI related to selling tax credits to raise money for the Mansion?
Why won't I demand that the Mayor respond to the accusations about his integrity, and/or demand his resignation?
And finally, what is going on with the search for a New City Manager?
In the future, I would like to continue to respond to issues such as these on this blog. I invite you to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask me your questions - especially the “hard” questions. If I don’t have enough information to respond, I will work on getting the information. If it is something relating to the broader community interest, I will post my response to this blog. It would be impossible for everyone to like my position on every issue that comes before the City. But, everyone should understand why I am taking the position I am taking -- that is what transparency is all about.
Information is our best weapon in the fight against ignorance, rhetoric, and the poor decisions that often flow from them. Miami Springs is filled with intelligent, caring, and passionate residents. We are a smart community. We are smart enough to evaluate the evidence before becoming part of the gossip mill and, we are smart enough to demand the facts before getting sucked into the rhetoric.
Curtiss Mansion, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) that has worked long and hard to restore the original Glenn Curtiss Mansion, which is located on Deer Run on the Miami Springs Golf Course.
As part of their fundraising effort, CMI is selling pavers for the entrance of the Mansion. My campaign bought one, Bill and I bought them in memory of our loved ones, we purchased one for our family, and my business purchased one. If you are interested in purchasing a paver, please contact CMI.
Jeremy Glazer, Program Director and Jennifer Ator
On June 9, 2011, The Good Government Initiative held its opening dinner at the Little Haiti Cultural Center in Miami. The Good Government Initiative is a program for early-career elected officials from Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties. The program includes speakers, panels, large and small group activities, as well as community tours. The program is designed to introduce elected officials to issues they will be dealing with and develop skills they will need to be effective in office.
I am proud to be a member of the first class. Other members include Patricia Asseff, Vice-Mayor, City of Hollywood; Dwight Bullard, State Representative, Florida District 118; Heather Carruthers, Mayor, Monroe County; Daniel Dietch, Mayor, Town of Surfside; Jorge Exposito, Commissioner, City of Miami Beach; Wendy Harrison, Councilmember, Town of Jupiter; Barbara Kramer, Councilmember, City of North Miami Beach; Keith London, Commissioner, City of Hallandale Beach; Frank Quesada, Commissioner, City of Coral Gables; Raquel Regalado, Board Member, Miami-Dade County Public Schools; Felicia Robinson, Councilmember, City of Miami Gardens; Roxanna Ross, Mayor, City of Biscayne Park; Nora Rupert, Board Member, Broward County Public Schools; Robin Smith-Martin, Board Member, Monroe County Public Schools; Francis Suarez, Commissioner, City of Miami; and Elsa Vazquez, Commissioner, City of West Miami.
The President and CEO of The Good Government Initiative is Katy Sorenson. I am pictured above with Jeremy Glazer, the Program Director, who has a few Miami Springs connections of his own. At the opening dinner, we received a preliminary syllabus and I was surprised to see some friendly faces in the program including Miami-Dade County Director for the Office of Strategic Business Management, Jennifer Glazer Moon and Assistant County Attorney Jess McCarty. I know I am not only going to learn a lot from this very impressive group, but I will develop friendships that will benefit myself and the city for a long time to come.
Another season of Little League is behind us. Our firm, Hankins & Ator, PL, sponsored the 7-8 year old Giants. Our team did well. We might not have won every game, but our boys were encouraged, high-fived, and celebrated, even if the score was a little short.
Admittedly, I discouraged my husband, Bill Tallman, from coaching. I did not think he had enough experience in baseball -- tennis was more his thing. But, I was wrong. He did a great job and was a wonderful mentor to the boys. Thank you Miami Springs Little League, Bill Tallman, and the City of Miami Springs for continuing to support these programs year after year.