1. What previous actions by you demonstrate that you have the honesty, integrity, ethics and personal character to be an elected official?
I have always strived to be the most honest and ethical person with integrity and strong personal character. Throughout my professional career, I have always been entrusted with important positions and many of these jobs have been with governmental entities at the federal, state, county and municipal levels.
The endorsements of many elected officials including: County Commissioners Kristin Jacobs and Ilene Lieberman, Clerk of Courts Howard Forman, State Representatives Jim Waldman and Kelly Skidmore, State Senator Jeremy Ring, City Commissioners Marilyn Gerber and Lou Sarbone indicate their belief that I have the honesty, integrity, ethics and personal character to be an elected official also.
When County Commissioner Kristin Jacobs recently endorsed my candidacy for the Coconut Creek City Commission, she said:
"Please consider this email as my official endorsement for your candidacy for Coconut Creek City Commission Dist. E. I can't think of a citizen who has given more of their personal time, energy and heart to the betterment of Coconut Creek than you. You have given freely of yourself, expecting nothing in return, save the great feeling of knowing your doing your part to move the City forward. Your inherent integrity and character will be a tremendous asset to a city which is already considered Class A. I wish you the best of luck in this new challenge!" --Kristin
When I decided to run for the city commission, I was serving on the Planning & Zoning Board. I wanted to be certain from an ethics and legal standpoint that I resigned from the board and announced my candidacy for the commission properly. Therefore, I consulted the city attorney and followed the steps required.
Through my various roles in County and Municipal Government and as a member of the City's Planning and Zoning Board, I have become educated about the Sunshine Law and have had the responsibility to follow its provisions. Several weeks ago, I also attended a Broward Days Workshop on the Sunshine Law to re-familiarize myself with the various provisions.
2. What are your top priorities if elected, including your long-term vision for the city? Do you have any city ordinances, policies, regulations or charter amendments to suggest?
My top priorities:
· Improving our bulk trash pick up program by establishing the city into quadrants for pick-ups on one of four days. It is not safe to have bulk trash sitting around for so long, which happens all too often. Advertising one day results in bulk trash being left outside for days at a time.
· Maintaining and enhancing our land development policies to ensure a continuing smart growth approach and a balance of commercial, residential and light industrial to sustain our tax base into the future.
· Helping small businesses cut through the bureaucratic maze and review policies pertaining to permit reviews and inspections.
· Keeping our parks well maintained and improve drainage on the fields, where needed. I have advocated on numerous occasions for a city park in the north end of the city with swings and a playground.
· Assuming the responsibilities of keeping our waterways clean and overseeing proper drainage by starting with the abolishment of the Cocomar Water Control District.
· Ensuring the availability of clean drinking water and identifying opportunities to utilize reused water for parks, greenways, and medians. I would like to serve on the County's Water Advisory Board to help be an important voice in the future of meeting our water needs countywide. Our sustainability is dependent on water and we constantly need to look at creative ways to respect and protect our water supply.
· Assisting mobile home owners with additional relocation assistance when mobile home parks are sold and residents are going to be displaced.
City ordinances, policies, regulations or charter amendments to suggest.
Keeping City Hall closed on Fridays, especially when Holidays occur the following Mondays, is a policy that should be reviewed to ensure efficiency with the building permit process. I am hearing that there are delays with plan reviews and inspections that have some builders and business owners upset.
Since the job of Mayor currently rotates every year and is determined by the elected commissioners, I believe the next Charter Review Board should study whether or not an elected at-large mayor would be appropriate. It also may be worth studying whether the districted commissioners should continue to be elected citywide or by the voters in their respective district.
I would like to see the City of Coconut Creek assume the duties of the Cocomar Water Control District and dissolve the dependent water control district because I do not feel there is enough accountability having three people appointed by the County Commission act quickly enough to keep the waterway systems well maintained and functioning properly. The canal systems, particularly in the South Creek area of Coconut Creek, are filled with algae, dead fish and need major work. Almost ten years ago, I was Executive Director of the 1998-2000 Broward County Management and Efficiency Study Committee and we studied water control districts throughout Broward County. The Committee recommended dissolving or consolidating many water control districts and transferring responsibilities to the applicable cities.
Holding a one day City-wide Bulk Trash Pick-up is not working. Many times, my neighborhood must be one of the last to be picked up because bulk trash sits outside for several days. While the most recent bulk trash pick-up was scheduled for April 23rd, my bulk trash was not picked up until April 26th. Similar situations have happened in the past in my neighborhood also. It is often unsafe and unsanitary to leave this bulk trash outside for several days. I believe the city could be divided into four zones and assign different dates to the different zones. I spoke before the City Commission about this in 2005 and again at one of John Kelly's Town Hall workshops in April 2008.