Get the news that is important to you in This Week in Palm Beach. August 26, 2016 edition.
To subscribe to This Week in Palm Beach and receive it in your inbox, CLICK HERE
Huge 99L Generating Lower Winds, and Remains Disorganized
From Dr. Jeff Masters, Weather Underground: It’s too soon to completely write off 99L as a threat to Florida, as it still has at least 48 hours to organize before reaching the area. The wave remains a potentially significant threat to the Gulf of Mexico coast next week. Up to now, a substantial amount of vertical wind shear has helped to displace the upper- and lower-level portions of 99L, while also driving large amounts of dry air into the wave. The University of Wisconsin-CIMSS wind shear analysis from Thursday afternoon was still showing a high 25 knots of wind shear over the core of 99L, which likely accounts for the inability of the storm to develop any heavy thunderstorm activity at its center of circulation. This state of affairs may change in the near future, though. Wind shear as analyzed by the SHIPS model is forecast to fall below 15 knots by Friday afternoon and then to remain in the low to moderate range, 5 - 15 knots, through Tuesday.
TOWN OF PALM BEACH: Drivers encouraged to use Bradley Place or Cocoanut Row for Northbound traveling due to construction.
Construction in the area of North County Way between Barton Ave and Wells Road has closed a portion of the outer roadway to single lane travel.
Heavy congestion is expected and please use caution when driving in the area as Workers will be present Drivers should expect delays are encouraged to use Cocoanut Row or Bradley Place as an alternative course of travel.
Get the news that is important to you in This Week in Palm Beach. August 19, 2016 edition.
To subscribe to This Week in Palm Beach and receive it in your inbox, CLICK HERE
On Tuesday, August 16, the Palm Beach Town Council unanimously passed and adopted the following resolution on the Florida Everglades:
RESOLUTION NO. 123-2016
A RESOLUTION OF THE TOWN COUNCIL OF THE TOWN OF PALM
BEACH, PALM BEACH COUNTY, FLORIDA URGING EXPEDITED
COMPREHENSIVE ACTIONS TO STORE, TREAT, AND CONVEY
CLEAN WATER TO AND· FROM LAKE OKEECHOBEE TO
ALLEVIATE HARMFUL DISCHARGES TO EVERGLADES NATIONAL
PARK, FLORIDA BAY AND NORTHERN COASTAL ESTUARIES
WHEREAS, the discharge of water from Lake Okeechobee has contributed to algae blooms within local water bodies and recreational areas in South Florida, incl uding the Lake Worth Lagoon. Peanut Island and ocean-side beaches, resulting in beach closures and impacts to tourism; and
WHEREAS, the Everglades is the largest and most important freshwater, subtropical peat wetlands in North America; and
WHEREAS, one-third of all Floridians, nearly seven million people, depend on the
Everglades for their water supply; and
WHEREAS, approximately I .7 billion gallons of water per day are lost from the Everglades through discharges from Lake Okeechobee to the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, causing significant harm to the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee Rivers; and
WHEREAS, additional improvements are needed to manage stormwater runoff onto publicly owned properties north of Lake Okeechobee such as those recently approved by the South Florida Water Management District to slow down the flow of water south to the Lake and limit discharges from the Lake as recommended in the 2015 University of Florida Water Institute Report; and
WHEREAS, the United States Army Corps of Engineers has prepared the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP), the goal of which is to deliver a finalized plan, known as a Project Implementation Report (PIR), for a suite of restoration projects in the central Everglades to prepare for congressional authorization, as part of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration
Plan (CERP). The CEPP will identify and plan for projects on land already in public ownership
to allow more water to be directed south to the central Everglades, Everglades National Park and
Florida Bay; and
WHEREAS, Lake Okeechobee is the heart of the South Florida ecosystem yet its capacity is
limited by the condition of the Herbert Hoover Dike which is in need of repair and is critical
to the future storage of water and the health of estuaries; and
WHEREAS, studies indicate that failure of the Dike at Lake Okeechobee could cause catastrophic
flooding in large areas of Palm Beach County and create massive economic losses from flooded
crops in the Glades. In 2006, a state hired panel of engineering experts warned that the leak prone
Dike around the lake posed a grave imminent danger to the people and environment of South
WHEREAS, once the Dike is restored the Lake can retain large quantities of water that will not
flow into estuaries. With more storage capacity discharges from the Lake can be reduced.
Increased storage north of the Lake will enhance water quality, storage south of the Lake will
provide relief to discharges in the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee Rivers while providing more
water to Florida Bay. The South Florida ecosystem will be enhanced with these improvements
while protecting life and property; and
WHEREAS, storage of water south of Lake Okeechobee in the Everglades Agricultural Area
("EAA") will assist in reducing discharges from Lake Okeechobee to the estuaries and to restore
the Everglades and Florida Bay and has been prioritized in restoration plans since the original
adoption of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan by State of Florida and the Federal
Govermnent in 2000; and
WHEREAS, the current schedule for the implementation of Everglades restoration projects has
delayed the initiation of planning for storage within the EAA until 2021 or later, potentially
resulting in a decade or more of additional harmful discharges from Lake Okeechobee to the
WHEREAS, it is estimated that Florida has 2.3 million on-site sewer treatment and disposal
systems in operation, serving approximately 31 % of the population. Of the 2.3 million septic
tanks, less than I % are managed by operating permits and/ormaintenance agreements,
with the remainder only being serviced when the system fails. Over half of the 2.3 million septic
tanks are over 30 years old and installed under less stringent standards. Sewage, or "blackwater"
from a typical residential building contains a variety of inorganic and organic substances
including, but not limited to, nitrogen, phosphorous and E. coli bacteria; and
WHEREAS, over the past century, development, population growth, excessive drainage of
wetlands, and alterations in water quality and flow, including construction of water control
structures and facilities within the Everglades has altered the natural hydrologic patterns of
water in the region and have greatly damaged the Greater Everglades ecosystem; and
WHEREAS, protecting and restoring the Everglades is critical to restoring hydrology and
surface water, which can reduce threats caused by saltwater intrusion.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE TOWN COUNCIL OF THE TOWN
OF PALM BEACH, PALM BEACH COUNTY, FLORIDA, AS FOLLOWS:
Section 1: Recitals. The above recitals are true and correct an are incorporated herein by
Section 2: The Town of Palin Beach urges the federal govermnent, the State of Florida legislature
and the Governor of the State of Florida to expedite the process of planning and funding landbased
water storage treatment and conveyance north and south of Lake Okeechobee while limiting
discharges from Lake Okeechobee as recommended in the 2015 University of Florida Water
Section 3: The Town of Palm Beach urges the Federal Govemment and the State of Florida to
expedite the planning for water storage, water quality treatment and conveyance south of Lake
Okeechobee to decrease harmful discharges to the east and west coasts of Florida while
increasing the flow of clean water south to the Everglades and Florida Bay.
Section 4: Further, the Town of Palm Beach urges Congress to immediately increase funding and
expedite work authorizations for the United States Army Corps of Engineers Lake Okeechobee
Dike restoration project and authorize the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP) which
increases the ability to store, treat, and convey water south.
Section 5: The Town of Palm Beach urges the State of Florida or its agencies to embark upon
implementation of a region wide septic tank replacement program converting to centralized
sanitary sewerage collection, distribution and treatment systems to eliminate "blackwater"
leaching into the various surface water resources of this region in order to reduce contamination
from the nitrogen, phosphorus and E. coli.
Section 6: The Town of Palm Beach urges all relevant and responsible governments and agencies
to implement robust plamling programs in the South Florida region to control over-development
and agricultural runoff into Lake Okeechobee and local tributaries.
Section 7: Transmittal. The Town Clerk is directed to furnish copies of this Resolution to:
• U.S. Senator Bill Nelson
• U.S. Senator Marco Rubio
• U.S. House of Representatives Members for the State of Florida
• U.S. Army Assistant Secretary for Civil Works, Jo-Ellen Darcy
• U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District Commander Col. Jason Kirk
• U.S. Secretary ofthe Interior Sally Jewell
• Florida Governor Rick Scott
• Florida Senate President Andy Gardiner
• Florida Senate President - designate Joe Negron, District 32
• Florida House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, District 51
• Florida House Speaker - designate, Richard Corcoran, District 37
• Florida Senate and House Members Having Districts within the South Florida Water
Management District boundaries.
• Chair, South Florida Water Management District Goveming Board, Daniel O'Keefe
• Executive Director, South Florida Water Management District Peter Antonacci
• Secretary, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Jon Steverson
PASSED AND ADOPTED in a regular, adjourned session of the Town Council of the Town of
Palm Beach assembled this 16th day of August 2016.
By Michele Dargan, Civic Association Special Report.
A standing-room only crowd filled the back room of Nick and Johnnie’s Wednesday for a chance to hear from some of the candidates who will appear on the Palm Beach ballot in the August 30 primary election.
The Palm Beach Civic Association and the Citizens’ Association of Palm Beach presented the “Meet Your Candidates” forum with more than 120 people in attendance.
Twenty-four out of the 39 candidates on the ballot appeared at the 5 p.m. event, talking with constituents before and after the program.
Civic Association President Ned Barnes welcomed attendees and introduced candidates for supervisor of elections, state senate, public defender, property appraiser, sheriff, county commissioner and Port of Palm Beach.
Citizens’ Association Chairman Lew Crampton, a Civic Association director, introduced the candidates for circuit and county court judges.
Mr. Barnes told the gathering that both groups are non-profit, non-partisan organizations.
“Our groups do not endorse candidates,” Mr. Barnes said. “Instead we educate residents so they can make their own informed decisions at the polls.”
Mr. Crampton said he and Mr. Barnes were pleased to get such a large turnout.
“Usually in the Town of Palm Beach in the dead of summer, you can fire a cannon on Worth Avenue and you won’t hit anyone,” he said. “This is a great, great crowd.”
Each candidate had two minutes to make his or her pitch. The judicial candidates were recognized and waved to the crowd, but didn’t speak at the podium.
The three Republicans and five Democrats for U.S. Senate as well as incumbent sheriff Ric Bradshaw were notably missing.
Susan Gary, a Civic Association director, said she always comes to the candidate forums.
“It’s an opportunity to get to know the candidates a little bit better and that’s important in all of these elected offices from our judges to our port commissioners to the sheriff’s race,” she said. “It’s very difficult to get a feel for them from a newspaper article alone, so it is important to be able to hear them, see them and shake their hand.”
The non-partisan race for property appraiser pits the current Chief Deputy Property Appraiser Dorothy Jacks against County Commissioner Shelly Vana. They are vying for the job vacated by longtime Property Appraiser Gary Nikolits, who is retiring.
Mrs. Jacks touted her 27 years of experience in the appraiser’s office, 20 of those in a supervisory position. In addition, she said Mr. Nikolits endorsed her.
“We are a full-service office with a lot of moving parts,” Mrs. Jacks said. “We value 630,000 parcels a year and we manage over 300,000 homestead exemptions. It’s a professional job that requires someone with a lot of experience. We need someone at the helm who understands the work and is prepared to lead the office.”
Mrs. Vana said she has a long list of endorsements. Among them: U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy, U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, and State Attorney Dave Aronberg.
Mrs. Vana highlighted her eight years on the county commission, six years as a state representative and, before those positions, a teacher. As a state representative, Mrs. Vana said she was involved in rewriting the property tax laws.
“I would say all of those qualify me as a professional, especially the teacher,” she said. “This is about you, about who will make sure that you are treated fairly and who has proven that over two decades in various leadership roles, and this is a leadership role, that I can do the job.”
In the four-person Port of Palm Beach, group 2, Joseph Anderson and Katherine Waldron spoke at the podium. Incumbent George Mastics spoke with people individually after the event and candidate Henry Taylor did not attend. This race will appear on Democratic ballots only.
Born and raised in Palm Beach County, Mr. Anderson highlighted his business experience by working for AT&T and starting his own construction company. He also emphasized his civic and community service.
“I have a life of service,” he said. “I bring the business acumen and many projects coming from the port are construction related.”
Ms. Waldron said she wants to “bring a fresh voice to the port. I’m a businesswoman and I have a passion for community service.”
She referred to the port as “an economic driver.”
“We can create more jobs and do more in terms of helping some of the communities in the district,” she said. “It’s also important to make sure we’re protecting our environment, the inlet, so when we’re making our decisions, we want to make sure we’re taking that into account.”
Bobby Powell, Jr. and Michael Steinger, Democratic candidates for state senate, district 30, both spoke. This race will appear on Democratic ballots only.
Also speaking at the event: incumbent Public Defender Carey Haughwout and challenger William “Bill” Abramson; the incumbent Supervisor of Elections Susan Bucher and challenger Christine Spain; and the three challengers in the sheriff’s race – Alex Freeman, Rick “Rosco” Sessa and Samuel Thompson.
The nine judicial candidates in attendance were: Robert “Rob” Ostrov, circuit judge, group 1; Gregory Tendrich and Jeremy Zubkoff, circuit court judge, group 4; Lisa Ann Grossman, county judge, group 7; Thomas Baker, Gregg Lerman and Dana Santino, county court judge, group 11; Esther “Ettie” Feistmann and Bradley Harper, county court judge, group 15.
Jerry Frank, an executive board member of the Civic Association, said he likes listening to candidate’s backgrounds and seeing how they come across in person.
“Many of these people you’ve never seen before and don’t know much about them,” he said. “Hearing how they speak and present themselves is very important – whether they sound sincere or are giving a lot of political malarkey. When it’s a close decision and you’re borderline, you can make a decision.”
The Civic Association Candidate Meet and Greet is this evening at Nick & Johnnie's restaurant in the Town of Palm Beach. A packed house is expected with over 130 RSVPs.
Over 20 candidates from state senator, county commissioner, property appraiser, sheriff, supervisor of elections, Port of Palm Beach, public defender, and judge races have confirmed attendance. As always the press will cover the event and our own Civic Association News reporter will be there too. The event is co-sponsored by the Citizens Association.
If you are attending, remember that even though there is free valet parking, get their early because the valet line may be long. The event starts at 5 p.m. Call the Civic Association for more information: 561-655-0820
Click the Voters Guide to Download the PDF
Registered voters may vote early from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.on Monday, August 15 through Sunday, August 28,at the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Office, 240 S. Military Trail, West Palm Beach. See map and link to directions below.
The Palm Beach Civic Association is a nonpartisan organization that believes all civic minded citizens will want to make informed decisions in the August 30, 2016 Primary. This Voters Guide details only the candidates on the Palm Beach ballot.