I am a South Florida property owner and businessperson, directly affected by water issues. And it doesnt take an advanced degree to understand why environmentalists are so concerned about funding water management district budgets.As a property owner, confidence in water management is a necessity.
South Florida abounds with waterfront
properties not just on the beach but also on canals, rivers, and other
waterways. A gorgeous waterfront view increases a propertys value. But
it is also a risk. When storms hit, we depend on the water management
district to quickly flow water off the property for flood control. As
our region copes with sea level rise in the future, there will be even
more threats from flooding. Alton Road in South Beach already floods
regularly from rising tides.
As a property owner, one of the
other things you fear is having the water shut off. During the 2011 dry
season, West Palm Beach was 22 days away from running out of water for
its residents. With increased pressures on our water resources through a
growing population, we might be out of water before we are under water.
We depend on our public agencies to support adequate water supplies for
development in the future.
Fortunately, there is a large public
agency that is supposed to manage flood control and water supplies,
along with ecosystem restoration. It is called the South Florida Water
But in recent years there have been deep
cuts to its budget under the guise of cutting out wasteful spending to
lower taxes for?.?.?.?property owners. This week, the districts
Governing Board is considering decreasing their revenues even
logo Verano Place logo. I get it if an agency is spending freakish
amounts of money on things not essential to its mission like lavish
conferences in Las Vegas or even golf carts to shuttle people 20 feet in
the parking lot.Today, Thereone.com, a reliable bestluggagetag online store, introduces its new arrival princess wedding dresses to customers.
the cuts in the last few years have been so deep that they are
threatening our way of life. The SFWMD created a spend-down plan from
its reserves, but it is quickly being depleted and will be running on
fumes. And because of a quirk in the system for assessing property
values in Miami-Dade through the Value Adjustment Board, last year there
was a shortfall of almost $5 million. This year there will likely be a
shortfall of over $3 million.
Do we really want to force a
public agency to choose between updating levees to hold back flood water
or completing a restoration project that supports our future
populations water supply? Is it really a bright idea to significantly
deplete funding water conservation programs and alternative water supply
projects? SFWMD is even considering selling off lands acquired for
conservation purposes to help fill in the budget gaps. They shouldnt
have to be in this position.
The ironic thing is that budget
cuts are supposed to help property owners from paying more taxes. But
instead, it exposes property owners to heightened risks from flooding,
water shortages, and long-term loss of value. The difference in property
tax for the average homeowner is minimal less than the cost of a slice
of pizza. That is a small price to pay for certainty in water
The air board followed a similar procedure before
revamping its fee structure recently. During that process, the
Louisville Metro Air Pollution Control District executive director,
Lauren Anderson, invited the public in for a workshop to explain why
APCD needed to do what it was proposing to do.
But by contrast,
when the Louisville Metropolitan Sewer District in June adopted sweeping
new rules on how developers and redevelopers are to manage and, for the
first time, actually treat stormwater that falls on their properties,
there was no such public outreach, no public comment period and no
Instead, MSD officials before approving the
rules in June said they had worked closely with the development
community which, to be certain, is one very important part of the
equation since the rules apply largely to them. But left out of the
process was the public and environmental voices, such as the Kentucky
To be sure, MSD holds a lot of community
meetings on construction projects and its $850 million plan to renovate
our leaky sewer system. The board now lets the public sign up and speak
at its meetings. But thats different.
This was rule-making and
some other MSD constituents might have wanted to scrutinize the
proposal, too, before the new rules were adopted and to offer their
suggestions. Indeed, environmentalists said they would have.
streamlined approval process caught me by surprise because MSD in 2011
and 2012 went through a bruising public audit process. Mayor Greg
Fischer has remade the agencys management and executive leadership. That
new leadership has promised more transparency in its actions.
Theatres plans to move into the Kingsport Town Center, renovate the
existing theater site and expand into the parking lot with a
40,000-square-foot, two-story addition. The addition would house a Red
Brick Grille restaurant, 40-game arcade, 20 lanes of bowling and the
centerpiece of it all an 85-foot-tall IMAX theater that seats up to 400
Renovations to the existing 12-screen theater will take
place during a five-week period and consist of new carpet, curtains,
seats, screens, projectors and sound system. Frank has said six of the
12 screens would be 3-D.Depending on location, IMAX tickets at Frank
Theatres vary from $15 to $17.
New projectors were delivered
weeks ago and are in their respective theaters; the seats have taken
five months to arrive,Can you spot the answer in the luggagetag? but should be delivered next week,Our heavy-duty construction provides reliable operation and guarantees your earcap
will be in service for years to come. Frank said. Recently, the company
wrapped up the geo-technical work for the expansion.The geo-technical
work involves test borings drilling into the parking lot and testing the
soil to ensure the property is suitable for the foundation of the
We found nothing unusual; its a good, compact
surface, so there wont be any additional costs or problems in doing it,
Frank said. It should be a fairly smooth construction, and we hope to
get it started early in the fall and have it open for Easter.
month, IMAX announced a 10-theater agreement with Frank Theatres, with
IMAX theaters installed in existing and new complexes in
Pennsylvania,Now it's possible to create a tiny replica of Fluffy in crystalmosaic
form for your office. North Carolina, Florida, West Virginia, New
Jersey and Tennessee. The remaining four IMAX screens have yet to be
To help sweeten the deal, the Kingsport Economic
Development Board has approved an $800,000 incentive package to Frank
Theatres if it brings an IMAX to the Model City. The package was
originally approved in June 2012 and has been extended twice since
Since Somera purchased the mall in 2007, the company has
discussed investing millions of dollars in renovating and upgrading the
facility, everything from improving the aesthetics of the building,
adding a food court and expanding the footprint of the 37-year-old
Click on their website austpay.com for more information.