By: Roy Trachtenberg – Guest Columnist
Our city commissioners, Tom Powers, and Dan Daley who are running for mayor and city commissioner filed their campaign report. This can be viewed on line Campaign Treasurer’s Report. Waste Pro and other waste management and consultant companies donated over $4,500.00. Did Tom Powers and Dan Daley know that they were getting election campaign money before they voted for the waste contract? The same commissioners oppose an ethics review board.
Something stinks in Coral Springs.
Other companies doing business with the city also contributed to their election campaign fund. Maybe that is why, in my opinion, they got contracts with the city by a no bid process. These companies include: communications companies and consultants (maybe that is why we have two 911 systems), towing companies, auto companies, and political consultants who I believe have ties to the Republican Tea Party.
Did Tom Powers and Dan Daley violate the law? In my opinion, probably not. Did they violate the intent and meaning of the law? In my opinion, Probably yes.
Tom Powers has experience in circumventing the law. He was accused of violating the state sunshine law and was suspended from his city commission office. However he was found not guilty because of the testimony of the union officials, which by the way are the same fire and police unions that also contributed to his election campaign.
These same commissioners voted for $70,000 for the slogan “Coral Springs – Everything Under the Sun,” a slogan that a high school student could have created. Yet they refuse to vote for funding to pay half of the cost for a school security resource person, about $70,000. Broward School Board wants all schools to be protected especially since Sandy Hook Elementary, Arapahoe High School, and West Orange H.S. in Florida. Coral Springs is the only city that did not pay their share for security of their schools.
Shame on Vice Mayor Tom Powers who is running for mayor and shame on commissioner Dan Daley who is running again for city commission for not protecting our children. Maybe they don’t want to protect our children because they can’t get any campaign contributions from them.
Now the city commission wants to spend more money for a new city hall that will probably cost us twice as much because of the location. They are paying an outrageous amount for a temporary lease while the south city hall is demolished and the new city hall is built. I have seen the pictures of the present city hall and agree that we need a new city hall. However, I do not trust these commissioners. How much more are they going to get in political contributions? How is the site of the new city hall going to help merchants in the Walk? How many times has a resident walked into city hall? Do we really need a new parking garage when the parking lots in back of the walk are empty?
This city hall relocation is being rammed down our throats without a vote. We voted for a new police and fire station headquarters. But there will be no vote on the city hall. They are going to use our tax money and our property tax rate will go higher because of the increase in the value of our homes and probably cost over runs. Other cities are lowering their tax rate. Coral Springs commissioners only want to spend our money and get more contributions to their election campaign. No wonder Tom Powers has stated that he is against the ethics commission. It’s time to change the city commissioners.
Roy Trachtenberg is a retired school administrator. He was born in Miami Beach, Florida but spent 35 years in the New York City school system. He is also a retired assistant professor of Education and one of the first to integrate technology into the classroom which he taught to other teachers. He is a former Dean of Education for a community college trade school where he developed curriculum for 9/11 workers displaced because of the terrorist attack. He is married to Sharon Rosenthal and lives in Coral Springs. He has a daughter and 3 grandchildren.
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