Thursday, July 16, 2009

July 16: Sniglets On Legislative Travel, Miami-Dade's Budget and Reopening a Case In Fort Lauderdale

By Sylvia Gurinsky

Never mind that a number of Florida officials, including the two major candidates for governor, are being criticized for how they've spent the state's money on travel. Never mind that the Florida Legislature has moved to ban out-of-state trips for state employees for the next year. Lawmakers are still traveling:

With apologies to the memory of Karl Malden and those American Express commercials, perhaps the legislature's new motto should be: "Don't leave home." Don't these people know how to take their own advice in a bad budget year?

Apparently not. And it's something voters shouldn't forget next year.


Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Alvarez did one thing right in his proposed budget: Eliminating discretionary funds for commissioners. The money could still be used to support deserving community organizations without being politicized as a system of barter to keep those commissioners in office, which is basically how it's used now.

But Alvarez should have made another proposal: Restore the 25-cent fee to the Metromover system that travels through Downtown Miami and vicinity. A quarter isn't too much to ask in tough times. A lot of those quarters would go a long way in Dade's budget.


The most disturbing part of Julie Knipe Brown's excellent story in today's Miami Herald on the murder of businessman Ben Novack, Jr. is actually the part in which she writes about the death of his mother, Bernice, earlier this year:

Given the details, it sounds like the Fort Lauderdale Police Department needs to go back and re-open this case.

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