Lets play Name a County Commissioner
County Republican leaders will recommend to Gov. Charlie Crist that he appoint Boynton Beach Mayor Jerry Taylor for the open Palm Beach County Commission seat vacated last week when Warren Newell resigned under a federal criminal probe.The local kingmakers have spoken, and what a bunch of fools they are. Palm Beach County government doesn't need another politician with ethics problems. Because there is plenty of monkey business going on in Boynton Beach.
The board of directors of the county GOP voted 10-0 on Monday night to endorse Taylor, a former aide to County Commissioner Mary McCarty who has won four nonpartisan mayoral races in Boynton Beach.
Taylor is one of at least a dozen applicants for the job.
"We think that Jerry Taylor is so far above any of the other names who live in that district that this is a slam dunk for the citizens of that district and for the governor," county Republican Chairman Sid Dinerstein said.
How much weight the Republican endorsement will carry with the Republican governor is unclear.
"The governor will approach this appointment the same way he approaches all his appointments, and that is to look for someone who can best serve the community," Crist spokeswoman Erin Isaac said when asked what effect a partisan endorsement would have.
BOYNTON BEACH — When the community redevelopment agency meets tonight, city commissioners take over as the agency board, marking the end of a barrage of back and forth accusations of mismanagement and kickbacks that led to the ouster of the appointed seven-member body.This is all going on in the city Taylor is mayor of. I don't know if he is involved in what's detailed above, but Palm Beach County citizens deserve someone who is free of possible ethics violations or possible criminal charges.
• The purchase of 7.83 acres in May from former CRA Chairman Larry Finkelstein for $7 million; the land is planned for an affordable-housing community. Finkelstein bought the property after he left the CRA board.
• The purchase of a historic 1902 home at 211 E. Ocean Ave., for $850,000 for future offices of the CRA. A property appraisal paid for by the CRA listed its value at $850,000, but the market value listed by the Palm Beach County Property Appraiser's Office was much lower. Former CRA members said the purchase was part of a plan the city commission approved to rezone and redevelop the downtown area into commercial shops and restaurants.
• Expenses for lunches and use of a car from a limo service. CRA Executive Director Lisa Bright said all the purchases in question were legal and business related. She also said the chauffeured car trip with two CRA members and agency staff to the airport for Palm Beach County Days in Tallahassee cost less than a taxi or parking a car at a airport garage.
Thirteen other people have applied to replace Warren Newell.
• Robert Balogh, retired New York City middle school principal, no party affiliationSo far as I know, no sarcastic Florida bloggers among them. In any case, I don't live in District 3.
• Philip Blumel, financial planner and leader of commission term-limits referendum, Republican
• Dagmar Brahs, construction administrator, former president of Coalition of Boynton West Residential Associations, Republican
• Emil Danciu, former Boca Raton mayor, Republican
• Robert Dovey, former Lake Worth city commissioner and aide to Newell for 12 years, no party affiliation
• Vincent Finizio, former Belle Glade city manager, Republican
• Richard Galeta, dentist, community activist and former Lake Clarke Shores mayor and councilman, Republican
• Dennis Koehler, attorney and former county commissioner, Democrat
• Harriet Lerman, former Maine legislator and loser of close 2004 race to Newell, Democrat
• Tim Morell, attorney, Democrat
• Tom Ramiccio, former Lake Worth mayor, current Lake Worth Chamber of Commerce director, Republican
• Jose A. Rodriguez, vice mayor of Boynton Beach and executive in electronic payment company, Republican
• Stan Smilan, retired airline pilot and candidate for several offices since 2000, Democrat
Governor Crist hasn't announced when he will name Warren Newell's replacement. I sincerely hope Crist makes the right choice. Boynton Beach Mayor Jerry Taylor isn't it.
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