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AMENDMENTS Proposed by Miami-Dade Commissioners…Ignored Voters’ Message After Historic Recall (March 24, 2011 Meeting)

Posted by FactReal on March 24, 2011

Miami-Dade commissioners met today to supposedly respond to the wrath of the voters who are demanding fiscal responsibility and reform of county government and overwhelmingly voted last week to remove mayor Carlos Alvarez and commissioner Natacha Seijas for raising property taxes, for shenanigans with the unions, mismanagement, and other dictator-like conduct.
But the commissioners perverted the voters’ message and voted for items to benefit themselves. After almost 9 hours of ramblings debate, the 12 remaining county commissioners agreed on 6 amendments to the Miami-Dade charter (the county’s constitution) for citizens to vote on a special election set for Tuesday, May 24, 2011:
Increase commissioners’ base salaries from $6,000 to $92,097 a year in exchange for them not having outside employment and to set three consecutive four-year terms limits for county commissioners beginning after the 2012 election. (But each of the 13 commissioners already receives almost $1 million for their annual budgets which they use as they please — with few restrictions and no questions asked — plus $11,500 annual retirement contribution, unlimited free gas, $55,388 benefit package that includes an $800 monthly car allowance, etc. They will get great pensions and benefits for the rest of their lives…all paid by taxpayers. After all the mismanagement and abuses they want to increase their salaries and guarantee themselves 12 consecutive years as commissioners. The key word here is “consecutive.” After the first 12 years, will the commissioners run for re-election after a short resting period…securing for themselves another 12 years in power? When will it end? This sounds like lifetime dictators with vacation periods in between. Would a new pension kick in every time they temporarily retire?)

Ban elected officials from lobbying the county for compensation for a period of 2 years after leaving office.
(The keyword here is “compensation.” This would ban county officials from working as paid lobbyists. What happens if they get “gifts” for lobbying instead of compensation? Why only 2 years…how about 20 years after leaving office?)

Allow the Charter Review Task Force (an appointed board that reviews the county charter every five years) with super-majority vote (that is, approved by two thirds of the panel) to bring proposals directly to voters. (Currently only county commissioners or a difficult and expensive citizen’s petition initiative can propose amendments to voters.)

Put the Inspector General’s office in the county charter to supposedly bolster the office’s presence as a county watchdog and insulate it from commission intervention.
(Will the commissioners appoint this “inspector”?)

Eliminate the strong-mayor and give back those powers to the commission.
(In 2007, Miamians voted to amend the charter to put the county bureaucracy directly under the control of the executive office as a way to reduce the power of the commissioners. Now the commissioners want that power back?)

6) EASIER PETITIONS…not really
Eliminate the requirement of having all signatures notarized for citizens’ ballot initiatives.
(All the other onerous and ridiculous requirements imposed by the commission remain).

May 24th will also be the election for a mayor and a commissioner for district 13, but the commissioners have to return on April 11th to formally schedule that vote. I hope that scheduling doesn’t take another 9-hour debate…some of us have a life to live.

UPDATE: Special Meeting of the Board of County Commission – March 24, 2011
Here are the video and agenda of the commissioners’ meeting.

One Response to “AMENDMENTS Proposed by Miami-Dade Commissioners…Ignored Voters’ Message After Historic Recall (March 24, 2011 Meeting)”

  1. These people need arrested and locked up before any of this goes into effect, this out and out theft, absolutely no doubt .

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