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Condo News Online Local News Page


Condos of 

South Ocean Blvd., 

Palm Beach

By Madelyn Greenberg

Last Updated 04/24/2022

Condos of So. Ocean Blvd.  

view from Intracoastal at Lake Worth Bridge

Photos by Jimmy Shirley

FL Gov’s Push to Cut State Gas Taxes Gets Bipartisan Support


The following article is not about party affiliations. It is about how even in partisan times like these, you can look beyond politics and agree on doing things for the benefit of the people. A positive and productive idea, that is what bipartisanship should always be about. Not politics, but the people and their best interests.

We all know by now that inflation is on and appears to not be going away anytime soon. One of the obvious red flags in this situation, are the rising prices at the gas pump. This is especially dire, for those who make their living traveling to and from work, delivering products and even those in everyday life.

Florida’s Governor, with all that he is doing on so many fronts, has come up with a proposal for the Florida Legislature, in order to lower the State’s gas-tax. Even if it is a temporary measure, for six months, by dipping into Florida’s federal COVID-19 stimulus money, which, according to DeSantis, "…. the reduction in gas-tax revenue won’t hinder the state Department of Transportation’s annual road program.", as stated in a WUSF Public Media article.

The Governor’s proposal, has the bipartisan support from two of the possible opposing party candidates for Governor in 2022. Both Charlie Christ and Nikki Fried, also agree that there should be gas-tax relief for Floridians.

That indeed, is something that gets high marks as Bipartisan approval of Governor DeSantis’s proposal. Also, no doubt the same will be true for Floridians, their visitors, truckers, businesses, and tourists.

Florida, has no State income tax, so sometimes the State and even Counties use taxes to bring a steady income stream in. Gas/fuel costs are no different and no exception to this formula. Add to that, the rising gas prices for transportation needs from the growing inflation that our Nation is now experiencing.

In the last several months, the USA is no longer energy independent. Currently, due to certain actions by the federal government’s administration, our Nation finds ourselves submissive to countries in the world, that are far from friendly to our Nation or, reliable. Leaving OPEC, as more powerful than ever before, because of the USA’s new dependency on them to supply our oil energy needs, while cutting oil off in our own Nation. Which means, they can easily hold us hostage. This, undoubtably leaves the USA, at a great disadvantage.

Going from a Nation that was finally energy independent to one that is not. Add to that, the supply chain snarl, inflation growing within our economy, mandates that leave less workers, truckdrivers and more, and as those with less money due to it being worth less, means expensive gasoline becomes more and more of a hardship.

The positive for Florida, is that even with the escalating gas/fuel costs, at least for Floridians, there will be a temporary reprieve due to the Governor’s proposal push and hopefully Florida’s Legislature’s vote, to make that possible.

According to an article on this topic, from The Tampa Bay Times, in late November, "DeSantis said he was still working out the details with state lawmakers. He estimated that canceling the state gas tax for six months would save drivers $1 billion…" and the Governor said, "We want to protect Floridians as much as we can against the inflation that we’re seeing."

An article from the Epoch Times, "DeSantis said that ‘nothing has pinched people more than these gas prices.’ In addition to relief for Floridians via the tax cut, he called on fuel stations to reduce prices by 25 cents per gallon".

The article also describes, that DeSantis is "concerned that an increase in salaries and wages will not be enough to cover the rising costs of goods." The Governor is quoted as saying, "Even if you start making more money, if the prices [for goods and fuel] are going up faster than your wages or salary, you’re actually losing money in this inflationary economy."

The Governor said that he is pushing back at the "inflationary pressures" and that he wants to make a "meaningful difference".

According to my research, the Governor has spoken to executives at several large Florida-based gas stations and gotten agreements to lower the gas prices during the tax-cut period.

In the WUSF article, it was explained that Florida’s Governor feels that the "approximately 25-cent-a-gallon ‘gas tax relief’ proposal could save the average Florida family up to $200 over a five- to six-month period, while reducing state revenue by more than $ 1 billion. DeSantis wants lawmakers to approve it during the legislative session that starts Jan. 11."

The Governor said that in regard to doing the "gas tax relief", "…this is, I think, really, really big." The great news, is that both of the candidates that each hope to run from the Democratic party for Governor of Florida, both apparently agree with the Governor and think so too!

What better compliment can there be and encouragement for confirmation by the Florida Legislature, that both Democrats that hope to run in 2022 for Governor against the incumbent, are actually in agreement with this move being pushed and proposed by the Republican Governor!


Will Florida Be A Major Leader Out Of The Supply Chain Snarl?


It appears that Florida has become a Leader, among many of the current important issues within the 50 United States of America. The issue to be covered in this article is the present-day supply chain snarl and how it is a major negative impact for so many Americans.

This issue is not about politics, nor who we voted for and what our views are. The supply chain woes that we all have been hearing about for some months now and NOT getting any better, but possibly worse, are about logistics and getting the goods we need in a timely fashion.

Will not get into the blame game here, although there are some that are intertwined with the supply chain problems. The purpose of this article is to bring out the positive possibilities that are available out there and ones that can bring affirmative outcomes.

We all have heard that the ports in California and also in New York, have ships waiting out in the ocean for weeks due to the conditions at the ports that make offloading and sending out goods, impossible at this time.

In order to help this process, succeed, consideration of other alternatives need to be contemplated.

PJ Media, in an article dated 10/13/2021, said that the Florida Ports Council put out a Press Release, "that the state’s ports are open, staffed, and ready for business."

The Press Release went on to say that "Florida is where your success comes in, and our seaports are the solution to ensure the cargo shipping logjam doesn’t become the grinch that stole Christmas", stated by Florida Ports Council President and CEO Michael Rubin. In addition, "With inflation growing, shipping and manufacturing industries can save time and money by calling on Florida ports. Why pay to moor off the coast of California, when Florida shipping lanes are open and serving as the gateway for getting goods to America’s market?"

The article cited at that time that there were more than 60 ships waiting off-shore. Heard that number was more like 100 ships off-shore.

FL Ports Council President Rubin confidently stated, "Florida is open for business, and we are the solution to help resolve the global supply chain crisis. Instead of waiting off the coast of California, cargo vessels can offload and move their product to Florida and other discretionary markets in the same time it takes to find space in an increasingly congested California."

According to the Press Release: "The Sunshine State’s 15 public seaports are well-positioned to step up."

The Press Release also detailed that, "Thanks to Governor DeSantis, Florida is well-positioned to serve as part of the supply chain solution. Earlier this year, Governor DeSantis infused Florida’s 15 seaports with $250 million in stimulus relief to help offset the impacts experienced as a result of the pandemic. The stimulus is in addition to other port infrastructure and connectivity investments made in Florida to increase our capacity and ability to move cargo and passengers around the world…"

As to the article’s positive prediction, they hoped that shippers would reward Florida’s proactive attitude, so that Christmas trees, toys, sneakers, clothes and even toilet paper, can come ashore in Florida, sooner than anticipated to be delivered to California and the other slow-moving ports, so as to be moved-around within the USA.

The Washington Post gave additional details of the problem with the port crisis in California, by explaining that is also causing rail-yards to back up and logjams for Truckers too.

California has passed laws for Truckers, that eliminate owner-operators. Additionally, a law was passed that puts restrictions on the age of trucks that can legally operate in the state.

All these restrictions, including the VAX Mandate for Truckers and Port-Workers/Longshoremen, further impede getting all the goods out of the ports and in and out of the rail-yards.

According to Florida’s leaders, "Florida doesn’t have any of these restrictive rules."

To make things more difficult in California, US Rep. Michelle Steel of CA introduced Legislation to ban ships from idling or anchoring within 24 nautical miles of the Southern California coastline for 180 days. Do they have the right to this authority?


According to a Washington Examiner article, dated 10/24/2021, "Florida is encouraging ships to ditch backed up ports in the West Coast and head its way."

The Examiner said that Governor DeSantis, "…warned that the supply chain problems could worsen as the holiday season approaches."


Most importantly, a spokeswoman for JAXSPORT, which is the Jacksonville Port Authority, stated that "the facility welcomes any rerouted ships or new cargo vessels, whether temporary or permanent.". The spokesperson said that unlike the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, which account for about 40% of US imports, ‘the Jacksonville port has not had container vessels backed up at any point during the pandemic’.

Florida’s Governor has sited Port Everglades, Port Tampa Bay and Port Panama City as having the capacity to bring in additional ships and offload cargo.

Certain vessels have to go to ports that can support their size. There are other States with ports, like Houston, Texas and Savanna, Georgia that can take more traffic. It is Florida though, that has openly and publicly reached out though. Mark Derks, chief marketing officer for Florida-based BlueGrace Logistics, who said "That IT IS LOGISTICALLY POSSIBLE AND COULD BE ECONOMICALLY VIABLE TO REROUTE SHIPS FROM CALIFORNIA TO FLORIDA."

DeSantis’s office is confident that the trip to Florida is well worth it.

The Governor’s Press Secretary Christina Pushaw, stated that the trip from the backlogged ports of Southern California to Florida, are much more practical and would expedite things rather than waiting up to five weeks or more to dock and unload cargo in California.

Another article in Health News Florida, dated 11/12/2021, "Over the last month, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and other leaders have been promoting the state as a destination for cargo. They suggest ships avoid busy harbors like Los Angeles and Long Beach, sail through the Panama Canal, and drop anchor in the Sunshine State."

All said, Florida is a positive alternative for the choked-up supply chain crisis. The shame of it all, is that have heard very little about whether anything has come of Florida’s common-sense offer in order to expedite goods to get to Americans much faster.


Impractical Stance Will Come Back To Haunt Town


In a Palm Beach Daily News/USA TODAY NETWORK article dated 10/29/2021, it describes how the Town of Palm Beach is planning to ask the State’s "Resilient Florida Program" created by the legislature in 2021, for grant monies so the Town can "lift", "raise", "elevate" "infrastructure" within the Town.

The Town is planning to ask, as of September 1st, "for more than half a million dollars from a newly created state coffer…."

For such things as in their initial plan the Town now FINALLY plans on, "Lifting, lift stations that move sewage and wastewater, and elevating pump stations that handle sewage-free water."

The article goes on to tell us that Town Consultant Bob Hamilton "emphasized there are many more concerns to address, especially on the lagoon side of the island where homes, roads and the Lake Trail are the most vulnerable to rising waters."

Hamilton is quoted as saying, "There is a substantial present-day risk of flooding from the Lake Worth shoreline". Claiming it would likely come from "stormdriven surge through the Lake Worth Inlet that traps water in the lagoon, ballooning levels and overtopping seawalls." He also confirmed that this "present-day flood risk" "is anticipated to increase in the future."

The article also sites one of the most conservative assumptions that, in the future that new construction and some forms of remodeling of homes, WILL need to be RAISED UP, or ELEVATED, "TO 3 FEET ABOVE BASE FLOOD ELEVATION." Hamilton, also acknowledges that "THE FLOODPLAIN WILL EXPAND IN THE FUTURE." The house raising and remodeling of homes will be at the expense of homeowners.

Sounds practical, EXCEPT that the Town of Palm Beach has been within FEMA’s Most SEVERE SPECIAL FLOOD HAZARD ZONE for many years now and done an absolutely minuscule job of planning, constructing and raising any elevation, EXCEPT WHEN REQUIRED by FEMA.

Instead of retaining a consultant to study and prepare projects for the Town’s "FLOOD VULNERABILITIES AND BUILD PROTECTION FOR INFRASTRUCTURE AGAINST WATER THREATS.", Palm Beach starting at least as far back as 2014, made "AESTHETICS" their major goal!



Instead, knowing that the barrier island had all the glaring vulnerabilities of: low-elevation, high water-table, salt-water intrusion, within a direct storm and hurricane alley, sea-walls due to the ability of water to rise up through the ground, can not only go over the top, but under the structure onto the properties- - the Town of Palm Beach Town Council CHOSE NOT TO ACCEPT the overhead high-tech hurricane-proof hardened poles, strong wires and constantly capable of updating smart technology.


• the Town Council chose underground non-waterproof conduits with "taps" or seams, which as confirmed at the time from FPL, decomposes from saltwater flooding in the severe flood zones which cover the majority of the barrier island Town.

• Finally, the Council chose to install non-waterproof electric transformers directly within severe flood zones and below the base flood elevation level.

A community may look aesthetically pleasing, but Municipal Leaders should NEVER delay the most important priorities they are responsible for, which are: The Protection, Safety, Well-being and Property Values of those they represent!

When it came down to being PROACTIVE and PRIORITIZING FLOOD PREVENTION AND PROPERTY PROTECTION, the Town of Palm Beach has fallen dramatically short.

In 2014 up to and including 2016, the Town took on a direction and a Town-wide Project was pushed forward by the Town’s Leadership, that made no sense for their particular Municipality, either practicality wise, for safety or even, for future property values.

Instead of doing their due diligence in 2014, the Mayor and Town Council decided to vote to Underground their Electrical Utilities in a Town-wide Project. Then proceed to promote and finance their ill-advised Project with a Bond Referendum in 2016. Believe the beginning of construction on this multi-phase troubled Project came in 2017.

The give-away to the impractical stance of the Town’s decision-makers, came when Town Consultant Bob Hamilton said at the 5/27/21 Shore Board Meeting, how he has worked for the Town for 20 years. He then said that in 2014, he started to talk to the Town about their ‘FLOOD VULNERABILITIES’!

Coincidentally, without ever informing the residents of their flood risk vulnerabilities, the Town Council voted unanimously in October of 2014, to underground electrical utilities in a Town-wide Project!

In addition, Hamilton said that the Town Council had commissioned him in 2017, which was either just prior or at the VERY BEGINNING of the actual construction stage of the Electrical Underground Project, to do a supposed "Flood Vulnerability Assessment", which for some inexplicable reason was delayed and not completed until 2019.

CURRENTLY, AS RECENT AS NOVEMBER OF 2021, NOTHING HAS COME OF THE VULNERABILITY REPORT to bring any kind of practical protective Project. Wonder if the fact that the Municipality has still not completed the Town-wide Underground Utilities Project could have something to do with the ongoing delay?

Maybe it is because the Vulnerability Assessment was little more than a ruse by the Town, unless forced to do otherwise?

The Town should have planned for a Town-wide necessity and protective Project and FUNDED IT FIRST and foremost, PRIOR TO: financing and constructing a NON-WATERPROOF Town-wide Underground Utilities Project, renovating the Town’s Marina and making pretty parks and fountains. If the Town had instead built A NEW AND ELEVATED TOWN-WIDE WATER DRAINAGE AND PUMP SYSTEM, to lessen or eliminate the Town’s Flooding problems, that would have been the ONLY ESSENTIAL PROJECT that made practical sense to do first!

The answer as to why not, makes for much confusion and shows SKEWED PRIORITIES and lack of attention to the Town’s protection and safety!

The answer came directly from Public Works Director Mr. Brazil who represents the Town’s policies, regarding the drainage pipes, which are now underground. He said that it, WOULD BE TOO EXPENSIVE TO MODIFY IN ANY WAY.

FPL has said and confirmed more than once that when the Town-wide Underground Project is completed and there is the threat of storm surge, which occurs during many hurricanes, THE POWER WILL BE SHUT DOWN TOWN-WIDE!

Therefore, the antiquated storm drainage and pump system, which ARE RUN BY ELECTRICITY, will NOT FUNCTION AT ALL, when the power is turned off by FPL!

The current drainage and pump system will flood, since the water will likely "overwhelm it", plus the electricity will be turned off and make the Town’s current Drainage and Pump System totally useless!

So why then, has the Town wasted valuable time and taxpayer dollars on Aesthetic, "feel good" Projects, instead of at least having planned and initiated a new ELEVATED Town-wide Drainage and Pump System Project?

Plus, now what are they going to do about the loss of electricity they created with their new pet Town-wide Electrical Undergrounding Project?

What appears to be abundantly clear to anyone paying any attention in the Town of Palm Beach, is that THE IMPRACTICAL STANCE OF THE TOWN COUNCIL- -WILL COME BACK TO HAUNT THE TOWN’S RESIDENTS!

Deliberately Denying Treatments For COVID-19, What Rational Reason Can Justify This Action?

Part 2


Florida, with its growing population, including the greatest number of seniors than any other State, is suddenly, now on top of that denial list and their supply of the treatment, of Regeneron, has been "dramatically" cut.

According to several sources, the manufacturers have confirmed supplies within the USA, are ample and there WAS NO SHORTAGE OF THE MONOCLONAL ANTIBODY TREATMENTS.

Due to the Defense Production Act, the only entities that can actually purchase and distribute the Monoclonal Antibody Treatments available in the US, are the White House and its Agencies. Why was this instituted as part of the Act?

The average need for Monoclonal Antibody Treatments in Florida is 72,000. Due to this sudden policy change, that number was slashed to fewer than 31,000 doses.

DeSantis has said that move has resulted in cutting the essential supply by more than half to Florida. Which left the Governor and the State’s Health Agency scrambling and almost in limbo.

In addition, the Federal Government, who contracted two of three companies that produce the therapeutic, have made it so that Florida’s Governor, CAN NOT EVEN PURCHASE ANY ADDITIONAL SUPPLIES TO MAKE UP FOR THIS SUDDEN SHORTFALL, DUE TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT’S NEW RATIONING POLICY.

Left no other choice, Governor DeSantis was forced to purchase whatever number of doses they had available, from GlaxoSmithKline. Another pharmaceutical company that has the treatment, located in the EU and purchase these expensive treatments with State monies at $2,500 a dose, which he otherwise would have received from the Federal Government for free.

Heard on the news, that Nikki Fried, who is one of the Democratic candidates planning to run against Republican Florida Governor, Ron DeSantis in 2022, is also against the cut of Monoclonal Antibody Treatment dosages to the State of Florida. The report said she had asked Biden NOT to cut Florida’s dosages of the treatment. I attempted to contact Ms. Fried, but thus far received no confirmation of the report.

Proof, that saving lives, should be non-negotiable, regardless of party-affiliation!

This therapeutic was originally created, manufactured and stocked up under the previous Presidential Administration, where the plan was that any State could obtain as many dosages as each State deemed necessary. That plan was already set in motion, but completely underutilized until DeSantis’s initiation of it throughout Florida.

In fact, the Monoclonal Antibody Treatment was taken successfully by the previous President of the USA after he contracted the virus and as you may recall, he was back in business in 24 to 48 hours of taking it.

The lifesaving Monoclonal Antibody Treatment for some unknown reason, had been pushed aside, as the main focus became the vaccines, to prevent the virus from occurring. So instead, the use of therapeutics, for those that already contracted the virus, had been put on the back burner for many, many months. Unfortunate, because it could have possibly saved many thousands of lives.

Florida is possibly, the first State in our Nation to make the Monoclonal Antibody Treatments available! Through the previous Administration and the Federal Government, it was made free to any State.

The President of the Medical Association of the State of Alabama, Dr Aruna Arora explained that many patients who receive this antibody treatment feel better within 24 to 48 hours!

In an article from NewsRescue, it is suggested that if someone tests positive for COVID-19, "IT CAN BE A LIFE-SAVER IF GIVEN WITHIN THE FIRST 10 DAYS OF SYMPTOMS."

Ms. Pushaw’s strong statement for Florida’s Governor, should be universally agreed upon, by ALL Americans, "VACCINATED OR UNVACCINATED- DENYING TREATMENT TO COVID PATIENTS IS WRONG"!

Significant to note, studies and the facts demonstrate, that in Israel, where there is a heavily vaccinated population, COVID-19 is still spreading amongst the vaccinated people! In fact, there has been reports that recently Israel has had a "dramatic surge of new COVID-19 cases".

Monoclonal antibodies are engineered immune system proteins that boost an immune response against an infection.

Recall, when the virus first began, the previous administration sent ventilators, hospital ships, doctors, nurses, supplies and more, to those States who said they were in need. That happened to be in "Blue" States. The former President of the USA, regardless of what you may have thought of him, with those actions, plus the initiation of the unprecedented "Warp Speed", which created the COVID-19 vaccines in record breaking time, manufactured and paid for, so that as soon as they were approved, could go into arms, were all accomplished without skipping a beat. Therefore, "What has changed, since then, that could justify any treatment that can saves lives, currently being denied in any State that is in need?"

The current HHS response is that the agency will, "determine the weekly amount of mAb products each state and territory receives based on COVID-19 case burden and (Monoclonal Antibody Treatment) utilization" and that the new system "will help maintain equitable distribution, both geographically and temporarily, across the country…." Is nothing but a bunch of mumbo-jumbo. Especially, when this new policy, which begun around September 14, 2021 or so, had and still has no shortages of this treatment.

Life-saving treatments should always come before political policy decisions. That statement, comes from the fact, that at the time, the denial/rationing policy was made, coincidentally or not, the impacted States, were "Red" States only.

This sudden policy decision or action could lead to the loss of lives.

In a letter from Governor DeSantis to Biden and his Administration, the Governor stated that, as a result of DeSantis’s action, Florida has administered "100,000 treatments" and that Florida was "the first state in the nation to focus on early treatments for COVID-19 by setting up 25 treatment sites for monoclonal antibody treatments across Florida."

The Governor listed that due to his policy there was a "50% decrease in new hospitalizations; 24 consecutive days of declining hospitalizations; 2-month low in emergency room visits."

It appears that frustrated by the fact that DeSantis could not purchase any of the necessary treatments, due to the fact that the Federal Government has a lock on the two companies that manufacture the supply of the treatment in the USA, and the sudden over 50% decrease of the treatments by the Federal Government to Florida; must have led the Governor to accuse the current President, that this decision was, "….to make this about politics even if it means lives lost."

The Governor had a valid point, when he wrote, "This is bigger than politics. Lives are at stake."

What really makes no sense, because this should be an automatic agreement by the WH and Administration regardless of politics, is why the week prior to this sudden ration of life-saving therapeutics, Biden announced that HE WOULD IN FACT INCREASE SHIPMENTS OF MONOCLONAL ANTIBODY TREATMENTS!

Then, only one week later, he flip-flopped on the issue and deliberately denied these life-saving treatments and slashed the dosage numbers in Florida by more than 50%!


So, I leave you with the question that began this article, "Deliberately denying life-saving treatments, whatever they may be, for those that have contracted COVID-19, what rational reason can justify this action?"




Part 1


There should be universal agreement within the USA, that every American has the ability to receive lifesaving treatments which will allow those individuals that are ill due to a pandemic virus, receive the medication in time to help them get better before their illness becomes life-threatening. Especially, if this lifesaving treatment not only helps the ill person, but also can keep them out of the hospital.

THIS IS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT priorities that any Leader should have!

In today’s current environment, there is so much confusion about what is actually factual and what is really just political theatre. One day, government officials say it is okay to do things one way and then, a week or, even a couple of months later, it completely changes. Those actions that have heightened over time, have caused mass confusion and division among the American population. Especially, due to all types of supposed experts and various Officials’ insistence one way and then, they flip-flop to the other. The worst part is, most often, the advice at one point in time vs. another, proves to be wrong. The obvious end result of this chaotic management and sometimes demands, have not only caused the obvious division, but even, mistrust of the unknown. All of this, as we can see in the news and, hear from people we meet, has unnecessarily confused and even angered the public.


We all know by now, that regardless of what we were told at different points in time, vaccinated people, DO STILL GET THE COVID-19 VIRUS. Also, can pass it on to those that are already fully vaccinated and those that are not. Just as unvaccinated people can contract COVID-19 and pass it on.


This is more evidence, that ALL the therapeutics that are out there, including the Monoclonal Antibody Treatments, properly utilized, should be made available in the United States, to every American!

A seldom discussed category of people, are those with "Natural Immunity". Those individuals, have already contracted the virus and recovered. There are many millions in that category. It has been determined by scientists that those with "Natural Immunity" have at least 27 times stronger immunity antibodies and T-cells than any vaccinated person. Since, there are few publicized studies, we do not know if their immunity lasts for more than a couple of years or, like those who prior to vaccinations, got measles, mumps and chicken-pox, last as much as a life-time.

Instead of creating an environment where people are, "running around with their hair on fire", which appears to be the way things have become for so many since this pandemic has continued. Our Leadership NEEDS TO NOT ONLY MAKE VACCINES AVAILABLE FOR THOSE WHO CHOOSE TO GET THEM, BUT JUST AS IMPORTANT, OR MAYBE EVEN MORE IMPORTANT, MAKE ALL THE THERAPEUTICS FOR COVID-19 AVAILABLE! SO THAT THE PEOPLE WHO DO CONTRACT THIS VIRUS CAN RECOVER! THOSE REALITIES NEED TO BE ABSOLUTE!!

Thus far, those treatments have either had little availability or even been denied to patients throughout the USA.

It is well known that Florida has quite a large population and is growing by leaps and bounds. Florida probably has THE HIGHEST senior population of any State. Florida and Texas are loaded with Veterans. Although, the vast majority of seniors in Florida have been vaccinated, those same vaccinated seniors, are still susceptible to different variants. Despite taking both vaccines and possibly even a third, they get what some call "break-through" COVID-19, in different levels of severity. This occurs because we now know, that the vaccines "LEAK" after a shorter period of months than anticipated.


Florida Health website states: "Monoclonal antibody treatments can prevent hospitalization or death in high-risk patients with COVID-19 and are widely available in Florida." They go on to say that, "In clinical trials, monoclonal antibody treatment showed a 70% reduction in hospitalization and death."

It details that Regeneron cocktail that is currently being used, decreases the odds of getting sicker by 70- 80%.

There are other therapeutics that have had success when used properly, but at this time appear to be unavailable through government channels. In addition, there have been many reports of COVID-19 treatments as being denied to practitioners by local pharmacies in numerous States.

On the Florida Health website though, the Regeneron cocktail, is being made available within Florida.

IMPORTANT TO NOTE: The website also states that it is NOT a substitute for a getting a vaccine.

According to Florida Health, COVID-19 Response, "High-Risk Populations", "older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19." They explain that "Many conditions can cause a person to be immunocompromised…."

As to the fact that regardless of one’s vaccination status, excluding those with "Natural Immunity", who are thus far now still immune, Florida Governor DeSantis’s Press Secretary said that, "MORE THAN HALF THE PATIENTS GETTING THE MONOCLONAL ANTIBODY TREATMENT IN SOUTH FLORIDA ARE FULLY VACCINATED"!

The Governor’s spokesperson, Christina Pushaw stated, that those patients have "breakthrough infections."

Most significantly, as the spokesperson for Governor DeSantis, Pushaw insisted on behalf of Florida’s Governor, these monoclonal antibody treatments MUST BE GIVEN TO THOSE IN NEED!

President Biden has stated and it is on video, that THE MONOCLONAL ANTIBODY TREATMENT IS SUCCESSFUL!

The question then becomes: "Why has the current administration in the White House, announced that the federal government would suddenly ration or, greatly decease, the doses to some States?"


The next issue, Part 2 of this same article, IS A MUST READ, that lays things out in detail and gives new important information that every American should be aware of. In addition, it elaborates more deeply about the reason for the previous question, as well as the title of this article. So, stay tuned.

To be continued.

Yellow Journalism Practiced By Many Newspapers


How disappointing and unprofessional it has become so common place for "Yellow Journalism" to be practiced, instead of objective news reporting. It should be obvious for most thoughtful readers, that "Yellow Journalism" has become the norm in most newspapers, in order to serve a particular agenda and it is getting worse, every edition.

The particular subject matter being covered in this article, is the tragic collapse of a building, which happened to be a condo and the deaths that resulted from this horrendous accident that occurred in June, 2021 in the Town of Surfside, Florida.

"Yellow Journalism" is defined as a type of press and are American terms when a newspaper, "exploits, distorts, or exaggerates the news to create sensations and attract readers" and is of questionable, or poor taste. "Techniques may include exaggerations of news-events, scandal-mongering, or sensationalism."

As a good friend of mine described, it was "Yellow Journalism" that caused the Spanish-American War in the 1880s, after William Randolph Hearst in his 27 National newspapers started, "yellow journalism showed the media could capture attention and influence public reaction". Unfortunately, it appears that technique is being practiced NOW on steroids, and the condo collapse is a perfect example of it.

It appears that the tragedy of the collapse of the Champlain Towers South Condominium and the deaths caused during this catastrophe, have been abused and used in an on-going series of articles, op-eds and other sad excuses for scaring the daylights out of folks, in order to make Florida condos appear unsafe. Possibly to also encourage rushed-draconian mandates and policies in the State of Florida.


About now, you may be asking yourself, "Why on earth would the press do that?" Well, there are various potentialities and, after covering this subject in more detail, the possible reason should come into clarity. So, let’s begin.

Knowing that Florida properties and moving to the State in the last couple of years has become known as a, "prima", incredibly desirable local to reside and invest in, plus, even visit- - has made this fear-mongering "Yellow Press" campaign, using the tragic collapse and deaths in order to amplify this catastrophe to its absolute maximum, a reality! A shameful and despicable way to make all kinds of "know-it-all" accusations, theories and opinions, appear like well researched news articles, including, expert OP-ED pieces.

An important fact to note: the larger newspapers throughout Florida, although they may appear to be local papers, are anything but. They are owned by very few, NON-Floridian, National news/media conglomerates. As for other large out-of-State well-known newspapers, also reporting by using this same scare-tactic method, like their sister Florida papers, all appear to have the same type of beat-down agenda. They are seemingly unified with the same goal, which is to propagate this constant fear-mongering in the news about Florida. By attempting to diminish its desirability or, defiling the State by the use of what was likely an "anomaly" and certainly a tragedy, using FEAR as their main staple.

There is much more of an agenda than a simplistic boost in readership or sales. One just has to look a little further than the obvious as to why this beat-down on Florida condominiums has been ramping up for months now. That will be revealed later in this article for readers to ponder.

The constant assault on the public’s psyche and their investments in Florida’s condominiums, kicked into high gear in August. The titles alone of the articles from NY, Washington DC and Floridian papers, were enough to enhance the fear with unsubstantiated theories as to why the collapse took place. Such as: "How a…could have caused a Florida condo building to fall"; "They were Bullies Inside the Turbulent Origins of the Collapsed Florida Condo"; "Corrosion Exposed in collapsed Fla condo"; "Designed to Fail"; "Aging condominiums in Florida"; "Up to nine Surfside victims may have survived collapse- - Questions over whether more could have been rescued" ( totally disgusting and insensitive article); "How a decade of dysfunction contributed to condo disaster"; "Surfside demands systemic changes" and more.

As you may recall, on July 7th, I interviewed world-renowned Forensic Structural Engineer, Allyn Kilsheimer, who has been retained by the Town of Surfside, Fl to do a forensic investigation and a detailed report on what actually "triggered" the collapse. He told me then about all the supposed experts and their comments as to the causation and that "none of them either have the expertise or, they don’t have enough data, to make those decisions, (hypotheses or theories), about what was the cause." He also said to me, without the forensic investigation results, they, "DON’T KNOW WHAT THE H… THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT"!

Important to note, Forensic Structural Engineer Kilsheimer told me, "A building DOES NOT KNOW, that it is a condo or any other kind of building"

He also made these significant statements, "BASED ON MY 63 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE, I THINK IT WAS AN ANOMALY." When asked if a 40-year-old coastal condo/co-op building that is maintained, should have concern of a collapse, Kilsheimer said, "DOESN’T MEAN A 40-YEAR-OLD BUILDING THAT ISN’T MAINTAINED WILL COLLAPSE"!



As you may also recall in my previous article, I got responses from the top man in charge of the State of Florida, Governor DeSantis, regarding any policy changes in the aftermath of the condo tragedy. The Governor responded to my direct questions with, "IT WOULD BE IRRESPONSIBLE TO PREEMPTIVELY ASSUME THE CAUSES OF THE COLLAPSE BEFORE REVIEWING THE FINDINGS OF ANY INVESTIGATION." "A THOROUGH INVESTIGATION IS NEEDED TO INFORM FACT-BASED, EVIDENCE-DRIVEN POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS." "IT WOULD BE RECKLESS TO SPECULATE WHAT LEGISLATIVE AND REGULATORY CHANGES NEED TO BE MADE AT THIS POINT." "If anything needs to be changed in terms of policy, or regulations, those decisions will be made to prevent such a tragedy from ever happening again."

In spite, or maybe because of all of these points made by Forensic Structural Engineer Kilsheimer and Florida’s Governor, it appears that, the various newspapers in Florida, New York and Washington DC, have ramped up the fear-mongering articles.

These articles and op-eds, have encompassed, attacks on: the developers’ backgrounds; digging up dirt on part-time building inspectors; corrosion and salt-air scare/fear-tactics; trying to find all kinds of "condos" in Florida that they claim "averted tragedy"; attacking condo owners for not moving fast enough on maintenance matters throughout Florida, (as if that would cause a condo to collapse); encouraging the public to panic if they need any kind of "structural" repairs-must have immediate attention, (or their condo could fall like a house of cards); attacking Florida’s " Condominium Act", which was the first State to create such documents in 1963 and have been updated; attacking or insinuating Condo Boards are made up of idiots and in need of government take-over; Stating that special assessments for various items, should be passed and levied on owners immediately, (or, that could cause a collapse); BLAMING FLORIDA’S RULING PARTY LEGISLATURE, FOR THEIR ACTIONS ON FUNDING; these and more, just to name a few, of the endless unconscionable things covered in the "Yellow Journalist" blame-game.

Worst of all, was the article giving THE NAMES OF SOME OF THE DECEASED AND DETAILS FROM THE AUTOPSY REPORTS. Making statements and insinuations of how these victims who perished from this catastrophe and practically, describing how they must have suffered before dying under the rubble of the collapsed condo. Starting by taking credit for the paper’s investigation and what it "suggests". Such as, "Some medical examiner’s reports listed injuries that would not, on their own, be considered lifethreatening or result in immediate death." Claiming, "The (Their) investigation raises questions about whether any of the victims COULD HAVE BEEN RESCUED, AND HOW THE BUILDING COLLAPSE"(D).

That article was abhorrent and totally insensitive! What purpose did it serve? Just to panic condo dwellers that their building could not only collapse with them in it, but they can suffer a long and painful death. Despicable "Yellow Journalism"!!

What do you think might be motivating this? To get more readership? Doubtful.

Is it possible that the goal, is as simple as political motivation?

No tragedy or deaths should be made political, regardless of how the newspaper’s owners lean, vs. the party affiliation of a Governor. Presuming that in fact is what this "Yellow Journalism" is being used for, as a means to damage a Governor’s credibility and by extension, also the State’s no-tax policies and its standing in our Nation. IN THE EVENT THAT THIS TRAGEDY IS BEING EXPLOITED TO DIMINISH AND DESTROY FLORIDA ECONOMICALLY AND ITS REPUTATION, IT IS SHAMEFUL AND REPREHENSIBLE! It appears, that is about the only thing THAT EXPLAINS WHY FLORIDA IS UNDER FIRE LIKE THIS. If that is the answer, what else would the yellow-press stoop to?


Governor DeSantis’s Responses To Policy Changes In The Aftermath Of Condo Tragedy



In this journalist’s quest to find out what should be done at this point in time, in the aftermath of the tragic collapse of the Miami Champlain Towers South Condominium, regarding possible new regulations/legislation/policies, upon older Floridian condos and all types of buildings that are a few stories high; I decided to reach out to the one man in charge of running the State of Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis.

The reason for wanting the views of the Florida Governor on this subject, has nothing to do with politics, but rather to keep people apprised of the facts and make sure Floridians that already own homes, rent, visit , or plan to buy, are accurately informed.

What lead me to seeking the top person in charge of policies and important decisions of the State, was the continual and ongoing fear-mongering reactions in the press. Through articles and even op-eds. All written by or about, supposed "know-it-alls", in the weeks following the building’s collapse.

I am grateful that with the incredibly busy schedule and time restraints that are required of a Governor, that I was able to get Governor DeSantis’s written responses to my questions on this most important subject.

Unfortunately, the press has been using this tragedy as their excuse for either: 1- Scaring the heck out of the public about older Floridian condos being unsafe and in danger of collapse, or 2- Insisting on reasons to make hurried and harsh new legislative and regulatory crack-downs on older condos and other residential buildings, claiming that they are unsafe and could collapse!

All property-owners/shareholders, should maintain their homes, whether they be multi-story buildings, duplexes, townhouses, or even single-family homes. Good maintenance though, or the lack there of, according to world-renowned Forensic Structural Engineer Allyn E. Kilsheimer, IS NOT THE REASON FOR A MULTI-STORY BUILDING COLLAPSING! As Kilsheimer told me, "Doesn’t mean a 40-year-old building that isn’t maintained, will collapse"!

My questions to Florida’s Governor, came as a result of all of the unsubstantiated, onerous and frightening news articles/op-eds, circulating in Local and National press and the fact that most of the publications contain unnecessary negativity that are frightening the public.

This misrepresentation of why the collapse occurred, could instigate premature changes with impulsive new over-reactive regulations, policies, legislation, with dire code enforcement consequences and more. All when, NONE OF THE REAL FACTS ARE IN, AS TO WHY THERE WAS AN UNPRECEDENTED COLLAPSE OF A CONDO IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, SPECIFICALLY IN THE STATE OF FLORIDA.

The concern is these changes could happen, without decision-makers waiting to find out the real "cause(s)", "trigger(s)", or the "initiating factor(s)", as described by Kilsheimer, as to the real reasons why this catastrophe actually occurred.

The knowledge from Forensic Structural Engineer Kilsheimer, who said that this unprecedented tragic collapse of an older condo/multi-story building in Florida is, "BASED ON MY 63 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE, I THINK IT WAS AN ANOMALY", gave me the impetus to ask the questions I did to the Governor.

These are the written responses I received from DeSantis to my questions.

1- When asked if the Governor thinks that new Legislation, Policies, or Regulations should be enacted regarding the possible collapse of older Condos/Co-ops and other multi-story buildings in Florida, prior to the final forensic report conclusions being made public?



GOVERNOR DESANTIS: "We expect the investigation process to reveal a clearer picture of the factors that contributed to the collapse, which is a necessary condition to determine whether changes to State requirements or legislation should be considered- - and if so, what those changes might entail."

Most importantly, GOVERNOR DESANTIS RESPONDED: "If an investigation determines that the collapse was caused—in part, or in whole—by factors that could be mitigated via state-level policy change" He "would certainly give due consideration to any proposed reforms that could prevent such a tragedy from happening again."


The Governor also included with the responses, that he has offered the State of Florida engineering expertise to aid in the investigations. DeSantis fully supports the investigations by Forensic Engineer Kilsheimer’s firm, as well as the federal government agency National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) having started their own investigation, and OSHA, who is also doing an investigation. The Governor, "has committed to providing whatever resources are needed from the state."

In addition, the response included the following: "Local authorities are responsible for building code enforcement. Not only in Florida, but throughout the country."

2- "What would you like to say to the people of Florida and the Nation about this fear of older buildings collapsing in Florida?"

GOVERNOR DESANTIS’S RESPONSE: "Local authorities in Miami-Dade County (including Forensic Structural Engineer Allyn Kilsheimer), did emergency inspections of older residential buildings after the Surfside tragedy. THERE IS NO INDICATION THAT THIS IS A WIDESPREAD PROBLEM. Even the Champlain Towers North, the sister building to the one that collapsed, was inspected by the local authorities (and most significantly, by Kilsheimer) and found to be in good condition."

GOVERNOR DESANTIS ALSO STRESSED: "Therefore, residents of Florida should not be worried. Everyone should be aware that local and federal investigations about the causes of the Champlain Towers South catastrophe are underway."


According to the, 8/2/21, Sun Sentinel, it was reported that there are municipalities, for example in Palm Beach County, that are already proposing "Beefed-up safety program may affect hundreds of buildings in…", "to prevent another tragedy like the June 24th collapse in Surfside…." And goes on to say, "affect buildings older than 30 years and taller than three stories or 50 feet." Implying that it is, "because of saltwater’s corrosive effect on structures". The article explained that the City’s staff, not the private homeowners and their Board of Directors, will "establish a schedule of needed repairs and begin sending notices to building owners…" The article went on to say that building owners in this municipality would, "typically be given six months to complete those repairs." Even more excessive over-reach, is, when it stated that if the owners do not comply to whatever the city staff determine and "…fail to do the required work by the deadline, code enforcement and a special magistrate can issue fines…".

Important to note: It takes longer than that time period to notify multi- property owners or shareholders; to special assess them for the repairs, only after a duly noticed meeting takes place; to find a good and reputable contractor; to schedule the work to be done; to get the permits, to give owners a chance to find other places to live during the repairs; to get the work completed and inspected on time and; to give owners/shareholders the opportunity and time to arrange a way to finance the special assessment.

The above is a perfect example of how unnecessary and excessive government over-reach on private properties can take place, on the State, County and Municipal levels. Which will occur, if they jump the gun with new legislation/regulations/policies BY USING A TRAGEDY, when they have NO proof, NO facts and NO data OF WHAT ACTUALLY CAUSED THE COLLAPSE TO OCCUR.

All caused by unproven and unsubstantiated hypotheses.

Worth repeating, as Forensic Structural Engineer Allyn E. Kilsheimer told this journalist, "Based on my 63 years of experience, I think it was an anomaly."

Here is hoping that Governor DeSantis’s responses as to how to handle things in the aftermath of the tragic condo collapse, is heeded by State Legislatures, County Officials and Municipalities throughout Florida.

Plus, that the public reads what Forensic Structural Engineer Kilsheimer says about why THERE IS NO NEED AT ALL TO FEAR OLDER BUILDINGS IN FLORIDA COLLAPSING LIKE THE CONDO IN MIAMI!

Forensic Engineer Kilsheimer Describes How His Investigation Will Proceed


This article will outline the investigation as specialist Forensic Structural Engineer Allyn E. Kilsheimer described it.

During my 7/7/2021 interview with Kilsheimer, among the most significant statements that he made about the partial collapse of the Miami, Champlain Towers South Condominium, through the lens of his 63 years in the field, was when he said that he believes the tragic event, "WAS AN ANOMALY" and also, "WE DON’T KNOW THE CAUSE YET".

That is exactly what his forensic investigation is seeking to find. As Kilsheimer informed me during our interview, "SOMETHING IS THE INITIATING FACTOR", what the "TRIGGER" was, because he said there was "A TRIGGER". The purpose of this forensic investigation process, is that after a thorough investigation, hopefully the "the trigger" will be revealed to all.

Significantly, Kilsheimer also stated, that "IF NOT FOR THE TRIGGER", it "WOULDN’T HAVE HAPPENED. MOST LIKELY, IT WOULD NOT HAVE COME DOWN", referring to the collapse of the condo.

Important to also note: that whether a condo or other type building is well maintained or not, Mr. Kilsheimer asserted to me, "DOESN’T MEAN A 40-YEAR-OLD BUILDING THAT ISN’T MAINTAINED, WILL COLLAPSE"!


As it is imperative, when a strange death occurs, an autopsy is performed before determining the specific cause of death. A forensic investigation on the collapse of a building, which was unexpected and the loss of lives, with the subsequent report to the Town of Surfside, who retained Kilsheimer, going out to the public, is a more high-tech type of scientific process than an autopsy.

The following was taken from another interview with Allyn Kilsheimer. I saw this on a local Miami news outlet, "Straight Arrow News". The video was taped prior to my interview with Mr. Kilsheimer. He described the process that he will take with this important forensic investigation. Which will result in a detailed and thorough final report giving the conclusions about what caused this catastrophe.

Keep in mind, this was prior to the search process for those lost souls being halted. As recent as Friday, 7/23/21, the halt of that search was announced.

According to Forensic Structural Engineer Kilsheimer, who simplified this for laymen, these are the basics of what the investigation process entails:

1st "You collect drawings, to the extent that they exist."

2nd "You listen to all the people that are experts and know exactly what happened and why it happened WITH NO INFORMATION AND NO BACKGROUND. Absolutely, but you have to listen to them. You have to pay attention to them."

3rd "We come up with 30 or 40 things (triggers) that might have happened."


5th "And that is kind of where we are now."


7th "We keep collecting and finding things to understand it better."

8th "I looked at the two other buildings that are similar to this to understand it better." "I have looked at some other buildings at Surfside. Now, I just looked at another one in an adjacent Town." In one news report, Kilsheimer said, he would let his grandchildren stay in any of those buildings, without fear of a collapse.


10th Kilsheimer had said at that time, that unfortunately, "The people we would want to talk to, are not around now. You learn a lot from the first minute or two. We have paid attention to some of the eye witnesses that said, ‘I was in my apartment and this is what I heard’." At the time of that interview with Kilsheimer, he stated, "I have not yet asked to interview those people first-hand, because I think they are still under shock. No reason to put them in anymore grief."

11th Just as Forensic Structural Engineer Kilsheimer told me, he announced in this interview, "WE ARE LOOKING FOR A TRIGGER TO SEE WHY THIS HAPPENED."

12th "WE TRY TO GET IT DOWN TO ONE, TWO, THREE TRIGGERS" (possibilities). He admitted the goal is to get it down to THE trigger, but sometimes that is difficult. "We are trying to do everything factually…"

In another short interview, Kilsheimer stated, "The bottom line is we will be able to do everything we have to do, IT JUST TAKES TIME TO DO IT."

In the process of my research, I found that Allyn Kilsheimer was asked, if he had a sense that Florida Building Codes or Code Enforcement will change significantly at all depending on what he finds?


As an update on the Champlain Towers South tragedy. We now know that 98 people perished. We also know that the search for bodies has been halted, the site is mostly flat now and the rubble has been moved to a Miami warehouse. We know that Allyn Kilsheimer and the forensic work is ongoing, including examining the debris at the warehouse.

As a demonstration of Kilsheimer’s knowledge and expertise: As recently as last week, Kilsheimer wrote a letter that warned the Town of Surfside and Miami-Dade County that due to the void caused by the collapse in the hollowed out foundation , "If the wall were to collapse or rotate substantially, the retained soil under the street, (area of Collins Ave. near the collapsed condo), and sidewalk could move around it and could cause portions of the street to collapse and could seriously compromise the utilities under the street."

As a response to Kilsheimer’s warning, Miami-Dade sent in crews to shore up the remaining underground walls. Apparently, Kilsheimer knew that the underground walls from the condo, no longer had the support of the street level floors and heavy rains or more, could increase risks greatly.

Which clearly shows, Kilsheimer’s expertise and his statements to this journalist, about other older buildings, whatever type they are, are coming from decades of his knowledge and work experience.

Forensic Structural Engineer Allyn E. Kilsheimer’s assertions that the public should NOT BE CONCERNED this type OF COLLAPSE TAKING PLACE IN OLDER BUILDINGS, coastal or not, because it is likely an anomaly, are sound and extremely factual statements.

Therefore, it is imperative that this unnecessary fear that is being communicated, with unsubstantiated claims, for example: that the cement from older buildings is disintegrating, along with the rust of rebars, salt-air, salt-water, lack of enough and swift maintenance, lax code enforcement, climate change and other hypotheses, theories and opinions, from "experts" anonymous or even named, public officials and mostly the press- - NEEDS TO STOP!

NO ONE KNOWS WHAT CAUSED THIS UNPRECEDENTED TRAGEDY AND UNTIL, as the 63-years of experience, Forensic Structural Engineer, Allyn E. Kilsheimer stated in another interview:


It would be sound reasoning and in the best interest of those owners and visitors to be impacted by any changes, stricter laws or regulations and enforcement, that UNTIL THAT INVESTIGATION IS COMPLETED AND THE REPORT BECOMES PUBLIC, however many months it may take - -that NO State Legislatures, NO Counties and NO Municipalities should create NEW regulations, legislation or, force condos or any older buildings, to engage in panic driven maintenance actions. ESPECIALLY WHEN, THEY MOST LIKELY HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH A BUILDING COLLAPSING!


Renowned Forensic Structural Engineer Retained By Surfside Clarifies Escalating Rumors In Interview

Photo provided by 

KCE Structural Engineering of world-renowned Forensic Structural Engineer, Allyn E. Kilsheimer, who has been retained by the Town of Surfside, Florida, to do a forensic

investigation of the collapse of Champlain Towers South Condo in Miami, Florida.


I had the privilege of a phone interview on 7/7/2021 with esteemed and world-renowned Forensic Structural Engineer, Allyn E. Kilsheimer. He has been hired by the Town of Surfside, Florida, to do a forensic investigation of the partial collapse of the Champlain Towers South Condominium in Miami, Florida.

According to the N.Y. Post and my research, Allyn Kilsheimer is "world-renowned", a respected consultant retained on major disasters, like the 9/11 terrorist attack on the Pentagon and the collapse of the Florida International University pedestrian bridge in 2018. He also examined the Miami-Dade College garage collapse in 2012 and the partial collapse at the Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris in 2004. (According to Florida Politics).

Kilsheimer, owner of KCE Structural Engineers in Washington, DC, a forensic structural engineer, has overseen more than 400 projects, conducted more than 100 investigations, including more than 30 for structural collapse. Quite impressive.

I contacted Mr. Kilsheimer after reading about him in recent N.Y. Times and N.Y. Post articles, researching the tragedy in Surfside and listening to local Miami news reports when he spoke. This all lead me to go to the top and speak to the man who could clarify and quiet the swirling rumors.

These rumors and snowballing fear factor result from many expert hypotheses. Their frightening conclusions and theories, appear to serve to escalate the fear and panic about condos, that once they reach the age of 40 years or older, are in danger of collapsing like pancakes!

I stated my goal right up front to Structural Engineer Kilsheimer. To get the facts and try at the same time to hopefully diminish or abate the panic that is overtaking many: condo/co-op owners, their Boards of Directors, potential buyers, State Lawmakers, County and Municipal Leaders.

Kilsheimer’s response to me was, THAT IS EXACTLY WHAT HE WANTS TO ACCOMPLISH TOO. He also said, "I want to try and help some people feel not as panicked about where they live if I can."

I asked whether it is possible or even likely that, this terrible tragedy and collapse, IS AN ANOMALY FOR COASTAL CONDOS OR CO-OP BUILDINGS? First, he said, "A building does not know that is it a condo or any other kind of building."

Most significant though, was Allyn Kilsheimer’s response, "BASED ON MY 63 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE, I THINK IT WAS AN ANOMALY."

When asked if a 40-year-old coastal condo/co-op building that is maintained, should have less concern of a collapse, Kilsheimer’s response was quite revealing. He said, "DOESN’T MEAN A 40-YEAR-OLD BUILDING THAT ISN’T MAINTAINED, WILL COLLAPSE"!

I asked him about the growing fear that older coastal condos/co-ops were possibly less safe than newer buildings. Kilsheimer’s response is an important one, "I DON’T THINK THIS TYPE OF SITUATION IS SOMETHING THAT 40-YEAR-OLD BUILDINGS OR MORE, SHOULD WORRY ABOUT." He has said, "The age of the building did not bring the Champlain South Towers down."

Is the age of a building the tipping point for possible collapse? Mr. Kilsheimer made the analogy to me that "speaking from experience, I’m 80-years-old. That doesn’t mean I’m in bad shape, right? The building being 40 years old, it doesn’t mean it’s in bad shape or will collapse either."

We talked about the fact that some articles suggest that cracked concrete or spalling in a parking garage under or between buildings, or water intrusion and improper waterproofing might cause the sudden collapse. He said that "Waterproofing has nothing to do with holding up the building."


In an interview on a Miami news program, Kilsheimer was asked about the photos of concrete spalling in the garage and other places from an engineering report and if it could have caused the collapse? He responded, referring to the photos, "Remember, those are very limited areas and you don’t know if that is one square foot out of a million square feet or not. He then made a very important statement, "I DIDN’T SEE ANYTHING IN THOSE PICTURES THAT WOULD MAKE ME SAY, ‘I THINK THIS BUILDING IS IN IMMINENT DANGER OF COLLAPSE’."

There is a theory that the pool was pitched in a way to get into the underground garage and the sub-foundation supports of the building and, that is what caused the building to collapse. Kilsheimer responded that, "THAT IS NOT WHAT MADE THIS THING FALL DOWN".


He told me that he is getting all kinds of emails and hearing experts and various opinions about the cause for this collapse. Kilsheimer has said, "none of them either have the expertise or, they don’t have enough data to make those decisions, (hypotheses or theories), about what was the cause." He also said to me, without the forensic investigation results, they, "Don’t know what the h… they are talking about."

Clearly, since he expressed this frustration to me as well as in other news TV and video, it is borne out of the fact that Allyn Kilsheimer repeated to all, that, "NO, WE DON’T KNOW THE CAUSE YET." As he told me, this forensic investigation will take many months and must be done meticulously and methodically, BEFORE coming up with a thorough report and conclusions.

The reason that Mr. Kilsheimer is disturbed by all the frenzy that has come from the news reports, experts and their "opinions", is due to the fact that it has created an unnecessary panic about coastal Condos and Co-ops.

Since, rumors, opinions and theories are creating a frenzy of fear, even though NO ONE KNOWS WHAT REALLY CAUSED THE PARTIAL COLLAPSE, we can only hope that State, County and Municipal leadership, DO NOT JUMP THE GUN prior to the completion of Kilsheimer’s forensic report results! They all need to show restraint and wait the many months until the forensic investigation is complete with proof of the facts and causation revealed to everyone. Anything less would be a disservice to the public.

It appears, however, that without all the facts and forensic conclusive evidence in, some Floridian coastal Municipalities and even Counties are drawing their own conclusions. They seem to be considering enacting their own regulations/new policies upon older condo/co-ops, but not other buildings. DOING SUCH, WOULD BE PREMATURE, WHEN THE FINAL CONCLUSIONS, WHATEVER THEY MAY BE, WILL PROVE THE CONDO COLLAPSE IN MIAMI TO LIKELY BE AN ANOMALY!

Moreover, the worst thing to occur, would be IF BEFORE THE FORENSIC INVESTIGATION IS COMPLETED, State, County and Municipal Governments ENACT MASSIVE OVER-REGULATIONS on older Condo/Co-ops. This over-reaction will do more harm than good for those most impacted.

In another article, more facts from Kilsheimer on how this forensic investigation will proceed.

Tragedy Strikes When Miami Condo Collapses

Photos of television coverage images of the Champlain Towers South condo collapse (left photos) and responders carefully searching through debris pile (top right) and a memorial wall with photos of missing loved ones (bottom right)


When a tragedy strikes, it is only human to attempt to immediately find explanations for the horror and loss of lives. Rushing to judgment though, although with good intentions, is NOT necessarily what a thorough investigation will confirm.

Around 1:30 AM on June 24th there is video proof of the sudden collapse of the Surfside, Champlain Towers South Condo. The partial collapse of the building came down as if it were imploded and the collapse happened all at once. A video showed the center going down first and then within seconds, the tower, which is facing the ocean, collapsed immediately after. The 136-unit building had around 80 units occupied and there were residents and guests there at the time of this catastrophe.

Nothing like this has ever happened before, except during an implosion of an empty building, or when the Towers were struck on 9-11 and also in Oklahoma City from a bombing, but nothing like this in the USA specifically in a residential building without a deliberate reason.

Surfside’s Mayor, Burkett said on twitter and to the news that he felt that "there is no reason for this building to go down like that unless someone literally pulls out the supports underneath or they washed out. Or, there is a sinkhole or something like that, because it just went down."

The Mayor went on to say that, "Buildings in America do not fall down like this." He also told the News, "Something very wrong happened here and we need to understand what happened." Burkett concluded with, "I mean it looks like a bomb went off, but they are pretty sure a bomb didn’t go off."

Governor DeSantis issued a State of Emergency Declaration.

Both the Republican Governor, DeSantis and Democrat Mayor Levine Cava of Miami-Dade, agreed that there needs to be "a definitive explanation for how this could have happened."

DeSantis said that a "definitive explanation is needed in a timely manner." He also said, "It’s an explanation we don’t want to get wrong." The Governor explained at a press conference that it needs to be thorough, timely and absolute because, "You have families here that lost loved ones in this building collapse. They have the right to know. You have other folks who were able to get out safely, but then lost their homes… They have a right to know as well."

At the press conference he went on to say, "There is a lot of other people throughout this community and throughout Florida, who want to know: ‘Well how can a building just collapse like that?" DeSantis called this "a unique tragedy."

The Governor has had more than one press conference and had immediately flown down to Miami to the site. He said the State will support local investigative efforts that are already underway.

Due to the unusual circumstances of this catastrophe, the Israeli Defense Forces who specialize in this type of situation have been sent to assist.

At the White House, Biden was reminded by VP Harris before he left a press conference about the collapse and he said that the federal government is prepared to send federal monies.

Recently, there have been reports of MAJOR ISSUES BELOW THE POOL DECK of the partially collapsed condo. Most experts though, who referred to this and ANY OTHER PROBLEMS THEY FOUND, said that they did not know for sure that any of the issues found were the reason for the collapse.

None the less, hopefully this terrible catastrophe was an anomaly, but the loss of precious lives, including all those missing 150 people as of this writing, should be mourned by the State and even the Federal Government. Answers really need to be found. A thorough investigation is a necessity.

Marinas Cause Stagnation Of Water Which Can Create Dangerous Toxins


Funny, if you listen carefully to experts that are volunteering their services, what you can pick up. At the Town of Palm Beach Council Meeting on 6/8/2021, there was an invited guest speaker, who showed a slide presentation as the founder of his organization called "Lake Worth Waterkeeper". Reinaldo Diaz said that they look for pollution, bacteria, toxins, etc. and knows about watersheds.

During Diaz’s presentation, he showed a Marina. What he said about the possible dangers of a Marina, (especially those in lakes, intercoastal waterways, canals, etc.), he described a "Marina" as being "like a canary in a coal mine".

Mr. Diaz was talking about a particular Marina, the Pahokee Marina, off of Lake Okeechobee. The premise he explained would apply to other large Marinas, in the areas I’ve mentioned in the previous paragraph.

His reference was in terms of the water surrounding the docks and boats in those situations as attracting toxins. It was explained that the water surrounding a Marina in those types of areas are stagnant and apparently can become "EXTREMELY TOXIC"!

This should have been sounding ALARM BELLS for the Mayor and Town Council! Especially, since the Town is SPENDING, AT LEAST, 38 MILLION DOLLARS ON A TOWN MARINA PROJECT right NEAR residential homes and condos/co-ops.


This Town Project, which is NOT being done at the behest of many of the Town’s constituents, is really being done to attract INCOME FOR THE TOWN, probably to offset monies spent on other projects that are having financial woes.

The Town frequently retains favored firms and experts that always spend time complimenting the Town and playing up to their bosses’ egos. Palm Beach loves to lord themselves as leaders for others, but that does not mean when they get truly objective viewpoints that differ from the Council’s desires, that they listen or take heed to those that give facts or information that they don’t want to hear. We know that from the way they handled the facts and information of the negative consequences for a Town-wide Underground Utilities Project in their severe Special Flood Hazard Zone Municipality.

Mr. Diaz was NOT retained by the Town, but that particular reference that he made at the beginning of his presentation as to the health hazards and the fact that the Town Council knows, in fact, they are enlarging a Town Marina, should have been evident that many never discussed health issues this large Marina could cause major problems to occur in Palm Beach. This prospect was or should have been a bright red flag warning for the Town Council who were listening to the presentation.

This journalist, is in no way implying that the prospect of toxins in drinking water is not of extreme importance.

The Mayor and Town Council though, instead, noticeably TOTALLY IGNORED that particular red flag, regarding their Town Marina Project. Not even acknowledged whatsoever by any of the Council members or the mayor. They were too busy preening about how proactive they are being about their interest regarding toxins in drinking water, while the dangers of another Town Project that they are doing within the waters alongside the western shoreline of the Intercoastal waterway, or the Lake Worth Lagoon, completely flew over their heads. Wonder why?

The water in these large and crowded Marinas, apparently according to Diaz, "gets stopped/stuck and the stagnant water really likes cyanobacteria and when it gets bad it becomes EXTREMELY TOXIC"!

What Reinaldo Diaz said to the Mayor and Town Council next, was even more frightening. He said, "YOU DON’T WANT TO EVEN BE WITHIN 20 MILES!"


The dangers and health risks of CYANOBACTERIA as defined are: "Exposure can cause conjunctivitis, rhinitis, earache, sore throat, and swollen lips. Respiratory effects can include atypical pneumonia and a hay fever-like syndrome. Exposure can also cause electrolyte imbalances, headache, malaise, and muscle weakness/ pain in joints and limbs."

Looking further you can easily find answers to these important health hazard questions as to illnesses and even death that exposure causes:

• What diseases are caused by cyanobacteria?

Acute illnesses caused by short-term exposure to cyanobacteria and cyanotoxins during recreational activities include hay fever-like symptoms, skin rashes, respiratory and gastrointestinal distress.

• Can cyanobacteria kill you?

Blooming cyanobacteria can produce cyanotoxins in such concentrations that they poison and even kill animals and humans. ... Exposure to cyanobacteria can result in gastro-intestinal and hayfever symptoms or pruritic skin rashes.

• Are cyanobacteria toxic to humans?

Cyanobacteria from the species Cylindroapermopsis raciborski may also produce toxic alkaloids, causing gastrointestinal symptoms or kidney disease in humans. Not all cyanobacteria of these species form toxins and it is likely that there are as yet unrecognized toxins.

It is funny, when Palm Beach’s Mayor and Town Council want something done, they become tone deaf to the negatives and dangers a pet Project of theirs could bring to their Town. This presentation by Reinaldo Diaz, demonstrated such negative consequences and possible health hazards that could easily occur in their community. Yet, total silence and it appeared to go right over the Mayor and Town Council’s heads.

Besides the allergies, illnesses, diseases, respiratory problems this new Town Marina can cause for residents, property owners and visitors, due to it not being in ocean waters, but along an already polluted Intercoastal waterway shoreline, in addition, the large yachts can accidently have oil spills and cause not only air but also water pollution. STAGNANT WATER ALSO ATTRACTS INSECTS TO THE AREA.

The possibilities of dangerous health hazards that the Town’s NEW ENLARGED Marina can cause for the health and well-being of those within the Town, appear to outweigh the income desirability of this Town Project.

One can doubt that the Town will even acknowledge the possible dangers of the Project, since they again did not do their homework before they initiated this enlarged Town Marina Project.

If past history is any indication of the Town’s possible reversal or, reconsideration on a Project, once they decide to move forward, it appears nothing will be done to face the negative consequences of their actions. G-d forbid that the Town should stop this Town Project and just keep the same footprint of their original Marina, so that this Project does not do more harm than good. That prospect though, seems highly unlikely and instead, if anything, they will deny all negative possibilities and move forward with lightning speed.

Only, time will tell.

Ignore + Delay Imperative Projects = Future Disaster


Skewed priorities of Officials and not being proactive with those Projects that are essential, can lead to future disaster. In this case, a Town that lost its way somewhere along the line, would be the Town of Palm Beach.

A community may look aesthetically pleasing, but Municipal Leaders should never delay the most important priorities they are responsible for, which are: The Protection, Safety, Well-being and Property Values of those they represent.

Years of ignoring the severity of those essential Projects, the intentional delays and non-actions, are actually doing a terrible disservice to their Constituents and the Property Owners.

When it came down to being PROACTIVE and PRIORITIZING FLOOD PREVENTION AND PROPERTY PROTECTION, the Town of Palm Beach has fallen dramatically short.

In 2014 up to and including 2016, the Town took on a direction and a Town-wide Project that made no sense for their particular Municipality, either practicality wise, for safety or even, for future property values.

Instead of doing their due diligence, using the taxpayer dollars to prioritize and plan, plus initiate Flood Protection Projects based on the obvious vulnerabilities of their severe Special Flood Hazard Zone barrier island Town, in 2014 the Mayor and Town Council decided to vote to Underground their Electrical Utilities in a mega blank-check bottom line, Town-wide Project. Then proceed to promote and finance their ill-advised Project with a Bond Referendum in 2016. Believe the beginning of construction on this multi-phase troubled Project came in 2017.

In the recent comments made by one of the Town’s favorite consultants at the May 27, 2021, Shore Protection Board (SPB) Meeting, all the proof necessary was exposed to demonstrate that the Council was in fact, FOREWARNED about their vulnerabilities PRIOR to engaging and beginning construction on their ill-fated Town-wide Project.

The give-away came, when Town Consultant Bob Hamilton said at the 5/27/21 Shore Board Meeting, how he has worked for the Town for 20 years. He then said that in 2014, he started to talk to the Town about their ‘FLOOD VULNERABILITIES’!

Coincidentally, without ever informing the residents of their flood risk vulnerabilities, the Town Council voted unanimously in 2014 to underground electrical utilities in a Town-wide Project!

In addition, Hamilton said that the Town Council had commissioned him in 2017, which was either just prior or at the VERY BEGINNING of the actual construction stage of the Electrical Underground Project, to do a supposed "Flood Vulnerability Assessment", which for some inexplicable reason was (delayed) and not completed until 2019.

The Mayor and Town Council knew that if that information came out prior to the 2016 Referendum Vote, it likely would have doomed the vote to finance this folly. If it was exposed that due to the FLOOD RISK VULNERABILITIES that financing and initiating such a Project was not only a bad investment, but due to the essential need for reliable electricity, undergrounding within the Town of Palm Beach would be a poor choice.

The completion of the "Flood Vulnerability Assessment" in 2019, meant the Underground Project was well underway. Also, at that time the Town was facing several lawsuits challenging the Project. Therefore, if the flood risk vulnerabilities were exposed, those lawsuits might have had more strength.

When the Flood Vulnerability Assessment was finished, it was impossible for any layman to decipher what it really meant to the properties in the Town. Important to note, there was NO FLOOD VULNERABILITY ASSESSMENT DONE FOR THE UNDERGROOUND UTILITIES INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECT AT ALL!

In addition, the Flood Vulnerability Assessment did not take into account, flooding from rain events, or seemingly the fact that saltwater comes up under the island, which impacts the flooding with the high-water table, which would also affect the underground equipment and buried electrical conduits.

One thing was obvious, the Town’s residents at large were kept in the dark about anything negative and factual of any significance on that front.

Apparently, though the Town Council had been advised about their flood risks and vulnerabilities at least as far back as 2014 and DID NOTHING! Oh, not true, they DID IGNORE IT, and went ahead with their Town-wide non-waterproof electrical Underground Utilities Project instead of taking care of the Town’s many flood risk vulnerabilities!

Pretty outrageous, don’t you think?

Another coincidence is, now in June of 2021, when the Town-wide Electrical Underground Utilities Project has been going on for years, the construction for the most part, not even deterred by a pandemic, in June, after years of delay, the first draft of the Town Consultants’ "Level- Up Palm Beach, Coastal Resiliency Implementation Plan" is being presented. Coincidence, or something else possibly?


Alarming, but should not be surprising to the Town Council or those that have done their homework on this subject, was when the Town’s consultant, Bob Hamilton said, "IN SOME WAYS, YOU HAVE BEEN FORTUNATE, BECAUSE YOU HAVEN’T HAD THESE BIG STORMS AND A GIANT (STORM) SURGE THROUGH THE INLET, INTO THE BACK SIDE & INUNDATED THE ISLAND"!!!

Hamilton said next, "THE TRUTH IS, THAT EXISTS AND THAT LEVEL OF RISK IS GOING TO INCREASE IN THE FUTURE"!! That statement was less detailed and briefer than the description that the Town’s former Floodplain Manager, Bill Bucklew gave at a Town Meeting and written about by this journalist several years ago, but just as scary.

Those three statements, should be EXTREMELY ALARMING TO EVERYONE ON THE ISLAND!


In an article written by William Kelly on this same 5/27/21 meeting, ironically said, "Florida Power & Light electrical transformers", (switch boxes and all utility boxes)," situated on ground-level concrete pads to serve the new underground utilities system being built in the town, need to be raised to higher elevations to avoid prolonged loss of power caused by flooding, according to a slide in the presentation." Hundreds, if not thousands of new electrical utility boxes were already installed and continuing to be, during this Town-wide Titanic of a Project, on concrete pads BELOW the floodplain. The conduits buried underground will remain non-waterproof and vulnerable to salt-water inundation.

Whatever the slide showed was necessary, when asked by a Shore Board Member, "Have you all coordinated all of this that is going on with the undergrounding that is going on in the north and in the middle of the Town?" The response, which further demonstrates that the Town deliberately left that out of the engagement with the consultants, was: "I haven’t looked at the plans for the underground thing." Obviously, would not have, because the Town, who has retained its own Contractors, did not want to expose this from the very get go. Just the raising of the Utility Boxes alone, would have MADE THE COST OF THE PROJECT MUCH, MUCH HIGHER! So, sacrifice safety for price, plus, Ignore and delay. The reason why, should be glaringly obvious by now.

On top of that, the Town’s Public Works Director, Paul Brazil, said that, "THIS IS A LONG-TERM PROGRAM WITH A 50-YEAR LOOK-OUT." Is he kidding?

The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), as this journalist reported, had done a study in 2018 that showed conservatively, that the Town would be inundated with chronic flooding on the first floor of homes in less than 24 years and the inundation by 2100 will be devastating.

The Town and their consulting firm, at the Town’s pleasure, are underplaying the severity of the flood issues within the Town. In 50 years, besides the fact that no one involved, including the Property Owners, will be alive, appears by that time the Town of Palm Beach will be the equivalent of the island of Atlantis!

What a legacy that will be inherited from the Town Council, for the heirs of the Private Property Owners, when Palm Beach and all its niceties will be either totally inundated or underwater!

The Beat Goes On-Town Ignores Severe Flood Issues In Palm Beach


It is the same old song in the Town of Palm Beach, "The Beat Goes On" …as the Town continues to ignore their most severe Flooding issues.

The newest FEMA Flood Maps are out, but do you think that means anything in a Town that has their priorities upside down and instead where Aesthetic Projects mean more than proactive essential Flood Preventative Safety Projects?

From research and long-time residents’ experiences, we know that the barrier island of Palm Beach has historical Flood issues. We also know the seas are rising. That new issues, unrelated to Flooding from rainstorms, hurricanes, the high-water table and other conditions, is Flooding on the Intracoastal Waterway side even during sunny days when the "king tides" come in. On top of that as the FEMA Flood Maps are updated, whether they are done for Flood insurance or not, it is apparent that more and more of the Town of Palm Beach gets included in the most severe "Special Flood Hazard Zones".

Palm Beach’s Town Council spends time and taxpayer monies on whimsical Projects, like pretty parks, flower gardens, dog fountains, a non-waterproof Town-wide Underground Utility Project and even a larger Town Marina that looks pretty, while neglecting what should be a priority in their growing most severe Flood Zone Town.

All of their Projects may look Aesthetically pleasing, but NONE of them are going to help the barrier island Town when it Floods. Homes, businesses and lives will be destroyed. At that point, what good would it do to hold the Town Council accountable for their lack of action to protect the properties and their constituents from the imminent Flood Damages that will ensue?

The newest FEMA Flood Maps, as I have previously written many times, demonstrate that the majority of the Town is more than 75% within the most severe FEMA Special Flood Hazard Zones. This was confirmed by the Town’s former Flood Plain Manager, Bill Bucklew.

When it comes to the FEMA maps and Flooding on the barrier island Town, what most don’t know is, as a Preservation Foundation consultant Lisa Craig revealed during a presentation at the organization’s meeting, is the FEMA maps only identify some of the flood hazards in a coastal community. Craig said the maps DO NOT TAKE SEA-LEVEL RISE INTO CONSIDERATION! Therefore, the SEVERE FLOOD ISSUES IN THE TOWN ARE EVEN WORSE THAN THE FEMA FLOOD MAPS SHOW!

Even so, the narrow island municipality, both on the north-end and the south-end are predominantly within either the most severe Special Flood Hazard Zone AE on the Intracoastal Waterway/Lake or, on the extreme wave velocity hazard of VE (wave action) on the Ocean side.

Unfortunately, the Town’s local paper, the Palm Beach Daily News, on 5/13/21 had some probably unintended misinformation in an article, describing how the FEMA Flood Maps have been updated.

The paper said that, "Flood risk has long been a concern for homeowners on the island", (would be an understatement if owners were MORE INFORMED by the Town’s Leaders), and then their first "mis" was, when they went on to say, "and the town has stepped up its efforts." What efforts are those?

The article went on to describe an event at the Preservation Foundation, which is NOT a Town entity, but a private foundation/organization. Therefore, they DO NOT represent the Town! The Town appears to be attempting to take credit for what a private organization is doing. The organization gives lectures, informing property owners. As well-meaning as that may be, this DOES NOT represent the initiation of Town proactive Flood Protection PROJECTS whatsoever!

The second misinformation came when the Foundation’s director of programing, who is not an expert in Flood Plain Management, was quoted as saying, "As we have learned, about 50% of homes on the island are in special flood hazard area zones…" (The percentage according to statements from the Town’s previous Flood Plain Manager, was stated about 75% of the Town). What was accurate, was when the Preservation Foundation programming manager went on to say, "…and that percentage will keep growing each year…" Everyone can check out what Flood Zone they are in by clicking on/ or, going to Palm Beach County GIS

It is also important to note that a portion of the famous Breakers Hotel Golf Course, has flooded after a good rain. Longtime residents told me that it was once "a swamp, which was later filled in." In addition, the north-end of the Town has a large area that was also "filled in swamp."

Another example, came on September 21, 2020 with a Town Alert that said, "Please Use Extreme Caution Around Town Due to Flooded Areas." It had to be quite dire, because the Town of Palm Beach is anything but transparent about their history and current issues of frequent Flooding.

So, one has to wonder why the Town has not taken action on its many issues with Flood waters? There really is no excuse at all that this has gone on for years and things are only getting worse.

Palm Beach’s lack of preparedness for Flood events were laid bare back in March of 2019, when during a discussion at a Town Council Meeting, Public Works Director Paul Brazil replied to a few Council Members’ questions about the Town’s Storm Pump and Drainage system. Mr. Brazil said, "YOU CAN’T PUMP THE WATER OUT WHEN THE LAKE IS HIGHER THAN YOUR PUMP IS"!

Moreover, Brazil at that time, regarding the pumps, said: "WE CAN HANDLE ABOUT AN INCH AN HOUR"!

Even more alarming was the next statement by Brazil, when he stated, "There will ALWAYS be a STORM that CAN OVERWHELM IT"!

The point here is, JUST ONE EXAMPLE of a Town-wide necessity and protective Project that the Town should have planned for and funded first and foremost, prior to: financing and constructing a non-waterproof Town-wide Underground Utilities Project, renovating the Town’s Marina, making pretty parks and fountains. Would have been, if the Town had instead built A NEW AND ELEVATED TOWN-WIDE WATER DRAINAGE AND PUMP SYSTEM, to lessen or eliminate the Town’s Flooding problems!

The answer as to why not, makes for much confusion and shows SKEWED PRIORITIES and lack of attention to the Town’s protection and safety. The answer came directly from Public Works Director Mr. Brazil who represents the Town’s policies, regarding the drainage pipes, which are now underground. He said that it, WOULD BE TOO EXPENSIVE TO MODIFY IN ANY WAY.

FPL has said and confirmed more than once that when the Town-wide Underground Project is completed and there is the threat of storm surge, which occurs during many hurricanes, THE POWER WILL BE SHUT DOWN TOWN-WIDE! Therefore, the antiquated storm drainage and pump system, which ARE RUN BY ELECTRICITY, will NOT FUNCTION AT ALL, when the power is turned off by FPL!

The current drainage and pump system will flood, since the water will likely "overwhelm it" when there is more than 1 inch of water an hour, plus the electricity will be turned off and make the Town’s current Drainage and Pump System totally useless!

So why then, has the Town wasted valuable time and taxpayer dollars on Aesthetic, "feel good" Projects, instead of at least having planned and initiated a new ELEVATED Town-wide Drainage and Pump System Project? Plus, now what are they going to do about the loss of electricity they created with their new pet Town-wide Electrical Undergrounding Project?

Although the Real Estate prices are souring in Florida right now, due to the fact that it is one of the most desirable locations to live, in the future- - as a result of the Town Council’s neglect of their severe Flooding issues, this valuable Real Estate will END UP ONE VERY BAD INVESTMENT!

Under-Handed Shell Games Continue


What a shame that Town Council members in any Municipality in regards to a Project in their Town, would suggest things that are misinformation. Plus, then try and find a way to use that misleading story or, even consider using it as subterfuge in order to cover-up a financial blunder of their own creation.

In the Town of Palm Beach at their 4/12/21 Council Meeting, Town Manager Blouin was reporting some very unexpected good news that the Town of Palm Beach, although as Blouin explained "is NOT an entitlement community with needs", is expected to receive $3.7 million from "the "American Rescue Plan" COVID-19 Relief Package (ARP), which was recently passed by Congress.

Many news media as well as the White House, https://www.whitehouse.gov/american-rescue-plan/, said that this bill was for COVID-19 vaccine expansion programs, safely reopening K-12 schools in every State, provide direct relief to Americans, all to the price tag of almost $2 Trillion. Although advertised as such, that is only a very small portion of how the large number of monies will be allocated.

Proof of that is the fact that the Town of Palm Beach, which has only one elementary public school, as we know Florida schools have been open and in-person learning for many, many months now. As described, the Town is not an "entitlement community" and getting a treasure-trove of almost $4 million. Although, those monies as explained by the Town Manager "cannot be used for pension" (Too bad, since the Town has an unbelievable debt on that front) and, cannot be used for "normal budgetary measures". Town Manager Blouin said only that "There is a whole list of eligible projects".

Apparently, that is when Town Council member Araskog piped in with a misinformation propaganda statement that she and her Council colleagues have been attempting to claim as the reason for the financial blunder with a blank check price tag, flood-prone susceptible massive Town-wide Underground Utilities Project’s overage, that continues to grow.

Council member Araskog, first stated, "I know you are dealing with infrastructure". As many have learned, the American Rescue Plan had much hidden within it. In fact, MOST of the plan has nothing to do with COVID-19 vaccination programs, payments for unemployment and direct payments to Americans, assisting every race and creed small business owners with deficits caused by the COVID lock-downs, or safe school re-openings. Therefore, in that regard, Ms. Araskog knew the plan also included certain types of loosely defined "infrastructure", among other unrelated things.

What was most troubling and not accurate though, was Ms. Araskog’s next claim when she said, "That ALL THE DELAYS WE HAD IN OUR UNDERGROUND, WHICH CAUSED US TO HAVE OVERRUNS. IS THERE ANY WAY THAT COULD BE INCLUDED?" (With monies obtained by the Town from ARP.) "Or, is that out of the loop for this?"

This article will go into the deliberate misrepresentation of Ms. Araskog’s reason for the overage claim, after completing the rest of what subsequently took place at this same meeting, WHICH IS QUITE SHOCKING AND DISCONCERTING.

At first, in response to Council member Araskog’s request for the use of the ARP monies, Town Manager Blouin, responded that,

"I don’t think there is anything in there for undergrounding."

Then the next conversation got really disturbing. Council Member Crampton came up with a tricky and slight-of-hand Shell Game idea to possibly get those monies in another way. When he said, "There is a lot of Infrastructure money available and that could be on Projects we don’t have to spend. In other words, we can take some of that money that we are going to spend on those Infrastructure Projects when we get the Infrastructure money. And that perhaps can be used against the deficit that we’re experiencing on the Undergrounding program."

What was just as disturbing, was when Town Manager Blouin responded, "MR. CRAMPTON IS EXACTLY RIGHT…."

So, it appears that when the Town gets monies for an infrastructure Project from the government that are eligible Projects, not because the money from the Town’s Project is not planned and budgeted or put aside already, they will use those monies to try and diminish the continually growing overage that the Town has accumulated from the massive Town-wide Underground Utilities Project. Sounds rather sleazy, although likely perfectly legal maneuver. Talk about a "Shell Game"!

Now, to the Town Council claim that delays are the reason for the overage.

As you may recall in previous articles, the Council members claimed that those delays were caused by unwilling Property Owners who did not volunteer to give up, or grant a free easement on their front lawns of their private valuable real estate properties. Therefore, the Council placed the blame for the Town-wide Underground Utilities Project overage, squarely on the shoulders of their own Constituents and taxpaying Property Owners.

As far back as 5/6/2016, at a Town Underground Utilities Task Force Meeting, the future of this Project’s many issues and financial blank check were transparent, but ignored by the Mayor and Town Council.

Undergrounding Engineer specialist consultant Danny Brannon spoke at said meeting and HE GAVE A DETAILED ACCOUNT OF THE STANDARD PROBLEMATIC ISSUES THE TOWN WOULD ENCOUNTER.

Bannon explained that the "CONSTRUCTION BIDS WILL BE HIGH AND THERE WILL BE COST OVERRUNS." That was way back in 2016 before the Town began the Project in the first place!

The Town was also given explicit warnings about that same time, of cost overruns from the Town of Gulf Stream.

In 2019, after the Project had been underway, the most bizarre excuse given in order to diminish the severity of this boondoggle, came from Town Manager Blouin when he said at a 11/12/19 Town Council Meeting that he was, "NOT HOPING FOR A RECESSION TO OCCUR, that would create a whole host of problems for the Town, BUT, THAT (RECESSION) COULD CHANGE THE DYNAMICS OF THE LONG-TERM COST OF THIS AND WHAT IT MIGHT BE.". At the time I could not believe what I was hearing.

Instead, now the Town currently possibly faces inflation. Due to the fact that the Town has to re-negotiate the construction of each Phase of the eight, two-part North/South Phases, inflation will impact each part of each Phase’s cost. Making the Town’s financial blunder even worse going forward!

Blouin in 2019 also described his reasons for the soaring price-tag of the Project, then at $120 Million, as being also as a result of "The labor and material costs have gone up substantially! We’ve had additional difficulties in obtaining easements that have driven up the costs. THE TARIFF WARS HAVE DRIVEN UP THE COSTS. THERE IS A WHOLE SLEW OF ITEMS…" Tariff wars? You mean the equipment was coming from China? So many excuse(s) for something that the Town was fore-warned about before the initiation of the Project in the first place.

In regard to the $120 Million cost increase of the Town-wide Project, the Project had been advertised to Town residents as $90 Million, including a 20% cushion.

The escalating "OPINION OF COST(S)" of a RUNAWAY Town-wide Project appears little more than a minor inconvenience and annoyance, when the staff and Town Council makes up varied excuses regarding its SKYROCKETING FINANCIAL BOTTOM LINE, which overtime has gone up to as much as $150 Million and then mysteriously dramatically down/up somewhat again.

In September of 2020 at a Town Council Meeting, Ms. Araskog spoke-up with her claim that the only thing responsible for the cost overruns were those pesky uncooperative Property Owners who were unwilling to give away their valuable real estate in their front yards for those high-voltage eyesore utility boxes. Can you imagine that?

Especially after the Town has tried every and any pressure tactic to get them to relent. Araskog said, "We are going way over what was originally projected and it costing so much more BECAUSE…NOT WILLING to give the easements, or having many meetings…and now showing up in the budget."


Not to forget a previous idea of Council member Crampton, when he said regarding the Undergrounding Project that since the Town was "OVER BUDGET", THE OVERAGE CAN EASILY BE PAID FOR. (GET READY FOR THIS.) "WE HAVE $100 MILLION IN OUR RESERVES, WE DO HAVE THE RESOURCES TO DEAL WITH THIS PROBLEM, ABSENT A STORM… WE WILL NEED TO CONSIDER OUR RESERVES"!!!

Some troubling things come out of these Town Leaders’ mouths.

As the Town’s Public Works Director Paul Brazil admitted at the February 2021 Town Council Meeting, as to the future costs, etc. for the Town-wide Underground Utilities Project as: "UNKNOWN IN THE OUT YEARS."


That should be disappointing for the Town’s Constituents, knowing that the Mayor and Town Council are anything but transparent when they have a pet project that has already proven to be an unsuccessful boondoggle.

The Town Council Fiddles

While Palm Beach Drowns


Barrier islands and some coastal areas ARE SINKING!

Yet, the Town of Palm Beach ignores their "Titanic-like" major issues and for the most part, aside from some rare and empty meaningless words, disregard what really should matter most to their Constituency.

All the Town Leaders skip down the garden path while their Town is under assault from "Mother Nature" and is likely SINKING, which only exacerbates their historic and growing FLOOD ISSUES!

You would think with all the obvious dangerous issues, that Town Leaders, specifically the Mayor and Town Council, would be proactive, but it appears they are more interested in surface-type beautification projects.

It is not as if the Town Council for many years now hadn’t been aware of all of these issues, impossible! Although they made sure to keep their Constituents uninformed of these dangers. Therefore, there is no reason why they could not or should not have retained competent experts to battle these dangerous issues and already put these projects into motion.

Maybe, they think because of the Town’s famous reputation they are immune from catastrophe? It appears from research and scientific experts that they are tragically wrong!

This is unless they light a fire under their derrieres and start taking responsibility for what lies before the Town. Plus, wake up to the inevitable and harsh realities that they need to try to resolve before it has gone too far, or before it is too late.

The most important responsibility of any Municipality’s Mayor and Council Members, is to PROTECT all its residents and the property values of those Constituents NOW and IN THE FORESEEABLE FUTURE.

The barrier island Town of Palm Beach’s Mayor and Town Council, aside from some "show piece" projects, such as beach renourishment for SPECIFIC and LIMITED AREAS of the Town, while sprinkling sand on the inadequate dunes and not nourishing the critically eroded beaches in other parts, appear to ignore their most essential responsibility- -to protect ALL the properties on ALL SIDES and THROUGHOUT the island.

This is in addition to protecting those that reside within the Town with varied strong EFFECTIVE Flood Protection Projects. Such as, to start with, an elevated Town-wide Pump and Drainage Project. Those type projects are where the Taxpayer’s monies need to be invested.

It is a known fact that the barrier island Town, has a high-water table. Its foundation of coral and limestone, means that the ground is like Swiss cheese, therefore the saltwater also comes up from underneath the land. In addition to the Town’s low-elevation, they experience FLOODING from king tides, plus water driven hurricanes and even rain storms. They are within an evacuation route because they are at high risk of storm-surge. Add to that the likelihood of the barrier island SINKING!


A Palm Beach property owner sent me a National Geographic article, dated March 8, 2021, entitled "Sinking land and rising seas: the dual crises facing coastal communities."

The article, cited, "The world’s coastal residents are experiencing more extreme sea level rise than is widely appreciated because they are concentrated in places where the land is SINKING RAPIDLY, a study published Monday in Nature Climate Change has found."

For future reference, in most studies the issue of "sinking" land is most often called "subside" or "subsidence".

In a March 19, 2020, The Invading Sea, Florida and The Climate Crisis article, they talk about parts of Florida as "sinking". Most significant they sight that, "Sea-level rise and land subsidence can both increase the risk of flooding in coastal areas."

In 1/15/19, in an article from the Palm Beach Daily News, "Rising sea levels inevitable in Palm Beach…." At a local private Preservation Foundation meeting, several Town Council members were in attendance when they heard from guest speaker and author Jeff Goodell, "The Water Will Come: Rising Seas, Sinking Cities and Remaking of the Civilized World".

Goodell described that Palm Beach is at risk of INUNDATION. The article went on to say that, "Goodell displayed a Palm Beach map with flooding projections, based on current conditions. It showed that a sea-level rise of 3 feet would put some low-lying areas under water." He also said that at 6 feet, "you’re starting to lose the entire barrier island", and added that at, "8 feet the entire barrier island will be under water."

Goodell described that the "water will come, but the question is how high and how fast." He explained, "this is not a slow, linear thing. Sea level rise comes in pulses- - big pulses."

Interestingly, you would think if nothing else at that meeting, that the Council members in attendance might have given more thought to the prioritizing of Flood Protection Projects, when the author explained, "The trouble begins long before a city (or Town), becomes Atlantis." He noted that, "…septic-tank systems fail immediately during floods, marine creatures carried by water spill into streets and CORROSION ESCALATES. The latter condition can be especially problematic for public INFRASTRUCTURE." Such as non-waterproof UNDERGROUND ELECTRICAL UTILITIES INFRASTRUCTURE!

The expert speaker recommended that he thought that billions (or more like multi-millions) of dollars would be spent on Adaptation, Protection and Prevention to combat the SINKING, RISING SEAS AND FLOODING PROBLEMS.

Apparently though, he did not know how the Mayor and Town Council operate, since they are NOT PROACTIVE and they instead prioritize Aesthetics and spend Taxpayer monies on those type projects.

He mentioned, "raising the foundation of houses, elevating streets, INSTALLING PUMPS and building walls to keep the water out."

What was most interesting, was not what any Council member said, but what a concerned Palm Beacher in the audience concluded, "I think we need research, planning and adaption". "We need all of our brains and all of our creativity and all of our innovators—AND WE HAVE TO START RIGHT AWAY."

Too bad that is not the way Palm Beach’s Mayor and Town Council think.

Instead, Council members continue on their merry way with unsuccessful but aesthetically pleasing show projects, like their blank check Town-wide Underground Utilities Project, or beautifying Town parks and making flooded gardens.

The Council ignore the rising seas and SINKING LAND on their lake side and thus the major rising Intracoastal Waterway FLOODING goes on without a Town-wide credible resolution and plan for these issues

Even their so-called Beach Renourishment Projects, aimed at specific areas of the Town’s shoreline, while other areas remain critically eroded and at great risk. Those Renourishment Projects have no real strength since they are not contiguous along the critically eroded shoreline, much like a broken chain. Alas, it looks good where they think more people see it.

It appears that Palm Beach’s Mayor and Town Council fiddle while their Town continues to SINK AND FLOOD!

Maybe a bit like Nero fiddling while Rome was burning.


Idiotic PB Assertion? 

Gardens & Plants vs

 Concrete & Pumps 

For The Rising Seas


Instead of sensible flood protection Projects, Palm Beach rather make pretty gardens and parks.

There are municipalities that serve their constituency well with Projects initiated for the safety and protection of the community they serve when they endeavor to construct well thought-out Projects. These Projects are successful when they are accomplished in a timely fashion, so as to be preventative, rather than constructing aesthetic wish-list Projects that appear to be part of some kind of Alternate Universe.

The Palm Beach Daily News, 3/13/2021 article entitled "Tidal Gardens aims to redirect rising waters" describes "a public-private partnership with the Garden Club and the town".

Much like the Town-wide Underground Utilities Project’s real goal of getting rid of power-lines and poles, this small project, is another perfect example of the Alternate Universe that the Town Council’s decisions come out of. On the surface, this particular project sounds initially quite lovely, as the Tidal Garden might very well be. The comments contained in this article though, made about the garden or park which lies directly in a severe flood hazard zone alongside of the Intracoastal Waterway, shows how out of touch these people are with the harsh realities of flooding that lies before them in the Town.

Town Leaders and their associates, appear to be doing nothing about the real issues facing the Town and its Property Owners.

The article describes the severity of one of the many flood issues for the Town, "King tides, are exceptionally high tides that happen annually in the fall in Palm Beach County, are increasingly causing headache and heartache for homeowners, municipal officials, motorists and boaters. The high waters inundate roads, batter seawalls, flood FIRST FLOORS and cost tax dollars for road repair."

This problem is no stranger to the most severe Special Flood Hazard Zone barrier island Town of Palm Beach.

In the face of all these major and dangerous flood issues facing the Town, the Town’s new Mayor Danielle Moore, said, "IT’S A FUNCTIONAL AND BEAUTIFUL WAY TO DEAL WITH A GROWING ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUE." Ms. Moore is not new to the Town, she grew up there and prior to becoming the Mayor, served on the Town Council for several years. That being said, one would think that the Mayor and Town Council would be finding "functional" and safe Projects for the Town to PROTECT its Constituents from the onslaughts of flooding from king tides, the rising seas on all sides of the barrier island, hurricanes, rain storms and storm surge.

To make matters worse, the Town’s favorite landscape designer and a Town Board member, made the outrageous claim, which in addition to the Mayor’s comment demonstrates unrealistic skewed priorities, by stating: "WE USED TO BUILD RETAINING WALLS TO HOLD BACK NATURE. NO MORE. WE DON’T FIGHT NATURE. WE CELEBRATE IT AND WORK WITH IT", was said by Jorge Sanchez.

A naïve statement made by the President of the Town’s Garden Club was, "The waters are rising. There is no stopping it. INSTEAD OF FIGHTING MOTHER NATURE, we are working with her". This demonstrates how the Town has not properly educated their residents of the true severity and seriousness of rising water within the Town and the danger and damages it will bring.

Are those assertions, the Town’s philosophy about dealing with flooding issues on the island? Appears to be, from everything they have NOT done and from statements like these. Imagine, when the Town of Palm Beach is totally flooded as National experts, like the Union of Concerned Scientists have predicted will occur.

The flooding destruction on the island could have been avoided, or at least impeded greatly. Their own statements and actions prove that the Mayor and the Town Council don’t want to "deal with a growing environmental issue". Nor, "fight nature", to PROTECT PROPERTY OWNERS AND RESIDENTS. Giving in to flooding, as has been suggested by all three statements, is not something that is beneficial for the properties, investments or, the SAFETY of the residents that live in the Town.


The statements by the Mayor, the Town’s board member and landscape consultant, plus the Town resident, demonstrate a frightening lack of reality for the severity of the flood issues that face the Property Owners that have invested in the Town with their private real estate.

What the Town of Palm Beach’s Mayor and Town Council should have done long ago, was to educate their Town Boards and residents of the dangers that being within a most Severe Flood Hazard Zone barrier island really means, so that residents are fully informed. Kept a positive but practical attitude that resolving these dangers is well worth "FIGHTING" FOR!

Then, the Town should have carefully investigated, sensible and successful Flood Protection Projects, such as a Town-wide elevated Drainage and Pump System Project, Town-wide contiguous Beach Nourishment Projects, a Lake-Side contiguous Retaining/Seawall Project that will prevent water intrusion throughout the western border of the Town. All of this, instead of making excuses for not doing the right Projects and instead, continually engaging the same consultants for studies that go nowhere or, end up with ineffective Projects.

If the Town had done these wise, thoughtful and common-sense type Projects, Palm Beach’s Mayor and Town Council would have protected the investments of their Constituents and been a role model of preventative flood management, vulnerability flood protection and stellar leadership for their residents as well as for other Municipalities. Plus, the Property Owners’ tax monies would have been well spent.


The Town’s pet newspaper, the Palm Beach Daily News, 3/21/21 editorial endorsement of Tidal gardens as a way to deal with the rising seas as "a template for the future" is almost comical, if it weren’t so misinformed. Don’t they know that the majority of the Town is within the most severe FEMA Special Flood Hazard Zone? Plus, that the barrier island also has a high-water table too? Does this template include forgetting about all the Homes, Buildings, Businesses, Residents and Property Owners that live within the Town? DOES PALM BEACH’S FUTURE INCLUDE TURNING THE TOWN INTO A GIANT TIDAL GARDEN? TALK ABOUT IDIOTIC ASSERTIONS!


What a shame. A sad commentary, but an accurate reality.

The Danger of

Romanticism Vs. Reality


I have been writing about local issues for years now, but I am deviating because of something I read in a newspaper that needs to be rectified. In the e-paper edition of the local newspaper, on 3/6/2021, there was an article, titled "Better Days Ahead?", "Cuba’s struggling entrepreneurs look to……with hope" under the Associated Press tag line. The article completely romanticized what are proposed by the author of the article to be "entrepreneurs" within Cuba and, what type of government exists within Cuba today.

The fact is, Cuba IS a third world "Communist" country and there is NOTHING romantic or entrepreneurial about living there!

The plan in the following article, is to contrast the romanticism and misnomers about life for ordinary citizens of Cuba, with a reality check accomplished through a trip BY INVITATION, I made to the island in the spring of 2016.

I can guarantee, that in 2021, as per the type of government and their business enterprises, that nothing has changed within the tiny island Nation of Cuba.

According to the 3/6/21 Associated Press article, "HAVANA—Business was booming for a trendy little clothing shop called Clandestina in the heart of Old Havana, one of thousands of new private businesses that had arisen in what was once a near-wholly staterun socialist economy."

The article begins with a large photo of a man in a hat and mask in the tobacco field. The man is working in the field. How does that make him an entrepreneur?

Let’s get some realities straight here. Cuba as of 2020-2021 has a President, which is apparently, nothing more than a puppet show position, while "listed as the most powerful position in Cuba", is "Leader", "Raul Castro (1st Secretary of the Communist Party)."

Whether a Nation, such as Cuba, or the Press, may call them a "Socialist economy", there appears to be a fine yet blurry line between what is in reality, Communism economy and rule.

The US government-funded Freedom House, founded in 10/31/1941 by Eleanor Roosevelt and still being funded by the US, as of 2020, classifies Cuba "…as being ‘Not Free’. "

Most significantly, Freedom House states that, Cuba is on the list from the Americas, "……of THE WORST OF THE WORST: The World’s MOST REPRESSIVE SOCIETIES FOR WIDESPREAD ABUSES OF POLITICAL RIGHTS AND CIVIL LIBERTIES."

Whatever quotes the Associated Press article gave from these workers and authorities within Cuba, are staged for foreigners, especially for those from the United States. When you live in a country like that, your speech and rights are limited and you do not want to anger the government because of retribution.

When I visited Cuba, we were told at that time that there were new private businesses. To the average tourist, many from Canada and parts of Europe, at that time those tourists from the US had limited access, but every tourist was taken to certain approved areas for planned and staged events, stores, as well as restaurants.

Most tourists are only interested in the lush tropical climate and do not look beyond the limited areas shown that are all staged and they have limited to no contact with the average Cuban. This journalist however, always goes beyond, asks questions of local guides and anyone they introduce us to. Looks carefully beyond the prepared routes.

What I learned about the private businesses is they were a sham. There supposedly were some new businesses that a family or a person was said to own, but in reality, they had to pay the majority of any profit they received to the government, with little left for themselves and their families.

Cuba had churches, but was told after inquiring that there was no worship allowed in the churches. They took us out for a ride in different antique cars, which Cuba is also known for. Our driver, explained to me that the drivers had to give most of their income to the government. He explained that the homes that look well-kept and nice, belonged to the elite in the government. No one owned their homes anymore and that was why those on side streets were in decay with many families occupying what were once, in some areas, nice homes owned by single families that fled Cuba to the USA and left everything behind.

You could read between the lines that those in the tourist industry, were much better off than the average Cuban.

In the second of two articles I wrote after my 2016 trip to Cuba, I had been contacted by a Cuban American who emigrated to the US. This is what she wrote to me: "I want to thank and congratulate you on your eye opener and true to life article on Cuba in a recent Condo News. Coming in 1961 as a Cuban refugee with my parents and sister, it infuriates me when I see and hear people’s enthusiasm in their forthcoming visits to the island. Nothing has changed or will change, sadly but true." Those words from a Cuban who escaped with her family, says it all.

The average Cuban lives in poverty under total government control on all levels. The powerless population of Cuba, can’t escape and they live the lives that the government has preordained for them. Those working in a cigar factory, were given no choice. Although the factory had a family name, the family that had owned it fled years ago and the government took over. The Cuban government determines everything, including what young people go to college, which is free. They determine what career, or profession the government needs them for.

Our local guide showed us her "ration card" for food and essentials. Remember, she was better off than most. We were told that a good salary to a Cuban in 2016 was the equivalent of $20 to $30 A MONTH.

Therefore, the article in the Associated Press describing a beautiful Cuba with entrepreneurs, is nothing more than a facade.

Seeing the truth for oneself and researching the reality of what you’ve seen, whether it be Socialism or Communism, is something to be shunned and never romanticized. THE REALITIES THAT GO WITH THAT TYPE OF GOVERNING ARE SOMETHING TO BE TAKEN SERIOUSLY AND RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR DANGERS.

The Ever-Moving Shell Game of Underground Project Shortfalls


At the February 9, 2021 Palm Beach Town Council Meeting, it was announced that, CURRENTLY, "the shortfall" for the Town-wide Underground Utilities Project, was claimed to be $10.5 million as of 2023-2024. What makes this ever-changing number so impossible to trust as reliable, is that over the years since early 2017, the proposed overage of the Project and shortfalls have been on a roller coaster ride of different ranges.

The original cost of the Town-wide Project, WAS ADVERTISED AND SPECIFIED "NOT TO EXCEED $90 MILLION"! Which included a substantial cushion of at least 20%. It was not as if prior the Mayor, Town Council and their Board, the Underground Utilities Task Force (UUTF) members, were not warned of all the pitfalls by an experienced expert in the field who had done these types of Projects on a much smaller scale and additionally cautioned by another municipality, the Town of Gulf Stream. The legitimate warnings of what would come, regarding the time extensions and unknowns for the construction of such a Project, the many problems that the Town would ensue AND how the costs would ESCALATE UNBELIEVABLY!

It didn’t take very long at all, for the cost of the Project to skyrocket to $150 million! That first glimpse into the reality this Project would bring was when the REAL COST MANIPULATION GAMES and SHELL GAME began in Palm Beach!

Over time, the supposed cost of the Town-wide Project appeared to take on an artificial budget allotment. Like an out-of-control graph, the continually shifting lines, if such a graph existed, would have shown the changing costs of the Project. The lines with categories went down and then climbed slightly upwards, down and jumped upwards once again. Never really quite reaching the first highest spike cost. Why? Where did the $150 million cost expenses go to?

At one point THERE WAS AN ITEMIZED LIST OF ADDITIONAL EXPENSES, that would add up to an excessive cost for the Project. That list and most of those expenses just vanished and were never seen again within the Undergrounding budget. Why? Where did those itemized underground utility project costs go to?

It was rumored and possibly quietly mentioned, that most of the escalating cost items were being moved to other Town budget lines.

These and other tactics, like never mentioning the interest costs of the GO Bonds, which will add onto the final cost, were and have been DISGUISING WHAT THE REAL COST OF THE TOWN-WIDE PROJECT WILL BE!

The next artificial cost game played on the Town’s Constituents and the Property Owners that are paying the brunt of the expensive burden for this misguided direction of the Mayor and Town Council, came in 1/2020, when the Town popped up with a new and improved revised, "Opinion of Cost" for the Project.

Of course, it was MUCH, MUCH HIGHER, about $120 million, (that number is minus the $8.5 million in grant monies the Town managed to get), than the original $90 million cost the Project was advertised as to the Town’s people. Could have and would have made a huge difference, knowing how the costs would escalate alarmingly, for any residents at the original time who may have thought okay, without knowing anything about the many other problems that would occur: including the short life-span of such a Project and numerous flood-related electrical issues.

Ironically, with this newest "Opinion of Cost", the original much lower one appears to have disappeared from memory of the Town’s officials, most notably the Mayor and Town Council, who are responsible for the initiation of the Project in the first place. No one speaks of the original $90 million price tag, nor the higher cost of $150 million and any of those mysteriously removed details and related expense items that would have added up significantly within the Underground Budget.

As if they just evaporated into the ether and were never referred to again at Council Meetings or in communications to the public. It is as if it never even existed in the first place. THEREBY, DELIBERATELY MAKING THE TRUE OVERAGE AND SHORTFALL OF THE PROJECT APPEAR GREATLY DIMINISHED!

This is as the Shell Game and the numbers continue to move around, so that it is next to impossible to see the sleight of hand. All that they need are, three walnut shells and a pea.

Why do you think that Elected Officials would endeavor to do such a thing to their Constituents and Taxpayers, who in the end are financially responsible for the decisions and actions that take place within their municipality?

Well, now, even as the ever-moving Shell Game and Magic Act continue, there is still a proposed overage and "shortfall" of at least $10.5 million added onto the latest unknown cost of the Project!

Even with this new escalated "Opinion of Cost", the Town-wide Project is proving, none the less, to be what this Project was called prior to getting off the ground, when the Project was accurately labeled by some residents with common sense, as a "Blank Check for the Town’s Property Owners."

This Shell Game Magic Act Project continues on its costly path forward without any real transparency, regardless of the Town Council’s claims otherwise. This reality is quite simply shown by the short response at the February Town Council Meeting from the Town’s Public Works Director, Mr. Brazil. Mr. Brazil’s evasive and blurry response as to what the future of this underground utilities Project holds is demonstrated by his statement regarding all the costs, etc. as: "UNKNOWN IN THE OUT YEARS."

What kind of way is that to run and manage a multi-million-dollar Project?

It is called "Ching, Ching, Ching." Leading to the Town’s Property Owners and Taxpayers to "Pay, Pay, Pay", one way or the other. Through pocket A or, through pocket B.

It appears that the Town of Palm Beach expects their Constituents and Property Owners to trust them and never verify. Of course, it would be difficult to trust, regardless of their words, because of the true lack of transparency and deception that has taken place over such a long period of time.

In addition, no longer does the Town give details as to why streets are closed down quickly in the underground areas, no longer are there any mention of gas leaks and construction accidents as had been constant in the past, along with no real details as to where the true costs of this out-of-control Project have gone.

Oh, but yes, "the Blame Game", the Town Council and their obedient staff play for the rising costs of the Project are in full throttle. For some time now, the blame for cost increases have clearly and overtly been shifted to the Property Owners who do not immediately bend to the Town Council’s will and continual pressure tactics. Such as not giving up their valuable real estate for a high-voltage electrical utility box or boxes, with freebee easements on their front lawns.

Therefore, the Mayor and Town Council have shifted all the real blame to the Property Owners, in lieu of taking responsibility for initiating this Project in the first place and then plowing through with it regardless of its inevitable financial and electrical flooding failures.

How, ironic that this Blank Check of a Town-wide Project, on top of everything else, should NEVER HAVE BEEN PLANNED, CONSTRUCTED OR EXIST, IN A SEVERE SPECIAL FLOOD HAZARD ZONE BARRIER ISLAND TOWN!

How easy it would have been for the Mayor and Town Council to have done their homework and realized that installing non-waterproof electrical utilities underground and ground-level equipment below the floodplain was the most detrimental decision any elected Town Officials could make.

Sadly, the Legacy of the Palm Beach Town Council will NOT be one of foresight and well-managed Projects based on protecting Town and Private Properties.


Palm Beach Is Drowning In Their Leaders’ Lack Of Foresight

One more example of the severe flooding issues that exist within the Town of Palm Beach. Photo taken by Charles Pepper on 11/28/2020.


The Town of Palm Beach has been ignoring the reality of the high risk their flood hazard zone Town is in and instead, they continue to use every and any tactic to try to complete this pet Town-wide Underground Utilities Project.

Financially, the Town has used and required Property Owners’ payments by the method of non-tax-deductible Special Assessments, knowing that the 30 years of payments will extend longer than the Project’s life-span. Would any logical person think that is practical and financially sound decision- making?

It appears that the Town’s debt, from this blank check financial blunder, has the Town asking a second time for pre-payments from Property Owners, for a diminishing return Project.

At the January 12, 2021 Palm Beach Town Council Meeting, when the Town’s Financial Director was asked about this second attempt to get pre-payments, four years after the Town’s first full-scale push to get Property Owners to pay for all the years at once. Ironically, the Town’s senior Financial Director, Ms. La Clainche’s response to the Mayor’s question about the special assessments was, "These assessments will be on the tax bills for the next 26 years. So, it will transfer to the new owner when they sell… FOR MOST PEOPLE, I THINK THE OPTION TO JUST LEAVE IT ON THEIR TAX BILLS IS PROBABLY THE WISE ONE."

The Town’s Financial Director, La Clainche used her common sense and her expertise to give this response.

This appeared to have displeased Town Council member Araskog who after Ms. La Chainche gave her expert opinion, made her own attempt to ignore the Financial Director’s analysis and instead gave her reasons in favor of pre-paying, further demonstrating the Town’s desperation to get monies as fast as possible from the Property Owners, for a financially failing and escalating Project.

It appears, the Financial Director had the right answer and was thinking of the Property Owners best financial interests when she gave her educated opinion.

Florida’s sea-level is rising, and the damage costs from this flood reality are increasing year by year, with the now conservative estimate for some possible solutions to this major issue, being well over $4 Billion in Florida alone.

As sea-level rise is speeding up, we have the Town of Palm Beach, who did NOT have any foresight to choose the essential years of careful and thoughtful scientific planning and prioritizing this frightening and dangerous reality of their flood-prone Town’s current issue. Scientists have warned for years now, that these issues with sea-rise, excessive rain, storm events and water intrusion issues will increase greatly in the future, with coastal properties and homes being plagued with constant flooding.

The Town having no solutions or projects to protect their Property Owners from this flooding onslaught, instead, in its place, chose an unwise bizarrely unthinkable Town-wide Project. To bury Non-Waterproof Electrical Infrastructure Utilities on their most severe, low-lying, high water-table, Special Flood Hazard Zone barrier island! The real question here is: "What planet are the Mayor and Town Council living on?"

The reality is that scientifically, the rising sea-level and flooding in Palm Beach will destroy the non-waterproof electrical utilities system and leave the Town’s Constituents, their properties, their real estate values and their homes, flooded, without electricity and underwater! THOSE ARE THE FACTS THAT THE MAYOR AND TOWN COUNCIL HAVE CHOSEN TO IGNORE.


The reason some of the usual methods to successfully solve sea-level rise DON’T WORK IN FLORIDA and especially on the low-elevation barrier island Town of Palm Beach, IS THAT SALT-WATER FLOWS THROUGH THE POROUS GROUND.

It comes up from below and even the use of sea walls, are not sufficient, because the salt-water comes under the sea-walls. Oh yes, but the Town of Palm Beach has not even been looking into that solution, or anything else to stop the impacts from sea-level rise. No, instead they are barreling along with burying their electrical utilities with a NON-WATERPROOF Town-wide Project soon to be UNDERWATER! Makes perfect sense.

Solutions for this major problem SHOULD NOT be ignored! They include construction of: Stormwater Improvements, ELEVATING new Drainage and Pump Systems that cannot be flooded out or lose their electricity, RAISING Roads, protecting the Sewage Systems and Drinking Water from saltwater intrusion and adapting new building and zoning regulations, while figuring out ways to protect existing homes and properties.

What should be included in these solutions, IS THE VITAL NEED TO PROTECT THE MOST ESSENTIAL ELECTRICAL INFRASTRUCTURE WITHIN A MUNICIPALITY. Especially, since currently there is NOT A WATERPROOF Underground Electrical Utility Infrastructure System that is proven and can sustain long-term. Certainly not for flood-prone barrier islands.

Therefore, the construction of such a Town-wide Project with all of these known serious problems of flooding and sea-level rise, makes Palm Beach’s current Underground Utilities Project, economically insolvent and a disaster waiting to happen!

Yet, with Palm Beach, the priority is ramrodding this fool-hearty Project through.

The Town has used every and any tactic to get Property Owners to surrender their valuable real estate at no cost, for high voltage electrical equipment installed mostly under the floodplain in front yards of homes and condos, while the conduits with electrical wires inside, are buried in a flood zone and are NOT waterproof. The Property Owner, with said high voltage on-ground level equipment, from the standard easement forms signed by homeowners, still maintain liability for personal injuries on the easement property. Why would anybody want that if they knew all the facts? Mind-boggling!

AFTER they already began their pet Underground Utilities Project, the Town attempted to cover themselves by hiring one of their usual consultants and with an occasional reference to their "Vulnerability" Study. The most significant fact though, is this Vulnerability Study the Town engaged AFTER the Town-wide Project was already underway, never even considered an unbiased analysis of why undergrounding NON-WATERPROOF electrical equipment would be a catastrophic and financial failure.

A truly unbiased Town-wide Vulnerability Study should have been engaged and completed WELL PRIOR to the conception of an Underground Electrical Utilities Project, let alone putting such a major infrastructure Project into motion.

Instead, this current cover-up supposed Vulnerability Study, HAS GONE NOWHERE, ACCOMPLISHED NO REAL PROTECTION for ALL the properties in this high-risk Town AND the current study, absolutely and completely ignored the Town-wide NON-WATERPROOF Electrical Underground Utilities Project! Don’t you wonder why?

This is just one of many in the demonstrations by the Town Council of their lack of foresight, due diligence and any objective responsibility towards their Constituents and Property Owners for not only their best financial well-being, the long-term property values and most importantly, the essential safety in the future of their Constituency!


The Town-wide Underground Utilities Project in the Town of Palm Beach, is a glaring lack of foresight. It will eventually prove that Palm Beach Town’s Leaders should have instead found solutions for the onslaught of sea-level rise and flooding to protect their barrier island municipality. The problem is, it will be too late by then.

Sensible Decision vs Shortsighted Strategy


A Commissioner in the Municipality of Highland Beach who I had interviewed about 1 and ½ to 2 years ago, reached out to me. Commissioner Evelyn David reads my articles and wanted to update me on Highland Beach.

Ms. David mentioned how her residents/constituents "successfully DEFEATED a plan to underground our… utility lines."

This Highland Beach Commissioner stressed to me that you do NOT Underground Utilities, "Not when you’re are on a Barrier Island."

She reminded me that her neighbors in the Town of "Gulf Stream completed two miles of undergrounding and it took them 10 years. In addition, since they are connected to Boynton Beach to actually get their power, (from the mainland, much like Palm Beach), when Boynton goes out so do they."

Ms. David explained that, "FPL hardened all the utility poles in Highland Beach. I don’t believe we have lost power for more than a moment or two since then. Hardened poles may not be aesthetically beautiful, but THEY WORK!"

The cost to Highland Beach for the "FPL hardened" utility poles was ZERO DOLLARS and only G-d knows what was spent and will be spent in the Town of Palm Beach for their Town-wide Underground Utilities Project.

In addition, I was told that, (unlike the Town of Palm Beach, who refused the hardened poles with smart switch technology, which are installed closer together than the original utility poles), Highland Beach’s hardened poles will be used with 5G technology. Which, according to Commissioner David is another plus.

Of course, the most obvious reason for Highland Beach Commissioner David’s comments about never undergrounding electrical utilities on a barrier island, are due to the facts that barrier islands are even more vulnerable to flood risks than inland communities. That is a known and confirmed fact. A recent article, in The Palm Beach Daily News, demonstrates how flooding is an issue in Florida, that is getting worse year after year.

The article, entitled, "It was hot and wet in 2020" discussed "the official Nation Weather Service stations statewide, totals were nonetheless impressive…. drenched by nearly 100 inches of rain." As the article described, "May came in sloppy with an early start to a rainy season that lingered stubbornly."

Even inland areas had flooding issues, like a Lantana resident who was crawling out a front window to keep rain-induced flooding…. The man "…sealed up the doors to his Sea Pines Way house in early October with a silicone-like plastic, following three days of heavy rainfall that totaled 5.5 inches at PBIA." The homeowner told of "The pool was disappearing and water was coming in the garage." Describing how, "For weeks we had to go out the front window."

This is reminiscent of what one Town of Palm Beach, north-end homeowner described after a rain, that the water flooded his garage and the water was thigh high and had actually knocked out his garage doors. This flood was from a mere rainstorm!

Also, reminds one of one of the greatest floods in the Town of Palm Beach on January of 2014, where hundreds of cars were towed and people had to be rescued by the police. The following was written to me by a long-time Town homeowner. The description is quite graphic, but clear. The questions, excellent.

"What would the effect have been where the Town undergrounded at the time that storm hit our barrier island? This is a legitimate area for inquiry and answers since the majority of the town has low elevations.

This was evidenced by the storm in January of 2014 when the flood waters were over two feet in places and people lost cars and some were even trapped in cars and had to walk in multiple feet of water from the lake area.

What would the consequences have been had that storm hit Palm Beach after the entire Town had underground electric? What would the time period have been to restore electric?

Which areas would FPL began first to restore? How long after the storm ended could they begin restoration in order to prevent electrocution of their workers? Since people were walking and trapped in multiple feet of water during the storm, would they have to turn off power in order to prevent the risk of electrocution in standing water?

How far in advance of the storm would power be turned off if at all? Where, how, and do they differentiate the higher and lower flood elevations in town?

Also what happens when the flood level rises above sufficiently to cause salt water to intrude upon the equipment? Assuming that occurs isn’t it true that outages can occur well after the storm ends and power is restored?"

Back to the article, "It was hot and wet in 2020", when it describes, "An average of about 60.5 inches of rain, fell in 2020 across the 16-county region from Orlando to the Keys that is overseen by the South Florida Water Management District. That’s about 8 inches more than normal, …"

With all the rain, flooding and the Town of Palm Beach being so dramatically vulnerable, it seems mind-boggling that any reasonable and Town serving Mayor and Town Council would keep pushing through a Town-wide Underground Utilities Project.

All the facts, studies and experts with the unlimited problems laid bare, leaves any reasonable person to think past the aesthetic shallow purpose for the construction, as well as the unmerited claims of more reliability and instead, it makes one wonder, "What is the real reason the Town of Palm Beach is doing what is obviously an unwise financial blank check Project, which due to the serious flood risks on the barrier island, this Project is sure to fail, besides being preposterous, within the low-elevation, high water-table Special Flood Hazard Zone Town?

Ask yourself that question a few times and you will be more and more baffled and then disgusted.

Will They Ever Learn?


There is an old saying, that if you do not learn from history (or mistakes), you are doomed to repeat them. The sentiment, in its original form came from writer and philosopher, George Santayana and refers to the need for common sense. This adage appears to apply to the Mayor and Town Council in Palm Beach.

At the December 8, 2020 Town Council Meeting, Council members appear to have learned nothing, when it comes to their brazen lack of interest in the fact that as they demean Taxpaying Property Owners who do not want to give up their valuable real estate with freebie Easements to place high voltage utility boxes, transformers and switch boxes, on their private properties. The Council with their uncaring and unprofessional actions are doomed to repeat their mistakes.

Perfect example of this was when Council member Lindsay stated, "THE RESISTANCE, INSTEAD OF GOING DOWN OVER TIME, AS I WOULD HAVE EXPECTED, IT IS GOING UP!" Council member Lindsay is referring to the fact that Property Owners, despite the enormous pressure tactics coming from the Town, are not willingly granting Utility Easements.

This unrealistic and unprofessional attitude, is demonstrated when Council member Lindsay expressed her continual displeasure with Property Owners who value their real estate and might also be concerned with flooding on their properties that can occur, as well as the dangers of high voltage equipment on their front lawns. There is also, the liability factor that remains with the Property Owner, regardless of whether they give away their valuable real estate for an Easement to install the high-voltage equipment on it.

Lindsay added, "THE FURTHER WE GO, THE GREATER THE RESISTANCE. THE NIMBY FACTOR." "NIMBY", as previously described by Council member Lindsay, translates to: "Not In MY Back Yard". Although it is Not In Anyone’s Back Yard, but, much worse, because IT IS NOW IN THE FRONT YARD OF HOMES.

So many justified concerns and risks that the Palm Beach Property Owner must consider as they are being pushed, harassed and pressured, to grant this FREE Utility Easement IN PERPETUITY!

Yet, Council member Lindsay stated at the meeting that, "Because a few people don’t want to participate" (Is that what you call giving away valuable real estate?) Remarkably, she considers that "Tragic!"

In addition, Council member Araskog, expressed her attitude towards Taxpayers. Due to her goal of getting every Easement for FREE from Palm Beach Property Owners that she and her colleagues think they are entitled to and, the unrelenting desire that it should be granted regardless, it appears Ms. Araskog does not realize that when she said the following, that her statement is accurate, JUST NOT IN THE WAY SHE INTENDED.

Ms. Araskog’s enlightening statement, "WE ARE SPENDING SO MUCH OF TAXPAYER MONEY, THAT COULD HAVE BEEN USED ON SOMETHING ELSE." Yes, indeed, Council member Araskog, rather than the sure to fail unnecessary Town-wide Underground Utilities Project, IN LIEU, at NO COST TO TAXPAYERS, THE TOWN COULD HAVE INSTALLED FLOOD RESISTANT, HIGH-WIND CAPACITY, HARDENED POLES WITH SMART SWITCH TECHNOLOGY!

Most significantly, TAXPAYER MONIES should have been used, NOT with a NON-TAX DEDUCTIBLE, SPECIAL ASSESSMENT, but AS TAXES, to construct a Town-wide Flood Protection Project, like Miami Beach and other low-lying municipalities, with an ELEVATED Town-wide Drainage and Pump System Project. That would have been proactive and protect the Town, private properties and their residents!


The sad reality is that in the case of the Town of Palm Beach, the Town-wide Underground Utilities Project is really nothing more than a frivolous "aesthetic" obsession of the Mayor and Town Council.

The biggest losers in all of this, are the Town’s current and future Property Owners. That is the greatest tragedy of all!

The long-term attitudes by Town Leaders are astoundingly callous.

The lack of understanding, is remarkable, because the Project and the obvious repeated obsession of "aesthetics" is the real reason the Mayor and Town Council are endangering a historically highly vulnerable Special Flood Hazard Zone barrier island Town.

By constructing a financial runaway underground infrastructure Project, with non-waterproof conduits containing electrical underground utilities and ground level high-voltage utility boxes. This bizarre priority of "aesthetics", should not even exist in a municipality of such high flood risks.

Sadly, the Mayor and Town Council appear to care less about protection of valuable real estate and human lives rather than their shallow perception of what they believe looks attractive.

Despite their occasional claims of improved reliability that have no real merit, because the Town could have easily trimmed the overgrowth near electrical wires and poles, it is the desire for "aesthetics" that drives the real reason for their Project.

Will the Mayor and Town Council on the barrier island Town of Palm Beach ever learn?


Flood Zone Palm Beach!

10-28-20 FLOODED backyard turned into a lake on Seaspray home in PB. Photo taken by PBer Charles Pepper

11-2020 FLOODING on Lake Trail, PB Can instead rent out Kayaks on this walking/bike path. Photo taken by Charles Pepper.

2018 FLOODED sidewalks & street-wade through the water in Midtown, PB. Photo contributed.

2016 FLOOD photo on S. Ocean Blvd., south of Southern Blvd., PB from rainstorm. Photo by Maddy G

One of the WORST FLOOD areas in PB is in much of the north-end of Town. NO AVAILABLE photos at this time.


The Town of Palm Beach, due to their unrelenting "Aesthetic" obsession, may choose to ignore their Barrier Island Town’s: history of FLOODING from rain events over the many years, more recently, sunny day FLOODING, King Tides, FLOODING from the vulnerability of being low-elevation, having a high water-table, FLOODING from strong water-driven hurricanes, the majority of the Town being within the most SEVERE FEMA SPECIAL FLOOD HAZARD ZONE, FLOODING from sea-rise that is worsening every year, the risk of FLOODING from storm surge, BUT…. that DOES NOT CHANGE THE REALITY, that the Town is a historic flood-prone Barrier island, whose FLOODING ISSUES ARE GETTING WORSE AND MORE DANGEROUS!

Yet, as unbelievably irresponsible as it is, the Mayor and Town Council, chose to ignore the severity of the Town’s Flooding risks.

• Instead of doing an ELEVATED Town-wide Drainage and Pump System Project.

• Instead of ELEVATING all the western side retaining walls in a Town-wide Project.

• Instead of NOURISHING AND RE-NOURISHING, ALL the Town’s critically eroded beaches and making the coastal protection contiguous to the Town’s southern border.


To add, insult to injury, they put the majority of the financial burden for this sure to fail Project, which only complicates and harms the FLOODING ISSUES and the need for reliable and sustainable Electrical Infrastructure, which undoubtably should have been and continue to be, the MOST IMPORTANT PRIORITY OF ALL TIME WITHIN PALM BEACH, INSTEAD, the Town burdened private Property Owners with annual special assessments for 30 years. Longer than the Project’s life-span, to pay for this unrealistic, TITANIC OF A TOWN-WIDE PROJECT.

All while continuing to use guerrilla, unconscionable tactics in order to gain freebie Electrical Utility Easements on valuable private real estate.


You are living in an Alternate Universe, "the Twilight Zone", or "Never-Never Land".

Budget Running Wild For Underground Utilities Project!


Another interesting matter of consequence discussed during the Town-wide Underground Utilities Agenda item at the Town of Palm Beach’s 11/10/20 Town Council Meeting, besides what was revealed in the previous Condo News article, "Skewed Priorities Lead To Draconian Tactics", was how "OVER BUDGET" the Underground Utilities Project is.

This "over budget" problem, is not really a surprise. Since the initial claim that the Town-wide Project’s cost with a substantial cushion was "originally" to be $90 million, there has been a consistent shell-game of tactics used by the Town to cover the fact that the Project’s real cost, was and still is, nothing more than a BLANK CHECK!

Four years ago, in 2016, before the Project began its construction, there was a PAC of Palm Beach residents who actually had hand-outs to look like a bank check, which said, "Pay to the order of: Wasteful Government Spending", with four question marks in the box to write the cost of the Undergrounding Project. How apropos that insightful card has become and proven to be, predicting the way this sure to fail Town-wide Project is.

When it comes to the Town-wide Underground Utilities Project, although as stated at the same Town Council Meeting, the Project is NOT even halfway there yet, somehow, numbers and totals seem to be fluidly changing with spikes and dips that are unaccounted for.

Numbers and totals for the cost of the Project, are much like a Magic Act, and the growing costs, just seem to disappear in to thin-air and then come back with lower and different numbers, never fully explaining how the higher costs just vaporized.

One of the many perfect examples of this Magic Act, was spoken by Mayor Coniglio, when she now claimed at the November Town Council Meeting that the "original cost" of the Town-wide Underground Utilities Project, was "$98.58 million". When in fact, it was advertised and written as "$90 million".

Then Mayor Coniglio said that the Project is already "$22 million" …." OVER BUDGET"! It appears that the totals are ever changing, due to the overage being moved around to other areas to hide how much it has really increased. Still, even with that major deception, the "over budget", keeps, with the hidden amounts and the visible ones, increasing and increasing.

An enlightening statement by Mayor Coniglio, who has been extremely supportive of the Project from its beginnings and is still currently, was when she said, "Our assets are going to be compromised to cover the short-fall."

Her next statement, "As we go forward, our pocketbooks are getting slimmer and slimmer", is rather startling. Especially, since this Project was all pushed, promoted and being done, due to the Mayor and Town Council’s persistent "aesthetics" obsession. This "aesthetic" obsession, appears to have blocked the Mayor and Town Council’s: common sense, need for safety, reliability concerns, as well as their necessary financial foresight, to instead achieve their "aesthetic" whims.

The factual reality here is, that the Mayor’s comment, is also going to be true of the Property Owners, who have to pay annual Special Assessments to finance this "aesthetic" blank check failure, each year for 30 years!

Another brilliant statement and idea, was from Council member Crampton, who had the audacity to suggest that the Town’s Underground Utilities overage, or the fact that regardless of what pocket the overage is hidden in, will still show to some extent and this "OVER BUDGET" Project will also fall onto the Town. Therefore, according to Councilman Crampton the overage can be easily be paid for. All the Town has to do, (get ready for this one), is "WE WILL NEED TO CONSIDER OUR RESERVES"!!!

Mr. Crampton went on to proclaim that, "WE HAVE $100 MILLION IN OUR RESERVES. WE DO HAVE THE RESOURCES TO DEAL WITH THIS PROBLEM, ABSENT A STORM." Town Council member Crampton explained that those resources, (which was unsaid, but are there in case there is a hurricane, storm surge, etc.), are "… the resources to deal with the problem in the future." What an irresponsible and horrifying statement that an elected official made regarding the use of emergency reserves within a municipality.

This action is the same as selling your Life Insurance.

I would venture to say, Mr. Crampton, that "THOSE RESERVES ARE FOR EMERGENCY REASONS, SUCH AS CATASTROPHIC HURRICANES!" Afterall, the barrier island Town of Palm Beach is within what is considered a "hurricane alley". To even suggest such a use of reserve monies to instead pay off a frivolous Project as to Underground Electrical Utilities on a severe Special Flood Hazard Zone, high water-table, low-elevation, flood-prone barrier island, when the need arises to cover for the Town Council’s bad and dangerous decisions, is outrageously irresponsible!


Hard to imagine that any Town Council would have this mind-frame and continue along their merry way with a Town-wide Underground Utilities Project. Knowing, that the Project puts the Town’s electrical infrastructure at much greater risk, since neither the underground conduits carry the electrical wires with their seams, or connections, nor, the electrical high-voltage utility boxes, most not even installed above the salt-water flood-plain, are not waterproof and are VULNERABLE TO SALT-WATER INTRUSION AND FLOOD WATERS!

Bad decisions by a Mayor and Town Council have long lasting negative consequences for the Constituents and Property Owners in a Municipality. As unfortunately will be the outcome for the Town of Palm Beach.



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