Will the city allow pot stores?

Who will be our new neighbor?

Several yars ago Vice Mayor Walter Harris (middle with glasses) and friends were advocating for the legalization of marijuana.

Just where will the city allow pot stores to open? Should 60 percent of state wide voters approve Amendment 2, which will allow the consumption of marijuana for medical reasons. Seems to me that our own Vice Mayor Wally Harris was way up front on this matter when several years ago he joined a small group of activists on Miami Beach advocating the legalization on marijuana. So, come on boys on the dais get busy and get it done.

Been told that South Miami cops responded to a call on SW 57th Avenue and arrested a local athlete and soon thereafter, he was skipping his way to the goal line. That’s because some higher ups at the police department “unarrested” him and left the arresting officer just standing there twiddling her thumbs. Is that how it usually works?

Can’t help but see the For Sale sign on the vacant land across the street from our office on SW 62nd Avenue. It’s a really big piece of property and it is ready for development. Pretty sure the neighbors don’t have to worry about a casino or movie theater being built there. Nor do the neighbors have to be concerned about one of the big box grocery chains opening there, but I’ll betcha that a smaller grocery store, with a drug store attached, just might want to call South Miami home.

And speaking of development, the city and the CRA are just jerking around the citizens about getting the Madison Square project started. The long awaiting and much anticipated construction has been going back and forth, for I’ll just bet 10 years, plus. The proposed building, which could be a two or three or four story building was supposed to be built with the neighbors in mind. It talks about having offices, apartments and retail businesses inside where it is meant to help revitalize the much maligned area. It’s time that this commission and the CRA make this thing happen before it is too late.

The new Patricia and Philip Frost Museum of Science got a shot in the arm from Baptist Health South Florida after the healthcare system donated $5 million to a preventative health and wellness exhibit that emphasizes good health and taking care of your body. Including how to avoid obesity, something that has exploded in the public schools and Baptist’s involvement in preventative medicine has a long history in the community. Offering many initiatives, including numerous smoking cessation programs, yoga classes, and Baptist recently advertised on WLRN/NPR 91.3FM, a free CT scan screening of the lungs with a physician’s prescription. They are looking to catch lung cancer in its early stages not picked up with a conventional chest x-ray for long time smokers.

Further, even at the Baptist and South Miami Hospital cafeterias for employees they only serve Mediterranean Diet foods that are considered very healthy. The faith based not for profit is a major new donor for the Museum along with the Knight Foundation that is contributing $5 million to the state of the art facility being built on museum Park. This was of concern to the Watchdog Report when it suddenly fired its construction company, but it appears the project is back on track and expected to open in late 2016 after first hoping to be completed by 2015. Further the $275 million museum has gotten $165 million in public county bond money, and has raised over $87 million with a total fundraising goal of $135 million state’s the Miami Herald. And some 2,700 kids will have free access to the museum including free transportation through the Public Schools District. Editor’s disclosure: Vascular Surgeons at Baptist South Miami saved my life back in 2010 and for that I am forever grateful.

“We are all in this together,” said a member of the Miami-Dade County Community Relations Board last week after a major discussion on the eruption of anti-Semitic activity in the county that included a Rabbi being killed as he walked to his Synagogue in North Miami and has included Swastikas appearing on places of worship on Miami Beach. The CRB noted anti-Semitism in Europe is on the rise as well and this kind of hateful behavior cuts across all ethnic lines and should remind us all that if you live in Miami-Dade you are on a ship and we are all in this together. When one groups rights or another’s is singled out, given our diverse community it could be anyone regardless from where they come from and profiling of anyone must be fought and denounced she thought. Since hate crimes generally start with one group and expands and ultimately no one group or people is safe and must be fought and stamped out. If we as a county, are to reach our full potential that celebrates diversity but sometimes fails to respect this diversity of people or religions and this urge must be resisted and denounced by all of us, and we cannot be quiet. If we as a society, are to reach our full potential in the decades to come.

The County Commission approved a $1.6 billion budget for next year starting Oct. 1 and one community organization Farm Share did very well during the public hearings. Farm Share, the organization that collects food and distributes it to needy families, got $500,000 in funding and former state Sen. Daryl Jones, DMiami asked the commission for even more funding and he noted the organization “distributed some 7.1 million pounds of food,” over the past year through some “447 community based organizations,” and was recognized by past governors as “the best public private partnership in the state,” and the organization is very efficient with a very low administrative cost. For more on Farm Share, go to www.farmshare.org.

What about the swearing in of new Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava?

The newly elected county commissioner Daniella Levine Cava asked Commission Chair Rebeca Sosa last week, if she could change the date for her swearing in ceremony and when the commission votes on its new chair to November 24. The body agreed to the date change making the motion her first victory on the 13 member commission.

Further, Levine Cava elected to the District 8 seat on the dais has been having Sunshine Meetings with her fellow commissioners to hear their views on a variety of matters and is showing she is doing her homework prior to sitting on the body after she defeated incumbent Commissioner Lynda Bell in a tough well financed commission race.

(The last items were provided by www.watchdog.net)

Got any tips? Contact me at 305-669-7355, ext. 249, or send emails to Michael@communitynewspapers.com.

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About the Author

Michael Miller
Michael co-owns Community Newspapers with his brother Grant and serves as Executive Editor of the group of newspapers. He enjoys writing about local politics and area businesses. Michael can be reached at michael@communitynewspapers.com

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