[dropcap]W[/dropcap]hen “Big Spender” Josh Liebman was elected to the South Miami City Commission, the city budget was $15,277,913. During the 2014-2015 period, the last year before he faces re-election, the city budget was $16,737,052.
Not satisfied with increased spending, Commissioner Liebman proposed at the Feb. 17 Commission meeting that the city build a new city hall, stating it would not cost the city any money. The city’s Green Committee told him of some green organization that would foot the bill. He wants the city manager to go forward with this proposal.
Does the city have the money from this organization pledged? No! Does Commissioner Liebman think this organization will give the city about $9,000,000 to build a city hall without any special conditions? The city will be required to meet many special conditions. If the city got this money, would that mean that the city would not have other large expenditures? No!
I asked Commissioner Liebman where will a city hall go while the new city hall is built? His reply: across the street in the bank building. Won’t the bank charge a rather large of sum for rent? Oh! You didn’t think of that, did you? Who is going to pay the expense for moving the city government to a temporary location and back to the new city hall? Who will pay for connecting the internet, phone, etc.? How much will it cost the police department to move and set up operations in a new location and then move back again? Oh! You didn’t think about that, did you?
There are many more expenses to incur that I will not list. I’m sure city residents will think of many more. Is it true, Commissioner, that a new city hall will not cost city taxpayers at all? If not, I guess that you will pay all these other expense. My, you are good at misleading the public!
I find it amazing that this commission can build a new city hall when they cannot finish Madison Square that has been on the agenda for ten years! It took 20 years to get a community center, 50 years to get a swimming pool and 10 years to get a parking garage. Yet this commission is moving ahead on building a new city hall. Don’t you feel that this is reckless and wasteful spending?
After hearing the Commissioner Liebman’s amazing misinformation at the commission meeting, it’s made me and others realize that any commissioner making statements like you did is not qualified to be a commissioner. We look forward to election day.
— Richard Ward