Well, the Palm Beach Post is parroting the VOTE YES talking points from recent YES mailers we wrote about recently. Much has been written on social media on the topic of Boca’s Mayor Singer and council members Mayotte and Drucker spending $250,000 in taxpayer funds on a one question referendum to make council terms four years instead of three. The justification for extended terms is that other big cities in Florida are doing. Whoopee do. In this article I take another bite at the apple and go into why three years is better than four and probably the most common reason why folks say they are voting NO. Read on.
Why folks are voting NO
A commonly voiced reason against extending term lengths has nothing to do with the debate over four year terms incentivizing corruption. Rather, it has everything to do with something much simpler: HOW the referendum is being done is suspicious if not outright unethical. That is, after being voted into a three year term, then making a move to extend it a year when it’s the only thing on the ballot and benefits only the people putting it there, stinks.
Beyond the optics, it defies logic. No matter which way it goes, the voter turnout will be so small, it will not reflect the will of the people. The argument that it must be this year does not fly. It doesn’t pass the smell test and in the context of the track records of those involved, motives are suspect to a population suffering the worst under Boca’s concrete tsunami. People see Singer, Drucker and Mayotte spending taxpayer funds to open 28 polls and train hundreds of poll workers for an issue nobody was asking for and that benefits only them.
Three year terms are better
Consider the benefits to the city of keeping three year terms. Shorter terms result in more opportunity for people getting involved. More opportunity to bring new ideas and to steer the city in a direction residents want it to go; Not entrenched politicians. Plainly, three year terms make for better representation. Singer, Drucker and Mayotte were all afforded that opportunity. They need to go when their terms are up. So to vote YES, means voting against opportunity, fresh ideas and better representation; something you won’t read in the Palm Beach Post or other mainstream sources. They’ll go with the establishment as usual.
It’s hard to find people in favor of the referendum question. In fact, some citizens passed the hat, created a PAC and fought fire with fire by sending out a VOTE NO mailer just last week. Good for them. See the mailer here.
Look no further than the last year
Still want to vote yes for extended terms? Look at the over-development and governance issues BocaFirst has raised in just the last year:
- Allowing the Aletto Square proposed monster on Sanborn Square that will kill all hopes of a downtown North-South “Las Olas Blvd-esque” spine.
- The utter dereliction of duty in urban planning chaos that is Boca’s gateway to the beach a.k.a East Palmetto Park Rd.
- The attempt to amend zoning laws to allow multi-family hi-rises in residential neighborhoods.
- The plan to turn East Royal Palm Rd into the Bronx.
- The underhanded scheme to name a street in Mizner Park in honor of a consultant from Chicago who wrote countless developer perks such as “Office Equivalent Square Footage” into the Boca Municipal code.
Follow the money
Nobody was asking for extended terms. The resolution to put it on the ballot and to do so in spite of there being nothing else for people to vote on, came from Mayor Singer. The mayor has no one running against him. But he still collected and spent over $95,000 with $15,000 going to his office account. That’s a lot of money he was given and spent buying favors from other organizations. Click the image below for the full February 2023 Campaign Treasurer’s Report.
Nothing Says “Stop Overdevelopment” like Voting No
Preventing overdevelopment is the responsibility of elected officials. They are the ones entrusted to protect the city. Three of them are asking us to extend their terms for another year in a seemingly bogus election. If you feel that elected officials should be held accountable more frequently, VOTE NO in the March 14 election. For more reasons, see:
- Mayor Singer: You’ve got to be kidding.
- Boca’s Mayor Singer Makes Move to Get Longer Term
- Why Vote No?