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MINUTES OF GMCA ADVISORY BOARD MEETING

JUNE 19, 2008


The meeting was called to order at 11:00 a.m. by President Pio Ieraci.

Board Members present: Ieraci, Berkowitz, Glickfield, Guttman, Hamaker, Songer, McBride, Bindler, Chisholm, Creal, Friesmith, Glazer, Gonzalez, Guglielmetti, Konstance, Lecht, Miller, Nesbitt, Quintero, Solewin and Talerico.

Approval of Minutes - The minutes of May 15, 2008 were approved.

Old & New Business

The President introduced and welcomed Ellyn Bogdanoff, our District 91 Statehouse Representative, who addressed the recent condo bill and insurance. Discussion ensued regarding the Calypso Project:

  • Governor Crist is moved by community opinion, therefore, we need to do a better job of getting the issues out.

  • Discussed possibility of using a PR firm to access the media and organize a Town Hall Meeting to which we could invite the Governor to attend); we should also sit down with Sun Sentinel newspaper to solicit an op/ed piece written by a respected name

  • Discussed developing a marketing plan – Ellyn offered to do this.

  • Senator Atwater’s office is already engaged.

  • Pio is waiting for Senator Atwater’s office to answer question: Can we get the Governor to make a statement opposing Calypso?

Galt Mile Memorial Walk - Pio Ieraci - We need to see the final plan; spoke to Christine Teel. Pio will call a special meeting during the summer, if necessary, to approve the plan.

Il Lugano - Ralph Hamaker -

The hotel is offering an attractive rate for the summer: $129 per night “Good Neighbor Rate”. Ralph will find out number of condos and hotel rooms for Pio.

Beach Renourishment - No update; timeline remains the same.

Galt Mile Security Patrol - Pio Ieraci

Invoices should be paid by the end of July. Writing on the daily reports seems to be more legible.

Galt Mile Web Site – Newsletter – Eric Berkowitz -

  • May Hits: 886,908 hits; 12,848 unique site visits (first timers)

The past month’s articles:

  • May 15, 2008 - Galt Mile Residents: No Calypso - On April 7th, a meeting of the Galt Mile Presidents Council was convened to inform Association officials about the planned placement of a “Deepwater Port” for the offloading of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) 7 to 10 miles from the densely populated Galt Mile beach. Representatives of SUEZ Energy North America, Inc. or SENA, developer of the “Calypso” project, were invited to explain the project variables and respond to questions raised by concerned community participants with the understanding that association representatives would transmit what they learned to their association constituencies whose feedback would determine whether the project would encounter community support or opposition. Galt Mile residents subsequently clarified that they are understandably unwilling to risk their lives to provide these companies with more efficient product distribution. In view of the horrific consequences attendant to a security oversight, an error in judgment or hurricane damage, no prospective benefit to the State can justify the potential loss of property and life.

  • May 21, 2008 - Senator Atwater: Post-Session Update - Armed with instinctive networking skills, unique fiscal expertise and a natural talent for achieving consensus, Senator Jeffrey Atwater has earned the gratitude of battalions of his legislation's beneficiaries and the respect of his peers. Unlike many legislators whose advancement accompanies a benign neglect of constituents, Atwater is always a phone call away. Named as the next Senate President, the District 25 Senator remained in constant communication with constituents throughout the legislative session. Now that the session is over, he issued a summary of the legislature's achievements. He reviews legislation designed to enforce insurance carrier accountability, a long sought after anti-gang bill, environmental regulations targeting Beach Renourishment and spending cuts created to relieve pressure on the Budget without sacrificing important programs.

  • May 27, 2008 - City Rips Calypso: Emergency Meeting - On May 20th, the City Commission of Fort Lauderdale held its usual conference meeting at 1:30 PM to review agenda items and their regular meeting at 6 PM. GMCA Advisory Board member Fred Nesbitt of Playa del Mar and Bill Claire of Plaza South attended both meetings. The motivation for their appearance was not some vague political objective. Along with several other Galt Mile residents, they were there because they were afraid. When the City Commission heard their testimony, they realized that their fears were well founded. They voted to issue a resolution opposing the Calypso project at its current location. They decided that barrier island residents should not have to live with prospective incineration by a 2000 BTU fireball from an ignited natural gas vapor cloud. They were also unwilling to see Fort Lauderdale rocketed to the top of Al Queda's hit list.

    This nightmare will come true unless its stopped. A virtually unannounced meeting wherein the Coast Guard was supposed to address local concerns had been moved to the IGFA building in Dania – with one day's notice! Transportation to and from the meeting for concerned Galt Mile residents was organized for the Galt Mile Community Association by City Commissioner Christine Teel.

  • June 2, 2008 - Keechl Prepares for Budget Battle - In our County Commissioner’s Spring Newsletter, Ken Keechl reminds us that beneath his mild-mannered public persona is a two fisted budget hawk. Commissioner Keechl illustrates last year’s forward progress and exhorts that we prepare for the likely service trade-offs of a lower tax bill. The Broward Board of County Commissioners sifted through their appropriations laundry list last year, weeding out questionable programs, unnecessary projects that were seemingly funded annually by force of habit and expenses that can only be accurately described as embarrassingly overt political pork. Trimming the second $100 million from the budget will entail an intimidating stroll through a political minefield by Commissioner Keechl and his peers.

  • June 8, 2008 - SUEZ Bait & Switch Backfires in Dania - At the May 20th City Commission meeting, SUEZ North America Vice President Dan McGinnis promised to hold a meeting in Plaza South on Wednesday, May 28th wherein the Coast Guard would address the threat posed to concerned Galt Mile residents by the Calypso Deepwater Port gasworks. To discourage participation by the communities most threatened by a potential holocaust, SUEZ decided to “bait and switch” the venue to the IGFA (International Game Fishing Association) building, halfway across the county. Despite the single business day's notice, Commissioner Christine Teel secured a bus that conveyed scores of Galt Mile residents to the Dania meeting. They were joined by Senator Jeffrey Atwater, Representative Ellyn Bogdanoff, Broward Commissioner Ken Keechl, City Commissioner Teel, L-b-t-S Mayor Roseann Minnet and other local officials with the shared objective of preventing SUEZ from limiting participation to planted supporters with admittedly vested interests.

  • June 17, 2008 - Bogdanoff Spring Newsletter: No Calypso! - Last December, an article posted on the GMCA web site and reprinted in the January Galt Mile News exposed an obscure plan to offload liquefied natural gas near the Galt Mile beach. Shortly after confirming that a breach in the Calypso project’s delivery system would release an ignitable vapor cloud capable of a 2000 BTU conflagration, residents wondered why their public officials would expose them to this catastrophic danger. Surprise quickly turned to anger when they learned that local communities and their governments had been excised from the approval process 3 years earlier. In her Spring Newsletter, Representative Ellyn Bogdanoff explains her characterization of the project to the Governor, the only official in Florida empowered to stop Calypso. The Statehouse Majority Whip also considers pulling the plug on Calypso as the State's opportunity to step down its debilitating energy dependence by assuming a leadership role in the fast-growing alternative energy field!

Other Business -

  • Pio reported on the status of Ireland’s Inn. The project has passed P & Z (Planning and Zoning). There will be 164 motel units and 122 condos. It will be in the shape of a sail boat, have underground parking, several restaurants, retail spaces, and a spa. Pools are almost at ground level and the loading area will be completely covered. The project will come before the City Commission on July 1st at 6:00 p.m. and will need substantial attendance.

  • Bob Wolfe of the Property Appraiser’s Office spoke about budget cuts and the condition of the real estate market. Services are being offered regarding homestead exemptions. Broward County Property Appraiser staff will be taking Exemption Applications at The Beach Community Center on the last Friday of each month from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

  • Pio: The annual wage survey was sent out via email and should be returned via email. The method will save money. August 15th is the due date to return the survey.

  • Pio met with Windsong Trust. Five percent of our associations have joined the Palm Beach Trust which is up and running and provides a significant savings. As this grows, Galt Mile will split off of the Palm Beach Trust.

  • Frank Talerico announced that the Ocean Manor was hosting a Texas Hold ‘Em poker tournament on June 19th at 6:30 p.m. to benefit Kids In Distress.

  • Discussed maintenance issues, landscaping, etc. for the Mile. Pio spoke to Parks & Recreation to schedule a walk. We need to have direct contact in the department.

  • A moment of silence was observed for our dear friend Jim Gill, who recently passed away at 99 years of age.

Next Advisory Board Meeting - The next regular Advisory Board Meeting will be held on Thursday, September 18, 2008 at Nick’s Italian Restaurant.

Treasurer’s Report - The Treasurer reported $15,849.91 in our Treasury. Membership bills have been sent out and dues are coming in.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:55 p.m.

Fern McBride
Fern McBride, Secretary

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