Tonight the City Of Cocoa Beach will be having a Planning Board Meeting at which time the Board will address changes to the Comprehensive Plan which was submitted to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity which rejected several sections and sent them back to the City for revision.
The proposed changes by the City has many residents troubled and concerned about wording, especially when dealing with height and density requirements, variances, and a 5-0 vote required for all height and density requirements in the comp plan.
This is one of those meetings where people need to be present and have their voices heard. The meeting starts at 5:30 PM. The agenda and supporting documentation can be found here.
If you cannot attend the meeting, you can view it on the City’s website.
Related to the above meeting is an editorial which appeared in the print version of the Florida Today newspaper on July 5, but for some reason did not appear in the online version.
The editorial is written by Cocoa Beach City Commissioner Skip Williams.
Comp plan questions in Cocoa Beach
City staff recommends the Planning Board approve a response to Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s (DEO) objections related to the 2025 Comprehensive
One glaring DEO objection was negating the unanimous commission vote required to change height and density within the city, as approved by majority voter referendums on the ballot three different years. (more…)
The date should ring a bell in every American’s heart.
On this date 237 years ago, a group of men withstood the sweltering Philadelphia heat and decided to ratify a document that would declare thirteen British colonies to be free and independent from British rule. The actual resolution to declare independence took place on July 2, 1776, but the delegates to the Continental Congress took two days of edits, rewrites and changes to the document that was finally ratified on July 4, 1776.
The actual signing of the document would take place over the next few months as some delegations to the Congress did not have the authority to sign such a declaration. As the Declaration was approved by legislatures, they authorized the Congressional delegates to sign the document.
The Declaration of Independence is a masterpiece of reasoning and logic. It is compelling. One of the things that makes it endearing and forceful is that it is written in plain English. The common person could understand it. While some would argue its flaws and contradictions, the fact of the matter is that the Congress produced an extraordinary document that ordinary people could understand.
It would take a war and seven more years to make the words of the Declaration come to fruition – seven years to realize the promise of “for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor” to end, and a new chapter of forming a country to begin.
As we have gotten older, we have seen the meaning of “independence” change somewhat as it applies to our lives. Certainly there is a feeling by some that we in the United States no longer have the freedoms we once enjoyed or that were promised in the Declaration of Independence. There are other types of “independence” as well. People talk and work for financial independence. Most of us can remember the day when we left the safety and comfort of our parent’s home to seek individual independence.
Yet the independence that means the most to us is a different type of independence. (more…)
The Satellite Beach City Council meets tonight at 7:00 PM for a regular. There is a lot on the agenda that is more spending. When you have raised taxes and fees, you might as well spend the money.
One particular item that caught our eye is a proposal for increasing the salary of City Manager Courtney Barker.
While the proposal lists all of the accomplishments Barker has done, many of those accomplishments were in the pipeline when she took over the job. Secondly, the proposal makes light of longevity and compares Barker’s salary to City Managers in other towns.
When Barker was hired, she was hired despite not meeting the criteria the City Council had established in seeking a new City Manager. Despite this, the City Council gave her a salary that was more than other comparable sized cities and more than a person with no experience would have gotten. In many respects, Barker received a deal that was highly skewed toward her considering her lack of experience as a City Manager, her lack of education in the field, and her lack of credentials for the job.
Now after increasing taxes and fees, the City wants to give Barker a raise.
So while people in the private sector are still dealing with wages that have remained stagnant, the City of Satellite Beach wants to pay their own more.
It is not that we object to anyone making more or getting a raise. The City Manager’s leverage in this case is that she could say she could go elsewhere and earn more money. (more…)
Isaac Smith attended Ohio University during which time he led the group Students Defending Students (SDS), which advised and helped defend students who were accused of breaking the University’s Code of Student Conduct.
Smith was also a member of the Student Senate, which had started a look into the history of the University. The look in the rear view mirror inspired the Senate and many other organizations to have tee-shirts printed with themes from the past.
For Smith and the SDS, they chose a tee-shirt that was simply the original slogan of the group:
“WE’LL GET YOU OFF FOR FREE.”
There is a definite double entendre to the shirts and frankly, the slogan is amusing and effective advertising.
Ohio University thought otherwise. The FIRE picks up the story:
But when members of the group wore the shirts at a fall recruitment fair, the dean of students told them that they should not wear the shirts because they were not professional and contained sexual innuendo—which was, of course, the point. Another administrator later justified the informal ban on the T-shirts because the shirts “objectified women” and “promoted prostitution”—odd charges for a gender-neutral phrase about a free service. Fearing punishment under the the Student Code of Conduct, which prohibited any “act that degrades, demeans or disgraces” another student as well as “taking any reckless, but not accidental, action from which mental or bodily harm could result to another person,” SDS discontinued use of the T-shirts.
The school’s thought process that a gender neutral statement “objectifies women” as well as somehow concluding that offering a free service is akin to prostitution cannot be mocked enough. Beyond the mocking, there is the real issue of the school’s suppression of protected speech on campus. Smith contacted the folks at FIRE who reviewed the situation and filed a First Amendment lawsuit against the school.