Open mind in Cutler Bay

 

Re the Aug. 12 article, Lobbyists settle case with Miami-Dade ethics commission: Some important facts were missing from this article. In the early days of our incorporation the Cutler Bay town council wanted to be as accessible as possible to all residents and applicants when dealing with land-use issues, just as we are with other issues. We adopted an ordinance that permits council members to hear from the public and applicants prior to our meeting, but requires the council member and lobbyist to disclose the communication.

The first time the land-use application featured in your article came before the council I was contacted by the applicant’s lobbyist, but I didn’t feel that the requested variances would serve the town’s best interests, so I voted against it.

After the applicant made changes requested by the public during the first hearing, I felt comfortable that it would be a good product for the town and I voted for it. Since I began representing the town in 2006, I’ve made every decision based solely on what is best for Cutler Bay.

Any time I speak to someone about a quasi-judicial issue I disclose it immediately to the town clerk for the public record. If someone asks me a question about an upcoming issue that is quasi-judicial I explain that I must disclose the conversation. It feels right to be open with citizens and applicants. However, I always make it clear that I will not make up my mind until I’m sitting at the dais and have heard all the information from both sides.

Peggy Bell, council member, Cutler Bay

Read more Letters to the Editor stories from the Miami Herald

  • The readers’ forum

    We knew PAMM would need help

    Re Dusty Melton’s Sept. 12 Other Views column, PAMM shouldn’t get public funding: Consistently, both the public and private supporters of the Pérez Art Museum Miami have made explicit disclosure that additional operating support would be necessary to support a brilliant, larger museum.

  • Save on energy costs

    Florida’s unrelenting heat is often felt in our utility bills. In addition to finding ways to decrease your energy use, you may want to consider products and appliances that use less energy and water. An upcoming tax-free holiday on many energy-efficient appliances and water-saving products will help you do just that. This tax-free holiday runs from Sept. 19-21.

  • Passport to ride

    On Sept. 12, letter writer, Golden Passport misuse, Floreal de la Garza wrote regarding the fare-free Golden Passport program. I would like to clarify some of the claims made about this program, which benefits so many in our community. The Golden Passport program that existed prior to the approval of the People’s Transportation Plan in 2002 had an income requirement. Under the current Golden Passport program, a permanent Miami-Dade resident who is 65 years of age or older is eligible to receive a Golden Passport, regardless of income. Permanent Miami-Dade residents who are Social Security beneficiaries, regardless of age, also qualify.

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category