Scott Simmons's Blog – September 2010 Archive (14)

2010-2011 Property Tax Rates

Added by Scott Simmons on September 30, 2010 at 5:28pm — No Comments

Police to use volunteers in office

HIGHLAND BEACH — Town commissioners decided using a free volunteer instead of a paid administrative assistant was OK in the Police Department but not in the Town Hall lobby.

Chief Craig Hartmann assured them other towns use volunteers as a receptionist and first point of contact for residents seeking police help.

“They become the best ambassadors for your department,” he said.

Plus the town would save up to $75,000 a year in salary and benefits by not hiring a… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 30, 2010 at 5:11pm — No Comments

Highland Beach to vote on whether to replace aging fire truck

The old Highland Beach fire truck was used in a dramatic rescue at the Toscana condos.

Photo courtesy of Delray Beach Fire-Rescue

By Steve Plunkett

It’s in the shop a lot, and repair bills are mounting. It’s not easy to drive in tight places. And every time it gets back to the station, the life support equipment has to be taken out and plugged… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 30, 2010 at 5:00pm — No Comments

Boca Raton: Ocean Strand zoning controversy stirs residents to action

By Steve Plunkett

If change is coming to Ocean Strand, it isn’t coming quickly.

At least not quickly enough for the coastal parcel’s neighbors, who have been asking City Council, the Planning and Zoning Board and the Greater Boca Raton Beach and Park District to protect the undeveloped site from becoming anything but a park.

Penn-Florida Companies proposed a private cabana club in December to complement a luxury hotel in Via Mizner, a $1 billion redevelopment project planned… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:34pm — No Comments

Coastal Boca Raton/Highland Beach: Store, gas station generators may ease aftermath of future storms

By Mary Thurwachter

Who can forget Hurricane Wilma, the menacing Category 3 storm of October 2005 that sneaked up on us from the southwest and left us without power for days?

Now here we are smack dab in the middle of another hurricane season that experts predict to be busier than usual and we wonder what, if anything, has changed to help us navigate another big storm.

There’s nothing we can do to prevent a hurricane from blowing our way, but some improvements have been made… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:31pm — No Comments

Boca Raton Preservation Board wants historic status for 1927 house-turned-restaurant

The Boca Raton Preservation Board voted in July to pursue a Historic Preservation designation for the Giles House, long home to La Vieille Maison Restaurant at 770 E. Palmetto Park Road.

The city’s Planning & Zoning board recommended denying it in 2009, and City Council put the issue on hold. The restaurant closed in May 2006 and the property is for sale.

The owner of the property, identified as Irving Litwak, “does not feel this building qualifies for historic designation,”… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:28pm — No Comments

Editorial: Welcome to your newspaper

I love Palm Beach County.

It’s home to me — from the sweet stench of the Glades to the bracing spray of the ocean and everything in between.

I was born here, grew up on Florida’s west coast, and returned to Palm Beach County to attend Florida Atlantic University.

When I arrived in 1984, the Boca Raton phone book was about an inch and a half thick. It covered all the towns from Boynton Beach through Pompano Beach, with Boca and Highland Beach in the middle.

And The Boca Raton… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:27pm — No Comments

Boca Raton CRA takes over Mizner Park amphitheater

The Boca Raton Community Redevelopment Agency voted in August to assume ownership of the Count de Hoernle Amphitheatre at Mizner Park.

The city ended its 99-year lease with the Centre for the Arts at Mizner Park, the nonprofit group that built the amphitheater in 2002 on city land, and will take over the amphitheater’s remaining $588,000 mortgage. The city also will pay off up to $300,000 in debt incurred by the Centre for the Arts for such cultural events as Festival of the Arts Boca.… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:24pm — No Comments

Highland Beach budgets an additional $20,000 for library

By Steve Plunkett

For the second time in two years, Town Manager Dale Sugerman wanted the library to spend less. And for the second time in two years, he was rebuffed.

Library director Mari Suarez had asked for $85,000 for new books and publications for the budget year that starts Oct. 1; Sugerman trimmed $20,000 from her request.

“I stayed with the same number that I have recommended to the commission for the past two years, which is $65,000. I’ve not flinched,’’ Sugerman said… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:23pm — No Comments

Around Town: Ballroom Battle waltzes into Boca Raton Resort & Club

Click here to see photo slide show.

By Thom Smith

Affluent. Great weather. Diverse population. Good schools. Beautiful beaches. Great restaurants. Swinging nightlife.

But until recently it was always known as a resort town. Sprung from a hotel, it was a place to visit, not… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:20pm — No Comments

Boca hospital marks founder's 80th birthday

By Skip Sheffield

Gloria Drummond marked her 80th birthday on Aug. 20, but festivities are being delayed so the whole community can join in.

A celebration of Drummond and the Boca Raton Community Hospital she was instrumental in founding will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sept. 30, at the Harvey and Phyllis Sandler Pavilion of the hospital’s Eugene and Christine E. Lynn Cancer Institute. The public is… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:14pm — No Comments

Meet Your Neighbors: Joe and Winnie Pedalino

Joe and Winnie Pedalino may be retired, but they never quit working.

The couple, who live just north of the Gumbo Limbo Nature Center in Boca Raton, have volunteered for nearly 11 years at the educational and sea turtle rescue center, a place they think of as a second home.

And they love that others think of the center that way, too.

After 9/11, Winnie says she noticed an increase in visitors to the center.

“People felt more… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:05pm — No Comments

Grant could could boost support at Gumbo Limbo

By Steve Plunkett

Educational field trips to the Gumbo Limbo Nature Center in coastal Boca Raton may continue despite the school district’s budget having no money for them.

In June, Palm Beach County School Superintendent Art Johnson advised Boca Raton City Manager Leif Ahnell that ‘’we will no longer be able to fiscally support our Gumbo Limbo personnel.’’

That didn’t sit well with the Greater Boca Raton Beach and Park District, which helps operate the nature center in… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 3:00pm — No Comments

A Coastal Star: Highland Beach's activities expert

By Scott Simmons

She was born in Cuba. She grew up in Puerto Rico. And she lived in New York.

But now, Highland Beach is home to Martha Pando, who delights in her position as library assistant at the town’s library.

“I love the people who come in,” Pando says. “Our director is a visionary, and each staff member has his or her expertise. But the patrons make it a treat.”

Her job is a source of relaxation for Pando, who had a… Continue

Added by Scott Simmons on September 1, 2010 at 2:00pm — 1 Comment

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