|Welcome to the Issues page. It's dedicated to long-term projects and items. You can refer back to this back for updated information on things that will take a while to resolve.
There have been three instances since late 2013 related to minimum housing problems in North Miami. Over the holidays, the roof on one apartment building collapsed because of high rainfall. In another, a roof collapsed because of termite damage. With dozens of apartment buildings across the city, I've asked the City Manager to put together a task force of housing and code inspectors, police, and fire officials. I would like them make regular inspections of apartment buildings to be sure they meet minimum housing standards. Residents living within them deserve good living conditions.
Rising Sea Levels
North Miami has thousands of residents living on the waterfront, not just on the east side of town, but also along canals. Across the County, discussions of the impact of future rising sea levels have begun. North Miami needs to be part of those talks. We need to take an active role in planning for the future.
Lowering Sprinkler Bills
A couple of years ago, North Miami instituted new water bill rates. As a result, those with a second water meter, usually installed for sprinklers, have seen astronomical increases. I would like the City Council to reduce the rates we charge, reduce or eliminate the base sprinkler charge, and look at other ways to make billing more equitable.
The Greater North Miami Historical Society has hundreds of old photos on negatives. Dozens of them have already been digitized. The time is now to preserve them all and make them available to local residents and businesses who might want a copy for themselves. It would be a fun way to hang onto North Miami's past and tie it into modern day!
On August 20, 2012, the City of North Miami entered into a 99-year lease agreement with Oleta Partners LLC to develop the property formerly known as Biscayne Landing. As part of that agreement the City received the initial payment of $17.5 million. On June 26, 2012, the North Miami City Council voted to put $5 million in reserves.
As of August 1, 2013, the Council had already voted to allocate $15.2 million of the total amount. Yikes! I'm not thrilled that we've blown through so much of it and hope we might reconsider some of the decisions made a few months ago. Click here to see where we have allocated those funds. ;
The city's website has some good detail on the progress of some of these projects. Rather than duplicate it, simply click here to read where we stand on items like Library Repairs, Housing Programs, and new Police cars. Click Here
Red Light Cameras
In 2012, the Council voted to proceed with the installation of red light cameras at select local intersections.
I voted in favor of the plan because the cameras were held up as a way to reduce accidents at busy intersections. And studies since that time have shown that to be true.
Nonetheless, in 2013, I changed my position on red light cameras.
I still believe they are effective in getting drivers to slow down and obey the law. The problem is that our focus has shifted from safety to money. Take a look at this July 2013 Miami Herald report: Here
In 2012, North Miami brought in over $3 million from red light cameras. Our cut of that was $2.4 million. That's second most in the entire County! By comparison, Miami Beach, a larger city, had brought in $300,000 and kept $700. Clearly, North Miami has more cameras in place than other cities.
Sure, it's nice to have an extra $2 million to spend, but I fear that our impetus has gone beyond safety and now stands with revenue. And the costs of challenging these tickets in court has also increased. I'd like us to get back to using the cameras only at major intersections where traffic is most dense. That way, their proven effectiveness on safety will have the greatest impact.