Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A/Ocean Drive, July 3, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier

Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A/Ocean Drive, July 3, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier
Hallandale Beach Water Tower on State Road A1A/South Ocean Drive & Hallandale Beach Blvd. Located below the Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A/South Ocean Drive, on the south side (right) is the "Community Center" that HB City Hall, thru their gross incompetency and spite, made off-limits to HB citizen taxpayers for over three-and-a-half years after being given it for FREE by The Related Group, after they'd used it as their "model" sales office for The Beach Club condo towers next-door. In 2012 the city signed a not-so lucrative deal to make it the "model" sales HQ for RG's The Beachwalk project next to the Intracoastal Bridge, thereby putting this taxpayer-owned building just steps from the Atlantic Ocean off-limits to Hallandale Beach citizens for years to come. (And where's the American flag on the Fourth of July weekend? Missing in action as it had been for months when i snapped this photo!) July 3, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. For many years under Mayor Joy Cooper and City Managers Mark Antonio & Renee C. Miller, the City of Hallandale Beach illegally used this photo of mine on their official website as well as in large posters at city buildings, including the lobby of HB City Hall. This was done in clear violation of federal copyright laws, as they stole the photo without EVER asking my permission to use it or paying me a single cent. Really.
Hallandale Beach Blog is a common-sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on current events, economics, government, politics & culture of South Florida, in particular, the cities of Hallandale Beach and Hollywood. South Beach Hoosier, www.SouthBeachHoosier.blogspot.com, is where I also ruminate on national and international subjects, especially the past and current South Florida sports scene with the Dolphins, the Marlins, the Orioles, the University of Miami Hurricanes, and the Indiana University Hoosiers. But sometimes, if it's particularly germane or amusing, I post it here, too.
Everything you see on this page was originally located on my current blog, Hallandale Beach Blog, www.HallandaleBeachBlog.blogspot.com
Due to space considerations over time, as I wrote new posts and added new photos to the blog, I had to move some items, photos, posts and, videos off the main site to keep the blog more manageable, but I didn't want to simply delete these items forever, since many were popular, so I've created this mirror hyphenated blog so they could remain alive, as it were. I especially didn't want to move the videos, but having too many videos on the main page slowed the loading time, so...
Many of the photos below have necessarily been reduced in size from their original to fit within the new site parameters here, which explains, some of the odd photo sizes, but I still have the full-size version of them. Please come see what I'm up to NOW at:

Monday, October 27, 2014

He's no Houdini! Why Hallandale Beach Commissioner Anthony A. Sanders is so worried: He can't hide anymore from his crony capitalism and dismal record of words & votes against logic, common sense, financial accountability -and HB's future Quality-of-Life. The tide of change against him is rising, NOT fading. Vote for Kulin!

Contents below are a slightly-expanded version of an email I sent out last night to people all over Hallandale Beach, Hollywood, greater Broward County and throughout South Florida who care about cleaning-up one of the most incompetent and corrupt local governments in all of Florida, the City of Hallandale Beach.

He's no Houdini! Why Hallandale Beach Commissioner Anthony A. Sanders is so worried: He can't hide anymore from his dismal record of words & votes against logic, common sense, financial accountability -and HB's future Quality-of-Life. The tide of change against him is rising, NOT fading
Dear Friend of Common Sense in Hallandale Beach,

Hallandale Beach Commissioner Anthony A. Sanders is worried.
And he has good reason to be worried.
He's NOT an escape artist like Houdini, and his dismal and ruinous record in office is all around us! 

Right where we can see it.

Comm. Sanders knows that after six years of his consistently unsatisfactory performance in office, six years of his continually being shown as not only un-informed but also consistently
dis-connected from the legitimate concerns of the majority of HB residents and small business owners, six LONG years of his consistently being disrespectful of them while casting votes that've negatively affected them and their family's present and future Quality-of-Lifethat the tide of change against him is rising, NOT fading.

Despite his recent (ill-chosen) boast in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel that he was perfectly prepared to stand by his record in elective office after six years, the reality is that Comm. Sanders CAN'T defend it. 

The unintended irony of this, of course, is that his record can also NOT be defended by his own supporters among the anti-reform Cooper Rubber Stamp Crew, or among City Hall's selfish crony capitalism crowd of friends. 
Friends who love being rewarded for being friends of the powers-that-be: with COHB and HB CRA dollars.

But then that only stands to reason, since despite six long years of opportunities to do so, Comm. Sanders himself has been unwilling to defend his own record and votes with anything even remotely resembling logic or reason. 

Not just at the time Comm. Sanders was casting his predictable Rubber Stamp votes, but unable even to explain those votes and policy views with any degree of persuasion or conviction in the minutes, hours, days or weeks AFTER he's cast those same votes against
common sense and financial accountability, often at the same time.

Most of us who have paid even the slightest amount of attention to what happens in Hallandale Beach and its neighboring cities know that Comm. Sanders has never had to publicly defend that woeful record of poor performance, despite how egregious many of Sanders' actions have been, whether in the area of his questionable ethics, uniformily poor
judgment, or even his failure to consistently show-up at public meetings fully-informed and prepared to ask cogent questions, as the HB community has a perfect right to expect of any elected official.

What's particularly galled so many of us is that Comm. Sanders has been aided and abetted in that effort by a largely pliant and sleepwalking South Florida news media, that, with a few rare exceptions, never wanted to directly challenge Sanders' myopic and upside-down world view, to say nothing of personally holding him and his ineffective words/votes to account for the reality of the abymally poor governance we see in this city no matter where we go.

Now part of that is because Sanders, even after so many awful years in office, always wanted to play the role of voice for the disaffected and forgotten in this community. 

As IF that could in any way be explained by his six years of ALWAYS voting FOR real estate developers, no matter how incompatible or harmful the individual project was to the nearest neighborhood or the city at large

And year-after-year, the local South Florida news media -with a few exceptions- has lacked the mettle, gumption and attention-span to directly and publicly challenge Comm. Sanders on that faux pose of his, though the facts are clear they could've clobbered him using his own words and votes whenever they chose on a whole host of issues.
But sadly for us, the news media has consciously chosen NOT to challenge and press Sanders to fully explain his strange utterings and troublesome votes up on the dais. 

That failure has only exacerbated the growing sense of frustration and alienation in this city among reasonable people who simply want it to be MUCH BETTER than has been allowed to be.

One of the few shining exceptions to this apathy by local South Florida journalists has been Local10's Glenna Milberg.

actsofsedition video:  Local10/Miami: "City's pricey purchase." 
On July 26, 2012, Local10 reporter Glenna Milberg went to Hallandale Beach to learn more details about the curious case involving Pastor and City Comm. Anthony A. Sanders' rushed sale of his and his wife's property at 501 N.W. 1st Avenue to the city in 2009 -when the city had ZERO written plans for what it would actually do with the property afterwards!- for about $89,000 more than it was actually worth. Sanders continues to stonewall Hallandale Beach taxpayers about the exact details of this deal as he has now for over three years, and he refused to speak with Milberg on Thursday. Outside of the city-owned property that the city now receives $10 a year in rent for, Mayor Joy Cooper's explanation was unconvincing for HB taxpayers. Three years later she continued to hem and haw when asked simple questions -and to defend the indefensible- as she still can't logically explain what the rush was to buy the property at a higher price, esp. if there was no definite plan in place. It was left to former Comm. Keith London -the only vote against the purchase and Cooper's re-election opponent in November of 2012- to again explain why this deal was so egregious from HB taxpayer's point of view. It's just one of the dozens of inexplicable and nonsensical things that I've personally observed with Hallandale Beach taxpayer or CRA funds under Mayor Cooper's reign since I moved here. Uploaded July 27, 2012. http://youtu.be/XlOgkrL9CWI

People like you and your neighbors who want policy arguments at HB City Hall to be over commonly-agreed-upon facts and the best way to make good ideas become a reality, the exact opposite of what we've had in this city for far too long, with Sanders always on the wrong side of both common sense and history.

Six years later, with Sanders continually failing to rise to the responsibility, and in fact, to be found wanting by the majority of Hallandale Beach residents, even among those in NW HB, Sanders knows that the real disaffected people in this city are the very citizens,residents and small business owners like you who for years have been made to feel like uninvited and unwanted outsiders at your own City Hall.

Forever being treated shabbily, callously or even publicly insulted, by both an autocratic mayor and a power-hungry city manger, as they and their bureaucratic minions continually tried to flip norms of public democratic participation on its side, so they alone could be
left alone to form this city in their own image(s).

Far too often, despite our best efforts to positively change the culture of entitlement and self-evident wrong-way driving up on the dais, we were forced to watch in silence as this happened, with Comm. Sanders sitting up on the dais totally oblivious to what was taking
place, and not at all interested in putting HB residents and small business owners first, not forever second to someone else's interests.

Since Comm. Sanders can NOT defend that abysmal record of his, naturally -along with his cohorts among the Cooper Rubber Stamp Crew- he's eager to change the subject of this Commission race to something else, anything else -and distract voters from his own inability to make a positive difference for the whole community.

Please don't let him get away with it again!

IF there were actually honest-to-goodness candidate debates and public forums in this city, venues where HB residents and small business owners like you could speak truthfully about their legitimate concerns and fears, without Mayor Cooper and City Manager Miller constantly interfering -or running to protect Comm. Sanders from his own words and actions on the dais- trust me, my good friend, HB civic activist Chuck Kulin, would be constantly reminding Comm. Sanders that he was running against HIM and Sanders' failed record for reasons that he'd only be too happy to enumerate and articulate, with facts and precision that make the case.

But now in the last 20 days, even after all of Chuck's hard work on his campaign, absent those public venues to directly challenge Comm. Sanders and his votes directly on the record, and the news media's reluctance to print or air what so many of us know about Sanders' record in a way that aligns with what most of us have grown-up thinking is reasonable to expect in an election campaign, Comm. Sanders is relying upon the friends and cronies of Mayor Cooper and the myriad businesses who deal with HB City Hall to finance him and run interference for him.

Anthony A. Sanders/Commission Seat No. 1 Qualified as of 6/19/2014M4M5 , M6M7M8G4

People who are determined to keep this seat on THEIR side, opposing needed reforms and more meaningful public accountability and public input.

That’s why I need your help and am writing you now. 

Three weeks from this morning we'll all wake-up with the knowledge that the opportunity
to positively change things in this community has come and gone for another two years.
Do you want to wake-up feeling good that morning, energized and positive that this city can FINALLY start being the sort of place we can all take pride in, or, do you want to be suffering from a headache, knowing that things CAN and often DO get worse in this city
when consistently ineffective and inattentive incumbents are returned to their seats at City Hall?

If you want it to be the former and not the latter, please contact Chuck and offer to help him in this campaign however you can, doing what you can right now to show Comm. Sanders that he is going to be replaced by someone who can and will be a positive can-do voice for
you, common sense and financial accountability.

Chuck Kulin
1835 E. Hallandale Beach Boulevard, #130, Hallandale Beach, Florida 33009
Cell 954-804-2210 

E-mail ChuckKulin2014@gmail.com

It seems to me that we are so close to winning this pivotal seat, and so close to sending Sanders packing -but we can only get there when everyone looks themselves in the mirror and is willing to expend some time and effort in changing the dynamic and reality of this city.

There's now less than 20 days left.
What are YOU going to do?

This originally appeared at Hallandale Beach Blog on October 16, 2014

No comments:

Hallandale Beach Blog is where I try to inject or superimpose a degree
of accountability, transparency and insight onto local Broward County
government and public policy issues, which I feel is sorely lacking in
local media now. On this blog, I concentrate my energy, enthusiasm,
anger and laser-like attention on the coastal cities of Hollywood
and Hallandale Beach.

If you lived in this part of South Florida, you'd ALREADY be stuck in
stultifying traffic, paying higher-than-necessary taxes and continually
musing about the chronic lack of accountability among not only elected
govt. officials, but also of city, county and state employees as well.

Collectively, with a few rare exceptions, they couldn't be farther from the
sort of strong results-oriented, eager work-ethic mentality that local
residents deserve and expect. This is particularly true in the town I live
in, the City of Hallandale Beach, just north of Aventura and south of

There, the "Perfect Storm" of years of apathy, incompetency and cronyism
are all too readily apparent. Sadly for its residents, HB is where even
easily-solved, quality-of-life problems are left to fester for YEARS on end,
because of myopia, lack of common sense and ineffective supervisory
management. It's a city with lots of potential because of its terrific location,
yet its citizens have become numb to its outrages and screw-ups after
years of the worst kind of mismanagement and lack of foresight.

On a daily basis, they wake-up and see the same old problems that have
NEVER being adequately resolved by the city in a logical and responsible
fashion, merely kicked -once again- further down the road.

I used to ask myself, not always rhetorically, "Where are all the enterprising
young reporters who want to show that through their own hard work and
enterprise, what REAL investigative reporting can produce?"

Hearing no response, I decided to start a blog that could do some of these
things, taking the p.o.v. of a reasonable but skeptical person seeing the
situation for the first time, and wanting questions answered in a honest
and logical way that citizens have the right to expect.
Hallandale Beach Blog intends to be a catalyst for positive change.

If there's one constant gripe in South Florida, regardless of your age,
race, nationality or political persuasion, it's about the fundamental lack
of PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY here among Florida's state, regional and
local govt./agency officials.

Hallandale Beach Blog aims to be a small step towards regaining some
of that needed accountability, whether it's thru simple public scrutiny,
or requires a degree of follow-up investigation and public exposure of
incompetency, cronyism or simple negligence -South Florida's usual
governing style.

David put his hand in the bag and took out a stone and slung it. And it struck the Philistine on the head and he fell to the ground. Amen."-
Preacher Purl encouraging the underdog Hickory High basketball team before the state title game against heavily-favored South Bend Central in 1986's Hoosiers http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0091217/

Audio of pregame speech:

Nature meets man's quest for oceanfront property in HB

Nature meets man's quest for oceanfront property in HB
Looking south towards The Beach Club and the Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A from the beach, near the Hollywood cityline, May 2, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved


"So this is where our tax dollars go to die? My friend and fellow civic activist Csaba Kulin, perhaps wondering when we're FINALLY going to get the clean and inviting public beach that Hallandale Beach residents believe we're entitled to but have never received under Mayor Cooper and her Rubber Stamp Crew. Instead, we get rusty pipes in the middle of the beach and garbage cans on the beach -without lids- at the windiest place in the entire city. And a public building across the street from the beach that the public can't use for free but which city employees can -for their holiday parties." Click photo to see many more photos of the site and the original post. Or, go to http://hallandalebeachblog.blogspot.com/2012/06/latest-info-photos-re-related-groups.html

Entering Broward County, May 8, 2008

Entering Broward County, May 8, 2008
The original header photo on this blog - Entering Broward County, 2008. Gulfstream Park Race Track in center, and over on State Road A1A, the Diplomat Residences and Westin Diplomat Resort and Spa in Hollywood, and the three towers of The Beach Club in HB. BEFORE there was a Village at Gulfstream Park retail complex. May 8, 2008 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

It's long past time to put the BEACH back in Hallandale Beach

It's long past time to put the BEACH back in Hallandale Beach
For there ever to be a successful balance between business, town, and nature in Hallandale Beach, big changes will be necessary. Late afternoon, North Beach, Hallandale Beach, FL, February 10, 2012 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. While it might look nice and inviting from afar, the sad and galling reality for far too many Hallandale Beach residents who want to enjoy their public beaches, is that in the ten years under Mayor Joy Cooper and her Rubber Stamp Crew at City Hall, the city's highly-paid top bureaucrats and the city's ineffective Dept. of Public Works, the public beaches have been consistently neglected and poorly-maintained for MANY, MANY YEARS. In fact, there are several places at the beach where it's self-evident to even the casual observer that the city is NOT even in compliance with its own rules or ordinances -or even state laws- and hasn't been since I moved here in late 2003. To say nothing of showing initiative or common sense there. Yet despite the fact that the beach is an invaluable resource and the reason that many people have consciously chosen to live in Hallandale Beach instead of somewhere else in south Florida, Mayor Cooper and 3/4ths of the City Commission -and those bureaucrats- have chosen to squander time, energy and large sums of money on one terrible idea after another elsewhere in the city because of either personal connections or their push for the furtherance of crony capitalism, rather than in making the investment in making the public beaches cleaner, more attractive and more interesting for residents and guests alike. More recently, in her role as head of the Florida League of Cities, Mayor Cooper has neglected the city even more than usual, as she has flitted from one part of the state to another, acting like a Queen Bee. Believe me, the people she meets in other Florida cities in that FLC capacity have no earthly idea of what a poor job she has done for years by any sort of objective measure. In my opinion, in the year 2012, after all the dozens of fact-filled and photo-filled posts I've posted here documenting the deteriorating conditions of the city's public beaches, it's long past time to not only put the BEACH back in Hallandale, but to put genuine oversight and meaningful financial accountability to taxpayers in it as well. The citizens of this beach-side city deserve MUCH BETTER than they get with regard to beach maintenance and overall attractiveness. Ask yourself a question: If a well-managed but land-locked city like Coral Springs had a beach this size, what would it look like and how would it be managed? Now compare that image in your head with the current reality of ours under Mayor Joy Cooper. 'Nuff said!

Political Actions Speak Louder Than Words: Lies of Mayor Joy Cooper and City Manager Mike Good

Political Actions Speak Louder Than Words: Lies of Mayor Joy Cooper and City Manager Mike Good
March 3, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier, just days before the Air Supply concert on the beach, as Hallandale Beach DPW employees try to make the area "appear" to be well-maintained -when in reality, it's not- and thus fool HB taxpayers and visitors alike. This building underneath the city's iconic Water Tower, just steps from both the Atlantic Ocean and State Road A1A, was turned over to the City of Hallandale Beach on August 3rd, 2007, and yet as of September 2012, remains OFF-LIMITS to everyday HB citizens, taxpayers and residents, the true "owners" of the building, TWO YEARS later. There has STILL not been a single public open forum held by the city to gauge how citizens want to utilize it best. Instead, the building remains a veritable clubhouse for the cronies and pals of HB City Hall's elected officials and employees. And need I ask YET again, where's the American flag on the city flagpole next to the fountain? Once again, HB City Hall shows their gross incompetency by being unable to manage something as simple as keeping a flag flying. Pathetic! © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

A fish rots from the head down, and so does local government in Broward County, FL

A fish rots from the head down, and so does local government in Broward County, FL
A fish rots from the head down, and so does local government in Broward County, FL. This sign on U.S.-1 and S.E. 5th Street, across from Gulfstream Park Racing and Casino, lets you know that you're just feet away from the HB City Hall and Police Department. It's a government that gives every impression of holding itself apart and above from the citizens it's supposed to serve. The crazy thing is, they really don't think they have to follow the laws that govern everyone else in the state of Florida and the U.S., whether of logic and reason, contracts, or, more to the point for this blog, the Florida Statutes on Sunshine Laws and Public Records. City employees in Hallandale Beach routinely refuse to answer reasonable questions posed to them by residents, and often berate you for even having the nerve to ask! One of the other things that's quite shocking is the blatant disregard by the HB Police Dept. and Fire Dept. for basic safety rules. Common sense rules of behavior that are in place in every other American town, no matter how small or obscure. City employees -and friends of theirs- routinely park "their cars" directly in front of the building's east entrance, often for hours at a time. That's right, I said for HOURS at a time. While in every other town you'd find a clearly posted sign saying simply: "No Parking, Fire Zone, Cars Will be Towed," in HB, there are NO signs at all. I have personally observed parked HB city vehicles there that have prevented the HB Fire & Rescue vehicles from getting as close as necessary to the building. I've personally spoken to the individual members of Fire & Rescue after such incidents, and they were positively indignant that they are forced to put up with this sort of thing in the Year 2008. Oh, and one last thing. The lights that are supposed to illuminate this sign in front of HB City Hall HAVEN'T worked in over FOUR YEARS, either. Just like their cousin down the block on U.S.-1 at the city border with Aventura. I've told this to dozens of HB city officials, including the Mayor, City Manager, his staff, the Police Chief, a Police Captain, et al. None of them have done a thing, which is why as late as October 24. 2008, the sign was STILL dark at night! Four-and-a-half-years of nothing but darkness! Sundown, March 3, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Approaching Hallandale Beach sign on U.S.-1/South Federal Hwy.

Approaching Hallandale Beach sign on U.S.-1/South Federal Hwy.
So, CAN you see the sign welcoming you into the City of Hallandale Beach? Judge for yourself. It's between the 3rd and 4th tree. Original photo here was taken January 2007; this one taken May 8, 2008; photo by South Beach Hoosier.

City of Hallandale Beach, City of Choice

City of Hallandale Beach, City of Choice
Hallandale Beach, City of Choice. The monument sign that greets northbound drivers on U.S.-1/South Federal Hwy. at the gateway into the city as they leave the City of Aventura and Miami-Dade County in the rear window, on one of the three main streets into Hallandale Beach. Unfortunately, it's the perfect metaphor for the City of Hallandale Beach and its elected officials and employees the past 8 years: myopic and lacking in common sense. This sign, five blocks south of City Hall, was originally placed so far west on the median strip -and practically BEHIND a palm tree- that drivers actually COULDN'T actually read it even if they wanted to. In any case, because of the city's longtime gross incompetency, negligence and lack of appropriate oversight, the spotlights that were supposed to illuminate the sign at night HAVEN'T worked since about mid-January of 2004. Which is to say, yes, MUCH LONGER than the U.S.'s involvement in WW II. Welcome to the City of Hallandale Beach! Begin heavy traffic, chronic red tape and mis-adventures in government! My original photo here on the blog of this situation was taken January 2007; this one was taken May 8, 2008; photo by South Beach Hoosier. The three palm trees that had been in front of it on the median that obstructed it for so long have come and gone, with the result that for a few years you couldn't help but notice that it DIDN'T work! In February of 2009, in order to make room for a southbound left-turning lane at S.E. 5th Street into The Village of Gulfstream retail complex, the 'invisible' sign was removed and placed farther north on the media. For more than a year, despite a solar panel nearby, there were no actual light fixtures present! As of January 24, 2013, if you can believe this, with a new expensive street-lighting project along the median of U.S.-1 finally finished, where recently-planted trees now have lights shining on branches -as if that meant anything- guess what? Despite another nearby solar unit, there are STILL zero actual light fixtures pointed at the sign! ZERO! Correct, all these years and tax dollars later, the City of Hallandale Beach is STILL unable to figure out how to light this sign on the busiest street in the city at its southern gateway. Yet another sign of the ruinous reign of Mayor Joy Cooper. No attention to detail! © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Entering Hallandale Beach at night on U.S.-1/Federal Highway

Entering Hallandale Beach at night on U.S.-1/Federal Highway
Is that any better? May 11, 2008 photo by South Beach Hoosier.

Hallandale Beach STILL in the dark -FOUR years later!

Hallandale Beach STILL in the dark -FOUR years later!
You can only see this HB sign on U.S.-1 in the photo because of my camera's flash; May 11, 2008 photo by South Beach Hoosier.