Third lawsuit filed against Grove Bay project
This third suit claims that there were not the usual proper three bids received by the City of Miami for the project.
The suit also claims that the City-owned waterfront property may be leased only if all of
the following conditions are satisfied:
A) the terms of the lease allows reasonable public access to the water and reasonable public use of the property, and complies with other Charter waterfront setback and view-corridor requirements; and
B) the terms of the lease result in a fair return to the City based on two independent appraisals; and
C) the use is authorized under the existing comprehensive plan of the City; and
D) the procurement methods prescribed by ordinances are observed; and
E) the contract does not exceed five years and does not contain an automatic renewal or termination penalty.
Also, there were no discussions or references during a July 25, 2013 City Commission
Meeting that the proposed lease includes a contractual provision that allows Grove Bay to use this City-owned waterfront property for Casino Gambling as an “other contemplated use” if and when gambling becomes legal in the City of Miami solely upon receiving a favorable vote by the City Commission.
The state requires a municipal referendum ballot summary to be “printed in clear and unambiguous language” and to be “an explanatory statement, not exceeding 75 words in length, of the chief purpose” of the enabling resolution or ordinance. This does not, the ballot question is non-descript.
Here is the ballot question:
"Proposed lease of city-owned waterfront and submerged lands in Coconut Grove
"Shall the City be authorized to lease approximately 7 acres of waterfront and submerged lands in Coconut Grove to Grove Bay Investment Group, LLC, providing for 1) a minimum of $1.4 million in guaranteed annual rent and 2) approximately $17.9 million of privately funded improvements to redevelop an existing marina and public baywalk, construct restaurants and, partially fund a public parking garage for a 50 year term with two 15 year renewal options? "
The suit states that "The November 5, 2013 Referendum ballot title and ballot summary are misleading, fraudulent and deliberately deceptive because they do not reflect the chief purpose of the enabling resolution, Resolution R-13-0305, which was adopted only for the stated purpose of seeking voter approval pursuant to Charter Section 29-B."
In other words, the City wants the votes, tricking the voters in the process, thereby misleading the voters.
Here is the full lawsuit.
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