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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Voting for the person who will protect the Grove

I watched Al Crespo's videos of last night's Candidates Forum in Village West. I may or may not attend tonight's event at the Woman's Club. I've been hearing the same thing over and over from all candidates and to be honest, nothing new or striking has caught my attention. I do like what they are saying, I just think it comes down to personality now, since they are all basically saying the same thing. Who can take over the office and be a friend to the voters and not act like God, which has been the case here for many years.

The front runners seem to be: Teresa Sarnoff, Grace Solares and Ken Russell, possibly Javier Gonzalez. The others are not making themselves known, they are not standing out. I think Javier could easily be the front runner. More people need to get to know him.

I like Teresa a lot, not as commissioner, but as a person, and I like her life story. I just don't want a third Sarnoff term. I never wanted a first Sarnoff term.

I do believe that Javier wants to help the community and serve the community. He has been working behind the scenes on almost every major issue that has faced us in the city and village, and has not made a show about it, he has quietly done his thing to make life better. He's a regular guy, down to earth, humble, friendly and honest. He vows to protect Coconut Grove and he cares about the neighborhood. I believe Grace feels the same.

I don't believe anyone will stop big development. Developers are a greedy breed, let's face it, building multi-million dollar condos and zero-lot-line homes is not doing God's work. They don't care about quality of life and they steamroll over anyone in their way. They have given thousands of dollars to Teresa Sarnoff's campaign and nothing to the other candidates. That tells me a lot. I don't see any future commissioner reining them in. Grace talks about stopping the up-zoning and spot zoning and stopping the waivers given to developers so that they can have their way. If only the rest of the city commission felt like that. But of course, it all starts with one person and we can build from that.

All the candidates have great reasons for wanting to be district commissioner but will they strong enough for the job, what I mean is, once elected, will they hold their own? Will they be able to make their agenda happen by getting the other commissioners to side with them? I do believe the rest of the city commission cares about Coconut Grove as well as their own districts. I think that we need a person who will protect the neighborhood, care about its history, and I feel that the rest of the city commission will go along with them. We cannot keep selling out the village. The majority of Coconut Grove residents want the mass development to stop. They live here and not downtown or on Brickell because they like small village life. 

In Coconut Grove, when people ask questions at these forums, they don't ask about taxes and climate change and traffic (although that is related), they ask about over-development. How do we stop it? I think the first step is to vote for someone that is not in the developers' pockets. 

For linking to this one story, just click on the time it was posted & just this story will open for sharing - only through social media. Not copying and pasting.


Blogger HectorinMiami said...

Tom, with all due respect, your analysis is based on the candidate who raised a lot of money to get their name out. That's precisely the same reason why people support Sarnoff - she has all the money! This is why Rosy Palomino is pushing campaign finance reform (link).

You can't just pick the next commissioner according to how much carefully-designed lobbyist claptrap you are sent in the mail. That's the same as letting the lobbyists pick your candidate for you.

Additionally, the Grove doesn't need protecting. It needs "restoring" by the same people who call it home. The little guy can't do business in the Grove leaving it up to big brands and deep-pocketed interests - that has to change. And if the next commissioner is elected because they have "money" then they will only stand in the way of the good people who already know what to do to cure the ills plaguing the Grove.

And lastly, with all due respect to the candidates you mention... for as much as they say that they love the Grove, what have the accomplished for the Grove? I can't accept "I'll do something once I am commissioner". Show me your track record of getting things done. ---only Rosy Palomino has a list of accomplishments that says I care and I'm not waiting for a vote before I give back to my community (link).


Hector Roos
(305) 300-7237

September 29, 2015 10:24 AM  
Blogger James said...

I'm supporting Javier myself. He seems to care about the Grove, but at the same time be reasonable and realistic. There is too much money to be made to keep everything out. Some of the candidates I've heard sound like they want to bring the Grove back to the way it was in the 60's, that is unrealistic, and never going to happen. With Javier I feel like the best interest of the Grove will the number one priority, including responsible growth.

September 29, 2015 10:45 AM  
Blogger alcrespo said...

The argument of the candidate at the bottom of the pile is always that they are the "pure" ones, and the ones on top of them are the ones who are corrupt, bought and paid for. Sometimes that's true, but as often as not, the candidates at the bottom are there for a reason that has very little to do with money. Most of the time these candidates are just poor candidates, incompetent, arrogant and incapable of connecting with voters.

Being a successful candidates requires many skills, and connecting with voters is the most important. Rosy Palomino can scream from the rooftops until hell freezes over that she's the best and most qualified candidate, but the truth of the matter is that she's not, and that's why she can't raise money not only from "developers" but from the small, grassroots voters.

I predicted last week that I thought she might at best come in fifth, and most likely sixth. I'm thinking now that I was no kind. She might come in sixth, and might possible come in seventh, and it won't have anything to do on whether she refuses to talk money from lobbyists and developers, but because she's just a bad candidate who a lot of people have come to dislike.

September 29, 2015 1:00 PM  
Blogger HectorinMiami said...

Hey Al, why don't you attack someone who deserves it like Comm. Sarnoff? People have a right to know about campaign finance reform. I've asked you repeatedly, why are you attacking a real community activist with a list of civic accomplishments over decades, someone who is trying to level the playing field for everyone?

But wait! There's actually a lot more to talk about than even campaign finance reform which you don't want to talk about either!

$$$ Million of Artificial Turf contracts that are going to the same ONE contractor. Who is that contractor and what is his connection to the commissioners?

6 closed toxic parks including Miami Marine Stadium getting the artificial turf! There are a lot of pocket parks that have gotten the treatment too (like Lincoln Park).

Biggest budget in the history of the city of Miami that is being used by commissioners as money giveaways to friends ($82 million increase from last year!)

Lobbyists supporting candidates and what they are getting for their support if their candidate wins (and precisely what we lose in the process, too).

In all the time Al that you have to write, why don't you pick a topic that covers just one of the waste, fraud and abuse stories mentioned above.

You have my number if you want to talk. My door isn't closed to you.

Hector Roos
(305) 300-7237

September 29, 2015 2:12 PM  
Blogger alcrespo said...


I hate to have to do this on someone else's blog, but you're a complete moron, and a fool to boot.

You rail about why I don't attack someone like Commissioner Sarnoff who deserves it. Are you kidding? When it comes to going after Sarnoff there's no one else in the entire world has devoted more time and energy going after Sarnoff. If it wasn't for me, most folks would still be believing that he was only occasional corrupt instead of corrupt from the top of his head to the tips of his shoes.

I've taken Sarnoff on so many times and on so many issues that I would venture to bet that I could walk into a lot bars and restaurants in Miami and say I'm looking for The Lying Weasel Dick, and everyone would know who I meant.

As for my not"going after" other people, only days ago, when I wrote about Grace Solares, and here's what you wrote to me:


Congratz! And very timely. People deserve to know the truth.

Hector C Roos
Contact: (305) 300-7237"

Since I'm not on anyone's payroll, and because it's my time and money I think I'm entitled to pick and choose the stories that I decide that I want to write about. Don't lecture me about what I do or don't write about, Instead, get off your fat ass, start you own blog, and write about the stories you think are important.

And the next time you want to pretend that you're a campaign manager, maybe you might want to go out and find a better candidate.

al crespo

(Thanks Tom)

September 29, 2015 2:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our community is fortunate that we have Mr. Crespo to help us better understand our political system, legal process as well as what’s wrong with our elected leaders. For years he has proven his expertise at filing lawsuits and filing public records requests. This expertise is not a result of attending law school or even from volunteer work as a community activist. No this expertise was earned through years of time served as a Jailhouse Lawyer, a colloquial term used to refer to an inmate in a jail or other prison who, though usually never having practiced law nor having any formal legal training to assist themselves and other inmates in legal matters relating to their sentence. So if Mr. Crespo is so wise, honest, community minded and popular, then perhaps he should be running for office. Guess it’s just easier to sit at home, complain and criticize, than it is to actually create and do something positive to benefit our community.

Seems to me that all of the legitimate District-2 Candidates are campaigning against Teresa Sarnoff. They don’t feel she is qualified and has never accomplished anything for our community. They also feel that it is a travesty for her husband’s attempt to find a loophole in the Two Term Limit Rule. The irony is that so many opposing candidates may do a Ralph Nader, split the vote and help Teresa be viscous.

As far as the District-2 Candidates are concerned… There is only one that has proven years of defending our community. That has stood up and spoken truth to power on countless occasions. That is probably the only candidate that will continue to defend our community even if they are not victorious in this election. Thank goodness for Grace Solares! District-2 and all of the City of Miami will be most fortunate if she is elected to be our new Commissioner.

September 29, 2015 4:45 PM  
Blogger alcrespo said...

In response to the above writer who asks, if I am so wise, honest, community minded and popular, then why don't I run for office? I would if I could, but even though I did my time and "paid my debt to society" and have been out of prison for over 31 years, I am prohibited from voting and running for office in Florida.

As for your claims that I was a "Jailhouse Lawyer," you obviously know nothing about me, or my activities in prison. If you did you would realize that your description of me doesn't even come close to what I managed to accomplish from inside a 6' X 10' prison cell.

Because I can't run for office, my only opportunity to make a difference in my community is to do what I do, including going to all the meetings that I do and videotaping them so that folks who can't attend can at least look at the videos if they are interested in what is happening to their community.

Al Crespo

September 29, 2015 5:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@anon 4:45PM

You're getting paid or just Grace's friend/family? Your conventional political babble is insulting to anyone's intelligence. Tired of it. Same goes for others..

Guess we'll much like people feel all over the USA now: anti-politicians.

Tired of the Sarnoffs and Solares or Bushes and Clintons of this world. Blah, blah, blah,,

Ken or Javier seem the obvious choices.

Will they allow construction to go on forever at every corner, as in 27th ave?

Do they like those abominable concrete "park benches" on the new, beautiful regatta park?

Is the Grove getting a Trolley or just more Malls and High rises?

September 29, 2015 5:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry Al, but you could file some papers and get your voting rights back - - - easily. No, you enjoy bitching, moaning, complaining, back stabbing, sitting on your fat ass in an apartment that your Mother left to you, while hiding behind a computer key board tap, tap, taping out hate, anger and inferiority, however, you are colorful, entertaining and no doubt feel important - - - - as you look in some mirror.

September 29, 2015 6:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sarnoff and Latin Builders Association will buy the seat

September 29, 2015 8:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have never met Al Crespo but have read his blog. I have met Solares and Teresa Sarnoff and one other candidate Wood and been around the Grove and Miami long enough to have an informed opinion and the only one who has impressed me is Crespo. With the demise of the Miami Herald and others this towns politicians think that anything goes because of the absence of watchdogs like the Herald in the past. Crespo seems to be the only source for the chicanery being tolerated in the last ten years. You guys need to thank this man for what he does for the time and effort it takes with no pay and it seems for some with no thanks. And I can personally assure you having met him and briefly worked on issues with him and his wife that Mark Sarnoff is a genuine Major League ---hole of the highest caliber.

September 29, 2015 10:18 PM  
Anonymous al crespo said...

Once again, another moron who knows nothing about me runs their mouth. I can't get my voting rights back without a Presidential Pardon because among other things I robbed banks and was convicted in Federal Court. Go check out the requirements for people convicted of federal crimes.

As for the apartment that my mother left to me, again, you're a moron who obviously knows nothing about me. Let's say that my mother left me a condo? Is that to be looked at as a crime, or the expression of a love by a mother wealthy enough to own multiple properties, including a house that she lived in for over 60 years until I was forced to put her in a nursing home.

But that's not really what happened. For legal reasons that I don't think are anyone's business I decided at the time to have my mother be listed as the co-owner. I bought the condo, and after a couple years my mother quick-claimed her half to me - years incidentally - before she died. So while my mother did leave me a number of things that I'm grateful for, my condo was not one of them.

As for where I got the money to buy my little condo - $45,000 at the time - I did at the time have a successful career as a producer of music videos, of which I produced well over 100, plus countless TV Commercials, Corporate films, and a half-dozen films as an Assistant Director.

Of course, maybe the person who wrote this accusation was raised as a mongrel without the love of a mother, but then that's your problem. I trust I've answered those allegations to everyone's satisfaction, and if I didn't, you can kiss my ass.

September 29, 2015 11:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonderful how Politics brings the best in people.


September 30, 2015 8:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The simple fact is that anyone who wants this job is suspect. The hours are long, the criticism never ending, and the pay is nearly non-existent - at least the legitimate pay. Therefore, anyone who wants this job so badly is getting something out of it that we don't see - meaning it's either intangible or under the table (that includes promises for future compensation, like Marc Sarnoff has lines up).

A couple of these candidates are ego-driven, one just old & bored, and several others have their eye on something.

Altruism does not exist - it's utopia.

-That Guy

September 30, 2015 1:15 PM  

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