Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Great Pretender

Remember this pledge made by the mayor? Some people thought they were getting a man of integrity who was hell bent on streamlining county government and making the county more efficient. If you look closely however, you will see that the Mayor is using the diversionary tactic that most major cities across the country and that is: The budget deficit is due to the salaries and benefits received by public employees. In December 2011, the Miami-Dade Chapter of the Police Benevolent Association (PBA) agreed to concessions to avoid any layoffs but that was not good enough. (

Mayor Gimenez has decided that he will use his office as a bully pulpit to settle old scores. What is happening now does not have a damn thing to do with the budget. (

Instead, the mayor is using his only opportunity to “stick it” to local law enforcement because they never supported and spoke out against all of his acrimonious, mean spirited and dumb-ass decisions. The additional 5% that the mayor is asking for will not put a dent in the county deficit. Mayor Gimenez is a super-virus that is destroying County departments and diminishing County services. All County employees have all ready given up a lot in salary, benefits and incentives. Soon, County employees will have to pay a fee to come to work if the Mayor continues on his so-called fake austerity crusade.
The one thing that has always concerned me is that residents in Miami-Dade County relied too heavily on the words of their local, state, and federal politicians. Many people never take the time to investigate what they are being told and the reason they are being told something. Mr. Gimenez, who from henceforth will be known as the “Great Pretender,” has a large following, including many media outlets and well-respected local news anchors reporters. What they don’t see or refuse to see, is that the Great Pretender is diverting their attention from substantive issues and his own character flaws by staging this so-called “battle” with local law enforcement over an additional 5% increase in healthcare cost. Truth is, even if the PBA agreed to the additional 5%, Carlos Gimenez, the Great Pretender, would still demote and lay-off law enforcement officers because his hatred for local law enforcement is greater than his commitment to his oath of office and to the people of Miami-Dade County.

This meeting will now come to order.

Agenda Item #1

In 2010, the Great Pretender proposed legislation to raise the salaries of County Commissioners despite the fact the economy was in a recession.

Agenda Item #2

True or False? Mayor Gimenez is the mayor of integrity, austerity, and anti-cronyism? 
Before you answer, let me provide you with some facts:

Miami-Dade Mayor (Carlos J. Gimenez) talks about fiscal responsibility, but he doesn’t practice it. Many of the mayor’s cronies from the city of Miami fire department are milking taxpayers like a dairy farmer does a cow.

  • William Bryson and Genaro Iglesias, both retired from the city of Miami, were appointed to positions of fire chief and vice mayor, in Miami-Dade. The Miami Herald (October 27, 2011)
  • “The deputy mayors’ salaries, which ranges from low of $225,000 to high of $267,000.” The Miami Herald (August 4, 2011)
  • William Bryson and Genaro Iglesias receive each an additional $10,000 per month for their pension–$120,000 annually!
  • Mayor Carlos Gimenez receives, in addition to his salary, another $140,000 for his pension as a retired firefighter.
  • A possible conflict has forced Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez to sit out the awarding of a $50 million contract to a local construction company that employs his son Julio and uses his other son Carlos Jr. as its lobbyist. Munilla Construction Management submitted the lowest bid out of seven firms vying to be the general contractor on miscellaneous construction projects at the county’s airport. As Miami-Dade government’s chief executive, Gimenez is supposed to ultimately decide if MCM get the deal.” Miami New Times Blogs (September 23, 2011).
Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez is demanding concessions from county employees in a bid to cut spending. At the same time he is handing hefty salaries to his new coterie of top advisors that rival -- and even surpass -- some of the pricey compensation packages paid in the previous administration ousted by a voter recall.

Gimenez’s kitchen cabinet, announced Thursday, will be:

  • Ed Marquez, a former Miami city manager who will make $267,000 to serve as one of five deputy mayors, a newly created position similar to the previous job of assistant county manager;
  • Jack Osterholt, who is leaving his post as executive director of the South Florida Regional Planning Council and will earn $250,000 as a deputy mayor;
  • Genaro “Chip” Iglesias, the former Key Biscayne village manager and previous Gimenez aide, who will now serve as chief of staff and deputy mayor for $225,000;
  • Alina T. Hudak, the county manager and top administrator when Gimenez was elected last month, who will stay on as a deputy mayor earning $259,000;
He justified the salaries by saying, ““I want the best people available to help me reduce the size of this government and reduce costs,” Gimenez said. “Sometimes that doesn’t come cheaply.” Well, let’s see if taxpayers are getting the “bang” for their buck.

  • Third-quarter foreclosure filing rose 13.2 percent to 9,170 in Miami-Dade County.” The Miami Herald (October 14, 2011)
  • “Bank repossessions – the final stage of the foreclosures process – rose 50 percent to 2,296 in Miami-Dade during the third quarter.” The Miami Herald (October 14, 2011)
  • The unemployment rate in Miami-Dade County is 11.5%, among the highest in the nation! Nothing has been done to change it.
  • 1,286 jobs were eliminated in Miami-Dade government and 13 libraries were closed since Mayor Carlos Gimenez become mayor in July 2011. But don’t worry, over 3100 top “managers” will not face reduction of their six-figure salaries!
  • Police officers and Correctional Officers will be facing demotions and layoffs on February 07, 2012. So much for job retention and creation.
  • On July 07th, 2011, Mayor Gimenez told the County Commissioners they had to approve issuing $42 million in bonds to the Miami Marlins because they met all their obligations and Miami-Dade would be on the hook for any cost overruns caused by delaying the $42 million. Really? If the deal was on the “up-and-up,” why is the US Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) investigating the deal? You mean the Great Pretender did not seize this opportunity to try and protect taxpayer dollars by seeing what he could legally do to withhold all payments pending the outcome of the investigation?
Mayor Gimenez, like many other mayors and governors around the country, has waged war on public employees. I hate to burst the bubble of those of you who support these measures but you cannot and will not balance the budget on the backs of workers. Furthermore, this whole austerity “scampaign” is nothing more than a ploy to cover-up and divert attention from his own short-comings as mayor.

Meeting adjourned.

"What’s up muthaf***** where my money at? You gon’ make me come down to your house where your mommy at, mummy-wrap the kids and have em’ cryin’ for their mommy back, the dummy that your daddy is tell him I just want my racks (what he owes me)."

-Jay-Z (American Hip-Hop Mogul)