“Bath salts and incense are two different beasts,” says Thomas Wright, a Boca Raton-based attorney who focuses on herbal incense laws. “It’s like saying marijuana and LSD are the same thing.”
Wright says that bath salts are “incredibly dangerous” and that the majority of manufacturers have no chemical background and are clueless about what they’re concocting. He likens the substance to “synthetic meth or synthetic PCP.”
“I’ve had guys who manufacture these bath salts come into my office and we won’t even deal with it,” he says. “There are certain things that cross the line, and this stuff is very dangerous…It’s super coke.”
Published: June 27, 2012
New Times Broward Palm Beach
The city’s operating budget deficit more than tripled last year, auditors said Monday, making the city’s already precarious financial position worse.
Despite budget-reduction measures taken to save dollars, the city spent $3.5 million more in its operating budget than it had in revenues, according to the newly released audit of the 2011 fiscal year.
The deficit in the city’s general operating fund, which covers the day-to-day costs of running the city, increased from $1.4 million at the end of the 2010 fiscal year to $4.9 million last year.
Published: June 26, 2012
Former Deerfield Beach Commissioner Sylvia Poitier doesn’t want anyone to think she ”doesn’t respect government.” It’s important that she pointed that out, because you might mistakenly come to some other conclusion when you heard about she polluted land with dry-cleaning chemicals, then wouldn’t submit the government-required report about the pollution, then wouldn’t pay the $200-a-day late fees for the report for more than a year, then would pay for the cleanup of the land, then wouldn’t pay almost $11,000 in property taxes on the business.
Published: June 25, 2012
Every once in a while, we’re reminded of the impact one letter in the alphabet can make.
Consider, for example, what happened in a recent email exchange between a Fort Lauderdale man and Broward County Commissioner Dale Holness.
Holness replied to an email from a male constituent, but left out the key letter “R”:
“Imagine how I felt after the email i received back calling a gay man Mrs…….. Was that really necessary, was it just a simple mistake on your part Mr. Holness?” the indignant Sal Gatiano wrote.
Published: June 18, 2012
October 2010: Audit by the Department of Housing and Urban Development found the city violated federal conflict-of-interest rules by not disclosing federal money was awarded to programs that had connections to Poitier and former Commissioner Gloria Battle.
Nov. 26, 2010: Independent audit determined the city poured $1.7 million into the Mango, Brazilian and Founder’s Day festivals in 2006-2008 with little accountability. Among the audit’s findings: Poitier and former commissioners Steven Gonot and Pam Militello requested free blocs of tickets to the Mango Festival and distributed them to garner political support.
November 2011: Poitier found guilty of four counts of falsifying records. A jury convicted her because she failed to publicly reveal that her brother gave a $46,000 loan to a nonprofit agency that did business with the city. She maintained throughout the trial that she didn’t do anything wrong. She was sentenced to one year of probation, 200 hours of community service and a $1,000 fine.
Published: June 17, 2012
The panel, concerned about the ever-growing pot of uncollectable fines, considered writing off the lost money, but opted to keep it on the books to help persuade lawmakers of the need for reform.
“You’re telling me a city commissioner in Lauderdale Lakes has a $3,000 fine and we’re going to write it off? Is that what I’m going to understand?” said Commissioner Morgan Bentley, referring to Eric Haynes, whose fines are pending from 2005 and 2006. “I will never vote to write off fines.”
The Commission will also ask the Legislature to raise the limit on penalties from $10,000 to $25,000.
Published: June 16, 2012
Islah Abdul Aziz has seen housing officials come and go, but few can compare with the one that toured The Palms of Deerfield Beach in May.
Nadine Jarmon, the new executive director of the Deerfield Beach Housing Authority, entered the community kitchen at The Palms. She greeted Aziz and the others and when she spotted some dirt on the bottom of a swinging door, she grabbed a sponge, knelt and scrubbed at the spot until it was clean.
That, Aziz said, is the litmus test of a leader.
Published: June 13, 2012
Former Deerfield Beach Commissioner Sylvia Poitier has landed in hot water once again — this time for dumping chemicals from her dry cleaning business in the ground, then failing to pay fines or file a report connected with her actions. She’ll be back before a judge on June 22nd where she’ll face a contempt of court charge. Fines and possible jail time could await. It’s been one bad decision after another although she still contends that through it all, she didn’t do anything wrong. Go figure.
Published: June 6, 2012
The Miami Times
It’s time to engage in a group flashback again.
Since former Broward County Commissioner Sylvia Poitier is back in the news, take a look at this old Sun Sentinel clip from the year she lost her seat to then-fledgling candidate Kristin Jacobs. The story ran Aug. 18, 1998.
POITIER, FOES SPAR OVER HER RECORD
It was a placid debate until Commissioner John Rodstrom raised his hand to ask a question.
“You’ve made such a note tonight of being open,” he said, speaking from the audience to Commissioner Sylvia Poitier. “I’d like to see your bank statement that shows your $100 contribution. Will you let me see it?”
Jacobs has accused Poitier of embarrassing the county with bad decisions and lax ethics. Her latest charge concerns $2,250 in contributions that Poitier accepted from developer Michael Swerdlow, less than two months before joining in a highly controversial vote to buy his land at Port Everglades for $120 million to expand the port.
Published: June 4, 2012
Former Deerfield Beach Commissioner Sylvia Poitier is in trouble because of the harmful chemical that her dry cleaning and laundry business put into the ground between 2005 and 2010.
She faces a hearing on June 22 to see whether she will be held in contempt of court for failing to make fine payments and to submit a required report to the Department of Environmental Protection.
If she is found to be in contempt she could owe the department $200 or more for every day the report is late. It was due in May 2011 and she has not turned it in, said department spokeswoman Christina Llorens.
Published: June 3, 2012