Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Miami's newest signature building by taxpayers? The Nail Clipper … Guest Blog by Al Crespo


Let me simply my arguments.

1. A developer whose goal is to build a private, commercial project that he repeatedly stated would be built with private funds now wants the State of Florida - and the taxpayers - to help finance its construction.

2. No one knows how much money he wants - not even folks in Tallahassee, whom I've been in touch with. The amount of money being sought is a secret.

3. The building will be built on city owned waterfront property that is already leased to another company - the Bayside Marketplace folks - which means that this 1000 foot tall, $430 million building is going to be built on land obtained through a sub-lease.

4. There are no documents that I've been able to find that indicate whether this project will pay Impact Fees, and don't think that every project - especially all those high-rise condos and office building have paid Impact Fees, because some of them haven't, and almost all of the rest paid fees lower that what their impact to our qualify of life required that they pay.

5. The public records in the possession of City of Miami officials - specifically the Facilities Management Department - related to this project have been purposely withheld, as evidenced in Part II of my video where I detail the steps that I've had to take so far to get only a portion of the documents that HAVE to exist in order for this project to go forward.

6. The local news media, starting with Miami Today and the Miami Herald have failed to adequately report on this project - especially this effort by Berkowitz to go after public money after he stated that he wasn't going to do so - and consequently for the most part have acted as PR flacks instead of journalists.

There is absolutely no difference between Jeffrey Berkowitz wanting public money for this project and Steven Ross wanting public money for Sun Life Stadium, or Loria wanting public money for the Marlin's stadium or David Beckam wanting either public money or public land for his stadium.

I'm not opposed to any of these project, but I am opposed to the taxpayers having to pay the tab, given the myriad of serious problems that we have in this county that impact negatively on our quality of life.

That's where public money should and needs to be spent, not on a 1000 foot observation tower that Berkowitz expects to make him and his other investors gobs of money!


Anonymous said...

Al Crespo is acting as an investigative reporter. Crespo gets the documents and E-mails. Perhaps the Miami Herald could find a reporter to research this story instead of just printing the drivel provided by the promoter and his flacks? For example, the proposed site is on public waterfront land. Shouldn't there be a Voter Referendum?

Anonymous said...

Given how they dealt with the stadium issue, it may not be as easy as you think for these kind of people to pimp off the taxpayers at the state level.

Anonymous said...

They will not disclose the lease terms or projected revenue until the last minute, like the beach convention center project. So obvious.

Anonymous said...

There's a lot of space on the south face of the building for a bright, L.E.D. billboard.

Like Sarah Palin said in the 2008 presidential campaign, people will say: "I can see the billboard from my house in Homestead."

Advertising income will defray the public expense.

Such a deal.

Anonymous said...

Great rendering.

Anonymous said...

Start the recall now! Don't let this get any momentum.

Anonymous said...

The "project" already has 1-2 approvals from the City of Miami Planning Department. No chance for a crime there, right?

Anonymous said...

Berkowtiz stated the project would be funded by rich Chinese people looking for green cards. Then why hire lobbyists to get tax dollars from the County and Tallahassee?

Anonymous said...

It is a forceps

Al Crespo said...

I just discovered that the guys over at ExMiami analyzed the documents that I posted apart of my Skyrise Miami story, and given that so much smarter than me, it quite frankly amazed me that what's afoot is a lot more than I even thought was going on.

Props to Eye On Miami, ExMiami and Curbed Miami for picking up this story. Check their the analysis of the documents by going here:


Anonymous said...

ExMiami blog did a great job. Berkowitz and General Growth Properties sure hate taxpayers.

Anonymous said...

Where are the Feds? Why aren't Herald Editors ordering reporters to read the fine print?

Anonymous said...

Miami Herald discovered SkyRise Tower is up for $10 Mil in tax dollars in Tallahassee... Really? After Berkowitz and his flacks stated he would use 100% private funding?