Thursday, November 11, 2010

Is Norman Braman Foiled Again? By Geniusofdespair

Auto Guy Braman lost the suit on the Marlin's stadium. Is he destined to lose the petition drive to recall the mayor as well?

Here is the dilemma. According to the Home Rule Charter Braman cannot collect any more than 25 percent of the valid signatures from voters registered in any single County Commission District. However, most of his collecting was in the Little Havana, Hialeah and Westchester area. Braman submitted about 100,000 signatures, twice as many as needed. A legal eagle friend said:

They turned in almost 100,000 signatures according to the papers and most of the signature sites were concentrated in certain districts, you cannot place on Harvey Ruvin the burden of determining whose signature to discard so as not to exceed 13,000 signatures (25%) in any given district.

In this case -- more might be a curse. If Ruvin stops counting after getting to the magic number of 52,000 of "signatures required" (the wording in the charter doesn't say "submitted"), it is very likely that he has counted a concentration from at least one district over the 25% mark. That is quite a fly in the ointment. Or does Ruvin have to keep counting to the end to alleviate this snafu that would invalidate the petitions for the first 52,000? I smell a lawsuit. Press "read more" to see County Attorney's opinion:


Anonymous said...

When we were collecting for Florida Hometown Democracy we were short in some districts. As long as we submitted BEFORE the deadline we just kept going. Why can't Mr. Braman keep submitting till the 60 days is up?

Anonymous said...

These people will do anything to subvert the will of the people.

Anonymous said...

Ruvin wrote this letter October 15th. Braman submitted the petitions on November 5th I think. Did Ruvin tell Braman about the 25% rule concern?

David said...

To play the game to win, you have to know and follow the rules or be penalized. Even though I do not support the recall due to its proximity to the end of the mayor's term limited time in office and the requisite associated expense, it is a shame you have to jump through so many hoops to get to the dance.

Geniusofdespair said...

Next stop Mr. Braman:

CHARTER CHANGE...what we needed in the first place. Or throw out the whole damn thing.

Anonymous said...

There are run offs in some of the municipalities. Perhaps he can send people over to get signatures during those elections...or maybe he can ask Patric Fiori's people to get them while he is going door-to-door asking if people sent in their absentee ballots.

Honestly, Palmetto Bay residents, consider voting for Bev Gerald.

The Jolly Antichrist said...

Meh, cut the Mr. Stuff, he's just Braman.

And, he's going to blow a blood vessel when he loses in court again.

Anonymous said...

This would be a very fitting end to Braman's mischief. I just hope Braman was stupid enough not to follow the rules -- again.

I happen to think Alvarez is a boy scout and as honest as they come.

But even if you do not like Alvarez, it does not make sense to hold a $4 million election to remove Alvarez from office when he is already a term-limited lame duck. That is stupid. And it also mean-spirited.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the petitions were submitted in categories, such as by district? But then elections could as well count all one district?

Anonymous said...

Braman will simply keep adding signatures as is needed. Carlos Alvarez is in trouble.
I don't suppose there is anything to keep Carlos Alvarez from running for mayor again if he is removed, is there?

Anonymous said...

Yes if he has no shame (which he doesn't) the Mayor can stand for election after the reacll.'
Anon re "Mean spirited" raising taxes 14% during the great recession to give county employees a raise and give out goodies to organizations that do little or nothing (except garner votes for incumbents) is Mean Spirited.

Anonymous said...

I'm still stuck on the fact Mayor Alvarez and some County Commissioners thought it was okay to have over 3,000 government employees making of $100K per year + whatever other benefits and raise our taxes and give another salary raise. Whatever happened to "Public Service". There's something really wrong when Government worker's make more that private sector worker's! The payroll at the County level needs to be examined by an outside auditor and we should really get a report as to what other County's payrolls look like for the same job with a similar type of population count. (I'd exclude any County in CA though, they're worse than Miami Dade).

I support the recalls but I'd also like to see the Charter changes on the ballots that Carlos Gimenez keeps proposing, but the GOE Committee keeps rejecting.

Anonymous said...

Who is paying 14% more in taxes? Name the number? Name the number of commercial properties that are paying more taxes?

Over 57% of homesteaded properties (those are the ones that people live in) are paying more taxes because for over 10 years they benefited from Save our Homes and payed nothing or less - this is a recapture time. Tell the truth people.

out of sight said...

Far as the 3000 employees making 100k; has anyone further checked to see if they are file clerks or if they are section heads that started working for the county when they were 20 years old and have been here 42 years and manage 35 people and manage a budget of 5 million dollars?

Or are they county attorneys that would be commanding 400 a hour in the private sector? The legal department needs to make sure they maintain a competitive law firm - precisely because they will be facing the 400 a hour attorneys in court.

It matters.

Anonymous said...

"Who is paying 14% more in taxes?"

Carlos is that you or one of your six figure minions?

OK MR(S) county employee let me give you a simple math lesson when you raise the millage then everyone is paying 14% MORE than they would have had the millage remained the same. Comprende?

"Recapture Time"
weve been captive of runaway expansive government run by over paid knuckle draggers like you for decades, go recapture your brain and comoon sense.

Anonymous said...

$400 an hour attorneys are few and far between in this economy and mostly a figment of your county employee imagination.

Plus what about the retirement benefits and low stress, compared to private sector attorneys who have to collect what they bill. County attorneys get their check regardless because taxpayers are a "captive" clientele.

Plus as we see from letter on this post from Mr. Cuevas Taxpayers best interest are not represented by county attorneys office.

Anonymous said...

I don't see how Ruvin can do anything but go through all the petitions to see if there are a sufficient number. The opinion is only saying that there must be at least 13,000 valid signatures in at least 4 districts. Seems pretty simple if one hired professionals to do the petition gathering...

Anonymous said...

People, think. the rules are in place so that the will of the people is not circumvented.... by oh I dunno, some rich person with a personal axe to grind...?

The people voted the Mayor in. There is a process to take out an elected official that has committed an unforgiveable error. But there have to be rules to this process, and if some rich person can't find out what the rules are and follow them.... well gee isn't that his problem?

Anonymous said...

"if some rich person can't find out what the rules are and follow them.... well gee isn't that his problem?"

If a "rich" guy can't get pased the gauntlet (not a process) us regular folks are REALLY screwed.

The highest concentration of rich people in Miami Dade County work at 111 NW 1st street (The county building).

Anonymous said...

last anonymous, there is a process and that the rules apply to the rich people and the poor when trying to recall an elected official.

I am not saying that the mayor's right... I agree all those people make way too much money... but that's been going on for years at the County.

Just because you are rich and your initials are NB, does not mean the county clerk is going to do it your way and not follow the rules of the established process.

think about it. take the emotion and the issue out of the equation.

Anonymous said...

$400 an hour attorneys are few and far between in this economy and mostly a figment of your county employee imagination.

Obviously, this poster has not tried to hire an attorney lately... The county legal office is the last line of defense against claims against the county. If those attorneys lose in court, then the taxpayers get socked - even if the county has a liability cap, it still can hurt when you get hit that cap times the number of crazies that see the county as a easy target for making money by suing.

Anonymous said...

Billions of dollars do not confer immunity against the ravages of old age. Undoubtedly, Norman Braman has already reached that point in life: He's too old to maintain a measure of reality within his little projects, and if he trusts the people who surround him, he's doomed to fail, as well. Braman sleeps with the enemy and doesn't even realize it! Hey! If he truly believes that the Republican Party is the "great defender of Israel," he will believe anything. LOL

Anonymous said...

"People, think. the rules are in place so that the will of the people is not circumvented.... by oh I dunno, some rich person with a personal axe to grind...?

The people voted the Mayor in. There is a process to take out an elected official that has committed an unforgiveable error. But there have to be rules to this process, and if some rich person can't find out what the rules are and follow them.... well gee isn't that his problem?"

Ok, I don't know where to start with this, but, you have got to be kidding me! Personal ax to grind. First off, the reason Braman has to jump in to begin with is that the unreformable majority on the BCC has made citizen generated petition drives almost impossible to accomplish. Gimenez tried to push a referendum on eliminating those hurdels again, just this week, only to get one second from Sosa, and no other vote.

By the way, the over 100K signatures that have been obtained as of today equalls the amount of votes that Mr. Alvarez was elected with. Those people are not millionares. They are pissed, and rightly so. All this administration has done is waste money, lie to the public, and take care of their own, whether its up on the 29th floor (where you probabl reside, say hi to Carlitos for me), or part of the Marlins ownership group. Enough is enough, and Braman has followed the rules. If there are enough votes for the recall to happen, the only person to blame is Alvarez himself for being an incompetent Mayor.

Why push so hard for a strong mayor, only to increase your salary by more than 100K over you predecessor (the rational being that you are actually running the county day to day as strong mayor), only to pay a County Manager (and a pitiful one at that) close to half a MILLION dollars, to do the job you asked the voters to give to you!!!!???


Anonymous said...

minus the ones that get paid overtime you are down to 1300 - in an organizational of this size executive % making 6 figure salaries in the private sector is 9% only 4.6% of staff make six figures - based on studies done around the country all government positions are not paid commensurate with their counterparts in the private sector.

Who make this hysteria up on Spanish radio - i feel like i ma back in Cuba - do your due diligence and read and understand the facts. I am truly getting embarrassed to listen to the ignorance on the radio and I am Cuban - stop this craziness. When they cut we will be like Colorado springs - doors closed and no service . Do you understand that?

Anonymous said...

I work in the county - 12 hours a day, I supervise 128 people, I am on call 24x7. I get no overtime, I work six days a week. I am paying more this year for insurance and I have not had a raise in 4 years!!!!!!! 4 years guys! Get the facts straight - this community once demolished by Brahman hysteria (BTW - do we know how many cars he is selling because of this - he is a business man and this is a game). If he means business he needs to pay for the election that will cost over 6 million dollars.

Anonymous said...

This post was about petition signatures...not salaries. Get back on topic.

Anonymous said...

Tell the truth to people who are signing the petitions and then we can be back on point in this discussion. This is about salaries, listen to the radio - it called the BLAME GAME. Carlos paid raises, Carlos has a vehicle, Carlos gave raises. Raise my foot! When is $50 million less in tax revenue considered a tax increase. Look at your trim and tax notice - you pay for many other things than MDC - talk about Save Our Home and educate the people on what it was and the ramification of the assessments and market values today. No lets talk about county raises lets talk about the six figure salaries - this is about the recall. Tell the Truth! Carlos is not a politician so he looks stupid, inept and ignorant - he wont go on camera, he wont feed into it, for this he can SLEEP AT NIGHT.
Tell the Truth! Stop WITH THE LIES - TELL Miami WHAT THE ENTIRE COUNTY INCLUSIVE OF 35 MUNICIPALITIES WILL BE AFTER THE RECALL AND 6 MILLION DOLLARS - WE CAN CLOSE THE LIBRARIES AND STOP FEEDING THE ELDERLY, MASS TRANSIT 1/2 THE ROUTES, GARBAGE PICKUP ONCE A WEEK AND OH WE ARE THE CITY BEAUTIFUL, oh more potholes, and dead dogs and more crime like in the 90's. Per captia today is $552 - back in 1998 $618 - less employees - TELL THE TRUTH!!!! LETS SEE WHO COMES HERE THEN - THEY DO NOT NEED TO EAT - THEY ARE MINIONS!!right? Have you signed the petition - have you been on welfare, have you paid your mortgage - stay on task and watch what happens - it is a sad day for all in Miami-Dade county whether you believe it or not. Watch what we become - bad enough how the rest of the US looks at us - the recall makes no difference - the next one will be worse - TELL THE TRUTH about the budget!

Geniusofdespair said...

Are you nuts? I did not write about the budget. So why should I be accused of not telling the truth about the budget? I don't particularly care about the budget-- never did. This post is about how to interpret the home rule charter as it relates to the recall. That is it. No budgets - no salaries. Nada. Don't be so dramatic or obvious.

Anonymous said...

That anonymous poster has mistaken Eye on Miami for Spanish language radio.

Geniusofdespair said...

Actually I tell the truth when I ask people to sign. I say: Natacha Seijas voted in favor of raising taxes by approving the budget, she always votes to move the UDB line, she ate manatees in Cuba and wants them removed from the canal near her condo and she insults citizens who appear before her.

The people only care about the tax part. The other part is for me.

Anonymous said...

Dramatic and obvious agrees the charter needs to be changed

Mickey D said...

Genious its obvious that Carlos Alavrez rapid response Brigade has invaded your blog armed with halve truths and talking points.
They are trying to turn this into an argument about NB and not about the issue at hand A TAX INCREASE DURING THE GREAT RECESSION.
The counties budget is still bloated and the county is full of whinning biatches who are overpaid and half of them aren't qualified or motivated enough to work at a Mickey Ds drive thru.

Anonymous said...

Since when do blogs not allow opinions - you have one I have one. That is the truth and you and everyone else, NB, Micky D, Carlos Alvarez, the bitches int he county the ah.... in the community have one. I do not believe in the recall. I do not believe in the words that are being said and time will prove what Miami will end up being - worse than it is today. Obviously some people believe they know more than another - so be it. My comment on the recall is that it is based on hysteria and half truth - like my statements. So be it - good luck in your smear campaign an intolerance for a venue of opinions - everybody has them. Obviously, counterpoint in a dictatorship world is not appreciated or accepted. Hope everyone you know fares well in their community needs being met. Oh you work for NB so that is a non issue for. you God bless this community when people such as those who know everything take over and make it the most wonderful place in the world today be a place run by politician and half-truths make a city not to be a part of. Simple minds, wow, a blog is a forum - so much for the form of public opinion. Democracy at its best - so quick to turn and point out the deficiencies of others. The mirror is a good place to start. I loved these blogs, as of today no more. Good luck Raul! Can anyone say teaparty?

fireman said...

I am one of the county employes who made over $100K last year with overtime. I am a fireman. I am the one who drags your lifeless bodies from your smoke filled homes. I am a paramedic. The one you call when your suffering a heart attack and have a family that relies on you to support them. I am a hazardous materials technician. I work in toxic environments to resolve releases of chemicals that threaten your homes and businesses. I am a rescue diver. The one who goes into canals at all hours of the day and conditions to remove your loved ones when they have lost control of their car and it has gone into a canal.

Yes. I do all of these jobs as a firefighter. I have a bachelor's degree and several associate degrees. The agency I work for has an annual increase in demand for service. Fire and rescue vehicles have to be properly staffed at all times. That is why there is a need for overtime. There has been no hiring of firefighters, probably in the past two years, with none planned in the forseeable future.

I'm tired of the firefighters getting pinned as to why taxes were raised. I would just as soon give up the 3% raise than have my brothers and sisters crucified on a daily basis in the media.

Yes, I can retire after 25 years of service. The average life expectancy of a firefighter is 9.5 years after they retire. I would rather have a 401K and live to 85 than a good retirement but 30 years less on Earth.

Geniusofdespair said...

Zany people this is a blog about the charter-- how the recall is addressed in the charter. You are all going off on your tangents and I am not even part of this thread but some of you don't get that I am not participating.

Wacko two above --- get a grip. Chill out. Blogs are editorials... If you want control start your own blog.

Anonymous said...

Let them eat cake.

Anonymous said...

The point is, we shouldn't need Normam Braman to push an initiative or a recall. The process should allow for a grass roots effort. Why people are upset at "his-oner" is another story.

Anonymous said...

Braman should have complied with the 25% Rule just in case it was in effect, just as he should have collected 250,000 petitions. He needed to get as many names of registered activist voters as possible, to crate a database to drive a huge voter turnout at the recall election, and in case thousands of signed petitions are tossed out on technicalities. He is spending gobs of money to get this done, so ignoring a possible procedural hurdle was stupid.

CATO said...

"The point is, we shouldn't need Normam Braman to push an initiative or a recall.The process should allow for a grass roots effort."

I Shouldn't drive a 5 year old BMW I should have a Brand New Bentley and it shouldn't cosume any gas.

Reality is that the bar for a recall has been set so high by those we elected to "represent us" that we do need Mr. Braman or someone like him.

I only wish he follows through on petition for changes on the charter.

Fireman yes your jobs not easy, few peoples are (except for maybe mayors staff) and there are many jobs that are more dangerous and have a higher on the job death rate than firemen and policemen(and gets paid a whole lot less). There are also jobs that require more education and knowledge (And gets paid less).

Soldiers for one are under a great deal of stress and must perform well under extremely difficult conditions and get paid less than firemen and or policemen. Roofers, loggers, structural construction workers, airplane pilots and more have higher incidence of injury and death on the job than firemen or policemen and most make less than 100k even with overtime.

And yes there are other items in the budget that constitute waste and malfeasnce that should be looked into.

G.O.D sorry I got off topic a bit on the last couple of paragraphs but I am growing tired off some folks sanctifying themselves.

Milly Herrera, Hialeah said...


"I'm still stuck on the fact Mayor Alvarez and some County Commissioners thought it was okay to have over 3,000 government employees making of $100K per year + whatever other benefits and raise our taxes and give another salary raise. Whatever happened to "Public Service".

This is REALLY why everyone is so upset!

"Tumba la casa" - Let's take the the house down!"

Anonymous said...

Here are some numbers for you:

Percentage of Americans making $100,000 or more: 15.8%

Percentage of Federal Government Employees making $100,000 or more: 20%

Percentage of City of Miami Employees making $100,000 or more: 47%

Percentage of County Employees making $100,000 or more: 11.7%

Average salary of the entire 28,000ish County Employees: approximately $50,000

I am not one of those 11.7%, but I also understand the facts, and that number is used to incite class envy, and it is working on everyone.


fireman said...

There's no "sanctifying ourselves." It is is merely an educational opportunity and for that I am grateful to the blog.

Personally, I feel we have been used. Everybody in the county got the 3% raise. There were no cuts to discretionary funds or the mayor's staff. Instead it was said that had taxes not been raised, police officers and firefighters would have been laid off.

The releasing of the six figues was probably done by the mayor or the manager. It only serves to direct anger and resentment towards dedicated public servants and away from the bloated bureacracy at the 111 building. I wish the local media spent as much time covering the millions in taxpayer dollars that go to connected companies than our salaries.

You can't compare any private sector occupation to that of a firefighter or police officer. Reason being is that their environments are controlled and regulated. They don't have to set up and deal with their tasks in a matter of minutes.

If it makes everybody feel better, go ahead and cut our benefits Go ahead and shut down fire stations. Just don't complain when you don't get the level of service you have been accustomed to seeing when you dial 9-1-1. Plese, don't call back asking for an estimated time of arrival because your arms are tired from doing compressions on your spouse. It happens every day. How can it not? Fire-rescue departments in Miami Dade are some of the busiest in the nation.

Thank you to all of you have supported your firefighters.

Geniusofdespair said...

M your class envy comment was most interesting. Yes, class envy fueled by a billionaire. Fun to watch. The more wealthy are not signing petitions as readily as others-- I tried at Epicure-- no takers. I hope the Mayor is noticing that the wave against him is comprised of mostly Republicans who are comfortable eating their own when it suits their agenda.

Anonymous said...


I would venture a guess that over 50% of the people who signed the recall petition are renters (who don't directly pay taxes and live in non-homesteaded properties where the actual owner's taxes on those properties dropped), and a majority of the signers use the services (senior centers, parks, libraries, and other services heavily subsidized by the County).


CATO said...

Fireman you said
"You can't compare any private sector occupation to that of a firefighter or police officer. Reason being is that their environments are controlled and regulated. They don't have to set up and deal with their tasks in a matter of minutes."

Obviously you are not welll acquainted with working in those private sector jobs I mentioned (and others I didn't).

Not trying to demean your job, but situations do arise in private sector occupations that require split second decisions where lives (including that of the person making the decision) are at stake.

I have been in many situations where my life and those around me depended on what I did.

One private sector job most of us can relate to being stressful and having peoples lives at stake is airplane pilot. Get the picture, my problem with Police and Fire workers is that they think their job is unique in the amount of stress. Though I will not argue that the jobs are stressful I would also say there are others just as or even more stressful and dangerous.

Where did you get the 9.5 year number and how far back does that sampling go, it probaly pre-dates a lot of techonoligical advances that prevent premature death of firemen from such hazards as black lung.

G.O.D. Idon't think this is a partisan issue, its an economic one. I do not envy someone making 100K plus or having decent retirement benefits its the sustainabilty of pay and benefits and how they relate to the rest of the communitty that is paying for them.