Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Mayor Gimenez, Who Exactly Wrote your State of the County Speech? Guest blog By Norma Rae

The State of the County address is usually about the county. Not this time. The know-it-all County Mayor used the speech to tell folks he is “a passionate man” and that his grandchildren call him “Abu.” And despite his constant warnings for the past two years that the future looks bleak, he shared with the audience: “I am an optimist.” Gimenez broke new ground with this speech. It was the first “Emotional State of the County Mayor” address.

The Mayor opened up about his family. In his own twisted words, he said, “ I couldn’t do this job without their total commitment and support not only to me, but also to the entire Miami-Dade County community.” That’s right, he said his family “supports the entire Miami-Dade County community.” Really? It is more like the taxpayers of Miami-Dade County entirely support his family. Between county and school system paychecks, a city pension, checks from government contractors and lobbying retainers, the family stays afloat on our tax dollars. If the Mayor is going to share his heartfelt thoughts about his family, he needs to be completely honest.

The speech wasn’t all fluffy. The Mayor talked tough about his “battle scars” from the Marlins Stadium deal. Even that comment was a bit of a stretch, though. What “battle scars” did he suffer? Because of that Marlins Stadium deal and the recall of Alvarez, Gimenez was able to quit his $6,000 a year Commissioner job and get elected to the Mayor’s office. He got a $144,000 pay raise. Plus, now he has all those high-paid Deputy Mayors to do his work while he goes golfing and visiting foreign countries.

Instead of telling us where he is leading the government, Gimenez announced he is leading a mission to Brazil this year. If he wants to create jobs with Brazilian companies, he should stay in his office and call that Brazilian company that wants to build the Airport City project. This trip is looking like another summer vacation package for his family and his lobbyists. I bet they go to the World Cup in Brazil. To get Gimenez tickets to the soccer games, his lobbyist friends must be working overtime. Or maybe Underwear Man and his billionaire backers are taking care of that.

After talking about his family and his vacation plans, the Mayor did say the State of the County is strong! And then he said the County has a $208 million hole in the budget. That’s like bragging you are done making mortgage payments on your house…and then mumbling, “because the bank did a foreclosure on me.” Maybe the Mayor was having a mood swing. Sometimes he feels like the county is strong, and other times he feels like the county is broke. It really depends on how he feels.

We know Gimenez has choked off the revenues for the county and has promised he is not going to lift a finger to raise money for the libraries. When Gimenez closes those library doors on the children and the elderly, the folks he says he feels so passionate about, he may find they have some passionate feelings about him. Some working age people may have some concerns about that, too.

The Mayor did spit out that he wants to “treat our employees fairly.” Don’t be thinking he has your back now. That phrase was just code for everybody is going to feel some pain. Every department will be punished equally. And Lisa Martinez, the new Chief of Staff, will be doing the whipping. The word is, when Mr. Iglesias refused to cut public safety jobs, she said she was “acting on the direct authority of the Mayor” and ordered the cuts. And then she took his job. I bet Mr. Iglesias, an old ally of the Mayor, didn’t see that shit coming. That girl must have some moves.

Now that Ms. Martinez is the Chief of Staff, and she has got her big fat pay raise, she is all about cutting jobs and handing out pink slips. She should read the Mayor’s speech real careful. Gimenez said one of his major priorities is “helping our families improve their economic well-being.” How do our families improve their economic well-being when they are unemployed? This is the type of two-faced, double-talk that makes everyone say hateful things about Gimenez. No one in the County family likes the man, except maybe his new Chief of Staff – and that is being optimistic.

(The writers of Eye on Miami do not necessarily agree with our guest bloggers).

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

If Gimenez wishes to amuse us with a speech, he should explain his relationship with Jorge Luis Lopez, Ralph Garcia Toledo, the Munilla brothers, etc. Recalling Alvarez to put put in place Don Gimenez looks more like a mistake every day.

Juan said...

Barf . This is a joke right April fools day come month early ? ... And his lobbyist mentor Lopez polling people via e-mail as to what they think .. No mention here of screwing employees.. Cutting libraries .. Reneging to pet trust.. Proposing to give away valuable port land as his son is hired to do pr and Lobbying for Soccer deal.. While his other son bets job from company who got no bid $4m contract to fix performing arts center ..

His office swarming with Genting apologists and advocates ready to cash in on the gambling payday that will ruin the community he chairs OCOG yet does nothing to support it financially .. Pays lip service yo its goals by reading prepared speeches on his I- pad ..OCOG all about linking education to targeted industries yet.. He continues to cut libraries

He is probably worst mayor we have had.. He has no vision for the future other than a tea party slash and burn mentality . He is a frustrated bureaucrat who unfortunately is now the mayor .. He has surrounded himself with incompetent.. Yes men(and women ) who don't know what they don't know . .. Lobbyists stuffing themselves at the public trough .. ( including his family).. What do we think? we think he is terrible he should resign ..he is a phony .. Arrogant .. Mean spirited tea party clone
Juan

Anonymous said...

Miami Dade County: paying daily for Mayor Gimenez and his ENTIRE family.

Barf meter please.

Outofsight said...

Then recall him.... Get him out of there....

If you fire enough mayors and other elected officals by recall or replacement, sooner or later they will start caring about who they tick off.... Then they will have to chose between public service or job perks provided by the puppet masters.

Anonymous said...

It's long past time to recall Gimenez in my opinion.

Anonymous said...

Love this blog post. Telling the truth. Wish we could get more reporting on true state of finances at the County. It will be hard to undo the damage this administration has done on all levels- from morale to decimation of departments.

Anonymous said...

The "Word" about Chip Iglesias is correct. He absolutely refused to cut public service and fought to increase dollars for public libraries and as a result he was Demoted shall we say.
As a former city manager he knows the money is there and exactly where to find it but since he challenged the all-mighty he was punished.
Iglesias is the one who agreed with Migoya the cuts could and should be restored.
How sad.

Anonymous said...

The Giménez administration will go down as the single most corrupt, non-transparent in the history of Miami-Dade County.

Anonymous said...

Indeed, it will take a long time to undo the damage Gimenez and his cronies have done to our community.

Anonymous said...

In his attempt to shrink the size of County Government, the solid waste management and public works departments were combined. Is there anything more idiotic than this? Obviously, it doesn't work. They have two distinct purposes. Again obviously, both highly-qualified directors retired. Now, Alina Hudak, who knows zero about either industry, is in charge of both.

It is a joke!

Anonymous said...

If Gimenez were serious he would fire 1,000 of the 27,000 full time employees AND he would reduce pay and benefits.

Anonymous said...

Under Commandante Gimenez' regime, Miami-Dade County has become an ethical sinkhole.

Anonymous said...

Great article! Gimenez is so full of crap

Anonymous said...

Ref. above anon. So you think firing 1000 county employees would solve our deficit problem? Surely you must be joking! Every county department is already stretched to the limit. The entire departmental infrastructure is destroyed. And why has this happened you may ask? Simple. By taking away the department safety nets, Gimenez and his clan of lobbyist friends can squeeze juice out of every county contract without opposition. Judging by the way you defend Gimenez, you may be part of the problem.

Anonymous said...

Not only does he lack administrative skills, Gimenez also lacks interpersonal skills.

He could be an ass, but be perceived as a nice, humble public servant, and people would still support him. Instead, he comes across as a pompous fool surrounded by boot-licking sycophants.

Anonymous said...

Just to prove a point - anyone - try this:
Request an appointment with Mayor Gimenez. After being grilled by the Appointment Secretary whose total vocabulary consists of 250 words.... you might get an appt.

Think the Mayor will see you - Ha!
You will sit in the waiting area for hours as dozens of Armani-wearing GQ types go in and out.

After you politely complain two or three times, you will be ushered in. Think you'll see a Deputy Mayor - Ha! An assistant secretary to the Assistant to a Deputy Mayor will give you three minutes.

By the way, most of these secretaries and assistants to the assistants are hot! Skin-tight dresses, six-inch heels, cleavages that leave little to the imagination and amazing hair!

Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

If Lisa Martinez is now doing the heavy lifting for Gimenez, why must we continue to pay Chip Iglesias a salary of $225K+? Why not just save the money and send Iglesias packing to the unemployment line?

Anonymous said...

Great idea!

Anonymous said...

Why do we all write here like fools and no one poses these questions to the Mayor? Is he the Mighty Wizard and can no one get near him? What does it take for the Miami Herald to conduct an investigation on this corrupt administration?

Anonymous said...

Lisa Martinez comes to the county from the Dade County School Board through the relationship she shares with Gimenez' wife. With no interview or qualification. This pawn is only in place to do Gimenez' bidding. A clear violation of established county nepotism guidelines.

Anonymous said...

Goodness! I had a sense that things were bad, but I had no idea things were this bad. We have to get new leadership, the organizational culture needs to be changed. We just can't take anyone off the street and have them be strong mayor and run the county. We go from one crazy situation to another one. We have no strong mayor material here, so we have to go back to a professional manager, weak mayor form of government.

Anonymous said...

To Anon: Ref Chip Iglesias.
Did you not understand what someone previously wrote? Lisa Martinez is not doing any heavy lifting as the Mayors Chief of Staff. She is doing as she is told to do and listens to the lobbyists rather than doing what is right. Mr. Iglesias, was demoted, I guess, because he wanted to do what is right for the county not his pockets as gimenez does. Is no one catching on here? If you do what is right you will be gone.

Anonymous said...

When you work for miami dade, you don't think ahead years or months, you think about this week maybe next. Anything else is speculation.

Why has the county mayor declared a war on libraries? He can snatch away the things we treasure, and there will be no getting them back.

Anonymous said...

the devil wrote his speech

Anonymous said...

Lisa Martinez worked alongside Lourdes Gimenez in the school system. Rumor has it that Martinez came to Lourdes' aid when she got in trouble for a policy violation and the two have been friends for years since then. she has no business being Chief of Staff.

Anonymous said...

Regardless of salary, Chip Iglesias is the ONLY one who brought some sensibility to the 29th floor. they rest of them are nothing more than puppets who at the ned of the day are incompetent cowards

Anonymous said...

To correcting anon ref. Chip Iglesias:

Are you not aware that Mayor Gimenez uses his aides as musical chairs, caring little about their future or the result of their actions? Lisa Martinez IS the new Chip Iglesias. Iglesias carried out every order issued by Gimenez for the last three years and that includes the closing of libraries, the cutbacks of employees and the failed push to get us to pay for cosmetics at Dolphin Stadium. Iglesias is not a victim, he is an agreeing partner who by the way, has been paid very handsomely. If his conscience caught up with him and he now refuses to bow before his master, he will join us on the unemployment line.

Anonymous said...

Interesting that new Chief of Staff Lisa Martinez had the task of leading the library blue ribbon panels on the libraries and she came from the school board bureaucracy as a former teacher. Is this where Gimenez' contempt for librarians as overpaid no-nothings come from. Gimenez griped that librarians - who must have masters degrees to get hired by the County- get paid more than teachers and aren't necessary. Different profession. But Gimenez wouldn't know. Apparently he doesn't even have a library card. Must we all suffer because of personal prejudices, ignorance and vendettas?

Anonymous said...

Chip Iglesias is just another fire man. Like other members of that frat he owes allegiance to the Fire Dept and its union first and to regular taxpayers second. When fire man Carlos Gimenez was the City Manager of the City of Miami he gave the Fire Union the contract that made City of Miami fire union members "the best paid firemen in the world". Within several years 30 firemen were making $300,000+ per year in pay and benefits. One fireman was making $110,000 per year in Overtime on top of his base pay.

Anonymous said...

Superb article. Martinez = Lopez operative. It seems Lopez and Gimenez travelled to Rome to get a papal blessing for a plan that began to be crafted when Gimenez used "pro bono" space from Lopez to run his campaign.