An Opinion By Jan Bergemann 
President, Cyber Citizens For Justice, Inc. 

Published June 4, 2010 


According to the website of the Florida Division of Elections, we will have to deal in November with nine (9) Constitutional Amendments. But none will be harder fought over than Amendment 4 -- also known as Hometown Democracy. The official name of the amendment is "REFERENDA REQUIRED FOR ADOPTION AND AMENDMENT OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT COMPREHENSIVE LAND USE PLANS." 


Although it has been praised as a referendum that subjects new or amended comprehensive land use plans to a vote of the electors of the local government by referendum, it's actually a referendum that tries to rein in Growth Mismanagement.


But the line is drawn in the sand.



Florida 's citizens should be sick and tired of the way developers -- with the help of crooked politicians -- raped Florida 's natural beauty.


The tactics used by the greedy developers and crooked politicians to defeat Amendment 4 are the same that worked successfully for many years:  Bribing the people in charge, buying votes and misleading citizens who are often naïve.


Florida leads the nation for the number of crooked politicians caught with their hands in the cookie jar. You open a Florida newspaper and you will find an article about another politician arrested and/or convicted. And if you read the whole story, you will find out that some developer was involved.  The marriage between greedy developers and crooked politicians seems to be a match made in money-heaven. This has to stop!


This week former RPOF chairman Jim Greer was arrested and indicted on six felony counts of grand theft, money laundering and running an organized scheme to defraud.  Greer’s successor as RPOF Chair is now Senator John Thrasher.  Thrasher obviously earned his money by writing letters filled with lies for the opponents of Hometown Democracy before being elected state senator and RPOF Chair.  All thanks to campaign coffers filled with special interest money!



And the opponents of Amendment 4 are lining up with big money, because they know that it is more difficult to convince citizens about the value of a comprehensive land use plan than it is to bribe a crooked politician. 


See below an article written by Buddy Nevins from the Broward-Palm Beach New Times that hits the nail right on the head. And read below the invitation filled with the names of the folks who are trying to defeat this referendum -- the referendum being an attempt to save what's left of Florida 's natural beauty and environment. Oil is already destroying our beaches; we don't need cement to destroy our land!


The names on the invitation are the names of the special interest folks who think that money can buy everything. Let's not forget to mention that this meeting will be chaired by Pembroke Pines Mayor Frank Ortis. It looks like he feels he needs some more money for his early retirement fund, despite the fact that Pembroke Pines is a typical example for Growth Mismanagement. Is there any piece of land left that he hasn't sold yet?


I know special interest may not like this suggestion, but it's only fair -- equal rights: Special interest had more than 20 years to destroy Florida . It's time for the citizens to take over! If that attempt is a failure, we will let greedy developers and crooked politicians take over again -- in 20 years -- without referendum. I doubt it is possible to do a worse job than the people now in charge did in regard to growth management!


You may be sick and tired of voting for crooked politicians. 

If so, VOTE YES ON Amendment 4.


Never forget:    

They may have the money, but we have the votes!




Development Crowd Panicking Over Amendment 4

Article Courtesy of BROWARD BEAT.com


Published 6-2-2010


If money is the mother’s milk of politics, the Broward Workshop is bringing together some of the biggest mothers for milking.


These political donors will gather at an upscale east Fort Lauderdale restaurant next week to raise money to block Amendment 4.


That’s the constitutional amendment which says that you, taxpayers and average Floridians, should have a say in what is built in your neighborhood.


If it passes, voters would have to approve any land use change.


Sounds democratic to me.  But the Amendment reads like Karl Marx to the build-at-all-costs crowd of developers, lobbyists and business owners in the Broward Workshop.


The way it works now, the Broward Workshop types buy and sell tame politicians with campaign contributions.  Then these politicians approve new construction.   

Amendment 4 would even the playing field.


The most interesting name on the invitation below is Mayor Frank Ortis of Pembroke Pines. He’s the chair of the fund raiser. 


Does that mean that the Strip Mall Capital of The World – Pembroke Pines – is the template for these anti-Amendment 4 folks? 


The Broward Workshop are the self-appointed leaders of the county.

As leaders, they’ve failed.


Broward has too many second-rate schools and clogged streets.    We have a 1950s tax base, an aging infrastructure and a directionless, weak political system wracked with corruption.  


The Workshop’s answer is to Build Baby Build.

Don’t they realize that their Pave-Over Everything policy hasn’t worked?   

The invitation below is enough to convince me to vote for Amendment 4.  

If that crew is for it, I’m against it.