Last week: Our economy is in a delicate balance. The FIU report that Florida wages are dropping for most of our households while costs are rising was offset by an idea for a countywide sales tax increase. A penny increase has merit as Broward County considers how to attract businesses and residents, provide a high quality of life to its citizens and maintain its prominent position as a tourist destination. It will be important to present the potential value of the increase in a manner that makes sense to a population that continues to be challenged by a declining standard of living.

July 21

Last week: Companies’ decisions about where to locate their businesses and individuals who are considering a move are often influenced by the quality of the area’s arts and culture. Greater Fort Lauderdale has been working diligently to promote its fine arts and performing arts, and the business community continues to grow creative industries. Welcome Bonnie Clearwater, new director of the Museum of Art, Fort Lauderdale who will bring well-known and experienced inspiration to our arts community and provide a new tool in the ongoing effort to increase awareness of the arts. Thanks to Bill Stanton for providing his leadership as interim director.

July 14

Last week: Kudos to the Fort Lauderdale Police Department for being the first city in the U.S. to use SmartWater CSI, a high technology crime fighting tool. This week, they employed SmartWater CSI to catch a burglar and make an arrest. Our City leaders are on the cutting edge. They recognize that a clear, forensically coded liquid used to mark a property that can then be scientifically analyzed to identify the owner if the property is stolen, just might be the most effective way to reduce crime in our neighborhoods.

 

July 7

Last week: Independence Day. The Pledge of Allegiance means more to me today than any other time in my life. Each of us who has the good fortune to live in the United States ought to want to pledge their loyalty to this country where we live together in peace, and where we have come to expect Liberty and Justice just as we expect clean water and electricity.  Welcome to people who want to live in the United States and become part of who and what we are. It is an honor to live here and to be an American.

June 30

Last week: This week’s news is all about our apparent need for laws.

We have laws to tell us who we can marry. We have laws to make sure our colleges and universities admit the appropriate ratio of ethnicities and genders. We have laws about voting that tell us what we need to do if we want to change a law about voting. Although laws protect us, they dull our need to do the right thing just because… it’s the right thing. Remember the simple ethics of the Golden Rule. There oughta be a law!