LOOKING AHEAD TO NEXT WEEK
Dr. Michael Dennis, chair, FAU Schmidt
College of Medicine
If NASA has the technology to guide the Insight space craft through 300 million miles and land intact on Mars at exactly the required 12 degree angle, why cannot we provide state-of-the-art, fraud-resistant voting mechanisms and practices especially in embarrassed Palm Beach and Broward counties? We can no longer tolerate problems with mail-in ballots, voters not being counted, possible dead people voting, failure to disclose ballots uncounted, and the “discovery” of more ballots after election results are reported. Exploring the inner structure of Mars is interesting, but not nearly as important as correctly recording the honest opinions of our electorate.
Randall Vitale, president, Hoffman’s Choco
Hamilton makes its Florida debut on Dec. 18 and it is happening right here in Fort Lauderdale at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts. The show runs through Jan. 20, and it is expected to be the toughest ticket to come to our area in a long time.
Arts and culture are a huge economic driver for our community, and opportunities like Hamilton highlight the role they play in benefiting hotels, restaurants, and retailers in a meaningful way. Let this be a reminder to all of us that we must continue to invest in the arts – for all.
Peter Moore, president, Chen Moore and
On Dec. 11, academics, financial managers and bankers will assemble from all parts of the World in Palm Beach County to participate in the inaugural Global Resilience Summit. The summit will bring together a wide variety of stakeholders to share ways in which collaboration and partnership can be fostered around resilience themes. What will make this summit different from other previous discussions is the focus on case study successes and the integration of banking and the insurance industry as part of the solution to sea level rise and the larger picture of resilience as a whole. www.floridaearth.org
Barbara Sharief, member, Broward County
Nov. 15 began manatee season which runs through March 31, 2019. Boaters should be on the lookout for greater numbers of manatees throughout the County’s waterways (including Intracoastal, canals and natural waterways) during the cooler months. Vessel operators should obey all posted speed limits, wear polarized sunglasses and watch for the large, tell-tale circular slicks on the surface of the water caused by the tail that indicate the presence of manatees. Violators may be fined. If you see a manatee in trouble, call Florida Fish and Wildlife Alert Number (888) 404-3922, text *FWC or # FWC on a cell phone.
Lori Berman, Florida state senator
In response to the revelation of numerous problems in the licensing of concealed weapons by the Department of Agriculture, Commissioner-elect Nikki Fried has proposed moving the handling of licenses to FDLE, putting law enforcement in charge of the licenses since they are responsible for doing the background checks. The NRA lobbyist, Marion Hammer, has attempted to politicize this function and wants to move the licensing to the Republican chief financial officer. Fried’s position that there should be non-partisan oversight of concealed weapons permits taking the politics out of public safety makes sense and is the right way to proceed.
Christine Hunschofsky, mayor, Parkland
In November’s election, the Constitution Revision Commission proposed a number of “bundled” Florida constitutional amendments on the ballot. These amendments combined completely unrelated issues such as offshore drilling and “vaping” indoors on the same ballot question. This practice creates confusion with voters and also results in voters making decisions based on one part of an amendment they like even if they dislike another part of it. Sen. Rob Bradley is proposing a bill to keep all constitutional amendments as “single issue” to avoid this problem. This is a bill that I hope will garner bipartisan support this legislative session.
Tracey Grossman, chairperson, Anti-Defa
As we once again turn our focus to the complexities of comprehensive immigration reform, conspiracy theories are seeping into policy discussions. A current myth says that terrorists infiltrate the U.S. through Mexico. According to a 2015 State Department report, “there are no known international terrorist organizations operating in Mexico, despite several erroneous reports to the contrary during 2014.” In fact, the vast majority of U.S. residents linked to terror since 2002 are American citizens. Instead of forwarding falsehoods, first reach for facts. The stakes are too great – for those seeking U.S. citizenship, and for the society they seek to join.
Jennifer O’Flannery Anderson, vice president, community relations, Nova Southeastern University
Winterfest 2018 is here! The family fest took place on Nov. 25, the Boat Parade is Saturday, Dec. 15. Expect great decorations and entertainment, fireworks, music and a few more surprises. Viewing opportunities can be found downtown as well as Birch State Park. This is another event that reinforces how lucky we are to live here and what a vibrant and dynamic place this is. It certainly is, “the greatest show on H2O.”