By: Sharon Aron Baron
With just four days’ notice, the entire City of Tamarac Citizen Observer Patrol (COP) volunteers were invited to a special City Commission meeting where they would be given a proclamation.
It was done rather hastily since they were given over a month’s notice for a proclamation last year. This year, many volunteers couldn’t make the meeting and therefore were missing.
So what was the big rush this year?
Nothing really, but it just so happened to coincide with Mayor Harry Dressler’s annual State of the City address, and quite possibly, an astute city official realized they needed some warm bodies filling the seats to clap during his speech.
I felt almost sad for the dozens of faithful men and women in blue who came because they were summoned by Deputy Carl Fitzgerald to be recognized, not realizing that they were just being lured to be seat warmers.
Not to say that the State of the City address wasn’t important. I mean, the City didn’t even promote or advertise it. No invites went out, and I didn’t even see chamber members there, so it seemed put together at the last minute. I remember when former Mayor Beth Talabisco did her State of the City speeches. She always had an audience there – voluntarily. I couldn’t tell if they were there to hear her speak or maybe to look at her. She was always smiling a lot and connected with everyone.
But there were important things that the mayor did discuss on Wednesday night during his State of the City address. He told the audience that the city was undergoing a resurgence with property values slowly rising and homes being sold soon after going on the market.
“More businesses are choosing to call Tamarac home,” he said. “The city is financially stable and soundly managed and recognized as such on a national basis.”
The mayor said their short-term focus is on safety, maintaining or enhancing property values, financial stability, and improving the quantity and quality of city services while keeping the millage rate stable.
“Our job as your elected officials is to make Tamarac as strong as we possibly can today while putting the pieces together to ensure an even better tomorrow.”
He said that Tamarac had been known nationally by bond agencies to be a City that does not spend beyond its means. “We do what we can afford to do, and we do not spend beyond that. Neither do we plan to.”
So after the speech, the COP volunteers received their proclamations, and the President of Fairhaven 11, Ellie Petardi, has been President of her community for 20 years. Several of her residents attended the meeting to show their support for her.
Also, the mayor proclaimed April as National Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Month and presented Shaheewa Gelin with a proclamation. This was a peace offering considering that her husband Mike Gelin ran against him in last November’s mayoral election.