By: Dick Brown
I attended a meeting of the Tamarac Planning Board today. This was a hearing for a land change application to turn a Woodmont Country Club golf course into single-family homes. What was once the Pines Golf Course, developers are hoping to build over 150 homes and 30,000 square feet of commercial space.
Tamarac resident Lawrence Torn chaired it. I believe he is one of the rudest people I’ve ever heard chair anything. Despite a covenant stating that the 36 holes of golf must be used solely for the purpose of golf courses and club only in perpetuity and that the covenant runs with the land, the planning committee had obviously come to a decision to approve it anyway.
The Planning Board still voted in favor, despite out of all the citizens, only three were in favor to the land change and building.
There were even two attorneys representing many homeowners that were rudely dismissed by Torn. They begged for more time to bring out facts and evidence why, legally, the committee couldn’t proceed.
The city attorney, Mr. David Tolces, an even ruder individual, threatened to have the attorneys removed if they persisted in trying to present evidence they had gathered. To the contrary, however, everything that the developer and their attorneys presented was acceptable and they were afforded all the time, courtesies and more.
I believe that the Tamarac Planning Committee was extremely one-sided. Showing what I thought was extreme bias, Torn was extremely proud of the fact that he was instrumental in breaking the Covenant at the Woodlands Country Club. Shame on me, I would have thought that the planning board should have been on the side of the homeowners. Not on the side of developer wanting to do away with the green space that defines Tamarac.
The Board said that the owners of the courses and club failed. They had to close the Pines Course because they can’t successfully run 36 holes profitably.
But, if the City of Tamarac allows them to convert to only 27 holes, suddenly, they can make that successful?
Really, are we that naive?