Three items on the City Commission Agenda for Jan. 13, 2020

#5. “Resolution No. 10-20 establishing the salary and other compensation for the City Administrator and amending the pay grade information for the City Administrator job classification. Based on Ms. Johnson’s extensive qualifications and experience, the Mayor is recommending to the Commission a starting salary of $249,000 for consideration, which is within the General Management Salary Rate Schedule for the City Administrator Pay Grade, GM20 ($174,303-$261,454).  Upon successful completion of a six (6) month probationary period, Ms. Johnson’s salary will increase by 5% to $261,450, also within the current salary rate schedule. Ms. Johnson’s current salary as Interim City Administrator is $220,000.”
In my opinion as soon as Jeff Green  left the city James should have appointed Ms. Johnson as City Administrator, and I’m happy he finally made the move. I am not in favor of James suggesting Ms. Johnson reach the top of the pay grade in less than a year. I would suggest her salary of $220,000.00/year, and a 5% increase in 2021.  If the Commissioner’s pass this Resolution they should start every employee at the top of their pay grade.  The President of the US earns $400,000.00/year.


#7.” Public Hearing and First Reading of Ordinance No. 4868-19 approving the Real Property Lease Management Policy for the purposes of providing a framework governing the leasing and rental decisions of real property owned by the City of West Palm Beach.”
The City owns property at  401 N Flagler Dr; and the PBC Property Appraiser has appraised the property at $12,050,272.00. The city, for years has rented the building to  Dennis Grady, Chief Executive Officer of the Chamber of Commerce for $1.00/year. The Chamber is joined at the hip with Related and Grady appears at Commission meeting and declares his Board of Directors had a meeting and voted unanimously to approve Related projects. Quid pro quo?  “Favor or advantage granted or expected in return for something.”


#8. “Public Hearing of Resolution No. 362-19: Regarding a request by Harvey Oyer of Shutts & Bowen LLP, on behalf of CityPlace Retail, LLC, for the approval of a Level III Site Plan Review within the CityPlace Development of Regional Impact (DRI) to construct a 21-story mixed use building containing 325 residential units, approximately 34,000 square feet of retail and approximately 57,000 square feet of office at 575 South Rosemary Avenue.”
Publix and Macy’s  are known as anchor site’s meaning it is a  “draw tenant”, or “key tenant.” When a Publix is built it draws other stores to the shopping center. Well both stores are gone from CityPlace and the City Commissioners will vote tonight to replace Macy’s, a 5 story building with a 21 story building with 325 residential units.

If a unit is rented  to a couple we are looking at approximately 650 additional cars + office and retail traffic.  The residents of WPB are concerned about the gridlock and amount of cars on the road. The city solution? Approve every project coming down the pike. This may turn out to be no problem at all if residents and shoppers ride a bike to get around Rosemary Square. My guess, the Commissioners will approve the 21 story building. Lambert and Shoaf need the endorsement of the Chamber of Commerce for re-election in 2020.

Below are recent changes made at CityPlace (Rosemary Square) Owner, Related, WPB.
Blue Martini CityPlace has closed it’s doors. This is a problem for the city. Blue Martini, affectionally called “Little City Hall”  is where Mayor James, City Administrator Jeff Green, Police Chief Frank Adderley, Assistant Chief Richard Morris, City Commissioner Peduzzi and the famous Willie Perez, friend of the Mayor and PSC’s Senior Regional Director who received the no bid contract of nearly 8 million dollars. The city waste so much of taxpayer dollars I wouldn’t be surprised if they purchased the “Table of Corruption” and moved it to the real City Hall where they could meet and reminisce about the good old days.

Recent changes to Cityplace.
Lucky Brand Jeans closed it’s doors right before Christmas.
Diva Duck Tours has moved to the Palm Beach Outlets Mall by Forever21 because of construction and parking problems.
The Cheesecake Factory will no longer validate parking for the garages on weekends due to the new $5.00 flat rate.
LA Fitness will continue to validate garage parking.
Parking was free for the first 80 min. then $1.00/hr.
The valet rate has increased from $8 to $12.

Double click to enlarge picture.