James Many Broken Promises

Can you remember back to Mayor Keith James campaign? He said he was going to keep the city moving in the same direction it already was moving as he was supportive of the direction the City was going.

Has he been keeping his campaign promise??? Lets check, and double click his campaign promises. One lie after another, but it got him elected.

After taking office, his very first act was to dismantle the African American advisory board. During his campaign they challenged his lack of involvement in issues that faced their community. Instead of stepping up, he eliminated everyone who would challenge him on that board. Everyone looked like James.

Internally, he created two new Assistant City Manager Positions, a Director of Safety and Security (code name for personal body guard) and a Director of Neighborhoods first position. This cost taxpayers in WPB in excess of a half million dollars. I watched James abuse taxpayer dollars for 8 years as a city commissioner with his constant travel. Well now he travels with his private security all over the country. Now taxpayers pay for 2 which includes travel, hotel rooms, food, rental cars and every other nickle they can squeeze out of us.

His next act was to go after the police chief, Sarah Mooney, even though he told the Police Benevolent Association and former Mayor Geri Muoio he would not replace her. This lie was told in order to get their endorsement. When he was challenged, he said that was not what he said. Another lie.

His next change was to the Community Redevelopment Agency. He pushed Jon Ward out the door stating he wanted to go, “in a different direction”. Saying this is nonsensical as the CRA has more large projects underway in the past few years than in the last 20. While looking for a new CRA director, he promoted the Assistant CRA director, Allison Justice, to “acting” CRA director. In the hiring process for a new director, James publicly attacked his acting director saying he was not impressed with her attention to detail. Even though, it was her attention to detail that made the new Clematis Street what it is. He went on to say he wanted the CRA to go in a different direction, but never says what that direction is. Would you be surprised to know he left her as the Acting Director when no one accepted his job offer?

This bit of news really upset me, and I want City Commissioners to pay attention. Next he replaced the Clean/Green team in the Historic Northwest Neighborhood with Property Works. This team was created to offer African American men from the neighborhood who may have had problems with the law a place to have a job and make themselves marketable. These young men worked city own lots and mowed lawns, trimmed trees/hedges and cleared lots of debris This program was created as a grass root program being run by the Northwest Community Consortium which is lead by Teresa Johnson. Ms. Johnson was a former member of the African American Advisory board that was eliminated as Mayor James first act.

The city gave a contract to an outside vendor which replaced the young men who were left once again with no job—no income. City Commissioners voted approval for the new contract. Were they told the contract was to replace young men who needed a hand up not a hand out. These young men all looked like James.

When Assistant City Administrator Scott Kelly retired, he promoted Department Director Poonam Kalkat as acting Assistant City Administrator. She is a strong female, so is it any wonder that he chose a male from Miami over giving her the position? Do we really have to recruit from Miami? Is there no one qualified in WPB?

I just learned that Ms. Morse was terminated from her position May 2020 by Mayor Keith James via City Administrator Ms. Johnson. Another “strong” woman James can’t deal with.

The latest casualty is his administration is Community Engagement Manager, Wendy Morse. She retired as WPB Police Captain after 25 years of service to the city. When Mayor Jeri Muoio reached out and asked her to accept a new position as Director of the Office Public Life, a newly formed department created by the city. Wendy accepted the position in Nov. 2017.

Ms. Morse responsibilities was to engage in dialogue with different neighborhoods and bring their concerns back to the city for the betterment of the neighborhoods, while interacting with all city departments on projects that would affect the public realm and specifically in the Northwest area, and to enhance safety. Can you see a pattern here about James treatment of women? How about his lack of care for the Northwest Community? He has continued to dismantle every program to deal with the community at a local level.

I reached out to neighborhood leaders and was told she was well respected and as one neighborhood president, Carl Flick told me she was “amazingly helpful” made herself available to residents and will be missed. It takes a long time to learn about the processes and community in the City of West Palm Beach government. Every time Mayor James replaces a long time employee we all loose. It costs time and money that we do not have to spare in these days of budget decreases.

Take for example Mayor James Director of Neighborhoods First, Tiffany David. The only “Neighborhoods First” Project she has done has been an illegal dumping project, which the Police, Code Enforcement, and Public works already had. In fact, the CRA under Jon Ward and Allison Justice purchased cameras so criminals in the Northwest Neighborhood who dump could be prosecuted. Have you driven around the Northwest Neighborhood lately? There is trash everywhere. So much for her only program. She has not endeared herself to the community and spends her time running around after James telling him how great he is. For this, she makes nearly 100K/year. Many community members have logged complaints against her because she won’t return phone calls, cancels meetings at the last minute, and overall has let the community down.

Ms. David attended a meeting with The North End Coalition of Neighborhoods (NCON) with James who spoke briefly and left telling residents Ms. David would answer their concerns.

James wasn’t out of the parking lot when David left the meeting.

A story written in Nov. 2019 concerning David is below if you missed it.


The city is working on the 2021 budget and we have already been told there will be cutbacks including possible layoffs due to James incompetience. Last one hired, first one fired. See my suggestion below.

Texts Responsive to 119 request – GreenJ