Vita wins lawsuit against the City of WPB

Once again WPBF (channel 25) Investigative Reporter Terri Parker was the first to report Vita LLC has won the lawsuit against WPB Mayor Keith James.

“Vita Lounge LLC won its lawsuit against the city of West Palm Beach to get back its winning bid to take over the Sunset Lounge.”

“Specifically, Vita sought to have the Court determine whether the CRA improperly disqualified it as the winning proposer for the operation of the Sunset Lounge,” according to the final lawsuit judgement.”
The court had to decide whether the disqualification was proper and lawful.

“The Court finds it was not,” the final judgement states. “The City urges the Court to find that, as long as Mr. Bassar was acting in good faith, the Court must defer to his decision. The City asserts that in order to invalidate Mr. Bassar’s  decision, the Court must find evidence of illegality, fraud, oppression or misconduct.”

The court found that Bassar sent the letter after the fact that he had decided there had been reasons for disqualifications on an interpretation of rules that “may have been unconstitutional and therefore illegal.”

Ms. Parker’s story can be found below and includes the news interview with Darrin Cummings, who the City claims gave an interview with WPBF without the City’s consent and was part of the lawsuit.  Also includes Court Judge Bell’s 19 page decision.

Procurement Officer According to Google. What does a city procurement officer do?

“Oversees preparation or negotiation of contracts and awards. Oversees the preparation of proposed City Council resolutions for all public contracting activities. Plans, develops, and implement innovative strategies for value-based enterprise-wide procurement requirements.”

Keith James sworn in as Mayor on April 4, 2019, and the City has had 4 Procurement Officer’s in 4 years.

Frank Hayden 2013 until 2019. Mr. Hayden was successful as the city’s Procurement Officer for 6 years until April 4,2019.

Effective 5/24/2021 Nathaniel Rubel (7 months)

Effective 12/13/2021 Paul Basser (1 year)

Effective: 01/09/2023 Donna Levengood

The City has spent many thousands of taxpayer dollars on a lawsuit that should never have happened and thousands more it cost taxpayers to have the Sunset Lounge remain shuttered. The next process is to have negotiations in “good faith” between the City and Vita LLC. My best to Vita.
In closing this story, I am happy to inform WPB Watch readers that the black community has found justice, not because of the city’s first strong black Mayor Keith James but received justice through Judge Bell and the attorney’s who defended Vita F. Malcom Cunningham Jr. Esquire and Amy L. Fischer, Attorney at Law.

The end.

Stet Media Group

let’s examine some history of WPB.

Below you will find a story on WPB web site, and tells the story of the Styx, a black community that settled on the island known as Palm Beach. The story is a quick read and I encourage readers to take the time to read it before it disappears, and judge for yourself if history is repeating itself once again in 2023.

“The Styx and Early West Palm Beach (Late 19th-Early 20th Century)”

“Black Settlement of Southeastern Florida”

After the black residents were removed from Palm Beach they settled in an area where City Place (built and owned by Related) is now located.

Who was mayor? First strong Mayor was Nancy Graham who served from November 1991 to March 1999, and was responsible for introducing Related to WPB along with Faye Outlaw, now WPB City Administrator Faye Johnson.

Ms. Outlaw resigned from the city of WPB as Director of Housing & Development in 1998, after black residents were removed and before City Place opened in 2000 and black residents were once again relocated to “predominantly Black Historic Northwest Neighborhood” and it appears Related wants that property also.

Now we have a news story from the Stet Media Group founded by 3 investigator reporters, Pat Beall, Carolyn DiPaolo, and Joel Engelhardt, former employees from the PB Post, who now bring us the Stet Media Group, and I call attention to the 2nd. story, “Related buying block in Northwest Neighborhood

“Checks and balances”
“Good morning, Sunshine! For you today, (most) banks get their footing, Related extends its reach in West Palm Beach, a magical quiz, Owls for the win, and a Florida rambler.”

“Florida Public Utilities owns this half-acre corner at Sapodilla Avenue and Second Street in West Palm Beach, but Related Cos. has bought most of the rest of the block. (Photo: Joel Engelhardt/Stet)”

“We love property records because they don’t deal in rumor and innuendo.”

“So it’s a fact that Related Cos. out of New York has dropped $15 million to buy most of a large block in the predominantly Black Historic Northwest Neighborhood, just northwest of Related’s major holdings in downtown West Palm Beach.”

“Financing is uncertain for Stet Media Group, but a trio of journalists are betting it will catch on.
“Three veterans of the Palm Beach Post are joining forces to venture into a new dimension of news delivery: the email newsletter.”

“The Stet Media Group got its name from an old copy-editing term meaning “let it stand” — back when editors wielded red-ink pens — and former Palm Beach Post News colleagues Pat Beall, Carolyn DiPaolo and Joel Engelhardt are taking a stand for journalism with some new bells and whistles.”

In my opinion, any reporter willing to color outside the lines to bring us news of what’s happening in our city, we can’t afford to lose. Please consider making a contribution to keep these reporters going and bringing us the news when others can’t or won’t.

The end


FLCGA (Florida Center for Government Accountability)

Who is Cheryl Steckler? She was the first PBC Inspector General (IG) who did an outstanding job investigating government waste and corruption until County Administrator Robert Weisman, along with County Commissioners slashed her budget and made her and her small staff ineffective. The County expected cities to contribute to the IG budget, and WPB led the fight,along with 10-12 cities who refused to contribute. County employees were warned not to contact the IG office. Ms. Steckler resigned her position. Story can be found below.

Who is John Carey? He is the second PBC Inspector General. “Despite documented success at ferreting out, and drawing attention to questionable government actions, county commissioners last week decided not to grant Inspector General John Carey’s budget request for $500,000 for additional staffers.” County Administrator Verdenia Baker agreed with Commissioners. Like Steckler, Carey won’t get the funding needed to hire staff to do investigations of corruption in PBC. See how it works? We’re not going to pay you to discover our shenanigans.

PBC Commission on Ethics (COE) I filed a complaint against a WPB Commissioner who voted yes on a project that would enrich her husband employed by the company doing business with the city. The COE found no probable cause. I enclosed a picture of the commissioner sitting on the lap of a member of the COE at an event and asked if this influenced their decision. I received no response.

Everything written above is “old news” why write about it? I had to refresh my memory and am sharing with new readers and folks who need a reminder also.
Both the Inspector General and the COE depend on PBC financing and when it is denied how much can be done with no staff, and how do you investigate the politicians who control the purse strings? Easy answer, you don’t.


Now comes FLCGA (Florida Center for Government Accountability) and for the first time in years I have hope once more.

Who is Barbara Petersen? “For 25 years, Barbara Petersen has been Florida’s defender of First Amendment rights” Until her retirement. Ms. Petersen was my hero for many years, and I was heartsick with the news of her retirement. Read the story below, as she has led a fascinating life, and her work is not done. Barbara’s back.

Barbara Petersen Executive Director, FLCGA. “Formed by a group of concerned citizens, investigative reporters, and open government experts, FLCGA is a non-partisan not-for-profit organization based in Tallahassee. Its mission is to produce well-sourced quality reporting that illuminates complex issues, holds government accountable to its citizens and enhances civic engagement in the democratic process.”

FLCGA is self supporting, won’t depend on any government for support, won’t accept special interest groups or PAC money. How will they survive? People who care about government and want to see change will support them. All donations made to FLCGA, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, are tax deductible. Registration #CH64626.

People who care about cleaning up government corruption can’t do it without FLCGA, and they can’t do it without our help. Please consider donating. Let’s get it done.

Below is their website, and I encourage readers to sign up to receive news on latest investigations, and they are reaching out to the media. The media know their city and report on what officials are doing behind the scenes. I signed up and received information on House Bill HB991 and it can be found below. Terrible bill and may pass unless residents  speak up and tell their Representatives in Tallahassee they are not pleased.

Barbara Petersen Executive Director, FLCGA and staff members can be found below.

Jan. 1, 2020 Petersen retires.

Dec 05, 2012 Cheryl Steckler

June 22, 2017 Carey


HB991  “Bad for Florida, bad for America”  This bill was added to FLCGA website, and I believe they are doing their due diligence and warning Floridians how far government will go to silence any citizen who is critical of their behavior.

“Imagine that while some television and radio news shows still exist, they only feature endless stories about cats and dogs, and fawning coverage of those in power.”

Email address to use to alert FLCGA about issues:

The end

West Palm Beach wants to boot the Photographic Centre

Pat Beall is a former senior investigative reporter for The Palm Beach Post and USA Today Network

Carolyn DiPaolo, who was senior editor for news at The Palm Beach Post.

Joel Engelhardt is an award-winning newspaper reporter and editor, including 28 years at The Palm Beach Post.

Below are excerpts from a new media group, called Stet Media Group, and you will find the three reporters mentioned above responsible for bringing us the stories below. If not for them WPB residents would be left in the dark without knowing the newest antics of Mayor Keith James and City Administrator Faye Johnson.

If you are interested in receiving honest news concerning our city, I strongly recommend you subscribe to the new media group and have the news delivered to your in box. Link in the story allows you to subscribe. These reporters are on our side and are doing what needs to be done to shine a light on city leaders.

“Is West Palm Beach getting enough economic oomph from its decision 15 years ago to give a chunk of prime Clematis Street storefront to the Palm Beach Photographic Centre?

Someone at City Hall doesn’t think so.

Eight months ago, the city sued to evict the center from its 26,000-square-foot space at the base of the city library at 415 Clematis St.

For Art and Fatima NeJame, the couple who started the Photo Centre in 1986 and accepted the city’s overtures to move to Clematis in 2008, there’s little the city could bring to the site that could do more to draw outside visitors.”

Please take the time to read the story below to understand the full impact of how James and Johnson are attempting to further damage WPB. Another lawsuit, but what the hell It’s only taxpayer dollars. My opinion the site has been promised to a “friend” of the city.

Read the entire story to discover what mayor agreed to the lease and what excuse James and Johnson are using to break the lease. These two are in lockstep with each other, and has damaged the city, which will take years to undo.

The end

Dialing For Dollars

Campaign Treasurer’s Report 12/1/2022 to 12/31/2022

A total of 47 donations went to Mayor Keith James for re-election.

$1,000.00 is maximum donation allowed.

27 donations were out of state while 20 donations were in WPB area.

12/6/2022  #25, #26 and #27, 3 towing companies each gave $1,000.00 donation to Mayor Keith James campaign for re-election.

12/12/2022  # 35 Sean Reynolds, SVP/Marketing, & #36 Leah Reynolds, Homemaker, both gave $1,000.00 donation, both list same address Mt. Airy, Md.

This does not pass the smell test for me. “An informal method for determining whether something is authentic, credible, or ethical, by using one’s common sense or sense of propriety.”

Campaign Treasurer’s Report found below.


12/12/2022 City Commission Meeting held 6 days after receiving donations from 3 towing companies.

Item 8.1 “Public Hearing and First Reading of Ordinance No. 4999-22 amending Chapter 86 of the City’s Code of Ordinances to establish the City’s Wrecker Operator System.”
“Originating Department: City Attorney’s Office.”

Background Information: Reads in part:

“The City previously provided for the towing or storage of disabled vehicles or vessels by entering into franchise agreements with towing companies selected through the City’s procurement process. The franchise agreements, among other things, charged the towing companies a franchise fee, payable to the City, for the privilege of operating within the City.”
The first thing I noticed was “Originating Department: City Attorney’s Office.” Why not the Parking Administration Edward Davis Office?  Read the agenda below.

CC meeting 12-12-2022

Below you will find a story written by Pat Beall, for the Sun Sentinel on 2/14/2023 and reads in part:

“A contest becomes a cakewalk, and voters are the losers”

“Don’t blame Rodney Mayo’s dogs. It was a lawsuit by West Palm Beach Mayor Keith James, not Mayo’s seven Lantana-housed pups, that robbed West Palm voters of a choice for mayor.

After Mayo filed to run against James last fall, the mayor sued the downtown businessman to make sure he would have no competition on the ballot on March 14.

Mayo did not live in the city, James argued. He lived in the Lantana house where he was getting his mail and keeping his dogs, and he had only recently changed his driver’s license to reflect a downtown Clematis Street address.

Of course, Rodney Mayo lives on Clematis. He practically created it.”

Read the entire story below.

Had enough? Below you will find the link that will allow you to download, print and sign the petition to recall Mayor Keith James. If you decide to help us be successful the petition must be signed and your signature witnessed. Only Registered WPB voters recall petitions will be accepted by the PBC Supervisor of Election Office.
Example: Mary and John Smith both want to recall Mayor James. They can witness each other signing and witness each other’s signature. Please send signed petitions too.
Committee To Recall Keith James
PO Box 1988
West Palm Beach, FL 33402

The end

Mayor James Record 2022

Who is Mark A. Parks, Jr.?

CFO (Chief Financial Officer) MBA (Master of Business Administration) CGFO (Certified Government Finance Officer) CPA (Certified Public Accountant) Chief Financial Officer (CFO)

DEFINITION: “The Chief Financial Officer serves under the administrative direction of the city administrator.

The CFO is responsible for planning, organizing, and directing budgeting, accounting, auditing and financial reporting functions of the city.”

Below are excerpts from the PB Post. Link below.

“West Palm Beach’s chief financial officer has been placed on administrative leave pending a management and operational review, leaving the city without its top accounting expert as the annual budget process kicks into high gear”.
“Multiple sources told The Palm Beach Post that the CFO, Mark A. Parks Jr., was escorted by security out of City Hall on Tuesday.”

“The city is crafting its fiscal year 2022 budget, a process where, in most municipal governments, the chief financial officer is heavily involved.”

When you have been placed on administrative leave, you are not walked out by security, you are fired.

I sat in the commission chambers during the budget discussions when City Administrator Faye Johnson left the dais and walked to the podium and began discussing the new budget. I was confused and wondered where Mr. Parks was, he always addressed the Mayor and City Commissioners on the new budget. A quick scan of the room and I spotted him in the audience and knew something wasn’t right.

Below are excerpts from The PB Post and Johnsons idea of a balanced budget.

“An earlier iteration of the budget called for 30% cuts to the Mandel Public Library and the Parks and Recreation Department. That meant the library would lose 12.5 full-time positions and 12 “on-call” pages. parks stood to lose 36 full-time workers. Members of the public, citing the importance of those public resources, urged the city to back off those cuts.”.

Under a new proposal, presented to commissioners Monday by City Administrator Faye Johnson, the library instead would lose one full-timer and seven pages, while the parks department would lose about 11 full-timers and five on-call part-timers.”
But other cuts would have to be spread among various city departments to make up for that, Johnson said. In all, 48 positions would have to go, including five layoffs and 43 vacant positions that would go unfilled.”

I asked a city hall employee, one who is familiar with Mr. Parks removal 1 question. Did James fire Mark?  Response: “No, but he didn’t do anything to help him either”

It didn’t take Johnson long to climb to the top of the ladder, and Mr. Parks was one of her victims left behind.

Who is Dr. Philip C. Harris? Assistant to the City Administrator, Faye Johnson.

Assists the City Administrator in the annual budget preparation and presentation.

Dr. Harris was hired as a level GM17. The City’s pay scale salary for level GM17. “Min. $121,330.00 Mid. $151,663.00 Max.$181,995.00. Harris receives a starting salary of $152,000.” (Mid. Level)

Monday, May 24, 2021 “West Palm Beach Mayor Keith A. James is pleased to announce the selection of Dr. Philip C. Harris for the position of Assistant to the City Administrator. Dr. Harris holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication degree from the University of South Florida and a Master and Doctor of Business Administration degree from Argosy University.”

On February 27, 2019, the US Department of Education stated that they were cutting off federal funding to Argosy University. According to Inside Higher Education, “The Education Department said that the roughly 8,800 students enrolled at Argosy campuses could seek to transfer their credits elsewhere or apply for loan cancellation in the event their campus shuts down.”
All Argosy campuses were officially closed on March 8, 2019″

Was Dr. Harris even vetted? Good to have friends in high places willing to fire the previous Chief Financial Officer and make room for a friend.

Who is Al Adelson & Stephen Ross?

PB Post reporter Alexandra Clough, wrote the article, and below are excerpts from the story. Entire story can be read below. My comments in italic.

‘Very powerful,’ ‘financially successful people’ create fund to back West Palm Beach police.

“Al Adelson, who launched the fund. Adelson is a developer of The Bristol, an ultra-luxury condominium at 1100 S. Flagler Drive.” Reminder, The Bristol is where Mayor Keith James sent the WPB Fire Dept. to issue the Covid vaccine to wealthy residents, before the neediest of residents.

“Among the people involved in the new police fund is Stephen Ross, owner of the Miami Dolphins football team and chairman of New York-based Related Cos., developer of The Square (formerly CityPlace), and numerous office buildings.”
“Adelson said the money raised by the fund will be used to recognize police officers with awards, as well as purchase needed equipment, such as a new mobile command center van. The van costs $1 million, Adderley said.” 

$1 million seemed high to me so I googled it and here’s the response.

How much does a mobile command center cost?” A well-equipped unit can range $100,000-$300,000 depending on options and features added.” Where’s the remaining $700,000 going to be put to good use?

Adelson said members of the fund are concerned about “street people” in the downtown who may be dealing with addictions. “That’s a different element, and I’m concerned that element will turn to crime,” Adelson said. “We want our downtown and the whole city to be safe. He stressed that he is not singling out homeless people who may be struggling economically.” All homeless people are struggling economically, step down from the tower!

2/7/2022 Palm Beach Post reporters Alexandra Clough and Kimberly Miller from the PB Post wrote:

“Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross is a powerhouse real estate titan who helped transform West Palm Beach from a sleepy midsized city to a growing center of finance and business.

Along the way, his Related Cos. has become the dominant developer in the city, and Ross is known as a business leader who doesn’t take no for an answer when it comes to winning approval for his ambitious real estate projects.

Related’s presence in downtown is pervasive, from the company’s mixed-use project known as The Square, formerly CityPlace, to its ownership of the downtown’s top four Class A office buildings, and to a new waterfront office tower under construction that won city approval despite vocal public opposition.

But real estate brokers mindful of Related’s power privately refer to West Palm Beach by a different name: “Relatedville.”

If you read this far is there any doubt Stephen Ross doesn’t have the “pull” to make things happen in WPB? How about Mr. Ross builds one less Class A office buildings and replace it with a Class A building to house the homeless, and he along with Mr. Adelson can rest easy, not seeing homeless people in their little corner of paradise.

WPB Parking Rates Increased:

My 1st. PRR (Public Records Request)
Mon, Mar 21, 2022, 5:52 pm “On the agenda for the City Commission meeting 3/21/2022 item # 8.4 concerns change to the city parking fee. No explanation of what the changes are. Please send me the documentation explaining what the changes are.”

City’s Response Tue, Mar 22, 2022, 10:19 am “I will provide the resolution approving the fees once signed by the Mayor.”

My 2nd. PRR Tue, Mar 22, 2022, 10:19 am “One more request for the agenda for the City Commission meeting 3/21/2022 item # 8.4 concerns change to the city parking fee. I did not notice this item on the Draft agenda. Please tell me the date and time it was added to the 3/21/2022 City Commission meeting.”

City’s response “This item was approved to be added to the final agenda at agenda review on March 17th, and was published with the final agenda on Friday, March 18th.”

Here lies the problem. It was added to the agenda on 3/17/2022 (Thursday) and put on the final agenda 3/18/2022 (Friday) for a meeting to be held 3/21/2022.

Not enough time for downtown businesses, residents and employees to respond. Good planning, now the mayor and city commissioners won’t have to listen to residents complaining about an out of control rise in parking fees.

Rate increase. Want to park on Clematis St. Parking meters went from $1.25 to $2.50/ hr.  and parking is limited to 2 hours.
Sunday and Holiday parking in a City Garage was free, now it will cost you $5.00, along with Saturday.
Once upon a time the city gave you the first hour of garage parking for free, just enough time to run in and pay your water bill, or check out a book from the library. No More!

$1.00 First two Hours, $2.00 Each Additional ½ hour after the 1st Two Hours” Wording it that way instead of sticker shock of $4.00/hr. with the maximum charge of $20.00 doubling the price from $10.00.

James commented the hike would keep traffic flowing. He was right, less people traveling to Clematis, can’t afford it anymore, so less traffic. Double click picture to enlarge. 

Who Phyllis Brooks?

I received a phone call asking if I was aware that City employee Phyllis Brooks was terminated from her job after 38 years of service to the City. That’s not possible, is it?

Ms. Brooks was hired by the City Of WPB in 1984 and was terminated in Feb.2022. How did this happen? How could a city employee work under 11 mayors, (Dwight Baber, Carol Roberts, Samuel A. Thomas, Richard V. Reikenis, Pat Pepper Schwab, James O. Poole, John F. “Jeff” Koons, Nancy M. Graham, Joel Daves, Lois Frankel and Jeri Muoio) Mayor James gets elected and Ms. Brooks loses her job. Did I mention she worked in the City Commissioners office while Keith James was a commissioner for 8 years. Was she to busy one day to genuflect when he walked by? Mayor James will not understand the harm he has done until he loses his job. Let’s get those petitions signed to recall James. Clock is ticking.

Resolution # 87-22 amending the Comprehensive Fee Schedule for Sidewalk Cafe permits between downtown businesses and Northwood Village.

The examples used to determine a rate for downtown West Palm Beach is greatly skewed. The 3 rate comparisons used were among the top 3 per square foot rates charged for sidewalk cafes in Florida. The examples used was Lincoln Road in Miami Beach at $325 PSF (per square foot) Las Olas at$125 PSF and Atlantic Ave in Delray Beach $115 PSF.

Residents and business owners attended the (1) CRA and (2) City Commission meeting, held back-to-back, and spoke on the issue, claiming they weren’t given enough notice concerning the raise hike and presented a petition for a postponement.

One resident, from Delray Beach, spoke against the hike and when she was through Mayor James said “Delray Beach” I took his 2-word statement as this was not her concern. In his infinite wisdom did James ever consider people traveled from surrounding cities to dine on Clematis St?

Staff reported Clematis lease rates were at average of $50 PSF This is not correct. Rates are $30-$35 PSF. Staff neglected to list the dozens of Cities that do not charge a PSF price and similar fees as we currently have in WPB for sidewalk cafes.

Staff told the dais this was discussed in March 2021 and Commissioners approved the motion on first reading, so downtown businesses were aware of the rate hike that was coming. Commissioner Warren mentioned she was not an elected officials at the time, and this was the first she heard of it. Commissioner Cathleen Ward was recently elected so she may be hearing it for the first time also.

Mayor James worked as hard as staff members to convince the Commissioners the resolution was needed.
Commissioner Christy Fox asked that the item be brought back to give downtown businesses a chance to respond, as did Commissioner Warren.

A frustrated James said, “I’ll entertain a Motion” Meaning he wanted either Commissioner Fox or Ward to approve the resolution. The deafening silence was much appreciated by me and people in the audience. Finally, a voice speaks up. Commissioner Joe Peduzzi who represents District 4

“Mayor, I move approval of resolution 87-22.” “James, do I hear a second?” More glorious silence. James, “Motion dies for lack of a second.”

The entire Commission meeting lasted 1:46:25. If you are interested in viewing the meeting scroll to beginning time 9:48 to end time 42:46 discussion lasted 33 minutes. For some reason the City has decided to run an ad before the meeting comes up. Please be patient. James raised rates for parking and now outside dining. Is he trying to destroy downtown business?

Sunset Lounge: Has significant meaning to the African American community, and the history and memories belongs to the children, their parents and their grandparents. At a time when the only thing they could claim was the Sunset Lounge, a place to meet with friends and family, have dinner, and dance the night away with famous black artist performing. Below you will 4 stories written on WPB Watch. Inside you will find links for other media stories and pictures dating back decades. Unfortunately there will be at least one more story when the courts decide which company will operate the lounge. The choice is between Vita, a black owned business operating out of WPB, or Mad Men, a Hispanic owned business operating out of Miami who has asked the city to withdraw their proposal, as they are no longer interested in doing business with WPB. They also stated the city has been unfair to Vita.





WPB Loses Two More Valuable Employees!

More fallout from the Sunset Lounge, this time the City has lost two valuable employee’s Procurement Official Paul Bassar, and Kathleen Walter, Communication Director.

Keith James was sworn in as Mayor in 2019 and Frank Hayden was the City Procurement Officer for many years until he was re-assigned to the Office of Economic Opportunity.

James & Johnson then hired Nathaniel Rubel, who worked for WPB for 1 year and left for a position as Assistant Director, Procurement at the City of Port St. Lucie.

Shortly after they hired Paul Bassar, who held the title as procurement Official for 1 year before moving on. An employee who wishes to remain anonymous mentioned “they were pushing Paul to do something with those bids he didn’t want to do so he just resigned and from what I understand went back to work for the Federal Government.” Mr. Bassar recently gave testimony in the Sunset Lounge lawsuit. Vita VS. WPB

In three years, the City has had three Procurement Officers, now looking for a fourth. What is the function of a Procurement Officers?

“Procurement Officers are responsible for assessing products, services and suppliers and negotiating contracts. They are also responsible for ensuring that approved purchases are of a sufficient quality and are cost-efficient.”

Kathleen Walter: Former Mayor Geri Muoio hired Ms. Walter as Director, Communications at City of West Palm Beach, FL. She resigned her position in Nov. 2022. She was the voice of the city. How do you explain the leadership of Mayor James with one scandal after another? I wish her well.

Mayor James 2nd. Attempt To Change FCOE Outcome!

This is a story on the no-bid contract to PSC Security

The Florida Commission on Ethics, rejecting its investigator’s recommendation, found probable cause that Mayor Keith James “misused his position to urge the award of a no-bid security contract to a company operated by one of his friends.”
The decision is not a finding of guilt but it means the commission found the case merited further review, trial before an administrative judge or settlement talks with the board.
No additional action along those lines has been scheduled yet, said C. Christopher Anderson III, executive director and general counsel of the commission. If James is found to have violated state ethics law, he could face fines of as much as $10,000 per violation or removal from office.”

Where is the FCOE decision on James? When is the lawsuit to begin? Was scheduled to start the end of November 2022.

Read the story below, it contains links with more information.

The end










James record as Mayor 2021

Updated 1/30/2023 @ 11:35


Jan. 20, 2021:  WPB Fire Dept. issued the covid vaccine to residents of the Bristol Waterfront Condominium located at 1100 S. Flagler Drive that sells apartments between $5.2 million and $42.6 million for an entire floor, combining two units at the top of the complex. I would classify the Bristol as a wealthy development.

April 4,2021 Mayor James interviewed by 60 Minutes reporter Sharyn Alfonsi concerning vaccines issued to residents of the Town of Palm Beach James made the following comment.

“Listen, the county health director has fallen on the sword on that and said it was her bad. Her organizational is bad. They made a mistake. But isn’t it funny that these mistakes only happen in communities that have that kind of wealth? They didn’t make a mistake and send a thousand doses to the poorest communities in our county.”

Three months earlier James made sure wealthy Bristol Residents received the vaccines.” See & hear the 60 min. interview below.


Three contracts to James political advisor Rick Asnani of Cornerstone Solutions with a no bid contract. Here’s how it happened:

Aug. 2021 James declared “A State of Local Emergency”.

“FURTHERMORE, pursuant to Section 252.38(3) {a) 5 Florida Statutes, I hereby exercise my authority to waive the procedures and formalities otherwise required by law pertaining to:” There are 8 procedures & formalities James can waive and I listed #2 & 8.  #2. “Entering into contracts”  #8. “Appropriation and expenditure of public funds.”

The 3 contracts below were signed by Mayor Keith James and Cornerstone Rick Asnani.

(1) $29,500.        Cornerstone Contract $ 29,500.00
(2) $80,000        Cornerstone Contract $80,000.00
(3) $248,000.     Cornerstone Contract $248,000.00

Because James declared “State of Emergency” contracts were not sent out for bids and no contract’s were presented to the City Commissioners for approval and residents were kept in the dark  $357,500.00 taxpayer dollars to James Political Advisor Rick Asnani.

City Water Contaminated: Volumes have been written on the crises and to this day people are still buying/drinking bottled water including the Towns of Palm Beach and South Palm Beach who receive their water from WPB.

Below are excerpts from Chanel 25 WPBF news and the entire story can be read below, along with the mayor’s reaction to the water crises.  Priceless

“Cylindrospermopsin, a toxin produced by cyanobacteria (formerly known as blue-green algae), was detected in the drinking water from the City of West Palm Beach’s Water Treatment Plant on May 20.

Residents are urged not to drink tap water. Infants, young children, the elderly, and those with preexisting liver conditions may be vulnerable to the effects of cylindrospermopsin. Animals are also vulnerable.

Officials also warned residents not to boil the water as it can increase toxin levels.”

Mayor Keith James has the responsibility of running the City, and he failed residents by not releasing the news of contamination when the problem was first discovered, allowed the most vulnerable residents to use city water for 8 days before issuing a warning. Who discovered the contamination?

Poonam Kalkat, Director of Public Utilities.
Joined the City of WPB Feb 2008 as the Laboratory Supervisor and advanced to Director of Public Utilities in July 2015, where she remained until Dec. 2021 when she resigned her position to become the Utilities Director for the City of Boynton Beach.

Ms. Kalkat graduated from Wright State University, (1992 – 2000) with a degree in Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
Ms. Kalkat was responsible for managing water, wastewater and storm water utilities for the city.

Are residents expected to believe Ms. Kalkat, with all her training and experience didn’t report her findings to the Mayor and City Administrator for 8 days knowing the damage contaminated water could cause? I don’t buy it. They knew.

Henrietta Farms:   One of Mayor James most egregious decisions.

It’s Sunday morning and you are about to make dinner for your family and your spaghetti is one of their favorite meals. You set up the ingredients and discover you forgot to buy peppers. Jump in the car and drive to the local supermarket and buy 2 fresh peppers, a minor inconvenient, but now you have the missing ingredient.

Not so easy for many in WPB who live in poorer communities, with no means of transportation and are considered living in a “food desert” On to Google

What does it mean to live in a food desert?

“Food deserts are geographic areas where residents have few to no convenient options for securing affordable and healthy foods — especially fresh fruits and vegetables.”

Who is most affected by food deserts?

“The other defining characteristic of food deserts is socio-economic: that is, they are most commonly found in black and brown communities and low-income areas (where many people don’t have cars).”

Who is Stewart Bosley?

Bosley, affectionately known as “Bos” saw a need and approached Former Mayor Lois Frankel who leased him an acre and a half of city land to start a community garden where it was most needed, right in the middle of a food desert. Former Mayor Geri Muoio and City Commissioners voted to wave the water Hook up.

If readers are interested the city also owns property at 401 No. Flagler Dr. complete with a beautiful building, great view of the water. The city also leases this property for years to the Chamber of Commerce for a whopping price of $1.00 a year. Quick check told me the property is appraised at $14,746,704 in 2022. Good to have friends in high places.

Mayor Keith James did not renew the lease, and people mentioned to Boz he shouldn’t have placed a “Vote for Taylor   Paula Ryan for Mayor” yard sign outside the farm gate. My apologies Ms. Taylor and Ms. Ryan.

The Palm Beach Post Editorial Board “Find urban farm a new home.”

Excerpts from the story, and I have included the link below.

“For seven years, West Palm Beach’s urban farm has brought a spot of green, purple and red to a weedy lot by the railroad tracks, in a humble, historic neighborhood where an overlay of street crime makes life tough but hasn’t suppressed a generational sense of community.”

“Sadly the city, by executive authority of Mayor Keith James, has given urban farmer Stewart Bosley a couple of weeks to clear out.”

“The city chose not to renew the lease to explore other opportunities and land purposes that will address other long-standing, critical needs in the city,” said a statement from the Mayor’s Office. The city sees the acre and a half as a potential site for housing for downtown workers, or for transitional apartments for the homeless. It’s considering other possible sites for a community garden.”

“On the site of long-demolished apartments a mile north of downtown’s glitzier streetscapes, the garden took root as a way to provide fresh, low-cost vegetables for residents, many of whom don’t have cars and who strained in the South Florida heat to trek the two miles to the nearest Publix. The modest operation was conceived by Vietnam War Marine veteran Bosley, to whom the city initially leased the land for $10 a month, and more recently $25 a month.”

City lock on Henrietta Farm

9/24/2021 (Fri.) Boz had a crew of volunteers to work on the farm that weekend, and when they arrived they found the lock was cut off and replaced with a new one. A weekend of work gone when the lease didn’t expire for 2 more weeks.

The city put new locks on the farm on 9/24/2021. This story will be published 1/30/2023. There is 1 year, 4 months & 6 days between dates when vegetables and fruit trees could have been harvested to feed the neediest, instead vegetables and fruit left to rot in the middle of a pandemic. Below are pictures taken in Jan, 2023 of Henrietta Farms. The city has done nothing with the land except mow the vegetables down.  Fruit trees have died from lack of care. Apparently, the city has turned off the water.

Below are pictures of Henrietta Farms taken in Jan. 2023, (Double click pictures and 1 notice from the city to enlarge)










While James accomplished this Rodney Mayo, the man that isn’t fit to run the city according to Mayor James and Rick Asnani of Cornerstone Solutions claimed he didn’t live in the city and should be disqualified, and the Judge agreed, and OUR election was cancelled.

Here’s what Rodney Mayo accomplished during the pandemic.

“We’re not turning anyone away. So, if somebody doesn’t have a meal, we’ll give them a meal as long as we can,” said Rodney Mayo with Hospitality Helping Hands.”      An organization he helped to create.

“At Howley’s Restaurant in West Palm Beach, the owner, who owns 16 other restaurants, is using the food he has, and some of his staff members, to prepare meals for people in the service industry laid off this week, among others”.

Now ask yourself who’s not fit to run the city.

Saved the best news for last. The committee to recall Mayor Keith James has presented the paperwork to City Hall. That was the first step needed for the recall, and it also started the ball rolling. The recall is extremely time sensitive, and a percentage of registered voter’s signature is necessary for a successful outcome.

The committee to recall Mayor Keith James is inviting you to a sign the petition. We are not asking for help to take back our country, just our city. Your signature can make change that is desperately needed in WPB.

When: Saturday February 4, 2023 @ 7:00 PM

Where: 522 Clematis St.

There is a city parking garage on the 500 block of Clematis St; and it’s suggested you enter the garage on Banyon St.

If you want to come by trolley the schedule can be found in the link below.


The end

Open Letter to WPB City Commissioners

Dear Commissioners,  Fox, Lambert, Peduzzi, Warren, and Ward.

What you are about to read I witnessed a few years ago when I attended the meeting between the mayor and city commissioners to discuss the agenda for the upcoming city Commission meeting.

At the meeting Former City Commissioner Shannon Materio asked why she was not allowed to ask a question of a staff member about a concern she had with an item on the agenda. She was looking for clarification. Apparently, the staff member told Commissioner Materio her questions must go through the city administrator, who at the time was Jeff Green.

The response Commissioner Materio received was “that was the rule” and they couldn’t have commissioners asking questions of staff which would pull them away from their regular duties.

I’m ashamed to admit that it took me a couple of years to figure out why that rule was in effect, but better late than never.

When commissioners meet to vote on an item, they are given a presentation by city staff and they are allowed to ask questions, but sometimes I believe they don’t ask the right ones. If the project is particularly important to the mayor, staff had better give the right response as I believe their job is on the line. With that said, in my opinion that is why Commissioners are not allowed to ask a question of staff. God forbid Staff give the wrong answer to the right questions.

Commissioners are kept in the dark on many issues, and a couple of commissioners have shared with me that they were told when asked to run this would be a “part time” job.

The 2021 census has the population of WPB at 117,286 residents and should never be considered a “part time” job. Your loyalty should be to the residents, not the Mayor, City Administrator, developers or special interest groups. That’s my opinion, and I’m sticking with it.

                                                                                 Joel Engelhardt

No one can write a better story than Joel Engelhardt, award winning newspaper reporter who wrote for the PB Post for 28 years before leaving for brighter skies. The story below on his website ( is long, but when you tell both sides of a story, don’t hide the facts it tends to be long.

If Mr. Engelhardt hadn’t used the words County, or name County Commissioners, I would think he was writing about WPB City elected officials. Please take the time to read the story, you’ll be better for it.

Below are excerpts from his story. The entire story is below.

“Emails show how county helped racetrack-to-warehouse conversion” 

“County staff moved quickly to help landowner avoid zoning obstacles but never publicly told the commission or the public why.”

“Last May, Palm Beach County staff rushed to avoid a legal challenge over the zoning board vote that blocked warehouses at the former Palm Beach International Raceway site on Beeline Highway west of Jupiter.”

“Top county officials from multiple departments responded to urgent requests from county attorneys for speedy action to get a seemingly mundane item before county commissioners at their May 26 zoning meeting.”

“While appearing innocent, the action would clear the way for the conversion of the racetrack to a warehouse complex by removing a potential hurdle for the developer — an action staff never made public or clear to commissioners.”

“When Commissioner Maria Sachs asked repeated questions about the move at a May 26 meeting, county staff never told her or anyone else publicly about the real reason behind their actions.”

“But more than 900 internal county emails, made public after a records request submitted and paid for by racing fan Jennifer Davis, reveal the untold story. Davis paid $187 for the emails — the county’s fee for producing, reviewing and redacting — and shared them with
The emails portray a county government doing one thing but telling public officials another.”

“They show how the county abandoned the rights of way to avoid a legal fight with the warehouse builder. By removing the rights of way, the county would remove the hurdle that had blocked the warehouse proposal.” 

If you have read his story his far and Mr. Engelhardt story hasn’t piqued your curiosity to read more, so be it. I feel good because you have the information You’ve been given a heads up.

Read entire story below.

The end

James Executive Order 2020-09 & Destroyed Doc’s?

The City Commission held on Jan. 23,2023 had an item on the Consent Calendar #7.7 which reads “Resolution No. 32-23 cancelling the General City Election scheduled for March 14,2023 and the General City Run-off Election scheduled for March 28, 2023 and Resolution No. 34-23 declaring the results of the General Election, which was scheduled for March 14,2023.”

The Consent Calendar starts at the beginning of the meeting around 5:15, and developers, business people, and city staff have already taken their seats, as they did on this day. The other seats were occupied by residents, upset with the cancellation of the March 14, 2023 election who were present and wanted Mayor James to hear their thoughts, and express them they did, one after another. Comments were made and people in the audience never would have heard them and known how residents really felt because once their business was finished they left their chairs and went home.Residents complained about not being able to send their comments to the Portal and have they read into the record. They had to appear in person to make a comment.

In my opinion James moved General Comment, where you were allowed to praise or chastise the city leaders for a full 3 minutes. Under former Mayor Geri Muoio, General Comment started the meeting off. James moved it to the end of the meeting. Fewer people attended, people waited as long as they could, gave up and left. I have sat from 5pm until after 10pm to make my statement. At that hour City Chambers was empty, no one to hear my complaint except people on the dais and the poor cops assigned to sit through it all.

Below you will find email communication between myself and the City of WPB. The city’s response includes Mayor’s Executive Order 2020-09

Request for PRR (Public Records Request)

From: Sandy Matkivich <>
Sent: Monday, January 23, 2023 8:33 AM
To: Jacqueline H. Mobley <>; Faye Johnson <>
Cc: Sandy Matkivich <>
Subject: City Portal
Hello again Ms. Mobley,
I just heard from a resident, who attempted to send a Public Comment to the portal and was unable to do so. Is the city aware they have a problem, or has the city closed it down?
If they have closed the site down, please send me the documentation that allows it.
Thank you again,
Sandy Matkivich

City’s response to my PRR

Jacqueline H. Mobley <>
To:Sandy Matkivich
Cc:Faye Johnson
The Public Comment Portal was implemented to accommodate virtual meetings during COVID-19. In April of 2020, under the Mayor’s Executive Order 2020-09, public comments were permitted on-line through the portal among several other virtual meeting accommodations. The Executive Order expired in May of 2022 and upon its expiration, the virtual meeting accommodations were terminated. However, the Public Comment Portal continued which was an oversight. That oversight has now been corrected through the discontinuation of the portal. The process for public comments is now being handled as it was (in-person only) prior to the Mayor’s Executive Order 2020-09 related to COVID-19 virtual meetings accommodations.
Thank You,
Jackie H. Mobley

The city claims  “The Public Comment Portal was implemented to accommodate virtual meetings during COVID-19”  It was a great tool for the public, the elderly, the impaired, people who had no transportation to city hall but wanted their voices heard. Damn shame Mayor James didn’t want to hear them.

The City Clerk didn’t send me the documentation I asked for “If they have closed the site down, please send me the documentation that allows it”   so I went to the WPB City Charter looking for James Executive Order 2020-09.   Look what I found below.

                                           City Commission Meeting held 12/12/2022

At the end of the meeting public comment began @ 1:53:30 when James called out the names of 3 residents to approach the podium and make their statement.

1:53:40 Mayor James statement: “Now by the way I got a card from something called Palm Beach Free Press we take comments from individuals and not entities so I don’t know who Palm Beach Free Press who that is but I’m not reading the card”

Quick check of the computer and I found :

Palm Beach Free Press
“My goal here is to exercise our rights, hold people accountable, expose corruption, and share unheard stories. Thanks for checking the channel out!” Web site below.

I want to know what comment to the city Palm Beach Free Press made, so I placed a PRR for information.

From: Sandy Matkivich <>
To: “” <>
Sent: Monday, January 23, 2023 at 07:58:00 AM EST
Subject: PRR PB Free Press

Good morning Ms. Mobley,
City Commission meeting held 12/12/2022 James had a card come through the portal from the Palm Beach Free Press and would not read the card into the record.

I am requesting a copy of the entire document sent by the Palm Beach Free Press.
Thank you in advance for your help.
Sandy Matkivich

Received no reply, so sent another email and included City Administrator Faye Johnson.

Sandy Matkivich <>,
Tue, Jan 24 at 9:25 AM
Good morning,
I’m still waiting for the PB Free Press comment sent to the city. Will you please send it to me.

City replied:

Jacqueline H. Mobley <> Tue, Jan 24 at 10:33 AM
To:Sandy Matkivich
Cc:Faye Johnson
Good morning,
I do not recall receiving a comment from PB Free Press.
Thank You,
Jackie H. Mobley

Ms Mobley, who reports to City Administrator Faye Johnson, who reports to the mayor, is charged with keeping the public records, all public records, not the ones chosen by Mayor James or City Administrator Faye Johnson.
Watch the City Commission meeting and see James holding the card, and hear him say “I’m not reading the card” That tells me the city is destroying public records. Are you mad yet?

Your free to see/hear the entire meeting, if you want to see him speak about the Free Press scroll to 1:53:30 start time.

James Executive Order taken from the City Charter. Appears 2020-09 never existed.









The end

James record as Mayor 2020

March 6, 2020 When voting was over in 2018 and James was elected mayor a friend and I took a trip to the PBC Supervisor of Election Office and they couldn’t have been more generous with their time and patience. Here’s what we learned.

My district is 7058 and there are 2,363 registered voters. 154 went to the polls and 90 voted by mail. 2,119 people did not vote.

My friend is district 7130 and there are 2,473 registered voters. 177 went to the polls and 86 voted by mail. 2,210 people did not vote.
When we complain about bad government, we have no one to blame but ourselves.

April 2020: The city previously allowed residents two months April and May to prepare for the hurricane season and granted amnesty where the city would pick up yard waste at no extra cost to residents, and we pruned back trees to allow the hurricane winds to pass through with little or no damage, and many residents took advantage of the city’s “gift.”
Well Mayor Keith James decided the city was losing money and he eliminated the amnesty due to the Carona Virus. 

Now neighbors are hesitant to trim back trees not knowing how they will pay for the special pickup. Thousands of people out of work through no fault of their own, with no paycheck, desperately trying to apply for unemployment benefit or waiting for a check from the Federal Government. Both are slow in coming. Folks are panicked about paying their rent, mortgage, car loans and utilities and now hundreds of dollars for the city to remove yard waste. After getting push back James decided a couple of weeks amnesty would be enough time and the “special” fee would resume.

Affordable Housing: Before passing this development, residents were told the city was desperate for affordable housing for low-income residents.

Below is what we received.

Broadstone Locklyn Apts. on Village Blvd.

The City of WPB has awarded most of our water views to developers so it only makes sense they must now spread out throughout the city.

The Family Church located at 3600 Village Blvd. has sold a large section of their property to Broadstone who plans to construct 6 buildings 4 stories high and consist of 280 rental apartments of studio apt’s 1, 2 and 3 bedroom and the rent from $1,775.00 to $2,375.00/ month. Construction finished and apts. remain empty.

New information below taken from Broadstone website Dec. 2022
2023 “Broadstone is offering “Now Leasing and Offering up to 6 weeks free* on Select Floorplans and Waived App & Admin Fees*! Starting at $2,393” Apt’s will remain empty.

Below both Resolutions on the Consent Calendar, where items are seldom discussed and voted on as a whole.

Resolution No. 111-20 “authorizing a letter of support to the Florida Department of Transportation for the Lane Elimination planned for the Broadway Improvements Project from 25th Street to 45th Street. Transportation staff is proposing to submit a Lane Elimination Application to the Florida Department of Transportation to eliminate vehicular travel lane(s) on Broadway from 25th Street to 45th Street.”

The city states: “As one of the highest traveled corridors in Palm Beach County, Broadway (State Road 5/ US Highway 1) is the ideal location for storefronts and businesses that will contribute to business expansion and commercial revitalization.”

The city is telling us Broadway is one of highest traveled corridors so why would they remove a travel lane?

Resolution No. 110-20 “approving the City’s intent to engage in mandatory conflict resolution procedures in an action filed against the Palm Beach Transportation Planning Agency regarding an amendment to its Long Range Transportation Plan that added a project extending and widening State Road 7.”

Ibis Country Club, located in District 4, is the reason the city has spent years and wasted millions of taxpayer dollars fighting the SR7 expansion. Why?
“At present, the community consists of 1,864 condo, attached, and single-family homes. There are 9,640 residents in Ibis Country Club.” They all have one thing in common. They vote, and they vote to protect a Mayor and City Commissioners who continue to fight the expansion. In other words Ibis picks City Commissioners in District 1,2,3 and 5. If you don’t understand, please read the first paragraph in the story. Disgraceful!

April 2020 Carona Virus:

“Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order in April that exempted firearms and ammunitions manufacturers from the state’s restrictions during the COVID-19 crisis.

Florida Governor’s Order Supersedes All Local Orders – Firearm Industry Can Remain Open Throughout Florida”

May 2020:
“The mayor of West Palm Beach, Fla., declared a state of local emergency on May 31 that banned the sale of firearms and ammunition as well as the right of citizens to carry a firearm for personal protection in public unless they are members of law enforcement.” James ignores DeSantis executive order.

May 31,2020 (Sunday) “West Palm Beach declares State of Local Emergency.”

A cop (Derek Chauvin) murdered a black man (George Floyd) by placing his knee on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes as he begged for air.
There was a peaceful protest on Clematis St. when James at 8:00 PM, signed a Declaration of State of Local Emergency (curfew) at the request of Police Chief Adderley. The curfew was to be enacted from 9:00PM until 6:00AM. At this point the Mayor and Police Chief were the only two with knowledge of the curfew.

Police officers addressed the crowd on Clematis St; by a megaphone and an armored vehicle that looked like a tank and told peaceful protestors to disperse because of a curfew that had been imposed with no time to advertise the curfew. Two people knew, James and Adderley. 

“But then things turned destructive. Protesters torched a Geek Squad van outside the Best Buy store on Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard. The Target store nearby had some of its windows broken out.”

The problem was on Palm Beach Lakes Blvd; not on Clematis St. where a peaceful protest was taken place.

“Business owner blames police for escalating violence on Clematis Street.”

“Several downtown business owners are waking up to shattered windows after a tense confrontation between protesters and police Sunday night.
Windows at Subculture Coffee, Rush Bowls, and Miracle Leaf in the 500 block of Clematis Street were shattered Monday morning.

The tense confrontation followed a day of mostly peaceful protests in West Palm Beach.”
Police tried to get the crowd to disburse after announcing a 9 p.m. curfew.
When some people did not immediately leave, witnesses said, police fired tear gas and rubber bullets.

Downtown business owner Rodney Mayo said it didn’t have to go that way. He believes that’s when the damage happened to his business.
“Right after that when the shields (went up) and they escalated it right after that,” he said. “It was completely unnecessary.”

Deputy Chief Rick Morris released the following statement: Please read the link below for Morri’s statement.

“Rodney Mayo says officer pepper spraying protesters led to Sunday’s confrontation with police.
Cell phone video from several sources shows the moment some claim sparked the confrontation between West Palm Beach Police and protesters Sunday night.
As people ran, some grabbed road barriers and signs and began tossing them into the street. Police said others threw rocks and bottles at officers.
Restaurant owner Rodney Mayo, who was in the crowd, said if not for the pepper spraying, that wouldn’t have happened.
“That was the catalyst that started it, yeah, I don’t think it would have escalated, because that’s when everybody started running because they got sprayed with mace,” said Mayo.
Mayo said police should have been more patient, but instead barely gave people a warning before firing foam bullets and dispensing smoke and tear gas.”

As WPBF 25 News first reported Tuesday, Adderley acknowledged they did use one tear gas dispenser after denying it Monday. He said that was a mistake that happened when an officer picked up the wrong canister, and he and other top officers weren’t aware of its use until Mayo pointed it out.”

June 2020 Peace Cookout for Police & Protesters
In an attempt to bring peace between Police and Protesters Rodney Mayo provided food, tents, tables, chairs and a band. Everything WPB demanded before the permit was issued.

There were invited speakers and one young man impressed me. His name is Ricky Aiken and he established “Inner City Innovators”

“Inner City Innovators was born from a need. A deep need to help the youth of communities, centered in the neighborhoods of West Palm Beach, Florida. With a rising crime rate, and shootings happening right and left, Executive Director, Ricky Aiken, saw that the time for change wasn’t two years or ten years into the future, it was now.”

James canceled the permit for the Peace Cookout. At the last-minute Lake Worth generously offered to host the event.

Aug.2020 PSC Contract, the story that keeps on giving.
Below are excerpts from a story in the PB Post.
“Investigator’s recommendation found probable cause that Mayor Keith James “misused his position to urge the award of a no-bid security contract to a company operated by one of his friends.”
“If James is found to have violated state ethics law, he could face fines of as much as $10,000 per violation or removal from office.”
“Shortly after taking office in April 2019, the mayor canceled a bidding process initiated by his predecessor”
“A rival of PSC, Giddens Security Corp. of Jacksonville, sued the city, alleging favoritism, and filed the ethics complaint.”
“I do believe that the mayor misused his position, tried to benefit his friend, by setting in motion that an existing contract be eliminated and that they rapidly do a consolidation, and that he failed to disclose that it was his friend,” said one ethics commissioner.
“It seemed like this mayor is a little bit out of control,” said another.
Giddens had a contract with the city and it covered from city hall and the main library to Northwood Village, the water and wastewater plants, and city operations center.
I sat in the Commissioners Chambers and listened to a Giddens employee, with tears running down her cheek, speak out and the PB Post ran a story and below are excerpts.
Valerie Jones described herself as “one of those homeless people” who lived in Currie Park. A year ago, she landed a full-time job with Giddens Security. Now she patrols the park.
On Monday night, she stood before West Palm Beach’s mayor and city commissioners and implored them to rescind the no-bid contract they gave without notice to another firm.
“I don’t want to be homeless again,” she told them. “I need my job.”
Mayor Keith James responded to Ms. Jones comment, with the disguesting comment.
“So, for Mr. Giddens to encourage you all to come up and pull at our heartstrings, in my view, is quite disingenuous”

Sept. 2020 Car Allowance
Car Allowance. Years ago a former commissioner complained about the paperwork involved in receiving reimbursement money he spent on gas in his private vehicle used for city business. So a resolution was passed and they voted themselves $500.00/month. My surprise was 4 other city officials who also received the benefit. So we have 9 people receiving $6,000.00/year= $54,000.00.
Mayor James did not receive the Car Allowance. As City Commissioner he received a total of $48,000.00 over 8 years. The shocker was when I discovered the city purchased a 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe SUV Full Size 4×2 which is assigned to James. The taxpayers also pay for his car insurance and gas. It’s good to be king.
Another surprise was discovering Gregory Key, Special Assistant to the Mayor, was driving a city owned 2019 Ford Explorer SUV Mid-Size and again the taxpayer is on the hook for car insurance and gas. It’s good to be prince.
Negotiations with Police & FireFighters for a new 3-year contract:

When first elected Mayor James was like Santa Clause at Christmas time handing out promotions and pay raises like the well would never go dry. Traveling from city to city along with his Police Security Detail spending thousands more.

The Carona Virus struck hurting the economy and the well started drying up. If James handled the city’s finances in a responsible manner from day 1 WPB outlook may not seem so dire that the only alternative the city could see was eliminate blue collar workers.

Residents protested and the city found another way. Fight the firefighters (IAFF) and police (PBA) union and deny them a decent wage.
I sat in the room listening to the negotiations when James entered the room, bellowing, “I told you last week you had my final offer, why are we here to negotiate again?”      Bully

I have no reason to believe Mayor James and City Administrator Faye Johnson have negotiated in “good faith” when they tell city employees and the public that if the fireman get raises city workers will get laid off.

James and Johnson declared an impasse in negotiation and it was sent to a Special Magistrate for a decision.

Both the Police and Fire Fighters are unhappy with the city’s impasse. James and Johnson has nearly destroyed the 2 most valuable assets the city has, cops and firefighters. They deserve better and so do the residents that depend on them.


“Public Hearing and Second Reading of Ordinance No. 4919-20 amending the City’s Code of Ordinances to prohibit certain conduct that threaten the aesthetic beauty and public health and safety in the Cities Downtown and Northwood Area.”

4919-20 is James’s solution and residents witnessed his frustration while attempting to bully the commissioners into approving the Ordinance.
James started by stating “This ordinance is not a criminalization of homelessness,” and repeated his statement several times. The Ordinance carries a penalty of a $500.00 fine or 60 days in jail. 

“Officials in West Palm Beach are hoping a continuous loop of the children’s songs “Baby Shark” and “Raining Tacos” played throughout the night will keep homeless people from sleeping in a waterfront park.” Sun Sentinel story below.

1,433 Comments. Read how residents feel about homelessness.

James, a Harvard graduate and attorney, who should have known better thinks he can do as he pleases with no push back. Well, the Southern Legal Council did push back. Read the letter below.

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