JANUARY 25, 2011


Last July I did a story about how a supposed group calling itself “The Friends Of Marine Stadium” - which actually at the time consisted as a front group created by the Miami-Dade heritage Trust, and at the same time was a non-profit corporation created solely by a local art dealer and member of the Heritage Trust named Don Worth - was then engaged in a full court press to try and get the City of Miami to create an inter-local agreement between the city and the Miami Sports & Exhibition Authority (MESA), that would have in turn given the Friends Of Marine Stadium, a sweet-heart deal.

Essentially, the deal would have resulted in the City transffering the last 10+ acres of waterfront property, valued at a minimum of $30 million to this group without any real public scrutiny.

Included in the deal would have been the opportunity for Manny Alonso Poch, owner/operator of the Arts & Minds Academy to shoehorn himself into a position to create a new charter school as part of the deal.  Poch has been the subject of numerous CrespoGram and Miami Herald stories about his management of Arts & Minds - none of them good, but he is a pal of His Ignorance, which merits him support from Raquelita, who has managed to anger her fellow School Board members for running interference for him.

In the aftermath of my story, the deal sudden dropped off the radar as Worth and his allies, and Tomas Regalado and his underlings tried to figure out another way to do the deal.

At the City Commission meeting on Thursday, January 26, 2012, they will present their latest plan.  Here it is.

The expected result of the deal this time is like the deal last time, which is to evade public imput and the solicition of bids from competing groups, companies and/or individuals who might have a better idea.

I’ve written in the past how, on occassion Commissioner “Ethics” Sarnoff manages to say the most amazing things from the Dias during City Commission meetings, and last September, during the budget discussions on the MESA budget, Sarnoff said this:

The decision by the 5 Dwarfs was to keep MESA alive and kicking, just so that mesa, after making a few minor window-dressing charges to the resolution could do what they did on Tuesday, which was to vote to support this proposal, thereby evading the requirements for an RFP for this property.

In fact, the deal is now even worse, because the footprint of the property that the city is prepared to turn over to the Marine Stadium - and make no mistake about it, this is a sweetheart deal intended to do just that - now include ALL of the property on the northern side of the Rickenbacker Causeway from The Rusty Pelican all the way to the Mast Academy

Just so you understand the voraciousness of these Friends of Marine Stadium, when it comes to trying to screw the pooch and the taxpayers of Miami - and of Tomas Regalado and the City Commission’s willingness to let them do so, here is the copy of the letter that Don Worth’s attorney, Lynn Lewis wrote last June, at a time when Worth was trying to influence how the inter-local agreement between the city and MESA would be written, as a way to insure that he and his pals got exactly what they wanted.

And just in case you didn’t bother to read the proposed resolution that will be voted on by the City Commission tomorrow, here’s the core of that document which gives the marine Stadium, and a sizable chunk of city land  to the frieds of The Marine Stadium without an RFP, or any opportunity for any competing groups to offer their plans or suggestions.

Bend over Miami, your Mayor and City Commission will be screwing you royally tomorrow!


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