MAY 29, 2012


The evidence has long been clear that Tomas Regalado doesn’t value education, or professional skills.  His whole political career was predicated on the philosophy espoused by his wife, who preached to her husband and children, “Trust only you family.”

When it comes to managing a city, you can only trust you family so far, and then you have to broaden your base if you want to be an effective manager.

In Regalado’s case he broadened his base by bring in his “4th son,” Angel Zayon to be his Communication Director, and his “Godson,” Luis Cabrera, to first be his Deputy Police Chief, and when that didn’t work out, to be his “Acting Assistant City Manager/Deputy Police Chief/ and Loose Cannon.”

But, a city requires more than a couple winners like Zayon and Cabrera to keep it running, and in instance after instance when jobs needed to be filled, Regalado turned to his ‘extended family’ to supply him with the manpower he needed.

Had these people been competent, talented and eager for more than a pay check, the cronyism involved could have been overlooked. Competence and exceptional performance has a way of glossing over how someone got their job after a while.

Unfortunately for the taxpayers of Miami, the collection of nitwits and incompetents that have gotten jobs with the City of Miami during the Regalado years has demonstrated that while cream rises to the top, so does shit.

In January, Commissioner Willie Gort, no stranger himself to questionable hires and appointments, asked the City Manager for a list of all the people that had been hired during Regalado’s time as Mayor after receiving a waiver because they weren’t qualified for the positions they’d been hired for.

There are always folks who don’t fit the mold - either educationally or in experience - but who if given an opportunity, can excel at whatever they do. Unfortunately, in the City of Miami, the examples of folks like this are overwhelmed by the nitwits and incompetents hired for their family or political connections, often at outrageous salaries, who, other than cashing their checks, demonstrate little, if any interest in the orderly management of the City.

Although the choices for the most embarrassing political appointment were many, my personal favorite was Vanessa Acosta, who didn’t just get 1 waiver, she got 2.

And she got her 2nd waiver after did such a great job negotiating the proposed settlement agreement last year between the City of Miami and Santiago Echemendia and Harkley Thornton, that had Commissioner Carollo not managed to convince the other Commissioners just how skanky this deal was, the City would have had to buy KY Jelly by the 55 gallon drum to ease the screwing they would have gotten because of her negotiating skills. 

If you’ve forgotten who Santiago Echemendia and Harkley Thornton are, they were the two guys who created a billboard company in an effort to slip into the billboard deal flow.

After being shot down on their first pass, they sued the City for violating their civil rights - you got to really have big balls to do that -  and when a Federal judge threw the case out of court on a default motion, they got really creative and decided to try and blackmail the City into giving them what they wanted.

Harkley Thornton’s best pal was the Florida Speaker of the House Dean Cannon, who did Thornton a big favor by introducing a poison pill amendment in a FDOT piece of legislation that would have caused great grief to the City, limiting their income from billboards to $500.00 per billboard, had it passed. It didn’t.

Acosta, whose Daddy owns an insurance company and whose Momma sits on a City board, and is a pal of Commissioner Gort’s,  waltzed in the door of the MRC making $100,000 a year, and less than a year later, she is now the Assistant Director of the City of Miami’s Building Department.

In short, she’s as clueless as a Pet Rock, and couldn’t walk on a job site and spot a building code violation if it up and bit her.

Below are Vanessa’s 2 waivers, followed by the PDF’s by year, on who needed waivers to work for the City because they weren’t qualified for the job they were hired for.

I’m sure that since Commissioner Gort’s request was made in January,  a couple potential candidates have been probably been hired in that time that could could give Vanessa a run for her money.

In fact, I heard that Commissioner Gort’s son-in-law just got hired by the City with a nice salary and benefits.

It’s Miami, Bitches!





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