Dear Editor,

The charter-mandated annual vote of confidence for the city manager was held at the October 10th council meeting. Prior to that, I sent the following message to the council and read it into the record at the meeting. The council eventually gave a unanimous vote of confidence.

To Mayor Mitchell, Council, and City Clerk, For the Record

City Manager/Finance Director William Alonso has had a long career working for Miami Springs. I’m sure that over the years many in city management have found him to be personable and competent in various areas. But the fiasco of the downtown development details involving the failure to properly protect the financial interest of the residents with appropriate parking fees should be a deal breaker. At best it was a negligent oversight. At worse it was a contrived effort to favor the developers over the residents. But instead of taking responsibility, City Manager Alonso has used pretzel logic to give dubious explanations for the failure. But always remember the honest words of City Planner Chris Heid who stated on the record; In hindsight, we wish we would have established a fee and charged them something. But we didn’t. This is to close the barn doors.”

Sometimes change is good and this is the right time for a change. Too many people have lost confidence in the City Manager and it’s time to move on with a fresh perspective. Obviously, the City Council’s first loyalty has to be to the residents, not to an employee, no matter how well-liked or long-tenured. There are many competent and professional managers out there and after so many years and the recent failures, it’s time to vote no confidence and start with new management. (End letter to council)

After the meeting, Mayor Mitchell wrote me a nice message thanking me for my involvement and passion for the city. This was my reply back.

“Thank you very much for the gracious words. I greatly appreciate it, especially knowing how hard you probably had to grit your teeth writing it! But seriously, your hard work and that of the council are appreciated as well. And that is why so many of us are very disappointed that the council at large has essentially advanced a less than candid narrative about why parking fees were not applied to the 1 Curtiss Parkway development. Call me stubborn but I for one will not be letting the issue go because the residents deserve better. We deserve better protection of our financial interest as well as truth and transparency for why parking fees were not imposed.

Putting all of the previously expressed excuses aside for a moment, I ask the following question and greatly appreciate your and/or the City Attorney’s reply. With all due respect, the question will not be going away until it is fully and clearly answered.

“If the City had gone through the necessary timely legal process of establishing a fee and followed any other appropriate measures necessary would there have been any legal reason preventing a parking fee from being applied to 1 Curtiss Parkway?” (End reply to Mayor Mitchell)

To all residents; It’s a very reasonable, million-dollar question. We need truth and accountability to finally cut through the various muddled and dubious excuses given for why no parking fee was imposed. If you agree please copy and email it to each council member. To date, I have received no answer.

Jim Llewellyn

Miami Springs


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