I can no longer hold in my frustration and disappointment with what has happen in Indiantown and where it is headed. With that said, I am going to be writing a series of Expose’ on what I see going on in Indiantown, I would put it all in one document but you would be reading for days.
This writing will provide short intro and then I will address the current and very important issue of the Comprehensive Plan and the Land Development Regulations (LDRs) that are being created as we speak.
When we as a Community came together to discuss Incorporation, I could have never imagined the scenario that is being played out today. We all had high hopes and dreams for Indiantown’s future as we knew we had everything we needed to be success right here in our community. I felt so strongly in our community I put my money where my mouth is and was the First person to invest in Indiantown’s future when I wrote a $3500.00 check as a down payment to our consultant to perform the Indiantown feasibility study. I have invested many thousands more and hundreds and hundreds of hours of my time to facilitate Indiantown’s Dream, which leads me to write to you today.
Unfortunately, Indiantown in its infancy has been plagued with incompetence. I, we who started this movement bare some of the responsibility as it was, we the founders who brought some of these people to the table not realizing they were not up to the task until we were well underway. Examples would be our First Village manager , who had no real experience as a Village manager and in my opinion was in way over her head, the same goes for Bonnie Landry who was brought in to head up Growth Management/Planning, and has proven in my opinion to be completely incompetent at all levels. This became painfully clear when she would not work with our Village Council Appointed Comprehensive Plan Committee, then went on to author our first Comprehensive Plan which was an absolute mess. Only after a huge intervention from town’s people and property owners was the Comprehensive Plan Corrected enough to avoid instant litigation and disaster. It was a terribly painful process which for the most part was handled outside of public meetings because we the people were not given ample time in open public meetings to air all of the obvious mistakes, many of which would have stripped property rights from the majority of Indiantown Property owners. Many property owners including myself had to go to extra ordinary lengths to help fix the mess and yet Bonnie Landry still works for the Village, even after repeated promises she would be gone as her conduct has never been and continues to be counterproductive to Indiantown’s wants and needs.
The same scenario is now playing out in the creation the Village of Indiantown Land Development Regulations (LDRs) . The Village has hired a consultant from Miami to write our LDRs. Parts of the first draft of the LDR document has been released and once again, as with the Comprehensive Plan the document is full of mistakes and does not reflect the vision of Indiantown. Quite frankly in my opinion they basically took something that already existed off the shelf, word-smithed the Village of Indiantown into it and sent it to us. So once again it is left up to the citizens and land owners to clear up a Poor document, we are willing and able to do so IF given the opportunity.
In efforts to those ends, the Indiantown Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Committee has been reviewing the LDR document and submitting our comments etc. to the Village, with no idea if these comments will be acted on, the same scenario that lead to the Mess with the Comprehensive Plan.
It has become clear to all of us on the Chamber committee and other wise in the community that the only way to get this document right , protect our property rights and allow the Village to realize the PROMISE that came with incorporation, is to have a REAL OPEN Public Meeting or Meetings that could take an entire day or days with the village staff and the LDR consultant to hammer out the defects in the document while providing local knowledge of conditions that actually exist in Indiantown .
This is an absolute necessity, for the NEW LDRs as presented, will strip existing property owners of their property rights and make it even more difficult to develop affordable housing, the One thing everyone in Indiantown has been screaming for and It’s NOT addressed in this LDR document.
To add insult to Injury, the Property the Village just purchased to build the future Village Hall on, is not allowed to have Government buildings on it according to the NEW LDRs! I don’t know what else to say!
The Indiantown Chamber Governmental Affairs committee has been asking to have an OPEN PUBLIC meeting with everyone in town, where sufficient time is allowed to openly discuss the issues with the Village staff and the consultant, thus far that request has been denied. I personally called Howard Brown our Village Manager and had a discussion with him this past Tuesday 8/25/2020 in which I discussed to myriad of issues that exist with the LDRs as presented. Mr. Brown once again, as with the Comprehensive Plan tried to dismiss my concerns with the excuse, that I am just not used to looking at LDRs that are different from Martin County’s, which is a ridiculous statement to be making to me.
In making my argument I pointed out that the LDRs as written will not allow the Village to build Government buildings on the New Site they just purchased, to which Mr. Brown answered he really has not looked at the document. After the drawn out “Dodge Ball” of a discussion, Mr. Brown agreed to take the request for a Special Open Public meeting with Village staff and the Consultant to the Village Council for consideration at the regular Board meeting 8/27/2020. To make a long story Short, no real effort was made by Mr. Brown to facilitate this meeting and none was approved by the Village Council. This I find absolutely absurd! We the people of Indiantown are doing our best to correct a document that we are paying a consultant to create and yet we are being treated like an unwanted step child. I have spent thus far over 25 hours reading and preparing written comments to the Village yet have no idea if they will even be looked at or considered.
As I stated above, I have had Enough of the Engineered Incompetence! Why in God’s name does something this important to the Community have to be so difficult? Why are we letting consultants from Miami and a City Manager from Opa Locka drive our Village into a Ditch, with this insanity!
There is NO BOOGEYMAN lets have OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS and get this right for Indiantown!
I guess Mr. Brown and a few of Our Village Council enjoy turmoil, I don’t know. One can only speculate as to why anyone would intentionally allow avoidable Problems to be created, I believe we all need to think REAL HARD about that.
CLICK HERE to Send an E-mail to the Council Telling them we want in person meetings
Editors Note: We are hoping to convince Mr. Watson to be a contributor with Talk About Martin. If you see him please tell him you would like to see him here more often. Thank You Scott for caring about the world we live in and being willing to do some heavy lifting to clean out the garbage and get on with the peoples business !