Preserving the Residential Character of Boca Teeca

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Beach & Park District Candidate Forum

Residents filled the large community center room for the Boca Watch sponsored debate by the 6 candidates for the 2 seats.  While all 6 candidates were in favor of saving green space there were some notable differences in their support, or lack thereof, for acquiring and operating the closed Boca Teeca golf course property.

Two candidates stood above the crowd as they clearly understood the importance of this issue and the benefits to the entire community.  Incumbent commissioners Dennis Frisch & Earl Starkoff were both  more aware of the issues facing the district and providing clear solutions that are within their power to implement, as compared to broad generalizations and finger pointing by their challengers.  None of the challengers had even attended a full meeting of the beach & park district which was demonstrated in their lack of knowledge about the details of many issues under the control of the District.

Two challengers are being heavily supported in their campaign finances by fire fighter unions from around the state which certainly raised questions about their motivations for being elected to the district.  Forum moderator Randy Schultz of the Sun Sentinel questioned these campaign finance issues, but there was not a clear answer from the 2 challengers.  What do fire fighters have to do with the recreational mandates of the Greater Boca Raton Beach & Park District (GBRBPD)?

At least one residential group announced their endorsement of the incumbents Frisch & Starkoff as the candidates recommended for their members and supporters of Keep Golf in Boca.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Cry Council Recap/BTUOA Finally Listening to Neighbors?

The BTUOA leaders appear to have got the message from being yelled at during their past several meetings, as their neighbors screamed that they wanted no development on the now closed Ocean Breeze golf course.  Audrey Swartz--Dineen stated the BTUOA represented all BTUOA residents (NOT!) in supporting the Ocean Breeze golf course acquisition by the city in the process of selling the municipal golf course.  BTUOA leader Doug Coller stated that he also supported the deal for Ocean Breeze golf course and he was "elected" to his position on the BTUOA board - LOL/those ballots must've been lost in the mail to their "members".

Assistant city manager George Brown will be analyzing the various offers to buy the city municipal golf course which includes an offer by Lennar to swap the Ocean Breeze golf course for the municipal golf course located west of the Florida turnpike on Glades Road.  Will George Brown & city leaders be able to get some concessions from Lennar in these negotiations? / Boca Teeca residents are not pleased with the prospect of being in limbo for 2 years during this contingency period, as Lennar would be seeking development approvals from palm beach county before closing the transaction and transferring title on the ocean breeze golf course to the city.

What are your thoughts and suggestions?

Monday, August 8, 2016

City Council Recap/Ocean Breeze

Today's city council workshop meeting resulted in the city manager being tasked with analyzing the numerous offers for the municipal golf course located west of the turnpike and reporting back in approx 30 days with his recommendation.  Only the Lennar proposal included a swap of the city golf course for the ocean breeze golf course.

The best comment from residents was by Lenore Wachtel who recommended that any offer to buy the city golf course should be contingent upon the transaction including the transfer of the Ocean Breeze golf course to the city.

Was it surprising that there were no endorsements of the last "Lennar" offer by Boca Teeca residents?(which included the swap of the golf course). But, what can Lennar expect when they offer to build a moat and hundreds of houses on the ocean breeze golf course?  Or, maybe it was their lack of transparency on the contract to buy the golf course from Wells Fargo?  Or, could it be that Lennar is believed to be behind the closing of the golf course in order to "encourage" owners to cooperate with their development proposal?  Or, could it be the lack of irrigation on the golf course since July 1st which has resulted in a browning meadow?

What are your recommendations for encouraging the city to acquire the ocean breeze golf course?  Should Boca Teeca residents email city council members and George Brown ( in order to request they negotiate on behalf of all residents to provide an expedited acquisition of the Boca Teeca golf course property in order to assure a smooth transition from the West Glades Rd. golf course?

Friday, August 5, 2016

City Council Meeting Tues, 8/9 at 2pm

More news on the potential deal for the land swap of the Ocean Breeze/Boca Teeca golf course for the city's current golf course located west of the turnpike, as the city council will be reviewing the various offers for the current golf course, including the revised Lennar offer that includes the swap of the 2 golf course properties, plus over $30 million in cash.  But, there are several others offers also under consideration as detailed on the city's agenda for this meeting.

There will be an opportunity for public comments before this issue is discussed by the council members, so if you are able to attend and would like to provide your support for this general concept of swapping golf courses, then this is your opportunity.  If you are unable to attend or do not want to speak at the meeting, then supporters are encouraged to email their supporting comments to the city leaders c/o Mayor Susan Hainey at / support a negotiated agreement with Lennar that includes the transfer of the ocean breeze property to the city.

The agenda for the city council workshop includes all offers and a summary of the offers by the city manager.  While the swap of properties is a good concept, it would appear that additional negotiation is warranted as the Lennar offer appears more 1-sided in favor of Lennar based upon all their contingencies that must be met within specific timelines or the deal may be cancelled by Lennar.

Accordingly, it would appear a better win-win-win transaction if all parties were treated more equally as the city, the Boca Raton residents and Lennar should have benefits to a negotiated agreement.  It would appear fairer if Lennar were to provide the city a 10% deposit of the total offer, including the transfer of the Ocean Breeze property upon the completion of the inspection period but no later than 60 days from the date of the agreement.  The balance of the revised offer would be paid by Lennar upon approvals for development on a timeline that requires consistent efforts by Lennar to obtain such approvals with 24 months of the inspection.

Today another revised offer has been received from Toll Brothers which is for $1 million more than the revised Lennar offer and the Toll Bros offer does NOT include the ocean breeze property.   Today's revised Toll Bros offer is significantly different from their previous offer which only sought to acquire a small portion of the city's golf property.

Assistant city manager George Brown has provided an excellent summary and spreadsheet on the numerous offers which can be viewed online under the city meetings page/agenda which includes links to each detailed offer and the summary of the offers.  It is expected that city council members may discuss these various offers and potentially give direction to the city staff & city attorney to negotiate an agreement that meets the objectives and fiduciary requirements of the city in such asset sell transactions.

As noted above me please communicate via email your preference for a negotiated agreement that includes the exchange of the 2 golf course properties which be in the best interest of the city residents (bring public golf into the city), the city (will pocket several million dollars) and the developer/Lennar (profitable business transaction).  Everyone should be a winner in this successful business agreement.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Boca Teeca Does Not Want To Be Held Hostage

Boca Teeca residents would be held hostage under the terms of the proposed offer by Lennar to buy the city's municipal golf course west of the turnpike which includes the swap of the Boca Teeca/Ocean Breeze golf course property.  The purchase price offered by Lennar is $37.5 million and is based upon a minimum of 400 home sites and 200 multi-family units to be approved by Palm beach county on the turnpike area golf course property.

Furthermore, the consummation of the transaction is based upon all development approvals being final, with all appeals periods having expired and no pending appeals.  Lennar anticipates that it will take 15-18 months to secure all Approvals .  The closing of the transaction is also subject to an inspection period of 60 days from the effective date of the agreement  and the closing must take place within 21 months from the end of the inspection period.

WOW! There are enough loopholes in this agreement to drive a truck through and during this entire period of approximately 2 years the Boca Raton residents will NOT have a championship level golf course within the city.  Residents in Boca Teeca are going to be held hostage for a minimum of 2 years and of course there is no guarantee that these terms will be met and the whole deal could be voided after approx 2 years of waiting.

This is NOT a good deal for Boca Teeca residents who have already demonstrated that they are not going to amend the deed restriction on the golf course property, so there will need to be some significant improvements in this agreement before 2,500 Boca Teeca residents will be able to support this deal.  Come on Lennar, you don't really expect the city to allow all these "voters " to be held hostage for 2 years!