Preserving the Residential Character of Boca Teeca

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Beach & Park District Unhappy with City

Has the city reneged on an agreement with the Beach & Park District?  According to the comments by the District commissioners this week, the city has not cooperated with the District based upon an agreement 2 years ago regarding allowing the District to expand the De Hornle park with 4 additional soccer fields.  The city has provided a plan for this land adjacent to the southeast section of the park which indicates a police gun range and "skid track" instead of the 4 soccer fields.  These plans illustrated 2 smaller fields adjacent to the park, but not as big as the soccer fields expected in the agreement.  Who in the city had the horrible idea of placing a gun range next to a city park?

In exchange for the expansion of the De Hornle park land, the District promised to build artificial turf fields at patch reef park (or other city parks).  The District has funds budgeted for the expansion of the De Hornle park (across from the library on Spanish River Blvd.) and the upgrading of 3 soccer fields, but based upon comments at Monday's District meeting there are probably not a majority of commissioners who support spending $3 million for artificial turf since the city has not lived up to their part of the agreement.

There was also discussion about placing the artificial turf on another field, Lake Wyman park, which does not have good drainage and would naturally make more sense since this would increase the usefulness of this field.  But, since the city owns this park the District would need the cooperation of the city via another inter-local agreement.  Considering the lack of cooperation between the District and the city it is doubtful that they will cooperate on the Ocean Breeze property unless something significant changes / will the two city-backed(?) new commissioners to the District help with the relationship after their installation in January?

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Economic Impact of Public Golf in Boca Raton

A public golf course in Boca Raton can easily be illustrated by the popular credit card commercial:

     1) $300 / Plane  trip to Palm Beach Florida in the Winter
     2) $200 / night for a hotel in Boca Raton (Marriott, Embassy Suites or other hotels)
     3) $50 / dinner in Mizner Park with outside seating to enjoy the warm weather
     4) $50 / day for golf at Ocean Breeze Public golf course

Benefit to the city - PRICELESS

The above illustration can be multiplied by 3 since there are 3 separate 18 hole golf course configurations under the 27-hole design of the Ocean Breeze golf course.  Each day is a new challenge for the golfer who could play the North/South, North/East & East/South courses for 3 distinctly different experiences on a Public course inside Boca Raton.

The chamber of commerce should support this opportunity since this cooperative effort of the city & Park District would bring many tourists dollars to the business owners that are members of the chamber, including restaurants & hotels.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Resolution to Support Ocean Breeze by Council

At the Tuesday meeting Councilman Jeremy Rodgers introduced a nonbinding resolution to support the operation of the Ocean Breeze golf course with the cooperation of the city.  But, councilman Weinroth amended the resolution with the support of councilman Mullaugh (seconded the motion to amend) that removed the "cooperating/participation" by the city in the operation of the Ocean Breeze golf course.  This amendment by councilman Weinroth was not viewed favorably by Boca Teeca residents in the Tuesday city council audience and viewing at home. But, considering that councilman Weinroth clearly supports the Orthodox Jewish supported offer by Compson for the purchase of the municipal golf course, this should not be a surprise.  Politically it was difficult for the mayor or other council members to oppose the amendment with the council chambers still filled with the Orthodox Jewish speakers sitting in the audience as they would not want to upset this constituency on a nonbinding resolution.

The amended resolution passed unanimously to support the operation of a golf course on the Ocean Breeze property.  While is is better than no resolution, the amended version eliminated the apparent intent of the resolution that would have supported the Lennar offer for the acquisition of the municipal golf course and resulted in the city owning or participating with the Beach & Park Distrct in the acquisition, improvement and operation of the Roberts as a golf course.

The orthodox Jewish rabbis made a very compelling case for the quality education provided by the Torah academy located just west of Boca Raton Blvd. on Spanish River Blvd/40th Street.  The speeches described what a great educational facility this organization has provided to the city which is exactly why the city should want to keep the academy within the city and NOT cooperate with their departure from the city to a location west of the turnpike.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Orthodox Jewish Support Compson Proposal/city golf course

The orthodox Jewish community in Boca Raton had many speakers, including several rabbis, speak at the Tuesday city council meeting in support of the city to include the Compson Development offer for the final consideration in January.  This proposal includes a 26 acre Torah school that needs more space to grow so it would move from Boca Raton to the municipal golf course site.  The remainder of the municipal golf course site would be housing built by Compson Development.  This offer was below the price offered by GL Homes but councilman Weinroth was clearly the supporter of this proposal and he got the other council members to agree to consider this offer in the final meetings for the golf course sell.

This will be expected to make the final decision much more competitive as there will be an expectation of at least 20 speakers by the Torah academy at the January meeting.  These speakers were very impressive in their comments about how important the academy is for the development of good citizens, BUT why would the city want to lose the academy that would move west of the turnpike and no longer be in the city?  Several of the speakers were residents outside the city as their address was well west of the turnpike so this movement may reduce their commute but it will not help the city and will actually move their business outside of the city--the opposite of economic development.   Expect potentially a hundred speakers at the January meeting supporting this offer for the municipal golf course.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Getting Closer? /City Acquiring Ocean Breeze

Today's city council workshop narrowed the list of potential buyers of their municipal golf course to GL Homes and Lennar (includes the golf course swap of Ocean Breeze).  There were many good speeches by residents in support of the swap proposal but in the end there as discussion of acquiring the Ocean Breeze property via eminent domain, at a potentially lower pace than the $10 million price tag by Lennar.

In order to better examine the legal prospects of an eminent domain acquisition of  the Ocean Breeze property the council decided to seek expert advice before deciding on the offers.  At the end of this discussion councilman Mike Mullaugh stated that eminent domain would not apply since t requires that acquisition of the property can only be achieved via the e,intent domain recess which is NOT the case on the property since there is a current avenue of acquisition via the Lennar swap offer.

The other interesting event at this meeting was the proposed resolution by Jeremy Rodgers to bring public golf to Boca Raton which will be on the agenda for a vote at tomorrow night city council meeting.  Golfers and Boca Raton residents will be closely watching this vote.

Next meeting for considering the sell of the glades road golf course will be January as the city seeks definitive information on the eminent domain issue.  The Lennar representative and their attorney were visibly unhappy about the city's attempt to undermine their offer with the use of eminent domain.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Greg Norman Coming to Boca Teeca?

At the recent meeting of the Greater Boca Raton Beach & Park District an announcement was made that a letter was received from PGA golf professional Greg Norman which expressed an interest in operating a leaning facility at the Boca Teeca golf course if the city or park district acquired and upgraded the facility.  The park district has already indicated that they were interested in spending $10 million to upgrade the facility IF the city cooperated in the acquisition of the property.

The city had announced their intention to make a decision on this issue at their 11/22/16 meeting but the posted agenda does not include this issue on their agenda.  What is the city waiting for?  They watched the value of their current golf course plument the during the last recession, so they need to strike while the iron is hot and this unique opportunity is available!

Friday, November 11, 2016

Important Meetings/Save The Dates

The city has plans to announce the winning bidder for their current golf course on west glades road on Nov. 22nd at their 6pm meeting.  Supporters are encouraged to call & email the city council members on a professional and persistent basis prior to this meeting in order to seek the acquisition of the Boca Teeca golf course property as a part of this transaction.  This would be a Win-Win for the city and the residents.  The city would receive $51 million from Lennar and the residents would get a championship level golf course that would be IN the the city that would be owned by the Beach & Park District.  The Beach & Park District has stated that they would plan to spend approx &10 million on the improvement of this golf course which would be expected to bring this facility up to the high standards maintained by the District.

Residents are also encouraged to attend AND speak at the Nov. 22nd meeting as a strong show of support is critical to this process.

For more information and comments on this issue, please see the Facebook page of Boca Teeca (request to be a friend for full access on Facebook)

For more updates on citywide residential issues, please visit the web site of the largest residential organization in the city, Boca Watch, at

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Election Results

City Referendum on waterfront development on city land
- Residents WIN as they prefer to preserve green space instead of the proposed Houston's restaurant.  An effort led by the chamber of commerce to defeat this proposal spent approx $300k to defeat this proposal, so thank you to the many residents who worked the early voting polls daily and the Election Day polls to defeat the chamber's political machine.  At the city council meetings prior to the vote there were many residents who spoke for hours to encourage the city council to support their efforts, but city council refused their pleas and appeared to be supporting the chamber's effort to build another restaurant on the old Wildflower property as the city rezoned the Wildflower land in anticipation of approving the restaurant.

Greater Boca Raton Beach & Park District
- Incumbents Earl Starkoff & Dr. Dennis Frisch were defeated by city-backed candidates Erin Wright (Hidden Valley resident) and Craig Ehrnst.  Congratulations to the new commissioners who worked the early voting polling location every day with the support of local firefighters (Erin is married to a firefighter).  In past communications with both new commissioners they have indicated their support for acquiring the Boca Teeca golf property by the District, so it will hopefully not have any impact our residential efforts to bring championship level golf back to the Public.  The beach & park district has a long history of acquiring, improving and operating land that was threatened by development and this is their legislated mandate to serve the residents of the District.  Public access championship golf within the city has not been possible for the last 40+ years, so this is a unique opportunity that should be supported by ALL elected officials.

For more details on city issues, please visit the web site of the largest residential focused organization in the city -