FOLLOWING THE CRA MONEY
THE SEOPW CRA SPENDS MILLIONS OF DOLLARS EVERY YEAR TO IMPROVE CONDITIONS IN OVERTOWN . HERE ARE THE CRA CHECK REGISTERS FOR THE LAST TWO YEARS SO THAT YOU CAN SEE WHERE THAT MONEY WENT
SEPTEMBER 5, 2016
A couple weeks ago, as part of a story about the Wynwood BID and their disagreements with the Mana Group over the construction of the project, Mana Commons, in the middle of Wynwood, the BID Board revealed their unhappiness over the discovery that over $7 million of a potential $10 million in cash that had been pledged to the Wynwood Community Development Fund by the Mana Group had disappeared when Commissioner Keon Hardemon, the Chairman of the SEOPW CRA, told the Mana Group that he wanted that $7 million for the benefit of the residents who live inside the bounders of the SEOPW CRA.
I'm always amused when I hear or read someone say that a politician "reminded them" that they should do something, especially give them money, because when a politician "reminds" someone to give them money there's almost always an implied threat in that "reminder."
But then again, I wasn't there, and Commissioner Hardemon is a dedicated young man whose always shown a concern for the residents of his District, especially as he begins his campaign for reelection, and there's no better way for him to continue showing that concern than to remind the rich developers who wander into Overtown of the importance of contributing to the betterment of his District. Therefore, I'm sure that there was no implied threat when the Commissioner "reminded" Mr. Mana to take care of his neighbors.
Given that the SEOPW CRA floated a $60 million dollar bond issue in 2015, as well as the millions that they receive annually from the Tax Increment Funds (TIFF) that help fund the operation of the CRA, I figured that it might help all those rich developers that are bound to keep showing up around Overtown how the SEOPW CRA spends money, the better to anticipate just so they know when they are reminded to donate, what the money will be used for.
In fact, perhaps Mr. Mana, given that he's such a savvy businessman, might want to ask Commissioner Hardemon to provide him with a list that details where his $7 million dollars will go.
After all, tens, if not a hundred millions dollars or more have gone to improve Overtown over the decades, and somehow the remaining poor Black folks living here are still pretty much in the same crappy situation they were before that money started flowing into various bank accounts and schemes that were intended to make things better.
So,in order to get a better appreciation of how money for the elimination of "Slum and Bight" is spent by the Commissioner and his CRA staff, here are the SEOPW CRA check registers for the years 2015 and 2016 to date.
Don't let all those entertainment and consulting payments confuse you, because it takes a lot of parties, high-priced consultants and lawyers to come up with good ideas on how to eliminate "Slum and Blight."
It's Miami. Bitches!