Condo Approval- Southeast- Jan. 2004
IN THE NEWS
Boca Raton -- A weeklong session conducted by the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council has produced a vision of North Federal Highway redevelopment inspired by West Palm Beach's CityPlace, complete with outdoor cafes and pastel-colored storefronts.
The Academic School for the Arts, which opened in August, laid off two teachers, prompting protests from students in November. The charter school's principal says the cuts were necessary because the per-student stipend was not enough to cover all of the faculty positions.
COST OF RENTINGNationally, renters an average of $731 a month for a 950-sq.-ft. two-bedroom, 1 1/2- or two-bathroom unfurnished apartment, excluding all utilities except water. In Florida, the Fort Lauderdale area has the highest average rent. Here's how some other Florida metro areas compare:Fort Lauderdale$1,217Miami$1,200Tampa$915W. Palm Beach
-Boca Raton$791Orlando$790Gainesville$779Bradenton$760Fort Myers-Cape Coral$753Sarasota$751St. Pete-Clearwater$704Jacksonville$683Fort Walton Beach$662Pensacola$639Panama City$619Punta Gorda$542Tallahassee$513Note: Second quarter 2003Source: ACCRABroward County -- County Commissioner Ilene Lieberman has been elected to a one-year term as county mayor.
State ethics commissioners are seeking records in connection with an inquiry into whether County Commissioner Josephus Eggelletion violated conflict-of-interest rules in voting on contracts with Waste Management Inc. while he was under contract as a lobbyist for the trash hauler. Eggelletion says a county attorney advised him that there was no conflict because he represented the company only on an unrelated matter.
Delray Beach -- Office Depot Inc. (NYSE-ODP) is partnering with television design guru Christopher Lowell to market a new line of inexpensive office furniture.
Fort Lauderdale -- Larry Anthony Calderon, a 28-year veteran of the California community college system, will succeed Willis Holcombe as president of Broward Community College.
A bankruptcy judge has approved plans for the sale of the Florida Philharmonic's music library and rehearsal hall.
Preservationists have persuaded city commissioners to reconsider a plan to demolish the historic art deco Lauderdale Beach Hotel to make way for a 29-story condominium tower.
Hollywood -- Commissioners have approved two condominium projects for the downtown Young Circle redevelopment. La Piazza III will include 300 condos, 50,000 square feet of retail and a parking garage. A second project will include 200 condos, 22,000 square feet of retail shops, a parking garage and space for a charter elementary school.
Martin County -- Strict growth management limits are unlikely to yield to developers' pressures to build in the county's western agricultural areas, growth management director Nikki Van Vonno told a group gathered to help reconcile pro- and anti-growth factions here.
Palm Beach County -- Scripps Research Institute officials followed up a meeting with black business leaders and Rep. James "Hank" Harper Jr., D-West Palm Beach, by pledging to seek minority contractors and work with the state's black universities as it pursues plans to open a branch here.
The county will host the 2004 Western Hemisphere Outlook Conference next month. The conference is billed as an opportunity for business people to meet with commercial officers from the U.S. Department of Commerce who hold foreign posts in the Western Hemisphere.
Port St. Lucie -- St. Petersburg-based Cox Lumber Co. is negotiating a deal to build a truss and building materials plant in the city-owned LTC Industrial Park. The plan has drawn criticism from local building suppliers, who say they would have liked to have been offered the same terms as Cox, which will pay $10 million for 26.5 acres under the terms of a deal authorized by city council members.
Stuart -- The city has sued airplane parts manufacturer Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., alleging the company has breached its agreement to supply 1.3 million gallons of drinking water in exchange for use of six city wells found to be contaminated by the company's plant in 1988.
West Palm Beach -- Construction has begun on downtown's latest condominium project, a 246-unit Mediterranean-style development being built by Miami-based BAP Development.
BROWARD COUNTY -- Citing "gross ignorance of official duties and gross carelessness in the discharge of them," Gov. Jeb Bush ended months of uncertainty by suspending Supervisor of Elections Miriam Oliphant. Brenda Snipes, a Democratic former schools administrator, has replaced Oliphant.