After Irma

Sep 16th

My town of Surfside was one of the first areas to be ordered to evacuate in Miami, as we were suppose to be directly in the path of a Category 5 Hurricane. I grabbed the kid, some photo albums, some paperwork, some mementos and some food (including my coke zero to ensure the situation didn’t get worse for me 🙂 ), stopped in Ft Lauderdale for the aunt, and went to Charlotte to stay at a cousins. You will notice I did not grab Michael. Because just like when we had the Hurricane scare last year, he was conveniently out of town again.

Side note, he actually called me during all this from an airport. Complaining about how they didn’t have the TSA precheck open and he had to stay in the regular line, and take his tablet out of his bag and he was so inconvenienced. Really, dude? Boy is lucky he picked me up the Frango mints while in Chicago, is all I have to say about that.

Any way, one week later we were able to come home as we had been incredibly lucky and only got hit by outer bands. There is still damage, mainly in the form of insane amounts of trees down. Which of course took down power. The majority of the power has been restored. But not all. And oh my god, the wrath this has caused.

Now I get it. Electricity is very important. I was very vocal that I would not be coming back if we didn’t have it. The phrase “no electric, no Beth” was used very regularly. And I get that I am very lucky because 1) I had somewhere to stay that was free and had electric and 2) I’m in a 6th floor condo that I don’t own so I didn’t feel pressing need to be here to check on it and/or keep it safe from looters.

But not everyone is in the same position as me (as seems to be the norm – ha! and sorry, couldn’t resist a little levity), and there are some fierce battles being waged between residents and town officials over the lack of progress of getting power back to everyone. And this latest post on Next-door is so omg!!!! that I feel it needs to be shared. Basically, the guy who wrote it desperately wants to be a town official and never gets elected. He must see this as his chance, and to ensure he gets it he is calling for the town officials to be imprisoned. Especially if they left during a Category 5 Hurricane. I just can’t wrap my head around this. To me, expecting a town mayor, who gets paid all of $1 a year, to stay during a Category 5 Hurricane is insane. And granted, I am typing this using power, while sitting in air conditioning, so my viewpoint is totally different from those without, but is this not extreme? What do you think?

Here is his manifesto in its entirety:

Urgent! Perjury!

I have been thinking these days how all this mess in Surfside could happen. We have excellent town, stable financial position, administration with more than a hundred employees, police with more than 50 cars, SUVs, ATV, tractors etc. One thought dawned on me. I remember the day when our new elected officials swore an oath at the inauguration day to abbey the law and town charter.

I checked the Charter, ARTICLE VIII. – EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT PROCEDURES. In state of emergency during natural or manmade disasters all commissioners and mayor must have meetings daily, have an Emergency Operations Plan and act as necessary to ensure the health, safety and welfare of our community until termination of the emergency state. Evacuation was announced for residents but not for officials, including elected officials. They must stay and defend our town from any danger by Nature or Aliens. Leaving the town is perjury and must be investigated and after investigating the role of any employee and elected officials if guilty – punished with a fine and imprisonment in the Town Jail for a term not exceeding ninety days (Sec. 25a.) The next meeting agenda should be

1. Recall and removal from office all commissioners and mayor because of disability to control the town, escape and ban to nominate to any elected position in future.

2. Early elections declaration.

3. Creating a temporary Committee of 5 members to run the town up to elections.

4. Cleaning the mess after Irma and comprehensive help to residents. I am going to open a file with complaint to Miami-Dade Ethics Commission to investigate the violation of the Florida Law and Town Charter by all town officials. We have a lot of senior people, about 10 100+ years old, many 90+ years old. Most of them need patronage and help from the local government. I wish to live to that age. How can I be sure that I am defended if elected officials quit leaving the town without power. They have everything. The mayor shouldn’t plead to fix lines and have an internet conference, but must call FPL officials to the site with the ordinance, if they don’t come, send police cars to deliver them and any needed employee to fix it during 7/24 non-stop, fine them and even put in town’s jail. All extra expenses for lounging, food, water by residents without electric power should be refunded by the government from emergency fund and tourist tax fund. I predict that if all of this is not done we’ll have the mess at least next 2 weeks.