At first, when commissioner Natacha Seijas voted last week to postpone making a decision on granting a permit to the $480 million Island Gardens project because she wanted the developer to come back and prove to her that it wouldn't suck up too much of the county's precious water supply, we didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Actually, we started out laughing and then began crying uncontrollably because we know that as long as we have representatives like Ms. Seijas, as a business community we will never be taken seriously.
"I am worried that the high volume of fresh water the marina would use might result in the demand for potable drinking water not being met," Ms. Seijas said with a straight face.
So, with that pronouncement, the developers, and representatives from the City of Miami-- including Mayor Manny Diaz and City Manager Pete Hernandez-- were all told, after three consecutive postponements, to come back one more time. To be fair, Ms. Seijas was joined by other commissioners, who, after five years and 40 public meetings, still have questions about the project. But it was her monkey wrench question that caught our attention and, after recovering from our crying jag, made us ask, Why?
Our research has turned up two possible reasons:
- Ms. Seijas needs the water for "her" pool and for irrigation. It seems she has some major projects going on in her district in west Dade. Amelia Earhart Park is getting a new sports complex with four soccer fields and a new aquatic center. Of course, the soccer fields will need to be watered heavily to keep them from turning brown and an "aquatic center" by any other description is nothing more than a big freaking pool.
- Ms. Seijas, a fervent anti-Communist from way back, secretly doesn't want the Island Gardens project to go through because Chinese Communists will be operating the Shangri-La Hotel, one of two hotels included in the Watson Island development. The luxury Shangri-La Hotel chain is based in Hong Kong and the Miami unit will be the first in the U.S.-- unless of course the developer can't prove his project will suck dry all of her precious water.
So, thanks to her "Dr. Strangelove" take on the matter, we bestow upon Ms. Seijas her second MVB Poopy Head Hat, which, for all those keeping count, puts her at the top of the heap.
(Please note MVB has stated previously that, although we are not enamored with the design of the Island Gardens project-- we think it lacks the defining grand architectural gesture that Miami sorely needs and deserves for that prime piece of public real estate-- our aversion to BS is stronger and we will continue to call it like it is.)