Monocle Man On: The Baseball Stadium, Umoja Village...
WARNING: First off, anyone wearing a monocle today should be viewed with suspicion. This gentleman, who wishes to remain anonymous as is a bloggers wont, is not the kind of guy you'd invite to a party. If his 1,000 yard stare doesn't quickly put your shindig into an irreversible slide toward downersville, his jaded, dyspeptic personality soon will. So, dear reader, read his words with caution and a mojito, MVB's drink of choice, in hand.
- MLB wants a downtown Miami stadium. So do I. But at what price? Part of the financing may include using millions of dollars designated by law to improve blighted neighborhoods. These funds would come from the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA). Right now, the proposed site is outside the boundaries of the CRA. But there is talk about expanding the boundaries to include the proposed site to tap the funds for the new stadium near I95 and the Government Center. To me, it looks like this plan will rob from the poor to give to the rich. I think MVB's proposed site is much better-- and it doesn't need to get built at the expense of building affordable housing for the poor to make it a reality-- plus, it's built over a MetroRail station making it unnecessary to walk through the heat, humidity, and the rain to get to the stadium. Miami mayor Manny Diaz supports using CRA funds to help build the stadium. Unfortunately for the poor, Michelle Spence-Jones is the Chairwoman for the CRA, the same one who, as a commissioner, proposed re-writing the ordinance to legally shut down Umoja Village, Miami's upstart shantytown.
- Regarding Umoja Village, today's Herald notes that the new ordinance Ms. Spence-Jones wants to introduce, has been pulled from this week's commission agenda. Maybe she realized how much it made her look like a first rate schmuck. Naw, they're probably just making sure all the legalese is drum tight and protects them from looking like heartless bastards.
- Meanwhile, Max Rameau, founder of Umoja Village, is organizing protests for Super Bowl week. Stay tuned.
- Elita Loresca