“Thank you for your support to reinvest in our community,” Baker said at a breakfast meeting for the Palm Beach North Chamber of Commerce. She referred to the 1-cent sales tax surcharge voters approved in November. The county, the school board and municipalities will split the money, which mostly will repair and improve roads and buildings.
Now some eight years removed from the real estate crash and recession, Palm Beach County continues on the rise, Baker said.
The county has added 11,500 jobs, its unemployment rate is 5.1 percent, and it is “experiencing a healthier economy with tourism, agriculture, biotech and transportation continuing to be vibrant aspects of what makes the county a great place to live, work and play,” she said.
And, she said, “We are also enjoying record-setting tourism and a robust real estate market. Property values and home sales are up, while foreclosures and interest rates are low.”
For decades, a 320-foot Cold War-era submarine has been a floating tourist attraction in downtown Charleston S.C. Now a group hopes to sink it off Jupiter, perhaps as early as this summer, as part of Palm Beach County’s renowned 150-plus piece artificial reef program and as an “underwater museum.” Organizers said it would be the first sub ever turned into a reef in Florida.
Palm Beach County plans to sink the USS Clamagore, the “Gray Ghost of the Florida Coast,” in about 100 feet, according to a memo for Tuesday’s county commission meeting.
County Commissioners would vote to approve paying a Miami firm $1 million. The money will come from a vessel registration fee trust fund.
The diesel-powered Clamagore, built in 1945, just after the end of World War II, ran up and down the Atlantic coast from Key West to Charleston and trained sailors to track Soviet nuclear subs. It was retired in 1975 and since 1981 has been docked since at the Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum in Charleston.
According to the memo for Tuesday’s commission meeting, while the sub has been a popular draw, it has “structural fatigue” so extensive it’s not practical to repair it enough for tourists to safely tour it. Several groups had suggested new homes for the sub but couldn’t come up with the money.
The 79-year-old retiredFederal Reservevice president, who winters in Jupiter Farms, has been released from jail in South Korea and arrives Tuesday night in Miami. He’ll spend a few days at the Jupiter Farms home of his son Kent before returning to Virginia, Kent said in an email.
Julius Malinowski has been in aSouth Koreajail since Nov. 10, charged with fraud, his son said. The family says he is the real victim, set up by people posing as executives of North Carolina-based BB&T Bank to unknowingly rip off a South Korean businessman.
Kent Malinowski said Dec. 21 that his father’s attorneys have told him his father agreed to plead guilty in exchange for a 1-year sentence that was suspended.
Kent said at the time he had an emotional phone call of less than 10 minutes with his father, who was awaiting clearance to leave. He said his father “choked up, and said to me, ‘Thank you… thank you…for all you did to get me out. You saved my life.’ That’s when I couldn’t hold back my own tears. Both of us… on the phone… sobbing like little kids. This phone call was the single greatest gift of my life…it’s taken me 57 years to experience the unrestrained joy of a Christmas miracle.”
King, in partnership with the town and Palm Beach County, will distribute birds to local social service agencies who will deliver them to families and individuals they’ve selected. No birds will be handed out to the general public.
The jai alai site, at 1415 45th St., was in the news last year after Victor Palacios of Palm Beach, an investor and a former real estate broker, told Mangonia Park elected officials his vision of a $500 million high-tech business and technology center at the site. King, now 85, has said he’s all for selling the property; all Palacios has to do is write him a check. Palacios has met a few times with town officials, but a year later, nothing’s come of the plan.
Valeche did attend last month’s organizational meeting, his first in weeks, and was sworn into his new term. He did not make mention at that meeting of his absences or his health.
Valeche has not describe his health situation, and during the election, opponent Tony Bennett had called on Valeche to be more transparent about his health. Bennett, a Democrat, noted that Republican Gov. Rick Scott would appoint a replacement if Valeche, also a Republican, won re-election and could not finish that four-year term.
A judge Monday gave Riviera Beach five days to assign activist Fane Lozman street addresses for the five Singer Island lots of what the activist calls his “Renegade” complex.
Palm Beach County Judge Martin Colin’s order said “credible evidence belies the City’s position” that Lozman hadn’t exhausted his avenues to get the address, saying Lozman first contacted the city via email and written correspondence more than a year ago.
County Vice Mayor, and newly-reelected Commissioner, Hal Valeche, hospitalized for weeks, said Wednesday he will not stand for the mostly-ceremonial mayor’s post when the new commission is seated at its Nov. 22 meeting.
“I don’t think I can do it because of my health. I’m going to decline,” Valeche said from Jupiter Medical Center, where he’s been since at least Oct. 24.
For the position of mayor, created in 2013, the board traditionally has turned to the person who is Vice Mayor and also is chairman as the commission sits as the governing board of the Solid Waste Authority. That would be Valeche. Next up would be Commissioner Melissa McKinlay, the current vice chair of the Solid Waste Authority’s board.
The 150-acre complex, near the J.W. Corbett Wildlife Management Area in northwestern Palm Beach County, will feature target shooting, including Olympic-style shooting events, as well as hunter safety courses. Its first phase is set to open next year.