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Commissioner's Monthly Message

February 2019

Dear Residents,

It is an honor and privilege to be your voice and to represent you, the citizens of our coastal communities from Deerfield Beach to Fort Lauderdale. As your County Commissioner, I look forward to continuing to improve our resident’s quality of life by focusing on several key issues in our community. Here are some recent headlines from around the County. 

Opioid Task Force Resolution 

In January, I sponsored a resolution urging the Florida Legislature and Florida Governor to create and provide funding for a statewide Opioid Addiction Task Force. Florida ranks fourth in the nation for total health care costs attributed to opioid abuse and eleventh in the nation for deaths resulting from drug overdoses, with the State’s drug mortality rate doubling since 1999. Although several counties, including Broward County, have created task forces to develop plans to address opioid addiction within our communities, a statewide approach is necessary to make a measurable impact in the fight against the opioid epidemic. Several states, including, but not limited to, Illinois, Indiana, Montana, Ohio, Rhode Island, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming have adopted a statewide approach to address the opioid epidemic and the multitude of problems it causes. 

Residents throughout the state of Florida, in rural and suburban communities, are confronting opioid addiction and resulting overdose deaths. As our community continues to struggle and cope with opioid misuse and abuse, through the application of routine practices, a Florida statewide task force could collectively and aggressively help affected communities mitigate and curtail damage caused by the opioid epidemic. I thank my fellow Commissioners for passing this resolution unanimously and look forward to working with our State Legislature to make a measurable impact in the fight against the opioid epidemic. 

District 4 Mayors Meeting 

On January 17th, I held the first District 4 Mayors Meeting. All Mayors and City Managers from the eight cities I represent were invited to attend. One of my promises during my campaign was that I would be here for my cities and their residents. To do this, I’ve scheduled three District 4 Mayors Meetings throughout the year. This will give us an opportunity to discuss issues of concern in each city and will give me the opportunity to provide any guidance or resources that Broward County government may be able to assist with. 

The very first meeting was a success, many Mayors and City Managers attended. We discussed overall key issues including the Transportation Surtax, homelessness, traffic signalization, waste management issues and many more. More specifically, each representative for each city was given an opportunity to express their residents’ concerns. I’m also glad to report that this was a great opportunity for all of the cities I represent to meet and engage with each other, providing another avenue for community leaders to communicate about experiences and learn from each other. 

Transportation Surtax: Oversight Board Appointed 

One of the key elements of the Transportation Surtax, which was approved by Broward County voters in the November 2018 election, is the creation of an independent Oversight Board. The members of the Oversight Board for the Transportation Surtax are a group of volunteers who have been appointed to oversee the administration of funds collected from the one-cent surtax. The Board will be responsible for reviewing projects for eligibility, monitoring revenues and expenditures, and offering transparency and accountability to the public. Board members will serve a four-year term and meet at least quarterly. For more information regarding the Transportation Surtax, please visit Broward.org/PennyForTransportation

TOPS Riders Choice Program Extended 

The Broward County Board of County Commissioners recently approved the continuation of a successful pilot program that provides transportation to people with disabilities who cannot use regular bus service. The Paratransit Riders Choice Pilot Program allows ADA eligible customers to call a taxi or licensed transportation network provider when they need a ride. The program has been extended for two more years and is intended for individuals who cannot drive or use traditional transportation to get around town. For more information on the Riders Choice Program please visit Broward.org/BCT

The Census Needs You 

The Census is coming in April 2020 and residents are encouraged to help our community count. The kickoff meeting of the Complete Count Committee was held in January, but volunteers are still needed. Many thanks to those across the County who have already agreed to participate. A correct count is critical for Broward County as Census numbers are used to determine federal representation and funding of human services, housing and other programs. For more information visit Broward.org/Census2020

Play Conservation Pays and Win 

Broward County residents are encouraged to play a new online game introduced by the Broward Water Partnership. Residents who play can show off how much they know about conservation, climate change and sustainability. You can play for a chance to win thousands of dollars in cash and prizes, with the first prize winner receiving $5,000 in cash; two second place winners receiving $1,000; and three, third place winners each receiving $500 in cash! For more information please visit Conservationpays.com

Veterans: Share Your Stories 

The Broward County Historical Archives at the Main Library in downtown Fort Lauderdale is calling all local veterans and civilians who have served with the United States military to record their stories for free. Veterans who would like to tell their stories can meet with a Special Collections librarian for a video interview, which the librarian tapes. A copy of the interview is given to the veteran and the librarian sends another copy to the Veterans History Project at the Library of Congress’ American Folklife Center. Archivists at the Library of Congress will acknowledge the veteran’s donation and preserve it for future generations. The record will be cataloged and made available to researchers and the public. 

Library staff will videotape oral history interviews at the Main Library by appointment. If interested in submitting your story, contact Erin Purdy to arrange an interview at 954-357-7363 or epurdy@broward.org. For more information on the wonderful things going on at a Library near you, please visit Broward.org/Library.

The Resident's Guide to Government provides a convenient resource to help people stay connected to their local government. It includes contact information for County officials and Federal, State and local agencies. Visitors can subscribe to E-news and social media sites. Please sign up at Broward.org/Commission/District4 to receive email updates from our office. You can also follow me on Twitter and like my Facebook page.

If there is anything that we can do to assist you with your vision for a better Broward, please do not hesitate to contact our office at 954-357-7004 or by email at LFisher@broward.org​.

Once again, I’d like to thank you for giving me the opportunity to serve you as your County Commissioner.

Best regards,


Lamar P. Fisher

County Commissioner
District 4​​​