It’s December, the holidays are upon us and it’s traditionally a time to look back and reflect on the past year and look toward the future.
It has been a pleasure to serve as Broward County Mayor this past year. Although there are many challenges ahead, I believe the County is on the rebound. Personally, a major milestone for me was the successful passage of a landmark Broward County/City Ethics Code. For many years I have been an outspoken advocate for a Code of Ethics that would govern elected officials and restore the public’s faith in government. Everything that I was working for in that regard came to fruition this year. The Code of Ethics has been incorporated into the County’s Charter and it now includes county and city elected officials, employees, and in some instances family members as well. Enforcement of the Ethics Code is the responsibility of the newly created Office of Inspector General. The Code of Ethics, which has governed County Commissioners since August of last year, will apply to all City Commissioners on January 2, 2012.
I was recently in Brazil on an economic development trip with Enterprise Florida and the Governor. These trade missions are designed to increase business at Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and encourage tourists to visit our region. It’s also an opportunity for business owners to develop foreign trade relationships. Brazil is Florida's top export market. In 2010, exports from Florida to Brazil surpassed $13.7 billion. The economic benefits of this trip for Broward County is currently being compiled, but Florida Enterprise reports early estimates of $61-million in statewide business contracts that are in the process of being finalized. I’ll have a full update for you in my January newsletter.
There certainly is much to celebrate in the month of December. Hanukkah begins December 21. Christmas on December 25 and Kwanzaa takes place on Monday, December 26. Of course we can’t forget New Year’s Eve on December 31.
Thank you again for the privilege of serving as Mayor in 2011. I never stopped being your District 6 Commissioner and I look forward to the opportunity to focus solely on issues important to our community.
Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to all and if you need to contact me please call my office at 954-357-7006 or send an e-mail to email@example.com. Until next year …..