District 8 Newsletter
October - December 2017

Message From Broward County Mayor Barbara Sharief

I sincerely hope that your family and loved ones made it through Hurricane Irma safe and sound. This was a challenging time for everyone and in times like this, Broward County truly shined as we helped each other through this difficult period. Broward did Beat Irma!

I am happy to announce that my office will be able to provide assistance in our new District Office located at City of Miramar City Hall, 2300 Civic Center Place, Miramar 33025. Meetings will be held on Wednesdays by appointment only. To schedule an appointment, please telephone us at 954-357-7008 or email me at bsharief@broward.org.

The holiday season is upon us and this is a great opportunity to enjoy time with family and friends, celebrate life, be grateful, give back, and reflect on what’s truly important. Just a reminder, even though we live in Florida, temperatures drop and we still feel the cold winter weather. So when the temperature drops, make sure to dress accordingly and have a safe and memorable holiday season.

I welcome your comments and want to hear which issues are important to you. Send an email to me at Bsharief@broward.org or call my office at 954-357-7008. Also, check out the Barbara Sharief Facebook page at Facebook.com/barbara.sharief or follow Barbara Sharief at Twitter.com/bestmom39.


Hurricane space viewHurricane Assistance Programs

Broward County residents who were affected by Hurricane Irma are encouraged to register for FEMA Disaster Assistance. If you have damage or sustained impact that you believe may result in future damage, you can register either online at disasterassistance.gov or call 1-800-621-3362.

Blue Tarp workersBroward residents with roof damage (shingle roofs only) due to Hurricane Irma should apply as soon as possible for the Operation Blue Roof Program. The program sends licensed contractors out to homes to cover the damage with fiber-reinforced plastic sheeting (tarp) until homeowners can arrange repairs. Operation Blue Roof allows residents to stay in their homes instead of paying for temporary housing or hotels. The program also protects property while homeowners recover from the storm. To apply in person, Broward residents can go to Walmart at 2500 W. Broward Blvd in Fort Lauderdale from 8AM to 6PM, 7 days a week or apply online at http://www.saj.usace.army.mil/BlueRoof or call 1-888-766-3258.

Opioid EpidemicOpioid Town Hall Meeting

On August 24th I hosted an Opioid Epidemic Town Hall Meeting that brought together more than 300 attendees including government leaders, healthcare professionals, substance abuse specialists, law enforcement, fire rescue, educators, parents and other interested parties. We had an open discussion about the opioid epidemic, how it is taking the lives of those in Broward, and what solutions are available to reduce the supply, use and number of deaths. The town hall meeting was held at the new Pembroke Pines City Center. We had many expert guest speakers that included:

Dr. Craig T. Mallak, Chief Medical Examiner, Office of the Medical Examiner and Trauma Services, Broward County
Dr. Gary Kunsman, Chief Toxicologist, Office of the Medical Examiner and Trauma Services, Broward County
Dr. Dale Fahie, Medical Director, Broward Addiction Recovery Center
Mr. Jim Hall, Senior Epidemiologist, Center for Applied Research on Substance Use and Health Disparities, Nova Southeastern University
Mr. Donald Maines, Substance Research and Program Manager, Broward Sheriff's Office
Ms. Heather Davidson, Director, Public Policy and Advocacy, United Way of Broward County

Opioid EpidemicOpioid Epidemic

Feeding South FloridaFeeding South Florida

If you are looking for ways that you can help your community this holiday season, I suggest you donate to a Food Bank. Feeding South Florida is located in the City of Pembroke Park at 2501 SW 32 Terrace. Feeding South Florida is the sole Feeding America food bank serving Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Monroe Counties. Now more than ever, due to the hurricanes, they need your donations. Feeding South Florida is the largest and most efficient food bank in each of the counties they serve.

Holiday Safety

Holiday lawn decorationsHoliday LightsHouse lit up with Holiday lights
Our Winter Holidays are here and although holiday lights are beautiful and much safer than candles, the electricity used to power these lights can cause problems if not used properly. Incandescent holiday lights can become hot enough to burn or ignite other decorations, and the cords can fray, leading to an electrical short. LED lights are considered safer and do not produce as much heat. Decorating with lights often requires the use of a ladder, and improper ladder use could lead to an injury. So take your time and have someone assist you when using a ladder to hang your lights.

Moderation is a good thing when you put up holiday lights during any season. Be sure to follow these light safety tips:

  • Choose lights that have been tested and deemed safe by a reputable testing laboratory. The best are UL or ETL. Holiday lights listed as safe by these laboratories will note that on the packaging.
  • Try to use the cooler-burning "mini" holiday lights as opposed to the traditional larger bulbs. The older style burns much hotter and can start fires.
  • Only use lights that have fuses in the plugs.
  • Inspect each set of lights--old or new--for damage. Return or throw out any set with cracked or broken sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections.
  • Replace burned out bulbs promptly with bulbs of the same wattage.
  • Never hang lights on a metal tree. The tree can become charged with electricity and shock someone. The tree can also short out the lights and cause a fire.
  • Only use outdoor lights when decorating outside. The packaging will note whether the lights can be used indoors, outdoors, or both. Don't ever use indoor lights outside. Using outdoor lights in the house is acceptable.
  • All outdoor electrical decorations should be plugged into a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI). You can buy portable units for outdoor use, or you can have them permanently installed by an electrician.
  • Use extension cords properly. Outdoor cords can be used anywhere, but never use indoor extension cords outside. Do not overload extension cords. They can get hot enough to burn.
  • Stay away from powerlines or feeder lines (these go from the pole to your house).
  • Secure outside lights with insulated holders or run strings of lights through hooks (never use tacks or nails).
  • Never pull on a string of lights, it stresses the cords and can lead to fraying. Store holiday lights loosely wrapped for the same reason.
  • When you leave your home, or go to sleep at night, turn off your holiday lights.

RECIPE FOR THE HOLIDAYS: Pillsbury Homemade Monkey Bread

Holiday lawn decorations 


½ cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cans (16.3 oz each) Pillsbury™ Grands!™ Flaky Layers refrigerated Original biscuits
½ cup chopped walnuts, if desired
½ cup raisins, if desired
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
¾ cup butter or margarine, melted


Heat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease 12-cup fluted tube pan with shortening or cooking spray. In large -storage plastic food bag, mix granulated sugar and cinnamon.

Separate dough into 16 biscuits; cut each into quarters. Shake in bag to coat. Arrange in pan, adding walnuts and raisins among the biscuit pieces.

In small bowl, mix brown sugar and butter; pour over biscuit pieces.

Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown and no longer doughy in center. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Turn upside down onto serving plate; pull apart to serve. Serve warm.

Lanterns previewChinese Lantern Festival

The Chinese Lantern Festival is a family-friendly event running for eight weekends during the holiday season. The theme of this immersive experience into the Chinese culture is "The Wild," and the lantern displays will include an assortment of beautiful creatures from around the world displayed as lanterns, which have been handcrafted by 20 Chinese artists. The festival will take place Thursday through Sunday, November 23rd to January 14th from 5:30 to 10PM at Central Broward Regional Park & Stadium located at 3700 NW 11th Place, Lauderhill 33311.

Visitors can walk amid the lantern displays, watch live performances, try authentic Chinese cuisine, purchase handmade gifts by Chinese craftspeople, and more. Traditional folk artist demonstrations will also be available for an up-close look at clay sculpturing, cartoon portraiture, folk embroidery, Chinese knotting, inside painting, dough modeling, fabric art, paper cutting, and straw weaving. Children can enjoy puppetry light shows, a dinosaur ride, and hands-on ping pong.

Flower lanternsAnimal lantern 

October – November – December Festivities

There are a lot of holiday activities planned throughout our cities over the next three months. So to ensure that you can plan accordingly, here are websites for you to visit for all of the holiday festivity details:

City of Hallandale Beach
City of Miramar
Town of Pembroke Park
City of Pembroke Pines
City of West Park

Serving on County Boards

Board Room
We are seeking residents with an interest in public service to represent the needs of the District. If you are interested in being considered, please forward a detailed resume to bsharief@broward.org. Be sure to include your permanent address, phone number and email address; whether you are a registered voter; whether you are a registered lobbyist; whether you serve on any other board, authority or agency (dual office holding); whether you are related to any Commissioner; and whether you have any potential conflicting business relationship. For a description of Boards, visit Broward.org/Intergovernmental and select BOARDS AND COMMITTEES.​​​​​​​​​

Serving on County Boards

We are seeking residents with an interest in public service to represent the needs of the district. If you are interested in being considered, please forward a detailed resume to bsharief@broward.org. BBe sure to include your permanent address, phone number and email address. Note whether you are a registered voter; whether you are a registered lobbyist; whether you serve on any other board, authority or agency (dual office holding); whether you are related to any Commissioner; and whether you have any potential conflicting business relationship. For a description of Broward County Boards, visit www.Broward.org/Intergovernmental and select BOARDS AND COMMITTEES.

Helpful Resources

Broward County Family Success Administration Division assists individuals and families with accessing the services they need to build a stronger, healthier and self-sufficient family unit. The centers provide assessment and case management, and, if eligible, rent/mortgage and utility assistance. If you have recently had a loss of income, received an eviction notice/mortgage default letter, or a water/electricity shut off notice, visit Broward.org/HumanServices/FamilySuccess or call 954-357-5650 or 954-357-5001  to find out how they can help you. The South Family Success Center is located in Commission District 8 at 4733 SW 18 Street, West Park, 33023 (Broward County Transit Route 5). If you are over 60, or are a veteran, contact the Elderly and Veteran's Services Division at 954-357-6622.

2-1-1 Broward is available 24 hours a day to help you find food, housing, health care, senior services, child care, legal aid and much more. For a complete list of services, dial 2-1-1 or (954) 537-0211, TTY (954) 390-0492 211, or go to 211-Broward.org.

To receive communications (such as this newsletter) from my office via email, or to arrange for myself or my Community Outreach Liaison, Launa Carbonell to attend your neighborhood or homeowner association meeting, please contact Launa at 954-357-7008 or lcarbonell@broward.org.

Other Resources

For Access to Healthcare or Relief from Homelessness:

Emergency Financial Assistance:

Legal Aid Services of Broward County, Inc.

If you or any one you know is experiencing homelessness the Homeless Helpline is now 954-563-HELP (4357). A friendly voice that can help you get the information, service or assistance you need to get back on your feet. Mon. - Fri.: 8AM to 6PM • Sat. - Sun.: 8AM to Noon. Broward.org/Homeless

X-Las Olas Groundbreaking

X-Las Olas Groundbreaking

JM Family

JM Family African-American Achievers Reception