A Message from Broward County Commissioner Barbara Sharief
It was an honor to serve as Mayor of Broward County last year, the second time since I was elected to office in 2010.There were a lot of challenges in 2017. We learned valuable lessons from a tragedy at Broward’s Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. And, as a powerful hurricane approached our County, we reacted quickly, keeping our residents informed before and after the storm. These were not easy times for our County, but we remained steadfast and resilient.
On an exciting note, I am so proud to report to you that the State of the County is excellent. Our economic indicators are strong and (in many cases) leading the State. We are experiencing above-average economic growth, and our unemployment rate has dropped to 3.3 percent - the lowest it’s been in more than a decade. Broward’s Port Everglades, airport and tourism industries are also thriving and setting records. And, we successfully passed a balanced budget for FY2018 with no increase in property taxes.
We look forward to an exciting year ahead working hard to hold true to our promise of “our best and nothing less.”
It is a privilege to work every day to make a difference in the lives of our residents. I wish all of you a happy, healthy and prosperous 2018.
I welcome your comments and want to hear which issues are important to you. Send an email to me at email@example.com 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.
Black History Month
Although we elected an African American president to office, many young people are not aware of the sacrifices and struggles that those before him made to accomplish this goal. We can’t take this accomplishment as an end point; in fact, we should use this opportunity to reach even greater heights. As the world continues to diversify with groups of many different origins, cultures and faiths, it is as important as ever to celebrate the histories that make up the collective account of our nation. We can reflect and celebrate these monumental contributions and use them as a platform for future growth.
January brings the celebration of the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and February is African-American/Black History Month. I encourage you to participate in the many events around the County and to take a moment to explore into the rich history of America.
Elementary Honor Society
It was my honor to watch 54 students in 4th and 5th grade at Orange Brook Elementary School be inducted into the National Elementary Honor Society. It was amazing to witness some of the children who set an example for their peers and excel in their studies. Congratulations to these future leaders!
Reading is Fun!
Let’s have fun with our children at the Big Read 2018 on Saturday, January 13th at Broward County’s Inaugural Chalk Lit Festival! Enjoy music, food trucks, murals created live and on-site by more than 20 street artists, 3D printing stations, face painting, museum-curated workshops, crafting with art materials, an area for kids to create their own chalk masterpieces, and a People’s Choice Award. Don’t miss the fun from10AM-5PM at the Main Library.
One of my favorites, the 26th Annual Florida Renaissance Festival, is returning to Quiet Waters Park in Deerfield Beach on Saturdays and Sundays from February 10th to March 25th. Travel back in time to the 16th Century and see knights mount their steeds to battle, sword fighters, minstrels, magicians, wenches roam the grounds, and merchants and artisans demonstrate and sell their wares. Feast on hearty food fit for a king! This era, when Europe made the transition from the Dark Ages into the modern era, was marked by revelry and excess in costume and cuisine, which are demonstrated each year in a reenactment at this fascinating time in history. A good time is always enjoyed by all at this festival.
Spread cheer in the new year, rebates are here! As you step into 2018, replace your water guzzling toilet with a WaterSense® high-efficiency model and get $100! Homes, businesses, and nonprofits in participating communities are eligible. With a WaterSense® high-efficiency toilet (or two) you can save a lot of water that can translate to lower water bills. Pre-approval is required, and your home must have been built before 1994. Visit ConservationPays.com to make sure you live in a participating community and to complete the application.
Now that the holidays are over, don’t forget those who are in need. Because hunger does not take a holiday, the County’s Food Drive is accepting donations at our governmental buildings as well as our libraries 365 days a year. Buy one – get one deals are a great way to participate. District 8 locations to drop off donations are Miramar Branch Library & Education Center at 2050 Civic Center Place, Pembroke Pines/Walter C. Young Resource Center at 955 NW 129 Avenue, or South Regional/Broward College Library at 7300 Pines Boulevard.
There are a lot of wonderful programs and activities that cities in District 8 offer. If you are looking for something enjoyable to do, here are some websites you can visit: Hallandalebeachfl.gov, Miramarfl.gov, Townofpembrokepark.com, Ppines.com, Cityofwestpark.net