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Johns Sims' Views on…

Improving Cooper City Government Efficiency: It’s Not That Difficult...
I believe we have to mandate to our City Administrators, attainable goals and objectives, which includes reducing unnecessary spending. The City Manager, along with each department head, should have clearly defined goals and expectations. Their progress should be reviewed semi-annually and their compensation tied directly to their results. That’s how any effective corporation is managed, and that’s how our City should be managed...by objective.

Solution: I offer two solutions: First” Management by Objective” (MBO). Simply run the City more like a private Company with the City Manager and department heads having annual goals and obtainable, solid objectives that they must live up to, such as reducing overhead and expenses, or instituting programs to increase departmental efficiencies. Secondly, let’s put our city government back the way it was regarding capital expenditures. YOU the Citizen should get to choose how you want Cooper City to spend your millions in taxpayer dollars!

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City Budget: Fiscal Accountability
Spending in our city is spiraling higher and higher with no end in sight! It’s time that our city officials become more fiscally accountable and responsible. We need to implement and abide by a ‘Zero Based’ budget. That simply means that every line item and every program be justified from the ground up each fiscal year! I will make every attempt to reduce our ten year budget projection by 15%. The days of ‘spend it or lose it’ regarding municipal budgets must stop now!

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Ad Valorem Taxes: Time to Put Money Back In Your Pocket! 
Your taxes increase annually for mostly 'feel good' spending, not absolute necessities. Our Government needs to manage their spending and keep their hands out of your pockets!

Problem: Your taxes have increased annually up to 20% and with absolutely no justification.  

Solution: Demand justification on any and all expenses approved by the Commission.

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Crime in Cooper City...Up or Down?
Is crime up or down? That depends on who you ask! Statistics don't always tell the whole truth. We all know about a neighbor who has been burglarized, a bike that’s been stolen or a car vandalized. I believe our police officers are the best in South Florida, but there just aren’t enough of them to go around! It’s time to revisit Cooper City’s contract with BSO and amend it if at all possible. We must increase the number of officers and upgrade police presence. Simply put, we need more feet on the street.

Solution:  Its time to sit down with BSO and look at all of the details of our contract and revisit the costs and level of service. At any one time the entire City has a maximum number of BSO police officers on duty. That’s about one Police officer for less than every square mile of residents. I believe it’s time to beef up the number of officers, with more patrols, more police visibility and more feet on the street, including bike patrols and roving teams. A first step in keeping pace with growth is that the police and fire services contract should be the re-visited, reviewed and an analysis of the contract of our Cooper City Police Department merger with BSO should be conducted to ensure that it meets with future growth management plans. If necessary, a mutual amendment with BSO to the agreement could possibly be enacted. Per many residents, the contract terms have not been fully upheld or kept. Patrols are seemingly less frequent as conveyed by residents, officers are seemingly not visible at critical times, and visibility is generally down leading to an increase in petty crime.  BSO’s allegiance is county wide but we need more police presence to make Cooper City crime free.

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Seniors: Our Forgotten Advantage and Responsibility
Seniors are often the ‘forgotten’ asset in our society. They have given so much to us, so it is time for us to give back! I have already sponsored and we have implemented a Senior Advisory Board that will manage and help us to be more effective in planning programs for our seniors. We also need to give our seniors and those on fixed incomes more municipal tax relief with an additional tax credit.

We do need young adults, seniors, and volunteers, to work together even more to make our city the best in Broward County , as our seniors have so much to offer to our community and our city administration but are largely ignored. Most seniors are totally disrespected by our current administration. We need to learn from them to make this city the best it can be.  We need to offer everyone more diversity in city sponsored activities.

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 Youth: Raising the Bar on Education
Over the years, many people moved to Cooper City because we had the best schools in Broward County. We still do, and I want to keep it that way. I will ensure that the students that go to school in Cooper City also live in Cooper City. That will help us reduce overcrowding. I will also work to make sure that our schools are safe and secure, just like the rest of the city. I want to work with the school board, the parents and the PTA to make our schools the absolute best in Broward County.

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Our City Image: Conduct Unbecoming…… 
Recently, Cooper City has been in the news. The problem is, it hasn’t been positive. Public service requires that elected officials live above even the appearance of impropriety. We have to restore respect, honesty, integrity and most of all, public trust to our City. 

Solution: Nobody is above the law, especially elected officials. If an elected official is suspected of breaking the law, they should be held to the same high standards that we hold all municipal employees. If guilty they suffer the same consequences as a City employee, Dismissal and whatever the Courts say is appropriate. The Cooper City Charter in Art. 6 already addresses this issue. My plan is to continue to address the unethical antics that have given our city a black eye.

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Cooper City: Someplace Special and Someplace Beautiful
We have implemented a broad Rejuvenation Program in order to improve our public property and City parks. Our City must set the example for the residents to follow. This can start with redesigning entrances, upgrading municipal landscapes in local neighborhoods and beautifying our parks. We can do all of this with existing and matching grant monies. 
 

Solution: Our City has lost its shine and looking a bit haggard.  We need to enhance our Citywide Rejuvenation Program to improve our Public property and City Parks. Plant more trees and flowers, not on major roadways like the recent major expenditure on Stirling Rd but right in our local neighborhoods and our local parks. Clean up our City and set an example for all our Citizens to follow, and do it with available matching grant money. Spend equally, not just in the higher income or deed restricted communities. The city's common areas need to be revitalized and better kept, especially in the older areas.

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Utility Bills: Up, Up and Away!!!  

Problem: Our utility bills have sky rocketed.

Solution: We need to totally revisit the entire utilities situation and I would recommend we form a “Utilities Advisory Board” made of residents from each area of our City to totally review all options and completely revamp our rate structure. We need to address the problem of seniors on a fixed income that typically place less demand on our system and also consider the needs of growing families. We also must address increasing utility costs due to mandates for the future use of water resources. Our rapidly failing utilities infrastructure needs to be addressed forthwith. 

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Ethics and decorum at our city commission business meetings 

Problem: Our Mayor and City Commissioners need to improve their role as the Board of Directors for Cooper City and be better role models.  They know how to create issues and are virtual experts at it!

Solution: We need to improve our image. The current administration needs to be unbiased and above and beyond reproach at all times. To allow citizen toward citizen attacks, commissioner toward citizen attacks, commission member attacks by their colleagues and ad hominem attacks while the city's business forum is taking place, is unethical, out of order and down right disgraceful. We need to once and for all clean up our City's image and set an example for all of our Citizens to follow, and do it with order, decorum and tact. The  administration has severely undermined the integrity of the city and its residents. We must maintain the integrity of the administration. Our citizens must support the leadership role of our Commission and the Commission in its entirety, regardless of personality conflicts or political affiliation.

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SMART GROWTH? CHOICES FOR OUR COMMUNITIES – CHOICES FOR OUR RESIDENTS

Smart Growth in Cooper City must consist of a collaborative of diverse residents, professionals and organizations created to provide education and to promote livable and sustainable communities. To that end, the partnership that I will create must support the principles of the South Florida Smart Growth plan for the Cooper City region. I support:

COMMUNITY CONVENIENCE: Providing walkable streets and housing choices where residents of all ages and incomes can shop, eat, go to school and enjoy their neighborhoods.

TRANSPORTATION OPTIONS: Transportation choice clearly has a big impact on how much congestion affects people's quality of life.

CONSERVATION: Preserving natural areas, available open space and local parks for your enjoyment today and in the future.

FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY: Making sure your tax dollars are very wisely spent by encouraging growth where we can provide the needed infrastructure.

PLANNING AHEAD: Linking development and transportation decisions that affect us county wide and ensuring an open and predictable planning process.  

Other issues I intend to address are:  School over crowding and our future. The schools must be expanded. School traffic congestion on 90Th Ave. It is a safety hazard and a traffic nightmare. Medians can be created to eliminate the traffic hazard and safety issues.  I intend to implement a Utilities Advisory Board. Customer Service is lacking and I will be addressing the issues of building department delays, code enforcement (frivolous and non-priority enforcement), permit issues, HOA issues, traffic light(s) issues in critical areas, tree trimming in order to avoid more storm damage, police presence, etc.

If you feel as I and so many others do, I would really like to hear from you right now if you would like to help make our City to more than Someplace Special. I'd like to hear your thoughts and comments on these, and other issues. You can CLICK HERE to send me e-mail via a form. I will respond immediately or as soon as possible. You can also read about my policy here.

Regards,

John Sims, Cooper City Commissioner

                                                                                                                                             

Political advertisement paid for and approved by John Sims, Nonpartisan, for Cooper City Commissioner, District 1