Word on the Street

On March 5, 2020, I uploaded a post on my Facebook page that dissected the history surrounding a political assault on Opa-locka. This assault on the city of Opa-locka just didn't start because state representative Bryan Avila, district 111 out of Hialeah, filled the bill under the ways and means committee he chair. He had help from state representative Jason Fischer, district 16, a Jacksonville republican who sponsored HB1209. Their efforts were joined by Sen. Doug Broxson of Pensacola who sponsored SN1522.

What is exponentially shady about Broxson and Fischer is that neither hail from the South Florida- area or Miami Dade County. Both men are North Florida residents.

The political assault on the city of Opa-locka dates back to 2010, and is marked by the moment former mayor and current commissioner Joseph Kelly lost the mayoral race to former Opa-locka mayor Myra Taylor. In 2004, Taylor and her husband, Bishop John Taylor, were arrested on federal charges of tax fraud. The incident forced her to leave office.

After a special election between current commissioner Joseph Kelly, Opa-locka mayor John Riley and candidate/former commissioner of the late Brian Hooten, Kelly won the mayoral seat. When Kelley took office he discovered the city had a financial deficit. He then took measures to give the city relief.

Kelly brought in former city manager Newall Daughtrey. For some odd reason, whenever the city goes into a deficit, it is always Kelly and Daughtrey who manage to resuscitate the city’s state of being. The brilliancy and genius commissioner Kelly exudes, regardless of what was has been said or is happening, is that he hold on to the courage of his convictions.

Without fail, Kelly sticks with Daughtrey as the person who could come in and rescue the city from its dismissal state and convince other members of the commission as well that he was the right man for the job.

 In 2017, I was approached by varied individuals to dissolve the city of Opa-locka because I was a member on the annexation committee that was actually trying to expand the city of Opa-locka into the Model City and Liberty City, Brownsville and West Little River areas of unincorporated North Dade-area of Miami-Dade County districts 2 and 3.

What those individuals didn’t know is that I have people that I actually sit and have discussions with regarding Opa-locka’s most pressing concerns. In no way, shape or form was I going to play a role in dissolving the city.

Additionally, most people didn’t know about this meeting, but while sitting on the annexation committee, I drew up the boundaries for the expansion of the city of Opa-locka, including carving out political seats for single member districts that would expand Opa-locks just in case annexation of those areas eventually took place.

The matter was discussed before the full city commission. It passed following a 5-0 vote for the city to consider exploring the possibility of annexation in the unincorporated areas of Liberty City, Brownsville and West Little River. 

The annexation committee started meeting with certain members of the community and homeowners associations about expansion. There was resistance from different areas because some interest groups did not want to be associated with Opa-locka because of the city’s questionable financial status and history under Taylor’s administration.

I knew the intricate details of the city's financial status and that the city was going into a deficit, so I recused myself from the annexation committee, simply because I’ve seen this movie before in the city.

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