On Jan. 23, 2014, all five supervisors of the Indian Trail Improvement District unanimously agreed to hire land-use attorney Marty Perry to study the effects on the district from the Minto West development proposal. During the meeting, ITID Attorney Mary Viator said, “We want to have the best team in place to make sure all the interests of the district are represented. We strongly urge retaining a land-use attorney who would be able to advise the district.”
Supervisor Carol Jacobs asked for a consensus of the board to hire Perry and said, “I suggest we hire Mr. Perry right away, because every day is critical, and a month has gone by already.” Supervisor Ralph Bair, expressing concern regarding the many potential development sites in the district, said, “I think it’s very important that we move along on this.”
Engineers and consultants tell us that our rural ITID roads were not designed to carry the traffic volume Minto West will generate. There are estimates that we, the ITID property owners, will pay over a million dollars more per year, every year, in road maintenance and improvements just to accommodate Minto West’s traffic on our roads.
On Oct. 29, 2014, five of seven Palm Beach County commissioners voted to approve the Minto West project with greater residential and commercial densities, completely ignoring the concerns of the ITID-hired consultants and the residents who live in the areas surrounding the property.
The vast majority of ITID property owners support the fight to save our area from over-development and Browardization. There are thousands of petitions in favor of doing whatever it takes to protect our roads, property, homes and our quality of life. However, on Nov. 19, 2014, with their engineering and consultant team’s gathered evidence in hand, at a cost of over a half of a million dollars to the ITID property owners, supervisors Michelle Damone, Carol Jacobs and Ralph Bair voted not to proceed with any legal challenge of the county’s approval of Minto West. We can only conclude that supervisors Jacobs and Bair voted to spend our money on Mr. Perry and his consultants merely to ensure their Nov. 4 re-election and had no intention of following through with a legal challenge. This also may explain Mr. Perry’s lack of enthusiasm near the end of his contract with ITID.
Three ITID supervisors, Damone, Jacobs and Bair, voted to spend our tax dollars on consultants and on gathering evidence they did not plan to use. By choosing to do nothing with this evidence, they have ensured that we will all continue to pay millions more to accommodate Minto West’s traffic every year, forever. They, like the five county commissioners, have assisted Minto in taking money from our pockets with no regard for our safety or quality of life.
Do these elected officials work for us? I think not.
Anne Kuhl, The Acreage