I was forwarded this story about Miami Beach. The article is a three month long investigation by the New Times on the City of Miami Beach…err more importantly corruption within the City…and even more importantly than that it focuses on the corruption within the Miami Beach Fire Department.
After reading the report, I can’t help but wonder why the Chief is still the Chief. But don’t stop there…why hasn’t the City cleaned up the fire inspection bureau among other questionable members?
The unfortunate thing is that I feel certain some of these issues aren’t unique to Miami Beach…I just wish they were.
I am sure we haven’t seen the end of this. In the end, I imagine there will be plenty of vacancies down in Miami Beach…but who knows?
One thing I do know is I am sick of reading about is sexual harassment and racial abuse in the fire service!
The New Times investigation uncovered the following among much more:
- Millions of dollars’ worth of fire permit fees went missing or were written off by inspectors, including those now charged with taking roughly $25,000 from club Dolce.
- City officials ignored repeated, detailed warnings about those missing funds.
- Top fire officials were warned about inspectors taking bribes from a South Beach hotel to ignore thousands of dollars in code violations, but did nothing.
- One powerful fireman, union president Adonis Garcia, has been accused of three assaults, bilking the county out of $76,000 in property taxes, and abusing his authority as a firefighter.
- A female firefighter successfully sued the department over repeated sexual harassment, including semen-stained clothing and death threats, winning $700,000.
- An African-American recruit was awarded $100,000 after alleging racial abuse, including being teabagged and called racial epithets by fellow firemen.
On Friday, New Times published a three-month investigation into Miami Beach Fire Rescue (MBFR). It showed that MBFR leaders and other city officials ignored evidence of corruption. Millions of dollars in permit fees mysteriously went missing. And the two employees who did complain were forced out.
It now seems as if the investigation — which hits newsstands later today — has struck a nerve with at least some Miami Beach politicians. Commissioner Jerry Libbin has asked for an “emergency discussion” today to review our findings.
More related New Times links to the story:
- Jerry Libbin Demands Miami Beach Respond toNew Times Fire Department InvestigationFebruary 6, 2013
- December 2012 Restaurant Openings and ClosingsJanuary 1, 2013
- Miami Beach Firefighter, Dade Cop Sentenced For Running CocaineDecember 20, 2012
- Blow It UpDecember 27, 2012
- Basel Basel BaselDecember 6, 2012