Say No To Notter
Look, I'm done writing about the site for the planned high school in Weston, now known only as MMM. I've written about all I can on the matter and if taxpayers are willing to spend $50 million to buy and prepare a site for a school on a dead end street next to the Everglades, then so be it. Ye gets what ye wants. But I will say this:
Interim Supt. Jim Notter has proven to be a sorry excuse of an administrator throughout the process of selecting a site. I don't trust him at all and I don't think you should either.
The presentations at last week's school board workshop meeting were so slanted in favor of the site in Weston that it's not funny. For instance, the fact that a road and bridge (the school board has NEVER built a bridge before) will be required on the environmentally sensitive land wasn't even mentioned in the summary given by the school board. It wasn't until school board member Phyllis Hope brought it up that Notter explained that the reason it wasn't mentioned was due to a "slight timing
piece." He said that he believed another option -- which was stringently opposed by state and federal water managers -- was viable.
Well, he and staff should have known better months ago. While Notter et al low-balled the politically connected Weston site, they inflated every cost at the Sunrise site, saying that nine acres owned by Lennar would cost as much as $32 million. Why? Because there's a townhouse development planned there. The board conceded that Lennar had said the land could be sold for $15 million. The catch: Since then the company has sold contracts for $250,000 townhomes on the site. Allegedly, it could cost as much as $17 million to pay off 30 contracts. Ludicrous.
The point is that Notter proved to be an incredibly unobjective leader and all the evidence points to the fact that he's a yes-man for developers, builders, and the rampant political machine steering the school board.
But that doesn't matter. Notter is in like Flynn as superintendent, no matter what is said at the upcoming public meetings. School board members are, well, on board, especially after lobbyists Neil Sterling, Barbara Miller, and others have filled their campaign coffers. And nobody is going to be more pleased the day Notter takes the permanent job than the lobbyists.