Sunday, March 11, 2007

Muff Diving Mayor Of West Palm Beach

I normally try not to pay much attention to West Palm Beach Mayor Lois Frankel (in black above) since her upper lip has the strange motion of looking like an obscene gesture whenever she talks. I kid you not. Somehow, whenever she talks, Frankels upper lip looks like it is giving you the Finger. However, after reading this New Times ARTICLE, I am beginning to see that Frankel's obscene upper lip might be getting quite an after-hours workout with one Miss Joan Goldberg (above in white):

"'s the whispering campaign that seems to grip West Palm Beach, even if no one dares ask Frankel directly: Is there something more to Joan Goldberg's meteoric rise to power in Frankel's administration and Frankel's leaving out a fraternization clause from her proposed ethics rules than simply a case of mutual admiration between the two women?"

What happened is that Mayor Frankel introduced an ethics code for city hiring policies that copied almost exactly the one in Tampa except for one very notable exclusion:

"the entire section on 'fraternization' in Tampa's code is absent from the copy Frankel circulated. In Tampa's code, that section forbids public officials from hiring a person with whom they have a 'close personal relationship,' defined by the code as 'dating, cohabitation, and/or having an intimate sexual relationship,' and it 'applies regardless of the sexual orientation of the employees involved.'"

It turns out that Mayor Frankel's "pal" was personally hired by her for a $70,000 part-time job as a "cultural affairs coordinator." Frankel, who has vacationed in the Berkshires with Goldberg has been criticized by a grand jury for the "pay for play" attitude of the city towards private developers who donate heavily to the campaigns of various city officials, especially the mayor. In the case of Goldberg, who has her fingers deep in city development despite her lack of expertise in this field, perhaps the best term would be "play for play."


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