BEACH · Plans for a two-story restaurant at the pier have sparked
fierce sparring, with critics calling it a sweetheart deal for
expert agreed, saying the going rental rate for a pierside restaurant
is more like $30 /a square foot compared with the 52 cents a
square foot Boinis would pay under the proposal. "It just doesn't
sound right to me," said Adam Von Romer, a senior investment
associate with Fort Lauderdale-based real estate firm NAI Rauch,
Weaver, Norfleet, Kurtz & Co. According to Von Romer, the rent
should be closer to $300,000 a year to give the city an 8 percent
return on the property, with the rent increasing to $1.4 million
a year by the end of the lease to account for inflation. In
54 years, that $120,000 would be more like $1,800, Von Romer
said. Susannah Bryan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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ban during Deerfield Beach public hearing outrages pier restaurant
Susannah Bryan Staff Writer Posted July 5 2004 DEERFIELD BEACH
controversial proposal for a pier restaurant has taken a zany
turn, with Broward Sheriff's Office attorneys caught in the
middle of a tug-of-war between the city and beach activists.
This time, the controversy is over paper plates. Not just any
paper plates, but ones marked "NO" in black marker. Beach activists,
toting the plates, came en masse to a June 15 meeting at which
commissioners tabled a vote on the project. At the direction
of Mayor Al Capellini, City Manager Larry Deetjen said he instructed
deputies last week not to allow the plates into City Hall on
Tuesday during a public hearing on the project.
activists, who won't be permitted to speak until the second
meeting, had hoped to use the plates to convey their opinions.
insane," said Tom Connick, attorney for the activists, who say
the city is trying to stifle free speech. "July Fourth, Independence
Friday, Sheriff's Office attorneys were trying to determine
whether deputies had the right to take away the plates, spokesman
Hugh Graf said. The project has drawn fierce opposition from
beach activists, who worry that the restaurant will increase
congestion on State Road A1A. They also object to granting the
developer a 54-year lease on public property valued at $3.8
wonder if all of the paper plates had `Yes' on them, ... would
they be objecting so much?" asked Pam Militello, secretary of
the Original Save Our Beach group.
said the mayor decided to ban the plates out of a concern for
order, decorum and cleanliness. After the last meeting, residents
claimed they were "poked" by the plates, according to Deetjen.
In addition, city crews had to pick up litter left in the parking
lot, he said.
scoffed at the charges, saying no poking or littering went on,
since the activists held on to their plates for the next meeting.
on," he said through chuckles. "Please."
Raton restaurateur Pete Boinis was also told not to bring placards
in support of his own project, said Jeffrey Greenberg, his attorney.
"They're concerned about decorum in the meeting," Greenberg
said. "We were cautioned in the same way as the [critics] were."
said he met on Wednesday with Chief Ron Reffett of the Sheriff's
Office Deerfield Beach district and was told the plates would
not be allowed into City Hall. On Friday, Connick hand-delivered
a letter to Reffett requesting he obtain written direction from
Sheriff's Office headquarters as to the constitutionality of
Peggy Noland, who opposes the project, was incensed by the effort
to ban the plates. "That is freedom of speech," she said. "What
is going on in our city? What are they afraid of?"
Bryan can be reached at email@example.com or 954-572-2028.
© 2004, South Florida Sun-Sentinel