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NUMBER 176 - NOVEMBER 21, 2019
Elections have consequences, and the election of Alex Diaz de la Portilla to the Miami City Commission represents a whole new level of political chicanery to the current antics of the crooks already on the commission.
Here's what is known and rumored to happen now that Alex de la Pinga is joining this gang.
First up is the news that my pal Emilio "Colonel Klink" Gonzalez is gone as city manager. The announcement of that departure might happen as soon as today, and if it doesn't, then it will be very, very soon.
The fact that the Colonel is having an Appreciation Luncheon for everyone at City Hall today during the commission lunch break, is seen by some as the way for the Colonel to go out with some dignity.
The colonel was a bad choice from the very beginning, and underscored early on that the reign of Francis Suarez was at best going to be rocky.
His replacement is supposedly Art Noriega, the current Executive Director of the Miami Parking Authority, who was touted as a possibility for the job when Suarez was first elected. There were questions then of why he would do something like that given that he's created a pretty cushy nest for himself at the MPA, and that question still lingers. Noriega did not respond to my phone message asking him about all of this, but the rumor has multiple fathers and mothers that are all insider players.
Noriega's a competent administrator, who is pals with all the players, which could be a problem for Art because Carollo and Diaz de la Portilla have big plans, and as he fully knows, neither of them gives a flying fuck for process or the law when they decide they want to do something, and I don't see them changing their plans or their behavior just because the city manager tells them that they just behave like gangsters.
UPDATE - I received a phone call from Art Noriega after posting this story and he stated that as of now he has not had any conversation with Francis Suarez about the city manager's job, or anything else related to the proposed changes that might occur as a result of the changes on the city commisison, and that while he cannot rule out the possibility of taking the job, he would only give it any consideration if, and when Emilio Gonzalez resigns and after serious talks involving police, salary, and Suarez's own future.
I've always found Art to be a straight forward guy, and so until the Klinker leaves, and things get sorted out, the future of the city manager is going to be the foder for rumors.
When it comes to Commissioner Ken "Sellout" Russell's future, it's pretty bleak. "Sellout" might have convinced the folks in his district that he walks on water, but it was all a palor trick based on the fact that the water was only an inch deep. The self-anointed champion of democratic progressives is going to get chewed up and spit out for being both a weak, ineffective Chairman, and for giving Eleazar Melendez that $150,000 to try and knock off Diaz de la Portilla.
Elections do have consequences, and the consequences here are going to be very public.
Look for Manolo Reyes to become the next Chairman of the Downtown Development Authority. The rumors have it that he might also take over the Chairmanship of the OMNI CRA, but I don't believe that. There's real money to be spent by the OMNI CRA, and the one thing that you can make book on is that wherever there is real money to spend, you're going to find Diaz de la Portilla. So look for him to take over the OMNI CRA.
Russell is also expected to be replaced as the Chairman of the Commission.
The only question now is who will Suarez appoint as next Chairman of the Commission?
There are several different scenarios being put forward. In one Diaz de la Portilla becomes chairman. In an other, Manolo Reyes becomes the chairman.
In the next 30 days or so before all of these changes will take place a lot of things can happen that might change the kaleidoscope but one thing is certain, when 2020 rolls around the City of Miami is going to go for a roller coaster ride whether they want to or not, and after the honeymoon between Carollo and Diaz de la Portilla, Commission meetings could very well become standing room only events.
It's Miami, Bitches!
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