Vice Mayor Justin Flippen said at the end of the meeting last night in his commentary that deciding to send a message to various county, state, and federal level politicians that the City Of Wilton Manors is against any future offshore drilling is making a statement not in what is being done but what vision you want for the future.
Obviously that is a paraphrase, Justin had a brilliant turn of phrase that I wish I had written down.
It was in response to the Vice President of the Historical Society of Wilton Manors giving an impassioned speech about the same subject saying it is like spending money on greeting cards in a budgetary crunch and expecting them to have any impact.
There are many things that you can do when you are in a position of power but one thing you must is to have the vision to leave the place you are in charge of better than you found it. I hear many people who are long time residents comment that Bubba's Gone and the Old Boy Network didn't work. They usually follow up with the impression that those who are here in power at an official or volunteer level have a much clearer vision of where they want the City to go in the future.
There are things you can do and things you can't do. The cynical would say "I have a vision problem, I can't see myself doing that". Usually those are the people that should be patted on the head and moved on. Last night it wasn't a question of saying "I can't see myself doing that", and there were a lot of "that" last night. Last night was where I felt the Commission were saying "I want to do it, I can't see how, I need a way to do so".
In other words they went past the "Can" and "Can't" to the "Must".
Must is Vision. Must is people realizing that in order to move forward, you have to set out on a path and see it to its conclusion. Must looks at procrastination and nudges it aside because procrastination rarely works. Must realizes that if you don't progress you end up with a City with an open wound in the middle of it like you could fire a cannon down the business district in prime time and not hit a soul.
I personally believe, and since this is a blog I have the say here, that the Wilton Manors Main Street plan of phased development of parking on Wilton Drive is one very important aspect of the Vision. It Must be done. We are at a point where further development of the Drive won't happen without someone doing something about parking. It will stagnate and the energy we have will get taken elsewhere.
Tennis courts are nice, but the citizens of the city of Wilton Manors deserve a better solution than that. The Romans called that "Bread and Circuses". Something to distract us from the fact that the Drive which is the economic engine behind the rebirth of Wilton Manors has hit the equilibrium point.
We Must have the Vision to proceed or we will have the Vision Problem of Decline.
I for one don't want to see Wilton Manors decline. I don't believe that the Mayor or the Commission or the vast majority of the citizens and businessmen here do either.
This is the fourth time that this question has come up since 2000. When something is right, it will not go away. It is time to act on it. The fourth time is the charm.