Last night was the 8th Annual Palmetto Bay State of the Village.Â This bittersweet event saw the last address from Palmetto Bay's first mayor and founding father, Eugene Flinn, Jr.Â Attended by hundreds, the event continues to show the strength of this Miami bedroom community.
"Incorporated in 2002, Palmetto Bay used to be a place where home
sales were described as East Kendall, south Dade...or just ignored
completely because it didn't fit into a Miami Herald category,"
explained term-limited Councilman Ed Feller explained.Â Now, Palmetto
Bay is on the map as one of the top places to live in the USA.
Councilwoman Shelley Stanczyk and Mayor Flinn welcome residents
Indeed.Â the Village now boasts police
response times among the top in Miami-Dade county, has lived up to it's
name as the "Village of Parks", added tons of new space to
Palmetto Bay Park (including world-class softball fields), opened a
brand new library and amphitheater, and will soon open a LEED-certified
"platinum" Village Hall and Town Center.
When many communities were dropping services and raising taxes,
Palmetto Bay did the opposite.Â Of the 33 municipalities in Miami-Dade
country, Palmetto Bay has the 3rd lowest tax rate.Â This year, the taxes
will again go down slightly.Â In fact, through fiscal responsibility,
the Village will also place $700,000 into reserves this year.Â No wonder
why the Village has a AA bond rating, almost unheard of in today's
Mayor Eugene Flinn provides the Address
Â All the while, new and improved services continue
to be provided to Palmetto Bay residents.Â The annual picnic, regular
movie nights in Coral Reef Park, nature events, kayaking, ladybug
releases and the summer camp program are just a sampling of what is
happening in Palmetto Bay.Â The Village also purchased and will soon
open Thalatta Park, a 4+ acre park right on Biscayne Bay.Â This new park
will allow residents direct access to the water and will host many
high-profile events in the future.
Mayor and Council
Most of the evening was about thanking people.Â Mayor Flinn explained that when you look at the Village, everyone is
contributing.Â Whether actively working in government or attending in
an event, we all make up what Palmetto Bay has become.Â Flinn went on to
recognize lots of people by name, highlighting their roles in the
community.Â He stressed that while there were many names mentioned, each
was extremely dedicated and efficient at their job, again underscoring
The event was broadcast live on the web by yours truly.Â You can see a low-quality version here.Â
I was even honored when the mayor told the audience that I extended the
reach of the community to those that could not attend, including his
brother serving in Iraq.
Mayor Flinn and MiamiHal
As the evening wrapped, the outgoing mayor
challenged everyone, "I and the council leave you a house in order.Â I
expect you to keep it in good shape."Â He went on to say how his heart
and family will forever live in Palmetto Bay and he expects to attend
lots of community events.
Writer's comments:Â Six years ago, I moved
to Palmetto Bay from New York City.Â I could not be happier.Â I am proud
to be bringing new people to look at and buy homes in this amazing
A full set of my photos are available here.