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Photo Credit: Palm Beach County ERM

28 Jun How Palm Beach County might waste $100 million, and more

GL Homes is the leading builder in and around the Agricultural Reserve Area, where developers must preserve 60 percent of their land. GL proposes to preserve land outside of the reserve in exchange for being allowed to build on 100 percent of three parcels in the reserve. With this proposal, GL wants to exploit one favor to get a bigger one. Six months ago, the county commission allowed GL 700 percent more homes than rules had allowed on 4,900 acres near The Acreage, the large unincorporated community west of West Palm Beach. That project is called Indian Trails Grove....

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28 Feb Karen Marcus talks about North County Growth

Courtesy of Inlet Outlet. In January, JIC residents got an opportunity to meet with Karen Marcus, a Palm Beach County Commissioner for 28 years. Hosted by Colony Garden Club, Marcus’s topic How to Preserve North County Quality of Life, drew strong interest. While in office, Marcus pursued sustainable growth. She is responsible for acquiring the many parks and green spaces that give North County its rural vibe. Though retired from the Commission, she continues to push for policies that will “preserve the natural assets that make Palm Beach County a very special place to live, work and raise families.” Marcus’s talk generated a lively question and answer...

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13 Dec If Not Sprawling House Plans, Why Sprawling Cities?

By: Timothy Hullihan If we designed our homes the way we design cities and suburbs – around the convenient use of automobiles – our homes would not be as comfortable and intimate as we know them to be. Our homes are sanctuary-like places in which we draw closest to those we love and hold dear.  Our car-centric cities are places we drive to, through, and away from, but are unlikely to experience deep sanctuary-like “placemaking” there.  It wasn’t always this way, and can’t be in the future if we are to grow healthy communities, and conserve the land we need for...

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23 Jun How to Kill an Estuary…. and How to Save It

Watching the evening news a few months ago three items appeared in succession that caught my attention. First, a news report indicated that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) would continue discharging billions of gallons of freshwater from Lake Okeechobee into the St. Lucie River for weeks to come. Next up was a related news story highlighting a visit by a tenured politician from Tallahassee who was touring the affected region....

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16 May Nonprofit’s mission is to encourage smart growth policies

In April, the Northern Palm Beach County Chamber of Commerce launched its open-for-business branding initiative — Palm Beach North: Florida’s Prosperity Coast. As someone who grew up here — and who spent years serving north county as a county commissioner — I support and applaud the chamber’s efforts. But it’s also important to point out that the very assets and resources that draw people to north county are under increasing attack, and we need to preserve them. North county’s cherished assets — featured in the chamber’s video — are our green spaces, natural areas, clean waters, sand and sea. The video touts...

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