A well-connected consultant received more than half a million dollars from the Fort Lauderdale Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) to build office space which has been used by Charlie Crist, Congressman Alcee Hastings and President Barack Obama. According to the February 2008 Northwest/Progresso/Flagler Heights Implementation Plan, Dickey Plaza would receive $300,000 in “development assistance” and $213,624 in “value of land contribution.” County records show the City of Fort Lauderdale CRA turned over the land to Dickey Consulting Services, Inc. on July 31, 2009 for the sum of $10.00. Dickey Consulting Services, Inc. is owned by Sheryl A. Dickey.
Dickey was not the only well-connected citizen asking the Fort Lauderdale CRA for public funds. Smith Plaza, owned by State Senator Chris Smith, wanted $104, 026 in “development assistance.” The Burnadette Norris Weeks Law Firm asked for $78, 980 in “development assistance.” Norris-Weeks is the attorney for the Broward Supervisor of Elections Office. REDBROWARD reported Norris-Weeks, a former business partner of Dickey, operates concessions at the Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport.
Mount Olive Development Corp.(MODCO) asked the Fort Lauderdale CRA for $137, 350 in “development assistance.” MODCO is under the control of Broward School Board member Rosalind Osgood. Last June, REDBROWARD reported MODCO received questionable funding from the Children’s Services Council Of Broward County (CSC). REDBROWARD obtained invoices for $3,902 paid to the Mount Olive Development Corporation (MODCO) since January 2013. At the February 2014 Children’s Services Council board meeting, a $2,500 payment to MODCO was approved as part of a$115,000 media buy plan. In May, REDBROWARD reported the CSC media buy plan included a $5,000 payment to Community Access Center for television, radio and print advertising. The non-profit organization is tied to Broward Commisoner Dale Holness. The Community Access Center is not a media company. Magaly Prezeau, president of Community Access Center, is a Democrat candidate for the Miramar City Commission.
Broward County Property Apprasier records show Dickey Plaza is currently valued at over a million dollars. Now called The Midtown Commerce Center, the land located at 1033 Northwest 6th Street is valued at $308, 240 while the building is worth $1,158, 170. As of 2014, Dickey Plaza is valued at $1,466,590.
CAMPAIGN OFFICES FOR OBAMA CAMPAIGN
Dickey’s offices were used for the Barack Obama campaign. In 2012, the Sun-Sentinel reported tickets to a Michelle Obama luncheon could be obtained at 1033 Northwest 6th Street. The Obama campaign even hosted a 2012 Reunion/Potluck Dinner at Dickey’s offices. According to the Organizing For America (OFA) website, “Let’s get the gang back together! Broward made history in electing President Obama in 2012 and we want to have a reunion to celebrate our accomplishment, dance, eat, catch up and re-engage. Sheryl Dickey is donating the 2012 OFA office at midtown commerce center for our reunion party.”
In May, Dickey and the Midtown Commerce Center hosted a fundraiser for Judge Ian Richards. REDBROWARD reported Dickey and County Commissoner Dale Holness are members of Richard’ campaign committee.
Yesterday, REDBROWARD reported Dickey, helped fulfill the minority participation component of the County’s agreement with B-Cycle of Wisconsin. Nothing in Ms. Dickey’s resume and work experience indicates knowledge of bicycles or bicycle sharing programs. In a contract dated March 15, 2010, B-Cycle LLC agreed to give 5% of the contract to Dickey Consulting Services, Inc. The Broward B-Cycle program officially launced in December 2011. A press release stated the B-Cycle program was “spearheaded” by Commissioner Kristin Jacobs, who presided at the opening of each station.
OFFICE SPACE FOR CHARLIE CRIST
In July, Congressman Alcee Hastings held a lavish grand opening for his 2014 campaign headquarters. Hastings’ office was located at 1033 Northwest 6th Street #208 in the Midtown Commerce Center.
In August, Charlie Crist opened an office along Sistrunk Boulevard. The grand opening featured local Democrat politicians, candidates, protesters, and the media. The Crist office is located in The Midtown Commerce Center. According to his campaign financial records, Charlie Crist has paid $5,619. 24 in rent to Dickey Consulting Services, Inc.
Surely, the voters and residents of Fort Lauderdale did not intend public dollars to go to well-connected operatives in order to help build office space for politicians, right?
How does the average resident of the Sistrunk neighborhood benefit from having a Charlie Crist office nearby? Does Sheryl Dickey share the rent she receives from Crist and Obama?
Sheryl Dickey, a public relations/social media consultant, did not respond to requests for comment.