FYI Miami: October 10, 2019
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SCOOTER SOLICITATION: Though the scooter pilot program was renewed by the City of Miami, its lifespan was extended by two months instead of the six proposed by Commissioner Ken Russell. Now a new resolution by Mr. Russell would extend the program once again for four more months to about May 1, but it will also call for the city manager to develop a competitive solicitation for a permanent scooter program, which would then be brought to the commission.
GLOBAL CLIMATE TEAM COMING: The Global Center on Adaptation will be opening its first US office in Miami. Mayor Francis Suarez in Miami signed a joint declaration with Dutch Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management Cora van Nieuwenhuizen. The organization aims to bring entities together to tackle obstacles that are slowing down action to adapt to climate changes.
E-BUS BUY ON ROAD: Miami-Dade has ordered its first round of electric buses. County lawmakers Oct. 3 unanimously green-lit an initial purchase of 33 e-buses for $32 million – $898,000 per bus plus training, maintenance and equipment costs – from Burlington, CA-based manufacturer Proterra Inc. Many residents and government officials spoke in favor of the buy. “We are thrilled to see these hit the streets,” said Emily Gorman, organizing representative for environmental advocacy nonprofit Sierra Club. Proterra CEO Ryan Popple applauded the county for “bold leadership” and “disciplined approach in exploring this innovation,” adding: “It’s absolutely critical, if we’re going to confront some of the environmental issues we’re facing as a nation and as a globe, that our largest and most innovative cities come together to build a new industry around clean technology.”
COUNTY URGES EVICTION STAYS: Miami-Dade lawmakers have asked the state to halt any pending evictions during declared states of emergency, following reports of at least one resident being evicted shortly before Hurricane Dorian was to strike South Florida. County commissioners approved two resolutions sponsored by Jose “Pepe” Diaz. One requests that the Florida judicial system adopt administrative orders requiring judges to automatically stay writs of possession associated with evictions after the governor or mayor declares an emergency. The other urges the state to adopt a moratorium on evictions during states of emergency. “During and after a hurricane, law enforcement needs to focus on residents’ health and safety, not evicting people who may have nowhere to go,” Mr. Diaz said, “especially at a time when homelessness is more likely to result in death from dangerous weather conditions and downed wires.”