SUMMARY, JANUARY 3, 2018
Alliance President Bob Schulbaum opened the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance. After the announcement of dignitaries and guests, the following reports were presented. Palm Beach County Fire Rescue Chief Kimberly Hude of Battalion 4 reported on the various situations that arose during the past month. She told of the fire at Kings Point, pleased to announce that there were no injuries. Additional training will begin soon to reinforce and maximize the abilities of the firefighters and EMTs.
Palm Beach Sheriff Office’s Captain Shawn Eastman announced that this past December saw less home thefts and break-ins than in the past. However, vehicle thefts are rising. There were 16 stolen vehicles, all from gated communities, that were stolen in December. All had keys or car fobs left inside. The Sheriff’s office is putting an action plan in place. Captain Eastman offered to speak to any Homeowner or Condo Associations and present tips and facts on crime prevention.
State Representative Lori Berman informed the audience that the Florida Congress will be in session in Tallahassee from January 9 until March 9. She predicted a steep increase in the budget, which is currently being worked on. The bill from Representative Emily Slosberg is receiving much positive attention from the Florida Congress. This bill provides to make texting while driving a primary offense.
Rebecca Della Rosa, Legal Affairs Director, told of the four major offensives that her department is focused on: Affordable housing and homelessness, the opioid epidemic, Hurricane Irma’s aftereffects, and transportation and road management.
Alliance of Delray’s Executive Vice President Lori Vinikoor announced that the Alliance is fighting to keep Level 1 Trauma Centers in Palm Beach County. The annual Wellness Screening Expo will be held on February 3 this year at the South County Civic Center. Physicians will be there to answer questions. The Alliance is working to try to accelerate the widening of Atlantic Avenue.
The main speaker, State Attorney Dave Aronberg was introduced. He spoke about elder abuse, their exploitation and fraud committed upon them. In Palm Beach County the largest group of victims are 85 years old and older because they are seen as vulnerable. His department handles between 70 – 100 cases at any one time. They are victims of such crimes as grand theft, exploitation, and domestic abuse and violence. Often the victims are reluctant to prosecute.
Assistant District Attorney Karen Murillo cited examples of fraud, theft, exploitation and abuse. Some examples are investment fraud, telemarketing schemes, construction fraud, and dishonest caregivers. If prosecuted, the conviction rate of the perpetrators is 90%. Some avenues of protection include seeing licenses, refusing to give information, building a social network, and being cautious when asked to send money. “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”
Herb Rein, a volunteer in the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office Fraud Squad offered advice that no one give outside persons access to home computers. He also suggested making copies of your social security card, excluding the last four numbers and provide the last four digits verbally to any medical office or hospital. The Volunteers Against Scams Team is available to give presentations.
The next meeting of the Alliance of Delray is Wednesday, February 7, 018 at the South County Civic Center. Doors open at 9am when refreshments are served. The meetings begin at 9:30. The public is welcome to attend.
Meeting was adjourned at 10:45 AM
Carol Klausner, Director