Each new year, I am invited to deliver the “State of the City” address before the Greater Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. Afterward, I embark on a speaking series at each of our neighborhood civic associations to share the address with the residents who attend. We are on a mission to create a thriving community, where quality living is available to all, and at the start of 2020, I’m proud to report, we are well on our way.
Building on historic accomplishments and the direction we set forth in 2018, 2019 was a year of success in follow-through. As a collective community, we put into motion plans for both public and private investments that will touch and improve every corner of our city, for the benefit of everyone who lives, learns, works, invests, and plays in our Hollywood.
In March, our voters approved an historic General Obligation Bond for a massive $165M investment in the public assets of our city including renewed neighborhood infrastructure; investments in resiliency and open space; a new police headquarters; and revitalized parks, playgrounds, sports fields and golf courses where families can gather, play, and enjoy the natural beauty of our city.
Residential and commercial property values in Hollywood have continued to appreciate at one of the highest rates of Broward’s large cities. We’re up $4.2 billion in three years, and we are set to surpass the $18 billion dollar goal I set, a year ahead of schedule. We are ushering in major improvements in the delivery of services to our residents and business owners with new leadership in several key departments of the City and significant technology and process improvements underway. Our Police Department achieved reaccreditation, and our Fire-Rescue Department continues its Class 1 ISO rating for the 18th year.
As a result of the landmark 2018 Interlocal Agreement we reached between Broward County, the City, and the beach district of the CRA, we began implementing a wide variety of significant housing programs to improve the city’s older neighborhoods, including a rehabilitation program for owner-occupied housing, the creation of demonstration blocks, an expanded first-time homebuyer program, work-skills programs, and more. Search “Neighborhood Pride Program” on the city website to see if you qualify!
There’s much more in the works with K-8 school proposals, the 2020 Census, a new city Strategic Plan, a homeless task force, road work, new tree plantings, water main installations, continuing city process improvements, ordinance reforms, new business openings, and so much more.
As your city government, we are seizing growth opportunities, enhancing civic communication and engagement, increasing economic vitality, employee development, and empowerment, ensuring well managed finances and administration and investing in infrastructure and facilities. Quality and reliable law enforcement and emergency services are always a top priority to build quality of life and strong neighborhoods. In everything we do, we are trying to employ effective and sustainable practices to ensure we can face any challenge that comes our way.
We couldn’t be more excited to begin 2020 with all this in motion and hope that your family ushers in the new decade with great health, success, and happiness.