A Look Back Hallandale Beach: On The Past Year Of 2023 We Hit Some Great Milestones
By Hallandale Beach Mayor, Joy Cooper
December 28, 2023
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. As we look back over the past year in Hallandale Beach we have all gone through some challenges and also have plenty we have accomplished. Last year we hit some great milestones. This would not have been possible without a unified Commission, strong City Management and the hard work of all our Staff.
This year marks the first full year Chief Michel has served as our Chief. He was originally appointed as our Chief back in June 2022. He continues to lead our department into the future along with his command staff. Over the earlier part of the year, we had witnessed an increase in Gang Violence that has been taking place between Hallandale Beach, Dania Beach, Hollywood and West Park. The incidents that have taken place are all active investigations. Crime Rate Statistics are lagging. So, if you go online you are going to find figures that are before 2023.
Our overall Crime Rate has dropped in Hallandale over the past year under his leadership. When he started there were many vacant positions. At one point we were down 20. This year the Chief has been working to fill all positions. Just like other agencies, officers retire, so he has many in the pipeline in the academy. They continue to roll out technologies including expanded License Plate Readers, Spot Shotter and this past year’s Drone Program. They are also working on expanding CCTV throughout the city. While the overall rate is lowered there is an increase in Property Crimes and Thefts.
Our City Budget for the first time in a year is stable. I have shared that in 2019 our Budget was dismal. The previous leadership used one-time Revenues and Reserves to balance the budget. The 2023-2024 Budget was balanced without the use of Reserves. To date our budget of $200 Million includes over $80 Million in Capital Projects and many new Management Projects that will move our City forward. They include replacing all of our Water Meters, upgrading our technology to enhance security and streamline Service Delivery to name a few. This year was the first year we debated reducing the Tax Rate in 5 years.
This year, we have seen Revitalized Investments by many Developers. Hallandale Beach hit the $1,200 Dollar Per Square Foot in the Residential Real Estate Market. 2000 Ocean opened and in less than 6 months the price went from $2.6 Million to $3.5 Plus Million. Slate, a Luxury Rental Building opened. The Diplomat Golf Course Reopened with a Membership Fee of $1 Million Dollars. They have also opened up sales for their Residential/Hotel.
Other Projects that are Under Construction or opened around the City include Workforce and Affordable Housing. The most recent building to open is Solaris right next to Bluesten Park. It has a mix of Units from One to Three Bedrooms. Their Three-bedroom Unit is $1,785 Per Month. I had a chance to visit and take a tour. The Units, Amenities and Buildings are truly remarkable! Affordable Housing is no longer the project of the past. Next year we are proud to say many more units will be on their way and provide much needed housing relief.
The Office Market continues to thrive. Atlantic III Opened and Atlantic IV is getting ready to be opened to Tenants. Optima Tower opened on Federal Highway and boasts Luxury Office Spaces with a Pool and Work-Out Facilities for their Tenants. Oasis has also Opened its first Office Building and has just received its Temporary Certificate on the Second Office Building facing Hallandale Beach Boulevard. This means that their tenants will begin their build out.
2023 also brought with it many challenges. The 1,000-Year Rain Event created havoc and Floods. This year I fought, and we placed another Major Drainage Pumping Project on the books for the Northeast Area. We continued to have strange weather with Storms that had Strong Winds and Heavy Rain. Thankfully, we had no Major Hurricanes!
With the Ukraine War still raging we as a society were faced with the horrific events in Israel. Our City was put on Alert and remains vigilant in protecting our many Jewish Temples and Schools. As the war continues, we as a commission have stood firm against Antisemitism. We are the first City in the U.S. to adopt Strong Criminal Penalties for Acts Of Antisemitism for Removing Flags, Posters Of Kidnapped Hostages and Acts Of Hate.
Our Gulfstream Academy K-8 School was rocked by the loss of Principal Campbell in November. Our schools have been struggling since the COVID-19 Pandemic. He brought back to the school a great vision and had already reduced Discipline Issues by 28%. Both Gulfstream K-8 and High School have a C Grade. WE all need to work together to improve these grades! In January they will be selecting a new principal and will be asking the community to weigh in. There will be a meeting for all partners on Thursday, January 11th, 2024 at 6:00 p.m. This will be to have a conversation about the future Principal.
As we look to 2024 I will also be looking towards next year. We have much to be thankful for. We all know that many in our City are still struggling. We will continue to support programs at the Hepburn Center and our CRA to provide a hand up and assistance to those in need.
As always please feel free to contact me anytime with your questions, concerns, and ideas to make our City a better place! I am available at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Or: email@example.com. On my Office Number at: (954) 457-1318. Or on my Cell/Text at: (954) 632-5700. You can always visit my Facebook and follow me at: Mayor Joy Cooper!