Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 070867
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File Number: 070867 File Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Version: 0 Reference: R-355-07 Control: County Commission
File Name: MAGIC CITY CHILDREN'S ZONE Introduced: 3/19/2007
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action: 3/20/2007
Agenda Date: 3/20/2007 Agenda Item Number: 11A13
Notes: Title: RESOLUTION DESIGNATING THE MAGIC CITY CHILDREN'S ZONE; URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO PROVIDE FOR CREATION OF THE MAGIC CITY CHILDREN’S ZONE PILOT PROJECT [SEE ORIGINAL ITEM UNDER FILE NO. 063157]
Indexes: CHILD WELFARE
  CHILDREN
Sponsors: Audrey M. Edmonson, Prime Sponsor
  Barbara J. Jordan, Co-Sponsor
  Dennis C. Moss, Co-Sponsor
  Dorrin D. Rolle, Co-Sponsor
  Sen. Javier D. Souto, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 3/20/2007 11A13 Adopted P

County Manager 3/19/2007 Additions 3/20/2007

County Attorney 3/19/2007 Assigned Leigh Macdonald 3/19/2007

Economic Development and Human Services Committee 3/14/2007 2E AMENDED Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation with committee amendment(s) P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Cynthia Johnson-Stacks read the foregoing proposed resolution into the record. Ms. Alison Austin, Chief Executive Officer, Belafonte Tacolcy Center, appeared before the Committee and presented a Microsoft PowerPoint presentation that summarized the Harlem Children’s Zone, a non-profit organization, which focused on enhancing the quality of life for at-risk children (Ages 0 to 21) and their families. She noted one-third of the funding for the Harlem Children’s Zone would come from public sources, but noted this initiative was largely a private-driven funding. She noted the involvement of Representative Marco Rubio, Florida Speaker of the House, to promote innovative ideas for Florida’s future. Ms. H. Leigh Toney, Executive Director, Miami-Dade College, Carrie P. Meek Entrepreneurial Education Center, appeared before the Committee and congratulated Commissioner Edmonson on her leadership role and sponsorship of the foregoing proposed resolution. She provided an overview of the mission, the vision and the continued process of improvements to replicate the Harlem Children’s Zone in this community. Ms. Toney stated the Miami City Children’s Zone would be a collaborative model that would include educational, non-profit, faith-based and community-based organizations. She noted the designated zone consisted of approximately 8,500 children between the ages of 5 and 21; of which 85% were African-American, 8% Haitian and 7% Hispanic in the public schools within the boundaries of the zone. Ms. Toney noted the objective was to show improved outcomes in education, leadership, cultural and athletic pursuits. She concluded her remarks by informing the Committee that the Florida State Legislature drafted legislation to create the zones on a statewide basis and efforts were being made to seek and obtain matching state funds for this initiative. Ms. Thema Campbell, 6015 NW 7th Avenue, Co-founder and Executive Director, World Literacy Crusade and Girl Power Program, appeared before the Committee and provided an overview of the Girl Power Program. She spoke in support of the foregoing proposed resolution and urged the Committee to support this initiative. Ms. Elaine Black, President/Chief Executive Officer, Liberty City Community Revitalization Trust, appeared before the Committee and spoke in support of the foregoing proposed resolution. She noted efforts were being made by the City of Miami Police Department to conduct karate classes for the youth in this area. Chairwoman Edmonson relinquished the Chair to Commissioner Moss. Commissioner Edmonson stated, for the record, that approximately 15 members of the Miami-Dade County Delegation traveled to Harlem, New York to tour the Harlem Children’s Zone. She explained the intent of the foregoing proposed resolution and urged the County Commission’s support on this initiative. She noted this pilot program was primarily for Commission District 3 and part of Commission District 2, in order to make it a more manageable program. She pointed out consideration for expansion of the designated zone would be given in the future if this program was successful. Commissioner Jordan spoke in support of the concept and noted a Miami Herald newspaper article written by columnist Leonard Pitts, Jr. entitled, “Harlem Program forms a Circle of Success for Kids.” She noted she was a Children’s Trust board member, and upon the completion of the program design, she would lead the effort to seek and secure funding from the Trust for this initiative. Commissioner Souto, as Chair of the Recreation and Cultural Affairs Committee, asked that the Departments of Park and Recreation and the Library work together and with Commissioner Edmonson to assist in the cultural aspect of the Magic City Children’s Zone initiative in terms of using the libraries and parks for this effort. Commissioner Moss spoke in support of the foregoing proposed resolution and commended Commissioner Edmonson and all parties involved in this collaborative effort. He suggested Commissioner Edmonson sponsor another resolution urging the State Legislature to provide funding support for this initiative. He also stated he looked forward to this program operating as a model and expanding it in the near future to other areas of the County. Commissioner Moss raised a concern regarding the funding sources in this community, specifically the Community Development Block Gant (CDBG) funding. He stated the CDBG funding for public services had been transferred to the Alliance for Human Services and stressed the need for CDBG funds to target those areas in the community. Commissioner Edmonson noted the Florida State Legislature would be considering the foregoing matter through the appropriate hearings. The Committee proceeded to vote on the foregoing proposed resolution as presented. Commissioners Souto, Jordan and Moss requested to be listed as a cosponsor to the foregoing proposed resolution. Commissioner Moss asked Assistant County Attorney Johnson-Stacks if the Committee could amend the foregoing proposed resolution today to urge the State Legislature to support the foregoing initiative. Responding to Commissioner Moss’ inquiry, Assistant County Attorney Johnson-Stacks stated the Committee could amend the resolution or sponsor a separate resolution as requested by Commissioner Moss. She further stated either alternative would be appropriate. Hearing no objection, the Committee forwarded the foregoing proposed resolution as amended (1) to urge the Florida Legislature to adopt legislation, substantially in the form of currently pending House Bill 1041, sponsored by Representative Dorothy Bendross-Mindingall, and Senate Bill 1942, sponsored by Senator Arthenia L. Joyner, pursuant to which the Legislature would provide for the creation of a Children’s Zone pilot project; (2) to direct the Clerk of the Board to transmit a certified copy of this resolution to the Governor, Senate President, House Speaker, Chair and members of the Miami-Dade County State Legislative Delegation; (3) and to direct the County’s state lobbyists to advocate for the passage of the legislation and direct the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs to include this item in the 2007 State Legislative Package.

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION DESIGNATING THE MAGIC CITY CHILDREN'S ZONE; URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO PROVIDE FOR CREATION OF THE MAGIC CITY CHILDREN’S ZONE PILOT PROJECT

BODY
WHEREAS, “Magic City” is a term often attributed to the City of Miami, and that name captures the significance of the potential and possibility that must be realized to yield the desired outcomes for the children and youth in Miami-Dade County; and
WHEREAS, the name Magic City portends a city where its citizens live charmed lives filled with all of the things that they need, as well as the opportunity to achieve the things that they want; and
WHEREAS, many residents of Miami-Dade County, including many of the youngest residents in the areas known as Liberty City and Little Haiti, experience lives beset with obstacles and challenges that limit, or totally preclude, their ability to create magic in their own lives; and
WHEREAS, a proposed pilot community initiative, known as the Magic City Children’s Zone, seeks to change that experience and make the promise of a happy, healthy, and safe quality of life a possibility for all children within its borders through the provision of high quality, robust and stimulating educational, cultural, social and athletic enrichment experiences; and
WHEREAS, the children and youth in parts of Liberty City and Little Haiti would benefit from the proposed initiative, which seeks to create interlocking programs and services geared at supporting the well being and positive development of children and youth in those areas; and
WHEREAS, the proposed initiative seeks to replicate the successes of other programs, including the Harlem Children’s Zone, a forty year old, national standard-bearer that gathered and organized members of the community around the healthy development of children; and
WHEREAS, the Magic City Children’s Zone, much like the Harlem Children’s Zone, will endorse the tenets that children from troubled communities are far more likely to become healthy adults and help build a better community if the adults around them are well-versed in the techniques of effective parenting and are engaged in local educational, social, and religious activities with their children, and that the earlier a child is touched by sound health care, intellectual, and social stimulation, and consistent guidance from loving, attentive adults, the more likely that child will grow into a responsible and fulfilled member of the community; and
WHEREAS, public officials in the State of Florida have had the opportunity to visit the Harlem Children’s Zone and have observed the successes of that program, such that Florida legislators have expressed interest in promoting similar children’s zones in the State of Florida; and
WHEREAS, the initiative in Miami-Dade County is guided by a team that includes persons with experience in public administration, business, and social services; and
WHEREAS, the initiative’s team plans to design a system expected to improve the functionality of the social networks in parts of Liberty City and Little Haiti; and
WHEREAS, the initiative seeks to establish a comprehensive, place-based, and coordinated educational and social services network to serve and improve the status of children and youth in Liberty City and Little Haiti; and
WHEREAS, the initiative seeks to improve the quality of programs, and thus outcomes, for the children and youth in Liberty City and Little Haiti; and
WHEREAS, the initiative also seeks to strengthen the internal systems and staff skills of the non-profit agencies in Liberty City and Little Haiti,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA:
Section 1. This Board hereby recognizes and designates the following described area as the Magic City Children’s Zone:
On the north: 79th Street
On the south: 54th Street
On the east: Miami Avenue
On the west: 27th Avenue

Section 2. This Board urges the Florida Legislature to adopt legislation, substantially in the form of currently pending House Bill 1041, sponsored by Representative Dorothy Bendross-Mindingall, and Senate Bill 1942, sponsored by Senator Arthenia L. Joyner, pursuant to which the Legislature would provide for the creation of a Children’s Zone pilot project by this Board.
Section 3. This Board directs the Clerk of the Board to transmit a certified copy of this resolution to the Governor, Senate President, House Speaker, Chair and members of the Miami-Dade County State Legislative Delegation.
Section 4. This Board directs the County's state lobbyists to advocate for the passage of the legislation described in Section 2 above and directs the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs to include this item in the 2007 State Legislative Package.



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