It is with great sadness that Norm Kent, attorney and friend of the popular South Florida radio icon, Neil Rogers, announces his passing, at 9:45 a.m. today, December 24, 2010.
Neil, 68, born on November 5, 1942, in New York State, expired from congestive heart failure at the Vitas Hospice in Florida Medical Center in Broward County, Florida.
There is a tribute to Neil Rogers published in this week’s South Florida Gay News. http://www.southfloridagaynews.com/editorial/publishers-editorial/2768-neil-rogers-the-gay-activist-who-wasnt.html
Announcements for a memorial service for Mr. Rogers will be made on Monday morning.
The Dania Beach City Commission voted Tuesday night (12/21/10) to move forward with a plan to merge the city’s fire department with the Broward Sheriff’s Office Department of Fire Rescue.
In a five-to-nothing vote Commissioners approved a resolution directing the city manager to execute an agreement between the City of Dania Beach and the Broward Sheriff’s Office to provide fire rescue and emergency medical services no later than January 29, 2011.
The Dania Beach Fire Department is comprised of 68 personnel who will all join the BSO at pay levels equal to their city salaries. The annual cost of the agreement will be $9,242,943, representing a full year savings to the city of $871,164. Combined with other expense reductions the city’s savings are projected to exceed $1.9 million.
“This agreement really underscores our commitment to provide improved service through regionalization while effectively reducing duplication,” Sheriff Al Lamberti said.
The Broward Sheriff’s Office Department of Fire Rescue was created in October of 2003 when BSO assumed operational and administrative responsibilities for the Broward County Fire Department. BSO FRD consists of over 600 fire rescue professionals encompassing five battalions in 15 locations. Dania Beach will join the cities of Weston, Southwest Ranches, Pembroke Park, West Park, Lauderdale-By-The-Sea, Cooper City, Lauderdale Lakes, Sea Ranches, Port Everglades, the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and the unincorporated areas which are currently served by BSO’s fire fighters and paramedics.
When that bill reaches my desk, I will sign it, and this discriminatory law will be repealed.
Gay and lesbian service members -- brave Americans who enable our freedoms -- will no longer have to hide who they are.
The fight for civil rights, a struggle that continues, will no longer include this one.
This victory belongs to you. Without your commitment, the promise I made as a candidate would have remained just that.
Instead, you helped prove again that no one should underestimate this movement. Every phone call to a senator on the fence, every letter to the editor in a local paper, and every message in a congressional inbox makes it clear to those who would stand in the way of justice: We will not quit.
This victory also belongs to Senator Harry Reid, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and our many allies in Congress who refused to let politics get in the way of what was right.
Like you, they never gave up, and I want them to know how grateful we are for that commitment.
Will you join me in thanking them by adding your name to Organizing for America's letter?
I will make sure these messages are delivered -- you can also add a comment about what the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" means to you.
As Commander in Chief, I fought to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" because it weakens our national security and military readiness. It violates the fundamental American principles of equality and fairness.
But this victory is also personal.
I will never know what it feels like to be discriminated against because of my sexual orientation.
But I know my story would not be possible without the sacrifice and struggle of those who came before me -- many I will never meet, and can never thank.
I know this repeal is a crucial step for civil rights, and that it strengthens our military and national security. I know it is the right thing to do.
But the rightness of our cause does not guarantee success, and today, celebration of this historic step forward is tempered by the defeat of another -- the DREAM Act. I am incredibly disappointed that a minority of senators refused to move forward on this important, commonsense reform that most Americans understand is the right thing for our country. On this issue, our work must continue.
Today, I'm proud that we took these fights on.
Please join me in thanking those in Congress who helped make "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" repeal possible:
STATEMENT OF RON MILLS, PRESIDENT OF DOLPHIN DEMOCRATS, ON THE PASSAGE OF DON’T ASK, DON’T TELL REPEAL
STATEMENT OF RON MILLS, PRESIDENT OF DOLPHIN DEMOCRATS,
ON THE PASSAGE OF DON’T ASK, DON’T TELL REPEAL
Ron Mills, president of the Dolphin Democrats, Florida’s oldest and largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Democratic club, issued the following statement on the passage of legislation to repeal the ban on openly-gay members serving in the military:
“Our nation was founded on the concept of equality for all, and yet equality for gay and lesbian Americans is still a work in progress. Today, with the US Senate’s passage of legislation to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, those gay and lesbian Americans who wish to serve their country without hiding their true identities are one step closer to equality.
“All 10 of Florida’s congressional Democrats in the House voted to repeal the ban earlier this week, joined by Republicans Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Lincoln Diaz-Balart. We thank them for recognizing that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell had to go. We also thank Senator Bill Nelson for his vote against the ban.
“The Dolphin Democrats have been out front in fighting for repeal, working with the Florida GLBT Democratic Caucus and National Stonewall Democrats. But this should not be seen as a partisan victory – rather, it is a victory shared by all Americans that underscores our true values.
“There are still many more key pieces of legislation lingering in Washington guaranteeing the LGBT community is ensured equality, but today we will celebrate the repeal of the discriminatory ban on openly gay men and women serving in the military. It’s a wonderful holiday gift for all Americans.”
President, Dolphin Democrats
Budweiser is holding an online vote for “Conservationist of the Year”, and one of the four finalists is Conservation Commissioner Ron Bergeron.
As a Florida Wildlife Conservation Commissioner, Ron has fought to bring attention to Florida’s most pressing environmentalist concerns. He is the founder of savetheglades.org and the Bergeron Everglades History and Cultural Museum, which educates the public on the importance of saving our precious Everglades.
We urge you to go to this link and vote for Ron. Budweiser has pledged to donate $50,000 to the winner’s cause of choice, and I want to see that money put to good use here in Florida.
So please, vote now! All votes must be cast by this Friday, December 17th.
The National Weather Service forecasts low temperatures, including wind chill, in the high 30s to mid-40s for Sunday, December 12, through Tuesday morning, December 14, for Broward County.
legend Neil Rogers; Tom Jicha reports that Rogers, who suffered a recent stroke and heart attack, is not having open-heart surgery and has been moved into hospice care. Rogers was the veritable voice of South Florida for more than 20 years, and he did it with his own brand of humor and profane (and FCC-defying) dignity. Rogers lives in Plantation Acres, spent summers in Toronto, and as a proponent of weed liked to vacation in Amsterdam. Rogers, especially compared to the Lords Of Loud who dominate the airwaves today, really was a radio god.
Sheriff Al Lamberti