Additionally, I was disfavored because I dared to challenge Odio's placement of unqualified personnel on my staff (which he did with support from union representative Charlie Cox). The so-called investigations orchestrated by Odio and Cox were not initiated to substantiate that I had poor work habits but were motivated by their determination to get rid of a person they could not manipulate. In fact, contrary to the information contained in Mr. Powell's article, the undisputed evidence and sworn testimony presented at my appeal hearing before the Civil Service Board disclosed that the quality of the investigation was so poor that the investigators did not actually see me on most of the days in question and that they intentionally misrepresented my activities while I was under surveillance.

For example, on one of the days the police investigator reported that I was home and not at work, I was with Police Chief Donald Warshaw and attorney Joseph Serota (whose firm continues to represent the city against me), along with hundreds of other people at the Community Relations Board Summit at the Radisson Hotel. On another day, at the time the union investigator claimed I was running personal errands, I was actually with Odio at a city commission meeting, where it was being acknowledged that my program was receiving almost one million dollars.

The city and the union have chosen not only to ignore the truth about my termination, they are perpetuating the dishonorable tradition of rewarding or ignoring incompetence and dishonesty.

Ivey Kearson, Jr.

Robert Andrew Powell replies: In December 1995, after the union investigation was released, Kearson told New Times that he did not dispute its findings.

Myths: Tell the Kids We Care
I read with great interest "Myths Over Miami" (June 5) by Lynda Edwards. Reading about the stories these homeless children use to battle the frustrating despair they must deal with on a daily basis was quite eye-opening. In addition to bringing to life the faces, hopes, and fears of these young children, Ms. Edwards's article also conveyed the fact that, as time passes and they grow a bit older, the hope that someone will help slowly fades and the reality of the world in which they live sets in.

As a result of Ms. Edwards's article, the Zonta Club of Greater Miami, part of Zonta International, is already making plans to collect donations of school supplies and back-to-school clothing for the children, as well as other needed items, and is working on ways to implement some ongoing service projects for them.

I would like to commend Ms. Edwards and New Times for a story that was very meaningful and a refreshing change of pace from the scandalous stories of wrongdoing that are so abundant in Miami these days. Thanks for giving us the opportunity to let the children know that someone does care.

Rosa Naccarato, vice president
Zonta Club of Greater Miami

Myths: Edwards an Angel
I congratulate New Times for publishing Lynda Edwards's excellent "Myths Over Miami." In recounting the children's fantasies, Ms. Edwards managed to convey both the horrifying reality of their destitution and their innocent faith in some ultimate, saving power that will come to lift them out of their involuntary poverty.

Ms. Edwards's article made me realize that I too believe in those children's fantasies. I believe that their poverty and the dangers that accompany it are the result of the evil power and influence capitalist greed wields over society. I believe that a struggle between the better angels of our nature and the demons of private property and profit -- the Furies of private interests -- is being waged while they sleep in those measly, grudging shelters provided for them by those who mistakenly believe that "the poor will always be among us."

I hold great hope for those children because they know (in that innocent way only children can know) that there really are angels out there fighting to save their lives. Lynda Edwards just may be one of them.

Chris Camacho

Portofino's Minister of Propoganda?
Despite John Dellagloria's wisecrack about the publication of an accurate article ("Letters," June 5), Ted B. Kissell's journalistic career is secure. Kissell obviously bent over backward to be objective about the just-passed Save Miami Beach charter amendment ("The Hale-Bopp Amendment," May 29).

Dellagloria's letter did not reveal that he was one of the primary authors of the convoluted, land-raping giveaway called the Portofino Agreement. Popularly known on South Beach as "Portofino's Minister of Propaganda," Dellagloria is now safely ensconced in North Miami. And now his work is in shambles, justly trashed by Miami Beach voters.

North Miami voters need to start asking their elected officials why him?
Richard H. Rosichan
Miami Beach

Best Evidence of Intelligent Life on the Mainland
It's good to see a Miami DJ like Alex Gutierrez finally being recognized by your readers (Best Club DJ, Readers' Poll, "Best of Miami," May 15). This guy has grown up with us here in Miami and was making us dance long before South Beach became hip. This proves that we, the readers, know that talent exists outside of South Beach.

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