Letters to the Editor

Letters from the issue of February 17, 2000

Second, the service. It would be difficult to imagine a friendlier, more responsive crew, from the doorman's warm handshake and sparkling greetings from the hostesses to the efficient and attentive waitstaff eager to please.

Finally, management. Tuscan is run by a team of professionals who appreciate the community. Locals are accommodated even during the height of the season in recognition, perhaps, of our loyalty at other times. Nonprofit groups hold large events at Tuscan Steak because management works within their sometimes limited budgets to provide a perfect venue and menu.

In our experience Tuscan Steak is without equal and bears little resemblance to Pierres's hypercritical review.

Merle and Daniel Weiss
Miami Beach

Not for Sale ... Exactly
Mayoral hopeful Marty Shapiro bills himself as the anti-development candidate for Miami Beach. Problem is, he's not.
By Ted B. Kissell

Shapiro Exonerated!
Five days before the November 2, 1999, Miami Beach mayoral election, New Times ran a cover story by Ted B. Kissell ("Not for Sale ... Exactly," October 28, 1999) attacking me for having an undisclosed conflict of interest in doing legal work for a condominium association while I was opposing 1) development of the Mirabella condominium project at 60th Street and Collins Avenue, 2) mandatory retrofitting of older high-rise condominiums with sprinklers, and 3) a commercial-impact tax on condominiums. It was the same line that my opponent Neisen Kasdin was espousing.

I filed to run against Kasdin on September 9, 1999. The very next day a complaint was filed against me with the Florida Commission on Ethics alleging the exact same conflict-of-interest story Kasdin and New Times would later promote. It is interesting to note that commission proceedings are confidential until an investigation is completed. Now we learn that the complaint came from some person from Cooper City, Florida. How does someone from Cooper City become an overnight expert on Miami Beach government? Obviously he was a Kasdin shill.

On December 16, 1999, the executive director of the Commission on Ethics concluded her report by saying, "I recommend that this complaint be found legally insufficient and be dismissed without investigation." On January 27, 2000, the commission accepted the analysis of its executive director and issued a "Public Report and Order Dismissing Complaint." The case is closed.

I want it to be a matter of record that I was exonerated. The election-eve allegations of conflict of interest by New Times and Kasdin were found by the Commission on Ethics to be unworthy of investigation.

Martin Shapiro
Miami Beach

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