Mike Mikan, interim CEO of Best Buy, the nation’s leading appliance and electronics retailer, announced the company is restructuring, which means job cuts. An estimated 2,400 employees could be laid off, with 650 of them from its Geek Squad, an appliance and computer servicing division. The layoffs will begin on Aug. 1. Best Buy has 34 stores in South Florida and there is no word on how many workers could be affected in the region. Best Buy purchased Geek Squad more than a decade ago and made it a division of the company. The unit will continue to operate after being restructured as Best Buy streamlines its operations to better compete with online retailers such as Amazon.
If you have not seen a Florida Power & Light (FPL) meter reader in your neighborhood lately, there is no need to be alarmed. Like other providers around the state and nation, FPL has been quietly installing “smart meters” on homes over the past few years. These smart meters send data to the company, including how much electricity you use each month. It means the end of meter reading as we know it. And, with smart meters, power can be turned on or off remotely.
Lake Worth Mayor Pam Trilo and city commissioners could decide to place a measure on the November ballot to change the city’s name. If approved, residents will decide whether “Beach” should be added to the name. “Lake Worth Beach” has a ring to it and Commissioner Scott Maxwell is a leading proponent of the change. The move is intended to attract tourists and inform the world that the city has a beachfront.
FTI Consulting, which is based in West Palm Beach and has global operations, has announced it is laying off 115 of its 3,800 employees. The company’s financial condition led to a decision to consolidate facilities and some operations. Additional job cuts are possible later this year.
ATHLETE GONE BAD?
Michael Fleurizard, now 20, was a standout football player at Dwyer High School in Palm Beach Gardens. He was highly recruited and settled on a scholarship from Marshall University. He was expelled from Marshall after his alleged involvement in the robbery of a pizza deliveryman. This week, he was arrested and is charged with allegedly hitting two Jupiter police officers with his car during a traffic stop. He has been charged with aggravated battery on law enforcement officers and possession of cocaine and marijuana.
Ricardo Juan, 23, a reputed member of the violent Makin' Life Krazy (MLK) street gang, has been arrested by U.S Marshals. Juan barricaded himself in a Lake Worth apartment as the marshals attempted to serve a warrant for his arrest, police said. He threatened marshals and at least one shot was fired at him as SWAT teams surrounded the apartment. He was wanted for cocaine trafficking, fleeing and auto theft and now faces seven new felony charges as a result of the standoff.
Andarly Desir of Lauderhill and Corey David Weintraub of Tamarac are charged in the death of 76-year-old William Norman. The two 19-year-olds were arrested in connection with Norman’s murder. His body was found floating in a Davie canal with a plastic bag taped over his head. Norman lived in Tampa and rented out to them a home he owns in Tamarac. Neighbors said two young men were the tenants and they often threw noisy parties. Authorities say they have confessed to the crime.
Community activists Alan Brown, Joe Major and other residents of Lauderhill are concerned over the lack of representation they say their communities have been getting. They are pushing for single-member districts in the city. Lauderhill has an at-large system of electing commissioners. At present, four of the five commissioners live in or near the affluent Inverrary section and residents want more diversified representation.
Yet another scandal is brewing within the Broward Sheriff’s Office. This time it’s in the Detention Department where, it is being alleged, black employees who are arrested for various offenses are not being detained in protective custody units as policy mandates. For obvious reasons, the policy is in place to protect law enforcement officers and employees from violent attacks by other prisoners. If this is true, then it is dangerous and must immediately be corrected. Col. James Wimberly is the executive director of the department. I’ll let you know what the explanation is.
Joel Martos, 48, has been hit with a slew of charges, including arson. Hialeah police say he set fired to a home where his ex-girlfriend, Carida Borroto, and their daughter lived, leaving them homeless. Borroto recently filed for a restraining order against him. Martos is charged with arson, burglary, aggravated stalking and violating a restraining order. Book ’em Danno!
Inmates being held in the Florida Department of Corrections’ prison in Doral are complaining of a power outage, no running water and no air conditioning. Calls made to the facility, the South Florida Reception Center, were not returned. Inmates say this is not the first time they have been without electricity. It would be inhumane under any circumstances if this is true and particularly so considering the ongoing heat wave. Something in the milk ain’t clean and we have to get to the bottom of this.
Rudy Eugene was shot and killed by police in May after officers encountered him eating the flesh off another man’s face under a Miami bridge. When they ordered him to stop, police say, Eugene “growled” at them and continued his cannibalistic attack. He was shot several times and killed. His victim survived and is recovering. Some speculated that Eugene was on some type of exotic drug. Now, toxicology reports confirm he was not on drugs at all. This type of behavior is not normal and Eugene likely was satanically possessed, which is more powerful than any drug the world has ever seen.