By Jill Fox
In a four to one vote during Wednesday’s City Commission meeting, Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky opposed the proposed 2021 budget.
Why? Because it removed roughly $1 million from the previous budget for road improvements in Pine Tree Estates.
“I’m voting no because I don’t want to be approving a budget without the $1 million that has been there since 2016 for the Pine Tree Estates roads,” said Hunschofsky.
Amidst the legal battle between residents of Pine Tree Estates and the City of Parkland, Hunschofsky said that when she went through the budget, she noticed the money in the Pine Tree Roads capital fund had been removed.
City Manager Nancy Morando explained the city needed to have that money in reserves, but at this point with the lawsuit, they didn’t see anything happening as far as a placeholder to initiate something moving forward.
“We can always amend the budget to put something back in,” said Morando.
Back in May, Parkland Talk revealed how hundreds of Pine Tree Estates homeowners put together a grassroots campaign to fight the city’s efforts to take part of their land as well as the allure of their Parkland community. On April 30, 2020, more than 200 plaintiffs who own and reside in the Pine Tree Estates subdivision filed a lawsuit against the city.
“This is an important issue going on, and I think we need to have a budget that includes that placeholder, so people realize there is a commitment to the Pine Tree Roads and there has been since 2016, and there has been no formal decision made by the commission because we didn’t have our strategic planning.” Said Hunschofsky.
With the city commission’s strategic planning meetings canceled due to coronavirus, the city has not scheduled any further discussions on the matter in 2020.
Despite Hunschofsky’s opposition, the budget passed with a 4-1 vote.
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