Hamilton Forman Admits
Destroying City Barricades
"With a Sledgehammer"

FORT LAUDERDALE — Commissioner Cindi Hutchinson says the repeated destruction of the city-owned barricades ("bollards") outside the First Christian Church is what led her to meet with Hamilton Forman — an elder and director of the church — in an attempt to stop the destruction. The Parks & Recreation Department had erected the barricades to protect the median from being destroyed by parked cars [see photo]. Hutchinson says the 200-foot-long barricades were twice knocked down. She said she referred the issue to city staff and that's the last she knew of it. In July 2004, with no public input, a permit was issued to construct 14 asphalt parking spaces on the SE 13th Street grassy median.

On Sept. 20, 2004, Forman startled the Property & Right-of-Way Committee by admitting that he was responsible for destroying the city's barricades. You can hear his statement by clicking one of the links below. The recording is about 1 minute and 23 seconds.

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New Times story about the meeting

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An minimal account of Forman's statement appears on Page 3.
(289K PDF file)


Transcript of Barricade Destruction Exhange

THE PLAYERS...

THORNBURG: Greg Thornburg, committee member

FORMAN: Hamilton Forman, First Christian church elder and director

PARTINGTON: Peter Partington, chairperson and Acting City Engineer

DEAL: Cal Deal, Poinciana Park resident

Edited for clarity due to much cross-talk.


THORNBURG: Second question... when were the bollards and the sign removed? Was at as the result of the [unintelligble]

FORMAN: I don't even know when they were put up. And when the first time they put some in front of the church, I went out and got a sledgehammer and knocked them out, and threw 'em to one side.

PARTINGTON: I wish you hadn't said that. [Laughter]

CM: Excuse me, I'm a lil' ... they were taken down as a result of a permit issued, is that a reasonable assumption?

FORMAN: Um, no.... No I ... I had the permit before those bal- those things were ever put up.

PARTINGTON: That would be a reasonable assumption, to have — or Mr. Forman also said that, with respect to those things. That's the way I characterize that.

DEAL: I'm sorry uh -- can we just clarify when these things were knocked down? Because I don't think it had anything to do with the permit.

PARTINGTON: These things being....

DEAL: The bollards. I know that had nothing to do with the permit. They just went out there and knocked them down because they didn't want them, and that's wrong also.

PARTINGTON: I agree.

FORMAN: Wait a minute. Wait a minute.

DEAL: When were they knocked down Mr. Forman?

FORMAN: I went out there...

DEAL: When were they knocked down?

FORMAN: Let me put it this way -- you put them up, on the church side, on the church side, on the church side, you put them up one day. When I walked out and saw they were there, I knocked them down that same day so that we could continue to park in that area, and I took 'em over to one side.

PARTINGTON: We think the city must have put them up, so...

FORMAN: Well whatever whoever put 'em up.

DEAL: So when were they knocked down? What day?

FORMAN: The the the same day, they the ... on the church side, the same day they were put up.