FBI slams own 9/11 document; New report discounts Sarasota Saudis ties to hijackers

From left to right, Georgetown University professor Bruce Hoffman, former Attorney General Edwin Meese, FBI Director James D. Comey and former Congressman Tim Roemer at a Wednesday press conference

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
A report that lauds the FBI for making “great strides” in protecting the nation from terrorists in the past decade also says the Bureau produced and made public bad information linking Saudis in Sarasota to 9/11 terrorists.

A Broward tale: Property taxes, politics and conflicting interests

Martin Kiar being sworn in as Broward Vice Mayor last year by his father Monroe Kiar. Photo: Mark O’Loughlin, TheWoodlandsTamarac.com

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Broward Vice Mayor Martin Kiar is beginning to look a lot like the county’s next property appraiser, but his political ambition already has created an apparent conflict of interest at the board that decides property tax appeals by homeowners and businesses.

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Charities in Broward, elsewhere that claim to support veterans spend big on overhead instead

FUM Management President Jamie O’Bryan and management consultant Douglas Sailors live in this million dollar home in Lighthouse Point. Both O’Bryan and Sailors declined to answer News21′s questions about the veterans’ charity they manage Photo: Chad Garland/News21

By Chad Garland and Andrew Knochel
News 21
Over four years, as veterans returned home from wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a Pompano Beach charity called Disabled Veterans Services, reported raising more than $8 million in cash and nearly $4 million in donated goods it claimed would help disabled and homeless veterans. But barely a nickel of each dollar the charity raised in cash went directly to help veterans, a News21 analysis shows.

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‘Concern’ about Ben Gamla curriculum sparks inquiry by Broward Schools

Hollywood's Ben Gamla charter school

By William Gjebre
BrowardBulldog.org
Broward County School officials have expressed concern that taxpayer-funded Ben Gamla Charter Schools may be violating a state law that requires charter schools to be nonsectarian in their programs and operations.

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Aviation deal fallout: Broward commissioners want back some power over who gets contracts

From left to right, Broward Mayor Kristin Jacobs and Commissioners Stacy Ritter and Lois Wexler

By William Hladky
BrowardBulldog.org
Broward County Commission unhappiness with the Aviation Department’s concession bidding procedures has led to calls for breaking down the wall between commissioners and staff selection committees that recommend which companies get government contracts.

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ATI career school company implodes amid fraud claims; $3.7 million whistleblower settlement

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By Dan Christensen
BrowardBulldog.org
A for-profit career school operator with once-bustling campuses in Broward and Miami-Dade counties agreed this month to pay $3.7 million to the government to settle whistleblower fraud claims.

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Veterans disability claims languish while billions are wasted on records system upgrade

The VA is overwhelmed by the number of paper claims it receives. This is an example of just one veteran's claim. Jessica Wilde/News21

By Hannah Winston
News21
The Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense spent at least $1.3 billion during the last four years trying unsuccessfully to develop a single electronic health-records system between the two departments — leaving veterans’ disability claims to continue piling up in paper files across the country, a News21 investigation shows.

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Controversial “Wizard of Claws” dog seller back in business; target of federal lawsuit

James Anderson’s Teacup Puppies Store at 4001 N Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale

By William Hladky
BrowardBulldog.org
“Wizard of Claws” dog seller James Anderson, who shut his business four years ago amid numerous allegations of wrongdoing and a lawsuit by Florida Attorney General’s Office, is back in business in Fort Lauderdale under a new name and again is involved in legal controversy.

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Are civilian nuclear plants vulnerable to terror attacks?

Cooling tower at MIT's Nuclear Reactor Lab, in October 2009. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

By Rebecca LaFlure
Center for Public Integrity
Nuclear reactors are located 26 miles from the White House, in downtown Boston and in the Midwest near a 71,000-seat college football stadium. Yet more than a decade after the Sept. 11 attacks, these facilities “are particularly vulnerable to sabotage attack,” say the authors of a new Pentagon-funded study.

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State records about Broward Sheriff altered; Israel to amend his financial disclosure

Scott Israel at his swearing in ceremony in January Photo: CBS4

By Dan Christensen
BrowardBulldog.org
Online state records that listed Broward Sheriff Scott Israel as a “principal” in a Weston private investigations firm, Talon/G6 Services, were altered last week to delete the sheriff’s name. This week, the sheriff’s lawyer announced that Israel would amend his financial disclosure form after it was disclosed that the sheriff had underreported how much money he was paid last year by a Fort Lauderdale private security company.

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Fresh questions about use of public money for Deutsch’s Ben Gamla charter schools

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By William Gjebre
BrowardBulldog.org
A Broward civic activist has urged the School Board to re-examine whether the publicly funded Ben Gamla charter schools are violating the Constitutional separation of church and state mandate. In response, a top district official has asked for a review of the matter.

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