Bal Harbour Jaime Sanz resigns, then gets reappointed to new council seat
Bal Harbour Councilman Jaime Sanz resigned from the council but got appointed to fill a vacant seat on the dais only days later.
BY RODOLFO R. ROMAN
Special to The Miami Herald
Only three days after Bal Harbour Councilman Jaime Sanz resigned from his seat, the village council appointed him to sit back on the dais.
On Monday, the village council unanimously appointed Sanz to replace former councilman Joel Jacobi’s seat.
On April 10, the Friday before the meeting, Sanz had turned in his resignation letter to the village, which didn’t specify why he was stepping down from his District 3 seat.
Sanz beat out seven residents who had submitted their resumes hoping to replace Jacobi for the District 4 seat, including Lynne Bloch-Mullen, Jacobi’s former opponent whose two-year legal fight challenging his residency helped lead to his resignation last month.
More than a dozen residents came to her support, asking the council to appoint her at last week’s meeting.
Bal Harbour Coalition member Michael Krop handed the council 110 signatures from residents asking to give Bloch-Mullen a council seat.
”We have a woman here who has lived in Bal Harbour for many years,” said Krop, a former school board member, to the council.
“She’s been interested in village politics, attended many council meetings. She’s acted in Bal Harbour organizations and has a deep love for the village.”
Assistant Mayor Jean Rosenfield said she preferred appointing someone she was familiar with.
”The best option is to go with experience,” she said at the meeting.
Sanz’s term was set to end in just a few weeks: Patricia Cohen was elected to the District 3 seat this month, and will be sworn in April 20.
Sanz no longer qualified to run for that seat because he had moved from his District 3 since taking office in 2005.
He said he used to live at the Harbour House, but added he was one of many residents required to leave the building while the structure was undergoing renovations in 2005.
Sanz then moved to his current home at 284 Bal Bay Dr. — which is in District 4.
Sanz said it wasn’t ”financially smart” to return to the Harbour House condo complex.
”I tried to go back there. But, they wanted too much money and it had too much problems in the building,” he said.
“The way the economy is, it wasn’t viable for me to move.”
Under Bal Harbour’s charter, candidates for the village council must reside in the village for at least one year before filing to run for office. He said he looked forward to taking his new seat.
”This opportunity came up. I enjoyed working with the council. I love the village,” said Sanz, who submitted a letter of intent along with the other applicants.
“I’ve been a resident for a long time. I can contribute to the village and keep it the way it is and improve it.”
Despite losing out at another chance to sit on the council, Bloch-Mullen said she still felt like a winner.
”I may have not gotten the seat,” said Bloch-Mullen, who is a Bal Harbour Citizen’s Coalitions member, “but people came up to me and congratulated me for the courage, and for being able to go through what we went through.”
She also said not to rule her out as a possible candidate for the District 4 seat when Sanz’s term ends in 2011.
”It depends how much work I can accomplish off the council,” she said.
“Believe me, I’ll keep working for Bal Harbour for as long as I live.”