Latest Issue: July 2014

Broken Ground, Broken Promises

Broken Ground, Broken Promises

July 01 2014

On August 2, 2012 a hearing before the COMMITTEE ON VETERANS’ AFFAIRS, U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES was held at the Lake Nona UCF Medical School. The purpose was to investigate the problems plaguing the construction of the VA hospital at the Lake Nona, Medical City location. Florida Congressman Jeff Miller stated the following:
"When ground was broken in 2008 on what will eventually become the new Orlando VA Medical Center, this area was a mere shadow of what it is today. Since then, ideas and plans that existed on paper and in the minds of architects, designers and engineers have evolved into existing infrastructure and active medical and research institutions. You can tell from some of the crowds in the hallway right now, particularly the folks carrying backpacks, this is the first day back at school for this medical school. They broke ground in 2007. Opened in 2010.

Behind us is the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, which
broke ground in 2007 and opened its doors in 2009. Next to Sanford-
Burnham is the University of Florida’s Research and Academic Center,
which broke ground in 2010 and will open later to the faculty and
students this year. Across the way--we passed it on the way in--is the
Nemours Childrens Hospital, which broke ground in 2009. It will open
to patients just 2 months from now. Yet our Orlando VA Medical Center,
which was scheduled to be complete in October of this year and anchor
of this city, is still an empty shell. Four years and hundreds of millions
of taxpayer dollars later VA has yet to yield anywhere close to the same
results of any of its neighbors."

Central Florida’s need for a hospital to serve the nearly 400,000 veterans
in the region has been discussed and studied for 25 years. Finally in
May 2004 the VA announced that construction on the 150-bed
Orlando hospital could begin as soon as 2006.

In July 2006 a bill specifying that the hospital be built next to the UCF
medical school in Lake Nona was approved. Ground was broken in
2008 with construction problems putting the completion at least 2
years behind schedule. At this point services should begin in mid 2015.

In a June 22, 2012 letter from Congressman Jeff Miller to then
Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki Miller stated: This project
from the start has been compromised by the lack of oversight by VA
leadership in addition to being fraught with design deficiencies,
medical equipment and procurement delays, a bevy
of changeorders,and communication issues.

The full text of the August 2012 hearing is available on line at

July 2014

Past Issues

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Community Calendar

Women and Money: Unique Issues: A Workshop Series

Jul 22 2014

Ends in 2 days

July 22, 24, 29: 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm Cost $25 per person for the 5 part-series. At some point in their life, women are likely to be solely responsible for financial decision making. This series is designed to provide women with information and encouragement about being financially successful. No matter where you are in your path toward understanding financial management, you are likely to increase your confidence in your ability to manage your finances. The classes cover the following topics: Money Basics, Protecting Assets:, Investing Basics & Estate Planning.

Plant Propagation Workshop

Jul 29 2014

6-8pm. In this hands-on plant propagation class, participants will learn how to multiply plants from seed, cuttings, and division. All three techniques will be practiced in class and participants will be able to take home their freshly propagated plants. Pre-registration is required. Class limited to 25 participants. $10 per person; register at

Huge Rummage Sale & Flea Market

Jul 31 2014

Ends in 6 days

Blessed Trinity Catholic Church hosts this popular, annual charitable event! CCW ladies are busy again, with lots of GREAT BARGAINS & FUN! Donation collection: Parish Center – BACK DOOR Signs posted to direct you. 4545 Anderson Rd (across from Conway Middle School) Donation times begin: Saturday June 28: 11am-3pm (first collection day) Mondays and Wednesdays 11 am to 2 pm Tuesdays & Thursdays 5 pm to 7 pm Saturdays, 11 am to 3 pm For additional information: call Susan 407.353.5353

Date Night at Leu Gardens

Aug 01 2014

See a classic movie or current feature film on one of the largest outdoor screens in Central Florida. Come early and enjoy a stroll in the 50-acre garden before the movie. This month's film is "You Can’t Take It with You" (NR) Cost: $6 adults, $3 kids Gardens open at 6:00pm and movie begins at 8:30pm

Seed Swap at Leu Gardens

Aug 23 2014

9:00 am - Noon Do you have extra seeds that you don’t need or didn’t plant? If so, you can bring them to Leu Gardens annual fall Seed Swap. Seed swapping is free, fun, and best of all, the find – you may find seeds you’ve always wanted to try. Plus, if you participate you will be able to go in the gardens for free the same day. Bring your extra seeds packaged in small packets and labeled with the botanical name and/or common name of the plant and exchange for other seeds you need or want. Leu Gardens’ horticulture staff will check in the seeds and place them in the right category. Fall is a great time to plant in Central Florida, so come out to the Seed Swap and start gardening. Experts will be on hand to answer your questions.

4th Annual Basket Social

Sep 13 2014

Mark your calendars for our 4th Annual Basket Social for an opportunity to win beautiful gift baskets and prizes! Refreshments too!! Tickets: 25 for a $10 donation. View baskets and submit tickets between 4:00 and 5:00pm. Drawings begin at 5:00pm. This year proceeds will go for necessary repairs to our church, such as roofing, flooring, and sidewalks. Located at Azalea Park United Methodist Church (50 Willow Dr, Orlando 32807. For more information contact our church office at 407-277-3472 or visit our web site at