Battle Between Broward Cities Takes Bizarre Turn: Read The Emails







The long angry war between Pembroke Pines and Southwest Ranches has taken another bizarre turn.

Pembroke Pines is literally attempting to eliminate Southwest Ranches by buying property in the town and attempting to annex the newly purchased land, charged Southwest Ranches Town Attorney Keith Poliakoff

“Their goal is to destroy our town by taking away our tax base,” Poliakoff told

That’s bunk, Pembroke Pines City Manager Charlie Dodge shot back.

Dodge conceded that Pembroke Pines has been annexing portions of Southwest Ranches, but said that the property was all agricultural.

“I would be surprised if the taxes on the whole bunch were more than $50,” Dodge said.


Charlie Dodge


That’s the way it has been for years in Pembroke Pines and Southwest Ranches. The two communities are locked in a nasty squabble that would be funny if it wasn’t for the thousands and thousands of dollars in legal fees that residents are paying.

The battle has been punctuated by public sniping from usually circumspect government bureaucrats. There have been road blocks to close streets, threats to cut off water service and a flurry of law suits that continue.

And now an annexation fight.

Here’s the annexation clash as outlined in public documents and interviews:

Pembroke Pines bought property last year in Southwest Ranches from several owners, hoping to use it for a city nursery. They pushed a bill for the 2018 legislative session to annex the land into the city.

When asphalt tycoon Dan Weekley and multi-millionaire entrepreneur Ron Bergeron found out about the annexation bill, they asked that property they owned by included, according to Dodge and other sources.

“Mr. Bergeron believed he wasn’t being allowed (by Southwest Ranches) to develop his property properly,” Dodge said.

Pembroke Pines hired lobbyist Ron Book to get the annexation bill through the Legislature.

The annexation bill was filed by Democratic state Rep. Jared Moskowitz. His Coral Springs-based district is miles away from Pembroke Pines, but Moskowitz has an interesting connection to Book.

Moskowitz is the executive vice president and general counsel of the nationwide, Broward-based disaster recovery firm Ashbritt. Book is the company’s longtime lobbyist.

In a phone interview with, Moskowitz said that he was initially contacted to sponsor the annexation by City Manager Dodge.  He later spoke to Book about the bill and also spoke to Southwest Ranches’ lobbyist Mitch Ceasar, the former Democratic Party chair.  “I was totally transparent,” he said.

Prior to an October 18 local hearing of the annexation bill, Book went to work coaxing local lawmakers to support the annexation.  He ran into some skepticism from Democratic state Reps. Kristin Jacobs of Coconut Creek and Richard Stark of Weston.



Kristin Jacobs speaking to the Florida House with Jared Moskowitz in center obtained Book’s email to the city explaining his progress :


From: Ron Book []
Sent: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 7:35 AM
To: Sam Goren; Dodge, Charles
Cc: Dawson, Michelle; David Tolces; Jacob G. Horowitz
Subject: RE: Conversation

Kristen is trying to get where we need her out of relationship with me. That Said, I could use some help. Also had a long conversation with Richard Stark who needs to be frickin’ pounded stupid!! As I explained to him, he has way more constituents in PP than in SWR and ought to pay attention to that. He needs pounding too. Great calls with Patricia Williams, Barrington Russell, Evan Jenne, and Braynon. Still have a ways to go.
Ronald L. Book

Richard Stark:  Needs To Be “frickin’ pounded stupid!!”


One of Book’s team of lobbyists added details about Jacobs’ objections in this email to Pembroke Pines City Attorney Sam Goren, Mayor Frank Ortis and Dodge:

From: Ileana Lima []

To: Goren, Sam
( <>; Dodge, Charles <>;
Ortis, Frank <>
Subject: Conversation
Importance: High
Just had a very lengthy conversation with Kristen Jacobs who is not there yet and it’s going to be hard for her to get there. She doesn’t like the precedent that, she believes, is being set by allowing one city to buy land in another city and then de-annex and allow other property owners without that city’s consent to leave and join the other city, as well. She’s looking for something, anything, to hang her hat on to vote with us that would indicate that this would not be precedent setting. I described what I believed to be a distinguished and characteristic which is where a city does own property inside of another city that is dominant in size in the annexation that creates an exemption. She doesn’t like the fact that you bought the land after Southwest Ranches was Southwest Ranches.
Help me try to figure this out as quick as you can from a precedent perspective. I need to get back to her.
Thank you.
Ileana M. Lima
Ronald L. Book, PA

Dodge decided to try his hand lobbyist Jacobs, although he conceded convincing her to support the annexation was probably impossible:


On Oct 17, 2017, at 6:44 AM, Dodge, Charles <> wrote to City Attorney Goren:

This parcel is contiguous to our City, adjacent to land owned by Dan Weekley. We have always been concerned that the Town has absolutely no respect for its neighbors as evidenced recently that the Town intends on placing a garbage dump or a parcel of property in the middle of Pembroke Pines, with no access roads to the property; that all garbage trucks would need to travel through Pembroke Pines. The City has been trying to prevent this type of use that affects the residents of our community. Rep Jacobs needs to hear from both Ron Bergeron and Daniel Weekley as to why they want to deannex from the Town; an issue that we did not solicit rather the request by the landowners. I don’t believe there is any way to convince her – but I will try and speak with her today.

In the end, it wasn’t Jacobs who killed the annexation.   Democratic state Sen. Gary Farmer of Fort Lauderdale shot it down at the October 18th meeting.  Under legislative rules, one member can kill a local bill.

Book wasn’t happy.  Reached days after the annexation died by, Book said he was still upset.  Here is his explanation about about Farmer in an email to Pembroke Pines City Manager Dodge:

From: Ron Book [
Sent: Wednesday, October 18, 2017 8:30 PM
To: Dodge, Charles 
Subject: RE: Richard Stark


Simply put, I’m really sorry about today. The world is a very round place. I’ve sent the message to Senator Farmer that needed to be sent. He should hope that when re-districting occurs Pembroke Pines is not part of his district.

Thank you. 

Ronald L. Book


Charlie Dodge isn’t giving up.

“We are concerned as what the town is doing by placing all the obnoxious uses adjacent to our city and requiring traffic travel through our residential neighborhoods to reach them,” Dodge said.

The attempts to annex Southwest Ranches land will continue. Southwest Ranches will continue to resist it.

As Dodge told lobbyist Book in an email after the annexation failed to pass:

From: Dodge, Charles 
Sent: Thursday, October 19, 2017 6:50 AM
To: Ronald L. Book

Thank you. There is always another time and place!




20 Responses to “Battle Between Broward Cities Takes Bizarre Turn: Read The Emails”

  1. Sad says:

    Written threats are never becoming.

  2. John Henry says:

    Everyone mentioned in this article is what’s wrong with Broward County. Haven’t we had enough of these idiots?

  3. Its Always About The Money says:

    Didn’t this happen in West Park with the Tallahassee bunch interferring in their incorporation and what they did not get??
    Sales tax distribution in the county is by population, after the county taking their 50% off the top. The remaining 50% is just sliced and diced by population. Pembroke Pines may have the largest population in the county, or is second.
    Isn’t it always about the money? And then there is redistricting for the county and the state elected seats come 2020.

  4. Louise Fowler says:

    Book is a hypocritical bully. He has his daughter, Shevrin Jones and Jared Moskowitz do his bidding. Thank the stars we have ethical representation from Sen Farmer and Rep Jacobs. And Rep Stark needs to share this story and have members stop letting Ron Book into their offices. He is a horribly arrogant man.

  5. Anonomyte says:

    Glad this is happening to SW Ranches. After 25 years as a member of a municipal zoning board in an adjacent community, reading this made me chuckle. For years all we heard is how “special” Southwest Ranches is, and don’t even think of letting outsiders use their roads. Only they can use their roads, and any other roads they want to. What a load of horse manure. I hope Weekly and Bergeron are successful.

  6. M says:

    Is that the same Ashbritt disaster recovery firm that the Attorney General was looking into for fraud following hurricane Irma and now seems to have forgotten about? Everyone is so dirty they don’t know what clean looks like.

  7. Jack says:

    Ron Book needs to be pounded stupid. How do we get our cities to stop hiring this tool?!

  8. Just Saying says:

    For what its worth Farmer doesn’t have any of Pembroke Pines in his district now. Having said that I don’t think Ron Book is the most influential lobbyist in Gary Farmer’s life. But someone should ask Gary, he’d know best.

  9. Everyonehasapulse says:

    Gary Farmer apparently has a spine. Good for him.

  10. TheBigHoot says:

    Don’t hate the player. Hate the game

  11. Spineless Farmer says:

    Gary Farmer has a spine? He literally meddled in something totally outside of his district for only one reason – political payback! Once it became known to him that it was important to Ron Bergeron, and Ron and his partner Ali Waldman hadn’t supported Farmer when he got elected, he killed it. But again, as vile of a thought as this may be, there’s really only one lobbyist who has Farmer’s “ear” whenever she wants it, or when he’s not completely tied up with his staff.

  12. Charles King says:

    After you click on the above link and stop laughing, be sure to read the Broward Beat article below. It involves one of the 3 small men with a huge opinion of themselves in Fort Lauderdale property taxpayer’s lives (Ron Book, Tim Smith, Lee Feldman). I’ll end the suspense. It’s pint sized government to government lobbyist Ron Book. It looks like someone leaked his emails and blew up his cottage industry of what should be the illegal practice of getting taxpayers to pay lobbyists like Ron to “lobby” other levels of their own “frickin’” government. The practice really should be illegal, what do elected officials think their jobs are exactly? Just to let you know how bad things have gotten in “Crooked” Jack Seiler’s Fort Lauderdale, we employee 3 different state lobbyists, one of which is Ron “I have a Criminal Record” Book, as well as a federal lobbyist to assist with Washington junkets. The three state lobbyists are necessary to juggle all the conflicts of interests. Anyway all Ron “I have a Criminal Record” Book ever brings back to Fort Lauderdale is state government subsidized housing money that most rational communities don’t want any part of and of course naming rights for his brat daughter the State Senator and Non Profiteer. Be sure to vote against “Bought & Paid For” Bruce Roberts, “Towering” Timmy Smith and Ben “the front” Sorenson and we might be rid of all our big problems in small packages come March. PS I wonder just who Ron “I have a criminal Record” Book had to “pound stupid” to get them to authorize naming Federal Highway through downtown Fort Lauderdale after his professional victim/senator/non profiteer daughter.

  13. Just One Vote says:

    What a bunch of strong armed thugs. This sounds like extortion. Fort Lauderdale should fire Ron Book and likely will when Roberts is not elected.

  14. Ha Ha Ha says:

    A Brief History Of Southwest Ranches…

    MARCH 24, 2005: Southwest Ranches exposed as a totally corrupt enterprise from day 1

    MAY 26, 2005: Southwest Ranches is an elaborate racketeering operation

    MARCH 16, 2006: Town Manager John Canada is officially above the law

    OCTOBER 13, 2006: John Canada terminated as Southwest Ranches manager

    JANUARY 26, 2010: State Attorney Serves Subpoenas in Wasserman-Rubin Criminal Case

    JULY 7, 2010: Affidavit: Wasserman-Rubin Lived Lavishly on Ill-Gotten Gains

    DECEMBER 29, 2010: The Mayor, the Landscaper, and the Italian Honeymoon

    JUNE 29, 2011: Richard Rubin Sentenced to Ten Months in Federal Prison

    APRIL 23, 2013: Diana Wasserman-Rubin pleads guilty, gets probation & a $3K fine

  15. City activist Robert Walsh says:

    My take.The problem here is Charlie Dodge.Dodge is South West Ranches biggest enemy…Advice to Ron Book.-choose your clients wisely…

  16. JOneill says:

    Ron Book has his greasy hands in too many issues and cities. He’s shooting blanks these days. 😂😂

    Maybe he shouldn’t threaten people with violent words and promises to sue…He’s like a pimply faced pre-pubescent 14 year old bully demanding people pay attention to him.

    I’m glad to see Kristin Jacobs and Gary Farmer stand up against Book, that toxic, cuckold.

  17. Nancy says:

    Gee where’s” lets Discuss”

  18. City activist Robert Walsh says:

    #16.Wow.Im very surprised at your sermation and or assessment and or anology of Mr.Book.To the contary i have heard just the opposite of his character.If you are right and correct im stunned…

  19. Chaz Stevens says:

    @18 In psychology, there’s an idea known as the Dunning-Kruger effect. It refers to research by David Dunning and Justin Kruger that found the least competent people often believe they are the most competent because they “lack the very expertise needed to recognize how badly they’re doing.” This dynamic helps explain Trump.

    And Johnny Haircut.

  20. City activist Robert Walsh says:

    One thing about Robert Walsh Mr.Stevens is he’s got game….