Letter from AIA Miami President, Angel C. Saqui, II, AIA, NCARB

May 2024

Greetings AIA Miami:

April was an active month for the membership, board, and staff. We hosted everything from our normal CEUs to a soccer tournament and a Spanish Wine Tasting, to serious advocacy work on behalf of Miami-Dade County Architecture firms. We met with the Miami Center for Architecture & Design board to reaffirm our commitment to our longstanding partnership.

On the political front, in early April, Brett Moss, AIA, Juan Crespi, AIA and I attended the Miami Dade County Board of Commissioners meeting to speak on behalf of Item 7H, which was part of a larger item IO 3-39 which consisted of adjusting the locally headquartered business, or LHB point system, to qualify, architectural and engineering firms for the Equitable Distribution Program for EDP. 7H focused on the following:

  1. Creating a Local Headquartered Business classification.
  2. Modifying the EDP to limit EDP participation to Locally Headquartered Business firms only.

We spoke candidly with the Chairman, Mr. Oliver G. Gilbert, III and the commissioners present to ask that they approve the item at the second reading in May.

Round two was on May 7, and Brett, Juan and I were present to show our continued support in favor of this item again. I’m happy to say that after eight years of attempting to pass these modifications, the item was finally approved. While we relish our victory, I have already been told to expect immediate push-back from the larger architectural/engineering firms and I will share more information as it becomes available in the coming weeks.

What we need is your help in contacting your local commissioners. Call, email, or speak to their staff. Our commissioners need to have feedback from us to know that we would like them to maintain this program as approved. The local firms whose offices are headquartered within Miami Dade County need this protection.

On a lighter note, Last Friday we held our annual AIA Miami Golf tournament at the Miami Shores Country Club! What a great event! Many thanks to Wesley Kean, AIA for chairing this committee and keeping this as one of the most attended and satisfying events for all of us to enjoy! Thanks to all our volunteers, and also to those who were “volun-told”. Thank you to Colleen Stovall, Marilyn Lugo and Ana Romo, our new Manager of Programs & Events. We appreciate their behind-the-scenes work!

Thank you and until next month!

#LetSOARin24

Angel C. Saqui, II, AIA, NCARB

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