Monday, March 29, 2010

Corruption in Hialeah....50 years ago

Following up on yesterday's post that looked back at some old issues of the now-defunct Miami News, I decided to see what was going on in Miami 50 years ago, give or take week.

I was shocked, shocked I tell you, to find that there was corruption taking place the unlikeliest of places, Hialeah.

The News had been tipped that customers at a certain Hialeah service station were having no trouble getting inspection stickers for their cars.

In the April 8, 1960 issue of the paper, reporter Barnard Collier writes that he drove an old clunker up to a County-run auto-inspection station in Hialeah.

As the Collier tells it, the car had no emergency brake, a faulty rear brake, no brake lights, and one of the tag lights was out.

The reporter got the inspection sticker for the car by handing the inspector a business card from the service station and some money folded inside of the inspection form.

How much did Collier pay to have his car passed? One dollar.

So, depending on one's perspective, things have changed a lot in Dade County in the intervening 50 years. Or not much has changed.

However, one thing is fairly certain. It might cost more than a buck to pay someone off in Hialeah these days!

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