September 23, 2016 Edition

Benderson Development reviewing feasibility of reducing Siesta Promenade’s residential density

In the meantime, Pine Shores Alliance members are rallying for the Oct. 11 boundary hearing for the project and continuing to voice their concerns

Benderson Development Co. staff is reviewing whether it would be feasible to reduce the residential density of the proposed Siesta Promenade project at the intersection of U.S. 41 and Stickney Point Road, The Sarasota News Leader has learned. (Read more »)


With the clock ticking, fundraising push intensifies for World Rowing Championships in Sarasota

Sept. 23 ceremony at Benderson Park will begin the year-long countdown to the 2017 event

With Friday, Sept. 23, officially marking the start of the year-long countdown to the opening of the 2017 World Rowing Championships at Nathan Benderson Park, the event’s executive director said this week that more than 500 international, domestic and local companies have been identified “that we will be going after for corporate partnerships.” (Read more »)


Chicken coops would not be allowed in side yards, County Commission agrees on first reading of proposed ordinance

Final, required public hearing on backyard chicken ordinance will be held on Oct. 10 in Venice

With the emphasis having been placed on backyard chicken keeping over the past four years, Sarasota County Commissioner Christine Robinson won unanimous support from her colleagues this week to remove a provision from a proposed county ordinance that would have allowed coops in side yards. (Read more »)


City cites specific criteria in the Zoning Code regarding safety concerns as it responds to Woman’s Exchange legal challenge over permit denial

City Commission was justified in interpreting the regulations differently from city staff, city attorney argues

The Sarasota City Commission was justified in its 3-2 vote to deny a building permit to the Woman’s Exchange for a loading zone on Rawls Avenue because of the commissioners’ interpretation of the city’s Zoning Code, City Attorney Robert Fournier argues in the city’s response to the nonprofit organization’s legal challenge of that decision. (Read more »)


Workforce study update shows need for emphasis on basic skills and demand for a range of training

CareerEdge report to the County Commission this week provides details about addressing the issues

The latest research undertaken about manufacturing skills gaps in Sarasota and Manatee counties shows that many students are unable to do basic math, read tape measures, communicate or interview well, and do not exhibit good work ethics, Mireya Eavey, executive director of CareerEdge Funders Collaborative, told the County Commission this week. (Read more »)


North Beach Road property owners have until Sept. 26 to record easements proffered with road vacation

Attorney told the News Leader in August that he was working to complete that legal process

On Sept. 16, Sarasota County staff notified the property owners who successfully petitioned for the county’s vacation of a portion of North Beach Road that they had 10 days within which to execute the easements their attorney proffered during the board’s May 11 public hearing on the matter. (Read more »)


Leon County’s homeless shelter designed to help people once again become self-sufficient, Tallahassee leaders say

To establish a facility in Sarasota County, they encourage the community to settle on someone to spearhead the drive

Opened about 18 months ago, the 24-hour Kearney Center homeless shelter in Tallahassee “really is a mall for social services, for human services,” Rick Kearney, CEO of Mainline Information Services, told the Sarasota County Commission and elected municipal leaders during the commission’s regular meeting on Sept. 20 in Sarasota. (Read more »)


City Commission approves first reading of zoning changes to facilitate expansion and remodeling of downtown buildings on major streets

City attorneys say the measures could encourage the Woman’s Exchange to expand on its Orange Avenue property

Although a second reading will be required, the Sarasota City Commission has given unanimous endorsement to a series of Zoning Code changes designed to make it easier for businesses in the Downtown Core to expand or remodel. (Read more »)


County staff discharged 3.3 million gallons of partially treated wastewater into the Grand Canal as Hermine poured rain on the Key

Action, which was reported to FDEP as required, was necessary to prevent spillage of raw sewage, county and FDEP staff members say

On Sept. 1, on its Twitter account, Sarasota County issued the following notice: “Try conserving water and helping to reduce the volume entering our sewer system. The county has 680 lift stations throughout the county, plus four water reclamation/treatment facilities that combine to treat more than 17 MILLION gallons a day, and they are operating at full capacity.” (Read more »)


A peek in America’s newest museum produces profound response

A veteran museum goer/connoisseur offers his reflections

On Saturday, Sept. 24, President Barack Obama will open the National Museum of African-American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. A lot of ink and electrons will be spilled over the event — the structure has been more than a century in the making. (Read more »)


County business tax due by Sept. 30

Tax Collector’s Office has three locations where payments may be made weekdays, and a special date has been scheduled in North Port; online option also available

Sarasota County Tax Collector Barbara Ford-Coates is reminding all business owners that Friday, Sept. 30, is the deadline to pay the 2016-17 Sarasota County Business Tax. After that date, a news release points out, the business tax will be delinquent, and additional money will be due. (Read more »)


School Board selects 4 finalists for next superintendent, including lone Sarasota County candidate

Other three have Florida educational credentials as well

The Sarasota County School Board has selected four finalists who will be interviewed as the potential successor to Superintendent Lori White, who will retire on Feb. 28, 2017. (Read more »)


Hamilton Building to open as county’s public library in Venice on Oct. 4

Venice Community Center library to close on Sept. 27

At 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 4., staff of Sarasota County’s Libraries and Historical Department will welcome patrons to the renovated Hamilton Building, which will serve as a public library until a brand new county facility has been completed on Venice’s Cultural Campus. (Read more »)


Vote-by-mail ballots to start going into mail Sept. 23 for out-of-state and out-of-country military personnel and civilians

Domestic absentee ballot mailing to begin Oct. 4

On Sept.23, the Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Office will begin sending vote-by-mail (absentee) ballots for the Nov. 8 General Election to stateside military voters and overseas military and civilian voters, Supervisor of Elections Kathy Dent has announced. (Read more »)


County Master Gardeners to host 11th Annual Sale on Oct. 8

Event to be held at Twin Lakes Park

Sarasota County Master Gardeners will hold their 11th Annual Plant Sale on Saturday, Oct. 8, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Twin Lakes Park, located at 6700 Clark Road in Sarasota, the county has announced. (Read more »)


Bay Haven School planning 90th anniversary celebration starting Sept. 26

Special events planned through Oct. 1

The students, staff and families of Bay Haven School of Basics Plus in Sarasota are planning a weeklong “birthday party” —Sept. 26 through Oct. 1 — to mark the 90th year since the school was established, the Sarasota County School District has announced. (Read more »)


Sheriff’s Office reminding people they can prevent burglaries by locking their vehicles and keeping windows closed

Such crimes are typically those of opportunity, the office points out

The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office is reminding residents and visitors to take one simple step to help prevent burglaries from autos: Lock the doors. (Read more »)