20150925-25 Sep 2015


Lido Beach renourishment proposal lacks sufficient documentation, county’s draft peer review says

An engineering firm hired by Sarasota County says it cannot confidently accept the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ proposal for dredging Big Pass to renourish Lido Key beach

Big Pass between Lido and Siesta Google mapsA 14-year compilation of studies and other materials representing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (COE) justification for its proposal to renourish Lido Key “[lacks] the supporting documentation necessary to confidently accept the conclusions,” says a draft peer review of the Lido Key Federal Shore Protection Project (Lido SPP), prepared by the Atkins engineering firm for Sarasota County. Atkins, which has an office in Sarasota, was hired several months after the Sarasota County Commission voted to approve such a review. (Click here to continue reading)

City assessments, Downtown CRA part of final county budget discussions

The County Commission gives the city more time to try to resolve a dispute over property assessments and debates future CRA funding

CRA Extension Committee Oct. 8 2013 StanWith City of Sarasota and Sarasota County staff having met and agreed to iron out a dispute over county assessments of city property for the 2016 fiscal year, the County Commission voted unanimously on Sept. 22 to provide a waiver that would permit the city an extra 30 days in the event it chooses to file suit against the county over the assessments. The action came during the County Commission’s second public hearing to adopt its 2016 fiscal year budget. (Click here to continue reading)

Proposed ordinance banning certain retail animal sales to be lone county agenda item on Jan. 27

On a 4-1 vote, the County Commission this week agreed to advertise a public hearing but asked staff to amend language of the proposed law beforehand to exempt certain types of breeders

Dogs without adequate shelter Ankerstar BCC Sept 21 2015After about two hours and 40 minutes of public comments on Sept. 21, the Sarasota County Commission voted 4-1 to advertise that a public hearing will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2016, on a proposed ordinance that would ban sales of commercially bred animals in certain retail establishments. As requested by the board, it will be the only item on the agenda that day. (Click here to continue reading)

As the economic impact of county tourism grows, air travel concerns remain a key obstacle to more visits

A firm hired by Visit Sarasota County says visitors in 2014 directly spent almost $1.4 billion, while jobs in the hospitality industry accounted for about 19 percent of all employment

Phillip Kerr Kerr & Downs TDC Sept. 17 2015 from TVThe total economic impact of tourism in Sarasota County in 2014 was $2,246,723,500, a 9.4 percent increase over the 2013 figure, a representative of the Kerr & Downs research firm told members of the Sarasota County Tourist Development Council (TDC) during its regular meeting on Sept. 17. Direct spending in the county in 2014 totaled $1,361,650,600, said Phillip Downs, founding partner of Kerr & Downs, which undertook the research for Visit Sarasota County. The increase from 2013 to 2014 was close to 10 percent, he noted. (Click here to continue reading)

Supervisor of elections schedules voter registration drives Sept. 21-25

Morgue file image of person voting in 2012In observance of National Voter Registration Day, which is Tuesday, Sept. 22, the Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections office (SOE) will conduct a number of voter drives during the week of Sept. 21-25, the office has announced.

“Every year, citizens forfeit the right to vote because they do not register or they register too late,” Supervisor of Elections Kathy Dent said in a news release. “In recognition of the 2015 National Voter Registration campaign, we want to highlight the importance of participating in the electoral process and give people another opportunity to register or to update their voter records prior to the 2016 election cycle,” she said. (Click here to continue reading)

County business tax payments due by Sept. 30, tax collector announces

Barbara Ford-Coates Legacy Award Sept. 2013Sarasota County Tax Collector Barbara Ford-Coates is reminding all business owners that Wednesday, Sept. 30, is the last day for them to pay the 2015-16 Sarasota County business tax. After that date, the business tax will be delinquent, and additional money will be due, a news release from Ford-Coates points out. (Click here to continue reading)