20151023-23 Oct 2015

School Board’s impact fee decision might face a legal challenge

Morgan Bentley School Board Oct. 20 2015 RBHAn attorney representing area builders says a decision will be made after the County Commission’s Dec. 8 vote on the fees

The Sarasota County Commission is scheduled to vote Dec. 8 on a request by the Sarasota County School Board to impose impact fees the School Board approved this week on a 3-2 vote, Scott Ferguson, communications specialist for the Sarasota County Schools, told The Sarasota News Leader this week. (Click here to continue reading)

Sarasota County students will return to classes earlier the next two years

Roy Sprinkle School Board Oct. 20 2015 RBHSchool Board approves calendar change, which also will enables testing to be concluded before winter break and students to finish up before Memorial Day

Although some parents have complained about the earlier end to their children’s summer, the Sarasota County School Board this week unanimously approved calendars for the 2016-17 and 2017-18 school years that call for a mid-August return to classes. The change will make it possible for students to finish up testing before the start of their winter break, board members pointed out during their regular meeting on Oct. 20 in Sarasota. (Click here to continue reading)

City Commission opts for shorter lane turning right onto Fruitville from U.S. 41

U.S. 41 and Gulfstream with corner of Vue site Norm March 25 2014The board also votes to ask FDOT to lower the speed limit to 30 mph from Fruitville Road to Gulfstream Avenue

On a unanimous vote, the Sarasota City Commission this week approved a recommendation to the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to shorten the turn lane on the northbound segment of U.S. 41 from Gulfstream Avenue to Fruitville Road, which will allow for a wider median north of Palm Avenue. The state department had provided the commission another option, which called for the right-turn lane to be a full third lane between Gulfstream and Fruitville. (Click here to continue reading)

City Commission votes 4-1 to approve joint meeting with the County Commission on homelessness

Marbut speaks as Caragiulo listens Nov. 25 2013The Nov. 6 session at the County Administration Center will start at 9 a.m. and tentatively end at noon

With Commissioner Susan Chapman casting the only “No” vote on Oct. 19, the Sarasota City Commission approved a resolution setting Nov. 6 as the date of its joint meeting with the Sarasota County Commission to discuss chronic homelessness in the community. The session will begin at 9 a.m. in the County Commission Chambers at the County Administration Center located at 1660 Ringling Blvd. in downtown Sarasota. (Click here to continue reading)

City Commission to file suit against county over fire-rescue assessments

John Herin Jr. GrayRobinson oct. 2015Deputy city attorney explains concerns about precedents that could be set without the action

Faced with filing a lawsuit against Sarasota County by Nov. 3 or the prospect of paying more than $48,000 in fire-rescue assessments its attorneys say the city does not owe, the Sarasota City Commission this week voted unanimously to proceed with legal action. The vote followed a presentation Deputy City Attorney Mike Connolly made during the board’s Oct. 19 regular meeting. (Click here to continue reading)

A proposed county Comprehensive Plan amendment would allow higher densities in a South County project

Thomas Ranch properties for BCC Oct. 13 2015 aerial mapWinchester Florida Ranch is seeking the change as it plans about 9,600 homes on 3,660 acres next to North Port and Englewood

Call it a matter of closing the “doughnut hole.” In formal terms, the Sarasota County Commission last week voted unanimously to seek state review of a proposed Comprehensive Plan amendment that would allow a developer to use higher residential densities in segments of a project planned on about 3,660 acres in South County. (Click here to continue reading)

Cooper moving from Sarasota Chamber job to Gulf Coast Foundation

Kevin-Cooper-headshot-RBH-Aug.-6-2013His new role will be director of community investment

On Nov. 9, Kevin Cooper, vice president of public policy for the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce, will join the staff of the Gulf Coast Community Foundation as director of community investment, the Foundation has announced. (Click here to continue reading)

Orioles set schedule for 2016 Spring Training

Orioles spring training thumbnail16 home games will be played in March 2016 at Ed Smith Stadium

The Baltimore Orioles have announced their Spring Training schedule for 2016, with a total of 32 games to be played during March. Half of those will be home games at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota. The team will open its season on March 1 against the Atlanta Braves in Orlando. The Orioles then will play host to the Braves the following day in their first home game. The Orioles will face the Braves four times during the season, with three of those contests scheduled at home. (Click here to continue reading)

Orange Avenue-Main Street roundabout opened in downtown Sarasota

Orange Ave. roundabout open Oct. 16 2015 SCC photoCompletion comes ahead of previously anticipated Nov. 11 schedule

The City of Sarasota announced on Oct. 19 that the new roundabout at Orange Avenue and Main Street has opened. Three days earlier, in his weekly newsletter, City Manager Tom Barwin wrote, “We’re getting word from our contractor, Jon F. Swift Construction, that the … barricades at Orange Avenue and Main Street should be removed by [Saturday, Oct. 17], meaning the new roundabout will be fully open and functional!” (Click here to continue reading)

Sportsmen’s group donates $5,000 to Sarasota Bay artificial reef program

reef ball drop_Sarasota Bay SBEP Oct. 2015University of Florida study has affirmed the positive economic impact of the program, which helps sustain fishing and tourism

The Sarasota Sportsmens Association (SSA) has donated $5,000 to the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program (SBEP) for the artificial reef program in Sarasota Bay supported by SBEP, Sarasota County, Manatee County and other partners, SBEP has announced. SSA has donated a total of $50,000 to the program since 2003, a news release says. (Click here to continue reading)

City issues permit for DeMarcay condominium project on Palm Avenue

DeMarcay_Hotel 27 Palm Ave. Ebyabe via WikimediaConstruction expected to begin in early 2016 on 18-story condominium project

On Oct. 15, the City of Sarasota issued a permit allowing construction to move forward at The DeMarcay, which will be located at 33 S. Palm Ave. in downtown Sarasota, the City of Sarasota announced. The project developer, XAC Developers LLC, plans to begin work early next year on “a luxuriously appointed residential project,” a news release from the developer says. (Click here to continue reading)