20180706-6 Jul 2018


Funding agreement for roundabout at Fruitville Road and U.S. 41 wins City Commission approval

County Commission scheduled to vote July 10 on transfer of $4.7 million in road impact fees to city for the project

The Sarasota City Commission this week unanimously approved a local funding agreement with Sarasota County to expedite the construction of a two-lane roundabout at the intersection of U.S. 41 and Fruitville Road in downtown Sarasota. (Read more »)

On 3-2 vote, City Commission approves Decide the Date ballot summary that combines two other options

Because language was crafted before vote on first reading, city attorney says, the public will be able to offer comments at second reading on July 16

On a split vote this week, the Sarasota City Commission approved ballot language composed at the dais to put before voters on Nov. 6 in a referendum on changes in the timing of the city elections. As a result, during the second reading of the ballot summary — set for July 16 — members of the public will be able to address the issue. (Read more »)

Purchase of parking meters authorized for St. Armands

Use of equipment to begin when new garage opens

After about 20 minutes of discussion on July 2, the Sarasota city commissioners voted 3-2 to approve the expenditure of $382,190 for parking meters on St. Armands Circle. The public will begin using the meters concurrently with the opening of the city’s parking garage on St. Armands, Parking Department Manager Mark Lyons reminded the board members. (Read more »)

Siesta Key Association to return to Circuit Court on July 23 to try to stop dredging of Big Sarasota Pass

Judge to hold hearing on City of Sarasota motion to dismiss nonprofit’s complaint, filed in 2017

A July 23 hearing has been scheduled in the 12th Judicial Circuit Court in Sarasota to hear a motion by the City of Sarasota to dismiss a verified complaint the Siesta Key Association (SKA) filed last year to try to stop the dredging of Big Sarasota Pass to renourish South Lido Key Beach. (Read more »)

Property values up even more with July 1 report

Figure for City of North Port approaching Longboat Key overall value

Revised Sarasota County property values — released to meet the July 1 state deadline — show even greater gains than the preliminary figures issued in late May to comply with the state mandate for reporting by June 1. As local governments continue to work on their budgets for the 2019 fiscal year, the changes mean more money to cover expenses that have to come out of their General Funds, which largely are made up of property tax revenue. (Read more »)

Conclusion of swap of River Road for Siesta roads still expected by end of the year, county staff says

County commissioners raise concern after hearing FDOT comments at regional transportation planning meeting

Concern arose late last month that the planned Sarasota County swap of River Road to the Florida Department of Transportation in return for roads on Siesta Key might take much longer than originally anticipated. This week, however, county staff affirmed that it is continuing to work on a timeline calling for conclusion of the process before the year ends. (Read more »)

Maio, Ziegler remain top fundraisers for the two County Commission races on the Nov. 6 ballot

Republican primaries set in District 2 and 4 races, with Democratic primary ahead for District 4, as well

With the candidate qualifying period having ended at noon on June 22, primaries are the next focus for six of the seven people vying for the two open seats on the Sarasota County Commission. Lourdes Ramirez of Siesta Key and incumbent Commissioner Alan Maio of Nokomis will square off in the Aug. 28 Republican primary for the District 4 seat, while Wesley Anne Beggs of Sarasota and Mike Cosentino of Siesta Key will face each other in the Democratic primary that day. (Reading more »)

City Commission approves agreement with FDEP for funding to assist short-term and long-term renourishment projects on Lido Key Beach

State to provide approximately $3.3 million

Without discussion this week, the Sarasota City Commission unanimously approved an agreement with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) for the state to provide the city $3,293,168.78 for both an emergency project and a long-term initiative to renourish the South Lido Key Beach. (Read more »)

Mayor votes against purchase of 17th Street building for new Central Records Division for City of Sarasota

Other commissioners point to continuing water damage at 12th Street structure

Almost two months after they authorized Sarasota City Auditor and Clerk Pamela Nadalini to work with Deputy City Attorney Michael Connolly on leasing or buying a new home for the city’s Central Records Division, the city commissioners voted 4-1 this week to allow the pair to proceed with potential purchase of a 17th Street building. (Read more »)

Maultsby leaving Sarasota County Government job to become chief operating officer of Sarasota County School District

He has been director of the Office of Business and Economic Development

Jeff Maultsby, who has been director of business and economic development for Sarasota County, has been named the chief operating officer (COO) and assistant superintendent of the Sarasota County School District, pending School Board approval. Maultsby would succeed Scott Lempe, who had been with the district since 2003. (Read more »)

Air-conditioning system breakdown and loss of restaurant operator latest financial woes for Bobby Jones Golf Club

Manager discusses issues with City Commission during her budget workshop appearance

Along with the need for a projected $650,000 subsidy from the City of Sarasota’s General Fund in the 2019 fiscal year, the Bobby Jones Golf Club has a number of financial issues that recently popped up, club Manager Sue Martin has told the City Commission. (Read more »)


OPINION (free):

Cartoon of the Day

Commentary: In memoriam

After Capital Gazette shootings, writer finds path to comfort in Emerson

I have taken to staying away from the “bad news.” But today the headlines hit home: five souls gunned down at the offices of the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Md. Once again, we are eclipsed by senseless violence. One of the five — Rob Hiaasen — I knew from his work at The Palm Beach Post. (Read more »)

Commentary: Magnuson-Stevens Act under attack in Congress

What is more American than baseball and apple pie? Fishing. In Florida, we celebrate our holidays by going to the beach, picnicking, boating and fishing. Therefore, as we celebrate our country’s birthday, we should be celebrating and preserving our natural resources, which are so much a part of our heritage. Unfortunately, Congress has plans that could interfere with our joy when it comes to fishing in the future. (Read more »)

Commentary: Give me the simple life

Some of us feel no need to pursue the latest technology

I recently purchased a new Canon point-and-shoot camera to replace my old Canon point-and-shoot camera, the trusty loyal friend that accompanied me on many international trips during the past 10 years and simplified my life. (Read more »)

OTHER NEWS (free):

July 4 drowning reported off Centennial Park

Candidates for District 2 County Commission seat invited for CONA forum on July 9

SMH first in Florida, fourth in nation to become AHA Cardiac Center of Excellence

Folino named new Tuttle Elementary principal