Consolidation study not moving - yet
Although both Holmes Beach and Bradenton Beach approved a non-binding
referendum last November to discuss the feasibility of consolidating
either the two cities or some essential services, the initial effort
appears to be lagging.
Mayor Carol Whitmore told the city commission Jan.
10 that she and Bradenton Beach Mayor John Chappie
have not yet been able to schedule a meeting to discuss
Chappie still has to get permission from his city commission
to proceed with a meeting that would include department
heads from both cities.
She also noted
that none of Holmes Beach's department heads
are in favor of consolidation.
Rich Bohnenberger agreed. "I've always
said there's nothing in it for Holmes Beach."
So did Anna Maria.
That city commission declined to even put the non-binding
referendum on the November ballot, citing public input
against any consolidation with Holmes Beach or Bradenton
she hoped to have more to report at the commission's
Jan. 24 meeting.
In other business,
City Attorney Patricia Petruff said she's completed
all the revisions to the proposed ordinance governing
the use of docks in the Sunrise Boat Basin, a process
that has taken more than two years.
said the first reading of that ordinance will be on
the commission's Jan. 24 meeting agenda.
A similar ordinance
governing use of dock space in the city's T-end
canals between 76th and 79th streets will be brought
to the commission once the Sunrise ordinance passes.
must still establish a dock-use agreement and decide
on fees for usage.
will also be discussed Jan. 24.
In other business,
the commission heard a request by the Anna Maria Island
Community Center to install a scoreboard at the baseball
field. The board would be donated by the Coca-Cola
Company, but the city would have to bear the estimated
$3,000 installation cost.
asked for more details on the size of the scoreboard
and a schedule of games when it might be used. The
games would be played in the afternoons and on Saturday
morning as there are no lights at the field.
also approved a $224,000 contract with Huffman Trucking
of Bradenton to begin the Haverkos II drainage basin.
commissioners that the Manatee County Area Tranist
has received the first of four new trolleys that will
be integrated into the Island trolley system, replacing
the current trolleys. The new trolleys are quieter
and will withstand the Island's weather conditions
better than the current trolleys.
advised the commission and the public that the Jan.
24 commission meeting should be a fairly full agenda.
In addition to
the canal ordinances and proposed land use changes
(see separate story), the commission will also take
public input and discuss a proposal by Manatee County
to increase parking at the Kingfish Boat Ramp on Manatee
Avenue at the city limits.
Members of the
Westbay Cove Homeowners Association have come out firmly
against the proposal and have promised to voice their
opinions to the commission at that meeting.
has proposed to cut down the Brazilian pepper trees
that extend along the shore from the boat ramp to Westbay
Cove because these trees are considered "exotic" and "invasive," but
Commissioner Roger Lutz has said he considers this
explanation just a "smokescreen" for the
county to add parking up to the Westbay Cove property