Life is curious

Contributing Columnist

Life is a curious thing but on Longboat Key, it gets more and more curious.

Having just reviewed both the decision of the judge in the Key Club case and then the appeal by the town to that decision, it has become very apparent to me that like Thomas Becket, Monica Simpson was the key element and her removal a virtual necessity since their entire case rested upon their contention that she was incompetent.

It then raises the question of how could this be done. There was no way that the then-town manager, Bruce St. Denis, was going to fire the “best planner in the history of the town” in the words of former Planning and Zoning Board Chairman Bob Diamant. (Mr. Diamant was not only the chairman but also the guiding light to all zoning and planning decisions made by the town over the past 20 years). His credentials include the Sears Tower and the Regent Hotel in Hong Kong and your own Town Hall.

If Simpson was to go, St. Denis had to go first and in a very curious turn of events, that is what happened. It might have been a coincidence just like it might have been a coincidence that the Japanese Navy found itself off the coast of Hawaii and since they were there…?

However, done is done. Publix will get their cheaper, less attractive building, the appeal will go on and if it is denied, the codes will be rewritten to accommodate the judge’s ideas, and life will go on.

What I find most curious is why?

Having just spent 10 days on the East Coast of Florida, I can tell you the towns that have already done what the Dave Brenner/George Spoll/Jim Brown/Phill Younger contingent want to do are in the toilet while real estate on Longboat Key if not booming is doing better than any other place in the state and probably in the nation, with the exception of San Francisco and New York, both of which are specific-industry driven.

People are not buying on the key because there is going to be a big expansion at the golf club or more tourist camps or more stores, they are buying because they like what they are seeing right now.

Real estate brokers are not selling a future; they are selling a beautiful place, uncluttered, low traffic and a lovely place to live.

It also seems curious to me that one of these hot shot Realtors that keep crowing about their sales figures doesn’t just tell the group in power to not mess things up. Everyone is doing quite well, thank you.

A new voice who is saying just that, Ray Rajewski, has entered the race against the most important proponent of this potential change, Dave Brenner. This election is just six weeks from now. How it comes out might well determine the future of the town. I have seen Brenner’s future, and I spent 10 days there this month — in my view, it ain’t working.

It is still working on Longboat Key. It is up to the voters to make sure it stays that way. Having lots of hotels, motels, strip malls and fast food joints is not what is appealing to the buyer’s pool that is out there. They are the lucky few who are still doing very well in this economy and want a place in the sun that suits their lifestyle.

Longboat Key was designed to be that exclusive and residential place. Don’t let Dave Brenner and his colleagues turn us into a second rate tourist town.

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1 Response for “Life is curious”

  1. Georgie McFarland says:

    Here we go again, he calling it US. How can it be US when HE spent 10 days over there on the East Coast of Florida on HIS lone sojourn from the boondocks of Pa? How can one compare the East Coast of Florida to US here on the West Coast? Is it not apples vs oranges?

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