Longboat Key Letters – Week ending October 6, 2017

Longboat Key News encourages Letters to the Editor on timely issues. Please email to: letters@lbknews.com or mail to PO Box 8001, Longboat Key, FL 34228. We also print letters sent to Town Hall that address Longboat Key issues. We reserve the right to edit.

Request for FEMA to remove debris

To: FEMA Administrator William Long

Hurricane Irma, a category 4 storm, made landfall in Florida three weeks ago. In the storm’s aftermath, Florida counties continue to struggle with removing debris on private roads, which threatens the health ad safety of residents. We urge the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to work with requesting counties in Florida to swiftly approve federal reimbursements for debris removal on private roads where safety hazards have been identified. We have seen firsthand the devastation caused by the hurricane and thank you for your partnership and prompt approvals for Public Assistance as counties continue to assist residents recover from this major hurricane. Debris, including trash and fallen trees, still litter roads and properties across Florida after Hurricane Irma. The longer we wait for debris removal, the more these piles of debris continue to produce unsafe and unsanitary conditions for Floridians across the state. Recognizing the magnitude of this storm, the removal of debris on private roads should be treated the same as debris on other roads when inn the interest of public safety. As FEMA is the lead federal agency responsible for disaster response, the law provides it with the authority to assist with debris removal on private property after a natural disaster. As such, we respectfully request you work with the state and counties to approve adequate removal of debris from private roads so that residents can continue to recover safely and efficiently.

Bill Nelson

U.S. Senator


Longboat Key Arts, Culture and Educational Center

To: Town Commission

I just wanted to reach out and see if there are any outstanding comments to the program information that Dr. Larry Thompson shared at the September 25, 2017 commission meeting (attached).  Please let me know of any additional comments to the information, if possible, by the end of this week.  My goal is to send any feedback to the Ringling College of Art and Design on Monday next week so that Ayres-Saint Gross (ASG) can finalize the Preliminary Design & Programming Report by October 19th.

Once received, the final report will be distributed to the Town Commission and discussed for approval tentatively at a November Commission meeting. Please feel free to reach to me with any comments.

Isaac Brownman


Public Works Department

Longboat Key


Flu Shots October 24th at Town Hall

To: Town Commission

CVS on Longboat Key is scheduled to be on site at Town Hall to provide flu shots and pneumonia shots to our staff on October 24 from 10:30 a.m. – Noon.

These immunizations administered through the pharmacy have a zero co-pay. You will just need to bring your Insurance Identification or Medicare ID Card.

If you are interested in getting a flu shot this year you must sign up with Lisa.

Lisa Silvertooth

Human Resources Manager, Longboat Key


Longboat Key Putting Challenge – 2018 OPL Charity Golf Tournament

To: Town Commission

We are excited to once again host our Longboat Key Putting Challenge in conjunction with our 2018 OPL Charity Golf Tournament.

I am delighted to extend an invite to you to participate as one of our VIP’s. I have attached a picture from last year’s event.

The location will be the Links on Longboat Putting Green, just behind Spike ‘n Tees restaurant.

The date is October 21, starting at 4:30 p.m. with a Wine & Cheese reception while we wait for everyone to arrive.

The putting contest will start promptly at 5 p.m. It will be the same format as last year with progressively greater putting distances (2 ft, 5 ft and 10 ft). This year’s event will benefit the special funds for the Longboat Key fire and police departments.

Chief Cumming and Chief Dezzi, since this will be a benefit for your departments, please extend an invite to your Assistant Chiefs and others in your department that you would like to invite. We welcome their participation.

Mark your calendars and start practicing! Please RSVP to me by October 14, so we know how many contestants we will have. Thank you and hope you can make it!

Sandra Rios 

Director of Marketing and Communications 

The Resort at Longboat Key Club


Article in Sarasota Herald Tribune on EOC catering

To: Mr. Zach Murdock

I have no quarrel with the reporting. The items you identified are appropriate for the after-storm analysis and discussions about what could be done differently and better.  I am, however, disappointed with the headline on the article, which gives the impression of, if not fiddling during the storm, dining lavishly.

I was not at the EOC headquarters, nor was I involved in any of the pre-storm planning.  I do know that many, many people worked nearly around the clock, sleeping—if they could—on cots. Up to the time the storm hit, they were preparing the coordination to respond to a calamity. We are all fortunate that the emergency that did occur was not greater. That does not lessen to effort, including the stress, that went into the potential and ultimate response.

I agree with former Commissioner Robinson that this is a subject that requires a workshop discussion at the County Commission level.

The Herald-Tribune’s headline tends to put things in a context that could make the proper discussion more difficult.

Terry Gans


Longboat Key


To: Mayor Terry Gans

Thanks for the note and I understand your point. There will always be people who read only the headline, but it’s almost impossible to boil a whole story down to a few short words like that. I tried to unpack as many of the important parts of the story as I could in that first section for those folks who did bother to at least open it and skim the top, but it was one of those articles that took a lot of time and words to fully explain and put into context.

So point taken on the headline, but I think it was the most salient piece to try to highlight there. It’s on me as a writer to draw the reader into the full explanation and I sure hoped the way I structured it did the job for those willing to give a long story a shot.

Always appreciate your feedback and I’m sure we’ll catch up again soon.

Zach Murdock

Sarasota Herald Tribune



Debris Pick-up as of Oct. 1

To: Town Commission

Here is an update on the current debris hauling:

Cubic yards hauled away as of 10-1-17 = 6,900

Crews are averaging about 15-25 truckloads and 460-800 cubic yards a day.

Ashbritt has cleared from north bridge including side streets to General Harris and south bridge along GMD including side streets up to Triton. Over the weekend, they cleared all streets in the Village excluding Lands End and Bayou Hammock.

Ceres has cleared all of Longboat Club Road and Harbor Sound Drive including side streets. They are currently working in the Bayou Sound area.

FDOT has cleared most of GMD from north bridge to about the Manatee County/Sarasota County line. Excluding some areas around Centre Shops, just north of Bayfront, Laguna Drive and on the west side of GMD. Some of this debris has been put out after already being cleared once.

Mark Richardson

Town of Longboat Key

Streets, Facilities, Parks & Recreation Manager


Sea turtle enforcement to date

To: Deputy Police Chief Frank Rubino

The following is a breakdown of the efforts made to date (10-02-2017) towards enforcing Turtle Lighting and Beach obstructions for the 2017 Turtle Season.

Code Enforcement Officer performed 29 inspections.

Community Service Specialist performed 9 nighttime inspections and tagged 55 different furniture violations during the nighttime patrol of the beach.

Patrol Officers tagged 16 beach furniture violations.

74 Beach Obstructions (Chairs, umbrellas, etc.)

74 were issued 24 hour tags (44 cases came into compliance, 1 case we removed and impounded the furniture).

1 issued Courtesy Notice.

2 resulted in written cases.

42 cases were opened for lighting violations.

25 were closed with voluntary compliance.

17 are active and we are working with property owners/managers to bring into compliance.

0 cases have been forwarded to the Code Enforcement Board.

Lighting survey for beach project was conducted the beginning of May and again in July per permit requirement. CEO documented 136 cases where lights were observed from the beach.

116 first class letters were sent to physical address and secondary listed address with an educational brochure and letter from the Town.

20 streetlights were noted and an email was sent to Public Works to contact FP&L.

393 email complaints on lighting and furniture from Turtle Watch and other volunteers, residents, and visitors.

79 complaints on 26 properties found in violation and Code Enforcement initiated action. (22 Courtesy Notices for lighting violations, 1 Courtesy Notice for furniture violations, 4 Notices Code Violation for lighting violations, and 7 properties tagged for furniture).

The remaining 314 email complaints are either under investigation or unsubstantiated due to insufficient information or found not in violation.

Of the 393 email complaints, all email complaints on a property with a real property owner/manager resulted in a certified letter from the town and an educational brochure on the town’s marine turtle protection ordinance being mailed to the property owner/property manager.

213 certified letters with educational brochures were mailed out to properties.

Frank Rubino 

Deputy Police Chief

Longboat Key


Red Ribbon Proclamation

To: Commissioner Randy Clair

My name is Michael Manley. I am 11 years old and in 6th grade. I belong to the Atlantic Coast Young Marines and have the title Corporal. The Atlantic Coast Young Marines are extremely active in educating the communities in Florida, young and old, about the dangers of drugs, alcohol and tobacco. We request proclamations from Mayors and Governors to show the public how many people that we look up to stand with us. I was hoping that you would be willing to join us and grant the Atlantic Coast Young Marines a Proclamation for Red Ribbon Week. The Atlantic Coast Young Marines would be so happy to have your support. You would be proud to see how many adults, and children, that we were able to educate on the dangers of drugs, alcohol, and tobacco last year. It was an amazing feeling to be able to show different communities how many governors, mayors & political leaders stood with us for such a great cause. Even if every year we help only one person, that’s one person more that will have a chance at a healthy and long life. You would definitely help us make a difference! We are hoping that you will be willing to help support us. The Atlantic Coast Young Marines would be honored if you would issue us a Red Ribbon Proclamation for October 23-31, 2017.

The sample proclamation is attached for your review. Also, if you can mail the proclamation, it would be great if you could mail it to my Unit Commander’s address. Thank you in advance for your time and help. Also, thank you for believing in such a great cause. The Atlantic Coast Young Marines really appreciate it & promise to make you proud.

Michael Manley

Atlantic Coast Young Marines


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