Editorial Letters – Week ending January 18, 2019

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.

Open play Bayfront Park

To: Commissioner Jack Daly

Open Play grew again at Bayfront. We are overwhelmed with players and not enough courts. We need your help. We need more open play hours. We also need more courts. Please come down to Bayfront and see what is happening. The second photo shows you all the players that are waiting, there are 12 already on the court! Players are getting very frustrated.

Sara Cullen

Longboat Key

Open play Bayfront Park

To: Sara Cullen

As you know, the town has budgeted for the evaluation of options for additional courts, which is underway; and this effort is conditioned upon obtaining significant financial support from the Pickleball community. As we have discussed, I suggest that such fundraising efforts would best be achieved by forming an organization similar to the Friends of Tennis  for the Tennis Center.

Jack Daly


Longboat Key


Yesterday’s hearing in the Colony Termination matter

To: Town Commission

I have received several inquiries about yesterday’s hearing involving  the Colony property and Unicorp’s termination proceeding currently pending within the Twelfth Judicial Circuit Court and captioned Unicorp Colony Unit Owners, LLC v. Colony Beach & Tennis Club Association, et al.   The lawsuit involves Unicorp’s request to terminate the Colony Condominium Association under Chapter 718 of the Florida Statutes.   Several Colony Association unit owners have opposed the lawsuit and the requested relief sought by Unicorp.  These opposing unit owners filed various Motions to Dismiss seeking to have the Court dismiss the case on various legal grounds.  Yesterday’s hearing considered those pending Motions to Dismiss.  Judge Hunter Carroll (the same judge that presided over the Colony demolition proceedings that took place in June) heard argument on the opposing parties’ Motions to Dismiss/Motion to Strike.  All of those Motions seeking to dismiss the suit were denied, and the Court ordered the parties to Answer the pending complaint.  The Court also ordered an expedited hearing schedule (presumably to consider other anticipated motions/arguments by the parties) and established a standing one-hour monthly hearing time each month commencing in February.

Judge Carroll entered a handwritten Order memorializing the above ruling, a copy of which is attached. As the text within the handwritten Order is somewhat difficult to read (based upon the quality of the copy), I am also attaching a retyped version that sets forth the text of the Order.  I did not attend yesterday’s hearing because the Town is not a party to this litigation.  Accordingly, I received the attached Order (and retyped Order) from Attorney Jeff Warren (the Colony Association’s legal counsel). Please call me directly if you have any questions regarding this information and update.

Maggie D. Mooney

Town Attorney

Longboat Key


Frontier Fiber Talks

To: Town Manager Tom Harmer

I believe enough time has passed since out last meeting to have some sort of dialogue to have developed between Frontier and the town concerning existing fiber optics on the island. It is my hope that the town and Frontier will find a way of providing our community a specialized fiber system at a fraction of the cost the taxpayers will pay producing a second and perhaps redundant fiber optic system.

Please update me on what has transpired between the town at the frontier. Additionally I am interested to know where the town stands with pinpoint second vendor for the fiber-optic system.

Gene Jaleski

Longboat Key


Frontier fiber talks

To: Gene Jaleski

I apologize for the delay in response. We met with Frontier regarding the Town’s undergrounding and fiber project this past December. They indicated that they have no interest in expanding or supporting additional residential FiOS system market.  They indicated that strategically they are more interested in exploring and expanding single-glass dedicated Ethernet service specifically for business. Also, there were concerns from the Town competing with Frontier using their own fiber. So, there was no further discussion since the Town is looking to explore more opportunities for our Town-owned fiber project than just business connectivity. We are continuing with the direction as approved by the referendum.

Isaac Brownman

Director Public Works

Longboat Key


Investigating Chuck Whittall and Unicorp

To: Mayor George Spoll

I am a resident of LBK. I have Chuck Whitall (Unicorp) under investigation. My collective implications he backs into my former employer Larry Van Tyul. My focus is Robert Igor of the Walt Disney Company. I’m confident Chuck beelines right there.

I can present to the Commission my findings and concerns. I am sending out this weekend correspondence to LBK resident Congressman Vern Buchanan, Internal affairs Massachusetts State Police and Cambridge Police, Cambridge Mass.

I will be going out to the Western United States very  soon. This in part to further the Investigation of the Walt Disney Company. I absolutely would like to present to the commission all the pertinent information on Chuckle.

Andrew Litvin

Longboat Key


Traffic Issues at Bay Haven School

To: City of Sarasota Commission, Police Chief Bernadette DiPino

I am making another request for more regular traffic enforcement around Bay Haven School in the mornings and afternoons on school days.

This morning I observed three vehicles obviously speeding on Indian Beach Drive, and this afternoon I was nearly hit head-on by a Bay Haven parent running the stop sign at West Tamiami Circle.  These are regular recurring problems on a daily basis in our neighborhood.  Many of the parents show complete disregard for speed limits and stop signs, and put residents at risk every day.

I have made multiple requests for regular police presence and enforcement and can honestly say I have not seen a single patrol during this academic year.  I walk my dog every morning around the neighborhood during peak drop off time of 8:30 a.m. to 9:15 a.m. and would expect to see patrols if they were there.

Please advise how the city commission, police chief, school board, city manager, and Bay Haven staff will more effectively address the daily traffic problems in our neighborhood.

Turner Moore



Parking issues around Bay Haven School

To: Police Chief Bernadette DiPino and Turner Moore

So sorry about your almost accident, that is awful and scary.

I have to say, both my boys attended Bay Haven, so I have a cumulative 12 years as a parent at the school. While I love the school I have to say there exists a daily safety hazard. I walked the boys to school and Oliver and I would count the number of people who ran the stop sign on Mr. Moore’s street after leaving the school.

Having said that, anything that can be done to help remind parents to slow down when going to and leaving the school would be helpful and of course any police patrol presence during the critical drop off and pick up times will also be helpful.

Jen Ahearn-Koch

Vice Mayor

City of Sarasota


Portable restroom near San Marco Condominium

To: Vice Mayor Jen Ahearn Koch

Happy New Year! Unfortunately due to the flu, I missed the meeting at The Reserve yesterday.

Once again the San Marco residents are up against an intolerable situation with the construction on U.S 41. For the second time a portable potty has been placed right across the street from our building.

The first portable potty was placed and quickly removed the week before Christmas – with Pinky’s help.

No one wants to sit on his/her balcony, or look out of their windows, and see men going in and out of that portable potty and then pulling up their pants as they exit!  It is disgusting and will not be tolerated.

There is no reason for that structure to be placed across from a residential building. It can be moved to the other side of the new pedestrian bridge and across from the Pioneer Park.

In addition we have a unit for sale in the building. This is causing a problem for the owners, as potential buyers have sited this as a problem, as well as the road construction.

I am sure you are aware that a man was hit by a car and killed on December 19th right in front of my unit. It was several hours before the police finished their work and removed that poor soul from the street.

How much more will we have to tolerate. There are weekly accidents with damaged cars pulling into our parking lot.

I have talked to Pinky three times about moving the portable potty and it is still sitting there. I asked Alice yesterday to request the contractors to immediately move the portable potty to another place.

I spoke to Larry Murphy and he referred me to Doug Jeffcoat. I left a message for Doug on his phone and hope he will return my call.

During the entire time this road work has been going on there has NOT been a reason to put a portable potty on the street across from our beautiful building. Please help us to get this situation corrected.

We have been patient with all the noise, dust, dirt and car accidents taking place in front of and on our property. But a man being killed and portable potties are inexcusable!

I look forward to hearing from you,

Helen Margolis



Portable restroom near San Marco Condominium

To: Vice Mayor Jen Ahearn Koch

Last Friday, the portalette was moved to the other side of the new pedestrian bridge (see attached picture).

Alice Ramos

Community Outreach Specialist



Portable restroom near San Marco Condominium

To: FDOT Alice Ramos

Thank you for assisting us in order to get the portable potty moved away from San Marco Condominium.

Helen Margolis



Parking on St. Armands

To: Vice Mayor Jen Ahearn-Koch

I hope my message today resonated with you. I missed a few key points that I feel a personal email would be better suited since this issue you campaigned on and I believe you pride yourself on how communicative you are with neighborhood leaders (and I agree you’re fantastic at it).

The residents of St Armands will be upset in the future, you can bank on it. What’s going to happen is once the limited free zone parking fills up, people will seek other free parking areas such as neighborhood streets and along the median of John Ringling blvd.

Don’t you think employees should park for free? Places like Colombia will have to foot a $12,000+ bill just to let employees park! Multiply this by all the hundreds of stores! A classic money grab!

This will impact the consumer as prices will go up and employees will likely quit their jobs but merchants can’t just quit their businesses. They have to eat the cost.

What can we do to make employee exemptions happen? I feel as if the city staff is running amok on this issue.

Mikael Sandstrom


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