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County to discuss affordable housing plans

County to discuss affordable housing plans

Sarasota County, Florida -- Sarasota County and the cities of Sarasota, Venice, and North Port have announced they will partner on a five-year consolidated plan for community development and affordable housing. Community visioning sessions will be held to explore such community needs as economic development, neighborhood improvements, special needs housing, services for the homeless, affordable housing and social services for low-income residents.

The two visioning sessions for the 2011-2016 consolidated plan will be held from 5:30 - 7:00 p.m. on the following dates and locations: 

  • Tuesday, March 1, at the Robert L. Taylor Community Complex, 1845 34th St., Sarasota
  • Thursday, March 10, at the North Port City Commission Chamber, 4970 City Hall Blvd., North Port

City Hall's drive-thru hours changing

City Hall's drive-thru hours changing

North Port, FL -- Starting at the end of this month, on January 31, 2011, the City Hall "drive-thru hours" will be changing, according to the City's website.  After several months of monitoring the activity, it was decided that keeping the drive-thru open in the early and late hours was no longer necessary. The increase in on-line payments since this service has been offered is another reason the hours will be shortened. 

In an effort to be more efficient with staffing, the hours will now be Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.  These are the same hours that customers can make payments inside of City Hall.  Customers making Utilities payments as well as other City payments can still use the night drop located at the corner of the drive-thru lane after hours. 

Questions may be directed to the Cashiering office at (941) 429-7122.

Beach renourishment begins on Longboat Key

Beach renourishment begins on Longboat Key

Longboat Key, FL -- Along with shell seekers and sun bathers, some heavy equipment is hitting the beach on Longboat Key.


The town's contractor has begun a $4.5 million beach renourishment project at the north end of the key.


Pedestrian and beach access parking is partially restricted during construction at the Broadway Street beach access and the North Shore Road beach access remains closed.


Workers will first remove an old seawall in the vicinity of Longbeach Village Condominium and later this month sand replacement operations will begin. Sand will be placed on the beach from just south of the Broadway Street beach access to just north of the North Shore Road beach access toward Greer Island, also known as Beer Can Island.

New water main to be installed under Big Pass intercoastal

New water main to be installed under Big Pass intercoastal

Sarasota Beaches -- According to the City of Sarasota, a new potable water main will be installed under the Big Pass intercoastal waterway between Lido Key and Siesta Key. The project is part of the City’s water distribution improvements program. Protective fencing has been installed in portions of South Lido Park and North Shell Road, on Siesta Key, where crews are working.

The water main is 2,100 feet long and was fused together on Ben Franklin Drive on Lido Key. It will remain there for approximately the next two weeks at which time the process to pull the pipe 100 feet below Big Pass will begin. When finished, it will connect South Lido Park to the north end of Shell Road on Siesta Key. It is anticipated the project will be completed by the end of February. The new water main is larger than the current one and will improve water capacity and provide redundancy.

Beach campground deals for Sarasota residents

Beach campground deals for Sarasota residents

Sarasota, Florida - It's one of the few places on the west coast of Florida where you can camp right on the beach and now residents of Sarasota County can get a bargain rate at Turtle Beach Campground.

Residents can now stay two consecutive nights for the price of one at the Siesta Key campground. To take advantage of the deal, you must stay on the same day you book the reservation and the following day. This "Last Minute Special" runs through March 1st.

Homeless woman attacked at community park

Homeless woman attacked at community park

Sarasota, FL -- A homeless woman was attacked late last night while she was sleeping on a picnic table at Nokomis Community Park 234 E. Nippino Trail.  

According to the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office, she was awakened after being punched in the face by a man who said he had a knife and told her not to scream.

Two Sarasota hotels on bedbug database

Two Sarasota hotels on bedbug database

Sarasota, FL -- A couple of Sarasota hotels turns up on a state database of bedbug infestation complaints.

According to the Sarasota Herald Tribune, the database includes reports on 137 reported infestations investigated by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation dating back to 2009.

Two Sarasota hotels show up on the list.