+ City Commission approves Orioles deal
A split City Commission approved a deal that would pave the way for the Baltimore Orioles to hold spring training in Sarasota.
By a 3-2 vote Wednesday, the commission approved an agreement that transfers Ed Smith Stadium to the county for $1 and allows the county to conduct contract negotiations with the baseball team.
The agreement requires the city to cleanup any contamination under the stadium property. The site used to be a landfill, and there is evidence of groundwater and soil contamination.
At press time, the County Commission was scheduled to vote on the agreement with the city Wednesday night. For more on the story and details of the votes, visit YourObserver.com.
+ Tiger Bay names new president
For the first time in 20 years, the Sarasota Tiger Bay Club has a new president. Longboat Key Commissioner Hal Lenobel was named president this week, taking over for Marj Baldwin, who announced her retirement in March.
Also named as officers were Sam Holladay and John Patterson as treasurers. Dan Bailey was named secretary.
The next Tiger Bay Club luncheon will take place Aug. 20, and the guest speakers will be Sen. Nancy Detert, Rep. Keith Fitzgerald, Rep. Doug Holder and Rep. Bill Galvano. Former Sen. John McKay will serve as moderator.
+ Commission votes to raise traffic fines
County commissioners voted July 22 to raise the fines on several traffic infractions by $15. The county is employing a new state law that allows local governments to double the $15 surcharge on items such as speeding, red-light running, leaving the scene of an accident and reckless driving.
The current surcharge brings in about $700,000 per year, but the county’s court-facilities costs are about $1.2 million. The county hopes the higher surcharge will make up the funding gap.
+ Tampa company bridges the gaps
Sarasota County has hired a Tampa company to build the two trestles necessary to bridge the northern and southern sections of The Legacy Trail.
Misener Marine Construction was awarded a $3 million contract to build the trestles over Dona and Roberts bays. The contract calls for the construction to be complete by July 21,