The main proponents of the incorporation of Casey Key are proving their resolve despite recent setbacks to their campaign.
“The effort is very much alive and well,” said George Scantland, who leads a group that paid a consultant to write an incorporation plan and requested District 70 Rep. Doug Holder, R-Sarasota, to introduce a bill in the Legislature.
Scantland sent a letter last week to all Casey Key property owners informing them that the group has changed its name from
The Casey Key Committee to Study Incorporation to Save Casey Key: Neighbors for Better Government.
The letter also outlined supporters’ reason for seeking incorporation — overly obtrusive rules and regulations imposed by Sarasota County — and a response to those opposing incorporation.
“We need more time for the folks against it to realize it’s more than a tax increase,” Scantland said. “You’ll protect your property — your biggest investment.”
The drive for incorporation has hit a few roadblocks in the past month. House Bill 1225 died in committee for this session. However, it could be revived next year.
A straw poll at a neighborhood meeting showed nearly every one of the 100 audience members was opposed to incorporation. Scantland said that was because the homeowners in attendance were handpicked by the organizer, David Macrae, who is also opposed.
And, earlier this month, the Casey Key Association voted to oppose incorporation, but created a task force to study the issue further and report back later this year.
Bob Bry, a member of the anti-incorporation group, Friends of Casey Key, said the letter was “a feeble attempt to keep alive a failed effort that has been roundly criticized.”
He said Friends of Casey Key has recently collected signatures from 200 of the Key’s 560 registered voters on a petition that opposes incorporation.
“We don’t join those who demonize the county,” Bry said. “We feel the county has protected us all in a meaningful way.”