Sarasota County commissioners continue to present a unified front in the local push to address homelessness, while the Sarasota City Commission remains divided on the issue.
While city commissioners yesterday argued over the potential placement of a homeless shelter and consultant Robert Marbut's strategies to address the problem, the board ultimately voted 3-2 to extend his contract through Nov. 30, and pay for a portion of feasibility studies for proposed shelter locations. This morning, county commissioners breezed through a discussion item on the same topic, and in less than 10 minutes unanimously approved the contract extension.
The county and city will pay roughly $86,000 to extend Marbut's contract while he oversees implementation of his Homeless Strategic Action Plan. Municipal officials initially agreed to hire Marbut for four months beginning in August, but extended his contract through Feb. 28
"This will keep the momentum moving forward," said Sarasota County Homelessness Coordinator Wayne Applebee.