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Longboat Key Friday, Jul. 16, 2010 5 years ago

IPOC challenges code amendments

by: Kurt Schultheis Managing Editor

The Islandside Property Owners Coalition (IPOC), as expected, has filed an administrative appeal that challenges code changes the Town Commission approved in May.

Because the town of Longboat Key chose not to respond to a request by IPOC to amend the changes made within 30 days of their request, IPOC attorney Michael Furen filed an administrative appeal with the state’s Department of Community Affairs Wednesday, July 14.

The seven proposed amendments to the code submitted to the town by the Longboat Key Club and Resort, in an effort to diminish much of the legal challenges presented by IPOC, were approved May 3.

The petition states “the amendments materially alter and change numerous provisions of the land development code governing the Gulf-planned development zoning district. IPOC, thus, has ‘associational standing’ to file and process this challenge to the amendments as being inconsistent with the plan.”

The petition points out many provisions of the Comprehensive Plan, which “ensure the compatibility of adjacent land uses,” “preserve and enhance the character of Longboat Key” and place emphasis “upon the protection of the visual and aesthetic character of neighborhoods, including open space.”

The state now has 60 days to review the petition and make a decision.

If a law judge agrees the town’s actions were inconsistent with its Comprehensive Plan, the matter is referred to the governor and his cabinet, who Furen says has the ability to impose sanctions on the town, including taking away revenue-sharing funds that include funds available for town beach-renourishment projects.

Furen said IPOC also has the right to file an appeal with the District Court of Appeals if the judge involved disagrees with IPOC’s views during this process.

IPOC has also reserved the right to challenge the commission’s decision to approve the Islandside project and has until July 30 to file such a challenge in circuit court.

Contact Kurt Schultheis at [email protected].

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