Longboat Key Commissioner Robert Siekmann has declined an invitation by Key Club General Manager Michael Welly and club attorney John Patterson to meet with him about proposed changes to the town’s code.
In an e-mail sent by Welly’s executive assistant April 19, it states the two are seeking individual meetings with commissioners to describe the proposed code amendments and how they relate to the club’s $400 million Islandside renovation-and-expansion project.
The two hope to talk to all seven commissioners to explain why the codes are being proposed and what the changes will accomplish.
But Siekmann declined the invitation.
Wrote Siekmann, in an e-mail to Welly’s executive assistant dated April 21: “Please thank Michael Welly and John Patterson, but I will not accept their invitation to a private meeting to discuss the proposed code amendments. These issues should have been fully vetted at our April 16 public meeting held specifically to address these code amendments. Yes, I understand meeting in private to discuss legislative issues is legal, but the Key Club application involves not only legislative but also quasi-judicial issues. I don't think a private meeting is a good idea; it sends the wrong message.”
The only other commissioner to respond to the invitation is Commissioner Gene Jaleski, who will meet with club officials 10 a.m., Tuesday, April 27. at Town Hall.
Town attorney David Persson confirmed for Jaleski and the rest of the commission the conversations are permissible as long as they relate strictly to the code changes and are conducted with only one commissioner at a time.
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