+ Developers approach city about hotel project
Interest is growing in developing the vacant lot adjacent to the Palm Avenue parking garage.
“We’ve talked to three different parties who are very interested,” said City Manager Bob Bartolotta.
The city has expressed its desire to have a hotel built on that property, but Bartolotta said a mixed-use development would also be favorable.
At the Feb. 22 City Commission meeting, commissioners are going to be asked to approve an “invitation for negotiation,” which will allow city management to begin negotiations with developers.
Bartolotta said he wants to find a company that will start building within 12 to 15 months.
+ New College welcomes two new board members
The Florida Board of Governors has appointed two influential women to the New College of Florida Board of Trustees.
New College alumni Mary Ruiz and retired Boston educator Audrey Coleman will serve on the board through 2016.
Ruiz is the president and CEO of Manatee Glens, a nonprofit hospital that helps families in crisis with mental-health and addictions services.
Coleman was recognized by President Ronald Reagan in 1985 as one of the 10 most influential black women in the country.
The two women replace outgoing board members Ken Misemer and the Rev. Jerome Dupree.
“We are fortunate to have these two outstanding individuals within the college’s governance structure for the challenging period in the years ahead,” stated New College President Mike Michalson.
+ Sarasota Memorial, USF create partnership
The University of South Florida’s College of Nursing is adding Sarasota Memorial Hospital as a new partner.
The collaboration supports a USF health-care program that assesses how best to serve the local community’s health profession needs.
This summer, a new team of 12 undergraduate nursing students will be created and will conduct all of its clinical training at Sarasota Memorial Hospital.
+ City, county offices closed for Presidents Day
All city and county administration offices will close Monday, Feb. 21 in observance of Presidents Day.
The City Commission meeting, which is usually held on a Monday, will take place Tuesday, Feb. 22.
SCAT bus service and residential garbage and recycling will not be affected.
Meetings & agendas
Charter Review Board — 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 17, County Administration Center, 1660 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota
Planning Commission — 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 17, County Administration Center, 1660 Ringling Blvd, Sarasota
County Commission — 9 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22, County Administration Center, 1660 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota
Downtown Improvement District — 9 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22, City Hall, 1565 First St., Sarasota
City Commission — 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22, City Hall, 1565 First St., Sarasota
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24 Sarasota Pumpkin Festival
5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
25 Free picture framing seminar
25 Stepping Out Against Domestic Violence (DV Awareness Walk)
25 3rd Annual Sarasota Book Fair
10:00 am - 3:00 pm
On Saturday Phillippi Shores Elementary fourth-grader Mickeyshane McGetrick invited friends and classmates to help kick off his class project to clean up Turtle Beach.
Only 9 days left to vote for your favorite 'It's Read Everywhere' photo!
Voting is now live for the Observer's 'It’s Read Everywhere' photo contest.
School of rock
Fans cheered on their favorite bands Saturday at Rock for a Cause.