+ County extends state of emergency
County commissioners have extended a resolution that declares a state of emergency to deal with any problems related to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
The commission initially enacted the state of emergency last week, but because the state of Florida only allows emergency orders for seven days at a time, commissioners had to vote on a resolution for another seven days.
The commission also voted to authorize Chairman Joe Barbetta to order additional seven-day resolutions until the emergency has passed.
County Administrator Jim Ley said the state of emergency does not mean that there’s an imminent danger of oil coming ashore. It’s merely an administrative move to allow the county to project and account for costs if the spill affects the county.
+ Commission OKs Siesta beach funding
County commissioners approved Tuesday nearly $600,000 in funding for long-discussed improvements at Siesta Key Beach.
The commission unanimously voted on a $598,701 contract for a 30% design development for the Siesta Beach Improvements Project.
The plans call for more than 300 more parking spaces, most of them unpaved; landscaped parking-lot islands; landscaped circular entryway; new concession building; new restrooms; park-wide walkway; elimination of the public-safety building at the beach entrance; nature trails; and paver walkways from the parking lot to the beach.
The entire project is expected to cost between $10 million and $15 million. Funding comes through the voter-approved 1% surtax for capital-improvement projects, which was renewed in November 2007.
+ Meetings & Agendas
• City Commission — 2:30 p.m. Monday, May 17, City Hall, 1565 First St., Sarasota
• Sarasota County Commission/Manatee County Commission meeting — 9 a.m. Tuesday, May 18, Gold Coast Eagle Distributing, 7051 Wireless Court, Sarasota
• Arlington Park Neighborhood Association — 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 18, Waldemere fire station, 2070 Waldemere St., Sarasota
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3 FREE 5K Fun Run
7:00 am - 8:00 am
3 Historical Trolley Tour
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
6 Feast of the Epiphany offers beautiful close to Christmas season
6 SILL Global Issues Lecture
10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Couple celebrates 54th anniversary
Carol and Jules Green met at a summer camp where Carol was a junior counselor and Jules was a waiter.
Officers welcome holiday backup
The Sarasota Police Department is on the lookout for an elf who goes by the name of Officer Elf on the Shelf.
Sound of hope
The holiday season hasn’t officially started until our favorite bell ringers return to their posts.