+ We lost ’em all
The valiant effort of the defeated three commission challengers should be rewarded in some manner. It was no small effort, but a great expense in time and money for them to hurl themselves against the entire entrenched seven-membership of the Town Commission, abetted by business interests, to gain a voice.
It is a loss that Longboat Key cannot have some representation and contribution by the disenfranchised 49.5% of our community. They do have a great deal to offer besides supporting commerce on this island and just paying taxes.
Looking forward to the commission draconically limiting the future input by this minority on any controversial subject brought before it to 180 seconds at a time will be a grievous waste of talent.
Our commission will be faced with weighty matters dictating and directing the future of our community — many of them having serious monetary implications.
The election is over; the electorate has made its selections. But reason and retrospection should be evidenced by a calculated change in the commission’s attitude toward this unrepresented segment of the citizenry.
+ Joggers should stay out of the bike lane
Every day at 7 a.m. I take a 45-minute bike ride using the bike lane on Gulf of Mexico Drive. I travel, depending on wind speed and direction, anywhere from 8 to 15 miles per hour, and, even though there are cars passing by a few feet away at 40 miles per hour, I feel safe on my daily ride. However I am concerned about a situation I encounter a few times a week. I am talking about joggers and walkers using the bike lane and forcing me out of the normal path. When this happens, I have two choices: One is to veer into the vehicle traffic lane; the other is to go off the pavement onto the grass. Neither of the alternatives is good. This is especially troubling when the individual is walking with traffic and not aware I am approaching from behind.
Walking in a road not facing oncoming traffic or walking in the road where a sidewalk is present are both prohibited by state law. I would hope those considering this practice think about the danger involved and use the sidewalk instead of the bike lane. Furthermore, I believe the police should be explaining the safety issues involved as well as the violation of Florida law to those individuals choosing to use the road.