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The town's new police vehicles will have a different paint scheme than the current vehicles. (Courtesy Longboat Key Police)
Longboat Key Tuesday, Sep. 17, 2013 4 years ago

New vehicles drive canal discussion

by: Robin Hartill Managing Editor

The topic wasn’t on the agenda of the Longboat Key Town Commission’s Monday, Sept. 16 regular workshop but came up when a discussion on funding new police vehicles and radios veered off in a different direction.

The commission ultimately reached consensus to forward the ordinance that reallocates funds to provide the $356,000 needed for new police vehicles and equipment.

And, commissioners agreed that canal funding should be a topic for future workshop discussion.
So how did the paths of the two topics cross?

Both are funded by infrastructure surtax — i.e. Sarasota County’s one-cent sales tax.
The commission approved new police vehicles and radios last year, but town staff inadvertently left the cost out of the budget.

Town Manager Dave Bullock presented an ordinance to commissioners that would reallocate infrastructure surtax funds to provide for the $356,000 by reducing funds for other projects — including a reduction of $100,000 each for comprehensive beach management and canal dredging.

Commissioners wanted a breakdown of the replacement schedule, which is based on a formula of both mileage and hours on the road, because police vehicles spend a large amount of time idling, placing wear and tear on the vehicles.

They also discussed whether alternative funds were available.

The commission agreed to forward the ordinance to its October regular meeting.

They also debated how funds should be spent, with Commissioner Phill Younger questioning whether the town should be funding canal dredging.

Canal dredging will be a topic for a future workshop.

Also at its Sept. 16 workshop, the commission:

Approved on consent agenda:
• A temporary extension of its collection franchise agreement with Waste Management;
• The 2013-14 fiscal year holiday schedule
• The Floodplain Management Plan 2013 Annual Report & Community Rating System

Forwarded to its Oct. 7 meeting for first reading:
• A $762,000 budget transfer from the Road and Bridge Fund to the Streets Department;
• A $337,814 budget transfer from the Road and Bridge Fund to reimburse the Beach Fund for construction of the North Shore Road seawall;
• An ordinance amending the 2012-13 fiscal year budget to provide funds for an assistant town manager and for paid accrued vacation and medical for employees who retired or entered the Deferred Retirement Options Program (DROP);
• An interlocal agreement between the town and Sarasota County for storm-sewer permit monitoring that incorporates new language about Florida Department of Environmental Protection requirements, new time periods and increased costs.

• The town’s policy for electronic meeting attendance and participation.

 Contact Robin Hartill at [email protected].

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