+ Waterlefe presents Fort Hamer plea
Waterlefe residents pleaded their case against the construction of the Fort Hamer Bridge during the Manatee County Commission meeting July 27.
Resident Tom Davidson, who is leading a committee against the project, spoke on behalf of property owners and presented commissioners with a resolution against the bridge adopted in late June by the Waterlefe Master Property Owner’s Association.
“We think it’s the wrong bridge,” Davidson said. “We believe it is the wrong time. We believe it is the wrong place.”
Residents say the bridge may cause environmental and noise pollution, would be visually unappealing and would be a danger for residents and drivers using the bridge because of its proximity to the golf course.
The bridge, which has been scaled back to a four-lane bridge from its original six-lane design, must undergo a new environmental impact study.
+ Commissioners OK sheriff’s office surtax
Manatee County commissioners last week approved 4-3 an increase of 10 cents for every $1,000 of assessed value on Truth in Millage notices that will be sent to tax payers in August.
The change, which can be lowered but not increased during the budget process, is intended to help fund the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office and would generate more than $2 million if approved in August. It is meant to help the sheriff’s office pay for a mandatory increase in the stage pension fund, as well as other budget shortfalls.
Commissioners Donna Hayes, Carole Whitmore and John Chappie opposed the measure.