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Longboat Key Tuesday, Sep. 15, 2020 4 months ago

Plager appointed to Planning and Zoning Board

The commission also considered Aaron Kleiner and Maryl Levine.
by: Mark Bergin Staff Writer

The Longboat Key Town Commission voted Monday to appoint Sheldon Jay Plager  as the seventh member of the Planning and Zoning Board.

Commissioners voted 7-0 to appoint Plager, though Commissioner George Spoll initially supported Aaron Kleiner and Commissioner BJ Bishop initially supported Maryl Levine.

“The only comment I was going to make in favor of Plager, [he is] obviously very highly qualified,” Mayor Ken Schneier said. “He has been a property law professor, [which] will definitely help, and he is a 12-month resident here.”

From 1977-1984, Plager served as Indiana University School of Law’s eleventh dean. The New Jersey native received his undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina in 1952.

Plager received a law degree from the University of Florida in 1958 and a Masters in law from Columbia Law School in 1961.

From 1958-1963, Plager taught law at the University of Florida. He also taught at the University of Illinois from 1964-1977.

After leaving Indiana he was a visiting scholar at the Stanford University Law School, before holding positions in the Department of Health and Human Services and the Office of Management and Budget.

“There's no question about the fact that he's a very good candidate, but [he is] relatively recent to the town,” said commissioner George Spoll, who initially supported candidate Aaron Kleiner. Commissioner BJ Bishop, whose election to the commission opened up the seventh seat, initially supported Maryl Levine. Both ultimately supported Plager.

Plager also served as a Senior U.S. Circuit Court Judge.

It took the commission months to nominate a seventh member to the P&Z Board because the town typically hosts an in-person event to meet the candidates. Commissioners have been unable to hold such an event because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In April, commissioners reappointed David Green to remain on the P&Z Board. 

Mark Bergin is the Longboat Key Town Hall reporter for the Observer. He has previously worked as a senior digital producer at WTSP, the CBS affiliate in St. Petersburg. Mark is a graduate of the University of Missouri and grew up in the Chicagoland area.

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