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Longboat Key Tuesday, Jun. 15, 2010 7 years ago

Town to help Colony see the (turtle-friendly) light

by: Robin Hartill Managing Editor

Longboat Key Code Enforcement Officer Heidi Micale will meet with officials from The Colony Beach & Tennis Resort to discuss how the property can be brought into compliance with the town’s turtle-lighting ordinance. Micale recommended the discussion at the Code Enforcement Board’s June 14 meeting.

Paula Clark, former Turtle Watch permit holder for Longboat and Lido keys who was recently hired by the town to perform inspections, showed the board recent photographs taken from the Colony beach at night, in which lighting is visible. She also presented two diagrams drawn last July, when hatchlings from two nests near the property became disoriented.

“We’re trying to get everything compliant so that that doesn’t happen again,” Clark said.

Dr. Murray “Murf” Klauber, Colony owner and chairman, told the board that he was unaware that the property was not in compliance and showed the board photographs he had taken of the property from the beach, which showed darkness. Micale told Klauber that some of the lights he thought were in compliance with the ordinance were not turtle-friendly. Klauber also took issue with lighting that he said came from a privately owned home, rather than his property.

Board members agreed that they should return to the property.

“I’d like to see this resolved in favor of the turtles without causing undue harm to you,” Code Enforcement Chairman Robert Krosney told Klauber.

The Colony was one of seven properties that received turtle-lighting violations that were voted on at the meeting (see box). The other six properties accepted stipulation agreements that established grounds for a repeat violation if the same property is cited for the same violation in five years. The penalty for violating the ordinance is up to $250 a day, and $500 a day for repeat offenses. Of the seven properties, the Colony was the only one to receive a repeat violation.

The following seven properties received turtle-lighting violations:

• Home of Robert and Jayne Berman, 6429 Gulfside Road
• Cabana Beach Club, 5851 Gulf of Mexico Drive
• Castillian Condominium Association, 4515 Gulf of Mexico Drive
• Longbeach Condominium Association Inc., 7075 Gulf of Mexico Drive
• The Colony Beach & Tennis Resort, 1620 Gulf of Mexico Drive
• Longboat Harbour Towers, 4401 Gulf of Mexico Drive
• Home of Gregory McKee, 4101 Gulf of Mexico Drive

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