- April 16, 2014
The town of Longboat Key may be getting some assistance with its density issue.
Town Manager Bruce St. Denis notified the Longboat Key Town Commission in a June 26 email that Rep. Ray Pilon’s staff has contacted him about assisting with a new state bill that prohibits the town from holding a referendum regarding future Comprehensive Plan amendments.
For the town of Longboat Key, that bill means a referendum can no longer be held to increase the island’s density.
Longboat Key Mayor Jim Brown sent an email to elected officials June 21, urging them for assistance in getting an amendment granted to the new bill.
Brown sent emails to Pilon and Rep. Jim Boyd, as well as Sens. Mike Bennett and Nancy Detert, urging their assistance.
“Under the charter provision of the town, the referenda process is used to liberalize density restrictions, not to limit them,” Brown wrote. “It has functioned well to ensure an orderly and predictable growth process and appears to have wide support within the town. Because it has functioned so well for so long, we ask that an amendment be offered that would grandfather communities that have charter provisions enacted prior to Jan. 1, 2011, or some other reasonable date.”
The town of Longboat Key has a town charter provision, which was adopted in 1985, stating that density above the 1984 Comprehensive Plan cannot be increased without a vote of the electorate. The new bill prohibits a referenda process regarding density.
St. Denis, however, said Pilon’s staff is willing to see if there is a way for an exemption to be created for Longboat Key as part of a local bill.
“It may be possible to address our issue in some sort of a glitch bill,” St. Denis wrote.
Contact Kurt Schultheis at [email protected]" target="_blank">[email protected].