- March 14, 2011
Longboat Key registered voters will be presented with two ballot questions on the Tuesday, March 15 municipal election ballot.
The town’s residents will be voting on a referendum question that seeks voter approval for a $16 million beach project, which includes the construction of erosion-control structures on the north end of the island. The project cost also includes placing sand along the north end and other high-erosion areas island-wide.
Town Manager Bruce St. Denis has been performing “Beaches 101” presentations for residents to explain why the project is important.
To help hold sand on the severely eroded north end, a groin that’s similar to what sits on the other side of Longboat Pass at the southern tip of Anna Maria Island might help hold sand in the area.
Two other groins that are proposed near the vicinity of North Shore Road might also help.
St. Denis believes the $16 million project might be able to be performed for as little as $8 million if both a $3 million surtax funding option and a $5 million credit from natural-gas pipeline company Port Dolphin LLC are received next year.
St. Denis also alluded that changes might be coming to the town’s island-wide beach project in the future. The Town Commission chose to put forth this ballot question as opposed to an island-wide beach project that the commission believes is premature at this time.
If approved, beachside Longboat Key taxpayers, who reside in District A, would fund 80% of the beach project. Bayside property owners, who reside in District B, would pay the remaining 20% of the project.
Also on the ballot is a town charter amendment question, which asks voters to clarify what is considered a partial term for commissioners.
In short, the charter amendment is asking voters to decide if a partial term counts as a full term.
Currently, commissioners can serve up to three, two-year consecutive terms before reaching their term limit.
If approved, this charter amendment would allow a commissioner to serve three full terms, as well as a partial term, as long as the partial term is less than one year. If a commissioner were appointed for a partial term of more than one year, that partial term would count as a full two-year term.
The following questions will be placed before Longboat Key registered voters on the Tuesday, March 15 ballot:
• District A Beach Erosion Control Bond Referendum
Shall Longboat Key Beach Erosion Control District A issue not exceeding $16,000,000 General Obligation Bonds, bearing interest not exceeding the maximum legal rate when sold, maturing in not exceeding twenty annual installments beginning the year after issuance, pledging the District’s full faith, credit and unlimited taxing power, to finance erosion control and sand for the District’s northerly Gulf beaches, pursuant to Resolution 2011-02 of the Town Commission, ex officio as governing body of the District?
Yes — For bonds
No — Against Bonds
• District B Beach Erosion Control Bond Referendum
Shall Longboat Key Beach Erosion Control District B obligate itself to partially retire District A’s not exceeding $16,000,000 General Obligation Bonds, bearing interest not exceeding the maximum legal rate, maturing in not exceeding twenty annual installments, pledging the District’s full faith, credit and unlimited taxing power (but at an annual millage rate of 20% of the sum of District A and District B annual millage rates) for beach erosion control and sand projects on Longboat Key?
Yes — For bonds
No — Against Bonds
• Charter Amendment Term Limit Question
Shall the charter of the town be amended to provide that a partial term for any commissioner of more than one year shall be counted as a term under the three consecutive term limitation provided for in the town charter?
Early voting for all Longboat Key registered voters for the March 15 municipal election will be available March 7 through March 13, at Town Hall, 501 Bay Isles Road.
Early-voting hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday.
On Tuesday, March 15, voting hours are from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. On Election Day, Sarasota County voters must vote at Town Hall, and Manatee County voters must vote at Longboat Island Chapel, 6200 Gulf of Mexico Drive.
Contact Kurt Schultheis at [email protected]