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July 28 issue

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Photo courtesy of GULF BEACHES PUBLIC LIBRARY
Lily Lieber-Mentges has her first encounter with the library bear recently at Gulf Beaches Public Library in Madeira Beach.
TREASURE ISLAND - The city of Treasure Island could be the beneficiary of a plan to put a paid parking lot across from the entrance to Sunset Beach.

City commissioners voted 3-1 on July 19 to accept a lease-option deal for the former Delilah’s property on the northeast corner of Gulf Boulevard and First Street East. Commissioner Ken Keys voted against it. Mayor Bob Minning was absent.

The 1.5-acre site was under contract for $2.2 million but broker Tom Gaffney said he would work with the city. City Manager Reid Silverboard said Gaffney’s offer was for the city to buy the site outright for $2.1 million or lease it for 18 to 24 months and then purchase it for $2.1 million.
 ... Read More 
REDINGTON BEACH - The town of Redington Beach’s tax rate should remain at the current level of 1.941 mills for the 2017 fiscal year, town commissioners proposed July 20.

In a preliminary vote, the panel tentatively adopted the millage rate in a workshop preceding the regular commission meeting. The rate, if approved, would produce revenue of $780,961, about $50,000 more than this year. The latest property valuations by the Pinellas County Property Appraiser found values for Redington Beach were up 7.03 percent to $423.5 million.

Before the vote, Mayor Nick Simons said, “I personally would give serious consideration to the rollback rate” of 1.8149 mills, adding, “but at this meeting I would certainly prefer to keep the tax rolls at the current millage rate.”
 ... Read More 
Wednesday, July 20
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MADEIRA BEACH - The city of Madeira Beach’s tax rate will remain one of the lowest in Pinellas County. The city commission approved leaving the rate at 2.2 mills at their July 12 regular meeting.

The rate can be lowered further at upcoming budget hearings, but cannot be raised.

The millage rate currently is the third lowest of all full service cities in the county, and eighth lowest of the county’s 24 municipalities.

The decision to leave the millage rate unchanged came as somewhat of a surprise. City Manager Shane Crawford has warned over the past year that a rate increase was likely, due to the number of large and expensive projects being undertaken by the city.
 ... Read More 
REDINGTON SHORES - Town of Redington Shores residents will save over $120,000 in taxes next year, thanks to a decision to further decrease an already low tax rate.

A tentative rate of 1.8 mills was approved at the July 13 town commission meeting. The rate can be lowered, but not increased, at upcoming budget hearings.

The town’s current millage is 2.0, which had been the sixth lowest among the county’s 24 municipalities. The decrease to 1.8 mills gives Redington Shores the third lowest rate, behind tiny Belleair Shore, and second place North Redington Beach.
 ... Read More 
ST. PETE BEACH - Eleven city residents have thrown their hats into the ring to be considered as interim St. Pete Beach mayor.

City commissioners will consider the applications during a workshop Tuesday, July 26, and swear in the winning candidate during the regular commission meeting later that evening.
 ... Read More 
TIERRA VERDE - Local vendors are being sought by the Tierra Verde Women’s Club for its redesigned and rebranded Garage Sale.

Now called “Market in the Park,” the event is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 12, at the Tierra Verde playground and park just south of downtown Tierra Verde.
 ... Read More 
Wednesday, July 13
TREASURE ISLAND - The possibility of redevelopment on the north side of Treasure Island picked up momentum July 5 when city commissioners unanimously passed the proposed Planned Development Zoning District ordinance on second and final reading.

However, it’s not a done deal. Voters must still approve the measure when it appears on the ballot on Nov. 8.

The “PD” ordinance would give the city more flexibility in negotiations with developers for reconstruction of the many older, blighted properties within the zoning district. The ordinance pertains only to the east and west sides of Gulf Boulevard, north of 127th Avenue; and the west side of Gulf Boulevard between 104th and 119th avenues. It does not include Gulf Front Park, St. Pete Municipal Beach and Kingfish Park, next to Gator’s on the Pass.
 ... Read More 
REDINGTON BEACH - Whether to keep taxes at their current level or to lower them is the question before town commissioners as Town Clerk Missy Clarke presented the proposed 2016-17 budget at the July 6 meeting.

Clarke told the panel that property values in Redington Beach have been set at $423.5 million by the Pinellas County Property Appraiser’s office. Those property values would generate $780,961 in the next fiscal year if property taxes were kept at the present millage rate of 1.941 percent, she said. Taxes lowered to the rollback rate of 1.149 percent would generate revenue of $730,225.

“Nothing has really changed” in the general or capital fund budgets, she reported.
 ... Read More 
REDINGTON SHORES - “Let the Swimmers Beware” will continue to be the watchword for those who venture into the gulf waters offshore.

A move to put an end to local shark, or “blood” fishing, a practice said to endanger swimmers in the area, has been abandoned. The Redington Shores Town Attorney said such a ban conflicts with state law and would be illegal.
 ... Read More 
ST. PETE BEACH - St. Pete Beach City officials are accepting applications for interim mayor through the end of this week.

Due to the resignation of Mayor Maria Lowe nine months before her term was to end (March 2017), the City Commission is accepting letters of interest and resumes through noon on Friday, July 15.
 ... Read More 
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E-mail news to bmcclure@tbnweekly.com.
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Tampa Bay Newspapers
9911 Seminole Blvd.,
Seminole, FL 33772
Phone: (727) 397-5563
Fax: (727) 397-5900
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