REDINGTON SHORES – Town officials are addressing problems caused by red tide.
“The main thing on everyone’s mind is red tide,” said Mayor MaryBeth Henderson in opening the Sept. 12 Town Commission meeting.
“It’s here,” she said.
Henderson said a significant fish kill “washed up on our shores this week.” As quickly as it arrived, “the town and county worked together to clean it up ASAP,” she said.
Henderson praised the job done by town workers Steve Jordan and Brad Kelly, who drove the tractor with a rake “up and down the beach countless times to gather and dispose of the dead fish.”
Also, “the county came to our rescue in bringing in at least 25 workers with rakes and dumpsters.”
Henderson called out Kelli Levy of the county Emergency Management Team, saying “she was phenomenal, going above and beyond in helping.”
Henderson said the town is monitoring the Red Tide and will stay on top of the situation.
“We will continue to keep our beaches as free of (dead) fish as possible,” she said.
Chief Heather Burford of the Seminole Fire Department, which provides Emergency Services to Redington Shores, said there had been no medical calls to the department related to red tide.
Code enforcement update
The need for a more active code enforcement policy was discussed at last month’s workshop. Several options were looked at, including the Sheriff’s Office, Indian Shores Police Department and using town staff.
Commissioner Jeff Neal said the Sheriff’s Office provides code enforcement locally for Madeira Beach, North Redington Beach and Belleair Bluffs, using a dedicated police officer at a charge of about $45 an hour.
Indian Shores Police Chief Terry Hughes said at the workshop his department, which already provides police protection to Redington Shores, would add code enforcement at no charge. But the officers involved would need to be certified, which involves some schooling, and a charge. That cost would be shared by the Police Department and the town.
Neal said at the September meeting he had had talks with Captain Mike Leiner of the Sheriff’s Office about hiring a deputy who would do code enforcement in Redington Shores about six hours a week.
“We’re close to a deal. (The Sheriff’s Office) is definitely where we are going,” Neal said.