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Highlights of July 1, 2024 Sarasota City Commission Meeting

Highlights of July 1, 2024 Sarasota City Commission Meeting


Proving that a picture is worth tens of thousands of words, during public comment one resident showed CityPAC's special interest gauge -- revealing that an eye-popping 75% of the funding for the 3 incumbent city commissioners' re-election campaigns is from those with business before the city.

The Sarasota Newsleader took a deep dive and named names of who is backing which incumbents, finding that tens of thousands of developer dollars are fueling the campaign treasuries of commissioners Alpert, Arroyo and Battie.


A series of traffic studies conducted in March of this year showed an alarming number of speeding violations of the school zones (over 17,000 in 5 days in front of one school). As a result, the city will be adding speed cameras for the school zones around Alta Vista Elementary, Southside Elementary, Tuttle Elementary, Sarasota High, Cardinal Moody, and the Sarasota Military Academy.


CityPAC steering committee member Eileen Normile, a former prosecutor and city commissioner, explained the risks to the public of the judge’s dismissal of a lawsuit on the grounds that elected officials enjoy absolute immunity from malicious defamation. Nonetheless, the city commission voted to reimburse Kyle Battie’s attorney’s fees, and remained silent on the open wound ripped in the fabric of our city and civil rights.


“Let’s make a deal”, rather than “let’s follow the law” remained the perceived coin of the realm at city hall, as a developer sought to rescind a prior commitment to limit height on a parcel located on Fruitville and Palm. The primary rationale for the new request to amend the prior agreement was that a developer spotted an opportunity to optimize their returns from one of the most valuable pieces of the land in the city.

Heeding calls from the presidents of the Rosemary District Association and Downtown Sarasota Condo Association, the city commission voted to send the issue back to the Planning Board for review.


The Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections says poll workers are needed. Sign up to aid with the upcoming elections at Sarasota Votes.

COMING UP - JULY 18 - CityPAC Candidate Forum

CityPAC will be hosting its second 2024 Sarasota City Commission candidate forum on July 18, 2024 at the Friendship Center from 5:00-6:30 p.m.

The format will be a community conversation, featuring voter questions. All candidates (incumbents and challengers) for the 3 district seats have been invited.

CANDIDATE CHATS - Tuesdays in July

Please stop by Reyna's Taqueria on Tuesdays in July between 5-6 p.m. to meet Kathy Kelley Ohlrich (District 3) and Ron Kashden (District 2), the two city commission candidates that CityPAC endorsed after its March forum.

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