BELLEAIR BLUFFS - A group of residents opposed to building a new Largo fire station across from Belleair Bluff's City Hall prompted a discussion lasting nearly an hour at the City Commission’s April 14 workshop meeting. A petition signed by 112 residents was presented by the group’s spokesperson.
Lori Spence of Bluff View Drive represented the opponents. She told the commission she and others had canvassed residents living in the vicinity of the proposed station site.
“As you can see, 112 citizens, to date, think planning for the proposed fire station should not go forward,” she said.
BELLEAIR - With a 4-1 vote Belleair Commissioners approved the establishment of a new zoning designation, aimed specifically at the property occupied by the Belleview Biltmore Hotel.
Commissioner Stephen Fowler was the only one who voted against the zoning. All along he has been critical of the new designation.
The new zoning is known as RM-10 and it allows potential developers of the hotel property to produce plans with only 10 living units per acre on the 20-acre site. Up until now the fewest number of units permitted was 15 and city officials felt that was too many and would have been a detriment to the high-end development of the property.
BELLEAIR BEACH - A 66-year-old Largo man was transported to a local hospital via Bayflite with life-threatening injuries Monday afternoon after he was hit by a truck in Belleair Beach.
According to a report from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, the crash occurred about 3 p.m. April 14 on Gulf Boulevard near Howard Drive in Belleair Beach.
Deputies assigned to the Major Accident Investigation Team said Nathen Wright was riding his bicycle southbound on Gulf Boulevard in the bike lane. At the same time, Kelvin Simmerman, 55, of Dunedin was driving a 2013 GMC pickup truck traveling southbound.
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH - Helen R. Proctor, 86, a founder of the Indian Rocks Beach Library and Indian Rocks Beach Area Historical Society, died April 4, 2014.
Proctor was the editor of the Indian Rocks Pictorial History Book, a member of the Civic Association, Action 2000, Clearwater Chapter of National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, Belleair Republican Women’s Club and American Contract Bridge League. She was a precinct clerk for Indian Rocks Beach for many years.
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH - City officials are laying the groundwork designed to improve the look of Gulf Boulevard through more trees and landscaping
Planning and Zoning Director Danny Taylor has started work on a proposed ordinance that would create a “canyon effect” on Gulf Boulevard
He told commissioners April 8 the Planning and Zoning board looked at several ordinances in October and November from around the Southeast. Board members liked the town of Belleair’s ordinance and used some of its provisions for their proposed regulations.
BELLEAIR BLUFFS - Fire stations do not belong in residential and recreational areas. That’s the message a group of Belleair Bluffs residents hope to convey to city officials when they present a petition signed by neighbors of a proposed new station to be located on city property across from city hall.
The property also sits in a residential neighborhood and is close to the city park where children play, said resident Lori Spence, who is heading the petition drive. Spence said a number of residents whose homes are close to the fire station are “very concerned.”
“We are opposed to this. It is not the right location for a Largo fire station,” she said in a recent interview. Spence said the residents are concerned about a decrease in their property values due to the station’s presence, as well as the noise of sirens and fire trucks going back and forth, and the potential danger to children playing in the nearby playground.
BELLEAIR BEACH - Two years ago, voters approved a referendum issue that directed council members to develop a financing plan to underground all public utilities in Belleair Beach.
Since that time, as the cost of undergrounding has continued to rise, the issue has been mostly put aside in favor of more easily done beautification projects.
In May of last year, the City Council decided to set up a committee to study ways to use nearly $3 million in funds Belleair Beach is due to receive as part of a massive Gulf Boulevard Beautification project paid for with county Penny for Pinellas funds. That committee’s efforts have so far produced a crosswalk beautification project, which is currently underway.
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH - City commissioners unanimously approved a resolution April 8 authorizing the city manager to execute a contract that will allow a company to rent chairs, umbrellas and cabanas at the county and Indian Rocks Beach access park.
In an effort to offset maintenance costs, staff discussed several options to create a revenue source and settled on issuing a request for a proposal March 12 for specific beach rentals at the park, 1700 Gulf Blvd.
The city received one proposal for the service from a company that has several contracts in place in the Tampa Bay area, Advantus Leisure Management Services.
Classic car show TIERRA VERDE – More than 100 cars will be on display Saturday, April 19, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., when the Tierra Verde Business Partnership plans its third annual Classic Car Show and Taste of Tierra Verde in the Tierra Verde business district at 1101 Pinellas Bayway S.
A portion of the proceeds from the event will be donated to the Eckerd College Search and Rescue Team.
The TVBP is made up of 75 local businesses and community groups. Its mission is to support and promote existing and new businesses on Tierra Verde.
Entry fee for the car show is $15 in advance and $20 day of the show. Cars for sale are $10 day of the show and vendor space is $25.
For more information on the car show, call 547-8082.
Document shredding ST. PETERSBURG – A post-tax season document shredding event will benefit the St. Petersburg Free Clinic. The event is set for Saturday, April 19, 10 a.m. to noon, at Cummings Financial Organization, 3637 Fourth St. N.
To get these services, people are asked to bring a donation of canned goods for use by the clinic.
Commercial shredding will not be accepted at this event, though monthly on-site pickup services are available separately through the Louise Graham Regeneration Center.
Feeling Better About Ourselves workshops PINELLAS PARK – Feeling Better About Ourselves will present a series of monthly workshops for people coping with depression, biopolar disorder and addictions (dual diagnosis).
The first workshop,“The Importance of Self Worth in Our Recovery,” will be offered Saturday, April 19, 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., at Windmoor Healthcare, 11300 U.S. 19, Pinellas Park.
The suggested donation is $5. For information, call Sandi and Les at 822-3480.
Golden Corral blood drive Golden Corral restaurant at 10050 Ulmerton Road, Largo, will host a blood drive Saturday, April 19, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The blood drives will offer donors an opportunity to share their power to save lives by donating blood.
All blood donors will receive a coupon for a free lunch buffet from Golden Corral and a voucher for a free movie ticket, as well as a wellness checkup, which includes blood pressure, temperature, iron count and a cholesterol screening.
Rotary Club Easter egg hunt TREASURE ISLAND – The Gulf Beaches Rotary Club and the Isle of Capri Civic Association are co-sponsoring a free Easter egg hunt Saturday, April 19, 10 a.m., at Treasure Island Community Center Park, 106th Avenue and Gulf Boulevard.
Activities for children 10 and younger will include an egg hunt, bonnet and hat contest, and a visit with the Easter bunny.
Those attending should bring cameras to capture the fun.
For additional information, call 547-4575 or 367-2303.
CLEARWATER – The East Library, 2251 Drew St., is hosting a monthly Socrates Café, which are free forums that are open to the public. Attendees will get a brain workout, which research has shown is as important as exercise is for the body.
The Cafés are set for Saturdays, Feb. 8, March 15, April 19, May 10, June 21, July 19, Aug. 16, Sept. 20, Oct. 18, Nov. 15 and Dec. 20, 2 to 4 p.m.
Participants choose a philosophical topic and then use Socratic dialogue – a question and answer debate technique developed by the Greek philosopher – to examine the topic. There are no prerequisites or additional preparation required.
Socrates Cafés came into being through writer-philosopher Christopher Phillips who said that people learn more by asking questions in social groups. In his book, “Socrates Café: A Fresh Taste of Philosophy,” he advocates using the Socratic method of philosophical dialogue in open-invitation forums to understand truth.