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SRQ DAILY Aug 18, 2016

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"A project should be based on what makes sense for an area."

- Frank DiCicco, Sarasota County Commission candidate

[Politics]  Growth Debated in Sarasota County Contest
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

As candidates vie for an up-for-grabs Sarasota County Commission seat, the subtleties of what constitutes planned, controlled growth loom large in the contest. Mike Moran, a sitting Sarasota County Planning Commissioner, has argued problems like a lack of affordable housing can only be solved as developers are allowed to develop land based on market demand. Frank DiCicco, president of the Myakka Valley Ranches Homeowners Association, said largely unfettered growth has led to infrastructure that lags behind construction rates. One of these candidates will carry their philosophy forward as the Republican nominee for Sarasota County Commission District 1.

Moran argues regulations have stifled the sort of creative development necessary to deal with housing issues in the region today. Affordable and attainable housing, which Moran calls a “drum I’ve been beating for a long time,” has been missing in this market for some time because of the difficult pressures here, many created by government. High impact fees and certain density restrictions can make it hard to bring cheap housing on-line. “While the intentions are honorable, it shows how the government can try and alter free market principles and the results can hurt the very people you are trying to help,” he says. He would like to see the creation of a special district, one where creating housing somewhere growth is desired would stimulate development by incentivizing it rather than restricting or financially penalizing it. He believes his experience working with governments—he also serves on the Southwest Florida Water Management District Board—would help in crafting the right governing rules and in working with other jurisdictions in partnership on the issue.

DiCicco, in contrast, got involved in public discourse in large part because of housing he did not think the community could yet handle. He was surprised when a 1,700-acre development with 3,400 homes was approved off of State Road 72 before infrastructure to handle the boost in traffic was approved. He said the approval of developments in and of themselves isn’t the problem so much as the timing, and that citizens ultimately get burdened when new growth comes before proper roadways and other services come to fruition. “A project should be based on what makes sense for an area,” he says. That also requires a process that brings neighbors into a discussion before a project comes online, but often affected homeowners, particularly in low density regions of the county, don’t get notified of zoning hearings because their properties aren’t in extremely close proximity to affected land. He’d like to see a greater expectation that developers contribute to the cost growth brings to community, and said additional cost should be borne by those who want to build or buy a new home in the region as opposed to buying an existing home that doesn’t require new infrastructure.

DiCicco and Moran face off in a county-wide Republican primary on Aug. 30. The winner will face Democrat Fredd Atkins, a former Sarasota mayor, in the November general election.  

Pictured: Frank DiCicco and Mike Moran

[Daily Shop]  Taste the Mediterranean
Aviel Kanter, aviel.kanter@srqme.com

Ask the person behind the counter at the Artisan Cheese Company to let you smell one of the already opened bottles of their Italian sale alle erbe—your life will be forever altered. Aromatic wafts of freshly picked rosemary, sage and garlic spiral out of the glass container; resist the urge to pour straight down the gullet. Imported directly from the Società Agricola Vignalta in Italy, this herbed salt reflects an age-old Veneto tradition of infusing sea salt with fresh herbs, in this case, grown on the Marlunghe estate and never dried before being blended. The wild-grown rosemary and sage are mixed with ground pepper and garlic to create this one-of-a-kind salt, best sprinked over any kind of grilled meat or fish, potatoes, soup and even your morning eggs. Insider tip: request the Artisan Cheese Co. to place you a bulk order.  

Artisan Cheese Company, 1310 Main St., Sarasota, 941-951-7860.

[Recognition]  Morrison Named Among Top 40

A broker-associate in the RE/MAX Platinum Realty in the Venice office, Maia Morrison has been named among the Top 40 Business Professionals by the Venice Gondolier Sun. The Top 40 Business Professionals are recognized for demonstrating business and professional excellence. Morrison received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Venice Area Board of Realtors (VABR) where she served as 1987 president, six years as treasurer and on numerous committees.  

RE/MAX Platinum Reality

[Recognition]  JMX Brands Make Watch List

JMX Brands is among 50 statewide companies expected to see significant growth over the next several years. The company was selected from more than 500 nominees for Florida companies to Watch, a statewide program managed by economic development group GrowFL, in association with the Edward Lowe Foundation.  

JMX Brands

[Recognition]  Goodwill Receives Market Leadership Award

Goodwill Manasota won the Market Leadership by Share of Used Goods, Market Leadership by Donations and Operational Excellence awards for having one of the highest marker penetration scores among Goodwill agencies of a similar size. Market penetration is determined by the number of people who shop at and donate to a particular Goodwill region, divided by the size of the relevant market population.  

Goodwill Manasota

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns.In the CocoTele department, SRQ DAILY is providing excerpts from news releases as a public service. Reference to any specific product or entity does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by SRQ DAILY. The views expressed by individuals are their own and their appearance in this section does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

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