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SRQ DAILY May 3, 2021

Monday Business Edition

Monday Business Edition

"The most important bill we passed is our annual budget. This balanced budget is fiscally responsible that addresses important needs for Sarasota County and all Floridians in a number of areas, including health care, public education and the environment."

- Rep. Will Robinson, R-Bradenton

[State]  Lawmakers Tout Piney Point, Policy Wins As Session Wraps
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

The 60-day legislative session closed on Friday, with most lawmakers saying the Sarasota-Manatee area benefitted from work in Tallahassee. Local lawmakers played key roles in issues from insurance reform to a change in how sales tax will be collected.

“I am very proud of the work we have done on behalf of Sarasota County this legislative session,” said Rep. Will Robinson, R-Bradenton. “The most important bill we passed is our annual budget. This balanced budget is fiscally responsible that addresses important needs for Sarasota County and all Floridians in a number of areas, including health care, public education and the environment."

And lawmakers through the region pointed to a major budget accomplishment, securing $100 million to clean up the Piney Point industrial site in Manatee County. A reservoir breach at that site forced evacuations of more than 300 homes mid-Session and the release of more than 200 million gallons of industrial wastewater into Port Manatee and Tampa Bay.

Rep. Tommy Gregory, R-Sarasota, praised “Gov. [Ron] DeSantis' leadership and financial commitment to resolving the decades old problems at Piney Point.” Even Rep. Michele Rayner-Goolsby, D-St. Petersburg and the only Democrat representing the region in Tallahassee, said that nine-figure appropriation was the most significant gain for the region out of Session. Sen. Jim Boyd, R-Bradenton, listed that as the top benefit to the region out of session as well.

There were policy fights. Rayner-Goolsby fought against a ban on transgender girls playing girls’ sports in school that the Republican Legislature ultimately passed.

Boyd sponsored a massive homeowners’ insurance overhaul that would be one of the last bills passed in session. It amends how attorneys’ fees are awarded and how rates are structured for Citizens Property Insurance.

Sen. Joe Gruters, R-Sarasota, after three years successfully pushed through a major sales tax change, requiring online retailers to collect sales tax at point of sale. The expected $1-billion annual windfall will be used to replenish Florida’s unemployment trust and to slash commercial rent taxes by more than half.


Photo courtesy Florida DEP.

[Celebration]  Aqua Plumbing & Air Celebrates National Skilled Trades Day

 Aqua Plumbing & Air, a local heating, air conditioning and plumbing company, invites the community to recognize National Skilled Trades Day on May 5, 2021. In an effort to celebrate those who are employed as skilled trades workers, the company hopes to inform the community about the benefits of skilled trades jobs and encourage those considering careers within the industry, by partnering with local job fairs, hiring organizations and technical colleges and trade schools. 

Click here for more information.

[Recognition]  "Suncoast Empire" Selected as One Book Sarasota

The Sarasota County Centennial Committee is proud to announce that Suncoast Empire: Bertha Honoré Palmer, Her Family, and the Rise of Sarasota by the President of the Centennial’s Steering Committee Frank A. Cassell has been chosen as the essential book of the 2021 One Book/One Community program in Sarasota.  

Click here for more information.

[Recognition]  Doctors Hospital Earns 'A' Rating for Safety Through Pandemic

Doctors Hospital of Sarasota successfully treated the first hospitalized patient in the state of Florida with COVID-19. Dozens of caregivers treated that patient and there have been hundreds of patients with COVID-19 treated since then. “We believe that that the high standards for safety and quality we have in place contributed to our success in caring for COVID-19 patients throughout this pandemic,” said Robert Meade, CEO of Doctors Hospital of Sarasota. The hospital earned another ‘A’ grade for safety from the Leapfrog Group, a national organization that tracks safety in hospitals. 

[Recognition]  Quality Star Ratings and Hospital Report Cards Released

Sarasota Memorial Hospital continues to lead the region in quality and safety, earning a 5-star rating for overall quality from the federal government and another A for patient safety in The Leapfrog Group's hospital report cards released today. “Sarasota Memorial's culture has been built on decades of quality and safety,” David Verinder, president and CEO of Sarasota Memorial Health Care System said. “The dedication, leadership and support of our Hospital Board has helped make SMH what it is today and continues to shape the future of our health system.” 

[New Hire]  Jewish Federation Announces New CEO

“On behalf of The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee, I am proud to announce that after a comprehensive national search, our board of directors has selected Shepard Englander as our new Chief Executive Officer,” said Randon Carvel, Federation Board President. “We believe we have found the perfect leader to take the helm of our growing Federation. We couldn’t be more thrilled.” 

[New Grant]  CreArte Latino Cultural Center Receives Grant from Gulf Coast Community Foundation and Charles And Margery Barancik Foundation

Through their COVID-19 Response Initiative, Gulf Coast Community Foundation and Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation have awarded CreArte Latino Cultural Center a grant of $9,586. The funds will help complete construction of the organization’s new suite at 8251 15th St. East in Sarasota and pay certain expenses incurred during the pandemic. When completed, CreArte’s 4,500-square-foot space will feature a 100-seat theater, a classroom, and a lounge. 

[SOON]  MUSEUM: The Ringling: For Real This Time , December 20 – May 16

Ringling Museum of Art's video exhibition Real This Time will showcase the work of artists including Bear Witness from April 23 until May 16. During this extraordinary time, video has become the key medium contributing to the public sphere. Video, often captured on cellphones and shared through social media, exposes social justice issues and matters of civic life to a global audience. For Real This Time features video-based works that examine the current state of American society and pose uncomfortable yet vital questions about personal and collective attitudes toward issues of race and inequality. The exhibition is presented in a sequence of individual screenings. Each work brings to light narratives of systemic racism and offers a unique inquiry that evokes historical exchange to illustrate the expansiveness of the issues affecting Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) today. For Real This Time opens up a space for deeper reflection on the common experience of resilience across cultures in order to create a shift in our psyches that inspires tangible and effective change.

[SOON]  GALLERY: The Ringling: Frans Hals: Detecting a Decade , February 14 – May 16, Museum hours.

Frans Hals: Detecting a Decade will run Feb. 14, 2021 through May 16, 2021. The Ringling's portrait of Pieter Jacobsz. Olycan, by the Dutch Baroque master Frans Hals (1582/83 - 1666), is one of the museum's treasures. Renowned in his own day for his lively brushwork and uncanny ability to capture the vitality of his sitters, Hals continues to be a favorite among art lovers, collectors and artists alike. In this exhibition, organized by the Dallas Museum of Art, The Ringling's painting, which was executed about 1639, will be displayed side-by-side with a second portrait by Hals of Olycan (private collection), painted about 10 years earlier. Through close examination and comparison of these two portraits of the same person, the exhibition will shed light on Hals's revolutionary painting technique, and will explain how his work evolved over the decade of the 1630s. On March 18, at 10:30am, Dr. Sarah Cartwright, Ulla R. Searing Curator of Collections, will present a Virtual Gallery Conversation: Frans Hals: Detecting a Decade.

[SOON]  GALLERY: The Ringling: Larry Rivers: Boston Massacre , February 14 – May 16, Museum hours.

Also opening February 14 is Larry Rivers: Boston Massacre. In this series of 13 mixed-media prints, Larry Rivers, one of the pioneers of Pop Art, reimagines the tragedy of the Boston Massacre. This event, marking the beginning of the American Revolution, occurred March 5, 1770, when British Army soldiers fired their muskets into a crowd of civilians gathered on the streets of Boston, killing five colonists and galvanizing American sentiment for independence from Great Britain. Two hundred years later, Rivers revisits this moment in a series that disrupts traditional depictions of historical narrative through fragmentary visual references to the past that intermix with imagery from the political unrest of the 1960s. This exhibition presents the Boston Massacre portfolio from The Ringling's permanent collection. The exhibition will run until May 16, 2021. On February 23 at 10:30am, the Ringling will offer a Virtual Conversation: Images of Conflict. Guests will join curators Ola Wlusek and Sarah Cartwright in a conversation about artworks depicting conflict and trauma in The Ringling's collection. While focusing on the exhibition Larry Rivers: Boston Massacre, in consideration with examples of European Renaissance and Baroque art, representations of power and violence across time will be explored and how these images can help us understand conflict and address societal change today.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Discover Sarasota: Public Art Tour , October 1 – May 31

Sculpture has long been an integral part of Sarasota’s cultural legacy. On this 90-minute trolley or van tour, you visit more than 50 of the city’s public art sculptures, monuments, and murals in charming neighborhoods and downtown Sarasota. Sit back and relax as painter and public art expert Jerome Chesley helps you see the city through new eyes. Get ready to discover beautiful public pieces you may have never noticed before! Admire Jorge Blanco’s “Bravo” on the roundabout at Ringling Boulevard and Orange Avenue. Catch a glimpse of John Henry’s “Complexus,” standing over 60 feet tall. Pass by Seward Johnson’s iconic bayfront sculpture, “Unconditional Surrender,” a larger-than-life recreation of the famous photograph taken on V-J Day in Times Square. Ready to learn more about what makes Sarasota a true arts mecca? See all this and more on this unforgettable public art trolley or van tour. Book your tickets online today. This tour is 90 minutes, open to ages 12 and up, departs from 1826 4th Street, from October to May. Tours with fewer than 10 guests will travel in our comfortably air-conditioned high-top van. Tour ticket includes FREE Parking.

[SOON]  MUSIC: The Pops Orchestra: High Five Pop Up Concert Series , March 20 – May 15, 5:30pm

The Pops Orchestra is proud to present a “High Five Pop Up Concert Series” featuring the String Quartet, Woodwind Quintet, and Brass Quintet from The Pops performing in various outdoor settings around the Suncoast region at 5:30pm. Conductor Robyn Bell will lead you through a 60-minute show full of laughs, stories, and, of course, wonderful light classical, Broadway, film, and other popular music performed by the chamber music groups. It’s just what your soul has been seeking. Due to Covid restrictions, you won’t actually be able to give anybody a “high five” See you at the safe show. You have three opportunities to catch the Pops Orchestra's Chamber Groups in concert: on Saturday, March 20 at 5:30pm at Marie Selby Gardens, on Sunday, April 11 at 5:30pm at Historic Spanish Point (and help Robyn celebrate her birthday on this date), and on Saturday, May 15 at 5:30pm at Nathan Benderson Park.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Resilient Retreat: Resilient Rhapsody: Concert Series , May 9, 4:30pm-7pm

Resilient Retreat Welcomes You To Resilient Rhapsody: Concert Series Featuring the Sarasota Pops on their beautiful 84 acres of conservation land on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 9 at Resilient Retreat, 13010 Fruitville Road. Proceeds benefit Resilient Retreat and our mission to provide trauma-informed support for abuse survivors and those that witness trauma in the workplace. Gates will open at 4:30pm and the performance will take place from 5:30pm to 7:30pm. Individual tickets are $40 per person and VIP seating is $60 per person. COVID safety protocols will be followed. Sponsorship opportunities are available, for more information please call 9413430039.

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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