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SRQ DAILY Mar 10, 2022

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"Our region is a big winner this session."

- Sen. Joe Gruters, R-Sarasota

[State]  Rattlesnake Key, Safe Children Coalition Big Budget Winners
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

A proposed budget for the state of Florida showed tremendous wins for the Sarasota-Bradenton area, from money for a new state park to boosts in spending for adoption services.

“Our region is a big winner this session,” said Sen. Joe Gruters, R-Sarasota. “We have a great delegation that worked hard to secure funding for the various projects and community-based issues.”

The biggest single expenditure that counts as a regional win likely would be the $23 appropriation included in the budget to purchase Rattlesnake Key. Sen. Jim Boyd, R-Bradenton, counted that as his top budget priority this year.

“Preserving Rattlesnake Key is instrumental to protect our waterway from commercial development, to preserve fish and wildlife, and create a park and recreation area for all Floridians to enjoy for generations to come,” he said. 

The key, which is accessible only by water, sits near Terra Ceia in Manatee County waters, south of the Sunshine Skyway. Manatee County Commissioners last year voted to put $3 million toward the effort and a funding request from Rep. Will Robinson, R-Bradenton, initially sought just $2.5 million, but this amount massively boosts the available resources for land purchase.

Gruters, meanwhile, worked with Rep. Fiona McFarland, R-Sarasota, on changing how much money would go to community-based care agencies in parts of the state including Sarasota. The result was an $8.6 million increase in the budget for Safe Children Coalition, about a 30% boost, according to CEO Brena Slater.

She said the agency for seven years has suffered with a shortage in funding compared to areas like Miami. A change in formula used for this year’s budget makes sure every agency in Florida gets at least 100% requested funding.

“For us, it means we will be able to provide more diversion services for families, prevention services for families,” she said. “We’ll be able to increase case managers’ salaries and the number of case managers so their case loads are less. Our children and families will finally be equal to other children and families in the state of Florida.”

A number of individual appropriations also came to the region, such as $2.5 million for State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota, $2.5 million for a pedestrian overpass over U.S. 41 in Palmetto, $2.5 million for a training program at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport, and $3 million for powerline removal on State Road 789 in Bradenton Beach. 

[New Hire]  Sarasota Shumaker Office Marks More Growth with New Hire

Shumaker announced that Associate Ryan M. Guerin has joined the firm’s National Labor, Employment and Benefits Service Line, as the latest in a string of strategic hires for the group, which most recently welcomed Partner Clayton Williams in the firm’s Charlotte, NC office, and Partner Scot Hinshaw in the Toledo, OH office. Ryan’s practice primarily focuses in the area of labor and employment, but also covers an array of general and complex commercial litigation matters. He represents employers in litigation involving claims of employment harassment, discrimination, retaliation, leave laws, wage and hour laws, whistleblower laws, enforcement of and defense against non-solicitation and non-competition agreements, and other employment-related claims. He also advises businesses on current legal trends and best employment practices. Ryan represents numerous industries, including clients within the automotive, retail, hospitality, health services, transportation, manufacturing, and construction industries. 

[New Contruction]  Local Contractor Celebrates Groundbreaking for a New Hilton in Southpoint Jacksonville

Commercial construction management firm, Firmo Construction, has been hired to build a Tru by Hilton in Jacksonville by I-95 South. In partnership with Jacksonville-based hospitality development group, OMSHIV JAX LLC, Firmo was awarded the project earlier this year and celebrated the start of the construction process with a groundbreaking ceremony this week. Bringing decades of combined experience with Hilton builds and the hospitality industry, Firmo Construction, OMSHIV JAX LLC, and the project's architect, Bharat R Patel Architect, Inc., will deliver this Hilton model at 4945 Lenoir Ave in South Jacksonville. The future four-story Tru by Hilton will feature 98 guest rooms, a fitness room, patio, outdoor pool, and lounge and gaming area. At a little over 45,000 square feet, the structure will be situated on a 2.65-acre lot. 

For more information click here

[Committee members]  School Board Seeks Civic-Minded Citizens to Join Audit Committee

The School Board of Manatee County is seeking civic-minded citizens to serve as members of the Audit Committee. The Committee, which meets six times a year, recommends the appointment of the internal and external auditors; reviews the scope, plan and reports of the internal and external auditors; and assists in maintaining open communications between the selected auditors, the School Board and the District’s financial management. The Committee also reviews the collection and proper use of the funds raised through the one-half cent sales surtax for school capital outlay expenditures. Membership on the Committee requires an average of five-to-eight hours per month, with meetings scheduled every other month for three hours. The term is approximately three years. Those interested in serving must: live in Manatee County, be a CPA (active or retired) or had employment experience in school district financial operations and submit a letter expressing interest, providing contact information and providing a brief summary of their work experience. Responses must be sent to the Manatee County School District, Attn: Board Agency Clerk, P.O. Box 9069, Bradenton, Florida 34206-9069. Interested individuals can obtain additional information about the Committee by emailing Barbara Vedder, Audit Committee Chair, at vedderb@manateeschools.net. 

[Grants]  IMPACT100 SRQ Announces Record Breaking $663,000 for its 2022 Giving Year

IMPACT100 SRQ announced its 2022 Giving Year grant impact for Sarasota and Manatee Counties at their annual Big Reveal event. The goal to #FundAllFive was surpassed on March 8 when the local women’s organization announced it will fund six transformational grants to nonprofits in each of five focus area categories: Arts & Culture, Education, Environment & Recreation, Family and Health & Wellness. The Big Reveal took place at the Nathan Benderson Finishing Tower and brought members, supporters, and the community together in anticipation to learn how many women have come together to invest in our community, and how many grants will be funded for the 2022 giving year. The next phase of the Giving Year starts March 9, with the opening of the online grant application process for nonprofit organizations. After completing a required eligibility form, nonprofits are invited to submit an application for a $110,500 grant at www.impact100SRQ.org. Visit the link to apply or to learn more about past grant recipients. In just four years, since this local chapter’s inception, the women of Impact100 SRQ will fund 15 grants and will donate $1,637,000 to local nonprofits. Its collective giving model is simple – at least 100 women come together, each invests $1,000, and grants are funded in increments of no less than $100,000. As its membership grows, more grants can be funded and the impact of Impact100 SRQ will be magnified throughout our community. 

To learn more, visit

[Awards Given]  Sheriff Hoffman Holds Awards Ceremony

Sarasota County Sheriff Kurt A. Hoffman presented several awards during a ceremony Tuesday to recognize employees who demonstrated exemplary service to their community. Corrections Deputy Asen Dimitrov earned the Life Saving Award for rendering aid to an inmate during a suicide attempt. Deputy Christopher Hudson and Communications Operator I Jenifer Christensen earned the Life Saving Award for their efforts to save a 71-year-old Sarasota County citizen experiencing a heart attack. Members of the Honor Guard received the Unit Citation Award for their actions over the past year including the full honors memorial service for fallen Deputy Joshua Welge, the first line of duty death in the agency’s 100-year history. The Animal Services Section received a Unit Citation for their tireless efforts throughout 2021 to support the sheriff’s office and animals of Sarasota County. 

To learn more, visit

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: The Ringling: Yissy Garcia , March 10 – March 11, 11am and 7:30pm

Yissy Garcia–a composer and drummer- is one of the most powerful artists of this new generation of Cuban musicians. Born into a musical family headed by renowned Cuban percussionist Bernardo Garcia, Yissy has ushered in a new era of "high-speed Cuban jazz," which fuses street conga and rumba, plenty of drums, bass and funk -- all rhythms the artist says are "carried in our blood." Considered one of Cuba’s most dynamic and innovative musicians who defies genre and tradition with every funky groove, she demonstrates the art of combining traps and percussion, drawing from the wealth of Cuban folkloric and popular styles alongside serious jazz and funk. Yissy has quickly become an iconic figure of female percussion in Cuba and beyond, having performed with the likes of Dave Matthews, Esperanza Spalding, Omara Portuondo and Bobby Carcasses, and has been likened to “the Cuban version of Terri Lyne Carrington” by Tom Tom Magazine. Since 2012, she leads Bandancha, an off-the-charts quintet that follows the routes of Latin jazz, funk, and afro Cuban music. Its first record, Última Noticia (2015), joined the island´s musical scene as a paradigm of the most contemporary sound. She is part of the line up of Maqueque, together with the Canadian sax player Jane Bunnett, whose first record, Jane Bunnett and Maqueque, won the Juno Award to the best Jazz Album and the second record, Oddara, was recently nominated for the Best Latin Jazz Grammy award. This performance will show on March 10 at 11am and March 11 at 7:30pm.

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Osher Lifelong Learning Institute: Celebrating Florida's Wild Wonders , March 11, 9am-5pm

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Ringling College (OLLI at Ringling College) presents “Celebrating Florida’s Wild Wonders,” a one-day event inspired by the book, The Wilder Heart of Florida, and featuring eight celebrated writers, poets, educators, environmentalists, architects, and artists. The event is Friday, March 11, 2022, 9am to 5pm at the Ringling College Museum Campus, 1000 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. General admission is $125; registration opens on December 7. The registration fee includes lunch and a complimentary reception.

[SOON]  SEMINAR: The Ringling: Artist Talk with Jamison Ross and Yissy Garcia , March 12, 10:30am

Join The Ringling for an artist talk with musicians Jamison Ross and Yissy Garcia on March 12 at 10:30am. One of the hottest young names in music, singer and drummer, Jamison Ross’ music shimmers between jazz, R&B, soul, gospel and blues. Yissy Garcia–a composer and drummer- is one of the most powerful artists of this new generation of Cuban musicians. Less formal than a lecture presentation, Artist Talks are designed to be programs where artists and guests can share topics of special interest. Artist Talks will normally take place in the Chao Lecture Hall - please remember to allow extra time to walk or take a tram to the Center for Asian Art.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Jazz Festival: Swinging Under The Stars , March 13 – March 19, Varies.

The Sarasota Jazz Festival Swinging Under The Stars will take place from March 13 through 19 at Nathan Benderson Park. Main stage performers are Shelly Berg, Dick Hyman, Russell Malone, Ken Peplowski, Houston Person, John Pizzarelli, Catherine Russell, Arturo Sandoval, Terell Stafford, Tierney Sutton, and La Lucha Trio. Free Jazz in the Park on March 13 from 3pm to 6pm, Trolley Pub Crawl at UTC on March 15 from 6pm to 10pm, VIP Reception from 5pm to 6pm and Main Stage Concert at 6:30pm on March 16, Morning Jazz Film from 9:30am to 12pm and Main Stage Concert at 6:30pm on March 17, Main Stage Concert at 6:30pm and Late Night Tower Jazz Jams from 9:30pm to 11:30pm on March 18, and Afternoon Jazz Party from 12pm to 5:30pm, Main Stage Concert at 6:30pm, and Late Night Tower Jazz jams from 9:30pm to 11:30pm on March 19. 

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Sarasota Opera: Salute to the Stars Awards Luncheon , March 15, 11:30am

Salute to the Stars Awards Luncheon will take place on Tuesday, March 15, 2022 at 11:30am at Sarasota Yacht Club. On stage a singer’s voice is commanding. Imagine how you will feel hearing it just feet away from your table. Join us and celebrate the outstanding Sarasota Opera Apprentice and Studio Artists who will be honored in 2022. Enjoy a gourmet lunch while you experience performances by the awardees. The awards are presented through the generosity of visionary individuals as well as the Sarasota and Manatee Opera Guilds.

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Orchestra: Great Escapes: Journey on the Orient Express , March 16 – March 20, 5:30pm, 7:30pm, 8pm and 4pm

Join an unfolding murder mystery as the orchestra, conducted by Steven Jarvi, travels the fabled route of Europe's most famous train, enjoying the music along the way on Wednesday, March 16 at 5:30pm, Thursday, March 17 at 7:30pm, Friday, March 18 at 5:30pm, Saturday, March 19 at 8pm, and Sunday, March 20 at 4pm at Holley Hall.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: The Players Centre: Some Enchanted Evening , March 16 – March 27, 7:30pm and 2pm

More than those of any composer or lyricist writing for the stage, the songs of Rodgers & Hammerstein have become an integral part of our everyday lives. This stunning collection of their compositions places five performers in a theatrical setting: first ‘backstage,’ where the songs are sung as personal interplay, and then ‘onstage,’ where the songs are presented to an audience. Offering its performers an opportunity to explore timeless songs within their own styles and sensibilities, SOME ENCHANTED EVENING delights its audience with a glorious parade of genuine hits. Single tickets available Sept. 1, 2021 ($26.50 preview/ $29.50 single/ $14 student). Subscriptions are available now. The show dates March 16-19, 22-26 at 7:30pm and March 20, 26-27 at 2pm.

[SOON]  SEMINAR: Arts Advocates Gallery: Monthly Speaker: Fine Art Photography , March 17, 11am

March 17, 2022, 11am, Fine Art Photography – Who are today’s leading fine art photographers and rising stars? We will hear from Christopher Jones, curator of photography and new media at The Ringling Museum. Arts Advocates is keeping a close eye on the COVID-19 situation and will decide whether their monthly speaker programs will be in-person luncheons at Bird Key Yacht Club or held via Zoom as each event nears. These programs are open to the public. Visit ArtsAdvocates.org for more information.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: The Ringling: Homeschool Third Thursday: Women in the Circus , March 17, 10am-12pm

Women in the Circus will take place on March 17, 2022. March is Women’s History Month and this year we’re exploring the important role women played in circus history. Learn about circus greats like equestrian May Wirth, aerialist Lilian Leitzel, and human cannonball Silvana “Cha Cha” Zacchini. Students will learn about these amazing women and more, and discover how phenomenal performers challenged traditional gender roles in the early 20th century. Join us on the third Thursday of each month, for a special day designed just for homeschool families. Tickets are timed in order to avoid over-crowding; please check in at the Visitors Pavilion at the time noted on your ticket. Please note that this is a self-guiding program. Wristbands, a map, and a program packet with activities and information will be provided at check-in and families are invited to explore the museum at their own pace.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Van Wezel: An Evening with Chris Botti , March 17, 8pm

For over two decades, Grammy Award-winning master trumpeter and composer CHRIS BOTTI has amassed a spectacular variety of honors, including multiple gold and platinum albums, to become the nation’s largest-selling instrumental artist. His mesmerizing performances with a stunning array of legends such as Sting, Barbra Streisand, Tony Bennett, Yo-Yo Ma, Frank Sinatra, Paul Simon and Andrea Bocelli have cemented his place as one of the most brilliant and inspiring forces of the contemporary music scene. Whether he’s performing with illustrious symphonies or at renowned venues around the globe, his unparalleled crystalline and poetic sound transcends musical boundaries. Chris Botti will perform on Thursday, March 17 at 8pm.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Sarasota Art Museum: David Budd: Motion Within Stillness , October 9 – March 20, Museum hours.

David Budd: Motion Within Stillness from October 9 to March 20, 2022. After painting for only six years, David Budd (1927-1991, Florida) dove into the New York art scene in the 1950s —immersing himself in Abstract Expressionism and working alongside iconic names of the movement, such as Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Franz Kline. His paintings, like others of the time, relied on the bodily relationship between the artist and canvas —each stroke and mark of the artist encapsulated in viscous gestures of paint—and spontaneity; although, this is not to say that Budd painted hastily—each mark was placed with intention to animate the canvas’s surface.

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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