Does Manatee County lack environmental protections?

June 30, 2013 

The second part of the proposed amendment change has nothing to do with the Long Bar Pointe project but everything to do with what the builders are looking for in this county.

Do we have an environmental protection agency up and running in this county? If so, where are they? Remember, a builder is not interested in environmental issues, only how many houses can be jammed into an area for profit!

We in northwest Bradenton are seasoned from recent battles with builder Pat Neal and his dogged pursuit to change comp plans and construct homes in a high hazard flood zone. This all too familiar project traveled through the courts with Neal receiving multiple denials for his requested land use changes. Commissioner Betsy Benac can fill in the blanks on this as she was a Neal advocate.

Also, I question the thought process of adding more home inventory to a glutted home foreclosure market that we have here in Manatee County. Slow this down and let Long Bar Pointe run with the 2008 proposal; then come back to this board after a hard look is taken on completed 2008 proposals.

I think of the destruction of Hurricane Sandy along the northeast coast. And I also think of Florida's east coast, specifically Fort Lauderdale and Lauderdale-by-the-Sea and what has happened to that area. Unchecked building has created a concrete jungle of high rises with all sense of the environment and beautification secondary to the almighty dollar. Do we here in Manatee County want these negative changes?

Each commissioner should consider the folks who elected them and tell the builders who funded their campaigns that the IOU's will not be a priority when the public is in total disagreement with this type of land use change. We voted you in and pay you to represent us, your CEO, the taxpayer.

Bob Harrington


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