PORT MANATEE -- With less than two weeks remaining on his three-year employment contract, Port Manatee's executive director has signed a four-month extension.
Carlos Buqueras, who earns $189,000 as the port's top executive, is not using the last-minute agreement as leverage. During a public meeting with the Manatee County Port Authority, Buqueras said he purposely delayed renegotiating the terms of his employment with the port until after November's election. He said he wants to be the choice of the current set of authority commissioners.
"Out of respect, I wanted to be selected by the incoming board," he said. "I am committed to this port."
One seat on the authority changed due to the elections, with former board member Michael Gallen being replaced by Charles Smith.
There have been some indications that Buqueras' services could be a bit more expensive under his new contract. In August, authority Chairwoman Carol Whitmore told other members of the board that Buqueras is being recruited by other seaports. She also noted that some other port directors earn more than Buqueras, including Port Tampa Bay chief executive Paul Anderson, who earns $350,000 annually.
Buqueras and members of the authority board stated that they will negotiate a new employment contract after the start of the new year.
Wagner collects 2,000 pounds pet food
BRADENTON -- Wagner Realty is bringing a ton of cheer to Manatee County pets for the holiday season.
The Bradenton-based real estate brokerage collected more than 2,000 pounds of pet food during its annual drive. Last week, the company loaded all the food into a van and delivered it to the Humane Society of Manatee County. The animal welfare agency will use the food in its pet food bank, and will give a portion of what was collected to Meals on Wheels PLUS to distribute to Meals on Wheels recipients who own pets.
Sandy Greiner of Wagner Realty coordinated this year's drive.
Bradenton Sonic Drive-In hiring 100
BRADENTON--Sonic Drive-In is hiring about 100 full-time and part-time employees for its new location.
Sonic is returning to its 6008 14th St. W. location in mid-January after a four-year hiatus.
Whether it's a position in the kitchen or serving customers on roller skates, Sonic is hiring for all positions and people can apply at McClainSonics.com.
"Sonic values an entrepreneurial spirit and the power of the individual, and we take these attributes into consideration when hiring for a variety of career opportunities in this fun and challenging environment," said Buddy McClain, chief executive of the MVP Sonic Group, a franchise company that operates Sonics in Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.
-- Herald staff reports