Sarasota News Leader

02/28/2014

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and decimals, it represents the reallocation of millions of dollars for common and some- times even uncommon purposes. With it, you hold a city in your hand, figuratively speaking. Anybody who can balance a checkbook can understand an annual report. But the agenda item right after it is the auditor's report of the accounting for the money in Fiscal Year 2013. Luckily, this year's audit found no issues of complaint, and it passed the out- side inspection. These documents are required by state law, and they represent enormous labor. But the third financial report on the agenda fits neither of those descriptions. For the first time, the city staff has prepared what it calls a "Popular Annual Financial Report." Instead of 220 pages in black-and-white, it is nine pages in color. A critic might call it "City Budgets for Dummies." But it is an effort to make the city's multi-million-dollar spending understandable to the people who pay for it. You can save a tree and find it on the web at http://sarasota.granicus.com/MetaViewer. php?view_id=7&event_id=950&meta_ id=384854 Or you can pick up a copy at City Hall. HOPE SPRINGS ETERNAL Just as the snowy plovers return in the spring to frolic on Siesta sands, so do the hopes of public-private partnerships for the city's big- gest piece of undeveloped bayfront land. It is the acreage between the old G.WIZ science museum and the 10th Street boat ramp. Right The 2007 Cultural Park Concept Plan includes a photo of models showing how the developed area near the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall could look. Image courtesy City of Sarasota Sarasota News Leader February 28, 2014 Page 59

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