Sarasota News Leader

11/30/2012

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FIGHTING FOR CHICKEN FEED Downtown Sarasota has seen a number of organizations come and go, purporting to represent the area. Photo by Norman Schimmel DOWNTOWN SARASOTA ORGANIZATIONS SQUABBLE OVER USE OF $20,000 IN MARKETING FUNDS AND THEIR OWN EXISTENCE By Stan Zimmerman City Editor The Downtown Sarasota Alliance put on a show of force Tuesday morning, Nov. 27. The members were out to convince the Downtown Improvement District board to continue providing a $20,000 marketing grant to the DSA. were the work of the DSA. But we paid for them, and we repainted them, and we did that ourselves." Sarasota over the decades has seen a plethora of organizations sprout up, purporting to They faced stiff opposition from the new Sara- represent downtown. Alliance, association, sota Downtown Merchants Association, and partnership: Pick your term. Old ones were its chairman, Ron Soto. supplanted by new ones, and that is exactly what the Downtown Improvement District is "The whole reason we got started was beworried about. cause the DSA put up all kinds of hoops — some on fire — for our Dog Days of Summer Soto's organization is young. "We've been to[event]," he said. "The DSA recently sent out gether two-and-a-half months," he told the disan email saying all the Christmas decorations trict board. He has 34 members.

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