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Sarasota News Leader May 24, 2013 Page 15 short-term operation of the springs, the attrac- that the boards had indeed agreed to principles to guide a short-term contract. But the tion will close July 1. majority of the commission wasn't having it. North Port had first crack at the interlocal Cook, DiFranco and Mayor Linda Yates evendocument, and after 49 minutes of staff and tually voted to reject public discussion, the interlocal entireCommissioner Cheryl ly. The board also latCook quickly moved to The city and county do not have er voted 4-1 to shoot reject the agreement. legal standing to vote on this document down a list of modifi"There are a number because it memorializes an agreement cations to the interloof inaccurate things that never happened. cal suggested by Yates. in these files," she Cheryl Cook The only thing they said, pointing out that Commissioner could agree on? Anwhile Commissioner City of North Port other meeting. The Rhonda DiFranco had North Port city attorsupported a long-term procurement process for the springs at the ney and manager asked the commission to mediation, her abrupt "180" the next morning request another mediation with the county, and the commissioners agreed unanimously. should cancel out her consent. "There should not even be in existence this The next day, the County Commission tossed that idea on the scrap heap. interlocal," said Cook. "The city and county do not have legal standing to vote on this doc- County Administrator Randy Reid recomument because it memorializes an agreement mended that his commission approve the inthat never happened." terlocal as proof of good faith and "indicate that we did not wish to meet." Vice Mayor Jim Blucher tried to find middle ground, arguing DiFranco's flip-flop only af- "I'm extremely disappointed in the fact that fected the long-term plans for the springs and they didn't even come up with a solution last The Sarasota County Commission considers an agenda item on May 21. Photo by Rachel Hackney

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