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SNL: Should the idea of SCAT privatization be explored further? SS: Currently, SCAT is 80-percent funded by ad valorem taxes. For the most part, Sarasota County taxpayers are paying for [the bus sys- tem]. I am all in favor of mass transport in dense areas or if you are running a shuttle from point A to point B. From serving on the MPO, I can understand transit issues from that standpoint. But when you see massive empty buses running all night across the county, at some point, you have to ask, "Are we doing this because we are moving people, or are we doing it because we want to feel good about it?" SNL: You were opposed to the county leasing Warm Mineral Springs to a private contractor for 50 years. What would you like to see hap- pen at Warm Mineral Springs? SS: I was the one who wanted to put in a provision in the city charter that any leases over 10 years have to go to the voters. We are going to own it forever. Why are we rushing to develop it? The rush wasn't something the community had bought into. … It was bought with environmentally sensitive lands money, which is what the darn money was meant to be spent on. And then you are trying to sell the development rights off. The county had their agenda. North Port had enough of it, and to their credit, they stood up to the county. Why don't we have some nice slow conversa- tions, instead of "This is our plan and if you don't like it, you are an obstructionist." % • Gene Burgess and Melonie Burgess, licensed acupuncture physicians • Serving Sarasota since 2008 • Treatment rates are on a sliding scale, from $15-$35; new patients pay a one-time additional fee of $10 AFFORDABLE ACUPUNCTURE FOR EVERYONE 3615 Webber St • Sarasota, FL 34232 (941) 922-4611 Open Tuesday through Saturday Our Mission To provide our community with high quality and affordable acupuncture and herbal medicine and to create a treatment space that connects people and builds community. Click for larger map and driving directions Click To Schedule An Appointment Online MENTION THIS AD TO RECEIVE $5 OFF THE NEW PATIENT FEE Sarasota News Leader August 1, 2014 Page 25

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