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TEAMWORK TRIUMPHS Commissioners Joe Barbetta (left) and Jon Thaxton deliberate on a matter before the board. File photo COUNTY COMMISSION APPROVES PLANS FOR CONTESTED ASSISTED LIVING FACILITY By Cooper Levey-Baker Associate Editor The Sarasota County Commission on Wednes- day, Nov. 14, unanimously approved a rezone petition for a new assisted-living facility to be built on the corner of Proctor Road and Hon- ore Avenue. The commission first heard debate over the facility on Sept. 25, when residents of the bordering Center Gate neighborhood sharply criticized the proposal. Jack McGarry, whose home sits along the northern line of the prop- erty in question, called the facility "inappro- priate." After two hours of tense testimony, the com- missioners moved to ask the developers to regroup with the neighborhood to modify the plan — which turned out to be a wise move. The team behind the facility presented a re- vamped outline of the project Wednesday, with what the neighbors felt was a trouble- some driveway and parking lot shifted to the southwest, away from homes. Robert Medred, who has led the effort to have the property rezoned for the facility, praised the Center Gate residents for their willingness to compromise and said meetings held after the September hearing were "very construc- tive, very cordial." He complimented McGarry for his open-mindedness.

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