BELLEAIR BLUFFS -- Belleair Shore is still waiting to get a full audit report on the windup of Belleair Beach's sewer business so that it can make its claim for a refund.
John Elias, the town attorney, reported at the commission meeting October 20 that he has asked for a copy of the report.
Belleair Shore has been seeking the information for more than two months and has talked of suing to get refunds commensurate with what commission members think should be coming.
Mayor John Robertson said last Wednesday at the meeting that the town wanted an amicable settlement of the matter, although two of the commissioners, Carl Hilton and Bob Schmidt, have been vociferous in wanting to get full recompense.
Robertson also reported on the efforts being made to either block or defeat the Pinellas Suncoast Fire & Rescue district referendum on fees.
The district wants to assess a 17 cents per square foot fee which would bring the cost to most residences in the area to more than the $190 they are being assessed now.
A lawsuit has been filed by private citizens to enjoin the referendum and Robertson reported that a brochure opposing the referendum is being sent to 9,100 homes in the district. Half of the homes are on the mainland in the Oakhurst area.
Robertson has been a leading opponent of the referendum along with his colleagues from Indian Rocks Beach, Belleair Beach and Indian Shores.
In addition to the legal action and mail out, the political action group headed up by Larry Torgerson of Indian Rocks Beach has 50 signs that will be distributed throughout the area.
The fire assessment referendum is now scheduled on the November 2 ballot.
Robertson also reported that beach re-nourishment will take place in 2005, a year earlier than had been scheduled. Beaches lost sand in the recent storms.
Belleair Shore does not receive beach re-nourishment and its strand gains only from lateral flow from Indian Rocks Beach to the south and Belleair Beach to the north.
The town opted out of the re-nourishment because to receive it the town would have to make its beaches available to the general public and provide some form of parking and accessibility.
Though not generally recognized, the beach north of Belleair Shore in Belleair Beach is open to the general public. The parking lot at the marina at the Belleair Beach-Sand Key line is available for the general public.
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