BELLEAIR BEACH -- Paul Marino, city attorney, has determined that triangular lots at the ends of certain streets in Belleair Beach are rights of way and cannot be sold, given away or otherwise alienated by the city.
The question of these lots came up late last month when a star pitcher for the Minnesota Twins, Brad Radke, and his wife requested that the city relinquish what was described as an easement that jutted into their property at the end of 18th Street.
The request appeared on the City Council agenda, requesting that the city "vacate an easement" and would have gone through had not some members raised questions on the details. When they did, the matter was tabled and then then Marino looked into it.
He said that the council had the power to relinquish easements but if the pieces of land in question were rights of way then a provision of the city charter said that rights of way could only be given away, sold, etc. by approval of a referendum.
Last week Marino said, "I have determined that the lots in question are rights of way. If a petitioner wants to research it and challenge it they are welcome to do so." He told the council that he considered it now "a dead issue."
In question originally was a small triangle of land that was at the junction of two lots at the eastern end of 18th Street.
The two lots, that had held homes until a few years ago, are now leveled and the buyer -- whose status is uncertain -- petitioned the city to vacate the triangle whose dimensions are about 30 feet along each side.
It appears that the ordinance that was presented to the City Council November 15 for the vacation action was full of flaws.
How the small lots that were thought to be an easement originated is not known. Reportedly, there are similar triangular pieces of land on 17th Street, 16th Street, 15th Street and 14th Street. At 17th, 16th and 15th Streets there are two such triangles.
The pattern of the triangles suggests some particular reason for establishing them, but no one in the city, at this point, seems to have an answer.
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