INDIAN ROCKS BEACH - The City Commission meeting of April 3 was a sort of old home week for a couple of past commissioners, one of very recent vintage.
Jeremiah Carmody, gone from the commission now for more than a year, and Ed Piniero, who ran dead last in the March 13 election and was ousted after a short, one-year term, showed up to give their views on various and sundry matters.
They went on at length, so much so, in fact, that a meeting that began at 4 p.m. was abruptly ended at 10 p.m.
The policy of the commission is to not meet beyond 10 p.m. but this is more honored in the breach. When 10 came, Mayor Bill Ockunzzi routinely asked for a motion to extend the meeting's time.
Instead, he got a very definite peremptory motion from Commissioner Jose Coppen to adjourn. It was quickly seconded, because the two new commissioners on the board, Terry Hamilton-Wollin and Bert Valery, had campaigned on having shorter meetings.
Ockunzzi and R.B. Johnson voted to have the meeting continue although commissioners and staff were reeling with exhaustion in a workday that had now stretched to 13 hours.
So the two old hands - Carmody and Piniero - were indirectly responsible for the yowling that uttered forth from the throat of Scott Shapiro who had hung around all night waiting for an issue he was interested in to come up.
Because a motion to adjourn once seconded cannot be debated, Ockunzzi had to tell those disappointed citizens who wanted more meeting time that it was all over. Nothing could be done.
Piniero, out of office but still in good voice, regaled the audience at the meeting with a dissertation on old ordinances and codes that went on at length.
If nothing else, all that bloviating reminded voters that they had correctly cast their ballots four weeks and two days ago.
The Carmody-Piniero show went on throughout the meeting with the pair, as individuals, seemingly chiming in on just about every subject that came up.
One observer noted that it must have given Ockunzzi a sense of nostalgia to see his two former stalwarts performing as of old, but no longer able to vote with him on council matters.
City Clerk Deanne O'Reilly updated the commission with the news that the "Range Rider" support offered by the city managers association would not be free but would be implemented by hiring someone the association recommended on a temporary basis.
Earlier information indicated that the Ranger Rider program, designed to fill the city manager gap when a position fell open, offered by the International City Managers Association was free.
As promised, commission members got down to the business of setting priorities on subjects they will take up.
Among the pending items that have been hanging fire and never got addressed by the previous commission were the televising of commission meetings and the newsrack ordinance.
At the top of the list is renewing the sputtering attempt to find a new city manager and a continuation of the nagging Whitehurst Avenue property question.
Other key subjects given some priority were the question of the library and hiring a librarian, the beach management plan, retirement system for city employees, Gulf Boulevard and Narrows redevelopment and parks development.