Every previous deal-breaker dissolved as prospective owner Raymond Barshay and city commissioners relented in turn on various issues. Neither side was an outright victor. But the city’s iconic restaurant will have new life.
Flagler Beach city commissioners turned up the volume on the status quo Wednesday as they analyzed noise levels first-hand and agreed to document and analyze noise complaints for a while before changing the noise ordinance.
The commission reversed itself and voted to build the tower. The decision displeased the prospective owner of the Pier Restaurant. Several other deal-breakers hardened in those negotiations, leaving the restaurant deal in doubt.
Driven by Florida businesses, the Legislature is preparing to cut eligibility for the jobless and making it harder to claim benefits. Flagler’s unemployment rate is hovering around 16%, Florida’s around 12%.
After eight years of trying, winning an $80,000 federal grant, and spending $51,600 on construction, commissioners reversed course on a lifeguard tower to satisfy the Pier Restaurant’s potential new owner, who worried about blocked view.
More than 1,000 applicants–about a fifth of the county’s total unemployed–were expected on Wednesday alone, the first day of hiring at the two new restaurants, in an sign of enduring economic hardship.
Raymond Barshay and Flagler Beach Commissioners are at odds over the fate of the bait and tackle shop, which has been attached to the Pier Restaurant. They’re at odds over several other issues. But they’re still talking.
After a meeting lasting two hours and 17 minutes Monday, local governments conceded they have no agreement on economic development, except to meet again and let a “facilitator” help them find some.
Charlie Ericksen is critical of a city council that rubber-stamps too many decisions without debating or explaining them, and a city that he says hasn’t given local business a fair shake. Netts has been on the council since 2001.
Many plans, little agreement, no concerted action: Monday evening’s economic development summit between Flagler County’s seven local governments is unlikely to yield substantive results beyond a meet-and-greet of powerpoints.