Straw Vote results: 87%YES for Siesta Key Incorporation; Local legislative delegation meets January 12
January 6, 2023 —
87% of straw vote participants voted YES for Siesta Key Incorporation, attendees at the January SKA meeting learned from Tim Hensey of Save Siesta Key. 41% of registered voters participated in the straw vote.
The Sarasota Legislative Delegation will meet on Thursday, January 12th from 1:30 to 5 p.m. in the County Commission Chambers of the County Administration Center, 1660 Ringling Blvd. in Sarasota. Legislators will vote on introducing the Siesta Key incorporation initiative to the State Legislature. Save Siesta Key urges those supporting incorporation to attend and wear your blue or white shirt to show support.
Herald-Tribune, January 9, 2023, Derek Gilliam: “New Florida town? Siesta Key’s straw poll shows strong support for incorporation“
December 9, 2022 —
Save Siesta Key (SSK) reports that most people have received their ballots for a straw vote on Siesta Key incorporation. Those who have not received their ballot can call 941-287-8024. SSK requests that you return the ballot as soon as you receive it, no later than December 20th. The ballot must be returned in the postage paid reply envelope, one ballot per envelope. Your vote is anonymous, the bar code in the upper right of the ballot is for ballot integrity.
Even though the ballot sounds like an official vote for or against incorporation, this is only a straw ballot. The purpose of the straw vote is to provide an indication to the Sarasota legislative delegation of whether a majority of Siesta Key residents are actually in favor of incorporation. Your vote in the straw poll is critical to getting the question of Siesta Key incorporation on an official election ballot so that Siesta residents can actually vote on this issue. More about incorporation at SSK website – savesiestakey.org
Three members of the Sarasota legislative delegation attended the December 6th Siesta Town Hall: State Sen. Joe Gruters, State Rep. Michael Grant, and State Rep. Fiona McFarland. Michael Grant, who is Majority Leader of the Florida House of Representatives, emphasized that the outcome of the straw vote will have a major impact on whether he votes to take the Siesta incorporation initiative to Tallahassee for approval.
Read more in the Sarasota News Leader, December 8, 2022, Rachel Brown Hackney: “Newest member of Sarasota County Legislative Delegation says he needs to see strong signs of residents’ support for Siesta Key incorporation to vote for necessary legislative bill”
December 3, 2022 —
Due to postal delays, mailing of “straw ballots” has been delayed about a week. The return date has been extended, please return by December 30th.
November 2, 2022 —
The Board of Save Siesta Key (SSK) is announcing a straw vote to demonstrate that the majority of Siesta Key residents want the opportunity to vote on whether to incorporate the island. In November, a non-binding “straw vote” by mail in ballot will be delivered to all registered Siesta Key voters at their Siesta Key address.
As many know, it is critical to get a majority vote of the delegation in order to send our local bill to Tallahassee. The SSK board has been strongly encouraged by our delegation to put it to a straw vote. As one member of the delegation put it “if a straw vote indicates an overwhelming majority of SK residents want to vote on incorporation, how could we possibly deny you?” This evidence will prove beneficial in our state capital.
So here is how it will work:
· In the November 14th-17th time frame, every registered voter of Siesta Key will receive a straw ballot via first class mail.
· Prior to receiving the straw ballot, each registered voter will receive a postcard letting them know to expect the ballot and a picture of the envelope, so that it is not mistaken as “junk mail” and discarded.
· Each straw ballot will be mailed directly to the registered voter and contain a first class, self- addressed postage paid envelope to return the ballot.
· The ballots are being returned by mail to the law firm of Persson, Cohen Mooney, Fernandez, and Jackson in Lakewood Ranch, who will tally the votes. We are taking this extra step so that there no accusations of fraud or misconstrued results.
· We are asking that the ballots be mailed no later than December 8th, 2022.
· The results of the “straw vote” will be made public on our website and to the press, as soon as available.
As a clarification, the “straw vote” is not an official vote. The results will be used to demonstrate that the majority of the residents of Siesta Key desire an official vote in 2023 on the subject of incorporation. The next official step is a majority (3-4) of the local Sarasota Delegation must vote “yes” to introduce the incorporation of Siesta Key as draft bill, in January of 2023. If approved, the bill will be voted on by the entire House of Representatives and the Senate, during the 2023 legislative session. The Governor will also need to approve the bill.
If you are a registered voter and do not receive a ballot, call 941-287-8024 with your contact information and we will work with the attorneys to get you a ballot.
The Board of Save Siesta Key
This straw poll is one of many actions by SSK in preparation for the upcoming Sarasota Legislative Delegation meeting, where it is hoped that the delegation will vote to introduce SSK’s draft incorporation bill to the Florida legislature spring session. SSK also submitted a revised feasibility study and charter to the State Legislature in August. You can view these documents on the SSK website – savesiestakey.org.
If your neighborhood or Condo Association would like to learn more details regarding the proposed incorporation of Siesta Key, SSK board members would be happy to meet with your group either face to face or zoom. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org”
Read more: Siesta Sand, October 30, 2022, John Morton: “Coming soon to a mailbox near you“