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Thursday, May 10, 2018

Sailing Center's lease is renewed by City

The City Commission voted on Thursday to renew the U.S. Sailing Center lease for 10 years with two four-year options. 

The public was behind this and really let the commissioners know their love for the center.

The Sailing Center is at 2476 South Bayshore Drive), it's a big part of the community. The local yacht clubs in the 1980s supported the creation of the center to train up and coming sailors and to provide a community place with access to Biscayne Bay. The US Olympic Committee is a large part of the center these days.

For 25 years the Sailing Center has had a relationship with Biscayne Bay Yacht Racing Assn. and other organizations.

Three people from the Sailing Center were asked to speak. Chairman Keon Hardemon asked for few speakers after that from the community, which seemed like an odd request. He said basically that their speeches would not have an affect on the commission's decision.

The commissioners almost seemed hostile to renewing the lease, especially Joe Carollo.
But the commissioners did agree to the renewal to coincide with the Olympic cycle. There is a $64 million impact to the community according to the Sailing Center. It was pointed out that the Sailing Center is not a club as other entities on the Grove waterfront are.


The final vote was 4-1 in favor of the new lease. Joe Carollo voted against it. The others in favor were Commissioners Ken Russell, Chairman Keon Hardemon, Manolo Reyes and Willy Gort.

It's so humiliating that commissioners from outside the district make a big deal out of voting on what is good and what is not good for the Grove. If this vote was regarding a huge development project, they would all be all over it without hesitation.

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