EDC settlement approved

February 2016 – Sarasota, FL

Sarasota County EDC settles with local group over open meetings laws

SARASOTA, Fla. (February 18, 2016) — The Economic Development Corp. of Sarasota County has reached an agreement with Citizens for Sunshine, Inc., over how it operates with regards to Florida’s open meetings Sunshine Laws.

The agreement finds no fault or wrongdoing by the EDC and does not require any changes in how the EDC conducts its business in regards to the Florida Sunshine Law. The EDC has been voluntarily following the open meetings law for all of its Board of Directors’ meetings for about eight years, and will continue to do that under this agreement. The EDC has also been voluntarily following public records regulations for activities relating to public business.

Given the ambiguous and evolving regulations concerning the  applicability of the Sunshine laws to entities like the EDC, which receives both private and public money, the EDC Board believed it was important to be transparent with board activities, and has chosen to voluntarily be transparent since 2010, immediately after these matters were brought to its attention.

“The lawsuit has been distracting from the critical work that we do and that the community is counting on us to do,” said Mark Huey, President and CEO of the EDC. “We are excited to be putting it behind us so that we can focus all our energy into growing and attracting target businesses to Sarasota County with high wage jobs.

The EDC of Sarasota County is the private, not-for-profit corporation leading the community’s economic development strategy to add high-wage jobs and diversify the local economy. The EDC provides business assistance to companies in Sarasota County and helps forge solutions to community challenges that affect our capacity to build a diversified economy. The EDC works in partnership with chambers of commerce, local governments and other organizations throughout the county and the region. For more information, visit www.edcsarasotacounty.com.

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