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Date of Issue: December 20, 2007

Advisory board merger approved by one group

Let’s all come together and sing “Kumbaya.”

That was the word from the Bradenton Beach Scenic Highway Corridor Management Entity last week, when it voted to join forces with the Waterfronts: Accessible, Viable, Ecological and Sustainable committee to become one advisory committee to the city commission.

Scenic highway members have addressed and helped implement almost $1.4 million in projects in the city along Gulf Drive in the past few years, City Commissioner John Chappie said, with most funds coming from federal and state grants. The WAVES committee also has strong ties to outside funding sources to improve the streetscape of the city.

Both committees are dealing with virtually identical issues, city project/program manager Lisa Maria Phillips said. A joint committee would avoid quorum problems that have plagued both bodies and could reduce the number of meetings needed.

“I don’t see any downside of joining the two committees,” scenic highway chair Tim Lyons said.

Next up will be a discussion of the merger before the joint scenic highway/WAVES committee meeting at 3 p.m. Jan. 7.

In other business, the scenic highway committee agreed that it would meet at 3 p.m. rather than its current 1 p.m. session in an effort to gain more members.