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Court to hear motions in HB v. BB 27th Street dispute

By Kathy Prucnell, Islander Reporter

Utility lines were replaced and a new fence with gated entries was installed on the 27th Street right of way — the boundary between Holmes Beach and Bradenton Beach at the Sandpiper mobile home park last winter. Sandpiper uses the right of way for overflow parking. Park residents hoped the gated entries would keep people from trespassing in the private park. Islander Photo: Kathy Prucnell:

The 12th Judicial Circuit Court is set to hear several motions next week — one on behalf of each party — in the ongoing litigation over the ownership of 27th Street in Bradenton Beach.

        Holmes Beach filed a lawsuit in May asking the court to declare as public a portion of the street adjacent to a city of Holmes Beach boundary and the Sandpiper Resort, a mobile home cooperative in Bradenton Beach.

        The street runs east of Gulf Drive to Sarasota Bay at the border of the two cities.

        The lawsuit also seeks a court order requiring the Sandpiper to remove gates and private property signs from a Sandpiper fence, and to remove part of the fence for access to adjoining property in Holmes Beach.

        Bradenton Beach’s motion, filed in July by Charles F. Johnson of the Bradenton law firm of Blalock Walters, P.A., contends Holmes Beach failed to set forth a legal claim that could allow a court to declare 27th Street a public street.

        The motion also argues that Holmes Beach lacks standing to request the relief sought, and fails to contain proper allegations for the requested court order to remove the signs, fence or gate.

        In August, city of Holmes Beach attorneys Jim Dye and Patricia Petruff filed a motion for entry of default against Sandpiper Resort Co-op Inc. for failing to file a responsive pleading to the Holmes Beach action in accordance with court rules.

        In September, Sandpiper attorney Charles Webb filed a motion to dismiss and strike the Holmes Beach lawsuit for unnecessarily attaching exhibits, failing to plead grounds for the declaratory relief requested, failing to plead facts that allege a right or interest in the property and for pleading legal conclusions rather than facts.

        The hearing on all three motions is set for 2 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 23, before Judge Diana Moreland in the Manatee County Courthouse, 1115 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton.

        At the Oct. 9 meeting of the Holmes Beach City Commission, Commissioner Jean Peelen continued her objection to the suit, saying $17,000 in attorney’s fees have been spent thus far by the city.

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