Bradenton Beach board member resigns seat on CRA, new member sought

Anna Maria Oyster Bar owner John Horne has run out of time.

The result will be that the Bradenton Beach Community Redevelopment Agency will be short a member for the first time since 2016.

Mayor John Chappie said at a meeting Jan. 17 that Horne’s term on the CRA was up for renewal, and Horne is not seeking reappointment.

Horne said he enjoyed his time serving the agency, but decided not to seek reappointment due to a bevy of other commitments, including terms on the executive board of the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association, the board of trustees for the State College of Florida and acting as the vice chair on the Citizens’ Financial Advisory Committee for the Manatee County School District.

“I would have loved to continue, but I just don’t have the time right now,” Horne said in an interview Jan. 18. “I can’t put in the time that needs to be put into the CRA.”

Horne was appointed to a two-year term Nov. 17, 2017, alongside fellow restaurateur Ed Chiles, who received a four-year term. Horne said the CRA terms were staggered to avoid a simultaneous loss of two members.

Horne said he believes the agency is on the cusp of achieving several goals, including grounding utilities on Bridge Street and making the street more walkable and pedestrian-friendly.

“I think it is going to continue,” Horne said. “Me rolling off is not going to slow it down by any stretch of the imagination. I felt it was going to continue moving forward in the same positive direction, so I don’t feel like I’m leaving anything unfinished, or that because I’m leaving it would change anything.”

Horne said he would continue to be active in the community, and he hopes his successor shares his passion.

“I hope it is someone who cares about Bradenton Beach,” he said. “Someone who really wants to see this work continue.”

Applicants for the position must reside or operate a business in the CRA district boundaries, which is between Cortez Road, Sarasota Bay, Fifth Street South and the Gulf of Mexico.

The new member will serve a four-year term.

Applications are available at city hall, 107 Gulf Drive N., Bradenton Beach FL 34217.

The city notice for the CRA opening states, “No phone calls.”