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Updated: 10/04/2013 06:35:55PM

City to focus on Springs research

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NORTH PORT — City commissioners decided Friday to pursue some much-needed information in order to make a longterm decision on who eventually operates Warm Mineral Springs Day Spa, instructing City Manager Jonathan Lewis to work with Sarasota County staff on an agreement that would “phase in” research to help them make the selection.

Lewis has 90 days to deliver the agreement, as outlined by the interlocal agreement currently in place between the city and the county, who jointly own the 81-acre Springs. The cost of the information needed by the commission is unknown, but they will likely seek archaeological, geological, hydrological and historical studies of the city’s only tourist attraction, which has been closed to the public since June 30. The studies could cost in the hundreds of thousands of dollars each, according to Lewis, but exact figures are not known. Commissioners, for the most part, believed they could not make any decisions on the Springs in the long run without that information, and struggled for several hours during Friday’s workshop, trying to come to an understanding of how to proceed.

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