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Winter 2023 Newsletter

Updated: Nov 24, 2023





Message From the President

It has been my great pleasure to serve the residents of Kensington Park the last two years. It has been richly rewarding, challenging and wildly educational. I have made some great connections and friends along the way which has helped get a lot of projects completed here in Kensington Park.

Part of growing the community in a positive way and insuring that proper maintenance of infrastructure such as sidewalks, roads, fire hydrants, signs, roadside trees, sewer and water lines can be achieved through good communication and cooperation with various Sarasota County Departments.

As I will not be fulfilling the position of President of the Kensington Park Civic Association for a full term next year I will remain as President until Board members can be installed to fill the Board. As of now I am filling in as President and Kathy Jones our current Treasurer is filling in until we can find another Treasurer. As as of now there are no 2024 perspective Board members to be seated. If there is no Board there is no one to speak up for Kensington Park. If we don't ask for the county to do repairs or improvements they will not do it, they do not randomly fix sidewalks, roads, trim trees, fix signs or do any improvements.

Now is the time to get off the sidelines and get involved in the keeping Kensington Park a thriving community you can be proud to call home - you can apply here www.kensingtonparkfl.com/board-of-directors




Update on County Projects


We are continuing to work with Sarasota County Public Works Department to get the area at Ingot and Prudence where the kids cross to go to school cleaned up. Public Works were the ones who put the new sidewalk in for the kids.


They are getting the Forestry Department, Storm Water and Road and Bridge involved to clear the dead tress and brush debris off of the area. The retaining posts that are down can not be replaced as the county no longer uses that particular type of retaining post. They are looking at possibly removing the retaining post altogether and putting up a guard rail on both sides.


Our Roads are up for paving in 2024. As of now they are starting with Prudence Drive and will spread out from them. We will get a more detailed plan as the paving schedule gets closer.


I am working closely with Ronnie Locke to find out when paving will start and approximately how long it will take.


Jessica Sepulvida of Neighborhood Services was at the November Association meeting, she is now overseeing the completion of the community park. The park is her main focus at the moment. She is hoping for completion of the park by summer of 2024. See the article Jessica has in the newsletter.

UPCOMING EVENTS

  • December 2nd Civic Association Meeting

  • December 9th Keep Sarasota County Beautiful Road Cleanup

  • December 10th Holiday Lights Contest Judging


CRIME STATS


Deputy Brian Keane our Sarasota Sheriff's liaison spoke at the November association meeting about our current crime stats and crimes in our community. One thing that he pointed out was most of the crimes were crimes of opportunity such as things left out in the yard or under a carport not secured and easy to be taken during the day when people are at work.

The second biggest issue we have in our community is fraud which surprised. This is the type of fraud that is from people selling you bogus solar panels or other items then never installing them, or calling you to sell you something over the phone.



Once they have your credit card number they use it to put thousands of dollars on your account. If you chose to do business with a company who contacts you by phone or knocks on your door make sure you check them out very carefully. You can call the Sheriff's office to see if there are any complaints against them.

We did have a couple of cars broken into however they were unlock and there were items of value in plain sight. Do yourself a favor, lock your car and keep valuables out of sight.


We also spoke about people soliciting in our community. That would be those people who walk the neighborhood knocking on doors with clip boards. Kensington Park is a no soliciting neighborhood it is posted at all the entrances. In order to solicit they must have a permit and they can not get one as we are a no soliciting area so they should not be in our community under any circumstance. If you encounter them per Deputy Keane call 911 and give them a description of the person, what they are doing and where they are at so they can be removed from the neighborhood. As Deputy Keane pointed out many of these people are unscrupulous and are looking for homes to rob so make the call.

Deputy Keane said overall crime in our community is way down over last year by approximately 45% or more which is encouraging.





Water Main Break Update


I recently called Mike Mylette the Sarasota County Utilities Department Director, he did not answer his phone which he has not in the last few times I have called him however, he did have Greg Roush return my call.


The reason I called Mike Mylette was he told me in December of 2022 when we first started having a flurry of water main breaks that he had engineers working on a redesign and it would take about four maybe five months before the designs was completed so a new system could be put in place.


When Greg called he went into a long discussion about modeling and how our system was right on track and all the modeling was within the margins. He went on to say that the modeling show that no changes were needed to our system.


I finally stopped him to ask what he was taking about as I had no idea what he was talking about as I had never heard the term modeling before and that was not what I called about.


Greg explained that modeling was the procedure of analyzing a system to see if there were any issues including the flow and other considerations. From there they make a model of the system. In this case as we haven't had a break in a few months and the pressure is low the model is showing that everything is fine.


When I explained that I was calling because we have had 25+ water main breaks and the information that Mike Mylette had told me Gregg had no idea what I was taking about but promised to find out what he could and get back to me in a few day.


The following week I called Gregg to see what he found out as I had not heard from him. I was surprised and a little dumbfounded to say the least. Especially since we were told that our water system would be upgraded once it was bought by the county over ten years ago and Mike Mylette told me he had engineers working on a plan last December.


According to Gregg we are in the Tripar water District. The Tripar district is not due to have any upgrades to the water systems for the next four to five years and there are no engineering studies currently being done for that district. If we continue to have water main breaks they will be maintained by installing more valves and lowering the pressure yet again. I explained to Gregg that my rain shower is already a sprinkle shower and if the pressure get turned down any more it will be a dribble shower. Gregg said there really wasn't anything he could do or could see that we could do to get our water system upgraded. I told him we would be contacting all the county commissioners as it was promised that there was an engineering study underway and a new system would be put in place that would ensure that we would not have any more water main breaks.


Our best option at this point to get anything done with the water system is to contact the County Commissioners involved. Since our County Commissioner Mike Moran has not set foot in our community in either of his terms nor would he allow us to turn in the letter for the Park name to him. I recommend that we email the County commissioners at the email listed below with your concern about the water main breaks and the need for upgrade and repairs. The email for the County Commissioners is https://scgcommemail.scgov.net


After this article was written I learned that Mike Mylette the Utilities Department Director has retired, I will find out who is replacing him.




(photo for dramatization only, not actual damage)


Entrance Lights and Street Light at Andrea Entrance Not Working


There have been many inquiries about the entrance lights at Andrea Place and 17th Street not working. We have been in contact with Florida Power and Light about the problem and they are working to resolve the issue.


Hurricane Ian on September 28, 2022, took out the electricity to the entrance lights and broke the pole for the streetlight, which was removed at that time.


It will require boring under 17th Street from the south side to reconnect the power to the entrance lights. They have put in a work order to replace the pole and streetlight on the corner as well.





Welcome to the Neighborhood


We would like to welcome all 50 new residents to Kensington Park that made the decision in 2023 to invest in our community. The Civic Association is here for you and appreciates your support.




What Your Dues Pay For

Kensington Park Civic Association can only exist with your support. Your $35.00 a year payment assures that the entrance lights are on, and the general maintenance is maintained. As you are all aware, FPL has increased their rates, and it will cost over $1,200.00 a year to keep our lights on at the entrances. We pay for landscaping maintenance to keep the weeds from the sidewalks, mowing and trimming at the entrances, postage for mailings to investors and members and insurance to protect our residents on our public property plus the cost of any special events. Our annual expenses average $9,000.00 -$10,000.00 a year, this is why we ask for your support to allow us to continue to keep Kensington Park a desirable place to live and invest. Thank you all for your support.



4 Reasons You Need To Pick Up Your Dog’s Poop


Responsible dog owners pick up after their pets in public places. However, there are times when owners neglect to pick up their dog's waste, perhaps they are in a rush, don’t have poop bags, or they don’t see why it’s so important. And because of this, you’ve probably stepped in more than your share of dog poop. Chances are you’ve stepped in dog poop and not even been aware of it until you smell it wafting through your car. This is just one of many reasons why it is so important to clean up after your dog. Here are a few more.


Here are 4 Reasons Why Picking up After Your Dog is More Important Than You Think!


1. It will not Breakdown on its Own

If you believe that dog poop will break down or just wash away, you're wrong. Dog waste can take up to 12 months to fully break down. Plus, when rainwater washes over dog poop, it flows into the drainage systems. Then the contaminated water is carried into lakes, streams, and rivers.


2. Disease-Causing Bacteria and Parasites

The parasites and bacteria in dog waste can spread disease to other dogs and even you if not properly picked up. E. coli and salmonella are some of the bacteria which are carried in dog waste. Even if your dog does not show symptoms of being sick their waste can carry diseases that are harmful to humans and other pets.


3. It's Common Courtesy to Pick Up After Your Dog

Picking up after your dog is not only common courtesy but your duty as a pet owner. When feces is left lying in yards, grassy areas, parks, and even the sidewalk the smell can quickly become overwhelming! IT STINKS!


4. Dog Poop is Not a Fertilizer

If you think, as many people do, that dog waste is a natural fertilizer, think again. Since most dogs' diets are high in protein, it has the reverse effect of fertilizer. Dog poop is exceptionally high in nitrogen and phosphorus, so if you let your dog’s waste lay in your grass, it can actually cause burns in your lawn. Since it’s so acidic, it will kill your grass if it isn’t picked up.

Dog waste isn’t the same as cow manure since cows eat plant matter. While cow poop can be used as compost in gardens and fields. In fact, dog poop can contaminate fruits, vegetables, and surrounding areas with harmful bacteria if not composted properly. Kensington Park has dog waste stations. This is a county funded project through the storm water and management division. It is in effort to keep dog feces out of the the storm water and Sarasota Bay. The program is overseen by Mollie Holland. Waste boxes have to be adopted by a resident and then maintained by that resident. The county supplied the post, sign and boxes. We have boxes at the following locations: Corner of Monica and Dudley on the fence post by the stop sign. Easy access from the sidewalk On the corner of Ivy Place and Schwalbe Way On the corner of Tee Road and Sugar Lane attached to the palm tree Corner of 27th Parkway and Monica Parkway where the sidewalk meets 27th Parkway and Prudence Drive on the north side of the street where the sidewalk meets. Eagle Way just before Fauna on the west side of the street. 27th Parkway at the Calvary Chapel Church attached to the wooden fence. Right by the sidewalk **All of the residents who have adopted boxes do a really great job of keeping them full of bags and clean. Thank you for all your help!!




What is the difference between a Civic Association and an HOA?


Become an active member in the Kensington Park Civic Association and support your community!

A civic association is typically a volunteer organization that aims to improve the community's overall quality of life, while a homeowners association (HOA) is a governing body that enforces specific rules and regulations within a community.

  • Civic associations often focus on community events, social gatherings, and fundraising activities, while HOA's are responsible for maintaining common areas, enforcing property standards, and collecting fees from residents.

  • Participation in a civic association is usually voluntary, whereas homeowners in an HOA are typically required to pay fees and follow the association's rules and regulations.

  • Civic associations tend to have a more informal structure with fewer restrictions on membership, while HOA's have a formal governance structure with specific bylaws, committees, and officers.

  • Civic associations are more focused on building relationships within the community, while HOA's are more concerned with enforcing rules and regulations to maintain property values.

  • Civic associations typically have a board of directors who are elected by members, while HOA's may have a board of directors or a property management company that oversees operations.

  • Civic associations often work with local government officials and community leaders to advocate for the community's needs, while HOA's are more independent and self-governing.

  • Civic association events and activities are usually open to everyone in the community, while HOA events and amenities may be restricted to members only.

  • Civic associations are typically more involved in community service projects, such as neighborhood cleanups or charitable events, while HOA's focus on maintaining the community's infrastructure and amenities.

  • Civic associations and HOA's both aim to improve the community, but they have different approaches and priorities.


Shout out to awesome neighbors…we see you!


We want to recognize all the great neighbors who make Kensington Park a happy place to call home. We won’t share names, but you know who you are and thank you! Decorating for Holidays (handing out candy too) and seasonal yard decor- we love seeing your style and it looks great!

Picking up litter (even school age kids) and cleaning up after your pets. You care and we know it! Volunteering to help in any capacity with any

event.

Painting home exteriors, new roofs and repairing fences. Lovely color choices and such big improvements! Beautiful new landscaping and lighting around your home. So many beautiful blooming plants! Community yard sales participation. You were welcoming and friendly to those visiting our neighborhood. Thanks for having Kensington Park pride. It’s been a great year in Kensington Park and we appreciate you! .







Top 5 Ways To Improve A Neighborhood


Everyone wants to live in a safe and pleasant neighborhood. A home is likely your greatest financial investment and you want to do all you can to keep neighborhood property values up, right? So, what can you make a positive difference? 1. Report crime as soon as possible. Whether it’s a suspicious person or incident, theft, vandalism, trespassing or something more serious, police cannot act without hearing about the problem from you. Don’t assume someone else has or will call- make the call yourself. For emergencies call 911. For non- emergencies call 941-316-1201. To report a crime online go to sarasotasheriff.org and select File a report from topics on the home page. 2. Report nuisances and non criminal problems promptly. Examples of these types of issues are inoperable cars, boats, and RV’s on property, excessive parking (more than 4 vehicles) on property, and junk, garbage and yard waste piled up. More examples regarding Sarasota County Code Enforcement violations are available online at scgov.net If you find yourself thinking “Someone should do something about that” call code enforcement with questions, concerns or to file a report at 941-861-5000 or CE Officer Mike Taylor directly at 941-221-2415 or email him at mitaylor@scgov.net. 3. Take away the opportunity for crime. Think about your home, your car and even your lifestyle and ask what you could change to limit opportunities for crime. Lock your car and never leave valuables inside, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your garage doors closed when you are inside your home or in your back yard. Don’t leave valuables unsecured in your carport. Trim shrubs and bushes that offer convenient hiding places and limit your ability to see outside your home. Leave a porch light on and consider landscape lighting and motion activated lights. 4. Introduce yourself to your neighbors. Did you grow up in a neighborhood where everyone knew each other? That is rare today as neighborhoods and lifestyles have changed. We all want others to respect our privacy, and nobody wants a nosey neighbor but it can make a big difference to know your neighbors and be able to talk to them. Names and phone numbers for just a few neighbors can be very reassuring and helpful. Maybe even connect and have some fun!

5. Be Active! Walk or bike around your community, enjoy the neighborhood and see how it continues to improve. Wave and say hello to your neighbors. Take part in community events and activities. Attend community meetings to share your thoughts and ideas and have a voice in future plans and activities. Volunteer for a committee or consider becoming a board member. A small commitment of your time can really make a big difference in your neighborhood and you will benefit too…feel the pride!!


Without your help, this could be Kensington Park!!!


The entrances to this park were filled with weeds. There were no lights to light up the Entrance ways. The lawns were overgrown, and debris and garbage everywhere. More cars and homes were broken into, also gangs coming in the park, taking advantage of people and there property.


Unless the county enforcement was notified by someone, the neighborhood became one of the worst in Sarasota County. If no one has contact with the county to request repairs like sidewalks, road maintenance when they should be. Trees trimmed regularly, fire hydrants. No one to pay the power bill for the lights at the entrances, no Facebook, no website or newsletter for the homeowners to be informed no post on any social media or email. There is more but I hope you get this concept!

I have lived in this neighborhood since 1980 and a proud home owner. I am asking for your help as part of the Civic Association. Whatever language you speak we could use your help in paying your dues, help with volunteering or being a Board member!

That brings me to what events would you like to see happen in our neighborhood! It would be so nice to have events happen here right in our own neighborhood. It just can’t happen without your help!! Please reach out on our social media. We need your help!!! Volunteer’s needed!! Become a member, $35.00 a year. Also, what events would you like to see happen in this park? Kpcasrq.office@gmail.com


This could be Kensington Park!


Lost and Missing Animals

To those that live here in the Kensington Park area:

If you find your animals missing, you might want to

  • Call the humane society

  • Check on the nextdoor app.

  • Check on facebook Pet Pages

  • Please have you animal chipped.

Thank you.


 

The 2024 Membership Dues are Due!





For your convenience you can use the link above, scan the QR code to the left or If you prefer you can send a check to:


Kensington Park Civic Association,

P.O. Box 52574, Sarasota, FL 34232.


Please make checks payable to KPCA or Kensington Park Civic

Association.


Donations greatly appreciated to help with community improvements.


Name:_____________________________________________________________

Address:___________________________________________________________

Phone:____________________________________________________________

Email:_____________________________________________________________

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