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Commissioners celebrate Legacy Trail extension with no masks

Crews will be adding an 8-mile extension to the Legacy Trail. County commissioners were mask-free at the groundbreaking celebration.

SARASOTA COUNTY, Fla. — Crews will be adding eight miles to the Legacy Trail in Sarasota running from the Culverhouse Nature Center to Payne Park in Downtown. 

It's part of a clean-up of 8,000 railroad ties treated with creosote which can pollute the watershed. The trail extension is expected to be finished in 2022.

County Commissioners were part of the groundbreaking today of this $65 million project and noticeably not wearing masks.

Commission Chair Michael A. Moran told 10 Tampa Bay, “We made it crystal clear on this board that we’re very supportive of promoting masks, educating folks, any type of awareness that’s necessary but it’s just a step too far us to make it mandatory and enforcement."

Earlier this week, the owner of Pop’s asked commissioners on behalf of about 60 other independently-owned restaurants to pass a mask ordinance. Owner Joe Farrell told commissioners one of his part-time workers who hasn't been to work in over a week, tested positive for COVID-19, so he paid $15,000 for rapid tests for all of his workers and re-sanItizing the restaurant. 

He asked the commission to require customers to wear masks to help stop the spread. Sarasota County Commissioners have not voted on a mask ordinance and don't have plans to at this time.

RELATED: Sarasota voters approve $65 million referendum to extend legacy trail

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