Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tarpon Springs considers revoking Anclote River development agreement with retail giant Wal-Mart

TARPON SPRINGS — City commissioners will discuss whether to terminate a development agreement with retail giant Wal-Mart tonight at its regularly scheduled meeting.

Wal-Mart has allowed its application for a building permit to expire and the company has not approached the city with a revised site plan. That inaction could be considered a violation of the agreement, City Attorney Jim Yacavone said.

"We should get some type of finality with it," said Commissioner Robin Saenger. "It seems that the implied is that it was finished, but it was not formalized. I want us to look at our options and decide as a group and make a clear decision instead of letting it just drift along."

But Mayor Beverley Billiris said the city should allow the development agreement to simply expire instead of trying to revoke it. The five-year agreement was signed April 4, 2005, and would expire next April.

"It will naturally expire by itself," Billiris said. "I don't know what the urgency is to jump ahead of that. Wal-Mart said they've tabled it. If we make a move (to revoke the development agreement), that may trigger them to initiate a new application."

David Theriaque, Wal-Mart's attorney, declined to comment.

"This is the first I've heard about it," he said Monday of the discussion to potentially revoke the development agreement.

Yacavone said if the commission decides to rescind the development agreement, it could take at least three months. The process would include several public hearings, he said.

Wal-Mart hit a snag in its attempt to build a 203,000-square-foot supercenter on the banks of the Anclote River last October. The commission voted 3-2 that Wal-Mart had allowed its concurrency certificate to expire. To ensure that a development has the infrastructure such as roads and sewer to handle a project, the certificate is required.

For five years, a citizens group fought to keep Wal-Mart from building on a 74-acre site in Tarpon Springs. The group cited several reasons for its opposition, including protecting the environmentally sensitive area from the large amount of traffic a supercenter would bring.

Billiris said she wants to ensure that "we are looking out for the best interest of the city."

"You don't want to get so hung up on and so against Wal-Mart that you lose sight of the city, because it was an excellent development agreement," she said.

Demorris A. Lee can be reached at or (727) 445-4174.

If you go

Meeting tonight

What: Tarpon Springs City Commission meeting.

When: 6:30 p.m. today.

Where: City Hall, 324 E Pine St.

Tarpon Springs considers revoking Anclote River development agreement with retail giant Wal-Mart 06/15/09 [Last modified: Monday, June 15, 2009 7:33pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. William March: Two Democrats appear to lead challenge of U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross


    Half a dozen Democrats have filed for the primary to challenge U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross, R-Lakeland, but so far, only two have mounted substantial financial campaigns — Andrew Learned of Bloomingdale and James Gregory "Greg" Pilkington of Indian Lake Estates in Polk County.

    Rep. Dennis Ross, R-Lakeland, faces a challenge from Democrats hoping to take advantage of voter dissatisfaction with Republican President Donald Trump. [Times file]
  2. Gov. Scott says decisions on Confederate monuments should be left to the democratic 'process'


    Gov. Rick Scott this morning avoided directly answering whether Confederate monuments should be taken down, saying the decision should be part of a democratic "process."

    Workers place boards around a Confederate monument on Hillsborough County property in Tampa on Thursday, August 17, 2017. It took 24 hours to raise private funds in order to move the statue from its current location.
  3. A 5,000-year-old stone carving may be the world's first drawing of an eclipse


    An unassuming grass-covered stone mound outside of Dublin, Ireland, may be home to the world's oldest visual representation of a solar eclipse.

    This 5,000-year-old stone carving in Meath, Ireland, predating Stonehenge by at least 1,000 years, may be the world's oldest surviving depiction of an eclipse. [Courtesy of Michael]
  4. Ex-Bucs WR Vincent Jackson highlights Kriseman's pick for Manhattan Casino restaurant


    Mayor Rick Kriseman picked a Floribbean-themed restaurant to highlight turning a new page in the historic Manhattan Casino, which has been shuttered for more than a year after the city …

    Kriseman makes his choice on a new tenant for the iconic Manhattan Casino: Floribbean cuisine
  5. Man arrested after authorities say he left kids in hot car at Publix

    Public Safety

    ZEPHYRHILLS — A Wesley Chapel man faces charges of child neglect after authorities say he left three children in a vehicle in the afternoon heat while he went into Publix to buy diapers.

    Oladele Iyunade