MANATEE- A Manatee County Planning Commissioner of 4.5 years spontaneously resigned Thursday.
Al Horrigan said he was wasting his time. “I think they were hearing my voice, they were ignoring it,” he said.
The Manatee County Planning Commissioner resigned 3.5 years before the end of his term.
He said, “Today, the home–building industry is in control of Manatee County.”
While residential districts are growing exponentially, Horrigan said roadways aren’t keeping up.
“It’s the quality of life. They build more quantity, they don’t take care of the impact of that quantity and so the quality of life deteriorates,” he said.
With 40 years of real estate and developmental planning under his belt, he advocated for a solution to mitigate traffic for thousands…a bridge connecting Tara Boulevard and Honore Avenue.
The project was put on hold.
With a new neighborhood in the works, featuring more than 600 homes, next to a water recovery plant, Horrigan pushed to extend Natalie Way to connect to Honore Avenue.
“The developer didn’t want that. So they fought it on the basis that there was a problem with security,” he said, “And they were concerned with perhaps some environmental issues. But if they were really concerned with environmental issues, they shouldn’t do the project at all.”
That was the final straw for Horrigan. He said he realized then commissioners have a closer relationship with developers than with the public.
“People really have to understand that this will not get better until they change the politics of the county. They have to change commissioners,” Horrigan said.
Nick Azarra, spokesman for Manatee County told SNN it isn’t unusual for an advisory board member to resign. The board is actively seeking a replacement for Horrigan’s seat.