Community Spotlight: Frank Jurenka

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Q: Frank, let’s cut to the chase: You are president of the Siesta Key Condominium Council. In that role, what is your reaction to the county’s recent approval of the two large hotels?

A: I’m extremely disappointed in the Sarasota County Commissioners’ vote, save one. The Siesta Key Condominium Council worked diligently to get Siesta Key condos to sign-up to the (anti-hotel) Siesta Key Coalition effort and was highly successful with 70 or so associations joining. In addition, two Siesta Key Condominium Council board members were key players in the Siesta Key Coalition efforts.

The commissioners’ vote ignored the wishes of in-excess-of 5,000 noted taxpayers and most likely a high percentage of Siesta Key property owners. Guess their priorities were elsewhere, but a major factor may have been the small, actual-voter numbers on the Key.

The Siesta Key Condominium Council is now actively supporting the incorporation ballot initiative by the Save Siesta Key organization.

Q: Let’s rewind a bit. Tell us about your history with Siesta Key.

A: I have been a property owner at the Gulf and Bay Club since 2001 and a resident of Florida since 2015. I spend six months here on the Key and love every minute.

While traffic might have picked up in 20 years, thanks to existing building codes the Key is basically the same as when my wife and I first bought here.

 I work for the Siesta Key Condominium Council, which works to keep it that way, subject to modest changes/growth reflecting the times. In-scale hotels meeting long-standing building codes would meet those criteria.

Q: How and why did you become associated with the condo council?

A: My tenure goes back a number of years — in excess of 12, I think. I am fully retired and was, and still am, keeping busy. The Siesta Key Condominium Council afforded an opportunity to spend some of my excess time and energy on a worthy cause, as outlined in the council’s mission statement.

The essence of the statement is:

“… to provide member condominium associations, their owners, residents and renters, current information applicable to condominium living in the legislative, legal and insurance arenas, through a series of meetings/speakers; and to support efforts that promote: safety, economic stability, environmentalism, and the beautification of Siesta Key.”

The Siesta Key Condominium Council is one of three organizations that, shall we say, watches out for the Key. We try to do our best to keep our membership informed and advocate for issues of a general nature that impact the Siesta Key condo community way of life. We make every effort to support what the condo community wants and needs.

Q: We see you’ve also been a director with Save Our Siesta Sand. What has the impetus for that group, and what is its current status?

A: This group is alive and well and is basically in a “watching” mode since losing the battle with the city of Sarasota over dredging Big Pass.

Again, the Sarasota County Commissioners refused to step in to support Siesta Key. The condo council board sees this and other examples for reasons to continue to support, first, the single-member districts and then the incorporation ballot.

Q: On a personal note, what else keeps you active in your life on the Key?

A: I play some golf, walk the beach, attend local restaurants and ride my bike to get some exercise.  Siesta Key is really a nice place to live and enjoy significant outside life.

I also do some church work for the Siesta Key Chapel and am the treasurer for the Siesta Key Fire and Rescue Council, a not-for-profit supporting Fire Station 13.

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