Gulfport Community Update
January 10 – 16, 2021
Gulfport City Hall and facilities will be closed on Monday, January 18 in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. The Sanitation schedule will not be affected.
In an effort to help mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus, all public water fountains in the City of Gulfport have been turned off. For more information, call 893-1000.
The City of Gulfport permit-free Citywide Yard Sale is Saturday, January 16. In the event of rain, the sale will take place on Sunday the 17th. Brochures are available at the Gulfport Library; on the outdoor brochure display at the Gulfport Casino, 5500 Shore Boulevard; Gulfport Municipal Marina, 4630 29th Avenue, or online at www.mygulfport.us/gulfport-city-wide-yard-sale. Thank you to Olympus Printing for sponsoring this event. Call 893-1118 for more information.
The Gulfport Tuesday Fresh Market is a weekly year-round open-air market featuring fruits, vegetables and a wide variety of foods; hand-made art and crafts; bath, body and wellness products and more. More than 50 vendors and exhibitors participate each Tuesday on Beach Boulevard in Gulfport’s Historic Waterfront District. Hours of operation are 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Safety protocols are in place to keep vendors and shoppers safe. For more information, visit www.gulfporttuesdayfreshmarket.com.
Virtual Neighborhood Watch Meetings are broadcast “live on Facebook” at 7 p.m. every Wednesday. Check updates for your area and learn about recent incidents related to burglaries, BOLOs and stolen vehicles. Call 893-1022 or email email@example.com for more information.
Shop original artwork, choose your favorite cuisine and enjoy live music during First Friday Art Walk & Third Saturday Indie Faire on Beach Boulevard. Visit www.visitgulfportflorida.com +for more information. Hours of operation are 6 – 10 p.m.
Check out cars from the past during the 49th Street Business Association So Classic Car Show at Trolley Market Square, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Saturday, February 6. FREE admission. Visit www.so49.org/so-classic-car-show for more information.
The Gabber Newspaper & Gulfport Merchants Chamber of Commerce will cohost the Gulfport City Council Candidates Debate at the Catherine Hickman Theater 6 – 8 p.m. Thursday, February 11. Social distancing and mask protocols will be enforced. For more information visit www.eventbrite.com/e/gulfport-debates-tickets-131452817917.
The Annual Gulfport Fine Arts Festival returns to Veterans Park, 5350 31st Avenue, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday & Sunday, February 13 & 14. The juried art show will feature fine works including; 2D, 3D, ceramic, glass, metal, mixed media, wood, acrylic, collage, oil, pastel, ink, fine photography, watercolor, and fine jewelry. Free parking and admission. Visit https://www.facebook.com/events/676239236449097/ or http://visitgulfportflorida.com/the-gulfport-fine-arts-festival/ for more information.
Gulfport Grassroots in partnership with Keep Pinellas Beautiful will host the City of Gulfport 2021 Great American Cleanup Clam Bayou Cleanup 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, March 20. This is a perfect opportunity to volunteer your groups, family members, neighbors or come solo to meet everyone and enjoy a beautiful morning at Clam Bayou. Volunteers should wear closed-toed shoes, sun protection, and weather appropriate clothing. Cleanup supplies and drinks provided. Call 732-310-4932, or visit https://www.facebook.com/GulfportGrassRoots for more information
COVID-19 testing is available through Community Health Centers of Pinellas and the Florida Department of Health. Visit www.covid19.pinellascounty.org/testing/ for testing sites, hours of operation and information.
Pinellas County provides assistance information for those negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Visit www.covid19.pinellascounty.org/where-to-get-help/ for food pantry distribution sites, financial assistance, eviction/foreclosure assistance information, pet care assistance and more. Text your zip code to 211 Tampa Bay Cares at 898211 or dial 211 24 hours a day.
Dispatch calls for service
Self-initiated calls for service
Examples of arrests or significant incidents or calls this week:
Christopher Nelson was arrested for grand theft auto and an outstanding warrant for dealing in stolen property on January 7 after a caller reported he came to his grandmother’s home in the 5600 block of Gulfport Boulevard in a truck stolen from Tennessee, and in possession of a handgun and drugs. The complainant also advised that Nelson’s girlfriend, Amy Smith ran from the home. Officers Dillard & McIntyre stopped Nelson while he was attempting to flee the scene in the truck, and Officer Pope found Smith at Walgreens attempting to flush narcotics down a toilet. She was in possession of large amounts of fentanyl, methamphetamine, crack cocaine, a scale and items used for packaging drugs for sale, resulting in her arrest.
Nathan Greene was arrested on habitual traffic offender and resisting arrest charges on January 8 after he ran from Officer McIntyre during a traffic stop in the 1800 block of 49th Street for an expired tag. Greene was taken into custody a few blocks away.
Four unlocked vehicles parked in the 5700 block of 26th Avenue were burglarized during the early morning hours of January 9. A wallet belonging to a resident was found on the ground in the area.
A handgun was stolen from an unlocked car parked in the 3100 block of 57th Street.
Officers were dispatched to a report of a disturbance in the 5100 block of Tangerine Avenue on January 10 after a subject confronted a resident about comments he made on Facebook. The resident felt threatened and displayed a pocket knife in self-defense, and the subject left the area before officers arrived.
A car belonging to a Door Dash driver was stolen from the 5600 16th Avenue after the driver left the engine running while making a delivery. The car was recovered in St. Petersburg the following day.
A car was reported stolen from the 1800 block of 58th Street on January 12 after the driver left the engine running while delivering a pizza. Her phone was in the car, and tracked to the 1900 block of 49th Street where the car was found in an alley.
A resident in the 1400 block of 58th Street reported on January 13 that he confronted a man standing in his driveway next to his truck. He was concerned the man was going to try to break into his truck so he told him he was going to call the police. When he went inside to retrieve his phone he heard glass breaking and saw the suspect running eastbound on Newton Avenue. The suspect threw a large stone at the back window of the truck causing damage but it appears he did not enter the vehicle.
Criminal Investigative Section
New cases reviewed: 12
Cases currently assigned: 58
Detective Pham followed up on investigations and completed supplemental reports for an auto theft, a runaway, a death investigation, a burglary, and a fraud.
Detective Crowson followed up on investigations and completed supplemental reports for four auto thefts, a sexual battery, and a retail theft.
Crime Analyst Margaret Palmisano finished tabulating annual 2020 Uniform Crime Report data; performed pawn checks on cases with a named suspect, known serial number or searchable property description, and a review of property reported stolen to ensure proper database entry; compiled December 2020 officer activity data; the December crime scene call out report, and December CIS monthly report, and; began compiling statistical data for the annual report.
The Marine Unit was on the water for 9 hours this week, conducting 11 boater contacts and 1 vessel stops.
There are currently 26 vessels inside City limits, including 13 in the mooring field, and an additional 4 outside City limits. Four vessels have been declared derelict; 3 by FWC, and 1 by GPD.
Community Resources Division
The following written directive policies are currently in the review process: 405 – Missing Persons Investigations; 511 – School Resource Officers; 645 – Traffic, Boating, DUI & Parking Citations, and; 709 – Access to and Use of Secure Databases.
Recruiting and Screening
New Police Officers Taylor Myers and Gerald Grimes continued phase 1 field training this week.
Elizabeth Brown-Worthington completed law enforcement academy and will begin employment with GPD on January 19.
Commander Stone is performing professional standards duties until the position is filled.
Accreditation & Audits
Commander Stone completed and submitted the agency’s annual administrative review and analysis regarding bias-based policing for inclusion in the annual report due in February.
In preparation for the April accreditation assessment, we invited local subject matter experts from Tarpon Springs, Pinellas Park, and Palmetto Police Departments for a mock assessment this week. Assessors spent three days reviewing more than 260 files, inspecting equipment and facilities, and conducting interviews with staff. The team left us with high confidence that we are prepared for the actual assessment.
Officer Mills has been temporarily reassigned to the evening shift due to shortages in the patrol section.
Volunteer Coordinator Jim Wright posted weekly activity information on the neighborhood watch Facebook page, and hosted a Facebook live weekly neighborhood watch meeting.
Officer Motte assisted school staff with several misconduct complaints, resulting in school consequences. One incident resulted in the arrest a student who resisted efforts to break up a fight. Officer Motte spoke with a class about how to report a crime to police. He & Mr. Vigue were advised of a possible threat originating on social media toward an unnamed school. An investigation determined the threat was not credible due to the IP address originating in Texas. Despite this, and out of an abundance of caution, arrangements were made for additional police officers on and around local high school campuses throughout the day. Officer Motte also provided security coverage for a basketball game and covered a patrol shift for an officer on FMLA leave. He also hosted a virtual Police Explorer meeting with 6 explorers in attendance and agreed to meet virtually and in-person once in-person meetings resume.
Officer Sigsbee provided classroom presentations with 5th grade students regarding school rules and state laws, and actions and penalties associated with both; spoke with the parents of 4th & 5th grade students regarding behavior issues that need to be addressed at home and in school; met with a parent about a student who was injured during recess. The parent wanted to file criminal charges, but evidence indicated the incident was accidental, and she was referred to Pinellas County Schools Risk Management.
Assisted with five dockside pump outs, evacuating one hundred twenty gallons of waste, and two pump out boat services evacuating thirty-five gallons of waste.
Pumped five thousand three hundred eighteen gallons of gas, and three thousand one hundred eighty-nine gallons of diesel fuel, fueling one hundred fifty-one vessels.
In an effort to protect customers, staff and event/instructional facilitators, all onsite events are cancelled until further notice. Visit www.facebook.com/GulfportLibraryFL/ for resources, information & virtual/online programs. You may be prompted by Facebook to login or create an account which may limit your view of the content, but you do not have to setup an account to watch videos or view photos. Previously recorded programs will remain available for 2 weeks. Click on events to see what’s coming up.
Curbside/Parking Lot pick up service is available for borrowing library materials and picking up requested printouts (reemployment forms, IRS tax forms, etc.). Call 893-1074 for more information.
Check for virtual/online programs, resources, and information on our Facebook page. You do not have to setup a Facebook account, but your view of the content may be limited. Visit www.facebook.com/GulfportLibraryFL/ and click on videos to see any of our previously recorded programs and upcoming events. Programs will remain available for up to 2 weeks.
Friday, January 22, 10 a.m. – Babytime Online: If you have little ones under 2 years old, join us at www.facebook.com/GulfportLibraryFL/ as we sing songs, read books, enjoy lap bounce rhymes and learn baby signs.
Monday, January 25, 4 p.m. – Virtual Science Club for grades K-5: Join us biweekly online for a fun DIY experiment from the comfort of your own kitchen using common household items.
Wednesday, January 27, 2 p.m. – Beginner Sewing – Tiny Houses: Join us on Zoom or Facebook Live as we make adorable tiny house magnets and key chains! We’ll use fabric scraps and embellishments to hand sew tiny houses. Supplies are limited; and kits will be available on Monday, January 25. Call 893-1074 to check availability.
Thursday, January 28, 10:15 a.m. – Virtual Storytime: Join us on the library’s Facebook page! Be sure to follow @GulfportLibraryFL for books, rhymes, felts and more!
David Mather attended Library, Information Technology, and City department meetings to update procedures and to distribute information as directed by the City Manager regarding the City’s response to the COVID-19 virus, contacted/followed up with various vendors to resolve issues and to initiate and implement new services; followed up on issues with purchases and billing, and; participated in ongoing planning and procedures under the direction of City Council and City Manager during transition for restoring/modifying services; continued working with IT staff to troubleshoot new server, updated software hosting the Library’s network of public access computers; communicated with Finance Department staff to review applications for proposed new IT/Finance position; provided details of Resolution No. 2021-04 amending Gulfport Public Library fees at January 5 City Council meeting, and; installed large format scanner at Community Development and scheduled training for staff.
Carol Parker followed up with monthly statements from vendors, directing staff to retrieve and submit outstanding invoices to reconcile accounts; placed and received orders for new books and DVDs; inventoried and ordered supplies; coordinated with staff to further revise December schedule; provided coverage for Reference Desk; compiled and submitted press releases to Technical Events Specialist for City-sponsored ad; attended professional online training modules, and; corresponded with vendor to resolve billing issue.
Library Staff responded to phone and email inquiries and resolved various issues; contacted vendors to update their status and to request/follow-up with quotes for new services; composed and submitted reports; and submitted bills for payment by Finance; planned and implemented programs adapted for offsite use such as Virtual Craft and Science Club programs, and; logged into and participated in various professional development webinars.
Library Services/Statistics January 3 – 9, 2021:
Items Circulated Patrons
Staff processed 15 Library card registrations.
PARKS & RECREATION
- Updated and emailed weekly Constant Contact newsletter to email distribution list.
- Posted COVID-19 updates to social media sites.
- Created press releases for City activities affected by COVID-19.
- Used Adobe InDesign to create images.
- Assisted with email responses for Cultural Facilities Department.
- Updated Trumba Calendar.
- Assisted Senior Center with recording of virtual classes.
Register your email address at www.mygulfport.us to receive City of Gulfport weekly newsletter and emergency announcements electronically.
Alert Pinellas Emergency and Community Notification Service for Pinellas County enables the City to provide residents with critical information quickly in a variety of delivery methods. Visit www.mygulfport.us/alertpinellas for more information and to sign up for this FREE service.
City of Gulfport Multipurpose Senior Center
The Senior Center Fitness Center is open 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday – Thursday, and Fridays 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Hourly capacity is limited to provide physical distancing, and advance reservation is required; call 893-5657 to schedule. All other in-person Senior Center activities, classes and groups remain cancelled until further notice.
The City of Gulfport Telephone Reassurance program is much more than a morning wake-up call. This free service offers Gulfport residents 50 years or older – and their families comfort, security, and peace of mind. Volunteers provide daily phone calls to registered members. If the member cannot be reached, the volunteer follows specific procedures to confirm there are no major concerns. Registration is simple and free. If you or someone you know could use this service, call 893-2237 or stop by the Gulfport Senior Center at 5501 27th Avenue.
Gulfport Extended Mobility Service (GEMS) has resumed limited, essential transportation services offering reliable, affordable and convenient on-time transportation to supermarkets, medical appointments, etc. for Gulfport residents 55 & older and residents with a disability. This door-to-door transportation has provided independence & freedom to Gulfport residents since 1975. The yearly membership is $70 plus $2 per ride. For more information, call 893-2242.
The Gulfport Senior Center Pantry provides supplemental food assistance to qualifying Gulfport Seniors in need. Hours of operation are 1 – 3 p.m. every Monday & Thursday. Gulfport residents 50 years old and older must provide a photo I.D., proof of residency and income to qualify. The Food Pantry also collects donations of nonperishable food items such as cereal, canned meats, peanut butter, jelly, soup, canned vegetables/fruit, rice, canned/dry milk, pasta, personal toiletries, & pet food. Donations are accepted 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday – Friday. Call 893-5657 for more information.
The Gulfport Multipurpose Senior Center has many volunteer opportunities available. If you want to make a difference and help your community, join the volunteer program at the Senior Center. It’s a great way to meet new friends and to get acquainted with more than 50 programs, classes and workshops. Volunteers assist as Lobby Receptionist, Fitness Center Attendants, Reassurance Callers, Class/Activity Instructors, Special Events, Food Pantry, Clerical Support, Flea Market, Promotions, Bingo, Card/Magazine organizing, etc. Call Rachel at 893-1231 for more information.
Pre-recorded classes are available on GTV 640, and for streaming on ZOOM, Facebook and YouTube. Call 893-5657 or visit www.facebook.com/GulfportSeniorCenter for more information. Next week’s GTV class schedule:
Monday, January 18
10 a.m. – Money Mondays
11 a.m. & 6 p.m. – Chair Exercise
Tuesday, January 19
10 a.m. & 6 p.m. – Yoga
10 a.m. – Shine: Medicare Part D Drug Plan
10:30 a.m. – Spanish for Beginners
1 p.m. – In the Kitchen with Chef Jack
Wednesday, January 20
9:30 a.m. – Gentle Mindful Yoga
10 a.m. – Shine: Medicare 101
11:30 a.m. & 6 p.m. – Wellness Movement Exercise
1 p.m. – Trivia Mania
Thursday, January 21
10 a.m. & 6 p.m. – Wisdom Healing Qigong
10:30 a.m. – Spanish
Noon – Shine: Medicare Financial Assistance
Friday, January 22
10 a.m. – Writers Workshop
10:30 a.m. & 6 p.m. – Chair Yoga
- Virtual program attendance: 194
- Reassurance calls: 80
- Neighborly Care Network meals delivered: 1,018
- Food Pantry bags disbursed: 2
- Wellness checks/home visits: 2
- GEMS trips: 75
- Fitness Center attendance: 129
- Birthday calls: 536
- Pinellas County DOH Survey: 2,762 emails and outreach to 55 and older communities in Gulfport
Tampa Bay Club Sports have reserved Hoyt Field for Kickball Leagues.
Sand Life Volleyball & Tampa Bay Club Sports reserve the volleyball courts for volleyball clinics.
The following Contractual classes and activities have resumed; Ballet/Tap Combo, Essential Oils, Full-Body Fitness, Hip Hop, Hula Hoop Fitness, Pickleball, Basketball, Table Tennis and Tennis.
Twenty children are registered for the 2020/21 School Year Child Care Program for children in Kindergarten thru age 14. Bus transportation is available from Pasadena Fundamental, Bear Creek, Gulfport Montessori & Douglas Jamerson Elementary schools. Program hours are until 5:30 p.m. with extended hours available until 6 p.m. for an extra fee. Hours of registration are Monday – Friday from 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Five children are registered for the 2020/21 VPK Program.
Fourteen teens are registered for the Teen Night Program, a great hang out for teens in grades 6-12, providing recreation and social activities and offering monthly field trips, cooking projects, guest speakers & service projects. The teens utilize the gymnasium, game room and outdoor area.
Recreation Center Staff continue to clean, sanitize and disinfect the facility throughout the day.
Marivel Gutierrez facilitated the Teen Council meeting on Tuesday evening.
Seven Gulfport Teen Councilmembers attended the monthly meeting on Tuesday. Adviser Marivel Gutierrez facilitated. Topic of discussion: Advisor report, Approval of December minutes, Old business and New business.
Calls for service:
- 56 Emergency medical calls
- 1 Trauma alert
- 3 Structure fires
- 4 Fire alarms
- 2 Vehicle crashes
- 1 Gas leak
- 2 Wires down
- 1 Fire outside structure
- 1 Elevator rescue
- 6 Fire inspections
- 1 Plans review
- 1 Hood inspection
The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) meets at 7 p.m. every third Monday of the month. Call James Wright at 893-1022 for more information.
Gulfport Firefighters commenced their January 2021 online CME. This month’s topics: Physical Assessment and chest pain protocols.
St. Petersburg College Paramedic student Robert Horan is serving his internship with GFD. Acting Lt. Firefighter/Paramedic Michael Barber is his preceptor.
Chief Marenkovic and Captain Fernandez attended COVID vaccine administration training at Pinellas County EOC.
Chief Marenkovic and City Manager O’Reilly attended a County Administrator Zoom meeting to discuss Growth Management in the Pinellas County EMS system 5.
- Delivered donations to Senior Center.
- Made baseball bases for Recreation Center baseball diamond, replaced broken doorstep and repaired AC thermostat.
- Fixed toilets in Dog Park restrooms.
- Repaired Casino marquee and converted to LED lights.
- Delivered mail to main post office for Finance Department.
- Sanitized open public facilities hourly.
- Cleaned & sanitized Parks vehicles.
- Mowed, raked, lined and dragged ball fields daily.
- Watered all non-irrigated areas.
- Cleaned/maintained City restrooms daily.
- Removed grass and added clay to baseball field behind Recreation Center.
- Replaced broken trash cages around City.
- Fertilized irrigated areas.
- Rebuilt casino sign lighting and rear panel.
- Installed ties around Casino crawl space.
- Removed kitchen and disposed of storage shelving at Art Center.
- Mowed City complex, Senior Center & Library green spaces, and Veterans, Clymer & Caldwell Parks.
- Trimmed, weeded, cleaned & mulched City Complex & Recreation complex, and raked around benches & beach pavilions.
- Repaired irrigation at Clymer Park.
- Cleared leaves and debris from fountain screens at Wood Ibis Park.
- Cleaned & sanitized event trashcans.
- Greased mowers, sharpened blades and replaced shaft on line trimmer.
- All City park trash and cigarette waste containers were emptied.
- Cleaned all City playgrounds.
- Cleaned restrooms at Little League, beach and outside Casino.
- Completed billable work orders for pick-up of brush, electronics & appliances, trash & furniture, and items requested for pick-up by Code Enforcement.
- Picked up residential bagged leaves as requested.
- Delivered/replaced residential recycling bins with information sheets.
- Assembled & delivered new automated trash containers and replaced broken containers as requested.
- Commenced annual paving.
- Commenced annual sidewalk replacement/grinding.
- Daily chloramines sampling at points of connection to water distribution system, (includes Saturday & Sunday).
- Daily inspection and read of Wholesale meters.
- Daily inspection and recording of rainfall.
- Daily check of ground water levels.
- Read routes 23, 24, 25, 26 & 27 of monthly meter schedule.
- Disconnected water service at 16 locations for non-payment.
- Completed 7 non pay rechecks to confirm water services are still off.
- Performed 112 miscellaneous Customer Service department generated service orders.
- Performed 13 Sunshine One-Call, Call before You Dig utility locates.
- Reviewed permit applications for fences, driveways and irrigation.
- Replaced 4 water meters with Pro-Coder R900i meters.
- Continued locating and marking water line valves in City.
- Repaired water breaks at 5418 13th Avenue, and on Heron Street.
- Installed new service at 1127 Heron Street, and at 1841 50th
- Daily preventive maintenance and service to Lift Stations #1 and #2.
- Daily rainfall checks and documentation, (includes Saturday & Sunday).
- Daily ground water elevation recording (includes Saturday & Sunday).
- Weekly generator exercise and preventive maintenance check on Lift Stations #1 & 2, Fire Department/Garage, Police Station/City Hall, and Senior Center.
- Collected bay water samples at Gulfport Beach, Clam Bayou & Marina for quality testing.
- Televised sewer laterals at 1513 49th Street and at 2608 Beach Boulevard; both found to be customer problem.
- Cleaned 18 Storm water inlets throughout City.
- Repaired storm drain inlet 4533 27th Avenue.
- Performed preventive maintenance and various minor repairs on City vehicles.
The office is now open to the public with restrictions. Face masks must be worn, and no more than 2 customers are allowed in the counter area at one time. Questions may be directed to staff either via the telephone or e-mail. Conferences must be scheduled to ensure adequate space is available to practice safe social distancing practices. Inquires can be directed to 893-1024 or to firstname.lastname@example.org.
TEMPORARY INSPECTION PROCEDURES DURING COVID 19: IN ORDER TO MAINTAIN INSPECTION RECORDS ALL INSPECTIONS MUST BE SCHEDULED ON THE INSPECTION LINE 893-1057 AS USUAL. THE CUT-OFF FOR INSPECTIONS REMAINS THE SAME.
The Building Division is still operating; however, the permit counter is closed to the public.
All over the counter permitting is conducted via e-mail at email@example.com. Questions about submitting applications may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 893-1024. All payments must be made by credit cards over the phone.
Outside inspections will continue and should be phoned into the inspection line at 893-1057. Please call 893-1024 for information regarding interior inspections.
Mechanical equal change outs, water heater replacements and roof over inspections for occupied buildings are on hold until further notice, permits that expire due to this restriction will be extended without fees.
Door and window replacements (size for size, no structural), provided photo of location w/permit placard in photo, photos of shim and fastener installation and window manufacture stickers in place on windows, photos of interior and exterior calking and sealing. Provide a notarized letter of compliance (complies with manufactures approved installation specifications and Florida Building Code, Sixth Edition (2017)
Re-roof, provide photo of location w/permit placard in photo, photos of in-progress installation (underlayment, drip edge and flashing, ridge or box vent openings, roofing material identification and shingle or roof covering fasteners, etc.), photos of completed roof. Provide a notarized nailing affidavit and a notarized letter of compliance (manufactures approved installation specs and FBC, Sixth Ed. (2017)
Other inspections that may be done by providing photos and compliance letters include: drywall/tile backer, minor electric/plumbing/mechanical, non-structural framing, etc. These inspections must be pre-arranged with the inspector or building official.
All photos must be clear and legible and contain enough detail to show compliance for the inspection to be passed, they must be emailed to email@example.com on the day of the scheduled inspection, the subject line shall include the location address, permit number and type of inspection requested.
Inspection by affidavit or private provider must be pre-arranged with the building official and must comply with FBC-Building, Sixth Edition (2017) Section 107.6 and Florida Statute 553.791.
Property owners should be made aware of temporary inspection procedures and if on-site inspections are preferred by contractors or property owners for any of the above inspections, accurate contact information must be provided for advanced notice, the inspection will be at the inspector’s discretion and every attempt must be made by inspector, contractor and property owner to maintain 6 (six) foot social distancing.
Before embarking on home improvement projects give us a call at 893-1024 to discuss your plans and see what permits and inspections may be necessary, and code requirements to help you through the process. Whether it’s deferred maintenance or new improvements, many elect to do these projects themselves. Building Division staff tries to take extra time to work with homeowners embarking on these do-it-yourself (DIY) projects.
On anything other than small and simple DIY projects we recommend homeowners consider using a licensed contractor. Unless you are very handy and have the necessary skills to take on more complex construction projects, larger jobs can quickly overwhelm those less skilled in construction practices and management.
Don’t take chances with unlicensed contractors
Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board helps guide homeowners in hiring a licensed contractor for home improvements
Hiring an unlicensed contractor can put residents’ homes in jeopardy, produce safety hazards and cost extra money to homeowners when work is not done correctly.
The function of the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board is to regulate construction and home improvement contractors practicing in all Pinellas jurisdictions.
The licensing board can tell you if a contractor has a license. They must be licensed by the board or the state of Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation and be registered with the board. Licensed contractors have passed a competency exam and perform electrical, plumbing or structural work in compliance with the building codes.
The state requires licensed contractors to have workers’ compensation and liability insurance and the board monitors their insurance coverage. Without these, if a worker gets injured on the job or damages property, the homeowner is liable. Many insurance policies will not pay claims if an unlicensed contractor was doing the work.
When selecting a contractor, remember:
- Talk to friends and neighbors for recommendations.
- Home improvement contractors of various skills must be licensed with the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board. The license number must be displayed on advertising as well as on contracts. You can verify a contractor’s license number and check any complaints by contacting the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board at 582-3100.
- Check with the Department of Justice and Consumer Services at 464-6200 to determine the number of complaints against a business.
- Ask the contractor for references and follow through with verifying them.
- Ask the contractor for proof of insurance.
- Never deal with anyone who solicits or appears at your home unannounced.
- Obtain a minimum of two bids for the work to be done.
When signing a contract, make sure:
- All work should be specifically stated in the contract.
- An approximate starting and completion date should be included.
- All warranties including labor and materials should be addressed.
- A payment schedule should be contained in the contract.
- Do not give a large deposit before the beginning of work and do not pay the balance until completion.
- A three-day right to cancel rarely applies to home improvement contracts.
- Do not sign a blank contract or one containing blank spaces.
- Watch for non-refundable deposits and non-escrow accounts. In new home construction, part of the purchase price must be escrowed (this can be waived).
For more information call the board at 582-3100 or visit www.pcclb.com.
Business Tax Receipts
A Business License is good from October of the current year through September 30 of the following year. For questions regarding business tax receipts, call Lisa Giddens at 893-1063.
Thinking of starting a new business? Checkout out the City’s website for the City of Gulfport New Business Checklist at www.mygulfport.us under the Community Development Building Department tab in the Information & Regulations section. Call Lisa Giddens at 893-1063 for more information.
Call the Small Business Development Center at Pinellas County Economic Development at 464-7332 or visit www.pced.org/entrepreneurs for information, including a number of workshops on starting a new business. They also offer personalized business consulting to help you become successful with your startup business.
During the Covid-19 outbreak, Code Enforcement will focus primarily on life/safety issues.
Because the City has one inspector who focuses on one section at a time, we depend on residents to call in violations when they see them. We will inspect within one working day of a complaint to verify violations. Call 893-1061 if you see violations. If the inspector is unavailable, leave as detailed a message as possible to help us find the violation. Complaints can be anonymous, but if you want a follow-up you will have to leave contact information which means the complaint is no longer anonymous. Any personal information you provide becomes part of the public record, which any other citizen has the right to review. E-mail correspondence is considered a public record. If you wish to make a complaint, e-mail communications are not anonymous.
Planning & Zoning
View the zoning map on the City website at www.mygulfport.us/community-development/. The Zoning Code, Chapter 22 of the Code of Ordinances is available online at www.library.municode.com/fl/gulfport/codes/code_of_ordinances.
January 13, 2021 Board of Adjustment Meeting results:
V21-01: 5915 Bayview Circle South; Variance request to reduce the left-hand one-third setback requirement by 9.67 feet, from 26.67 feet to 17 feet to allow for a proposed new catwalk and boat lift to be installed on the left-hand side of a proposed new dock. APPROVED
V21-02: 1860 53rd Street South; Variance requests:
- to reduce the required separation distance between the primary structure (house) and the proposed accessory structure by 10 feet, from 12 feet to 2 feet;
- to reduce the required secondary street side yard setback distance by 6 feet, from 12 feet to 9 feet; and
- to reduce the required rear yard setback distance by 12 feet, from 15 feet to 3 feet to allow for the installation of a 20’ x 30’ accessory structure (steel carport) over existing brick pavers. REMOVED FROM AGENDA AT OWNER’S REQUEST; WILL BE RESCHEDULED TO NEXT AVAILABLE MEETING