Holes on the beach pose danger to walkers, sea turtles

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by ChrisAnn Silver Esformes

A female snowy plover sits next to her chick April 20 on the beach near 81st Street in Holmes Beach. Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring volunteers have been watching a mating pair and another male on the beach in that area. The chick pictured is one of three that hatched April 19. Islander Photo: Courtesy 
Pete Gross

DOT polls county board on future Cortez Bridge options

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by Ed Scott

What is your choice for the repair or replacement of the Cortez Bridge? Manatee County Commissioner Robin DiSabatino looks at the prospect of two new bridges linking the mainland to Anna Maria Island from the perspective of a boater who waits for a bridge to open and a motorist who sits idle until it closes. […]

Amendments gut state vacation rental bill

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by Bianca Benedí

Amendments made to Senate Bill 188 effectively gutted the state’s ability to prevent municipalities from regulating vacation rentals, according to state Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota, who filed the bill. The bill prohibited local ordinances from regulating or restricting vacation rentals and would have stripped local governments of vacation rental regulations adopted after June 2011. As […]

Chicks hatch in 
Holmes Beach

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A female snowy plover sits next to her chick April 20 on the beach near 81st Street in Holmes Beach. Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring volunteers have been watching a mating pair and another male on the beach in that area. The chick pictured is one of three that hatched April 19. Islander Photo: Courtesy 
Pete Gross

Judge denies bond to murder suspect

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by Kathy Prucnell

Bond denied. Twelfth Circuit Judge Deno Economou denied bond April 19 to Eugene Matthews, 83, jailed since his arrest Jan. 10, when he presumably shot and killed a former Anna Maria Island hairstylist outside his Parrish home. Rebecca Rawson, of Bradenton, died in the shooting. Matthews also is charged with the attempted murder of her […]

Safety do’s and don’ts for nesting season

by ChrisAnn Silver Esformes

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission recommends people follow these guidelines for sea turtle safety: DO turn off or adjust lighting along the beachfront to prevent nesting sea turtles from becoming disoriented and going toward the glow of light on land, instead of natural light reflecting on the surface of the water. Indoor lights […]

Center to host youth karate championship

A youth karate championship will take place 1-3 p.m. Saturday, May 6, at the Center of Anna Maria Island, 407 Magnolia Ave., Anna Maria. Sensei Omar Schwanzer, who has been teaching youth karate since 2013 and women’s self-defense since 2014, will present the tournament. The fee for competitors will be $10. There is no admission fee for the […]

Holmes Beach police arrest 2 on drug charges

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Two people from Hillsborough County were arrested April 17 after police found them sleeping in a vehicle in the Manatee Public Beach parking lot in possession of eight hypodermic needles, two glass pipes and 6.7 grams of Spice, a synthetic drug. Jonathan Scrocco, 27, of Brandon was arrested on nine counts of possessing drug paraphernalia. […]

Keeping Anna Maria beautiful …. And Cortez, too!

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by Kathy Prucnell

Bradenton residents Trevor Wolford, 11, and Cecil Coleman, 12, pick up and bag trash from the beach April 22 in celebration of Earth Day. “I think it’s a great way to clean up the island because I know most people throw out trash without thinking about what the animals and the environment have to say about it,” Wolford said. “One of the things that makes me sad is most of the trash is near the trashcans.” This year’s this year’s countywide Great American Cleanup was hosted by Keep Manatee Beautiful. Islander Photos: Jennifer Sheppard

Holmes Beach ‘hostage-taker’ pleads to misdemeanors

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The man who held some 40 police at bay for four hours outside a Key Royale home nearly a year ago pleaded no contest April 10 to two misdemeanors — exhibition of a firearm and assault. Gerald Harles II, 32, of Holmes Beach, was found guilty of the reduced charges. Twelfth Circuit Judge Susan Maulucci […]

Unclaimed boat problem in BB outweighs derelict vessels

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by ChrisAnn Silver Esformes

“If I touch it, we own it,” Bradenton Beach Police Chief Sam Speciale said at an April 13 department head meeting, referring to an unclaimed boat tied to the Historic Bridge Street Pier. The city’s ordinance prohibits boats from overnight mooring to the pier, but the city has no mechanism in place to enforce the […]

WMFR prepares for upcoming fiscal budget

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by Bianca Benedí

West Manatee Fire Rescue commissioners issued a recommendation April 20 on how to move forward with preliminary planning for their 2017-18 fiscal year budget. By June 1, the board of commissioners must agree on a maximum preliminary assessment rate for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1. The planned assessment rate can be lowered but […]

BBPD arrests Bradenton man for restaurant theft

A Bradenton Beach restaurant employee is accused of “thousands of dollars” in credit card thefts. John McKee, 48, of Bradenton, was arrested April 13 for grand theft after Island Time Bar and Grill owner Bill Herlihy and another employee filed a complaint against the waiter with the Bradenton Beach Police Department. According to a BBPD […]

Holmes Beach discusses beach concession funding, projects

by Jennifer Sheppard

It’s time to start looking for projects to benefit Anna Maria Island. There’s more than a $1 million in available funding, but there’s no project list for the surplus of concession revenues from Manatee Public Beach in Holmes Beach and Coquina Beach in Bradenton Beach. “Any projects that we propose should be focused on improving […]

Grassy Point Preserve re-opens with fanfare for nature

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by Jennifer Sheppard

Fifteen years ago, Billie Martini eyed Grassy Point Preserve from a boat with a vision for the future. Years earlier, she recalled in an April 19 interview, “My husband and I would go out, whenever we had problems, we’d go out in our boat and we’d just drift over the shallows and look down through […]

$552k Bert Harris suit slapped on Holmes Beach

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by Kathy Prucnell

Bert Harris suits are beginning to stack up against the city of Holmes Beach. Mayor Bob Johnson was served April 20 with the newest one. The plaintiff is a trustee of the Patricia H. Hutchinson trust, Frederick C. Hutchinson II. On behalf of the owners of 104 75th St., the plaintiff’s allege $552,000 in damages […]

Alcohol citations continue in Holmes Beach

by Kathy Prucnell

Holmes Beach Police Department continues to ticket visitors for consuming alcohol in public — on the beaches and streets. A first-time alcohol violation will mean a $75 ticket, but violators can face up to a $250 fine, if contested. Holmes Beach police report 30 alcohol violations in March, down from 55 in March 2016. The […]

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Sport

Adult football league: And then there were 4

by Kevin P. Cassidy

First-round playoff action in the adult flag football league at the Center of Anna Maria Island produced no surprises as the fifth, sixth and seventh seeds were eliminated during playoff action April 20. A champion will be crowned Thursday, April 27, when semifinal action narrows the field to two teams that will battle for the […]

Fishing

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Inshore, nearshore anglers hook up fish aplenty

by Capt. Danny Stasny

Despite an abundance of boaters throughout our region — just like traffic on the roads — the waterways also see increased use in high season and fishing around Anna Maria Island is putting smiles on anglers’ faces. The inshore bite on snook and spotted seatrout is especially good, with daily limits on trout and plenty […]

Real Estate

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Real Estate – 04-26-2017

by Jesse Brisson

517 Villa Rosa Way, Anna Maria, a 3,100 sfla 3bed/4bath/3car canalfront pool home built in 2016 on a 7,884 sq ft lot was sold 03/31/17, Carden to Parker for $1,900,000; list $2,049,000. 705 N. Shore Drive, Anna Maria, a 2,421 sfla / 4,448 sfur 3bed/3½bath/2car pool home built in 2001 on a 5,100 sq ft […]

Streetlife

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Island police blotter – 04-26-2017

Anna Maria April 2, Bayfront Park, 316 North Bay Blvd., trespass. A man and woman sleeping on a beach were trespassed upon an affidavit signed by the director of the Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources. The sheriff’s deputy determined the pair had no such prior warnings. They left the park. April 7, Palm Avenue […]

Classifieds

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The Islander Classifieds: Wednesday, April 26, 2017

ITEMS FOR SALE FREEZER: 5.5-BY-2.5 feet, commercial, heavy duty with lock. $50. 941-778-3106. HENRY LINK WICKER bedroom set. King headboard, entertainment center, $350. Excellent. 941-383-2269. COMPUTER: DELL DUAL core, refurbished, $60. 941-756-6728. ANTIQUE PARTNER DESK: All wood, $1,000. See at The Islander office, 3218 E. Bay Drive, Holmes Beach. FOUR OAK OFFICE chairs: Antiques, perfect […]