Monthly Archives: December 2016

The Islander Classifieds: Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013

ITEMS FOR SALE

COFFEE TABLE: DROP-leaf, very nice, $100, above-ground pool, ladder, accessories, 15-18 foot, 1 year old, $100. 941-778-3920.

KENMORE 26 CUBIC foot side-by-side refrigerator, white, very good condition, $125. 941-761-2812.

LIKE NEW SECTIONAL couch, camel color, $475. 941-778-7709.

WROUGHT IRON DINETTE set: Table, fours chairs, all painted white, $75. 941-778-7293.

ARMOIRE, $100. MATCHING king headboard, natural maple, $100, 941-779-0883.

FREEBIE ITEMS FOR SALE

Individuals may place one free ad with up to three items, each priced $100 or less, 15 words or less. FREE, one week, must be submitted online. Email classifieds@islander.org, fax toll-free 1-866-362-9821. (limited time offer)

ANNOUNCEMENTS

THE HIVE: GIFTS & Arts at Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach. Local hand-made unique jewelry including our very popular Mermaids Range, Tibetan jewelry and goods, plus Pandora-style charms and various gift items from around the world. 941-730-1745.

ATTENTION VETERANS AND active military from Anna Maria Island. Crosspointe Fellowship wants to hear from you in order to welcome you to a Nov. 16 patriotic Thanksgiving event. Call the Rev. Ed Moss at 941-778-0719 to provide your contact information.

WANTED: WORKOUT DVDs and retired but working XBox, Wii units with games for Ministry of Presence for kids and teens in Haiti. Deliver to The Islander, 5604B Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

TERRY HAYES, REALTOR. Premier Sothebys. 941-302-3100. Terry.hayes@sothebysrealty.com. Discoverannamaria.com.

WANTED: YOUR OLD cell phone for recycling. Deliver to The Islander, 5604B Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

ANTIQUES, ART, and collectibles. View at The Islander store, 5604B Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

AERIAL PHOTOS of Anna Maria Island. View and purchase online: www.jackelka.com.

FISHING GEAR WANTED: The Privateers and The Islander are collecting new or used, repairable fishing poles and reels, nets, tackle, buckets, etc. to give to children. Donate your gear at The Islander newspaper office, 5604B Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

FREE GUN LOCK courtesy of Project Childsafe, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Holmes Beach Police Department. Pick up at The Islander office, 5604B Marina Drive, Holmes Beach. Don’t be sorry, be safe.

GARAGE SALES

ROSER THRIFT SHOP: Open 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday. Donations on Wednesdays, 9 -11 a.m. Visit our $1 sale racks! 511 Pine Ave., Anna Maria. 941-779-2733.

STEFF’S STUFF ANTIQUES: Consignment sale 20-50% off, open daily. The Centre Shops on Longboat Key. 5380 Gulf of Mexico Drive. 941-383-1901.

HUGE YARD SALE:  8 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Nov. 1-2 Loads of really great stuff! 531 69th St., Holmes Beach.

PLANTS FOR SALE! 8 a.m.-? Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 2-3. All size palms and assorted tropical. Proceeds benefit Solve Pregnancy Center. 28 Seaside Court, Holmes Beach.

LOST & FOUND

FOUND: TWO MATCHING rings, found Columbus Day on beach, near chair by water. Bradenton Beach. Claim at The Islander office, 5604B Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

PETS

WELL-MANNERED RESCUED dogs (and kittens!) are looking for great new homes or fosters. Please, call for information, 941-896-6701.

YOUNG DOG NEEDS home: Bulldog mix, male. Sweet, likes everyone! Neutered and has shots/chip. 941-345-2441.

DOGGY DAY CARE: Coastal Canine Cottage. Leave your pets with us for fun and pampering while you’re out! Lisa, 941-243-3990. 8819 Cortez Rd. W., Bradenton.

BOATS & BOATING

BIMINI BAY SAILING: Small sailboat rentals and instruction. Day. Week. Month. Sunfish, Laser, Windrider 17 and Precision 15. Call Brian at 941-685-1400.

PONTOON BOAT RENTAL Create life long memories. Call 941-518-3868 or see boatflorida.weebly.com.

PONTOON BOAT RENTAL Create life-long memories, call 941-518-3868 or see boatflorida.weebly.com.

POWER NOLES CUSTOM 11.5-foot fiberglass tunnel hull with bass seats. Very stable! Great for fishing-stand on the side without tipping, go in really shallow waters. Very fun boat for anyone who wants to get on the water!
 Includes a trolling motor with battery. Must see! $500 obo. Call Toni, 941-928-8735. 

HELP WANTED

ALL-AROUND HANDYMAN/garden caretaker with good customer interface skills required for prominent establishment selling indoor/outdoor home decor. Accepting resumes: The Sea Hagg in Cortez between 10 a.m. and noon. Deadline Nov. 9.  12304 Cortez Road.

KIDS FOR HIRE

LOCAL ISLAND STUDENT babysitter available. CPR and first aid-certified, early childhood development major. Emily, 941-567-9276.

RED CROSS-CERTIFIED babysitter and dog sitter. Reasonable rates for both. Call 941-527-5051.

RESPONSIBLE RED CROSS certified babysitter. Honor student. Call or text Isabel, 941-545-7995.

KIDS FOR HIRE ads are FREE for up to three weeks for Island youths under 16 looking for work. Ads must be placed in person at The Islander office, 5604-B Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

SERVICES

TOASTED COMPUTER SERVICES. Your home and business specialist. On-site service, virus/spyware, cleanup, system setup, upgrades, diagnosis and repair, internet/wireless networking, custom system design. 941-224-1069.

I DON’T CUT corners, I clean corners. Professional, friendly cleaning  service since 1999. 941-779-6638. Leave message.

ISLANDER HANDYMAN SERVICE: 23-year Island resident, references. The Flying Dutchman LLC. We do all repair, interior and exterior, carpentry and more. Peter, 941-447-6747.

ALL AROUND PAINTING: Quality work. Free estimates. Licensed, insured. Call native islander Jim Weaver, 813-727-1959.

ISLAND COMPUTER GUY, 37 years experience. On-site PC repairs, upgrades, buying assistance and training. Call Bill, 941-778-2535.

TRANSPORT SERVICE: LET me drive you to the airport or anywhere in Florida. Flat rates. Reasonable. Call Mike, 941-567-6634.

CLEANING RESIDENTIAL, COMMERCIAL and resort. Love what we do, love to work. 941-756-4570.

INTRODUCTORY OFFER!  BUY one, get one free music lesson. manateemusic.net or 941-741-8832.

NEW REAL ESTATE photography services for the Bradenton and Sarasota area. Professional photography and video at affordable rates. Call For Real: 941-524-4656.

JUST THAT CLEANING service: We will clean your home like our own. We offer organic cleaning products. Free estimate. Call Jenise, 941-730-6773.

U FLY I drive your car anywhere in the USA. Airport runs, anywhere. 941-746-5651, 941-545-6688.

MATT’S TRANSPORT: PERSONAL assistant, airports and more. Tampa, $85, Sarasota, $35, local. Details, 941-807-4046.

COMPUTER SERVICES: I can fix it. Virus cleanup, system upgrade. Hardware, software and network repair. FBI virus cleaned and removed. Cell phone repair, support. Replace broken camera, screen, etc. Give islander Socko a call: 941-799-1169.

BUSINESS-TO-BUSINESS JD’s Window Cleaning looking for storefront jobs in Holmes Beach. I make dirty windows sparkling clean. 941-920-3840.

ISLAND MERMAIDS CLEANING and Co.: 38-year Islanders. Rentals our specialty. 941-778-3046.

BEACH SERVICE air conditioning, heat, refrigeration. Commercial and residential service, repair and/or replacement. Serving Manatee County and the Island since 1987. For dependable, honest and personalized service, call William Eller, 941-795-7411. CAC184228.

ANYONE CAN TAKE a picture. A professional creates a portrait. I want to be at your wedding! www.jackelka.com. 941-778-2711.

RELAXING MASSAGE IN the convenience of your home or hotel. Massage by Nadia, more than 19 years on Anna Maria Island. Call today for an appointment, 941-518-8301. MA#0017550.MA#0017550.

LAWN & GARDEN

CONNIE’S LANDSCAPING INC. Residential and commercial. Full-service lawn maintenance, landscaping, cleanups, hauling and more! Insured. 941-778-5294.

ISLAND LAWN SPRINKLERS repairs and installations, watering the island for 15 years. Jeff, 941-778-2581.

JR’S LANDSCAPING AND MAINTENANCE Lawns, native plants, mulching, trimming, hauling, cleanups. Island resident 25 years. Call 941-807-1015.

LANDSCAPING

STRAIGHT SHOT LANDSCAPE. Specializing in old Florida seashell driveways and scapes. Free estimates. Call Shark Mark, 941-301-6067.

SHELL DELIVERED AND spread. $50/yard. Hauling all kinds of gravel, mulch, top soil with free estimates. Call Larry at 941-795-7775, “shell phone” 941-720-0770.

TOP NOTCH LAWN Care: Residential and commercial. For all your landscaping needs. 941-932-6600.

NATURE’S DESIGN LANDSCAPING. Design and installation. Tropical landscape specialist. Residential and commercial. 30 years experience. 941-729-9381, 941-448-6336.

HOME IMPROVEMENT

VAN-GO PAINTING residential/commercial, interior/exterior, pressure cleaning, wallpaper. Island references. Bill, 941-795-5100. www.vangopainting.net.

CUSTOM REMODELING EXPERT. All phases of carpentry, repairs and painting. Insured. Meticulous, clean, sober and prompt. Paul Beauregard, 941-730-7479.

GRIFFIN’S HOME IMPROVEMENTS Inc. Handyman, fine woodwork, countertops, cabinets and wood flooring. Insured and licensed, 941-748-4711.

JERRY’S HOME REPAIR: Carpentry, handyman, light hauling, pressure washing. Jack of all trades. Call 941-778-6170 or 941-447-2198.

SOUTHBAY HOME REPAIRS: If it’s broken, stuck, loose, leaks, needs paint, etc. I’ll fix it. Affordable quality work. 941-720-2906.

THE FLYING DUTCHMAN LLC: Professional tile roof restoration. Call Peter for free estimate. 23-year Island resident, references, insured. 941-447-6747.

PRESSURE WASHING: RESIDENTIAL, commercial, resorts, roof, lanai, etc. Also windows, lawn services, also. 941-756-4570.

CARL V. JOHNSON Jr., Building contractor. Free estimates and plans. New houses, porches, decks and renovations. Fair prices. Hire a Florida licensed contractor. Call 941-795-1947 or cell, 941-462-2792.

RENTALS

WEEKLY/MONTHLY/ANNUAL rentals: wide variety, changes daily. SunCoast Real Estate, 941-779-0202, or 1-800-732-6434. www.suncoastinc.com.

VACATION RENTALS: GREAT location near boat ramp and everything on Anna Maria Island. Free WiFi, cable. 941-779-6638.

VACATION RENTALS: BRADENTON houses or condos. Weekly or monthly. Call 941-962-0971 or 941-794-1515. www.coastalpropertiesrealty.com. Suzanne Wilson, broker.

PERICO ISLAND: MONTHLY/seasonal 3BR/3BA, private pool, community pool gym, tennis. 941-795-3778. www.pericoholidayvilla.co.uk.

2BR/2BA HOLMES BEACH waterfront condo: Fully furnished with views, pools, Jacuzzi, tennis, boat dock. Seasonal or yearly. Call 818-620-0901.

ANNUAL: SPACIOUS VILLAGE Green 2BR/2BA, two-car garage on lake. $1,550/month. 941-356-1456.

SEASONAL OR WEEKLY cottage-style rentals. 1BR/1BA or 1BR/1BA with loft with pool. Walk to beach, shops or dining! 941-778-3426. Web site: www.spinnakerscottages.com.

REAL ESTATE

PLEASE CALL ME if you are interested in selling. I am looking to purchase a home close to the beach or on the beach. 941-779-6158. No Realtors.

WE’RE LOW, LISTINGS needed. Are you curious as to how much your home could be worth? Call us for a free professional consultation. Call Lynn at Edgewater Real Estate, 941-778-8104.

DISTRESS SALES/BANK foreclosures and fixer-uppers. Go to: www.ManateeAreaForeclosures.com for a free list of properties available now. 941-315-1501.

LONGBOAT KEY: CHARMING New England-style country 2BR/2BA plus office or studio. Steps to marina and pool. Private Gulf beach access. Immediate occupancy. $279,500. Owner, 941-383-0285.

FREE! WHAT EVERY Real estate buyer or seller needs to know! Go to: www.yourmarketupdate.com. 941-400-8735.

FOR SALE: 2BR/2BA Gulffront view, $379,000, 2BR/2BA condo, $239,000, 1BR/1BA remodeled, $144,900. Call Jen and Mark Bowman, Keller Williams Realty for your Anna Maria Real Estate. 941-840-0117. www.BowmanSellsHomes.com.

2BR/2BA UNIT at Sunbow Bay: Tennis, two heated pools, elevator, great location. Call Barbara, Mike Norman Realty, 941-778-6696 or 941-778-1078.

SANDPIPER RESORT ON Island. 2BR/1BA, $49,900. Call Anne, Realtor, 941-713-9835. Real Estate Mart.

A Toast to Tony Jacklin: Friend, patron, icon, dancer

Tony Jacklin and Sean Murphy | Beach Bistro We cheered as golf icon and Bradenton resident Tony Jacklin strutted his stuff on the BBC One’s “Strictly Come Dancing,” and though he was the first contestant voted off during the fall season opener, we give him an A for effort!

Jacklin is a longtime friend of Beach Bistro/Eat Here restaurateur Sean Murphy. Eight years ago, Jacklin told Murphy that he, Kevin Daves and Jack Nicklaus were going to build the best golf course in America and they wanted him to do the food. Thus began The Concession.

To this day, an artifact of their friendship hangs on the wall of Beach Bistro, a portrait of Sean given and signed by his golfing hero.

Beach Bistro's Sean Murphy with Gift from Golfing Legend Tony Jacklin

Jacklin is also such a devoted patron of the Beach Bistro that the bar named a drink after him: the Tony Jacklin martini, with Bombay Sapphire gin, white vermouth, and a cocktail olive with Maytag blue cheese. It is “cool under pressure,” Murphy says, just like Jacklin.

The athlete was certainly cool under pressure when he appeared on Britain’s version of “Dancing with the Stars” with his partner, Aliona Vilani (@AlionaVilani). The two performed a golf-themed Charleston to “It Don’t Mean A Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing).”

Though critics described his footwork as “below-par” and judges only gave him 13 points, we think the 69-year-old Jacklin deserves a standing ovation just for enduring those four-hour training sessions.

“Tony is a rock star in Britain—their Mickey Mantle, their Arnold Palmer—and he has been a wonderful patron of the Beach Bistro,” Murphy says, adding that Jacklin was history’s most successful European Ryder Cup captain and the first British player to win the Open Championship for 18 years.

“‘Twinkle Toes Tony’ always has our vote.”

Island homesteads in slow — not rapid — decline

Some island elected officials have expressed alarm that Anna Maria Island is losing permanent residents at a rapid rate.

While the 2010 census reported a decline in the island’s permanent population, figures from the Manatee County Property Appraiser’s Office show the drop in homesteaded properties the past 15 years on the island is not as steep as some assumed.

Anna Maria Mayor SueLynn agreed the numbers don’t spell out the steep decline she thought was occurring, but she still has concerns for the city’s loss of homesteaded properties.

While Anna Maria lost 62 homesteaded properties from 1998 to 2013, and Holmes Beach lost 182 homesteaded properties, Bradenton Beach increased its number of homesteads from 253 to 268 in the same 15-year period.

The property office reported 2,293 homesteaded properties islandwide in 1998 compared with 2,065 for 2013, a decline of 9.9 percent.

“But when it is people I’ve known and expected to retire here permanently, then they leave, it’s a concern,” the mayor said.

The mayor also is worried about the number of vacation rentals in the city.

“It just seems like all new construction in the past few years on a vacant lot has been for a vacation rental,” she said.

SueLynn observed the city has more than 1,100 non-homesteaded properties and 542 homesteads.

She said she anticipates the number of non-homesteaded properties to gradually increase in the coming years.

The mayor noted that while the MCPAO gave her its figures for 2013, the MCPAO said it works one year in arrears counting homesteaded and non-homesteaded properties and determining taxable value.

The figures given SueLynn and for this report were as of Jan. 1, Sharon Barhorst of the MCPAO said. They are the figures used to compute taxable value for the 2013-14 city and county budgets.

“So we could have even more vacation rentals than we believe, and maybe fewer homesteaded properties than we think,” SueLynn said.

The city will get new tallies in January from the property office.

Between 1998-2013, the property office reported these figures for homesteaded properties on Anna Maria Island.

 

Homesteads            1998      2013

Anna Maria               604        542

Bradenton Beach      253        268

Holmes Beach       1,436     1,254

Island homesteads in slow — not rapid — decline

Bradenton Beach cell tower gets bad reception

It was as close to standing room only as the Bradenton Beach City Hall chambers can get for an Oct. 18 public hearing on a proposed cellular communications tower.

Public comment was unanimously opposed to both the construction of a cell tower and the location near the city’s public works facility, which is at 400 Church Ave.

Residents of Church Avenue, close to where the tower will be built, were united in opposing the project.

Paul Georges said the proposed tower is five times taller than any other structure in the city and, while he found the presentation informative, he disagreed with the concept.

“I feel Bradenton Beach is a special place to live and hope it continues to be so,” he said. “The question is, do we really need a cell tower? I live less than 100 feet from where it will be and I feel there are toxic issues at the site, as well as being a safety concern to pedestrian, bike and car traffic. It should be a safety concern to the city, too.”

Georges said commissioners should be good to the citizens, “not just to businesses and private interests.”

The proposed tower will be 150 feet high with a base foundation that is 60 by 70 feet. The structure will begin at the southeast corner of the public works building and stretch east toward the marina and south into the city parking lot, although only one parking space is expected to be lost.

Kevin Barile of Florida Tower Partners said the only way to improve cellphone service in the city is to build the tower.

“It’s quite well known that there is poor cellphone service in this area,” he said.

A Verizon representative agreed, saying there are 134 dropped calls recorded every day within the city.

But call numbers didn’t sway the opinion of those who spoke against the tower.

Residents near the proposed site said property values will decrease and cited safety concerns from a tower collapse, as well as cancer concerns from radiation.

Barile said the tower is designed with a collapse point, “in this case, 30 feet, so it only needs a 30-foot fall zone clearance. All of the equipment is inside the tower, so nothing will fly off the structure in winds in excess of 115 miles per hour.”

Cell tower consultant Art Peters, who has spent more than four decades as an engineer, said there are no structural or health concerns associated with the tower.

Health questions are something “I’ve been asked a thousand times,” said Peters, who explained the Federal Communications Commission sets the health standards based on criteria established by an international organization that includes doctors.

“The FCC sets the level of radiation below anything else they can set, and not even Congress can counter those standards,” he said. “A lot of people are fearful of radiation, but radiation from a cell tower is not like anything that hurts your body. It’s more like a toaster. It’s not ionizing radiation.”

Commissioner Gay Breuler said it was her understanding that local government has no authority to consider radiation transmission, because there are no dangers to consider.

Peters said Breuler was correct.

Breuler said the city can help residents by ensuring there will be as much landscaping and other measures to disguise the structure’s base and her suggestions came with a motion to approve the permit.

That wasn’t enough for other speakers, however. Carl Parks, chair of the Scenic Waves Partnership Committee, said the city ordinance repealed by the commission “did a much better job protecting the public” than the new ordinance.

Jo Ann Meilner agreed, saying every issue raised by those speaking was addressed “in the previous ordinance you people gutted.”

Tjet Martin, campaign treasurer for mayoral candidate Bill Shearon and one-third of a group suing the city over a joint development between the city and Ed Chiles, along with Shearon and Meilner, said the public has not had enough time to vet the process.

The city has conducted multiple public meetings regarding the cell tower, but Martin said the public should have been able to meet with the consultant, too.

Other nearby residents said they had only just learned about the cell tower, although meetings dating back to January 2012 were noticed and reported in the media.

Janie Robertson, former Ward 3 commissioner and a candidate to regain her seat, said she agrees with the concerns expressed by the citizens. She also said she’s asked the city several times about seeking an alternative location.

“All I’m ever told is ‘There is no other location,’” she said.

Robertson suggested the First Street city parking lot as an alternative, although it would mean losing parking spaces.

While city officials and staff have said there are no alternative locations, they admitted they were unsure if the First Street parking lot had been researched.

However, Barile assured commissioners every alternative location had been sought out and that the best location for the best service is near the public works building location.

The planning and zoning board recommended approval of the permit Sept. 23, but added stipulations, and commissioners agreed with some P&Z concerns and dismissed with others.

Stipulations for landscaping and some type of buffer around the base were accepted in the motion made by Breuler, which passed unanimously.

Bradenton Beach presses on in lawsuit defense

Bradenton Beach commissioners won’t be deterred. They are pressing on against a lawsuit filed in June 2012 to halt development on the beach across from city hall.

The suit targets a joint development agreement between the city and Ed Chiles’ BeachHouse Restaurant corporation, ELRA Inc., but neither Chiles nor ELRA are named in the suit.

It was filed by three citizens to stop a proposed parking lot on the beachfront at the BeachHouse Restaurant, 200 Gulf Drive N.

The project included the construction of a dune, which has been completed, and the creation of about a dozen parking spaces for the restaurant, as well as five spaces for the city. The city owns an easement on the beach at the south end of the property owned by Chiles.

The parking lot project has yet to begin, but the restaurant has used the area for parking for several years.

The suit challenges the city’s decision to disregard a March 2012 planning and zoning board vote to recommend the commission deny that agreement. Among the reasons cited by P&Z were that it violates the city charter and land development codes.

The city entered the agreement in April 2012, questioning during discussion the qualifications of P&Z members to make the recommendation. The contentious meeting led to the resignation of three P&Z members — two of them parties to the lawsuit — Jo Ann Meilner and Bill Shearon. Shearon is both a mayoral candidate in the Nov. 5 election and former city commissioner. His partner and campaign treasurer, Tjet Martin, is the third party in the suit.

Little movement on the suit has occurred, but city attorney Ricinda Perry said Oct. 17 that legal fees for the city have reached $20,000. If it goes to court, Perry estimated the city’s costs will more than double.

The plaintiffs in the case, represented by former city attorney Ralf Brookes of Cape Coral, offered the city a deal to end the matter — if the city agrees to binding arbitration — but commissioners previously rejected that proposal. They did so again at the Oct. 17 city meeting.

Perry said there are no hearings scheduled, and that she has been attempting to force mediation.

Perry sought direction on whether commissioners wanted her to pursue litigation or binding arbitration, which she said is still an option to reduce costs.

Mayor John Shaughnessy said costs were a concern. He wanted to revisit the arbitration offer because it would be “quicker and less expensive.”

Commissioner Ric Gatehouse said no to arbitration.

“It’s binding and we have no further legal recourse,” he said.

Perry said typically an arbitrator “relies on their own experience. That’s where the concern lies with me. You’re stuck with (his or her) opinion with no ability of appeal if the decision is based on misunderstanding of the law.”

Gatehouse said he preferred to take the case in front of a judge.

“We have to defend our right to make decisions up here based on our understanding of codes and ordinances,” he said. “We’ve offered mediation. The ball is in their court. I’m content to wait rather than enter into arbitration where we have no recourse.”

Commissioner Gay Breuler said that’s why the commission rejected arbitration when it was first offered.

“We knew this was going to cost money, but we know we are correct and it’s the right thing to do,” she said.

Commissioner Jan Vosburgh also rejected arbitration and Vice Mayor Ed Straight said his experience with arbitration was not good.

Commissioners did not need to take official action since they had previously provided a consensus to reject the arbitration offer.

MCAT: Island-mainland shuttle study underway

Bradenton Beach Scenic Waves Partnership Committee members, who met Oct. 7 for the first time since May, took advantage of having representatives present from the Florida Department of Transportation and Manatee County Transit Authority to discuss an islandwide concern: traffic congestion.

But discussion was all Scenic Waves members could do. The committee picked up where it left off before the summer hiatus — without a quorum.

Scenic Waves chair Carl Parks opened the meeting by saying the committee is well versed on traffic issues after having participated in many studies over its 12-year history.

There are many traffic proposals being discussed throughout the island and one often-discussed proposal is the creation of a park-and-ride system. The system would allow beachgoers to leave their vehicles at a parking lot off island where they would board free buses to local beaches.

MCAT planner Sarah Perch confirmed that the county is studying the feasibility of that idea.

“We are looking at facilities throughout the county and the idea is going before the Sarasota/Manatee Metropolitan Planning Organization board this month,” said Perch. “Hopefully from that study, we can get some ideas about where to have facilities for a park-and-ride system.”

Perch said the county already offers free weekend shuttle services from Manatee Avenue to the island and touted the success of the free trolleys that service the island.

“The AMI route is the most frequent route we have, which runs every 20 minutes,” said Perch. “The island trolley is the most productive route and carries the highest number of passengers.”

Perch said discussions also continue with Sarasota County to create an interlocal agreement between the two transit authorities that would expand bus services.

Jim Van Pelt, MPO liaison to Scenic Waves, said there are a number of studies being funded through the MPO, including the park-and-ride study.

“We are looking at a number of places for parking facilities for that and looking at connecting transit to take them to different parts of the county,” said Van Pelt. “That one should be done by December. We also are doing a big study of routes from Lakewood Ranch to Bradenton and maybe see how we can direct those to the island.”

Bradenton Beach Commissioner Ric Gatehouse, attending the meeting, brought up a concern that people would not want to use a park-and-ride system if they can’t bring beach gear.

Perch said that there is not a lot of flexibility with adding storage on buses, but Van Pelt said Fort Myers has a heavily used park-and-ride system.

“Beach gear is not a deterrent,” he said. “They bring it right onto the bus.”

Others suggested that people won’t use the bus service without an incentive.

Jan Parham, FDOT transit projects coordinator for Sarasota County, said the committee could work with businesses to offer coupons to passengers.

Former Commissioner Janie Robertson, a commission candidate in the Nov. 5 city election, asked if FDOT could create an express lane for buses to the island.

“This area is constrained and there is no way to put in another lane,” she said.

Robertson said she was specifically referring to Cortez Road between 115th and 119th streets, where the right-hand turn lane ends and the westbound traffic over the bridge narrows to one lane.

Others attending agreed that it was a safety issue due to people using the turn lane and then cutting off traffic to get onto the bridge during the season.

Keep Manatee Beautiful executive director Ingrid McClellan, a Scenic Waves member, suggested FDOT remove the medians in that area to make an express lane for a proposed park-and-ride system.

“Those medians are too thin to plant anything that will grow,” she said. “I don’t see why you can’t remove them and make it a center lane for buses.”

Parham said she would extend an invitation for someone from the traffic division to attend the Nov. 4 Scenic Waves meeting to discuss options.

In other matters, McClellan said everything is almost ready for the Oct. 30-Nov. 2 Bradenton Beach Sandblast at Coquina Beach, this year in conjunction with the Pirate Invasion.

Scenic Waves member Jake Spooner, also a Bridge Street Merchants member, said the merchants have several events planned to raise money for the Christmas on Bridge Street event Dec. 21.

An official Christmas lighting ceremony also is planned Nov. 30.

Under new business, Parks requested that the commission assign more projects for review by Scenic Waves.

Commissioner Gay Breuler, liaison to Scenic Waves, said Parks had it backward.

“If you have a project identified, then you present it to us,” she said. “Scenic Waves is an advisory board to the commission and mayor, not the other way around.”

Parks said prior commissions sought Scenic Waves recommendations on certain projects before making a decision, much like it does with the planning and zoning board.

“That’s going backward,” said Breuler. “If something comes to the commission for a vote, then it’s probably already had that attention. What Scenic Waves is designed for is for you to come up with projects that you think are useful and present them to commission.”

Breuler said if Scenic Waves was going to wait on the commission or mayor to present projects to them, “You’ll be waiting for awhile.”

Scenic Waves meets the first Monday of the month at 3 p.m., at city hall, 107 Gulf Drive N.

Contractor pleads not guilty in HB fraud case

A contractor has pleaded not guilty to a first-degree felony charge that he schemed to defraud Holmes Beach City government out of more than $50,000.

Chris Richard Arnold, 61, of Bradenton, entered his plea at the Manatee Judicial Center in Bradenton Oct. 7.

He was arrested last month on a warrant executed by the Holmes Beach Police Department.

The probable cause affidavit contains the allegation that Arnold, contracted by the city in June 2012 for street repair work, invoiced the city for work he didn’t complete.

The report said Arnold, in a systematic and intentional scheme to defraud, sent 12 invoices to the city and collected $92,830.50 for work that was not completed.

A case management discussion was set for Nov. 14 at the judicial center.

BB man guilty of battery on police officer

A Bradenton Beach man has pleaded no contest to battery on a law enforcement officer.

Zachary A. Gennell, 20, was placed on probation for a year and sentenced to 75 hours of service work, as well as ordered to take an anger management class. He also was required to be evaluated for drug use.

He was arrested a year ago in downtown Bradenton after a fight. The arresting officer said Gennell was combative, shouted profanity and racial slurs and spit at him.

Gennell also was judged guilty of disorderly intoxication.

His plea was entered in late September, canceling an October trial.

Seffner man pleads no contest to theft

A Sefner man arrested in Holmes Beach in May and charged with theft has pleaded no contest.

Karlos Macias, 28, represented by an assistant public defender, entered his plea Oct. 3 and was judged guilty. He was sentenced to 18 months in jail with credit for time served and placed on probation for a year.

A police report said Macias and a second person stole landscaping equipment valued at $600 in Anna Maria. The two were stopped by a Holmes Beach Police Department officer in Holmes Beach and taken into custody.

Macias also must participate in an addiction program.