Category Archives: News

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Dolphin Dash 5K winners announced

Race organizers announced the names and times of the winners in the sanctioned 5K Dolphin Dash Jan. 14. The race began at Anna Maria Elementary in Holmes Beach and meandered through neighborhoods on city streets. More than 100 runners participated in the annual AME-Parent Teacher Organization fundraiser, with proceeds going to the PTO. Parent organizer […]

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Former Anna Maria Commissioner Mattick died Jan. 10

The U.S. flag at Anna Maria City Pier Park was lowered to half mast to honor former Commissioner JoAnn Mattick. It was a fitting sight, the flag waving over the bayfront and the pier — so near and dear to Mattick. Laura JoAnn Mattick, 81, of Anna Maria, died Jan. 10. She served as Anna […]

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League takes up fight against senator’s vacation rental repeal

As the state gears up for the 2017 legislative session in Tallahassee, the ManaSota League of Cities is preparing its stance on short-term rental regulations. Its position is clear — give short-term rental rights back to residents in barrier island cities. At its Jan. 12 meeting, board members discussed the MSLC’s approach for the legislative […]

… while Anna Maria plans its own fight against legislator’s VRO threat

Island officials learned in recent weeks their focus on limiting vacation rentals could be unraveled. In Anna Maria, the gloves are going on. A bill introduced by state Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota, could undo vacation rental regulations Anna Maria enacted in recent years, Anna Maria Mayor Dan Murphy told city commissioners Jan. 12. Murphy said […]

Public weighs in on Bradenton Beach short-term rental plan

Public comment during the Jan. 10 Bradenton Beach commission’s workshop on a transient public lodging establishment ordinance began with comments from planning and zoning board member Reed Mapes. Mapes said it is important for the commission to read the comp plan. He said the city is required by the state to limit density due to […]

Bradenton Beach approves marijuana ban, moratorium

More than 79 percent of voters in Bradenton Beach voted in November 2016 to allow the use and sale of medical marijuana in the state — more than any other precinct in Manatee County. However, the city is prohibiting medical marijuana dispensaries. At a Jan. 5 meeting, the city commission unanimously approved the first reading […]

35 of 87 Bert Harris claims unresolved in Anna Maria

The city of Anna Maria finished 2016 with 35 unresolved Bert Harris claims. Of the 87 claims submitted since the vacation rental ordinance went into effect April 1, 2016, 52 claims have been settled with relief on the occupancy restriction. The Bert Harris Jr. Private Property Protection Act of 1995 allows property owners to seek […]

Mayors drive appeal to offset costs from vacation rentals

More people, more problems? That could be the case for the barrier islands. With tourism on the rise and the seasonal population more than three times the permanent population, the mayors of the island cities have partnered to find funding to offset the increasing impact of infrastructure — a projected $24.5 million deficit over the […]

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Sheriff arrests murder suspect, victim had island ties

An 83-year-old man was arrested for the Jan. 10 fatal shooting of a longtime Anna Maria Island hairstylist. Manatee County Sheriff’s Office arrested Eugene Matthews at the county jail several hours after he allegedly shot Rebecca Rawson, 65, of Bradenton, who was taken to Manatee Memorial Hospital in Bradenton and pronounced dead at 8:10 p.m. […]

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BB commission discusses proposed short-term rental regulations

Bradenton Beach is the last of Anna Maria Island’s three cities to plan short-term rental regulations. City officials say the city is working to lock in residents’ rights to prevent neighborhoods from being overrun with big vacation rentals. Bradenton Beach commissioners met Jan. 10 in a workshop to review the planning and zoning board’s recommendations […]