Category Archives: News

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Environmental group pushes for Cortez Bridge details

A Cortez Bridge study by the Florida Department of Transportation was a sham, according to ManaSota-88, a nonprofit devoted to public health and environmental issues. “This is wrong on every level,” said Holmes Beach resident Barbara Hines, ManaSota-88 vice chair and a member of Holmes Beach Planning Commission. “It appears they selected the most environmentally […]

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Anna Maria opts for do-over on pier demolition bids

The price to demo the Anna Maria City Pier came in high. Too high. Anna Maria officials elected May 18 to reissue a request for proposals for demolition of the pier. During an emergency meeting, Mayor Dan Murphy asked commissioners to reject the submitted bids for the demolition contract and reissue a request for proposals, […]

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Barrier island traffic study solutions: paid parking, wayfinder

The 5,071 parking spaces on Anna Maria Island fill up fast during holidays and prime beach days. More than 1,000 more parking spaces are needed to address the imbalance, according to a recent consultant’s report. Instituting paid parking and installing a wayfinder system could help solve the problem, according to a 72-page analysis and recommendations […]

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Palmetto man charged with assault for police threat

An aggravated assault charge was filed against a Palmetto man who threatened police with survivalist-style weapons in December 2017 in Anna Maria. Douglas Schofield, 45, was charged May 7 by the State Attorney of the 12th Judicial Circuit. He was served with the court paper a week later. Schofield was shot in the stomach Dec. […]

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BBPD, MCSO arrest burglar, batterer

Bradenton Beach police arrested a 27-year-old man for stealing a surfboard — an open case since December 2017 — the same day he was arrested for battery to a woman on a boat near Cortez. Detective Sgt. Lenard Diaz arrested Joseph Gaston May 10 for the burglary and theft in Bradenton Beach. Gaston lives on […]

WMFR moves forward on 2-year assessment increases

Property owners in the West Manatee Fire District likely will see their assessments rise 2 percent in the coming fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1. WMFR commissioners voted 3-2 May 15 to approve a proposed 2 percent assessment increase as part of a plan to raise rates 2 percent over each of the next two […]

Bridge battles won, war lost

By Jennifer Glenfield Special to The Islander Motorists lined up on the Cortez Bridge in the early 1990s waiting for boats to pass through the open drawbridge were likely handed a flyer urging them to save Anna Maria Island. “You’ve Found Paradise,” one of the flyers read at the top, in green print. And, at […]

Eyes on the road

The Florida Department of Transportation and Manatee County posted the following notices for the week of May 21: • Avenue C: Manatee County crews are replacing force mains. Installation of a 6-inch water main is underway along Avenue C from 24th to 26th streets north. Crews are installing water services across Avenue C. Intermediate road […]

Red tide not detected in Manatee

Karenia brevis, the Florida red tide organism, was not detected in Manatee County the week ending May 18. Red tide was detected elsewhere in the region. For more information about red tide in Florida, go to