Stories this week on Anna Maria Island: Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2010
Top Top Notch: Top flight
Penny Frick of Bradenton won the grand prize in The Islander’s annual Top Notch contest for this photo of a white pelican landing in Cortez. Frick won $100 from the newspaper, plus a bevy of gifts from Islander advertisers and placement in professional photographer Jack Elka’s 2011 calendar. Look for The Islander’s honorable mentions in the Top Notch contest.
Get to courtroom 5E at the Manatee County Judicial Center early Thursday.
In what some long-time Anna Maria residents claim is the most divisive issue ever in this quiet little city of about 1,800 residents, the future composition of the city commission and government could well be at stake beginning at 1:30 p.m. Aug. 12.
Former Anna Maria City Commissioner Tom Aposporos has sent city attorney Jim Dye and Recall Commissioner Stoltzfus committee chair Bob Carter a letter offering an independent opinion regarding the Sept. 7 special election to recall Harry Stoltzfus from office.
Gene Aubry and Stoltzfus have qualified to go on the ballot to fill the remainder of the term, should the vote to recall Stoltzfus be successful. Voting for the commission seat takes place at the same time and location as the recall vote.
The results of the 2009-10 Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test scores are finally known, and Anna Maria Elementary School has received another “A” grade.
“There really weren’t many surprises this year. When the teachers work closely with the students, follow the student data throughout the year, remediate in the area of weaknesses, the teachers have a pretty good handle on how they will respond on the test,” said AME principal Tom Levengood.
The snack bar at Coquina Beach is going old-style for a while.
The concession will be run from a trailer at the beach while Manatee County renovates the pink-painted concession building.
Bradenton Beach commissioners unanimously approved a temporary use permit for the trailer concession during a meeting Aug. 5. Coquina Beach is operated by Manatee County, but is within Bradenton Beach city limits.
The last of 31 Holmes Beach dredging projects is a week from completion. And this one, as DredgeMonster owner Paul Dimariano said, is a “bear.”
DredgeMonster is clearing 3,200-cubic yards of grass, sand and silt from a canal in the neighborhood near St. Bernard Catholic Church along South Harbor Drive. The canal, labeled as HB-21, sinks into the open eastern shoreline of Anna Maria Island like a pool-table pocket, and so is a mouth for seagrasses and leaves that enter from the Intracoastal Waterway.
The federal government estimates that the “vast majority” of oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill has either evaporated or been removed from the Gulf of Mexico.
The estimate came from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which reported that a third of oil released from the now-capped deepwater well off the Louisiana coast was either burned, skimmed or broken up using chemical dispersants.
Holmes Beach has proposed $4,401,417 in reserves and unspent carry-overs for the fiscal year of 2010-11, an increase from last year’s adopted reserve of $3,597,057.
Mayor Rich Bohnenberger said the main reason that budget item is increasing is because of uncompleted projects that could not be funded. One was a stormwater project at 37th Street and Gulf Drive that could not be completed in the 2009-10 fiscal year. The Florida Department of Transportation project to build a mast-arm traffic signal did not allow the city project to proceed until the DOT project — now under way — could be completed.
Someone allegedly set fire to a 2000 Mercedes-Benz owned by a Wisconsin resident early July 29 at the 5400 condominium building, 5400 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach.
Kurt Lathrop, deputy fire marshal at West Manatee Fire Rescue, responded to a call of a vehicle on fire at 5:23 a.m. Lathrop said that when he arrived, the vehicle, parked under a carport, was on fire.