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Date of Issue: September 30, 2009

Commission: no bridge annexation

The area west of the Anna Maria Island Bridge is the land Holmes Beach officials want to annex.
Islander Photo: Lisa Neff

Holmes Beach city commissioners agreed Sept. 22 that they want to pursue annexation of the area west of the Anna Maria Island Bridge to the city boundary.

But, commissioners said, they do not want to pursue annexation of the bridge as they press forward with survey work needed to ask for legislative approval of a boundary change.

The city is entering discussions with Manatee County to annex the area west of the bridge, including the county-operated Kingfish Boat Ramp.

The area lies in unincorporated Manatee County, but for years Holmes Beach thought the land was within city limits and policed the area.

City officials have said they’d like to bring the area back into Holmes Beach, primarily because of the proximity of Holmes Beach Police Department patrol officers.

On Sept. 15, county commissioners approved a resolution to discuss annexation with the city, but included a suggestion that the city consider expanding its interests to include the bridge.

Manatee County Sheriff Brad Steube presented the idea to county commissioners, pointing out that even if the city annexed the boat ramp area, multi-jurisdictions would continue to be involved in policing nearby.

Bradenton police officers have jurisdiction on much of Perico Island and up to the east end of the bridge on Manatee Avenue/State Road 64. Florida Highway Patrol has jurisdiction on the bridge.

During a city commission last week, city attorney Patricia Petruff asked how to proceed.

Survey work and a legal description for the area Holmes Beach seeks to annex is needed this week, Petruff said.

Commissioners reached a consensus that the legal description should cover the area west of the bridge to the city line, but not the bridge.

“That’s what we need to do,” said Commission Chair Sandy Haas-Martens.