Vol. 8 No. 32 - April 30, 2008


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryResidents to buy trailer park

CORTEZ – "Hello, it’s happy Harry!"

That’s how Harry Howey answered the phone an hour after the news that a deal had been struck between his son, Butch Howey, owner of the Cortez Trailer Park, and the homeowner’s association to sell the park to the residents.

Residents plan to form a co-op, which would allow them to buy shares in the five-acre park at the eastern end of the Cortez bridge, which includes a marina and restaurant, said Donna Stoutin, President of Cortez Park Homeowners Inc. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryGas pipeline, port hearing set for May 6

The public will have a chance to comment at a public hearing May 6 on an offshore natural gas port proposed for 28 miles west of Anna Maria Island in the Gulf.

The Port Dolphin Energy Liquefied Natural Gas Deepwater Port would consist of two submersible mooring buoys about three miles apart, each anchored to piles driven in the seabed 100 feet deep by eight mooring lines of wire rope and chain.

Tankers called shuttle and regasification vessels that convert liquefied natural gas into natural gas would moor at the port for four to eight days, pumping the natural gas to Port Manatee through an underwater pipeline. More...

Flaws found in drainage project

ANNA MARIA — Citizen complaints have forced the city to acknowledge problems with a drainage project already in the ground and also to re-think a project poised for permitting.

"Finally, they’ve listened," said resident Jim Conoly, who along with Tom Turner and Richard DeFrank have been complaining about faulty filter boxes in the North Shore/Gladiolus project completed last year and the upcoming project that was due to start in February. More...

Voters to decide on super majority for comp plan changes

ANNA MARIA — Voters will decide in a referendum whether or not they want language included in the city’s comp plan that would require a super majority vote of the commission for any changes to the land use element of the comp plan.

City commissioners voted 4-1 last week to put the question to the voters in November.

Members of the Charter Review Commission forced the issue by asking commissioners if they wanted the language included in the charter, which is currently under review. In answer to that question, commissioners voted to put the matter before the voters in the November election. More...

Four property tax reforms to hit ballot

Four proposed property tax reforms are now up to Florida voters to decide in November.

The Florida Taxation and Budget Reform Commission voted last week to place the Constitutional amendment proposals on the November 2008 presidential ballot.

The most controversial would replace property taxes allocated to schools with an increase in the state sales tax from 6 percent to 7 percent. It passed the commission 18-7, one vote more than required to make the ballot. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryThreatened bird family makes Island home

ANNA MARIA – Two threatened snowy plover chicks newly hatched on Anna Maria Island have more than just their parents watching out for them – and they need every friend they can get.

The snowy plover parents are one of only about 45 pairs on the southwest Florida coast. The species, whose nesting season begins in early February, is listed as threatened in the state, one notch under endangered.

Least terns, also threatened, and black skimmers, a species of special concern, began nesting in early April on the Island. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryCity to seek alley, drainage funding

BRADENTON BEACH – For years, the city’s alleys have shrunk as people extended landscaping and other structures into the rights of way behind their homes.

This drew the attention of city officials who met last Thursday to discuss the future of those alleys. The answer may lead to an extensive project that will take care of some of the drainage problems that plague the residential areas in the northern section of this city. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryA ribbon for the causeway

BRADENTON – The Palma Sola Scenic Highway Corridor Management Entity celebrated National Arbor Day on Friday with a ribbon cutting ceremony at the causeway pavilion and the planting of four sabal palms.

The event marked the completion of beautification efforts along the 4.5-mile corridor that included planting native trees and removing most non-native trees, including Australian pines and Brazilian peppers, painting a rest room and trash cans and installing a modular newsrack. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StorySea Turtles: An Island saga

Even hushed tones carry over the quiet Gulf of Mexico at night, turning the turtle hatching into a silent vigil.

The volunteers who found the nest are there, as are those who have kept watch over it for two months. Nighttime beachwalkers join in to watch and wait for the magical event.

Suddenly, just when the drowsy crowd least expects it, the sand breaks open and a hundred tiny turtles pour out, streaming to the Gulf in a struggle to live. More...

reel time

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story"Pole & Troll Zones:" Give an inch, save a mile

Captain Rusty Albury, a guide and fifth generation "Conch" from Islamorada, said it best, "If you go down to First Street and get mugged, how long will it be before you don’t go there anymore?" Albury’s supposition was in response to my question about his thoughts on "pole and troll zones." His point was that fish that are constantly run over will eventually leave an area. While Albury is a big fan of an increase in these areas, he is quick to point out that boaters should not be denied access. More...

real estate

It’s an upside down world

If you asked me a year ago what an upside down house was, I would have told you it was one where the bedrooms were on the first level and the living area on the second. Well a lot has changed during the past year and the term upside down house has taken on a meaning far more ominous than a simple floor plan.

In today’s upside down financial world, if the outstanding mortgage on your home exceeds the value of the home you have an upside down property, and you’re certainly not alone. An estimated nine million households own a home worth less than its mortgage debt an understandable number when you consider that in 2007, 29 percent of mortgages had no down payment. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryPreferred wedding location

The BeachHouse restaurant, at 100 Gulf Drive N., Bradenton Beach, and the Sandbar restaurant, 200 Spring Ave., Anna Maria, have been recognized by The Knot magazine as the "Best of Weddings" for Florida’s West Coast. This is the second year the Sandbar has won this honor and the first year for the BeachHouse.

The BeachHouse, assistant events coordinator Catherine Unger (left) and events coordinator Shawn Rhoton show the medal given by The Knot, an industry magazine and website. The Chiles Group owns both beachfront restaurants. Austyn Gordon and Patti McKee are the event coordinators at the Sandbar restaurant. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Island Majors hitting their stride

The Community Center’s NFL Flag Football season opened its second season last week, and if the contests were any indication, players and fans are in for another wild ride. Last year’s inaugural run was one of the most popular sports programs offered by the Center, drawing some 50 kids out to participate in the fast-paced game.

This year, the turnout was nearly double that and the first slate of match-ups provided some excellent competition and nail-biting excitement for the fans. All games are played at the athletic fields just north of city hall in Holmes Beach. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryAnother win for Islanders squad

The Islanders 13 - Freedom Bank 3
The Island’s Majors Division squad that turned up to play this game against Freedom Bank on Monday, April 21, was the same team that looked so together the last time out and it just looked like they wanted more.

Pitching this night was Justin ‘Tiny’ Garget, who would toss his best game of the season so far and his second win. His concentration level is high, he remains focused throughout and, while there is less finesse in his young arm, there is certainly a whole host of talent as he gets the job done. More...

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Debbie Rhodes repeats as shoe champ
Exclusively Online

The fine weather we’ve seen over the past few weeks has been matched by some equally fine horseshoe play at the Anna Maria horseshoe pits. Two teams advanced from the eighteen player pool on Saturday, 4/19, and the day’s final match was completed in near record time. Trailing by a score of 9-7, Debbie Rhodes and Herb Puryear powered past Ron Pepka and Jay Disbrow with a barrage of ringers that propelled them to the winner’s circle. Puryear threw two ringers, with Rhodes following with one of her own, and then watched Puryear repeat the feat, leaving their opponents shaking their heads at the 22-9 thrashing that had been handed to them. More...


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