Vol. 14 No. 45 - September 3, 2014
Labor Day: Slow and Mellow
HOLMES BEACH – Labor Day weekend was slower than expected, but those who hit the beaches had a wonderful time.
“It’s been a rather mellow holiday weekend. We had a couple parking issues, but today’s been slow. There hasn’t been as many people as we expected today,” Holmes Beach Police Chief Bill Tokajer said on Monday afternoon.
“Traffic-wise, it’s been pretty calm,” he said of the weekend as a whole. More...
Bridge alternatives outlined
HOLMES BEACH – Former Bradenton Beach City Commissioner Jim Kissick looked at the sets of plans on easels inside the activity center at St. Bernard Catholic Church. A former fighter pilot for the Navy and a former U.S. Marine, Kissick led the charge of citizens who helped stop an attempt to replace the Manatee Avenue drawbridge with a 65-foot-high fixed span 22 years ago.
Now, at 90 years old, Kissick recalls the research he did on the differences between low-level drawbridges and tall fixed bridges, especially if a storm is approaching. Much of his effort was spent gathering information as a member of Save Anna Maria, a citizen’s group fighting the bridge replacement. More...
Mainsail plan OK’d - really
HOLMES BEACH – There was no marching band, shower of confetti or skies lit up with fireworks, just a quiet 3-1 vote to approve Mainsail’s site plan.
The project, located near the intersection of Marina and Gulf drives, includes a lodge with two wings that feature two-bedroom lodging units, an 80-seat restaurant and meeting rooms, a 50-slip marina and a separate building with two-bedroom lodging units.
“We’re excited and thrilled and ready to get to work,” Joe Collier, president of Mainsail Development, said after the vote. “Everyone will be impressed by what we build. Despite all the drama over the site, it will be an asset to the city.” More...
Pier rent abatement discussed
BRADENTON BEACH – During last week’s commission work session, Mayor Bill Shearon proposed a $1,135 per month rent abatement for the proprietors of the three businesses located at the Historic Bridge Street Pier.
Shearon’s proposal was scheduled for further discussion at the Wednesday, Sept. 3 Pier Team meeting, with a Pier Team recommendation to be presented at Thursday’s commission meeting for acceptance, amendment or denial. More...
Commission rejects Island Auto plan
HOLMES BEACH – After watching a larger commercial project on Avenue C receive commission approval, Island Auto Repair’s Judi Rickerson was extremely disappointed with the commission’s 3-1 denial of a plan that would have brought the family business back to the Island.
In the end, it came down to a lack of parking.
After Thursday’s work session, an emotional Rickerson said, “Well, they just shot us down.” More...
Fall classes begin at Center
The Island Community Center offers the following classes at 407 Magnolia Ave., Anna Maria. For further details or to register, call the Center at 941-778-1908, ext. 0 or visit www.islandcommunitycenter.com. For a complete list of center programs and special events, visit the website.
Conversational Spanish will be offered on Tuesdays beginning Sept. 2. Instructor Lisbeth Oscuvilca will teach a Beginners Class from 2:30 to 4 p.m. and an Intermediate Class from 4:30 to 6 p.m. More...
Laundry facility and office space approved
HOLMES BEACH – Island Real Estate owner Larry Chatt received commission approval to build a three-story commercial building on his vacant lot at the corner of Avenue C and 30th Street North.
During last week’s meeting, commissioners unanimously approved the proposed site plan despite concerns raised by residents. Commissioner Jean Peelen was on vacation and did not attend the meeting. More...
Law enforcement faces icy challenge
Before taking an icy dousing Friday morning, Holmes Beach Police Chief Bill Tokajer issued a challenge for the other heads of law enforcement on Anna Maria Island and Longboat Key to get wet and cold to fight ALS.
The law enforcement agency heads – Manatee County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Paul Davis of Anna Maria, Bradenton Beach Police Chief Sam Speciale and Longboat Key Police Chief Pete Cummings – said they will participate in a challenge over who can raise the most money, and are looking for donors this week. More...
Parking ban discussions continue
HOLMES BEACH – The Island Congestion Committee continues their efforts to have an ordinance passed that restricts right of way parking in residential areas.
During last week’s commission work session, representatives Carol Soustek and Jayne Christenson provided a recap of the previous day’s committee meeting.
The focus of the committee meeting was the proposal to eliminate right of way and street parking in residential neighborhoods; to identify unused and existing parking spaces in Holmes Beach; to ensure compliance with beach renourishment funding, as spelled out in an interlocal agreement; and the need to establish and adhere to a timeline for enacting these measures. More...
Scallop count up from last year
The Seventh Annual Sarasota Bay Great Scallop Search was conducted on Saturday, Aug. 23, with the largest crowd of volunteers to date. The event was a sellout of well over 100 participants who surveyed areas of Sarasota Bay from New Pass to Anna Maria Sound. During the morning count, 40 live scallops were found, a big increase over 11 that were located last year.
Teams of searchers deployed transect lines in various parts of the bay and then snorkeled along the lines to look for the blue-eyed mollusks. Based out of the Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant and Pub in Longbeach Village, the event helps scientists to get an idea of the population dynamics of scallops, which were once prolific in Sarasota Bay. Through a number of factors including pollution and habitat loss, scallops all but disappeared from bay waters after the late 1960s. More...
Housing market remains anemic
With the new school session in full swing and Labor Day also in our rear view mirror, Manatee County students and residents are starting to clear the sand out of their brains and get back down to the business of business. But the real estate market hasn’t quite shaken the Gulf beach sand out of its brain and the hope of double digit appreciation rates may also be in the rear view mirror.
The economy of the country is flat; it’s a little better than last year and the unemployment rate is coming down somewhat. However, the average American still isn’t comfortable with their flat incomes and poor job choices which keep them from making big ticket purchases like new homes. It doesn’t take Wharton School of Business alumni to figure out that instead of moving up, we’re moving horizontal, which is having an effect on the national real estate market. More...
Equities reliable as long-term income sourceInvestment Corner
Investors often migrate to vehicles perceived to be more reliable income sources as they approach or enter retirement. Money market funds, high quality bonds and certificates of deposit are a few of these default income vehicles.
Equities are feared a bit by the income oriented investor due to their periodic bouts with volatility.. Statistics can be deceiving when used to the advantage of the story teller, but when referenced properly are very useful for decision making. The statistics related to using dividend paying common stocks as part of a long-term income plan are quite compelling. More...
The adult co-ed spring soccer season comes to a climatic conclusion this week at the Anna Maria Island Community Center.
The soccer buzz is all over the world right now due to the FIFA World Cup in soccer. The most popular sport on planet earth has fans reeling and soccer fans on the Island are no different. What a perfect time for the conclusion of the Center’s adult soccer season.
Upsets were prevalent in last week’s first round of the playoffs. Three out of the four tournament playoff games were won by the underdog seeded team. Again this shows the parity of the Center’s drafting system in the sports leagues and how any team can win on any given night. More...