Vol. 15 No. 34 - June 17, 2015


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryGROUNDED! Fireworks cancelled to protect birds

BRADENTON BEACH – Imperiled shorebirds nesting on the beach at the north end of the BeachHouse restaurant have caused the cancellation of the 22nd Annual Beach House Fireworks Spectacular on Friday, July 3.

A nesting area including black skimmers, a state species of special concern, and least terns, a state threatened species, has been staked off for protection by Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring, which brought the issue to the attention of Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Director Charlie Hunsicker. More...

City moves to limit number of bedrooms

HOLMES BEACH – After hearing statistics from City Planner Bill Brisson, commissioners last week agreed on a four-bedroom limit on single family homes and a three –bedroom limit per side on duplexes in the R-2, R-3 and R-4 districts.

Since January, the city has been under a moratorium in those zoning districts on remodeling or construction of homes with four or more rooms that can be used as bedroom/sleeping rooms.

“Through 2008 the vast majority of dwelling units in the R-2 district had three or less bedrooms,” Brisson explained. “Four bedrooms were not the rule, but were not uncommon.”

He said up to 2008, 18 to 20 percent of units had four bedrooms, and 2.4 percent had more than four. However, between 2011-2014, the number of dwelling units that had five or more bedrooms jumped to 40 percent. More...

Pool rules relaxed for residents

HOLMES BEACH – After hearing suggestions from Chair Judy Titsworth, city commissioners agreed last week to relax some rules for residents in the draft swimming pool ordinance.

“My goal is not to punish residents for things that are happening in resort housing,” Titsworth explained.

She asked if pools could be considered as a percentage of the impervious surface allowed on a lot rather than the entire pool being counted toward the impervious surface calculation.

The ordinance designates pools as impervious surface, which means they do not let water through. She said a lot is allowed 40 percent impervious surface, and if the pool is counted in that 40 percent, it limits the homeowner’s options for driveways and other impervious surfaces, forcing them to use materials such as turf block instead of asphalt or cement. More...

Commissioners agree on one pool per duplex lot

HOLMES BEACH – After hearing from residents and discussing the issue, commissioners agreed last week on one pool per duplex lot. The city is under a moratorium on two pools on duplex lots until July 31.

Prior to discussion, Margie Motzer urged commissioners to limit duplexes to one pool per lot. She gave an example of a block on the north side of 72nd Street and the south side of 73rd Street, which currently has 10 pools and could have as many as 14 or 15 pools.

“We keep hearing that you can’t regulate kids being kids during the day,” she said. “This is a much bigger issue than kids being kids, and it’s magnified by the numbers.” More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryPier RFP available

BRADENTON BEACH – The RFP (request for proposal) for the three business spaces located on the Historic Bridge Street Pier is now available.

The RFP was released late last week and was formally advertised on Friday.

“The city of Bradenton Beach is requesting proposals from qualified persons or entities to enter into a lease/concessionaire agreement,” the RFP states. “Proposal may include the sublease of any of these spaces located on city-owned waterfront property at 200 Bridge Street.” More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryPier RFP generates interest

BRADENTON BEACH – According to Mayor Jack Clarke, the city has already received multiple inquiries from parties interested in leasing the three city-owned business spaces located on the Historic Bridge Street Pier.

One by land…

Prior to the pier RFP (request for proposal) being released last week, the city received an e-mail from Colorado restauranteur and longtime Island visitor Richard Foresta.

“I am very interested in the restaurant space at the end of the pier on Bridge Street. I currently own three pizzerias and would be interested in putting a pizzeria in that location,” his June 6 e-mail said. More...

Challenge spurs ‘blue’ ideas

People with ideas to improve the environment, boost tourism and develop the area’s Blue Economy are competing for funds to turn them into reality in the inaugural Gulf Coast Innovation Challenge.

The not-for-profit Gulf Coast Community Foundation will award up to $375,000 in grant funds in November for the winning solution to a marine science issue facing Florida’s Gulf Coast. Finalists will be announced at the end of this month, and as many as five teams will receive grants of $25,000 each in July to prototype their product, service, project or business.

The challenge already is having a positive impact on the community, according to Greg Luberecki, director of marketing and communications for the Gulf Coast Community Foundation. Several teams with complementary interests are discussing collaborating with competitors after the challenge is over, and several non-competitors have requested contact information for teams whose projects complement their own work, he said. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryNew sleigh makes Privateers’ day

CORTEZ – Christmas came early for the Anna Maria Island Privateers Sunday afternoon when they were presented with a new Christmas sleigh created by two men named Klaus and some pirate-friendly elves.

Built and designed by the father and son team of Warren and Tim Klaus and based on a previous design created by the elder Klaus and his friend Jim Griffin, the new sleigh replaces the one commandeered during a two-year legal battle with former Privateer Rick Maddox.

“I designed and built it with a lot of my friends” Warren said of the sleigh that sat in the driveway of his Cortez home on Sunday afternoon, waiting to be bestowed upon one of the Island’s most beloved charitable organizations. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryFilm brings viewers into Cortez

CORTEZ – “Paradise, FL” transported moviegoers at the inaugural Skyway Film Festival at the Manatee Performing Arts Center on Sunday onto the docks and into the homes of Cortez in the “cinema verite” tradition.

Seeing the story like a fly on the wall is what writer and producer Tony Stopperan had in mind, he told a Cortez fisherman in the audience on Sunday, who recognized local boats, canals and docks in the film.

But even those who had never been to Cortez had been there by the time the film ended. The postcard-perfect pink and purple sunsets on Sarasota Bay, the old trucks rattling down 45th Avenue West and the net-draped docks stacked with crab traps set the scene for the story about a hard-working, hard-drinking fisherman struggling to make ends meet for his broken family. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryFishing bridges, piers and docks

Bridges, docks and piers provide anglers who don’t have a boat some excellent fishing opportunities. Besides being a convenient access point over the water, their structure provides the perfect habitat for fish. A large variety of small baitfish, crabs, barnacles and other crustaceans make these pilings home and provide gamefish a refuge and an ambush point for feeding.

The bridges that span the local passes are natural corridors for fish like pompano, Spanish mackerel, ladyfish and bluefish. These species migrate from the Gulf to the local bays, feeding around the bridge pilings and fenders. More...

real estate

What’s your real estate IQ?

I read something recently about improved human IQ scores during the past 100 years. A study conducted by the University of Vienna reported that people scored about three points more every decade, therefore, the average score is 30 points higher than it was 100 years ago.

So why does the average real estate buyer or seller care about IQ scores? Well simply put, if your real estate IQ is below par, you may be missing out on information and accruing knowledge needed to make an informed decision.

Gone are the days when you walked into a real estate office and the person on “up time” sat you down at her desk and pulled out a box of listings on 3 x 5 index cards. If you were lucky, you got to see a black and white picture of the front of the property, and if you were real lucky, the agent on the other side of the desk toured the property and had total recall. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

Are stock prices in a bubble? – Part II

Investment Corner

A little over 1 ½ years ago I wrote an article which appeared here in the Sun. The topic was whether or not the stock market was in a bubble phase due to excessive speculation. At that time, the financial media and press were obsessed with talking about stocks being over-valued, and how the bursting of the bubble was soon to come.

Bubbles in asset class prices include irrational behavior by a majority of investors, who get swept up into believing that prices will continue to rise, and they ignore all fundamentals of business and economics. We are not talking here about a normal bull–bear stock market cycle where corrections of 10 to 30 percent happen every few years. These corrections keep the market from becoming too speculative in nature, which eventually results in very over-valued market. These true bubbles occur les frequently and usually result in price declines of 50 percent or more. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Team Gardner’s teens head to championship game

Team Gardner 40
Team Ray 32

Taking on the responsibility of coaching the youth at the Anna Maria Island Community Center is nothing new to the Center’s athletic department staff. This basketball season, Athletic Director Matt Ray coached two youth teams and Assistant Athletic Director Ray Gardner found himself heading up four teams. Their time and dedication make it possible for over 30 kids ranging in age from five to 17 to play with passion on the basketball court.

On Tuesday night, the two coaches once again found their teams meeting up for a spot in the championship game. The 14-to 17-year olds battled it out for two halves of play, ultimately finding Team Gardner on the top, clinching the final seat in the finals. More...


Tuesday Turtle Talks continue

Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring offers free Tuesday Turtle Talks each Tuesday at 10 a.m. at the Annie Silver Community Center, 103 23rd St. in Bradenton Beach.

No reservations are required for the program, which highlights 35 years of turtle and shorebird nesting history on Anna Maria Island.

Free souvenirs include temporary turtle tattoos and the Flippers and Feathers Activity book. Shirts and hats will be available for purchase.

Doors open at 9:30 a.m. so you can visit with the crew that monitors AMI shorelines every morning. More...

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