Vol. 14 No. 49 - October 1, 2014
Students celebrate peace
HOLMES BEACH – After a weather delay a week earlier, the skies cleared as students at Anna Maria Elementary School celebrated its 13th Annual Peace Day. The event is affiliated with the International Children’s Day of Peace, and it is intended to teach students to find peaceful solutions to arguments, disagreements and other problems between people.
The celebration began with the raising of the American flag and the Pledge of Allegiance, but before that, AME Guidance Counselor Cindi Harrison introduced new principal Jackie Featherston and gave her a replica of the Peace Pole that graces an area in front of the school and near the American flag. More...
ANNA MARIA – After taking a second look at the moratorium passed on Monday, Sept 22, during an emergency meeting, the city commission reaffirmed its intention at a special early meeting on Thursday, Sept. 25.
The motion stated the circumstance that brought on the moratorium is because investors are building structures that would have as many as eight bedrooms. The city commission wants to see if a building like that could be treated as a motel and banned, since the only motels in the city are grandfathered in before the city banned them many years ago.
Mayor’s fate topic of special meeting
BRADENTON BEACH – The Monday Oct. 6, special commission meeting will determine whether the majority of the city commission intends to move forward with efforts to remove Mayor Bill Shearon from office.
Taking place at city hall, Monday’s meeting will start at 11 a.m. and begin with public comment. The meeting agenda then provides an opportunity for the commission to discuss potential disciplinary alternatives or solutions that fall short of attempting to strip Shearon of his mayoral duties. More...
Board OKs use of beach concession funds
BRADENTON – Manatee County commissioners last week approved a resolution establishing guidelines for using the surplus beach concession revenues.
“It sets forth a process by which those revenues can be used for projects benefitting the Island,” County Attorney Bill Clague explained.
He said guidelines include a joint letter from the three Island mayors with a description of the project and an interlocal agreement between the county and cities. The project must be a one-time project that benefits the Island, all three cities must agree on it and they must apply to the county for project approval. More...
Slow Septembers may be things of the past
New tourism marketing campaigns may make slow Septembers a thing of the past.
In hot September, the slowest month of the year on Anna Maria Island, tourism lags so much that some businesses close their doors for vacations or renovations, beachgoers have large stretches of beach to themselves and open parking spaces are the new normal.
The rest of the year, congestion has become so challenging on the Island that a congestion committee was formed in Holmes Beach to examine solutions. More...
Mayor responds to removal efforts ...
BRADENTON BEACH – Last week, Mayor Bill Shearon shared his thoughts on the commission’s recent decision to move forward with forfeiture of office proceedings against him.
Although he does not believe he should be removed from office, Shearon did support moving forward with the process in order to formally address complaints about his performance.
“What I asked for at the last meeting, and what I’ve repeatedly asked for, is that this has to be narrowed down. Tell me what you don’t like and what you’d like me to do. Most importantly, if you’re going to complain, you should also have a solution,” Shearon said. More...
... while vice mayor explains move
BRADENTON BEACH – In the wake of two recent meetings pertaining to Vice Mayor Jack Clarke initiating preliminary forfeiture of office proceedings against Mayor Bill Shearon, Clarke’s critics have suggested that his efforts are driven by his desire to be mayor.
Last week, Clarke discussed the reasons he took actions that could potentially result in Shearon being removed from office.
“It’s not a political aspiration, it’s done out of a desire to pull the city out of its nose dive. I believe, under the applicable provisions of the city charter, the mayor should step down and forfeit his position for the benefit of the city as a whole,” Clarke said. More...
Tree house case in wait-and-see mode
HOLMES BEACH – City Attorney Patricia Petruff reported to city commissioners last week that they need to wait and see what tree house owners Lynn Tran and Richard Hazen plan to do regarding the recent order from Judge Janette Dunnigan.
On Sept. 16, the judge upheld the code enforcement board’s July 2013 ruling that the tree house was constructed without a permit and encroached into the erosion control line and ordered the couple to remove the violations or demolish the structure.
Petruff said tree house attorney David Levin) can file a motion for rehearing or appeal the ruling at the District Court of Appeal (DCA). More...
Sousa outlines goals for West Manatee Fire Rescue
HOLMES BEACH – “It’s really good,” Capt. Tom Sousa said about his approval as West Manatee Fire & Rescue’s chief to replace the retiring Chief Andy Price in April 2015.
Sousa, who has served as the fire district’s training/safety/public information officer, said the district has really grown since the merger of the West Side and Anna Maria fire districts in 2000. More...
Fishing line cleanup helps seabirds
On Oct. 4 from 8:30 until 12:30 p.m. members of Sarasota Bay Watch will team up with Save Our Seabirds, and the Sarasota Sailing Squadron to conduct the Sixth Annual Fishing Line Cleanup of bird rookeries in Sarasota Bay. The event is organized to remove fishing line from mangroves during the season when birds are not nesting.
The event has been a great success in years past with participants collecting yards of line from Roberts Bay to Manatee County during the morning event. Lunch will be provided to volunteers after the cleanup. Those who can’t make the meeting, but would still like to help can call 941-232-2363 and arrangements will be made to get equipment to you and pick up the trash you collect which is very important for research.
Looking for a rental? Good luck
It’s Oct. 1 – do you know where your winter rental is? Based on the multiple phone calls I have recently received from the Northern environs, chances are if you or your friends and family are looking for a winter getaway for a few months, they may be too late.
The baby boomers have struck again and this time their aim is the Florida rental market, both seasonal and annual. They are gobbling up rentals at an alarming rate and are willing to pay almost anything, driving the rental market just like they have driven every other market this huge bubble of babies have passed through since they were born. More...
Quiet markets won’t last foreverInvestment Corner
Investors have been enjoying an unusual period where the wind has been at the back of most major asset classes for the last few years. With the exception of commodities, which continue to do poorly in 2014, and emerging markets equities, which were poor performers until perking up this year, all other major asset classes have turned in good performances since the end of the financial crisis of 2008-2009. The great returns have also come in a period of extremely low volatility where daily price swings have been small compared to historical levels and mostly in the upward direction.
Our human nature tends to build confidence after periods where making money has been relatively easy and without a lot of stress. Of course, history has shown us these periods have never lasted forever. The current upward trend in stock prices is now the fourth longest ever, and there is evidence that some of the money fueling the run is being invested by individual investors. More...