Vol. 15 No. 40 - August 5, 2015
ANNA MARIA ISLAND – High water and short-term local flooding were common scenes on the Island Monday morning.
“The rain has been a little heavier this morning than it had been the last couple weeks,” said Bradenton Beach Public Works Director Tom Woodard.
“That, mixed with high tide, produced some pretty heavy flooding this morning. We set out some high water and slow speed signs in some of our neighborhoods, and I received one report that water was coming into someone’s ground level home,” Woodard said. More...
PAR sues city over vacation rental ordinance
ANNA MARIA – A second group has filed a lawsuit against the city’s vacation rental ordinance.
Pine Avenue Restoration, LLC, also known as PAR, filed suit July 28 asking for declaratory and injunctive relief from the ordinance.
The suit claims the ordinance is unlawful and “disturbs plaintiff’s vested property rights that were established through good faith reliance on the city’s prior approval of a development project.”
The project’s approval process included six separate development orders requiring a complicated application process that addressed most of the requirements in the vacation rental ordinance. It allowed owners of the properties to rent the living quarters above the shops on a short-term basis. The plaintiffs claim the city specifically gave the owners the right to rent short term. More...
Court appoints new judge for injunction
ANNA MARIA – At the city’s request, Judge John Lakin has disqualified himself from hearing a request for an injunction against the city’s vacation rental ordinance. The ordinance requires rental agents to give the city information on rental contracts already signed for rentals after the ordinance takes effect next January.
During the initial hearing, Lakin disclosed that his wife once worked for Island Real Estate, which is involved with the Anna Maria Island Vacation Rental Association, one of the plaintiffs in the request. That disclosure prompted Mayor Dan Murphy to ask for a new judge because of the possibility of a conflict of interest.
The court has reassigned the case to Judge Gilbert A. Smith, Jr. More...
Board discusses rental regulations
BRADENTON BEACH – The city’s Planning and Zoning Board (P&Z) members support additional vacation rental regulations, but not at the expense of a costly legal battle.
At the request of new board member Frank Harrison, last week’s P&Z meeting included a discussion on the recently adopted Anna Maria vacation rental ordinance and the possibility of using it as a basis for a similar ordinance in Bradenton Beach.
The volunteer board members agreed that more could be done to address growing concerns about large rental homes being built in residential neighborhoods, but were divided in regard to how this might be accomplished. More...
Court denies tree house motion
HOLMES BEACH – The Florida District Court of Appeals (DCA) has denied a motion filed by tree house attorney David Levin.
On behalf of tree house owners Lynn Tran and Richard Hazen, Levin filed for a written opinion regarding a court decision to deny an appeal of a judge’s ruling. The ruling upheld the Code Enforcement Board’s 2013 order to remove the violations or demolish the tree house in front of Angelino’s Sea Lodge at 103 29th St.
City Attorney Patricia Petruff told city commissioners at last Tuesday’s meeting that “the code enforcement case is finished in the court system. The judge has set aside an order imposing a fine, but the code enforcement process needs to move forward.” More...
Board approves Prince Park
In honor of the little cat that stole everyone’s heart, Holmes Beach city commissioners agreed to name the pocket park on 52nd Street after him calling it Prince Park. Prince was recently attacked and killed by a wild animal.
Chair Judy Titsworth brought the idea to commissioners at last week’s commission meeting and said Steve Bark of Bark Realty would raise the money for a sign and a cat sculpture for the park. More...
Preservation loses a friend and champion
MANATEE COUNTY – The July 29 passing of Manatee County Clerk of Circuit Court and Comptroller R.B. “Chips” Shore was felt throughout the county, including in Cortez, where he served for many years on the Florida Institute for Saltwater Heritage (FISH) board of directors.
Shore, who was 74, recently filed to run for a 10th term in office. Gov. Rick Scott will now select Shore’s successor, and Angelina Colonneso has been appointed to serve as interim clerk and comptroller.
“Mr. Shore was responsible for many technological advances such as e-filing, public access to court records and Smart Bench, a judicial application for judges to access court records,” said Manatee County Information Outreach Manager Nick Azzara in an e-mail. More...
Agreement on sea grape trimming in the works
HOLMES BEACH – City officials have agreed to grant an extension on a notice of code violation for Jose Vivero regarding trimming sea grapes on the beach in the 4300 block of Second Avenue.
In May, Vivero hired a tree service to trim the sea grape trees located along the beach access and the neighboring property across the street from his property without permission from the city or the neighboring property owner.
Vivero’s attorney, Greg Hogipan made the request in an e-mail to City Attorney Patricia Petruff stating, “As you are aware, we are working diligently with the DEP (Florida Department of Environmental Protection) and the State Attorney’s office in conjunction with the city of Holmes Beach to bring this matter to an amicable resolution. More...
Rescued puppies need foster homes
BRADENTON – Who can resist the imploring face of a cute puppy or dog?
Underdog Rescue is hoping not many people can when they see the latest group of 27 puppies and dogs rescued from various places and needing foster homes.
“We got them last Sunday,” said Shona Otto, founder and president of Underdog Rescue said. “Some were from another rescue group that was overwhelmed, some were from a shelter and would have been euthanized. It’s a lot to handle.”
Otto said the dogs are a variety, but mostly small dogs such as Yorkshire terriers, dachshunds and rat terriers. All have been taken care of medically and are well groomed, and the organization covers their expenses. More...
Outsmarting foul weather
July is not considered prime time for anglers in general, but it’s one of the best times for fly fishermen. The last three weeks have been virtually unfishable during the daytime with hard west winds, frequent squalls and cloudy skies. Finding any time to fish between thunderstorms and squalls has been challenging. While it’s been difficult for local guides to fish, captains like Harrison King have been having some excellent success by fishing late afternoons and evenings under dock lights. Most evenings when the heat subsides the thunderstorm activity lessens as well, providing a chance at some productive and comfortable fishing opportunities.
This past week, an approaching full moon also provided some late afternoon low tides that could have been perfect for tailing redfish. I was quick to accept an offer from Steve Traves, of Anna Maria Island Outfitters, to fish one evening with King. We invited my good friend Captain Rick Grassett along, and we took two boats. More...
What’s the real cost?
Over four centuries ago, Francis Bacon, the English philosopher, said, “Knowledge is power.” Those words were never truer than in our modern world with its spider web of intricacies, especially when it comes to mortgage financing.
Last week we talked about mortgage lenders entering the mortgage market offering riskier home mortgage products than we’ve seen in a long time. This is especially true in the jumbo mortgage market place. Regardless of whether or not you’re applying for a regular conventional mortgage or a jumbo non-conforming mortgage, you still need to understand the difference between the interest rate and the annual percentage rate (APR).
Anyone who has ever read an ad or searched on line for mortgage rates will always see two rates – the interest rate and the APR. Since the interest rate is the number used to determine the monthly payment most homeowners don’t pay too much attention to the APR. However, the annual percentage rate is actually more informative as it relates to giving you the real cost of your mortgage. More...
Part III: How much is enough?Investment Corner
In Parts I & II of this series, we reviewed the process of planning for how much retirement income will need to be generated by your investment plan to supplement Social Security and pension income. We also highlighted how longer life expectancies and personal goals of retirees can create stress on a retirement income plan. If you missed Parts I & II you can read them by visiting my blog under the “About” tab at www.breitercapital.com or at the Sun’s archives at www.amisun.com
In this final segment we will review the safe withdrawal rate concept and give an example of how to calculate an appropriate retirement nest egg for your income needs. This includes the income to support your desired retirement lifestyle and leaving a legacy to your chosen heirs.
The original work on the safe withdrawal rate was done by William Bengen, a financial planner from southern California. Using historical return data on the stock and bond market including good and bad times, he concluded that a 50-50 mix of stocks and bonds could support a 30-year retirement distribution period if the initial withdrawal rate was limited to 4.2 percent, and then adjusted by 3 percent annually for inflation. More...
Quick action, quick scoring: Adult co-ed flag football electrifies the field
With only three games left on the compressed regular season, adult co-ed flag football takes the field again in the summer heat at the Anna Maria Island Community Center. In a compressed five week season, the men and women of the gridiron take the field two nights a week for back-to-back action, squeezing in the standard eight-game regular season.
In this week’s action on Wednesday night, the eight teams put serious statistics in the books and points on the scoreboard. The first game of the night found the Slim’s Place Eagles facing the first place Miller Electric Lions. With the wins this week, the Lions remain undefeated. The Eagles put up a valiant fight scoring 18 points – two touchdowns by Andrew Terman and one by Holly Belton. Jason Mickan lead the Eagles as the quarterback with 20 pass attempts and 16 completions for 222 passing yards. Quarterback Ray Gardner completed 13 of the 20 passing attempts for 83 yards, aiding his teams to the victory with 27 points. Big man Eric Gledhill, Craig Doher, and Mike Gillum put points on the board, leading to the team victory with 27 points. More...
Turtle nests at risk
Continuing storms and higher-than-normal tides have placed loggerhead sea turtle nests in jeopardy up and down Anna Maria Island beaches, leaving them underwater for hours at a time several days in a row.
The eggs can take being submerged to a point, but 60 nests are estimated to be lost out of the 300 or so remaining on the beach, Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring Director Suzi Fox said.
Bradenton Beach was hit hardest by winds that pushed the Gulf of Mexico up to the dune line in some areas, she said. More...