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Tag Archives: money

Reclaiming Empowerment: How the American Voter Can Hold Congress Accountable

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By Roy Eaton There is no question that the American voter has the means to hold Congress hostage, but do Americans have the will and intestinal fortitude to hold this branch of government accountable for their inept leadership, lack of statesmanship and total incompetence? When will we gather the will and courage to turn the tables on these irresponsible bureaucrats and hold them responsible for their actions — or lack thereof? The Second Amendment may have given us the right to bear arms, but the 19th Amendment granted to “all” Americans, a far more powerful weapon — the right to ... Read More »

Grants Awarded by Noontime Rotary

Bruce Graev, president of the Rotary Club of Marco Island, presents a $4,000 check  to Neil Snyder for the Meals of Hope project at The Snook Inn where a fund-raiser event was held Tuesday, Aug. 12. More than 100 people attended donating enough to package more than 11,000 meals. SUBMITTED photo

Submitted The Rotary Club of Marco Island (Noontime Club) recently announced the list of organizations receiving grants from their fund-raising efforts of the past year. Topping the list is $36,000 for college scholarships for local students. The club is currently providing $3,000 per student for this academic year to a total of 12 students. They are at various stages of their college careers and must maintain an acceptable grade point average and carry at least 12 credit hours in order to remain eligible for their scholarships each year. The club has been awarding scholarships to local students since 1973. The ... Read More »

Magistrate or No Magistrate? That is the Question

Members of City Council meet at a workshop with the Code  Enforcement Board to discuss their possible replacement with a Magistrate. PHOTO BY CAROL GLASSMAN

By Carol Glassman Whether to replace the city’s Code Enforcement Board (CEB) with a magistrate turned out to be a difficult question, when five members of City Council (Councilmen Kiester and Batte were absent) met Tuesday, Aug. 12, for what they had anticipated as a joint workshop with the CEB. After about 15 minutes of expressing their opinions and irritation with the topic at hand, the misunderstanding about the workshop format and the draft ordinance prepared by City Attorney Burt Saunders’ office, the meeting almost ended before it began. Council Chairman Ken Honecker, frustrated with the chain of events, was ... Read More »

City Manager Hernstadt Aims to Fill City’s Bucket List

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By Carol Glassman City Manager Roger Hernstadt addressed approximately 50 residents of Hideaway Beach last week, accompanied by Fire Chief Mike Murphy, Assistant Chief Chris Byrne, Public Works DirectorTim Pinter, Assistant Chief of Police Dave Baer, some colorful handouts and an assorted table full of groceries and edibles valued at about $5 each. Hernstadt seemed determined to make the city’s budget and longterm debt presentation both simple and entertaining as he introduced himself and encouraged the audience to take his business card and never hesitate to contact him with questions or concerns. Briefly, Hernstadt pointed out that in order for ... Read More »

City Council Approves Lobbyist

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com During the 2014 legislative session, Florida lawmakers had a $1.2 billion budget surplus to dole out to pet projects in their districts. Marco Island City Manager Roger Hernstadt and the City Council are betting this was not an anomaly. “This year, the Legislature had extra money and went on a buying spree,” explained Hernstatd. “(Marco Island) was not in the game. I don’t know how long this environment will last, but I felt it was worth the council’s consideration to see if they want to get into the game.” To that end, councilors voted 5-1 ... Read More »

Marco Island Soccer Club

The Marco Island Soccer Club is sponsoring a entry level soccer USSF referee course taught by the Florida State Referees. The cost of the course is $100.00 and includes all instructional costs, registration with US Soccer and a background check or age verification through FYSA. To register for the course, go to: https://www.leaguelineup.com/formpreview.asp?url=marcoislandsoccer&sid=315414824&FormID=94475 COURSE DATE & TIME: September 6th (9a-4p) September 7th (9a-2p) COURSE LOCATION: Marco Island Academy 2255 San Marco Rd. Marco Island, FL 34145 The referee course is a great opportunity for High School & Middle School students, as well as adults to learn more about the game of soccer, and ... Read More »

Batte Seeks 2nd Term

Joe Batte

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Joe Batte’s resume is an impressive one. The New Jersey native is a husband, father, Seton Hall graduate, former U.S. Marine Corps officer, Vietnam vet, and a former special agent and criminal investigator for the U.S. Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General. His federal law enforcement specialty was Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security fraud. Today, he still provides consulting services to the health care industry, focusing on compliance and health care fraud and abuse. For the last four years and four months, he also has served Marco Island residents on the City ... Read More »

Letter to the Editor: Andrea Cooper

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Dear City Council, I recently emailed the council with a plea for you to reconsider down sizing the Marco Island Farmers Market. Thanks to those of you who responded. Since then, I have spoken to many of the shop owners of the stores in the Marco Town Center plaza.  They tell me that their business is more profitable the day of the farmers market.  They make more money because people from Marco Island and Naples shop in the stores and eat in their restaurants after the market. I encourage the council to slow down on making this very important decision ... Read More »

Letter To The Editor: Pat Berry

Lettertoeditor

The 15th Southwest Florida Soapfest has come and gone. We made some changes, added an extra day and it all paid off…what a great event. Each year we thank over 100 individuals and organizations who donate to this wonderful cause – whether it be their talent, time, money, food, gift certificates, housing, vehicles, etc. All of us at Soapfest feel very privileged to be a part of a community that pulls together as the Soapfest cogs move to make this wheel turn. We had a group of 9 wonderful actors who donated their time and supported us with bundles of ... Read More »

The Question of a Public-Private Partnership

Bob Olson addresses the Marco Island City Council during the June 21st  reading of the Marriott’s PUD amendment. Olson spoke frequently against the Marriott PUD amendment in the months leading up to its final approval on June 16. SUBMITTED PHOTO

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com During its June 16 regular meeting, the Marco Island City Council put to rest the debate over the Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort’s $150 million renovation project, approving the PUD amendments by a vote of 6-1. Even so, new questions rose about the Marriott’s offer to give the city $1 million to expedite the renovation of the Smokehouse Bay Bridge. Marriott General Manager Rick Medwedeff made the offer during the project first appearance before City Council on June 2. The $1 million contribution to will cut the construction schedule by eight months, eliminate any potential ... Read More »

Roadwatch Report

Motorists are reminded to wear safety belts and drive with caution, courtesy, common sense, and patience as they travel through work zones. Remember, speeding fines are doubled in work zones.As a reminder, travelers can visit www.FL511.com or dial “511” from their phone to learn about traffic conditions on major roadways across the state. If you know before you go, you can plan accordingly and save time and money. I-75/Alligator Alley Rest Area at mile marker 63: Work continues to build two recreational access areas adjacent to the Big Cypress National Preserve backcountry trails, replace the existing rest area, build a new public safety ... Read More »

How Gullible Are We?

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By Carol Glassman I know, I know, none of us likes to see ourselves in those terms. After all, gullibility suggests not only that someone or perhaps some group of people out there is a lot smarter or wilier than we are but also that they are quite likely to take advantage of us, publicize it and make us look quite foolish. Well, I suppose that could happen, but take heart. I happen to know that tests have been done — yes, actual scientific tests — that show gullibility is not our fault. For example, did you know that people ... Read More »

Refrigerator Inflation, Frantic Freckles and Laid-Back Lucy

Bureau of Labor Statistics

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com You’ve got bad eating habits if you use a grocery cart in 7-Eleven.” - Dennis Miller, American Comedian and Actor   Question: My grocery bill keeps going up even though I purchase the same items each week. According to the media, inflation is low or non-existent. How can this be true? Answer: Inflation is measured by the Core Consumer Price Index (CPI) to indicate price trends. The reason your food shopping experience doesn’t match what you see as reported inflation is that necessities like food and energy aren’t included in the calculation. This ... Read More »

A closer look at the Marriott’s $1 Million Offer

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com On June 2, the Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort’s $150 million renovation plan cleared another hurdle when City Council approved the amendment to the hotel’s planned unit development and master plan by a vote of 4-2. Councilors Amadeo Petricca and Chuck Kiester voted against the measure, and Councilor Joe Batte was not in attendance. The second reading of the PUD amendment will be held Monday, June 16, at 5:30 PM, during the next regular City Council meeting. The approval came after nearly six hours of presentations, impassioned community responses, in-depth discussion and a surprise promise ... Read More »

Marco Makes Strides Against Breast Cancer

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AMERICAN CANCE SOCIETY CARES Lisa Honig In 2013, a group of passionate volunteers led by Marco Island American Cancer Society board member Monte Lazarus worked together with the American Cancer Society to hold a “Luau Against Breast Cancer.” For a first-time event we had a wonderful response from the community with support from First National Bank of the Gulf Coast, Hammock Bay Golf and Country Club and the Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort and Spa. This year’s event will once again be held in October (date/location TBD) and the first planning meeting will take place on June 23, 2014 in ... Read More »

Approved: 1st Reading of Marriott PUD Amendment

Marco Island city councilors listen to both sides of the Marriott project debate during the June 2 meeting.

By Noelle H. Lowery The Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort’s $150 million renovation plan cleared its first hurdle Monday (June 2) night when City Council approved the amendment to the hotel’s planned unit development and master plan by a vote of 4-2. Councilors Amadeo Petricca and Chuck Kiester voted against the measure, and Councilor Joe Batte was not in attendance. The approval came after nearly six hours of presentations, impassioned community responses, in-depth discussion and a surprise promise from Marriott General Manager Rick Medwedeff. The hotel’s ownership group will kick in $1 million to expedite the renovation of the Smokehouse ... Read More »

City Council Notes

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com The Marco Island City Council got down to business during its May 19 regular meeting hashing out a number of issues, including the purchase of an emergency standy-by generator for its South Water Treatment Plant for $200,000, the award of the $7.625 million contract for the Smokehouse Bay Bridge project to Quality Enterprises USA and a detailed discussion on how the city creates its ordinances and resolutions. An Electric Deal Council tackled the generator purchase first, agreeing to include the purchase of the emergency standy-by generator from Lee County Electric Cooperative (LCEC) in its FY2015 ... Read More »

If We Build it, Will They Come?

Goodland enjoys 2 county parks inside her very modest amount of land, pictured above is Margood Park. PHOTOS BY MELINDA GRAY

GOODLAND LIFE Melinda Gray melinbrya3@yahoo.com “Water, water, everywhere, And all the boards did shrink; Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink.” — Samuel Taylor Coleridge “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” Summer is quickly approaching, and with it come the horror stories warning first-timers like me of mutant bugs, face-melting heat and the unbearable boredom to come. Of course, I don’t believe everything I hear, but I do feel a kind of “something wicked this way comes,” and I have started to brace myself accordingly. In my search for ways to keep the family cool this summer, I’ve noticed ... Read More »

City Manager Roger Hernstadt on His ‘Debt Free’ Budget

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Marco Island City Manager Roger Hernstadt has been on the job now for 100 days, and he already is making a major impact on city operations. From restructuring the Community Affairs, Building Services and Planning and Zoning departments to professionalizing and streamlining communications between city staff, City Council and Marco residents, Hernstadt’s strong management and leadership skills are driving the city of Marco Island towards its next stage. Now, Hernstadt has turned his attention to the city’s 2015 budget. During the City Council’s budget kick-off workshop last month, Hernstadt unveiled an aggressive five-year plan to ... Read More »

Donations Encouraged For Flood Victims

The State Emergency Response Team (SERT) and Volunteer Florida encourage prospective donors who would like to assist Floridians impacted by the severe storms and flooding in north Florida to make cash donations with established disaster relief organizations. Volunteer Florida offers the following tips on how to wisely help survivors: CASH – Financial gifts are the best way to immediately help survivors. Donate to an established relief organization. For a complete list of established relief organizations, visit: http://www.volunteerflorida.org/about-foundation/disaster-relief-agencies/. CONFIRM – A community hit by disaster does not have the time, staffing or money to dispose of unneeded donated goods. Confirm with the ... Read More »