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3 days ago, 03/26/2015 at 4:31pm Delete

What Part of Yes Don’t They Understand

Last November 75% of Florida voters sent a message to the Florida Legislature: We want designated funds used for land and water conservation. It isn’t often that such a large number of voters are so clear on an issue.

Fort Myers Beach voters were even more insistent, with over 82% of voters voting yes on Amendment 1.

Unfortunately, the Florida Legislature hasn’t heard the message.

Amendment 1 called for 33% of documentary stamp taxes to be used to acquire and restore Florida conservation and recreation lands for the next 20 years.

The first thing the Legislature did was pull funding for affordable housing, also funded by the documentary stamp fees. They could have adjusted the amount of stamp fees going into the general fund, but apparently needed to make a statement about the effects of Amendment 1. "See what you foolish people made us do?” Once their point was made, they magically found the funding to restore the full amount that the affordable housing trust fund would have received before Amendment 1 before passing the bill along. Seems childish, doesn’t it?

Another tack they’re trying is to use Amendment 1 funding to cover existing administration costs for the Department of Environmental Protection or pay for park ranger salaries rather than invest in new land and water projects.

See, if they use Amendment 1 funds for those things, then they can take the money that would have paid for the DEP and ...
Who's Playing On The Beach

Issue-737's Top Story 3 days ago, 03/26/2015 at 4:05pm

Beach National BankBeach National Bank -
Memories of a Bygone Era

With all the excitement surrounding the renovation of the new Town Hall at 2523 Estero Boulevard, how many folks remember that building was first constructed in 1968 to become the home of our little island's first bank? Hearkening back to the days when hometown banks were really part of the community - hosting bake sales and contributing to Little League and civic projects - the Beach National Bank opened its doors in February of 1969 in a ground floor building that differs little from what currently exists on the corner of Tropical Shores and Estero Boulevard.

"I was going through some stuff the other day, and I found this ledger where someone had compiled all the clippings and press releases from the first bank that existed in that building,” long-time islander AJ Bassett told us last Friday.
Craft Beer Fest 3 days ago, 03/26/2015 at 4:23pm

Craft Beer Fest2ndCraft Beer Festival
Comes to Bay Oaks Saturday

Craft beer aficionados, get ready! The First Annual Craft Beer Festival - held last November - was such a success that the folks at the Bay Oaks Recreation Campus (BORC) decided not to wait a whole year to have another one. This Saturday, March 28th, from 1-4pm, the beautiful oak shaded grounds of Bay Oaks will play host to another fun day of food, music and - of course - hand crafted fine beers by a number of local Southwest Florida breweries.

"Bay Oaks is welcoming back several returning breweries from the area to our growing outdoor festival,” said Parks and Recreation Director Randy Norton."These include Momentum Brewery, Lakeland Brewery, Point Ybel Brewing Company...

AquaGliding 3 days ago, 03/26/2015 at 4:21pm
AquaGlideAquaGliding at the Beach Pool

With the warm weather returning, we decided to venture over to the Beach Pool this week to check out what’s new, and were we surprised! Along with their famous waterslide, fun and funky kiddie pool and lap pool for swimmers, the friendly folks in the Town’s Park and Recreation Department have added a new feature that is becoming very popular - the AquaGlide.

Part trampoline, part jungle gym and part slide, the AquaGlide is an inflatable obstacle course that runs the entire length of the big pool, taking up one of the swimming lanes. Officially called the ‘Aquaglide Adventure Series Challenge Track’, it was the brainchild of Aquatics Supervisor Paul Rapp, according to Pool Supervisor Louis Monaco - who is gradually taking over Rapp’s role at Beach Pool.

Relay For Life5 days ago, 03/24/2015 at 12:52pm

Relay For LifeReel’n For Relay
Fishing Tournament This Saturday

Our Fort Myers Beach community has been a strong supporter of the Relay for Life fundraiser for the American Cancer Society for many years, drawing both visitors and residents to our unique Relay event on the beach with the Gulf of Mexico as a backdrop. This year the Relay event will be held Saturday, April 11 from Noon-8pm on the beach at DiamondHead Beach Resort.

This weekend, Islanders can jump start that Relay support and have a lot of fun at the same time, while getting out on the water. The inaugural Reel’n for Relay Fishing Tournament will be held this Saturday, March 28 and there’s still space for a few more fishing teams!


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Sumo vs. David Beckham, Raul, Roberto Carlos, Juan Sebstian Veron, Emmanuel Petit, Rui Costa and Edgar Davids. Video courtesy of The Ad Show.

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