Sep 302016
 
Woman Charged with Stealing $29,000 Worth of Her Roommates Stuff and Her Debit Card While Roommate in Hospital

A Big Pine Key woman was charged with stealing a large amount of jewelry and other property from her roommate and using her debit card without her permission while the roommate was in the hospital. The crimes took place in September of 2015. The victim had been in the hospital for a period of time. While she was there, her roommate 31 year old, Belen Araque, allegedly took a total of $29,000 worth of items from her home including jewelry, rods and reels, clothing, custom made [continue reading…]

 September 30, 2016  Posted by at 1:00 am * Featured Story * No Responses »
Sep 162016
 
Mayday!! Fishing Boat Lands on Top of Rock Jetty [video]

The U.S. Coast Guard responded early Tuesday morning to a Mayday call on vhf radio sent by fishing vessel “Little Angenette.” About an hour before sunrise the “Little Angenette” missed the entrance to Key West harbor. The captain initially reported that he’d hit a channel marker and was sinking fast.

Sep 162016
 
New Tool for Battling Zika-Carrying Mosquitoes Approved

The EPA has just released a permit for a cutting-edge technology designed to control the disease carrying Aedes aegypti mosquito. The technique, pioneered out of the University of Kentucky, under the leadership of Dr. Scott Dobson and his team, is based on an all-natural solution to mosquito control. Male mosquito eggs are infected/injected, using microscopic needles, with the Wolbachia bacterium. This cutting edge technology, is harmless to humans. When Wolbachia infected male mosquitoes mate with female that are not infected, none of the offspring hatch. [continue reading…]

 September 16, 2016  Posted by at 12:54 am Issue #184, News 1 Response »
Sep 162016
 
Thumbs Up on the Ditching of the Skeeter Taj Mahal

It appears that the Florida Keys Mosquito Control Board is in the process of regaining it’s sanity In its most recent meeting they ditched the Big Coppit Skeeter Taj Mahal.  The vote was 3-2.  Only two very old line commissioners voted for the Taj Mahal.  Commissioners Shaw and Smith.  Shaw is not seeking reelection.  Smith is!  Remember that he wanted to raise your skeeter taxes by 45%,  that’s what it would have cost to build the Taj Mahal that he and Shaw wanted.  Commissioner Craney-Gage [continue reading…]

 September 16, 2016  Posted by at 12:48 am Issue #184, Letter to the Editor No Responses »
Sep 162016
 
On Conformity

by Kirby Congdon……. My lover and partner of forty-three  years was different than any of my other friends. I was asked, “How did you handle it between yourselves? What kind of discussions did you have to resolve this distinction that was so public?” My partner and I replied with words to the effect that if your lover had been born with an excess of psoriasis that gave his face a visible proof of acne, was that something we had to resolve to make ourselves, as [continue reading…]

 September 16, 2016  Posted by at 12:36 am Art, Issue #184, Kirby Congdon No Responses »
Sep 162016
 
Bestselling Author Shares Key West Adventures  & Writing Secrets to Students

Three-Time Newberry Honor-winning and New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Holm takes a question from Key West Montessori Charter School student Zoe Barras after a presentation that blended her personal family lore with the rich history of our island.  Holm’s latest novel “Full of Beans” and her multi-award-winning “Turtle in Paradise”  take place during the Great Depression in Key West, making them great educational tools as well as wonderful adventure reads for elementary students. The special event was organized by Books & Books and the charter school’s book fair committee [continue reading…]

 September 16, 2016  Posted by at 12:14 am Issue #184, News No Responses »
Sep 162016
 
United Way of the Florida Keys Welcomes New AmeriCorps VISTA Member

United Way of the Florida Keys is proud to announce and welcome new AmeriCorps VISTA Rebecca Medicine Eagle. Rebecca joins UWFK with five years of experience working with AmeriCorps, through both their State and National and their “Volunteers In Service To America” (VISTA) programs. She has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Nevada, Reno and is a Certified Tribal Emergency Manager as well as a Certified Conflict Resolution Manager. She has volunteered with the American Red Cross for 26 years, is a [continue reading…]

 September 16, 2016  Posted by at 12:10 am Issue #184, News, Public Notice No Responses »
Sep 162016
 
6th Annual Key West Musician's Festival to Benefit Sister Season Fund

Many of the Keys best and best loved musicians will let it rip at the 6th Annual Key West Musician’s Festival, which takes the stage Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 17 and 18, at the Smokin’ Tuna Saloon, 2 p.m. till 9 p.m. each day. Singing Iguana Productions are presenters of the free music fest and the event is critical annual fundraiser for the local charity, Sister Season Fund, which assists locals in the entertainment and hospitality industries with rent and utilities when they are out [continue reading…]

 September 16, 2016  Posted by at 12:04 am Issue #184, Music, Special Event, Special Events No Responses »
Sep 092016
 
Oh, Connie!

by Malcolm Willison….. Oh, Connie!  Can you be gone?  Can you really have taken away your impish face, those penetrating eyes, wry smile, the devastating remark? You would throw out an article or craft a poem that captured us—you could revel in a phrase or reveal a deepest longing.  We so counted on you–your quick wit, your sly remark, your careful edit of your own and others’ exposition and choice of words, your trenchant critique.   Now who will offer us that same left-handed support, the [continue reading…]

Sep 022016
 
City Manager Defends Amnesty Program for Hundreds of Illegal Transient Rentals by Claiming it's Not Happening

  Commentary by Arnaud and Naja Girard…….. Four thousand dollars a week is not unusual for the rental of a house in Old Town – as long as you can rent to tourists – that is. Last Wednesday on US 1 Radio’s Morning Magazine, City Manager Jim Scholl went on the defensive amidst accusations that the City has been rewarding illegal transient rental operators. In a story published last week in The Blue Paper we revealed that in 2013 the City had changed the grandfathered-in date in [continue reading…]

Sep 022016
 
Mr. Cady

by Kirby Congdon…….. We had a splendid upright piano at home. In the Great Depression I got my first lessons for free by taking a trip with my older sister on the trolley out of town to a teacher working under the Works Progress Administration in West Chester, Pennsylvania. When we moved to Old Mystic, Connecticut, my teacher, Miss  DeeWilliams, came to the house every Saturday and gave me lessons for fifty cents. Mr. Cady tuned the piano for twenty dollars. He pointed out to [continue reading…]

 September 2, 2016  Posted by at 12:49 am Issue #182, Kirby Congdon No Responses »
Sep 022016
 
Monroe County Partners Go Door-to-Door to Zap Zika

MONROE COUNTY – The Florida Department of Health in Monroe County and Florida Keys Mosquito Control District (FKMCD) hosted five door-to-door outreaches on mosquito bite prevention from Key West to Key Largo, including all military bases and housing in Key West. With the direction of Mosquito Control, nearly 150 volunteers went door-to-door, covering most of the Keys’ hotspots for the Aedes aegypti mosquito – the species found around homes and businesses that can carry the Zika virus and other mosquito-borne diseases. Volunteers spoke face-to-face with [continue reading…]

 September 2, 2016  Posted by at 12:48 am Issue #182, News, Public Notice No Responses »
Sep 022016
 
Senior Associate Attorney Joins Law Offices of Samuel J. Kaufman, P.A.

The Law Offices of Samuel J. Kaufman, PA is very pleased to announce the addition of Attorney Suzette M. Alfonso. “I take the time to listen and explain your options. Planning becomes a relaxed, informative experience.” Suzette has been practicing law for over 21 years.  The focus of her experience includes Estate Planning, Family Law, Corporate & Business Law as well as Probate and Insurance Defense.  Additionally, she brings many high demand and valuable areas of law to our practice: Medicaid Planning and Elder Law, [continue reading…]

 September 2, 2016  Posted by at 12:27 am Issue #182, Public Notice No Responses »
Aug 122016
 
Annual Tot Swap Consignment Sale

Are your closets overflowing with unused children’s clothes and other items?  Now is the time to clean out your closets and make some extra cash, or donate your items to support a local non-profit! The Florida Keys Healthy Start Coalition is holding their annual Tot Swap Consignment Sale, to be held in Key West September 13-18.  The sale will be held next to the Key West K-mart and is open to the public.  Everyone is welcome to shop. Accepted consignment sale items include new or [continue reading…]

 August 12, 2016  Posted by at 12:13 am Issue #179, Special Event No Responses »
Aug 052016
 
"C’mon FKMCB….get to work.  Use all the weapons that you have to protect us from ZIKA."

4:30 PM Monday, August 1: 10 NEW ZIKA CASES IN MIAMI. Miami-Dade asks for help from Monroe County in combating the ZIKA mosquitos. The Bloomberg News headline is “ZIKA NIGHTMARE HITS MIAMI.” The article chronicles the arrival of Florida’s first home grown cases of ZIKA. The YAHOO NEWS head line is “MIAMI BLOOD DONATIONS HALTED OVER ZIKA FEARS.” The article chronicles the fact that Federal authorities have called for a halt to blood donations in Miami as a result of local cases of ZIKA. The [continue reading…]

 August 5, 2016  Posted by at 12:38 am Issue #178, Letter to the Editor 1 Response »
Jul 222016
 
"Devious" Developers Score on Offshore Island Development, 2016

by Arnaud and Naja Girard……. Remember, the first time you drove down US 1 all the way to Key West? We would like to take you from that glittering vision of hundreds of little green islands suspended over endless turquoise waters and sit you down in the boardroom of the County Commissioners who are in charge of protecting that whole magical expanse called the Florida Keys. Few issues in Monroe County have stirred as much passion and cloak and dagger plots as the development of those [continue reading…]

Jul 222016
 
Fraternities

by Kirby Congdon…… Having been brought up in a rural, one-horse farm, I was used to being alone and doing without group approval. Unconsciously my stance was that I would be compromising my integrity if I were to accept the standards of a world that had always found me lacking in regard sports and the obligatory skills that went with them, or in regard to school with its competitive approach toward any accomplishment. I was only comfortable when I could be myself without being compared [continue reading…]

 July 22, 2016  Posted by at 12:26 am Issue #176, Kirby Congdon No Responses »
Jul 152016
 
Blue/Green Algae

Dear Editor: This is in regards to the toxic sludge that’s heading our way. Many on the west coast are determined to send it south but that’s not the answer. The Everglades is choked out due to development and can’t handle it and the way they rerouted the flow of water doesn’t allow it like it did in the past. So what to do? After contacting the Corps of Engineers at each lock thru the water ways that come from Lake O to Ft Myers I learned [continue reading…]

 July 15, 2016  Posted by at 12:36 am Issue #175, Letter to the Editor No Responses »
Jul 152016
 
ART IN PUBLIC PLACES INSTALLS COLORFUL BENCHES MADE FROM PROPANE TANKS AT MARATHON COURTHOUSE

  The Monroe County Marathon Courthouse is a little more colorful with the recent installation of an eye-catching turquoise bench and sky blue loveseat created by California artist Colin Selig. He makes them from an unlikely source: salvage propane tanks once used to heat homes. His functional sculptures are part of the County’s 1% Art in Public Places program. “These benches create a lovely, quiet space for people who visit and work at the Courthouse,” said Elizabeth Young, Executive Director of the Florida Keys Council [continue reading…]

 July 15, 2016  Posted by at 12:18 am Art, Issue #175 No Responses »
Jul 012016
 
Aw Gee Whiz, Growing Greener Every Day?

by Sloan Bashinsky……. My random thoughts on Amendment 4 and related “growing greener every day” Key West, based on what I’ve seen, heard and read. Amendment 4 is a pro-solar energy Amendment to the state Constitution, on the August 4 ballot. Amendment 4 would offer a tax exemption to commercial property owners who install renewable energy devices in a state that already allows the tax break for residential solar power systems. Since it’s a proposed amendment to Florida’s Constitution, Amendment 4 requires 60 percent of [continue reading…]

 July 1, 2016  Posted by at 12:38 am Island Voices, Issue #173 No Responses »
Jun 242016
 
WHERE THE HECK IS THE SOUTHERNMOST POINT?

by Dennis Reeves Cooper… The Southernmost Point. That big red buoy at the southern end of Whitehead Street. One of the top tourist attractions on the island. But most Key Westers know that the big red buoy does not really mark the actual geographic Southernmost Point. The actual Southernmost Point is supposedly a few blocks on the other side of that fence on Navy property, right? But if the buoy were placed over there, very few tourists would be able to go there and get [continue reading…]

Jun 172016
 
Relay For Life Team on Their Way! Track Their Progress...

#1 Relay for Life Team Castaways Against Cancer Set Off on 17th Annual Kayaking Trip with the Support of U.S. Century The Castaways Against Cancer, a Relay for Life team ranked 1st in Florida, launched on their 17h Annual kayaking journey, dubbed the “Proof of Life” tour from Virginia Key in Miami, FL on Saturday, June 11. Paddling the equivalent of a marathon a day, the Castaways will paddle a total of 160 miles as a fundraiser supporting the American Cancer Society (ASC) and are [continue reading…]

 June 17, 2016  Posted by at 12:42 am Issue #171, Special Event No Responses »
Jun 102016
 
Task Force Dagger Foundation Says Thank You Key West, June 15th, Little White House

Task Force Dagger Foundation [TFD] is dedicated to wounded, ill, or injured U.S. Special Operations Soldiers and their families. TFD Foundation is now in its sixth year taking this therapeutic recreational event to Key West, Florida.  As a way to say thank you to the city of Key West for helping TFD become so successful with this event and help it grow every year, we invite the entire community to the Truman Little White House on June 15, 2016.  Tickets are $25 apiece online; $35 at the door. [continue reading…]

 June 10, 2016  Posted by at 12:24 am Issue #170, Public Notice, Special Event No Responses »
Jun 032016
 
Detectives Investigating Hidden Cameras Found in Women’s Restrooms

Detectives in the Upper Keys are investigating three reports involving hidden cameras found in women’s restrooms. In all three incidents, miniature cameras hidden in coat hooks were found mounted on the walls in the women’s restrooms. They were found at Anne’s Beach on May 26th, the Circle K Store at the 99.8 mile marker of Highway U.S. One on May 28th and in the women’s bathroom at Harry Harris Park in Tavernier today [May 31st].

 June 3, 2016  Posted by at 12:46 am News No Responses »
May 272016
 
FIGHTING FIRE IN KEY WEST

by Dennis Reeves Cooper……. Today, if you dial 911 to report a fire, the Key West Fire Department will typically be at the scene of the fire within five minutes. When I was researching this story and former Fire Chief Eddie Castro gave me that information, I asked the question again. “Come on, Chief, five minutes from the time the call comes into the fire station to fighting the fire does not seem credible.” “Well, actually,” he said– lecturing me like one of my old [continue reading…]

May 272016
 
School Board's Discussion on Henriquez Rehiring: "[silence]"

FRONT PAGE COMMENTARY by Arnaud and Naja Girard……. NOT TO SPEAK IS TO SPEAK, NOT TO ACT IS TO ACT We wondered this week just how the Monroe County School Board was going to justify the rehiring of a disgraced employee, twice embroiled in school district financial scandals. While the board did approve the $105,000 a year salary for Mike Henriquez in his new, specially tailored, Director’s job, they simply made sure, during the public meeting, to never once utter his name. This is how the board, in [continue reading…]

May 272016
 
Hialeah Man Charged with Multiple Counts Credit Card Fraud

CRIME REPORT: An alert merchant in Key Largo quickly called the Sheriff’s Office after a Hialeah man attempted to use multiple fraudulent credit cards in his store to purchase high end merchandise. That call led to the arrest of the man who is now in jail on 60 felony counts related to the fraud. The manager of West Marine in Key Largo said 41 year old Rogelio Rodriguez walked into the store at about noon and asked to see one of the most expensive models [continue reading…]

 May 27, 2016  Posted by at 12:55 am News No Responses »
May 242016
 
Man Arrested for Violent Upper Keys Rape

  A local man, 53-year old Johnny Hayes was arrested for violently raping and beating a Tavernier woman on March 13th. He is accused of grabbing her as she walked on a street near her home, dragging her into the bushes, beating her with some type of blunt object, threatening to kill her and then raping her. The attack allegedly took place just after 9 p.m. on the southbound side of highway U.S. One, east of the Tavernier Creek Bridge. The victim stated she was [continue reading…]

 May 24, 2016  Posted by at 7:08 pm News 1 Response »
May 202016
 
"All Thoughts of GMO Mosquito Release Should Be Abandoned."

Dear Editor: Following my past Letter to Editor, I authored a 2,000+ word article in TheBluePaper.com outlining additional research and questioning why GMO mosquitoes are even considered. I continued my research, wondering why Zika suddenly became serious enough to spark recent media hysteria and predictions of epidemics. I found some disturbing correlations that suggest all thoughts of GMO mosquito release should be abandoned. Consider the cause of the Zika epidemic a mystery to be solved. Here are some clues: The Zika virus was isolated by [continue reading…]

 May 20, 2016  Posted by at 1:05 am Issue #167, Letter to the Editor 3 Responses »