Dec 082017
Big Win for FIRM in Fight for Fair Insurance Rates in Monroe County

by Rick Boettger……. For the first time in 10 years, Citizens Insurance has not screwed Monroe County with another scientifically and financially extortionate 10% hurricane insurance increase. At least for homeowners.  Condominium owners like me are getting our yearly shaft: the near-$7k I paid last year will go up to around $7,700, my second-largest fixed expense after the interest on my remaining mortgage. In my column on Heather Carruthers’ financial incompetence last month, I questioned whether she had brought the same level of expertise to [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:39 am ~ Column ~, issue #246, Rick Boettger 3 Responses »
Dec 082017
Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration's Approval of Endangered Species-killing Mega-development in Florida

Project Threatens Species Found Nowhere Else on Earth The Center for Biological Diversity, Tropical Audubon Society, Miami Pine Rocklands Coalition and South Florida Wildlands Association sued the Trump administration today for approving Coral Reef Commons, a mega-development slated for the largest privately owned tract of critically endangered pine rocklands habitat in Miami-Dade County. The development approved by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service threatens 20 endangered plants and animals, including the eastern indigo snake, gopher tortoise, Florida brickell-bush and two butterflies, the Bartram’s scrub-hairstreak and Florida leafwing. Several of these species are limited to [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:38 am News No Responses »
Dec 082017
"Tax Reform": Dump the Home Mortgage Interest Deduction

by Thomas L. Knapp……. The US Senate’s version of “tax reform” reduces the amount of mortgage interest that home buyers can deduct from their taxable incomes. Currently, the maximum deduction is for interest paid on mortgages of up to $1 million on two homes or on home equity loans of up to $100,000. The new bill would cap that at $500,000 on one home. The House version doesn’t reduce the mortgage cap, but does away with the home equity deduction.

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:38 am News 6 Responses »
Dec 082017
Jeffrey Cardenas Embarks on Three Year Sailing Journey Around the World

Noted Key West-based author, photographer and sports fisherman Jeffrey Cardenas, 61, embraces the wind as he sails out of the Stock Island marina on Saturday, to embark on a three-year voyage around the world.  Cardenas noted that the 46-foot cutter-rigged vessel, “Flying Fish” is “built like a rock” and “strong enough to take me through any ocean.” Cardenas’ wife Ginny Stones, sister Susan Cardenas, and other family and friends gathered on the dock to wish bon voyage to the sailor, who is joined by brother Bob and [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:35 am issue #246, News, Special Event No Responses »
Dec 082017
Happy Holidays. Yes, All of Them.

by Thomas L. Knapp……. It’s “War on Christmas” time again. In a November 30 speech in St. Charles, Missouri, US president Donald Trump mounted a stage festooned with Christmas trees to kick off the annual Airing of the Fake Grievance: “[Y]ou go to the department stores and you see ‘Happy New Years,’ and you see red, and you see snow, and you see all these things. You don’t see ‘Merry Christmas’ anymore. With Trump as your President, we are going to be celebrating Merry Christmas [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:34 am issue #246, Thomas L. Knapp 5 Responses »
Dec 082017
Update on Hurricane Debris Removal In Unincorporated Monroe County and on US 1

Monroe County’s new debris removal contractor DRC Environmental Services began removing white goods (large appliances) on Nov. 30. Crews currently are working to collect eligible construction and demolition hurricane debris, as well as vegetative hurricane debris in the following areas: Lower Sugarloaf Upper Sugarloaf in Indian Mounds Estate Cudjoe Key on the north side of U.S. 1 in the Cudjoe Ocean Shores Subdivision Cudjoe Key on the south side on Spanish Main Drive and roads off of it Summerland Key on the ocean side near [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:32 am issue #246, News, Public Notice 1 Response »
Dec 082017
Rising Tides

by Larry Murray……. Dear Editor, The decision by the Navy to raise Sigsbee Road by 6 inches confirms what I have been saying for quite some time.  The Navy announced that Sigsbee Road was flooding regularly at high tide, not just during king tides or a solstice as many would have us believe. I do not care if the cause is climate warming or whatever.  All I know is that the canal behind my house has been routinely higher throughout 2017.  For me, it does not [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:30 am Dr. Larry Murray, issue #246 No Responses »
Dec 082017
Monroe County has Created a Sub Class of Taxpayers that is Being Discriminated Against

by Eugene E. Nanay Jr……. Dear Editor, Several years ago Monroe County advised the taxpayers that ALL the residents of the CRWS would be charged a fee of $4200. For connecting to the MANDATED Sewer system. Don’t forget I said ALL the residents. County ordinance chapter 20 States AII residents connection points SHALL BE PLACED IN THE ROW AT THE PROPERTY LINE. After a telephone  conversation with an assistant county attorney I was left with the impression that their ordnance ONLY APPLIES TO PEOPLE WHO ARE [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:28 am issue #246, Letter to the Editor 1 Response »
Dec 082017
Disaster Recovery Centers to Close in Key West, Marathon

ORLANDO, Fla. – Three Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) are scheduled to close Saturday, December 9, in Boynton Beach, Key West, and Marathon. Disaster Recovery Centers offer in-person support to individuals and small business owners. Survivors still needing help may visit any DRC. They may locate one near them by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 (Voice, 711 or VS) or 800-462-7585 (TTY). Helpline numbers are open 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week. A DRC locator can be found at or by [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:26 am issue #246, News, Public Notice No Responses »
Dec 082017
100 Years of Naval Aviation in Key West

Mayor Craig Cates on Tuesday recognized the 100th Anniversary of Naval Aviation in Key West, proclaiming December 18th be set aside to honor this important milestone. Through booms and busts, the presence of the Navy has, throughout Key West’s history, has provided stability that has kept the community going strong. The nation’s southernmost naval base, established in 1823, proved to be an ideal training facility for the Navy’s fledgling aviation force. Naval Air Station Key West was established as a small coastal air patrol station on July 13, 1917, [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:24 am issue #246, News, Special Event No Responses »
Dec 082017
Previews of Exhibitions at the Gildea Gallery

by Kirby Congdon……. The Gildea Gallery has been promoting solid work by experienced painters and sculptors. We have now three distinctive artists this season in a joint show opening on December 11th, 6 to 8 p.m. Suzanne Donazetti works on copper, putting a subtle wave vertically on her sheet of metal juxtaposing her control over this shape with a vast checkerboard of small squares each one tinted in overall patterns of closely related tones. The three-dimensional effect not only gives depth to the surface but gives [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:23 am ~ Artists ~, issue #246, Kirby Congdon No Responses »
Dec 082017
A M**D Case of Brain Splatter

by Kim Pederson……. Punctuation marks. What’s their story? In the endless search (mine anyway) for the strange and wonderful, they certainly qualify. Sure, we know the period, the comma, the question mark, and the exclamation mark. But what about the guillemet, the solidus, the octothorpe, and the obelus? Each one has its own specific role in our language and its own history. Today, for no discernible reason, I’ve focused my less-than-laser-like attention on the asterisk, or, as it is better known, the *. The asterisk, [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:22 am issue #246, Kim Pederson No Responses »
Dec 082017
Key West Art & Historical Society Presents “On the Waterfront: Truman Annex Artists” Exhibit at Custom House Museum

Key West Art & Historical Society’s exhibit “On the Waterfront: Truman Annex Artists” opens with a special reception on Friday, January 12th from 6:00pm-8:00pm, in the Bryan Gallery at the Custom House Museum located at 281 Front Street.  The exhibit features historic and contemporary works of some of Key West’s celebrated artists that rented spaces between 1974-1986 in the decommissioned naval warehouses, machine-shops, and residential facilities for use as studios after the U.S. Navy abandoned their base on the present-day Truman annex. Artists include John Martini, Helen Harrison, [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:20 am Art, issue #246, What To Do No Responses »
Dec 082017
Decimos (We Say), A Lliterary Collection of the Florida Keys is Requesting Submissions

Elegant Publications Company (EPCO) is excited to announce the development of a new publishing project: Decimos (We Say). This monthly literary magazine representing the work of the Florida Keys, is now accepting submissions of poetry and short fiction on our website or directly via email Submissions must be 1-5 pages in a word document attachment. This collection will provide local authors and readers a fresh platform for original fiction, poetry and professional craft commentary generated by the Keys community. Print copies are already for sale [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:14 am issue #246, Literature, What To Do No Responses »
Dec 082017
Warm Weather and Scenic Course Mark 20th Key West Half Marathon

Runners seeking a picturesque warm-weather challenge this winter can find it Sunday, Jan. 14, during an event acclaimed as one of the United States’ leading winter half-marathons. Several thousand runners are expected for the Key West Half Marathon & 5k Run in the continental United States’ southernmost island city. Event organizer Barbara Wright encourages interested runners to register soon, since the popular event is fast approaching its 4,600-entrant sell-out capacity. Now in its 20th year, the race has earned prestigious kudos including being noted as a [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:12 am issue #246, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Dec 082017
Key West Art & Historical Society Hosts Holiday Concert & Bazaar at Custom House Museum

Get into the holiday spirit at Key West Art & Historical Society’s Holiday Concert & Bazaar on Thursday, December 21st from 5PM to 9PM, located on the sweeping historic porch and promenade of the Custom House Museum.  The celebration will feature Key West’s finest artisans, musicians and choirs, along with a spectacular holiday light show presented by Key West High School’s ‘Conch 5 Studios’ students, with proceeds to benefit the Bahama Village Music Program & Society educational programs. Visitors can browse hundreds of unique gift options at this signature [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:08 am issue #246, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Dec 082017
Key West Art & Historical Society Distinguished Speaker Series Guest Craig Pittman to Share Weird and Wonderful Florida Stories at Tropic Cinema

On Thursday, December 14 at 6:00pm, Key West Art & Historical Society welcomes Distinguished Speaker Series guest and journalist Craig Pittman at the Tropic Cinema where he is to present selections from “Oh, Florida! How America’s Weirdest State Influences the Rest of the Country,” a book that recently won the gold medal for Florida non-fiction from the Florida Book Awards. The Tampa Bay Times environmental journalist and author of four books is a native Floridian with a bevy of top-tier reporting awards and a resume of newspaper [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:06 am issue #246, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Dec 082017
Florida Keys National Wildlife Refuges Photo Club Meeting:  Wed. Dec 13th, 2017

Looking for a new adventure?  We invite you to attend the Florida Keys National Wildlife Refuges Photography Club meeting.  We welcome everyone, from beginners wanting to learn, to experienced photographers who want to share their expertise.   Together we’ll explore the natural areas of the Florida Keys looking for great photography opportunities and stories to share. Bring 3-5 photos to share.  Learn about our upcoming field trips and photo classes.  The meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, Dec 13th, 6:30-8:00 P.M. at the National Key Deer Refuge Visitor Center in the Winn-Dixie plaza on Big Pine Key.  For more information, contact Kristie @ 305-304-9625.  Facebook: [continue reading…]

 December 8, 2017  Posted by at 12:04 am Art, issue #246, What To Do No Responses »
Dec 072017
Believe It or Not! Florida Residents Get 1/2 Off at Ripley's Until Dec. 20

Florida residents can get all the fun that Ripley’s Believe It or Not! has to offer for half the price. Ripley’s Florida attractions are offering half price tickets for Florida residents at all Ripley’s Florida attractions from now through December 20. Participating attractions include: Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Key West Odditorium Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Orlando Odditorium Ripley’s Believe It or Not! St. Augustine Odditorium, daytime Red Train Tours and Ghost Train Adventure Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Panama City Beach Odditorium Residents will need to [continue reading…]

 December 7, 2017  Posted by at 11:40 pm issue #246, Special Events, What To Do No Responses »
Dec 012017
Animal Control Update – RFP Failure

by Margaret Blank……. Ugh.  The Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) is just so buffoonish and incompetent.  It’s very, very annoying to me.  I’m so glad they’ve all been nabbed for ethics violations.  It’s so well deserved. The county advertised a Request for Proposal (RFP) to run the Marathon animal shelter.  They placed ads only in local newspapers. The Key West Citizen, the county’s propaganda arm. The Keynoter/Reporter, Murphy’s mouthpiece. Only one bidder responded, the Florida Keys Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (FKSPCA).  They are [continue reading…]

 December 1, 2017  Posted by at 12:58 am Issue #245, Margaret Blank 2 Responses »