Key West - Key Lime Medical Associates also known as John W. Norris III M.D. PA, located at 508 Southard Street, Suite 103, Key West Florida 33040 is transferring care of its patients and location to Keys Medical Group (KMG). After careful consideration and extensive evaluation, this decision was due to various factors, including the ever changing healthcare industry here in the Keys. The physicians and staff of Keys Medical Group will be taking over charts and patient care on September 1, 2023 at the Key Lime site. Dr. Norris is turning over the complete care of
the patients of this practice to the Keys Medical Group providers. He is going to spend more time with his family and operate just a small separate concierge practice. Keys Medical Group will become the custodian of the medical records and provide care at the following locations:
1. Keys Medical Group- Primary Care
3224 N. Roosevelt Blvd
Key West, FL 33040
2. Keys Medical Group- Family Medicine
29755 Overseas Highway
Big Pine Key, FL 33043
3. Key Lime Square (same location)(After renovations have been completed)
To make an appointment with Keys Medical Group, please call the phone number associated
with the location of your choice. If you wish a copy of your records, they will be available with a
signed medical records release. You may also choose any of the other healthcare providers of
the Keys, as well.
We understand the impact of this news and are committed to supporting you during this
transition. Dr.Norris carries his cell phone, if you need to reach him. Please, leave a voice
message. PLEASE, DO NOT TEXT. His cell phone number for voice messages is
VILLAGE OF ISLAMORADA AND COUNTY MAY USE AN EMPLOYEE EXCHANGE PROGRAM FOR INTERIM VILLAGE MANAGER POSITION
ISLAMORADA, FL – On Thursday, July 27, the Islamorada Village Council gave a head nod to its village attorney to explore the possibility of Monroe County loaning its Director of Employee Services Bryan Cook as an interim village manager with an employee interchange agreement. The Village Council attorney will work with Monroe County attorneys to assemble the details for the Aug. 3 Village meeting. The Village Council did not extend their current village manager’s contract, which expires Aug. 1, 2023.
“There are more questions than answers at this time, but we are exploring if this is something Islamorada wants to pursue,” said Monroe County Administrator Roman Gastesi, who has seen similar Executive on Loan programs instituted in the City of Miami and Miami-Dade County years ago, and recently lent Bayshore Manor employees to Poinciana Gardens when that transition took place. “If this is a way our Monroe County family can help our Islamorada family stand strong, we will be glad to step up for a short duration to teach them some of the things that work well in the county.”
Gastesi and Cook met with the County’s Senior Management Team Thursday morning, and the directors offered their full support to Cook and Islamorada to help with the transition.
“The County has had some of these same issues in the past, and we have overcome them throughout the years by bringing people together,” said Gastesi. “While we can all have differences of opinion, we have learned to respect each other and respect each other’s differences.”
Cook has 27 years of human resources experience and believes that everything accomplished in an organization is done by people. He is a collaborative, people-first director who uses a non-authoritative management approach.
“I am honored and grateful to be considered to offer this assistance,” said Cook. “I am not perfect, the County is not perfect, but we have made improvements on top of improvements over the years, and I believe that we now have a pretty good format that we would be happy to share with the Village of the Islamorada.”
Cook envisions that he will be fully committed to Islamorada full-time and will stay in touch as needed with his County Employee Services team for any issues that arise on a County-level. The day-to-day employee services routine will not be affected, but a few high-level projects may be put on hold until his return.
The Hemingway Look-Alike Society (HLAS) presented $19,500 in scholarships to CFK students. Standing (L to R): HLAS members David Douglas, David Hemingway, Stephen Terry, CFK student Kira Ward, CFK Alumni and Donor Relations Shania Duarte-Vera, CFK students Lisdania Santana, Tania Molina, Laurel Beaupre, Justin Spencer, Abigail Fields, Colten Buckles, Nicola Ritchie, Sara Squire, Gabriella Monteagudo Boza, and Ivan Lopez.
KEY WEST, FL, July 28, 2023— The “Papas” of the Hemingway Look-Alike Society (HLAS) kicked-off the festivities of the famous Hemingway Look-Alike Contest by presenting $19,500 in scholarships to students attending The College of the Florida Keys (CFK) on the stage of Sloppy Joe’s on July 20. “Papa 2013” Stephen Terry and “Papa 2016” David Hemingway awarded four scholarships for literary talent and seven scholarships for nursing students. They also presented two new scholarships for the first time—one for a first responder and one for a veteran.
The HLAS established the CFK scholarship 24 years ago with the purpose of encouraging education and literary talent in the community where the legendary writer called home in the 1930s and produced some of his most enduring literary works. The scholarship was later opened to nursing students. To date, they have awarded approximately 300 scholarships and built an endowment to fund future scholarships for many years to come.
Throughout the year, the “Papas” and “Mamas” collect donations and fundraise at various events held during the Hemingway Days celebration to support the group’s ongoing philanthropic commitment to CFK students.
For more information about CFK and its scholarship opportunities, visit the College’s website at cfk.edu/paying-for-college and for more information about how to give to the CFK Foundation, contact Lana Gaspari, CFK Vice President of Advancement and CFK Foundation Executive Director, at email@example.com or 305-809-3214.
Meeting hosted by Monroe County and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission on August 1
Key West Beachside Marriot Hotel
3841 North Roosevelt Blvd
Key West, FL 33040
Aug. 1, 2023
10 a.m. to noon
Meeting is open to the public or can be viewed via Monroe County channels: Monroe County Television (MCTV) www.monroecounty-fl.gov/mctv, Comcast Channel 76, AT&T U-Verse Channel 99, Hotwire Fision TV Channel 1615, Roku, and Amazon FireTV.
Meeting to discuss administration and disbursement of $10 million for Monroe County habitat support structures
The Key West Art & Historical Society Welcomes Families to Fort East Martello Museum on Community Day
July 26, 2023 – (KEY WEST, FL). On Sunday, August 6, from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., join the staff of the Fort East Martello Museum, located at 3501 South Roosevelt Boulevard, to explore one of the island’s Civil War-era forts and its exhibits which encompass our rich and diverse history. Dubbed “Family Museum Day,” the program is designed to coincide with the Society’s wildly popular Community Day, a day offering free museum admission for Monroe County residents the first Sunday of each month.
While on the property, families are invited to take a self-guided tour of the fort and citadel, explore the outdoor sculpture garden, and view artwork created by celebrated Keys folk artist Stanley Papio. In addition to free admission, adults and children are encouraged to explore the history of aviation in Key West by joining Society educators Miss Kassandra and Miss Jenni in the air-conditioned Lee Garrison Classroom to make their very own popsicle stick airplanes.
“Soon after Flagler’s Overseas Railroad began service, a new mode of transportation gained popularity around the globe. Flying became the rage, offering the swiftest way to travel from one place to another. By the 1920s, luxury flights carried passengers throughout North America, the Caribbean and South America. Key West became a principal connecting city on these routes,” says Education Specialist Kassandra Collett. “Juan Terry Trippe started Pan American Airways in Key West in 1927, making the island the birthplace of one of the most successful airlines in history. We are excited to commemorate this aviation milestone during our free Family Museum Day program.”
The Family Museum Day program is free and open to the public. Registration is not required, and all supplies will be provided by the Key West Art & Historical Society. For additional information about the program, visit kwahs.org/upcoming-events. You can also contact Collett at 305-295-6616 x504 or firstname.lastname@example.org. This project is sponsored in part by the Department of State, Division of Arts and Culture, the Florida Council on Arts and Culture and the State of Florida, with additional support provided by The Helmerich Trust. Your Museums. Your Community. It takes an Island.
MONROE COUNTY, FL – On Wednesday, Monroe County Attorney Bob Shillinger and County Administrator Roman Gastesi updated the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) on the County's recent meeting with the Acting FEMA Region IV Administrator Robert Samaam and his staff in Atlanta regarding the County's request to change certain floodplain regulations. Members of the public, the construction industry, and real estate professionals were involved in the discussion and provided input, suggestions, and questions regarding the potential changes to the BOCC.
Shillinger and Gastesi relayed that the FEMA discussion focused on three issues the County faces with floodplain management: 1) the County's FIRM date (1973 versus 1975), 2) the restriction that limits downstairs enclosures to no more than 299 square feet (299 rule), and 3) the Inspection Upon Transfer of Ownership program. Unincorporated Monroe County is the only community in the Florida Keys restricted to 299 square feet, while the municipalities allow up to the full space underneath a structure as enclosable storage space. The 299 square foot limitation was agreed to by the County in 2004 as part of a remedial plan that was adopted to avoid being placed on probation and ultimate suspension from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) due to poor enforcement efforts of the minimum standards required for participation in the NFIP. FEMA's minimum standards were adopted to minimize the loss of life and costs of cleanup that would be incurred if homeowners were allowed to convert their downstairs enclosures into habitable living spaces.
"The FEMA administrator expressed concerns that the community could backslide into a state of non-compliance similar to what led to the imposition of the remedial plan in the first place," said Shillinger. "We want to ensure we do not jeopardize our community's ability to participate in the NFIP."
Currently, 1,913 (16 percent) of 11,796 NFIP-insured properties in unincorporated Monroe County are listed on FEMA's National Violation Tracker.
At the meeting yesterday, the BOCC took input from the community about potential changes to the County's floodplain ordinance. Those suggestions will be incorporated into future negotiations with FEMA and may lead to ordinance changes that will be considered at future public hearings.
Shillinger has been working with the National Association of Realtors legal staff regarding changes to the Inspection Upon Transfer of Ownership program that should address stakeholders' concerns. He also said County staff is working with FEMA to resolve the dispute regarding the correct FIRM date – 1973 or 1975.
The BOCC also approved a resolution limiting liability for home sellers and buyers who may be affected by the Inspection Upon Transfer program in the ordinance to Jan. 31, 2024. The BOCC approved a similar resolution in March due to the inability of the Building Department to staff the inspection program. Since the BOCC is looking to make changes to the inspection program, they voted to extend the resolution, which was scheduled to sunset on Sept. 1, 2023. The resolution recognizes a defense to a code violation for homeowners who fail to obtain an inspection of their downstairs enclosures prior to the sale of their home. That requirement was adopted in 2012 to help ensure buyers were fully aware of the legality of the downstairs enclosures of homes they were buying.
MONROE COUNTY, FL – Hurricane season is here. Monroe County residents are reminded to pick up one reentry sticker for each registered vehicle by providing proof of residency at a Monroe County Tax Collector’s office. Proof of residency includes a Florida Driver’s License or a property bill with a local address, and vehicle registration. For homeowners with a vehicle registered outside of Monroe County, bring your local property tax bill with the out-of-county vehicle registration. A decal is not required for reentry, proof of residency can be provided at the checkpoint; however, stickers make reentry easier if checkpoints are required to ensure safe reentry into the Florida Keys following a destructive storm.
The sticker is color-coded for zone-by-zone reentry. Monroe County reentry stickers are barcoded to verify authenticity. Lower Keys residents from the south end of the 7 Mile Bridge to Stock Island (MM 40 to MM 4) are dark pink, Middle Keys residents from the south end of the Long Key Bridge to the north end of the 7 Mile Bridge (MM 64 to MM 47) are aqua, and Upper Keys residents from the county line including Ocean Reef to the north end of the Long Key Bridge (MM 113 to MM 64) have a purple decal. The City of Key West has its own sticker, which is white. If City of Key West residents already have a Key West reentry decal (no barcode), they do not need to pick up a new one.
WHERE TO GET REENTRY STICKERS
Residents from Ocean Reef to Stock Island: Stickers are available at the Monroe County Tax Collector’s office from 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Tax Collector Locations:
Residents in Ocean Reef: Stickers are available at Ocean Reef Public Safety, 110 Anchor Dr., Key Largo.
Residents in Key West: STICKERS ARE THE SAME. IF YOU ALREADY HAVE THE WHITE STICKER, YOU DO NOT NEED A NEW ONE. If you do not already have a reentry sticker, they are available at Key West City Hall, 1300 White St., or the Key West Police Department, 1604 North Roosevelt Blvd, and the tax collector’s main office at 1200 Truman Ave, Ste 101. The hours are from 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Stickers are available throughout the year but do not wait until a storm is approaching to pick up a sticker. Stickers will not be available once a state of emergency is declared in Monroe County, which occurs several days before a storm is forecast to strike. For more information on reentry after a storm, visit www.monroecountyem.com/reentrystickers.
Mayor Teri Johnston and the Key West City Commission commended the Florida Small Business Development Center (FSBDC) at Florida International University for its recent national recognition.
The Center started working with small businesses in the Keys in 2018. The team of highly experienced consultants provides assistance and training to entrepreneurs and business owners in the City of Key West and Monroe County to help them start, grow, and succeed.
FSBDC at FIU work one-on-one with small businesses providing startup assistance, access to capital, marketing, financial management, government contracting, human resources and business strategy advising.
The Center has delivered more than 2,215 hours of consulting to 223 Key West small businesses, resulting in business owners securing over $18.4 million in capital, securing $7.3 million in government contracts, increasing sales by $8.6 million, impacting 1,548 jobs, and launching 13 new businesses.
In April, the U.S. Small Business Administration announced SBDC at FIU as the winner of the 2023 Small Business Development Center Excellence and Innovation Award, which recognizes the country’s top small business center.
Regional Director Brian Van Hook accepted the honor with consultants Nancy Hull, Bonnie Barns, and Julie Brown. They were joined on the dais by Nick Formico, owner of Key West Marine Hardware who is the Center’s Keys Client of the Year.
“We talk about numbers on a page but its actually all about the business owners,” said Van Hook. “Nick here was our Client of the Year. And that’s what we’re all about, helping local business owners.”
34TH HEMINGWAY 5K SUNSET RUN & PADDLEBOARD RACE IS SATURDAY, JULY 22, 2023 IN KEY WEST WITH NEW LOCATION FOR PADDLEBOARD RACE
Key West, FL – The 34th Anniversary Hemingway 5K Sunset Run and Paddleboard Race presented by Papa’s Pilar Rum, named one of the best 5Ks to run this summer by Runner’s World, returns Saturday, July 22, 2023.
The event takes place in the heart of tropical Key West, a worldwide travel destination with spectacular waterfront views and historic downtown charm, and at the same time the island celebrates legendary author Ernest Hemingway with an annual festival.
The only change this year is the location of the paddleboard race, which will take place Saturday at Higgs Beach, 1000 Atlantic Blvd. and start at 5:30 p.m., followed by the 5K walk/run which starts at 7:30 p.m.
As always, the 5K walk/run will take place at the Southernmost Point, 1400 Whitehead St.
This short and sweet race offers a special twist in the 5K world, Runner’s World said: “Gorgeous Key West lets entrants enjoy both the sea and the shore as they can sign up for either race, or both if they're adventurous.”
The Hemingway 5K Sunset Run also includes the Key West Beach N’ Beer Mile, the Key West Papa’s Pilar Rum Stroll, an awards ceremony and beachside after party. Visit our website for details. Race results will be posted on www.keywesthalfmarathon.com and Facebook.
MONROE COUNTY, FL – The Monroe County Board of County Commissioners met today to discuss the proposed $667 million Fiscal Year 2024 (FY24) budget. The budget includes the Board of County Commissioners, the constitutional officers, like the Sheriff's Office, Tax Collector, Property Appraiser, Supervisor of Elections, and Clerk of Court, and other appropriations for the Tourist Development Council, capital projects, and reserves.
Monroe County Administrator Roman Gastesi and Budget and Finance Director Tina Boan presented the tentative budget with FY24 estimates of residential real estate trends, taxable property values, sales taxes, and state shared revenues, along with fund balance, reserves, and general fund.
“We are a little county with big county problems plus 5 million visitors a year,” said Gastesi. “This budget continues to meet our increased service demands for our residents, sustainability for our future, public safety, and more.”
With the proposed budget and countywide average property values, a homesteaded residential property owner with an average appraised taxable value of $484,735 will see an $11.24 monthly increase in their property tax for the FY24 year with the tentative budget. The taxable value is different from the market value.
FY24 budget key points:
FY24 Budget Timeline:
The Monroe County Office of Budget and Finance provides coordination and development of the budget. The award-winning office continues to work with inflation issues and Hurricane Irma and Ian impacts while providing for the department's daily operations, program enhancements, capital projects, and infrastructure improvements.
For more information about the budgeting process, visit www.monroecounty-fl.gov/budget.
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