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Want to learn about the environment? The Town of Fort Myers Beach is planning its first-ever Environmental Symposium, so pay attention or you'll miss it! It will be held today.......... Jan. 17.        

"It's going to be geared more towards the residents here on the island, because we're going to be talking about a lot of things that impact the homes here," said environmental technician Rae Burns.       

Representatives from Turtle Time, Florida Fish and Wildlife, the Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife in Sanibel, and the University of Florida's Institute for Food and Agricultural Sciences will be doing presentations.          

Topics will include native vegetation, nesting shorebirds, sea turtle lighting, and how to handle sick and injured wildlife and more.          

"It's going to be very educational," said Burns. "It's basically an overview of all the environmental avenues that are here on the island for people to access."    

Council members, and Town staff will be on hand to answer environmental questions from the public and representatives from the Marine Resources Task Force will be there.       

The free event will begin setting up at 5 p.m., and run until 8 p.m at Bay Oaks Recreational Center, located at 2731 Oak Street.

Sunday, 13 January 2019 08:54

The Wall, then and now!

When Obama was in Office.... all the Democrats wanted a wall.... now because it's part of Trumps campagne promises.... It's immoral

Friday, 04 January 2019 08:36

Trump & The Post: Whose Side Is Mitt On?

If there is a more anti-Trump organ in the American establishment than The Washington Post, it does not readily come to mind. 

Hence, in choosing to send his op-ed attack on President Donald Trump to the Post, Mitt Romney was collaborating with an adversary of his party and his president.
And he knew it, and the Post rewarded his collusion.

"The president has not risen to the mantle of his office," said Romney; in "qualities of character" Trump's "shortfall has been most glaring."

Our leaders must "inspire and unite us," not "promote tribalism," wrote Romney. We must defend the "free press."
All music to Post ears.

As senator, Romney promised, "I will speak out against significant statements or actions that are divisive, racist, sexist, anti-immigrant."

Sounds like a litany of media slanders against Trump, some of which, seven years ago, were lodged against a GOP presidential nominee whose name was Mitt Romney.

Thursday, the Post paid Romney in its special currency, with a Page 1 photo and headline about having discovered "a new voice of resistance."

But Romney had not exactly pledged his life, fortune and sacred honor to dethrone the tyrant. Rather he declared, "I look forward to working on these priorities ... with Mitch McConnell."

A day later, The New York Times, perhaps miffed it had not been the beneficiary of Romney's dump on Trump, dumped all over him:

"Romney Cools Fiery Tone After Trump Allies Assail Him," ran the headline. A CNN interview, wrote the Times, found Romney "repeatedly declining to escalate his attacks on the president and explaining that he would only speak out against Mr. Trump on issues of 'great significance.'"

Does Romney not see presidential character as an issue of "great significance"? The Washington Times said Romney appeared to be auditioning for the role of Jeff Flake in the new Senate.
Though the Romney screenplay seemed to fizzle after the early negative reviews, the episode is revelatory.

Clearly Romney senses Trump is in trouble, and may not survive, or may not run, and there may be an opening for him. He seems to want to be properly positioned with the anti-Trumpers and never-Trumpers, should that happen.

Yet, in seeing Trump as besieged, Romney is not wrong.

With loss of the House and resignation of his defense secretary, the president had a rough year's end. Now the expectations of his enemies and the hopes of this hostile city for his fall are greater than ever.

Blood is in the water. If Trump seeks re-election, he will be challenged in the primaries. And as presidents from Truman to LBJ, to Carter, Ford and Bush 41 discovered, these can prove problematic.

Looking over to the other side of the aisle, however, that party, too, has problems. The more hot-headed of the House majority have already said they will introduce articles of impeachment against the president.

And when the militant members are rewarded by major media with favorable coverage and commentary, this will induce others to join in, in anticipation of the same media rewards.
An impeachment battle thus seems inevitable.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her Democratic leadership may see this rush to impeachment as a strategic blunder. But they will be unable to contain or control what will by spring resemble a mob.

Today, unelected media, not elected politicians, decide what gets attention. For our media, President Trump is the issue, as he was in 2016, 2017 and 2018, and removing him from the presidency the strategic goal.

But beyond the issue of Trump, 2019 looks to be a rough year for America. The deficit will reach a trillion dollars. National debt is near $22 trillion. The budget is out of balance. No consensus exists in Congress on how to deal with it.

If sanctions are not first lifted on North Korea, there will be no nuclear deal, and the probability grows that "Little Rocket Man" will begin anew to test his missiles and nuclear warheads.
With U.S. troops pulling out of Syria and Afghanistan, the day is coming, and soon, when we must face up to and act upon these facts:

America lost both wars. Afghanistan will fall to the Taliban from whom we took it in 2003, and Bashar Assad, Russia, Iran and Hezbollah are, for the near-term, dominant in Syria.

As for our Kurdish allies, they will have to turn to Assad and offer to give him the Syrian lands they captured from ISIS, in return for the Syrian regime's protection from the Turks.

And as for Russia and China, our great adversaries, our foreign policy elite succeeded in this century in undoing the best work of Nixon and Reagan.

Where those presidents split China from Russia and ensured that Beijing and Moscow would have better relations with us than with each other, our elite revels in that it has alienated both China and Russia -- and united both against us.

Patrick J. Buchanan

Wednesday, 02 January 2019 23:46

Fort Myers Seafood & Music Festival

At Fort Myers Seafood & Music Festival, hungry festivalgoers will flock to enjoy a delicious array of seafood ranging from Cajun-style crawfish to raw bars.

Over the course of three days, January 4-6, 2019, thousands will flock to Fort Myers, Florida. The festival's beer garden, alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, live music, arts & crafts as well as a variety of attractions for folks of all ages.

FREE General Admission! HOURS: Friday evening 4pm - 10pm, Saturday 11am - 10pm and Sunday 11am - 6pm

LOCATION: Fort Myers River District. VIP Tent admission is $75 that includes an open bar serving premium drinks in a private tent with a dedicated service staff. The tent’s location enjoys optimal viewing of the live music performances.

VIP tickets are available thru EventLive.

Enjoy foods cooked fresh onsite (seafood, meat, vegetarian) with a variety of side dishes and of course - desserts!

For drinks, choose from alcoholic, non-alcoholic and fruit drinks, While eating, listen to the captivating sounds of live musical performances on stage by some of Florida’s and the region’s top musical talents from such genres as R&B, jazz, rock, reggae and Caribbean sounds.

This year's performers include on Friday night: the Freecoasters (Reggae, American Southern Soul), Sarasota Steel Pan Band (Caribbean) and The Shindigs (Beach Boys Tribute Band).

On Saturday enjoy: Kettle of Fish (Rock), CeCe Teneal & Soul Kamotion (Blues, Soul, Roots), J.P. Soars & The Red Hots (Blues), the Bob Marley Tribute Band featuring Yvad, former lead singer of the Wailers (Reggae), and the Caribbean Chillers (Jimmy Buffet Tribute Band).

Finish your relaxation on Sunday listening to Twinkle & Rock Soul Radio (Rock, Soul), the Billy Rice Band (Country Rock) and the U.S. Stones (Rolling Stones Tribute Band).

During breaks between the performances, stroll through a diverse marketplace of arts, crafts, select food items and specialty...

The United Way and the Unitarian Universalist Church of Fort Myers (UUCFM) have begun a partnership designed to reduce youth violence. This initiative is a United Way Collaborative entitled the Youth Violence Prevention Project (YVPP). The YVPP is a community funding initiative to encourage the development of programs that will reduce youth violence and the risk factors that contribute to it.

YVPP focuses on giving grants to local youth centered organizations or communities who propose youth violence prevention programs with clear and measurable objectives.

The project will offer a total of $25,000 in grants to fund student-driven programs that address youth violence prevention and awareness. Grants will be awarded in increments of $500, up to $2,500. Projects must be in Lee County.

A student committee will review the submitted grant applications and select projects to be the recipients of the funding. Selected projects will be required to match the funding with money or in-kind donations.

The United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades, and Okeechobee is asking that grant applications for funds from the YVPP be turned in by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, January 18, 2019. Applications should be submitted to the United Way by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">
For additional information, or to apply visit: www.UnitedWayLee.org/YVP.

The United Way and the Unitarian Universalist Church of Fort Myers (UUCFM) have begun a partnership designed to reduce youth violence. This initiative is a United Way Collaborative entitled the Youth Violence Prevention Project (YVPP). The YVPP is a community funding initiative to encourage the development of programs that will reduce youth violence and the risk factors that contribute to it.

YVPP focuses on giving grants to local youth centered organizations or communities who propose youth violence prevention programs with clear and measurable objectives.

The project will offer a total of $25,000 in grants to fund student-driven programs that address youth violence prevention and awareness. Grants will be awarded in increments of $500, up to $2,500. Projects must be in Lee County.

A student committee will review the submitted grant applications and select projects to be the recipients of the funding. Selected projects will be required to match the funding with money or in-kind donations.

The United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades, and Okeechobee is asking that grant applications for funds from the YVPP be turned in by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, January 18, 2019. Applications should be submitted to the United Way by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">
For additional information, or to apply visit: www.UnitedWayLee.org/YVP.

If the Pentagon intends to be laser-focused in its goal to improve directed-energy weapons, it has just a few years to decide whether it wants to invest heavily in the new technology, according to the former director of the Missile Defense Agency.

"There are some things that kinetic weapons will not be able to do" now or in the future, said Henry "Trey" Obering, an executive vice president at consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton who leads the company's directed energy innovation team.

"The big difference between kinetic energy weapons and directed energy is obvious: It's the speed of light, and where would you need a speed-of-light weapon?" he said, pointing out that the need to stop a fast weapon is ubiquitous on the current and future battlefield, including space.

Obering said the Pentagon -- should it get its $700-billion-plus spending boost -- could afford to throw additional resources toward the directed energy fight. It's an investment, much like the one the Pentagon made years ago to smart, laser- or GPS-guided munitions as opposed to dumb bombs that paid off, starting with Operation Desert Storm.

"Even if we increase [the funding] to $2 to 3 billion per year, I think you will see dramatic improvements and dramatic advances," said Obering, a former Air Force lieutenant general, fighter pilot and NASA space shuttle engineer, in a recent interview with Military.com.

Using lasers, "You're tracking and your engagement is almost instantaneous," Obering said. "You can bring down drones efficiently and very effectively" with lasers or high-powered microwaves, he said.

"A speed-of-light weapon like … a laser … would be very effective in the boost phase" before a rocket travels across hundreds of miles, Obering said. This could also apply to adversary hypersonic missiles, he added.
The best place to put those weapons, he posited? "Space, you don't have the atmosphere to deal with," he said. "Let's say that you need enough lethality to shoot down a boosting missile in the atmosphere. If you elevate … a laser out of the atmosphere, you can achieve the exact same lethality with about half the power because you don't have to deal with the atmosphere. Your effective range increases in space, and the amount of power that you need decreases.

"I think that that's where this country needs to go. We need to be serious about establishing a space-based capability," Obering said, adding that the technology, with proper funding, could be developed within the next decade.

Last month, Mike Griffin, undersecretary of defense for research and engineering, said the Pentagon plans to boost its investment in the laser technology realm for missile defense over the next few budget cycles.

"You need another factor of three to four to have as space control weapon, a missile defense capability -- space-based, boost-phase or midcourse capability -- with a large directed-energy weapon," Griffin said during a Center for Strategic and International Studies event, as reported by Defense News.

What the Pentagon wants to invest in is high power and increased range -- hundreds of kilometers in range -- to be able to "go after missiles" in their boost phase, Obering said.

"If you look at the range of the laser the Navy put on the USS Ponce, what the Army's doing with the laser on the Stryker vehicle … those applications would be relatively low-powered, tens of kilowatts and relatively short ranges," he said. They merely scratch the surface.

"There's a lot of technology that has advanced in the solid-state, fiber or hybrid lasers … where the efficiency of the diodes has dramatically increased. We've also made tremendous strides in new materials and materials science," Obering said, referring to lightweight products that are as strong as titanium.

So to improve on the capability, the Pentagon likely will analyze a multitude of ingredients for investment: laser power scaling, or increasing its output power; beam quality, or intensity and coherence of the beam; and tailored size, weight and power input requirements, Obering said.

But the application doesn't need to be super sophisticated: The technology could be used at checkpoints in hot war zones where a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device could attack a base. "Using high-powered microwave, you could actually shut those vehicles down," he said.

Adversaries such as Russia or China also are looking for more advanced ways of using lasers, Obering said. "We have real threats, existential threats that could be on par with us. And we haven't had that since the height of the Cold War.”

Oriana Pawlyk
military.com

Monday, 24 December 2018 21:42

Merry Christmas

We would like to Wish You All a Very Merry Christmas, from our Famil to yours
and to all our visitors from around the world too!

Joyeux Noël! French

Buon Natale! Italian Frohe Weihnachten! German

Feliz Navidad! Spanish

Nollaig Shona Dhuit! Irish

Boas Festas! Portugese

Zalig Kerstfeest! Dutch

Prettige Kerstdagen/ Zalig Kerstfeest! Dutch

Wesolych Swiat! Polish

Eftihismena Christougenna! Greek

Sretan Bozic! Croatian

Merii Kurisumasu! Japanese

Congress must periodically renew the NFIP’s statutory authority to operate. On Dec 7, 2018, the President signed legislation passed by Congress that extends the National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP’s) authorization to Dec. 21, 2018. Congress also postponed a vote on government funding until Dec. 21..... Well, Congress failed to pass a budget in time and now the government shutdown will continue until at least the Thursday after Christmas as of this writing.

NFIP reauthorization is an opportunity for Congress to take bold steps to reduce the complexity of the program and strengthen the NFIP’s financial framework so that the program can continue helping individuals and communities take the critical step of securing flood insurance. The level of damage from the 2017 hurricanes makes it clear that FEMA needs a holistic plan to ready the Nation for managing the cost of catastrophic flooding under the NFIP. If lawmakers are unable to find common ground on the higher-profile funding issue, it's unclear what might happen to NFIP.

Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio, joined forces with John Kennedy (R-La.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) in a bipartisan effort to get a10-month NFIP extension. They introduced a bill, S. 3703, to reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for 10 months – through Sept. 30, 2019.

If Congress passes the bill after flood insurance expires on Dec. 21, the s. 3703 includes a provision that would make flood coverage retroactive in the event of a program lapse. However, it's not yet clear whether the bill will pass in favor of more shorter-term extensions.

"While I am frustrated with the continued need for extensions, it has become clear that we need additional time to come to a consensus on bipartisan and bicameral reforms to the NFIP," Rubio says. "Floridians who rely on this program cannot afford this uncertainty when we enter the 2019 hurricane season. I urge my colleagues to pass this important extension as soon as possible."

"More than five million Americans depend on the National Flood Insurance Program," Kennedy says. "For those of us who live along the Gulf Coast, the NFIP means we don't have to worry every time it rains."

"It's critical that we prevent a lapse that would disrupt the real estate market and leave thousands of families uninsured and vulnerable," adds Menendez. "This (10-month) extension will give Congress time to pass a long-term reauthorization with real, meaningful reforms in line with my SAFE NFIP Act, which is the most bipartisan flood insurance bill in the Senate."

Even if it is after the deadline , the program will probably be reauthorized. In the event a lapse does occur, insurance agents would not be able to issue new insurance policies or increase coverages.

Review some of the basics:

• New policies cannot be issued and coverage increases cannot be made to existing policies.

1. If a request and payment was received on or before 12/14/18, we can honor these dates and process as normal.
2. If the request and/or payment is received after 12/14/18, the insurance carrier is not authorized to issue new policies or coverage. Typically, the insurance carrier will hold the premium          until it is reauthorized/approved and then will process. The effective dates will be determined by the reauthorization law.

• Everyone that has coverage in force, still has coverage until their next renewal date.

1. If your insurance policy is set to renew on or around the date of reauthorization and you have received your renewal notice, the insurance carrier is authorized to issue your renewal as          long as payment is made before the end of the 30 day grace period.
2. Insurance carriers are not allowed to issue any further renewal notices after the date of the program lapse.

Watch for our future issues as we keep an eye on this very important issue for you.

 

 

 

 

As Governor Elect DeSantis prepares for his Jan. 8 inauguration, a series of advisory transition committees are meeting and talking about ways to help the Republican realize his policy goals.

The Transition Advisory Committee on the Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture kicked off a week of discussions with a teleconference call last Monday afternoon. Members discussed a wide range of topics including deteriorating coral reefs, invasive species, and red tide.

Southeast Florida Republican Congressman Brian Mast, who has worked along side DeSantis in Congress, chairs the committee.

"Water is the lifeblood of our environment and certainly everything that goes into that water and that environment, for us in Florida, is the lifeblood of our community" he said, and then added "We can put this quite simply that, if we wouldn't want our kids in the bathtub with it then we probably don't want it in our waterways."

Mast says he thinks DeSantis will be known for his work on environmental issues.

"Water is a priority, the environment is a priority, Florida's natural resources are a priority for this Governor elect," he said "In my opinion personally, I think he's going to be known for his work on these issues"

Members of the public were also given the chance to speak, Jessika Arman is a real estate broker working in Sarasota and Manatee County. ”Because red card was so bad and having lived here since 1971, I smelled the death from the ocean 15 miles Inland, this is an unprecedented event and we have to do something".

She asked if DeSantis would consider forming a Citizens task force to tackle environmental issues like red tide. She went on to say "I feel like the last eight years under the current (Rick Scott) administration, we have felt like a disconnect or we haven't had a role to play, I feel very hopeful after listening to this long session and getting this opportunity to voice my thoughts"
"Your message will be clearly convey to the governor-elect, replied Mast. "I promise you that."

The Committee on the Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture will hold its third and final meeting on Friday December 28th before making its recommendations to governor-elect DeSantis.

A conference call number will be provided before the meeting at www.DeSantisTransition.com.

Members of the public are invited to participate.

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