Florida Keys News - Islamorada/KL Free Press
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
New marine officer unlikely

ISLAMORADA -- The village looks to have scrapped plans to hire an additional full-time marine officer for the coming year.

The town instead will allocate $20,000 to $25,000 for the Monroe County Sheriff's Office to pay overtime for periodic added patrol on local waters.

"We're going to save the village a bunch of money," Sheriff's Capt. Corey Bryan said.

Complaints from three Lower Matecumbe Key neighborhood associations about the burgeoning party spot in the flats just a few yards off their shared bayside beach park led the village last month to propose a new marine patrol officer at a salary of $60,000.

However, some residents of those neighborhoods -- Port Antigua, Sandy Point and White Marlin Beach -- took issue with the complaints of their association boards.

At the July 28 Village Council meeting board members said the many emails they had received on the issue were split 50/50.

The council is slated to consider the renewal of its annual contract for police service with the Sheriff's Office when it meets Thursday, Aug. 22. The proposed $1.77 million contract does not include a new marine patrol position.

Bryan said the overtime budget will allow him to staff an extra officer on Saturdays and when a need is anticipated.

rsilk@keysnews.com

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