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In an attempt to help curb the increase in crime on the island, the San Pedro Business Association (SPBA) raised nearly $40,000Bze to equip the San Pedro Police Department with a new police patrol boat.

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A new program initiated by the Belize Police Department honored 18-year-old San Pedro High School student Earl Sutherland last week Friday for his outstanding participation in academic and community affairs.

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The PUP 7 in San Pedro are saying that not only are they Ready, but also Willing and Able. This is the theme of the PUP Campaign for town council elections for March 2009 that was launched this past weekend in their endorsement convention. Present at the convention were Hon. Johnny Briceño, Party Leader; Servulo Baeza, Secretary General; Senator Eiden Salazar; Martha Carillo, Chairperson Women’s Group; and a large crowd of party supporters from San Pedro and residents of all the districts.

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Upon receiving several calls from the island, Deputy Prime Minster Gaspar Vega dispatched a team from the Ministry of Environment and Lands on Friday, February 15, to the island to crack down on developers dredging or cutting down mangroves without proper permits.

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Prior to the final games of the 11-a-side competition, the San Pedro Sports Council paid tribute to a special group of people who has definitely left their mark in the world of sports in San Pedro. Councilor Pablo Ico, Mayor Elsa Paz and the Sports Council handed out special recognition plaques to 16 special individuals who have dedicated their lives to enhancing the world of sports on the island, in particular football (soccer).

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High above the blue-green waters of northern Ambergris Caye, Ecoflight’s chief pilot Bruce Gordon banked the turbo-prop airplane to show his passengers the lush tropical terrain encompassing the Bacalar Chico Nature Preserve. Gordon was joined in the educational flight by representatives of Green Reef, the Peace Corps, and Edwardo Brown of Ambergris Today.

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Luxury Spafinder Magazine featured Belize in a 10-page spread on its January-February 2008 issue in what they called “The Insider’s Guide, Belize” where it compared the top four Spa Resorts in the country. Included in the article is a review on Cayo Espanto, off the shores of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, which featured spa treatments from San Pedro’s very own massage therapist Kristi Gonzalez.

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The invasion of predatory lionfish in the Caribbean region poses yet another major threat to coral reef ecosystems -- a new study has found that within a short period after the entry of lionfish into an area, the survival of other reef fishes is slashed by about 80 percent.

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Lee-La Vernon, the famous Belizean singer/dancer who embodies the very essence of Creole culture, performed her captivating Brukdong and Sambai dances as well as her original songs last Friday at the San Pedro R.C. School grounds, showcasing a highly-energetic and entertaining event for hundreds of children. Lee-La was invited by the school to do a cultural presentation on the Creole people of Belize in observance of Culture Day for Child Stimulation Month.

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A few weeks ago, Ambergris Today reported on the boat captain license issue that was causing much concern amongst the community in particular with the U.S. nationals living on the island. Boat Captain’s Licenses are required for private boat owners and those concerned believe that this creates obstacles for our foreign owners that are in the country periodically. The Belize Port Authority had announced that these licenses will only be issued to citizens and legal residents, but not to any foreigners or even those on Retirement Residency.

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A New Year brings hopeful resolutions, new opportunities, and for Ambergris Caye, lots of rain. It has also brought a group of 12 students from Montana State University sponsored by the School of Architecture who come to work on their school projects and at the same time create beautiful plans and suggestions that our Town Council may use to beautify and/or improve conditions on the island.

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Twenty two graduate students from Christopher Newport University (CNU) in Virginia, and three education professors, spent two weeks at Holy Cross Anglican School in January. The project was part of a service learning course in the CNU Master of Arts in Teaching program. The graduate students entered Holy Cross classrooms to act as partner teachers where they assisted in planning lessons, managing student behavior, and taught for two hours a day so the classroom teachers could attend the in service training provided by the education professors.

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The Second Annual Lobster Fest is set for four days of fun activities Beginning on June 14th and culminating on the 21st of June with a major block party on Barrier Reef Drive.

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Carnaval 2006 lived up to its theme of “Musica, Alegria y Color” and nowhere else was this more obvious than with Flora’s Carnaval Group. For the third consecutive year, this group of Carnaval enthusiasts took to the streets to bring joy and laughter to the residents and tourists of “La Isla Bonita.” Joining forces with this group was The San Pedro Airline – Tropic Air who sponsored this year’s Carnaval group with the hopes of encouraging other businesses to also get involved and thus making Carnaval a bigger and better celebration.

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Twenty five kilos of cocaine are off the streets of San Pedro Town after a local resident turned the drugs in to police. According to the Head of the San Pedro Police Department Assistant Superintendent Dennis Arnold, at about 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, January 14, a resident who preferred to remain anonymous handed over to police a bag containing 25 packs of cocaine each weighing one (1) kilo.

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Press Release – Ambergris Caye Local Building Authority – February 26, 2008 - A temporary moratorium is in place on all applications seeking approval for the construction of piers on the island. The proliferation done in complete disregard to due process and in relocation of criteria has given cause for great concern to the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC).

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The San Pedro 5-a-side court was converted to a basketball court as San Pedro hosted the first ever semi-pro basketball game on Saturday, March 18. The grounds were packed and the bleachers were at maximum capacity as basketball fans went to cheer for San Pedro’s first semi-pro basketball team. And the fans had reason to be happy and cheer as the Tiger Sharks took the win against Corozal’s Northern Uprising 79 to 66. It was an exciting match with Northern Uprising never taking the lead; the Tiger Sharks dominated the game.

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A press release by the San Pedro Town Council was sent to inform the general public, that, as recommended by the San Pedro Town Council, the Minister of Defense, Housing, Youth and Sports, Hon. Cordel Hyde, has appointed the following persons to serve as the Local Building Authority of San Pedro Town for a period of two years; Chairperson: Mayor Elsa Paz, Council Representative: Mr. Rigoberto Kumul, Members: Mr. Daniel Guerrero, Mr. Miguel Guerrero, Mr. Raul Gonzalez, Mrs. Pinita Verde and Mr. Winston Franklin Panton.

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San Pedro Business Association Tackles Issues - The San Pedro Business Association held its February 2008 General Meeting at El Divino Restaurant on Friday, February 22. At the head table for the meeting were Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr., Deputy Mayor Joseph Elijio, Elito Arceo and Terry Anderson. Issues addressed at the meeting were taxes, crime, garbage and the master plan among others. BDF Help Decrease Crime

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A new and much needed undertaking has emerged on the island that will prove to be a vital part of the islands rescue and medical services. Sterling Vorus of Island Ferry is currently training his staff to handle many emergencies such as rescuing stranded boaters, first aid, search and rescue, evacuations and ambulance service for the north end to San Pedro and/or to Belize City.

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