The Bent Range Marker is Now Officially Saved


Image Courtesy: Bruce Marx | Facebook

Dear Fishing Community:

It is now official—the Bent Range Marker has been saved. The contractor (Shoreline Foundation) has been paid and has executed a release in favor of all the interested stakeholders. The structure will continue its existence under the jurisdiction of Miami Dade County who will maintain it with the funds donated by the fishing community to the Capt. Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge. While this post may be lengthy, it is important for me to summarize the plan to save the Bent Range Marker and recognize everyone who contributed to its success.

The saving of the Bent Range Marker was a Herculean effort that owes its success to the members of the federal government, local government and the members of the fishing community. This campaign resulted in an unprecedented divestiture of a United States’ asset to Miami Dade County in order prevent its demolition. Every governmental employee involved in the plan to save the Bent Range Marker from destruction recognized the important conservation issue presented and went above and beyond their normal duties in order ensure the plan’s success.

Upon learning of the campaign to Save the Bent Range Marker, Shoreline Foundation agreed to put the demolition of the structure on the back end of its contract in order give the fishing community more time to carry out its plan to save it. Dade County Mayor, Carlos Gimenez, and Miami Beach Mayor, Philip Levine, endorsed the effort to save the Bent Range Marker. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission provided its formal Resolution to save the Bent Range Marker, as well. Many members of the fishing community wrote their letters in support of the Bent Range Marker and explained to the involved governmental officials why the structure was so important and why it needed to be saved.

The Captain Bob Lewis Tournament agreed to enter into an Agreement with Miami Dade County to underwrite the maintenance of the Bent Range Marker through monies donated by the members of the fishing community. Moreover, before he knew of the substantial funding that the fishing community would ultimately pledge towards this cause, Rodney Barreto gave Shoreline a $115,000.00 personal guarantee. Rodney’s personal guarantee was necessary to induce Shoreline to give Dade County the Release it required before Dade County could move forward with the plan. Had this Release not been furnished, the Bent Range Marker would have been demolished. Once Dade County received the Release, however, it moved, with haste, to commence the governmental process that resulted in the unanimous vote to pass Resolution R-1027-14 authorizing Miami Dade County to contract with the Coast Guard to accept jurisdiction of the Bent Range Marker and to contract with the Bob Lewis Tournament to underwrite its maintenance.

This truly was a circumstance where government officials and private individuals worked together to achieve a result that benefitted marine conservation. The following individuals assisted in making the Save the Bent Range Marker Campaign the success that it was:

Miguel Padilla-United States Coast Guard
Brian Huff-United States Coast Guard
Mark G. Sheaffer-United States Coast Guard
Timothy R. Martin-United States Coast Guard
Andrew M. Engle-United States Coast Guard
Mark S. Barney-United States Coast Guard
Gabe Somma-United States Coast Guard
Patricia Dixon-United States Coast Guard
Eric Driggs-United States Coast Guard
Eric Masson-United States Coast Guard
Mayor Carlos Gimenez
Deputy Mayor Jack Osterholt
Alex Ferro (Chief of Staff to Mayor Gimenez)
Theresa Therilus (Assistant to Deputy Mayor Osterholt)
Miami Dade County Commissioner Bruno Barreiro
Miami Dade County Commissioner Rebeca Sosa
Miami Dade County Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava
Miami Dade County Commissioner Audrey A. Edmonson
Miami Dade County Commissioner Barbara J. Jordan
Miami Dade County Commissioner Xavier L. Suarez
Miami Dade County Commissioner Esteban A. Bovo, Jr.
Miami Dade County Commissioner Jose “Pepe” Diaz
Miami Dade County Commissioner Sally Heyman
Miami Dade County Commissioner Jean Monestime
Miami Dade County Commissioner Juan C. Zapata
Lee Hefty (Director-DERM)
Steve Blair (DERM)
Paul Voight (Intergovernmental Affairs Coordinator Department of Regulatory and Economic Resources)
Abbie Schwaderer-Raurrell (Assistant County Attorney)
The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Rodney Barreto
Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine
Jose Fonseca-The Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge
Mike Owens-The Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge
Holly Lewis-The Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge
Scott Salyers-The Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge
Mike Puller-The Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge
Capt. Jimmy Lewis-The Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge
Jorge Rodgriguez-The Bob Lewis Billfish Challenge
Sue Cocking (Press)
Steve Waters (Press)
Shoreline Foundation-reduced it’s expected payment by $10,000.00

Lastly, thanks must be given to the following members of the fishing community who, collectively, contributed more than $146,000.00 towards this cause:

Scott Robins-“Weez in the Keys”-$15,000.00
Bass Pro Shops-$10,000.00
Costa Sunglasses-$10,000.00
Guy Harvey Foundation-$10,000.00
Jeff Altman-$7,500.00
Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida-$7,500.00
CCA of Florida-$5,000.00
The Ruwitch Foundation-$5,000.00
Weitz Charitable Foundation-$5,000.00
Anonymous Donor-$5,000.00
Capt. Harry’s Fishing Supply-$2,500.00
The Late Michelle Marx/Bruce Marx-$2,500.00
Crook & Crook-$2,500.00
Clark Bergner-$2,500.00
Admiral Oil-$2,500.00
Stephanie Choate-$2,000.00
Capt. Bouncer Smith-$2,000.00
The Fever Fishing Team-$2,000.00
Capt. Charles Greenberg-$1,500.00
Rafael Sanchez-Aballi-$1,500.00
John Anderson Family-$1,500.00
Qualifier Fishing-$1,000.00
Craig and Jodi Fox-$1,000.00
Damien Claire-$1,000.00
Jorge Sanchez and Family-$1,000.00
Top Gun Charters-$1,000.00
Bass 2 Billfish-$1,000.00
Presidential Challenge-$1,000.00
Miss Britt Charters-$1,000.00
R&R Tackle-$1,000.00
Bob Hewes Boats-$1,000.00
Leeward Rod Company-$1,000.00
Kitt Toomey-$1,000.00
Luis Perez-“Full Time Sportfishing”-$1,000.00
Jody Lewis-$1,000.00
Frank Cortinas-$1,000.00
L&H Sportfishing-$1,000.00
Dorian Marx-“Clearly Creative Jewelry”-$1,000.00
Manny Menendez-$1,000.00
Mike Samuels/Viking Yachts-$1,000.00
Ashley Live Bait-$1,000.00
Tyler Tambor-$1,000.00
Angel Veliz-$1,000.00
Boat Center-$1,000.00
Peter Menten-$1,000.00
Ivy Foundation-$1,000.00
Hydraulic Sales & Services, Inc.-$1,000.00
Tropical Anglers Fishing Club-$1,000.00
Max Tower-$750.00
Hopkins Carter-$500.00
Capt. Eddies on the Key-$500.00
Worldwide Insurance-$500.00
Eduardo Calil-$500.00
Steve Hubbard/Two Suns Charters-$500.00
Chris Armstrong-$500.00
Fonseca Family-$500.00
William Morrison-$500.00
Capt. Nick Gonzalez-“Double Threat Charters”-$500.00
Robert Desmond-$500.00
Jose Marrero-$500.00
Capt. Frank Godwin-$500.00
Jamie Bunn/Bluewater Movements-$500.00
Turn A Key Marine-$500.00
Capt. Q-“Cutting Edge Fishing”-$500.00
Capt. Wayne Conn-“Reward Fleet”-$500.00
Capt. Jimmy Lewis-“Kite Hunter”-$500.00
Nishan Vartanian-$500.00
Phillip Gerson-$500.00
Capt. Mike Puller-“The Fishing Experience”-$500.00
Steve Temes-$500.00
Capt. Orlando Muniz-$250.00
Donald Blake-$250.00
Mike Owens-$250.00
Jose Juncadella-$250.00
Richard Morrell-$250.00
Scott London-$250.00
Ken Fedele-$250.00
Andrew Horne-$200.00
Joseph Figiel-$200.00
Vince Austin-$200.00
Warren Trazenfield-$200.00
Art Sapp-$200.00
Brett Dudas-$200.00
Pete Larkin-$157.00
Bada Bing Fishing Team-$150.00
Capt. Dave Brown-$150.00
Mike Dixon-$150.00
Gil Gutierrez-“Lucky Fishing Charters”-$150.00
Robert Vich-$100.00
Alan Sherman-$100.00
Edgar Benes-$100.00
Harrison Bresee-$100.00
Jace Reyes-$100.00
Jose Prado-$100.00
Justin Miller-$100.00
Vinny Delgado-$100.00
Glenn Clyatt-$100.00
Ivan Cabrera-$100.00
Let’r Eat/Let’r Sleep-$100.00
Scott Salyers-$100.00
Thomas Flyer-$100.00
Willi Lopez-$100.00
John Jolley-$100.00
Alex Gonzalez-$100.00
Meade McCabe-$100.00
A.J. Sepe-$100.00
Roy Buddle-$100.00
Michael Berkowitz-$100.00
Enrique Behar-$100.00
Gary Manheimer-$100.00
J. Humbeck-$100.00
Matt Rule-$100.00
Pat Cochrane-$100.00
Jimmy Newmeyer-$100.00
Jason & Nancy Press-$100.00
Todd Gross-$100.00
Jen Copeland-$100.00
Marcy Mock-$50.00
John Hexter-$50.00
Jody David-$50.00
Kelsey Pazul-$50.00
Anonymous Donor-$50.00
Stephanie Gordon-$50.00
Judith Lewis-$50.00
Same Alsop-$50.00
Jose Lopez-$50.00
Jack Dresner-$50.00
Anonymous Donor-$40.00
Luana Stowe-$25.00
Bruce Evangelista-$25.00
Anonymous Donor-$25.00
Mathius Moeller-$25.00
Martin Hadida-$25.00
Robert Haney-$25.00
Darryl Copeland, Jr.-$25.00
Andrea Ormston-$20.00
Lawrence Renouf-$10.00
Cody Lapnow-$10.00

The Save the Bent Range Campaign was a great example of how government and the private sector can work together in the spirit of conservation. Hopefully, the things which were learned in the Save the Bent Range Campaign can be applied to future conservation efforts in Florida and the rest of the country.

Courtesy: Bruce Marx | Facebook

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