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Southwest Florida water board wants to transfer Pine Island to Manatee County

At the State Road 64 boat ramp on Braden River, Pine Island Preserve sits in the middle.
At the State Road 64 boat ramp on Braden River, Pine Island Preserve sits in the middle.

The Southwest Florida Water Management District board Tuesday OK'd a motion directing its staff to negotiate a transfer agreement with Manatee County that would protect Pine Island Preserve from potential sale.

The board OK'd the motion unanimously after residents and officials from Manatee County objected to the agency's inclusion of 66 acres ona list of properties to be considered for sale.

The lush island preserve in the middle of the Braden River was among those proposed for sale as part of SWFMUD's bienniel effort to reviewall its properties.

The board's action may mean that the water agency could transfer ownership of the island to Manatee County rather than putting it up for sale.

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