By Rich Pollack

    Highland Beach town commissioners will be spreading the word about the need to keep balloons and other debris off beaches, but stopped short of creating an ordinance similar to one implemented by Lantana that bans balloons.
    The town received a request from the Loggerhead Marinelife Center in Juno Beach, which is forming partnerships with communities in South Florida aimed at protecting sea turtles and their habitats.
    Part of that effort is a focus on reducing the release of helium balloons on the coast because they can burst and drop into the ocean. Sea turtles, which primarily eat squid, often mistakenly eat the balloons.
    Town leaders declined to pass an ordinance banning balloons on the beach, noting that the town does not have a public beach and that the ordinance would be difficult to enforce.
    Instead, commissioners asked employees help get the word out through the town’s newsletter as well as through posters and other educational materials.

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