Island Sand Paper

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Island Sand Paper
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Volume 18, Number 34 By Islanders, For Islanders August 24th, 2018 Captain Daniel Andrews, Executive Director of Captains for Clean Water, shown here releasing a tarpon. Photo submitted. Captain Daniel Andrews of Captains For Clean Water 6 QuestionsBy Gary Mooney The Island Sand Paper periodically asks a community lead er 6 Questions to provide readers an in-depth look at a topic of local interest. This edition features Captain Daniel Andrews, who help form Captains For Clean Water two-and-a-half years ago and is now its Executive Director. You can contact their organization at www. #1: What was your A-Ha Moment that led to the founding of Captains For Clean Water? The discharges we were receiving here in our Southwest Florida wa-Contd pg.11 Thanas Chosen as New Town Attorney Town Temporarily Waives Parking FeesBy Gary Mooney The Town of Fort Myers Beach Council held an unusual split-session Public Meeting on Monday, August 20, with the principle topic the private and public interviews to retain or select a new Town Attorney. It ended its meeting just over 8 hours later, by temporarily waiving the Town Parking Fees through at least Monday, September 10, to spur local businesses in the wake of the islands devastating economic downturn due to the ongoing water quality issues. Council actually began at its standard time of 9 a.m., opening with the 2nd Reading of the Bicycle & Pedestrian Amended Ordinance, with brief discussion, since it advertised this as an agenda item, but quickly continued it to its October 1 meeting, to allow additional legal research. The panel then took a public recess until 1 p.m., to privately meet with the attorney applicants, as well as for a lunch break. In addition to the incumbents, The Peterson Harrison, Kirkland, Petruff, Pratt, & St. Paul; GrayRobinson; and Weiss, Serota, Koop, withdrew the prior week. Once Council reconvened from their heard brief public presentations from each, as well as asking follow-up questions. They then took their secret ballot vote that resulted in a tie between Dye, Harrison, Kirkland, Petruff, Pratt, & St. Paul and The Peterson Law Group. Thomas Thanas of Dye, Harrison stated he would be the attorney interacting directly with the Town, and it would be his principal client. I worked with towns, schools and other special districts. I come to you not only as a City Attorney, but also a former City Manager and State Judge in Illinois, so that background gives me a unique perspective that most attorneys dont have and helps me to give you advice. I have experience in Code Enforcement, environmental issues, stormwater and Short-Term Rentals, along with balancing residential and commercial needs to keep this a great community for decades to come. While describing diplomacy as my best attribute, he acknowledged that most of his career was in Illinois and, while he passed the Florida bar exam, he has only been here for one year and will commute from the Sarasota area. John Turner of The Peterson Law Group said that, we are your Town Attorneys and hope to remain your Town Contd pg.8 Thomas Thanas of Dye Harrison Law Firm in Brandenton, was selected as the Towns new attorney. Photo provided.LPA Approves Land Vacations Margaritaville Process Begins Despite Legal Actions During a special meeting this week that Local Planning Agency members expected to focus on Land Development Code changes, Public Hearings to vacate land, four of them related to the Margaritaville Resort Ordinance 18-04. While the LPA approved those four vacations, they denied a vacation request on Donora Blvd, that would have allowed a pool project, preferring to see a setback variance. Pete Oiderma of 300 portion of the platted waterway that lies outside the seawall behind his house and is owned by the Town, to be vacated by the Town. The seawall is up to 17 feet from the platted lot line. The discrepancy came to Town staffs attention when he submitted plans for a replacement pool and other improvements. With the actual lot line up to 17 feet inland from the seawall, the pool did not meet the his lot line and any extension of the house would Contd pg.19 Bay Harbour Hearing Continues Day Two Focus on Public CommentBy Gary Mooney The controversial proposed Bay Harbour Marina Village residential and commercial develop ment hearing before the Lee Coun ty Hearing Examiner continued for its second day on Thursday, August 16, in Downtown Fort Myers, with roughly 35 people in attendance. Bay Harbour developers Jack Mayher and Nick Ruland, under the legal title of Southern Comfort Storage LLC, are requesting the rezoning of their 7.47-acre site from Industrial Development, since the Lee Plan began in 1984, to Destination Resort Mixed Use Water Dependent Future Land Use (DRMU WD FLU). Hearing Examiner Donna Marie Collins picked up where she left off the prior day, with Public Comment. Of the ten people who spoke on Day #2, seven were against the project, including several of its longest and most-vocal opponents; of the three in favor, two including co-developer Mayher. was Joanne Semmer, who warned, everybody get comfortable, before beginning her over 75-minute statement. San Carlos Island is one of the few working waterfronts left in Florida, so to Contd pg.14


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Page 3 D A I L Y S pe c ial s O P E N A t 8 am BE S T BR E A K FA S T O n Th e Be ac h H A P P Y H O U R L I V E M U S I C N ig h t l y D I N E I n A ir -C ondit ione d C om for t BE S T S U N S E T V ie w ing O n FM B Ha ppy Hour O P E N D A I L Y 8 A M 1 A M$5 $5 Guest Commentary Seeing the Light Lawsuits Cost Town & TaxpayersBy Jay Light Once again, the Town is being sued by a local resident who doesnt like one of the Coun cils decisions. Chris Patton, who lives on Primo Drive, out the Towns approval of the TPI-FMB Margaritaville project, claiming the Town didnt follow its own procedures in approving the application. She claims she will be adversely affected by inprojects height, intensity, activity, lights, music, visual and audible noise pollution and enjoy ment of the beach. Beyond that, she has the chutzpah to ask for the Town to reimburse her for her costs in the action. This lawsuit has about the same chance of succeeding as I have of winning an Ironman Competition. No development project since incorpo ration has been vetted, scrutinized, torn apart and put back together with as much attention to detail as this one has. Everyone, including the Council, town staff, the outside consultant who wrote the Towns Comprehensive Plan and Land Development Code, and the TPI applicant Tom Torgerson, has made very sure that every i was dotted and t crossed. The Comp Plan and Code very clearly the Councils call and they made it, unanimous ly. They decided that a storm drainage system serving that entire area, improved view corridors, discounts for residents and the donation to the Town of a tract of land at the base of the can dislike the decision all she wants, but that wont change the correctness and legality of it. This entire gambit raises questions that deserve to be answered. First, whos really paying for this? A suit of this type is going to cost both Patton and the Town a bunch of money, no matter the outcome. Shes engaged three lawyers, one from Cape Coral and two others all the way from Tampa. I dont know anything retired. Either her former employer has an incredibly good retirement program, or shes inde pendently wealthy from another source. Unless, of course, shes simply fronting this action for someone else with deeper pockets whos paying but doesnt want his name on the suit. There are some interesting coincidenc es here. One of Pattons lawyers, Ralf Brookes, behalf of Lani Kai owner, Bob Conidaris. Over several weeks recently, Conidaris bought fullpage ads in another local paper in which he wrote very lengthy and somewhat disjointed essays (Im being kind here.), telling us what a wonderful citizen he has been, what terrible greedy Tom Torgerson is, and excoriating the Town for the TPI approval. His complaints echo (or served as the template for) the grievances in Pattons lawsuit. In May, he invited other unhappy campers to a meeting with the same attorney, Brookes, to discuss all potential legal rights and remedies concerning the issue. The media were excluded from that meeting. Just a couple of weeks ago, Conidaris appeared on one of the local TV channels announcing that he was planning to donate to the Town a pedestrian overpass at the base of the bridge that would cost him three-million dollars, totally ignoring (or maybe not) the fact that the Margaritaville project included an overpass less than 100 yards down the street. Attempts by the Sand Paper to reach Conidaris for comment were unsuccess ful. Pardon my use of the expression, but this reeks of collusion. While it has been made clear (elsewhere) that collusion is not a crime, nonetheless, as a taxpayer, Id sure like to know whos really forcing the Town to waste money on a frivolous lawsuit. Mr. Conidaris could very easily put this question to rest with a simple, unequivocal public statement that he isnt funding or in any other way backing this suit. For that matter, Ms. Patton could make her own statement that it is she alone who is paying for this. Lacking such statements, silence or responses of no comment from both of them, amount to an admission that the suggestion of collusion is accurate. So where do we go from here? Months ago, I urged Town Council to establish a policy that the Town would seek to recoup funds spent on defending meritless lawsuits. This is exactly the kind of nuisance suit I was talking about. I understand that people need to be able to sue the Town when the Town has really screwed up because that certainly has happened. This isnt one of those instances. This time, they did everything right and anyone who can read could imbursed? Thats a double-edged sword which cuts both ways. As a taxpayer, I want to be reimbursed, too. The Council needs to decide whose interests they are there to protect. At this moment, TPI and Tom Torgerson arent a party to the suit, but there is no question that delaying his project while this Kabuki Theater plays out is going to cost him a pile of money, too. I urge him to have his attorneys send a letter to Mr. Brookes making it clear that TPI is being damaged by this action and will inde pendently seek remedy from Ms. Patton, since really wants to play hardball.


Page 4 Beach Botanyby Jim Rodwell BUTTON RATTLESNAKE MASTER The Button Rattlesnake Master, Eryngium yuccifolium, is in the same genus as the Rattlesnakemaster, E. aquaticum, a wetland plant that I wrote about late last year. Yuccifolium is not a wetland plant, yet it grows in savannas, every county in the State. Yuccifolium is an herbaceous perennial that grows to a height of 3 to 5 feet. A single rigid and erect stem grows out of the center of a basal rosette with linear leaves to 2 feet in length. Leaf margins have thin prickly spines. The stem branches in the towards the top. white to green petals that are surrounded by spiny bracts. Flowers are bisexual. are grouped into threes. An older upper head with two younger lateral heads. closely at the specimen in the picture. Yuccifolium is found in every state from the Atlantic Coast to the Mississippi River. There are nine species native to Florida in the genus Eryngium. The belief that Native Americans used the plants root as an antidote for rattlesnake venom. This photo was taken in a prairie alongside Daniels Parkway one of my favorite sites. The Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce held an open house Wednesday, August 22, for Business Continuation Consulting: Strategies for Staying Open and Flourishing During Algal Blooms. This is a timely Chamber initiative aimed at supporting local business suffering from the coastal water quality the beach in late July. The Chamber has maintained a working relationship with the Small Business Development Center, (SBDC) hosted in our area at Florida Gulf Coast University. The SBDC is a division of the Federal Small Business Administration (SBA) and provides according to assistance to small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs throughout the United States and its territories. SBDCs help entrepreneurs realize the dream of business ownership and help existing businesses remain competitive in a complex, ever-changing global marketplace. SBDCs are hosted by leading universities and state economic development agencies and funded in part through a partnership with SBA. Local resident, Duane Hoversten has been Minnesota and now in SW Florida. Hoversten, a successful entrepreneur & business owner, has advised hundreds of small businesses from startup stage to growth stage, to crisis management. was joined in the afternoon by Lois Knox, Regional Director of SBDC. Conversations with the Island Sand Paper reviewed the available business disaster assistance available at this time, and possible other options in the future. First, businesses need to know beach and water clean-up efforts continue and are led by Lee County Parks & Recreation and Town of Fort Myers Beach, both funded by Tourist Development Council dollars. See the Island Sand Paper August 17 issue TDC Approves More Clean Up $$ at www. The primary tool available at press time for qualifying businesses is from the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program. This program is designed to provide interest free funding up to $50,000 for 180 days. The logic of any bridge loan is for it to be temporary funding, allowing time 18% annual interest starts, effective from day one of the loan. The short term and costs associated with this offering have dubbed it The Bridge to Nowhere by some, implying more debt is not what most businesses need today. Hoversten indicated that many of his SBDC clients are still paying off debt associated with recovery from Hurricane Irma in 2017. For more details and application deadlines, Knox shared a potentially helpful option for business that would involve FEMA Disaster Area Status declaration. Governor Rick Scott declared a State of Emergency for 7 counties for blue-green algae blooms, including Lee County on July 9. On August 15, Scott expanded this emergency to counties experiencing toxic algae bloom of red tide. Navigating the various county and Florida state processes for state of emergency status and disaster declaration status is not easy to grasp or understand. This apparently is what is needed before any possible by Governor Scott. The dubious honor of earning programs of longer term and lower interest loans for businesses suffering economic damage. These funding options are far more helpful than the Florida Emergency Bridge Loan program available now. In the meantime, businesses are encouraged to stay informed on conditions that affect their businesses. Sharing their business messages via advertising, social media and their websites create information that customers can use to make decisions to visit and utilize their business products and services. Beach and water conditions vary greatly from day to day, so businesses and their customers need to stay informed. For more information from the SBDC, visit Chamber Offers Business Help Algae Blooms Hurt Beach Businesses


Page 5 www.MatanzasOnTheBay.com416 Crescent Street, Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931 CALL FOR WATERFRONT ACCOMMODATIONS (239) 463-925 8 RESTAURANT INN MARINA SUMMER PRIX FIXE MENU 4 COURSE DINNER FOR 2 WITH WINE | $60 PER COUPLE | SUN-THURS 4:30-7:30 P.M. Not valid on Fridays, Saturdays or holidays. Cannot be combined with other offers. Exp. 12/20/18 $5 OFF TWO ENTREES SP0818 on Fort Myers Beach Free Boat Dockage Indoor & Outdoor Seating Call Ahead Seating Available Happy Hour Everyday Live Music Daily Upstairs Sports BarMATANZAS ON THE BAY just ask the locals! Lingering Algae Hits Beach Businesses HardEconomic Disaster LoomsBy Gary Mooney Fort Myers Beach businesses are hemorrhaging money, with empty bars and restaurants, hotel and resort cancellations, and beach scenes resembling an apocalyptic movie. To stem the tide, the Greater Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce is instituting several programs, while the Town of Fort Myers Beach is waiving its Parking Fees through at least Monday, September 10. Jacki Liszak, Chamber Executive Director, said her organization is employing a number of initiatives. We work with Duane Hoversten of the Small Business Development Council out of Florida Gulf Coast University. He can meet with you any time, and his services are absolutely free. Duane can discuss available loan programs, and help with creating budgets and a disaster assistance plan. An interesting program he is following is the State of Florida is examining reopening its Emergency Loan Program instituted following Hurricane Irma, where you can receive a 20-year loan at just 3.5 percent interest. That would be much better than the current programs that run 90 or 180 days, that you must repay at the end of those terms, or an 18% interest rate kicks in. For those who can help, Jacki encouraged participation in the Tip The Bill Challenge! This began on Social Media, she related. We encourage our restaurant and bar patrons to tip your servers 100 percent of your bill, as you might make their day! If you cant tip the full bill, go as high as you can, as a 27-percent tip is amazing! When you do this, write #tipthebillFMBCC on your bill, take a photo, and post it on Social Media. For those who need help, the Chamber is working with the Harry Chapin Food Bank to bring food directly to Fort Myers Beach each week. Richard LeBer, their Executive Director, was a Chamber Luncheon speaker recently, and offered their services directly on the beach, to be more convenient. This is not only for beach business employees, but all residents, including seniors and young families with kids in the Beach Elementary School, so all are welcome. It begins this Friday, August 24, then continues every Wednesday, at 1510 Estero Boulevard from 10 a.m. to Noon. In the Chambers on-going beach business survey, Jacki stated island economic losses are averaging $2.6 million-per-week, with roughly 5,000 tourism-based jobs losing $450,000 weekly in pay, based on 37 business surveys, projected over 367 Fort Myers Beach businesses, per Lee County statistics. That is only for Hospitality and Tourism categories, Liszak said, eliminating all others, like doctors, lawyers and churches. Lee County estimates these businesses generate $647 million-a-year, so $2.6 million-a-week is huge, not only for Fort Myers Beach but all Lee County.FREE PARKING Council member Anita Cereceda, at the Monday, August 20 Council meeting, sadly told her colleagues that, this past weekend, I was struck by how empty the island was! There were not more than two cars at any beach access and nobody was doing any business. She pointed out that in August 2017, the Town made $93,325 in Parking Revenue, mid-month was down to $21,000. Those numbers say everything to those of us who own businesses. I had two different residents tell me they are looking for property in Pinellas County because they are tired of this. I try my best to give them anything to get through this current state of affairs, and that we must be hopeful as a community about our future. As a result, I hope Council would propose a parking waiver through September, to give hope to the Doubting Thomas who run rampant, until people see signs of recovery. Council member Bruce Butcher pointed out the situation is even worse, as the 2017 Parking Revenue was at a $2-per-hour rate, while 2018 is $3-per-hour. Town Manager Roger Hernstadt suggested the Town waive parking through the next Council meeting on September 10, then re-evaluate the situation. Vice Mayor Joanne Shamp favored that, as it will get us through Labor Day. We need to do whatever we can now to encourage business and patronage of our community, continued Cereceda, because people who work in these businesses have to make a living in our Town. Council instructed the Town Manager to waive parking fees through Monday, September 10.REAL PEOPLE REAL JOBS John Lallo, owner of Petes Time Out in Times Square since 1983, reached out to State and National leaders, imploring immediate action: Contd pg.15 A lone walker has the beach to himself one morning this week.


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Page 7 By Gary Mooney Do you have what it takes to be Southwest Floridas next musical breakout star? If you are a vocalist or vocal group of any age that specializes in Country, Pop, Rock, Blues or R&B, Christian and think you do, then get your submission in to Creative Minds Records (CRM) for their Talent Search on Tuesday, September 18, at the Broadway Palm Dinner Theater at 7 p.m. CMR has been around now for 8 years, out of Fort Myers, explained Owner & President Teresa Zepcevski. If you want to get with a major record label, you have to go to the big cities, like New York or Nashville, so it is nice to have a forum like this to help transform the Southwest Florida musical scene. We have a lot of musical talent in this area, with so many singers and musicians and bands, that we are excited to give the local musical community the chance to be part of the larger landscape. CMR is an independent label that provides a platform for musical artists to develop, record and receive bookings and promotion. It targets emerging singers, songwrit ers and bands by putting together gigs, developing a promotional kit, creating albums and getting heard, with in-house recording professionals and designers helping upand-coming talent to enhance their sound and craft their image. The Talent Search winner will receive $2,500 and a chance to sign a record deal, added Johnny Mars, CMR Vice President. The winner absolutely receives the money, but the record deal is not a given, as we need to work out appropriate details. It is absolutely possible that one act may receive the money, and one or more others will get recording contracts. Johnny and I always travel to different places, like Los Angeles or Nashville, looking for new thought it a shame there was no cal musicians, so we thought, lets have a talent show, to bring them to us rather than the other way around. The Talent Search is absolutely free for musicians to enter, as well as for those who make it to the September 18 show. Teresa is born-and-raised and spent her entire adult life in Southwest Florida, so she knows almost every Class A musical artist and has for years, Johnny related. Southwest Florida and really the entire state is super, super, super thought behind the Talent Search with to help achieve their dreams, become a commercial success, receive professional marketing, and ultimately hook up with a major label, to get out of Florida to national and international markets. Any singer, musician or band can submit, though the CMR selection committee decides which ones will appear in the Talent Search. We anticipate having roughly 20 acts in the show, Teresa stated, and already have over 30 acts submitting, so that is exciting. Submissions are open to anyone, from the local area to further away. All you have to do is post your submission on our website by midnight on Saturday, September 8, and if you make it, we let you know by Tuesday, September 11. Your submission does not have to be First Class, because we know money is tight for working musicians. Get your music to us in any possible format you can, whether it be by a recording, demo, video or MP3; even if you sit down in front of a computer and video yourself. Participants under 18 must have a parent or guardian sign the entry. Johnny will be one of the evenings three judges. A couple very good friends in the music industry will join me, but we cant mention who they are just yet, but when you hear their names, it will be a pleasant surprise! They tease there may be a special guest, who will appear either in the middle of the evening or at the end. We are working diligently to make that happen, he assured.TABARRINI FOUNDATION Talent Search proceeds drens Music Outreach Founda tion, run by well-known Fort Myers Beach musician, Sideshow Bob! I know Bob very well, and have for years, offered Teresa. All their Foundation money goes to kids, who learn to play music through an 8-week class, then any youngster who completes the course receives their own guitar to keep, so it is a great way to introduce young performers to music. For me, Bob plus children plus music is an ideal combination, something I love, and perfect all the way around! For more information on the foundation, visit Tickets are $10-per-person and available on-line at, at Brents Music Headquarters at 1936 Courtney Drive, or the Broadway Palm Dinner Theater at 1380 Colonial Boulevard, all in Fort Myers. They will also be available at the door, Teresa stated, but the Broadway Palm only holds 400 people, so getting them in advance is the smart move, with VIP passes and tables avail able as well. We scheduled this purposely on a Tuesday evening, hoping that a lot of local entertain ers can attend, as most people perform during the summer from Wednesdays through Sundays. For information, see the website or call 239-980-5674. We want Southwest Florida musical artists to know the Talent Search is all about them, conclud ed Johnny, and that is why there is no fee for them to submit and ultimately perform that night. We at CMR are on the side of the artists and this is all for them. We do not do this to make money for us, but to sign artists to the best and fairest deal possible, and that is why we do what we do!Talent Show Seeks Musicians September 18 Show All About Artists Teresa Zepcevski, Creative Minds Records President. Photo provided


Page 8 Thanas Chosen as New Town Attorney Town Temporarily Waives Parking Fees, Contd from pg.1lawyers with over 75 years of experience in Florida. We helped the Town draft more new laws in the past 18 months that it did in the previous 3 years, with 61 Council Resolutions, the TPI-FMB issue, and other Ordinances like for Short-Term Rentals. We are here at Town Hall almost every day, for an average of 38 hours-per-week. Jack Peterson asked Council to evaluate your proposals on expediency, cost-effectiveness We like being your lawyers and want to remain your lawyers.THEN THERE WERE TWO With the choice down to member Anita Cereceda. I am very impressed with Tom Thanas but am very concerned about a 2-hour-plus commute from Sarasota. In season, it can be two hours from Daniels Road to Fort Myers Beach. I have had my gripes with The Peterson Law Group, but we cleared the air, I believe they will pick up their game, so I will pick them as my #1 choice. Vice Mayor Joanne Shamp, however, said, The commute is their problem; my only concern is the legal services that they will provide the Town. Tom Thanas has a phenomenal mix of expertise, My only drawback is that most of his career was in the Midwest, but I dont have a problem that he will get up-to-speed quickly, so Dye, Harrison is my #1. Mayor Tracey Gore said, Dye, Harrison is excellent, and it wont be long before Tom moves here, as how can you come to Fort Myers Beach and not move here, just like Town Manager Roger Hernstadt, so his commute is not a problem for me either. He doesnt have Florida experience but he passed our bar and you cannot pass that without knowing Florida law, and he has all the backup he needs. Council member Dennis Boback said, I commuted here for two years from Sarasota, so that is something you get used to. The Peterson Law Group, however, spoiled us by being here all day every day, so this is a tough decision. Council member Bruce Butcher declined any comment. Council then by a secret ballot voted 3 to 2 to name Thomas Thanas and Dye, Harrison, Kirkland, Petruff, Pratt & St. Paul as the new Town Attorneys. Thank you for the opportunity to serve, Thanas said. I anticipate a smooth transition with The Peterson Law Group, as we are in the middle of a lot of things, but it sounds like it is time for a change. Town Manager Roger Hernstadt will negotiate the new contract with Thanas, to coincide with the 2018-19 Budget that begins on October 1. Thanas brings over 25 years of experience representing municipalities in suburban Chicago, including Joliet, Lockport, Olympia Fields and as the city manager of Joliet and was appointed a circuit court judge for two separate 1-year stints. His corporate experience Entertainment where he handled regulatory issues for casinos in the Midwest. Thanas undergraduate degree is from University of Notre Dame; his law degree from Valparaiso University in Indiana. Under Public Hearings: Appeal of 3120/3122 Estero Boulevard Duplex Denial, owners Kelly and Greg Hardin wish to construct a duplex on their property that they argue is legal for a two-family dwelling unit, but Town Staff disagreed because its 22,338-square-foot lot size exceeds the Towns 15,000-square-foot density limit that would allow rounding up of density. While several Council members sided with Staff, the Hardins received a 2017 Zoning such a project, and Council did not feel they could override that previous authorization. Council ultimately overturned the staff denial by unanimous vote.FREE PARKING In other business, Council unanimously approved its Consent Agenda that included $31,195 to the Weiler Engineering Corporation for the new Times Square Water Main design and authorized the Town to shift its Employee Health Care Plan to Florida Government Healthcare Solutions. Under Town Manager Items, Roger Hernstadt stated that, due to the Red Tide and Blue-Green Algae outbreaks, the Town contractor removed over 125 tons of contaminated material from Fort Myers Beach and will continue to do so as long as conditions warrant. Cereceda appreciated the Town Manager stressing that the material was removed and not buried, as so often appears inaccurately in Social Media postings. The Town Manager reported as well that the Town has one applicant to date to be the new Special Magistrate, and will accept applicants through the end of August. Under Town Attorney Items, Jack Peterson thanked Council on behalf of The Peterson Law Group. If you need us in the future, give us a call, as we will be around. Under Council Member Items, Town Council, in response to the islands devastating economic downturn due to the ongoing water quality issues, instructed the Town Manager to waive Parking Fees through Monday, September 10, when they will reexamine the situation at their next meeting. Details of this decision appear in a related article in this edition of The Island Sand Paper.


Page 9 Your Hometown Newspaper for over 18 years Missy Layeld, Editor Mike Buster Circulation Manager c/o Mark List, Production Sarah List, Photographerinfo@fortmyersbeach.newsHappiness is not a station you arrive at, but a manner Sandy Sandness, The Island Sand PaperPHONES Oce: 239 4634461 FAX 855-886-3568 (toll-free) MAIL 450 Old San Carlos Blvd. Unit G-108 Ft. Myers Beach, Florida 33931 E-Mail WEBSITE SUBMISSIONS POLICY Signed letters up to 300 words are welcome. All letters should be the original work of the author & include a phone number for verication. No pseudonyms. We reserve the right to edit for clarity, brevity, accuracy, good taste and to prevent libel. No attacks on private individuals or letter writing campaigns, please. Repetitive letters from the same individual on the same subject will not be printed. We will publish a maximum of two letters from the same individual every 30 days. Submissions over 300 words will be considered for Guest Opinion publication.DEADLINE FOR LETTER SUBMISSION IS NOON WEDNESDAY. e Island Sand Paper encourages all Islanders to submit original articles and photos. Publication is based on space and takes into account relevance and quality. e Sand Paper uses artistic license for humor and to amuse its readers. Nothing contained in this paper is intended to embarrass or oend anyone. COPYRIGHT 2000-2018 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.No parts of this newspaper may be copied or reproduced without the written permission of e Island Sand Paper. Editorial Bob Layeld, Publisher Gary Mooney Lead Writer OFFICE HOURS MON-FRI 10AM-3PMSubject to change due to story assignments. CALL TO BE SURE! STATE OF THE ISLAND Its been four weeks since our summer was rudely interrupted by our beach, the result of a Red Tide bloom come ashore. We are used to seeing red drift algae, sometimes in larger quantities than wed like. The Mexico and Estero Bay. But this this was something else entirely. We had been hearing about the Red Tide in the Gulf of Mexico since last fall. Sometimes the huge Red Tide bloom would drift closer to shore and with onshore breezes, people would complain of coughing and respiratory irritation. With fairly regular Red Tide blooms in the Gulf, that was not too much out of the ordinary. Not all beaches were affected, so beach-goers bothered by Red Tide could head down the road a few miles disappear. Lake Okeechobee water releases began June 1. Since the lake had abundant Blue-Green algae blooms, that too came down the river, with streaks of green appearing in the river, and by the end of June canals in North Fort Myers and Cape Coral were covered in a carpet of green slime. Islanders wondered whether our canals would follow suit. We were assured that blue-green algae was a freshwater algae, and it would not proliferate in our saltwater canals. So far that has held true. Not that we dont have any blue-green algae in our canals, we do, but they are not carpeted with green slime. We were relieved, a little. Then came July 26. The sight, the smell, the reality of the piles of dead things on our beach were stupefying, hard to see and harder to imagine what it meant. Credit goes to the Town of Fort Myers Beach and Lee County for their rapid mobilization of efforts to remove the dead things from our beach. Also to the volunteers that helped on the beach and in the canals Today, four weeks after that startling arrival of Red Tide on our shores, our beach is, for the most part, clear of the visible effects of Red initial wave. We still have some green-tinged sand and no one can tell us if the sand is safe yet or not. We do know that Red Tide continues to be the entire SWFL coast from Tampa Bay to Marco Island. We are a community dependent on tourism. This combination blow of Blue-Green Algae and Red Tide, have brought our business community to their knees. Tourists are staying away in droves. Its hard to see our business district empty day and night. We like to talk about all the things to do on and near the beach that have nothing to do with sitting on the sand and visitors enjoy the variety of activities and events available to them here in SWFL. of those things are secondary to going to the beach and playing in the water. If our beach and our water is not clean and clear, visitors will not come over that bridge. Its August one of the slowest tourism months of the year here. When our businesses say their business is down drastically, they mean from previous August business. Visitors are staying away. We know that is because the world now knows about our water quality issues. Some would have the media, local, regional and national, not mention those issues. There are a couple of problems with downplaying our bad water: 1.Our water quality issues will never be solved if they are swept under the rug as they have been in the past. Without national awareness, our water quality problems will never get any traction. How has dealing with our water quality problems by keeping quiet and talking quietly to 2. Theres a serious ethical issue with knowing that our water and our beaches may not be safe and saying nothing. Would you bring your beloved children or grandchildren to play in our sand and our water right now? If that answer is no, then we have a moral imperative to tell the truth to those visitors, even if that truth is, We dont know if its safe yet. Until we can say that our beach is safe, our businesses need your help. Now. The Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce is leading an effort to encourage diners to Tip The Bill as a way to help support service staff in our businesses that rely upon tips. If you cant tip the entire bill, tip extra, any extra will help. The Harry Chapin Food Bank will also be making a weekly stop here on the beach to provide food to any families that need a little extra help right now. In addition the Choice Market at Beach Baptist continues to provide food help weekly on Thursdays. See our story, Hospitality Help for details. The Town has suspended parking fees at their meters until at least September 10 as a way to help businesses. To us, anyone who lives, works or plays on Fort Myers Beach as an Islander. We are calling today on all Islanders, near and far, to step up and help our beach businesses. Go out to eat, shop local, do what you can to support our local businesses. Now is the time for all Islanders to come to the aid of the Beach. We need you! Editor


Page 10 The August meeting of the Fort Myers Beach Fire Control District Board of Commission ers was held Tuesday, August 21, 2018 at Town Hall and included a view of the 2018-2019 budget and ladder truck. Chair Carol Morris, Treasurer Bob Raymond, Larry Wood and Ron Fleming were present; Vice-Chair Ted Schindler was absent. The Treasurers Report re$10,429,432 Total Revenue, with $8,658,638 Total Operating Expenditures. The board approved checks totaling $160,358. During the Fire Chiefs Renunziato, Facility & Logistics Manand explained his role to keep the districts facilities safe and looking their best. Love commended the districts participation in the School Safety Initiative, which placed district vehicles on Estero Blvd, reminding drivers to slow down in school zones. He congratulated Armiger and Layne Tal for passing the Acting Driver Engineer exam. Driver Engineer Jen Gordon was recognized for 12 years of service to the district. July 2018 incidents totaled 186 with average response time of 5:03. 69% of them were EMS calls for service; 16% Good Intent; 12% Service and 3% Fire. (Good Intent calls include situations where someone calls 911 and it isnt actually an emergency. Service calls date calls total 1952. FEMA has completed their review of the districts reimburse ment request for Hurricane Irma and it now moves to the Florida Division of Emergency Management for review. Chair Carol Morris gave the Attorney Report regarding the in November 2015 alleging breach of contract. Maybe were getting close to trial. The other side has said were ready and want a motion to go to trial. Expect it to be 2-3 days, said Morris. A concern I have is where have we put possible money that we might have to cough up if were not successful, she continued. Do we have something in the budget that would accommodate that just in case? Chief Love later explained that any settlement funds would come from the districts contingency funds. Under Old Business, Love the districts new Engine 32 and proposed Ladder Truck 33. The engine was purchased using recount. Those reserve funds must ing of the planned ladder truck will be combined with the engine, in a move that will save the district about $40,000 in interest and metal tariff fee-related price increases, ized by September 24. Love said the ladder truck committee would be visiting two truck manufacturers and their recommendation would be sent to commissioners by September 6, prior to the September 10 board meeting. The board voted to adopt changes to the Board Policy Manual regarding meeting cancella tion and job description approvals. They also approved an addendum to the Fire Chiefs contract that sets the deadline for an annual review at the end of May each year with any pay increase retroactive to his employment anniversary date, March 21.2018-2019 BUDGET The proposed budget for ments and cuts made after the Truth in Millage rate was set at 2.642, was presented to the board. The budget, which will be posted soon org under Administration, is based on a tax rate of 2.6153, or $261.53 per $100,000 of taxable value. The Operating Expenditures plus Reserves total $20,239,619 for next years budget. During Commissioners Remarks, Ron Fleming shared two letters from Matlacha/Pine Island Fire District and Bonita Springs Fire District joining the FMB district in endorsing Mayor Kevin Ruanes Clean Water Initiative. On September 10 at 5:05pm, the Fire Board will hold Beach Library. Their next work session meeting will be held on Tuesday, September 18 at 9:30am at Hearing is tentatively scheduled at 5:05pm on September 25 at FMB Town Hall. The regular board meeting will be held that evening at 6pm. Fire Board Views BudgetFort Myers Beach Fire District Engine 32 sits in Station 32 on San Carlos Blvd.


Page 11 Captain Daniel Andrews of Captains For Clean Water 6 Questions Contd from pg.1ters from Lake Okeechobee in 2016 were the worst I had ever seen in my life to that point, though of course this year we surpassed that. That led to a disastrous season for had a lot of people upset and they wanted to get involved in the clean water movement but did not know how. We put out the word on Social Media that we would be hosting a meeting at Bass Pro Shop, fully expecting a handful of captains to attend, but to our amazement, a couple of hundred people turned out. There were many questions, and so many folks wanted to take tangible action; that the next thing you knew, we were getting down to work and Captains For Clean Water was born. #2: I assume you are a propo to the Everglades as the ultimate solution. If that is correct, what other viable short and long-term solutions do you support? That all depends on what the problems are that you are talking about. The real short-term solution to most of our problems is to stop the Lake Okeechobee discharges into the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie Rivers, and the real long-term solusouth from Lake Okeechobee back through the Everglades. There are other things that need to be addressed, like the overload of nutrients into the entire system that feeds the Red Tide and Blue-Green Algae blooms, so we need to make sure that the water that ends up in clean. Once we take care of those issues, our coastal water quality will be clean again, and we can return to being the beautiful natural place that people love and visit, so the priority of Captains For Clean south through the Everglades. #3: Governor Rick Scott, Lee County Commissioners, and many local municipalities have declared a State of Emergency over our water conditions. Will effects to help get us through this situation? Those impacts will not really be anything else, we need our government leaders to become poli cy leaders and to take immediate action now to bring projects to the table, with the appropriate levels of funding, to work on a wide-ranging water restoration plan to solve our water quality issues once and for all. The State of Emergency declarations will allocate a very small amount of money for businesses, chines to suck the algae out of the canals and stuff like that, but they will not provide nor put into place the long-term solutions that continue to plague our people. #4: John Cassani, the Calusa Waterkeeper, recently said that he is not so sure that our water issues are an environmental problem, but actually a political one. What is your reaction to that statement? There is a lot of politics in our water challenges, including the acquisi tion of all the necessary funding to make the projects on the drawing boards realities, from the design stages through construction and completion. We need leaders who will not only enforce environmental regulations that are already on the books, but strengthen them, particularly in ensuring that agriculture meets the same stringent water quality regulations that urban areas have to maintain. There is also a difference between the challeng es for our State versus National leaders. Up in Washington, DC, we need to make sure that those politicians who govern the entire nation understand the importance of clean water in Florida to everyone else, so that they will allocate their share of funding to keep the projects down here going forward. #5: Along that same line, Rae Ann Wessel, the Natural Resources Director for the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation, recently said that everyone needs to vote in this upcoming election like your life depends on it, because it just might! What is your reaction to that statement and are there candidates this year The short answer is I agree with that 100 percent! There are candi dates on this years ballot who I am sure will do a great job for us in their management of the environment, however Captain For Clean Water does not endorse nor sponsor any particular candidates, as we are a 501c3 organization. Do your own personal research, to make sure you become an active part of the political process, because we do have candidates running for the #6: What is the most rewarding Captains For Clean Water? It is knowing we have so much support from so many different people see our current conditions, but we and fund the proper methods to move water again south to the Everglades. Water quality now is becoming the issue that is at the top feel it is the Number One issue for all of Florida, so it is increasingly hide from that and to understand what we are dealing with, even if they are from the central or northern part of the State, because they now see it on the national news every day, so they are going to have to pay attention to us.


Page 12 VOTINGEarly voting in Lee County will be held through August 25 at 10 locations around the county. The closest Elections Centers to Fort Myers Beach are 13180 Cleveland Ave. Fort Myers and 25987 Tamiami Trail, Bonita Springs. Voters may use any Lee early voting center. All are open 10am-6pm. Election Day is August 28. Polls are open 7am7pm. All vote by mail ballots must be returned by 7pm Aug 28. See for details or call 239-LEEVOTE.FREE FMB PARKING Parking at FMB meters in beach accesses and downtown are free through at least September 10. Meters in county-owned lots (Lynn Hall Park, Bowditch Point Park) are not affected. POOL FUNThe Fort Myers Beach Community Pool is open 7 days a week from 10am-6pm. The pool is a great place to cool off on hot summer days for a nominal fee. The pool offers 7,000 square feet of cool, clear water, a lap pool with accessible lift, a shallow family pool with play structure and plenty of shade. A Water Aerobics class is held every MO, WE & FR at 9am. FOOD BANK The Harry Chapin Food Bank will have their mobile food truck at 1510 Estero Blvd this FR, Aug 24 from 10am-noon. After that they will return every WE from 10am-noon so long as they are needed to help local residents faced with decreased earnings related to our water qual ity problems. Choice Market is also available every TH from 11am-4pm at Beach Baptist. OFFICER FUNDRAISERThe Veterans Club of America #1, also known as the Little Club, located at 16701 San Carlos Blvd, Fort Myers, will host a fundraiser Jobbers-Miller on SU Aug 26, beginning at 3pm. All are welcome! All bar register sales from 3-5 p.m. will be donated to the family. Hamburg ers, hot dogs, brats, salads & sides family. Music and entertainment by local musicians. If unable to attend event, donations can be made at Adam Jobbers-Miller (239-4663177).WATER QUALITY LINKSLee VCB: SCCF Reports: Lee County Algae Status: leegov. com/waterqualityinfo YOGAThe FMB Womans Club is now hosting a Yoga Flow class every WE morning from 8-9am. Open to all. Bring a mat, plus towel, water, block and strap if desired. $8 members; $10 non-members.FUNDRAISER CAPTAINS F OR CLEAN WATERParrot Key Caribbean Grill has created a tasty fundraiser to support Captains for Clean Water a special cocktail called Fish Kill 100% of sales will be donated. The cocktail will be available through the month of August.MORNING MEANDERJoin an experienced Bird Patrol Guide in Lakes Park, 7330 Gladiolus Dr, Fort Myers, on SA Sept 1 at 8am for Morning Meander, an easy walk along clear paths with an opportunity to see birds in native vegetation. Lakes Park is a birding hot spot and crucial nesting area for many birds. Wear comfortable shoes and dress to be outside. Bring water, sunscreen and binocu lars. For more information call 239533-7580 or 533-7576.ADVISORY COMMITTEESThe Town of Fort Myers Beach seeks interested volunteers to serve on eight advisory committees that serve to advise Town Council: Anchorage Advisory Committee, Audit Committee, Bay Oaks Recreational Campus Advisory Board, Community Resource Advisory Board, Cultural & Environmental Learning Center Advisory Board, Local Planning Agency, Marine Resources Task Force and Public Safety Committee. If youd like to get involved in our Town, you are invited to submit an Advisory Committee Application Form to the Town Clerk, either in person or by email by 4:30pm Sept 7. Town Council will consider applications at their October 1 meeting. Find more information on what each committee does and the application form on the Towns website under News > Calling All Islanders or via direct link: CLEANUPMark Sept. 8 on your calendar and join the 4Ocean team for a cleanup at Lynn Hall Park from 8-10am. All necessary cleanup materials will be provided. Bring water and sunscreen. Look for the blue 4Ocean tent in the park. Pre-register at PROGRAMMany older adults worry about falling and limit their activities as a result. The SWFL Area Agency on Aging is sponsoring a FREE weekly program on WE Aug 29 Oct 17 A Publication of FREE rfntb


Page 13 at Hope HealthPark, 9470 Health Park Circle, Fort Myers. The class will meet weekly for 8 weeks for 2 hours/class. Learn to view falls as controllable, set goals for increased activity, decrease fall risks at home and exercise to increase strength and balance. If you have fallen in the past or are worried about falling or have limited your activity level due to concerns about falling, this class is for you. Preregister now at 866-413-5337SOFTBALL LEAGUECalling all adults who love to play softball! Bay Oaks Recreation Center will host a Co-Ed Adult Softball League on TU night Sept 25Nov 13. Teams supply their own uniforms (solid color jersey). Cost $250/team. Must register by 7:30pm FR Sept 14 at Bay Oaks. For more info contact Dominic or 239-765-4222. EITA MEETING On TU Sept 11, the Estero Island Taxpayers Association will resume their meetings to be held on the second TU of the month with Social Time from 6-6:30pm and Meetings at 6:30pm at Beach Baptist Church, 130 Connecticut St. Enter at the front of the church. All FMB taxpayers are welcome to attend EITA meetings. Septembers anticipated topic is Unincorporation. For more information: esteroislandta@gmail. comSCARECROWS IN THE PARKLakes Park Enrichment Founda tion invites everyone to participate in the 9th annual Scarecrows in the Park competition during the Lakes Park Fall Festival, Oct. 1228 at Lakes Regional Park. Local businesses, organizations, community members, youth groups are all invited to participate. Proceeds awarded in multiple categories on Oct 13. Anyone interested is invited to visit or email for more information. BEACH LIBRARYThe Fort Myers Beach Library is a great place to visit. Browse the librarys many collections, use the computers, visit the Friends Used Bookstore or the artwork on the FR 9am-5pm and SA 9am-1pm. Closed Labor Day Sept 3. 239-7658162. Upcoming programs include: TU Aug 28, 10:30am, Old Time Radio, pre-registerMOUND HOUSEThe oldest standing structure on Fort Myers Beach with a historical museum inside and beautiful grounds outside including an observation pier, kayak launch and amazing back bay views. Grounds open sunrise to sunset. Museum is open TU, WE & SA from 9am-4pm. Located at 451 Connecticut St. with cut. Call for exact times on kayak tours, costs, reservations and additional information. 239-765-0865. Upcoming programs include: SA Aug 25 10am -Garden Walking Tour; 11am & 2pm Shell Mound Tour; 1pm Guided Tour TU Aug 28 9am Beach Walk at Newton Park (beach conditions permitting); 1pm Shell Mound Tour; 2pm Guided Tour WE Aug 29 2pm Guided Tour FR Aug 31 8am Mangroves by Kayak Tour SA Sept 1 am Family Fun Kayak Tour; 1pm Guided Tour; 2pm Shell Mound Tour TU Sept 4 9am Beach Walk at Newton Park (beach conditions permitting); 11am & 2pm Shell Mound Tour; 1pm Guided Tour FORT MYERS BEACH NESTS................... 67 FALSE CRAWLS... 148 HATCHED............. 40 BONITA SPRINGS NESTS.................. 203 FALSE CRAWLS.. 192 HATCHED ............. 124 WE Sept 5 1am & 2pm Shell Mound Tour; 1pm Guided Tour SA Sept 8 am & 2pm Shell Mound Tour; 11am Guided TourLOVERS KEY STATE PARKGuided nature programs are offered in the park. All programs require registration, are free with park entry and take place at 10am. To register call 239-463-4588. Upcoming programs include: Fr Aug 31 Kayak Tour WE Sept 5 Manatees Talk TH Sept 6 Fishing Clinic FR Sept 7 Sea Turtle ProgramHURRICANE RE-ENTRY PASSESFort Myers Beach residents and businesses may obtain a hurricane re-entry pass at Town Hall. In the event of an evacuation, passes may be required to re-enter the island. If you have a Purple (resident) or Yellow (business) pass, they are valid for the 2018 season. If you do not already have one of those, pick up an application at Town Hall or online at The Town of Fort Myers Beach website: Emergency Preparedness. Applicants will need to provide photo I.D. and proof of residency. For details on what proof is needed, call 239-765-0202 or see website. Passes will not be mailed this year, so stop in Town Hall to get yours!ISLAND HOPPER FESTThe 5th annual Island Hopper Songwriter Fest will begin on Captiva Island Sept 21-23, before moving to downtown Fort Myers Sept 24-27 and wrapping up on Fort Myers Beach Sept 28-30. The Fest features live free performances by singer-songwriters at multiple venues. Midland will perform Sept 30 at Pink Shell Resort during a ticketed event. The winner of New Vocal Duo/Group at the ACMs and their Grammy nominated # 1 single, Drink Problem will make this group one to see. Watch for ticket availability at


Page 14 The Print Shop Inkhas moved to 19221 San Carlos Blvd!Between Sunnylands Trailer Court and the Sunoco gas station! Watch for our signs!239-463-7744 Bay Harbour Hearing Continues Day Two Focus on Public Comment, Contd from pg.1say that the working waterfront is dying is ridiculous, as we are enjoying record catches. This is the only designated federal deep-wa ter channel in Florida between Key West and Tampa, and the shallow waters on the back side do not on Oak Street to use Hurricane Bay and Hurricane Pass. Charlie Whitehead, President of the Beach Area Civic Association (BACA), said, Bay Harbour is inconsistent with the current County Comp Plan, but if the Comp Plan is changed, then it becomes compatible: Madam Hearing Examiner, if that sounds confusing to you, imagine how these people here feel. I dont favor this proposal because it is too much. At 145 feet, it will literally be ten times as tall as some of the surrounding homes, and increasing residential densi ty in a hurricane zone with narrow roads goes against every plan and is a bad idea. In our survey, the majority of BACA members oppose Bay Harbour. Nicholas White opposed the plan, There is no reduction in scope, intensity and density, thereprevious hearing are still appropri ate. We are not a gleaming tourist mecca and do not wish to become a gleaming tourist mecca. We have a 35-foot maximum construction height on San Carlos Island, so why are we even considering a 145-foot building! Those in favor said they are because this will create jobs, but not one of them said it complied with the Lee Plan, because it does not! Kathryn Young, however, supported Bay Harbour. We need to embrace change, while retaining control over it, to make our community nice and clean. I drive through it on my way home and am not happy, as it is rather blighted, and hope other people dont dare look at it.HEARING EXAMINER QUESTIONS Collins at the prior days session asked Bay Harbour representatives to provide the following information: Resolutions approv ing the Ebb Tide Development boat barn information at the end of San Carlos Island, a baseline mark for the estimated height of the 145-foot-high main building; detailed information on the boat barn forklift crosswalk, including Rightof-Way, crossing frequency, roadway public access, vehicle parking regulations, and how Bay Harbour agement system; the main build ings width and length; how it will manage bonus density; and potential water taxi and shuttle services. Collins focused primarily on the boat barn forklift crossing, as well as a previously unanswered question: the actual number of spaces for the attached parking garage. Bay Harbour project engineer James Ink addressed the forklift crossing. The general consensus is we will move 10 to 20 percent of the boat barn capacity, so 28 to 56 boats-per-day, at 5 minutes-per-boat. Forklift operators have to pass tests, and only work in conjunction with a structure that will move up-&-down when boats cross or with a full-time employee spotter. David Depew, of Morris-De pew Associates engineering and architecture, addressed the parking garage. We need roughly 418 spots for residents, the boat slips and for retail, leaving approximate ly 200 additional spaces for public parking, totaling between 620 to 650 spots. This revelation made the revamped parking proposal even larger than the original plan that called for a 520-space garage, leading Collins to ask why the developers need so many public parking spaces. The demand is there, said Depew, as well as to generate income to offset the cost of the facility. Collins felt 200 public spacin-season, and asked about a park&-ride or shuttle to accommodate the additional cars, because the intensity issue with this project raises a question mark for me, as this is a big add-on. Mayher said existing area businesses require additional parking to economically survive, stating, We will not attract any other cars to the beach; they are already there. A shuttle is acceptable from our perspective, but it is only a 10-minute walk from our front door to Times Square and Fort understanding why beach patrons would park at Bay Harbour without a shuttle: Without one, visitors would have to haul their chairs and umbrellas and strollers over that 10-minute walk. One component the Bay Harbour presentation lacked was a street-level view rendering, including landscaping, and Collins requested they provide one for a latter session, along with a forklift crossing review with its safety markings. Upon consulting schedules, Collins will reconvene the hearing on Monday, September 10, at 1:30 p.m. We will have a brief presen tation on those issues at that time, but there will not be any additional public input. Lee County Staff and the applicant will then make their closing remarks, so I anticipate that session lasting just an hour or two, then I will begin to formulate my recommendation. BACA President Charlie Whitehead said the proposed Bay Harbour Marina Village main building would dwarf surrounding San Car los Island homes. Photos by Gary Mooney. Joanne Semmer said the San Carlos Island working waterfront is alive & well, enjoying record catches.


Page 15 rfnttb bb rffn SALES CENTER OPEN DAILYtbbbr f f PRIVATE LABEL LIVING DEVELOPED BY r fntbrbbbb bbbtbtt bbbtb bbbbt tt bbtb b b bnb bb bb bbbb bb n f Lingering Algae Hits Beach Businesses Hard, Contd from pg.5We need our Representatives on their A Game and to come up with solutions. The businesses and workforce in coastal communities are suffering dearly. The economic Lake Okeechobee, and then algae and mass killings of sea life on our shores, are of biblical proportion. This is absolutely worse than any hurricane or natural disaster weve ever faced in our area. We are exercising all available options to retain staff and weather this economic storm, so Small Business Grants are the key. Ive come to desperate measures, in even considering laying off staff, for my Staff is my bloodline of our business; some have been with us for over 20 years and are suffering immensely and need to feed their families. I plead for you to represent us and lead us out of this mess swiftly; make great decisions that save the backbone of the small businessperson. We are down $25,000 the last four weeks, so we need help like in any natural disaster. one of Fort Myers Beachs premier locations, who wished to remain anonymous, described the personal downturn. A good day used to be $400, but now a good one is $100, with many from $50 to $80, so I am down on tips 70 to 80 percent. This is the worst it has ever been, and I was here for Hurricanes Charley and Irma. I have been at my job for around 15 years and love it, but for applications to change my career, because I cannot support my family on this income.VOTE CLEAN WATER Cereceda in her Council comments noted, The real water issue is not the depth of Lake Okeechobee but the quality of its water. If the lake was crystal-clean pristine, we would not have an issue with releases, but it is not. What we discharge into our surrounding water should be of paramount importance to us, in every decision we make. We need to stress this to the State, because they are the sole decision-makers over water quality. Liszak encouraged everyone to get involved, with the crucial State election this November. I cant get a line out of my head, from Rae Ann Wessel of the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation, who told you earlier this season that people need to vote this year as if their life depended on it, because it just might! That sure became prophetic, as I now often hear others quoting that. If this doesnt encourage you to register and vote, I dont know what will. Clean Water advocates tell us there are strong environmental candidates running in Florida this year, so forget about and vote for Clean Water! Fort Myers Beach hospitali visitors and residents headed out to dinner or a few cold beverages. They always have a welcome smile and a warm greeting. They are really the heart and soul of our Island hospitality. The last month has been hard on beach businesses. As our water conditions got worse in late July, business slowed and, in some cases, stopped. The dollar amount of lost business, as calculated by the Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce, is over $2.5 million, of algae came ashore on July 26. Since then the piles of algae up. The beaches are clear, with Red Tide persists. `When businesses hurt, their employees do also. Hours are cut, tips dwindle. Then it becomes Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce President Jacki Liszak estimates that between lost hotel retail purchases, beach workers are losing about a half million dollars each week as our poor water conditions continue. The Chamber of Commerce has launched a couple of efforts to assist hospitality workers on Fort Myers Beach. FOOD BANK The Harry Chapin Food Bank truck will be on Fort Myers Beach at 1510 Estero Blvd this Friday, August 26 from 10am-noon, offering free groceries to help those affected by the economic slowdown related to red tide and blue-green algae. The mobile pantry can help up to 250 households. Each client receives 30-40 pounds of a variety of food. Each household may receive canned goods, cereal, fruit, with some fresh produce, meat and bread, depending on what the truck has stocked that day. To qualify for free groceries, people only need to sign their names and note how many people live with them. Chamber volunteers will be on hand assisting at the mobile pantry. After this Fridays food distribution, the mobile pantry will be return to 1510 Estero Blvd each Wednesday from 10am-12 noon as long as the need exists. Choice Market at Beach Baptist, a Harry Chapin partner food bank, is open from 11am-4pm every Thursday. Clients are Choice Market choose their own food from available donations. For more information on Harry Chapin Food Bank visit TIP THE BILL The Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce is challeng ing the community to assist local restaurants and servers by tipping the bill. Yes, the whole bill! Double it! When you do, Chamber President Jacki Liszak asks that you write #tipthebillFMBCC on the bill, snap a photo and share it with them on social media @FMBChamber (Facebook) or @FMB_Chamber (Twitter or Instagram). Not everyone will be able to double their bill, so Liszak encour ages everyone to do what they can. your budget. All efforts are appreci ated! For more info contact the Hospitality Help This gratuity didnt quite Tip The Bill but the 50% amount meets the spirit of the Challenge! Photo by Gary Mooney.


Page 16 CLOTHING STORE JOKE Rosanne, a beautiful young foreigner walked into a small clothing store in the mall with her english speaking accent, would it be ok with you if my Fiancee tried on the dress in the window? Listen said the owner after just a brief pause, business has been slow here for a while now, if youre maybe it will bring in a few customers.


Page 17 WHAT IS COMMUNITY COMICS Each week I draw a cartoon and put it up on my FB page (Mark List) on Saturday morning, and ask all my FB friends to contribute captions for the cartoon. I also ask that everyone vote for the ones they think are the funniest. The ones with the most Likes by Monday or Tuesday get printed in the funnies pages that week. We do it simply for the fun of it. Your August issue of Sand Life is Now Available! You poop on the hat, Ill grab the fries. Thomas Tom Kat Fahey Look! Our supplier has arrived! Its perfectly all right. Hes not using a straw. Sucker! He buys em and then we get to eat them hahaha!! Please dont feed the tourists! If you do theyll keep coming back!


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Page 19 LPA Approves Land Vacations Margaritaville Process Begins Despite Legal Actions, Contd from pg.1not meet the 25 foot waterbody setback. The staff report indicated that other properties on the Donora canal also encroach into the canal right-of-way, but with less depth than this property. LPA member Jane Plummer told the board that the entire neighborhood from Donora Blvd to Connecticut St. have canal rightof-ways that extend from 1-10 feet inland with the town owning that narrow strip between lot line and seawall. She suggested vacating the property to the seawall, though other LPA members preferred the option of a setback variance request to handle this pool request and then addressing the larger issue of multiple properties with a strip of Town-owned land between their lot line and the seawall. Oiderma said he began this project in November 2017. He learned that renovating the pool was not practical, theyd have to replace the pool. He explained that he ran into problems with the requirement to provide a drainage plan, percentage of pervious surface and multiple application rejections. Eventually, following a meeting with the Mayor, Town manager and Jason Green, the contracted director of Community Development, he submitted a request for the Town to vacate the strip of land between his lot line and the seawall behind his house. The Town owns that land, but they do not take responsibility for that land. Beach owning it. I maintain it, he said. Green gave the staff report, beginning with pointing out that the Comprehensive Plan discourages any vacation of Town land unless to holding ownership of it. It seems that this canal was not built quite to the property lines, Green said. We dont have a reason why, but part of the concern on the public works side, was navigation of the waterway. Dan Hughes commented that there didnt seem to be any valid function of the Town-owned property and putting it on the tax rolls would be a positive. Megan Heil added that a vacation of the land seemed extreme, and asked why a simpler setback variance wasnt requested. We give them all the time with odd-shaped lots. Jane Plummer shared her experience with a property with a similar town-owned strip of land between her lot line and the seawall. She said she was given permits to add a pool, deck and lift, then after selling it, the new owner was denied permits, which led to Plummer being sued and her real estate license being threatened by the new owner. Green said that the bigger picture of the entire street of land whose lot lines do not coincide with the seawall should be Canal Street OBITUARIES PAUL ABRAHAM 1924 2018 Paul Abraham passed away peace fully on August 7, 2018, just 23 days shy of his 94th birthday. He and his deceased wife Ruth, who died in July 2016, had been married for 69 years and lived on Fort Myers Beach since 1974 after retiring at the age of 50. But being retired was not really what Paul enjoyed. Rather he wanted to work hard all day and every day as he had done throughout his life. He worked hard as a child with his own hot dog stand. After enlisting in the Navy right after his high school graduation, he worked hard as the chief mechanic on a transport engine apart and put it back together again. After being away at war for four years, he came home, got married and worked hard building a busiing on the vestry of his Episcopal church. So he just wasnt about to sit around on Fort Myers Beach. First, he drove a school bus. Then he got his real estate license. He sang in the local Barber Shop Quartet. He became extremely involved with his local church, doing everything from being on the vestry to cooking shrimp at their annual event. And he worked hard for his local Kiwanis Club, selling Christmas trees, painting benches and later making the Kiwanis Thrift Store a huge success. He was a Mason most of his adult life and a member of the American Legion for 72 years. He also began doing stained glass, which was a hobby that sustained him for his last 40 years. Converting a spare bedroom into his glass room, he set up his workshop at home where he created beautiful stained glass windows for his family and friends. His art can be seen in churches on the Beach, in Geneva N.Y. and in Washington, D.C., in a Hope Hospice in Naples Florida, and in Martel Residential College at Rice University. His windows hang in the houses of his four children, seven wonderful creativity. Paul will be terribly missed by all but remembered as a great man who served his family and his God until the end.BETTY WEISE 1934 2018 Betty Miller Weise, 83, beloved wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, friend and amazingly talented artist, passed away on Thursday, August 16, 2018 in Fort Myers, Florida following a long illness. Formerly of Cincinnati, Ohio, she was born September 3, 1934 to the late Ralph A. and Cora J. Miller. Betty graduated from the University of Cincinnati College of Design, Art and Architecture and later earned an M.A. degree in early childhood education. Follow ing her retirement from teaching Art and Elementary Education in the Cincinnati area, she moved to Sanibel Island, Florida where she was an integral part of her community for many years. She is survived by her husband of almost 59 years, Dr. Eric Weise; her daughters, Rebecca Garlock and son-in-law Keith of Sebastopol, CA, Michelle Johnson and son-in-law Kirk of Davis, CA and her son, Michael Weise and daughter-in-law Jennifer of Walnut Creek CA. She is also survived by granddaughters, Caitlyn Garlock, Meghan Dolcini and husband Eugene, Erin Garlock, Madison Johnson, Ava Weise and Sophia Weise, Grandson Zachary Johnson, and Great Granddaughter Kensley Dolcini, all of northern California. Betty was an active member and Deacon of the Sanibel Congre gational United Church of Christ, a member of the Alpha Chi Omega socer of the Sanibel Art League and the Fort Myers Beach Art Association, heading the scholarship program for high school graduating artists for many years. In addition to her history of teaching art education and art in Ohio, Connecticut, and Florida, she was a dedicated and talented plein air watercolorist on the islands and on the beaches of southwest Florida. A celebration of her life will be held on Saturday, September 22 at 2 p.m. at the Sanibel Congregational Church 2050 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel Island, Florida. For her extended family in California, many friends in Ohio and numerous other states, the celebration will be live streamed. Stay tuned for more information at For memorial gifts the family suggests contributions to the Fort Myers Beach Art Association Scholarship Fund, PO Box 2359, Ft. Myers Beach, Fl. 33932. 239-463-3909. DENNIS LINATSAS 1959 2018 Dennis Linatsas, 58, of Cape Coral passed away Tuesday, August 14, 2018. He was born November 22, 1959 to James and Evanthea Linatsas. Born in Nashua, New Hampshire, Dennis came to Florida and met his lovely wife love and humor. He was the owner of Royal Scoop Ice Cream, Fort Myers Beach, and loved making people laugh. Everyone that he met became family. He touched many lives and will be greatly missed. He is survived by his wife, Wanda; step-children, Joshua and Samantha Hall; sister, Donna; as well as brothers, Charlie and David. Memorial services were held on August 18 at Beach Baptist Church on Fort Myers Beach. Make-A-Wish Foundation at or stop by Royal Scoop and leave your Make-A-Wish donation there. HAZEL MCKENNA 1922 2018 It is with great sadness that the family of Hazel V. McKenna announces her passing from a long illness on August 18, 2018 at the age of 96. Hazel was born on July 11, 1922 in Hackensack, NJ and lived for many years in Norwood, NJ before retiring to Ft. Myers Beach, FL in 1984. She was an avid bridge player and a member of the Womans Club of Ft. Myers Beach where she played several times a week. She was an accomplished and knowledgeable gardener and an adoring grandmother. She is survived by her loving children, Kathleen Moore and her husband, Bill Moore, Bruce McKenna and Nancy McKenna Midera and her three grandchildren, Craig McKenna, Matthew Midera and Alex Midera. Hazel was predeceased by her adored husband and best friend, Raymond McKenna in 2003. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, August 27, 2018 at 11 a.m. at Immaculate Conception Church in Norwood, NJ. The family suggests that memorial donations in memory of Hazel be made to the Alzheimers Association 225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl. 17, Chicago, IL 60601. To sign Hazels guest book or to leave online condolences for her family, please visit Contd pg.20


Page 20 For all tides go to Tides Matanzas Pass Ft. Myers BeachDay High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible F 24 High 1:53 AM 2.2 7:04 AM Set 5:21 AM 93 24 Low 5:27 AM 1.7 7:56 PM Rise 7:01 PM 24 High 12:08 PM 3.2 24 Low 7:07 PM 0.2 Sa 25 High 2:11 AM 2.2 7:05 AM Set 6:13 AM 97 25 Low 6:05 AM 1.6 7:55 PM Rise 7:40 PM 25 High 12:46 PM 3.2 25 Low 7:36 PM 0.4 Su 26 High 2:24 AM 2.2 7:05 AM Set 7:06 AM 99 26 Low 6:42 AM 1.5 7:54 PM Rise 8:18 PM 26 High 1:21 PM 3.2 26 Low 8:02 PM 0.5 M 27 High 2:36 AM 2.3 7:06 AM Set 7:58 AM 99 27 Low 7:18 AM 1.3 7:53 PM Rise 8:53 PM 27 High 1:57 PM 3.2 27 Low 8:27 PM 0.6 Tu 28 High 2:51 AM 2.3 7:06 AM Set 8:51 AM 98 28 Low 7:57 AM 1.2 7:52 PM Rise 9:28 PM 28 High 2:34 PM 3.0 28 Low 8:52 PM 0.7 W 29 High 3:11 AM 2.6 7:06 AM Set 9:44 AM 94 29 Low 8:40 AM 1.0 7:51 PM Rise 10:03 PM 29 High 3:16 PM 2.9 29 Low 9:18 PM 0.9 Th 30 High 3:36 AM 2.7 7:07 AM Set 10:39 AM 89 30 Low 9:27 AM 0.9 7:50 PM Rise 10:39 PM 30 High 4:03 PM 2.7 30 Low 9:47 PM 1.1 F 31 High 4:06 AM 2.8 7:07 AM Set 11:34 AM 82 31 Low 10:22 AM 0.9 7:49 PM Rise 11:17 PM 31 High 4:59 PM 2.4 31 Low 10:18 PM 1.3 BEACH CLASSIFIEDSA Better Bugman LLCA Full Service Pest Control Company Residential & Commercial MOSQUITO + SPIDERS CONTROL PROGRAMS Call Today for FREE Estimate. Phone: 239-454-BUGS(2847) Fax: 239-415-BUGS(2847) PEST CONTROL HANDY MAN HANDYMAN For Small Jobs & HOME WATCH Call EMMY THE HOME DOCTOR 239-233-2587 BEACH CLASSIFEDS $20 / WEEK $60 / 4 WEEKS 239-463-4461 HELP WANTED Help Wanted Outrigger Beach Resort FT/PT Positions available Housekeeping Kitchen Morning Short Order Cook Caf Server Drug Free Workplace Apply in person Outrigger Beach Resort 6200 Estero Blvd. Fort Myers BeachLPA Contd from pg.19addressed. Following discussion, the LPA voted 6-0 to deny the vacation and offered to discuss a 5-foot setback variance. Green explained that he would work with the Oidermas on the setback variance request and expected that it and the right-of-way vacation request would be ready for Town Council at the same time. MARGARITAVILLE The remaining four land vacation requests dealt with properties along Canal Street in the TPI-FMB Margaritaville Commercial Planned Development. The vacation of Canal Street was a condition of the CPD approval. As he introduced the requests, Green noted that the required public notices for the hearing were placed prior to the Town regarding the Margaritaville Resort. When he told the LPA that it was up to them whether they wanted to proceed with the hearings, Chair Hank Zuba replied During the hearing Leon Moyer spoke during Public Comment, expressing concern about how the utilities were being handled on vacated land. He also suggested that the legal actions stood a very good chance of succeeding and the LPA could take the opportunity to table this yourself and take it out of council control. Green assured the LPA that the utility companies were onboard with the project. The LPA then voted 6-0 to vacate each of the requested properties. Following a brief break, the LPA discussed proposed changes to the Sea Turtle Protection Code in the LDC. Rae Burns, Environmental and Storm Water Technician for the Town, reviewed several updates planned for the code. LPA members asked that the placement of personal beach furniture be covered in the code. Burns will bring back an updated version at a future date. During Member Items, Dan Hughes voiced that he was still having trouble with councils action on the Dullard case, saying hed like to discuss with staff some of the consequences of that decision. I and rationale given and dont agree that this does not create a precedent. Plummer voiced similar on that case, Megan asked for the Rowe case to be provided at the second hearing. But it was not. It really doesnt exist anymore, as the time had expired to do what the Rowe case had approved. Now we have a new one, much larger, that people will come forward with. Green said that the primary question was whether you could deviate from the square feet at hand; whether the project was done or not wasnt important. Hughes asked, Im concerned if something comes in tomorrow, what will staff tell them? Green responded, There are 99 other factors that go into the decision. But only one factor that were discussing now, replied Hughes. You cant use other factors. Responding to a question by Hughes about Council member Shamps comment that she approved it due to neighborhood context, Greens reply was, Its not my place to judge council actions. Hughes concluded his concerns, Im done, with Zuba quipping, We may all be done. The September LPA meeting will not be held on September 11 as that would be the day after a council meeting. Green will poll members to see if they can meet Sept 25. HELP WANTED Housekeeper needed for two full size homes on Fort Myers Beach (near Sky Bridge), three days/week. Duties include all aspects of house keeping, including linens/laun dry and exterior patio clean ing. Should be able to lift 30 pounds. Please forward letter of interest, resume and salary requirements to: Boxholder PO Box 2820 Fort Myers Beach, FL 33932




Page 22 Doors open at 1:45 PM. Beach Theater Water Conditions August 22, 2018 Fort Myers Beach Red Tide: On Wednesday, August 22, 2018, the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commissions (FWC) mid-week report showed continued presence of the red tide organism, Karenia brevis along the Lee County coastline at medium to high levels. The red tide bloom extends approxi mately 145 miles along the Southwest Florida coast from Manatee to northern Collier counties, with most areas showing the same or slightly higher levels compared to last week. Fish kills were reported from Pinellas to Collier counties. Forecasts for the next few days indicate that the bloom may move in a southeasterly direction. and horseshoe crabs were found at the three beaches visited by the Sand Paper at mid-tide Wednesday morning. There were stretches of The water at the shoreline was clear, with some red drift algae seen. No respiratory irritation or odor was noted. Over the past week, 12 dead sea turtles were removed from Sanibel beaches. Turtles and birds continue to be admitted to Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) on Sanibel. Fort Myers Beach and Lee County continue to clean the beaches as needed. Blue-Green Algae: The Sanibel-Cap tiva Conservation Foundation released their August 21 report which states, Cyanobacte ria blooms persist within Lake Okeechobee, Caloosahatchee and estuary. Lake O releas es continue. On July 27, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began pulsed releases aimed at at S-79 from August 14 -20 was 3460 cfs, with The Lee County Environmental Lab documented Microcystis and Dolichospernum upstream of the Franklin Lock. Davis Boat Ramp, North Shore Park and Midpoint Bridge Park all were shown to have abundant Microcystis. Clumps of blue-green algae continue to be visible in Fort Myers Beach canals. Summary: Red Tide and Blue-Green Algae continue to be found in the water along the Lee County coast and in the estuary. Clear water does not mean that there is no Red Tide or algae present. For current water conditions visit August 22, 2018 FWC Red Tide map. Clear water and beach at Lanark beach access Aug. 22, 2018.




Page 24 rfnt rfntfnn rfntrb nnLive Music is Back! New Front Patio! rfntb rfntfb fnnr The Best Happy Houron the Beach!Mon Fri 2-5pm