Town Council’s last meeting of the year
was Monday, December 7
The full agenda of the Town Council meeting on Monday, December 7, included discussion about beach renourishment, grant applications to the Lee County Tourism Development Council (TDC) for 2021, and two committee reports, among other items.
For the first hour of the three and a half hour meeting, members of the public continued to provide input on the redevelopment projects for Bayside Park, Bay Oaks Recreational Campus, and Times Square as well as beach erosion on the south end of the island, public restrooms, and the historic arches at the Lee County parks.
Representatives from the Town’s Anchorage Advisory Committee (AAC) and Bay Oaks Recreational Campus Advisory Board (BORCAB) submitted update reports.The AAC has requested that Town Council approve the purchase and renovation of private property in the vicinity of Harbor House for the Mooring Field upland services facility. If approved, upland services would be managed by the Town instead of an outside service provider.
Related to the redevelopment of Bay Oaks, BORCAB has asked Town Council to reconsider adopting the original, full-scale plan that exceeds the current budget by 300 percent. BORCAB believes that the community would support the higher-cost budget for this larger plan. A joint meeting between Town Council and BORCAB is scheduled for January 2021 to discuss project phasing.
In other business, Town Council approved extra-duty detail contracts with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office to control pedestrian crossings at the foot of the Matanzas Pass Bridge and the intersection of Old San Carlos and Estero Boulevard. Boat patrols were also approved with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.
Public restrooms came up again during discussion about the Town’s list of requests to Lee County’s TDC for funding for various projects. The list was approved. It includes beach and shoreline maintenance and beach renourishment as well as signs, landscaping, restrooms and shade structures at Mound House and Newton Beach Park, and portable restroom trailers at the Palm Avenue Beach Access.
First public hearings were held for the special events, water supply facilities work plan, and height and setback requirements ordinances. Second public hearings for the special events and height and setback requirements ordinances are scheduled for Town Council’s first meeting in 2021. The second hearing on the water supply facilities work plan is scheduled for the meeting on March 1, 2021.
Lastly, Town Councilors decided to cancel the annual cupcakes and New Year’s Eve ball drop in Times Square and the Town’s 25th birthday party due to continuing concerns about the spread of COVID where groups of people gather.