As if you needed any more proof that Fort Myers Beach was ground zero for Hurricane Ian. Lee County Tax Appraiser Matt Caldwell has released the estimated tax roll figures for 2023. Out of all Lee County municipalities, Fort Myers Beach will take the biggest hit.
The total taxable value of properties on Fort Myers Beach in 2022 was $4.5 Billion. In 2023 that number is estimated to be $2.7 Billion, a 40% drop. New taxable construction on Fort Myers Beach in 2022 was $44 Million. New construction is estimated to be $861,000 in 2023.
By comparison, the drop-off on Sanibel is estimated to be down 31%, the City of Fort Myers 12%, Cape Coral 11.5% and Bonita Springs 7%. Lee County is only estimated to be down 5.2%.
What this will ultimately mean is less ad-valorem tax money to run the town and the need to rely more on state and federal financial help to keep the town afloat until homes can be rebuilt and new businesses can be constructed. By all estimates that is years away as residents are just now trying to get permits to rebuild while other property owners are still trying to decide whether to demolish their homes and rebuild or sell their property.