How You Helped Your Neighbor


69-year old Fort Myers Beach resident Dean Ruban lost his house at 4341 Estero Boulevard. During Hurricane Ian he had to jump out of the window to survive the storm.

Today, Ruban is staying off the island in housing provided by the government. He hopes to rebuild, but as his daughter tells us, and we’ve heard many times before, he’s dealing with insurance, permitting, working through the FEMA rules, etc.

On June 15th, Ruban received a “Demo without a permit” violation from the town of Fort Myers Beach. This is not a complaint against the town story. We all now know the rules. Even though homes are gone, thanks to the storm, not a demo crew, the town says you still need a demo permit.

Demo permits from the town are just under $500.00.

Our good deed of the day Wednesday was to raise the money for Ruban’s permit so it’s one less aggravation on his plate and one less demo permit issue for the town to worry about. You did it in 24 minutes…

Here are the FINAL donators…($585)
Stan Sidorowicz – $25.00
Jo Vaughn – $25.00
Mary Jane Roache – $25.00
Danielle Skillman – $25.00
Charlina Hurt – $25.00
Deborah Ladd – $25.00
Dan Lenzi – $25.00
Catherine Foss – $25.00
Sherri Kehoe – $25.00
Steve Bedell – $25.00
Mary George – $25.00
Holly Ozsan – $10.00
Susan Host – $25.00
William Wagner – $25.00
Linda Rustin – $25.00
Janet Wrend-Cleary – $25.00
Shirley Mueller – $25.00
Helen Gustafson – $25.00
Jenni Hawkinson – $25.00
Jeanette Tardiff – $25.00
Barbara McGee – $25.00
Beth Leland – $25.00
Patricia Tardiff – $25.00




  1. Half the houses on our street do not have permits for work being done right now. Town Staff picks and chooses who gets code violations. Nothing new, business as usual with staff.

  2. $500 for a Demo permit ???
    Shouldn’t have any fees for any permit !!
    The sooner people can rebuild – the sooner revenue comes back.

  3. It couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. Dean and his grandson Mike have been helping us recover with their electrical services since the storm hit. I’m sorry I didn’t see the support request in time.

    • I feel the same. They were a great team and helped us a bunch with electrical. i would have donated as well if I had seen this. Good luck to Dean.

  4. So easy for those who haven’t lost anything to say you should pay this for safety. These folks lost everything. Every damn thing they had. Now add insult to injury and ask them for $500 to pay for a permit when they need this money to survive. Come on Dan Allers. And new town manager you are better than this. I am your friend I know you to be a better man. Step up and lead. You are the leader now. It’s time to show why you were voted as the leader. And always remember it’s not a fault to ask for the help of county and state. It’s not weakness. It’s leadership. Know when to say this is too much for the town to do by itself. We support you.

  5. Dang, never saw anything about donating, not sure how I didn’t see it 😞. If there is anymore needed, please post so I can help.

  6. Why has nobody in the Town of Fort Myers Beach government explained about how the permit & inspection process is all about safety? Permits initiate inspections for things like insuring electrical power is shut off before demolition. Live wires protruding from the ground are very dangerous. Construction permits insure things meet code. That benefits current and future owners of a given property. Yes, it may sound silly to require a demo permit for a house washed away by Ian but stop & really think about it. Permits & inspections protect property & people.

    • In theory your absolutely right. But explain why my neighborhood has investors building new bedrooms in the garage with just a permit for installing an air conditioner, and meanwhile families like mine who actually need a home to live in, have been rejected 5 times now even though we have had all the safety measures and experts sign off. Its not fair, its building the wrong kind of neighborhoods, and it feels like deep pocket corruption.

  7. I’m sorry. This doesn’t seem logical. You need a$500 permit because the hurricane washed you house away. I say the hurricane needs the permit. Sometimes it comes to the point of ridiculousness.

  8. Dean has done some work for me in the past and is a wonderful person – so sorry this has happened to him – we need him back!!!


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