Concrete Piles Could Be On Estero For Awhile


Interim Town Manager Keith Wilkins met with Lee County on Thursday and they are not budging. Lee County will no longer be cleaning up the debris on Estero Boulevard after the state decided not to extend its deadline for debris cleanup reimbursement. Now what?

There appears to be a slight possibility the state will step in and help and, perhaps, pay for one final clean sweep of Estero Boulevard. Town officials don’t appear to be holding out much hope that will happen, And, the state has not set a deadline to decide, so those piles continue to sit there. That leaves the responsibility with the town.

There are massive piles of debris up and down Estero Boulevard. Some piles block the sidewalk completely pushing residents out into the road to get around them. Other block the bike lanes. A few have rebar dangerously protruding from them.

There’s no way of knowing when all of that debris was pushed out into the Estero Boulevard right-of-way. Was it before the March 1st state deadline or was it after? There’s no doubt that anything added to the Boulevard starting this week, when this first came to light, will be well documented and whoever adds to the debris mess will be held accountable.

But what happens now?

If the state decides not to intervene and do a clean sweep of Estero Boulevard, the responsibility falls on the town. Your ears aren’t failing you. The town would be responsible to clean up a Lee County owned 7-mile road. That would most likely result in town staff trying to determine which land owner or contractor created every pile on Estero Boulevard, getting in contact with those responsible, and making them pay to remove the piles. A tall task for a government operating at full capacity for sure. An even taller task for a government struggling to financially survive and focus on getting residents permits to rebuild their homes and businesses.

Lee County has told Interim Town Manager Keith Wilkins the county has no plans to go after the contractors or homeowners who created the piles but the town is welcome to do so.




  1. I am disgusted with Lee County…I pay my overpriced taxes on a very small beach house that I have owned for over 20 years…my dream retirement…as I watch my property taxes skyrocket to the point of not being able to retire there as planned…they take my money…I clean my place….I work really hard…and also pay taxes to a school that may NO LONGER be here…Lee Co is a shame…we were devastated here…I cleaned my place…and now Lee Co wont finish their job.. I want my very quiet Ft Myers Beach back…down home and quaint….and dont knock Gov DeSantis…he is on our side…write him..all of us…and let him know what Lee Co is also putting on the taxpayers….those that own property and didnt clean it up…take it…take it…eminent domain…sell it and get the damn job done….so afraid to offend….I am NOT! sick of this bullshit

  2. I agree with Eric and Dawn. When FEMA announced (about two months ago) that Ian Debris Pick-up was going to end at the end of March, I contacted the Town and asked them to do something about all the derelict properties on the island. At that time, the 7-Eleven on Driftwood, the 2-story condo across the street from it and the 2 acre property between Driftwood and Bahia Via were all listed as locations that have not cleaned up their properties. 7-Eleven has since, but we’ve found out the other two have said they will not, the properties are for sale, and that the new owners can deal with the clean-up. First, with attitudes like that, I’m glad they won’t be my neighbor any longer. Second, those people still own those properties and should be held accountable, not the rest of the tax payers. If the Town does clean-up these properties, they need to charge back the property owners for the expense. If it’s not paid, file a lien against the property for payment at time of sale. Those of us that have been here the past six months cleaning up our own properties should not be responsible for those that choose not to be responsible.

  3. How do we get people to quit bringing truck loads of debris to the corner of Ohio Avenue and Estero where the Liki Tiki was? They JUST got that cleaned up and people keep dumping there, and spewing it out in the street. Please stop, keep it in front of your own property, please.

  4. Has anyone bothered to contact Ron DeMickeySantis? He also promised to get things done. Maybe he can start banning sand and debris.

  5. So why have so few of those truckfulls of property tax and tourist tax dollars crossing the bridge to County Hall not coming back to the town in a time of such disaster.
    Anyone dialing up Ray Sandelli?
    How much has been going to voter-rich Cape Coral, the wealthier neighborhoods of Sanibel? Are their roads still getting pickups? Anyone asking?
    So much for all that time spent trying to hold hands with the county. It’s always the toughest times when you learn who your friends are.

    • Once again you nailed it! The county just wants the property tax with as little expense as possible! They have roads to build in Leigh to continue building their tax base!

  6. Sounds like lee county is trying to get the town of ft Myers beach back under county control .Can we survive as a town?

  7. I agree with Eric- also what about these homes and businesses who have done absolutely nothing! There are numerous buildings in the downtown area that are piles of rubble. When are these owners going to clean them up? The two story surf shop has a back wall caving in each week. Are we going to just wait until the thing collapses and hurts someone? How about the Tropical store and the pile of rubble next to it, which was the woman’s clothing store? These owners need to be held accountable and get them cleaned up and cleared out!

  8. That is absolutely not fair to hold the taxpayer responsible for a resident’s debris. Residents had 6 months to make a phone call to to schedule cleanup. If they chose not to do that, then so be it. Cleanup should be on their dime. Rent a dumpster, a jackhammer and/or a crew and go to work. Most other residents took responsibility for their properties……I sure did.

    If the town ends up paying, then all residents that cleaned their own properties should expect a tax rebate…..right??!!

    And speaking of lot cleanup….there are two types of cleanup…”gross debris” removal and “fine debris” removal.
    Most have the “gross removal “ completed. Now the “fine removal “ needs to happen. Please come back and pick up the debris that the claw trucks weren’t able to. All that fine debris is blowing into canals, on streets, etc. So many people who aren’t here are “out of sight, out of mind”. Please realize all these lots are still philthy! Simply put….if you own property on the beach, handle your business. It’s not your neighbor’s responsibility to clean up after yourself!

  9. Keep voting for these commissioners and this is what you get. According to pendergrass, they are just “monitors” so good luck with figuring something out.


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