Town Makes Vague CDBG-DR Funding Request


Communities all over Southwest Florida are submitting requests for a piece of the $1.2 Billion Lee County was awarded from HUD to help recover from Hurricane Ian. While Sanibel was very specific in their ask, Fort Myers Beach was quite vague.

The Town of Fort Myers Beach is asking Lee County for $1.745 million. The town says it is requesting the money “to support critically necessary island-wide recovery and resilience  planning initiatives. The Town seeks to fill a need to modernize comprehensive and actionable recovery plans to guide the town’s implementation of its recovery strategy, fully considering unmet needs, mitigation best practices, and sustainability.”

By comparison, Sanibel has asked for $702,000 for three specific projects:
Sanibel Plan Update ($250,000)
One of the strategic goals and objectives that City Council adopted on August 16, 2022 was to develop a plan to review all elements of the Sanibel Plan (the city’s comprehensive plan) and present an updated plan to Council. The Sanibel Plan was last revised in 2013.

Sanibel Transportation Master Plan ($200,000)
A comprehensive master plan will be developed to include the evaluation of roads for climate related risks, parking and transportation alternatives, and traffic management to improve level of service along roadways (mitigate congestion).

Sanibel Broadband Feasibility Study ($252,000)
This study will determine the feasibility of underground and aerial installation of infrastructure for fiberoptic-based high-speed symmetrical internet network connectivity to end users (households, businesses, etc.) within the city limits of Sanibel.

The majority of the $1.2 Billion Lee County was awarded must be used for low to moderate income housing needs throughout Lee County.


  1. Alls I know is I’m 5 generations from the lee county area and I was forced to sell my home . And now I can’t find anything house or apartment for rent or to buy in my price range. Everything is so expensive it’s ridiculous. I’m not sure what to do I’m so confused and lost and very upset over the prices of every house and apartment I look at . I need someone to point me in the right direction. I would like to Stay in the area my family grew up in which is in the 33908 zip code ,but it’s just become so expensive

  2. One should be very cautious about grants from HUD. I expect wok initiatives would be expected to be implemented, should the city accept the money. I would also be suspicious that the “Work Force Housing” cabal would get behind the HUD money in order to justify building low-cost housing on Estero Island.

    • I don’t think you understand the CDBG-DR.

      None of it will be used to build housing on FMB and, IMHO, there will never be workforce housing on FMB. The costs of land and construction are prohibitive, and there are significant burdens in administrating WFH. I don’t see anyone taking that on, especially on FMB.

  3. No offense to Sanibel or FMB but if this money is for low income housing, how does either location qualify for any money? There is no low income housing on either island. Is there even moderate housing? Why is Sanibel’s plan to use it for a bunch of studies when people in Lee County still don’t have a place to live after Ian?


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