On Monday the Fort Myers Beach Town Council will discuss a resolution that includes a request for $1 million from the Lee County Tourist Development Council for 7 full-time positions and 1 part-time position.
The TDC is a separate arm of the Lee County Government that awards tax dollars collected from tourists to be used to maintain beaches, shorelines, parks and piers.
Back in November of 2021, Visitors & Conventions Bureau Executive Director Tamara Pigott reported record-breaking bed tax collections of $53.3 million for 2021.
The town resolution says the request of $1 million is “for the equivalent of seven full-time positions (including overtime) and 1 part-time position, and 34% of beach patrol’s time to dedicate for beach and shoreline maintenance activities. These activities include litter, waste and recycling removal, landscape maintenance and maintenance to pedestrian pathways that provide visitor access. The money request also includes maintenance and upkeep of 29 Beach Accesses including repairs to existing boardwalks, the native landscape at The Mound House, 216 Connecticut Street native landscape, Newton Beach Park native landscape and janitorial requirements for the public restroom facilities at Newton Beach Park and Mound House and the Palm Avenue Beach Access Restroom Trailer.”
At peak times during the year, the town uses contracted labor to supplement staffing to maintain its beaches.
The Town is also requesting funds for the replacement of an F250 and tractor as well as the repair and maintenance of equipment used for beach and shoreline operations as well as the costs for trash and recycling removal. The resolution also says the town is requesting a bucket truck used for high trimming of palm trees and landscaping.
In addition to the $1 million request, the town is also asking for:
– $9.8 million for its major long-term beach renourishment project
– $205,000 for The Mound House
– $82,000 for Newton Beach Park
– $32,000 for Beach Profile Monitoring
In all the Fort Myers Beach Town Council will be asking for $11,110,196 from Lee County. Over the past 5 years the town has been awarded between $900,000 and $1.3 million per year.