January 18, 2005

Panel Members in Attendance: Hal Miller, Gordon Hullar, John Madden, Ron Gibson, Peter Koury, and Rene Miville

Absent: Chris van der Baars, Dave Jensen, Harry Silverglide

Audience: 31

1. The meeting was called to order at 1:05 PM.

2. Introductions and roll call were made by Hal Miller. The minutes of both the 11/9 and 12/14 meetings were approved as presented. Motion by Madden, second by Koury.

3. Discussion of Bike Safety Apron Designs and Public Input.
Dan Moser of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee, Lee County, and Randy Cerchie, of Lee County Department of Transportation, were present to field questions from residents. Moser had read all the comments received from the e-mail survey regarding the bike safety apron, and assured the audience and panel that the plan is for a paved shoulder only, not a separated path such as that on Sanibel. He felt that from the comments he read that residents want to see something done to accommodate bikers on the island. He said that Lee County would maintain the safety apron as far as trimming trees and bushes that may impede riders or affect safety.
A number of audience members had questions for Moser based on his comments. Lee Williams, a Captiva resident, made a statement regarding adding median "traffic calming" strips to Captiva Drive to slow drivers, as well as extending the double yellow line the length of the island, preventing cars from passing. She and her husband are willing to donate a portion of their property frontage for the safety apron.

4. Discussion of Action to Petition Lee County to Permit the Operation of Golf Carts on Certain Portions of Captiva Drive.
Bryan Miller, traffic engineer with the Lee County Department of Transportation, was present to continue the discussion of golf cart usage on Captiva Drive. He feels that a recommendation to limit usage from Wiles Drive to the entrance of South Seas Resort, to include the side roads therein, would stand a good chance of passing the County approval process. The statute on golf cart usage, as it currently stands, includes unlicensed drivers age 14 and above. The vendor on Captiva who rents carts, though, will only rent to users over age 25, according to Lee County Sheriff's Deputy Poppalardo. Motion was made by Miville, second by Gibson, that the Captiva Community Panel request permission that the Lee County Department of Transportation allow golf carts to be used in the area bounded by Wiles Drive on the south to the north end of the island. Motion passed 6-0. Gooderham will draft and send a letter making that request to Scott Gilbertson and Commissioner Bob Janes.

5. Presentation by the Captiva Civic Association Regarding the Harbour Pointe Rezoning Application.
Consultant Rae Ann Wessel was present to give a presentation on mangroves, and to present the opinion that the CCA does not feel the mitigation offered by Mariner is an equal trade for the 4 acres of wetlands which will be impacted by the proposed Harbour Pointe development. Questions and statements were received from the panel and the audience responding to Wessel's presentation.
The panel restated its position that the mangroves should be protected to the greatest extent possible. A motion was made by Koury, second by Gibson, that the panel reaffirm their opposition to the application of Mariner regarding the development at Harbour Pointe because it does not protect mangroves to the greatest extent possible. Vote was 3-3, no action taken.
Steve Hartsell, representing Plantation Development Ltd., suggested that there is more information available that the panel has not heard regarding the mangroves and encouraged panel members to attend the Hearing Examiner's hearing on this matter now scheduled for February.

6. Update from the Canopy Restoration Task Force.
Bill Fenniman reported that Lee County is not willing to provide funding for canopy preservation, and DOT has no interest in doing anything to the roadway. Fenniman recommended that the committee stand in limbo until the status of the $300,000 grant the county recently applied for to aid in canopy restoration on Sanibel and Captiva Islands is ascertained. Residents have been warned that if they choose to plant in the right of way along Captiva Drive they may have to remove it in the future. Miville disputed Fenniman's characterization of the county's stance on funding for the restoration based on his conversations with county officials.

7. Discussion of Expansion of Sewer Service to Captiva.
Ken Gooderham reported on his discussions with Sanibel officials. He had a meeting on December 14 with city manager Judie Zimomra, utilities director John Hefty and city attorney Ken Cuyler, and subsequently received a letter January 11 from Judy Zimomra detailing some questions the Sanibel City Council had raised at its January 4 meeting. Gooderham drafted a reply that was reviewed by Miller and sent as an answer on behalf of the CCP. After some discussion, it was agreed to defer any further action until the February meeting of the panel. The panel expressed interest in exploring options in enhancing septic regulations and maintenance on the island, and will forward names of possible experts to be invited to Gooderham for contact.

8. Update on Underground Utility Plans.
Van der Baars was unable to attend the meeting, so Gooderham spoke on his behalf. He reported that there had been one task force meeting held prior to Christmas, information on the nonbinding estimates had been forwarded to the county's MSTBU office for staff to calculate the financing and processing costs, and there would be more information to share at the February meeting.

9. Discussion of Possible Next Steps for Various Captiva Projects.
Gooderham reiterated that the panel has to decide on what steps they want to take regarding the proposed bike path, who will pay for a survey, if desired, etc. Gooderham will draft the letter to Lee County regarding the golf cart usage on Captiva Drive. Discussion will continue in February regarding the septic system/sewer issue.

10. Other Business.
Miville shared with the panel that he met with Bill Newman, of Lee County Waste, regarding trash removal on the island. There are a number of properties that are in danger of being fined for having trash at the road that cannot be picked up in the regular trash removal system. Miville will send out a mass e-mail to island residents notifying them that they will be fined by the County unless trash is removed prior to the end of January and will offer them a possible hauler who is willing to remove vegetation debris for a price.

11. Set Dates for 2005 Meetings.
The next meeting of the Captiva Community Panel will be February 8. The March meeting was scheduled for March 8, but Gooderham is unable to attend due to a conflict; it may be rescheduled to March 7 or 15, depending on the availability of the CCA hall. The remaining schedule of meetings (April 12, May 10, October 11, November 14, and December 12) was not approved.

12. The meeting was adjourned at 3:15 PM.

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