Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Donna Fiala’s Coastal Comments

April 15th is almost upon us.

April 15th is almost upon us.

So often I have heard people on Marco Island say something about not knowing where their tax dollars go. I thought I would just outline a few services that Marco taxes pay for, such as our wonderful library, the Caxambus boat ramp, maintenance, etc., the new 951 boat launch and expanded parking, Tigertail Beach maintenance and operations, South Beach maintenance, Department of Animal Services, Jail, the State required Sheriff’s Department for such things as SWAT team and general assistance and surveillance, Court System, 911 Emergency Service, Emergency Operations for major events such as Hurricanes and cleanup after major storms and hurricanes, wildfires, etc., Veteran’s Services, Services for Seniors such as in home case management and help with prescriptions, free beach stickers, $1 million to the City of Naples for the right for everyone in the county to park at their beaches, $1 million to Marco for road maintenance, Collier County Extension Services for homeowners to learn to maintain their personal landscaping as well as educate themselves on plants and pests, boater channel markers, the David Lawrence Center, Marco’s own recycling center (just built last year) and of course Tourist Tax Dollars go to beach and boaters pass maintenance. Also, dollars the county has received as state grants are used to build sidewalks, median landscaping on 951, smaller bridges on Marco, and stimulus dollars, which we dedicated to Marco ONLY, so that a second bridge to Marco could be built without tolling. Oh, and did I mention the landfill and recycling program? All of these services are paid for through your tax dollars.  I’m sure I’m missing some things. In the next column I’ll try to show a pie chart of the tax dollars received and how they are spent.

The Marco Island Planning Board voted unanimously to recommend that the City Council enter in to an Interlocal agreement with the County to adopt a mandatory business recycling ordinance. The Interlocal Agreement will be presented before the City Council for approval in about 90 days. The County Solid Waste staff has been assisting the City of Marco by providing technical assistance with the development of the ordinance, and providing presentations to the City Planning Board and City Council. The goal of this endeavor is to preserve valuable landfill airspace to extend the useful life of the landfill as well as to conserve natural resources. Achieving the goal of county-wide mandatory business recycling is essential in maintaining the low rate of the landfill tipping fee.

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