provided to The Santiva Chronicle
As she approached her retirement after 20 years as City Manager, Judie Zimomra graciously addressed the Sanibel Captiva Lions Club at their September meeting. She briefly recapped her years of service to the Sanibel community. She emphasized that she was just the manager, and it was the very dedicated and competent staff the makes the City run smoothly. She pointed out that over the 20 years the City received almost $72 million in grants, which helped maintain a healthy financial position.
She spent most of her time talking about the current state of the City, and the future changes that are likely to take place. She highlighted the completion of the sewer plant, which uses the latest technology to protect the water quality. Amy Nowaki has been hired as the architect for the Center 4 Life building and the financing is in place for the reconstruction of the old bank building.
Planning is underway for new facilities for the police department. She pointed out that when the current facilities were completed there were no computers, and the department was smaller and predominantly male. Now almost one half of the force is female, there are inadequate locker facilities and no space for training.
The City is facing the same labor issues as are other economic entities. Most of the City employees do the type of work that they must be physically present and cannot work from home. Similar to what is happening to other entities, applicants do not appear for interviews, some who accept job offers never show up, and when a current worker has a better offer, they quit with almost no notice. The offering of signing bonuses or higher starting salaries is causing a salary compression that affects the morale of more senior workers.
She pointed out that Sanibel has some advantages to attract talent. The Sanibel “brand” is well known, not only regionally, but throughout the country. The Sanibel Plan has been copied by other cities and the City is renowned for keeping the environment as the number one priority.
The members of the Lions Club wish Judie Zimomra the best in her future endeavors.
The Sanibel Captiva Lions Club has been serving the Sanibel and Captiva Communities for over 50 years. While the Lions Club is most known for their effort to eliminate preventable blindness, the club serves citizens of the Islands and greater Southwest Florida in a variety of ways. The local club is part of Lions Club International, the largest service organization in the world with over 1.4 million members in chapters in over 200 countries.
Sanibel Captiva Lions Club holds regular dinner meetings on the first and third Wednesday of the month during the year. Visiting Lions or other interested people are welcome to attend. For more information on the Sanibel Captiva Lions Club contact Membership Chair Lion Steven Schulz at PO Box 391, Sanibel, FL 33957, or 239-233-6261, or visit www.sanibelcaptivalionsclub.org.