City Shorts – May 2, 2023

by SC Reporter Wendy McMullen

* Sanibel will be a sub recipient of the $1.1 billion awarded to Lee County but the division has not yet been allocated

* The city faces a projected $5 million deduction from the property taxes paid to the city by Lee County. This is because of deductions that will be paid to individual property owners because their homes were not habitable.

* Approximately $6 million in city tax revenue was lost from the beach parking lots closing after Hurricane Ian.

* The state of emergency proclaimed after Hurricane Ian will be extended to May 21. It was due to expire Monday, May 8.

* The Police Blotter announcing violations and arrests begun after Hurricane Ian will be continued for the time being.

* Storage units on properties with damaged homes will be allowed until August 6, 2023

* Property owners can continue to remove vegetation and dead native and non native trees from property or trees that are leaning at an angle of more than 30 degrees without a vegetation permit.

* The seminar on Guidance on Restoring Homes on Sanibel held at BIG Arts on Monday, May 1 had more than 70 attendees and 800 views on Facebook. It can still be viewed on the City of Sanibel Facebook page.

* Mayor Richard Johnson and Council Member John Henshaw were among the most popular targets in the Dunk Tank at Saturday’s Sanibel School Seahorse Festival.

* Council member Dr. Scott Crater said he was working with federal officials to recognize Hurricane Ian as a qualified storm so property owners can deduct losses from federal taxes.

* Former tenants of Below Market Rate Housing (BMRH) on Sanibel will be given first preference as the units are restored. Mayor Richard Johnson extolled the virtues of projects run by Community Housing Resources (CHR) which allow people to work where they live. “It’s what makes Sanibel a diverse and interesting place to live,” he commented.

* Mayor Johnson promoted the use of the Sanibel Wander Map an interactive map that shows island businesses that are open on the island now as well as the present location off island of those that closed after Hurricane Ian flooded their premises. The map can be accessed with a simple QR code scan found on the Sanibel-Captiva Chamber of Commerce website or online at

* The Woodring House at 1816 Wooding Road was formally added to Sanibel’s Register of Historic Landmarks at Tuesday’s council meeting. Woodring House is owned with fee title by “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society with a life estate interest by Ralph and Jean Woodring. Ralph Woodring founded and managed The Bait Box on the island and Jean served as one of the island’s first planners.

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