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Toll to leave the island

By Staff | Jul 16, 2009

To the editor,

My wife and I first came to Sanibel in the late 1950’s on a four-car ferry to Bailey’s Landing. If I remember correctly, there were three restaurants and Timmy’s Nook was where The Green Flash is now on Captiva. I must admit I liked Sanibel better in some ways then than I do now. We usually spent Christmas vacations at the West Wind Inn, where our four children decorated broken branches with shells for a Christmas tree. In the early 1970’s, we built a modest beachfront Michigan home in the Chateaux Sur Mer area, before there were any mega-mansions.

Lee County’s DOT proposal to raise tolls in this economic downturn is economically ridiculous and counterproductive. If the County Commissioners had used the toll money for inspection and maintenance, instead of unrelated pet projects, we probably would not have needed new bridges.

Most of Sanibel and Captiva residents are retired and on limited incomes of one sort or another, and local business people pay their off-island employees’ tolls. If the Lee County DOT and Commissioners insist on raising tolls, I would suggest that Sanibel establish a comparable toll to get off the islands for non-residents, except for island employees.

Irving S. Johnson, Ph.D.