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Council fine tuning goals for FY2011-12

By Staff | Oct 5, 2011

When the City Council continued discussion of their goals for the upcoming fiscal year on Tuesday, the package presented during the meeting was much more comprehensive that the plan introduced during the final budget hearing on Sept. 20.

But according to at least one member of the council, they may be stretching themselves a bit too thin.

A three-tiered list of council goals for 2011-12, revised by city staff in the weeks following their last session, included a “top priority” of sustaining and strengthening the city’s financial stability. Highlighted amongst this goals was developing a Long-term Debt Early Retirement Plan by enhancing the budgeting process by including more historical trend analysis and by extending operational budgetary forecasting to five years.

That goals includes developing a feasible plan to early retire the city’s long term debt in order to reduce Sanibel’s annual fixed costs and to produce substantial finance cost savings for the City of Sanibel’s taxpayers.

A second financially-stablizing goal is to develop a Facility Component Replacement Plan. In order to preserve and protect the city’s facilities periodically major components such as roofs, HVAC systems and flooring must be replaced. The plan will identify the city’s facilities’ components; each component’s estimated replacement cost; and each component’s scheduled replacement date.

The council’s second priority goal is to improve water quality at both the local and regional levels.

Locally, the city hopes to review progress towards implementing fertilizer and lake management guidelines with golf course managers to ensure that all are making progress towards compliance and improving scores on their annual report card. It also strives to continue an education campaign on fertilizer Best Management Practices and develop stormwater information package for homeowners to address water quality in community lakes.

Reginally, Sanibel will attempt to develop a regional stormwater rule for Southwest Florida, work with local governments within the RPC study area to develop a planning document with a strategy on how to move forward with development of a regional stormwater rule and work with the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) and other local stakeholders to implement water storage and treatment projects within the Caloosahatchee basin to improve water quality and reduce ecological impacts associated with high and low-flow issues.

The city’s third highest priority is to continue the city-wide Redevelopment Work Plan Study, although the quantity and order of each subsection of those goals were debated.

“I’m not too sure we can accomplish all of these in the next year,” said Vice Mayor Mick Denham, who suggested that they narrow the list to two or perhaps three priorities. “I think we may be biting off more than we can chew.”

In the end, the following list of priorities were proposed:

Adopt appropriate revisions to the Sanibel Plan (Coastal Zone Protection Element, Section 3.2.1; Policy 3.1) to allow for the reconstruction of lawfully existing resort accessory swimming pools and structures currently located within the Gulf Beach and Bay Beach Ecological Zones.

Prepare a redevelopment work plan for the existing resort housing properties that are located outside of the Resort Housing District.

Develop a “Best Practices Green Technology checklist” that will be required whenever any new development or redevelopment project is approved.

Prepare a redevelopment work plan for the Commercial District. The Town Center General and Town Center Limited Commercial District nodes, along Palm Ridge Road, Periwinkle Way and Tarpon, is recommended as the first areas for consideration.

Prepare a redevelopment work plan for the Residential District.

Pending some additional fine-tuning by city staff, the council may formally adopt their goals for 2011-12 at their next meeting.