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CCP schedules workshop for Captiva Community Plan

By Staff | Oct 22, 2015

After one lengthy conversation after another, the Captiva Community Panel decided to hold a workshop next month to continue the discussion about the Captiva Community Plan after Lee County staff offered extensive feedback.

Jay Brown said anything they could not resolve with a 30-second discussion should go to a workshop, which resulted in one scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10. Some of policies that will be discussions include quality of adjacent waters; density increases prohibited; criteria for variance approval; dark skies; estuarine and wetland resources; underground utilities; alternative transportation; tourism; short term rental of residential units; trees along Captiva Drive; heritage tress and mangroves.

Max Forgey, the Captiva Community Panel planner began the meeting last week by sharing information regarding the 10-page proposed Captiva Community Plan.

“Over the last three, or four years, this panel has been looking at the portion of the Lee Plan that relates to Captiva,” he said. “There have been two sets of amendments. One is about three years ago. The panel took upon itself to create its own vision statement for what they wanted Captiva to be. What they wanted the island to be in the future. Those have been incorporated into our draft version. The rest of it is a result of workshops, public input that we have gotten over the last two or three years. We have incorporated a strike through or underline version. If it’s underlined, it’s been added, or the panel is proposing to add it. If it is stricken through it is language the panel hopes to delete, or put somewhere else.”

Sharon Jenkins-Owen, the principal planner for Lee County attended the meeting and offered some advice throughout the discussion Tuesday, Oct. 13. She said after everyone comes to an agreement with the Captiva Community Plan it will then go to a committee meeting before a local planning agency takes a look at the plan. From there, the Lee County Board of County Commissioners will review it before going to the State of Florida for adoption. After adoption, the plan will go back before the county commission where the final decision will be made.

The discussions regarding Lee County staff’s comments began with the Captiva Community Vision, goal 13.

The panel’s verbiage is “Captiva Island is a coastal barrier island with a low-density residential lifestyle and economic base, augmented by commercial activities, which serve residents and tourists who are drawn toward a tranquil, unhurried experience in an natural setting. As an inland community, Captiva’s natural beaches, wildlife and flora – is its most important attraction, and Captiva residents regard the protection of its mangrove fringe, water quality and dark skies as matters of paramount importance. Toward this end, its residents, owners and the business community must work together, with Lee County and other regulatory bodies to sustain the fragile and limited resources of the island.”

Under this verbiage, 16 bullet points continued to show what the community values.

The comments from Lee County staff said the text was too lengthy and belongs to the “community plan as backup to support the amendments or incorporated as policies if not already.”

Captiva Community Panel President Mike Kelly said the community and panel spent almost two years working on the community vision.

“We compiled and spent time analyzing and coming up with what we thought was important to Captiva,” he said. “We should continue to believe in our vision.”

Forgey said the goal statement is a great place to express a neighborhood vision. His recommendation was to keep the vision statement.

“When someone with a fresh eye looked at this, they thought ‘are you accomplishing all the same things within that first paragraph that you are really saying in the second paragraph,'” Jenkins-Owen said, adding that the comments were provided to give the panel something to ponder.

The monthly Captiva Community Panel meeting was moved to Thursday, Nov. 12, at 9 a.m.

Follow Meghan @IslanderMeghan on Twitter.