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CCP goes over term limits, sewer and carts

By Staff | Jul 21, 2020

The Captiva Community Panel recently decided how to interpret its bylaws regarding term limits for vacancy appointees, as well as heard updates from its wastewater and golf cart safety committees.

At the July 14 meeting, President David Mintz opened the panel’s discussion on the vagueness surrounding the bylaws’ language for the permitted two consecutive terms when applied to someone appointed to a vacant seat. He had raised the issue last month and asked the panel to think on it.

Mintz explained that openings must be filled within 30 days, but future terms are not addressed.

“If you fill a vacancy and you serve for one year or two years, does that one year or two years count as someone’s three-year term?” he asked. “Or (is that time) not considered a full three-year term?”

Panel members can serve two, consecutive three-year terms before they are termed out.

“I thought it was an easy question. You get six years and that’s it,” Mintz continued. “But the more I read it, and the more I read it, and the more I read it, I started to think that’s wrong.”

“I think we can amend the bylaws to make this clearer,” he added.

Panel Member Mike Lanigan voiced his objection to the idea of someone being appointed in the first year of a term to finish it, then having the chance to serve two full terms – six years – after that.

“I’d rather have shorter terms than longer terms,” he said.

Panel Member Ann Brady agreed.

“I think the intention was a maximum of six years,” she said.

Panel Member Tony Lapi suggested that the 18-month mark in a term could decide if it is perceived as a full term or not. Appointments before the halfway mark could count as a term, so they get one more.

“A compromise now for both sides,” he said. “Until we change the bylaws.”

The panel voted unanimously to count appointments of 18 months or more as one full term.


Panel Member and Wastewater Committee Chair Jay Brown reported that he recently discussed the cost and scope of a comprehensive engineering study for a central sewer system with two engineering firms. Last month, he reported that county officials said funding will not be available any time soon.

Kimley-Horn provided a proposal estimated between $50,000 and $70,000.

“They believe there is perhaps $40,000 of funds available to pay for part,” Brown said. “For an additional $10,000 to $20,000, they can develop recommendations for assessing property owners.”

The panel had initially believed a more comprehensive study would cost about $200,000.

“It seems like a great proposal,” he said of what Kimley-Horn submitted.

Brown continued that CONSOR Engineers has not created a proposal for the panel to see.

“They feel very strongly that our central sewer plan should be based on STEP (Septic Tank Effluent Pumping) technology, rather than conventional central sewer technology,” he said.

For a STEP plan, properties retain septic tanks. The tanks are adapted, so the liquid is captured in a central collection system and processed. The solids remain and are pumped out every couple of years.

“They want to create a proposal where they would do an evaluation of the STEP processing,” Brown said. “His ballpark estimate for this (comprehensive study) analysis would be about $25,000.”

CONSOR also estimated that the project would cost about 25 percent of that of a central sewer system.

It is aiming to submit its proposal by Aug. 6.

Brown suggested that he take Kimley-Horn’s proposal to county officials to see if they can work with the CEPD on the funding. In addition, he suggested they get the CONSOR proposal and review it.

The panel agreed.


Treasurer and Golf Cart Safety Committee Chair Antje Baumgarten presented to the panel some suggestions on behalf of the committee to help improve safety due to golf cart traffic.

It recommended meeting with the county’s legal advisers to discuss a possible addendum to the current ordinance. The goal would be to add the following items:

– No alcohol on golf carts

– Kids safety first: Responsibility of parents

– Captiva Golf Cart Certified: Renters must undergo a face-to-face instruction on the rules

– Off-island rental companies must follow the same rules as on-island companies

– New mandatory stickers on rentals

The committee suggested that every rental have a new sticker with the key rules, including the Golf Cart Zone (north end until ‘Tween Waters), lane positioning, no alcohol, limited driving times for ages under 21 and responsibility of parents. Locals with carts will be encouraged to also put on a sticker.

In addition, renters should be required to sign a form stating that they have been informed and agree to the rules. The committee also recommended meeting with the county to improve signage, including:

– Both sides of the S-curve at Jensen’s on the Gulf

– No passing signs along Captiva Drive

– Big sign at ‘Tween Waters to mark the end of the zone


– The panel reviewed a list of issues raised in workshops, from committees or by residents that the panel has not been able to address and decided which to pursue in the future and which not to.

Some topics kept on the table include gas leaf blowers, overcrowding from day-trippers and rentals, and county community planning, while subjects like an attorney retainer and scooters were dismissed.

– Panel Member John Jensen reported Alfredo Fermin, of AAA Wildlife Trapping and Removal Services, passed along that Lee County has spent $19,500 of the $25,000 budgeted for his services.

“So he’ll have to cut back to three weeks a month until the end of September,” he said.

Jensen said there are about 100 properties Fermin can visit, and he catches 30-40 iguanas per visit.

After some discussion, the panel agreed to ask Fermin put together a detailed report on his catches. Also, Jensen will reach out to Marco Island and Boca Grande for the results of their programs.

– Mintz reported that the right-of-way letters have been drafted for the six property owners to sign located along Captiva Drive, from the post office to Andy Rosse Lane, for the new sidewalk. However, Johnson Engineering is waiting to hear from the county that the plan for the county lands is alright.