Monday, November 11, 2019

Advisory Committees Help Make Us a Better Community


Advisory committees serve to provide the community with a wide-ranging source of information and feedback to both the city staff and to the Marco Island City Council. The membership of those committees is made of seven members to each committee from a wide cross-section of the island and appointed by each individual council person.

Marco Island’s South Beach. | Photos by Maria Lamb

Those committees report directly to the city council and each have a city staff member as a liaison to answer questions. They include the following:

  • Beach and Coastal -Resources Advisory Committee
  • Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee
  • Waterways Advisory Committee
  • Audit Advisory Committee
  • Beautification Advisory Committee
  • Planning Board

The Coastal Breeze News over the next six editions will highlight one of those committees and its charge to allow you a deeper insight as to what it does and how it impacts the quality of life on the island.

Should you have an interest in volunteering for one of those committees you should email Laura Litzan, the City Clerk for Marco Island at llitzan@cityofmarcoisland.com, or visit the city’s website at www.cityofmarcoisland.com.

Beach and Coastal Resources Advisory Committee

Councilors and residents alike strongly agree that our beaches and the environment which surround them are a very important aspect of what makes Marco Island a very special place.

The committee meets the third Wednesday of every month in council chambers at 9 AM.

The committee is especially mindful of wildlife and birds that share the magnificent seven miles of beachfront with the other residents and visitors to the island.

An important way to ensure that this gets the proper attention is through an active and ever evolving Beach Stewardship Volunteer Program. This provides educational opportunities for volunteers to serve as Beach Stewards to educate and inform those enjoying our beach.

As a committee, they feel it is important to raise public awareness of beach issues and keeping the public informed regarding rules and projects on the beach.

The committee has established the following goals for 2019 and are actively working to accomplish those goals.

  • Reducing the use of single-use plastic bags and straws island-wide.
  • Expand the monthly beach clean-up program to include non-Saturday mornings and evenings, while holding beach awareness events on a semi-annual basis.
  • Increase outreach and communications with beach vendors, restaurants, hotels and condominiums, time shares and homeowners along the beach, in addition to island organizations to reduce the impact of trash along our beaches. Stronger educational efforts regarding beach etiquette regarding our wildlife.
  • Increase outreach with school children to promote environmental awareness on such issues as “respect for wildlife, sea turtle season and best practices of environmental stewardship.”
  • Submit newspaper articles to promote awareness of the issues and concerns being discussed by the Beach and Coastal Resources Advisory Committee. Potential topics could include beach re-nourishment, Beach Stewardship Program, beach clean-ups, wildlife, iguanas, burrowing owls and gopher tortoises, eagles and ospreys.
  • Promote increased participation in the Volunteer Beach Stewardship Program with presentations at clubs, organizations and businesses to gain volunteers and possible sponsorship.
  • Work towards Collier County installation of a lightning detector at South Beach using TDC funds.
  • Work with environmental organizations such as Audubon of the Western Everglades, Audubon Florida, Rookery Bay, the Conservancy of SW Florida, Collier County Shorebird Stewardship and FWC to help protect and preserve Marco’s coastal natural resources.

Attendance at their monthly meetings is open to the public and there are opportunities for input and questions by the public at those meetings, which is welcomed. The committee will not meet in August but will resume its normal schedule in September.

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