People have been asking who I am endorsing, so I thought I’d better mention it again for those who haven’t seen it. With all the virus stuff, the distancing things, the masks and gloves, we’ve all been busy taking care of our families and ourselves and others, so I’ll mention it again. I have endorsed William Douglass for County Commissioners, District 1, the seat I now hold. William has lived in Collier County for 36 years and worked as a fireman for East Naples Fire Department, and then with the Greater Naples Fire Department for 30 years until he recently retired. Both his kids went to Lely High School when the Marco kids also went there, so your kids or grandkids might remember the Douglass children. William’s wife worked for the City of Marco Island for 5 years, so they are VERY familiar with Marco Island and loves the people. He is hardworking, honest, dependable—because Firemen MUST be dependable—and cares about the people! Again, that’s what Firemen do because they care about the people! Ask Chief Murphy! Instead of politics, they care about us!
Oh, yes! Please vote for Crystal Kinzel to remain the Clerk of Courts for another 4 years. You couldn’t find a more honest person, hardworking, caring and a good friend to the community!
*Advertisement! The County needs Lifeguards! If you have extra time and can swim and/or have obtained a Florida license, please call Steve Carnell the Parks & Rec Administrator for the Collier County Parks system—his number is 239-252-8371. Or you can contact Barry Williams the Parks Director at 239-252-4035. They will be so happy to hear from you. All of the pools need people, but they especially need Lifeguards at the very busy Eagle Lakes Aquatic Center. It’s a fun place and a nice way to stay cool during this hot summer!
*Have you filled out your U.S. Census questionnaire online yet? It will probably take 10 minutes or so, but it is very important that you fill it out. Local communities depend on information from the Census Bureau to fund programs that promote the well-being of families and children, as well as equal employment opportunities for you and your neighbors. To find this questionnaire, go to my2020census.gov. If you do not submit the questionnaire by e-mail, you will receive a paper questionnaire by mail in a few weeks. Thank you for your help.
*For the folks living along U.S. 41 E, east of 951, you probably noticed some really weird machinery working on digging out the swales from trees, huge weeds, boulders, overgrowth, etc. I went to watch, and who was there but Cleo! Yes, Cleo and Stan Venetos from Reflection Lakes! I think they are a little famous around there, and always with a smile on their faces as they work to make the area a lovelier place to live. FDOT were the folks who were doing the digging with a HUGE machine in which each wheel operated on its own, without being connected to the other wheels! It was fascinating! The operator was able to make that machine lift one wheel in the air and the other one ride along the side. It really took talent to work that baby! The mechanical engineer who designed it in Germany must have been a genius! We again thank FDOT for coming to our rescue, and a special thanks to Frank, with the contract company! What a delightful guy. And a special thanks to Victoria Peters from FDOT! She’s the best. Now you see governments working together for the betterment of the people!
*Being that we receive our absentee ballots this week, I wanted to mention a couple more people to vote for: One is Jan Glassman for Republican Committee Woman! She has worked for us for years and never gets the credit she deserves, and never asks for anything. She’s soft–spoken, very smart, very politically savvy, and a good friend to the Republicans! Actually, she’s a good friend period!
*I went to the new Paradise Coast Sports Complex last week, and… well, YOU OUGHT TO SEE IT! When it’s finished in a few more years, it will be 180 acres large, but right now they are working on the first 50 acres, and installing all the newest equipment, etc. With so many people out of work, many, many came over to the county looking for work, and they got it alright! Nick Casalanguida, the Deputy Administrator, who has been calling the shots, was beaming like a brand-new father! Nick said that there were days when they had over 200 people all working on the project at the same time! Yes, there’s still a lot of work, but they hope to have the first phase ready by fall. Other groups working on this project were Tourist Development Council, the Collier County Sports Council, United Arts Council, Manhattan Construction—Sports Complex Construction Contractor, Sports Force Parks, Clerk of Courts Crystal Kinzel, County Attorney Jeff Klatzkow, Davidson Engineering and of course all of the Commissioners supported the project.
*I wanted to give a High Five to Rob (Robbie) Schank for his outstanding accomplishments for the Lely Boys Soccer Team. His Dad also works at Lely, and they are long time family friends! I knew Robbie as he was growing up. He is in his 26th year as Head Coach. Schank led the Trojans to their second straight strong season with a 22-6-2 record and advancing to the State Semifinals where they lost in penalty kicks. They beat Naples, which had beaten Lely three times in the regionals! Good job Robbie!!! Next year we’ll watch you and your team win ‘em all! Hey, Dad Bob, I bet you are really proud! His Dad, Bob Schank, was the Chief with E.N. Fire Department when it was still called that—what a beautiful family!
*You remember that awful deteriorating building at the corner of Davis Blvd and Collier Blvd, which we dubbed The Skeleton Building because all it was a frame to a make-believe building? We (the county) begged the owner to at least finish off the outside, but they paid no heed! Finally, someone has come in after 10 years of putting up with that mess and bought the building on 18.21 acres which will become an Amazon “Last Mile” Distribution Center. No, it’s not the much-wanted restaurant, or a great shopping area, but at least it’s not that mess anymore!
*Last but not least, is the man I’ve already endorsed, but haven’t spoken out much about it, and that is Jeff Page, for Greater Naples Fire Department Commissioner! This guy knows emergency business from the ground up! He worked for many years with EMS, and then decided to work the other side of the coin as well, as a Fire Commissioner! Please vote with me for Jeff Page.
See you next week!