Monday, October 2, 2017

September 2017 Month in Review - Local News

As at the state level, Hurricane Irma dominated September’s news related to our county and municipal governments and school district, and there is much to report. But I'd like to begin with this quote from Friday’s Naples Daily News editorial:
There will be a time to constructively dissect the Irma preparation and post-storm response. Now is too soon. Monday morning quarterbacks will best serve our community if they wait on the sidelines for more fact-finding.

In this post, I share the news as reported, and without comment. As you read this post, please consider each story from the perspective of the elected officials responsible. If you were they, would you have done anything differently? What facts would you be seeking in order to decide what to do next?

If ever there was an opportunity to see and evaluate your government in action, it was during Hurricane Irma. If you have comments, questions or suggestions about any of last month’s events, I encourage you to share them with your elected officials.

As a reminder, these are the local governing bodies that were/are responsible for providing services to our community:

Collier County Emergency Services Center
8075 Lely Cultural Parkway, Naples 
The Board of County Commissioners — Their appointed County Manager and his organization (CMO) are responsible for the day-to-day operations of county government. As relates to Hurricane Irma, the Bureau of Emergency Services Division and the Public Utilities Department are part of the CMO. (Organization chart )

The Collier County Sheriff - The Sheriff and his staff are responsible, on a day-to-day basis, for “preserving and protecting the lives, property and constitutional guarantees of all persons.”

The  City of Naples City Council, City of Marco Island City Council and City of Everglades City City Council and their respective City managers and staffs are responsible for providing services and protecting their municipalities. (Ironically, Everglades City’s mayor of 22 years resigned over problems with the City’s sewer plant just days before Hurricane Irma wreaked its havoc.)

The Collier County Public School Board — The School Board’s appointed superintendent and her staff provided hurricane-protected shelters for community members who evacuated their homes due to the predicted storm surge.

The stories, editorials, and commentaries noted below link to the Naples Daily News unless otherwise noted.

Top stories: Hurricane Irma


 Top editorials and commentaries - Hurricane Irma


Top stories: Collier County


Top stories and commentaries: City of Naples


Top stories: Collier County Public Schools


Looking ahead: ways to help

As mentioned above, there is still great human need in areas within our own community, and there are many ways to help. I close this post with just a few:

  • Volunteer your time to help victims of Hurricane Irma in Collier County via VollunteerCollier.com/irma.
  • Purchase needed items from the United Way of Collier County’s Amazon Wish List for Hurricane Irma Victims. The items you order will be shipped to the United Way, which will get them delivered to areas that need them the most.
  • Make a tax-deductible donation to the Collier Comes Together Disaster Relief Fund, established to provide assistance to Hurricane Irma victims and their families. You can designate a geographic area (e.g. Marco Island, Immokalee, Golden Gate), purpose (e.g. food, housing) or nonprofit to benefit.

Thank you for wanting to be an informed voter and for making a difference in our community.

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