Collier County and Local News for December 2020

December Collier Government News

As Feared: Becoming a News Desert

It’s been coming for some time but accelerated greatly this month. On December 1, long-time Naples Daily News columnist Brent Batten accepted a buy-out offer from Gannett and announced his retirement:

  • Brent Batten: A few lines at the end of the line. “Over 35 years I’ve been fortunate to cover the police and courts beats, serve as the paper’s Lee County bureau chief, its city editor and, for the past 23 years, a columnist.” Naples Daily News, 12/1/20

Around the same time, Patrick Riley, Naples Daily News county government reporter, left to become government accountability reporter at Lookout Santa Cruz, a startup online news enterprise. It’s one of many new business models seeking to fill the growing news desert space.

In the two weeks that followed:

We must continue to support our local journalism. A one-year digital subscription to the Naples Daily News is just $3 for 3 months. Click here to subscribe.

Due to the increasing scarcity of local government news, I have expanded the sources I follow.

Local news reported in this post is by:
Steve Stefanides (Coastal Breeze News); Brittany Carloni, Dan DeLuca, Liz Freeman, Rachel Fradette, Thaddeus Mast, Omar Rodriguez Ortiz, Patrick Riley, and Karl Schneider (Naples Daily News); Olivia Hyde (NBC-2 News); Bill Smith (The News-Press); David Silverberg (The Paradise Progressive); Andrea Perdomo (WGCU News); and Rachel Cox-Rosen, Rich Kolko, Nicole Lauren, Zach Oliveri, Taylor Smith, and Gina Tomlinson (WINK News).

Coronavirus Update

Through January 3, 4,521 people have been vaccinated in Collier County, according to the latest Florida Department of Health COVID-19 vaccine summary. No other county-level details are available.

Collier’s COVID-19 test positivity rate has been in the double-digits since December 30:

In the City of Naples

Board of County Commissioners

Collier residents are represented by one of five elected county commissioners.
Find your commissioner HERE.

Last month, County Manager Leo Ochs announced plans to retire by the end of May and Deputy County Manager Nick Casalanguida said he would leave by year’s end. Now:

Commission News

Other County Government News

County Project Updates

Beach Improvements

Naples Senior Center

Amazon Distribution Center

Paradise Coast Sports Complex

East Naples Triangle

Collier County Public Schools

Other County Government Bodies

Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller

Collier Sheriff

City of Naples

City of Marco Island

Greater Naples Fire Rescue District (GNFRD)

Residents of Collier County receive fire and emergency medical services (EMS) from five separately-managed entities, depending on the location of the need. GNFRD is one of them.
Learn more HERE.

Our State Legislators

Parts of Collier County are represented in the Florida House of Representatives by Reps. Bob Rommel (District 106), Lauren Melo (District 80), and David Borrero (District 105). All of Collier County is represented in the Florida Senate by Sen. Kathleen Passidomo.
Find Your State Representative

Our U.S. Congressmen

Parts of Collier County are represented in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (District 25) and, through January 2, 2021, Rep. Francis Rooney (District 19). Rep. Byron Donalds assumed the District 19 seat on January 3rd.
Find Your Representative

From our newest Congressman:

That’s it for December Collier County government news.

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