After the Fort Myers Beach Town Council closed the beach on Friday evening, I decided to take a ride to Bonita Beach on Saturday afternoon (March 21st). I have attached a photo of Bonita Beach on Mar. 21. Bonita closed their public beaches and all access points; however, their approach for the closure was completely different from FMB.
Bonita used beach patrols to assure that the public beaches were closed and that private property owners and condo owners/renters acted respectfully while sitting and walking on the beach. FMB used beach patrols to assure that no one stepped foot on the beach!
FMB Town Council decided that they would control the behavior of all private property owners and not allow them to sit outside in their front yard (the beach). As I understand it, private property owners and condominiums own the property in front of their units out to the high water line. I am disappointed that our Town Council decided to adopt the position that we could not use our own property, and do not see what legal theory they used to do so.
FMB Town Council took the “poison pill” approach while Bonita took a “common sense” approach to the virus issue.
It is for this reason (and watching the Town Council for ten years) that I believe that we should not have five Town Council members making such large decisions that have significant economic consequences.
By the way, it looks like the FMB Town Council finally solved the traffic problem!
Fort Myers Beach