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Council's Corner: Feasibility study will help community make an informed decision
July 5, 2017

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The Lehigh Acres Community Council has raised the money to begin the feasibility study to make an informed decision as to whether or not Lehigh Acres should be incorporated.

Joe Mazurkiewicz, president of BJM Consulting, will perform the study. Mr. Mazurkiewicz performed the last study in 2007 for the Citizen's for Cityhood group.

The Citizens for Cityhood group of talented individuals put in hundreds of hours and raised a great deal of money to have the incorporation effort put to a straw ballot, which was unsuccessful. It was unsuccessful, not because Lehigh Acres wasn't ready for incorporation, it was unsuccessful because the residents were told their taxes would increase through a great deal of false advertising.

In 2007, a study by a professional consulting firm indicated there would be a surplus of tax revenues over expenditures each of the five years the state required the study to cover and Lehigh was ready to be incorporated. Today, we have more residents, more revenue and a plan to succeed.

The Lehigh Acres Community Council hopes the residents will not listen to people that are not convinced Lehigh Acres is ready. These people have no basis for this type of thinking because they haven't done a study; they are putting together their own numbers and making conclusions that just aren't justified by the facts.

The fact remains, after the professional consultant has completed the study, only at that time will the Community Council decide to take the next step - that is showing the legislative delegation that incorporating Lehigh Acres meets all state requirements. The state Legislature will pass very tight directives on all the issues, especially the formal aspects. Once approved, then and only then will it be put on the ballot for all voters to decide.

The Lehigh Acres Community Council invites the entire population of Lehigh Acres to come to the council meetings, listen to the facts provided by consulting firms and attorneys, and make an informed decision. Whether you're for incorporation or not, come to the meetings; all input is necessary and important to your future - no matter what age - and the future of your community.

Do you remember Lehigh's earlier years when the population doubled every winter, had five luxurious golf courses, the trees were always trimmed and people freely walked the streets and shopping areas? Children were safe, we were all safe.

Drive around Lehigh Acres today and look at the community. If you like what you see and if you think this is what the ninth largest city in Florida (by number of acres) should look like, then don't vote for incorporation. However, if you drive around town and are not satisfied with the condition Lehigh Acres is in today, come to our meetings and not only find out how incorporation will affect you, but how it will make Lehigh Acres appealing to larger businesses bringing down our underemployed and unemployed ratings.

The Community Council of Lehigh Acres serves as the voice for unincorporated Lehigh Acres.

Meetings are held the third Monday of each month at 6:30 p.m. in the meeting room at the LCSO East District substation, at 1301 Homestead Road N.

To contact the council, email Info@LehighAcresCommunityCouncil.com.

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