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Things to know for Bonita Springs residents reentering the area

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Posted at 4:58 AM, Oct 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-07 12:11:29-04

BONITA SPRINGS, Fla. — — The following is an unedited release from the City of Bonita Springs dated Oct. 7.

Bonita Beach residents can obtain passes for limited vehicular access to the Bonita Beach Area beginning today October 7th at 1:00pm at the Bonita Springs Recreation Center. Limited vehicular access to the Bonita Beach area will be open to Bonita Beach residents with passes starting on October 8th at 7:00am. Passes must be presented to Lee County Sheriff Office at the entrance of Bonita Beach Road.

For residents to gain vehicular access to their property, the resident must follow the instructions below:

· The property owners must provide their ID and proof of ownership. The proof of ownership may be a Bonita Spring Utilities Statement, A Florida Power and Light Statement, or a Lee County Property Appraiser TRIM Notice.

· If an owner would like an authorizing agent, such as a contractor or family member to access the property for them, they will need to have an affidavit signed. The Affidavit Authorizing Agent form will be provided by the City or can be accessed at Affidavit Authorizing Agent form. The property owner must have the form signed and notarized. The designee will need to provide their ID and owner’s proof of ownership in the form of a Bonita Spring Utilities Statement, a Florida Power and Light Statement, or a Lee County Property Appraiser TRIM Notice with the property owner’s name on it.

· Once the necessary documents have been obtained, the property owner or their designee must come to the Bonita Spring Parks and Recreation Center located at

26740 Pine Ave, Bonita Springs, FL 34135 to receive a pass to gain access to Hickory Blvd.

o Residents will be able to apply for a pass starting at 1:00 pm on October 7th, 2022.

o Bonita Springs Parks and Recreations center will also be open for Bonita Beach residents on Saturday, October 8th, 2022, and Sunday, October 9th, 2022 from 7:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Once residents are given vehicular access to the affected areas, they will be advised to use extreme caution driving on Hickory Blvd, as there are areas along the roadway that have been destroyed. The City will not be liable for any damage to vehicles due to the condition of the road and right of way. All vehicles must be parked in the appropriate driveway. Vehicles cannot block any portion of Hickory Boulevard. Residents are advised that vehicles are likely to get stuck in the sand if parked anywhere but on the driveway and the City cannot guarantee that a tow truck will be permitted immediate access under the circumstances.

For questions regarding Bonita Beach Access please call 239-949-6262 or visit Bonita Beach access page.

Upon entering the beach area, residents may see tags placed on their home.

A GREEN TAG placed on a structure is for first responders. It allows them to track structures they have searched. Green tags are not intended to provide safety information to the general public.

A RED TAG placed on a structure means the house/structure was found to be in hazardous condition. It has been determined to be uninhabitable in its current condition. While this does not necessarily mean the structure has been condemned or is structurally unsound, property owners entering structures with a red tag are doing so at their own risk and should use extreme caution.

Property owners are encouraged to work with an engineer, architect, or contractor to determine what repairs are necessary for their home. The estimated cost of these repairs should be used to see if they will exceed the FEMA 50% Rule (see other notes, but generally this requires property owners making repairs that are valued at more than 50% of the value of the structure to bring the entire property into compliance with current regulations). Permit requests should then be

submitted to the City of Bonita Springs Community Development office located at 9220 Bonita Beach Road, Suite 111, Bonita Springs, Florida, 34135. Please note this department is not located at City Hall. Building permit fees associated with repairs needed because of storm damage have been waived.

For additional questions please call Community Development at 239-444-6150.

The following is an unedited release from the City of Bonita Springs dated Oct. 5.

The City is continuing to assess the damage caused by Hurricane Ian. The City has been updating residents throughout the last few days on Facebook Live.

Access to Hickory Blvd

The City of Bonita Springs is working to get residents access to the areas along Hickory Blvd that have been affected by Hurricane Ian. Residents should begin to prepare to gain access to their residences. If the property owner would like a home watch representative, contractor or family member to access the property for them, they will need to have an affidavit signed by the property owner and a utility bill with the property owners name on it. It is preferred that the affidavit is notarized. Residents will be allowed vehicular access to Hickory Blvd in the coming days. When it is safe to access, the city will post an announcement.

Lee County DOT has been working to clear the roadway for vehicular access along Hickory Blvd, as well as residential driveways. The sand has been pushed into mounds along the right of way. Please do not move the sand piles, as DOT will not remove any sand piles located outside of the right of way.

Residents will be required to show proof of residency before entering the island. Contractors will be permitted access so long as they are with the property owner.

Once residents are allowed access to the affected areas, they will be advised to use extreme caution driving on Hickory Blvd, as there are areas along the roadway that have been destroyed. The City will not be liable for any damage to vehicles due to the condition of the road and right of way.

All vehicles must be parked in the appropriate driveway. Vehicles cannot block any portion of Hickory Boulevard. Residents are advised that vehicles are likely to get stuck in the sand if parked anywhere but on the driveway and the City cannot guarantee that a tow truck will be permitted immediate access under the circumstances.

The Lee County Sheriff’s Office is currently stationed at the south end of Little Hickory Island and deputies are available to transport residents to and from their homes to retrieve belongings.

The Building Department has inspected every building for structural integrity. A red tag has been attached to the front of any structure that has been deemed unsafe.

IF A STRUCTURE HAS BEEN RED-TAGGED, NO PERSON MAY ENTER THE STRUCTURE FOR ANY REASON.

Residents may call (239) 444-6150 to ask whether their property has been red tagged.

About Storm Debris:

Storm debris is collected separately from household garbage. Storm debris assessment is already underway throughout the county collections will begin in the next few days, giving residents time to get storm debris to the curb.

Click here to view guidelines [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com] so that work crews can quickly and efficiently remove storm debris from your property.

  • Most Important – Please set storm debris at the curb away from your normal household trash and recycling; it will be collected and documented separately.
  • Place storm debris at the curb in three separate piles: garbage, yard waste and building debris. Federal Emergency Management Agency rules require documentation of the volume and type of debris collected to reimburse the county for storm cleanup.
  • Garbage must be placed in a 40-gallon can or heavy mil plastic bag each weighing no more than 50 pounds. If you have a larger county-provided container for automated garbage collection, you may use that as well.
  • Yard waste does not need to be bundled after the storm. Place it in piles that can easily be managed by collection personnel with a claw truck.
  • To expedite collection, do not place anything beneath low-hanging obstacles like trees or power lines or near things like fire hydrants or mailboxes.
  • Food must be removed from any appliance set at the curb. Inedible food should be placed with the garbage.

For private or gated communities

FEMA regulations require that private or gated communities have a current Right of Entry and Indemnification form on file with the City of Bonita Springs before any disaster debris recovery crews are allowed to enter the community. Click here [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com] to download the form, then email the form to public works.

If you are unsure if your community has a current Right of Entry form on file, please have your community association manager or home-owner association president email public works.

Storm recovery status is updated on the city website www.cityofbonitasprings.org [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com]. Regular updates can also be found at the City of Bonita Springs Facebook page.

Questions, please visit our hurricane Ian [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com] page.

Operation Blue Roof

Operation Blue Roof is currently active in Florida following Hurricane Ian. Operation Blue Roof is a priority mission managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the FEMA Federal Emergency Management Agency. This is a free service to homeowners. Parties affected by Hurricane Ian are encouraged to submit a Right-of-Entry application. To learn more about Operation Blue Roof and to apply, visit BlueRoof.us or call 888-ROOF-BLU (888-766-3258).

The Florida counties that have been identified are Charlotte and Lee. The initial sign up period is set for 21 days and will end on Oct. 23.

More information: https://www.saj.usace.army.mil/Media/News-Releases/Article/3177838/usace-announces-start-of-blue-roof-program-in-response-to-hurricane-ian/fbclid/usace-announces-start-of-blue-roof-program-in-response-to-hurricane-ian/ [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com]

Imperial River

This morning at 9:45 AM official reports on the Imperial River's show the water level has slightly decreased from 12.32 at 12.29. For those that are concerned, we have sand and sandbags available. The sand is self-serve. We recommend bringing your own shovel (just in case none are available on the sandpile). Sand and bags are located at 27701 Bonita Grande Drive, Bonita Springs, FL 34135.

The City of Bonita Springs continues to advise residents near rivers and canals to keep an eye on the water levels. There is not a mandatory evacuation at this time, however, should the levels increase, residents in flood-prone areas should take precautions.
Sheet flow, which is a natural phenomenon after a hurricane, can cause rivers and canals to rise. The Imperial River has slowly risen since Hurricane Ian. Residents can access the USGS Daily Data for Florida National Water Information System webpage to check levels of the https://waterdata.usgs.gov/monitoring-location/02291500/?fbclid=IwAR2xLq1W07RQlGuF5fKPnUhFOZV5R5RXRBE1Hc8WDsBFvObxCEhgz8xgebI#parameterCode=00065&period=P7D [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com]

Lee County Tax Collector

At the request of Lee County Tax Collector Noelle Branning, The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles is bringing two units called FLOW (Florida Licensing on Wheels) Mobiles to Lee County. These mobile units will provide residents with a replacement driver license, identification card and titles. All fees will be waived, and no documents are necessary to issue replacements.

http://ow.ly/Bpoa50KZJoR [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com]

The FLOW Mobile units will be stationed at Hertz Arena (11000 Everblades Parkway, Estero) starting Monday, October 3. Hours on Monday will be from 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Starting Tuesday, October 4, hours will be 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., seven days a week.

Lee County Point of Distribution (POD) of Food and Water

Lee County is continuing it’s Point of Distribution (POD) for Food and Water at the Old Bonita Library- 26876 Pine Ave.

There are more locations throughout the county. For a list of Distribution sites please visit https://www.leegov.com/hurricane/storm [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com]

Lee County Shelters

The remaining shelters still have space for people in need. For more information, please visit leegov.com/storm.

Estero Recreation Center

9200 Corkscrew Palms Blvd.

Estero, FL 33928

Hertz Arena

11000 Everblades Parkway

Estero, FL 33928

Island Coast High School

2125 DeNavarra Pkwy.

Cape Coral, FL 33909

Lee County Government

For more information about Hurricane Ian and the resources available, please visit the Lee County’s Hurricane Ian pages https://www.leegov.com/hurricane/storm [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com] as well as https://www.leegov.com/hurricane/afterthestorm [cityofbonitasprings.us12.list-manage.com]