Water Quality – The Fight Continues


It’s been quite a week on Sanibel. Before I get into the leading island news, be sure and check out the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service activity since last Friday. It follows the “water” scoop and other news below.

Early this afternoon, teammate Elise and I took a ride to check on the progress of the summer paver project at Spanish Cay (it’s coming along, with only a small area yet to be completed) and to take a couple of beach photos to post here. There were several cars parked at the Fulgur Street beach access when we pulled in, but the riders walked down the boardwalk, barely making it to the beach before they all turned, to return to their cars and leave.

08-03-18 1

08-03-18 Fulgur west

08-03-18-3

08-03-18 Fulgur south

08-03-18 2

08-03-18 Fulgur east

I also made it to the beach. But didn’t stay but a minute. The strong smell and throat irritation from the red tide deters even the hearty. There were hardly any people on the beach in either direction. The above are three shots are looking west up the beach toward Sundial, south, and east toward the mainland and Ft Myers Beach.

Southwest Florida Water Update

You likely have heard or read about the waters in Southwest Florida and the Gulf coast being in crisis from harmful blooms causing mass mortality of aquatic life. Waterways and beaches are littered with fish, dolphins, manatees, birds, shellfish, etc. The cause? Pollution from harmful high levels of nitrogen and phosphorus, nutrients that are feeding two different harmful blooms.”

SCCF logoThese two blooms are described in The Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation’s (SCCF’s) “Call to Action” that was emailed yesterday to their members:

  1. “Freshwater cyanobacteria (aka blue-green algae) that looks like neon green paint in Lake Okeechobee and the Caloosahatchee River reaching coastal back bays and beaches. This algae is an indicator of polluted water than can turn very potent toxins on and off. Toxins can persist in the water and sand even after the visible signs of a bloom are gone. The current bloom began in Lake Okeechobee on June 7, 2018.
  2. “Red tide is cause by a marine (saltwater) microscopic dinoflagellate that turns water a red color. It blooms offshore and moves onshore feeding off nutrients. The Gulf Coast has been experiencing an extraordinary event since October 2017 along the southwest gulf coast. Toxins released by this organism kill marine life, makes shellfish poisonous to eat, and causes eye and throat irritation when present.

“The two blooms are independent and not related, however, both are responding to excess nutrients from watershed AND Lake Okeechobee “runoff”.

“We all contribute to the excess nutrient problem so we all have to work toward solutions. We must ask elected officials to stop eroding environmental protections. Stop permitting wetland development. Establish water quality standards, and upgrade stormwater regulations for both urban and agriculture.”

The Lake O water release solution is not going to be quick a fix and there are many parts to the problem solving. Much has been done, but most of the solutions still are being constructed, funded, or planned. The Feds have partially funded some of the Lake O work, but this project will take years. The Florida legislature also has put millions toward a solution. Florida Senate Bill 10 recently passed and was signed into law so none of its initiatives have been implemented. It is touted as the strongest ever legislation for Everglades restoration.

A few weeks ago, the White House backed the EAA reservoir. (EAA stands for Everglades Agricultural Reservoir.) It is one of the central components of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP). The reservoir would hold water from Lake O and farm run-off in the wet season and release water south in the dry season. While funding is expected to be included as part of America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018, the request for funding still needs to be approved by the U.S. Senate.

The Feds also just sent the state $3+million, specifically to assist with local municipalities dealing with the algae blooms. Here islanders are thankful that the City of Sanibel is cleaning the beaches and has brought in contractor help because the volume is so high. Sanibel City Manager Judie Zimomra is posting daily updates on www.MySanibel.com with descriptions of the status at various beaches.

Last week, the Army Corps of Engineers announced that it would slow the discharges from Lake O, but we cannot let up in our push with local, state, and federal governments officials.

As island lovers and property owners, understanding and being informed on the “water” issue will help get us through this crisis. The red tide algae eventually will disappear just as it has almost every year going back as far as when it was first documented in the 1840’s. It is unfortunate that those here on their annual vacations are seeing the beaches at their worst.

I know I have posted before asking you to reply to a Call-For-Action. But today, I ask again. Please use the following blue link to go to SCCF’s easy form for sending emails. https://p2a.co/Yl1Gebl

Facts From FWC About Red Tide and Ongoing Bloom

Floria Fish & Wildlife LogoSourced to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and posted locally after the young whale shark beached here on July 22.

  • “FWC has been monitoring the bloom since it started in November.
  • “The bloom has moved north and south along the coast several times as a result of wind and currents.
  • “FWC’s Fish Kill Hotline has received more than 300 fish kill reports and requests for info associated with the bloom.
  • “Fish kills have been reported in Pinellas, Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Lee, Collier, and Monroe counties; some of the affected species include grouper, trout, eel, snook, tarpon, hardhead catfish, baitfish.
  • “Red tides are a common occurrence along Florida’s Gulf coast and fish populations have evolved to be resilient to the impact.
  • “There have been several red tide events over the last 20 years and fish and fisheries are able to rebound even after severe and prolonged red tide events.
  • “In addition to fish kills, red tides can cause illness and death to aquatic wildlife including marine mammals, sea turtles, and birds.
  • “FWC staff have been out in the field to confirm species identification and location, estimate of number of dead fish and obtain samples from fish carcasses.”

Next Week at Florida Realtors®

Florida Realtors logoNext week is Florida Realtors® 102nd Convention and Trade Show followed by their annual business meetings. This lucky girl is serving on five committees this year and though we manage to get most committee work done through the year by emails and phone calls, we expect to finalize many projects over the few days when we are all together in Orlando.

While I am away, SanibelSusan teammates, Dave, Elise, and Lisa will be here keeping our business humming, while I’ll be in touch with them, mostly through email. One of the topics that will be discussed at the meetings is water quality. Our local Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® has been fighting for improved water quality for years. In Orlando at FloridaRealtors®, it is on the agenda at the Legislative Think Tank Land Use Group and probably also will be discussed in the Resort & 2nd Homes Specialist Breakout Group. There, I will hear about how similar “water” problems are affecting our business on both west and east coasts.

Island Summer Openings/Closings

  • sanibel-library-logoSanibel Public Library Reopens – The Library reopened on Wednesday for normal hours of operation after being closed for its updating/modernization project. While renovations continue, their temporary main entrance is on the west side of the building. Library hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays and Thursdays; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays, closed Sundays. For more info, call them at 239-472-2483. More info at www.sanlib.org.
  • sanibel schoolLocal Schools Opening Soon – How can summer be almost over? Open houses for the Sanibel School are Wed, August 8, with the 2018-2019 school year beginning on Fri, August 10. More info at www.sbl.leeschools.net.

Why Won’t My HOA Board Listen To Me?

Here is some good advice that was posted yesterday on-line at FloridaRealtors®. It was published in the Fort Lauderdale “Sun Sentinel” and written by Gary M. Singer.Sun sentinel

“Question: I live in a beautiful community that is well maintained by the board and its various committees. All is great, except for the roads – they are ugly with oil marks and patched areas. I have asked about this, but it does not seem to be a priority of the board of directors. How do I get the board to address this issue? – Philip

“Answer: Most people who want to get their board’s attention try to bring up a new issue at the public board meeting. This is not a good idea and will most likely not work.

“A board meeting is a business meeting and should be run from an agenda of items known to all in advance so that the members and directors have ample time to research and consider the issues to be dealt with during that meeting. The common tactic of trying to embarrass or ambush the board at the meeting almost always backfires. Simply, the board meeting is not the time to introduce a new issue.

“The better method is to send your board a letter outlining your concern. Try to be detailed and propose solutions. Explain why you think it is an essential use of the community’s resources, bearing in mind that other residents may have differing priorities. Send the letter by certified mail to ensure it gets the attention it deserves.

“If it still does not make the agenda, try again, or even better, get some neighbors to write in, too. Many voices will hold more sway than just one.

“Finally, if, after all of these efforts, the existing board does not share your priorities for the community, you should consider running for the board at the next election. When you are a board member, you are able to help set the agenda and get your ideas pushed through. At least, that is, if enough of your neighbors agree with you.

“About the writer: Gary M. Singer is a Florida attorney and board-certified as an expert in real estate law by the Florida Bar. He practices real estate, business litigation and contract law from his office in Sunrise, Fla. He is the chairman of the Real Estate Section of the Broward County Bar Association and is a co-host of the weekly radio show Legal News and Review. He frequently consults on general real estate matters and trends in Florida with various companies across the nation.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service sancap GO MLS logoActivity July 27-August 3, 2018

Sanibel

CONDOS

No new listings.

1 price change: Island Beach Club #320F 2/2 now $757.5K.

3 new sales: Coquina Beach #5F 2/2 listed at $495K, Loggerhead Cay #463 2/2 listed at $499K, Loggerhead Cay #184 2/2 listed at $789K.

6 closed sales: Mariner Pointe #732 2/2 $463.5K, Loggerhead Cay #483 2/2 $517.5K, Loggerhead Cay #342 2/2 $550K, Kimball Lodge #303 1/2 $595K, Loggerhead Cay #163 2/2 $725K, Seawind II #5 2/2 $760K.

HOMES

No new listings.

5 price changes: 9477 Peaceful Dr 3/2 now $469K, 4542 Bowen Bayou Rd 3/2 now $479K, 976 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex now $499K, 438 Surf Sound Ct 3/2 now $799K, 1133 Golden Olive Ct 3/3.5 now $2.444M.

3 new sales: 5885 Pine Tree Dr 3/2 listed at $549K, 610 Hideaway Ct 3/2.5 listed at $639K, 413 Bell Vista Way E 4/4 listed at $2.495M.

3 closed sales: 6143 Henderson Rd 4/3 $380K, 1940 Periwinkle Way 3/2 half-duplex $445K, 1552 San Carlos Bay Dr 4/5.5 $2.085M.

LOTS

No new listings, new or closed sales.

1 closed sale: 5340 Punta Caloosa Ct $1.33M. 

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: Tennis Villas #3128 1/1 listed at $352.5K.

No closed sales.

HOMES

2 new listings: 17101 Captiva Dr 7/6.5 $2.8M, 1102 Tallow Tree Ct 5/4 $2.995M.

No price changes.

3 new sales: 16181 Captiva Dr 4/4 multi-family listed at $1.895M, 16177 Captiva Dr 2/2 listed at $3.395M, 16179 Captiva Dr 6/6 multi-family listed at $5.095M.

1 closed sale: 15155 Wiles Dr 3/2 $1.1M.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Sun clip artUntil next Friday, wishing you sunshine, clean beaches, and summertime fun!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Almost Thanksgiving 2015 on Sanibel Island


BeachIt’s Sanibel Susan, reporting that this week, the record-warm temperatures continued on Sanibel and Captiva Islands along with sunny weather. As the islands get busier, so do the bike paths and beaches with snowbirds and vacationers already enjoying pre-holiday festivities.

Weather reports say that a cool front is arriving later today (Friday) with a few occasional showers that may hang around over the weekend and Monday – possibly a few daytime temperatures down into the mid-70’s too. We are ready for that.

By Thanksgiving, it’s likely to be back into the low 80’s.

Below are a few news items followed by the action posted in the Sanibel and Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service since last Friday.

Red Tide

Sanibelcityseal logoIt certainly is not unusual this time of the year, after a rainy warm summer to hear about red tide blooms in Florida. But, it has been a few years since Sanibel has experienced what is occurring now. Fingers crossed that the upcoming cool front pushes it away. In the meantime here what the City posted late yesterday on www.MySanibel.com:

City Reminds Private Property Owners Proper Pickup Techniques for Removal of Debris from Sanibel’s Beaches

“At this time, the City of Sanibel is experiencing moderate levels of Red Tide impacting a small portion of the Island. We are monitoring conditions very closely. Excellent sources of additional information on Red Tide are available at:

http://www.leevcb.com/sites/leevcb.com/files/red_tide_rack_card_generic_web.pdf

http://www.leevcb.com/content/water-quality-issues

http://coolgate.mote.org/beachconditions/

http://forecast.weather.gov/wwamap/wwatxtget.php?cwa=usa&wwa=Beach%20Hazards%20Statement

https://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/hab/

“Currently, Sanibel Public Works Department is picking up dead fish along the public beaches as conditions warrant. Property owners and managers authorized to remove dead fish from the beach along their respective properties. Anyone removing fish from the beach should adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Only dead fish may be removed from the beach. This ensures that beach habitat for Sanibel’s wildlife is protected during the cleanup process.
  • Dead fish may only be removed by hand, using hand tools such as pitch forks or grabbers. The use of shovels and mechanical equipment is strictly prohibited.
  • All fish should be double bagged and placed in an onsite dumpster for disposal.
  • At this time, NO large sea life has been impacted. If you have large fish, marine mammals or sea turtles that are too large to handle, please contact the City of Sanibel Police Dispatch at (239) 472-3111.
  • No motorized vehicles are permitted on the beach and only those vehicles authorized by the City Manager may be used in cleanup activities.

For further information regarding this matter, please contact the City of Sanibel Natural Resources Department at (239) 472-3700.”

SanibelSusan Realty Happenings

Sanibelsusan LogoAgain this week, several of our listings had showings. On Sunday, I opened two homes for showings. A condo listing sold this week, we received a new canal-front home listing which had its first showing yesterday, and I met with some other owners also thinking of selling in 2016.

Teammate Dave has been attending inspections, holding open houses, and following up on sales that are in process, while Elise continues to follow-up on our listing activity and marketing material. Lisa will be manning the fort tomorrow updating our inventory documents as she does each week. All of us are off on Thanksgiving Day (we are only closed two days a year – Christmas will be next). The team also will have next Friday off, while I will be showing property, then in the office sending you next Friday’s real estate update.

I had lunch today at Sundial Resort. They have a new menu, with a Caesar salad big enough to share if you are looking for a meal with a view. The new Japanese restaurant there is not open yet and it was pretty quiet for a Friday afternoon, but plenty of check-ins are expected tomorrow. Here’s hoping they are all buyers!

(Picture below taken today from the dining deck at the Sundial Beach Resort.)

Sundial deck view 11-20-15

 

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors November Membership Meeting

The Sanctuary club aerialYesterday, was the monthly breakfast meeting of the islands’ Association of Realtors®. Held at The Sanctuary, we were treated to a terrific meal followed by a presentation by Ken Kouril, the Golf Club General Manager. His pitch centered on the upcoming 2016 Capital Project planned at The Sanctuary which will provide more outside dining, redecorating and refreshing the Clubhouse, and constructing a state-of-the-art Fitness Facility. Here are a few more details from his handout:

Redecorate/Refresh the Clubhouse – Redecorating by Peacock & Lewis, a highly recognized and awarded architectural and decorating firm, will focus on such key components as the color palette, repainting, new carpets and drapes, reupholstering and replacing furniture, new lighting fixtures, improved acoustics in the main dining room, an audio-visual system, and modernization of the bathrooms.

Outside Dining – The porch adjoining the Grill Room will be transformed into a pleasant dining venue for Members. The project will involve a minor renovation to eliminate visual obstructions (the lower wall) to improve the view, and a complete makeover (e.g. floor, ceiling, lighting, furniture, fans, etc.) of the space to create a comfortable and attractive setting in harmony with the Grill Room.

Fitness & Wellness Center – A 5,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art Fitness & Wellness Facility will be constructed comprised of a 1,800 sq. ft. equipment room housing cardio and strength training equipment, a dedicated stretching room, a 900 sq. ft. group exercise room for Pilates, yoga, and similar activities, comfortable and well-appointed rooms for massage therapy, and restrooms. There will be a new outside pool (75’ long x 25’ wide) for recreation and lap swimming with both deep and shallow water. Aerobics classes also will be an addition to the existing wellness programs currently offered.”

So as not to interfere with the upcoming winter activities at the club, the demolition of the current Fitness Center and construction of the new one will not begin until May 1, 2016 (expected to take a year to complete), while the Clubhouse work will begin May 15, 2016 and be completed by mid-October. (The Clubhouse will be available during construction. Tennis will continue through construction, however, the Fitness Center will not be available during this time.) More info at www.sanctuarygc.net

If you would like to enjoy these upcoming improvements at The Sanctuary, our listing at 5743 Baltusrol Court overlooking the 9th fairway to lake is available. This unique custom villa home has a spectacular grand foyer, stunning great room opening to expansive outdoor living spaces with pool and spa plus pool bath. Inside, the split floor-plan has 3 bedroom suites with separate office/den, utility room, gourmet kitchen, and powder room. An oversized 2-car garage (really 2-1/2-car) completes the picture. The adjoining lot also is available. Please contact me for more details – or click on the tab above.

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Upcoming Island Events

With holiday celebrations beginning, here is the big event of the weekend:

pilgrims-and-indians-and-turkeySun – Nov 22 – Annual Sanibel Thanksgiving Celebration – at The Community House, 2173 Periwinkle Way at 6:45 p.m. This is a non-denominational celebration of Thanksgiving in music, words, and song. Admission is free. Local community leaders and representatives from island churches take part. Singers include The BIG ARTS Community Chorus (SanibelSusan in the alto section). Cookies and apple cider follow the celebration. Guests are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food or monetary donation for FISH of Sanibel-Captiva.

For those that follow our community chorus, here are a few other upcoming performances:

children-singing2Sat – Nov 28 – During the 25th Sanibel Masters Art Festival (which is both Fri & Sat from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) on the grounds of The Community House, the Sanibel Chorus will perform a preview of their holiday concert twice on Sat morning, once at 10 a.m. and again about 11:30 following a short break.

Sat – Nov 28 – South Seas Tree Lighting is 5:30 to 9:00 p.m. at the entrance to South Seas. Free and open to the public, this kicks off South Seas holiday season with a tree lighting ceremony featuring the BIG ARTS Community Chorus, cookie and ornament decorating, and a reading of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. www.southseas.com

historical village logoFri – Dec 4 – 31st Annual Sanibel Luminary Festival – from 3 to 5 p.m. before the Luminary Trail begins, The Sanibel Historical Village will celebrate Christmas will a free public event. The theme is “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”, in recognition of the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. The event will highlight what it was like on Sanibel during Christmas 1945. The Sanibel Community Chorus Ensemble will perform and each village building will incorporate patriotic pieces of the time in celebration of the theme, with live interactive events.

BaileysAlso on Sanibel Luminary eve, at approximately 6 p.m. there will be a surprise flash mob inside Bailey’s Store, followed by the singing of carols outside. (Hope I didn’t spoil the surprise.)

Sanibel Luminary Trail is from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Friday, while Captiva’s Luminary is the next night, Sat Dec 5.

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity November 13-20

Sanibel

CONDOS

3 new listings: Sand Pointe #217 2/2 $789,999; Kings Crown #315 2/2 $899K; Gulfside Place #317 2/2 $1.495M.

2 price changes: Casa Blanca #6 1/1 now $250K, Snug Harbor #113 2/2 now $985K.

Sundial B206 Ext Back4 new sales: Seashells #28 2/2 listed at $365K, Sanibel Arms West #M8 2/2 listed at $519K, Sanibel Arms West #B1 2/2 listed at $525K, Sundial West #B206 2/2 listed at $579K (our listing).

2 closed sales: Lighthouse Point #221 3/2 $569.9K, Somerset #B201 3/2.5 $1.85M.

HOMES

From Street 38 new listings: 1429 Sandpiper Cir 3/3 half-duplex $429.9K, 9475 Beverly Ln 3/2 $534.5K, 1258 Par View Dr 3/2 $799K, 4215 Old Banyan Way 3/3 $825K, 918 Lindgren Blvd 3/3 $1.495M (our listing), 1688 Hibiscus Dr 3/3 $1.895M, 4190 Dingman Dr 4/3.5 $2.995M, 1196 Bay Dr 4/4.5 $3.195M, 2405 Blue Crab Ct 4/4.5 $3.295M.

1 price change: 1004 Fish Crow Rd 4/3 now $874.9K.

4 new sales: 2065 Wild Lime Dr 3/2.5 listed at $579K, 9445 Beverly Ln 3/2 listed at $699K, 236 Palm Lake Dr 3/2 listed at $879K, 5436 Shearwater Dr 3/3 listed at $989K.

3 closed sales: 426 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 $645K, 1490 Middle Gulf Dr 3/4.5 $1.583M, 2963 Wulfert Rd 4/6.5 $2.5M.

LOTS

No new listings, price changes, or new sales.

1 closed sale: Sabal Sands Rd, lot 8 $195K.

Captiva

CONDOS

4 new listings: Bayside Villas #5208 1/2 $287K, Marina Villas #807 2/2 $670K, Gulf Beach Villas #2127 2/2 $750K, Beach Homes #20 3/3 $2.595M.

No price changes, new, or closed sales.

HOMES

1 new listing: 14981 Binder Dr 3/3 $1.095M.

No price changes, new, or closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy. Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market. The information provided represents general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

Thanksgiving wordsUntil next Friday, Happy Thanksgiving!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan