Economy is Strong on Sanibel


The City of Sanibel will continue to enjoy a high rating in the Community Rating System (CRS) through 2016. Good news for those holding flood insurance policies. CRS is a voluntary incentive program that encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum National Flood Insurancerequirements. Sanibel attained a rating of Class 5 so that island policy holders will be entitled to a 25% savings. Good going! The city is looking out for us!

Your electric rates are going down. Lee County Electric Cooperative (LCEC) has reduced rates four times in the past two years with the possibility of further reductions. Your bill is now lower than it was in 2008. LCEC rates are well below the state average and the lowest among Florida cooperatives. Cooperative members (utility customers) own the utility and are assigned equity. When it makes financial sense the cooperative retires equity and returns a portion of it to members/customers. Over the years they have returned more than $231 million in equity. That’s really nice to hear. Combine that with our lower tax rate this year and we can have a party.

Bauer Financial has been analyzing and reporting on the financial condition of the banking industry since 1983. The result of their analyses is a rating scale with 5 being the highest rating. The Sanibel Captiva Community Bank has been awarded the 5 rating meaning it has twice the capital the regulators require, is profitable and has kept delinquent loans in check. In fact, it generates the third highest return on equity of Florida’s 157 chartered banks. Isn’t it nice to know your money is safe.

The Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) has received an inaugural gift of $100,000 to launch the newly created Endowment Fund. It will provide a permanent, self-sustaining source of funding that will support CROW’s mission forever. Income from the endowment will supplement funds that are raised annually to ensure continuous delivery of educational material and patient service.

The Community House is one of the best known buildings on Sanibel. It was built in 1927 and today 57 different organizations hold their activities there. More than 50,000 people visit the facility each year. It has been a focal point of island social and civic activities. After 88 years it needs to be updated. Construction is scheduled for this summer provided the $3 million needed for the restoration is pledged or donated. The building is owned by the Sanibel Community Association (SCA) a non-profit 501c – so no government funding. If you would like to support this effort contact Riska Hall at (239) 472-2155.

Best Gulf Coast Realtor