City Commission Meeting Oct. 11

The commission meeting started with the final public hearing concerning the blasting, construction and development limits on Ordinance No. 2018-09, concerning the large area behind Walmart. There was also a final hearing on the issue concerning the limited development around Yeomans Avenue. Both of these items were extensively discussed in last month’s meeting.

The public hearing started with concerns about paving the roads in the Sunset Park. Donald Johnson and other citizens that live in Sunset Park explained that they have an ongoing problem with the roads and the drainage system in that area and that they need to be fixed. The roads have been in bad shape for the last several years, which is dangerous for the kids in the area according to Mr. Johnson. Mr. Johnson explained that the water in Sunset Park does not properly drain. Commissioners explained that all roads in LaBelle are paid for the same way; one third is paid for by one property owner on that road on one side, and the other third is paid for by the other property owner on the other side of the road. The final third of the payment will be covered by the city. Unless the city can get a specific grant to pave the roads.

Another concern raised by Willy Thomas, who also lives in Sunset Park, was the tall grass in the area that people are not taking care of. This leads to snakes and other animals crawling around in the tall grass. This is not just a problem in Sunset Park, but throughout the whole city of LaBelle.

The Fire Department had 67 calls this past month. They also upgraded their equipment to get the carcinogens off of the fire fighters as quick as possible through cleaning “buckets” and new upgraded hoods. October 31 the Fire Department is having an open house, they will be handing out candy to the kids and people can admire their brand new fire truck and the station as well.

The Hendry County Sherriff’s received a total of 11,391 calls for service, 5,018 in the city of LaBelle.

City Attorney Derek Rooney proposed a possible solution for the mowing problem. When people don’t mow their lawn, they get a lein on their property. Which does not really solve the issue when the leins are not being paid off. A possible solution might be that the city will cut the grass for the people that don’t cut their grass and then add it to their specific tax bill.

It is anticipated that on Oct. 22 the construction of the sidewalk will begin, it will go from SR 29 to the Moose Lodge and then turn to where it will end at the road crossing to the soccer park.

Another issue were the DOT signs. DOT requires the City to either have a performance bond or a letter of credit or around 23,000 dollars for each of the three signs that need to be replaced. Because if DOT has to remove the signs they want to have the funds to cover their projected costs. The Commission is looking at other ways to resolve this issue.

The next meeting will be November 8 at 6 p.m.

Geoffrey Ionescu can be reached at

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