By Mike Welch
At this writing Lehigh Acres/Eastern Lee County is operating under the Phase I step established by Governor DeSantis. Restaurants as well as retail establishments have opened to accept 50% capacity and a strong encouragement to continue the guidelines of masks, sanitizers, etc. For a full description of Phase I see www.leegov.com
By Act of Congress and signed by President Trump, part of the Federal Cares Act II gives larger communities such as Lee County extra funding for COVID19 related assistance. Lee County received close to $134 million. Developing in phases, the first phase which began on May 26th is $57.5 million in Human and Business Services to provide immediate relief for individuals, families and businesses. This includes:
• Individual Assistance Program: Rent, mortgage and utilities $2000 per household
• Small Business Relaunch Program: $5,000 Grant for businesses with less than 25 employees and the owner must be a Lee County Resident
• Childcare Assistance Program: Offering Quality childcare
• PPE for Small Businesses
English and Spanish assistance is available by calling 239-LEE-CARES (239-533-2273) on weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Also please see the website www.leeflcares.com
Our articles this month great! Lee County Commissioner Ray Sandelli offers us an article that further describes Phase I of LEECares. Ray has become familiar with our community since his appointment to the Board of Commissioners. Give Ray a call at 239-533-2223 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition, Sheriff Marceno warns us all about an assortment of crimes and scams going on during this time of crisis. Sheriff Marceno and his team are available should you or those you know have fallen victim. Call the Fraud Line at 239-258-3292.
In this month’s Voices I include articles from two well know public servants who are running for office and will be on the ballot in the August Primary. Former State Representative Matt Caldwell is running to replace retiring Lee County Property Appraiser Ken Wilkinson. Matt represented our area in House District 79 till last year. He placed an indelible mark on our community with his advocacy and work to help make the new SR82 a reality as well as his work on infrastructure and the environment.
Sanibel Mayor Kevin Ruane is running in the Primary to eventually replace retiring Lee County Commissioner John Manning. Kevin’s knowledge, expertise and servant-leadership will be a great asset.
Congratulations to our Seniors who have graduated. This time will remind you later that life is sacred, community is treasured and that working together we can accomplish so much.