Q: Why incorporate?
A: To give our citizens local control over land use and protect us from future annexations by Cape Coral.
Q: What area would be incorporated?
A: As currently proposed, it would be contiguous with the boundaries of the Matlacha Pine Island Fire Control District
Q: Will my taxes go up?
A: No. Not according to our initial fiscal forecast.
Q: Won’t government just get bigger?
A: No. GPICA envisions a “government light” concept with
minimal local government staff and salaries. We would contract with Lee County to provide services at our current levels.
Q: How will we pay for services?
A: We are a donor community to Lee County. That means we pay more in taxes than we receive in services — the county keeps our excess tax dollars. As a town, all the taxes would come directly to us. We would then contract with the county to provide services (police, streets, waste, permitting, parks, library, etc. ) at the current levels. The surplus would pay the cost of our local government and provide a rainy day fund under our local control. (Note: water and fire are already provided by our own special districts and schools are
provided by the Lee County School District — this would not change.)
Q: Would property taxes be our only revenues?
A: No. As a town, we would be eligible for state revenue sharing funds, franchise fees from utilities and able to negotiate with the County for a share of the communication services tax.
Q: What are the projected revenues and expenses?
A: With our millage rate remaining the same at 0.8398 mils, the BJM study “best case
scenario” projects revenues of $3.24 million in three years and $3.44 million in five years;
expenses of $2.45 million and $2.7 million in three and five years and $2.49 million and $4.05 million in reserves.
Q: Will there be a formal vote?
A: Yes! After taking a poll and getting favorable results from the community, GPICA has created a charter defining the purpose and goals of the town, including our purpose to be a small government that represents Matlacha, Matlacha Isles, Pine Island Center, Pineland, Bokeelia, St. James City. The charter is now being circulated for further input.
After our SWFL delegation (state Representatives & Senators) approves, it will be presented for a vote of the full state Senate and House. Once that is approved, the Governor signs the bill and it comes back to our community voters for a full referendum. We expect that referendum would occur in 2019.