In these days of the 30 minute news cycle and the endless supply of scandals, it is easy to lose touch with issues going on in your own community. Indeed, the most impactful decisions in our day-to-day lives occur in City and County level Council meetings. YOU can have a say in what happens in your community by joining a Citizen’s Advisory Board or Committee.
Now, you can always attend your local Council meeting, have your 3-4 minutes at the podium and let that be the end of it. However, if you truly want to have an impact in your community, the most effective way of having your voice heard in local issues is to join a Citizens Advisory Board.
These Boards were established so that active members of the community and skilled professionals can have a legitimate say in local governance. In addition to being on the ground floor of decisions being made in your community, you will have a direct access to your elected officials, increase your voice, and get experience reaching consensus with members of your community. You will also increase your familiarity with how governing happens, which can prepare you, yes YOU for a possible run for local office in the future.
Depending where you live, you can apply online to an Advisory Board, or submit your application and resume to your local City/County Clerk.
Treat this like applying for a job – managers are always more likely to hire applicants who are energetic about working. Don’t be shy, call your councilperson’s office, or show up in person.
These advisory boards exist in just about every community in Lee County.
Lee County –
Lee County has an abundance of vacancies on its Citizen Advisory Boards and Committees. There are upwards of seventy vacancies on the various committees. Multiple vacancies exist on the Affordable Housing Committee, Conservation Land Acquisition, the Disaster Advisory Council, Black Affairs Council, and the Parks & Recreation Services. For further information about these committees, please go to http://www.leegov.com/bocc/advisorycommittees/committeesearch to find out more about a particular Citizens Advisory Board.
To apply, Fill out the application : http://www.leegov.com/bocc/_layouts/15/WopiFrame.aspx?sourcedoc=/bocc/Documents/committee/AdvisoryCmtApp4-18-2017.docx&action=default
and return it to:
Lee County Administration Advisory Committees
P.O. Box 398
Fort Myers, FL 33902-0398
Fax: (239) 485-2252
- Three citizen advisory board positions are currently vacant:
- The Streetlight Advisory Committee
- Bicycle/Pedestrian Safety Committee
- Outreach Advisory Committee
Applicants should visit the Bonita Springs website http://www.cityofbonitasprings.org/for-residents/volunteer-opportunities/
and fill out the application form which should be submitted to:
Office of the City Clerk
9101 Bonita Beach Road
Bonita Springs, Florida 34135
Cape Coral –
There are four vacancies on the Budget Review Committee.
The application form can be found HERE
and it should be returned to:
Clerk of Cape Coral at City of Cape Coral
City Clerk’s Office
P.O. Box 150027
Cape Coral, Florida 33915-0027
Fort Myers –
Twenty vacancies exist on various Committees for the City of Fort Myers. These Committees are Ward-specific, meaning that each section of the city should ideally have nearly equal representation. Citizens in Ward three have the most to gain, as many vacancies can only be filled by Ward three residents. Click http://www.cityftmyers.com/265/Board-Vacancies for more information about the vacancies on a particular Citizens Advisory Board.
To apply, complete the https://cityftmyers.seamlessdocs.com/f/boardapp and don’t be afraid to make yourself known to your Council Member.
Fort Myers Beach –
Two vacancies in the Community Resource Advisory Board whose responsibility is to promote and implement community activities.
One vacancy in the Marine Resources Task Force, whose goal is to stop drainage, and rehab Estero Bay.
Three vacancies are on the Public Safety Committee, which “shall address andy safety and transportation.”
It is strongly preferred that applicants live on or very near Estero Island.
Those interested in a Citizens Advisory Board should submit an application which outlines what committee you are interested in, and why you are suited for that committee.
Applications should be submitted to the Clerk of Fort Myers beach – Michelle Mayher at Michelle@fmbgove.com
Two openings exist on the Recreation Financial Assistance Committee.
One licensed mechanic or A/C contractor is needed for Contractor Review Board, which has one vacancy.
In October three vacancies will be available on the Employee Pension Board of Trustees.
Interested Sanibel residents can go http://www.mysanibel.com/City-Council/Council-Advisory-Committees for the online application and further information.