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NFM Civic Association: Election day is rapidy approaching

October 31, 2018
By Mark Lipton , North Fort Myers Neighbor

Well, the votes are coming in. All absentee ballots went out but many have yet to be returned. Please, don't let your ballot sit on a counter or desk and not get returned. And don't wait until the last day to mail. The Supervisor of Elections must have the ballot in hand by Nov. 6. Postmark date does not count!

And early voting is well under way. It began Oct. 22 and continues through Nov. 3 at select precinct polling places. In North Fort Myers it is the North Fort Myers Recreational Center. Same place the Civic Association holds its monthly meetings.

There is no voting Nov. 4 and 5.

Nov. 6 all polling locations are open for those of you who have not voted by mail or made it to an early voting site.

As I write this, 27 percent of Lee County registered voters have cast their vote. For those of you who don't know, my deadline is 5 Friday the week before the Wednesday paper distribution. So, I submitted today's column Oct. 26. The numbers have changed. Check the SOE website to see where we are. Let's get to 80 percent. That would legitimize the results.

It's a long ballot and I certainly understand why some registered voters throw up their hands and just don't vote. And negative ads don't help any. My suggestion to those who tell me that they don't vote because they don't understand the issues, or that voting doesn't matter, you have no interest in politics, or it isn't a Presidential election - well I have an answer. First of all, this is a critical election. Not only are you voting for Governor, a U.S. Senator, State Senators and House Representatives, but school board members, county commissioners, fire district commissioners, and a 1/2 cent sales tax.

So this is local, affecting our lives.

What about the fact that the ballot is long and complicated? My suggestion; check out one candidate, or one amendment, or the sales tax. The Neighbor in its last issue had a fantastic question-and-answer analysis of the School District's finances, future goals/needs, and more. Go online and that article should give you some guidance.

Not interested in sales tax, you can study a school board race. Use Google, go to websites of the candidate that interests you. That's an important local contest. Maybe Fire Commissioner or Florida State House Representative 79. All these races have significant local impact. You want to go big time, look up the two candidates running for U.S. Senator, Bill Nelson and Rick Scott, or for Governor, Andrew Gillum and Ron DeSantis. Your ballot counts even if you only darken one circle! Your right to vote is cherished around the world. Please, please, exercise it. You can become informed on one race or one amendment in a half hour or less. Yes, there is fake news on the internet. But googling three or four sites on just one proposed amendment, one that looks interesting to you, should give you enough information to make an informed decision. Your vote will make a difference - and you'll feel good that you voted.

Enough lecturing on civic responsibility. On to some fun.

Ornament making for the town Christmas tree is Sunday Nov. 4 at Recreation Center from 12:30-2 p.m. Dec. 15 we will be lighting the tree. In fact it will be a whole day of events on Dec.15, but now we need ornaments to help the festivities along. This is a children's event and they will love it. Bring your kids or grandkids. Watch their faces light up and they'll be helping us decorate our new tree as well. Remember? We have one.

The next Lee County Arts Center's Art Walk is November 10, same place as before, Hancock Bridge Square at Hancock and Cleveland. It'll be held from 9 a.m to 2 p.m.

And what about our new library? It has a roof! Construction is coming along well. If you come to our next meeting you can check it out. Impressive, modern, and a great addition to what is becoming the North Fort Myers Civic Center.

Looking back a bit, hope many of you made it to the Fall Festival. It was Oct. 19 from 6 to 9 p.m. A free, family-friendly event that included a costume contest, candy, face painting, games, photo booth, inflatables, a live DJ, prizes and Mitchie, our own North Fort Myers clown. A fun event for all. The Civic Association is proud it participated in that event.

Well, that's all for now. My next column will come out after the election, but before our next North Fort Myers Civic Association meeting. Nov. 13. 6:30 p.m. 2000 N Recreation Park Way, North Fort Myers. Please join us.

 
 

 

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