November 22, 2023 The Sun Bay Paper Page 4 Letters to the Editor Editorial Copyright © SBP Media LLC and Sun Bay Paper All rights reserved. This newspaper or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher. Quote of the Week All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent. Edmund Burke Dear Editor, Good paper with good editorials (Alexia Chapin’s was a nice read). Glad to have you back on Fort Myers Beach. Best wishes. Bob Carney Florida’s Success Means We Should Invest in a World-Class Pier When Florida has success, our Governor lets everyone know. And he’s had a whole lot to tout of late. The Sunshine State has achieved a new tourism milestone, with an estimated 35.1 million visitors between July and September 2023, setting a record for the state. Governor Ron DeSantis’ offi ce announced that this surge in tourism is led predominantly by domestic travelers, accounting for over 32 million of the total visitors. The state also welcomed 2.2 million international guests and over 660,000 Canadian tourists. In total, Florida has seen 105.2 million visitors in 2023, surpassing the 2022 fi gure by more than 700,000. Governor DeSantis attributes this success to the state’s policy of minimal travel restrictions, asserting that Florida’s commitment to freedom has been a critical factor in attracting record numbers of visitors. “Florida continues to set records for visitation because of our commitment to allowing visitors to enjoy their travels without arbitrary government restrictions. Florida will continue to be a beacon of freedom for travelers,” DeSantis stated in the news release. Compared to the previous year, the number of visitors has increased by 1.6%, with a signifi cant 8% rise over the same period in 2019, as reported by Visit Florida, the state’s offi cial travel, tourism, and vacation organization. Notably, Florida’s tourism sector is growing faster than the national average and outperforming other states in terms of visitor spending. While travel spending has dropped in states like California and New York, Florida has experienced an 11.3% increase in tourist expenditures since the third quarter of 2019. This growth is considerably higher than the national growth rate of 3.9% for the same period. These numbers state the case for why the Lee County rebuild of the Fort Myers Beach Pier should be world-class and forward-looking. I spoke to Allen Shanosky, a Let’s GO FMB Pier Committee member. He’s a third-generation islander who has spent the better part of the past year visiting piers around the state and up and down the coasts with his wife, doing fact-fi nding for the pier rebuild. While the pier is a Lee County project, all stakeholders should have a say. Shanosky says the average time for a pier rebuild – once the plans are approved – is 4.9 years. Statistically speaking, this means most of the decision-makers – the current Lee County Commissioners – will probably be out of offi ce by the time of the ribbon-cutting. Shanosky says the news this past week that FEMA had provided “clearance” to begin the rebuild of the pier was a bit of a misnomer. “FEMA will provide funding for the value of the pre-existing structure plus additional value for remediation, such as raising the pier.” The back of the napkin numbers mean that our electeds can negotiate between $12 - $14 million from the Feds. But the old FMB pier was on its way out before the storm. Built in 1991, it was coming up on the time for an upgrade anyway. Only eight feet across, it had a maximum capacity of about 200. And this is the most visited Lee County attraction if you take away the beaches. The Let’s GO FMB Pier Committee surveyed just under 10,000, and the results are telling. Nine out of ten believe the pier reconstruction should be a priority for the Lee County Commissioners. A whopping 98.5% want an improved pier. Dear Editor, I enjoy the article by Wayne Allyn Root “Trump was Right” and YES ,,, he was , about so many other things not even covered in the article. Mainly the one about the left stealing the election and I’m glad to see you are printing Mr Root, I have been following him for many years and I like what he has to say. Unfortunately, The GOP keeps losing elections because the left has the whole thing in the bag, with three quarters of voters unhappy with the direction we are going, infl ation, gas prices, on the brink of WWIII, only an idoit can believe that democrats are winning elections. NO WAY! Voters should be running in any direction but Democratic! And until we stop mail-in ballots without ID, ballot harvesting, drop boxes, and continued vote counting long after elections are over, we won’t win! Probably ever again. I’m not sure even Trump can win in 24, they stole the last one from him, what has really changed? By my point of view, looking at last weeks elections, nothing. About your jokes, I’ve been reading your paper for about 5 years, and the reason I’m conservative has a lot to do with a basic philosophy, some people see something they don’t like they think/say “no one should be able to read that!” like it’s their job to save the world from it. When conservatives see something they don’t like they think/say “I won’t share that” and not try to forbid anyone else from seeing it. The Democrats are the party of control, not us, we don’t censor! Over the past years, have I seen a joke that I didn’t think appropriate... yes a few times..... in 5 years... but I have enjoyed so many others and like being able to share adult humor with my friends over a couple of beers. It’s kinda like when then President Trump would tweet one of his “off ” tweets, I would think ‘man he could have skipped that one’, it’s the same with an “off ” joke. Besides, your paper isn’t like the others, you stand out, don’t stop now. Juan Caldeira Letters Continued on pg 9 Cont. pg. 10