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LA-MSID selects new board chair

January 31, 2018
By MELISSA BILL ( , Lehigh Acres Citizen

Lehigh Acres Municipal Services Improvement District's regular monthly meeting began with the election of a new chair and the appointment of members to new seats on the board. Prior to the process Vice Chair David Deetscreek presented Chairman Michael Welch, with an award, on behalf of the board, for his dedicated service as Chairman of the Board for 2017.

"It's been an action-packed year for us, but we have made a lot of headway. Hopefully we don't have to deal with another Hurricane Irma anytime soon," said Welch upon acceptance.

Welch then motioned to appoint David Deetscreek as board chairman and Mike Bonacolta to the role of vice chair. The motion carried unanimously by fellow district board members.

Article Photos

Chairman Michael Welch was presented with an award, on behalf of the board, for his dedicated service as Chairman of the Board for 2017.


"We are successful as a board partly due to our ability to smoothly transition from position to another. I'm looking forward to bringing some new ideas and working with everyone on this board in the coming year," said Deetscreek.

Other selections made included: Katyna Hoover, treasurer; Kenneth Thompson, secretary and Michael Welch, commissioner. The Board of Commissioners also appointed Carla Brantley as deputy secretary. Every January the board holds its yearly elections of board members.

Immediately following the board's elections, Welch spoke about the necessity of adding a new position to the board dedicated to emergency response and readiness.

"We are now just five months away from hurricane season. I think it's time to put together a job description and appoint someone to the board who will oversee emergency operations. This includes coordinating efforts with local and state officials and organizations," said Welch.

The Board of Commissioners voted to elect Commissioner Welch to fill that role and become the Emergency Operations director and coordinator representative for the board. This is a one-year position that the most immediate past-chairman will fill. The position was established to ensure the board's ability to work with local agencies to formulate plans and keep lines of communications open during a community incident or natural disaster.

Other items on the agenda included a possible site for a new stormwater facility, which would be located within the Mirror Lakes Country Club's property. The board agreed to move forward and arrange a meeting between Assistant District Manager Michael Cook and the property's owner to define the parameters of the properties use and other specifics.

District Manager David Lindsay also went over an agenda item to approve the ranking of legal firms that have applied for LA-MSID's General Counsel.

"Out of the law firms who have submitted proposals, we have selected four and ranked those firms in accordance with their experience and past performance record," said Lindsay.

Members unanimously motioned to accept the rankings as submitted and invite the top three law firms to make their presentations before the board.

Board members also discussed an interlocal agreement with Lee County concerning district signage powers.

"We have written the first draft of the agreement and will take it to the county for their review," said Lindsay.

The interlocal agreement on signage powers falls under Resolution 2018-03, which spells out the State of Florida Legislature's intent for the district to serve as the foundation for eventual municipal incorporation. LA-MSID is currently in negotiations with Lee County to provide signage powers by execution of an agreement and providing for a referendum of the voters in the November 2018 General Election.

Aside from LA-MSID's regular agenda calendar, the district also collaborated with CROW to release a rehabilitated snail kite back into the wild. The endangered bird was released on Jan. 22 in the Harns Marsh Preserve.

CROW is a teaching hospital and visitor education center dedicated to saving wildlife through state-of-the-art veterinary care, research, education and conservation medicine.

According to David Lindsay, LAMSID district manager, they have seen healthy populations of snail kite at Harns Marsh and other locations throughout the district.

The Lehigh Acres Municipal Services Improvement District will hold its next meeting on Feb. 26 at 6 p.m. at the LA-MSID, at 601 East County Lane. For information, visit the their website at



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