Longwater, Bellmar, Big Cypress
To the editor:
Sent to Collier County commissioners in advance of their vote:
If Collier County officials vote for these towns — Longwater, Bellmar and Big Cypress — the Florida panther, the state animal voted in by our school children, could eventually become extinct. Also, the Seminole God will be gone to the Happy Hunting Grounds, forever.
What many do not see is that every acre of white tail deer and our wild hogs’ prime habitat, by being taken away from them by these towns, will eventually take away the food chain the panthers depend on, which will help the panthers to starve to death or wander far and wide and get hit by a car or killed by the FWC as a menace to the close living public. Wildlife lands count to preserve all our native species not just our panthers but all our wildlife.
We need to follow the dictates of the Rural Lands Steward area. We need rural lands for a diverse county. A county unlike the East Coast counties. A county to raise crops to feed our nation and the world. A county to see wildlife and recreate in a rural setting. Collier County! A county to help cement the billion-dollar ecotourism industry in our area and Florida.
The Conservancy got it right, exposing the shabby plans for these towns and the burden taxpayers will face and contend in years to come to build and help support these towns.
Please vote no on these towns. Save our environment for our children and our wild animals, not to speak of our water for the people who are already here.Your quality of life hangs in the balance.
(Editor’s Note: The Collier County Commission approved two of the “rural villages,” Longwater and Bellmar, also giving the Big Cypress town concept a greenlight. Commissioner Penny Taylor voted no on each.)