Marco Island's new bridge will still be Jolley

— For now, the new span of Marco Island’s Judge S.S. Jolley Bridge will not be renamed. Rumors on the island that a group was seeking to name the span for the late Mike Minozzi, Jr., appeared to be exaggerated.

John Arceri, a past city councilor, did request Marco Island adopt a resolution Monday night that would dedicate the span to Minozzi for his work in getting the project shovel ready to receive federal funds.

Arceri was clear that his recommendation was not for naming rights. Instead, he suggested a plaque on the span as a way of showing “a high level of recognition” for someone he believed guided the bridge’s planning from inception to fruition.

Arceri, and others who spoke on behalf of Minozzi, asked council to accept a resolution dedicating the second span in Minozzi’s name by affixing the plaque on the Marco Island side of the bridge. Arceri also said he hoped to get the Florida Department of Transportation involved in the dedication.

Councilor Chuck Kiester expressed concern about other necessary approvals from government bodies including Collier County Commissioners and the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). Councilors also doubted the value of a plaque considering size and limited visibility.

Arceri assured them his recommendation would be going before the FDOT and would not be a problem for other local governments. Councilor Jerry Gibson point out that the new span will include a walking and biking path, so passersby could stop and read the plaque even if motorist could not.

Community speaker Jack Patterson said the value of such recognition was not the plaque’s size but its intent.

“We’re not naming the bridge, we’re memorializing the effort,” he said.

That effort included Minozzi’s relentless push to keep the project alive and a high priority in Florida even in tough economic times. Minozzi was described as a “whistleblower,” exposing the dangerous condition of the existing span.

“This project was not very well received,” said public speaker George Schroll. “Mike constantly fought to keep this moving.”

Lawyer Craig Woodward, a longtime resident of Marco Island, urged council to support the resolution.

“Mike went to the MPO meetings and fought for Marco Island with the county and the state,” he said. “He fought for the bridge to move up in the priority list. We were fortunate because of the work Mike did.”

One speaker felt the recognition was undeserved since Minozzi also favored a toll on the bridge.

Lawyer Bill Morris joined Woodward in expressing admiration for the work Minozzi did in spearheading the project that was later funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

“He set the table. The federal government served the meal,” Morris said. “A plaque is more than recognition. We cannot give Mike anything because he’s gone. But we can show appreciation for good deeds. It’s also an important part of Marco Island’s history.”

Although council discussed concern about circumventing naming procedures already in place for the city, it determined that a plaque on the bridge did not require further scrutiny and passed the resolution unanimously.

Mike Stapleton, a friend of Minozzi, summed up the community’s desire to honor him.

“The harder Mike worked, the luckier we got,” he said.

© 2011 marconews.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 19

1Paradiselost writes:

What should be in place is a 5 year moratorium on any naming rights.

After that time period it should be put on the ballot for the voters consent.

blogsmog writes:

name a train station after him.

RayPray writes:

in response to blogsmog:

name a train station after him.

A Greyhound bus terminal?

marco97 writes:

We could put plaque’s honoring him on the foreclosed homes in the STRP districts.
When the City added $15,000 to $20,000 worth of dept to homes in the STRP some peoples only option was to walk.

20_Days writes:

Ms. Ferrara,

On an ealier posting, I questioned why only specific news information was reported by you regarding Monday night's City Council meeting

Once again, I would like to know WHY almost 30 minutes of the City Council Meeting STILL has not be reported by you in this Newspaper?

To remind you, it was the discussion and presentation by the Marco Island Eagle Sanctuary Foundation.

Could your SELECTIVE forgetfulness be a result of your name being is listed as a Volunteer on the Marco Island Academy Application paperwork and as a member of their PR/MARKETING COMMITTEE?

How very interesting and very disturbing.

1Paradiselost writes:

PILAR
Cheryl Ferrara is listed on the application to the school board as on the PR/Marketing committee.

Rumor has it she (Cheryl )was seen talking to one of the board members of the academy during the council meeting.
I would have loved to been a fly on the wall listening to that conversation. So much for fair and balanced!

"How about a conflict of interest"........

Anne Batte, she is listed as on the Administrative Committee of the Marco Island Academy.

I always thought Marco councilman Joe Batte was an upstanding gentleman. I can now see why at the other nights meeting he fought so hard for the academy, he's on the list of volunteers too.

He should do what's right and recluse himself!! He would not get away with that type of behavior where he came from, so why here?

He won't get my vote next time!

I would love to list all the names........ Just contact the Collier County school board and they will give you a copy of all the listed supporters and committee members of MIA.

I know if my name were on the list without my permission I would be calling my attorney looking for damages from Jane Watt herself!

.

RayPray writes:

"I always thought Marco councilman Joe Batte was an upstanding gentleman...He should do what's right and recluse himself!!"

>>> Batte's reclusing himself would be odd behavior for a guy so wanting to be on the City Council.

>>> However, Batte should definitely recuse himself as far as squandering tax $$$ for the disreputable Marco Apartheid Academy.

1Paradiselost writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Ocram (Inactive) writes:

Maybe Frank Recker can take the case referred above and argue against his previous statements that City Council has nothing to do with the BOE decision regarding Tract K?

Do I sense a major Conflict of Interest regarding certain City Council Members?

1Paradiselost writes:

ORCAM...
Your right, It's a major Conflict!!!

Frank Reckers on the MIA list..

Also on the list is councilman Chuck Kiester and his wife Jane.

As is councilman Larry Magel all listed as volunteers to the Marco Island Academy.

Oh yea Anne Batte is listed on the "Political Committee" Too. Political Committee... Makes one think?

Gentleman do what's right and publicly, publicly recluse yourselves!!

Zoning issues will be brought up before you shortly. The voters expect you to do the right thing....

We all will be watching, and you actions will be on video tape!
.

1Paradiselost writes:

in response to MarcoIslandWoman:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Hank,
Do you know anything about the law?

Ocram (Inactive) writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Ocram (Inactive) writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Fossil writes:

A monumental mistake would be made if the City put Minozzi's name on the bridge. Mr. Minozzi was one of the most controversial figures to ever enter the public spotlight in our community. In addition to their notoriously overpriced STRP, Mike Minozzi and John Arceri are the reason many of us could no longer afford to live on Marco Island. They wanted to replace the existing span and charge the residents a toll to enter or leave their home town. They tried to justify this expnditure by submitting misleading data about the safety of the current span. In an effort to further justify the replacement of the Jolly Bridge, these two fellows convinced the City to charge the taxpayer for private focus groups and public surveys. In spite of the negative support those efforts garnered (overwhelming public disapproval) of their inititive, they continued to push for it. Why would recognitiion be given to a fellow who wanted to not only waste money on replacing a perfectly good bridge but also contrary to the public will, make us pay for it? The fact is, the new bridge span is a totally different inititive and will cost our community only the inconvience of it's construction. The plans to replace the standing original bridge (which continues to serve us) are the plans used to acquire the shovel ready federal funding of the new span. If you want to give credit to where it is due, then give it to Presidents Bush and Obama, who made the stimulas funding available for the new span. Facts are hard things to deny, but I'll bet someone out there will try. Arceri's suggestion deserves nothing more then a big raspberry.

RayPray writes:

in response to Fossil:

A monumental mistake would be made if the City put Minozzi's name on the bridge. Mr. Minozzi was one of the most controversial figures to ever enter the public spotlight in our community. In addition to their notoriously overpriced STRP, Mike Minozzi and John Arceri are the reason many of us could no longer afford to live on Marco Island. They wanted to replace the existing span and charge the residents a toll to enter or leave their home town. They tried to justify this expnditure by submitting misleading data about the safety of the current span. In an effort to further justify the replacement of the Jolly Bridge, these two fellows convinced the City to charge the taxpayer for private focus groups and public surveys. In spite of the negative support those efforts garnered (overwhelming public disapproval) of their inititive, they continued to push for it. Why would recognitiion be given to a fellow who wanted to not only waste money on replacing a perfectly good bridge but also contrary to the public will, make us pay for it? The fact is, the new bridge span is a totally different inititive and will cost our community only the inconvience of it's construction. The plans to replace the standing original bridge (which continues to serve us) are the plans used to acquire the shovel ready federal funding of the new span. If you want to give credit to where it is due, then give it to Presidents Bush and Obama, who made the stimulas funding available for the new span. Facts are hard things to deny, but I'll bet someone out there will try. Arceri's suggestion deserves nothing more then a big raspberry.

Agree!

However,

"If you want to give credit to where it is due, then give it to Presidents Bush and Obama...."

Bush & Obama are not paying for this bridge.

Right now it is the Chinese who buy our debt.

Later it will be your grandchildren having to kowtow to the Chinese to whom we are transferring ownership of our substance....

Ironic how we can't escape these local grand poobahs like Tucker and Minozzi, even after they have translated to that foggy golf course in the sky....

lauralbi1 writes:

Fossil: We all know that you are an expert on controversial figures in the Public spotlight.
Ed Issler

Fossil writes:

islandeye: You need go no further then the very minutes and video tapes of city counsel meetings to view and listen to their own words. Data and personal opinion presented by scoundrals stating the bridge had a low rating and had to be replaced. That rating was raised when many of us questioned the source of it. It was then discovered that the Goodland bridge had a higher priority for replacement and we again questioned the data for the Minozzi's inititve of a perfectly good bridge. Mike wouldn't give up, he kept at it until finally his justification was reduced to the inevitable eventual need to replace it. He conned Collier County out of a million dollars to support his quest. He even had surveys given to strp workers departing Marco Island after work to gain support for it's removal. What a salesman Mike was. He could have sold the city anything he wanted to and he was willing to talk and talk and talk. It was the same tactic John Arceri used to sell the city the STRP.

dc5799 writes:

in response to Fossil:

islandeye: You need go no further then the very minutes and video tapes of city counsel meetings to view and listen to their own words. Data and personal opinion presented by scoundrals stating the bridge had a low rating and had to be replaced. That rating was raised when many of us questioned the source of it. It was then discovered that the Goodland bridge had a higher priority for replacement and we again questioned the data for the Minozzi's inititve of a perfectly good bridge. Mike wouldn't give up, he kept at it until finally his justification was reduced to the inevitable eventual need to replace it. He conned Collier County out of a million dollars to support his quest. He even had surveys given to strp workers departing Marco Island after work to gain support for it's removal. What a salesman Mike was. He could have sold the city anything he wanted to and he was willing to talk and talk and talk. It was the same tactic John Arceri used to sell the city the STRP.

Don't forget Ronny Joels part in this scare tactic.

MrBreeze writes:

Just wait until the toll boths appear. I say give it a year by 2012 or 2013 you will see some ype of toll be it a fee pass for people or a use toll.

It is coming just wait and see your superheroes then.

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