Last Stand’s formal comment letter to DEO here.
The DEO needs to hear from YOU and thousands of Keys residents that we’re concerned, we’re already at capacity, and it’s time to stop putting lives at risk by allowing more new building in the Keys.
Make your voice heard! Please write to the DEO (deadline is 5 pm EDT on Friday, June 30; be sure to copy your County or City Commissioners). Then ask your friends and neighbors to do the same! There is strength in numbers and NOW is the time to act!
- Use this handy link for an instant email to the DEO: Send your message now.
- Copy & Paste the information into an email instead:To : FLKeysEvac@DEO.MyFlorida.com
Subject: ENOUGH! No new ROGOs for the Keys.
Body: We’re concerned, we’re already at capacity, and it’s time to stop putting lives at risk by allowing more new building in the Keys.
Your Name / Concerned citizen
- Write your own letter or email.
Send an email to FLKeysEvac@DEO.MyFlorida.com or send a letter to:
Florida Department of Economic Opportunity
Division of Community Development
The Caldwell Building
107 East Madison Street, MSC-400
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Be sure to copy your County or City Commissioners. Additional information and commissioners’ emails are listed below or can be found at this link. Then ask your friends and neighbors to do the same.
Local Government Emails
Key West Mayor & Commissioners: Mayor@cityofkeywest-fl.gov; DistrictI@cityofkeywest-fl.gov; DistrictII@cityofkeywest-fl.gov; DistrictIII@cityofkeywest-fl.gov; DistrictIV@cityofkeywest-fl.gov; DistrictIV@cityofkeywest-fl.gov; DistrictVI@cityofkeywest-fl.gov
Marathon City Council: email@example.com
Here’ some helpful points you can make (cut/paste) or write your own letter by June 30:
- Our entire 2-phase Hurricane Evacuation Plan assumes we will have more than 48 hours to first evacuate all the tourists, the Navy and their families, live-aboards, mobile homes, vacation rentals, THEN the residents will evacuate in the final 24 hours.
- The Navy, mobile homes are permanent residents and should be included in the 24-hour phase of the model.
- Vacation Rentals should be counted in 24-hour phase of the model, as there is no hotel manager or other enforcement agency to make them evacuate.
- A significant percentage of vacant homes should be included – home owners visit their properties throughout the hurricane season.
- The model should not assume all visitors have left on time and the roads are now open for residents!
- The model should include Regional Evacuation data – the model ends at Florida City and assumes no one else in South Florida is evacuating!
- There is no way to “enforce” who leaves or when. Human nature tells us people will leave:
- At the last possible minute, whether that’s because they’re busy securing their property or because it costs more to evacuate sooner (more nights in a hotel).
- The model assumes the same “24-hour flow rate”, yet most people don’t evacuate in the middle of the night when it’s dark or raining.
- We are already AT CAPACITY!
- The fresh water coming into our homes is already reduced due to breaks in the water pipe, which will cost $10 million per mile to replace.
- The sewage leaving our homes is fraught with problems and ravaging the nearshore waters. Recent news includes:
- 90,000 gallons of raw sewage leaked from the new Cudjoe Regional Waste Water Treatment plant,
- Raw sewage leaks in Tavernier just this past week,
- Continued use of shallow sewage wells leaking to nearshore waters in Marathon and several other locations.
- Climate change adds to the evacuation problem:
- We have sunny day flooding on our roads that can last weeks due to sea level rise.
- Category 3 – 4 – 5 hurricanes are far more frequent due to warming oceans.
- Rapid Intensification (storms escalating from tropical storms to CAT 3-4-5 hurricanes in less than 24 hours) has become common place – and the National Hurricane Center tells us this is something they cannot
- By State mandate, the Florida Keys must evacuate all of its residents 24 hours ahead of the arrival of tropical storm winds (even sooner than hurricane landfall).
- The DEO and local officials kept secret the fact that the 2012 model already exceeded 24 hours by 2.5 hours. The 2012 ROGO building allocations should have been reduced as a result.
- Instead, an additional 1350 ROGOs have been allocated – a 40% increase over the 2012 allocation. And, while the courts agreed the additional ROGOs violated the state hurricane evacuation mandate, the Florida legislature over-rode this decision just this Spring.
- We have just ONE road to safety and it’s over 130 miles to the mainland. Traffic is bad any given day on US1, we don’t need to imagine what it looks like when the entire island chain tries to evacuate at once – many of us experienced it before Hurricane Irma.
Here’s Some Additional Information:
- Florida DEO website for their 2023 Update to the Florida Keys Evacuation Model
- Keys Weekly June 23 story “KEYS RESIDENTS WEIGH IN AHEAD OF HURRICANE EVACUATION MODEL UPDATES“
- Keys Citizen June 22 story “Hurricane evacuation modeling elicits concerns“
- Last Stand’s June 23 email to Members
- Here’s Last Stand’s formal Public Comment letter to DEO
- Last Stand’s June 9 Action Alert (entitled Tell the State “ENOUGH” at these critical meetings June 13-14 and save our quality of life) to the community about the DEO’s Key West, Marathon and Key Largo Public Workshop on June 13 and 14. Here you’ll find videos of the workshops, and background information including: What’s evacuation got to do with overdevelopment?; The 2012 evacuation model didn’t include all residents – allowing greater development. Who will be included in the new model?; and Key issues to ask or write about.
- Last Stand’s May 4 letter to DEO asking them to update the Hurricane Evacuation Model
- Last Stand’s articles and stands on Hurricane Evacuation
- Stay up-to-date by joining Last Stand’s Email List here
- Join the fight by becoming a Last Stand Member here