Dates to Remember
Sept. 26, 2023 – Special City Commission Meeting & Regular Workshop
Oct. 4, 2023 - Clewiston Firefighter Pension Board Meeting
Oct. 16, 2023 – Clewiston City Commission Meeting
Oct. 19, 2023 – Golf Course Advisory Board Meeting
Office of the City Manager
Citizens, business owners & other interested parties:
On Sept. 18, 2023, the City Commission finalized the fiscal year municipal budget which will provide funding for all city operations for the period Oct. 1, 2023 through Sept. 30, 2024. This action took place after the Commission and staff held a total of eleven meetings with eight dedicated workshops and three related public hearings including dozens of hours of discussion over the past three months to develop the revenue and spending plan. The final budget actions included approval of the operating budget for all of the City’s general fund departments, as well as, all enterprise funds (e.g. electric, water & wastewater, solid waste). The Commission also approved the ten year Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) spending for the next fiscal year.
Management sincerely appreciates all the dedication to the important budget development effort by the City staff and particularly the members of the Commission who put so much time and effort into the process. Consistent with financial management improvement goals for the City, the approved budget was recommended by management to sufficiently fund fiscal year operations and approved capital expenditures while maintaining adequate reserve funding, meeting the City’s obligations going forward and further building upon progress realized over the past four budget cycles.
In furtherance of ongoing efforts to minimize the fiscal pressure on local funding sources and maintain the lowest practical rates, fees and charges associated with funding City operations, the financial plan does once again leverage substantial resources from state shared revenues, federal and state grant funds and other sources. As have been previously announced, a significant number of the critical infrastructure needs of the City over the next budget cycle are being fully funded or subsidized from grant and donation sources.
Anyone interested in reviewing budget documents can access relevant materials by visiting the City’s website at https://www.clewiston-fl.gov/department/division.php?structureid=32, or I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org to assist.
Thank you for your continued support and interest in the City of Clewiston.
Recreation & Leisure Services Director Lauren McGinnis reports:
We were thrilled to recently host Central Elementary at the C.S. Mott Pool for their FSA celebration! It was so much fun to watch the students enjoy all that we have to offer as well as cheer on their teachers as they braved the diving board as well. Students and teachers were treated to ice cream, private pool time, all of the fun and games in the Youth Center, and a picnic under the chickee hut to end the day!
Now that school is back in session the Youth Center is back open daily! The hours of operation for students to enjoy our building are 2:30 PM – 6:00 PM Monday – Thursday and 2:30 PM – 5:00 PM on Friday. We invite all of our youth to come and enjoy all of the board games, books, Xbox game systems, and 3D printers at the Youth Center every day after school. Be sure to follow us on Facebook as we have some fun and exciting new clubs starting next month!
Our 3D printer runs each Thursday. If you would like to be a part of our 3D print club and/or volunteer for the club please call us to find out how. We are always looking for volunteers to help with our clubs and activities here at the Youth Center, if you or anyone you know is interested in volunteering please call us at 983-1492 to find out how you can get involved.
Our staff have been getting the fields ready for the AYSO soccer season. We are thrilled to see so many families joining the sport and enjoying our field. We will have some baseball fields open during the soccer season. If you would like to use the fields or batting cages but have found the gates locked please call the Youth Center to find out how you can gain access.
We are currently working on renovating our parks! We have begun removing old equipment from parks that are being renovated. Please use caution if you see that your neighborhood park is missing pieces, and visit another one of our playgrounds. We are working as quickly as possible to get all the fun new pieces installed.
We have upgraded our facility rental process to make it fully digital. This includes a new information sheet that will help us prepare a more accurate quote, and help us find the facility that will best serve you for your event.
On top of our wonderful events this past month, our recreation support, maintainance, and sports complex staff have been very busy all across the city! Some things you may have seen and some you may not have, here is what we have been up to this month:
• 60 students enjoyed our building while utilizing the game room and technology in August.
• The Youth Center hosted 4 private events.
• The Youth Center hosted 1 business event.
• We hosted Central Elementary students for their FSA celebration!
• The Youth Center hosted Little League’s coaches and board for an initial interest meeting.
• Daily afternoon Youth Activity Groups have started to meet at the Youth Center.
o Monday/Wednesday – Taekwondo
o Tuesday - Sugar Dolls
o Thursday - Boy Scouts
• 25 Facility Rental requests were processed this month
• Staff repaired Youth Center Water Fountain.
• Staff cleaned all building entrances including the doors, windows, and grout.
• Staff touched up paint throughout the building.
• Staff caulked the foundation around the outside of the facility to ensure no water would leak in.
• Staff repaired facility rental equipment housing unit.
John Boy Auditorium and Beardsley Room
The John Boy Auditorium hosted 2 private events.
• The John Boy Auditorium hosted 2 mobile food pantries.
• The Beardsley Room hosted AYSO for a coaches meeting.
• The Beardsley Room hosted city staff for insurance open enrollment.
• Staff repaired water damage around chair rail in Beardsley Room.
• Staff deep cleaned the auditorium entrance including doors, windows, sidewalk, planter area, and grout.
• Staff cleaned dumpster corral at the auditorium.
• Staff cleaned air conditioning units to maintain efficient cooling of the facility.
• Staff deep cleaned building restrooms including air vents and grout lines.
Sugarland Sports Complex and Park Pavilion
• Sugarland Park Pavilion hosted 3 private events.
• Sugarland Sports Complex hosted an adults softball tournament.
• Staff spent 102 hours mowing.
• Staff spent 32 hours preparing and maintaining baseball diamonds.
• Staff repaired broken/damaged sprinkler heads on the softball fields.
• Staff repaired broken fencing and damaged gates at field entrance points.
• Staff performed maintenance on the spreader.
• Staff performed maintenance on the tractor.
• Staff fixed an oil leak on the ground master.
• Staff repaired and replaced the belts and pulley on the scag.
• Staff inspected the complex areas for litter and debris pickup daily.
• Staff sprayed fields to help kill weeds and ensure healthy field growth for the upcoming youth sports season.
• Maintenance staff assisted ballfields staff in preparation of the fields for the upcoming AYSO season.
C.S. Mott Pool and Splash Pad
• C.S. Mott Pool hosted 2 private group swim events.
• C.S. Mott Pool hosted 2 private rentals.
• C.S. Mott Pool hosted Central Elementary students for their FSA celebration.
• C.S. Mott Pool hosted a glow swim on Friday, August 11, 2023 with 200 attendees.
• In the month of August the pool hosted 819 patrons.
• Staff adjusted splash pad buckets.
• Staff checked drains and removed debris from Splash Pad.
• Staff cleaned tables and shade structures at Splash Pad.
We are working on organizing more family fun community events, and we would love to know what you would like to see. No idea is too big or small, we want it all from video game tournaments to movies in the park and everything in between. Please send any ideas or recommendations to email@example.com. If you are willing to donate and/or sponsor an event or activity please reach out. We would love to hear from you!
If you have any pictures enjoying any of our parks or facilities that you would like to share please tag us on Facebook or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. We love to see our community enjoying the many spaces we have to offer.
Library Director Natasha Hayes reports:
• Library staff provided ready reference/computer assistance, circulation activities, and patron programming to 1,543 patrons this month.
• This month’s programming activities have included:
o Children and Teens navigated obstacles by coding Spheros and playing a game of Tag. There were a total of 55 participants.
o On August 9th the day was filled with boundless curiosity and innovation at our Stem Club for tweens and teens. They dove into the world of Technology and Engineering.
o The AWE Learning Stations were accessed and used by a total of 45 children. Be sure to stop by and let the kids try the Early Literacy Station. It is designed specifically for youngest patrons ages 2-8 and features over 4,000 localized learning activities.
o The Friends of the Clewiston Library Book Club met on August 23rd to discuss
“Hang The Moon” written by Jeanette Walls. There were a total of 11 participants.
Highlighted Programs And Events:
September is Library Card Sign-Up Month: September is Library Card Sign-up Month so be sure to get one today! There is nothing more empowering than getting your own library card. It gives you access to technology, resources, and services to pursue your passions and dreams.
• Anime and Manga Club
o In-Person (Open to 6th-12th graders): Anime Club meets every Friday from 3:30
- 4:15 p.m. Come hang out and chat with other Anime fans. We will be watching anime provided courtesy of Crunchyroll and talking about your favorite manga.
o Via Zoom: We invite tweens and teens to join us every Monday at 3:30 p.m. To register, email email@example.com to receive Zoom log-in information. If you are under 18, please be sure to have a guardian’s permission to participate in this online event.
• Book Club: Come join the fun our next TWO meetings: Wednesday, September 20th at 2:00 p.m. and 5:15 p.m. to discuss the newest book club title, “Hang the Moon” by Jeannette Walls. With lively discussions, this group truly enjoys their meetings as they exchange their thoughts about each new title. New readers are always welcome.
• Gaming & VR Club: You don’t want to miss this! Stop in at 3:30 p.m. every Tuesday for video games. We have Beat Saber, Roller Coaster Ride, Super Smash Bro’s, Mario Kart, Minecraft, Animal Crossing and the Oculus Quest! Open to all skill levels. Children ages 7 and up. Walk-ins welcome, but registering is always encouraged for better preparation.
• SHINE (Serving health Insurance Needs of Elders) and Area Agency on Aging-Southwest Florida will be hosting virtual classes for anyone interested in learning more about Medicare! To register for upcoming webinars, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 863-983-1493.
If you have not done so already, please join our Facebook page (Clewiston Public Library) in order to remain up to date on the library’s events and programs.
Please stop by the library to pick up a calendar with a list of events and programs so you can join in on the fun.
Dates to Remember:
• Wednesday, September 27th
o Stem Club: Robotic Mini Golf at 3:30 p.m.
• Thursday, September 28th
Stem Club: LEGO Brick Challenge at 3:30 p.m.
• Friday, September 29th
o Anime Club at 3:30 p.m.
Golf Course Director Robbie Rush reports:
• Get all information of what’s going on at Clewiston Golf Course Facebook.
• Get on our E-mail list by going to the City of Clewiston Website. Go to the golf course division and at the bottom of the page you can sign-up on Constant Contact and get all Clewiston Golf Course information.
• Rates have changed to Summer Rates. Non-members $34.10 Plus Tax 18 Holes and
$17.05 Plus Tax for 9 Holes. Pay for 18 holes and play as many as you want in the same day.
• Golf Shop Hours are 7:45am to 5:30pm. The first tee time is 8:00am. Carts are due in at 7:00pm daily. The golf course is open Tuesday-Sunday and closed Monday.
• Bringing your own alcoholic beverages onto the golf course is prohibited. The golf shop sells alcoholic beverages if needed.
• Using Clewiston Golf Course range balls to play with is prohibited. We sell golf balls in the golf shop.
• Advertise a Tee Sign out on the golf course. If you are interested in advertising your business at the golf course call 863-983-1448.
• The Driving Range has a new token machine now. Get your tokens in the golf shop.
• Golf lessons and Club Repair are available at the club from PGA Professional Robbie Rush. Contact golf shop at 863-983-1448.
• Clewiston Golf Course can supply all your golfing needs. You can inquire in the golf shop
• Clewiston Elks Lodge Scramble is scheduled for September 23, 2023.
• Starting in November 2023, work will start on a new irrigation system. The golf course will be open and play will not be interfered with during the irrigation project. The project will last 90 to 110 days.
For more information call the golf shop 863-983-1448.
Community Development Director/Fire Chief Travis Reese reports:
• As hurricane season swings into full gear, remember clean drinking water is one of the most important items to have in case of an emergency. You should have 1 gallon of water per person per day for at least three days. Don’t forget your pets when preparing for an emergency, they will also need ample water and food.
• Tis the season to pay your annual Business Tax Receipt if you have a business in the City of Clewiston. Business Tax Receipts will expire September 30th. Feel free to stop in to the Community Development Office to make your payment, or drop it in the mail. Please note the office can only accept cash or check payments, no credit or debit cards.
• We have a new HVAC company in town, Oasis Mechanical LLC.
• We have a new fish market getting ready to open, Black Sea Fish Market LLC., located at 120 S. WC Owen Ave.
Code Compliance Supervisor Debbie Clay reports:
Sec. 14-125. - Keeping domestic fowl prohibited.
(a) The term "domestic fowl" means chickens, turkeys, ducks or geese.
(b) It shall be unlawful for any person to keep domestic fowl within the city.(Code 1960, § 4-5; Code 1982, § 4-15; Code 1999, § 14-112)
Segundo. 14-125. - Mantener las aves domésticas prohibidas.
(a) El término "ave doméstica" significa pollos, pavos, patos o gansos.
(b) Será ilegal para cualquier persona mantener aves domésticas dentro de la ciudad. (Código 1960, § 4-5; Código 1982, § 4-15; Código 1999, § 14-112)
Code Enforcement personnel will begin focused enforcement on these ordinances in October as well as continued enforcement of all City of Clewiston Ordinance.
The complete City of Clewiston Ordinances is available online and may be accessed utilizing the City of Clewiston website: https://www.clewiston-fl.gov/ or Municode Library website:
Police Chief Tom Lewis reports:
NEW HIRE – Please help us in welcoming Adamaris Hurtado to the department as she was selected to fill a full-time dispatcher vacancy. She comes to us as a proud graduate of the Clewiston High School Criminal Justice program taught by Ms. Petersen and Officer Bree Rojas. Please join us in sending her some congratulations on her new career beginnings. On
August 22, 2023, Chief Lewis participated as a United Way team member in their annual fund Hendry/Glades Fund Distribution process. The process included presentations by the Sunrise Community of Southwest Florida and Catholic Charities. Both organizations presented information on their funding needs to benefit the Clewiston community.
ACCREDITATION – Over the last 25 months, we have been working hard to prepare the police department to be accredited for the first time in the 98-year history of the city. We are very pleased to have secured three subject matter experts from around the state to provide our agency with a three-day mock assessment in September to better prepare us for the official state assessment. The dates of December 12-14, 2023 are our official accreditation assessment dates. During this time, the Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation (CFA) will send a team of subject matter experts to the Clewiston Police Department for a three-day on-site assessment. This accredited status will show the public, whom we proudly serve every day, that every aspect of our operation is operating under best practices and outside experts get a continuing first-hand look at our operation.
In the month of August 2023, Animal Services reported the intake of more than 27 cats and 23 dogs.
During the month of August, Sergeant Willie Roberts attended evening classes on Interview and Interrogations hosted at the Indian River State College. This training greatly assists the department in keeping current with case law to ensure we protect the rights of the citizens we serve.
On August 7, 2023 and August 10, 2023, members of the police department and animal services were trained on Adult and Pediatric First Aid, AED, and CPR, Stop the Bleed, and Narcan administration. The class was offered free to the agency and hosted at the Hendry County Emergency Operations Center.
On August 21, 2023, Animal Control Officer TJ Coppler attended a one-day Animal Cruelty and Fight Investigations Course in Fort Pierce, Florida. The training was hosted by the Fort Pierce Police Department.
On August 29, 2023 and August 31, 2023, Commander Tom Levins and Sergeant Tito Nieves attended training on Officer Employment, Certification, and Professional Compliance. The training was an overview of best practices as well as changes to the state process for certification. The training was offered free to the agency and was hosted by the Southwest Florida Public Safety Academy in Fort Myers, Florida and in Winter Haven, Florida.
General Services Director Williams reports:
The deployment phase of our Advanced Meter Infrastructure (AMI) program is well underway. Contractor Utility Partners of America will soon complete “swaps” of almost 50% of the electric meters in our system and will be moving to the water meter installations in the near future.
• Electric Crew Activities:
o installed new pole on 11th St
o installed new transformer on pole and transferred all wires over
o changed two transformers on Crescent Street,
o set new pole on Crescent Street to split load
o repaired street lights
o installed two new security lights for customers
o hung new transformer behind USSC
o assisted UPA installers as they completed the installation of well over 1000 electric meters
• Water Sewer Crew Activities:
o Repaired numerous (8) valve leaks/water line breaks,
o Prepared water meter boxes for AMI meter installations
o performed Lift Station inspections (50) and made repairs as needed
o replaced water filter at Della Tobias Avenue (7) and flushed line
o installed hydrant meter for customer
o assisted contractor with the lift station rehabilitation project
• Customer Service Department
o Your Utility partners with customers to bring renewable power to the electric grid. If you’d like to learn more about net metering, please visit the FTC consumer information site at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0532-solar-power-your-home .
o Please remember to register with CodeRed (Reverse 911). This system allows us to contact you in case of an emergency or with other informational announcements. You may register by clicking on the CodeRed link at the bottom of the City‘s website page www.clewiston-fl.gov . You may update your information at any time through the same link.
o If you are considering replacing your air conditioner or attic insulation, remember the City offers a rebate program for those items. Most local contractors participate in the program and can give you more information. You can also visit our website at www.clewiston-fl.gov or call our office.
o IT’S LIGHTNING SEASON! Don’t forget to sign up for your meter based surge protection! Visit our office today.
o ONLINE BILL PAY IS AVAILABLE on our web site at www.clewiston-fl.gov or www.municipalonlinepayments.com/clewistonfl.
• Facility Maintenance:
Air condition repairs (15) and filter replacements in city units.
plumbing repairs (3).
Electrical/Lighting repairs (2)
Roof repairs (2)
• Painted lettering on the front door for Community Development and replaced the plaque at the C.S. Mott pool provided by USSC;
• Made repairs to the drainage system at the Animal Control building;
• and repaired the overhead doors to the public works shop.
• Street Division:
o shopping carts collected and returned to businesses
o landscape maintenance
o pot hole repairs
o street signs replaced and guard rail repaired
odebris removed from streets, catch basins and welcome signs (at east and west terminus of town).
o Other work
• Solid Waste:
After a very long wait our new Grab Loader truck has arrived and has been put into service.
If you’d like to schedule a special pickup service, please call the Public Works Department at 983-1471.
Staff continues to maintain all vehicles in the city’s fleet.