Proven and Successful Advocate
for Marco Island Citizens:
Jared believes our community deserves real action and solutions not empty words and broken promises. Prior to winning his city council race in 2016, Jared made five pledges to the citizens of Marco Island and has worked tirelessly to successfully fulfill them based on his principles of fiscal conservatism, lower taxes, limited government, and protection of citizens’ rights.
Pledge #1 - To keep more money in citizens’ pocket
Pledge fulfilled! Jared has led the fight every single year to lower the millage rate and stop the increase of property taxes on Marco Island. Never before in our island’s history has a City Council set the property tax rate at rollback four years in a row. The rate is lower now than it was way back in Fiscal year 2011! Since Jared was elected in 2016, the property tax rate has been reduced by approximately 12%. In May 2018, Jared wrote a proposal that would lower the “Local Communications Service Tax” by 60%. Thanks to Jared, Marco citizens are saving $500,000 every year allowing their hard-earned dollars to be spent elsewhere locally or saved.
In 2019, Jared proposed a Capital Spending Protection ordinance to City Council that was voted on and approved. Marco Island’s taxpayers expect a high degree of fiscal responsibility in their government so he advanced an ordinance that would require a supermajority, which is five votes in favor instead of four, to approve certain large capital expenditures of approximately $2 million or greater. This will help ensure that large expenditures have broad community support and aren’t just divisive pet projects not approved by the community.
Pledge #2 - Protect property rights
Pledge fulfilled! Property rights are a cornerstone of a free society. The more we chip away the less freedom we have. After his election, Jared delivered on his promises to the citizens of Marco Island to protect Veterans' Community Park by voting to fix the zoning problems so that now the property is officially designated as a "park." Jared strongly supported the effort to put a moratorium on density transfers which would have allowed excessive development beyond what was intended and what neighbors had rightfully anticipated all because of big government. Ultimately, Jared voted to end the practice of density transfer entirely.
In other areas of the island, as citizens and businesses worked to exercise their rights on their own parcels, Jared always kept an open mind to allow improvements and support innovation while also ensuring that neighbors are not unduly burdened. Jared has been a consistent advocate for better protections for our island's wildlife and threatened species as well as environmental protection. With this approach and balance, the Marco Island community as a whole has been able to benefit without violating established property rights.
Pledge #3 - Improve Marco’s relationship
with the County and State
Pledge fulfilled! Prior to Jared's election, Marco Island consistently received the short end of the stick when it came to off-island politics. During his time on City Council, Jared has worked closely with our state legislative delegation and Ron Book, who represents our City in Tallahassee on legislative matters, to ensure that Marco Island's best interests are represented. It was Jared's innovative approach that resulted in a change to state law through a local bill that gave Marco Island citizens the right to vote in a binding referendum on the future of their EMS services.
Jared also worked with Marco Island Academy to assist in efforts with the Collier County School Board to provide MIA with over 1 million dollars in advance funds towards the building of the new high school facility. Jared has also spent time working with the Collier County Commissioners to improve our working relationship between our legislative bodies and helping Marco Island during joint workshops on fertilizer runoff and by solving issues like the control and maintenance of Goodland Road. This resulted in the County assuming responsibilities saving Marco Island millions of dollars now and into the future.
Jared is always watching developments in Tallahassee and Collier County, maintaining positive lines of communication with our state representatives and county commissioners, making sure that Marco Island is not caught off guard by any changes in upcoming laws.
Pledge #4 - Sunset provisions for controversial ordinances
Pledge fulfilled! Prior to Jared's election, Marco Island citizens were bombarded with poorly thought-out ordinances or policies that enlarged the size and scope of government or were seemingly done in the "shadows" without adequate public input and notice. Two key examples of this type of action were the proposed Veterans' Community Park hotel, that would have radically expanded density near the park property and would have given a developer a one million dollar interest-free loan on the backs of our taxpayers. Secondly, the massive "rental ordinance" that would have bloated the city government bureaucracy and negatively impacted the property rights of thousands of Marco Island citizens instead of focusing on addressing the actual issues directly to provide common-sense relief. Jared promised that he would put a sunset provision in similar controversial ordinances during his tenure so that future Marco Island Councils could debate the issues once more data had been gathered and wouldn't "lock-in" bad policy decisions that harm our citizens.
Since being elected, Jared is proud that there has never been another ordinance or proposal passed by Council as controversial as those referenced above nor has there been any foisted on an unsuspecting public. Rather than needing a sunset clause to protect against bad ordinances, Jared has consistently fought to keep bad ordinances from being approved in the first place. Jared also voted in favor of ordinance changes that properly zoned Veterans' Community Park as a "park" and eliminated density transfer! Jared's keen legal eye has been used throughout his term to improve bad policy, fix potential pitfalls, and prevent unintended consequences from being codified in our local laws and ordinances.
Pledge #5 - Make Council Meetings
more accessible to the public
Pledge fulfilled! One of the first actions Jared took upon taking office in 2016 was to improve our City Council meetings so our public's best interests were being served. In Jared's second meeting ever, he demanded that the Council repeal a resolution that was passed in 2015 that restricted the citizens' rights to petition their government. Council agreed with Jared and voted unanimously to repeal the restriction!
Jared co-drafted updated Rules of Procedure to improve the flow of the meetings, as Chair increased the ability for public comment on issues in front of the Council, put the people's business (ordinances and resolutions) at the front of the agenda and moved other Council and staff items to the end. Jared has always (every single time!) advocated setting meetings at 5:30pm so that our working citizens and families have an opportunity to participate in the process. In the past, meetings have been set in the mornings or early afternoon of workdays, preventing many citizens from being part of the process.