November Ballot includes elections for our Bayside Improvement Community Development District

Dear Pelican Landing friends and neighbors:

Walter J. McCarthy is a candidate for the Bayside Community Development District. He has been a CDD supervisor for the past 5 years. Walter is a Professional Civil Engineer, graduate of MIT, with over 50 years of engineering and management experience. His technical savvy and willingness to volunteer his professional expertise has saved Pelican Landing property owners over $100,000 during his tenure on the Bayside Board. I ask for your vote for Walter on November 6, 2012 (or at early voting). See below for information on his engineering background and some of his accomplishments for our community as a CDD supervisor. Please compare qualifications of the candidates before you cast your vote.

To read more about Walter’s accomplishments and background please click on this highlighted text to 

Walter J. McCarthy
Bayside Improvement Community Development District
Supervisor, Seat No. 3 & CDD Vice Chairman

Resident of Pelican Landing, Bay Cedar, since September 1994.
Originally appointed in 2007 to complete the unexpired term of a Supervisor who passed away. Elected Supervisor for a 4 year term in a contested election in 2008. If elected for another term he promises to continue to exercise fiscal responsibility (a fiscal conservative) while improving the level of service provided by the District. Of particular importance is the improvement of the water quality of our lakes (he was the first to initiate lake water testing which has been expanded by the CDD and he is a strong proponent of “mimicking of natural systems” [e.g. use of aeration and littoral plants] rather than use of chemicals and exotic species) and the implementation of a professional study of our lake water quality by Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) environmental staff. Of current importance as well is the imminent expansion of the District’s responsibility in the conduct of its role in the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit. His education, background, and experience as a Civil Engineer make him uniquely qualified (the only engineer on the Bayside Board and his experience in Lee County with engineering and permitting issues) to address these very technical issues.

Examples of Accomplishments on Bayside Board.
CDD Maintenance Facility. Shortly after his appointment in 2007 the CDDs voted to appropriate $800,000 to construct a maintenance facility on Coconut Road. He volunteered to serve as the construction oversight engineer (the design engineer was to be provided a fee of $20,500 for these services which were saved by the District as a result of his service). The low bid for the building and site construction work was $665,777. He worked with the low bidder and the Architect and Engineer and “value engineered” the design plans and negotiated an immediate reduction of $33,771 in the contract price. At the completion of the entire project the total documented savings to the CDDs as a result of his oversight and technical skills was $63,651.

South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) Certification Process. In 2011 the CDDs decided to proceed to secure the long overdue certification of the surface water management system permit. WCI, the developer, is the listed permittee under this SFWMD permit. Walter was appointed as the point person for this activity due to his engineering background and experience in the permitting process from his time with Lee County. He attended several meetings with SFWMD staff and negotiated a favorable, less costly, process for the certification (never done before). He then insisted that WCI participate in the cost of the certification process. WCI, upon this request, agreed to provide $15,000 to the cost. These savings to the property owners are a direct result of his effort.

District Engineer Services. In 2008, upon the motion of Mr. McCarthy, the District sought new proposals for District Engineer services. He pointed out that we were paying high prices for these services (he knew this from his professional experience). The new proposals resulted in naming a new firm as District Engineer with over 20% savings in hourly services and a first year reduction of over 40% in the services related to NPDES.

Las Palmas (Colony) Detention Area. The residents of Las Palmas brought to the attention of the CDDs that the surface water detention area in their community was posing an issue for them. Walter volunteered to serve as the point person to investigate and resolve the issue. His investigation uncovered that the area had not been properly designed and constructed by the now defunct developer team. He found the original design engineer, met with representatives of the firm, and after looking at the evidence presented, the firm agreed to pay 50% of the cost of the necessary corrections ($7,500) and have the original contractor perform the repair work at their cost.

Fiscal Matters. The annual assessment for the CDD general fund has increased by an average of 1.5% per year over the past 5 years (the greatest part of this increase came in the 2013 budget due to increases in lake maintenance cost and sums associated with a new maintenance matter which is proposed). The mitigation of the increases is directly a result of Walter’s insistence, from the beginning of his tenure, to examination of the budget on a line-by-line basis. The result of this effort is an annual “Budget Workshop” in July (CDD must adopt a budget prior to September each year) where this line-by-line activity is conducted. Walter was also instrumental in the action to refund money to Colony property owners when the accumulated reserves in the Colony Fund grew to excess. As a former business owner, he knows the value of people’s money and acts responsibly to protect this interest.

Education. B.S. In Civil Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); M.S. in Engineering Management from Northeastern University. Post graduate work in engineering at MIT. Registered Professional Engineer (retired) in 3 states (including Florida).
Experience. President, George Madsen Construction Co., Minneapolis, MN (6 years). Professor of Civil Engineering, University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, MA (16 years). County Engineer/Development Services Director, Lee County, Fort Myers, FL (10 years).

If you have any questions please contact me at 239-947-2427 or email at char.mccarthy@aol.com . Charlotte E. McCarthy; 25161 Bay Cedar Drive; Bonita Springs, FL 34134.