Coalition of groups calls on the county to somehow make the Upper Keys cleaner

Article Courtesy of The Florida Keys Info

By Kevin Wadlow

Published May 21, 2014

Months of sewer and highway construction on U.S. 1 spawned more roadside clutter, which has "taken its toll on the aesthetics of Key Largo," a community coalition says.

"This unsightly look, in some cases, is causing our residents to lose respect for this wonderful place," Frank Veltri, a member of the Elks Lodge in Tavernier, wrote in a May 12 letter to the Monroe County Commission. "Illegal signs, trash and code violations are becoming more common.

Groups including the Island of Key Largo Federation of Homeowner Associations, the Tavernier Community Association and the Elks Lodge will tell commissioners Wednesday that the time has come for a "Clean Up Key Largo" push.

Bike lanes, highway improvements and other enhancements "will be a waste of money" unless the county and state "begin to enforce their ordinances and regulations" on sign clutter and right-of-way infringement, wrote Dottie Moses, president of the homeowners association.

The accumulation of eyesores has "resulted in our community looking poorly," agreed TCA President John Hammerstrom.

They say that in addition to increased action on code infractions, the county and state could do more to prevent driving or parking on newly resodded areas, and increase landscaping.
The groups volunteered to take part in an advisory committee to government to "make Key Largo a showcase in the Keys."

The "Clean Up Key Largo" request is scheduled for about 11 a.m. Wednesday at the County Commission's regular meeting at the Murray E. Nelson Government and Cultural Center at mile marker 102.5.