Let’s check in with Key West Mayor Teri Johnston

After returning from the national mayor’s conference in Reno, NV, Key West Mayor Teri Johnston is ready to bring what she discussed to the Keys.

Johnston joined Good Morning Keys on KeysTalk 96.9/102.5FM this morning to talk about the city.

Key West proclaimed Juneteenth a city holiday earlier in the month and celebrations occurred this weekend.

Johnston said, “We’re so proud to do that. I understand that (the events) were well-attended.”

The mayor said hats off to the everyone who worked hard to make the first official Key West holiday a memorable one.

Johnston said, “We look forward to them getting bigger and better and more well-attended every year.”

Vaccinations for COVID have been approved for children under 5.

Johnston said, “I think that’s wonderful. We are anticipated to go through a very heavy COVID summer from all indications that we’re hearing. Certainly our youngest children need to be protected, particularly before they head back into the school year.”

In the last few weeks, hospitalizations in Key West have been on the rise — some of whom were in ICU, which has not been seen for a long, long time.

Johnston said, “So please be careful.”

Key West City Commission will meet tomorrow night at 5 p.m. in City Hall.

One item up for discussion is an on-demand transit system software.

Johnston said, “As you may have noticed around the city of Key West, you’ll see 30 and 36 passenger buses riding around relatively empty. We’re going to create an on demand system so that you can contact us and we will come, pick you up, get you to your location and hopefully it will be far more efficient and will have better service, not only for our locals, but also for our visitors.”

Another item is the city will be brining in almost $5.5 million in grants for community development to offset taxpayer responsibilities.

Two items relate to affordable housing.

One of them is to require landlords to give at least 60 days notice if a person’s lease will not be renewed or if rent will increase by more than 5%.

Johnston said, “We know how difficult it is to find housing in the city of Key West and we want to give tenants as much advance warning as possible if their lease is not being renewed or if their lease is being increased over 5%.”

Another item the city will discuss is bringing back the contract for Fantasy Fest.

Several months ago, management got together to talk about it and the vast majority said the event needs to be changed and brought back to the creative event that it once was and address the nudity that extended beyond the Fantasy Fest zone.

That will be up for discussion tomorrow night.

To see the agenda for the meeting, click here: https://keywest.legistar.com/MeetingDetail.aspx?ID=983700&GUID=64261C85-CE86-4DD4-B2C9-14509008F77F&Options=&Search=