The Key West City Commission has a whole lot of meetings tomorrow

Key West Mayor Teri Johnston joined Good Morning Keys on KeysTalk 96.9/102.5FM this morning to talk about what’s been going on in the city.

The new City Manager, Al Childress, began working today. Tomorrow there will be three meetings beginning at 5 p.m. in City Hall – the City Commission, the Board of Adjustment and the Caroline Street Corridor and Bahama Village Community Redevelopment Agency.

To see the agendas for those meetings, click here:

An update on the strategic plan will be heard tomorrow night as the city goes into the final year before a rewrite.

One agenda items is a request for qualifications for the Comprehensive Adaptation and Resiliency Implementation Plan, which incorporates sea level rise and climate change.

An auditor selection committee will also be created for the city of Key West.

Johnston explained, “This is a change for us as well as every other municipality because a state statute recently has required that all local communities create an auditor selection committee.”

The contract for the city’s long-term auditor expires next year. The committee will be formed to recommend an auditor to the commission.

The city will also be looking for a new city clerk.

The Move-In Assistance Program will also be discussed tomorrow to adjust eligibility and other requirements.

Johnston said this would “help people who work in the city of Key West and help them with first, last and their deposits so they can get into rentals, make it easier for our workforce to get into rentals.”

The program will help people with initial deposits and first month’s rent – people could be looking at $10,000 to $12,000 just to get into a place.

Johnston said, “I think it’s going to be very well received because that’s quite a chunk of money for somebody coming into the city of Key West, somebody renting to come up with first, last and one-month’s deposit. The city of Key West is going to help out those individuals to make sure that we maintain a healthy workforce and a healthy economy.”

The historic planner has also brought an ordinance to reduce the amount of time that it takes to get a demolition permit for a non-contributing structure.

Johnston said, “The old procedure was you had to go through two meetings, which put you back almost three months. His recommendation is if it’s a non-contributing structure, we do it in the first meeting, which will streamline that process somewhat.”

Another item up for discussion is to amend the comprehensive plan regarding the water supply facilities work plan.

The state budget includes a number of items that would benefit Key West.

Johnston said, “The Housing Bill has some good things in it that will certainly help us. We’ve got to keep an eye on a couple of the other restrictions in there, but overall it seems to be a really good proposal. We have a number of unauthorized seats in restaurants throughout Key West. This has been an ongoing program for the city since 2109. Identifying restaurants who are authorized to have a certain number of seats, who have paid the fees to have a certain number of seats and actually have more seats than what they are supposed to.”

There are about $600,000 in fees out there that have not been paid.

Johnston said, “The city is allowing these restaurants to come into compliance – either remove the seats or pay for the seats, one of the two, but certainly $600,000 into the city coffers would do great things as we head into our budgeting process for 2023-2024.”