In March 2015 when Estero became an incorporated municipality and the Village Council was elected, many people asked “Is the ECCL still necessary?”.
During the last eight months as the Village got organized and began to operate, the ECCL continuously evaluated how it could use the resources and experience that it has developed over the last 15 years in ways that compliment, and did not conflict with, the role and responsibility of the elected Village Council.
Several factors have contributed to the need for the ECCL to continue to play a supportive role in the emergence of Estero as a premier community in southwest Florida. They are:
- The provisions of Florida’s Sunshine Act that limit the ability of all Village Advisory Committee members to communicating with each other only at officially notices and advertised public meetings,
- The limited communication outreach capabilities of most, if not all, Florida municipalities, especially when compared to those of the ECCL,
- The government light commitment that is contained in the Village’s Charter that limits the size of its staff and creates a need for cost-free, talented volunteers like those that ECCL has recruited and involved over the years.
- Many of the challenges facing the Estero community are outside the jurisdiction of the Village. The Village Council may want to take positions on these issues but they are not in a position to devote major resources to them.
The ECCL is a membership network of 35 residential community organizations and a number of affiliated Estero organizations and institutions.
The following “8 Core Values” have emerged this year as the Village has made its organizational and operational decisions:
- Forum for our Membership in Estero: We provide a forum for our membership to bring their “outside the gates” problems and concerns for resolution and support,
- Clearing House for Ideas: Our monthly meetings act as a “Clearinghouse for Ideas” where people from all areas of the community can freely discuss each idea or suggestion,
- Knowledge and Experience: Our leadership and membership has extensive knowledge and many years of experience in researching and solving a wide variety of community and governmental problems,
- Public Information: We have a very strong commitment to helping our member communities and their residents to be fully informed about all the issues that are likely to impact their quality of life in Estero,
- Strength in Numbers: We strongly believe in “strength in numbers” …we are only as strong as the number of our members we can mobilize in support of our positions,
- Communication Cababilities: We continually strive to improve and expand our communications capabilities with the 40,000 residents of Estero directly using our resources and indirectly through the capabilities of our community members,
- Shared Communication Support: We add strength by providing communication services to other community organizations seeking to various opportunities or services for the residents of Estero, and
- Enhancement Thru Collaboration: We believe we can better serve the citizens of Estero by collaborating with other organizations and groups that share our concerns.