On Location with Tom Shadrach: City Permitting Failure to Act
5 years ago when John Gunter was running for the District 1 council seat, he stated that he could fix the permitting problem in the city based on his experience as a home builder and a business man. Fast forward 5 years, and the problem is worse than ever.
The problem with our permitting system is a Software and Hardware integration. This has nothing to do with how to build a home. I was a Program Manager for The Boeing Company where I led 500 people, doing mostly high-tech integration efforts for the aerospace industry. Most of the staff were Aerospace and Computer Software Engineers. My experience and skills are needed to understand the complexities of this problem and make sure it is solved.
The promise of a homebuilder managing us out of the permitting nightmare has not come to pass. It comes down to leadership and getting things done. Mayor Gunter has not done what he promised Cape Coral voters when he was elected in 2017. The permitting crisis has only gotten worse on his watch. New leaders are needed. Vote for me, Tom Shadrach for Mayor. It’s time for action.
August 18, 2017 News-Press article on Gunter’s campaign for District 1
John Gunter has built homes and businesses in four states. But right now, Cape Coral needs much more business properties than homes. And that’s why he’s running for District 1 on Cape Coral City Council.
“I’ve been here almost 10 years,” Gunter said. “I haven’t seen a lot of changes for the day-to-day people. We can’t keep going on, asking the homeowners to carry the weight of the tax burden.”
Gunter is one of three candidates running in District 1. The candidates have to live in the district but the election is citywide. The primary is Sept. 12. The top two finishers will face off Nov. 7 in the nonpartisan race.
Gunter said the ratio of 10 percent commercial properties to 90 percent residential properties in tax revenue was making for a dangerous recipe if there’s ever another Great Recession type reduction in home values.
“We do have it a little more difficult because you have such an influx of people in the winter,” Gunter said. “So we need to focus on bringing in businesses that aren’t tourism based.”
Gunter admits that many candidates talk about economic development but that his work as a contractor gives him insights that others might not have.
“Take zoning for example, our zoning is so restrictive where you have places you can build an office but not a restaurant or vice versa. Are they really all that different when you get down to it?” Gunter said.
Gunter also singled out the permitting process in Cape Coral from his own knowledge and the experience of friends and acquaintances.
“I’ve built in four states and 30 different counties,” Gunter said. “The city of Cape Coral is by far the toughest municipality to be able to get a permit pulled.”
With his building experience, Gunter said, he’s just the man to get horse, wagon and everything else back on track for Cape Coral.
Source: News-Press Article