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Conservation Collier Referendum Passes

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Barefoot Beach

Voters in Collier County have decided to reestablish funding for Conservation Collier.

The Conservation Collier Referendum passed on Tuesday. It will place a small tax on property owners of 25 cents for every one thousand dollars of land value, or $75 a year on a property worth $300,000.

Started in 2003, the program has so far acquired over 4,200 acres. Funding for the program sunsetted in 2013, but the land so far acquired now protects local water quality, wildlife habitat, and provides outdoor recreation space. The additional funds raised will enable more land, water, and wildlife to be protected.

Many local environmentalists and conservation organizations supported the referendum, including the Conservancy of Southwest Florida and the local NAACP chapter. Many see the Conservation Collier referendum as a step towards securing a place for all of us in Southwest Florida, in the face of climate change.