Short-term permits approved for mobility vehicles on Fort Myers Beach

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FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla.- Power-driven mobility devices could soon be allowed on Fort Myers Beach.

The town has granted a permit to help the disabled get to the sand and more carts maybe coming soon. WINK News spoke to one beach goer who’s been fighting for this for years.

“We don’t use it for anything else except to get to our cabana that we pay a lot of money for,” said Toni Scolaro.

Fort Myers Beach resident Toni Scolaro and her husband have been seasonal visitors for 30 years. But, in order to get to the beach, they both need assistance and they live where the beach is the widest.

“His difficultly walking on hard surface let alone soft sand, he will get out of breath walking from the car up here,” said Scolaro.

For three years, the couple was approved for a permit that allowed them to use a golf cart that would take them from their condo to their cabana, but, last season, the town said the permits were issued in error and denied them use of their golf cart.

“Our attorney from Florida Disability was in touch with the town and they probably figured they better do something.”

The town attorney agreed, and now Scolaro and her husband can now use their golf cart.

Now, Fort Myers Beach must come up with their own regulations. The town must decide what type of vehicles will be allowed on the beach, along with other things like not allowing them to go over 5 mph.

One of the other options on the table would allow for condo complexes or beach vendors to have a golf cart shuttle people with disabilities to the beach.

“I personally, for my use, I bought a golf cart. Although, they are allowing me to use it now, I feel like it’s just a band aid fix and when I come back in October, I think there will be problems,” Scolaro told WINK News.

The town council says its looking at the American’s with Disabilities Act to come up with a policy. They want to finish their discussion quickly.

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