Registrations have begun for the 2018 springs seasons of both the Gateway Soccer Association and Gateway Flag Football League.

However, according to a Gateway Services District document dated January 9, 2018, only the GFFL has signed their lease to utilize the Sherman Soccer Complex. Leases with both youth leagues should have been signed months ago.

The Gateway Sun reached out to GSCDD District Manager Chris Shoemaker to find out if there had been a typo in the document they published earlier this week. Shoemaker replied to say he was forwarding our inquiry to Public Works Manager Michael Tisch.

Tisch had not responded as of the time of publication.

Given the fact that the GSA is signing up players there’s every reason to believe the season will happen. Additionally, the GSA’s website specifically says their games and practices will take place at the Sherman Complex, and the GSA schedule even has time off booked for the Lee County School District’s spring break. By all indications, the season is happening.

That said, it is out of place for the GSCDD to state that the “Agreement has not been signed” so close to the beginning of the season.

As you may recall, the GSCDD’s Board of Supervisors recently voted 3-2 to increase field usage rates on the youth leagues from $17/hour to $48/hour per field when the lights are in use.

Chairman Margaret Fineberg, Vice-Chairman Bill Guy and Stoneybrook Ambassador Kathleen Flaherty were the board members who voted in favor of the measure, while Supervisor Doug Banks and Supervisor Ed Tinkle voted against it.


We’ve already stated our position on all of this, but it bears repeating.

The Board of Supervisors voted to raise rates despite the fact they had no idea why they were voting for this specific increase.

One Supervisor literally asked Tisch: “Do we know how we arrived at these figures?”

And Tisch said no.

Inexplicably, the three previously mentioned board members voted in favor anyway despite having no idea why they were voting for it.

The solution is simple: The Board of Supervisors should direct the district staff to match field usage rates at Gateway’s fields to the exact same rates charged by Lee County ($31/hour under lights) for use of their fields, beginning with the Fall 2018 or Spring 2019 seasons.


Editor of the Gateway Sun and owner of restaurant delivery service Florida Food Runner.

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