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Newsletter - Issue #21 - Hurricane Dorian and Labor Day Weekend
Personal Message from Rep. Bob Rommel

Florida is facing its first hurricane of the 2019 Season - Hurricane Dorian.  Though currently a Category 2 storm, Dorian is projected to reach the east coast of Florida on early Tuesday morning as a Category 3 or 4 hurricane with winds approaching 130 MPH. 

An update from the National Hurricane Center at 8:00 Thursday morning warned that tropical  force winds are could start to hit parts of Florida as early as Monday and could make landfall late  early Tuesday.  As of Wednesday, the "cone of probability," which offers a general idea of where the storm could make landfall, stretched from Miami to Savannah, GA, though it is centered on the East Coast of Central Florida. 

Even though Dorian is not expected to have a direct impact of Florida's West Coast, all residents should be prepared as these storms are known to make last minute changes that could put all of us in the direct path of the storm.  

Collier County's Emergency Manager Director, Dan Summers states that this storm will not be a repeat of Hurricane Irma.  However, Collier County may experience higher than normal water levels because of the recent afternoon storms and "King Tide" scheduled for this weekend.

Governor DeSantis has declared a State of Emergency for the State of Florida to ensure that state and local governments have ample time, resources and flexibility to prepare.  In addition, At Governor DeSantis' direction, the Florida National Guard has activated 2,500 members and has an additional 1,500 members on standby.

Residents of Collier County should be prepared for strong winds and heavy rain - especially on Sunday and Monday.  It is important that Collier County residents stay turned to weather updates. 

Collier County Public Schools are closed on Monday for Labor Day.  CCPS will provide an update on the status of school for Tuesday at 7:00pm on Sunday, September 1st.  You can check www.collierschools.com for the latest information.

Below are tips on how best to weather this storm.  Stay safe!

Bob Rommel
State Representative - District 106
Collier County is Prepared!!

Collier County Emergency Management continues to monitor closely the track of Hurricane Dorian.  While Collier County remains in the southern extreme of the broad forecast cone, the possibility of some severe weather remains in the forecast. We remind residents to continue their efforts to review their hurricane plan and supplies.  We do not anticipate any storm surge flooding based on current track models, although afternoon rains and a King Tide may impact our immediate coast if this storm exits through Collier County. 

County crews are in the process of checking drainage inlets and swales along Collier County roadways and ask that residents and property owners call (239) 252-8924 to advise of excessively high water in swales or flooded roadways.

Property owners and tenants are asked to assist with keeping drainage structures, swales/ditches and drainage grates on their property clear of debris. Toys, palm fronds, tree branches and other items can block drainage structures and cover drainage grates, which reduces the ability of stormwater to flow and can cause flooding of streets and private property. Travelers are reminded not to drive on roads that are under water.  If you cannot see the pavement markings or the edge of pavement, it is best not to risk driving into the water. 

Collier County Public Utilities has added an additional 32 emergency back-up systems to its inventory since  2017, bringing the total emergency standby equipment inventory to 127 units. The utility continues daily coordination with Florida Power & Light for tree trimming and system hardening efforts. Staff has made 100 generator cables in-house to speed the distribution of external generator resources, should they be needed.  

Now is a good time to revisit your individual, family and business hurricane preparedness plan and supplies.  Residents are encouraged to use this opportunity to sign-up at no charge for Collier County’s Alert Collier emergency notification system.

Alert Collier allows officials with Collier County Emergency Management the ability to send alerts directly to residents and visitors via phone (landline and cell), email, text messages, and hearing-impaired receiving devices about issues that may affect their safety, such as notifications of severe weather, evacuations, power outages and more.

Residents must sign-up to receive Alert Collier emergency alerts.  All residents and visitors are urged to sign-up today at www.AlertCollier.com.

It’s also essential that your family be ready before a storm approaches, and that you have a Four-Day Survival Kit prepared. Power outages and other long-lasting impacts from a hurricane require that each household be prepared with supplies for a minimum of four-days for each person – don’t forget the pets!

At the minimum, your Four-Day Disaster Survival Kit should contain the following:
Food
 - at least enough for four days for every person (and pet)
Water - at least one gallon per day per person (four gallons per person, plus extra for the pets)
Blankets/Pillows
Clothing
 - seasonal/rain gear/sturdy shoes
First Aid Kit (including medicines and prescription drugs)

Mosquito Spray
S
pecial Items - for babies and the elderly
Toiletries (hygiene items/moisture wipes)

Toys (books and games)
Important Documents (in a waterproof container) – insurance policies, medical records, bank account/mortgage deeds/titles, Social Security cards, birth certificates, etc.
Flashlights/Batteries
Cash – banks and ATMs won’t be open during power failures
Cell Phone Car Chargers
Keys - 
extra set of home and car keys

Radio - Battery operated and NOAA weather radio
Tools - keep a set with you during the storm
Pet care items:

     - proper identification/immunization records/medications
     - ample supply of food and water

     - a carrier or cage
     - muzzle and leash

Don’t forget to fill your vehicles’ fuel tanks.

Important Contact Information

Collier County Emergency Management
Dan Summers - (239) 252-3600
daniel.summers@colliercountyfl.gov
8075 Lely Cultural Parkway, Suite 445
Naples, FL 34113
Website Facebook Twitter You Tube Hurricane Guide Evacuation Zones Evacuation Routes Special Needs Shelters Special Needs Registry CERT

FEMA Disaster Assistance/Registration
800-621-3362 or TTY: 800-427-5593   www.fema.gov

FEMA Fraud Hotline:  800-323-8603

Attorney General's Price Gouging Hotline:  866-966-7226

Red Cross Food, Shelter and Financial Assistance:  866-438-4636

Salvation Army Hurricane Relief: 888-363-2769

State Assistance Information Line (SAIL) Hotline: 800-342-3557.  The SAIL Hotline is activated only during an emergency event. It provides additional resources and information for those in Florida to receive accurate and up-to-date information regarding an emergency or disaster situation impacting the State of Florida.  At other times, a recorded message will provide general information.

   First and foremost, it is extremely important that you have a plan: for your family, for your business, for your pet, and especially if you have special needs.  Go to FloridaDisaster.org for links that will help you build a plan(s) to meet your needs.
What is Labor Day?

Each year, on the first Monday in September, Americans observe a national holiday called Labor Day. Canadians celebrate the holiday on the same day, although the spelling is slightly different, and known as Labour Day. For some, the Labor Day holiday is a long weekend that marks the end of summer, with backyard barbecues, a final summer getaway, or shopping. Federal, state, and local governments close their offices. Banks and post offices also shut down for the day. However, the foundation for observing Labor Day is to pay tribute to working men and women in the U.S. and Canada.

1. Reasons for Labor Day

During the 19th century, many people, including children, worked seven days a week. The workday was 12 hours long. Most Americans endured these harsh, unsafe, working conditions to try and earn a living. Some worked on farms, while others worked in mines or factories. The tasks were often physically demanding, yet offered poor pay. In 1879 New York, a woman working as a dressmaker in a factory averaged between 33 and 58 cents per day. Although only a small number of workers joined varied labor unions, the idea of organized labor was growing. Labor leaders in the late 1800s suggested a Labor Day event to show the solidarity of labor unions and support for America’s laborers

2. The First Labor Day

On Monday, September 5, 1882, the Central Labor Union in New York City, recognizing the harsh realities of America’s laborers, brought together various unions and an array of workers from different industries for a public event to raise awareness about the issues of working men and women across the country. There was no recognized day-off for workers, so most of the gatherers took unpaid time off from work to attend. Workers and union leaders joined together in a parade, carrying signs with pro-labor slogans. The parade extended along Broadway, a street running the length of Manhattan in New York City and ended in Reservoir Park. Following the parade, the marchers gathered in Wendel’s Elm Park for a picnic and speeches. The evening concluded with fireworks and dancing. An estimated 20,000 to 25,000 workers and their families participated at some point during the eight-hour event.

3. The Idea of Labor Day: McGuire vs Maguire

There is some debate about who came up with the idea of Labor Day as a holiday. Peter J. McGuire, a carpenter, was the co-founder and Vice President of the American Federation of Labor. In the spring of 1882, he proposed a holiday on the first Monday in September that would kick off with a march, a street parade, and a public picnic. Under his plan, local unions would sell tickets to the event to raise funds for the organizations. Matthew Maguire, a machinist by trade and the secretary of the Central Labor Union of New York, also suggested a Labor Day holiday on the first Monday of each September

4. Labor Day Becomes an Official Federal Holiday

On June 28, 1894, President Grover Cleveland officially signed a declaration that Labor Day a was to be a national holiday. However, five states had already designated Labor Day a public holiday in 1887. Oregon was the first, with Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, and Colorado also recognizing the holiday the same year. Before Cleveland signed the declaration, 25 additional states passed legislation acknowledging Labor Day as an official holiday. One group of historians believes that Cleveland’s motivation to sign the national proclamation was to avoid losing the “working man’s” vote. In 1894, as a response to the lowering of worker wages, thousands of workers from the American Railway Union and the Pullman Palace Car Company decided to strike, severely disrupting rail traffic in the Midwest. Cleveland signed the declaration during the disruption.

5. The Other Labor Day: May Day

Labor Day was not the first day that aimed to recognize working men and women. International Workers’ Day originated in the U.S. The Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions, which eventually became the American Federation of Labor, held a convention in Chicago in 1884. Union members and leaders boldly declared that the eight-hour workday be officially and legally recognized by May 1, 1886. When the day arrived, 300,000 workers across the U.S. walked off of their jobs. Violence broke out two days later between the strikers, the police, and Pinkerton agents who arrived to curb the picketers. Over time, unions encouraged their members to recognize Labor Day instead of May Day, which they associated with more radical, anarchist views of labor and its issues. Today, May Day is a holiday in 66 countries.

6. Canada’s Labour Day

Although it also occurs on the first Monday in September, Labour Day’s roots in Canada date back to 1872 in Toronto. That year, printers took to the streets to implement a legal 9-hour work day. However, the strikers were jailed because unions were illegal in Canada. As a result of the printers’ arrests, more than 10,000 protestors took to the streets of Toronto. Eventually, Prime Minister Sir John A. McDonald not only repealed the laws prohibiting union activity, but he also released the organizers from jail. In 1894, Prime Minister John Thompson signed an order officially adopting the date as Labour Day.

7. Wearing White on Labor Day

For decades, people adhered to the notion that wearing white clothing after Labor Day was taboo. Many clothing historians say that it was initially for practical reasons. White was a summer color and a deterrent to the heat. Certain experts say the rule sets apart those of the upper class from those of lesser means. As an example, well-to-do classes wore white linen suits and Panama hats in the 1930s, especially at elite resorts. After Labor Day holiday, the travelers put away the white suits and replaced them with the heavier, darker clothing more suitable for fall. Famous designers such as Coco Chanel bucked the no-white rule, offering white as a suitable option any time of the year. Today, as a rule, more individuals choose to wear white whenever they choose.

8. Labor Day Travel

Because Labor Day marks the end of the summer, many travelers try to sneak in one more getaway before fall weather hits. Typically, more than 25 percent of Americans choose Labor Day weekend to leave town. Millions drive at least 50 miles from their home to the destination of their choice. According to AAA, in 2017, Labor Day travelers burned 3.5 million gallons of gas, despite the increased cost of fuel due to Hurricane Harvey and the shutdown of refineries that resulted.

9. The Modern Labor Day Celebration

Most people are unaware of the historical reasons behind the Labor Day holiday. Although some individuals don’t work over the Labor Day weekend, one out of every four Americans does. Those who aren’t working, around 40%, will take part in a backyard barbecue to celebrate the weekend. Some choose a trip to the beach. For those who view Labor Day as a sign that school is soon back in session, shopping is a popular option, and stores offer sales on a wide array of merchandise.

10. Last Summer Holiday and the Start of Fall

Americans and Canadians alike often consider the Labor Day holiday as the final holiday of the summer. In truth, the meteorological start of fall is on September 1, based on the annual temperature and the 12-month calendar. For gardeners, Labor Day is a signal that it is time for harvesting fall crops and planning spring gardens. Labor Day occurs during the last long weekend widely shared by workers and students alike until the holiday season begins in November.

By Lisa at Facty.com 

Copyright © 2019 State Representative Bob Rommel, All rights reserved.


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