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Keeping Islandia isolated
Robert H. Boyle
October 17, 1966
A man with the familiar name of Herbert Hoover has been one of the prime movers in the fight to stop developers in Florida's upper keys
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October 17, 1966

Keeping Islandia Isolated

A man with the familiar name of Herbert Hoover has been one of the prime movers in the fight to stop developers in Florida's upper keys

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In his battle for Islandia, Hoover has spoken to Lady Bird Johnson, and last spring he used the company DC-3 to fly down seven important Congressmen for firsthand inspection. Congressman Dante Fascell of Miami has introduced a bill authorizing the purchase of Islandia as a national monument. He says that in all likelihood homeowners on the islands will still be able to live there, but development would be prohibited. Meanwhile, the developers appear to be stymied. Hardy Matheson and the Dade County Council have passed an ordinance blocking the type of causeway the developers had planned to build. Matheson, an Islandia property owner himself, has given one of his plots to the Tropical Audubon Society, and the bird watchers have filed suit contesting the incorporation of Islandia as a city. A judge has ruled that 15 of Islandia's 18 voters are ineligible because they actually do not live on the islands. The decision is being appealed.

The Islandia battle is not over, but one good push should see it won. "It's so important to fight for something like this," says Hoover. "Of course, I'm very much in favor of conservation, but I'm also interested as a capitalist. You've got to have recreational areas for the average man if the capitalist system is to have any meaning, a place where the average man, with his shorter workweek, can go with his family to boat and fish. The average man can't go to the Bahamas to fish on a day off, like I can. Saving a place like this is important for the capitalistic system."

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