Getting established in Charlotte County
October 27, 2009
So you have decided that Charlotte County is where you want to make your new home. If so, getting established is easy, and there are a few actions you should take early on to become an official resident.
There is no “one-stop-shopping” location where you can take care of your new driver license, auto tag transfers, utility hookups and cable TV account. But here are the numbers you’ll need to get started.
Here are important phone facts to keep handy as you move in and establish your home in Charlotte County:
* Call 941-637-2141 for information about Florida’s requirements for a driver’s license. More specific information about drivers licenses and auto tags can be found in the next few pages.
* Embarq provides local phone service. Call 800-339-1811.
* For most residences and businesses, electric power is supplied by Florida Power and Light. Call 639-1106.
* Water and sewer service is provided by Charlotte County Utilities in Port Charlotte. Call 764-4300. Punta Gorda Utilities provides water and sewer service in Punta Gorda. Call the City of Punta Gorda, 639-2528.
* Charlotte County trash pick-up is provided by Waste Management. Call 629-1106.
* Comcast provides TV cable service as well as Internet service. Call 625-6000.
Driver license and auto tags
If you’re from out of state, one of the first things you’ll need to do is change your driver license to a Florida license. Plus, you’ll need to get Florida tags and obtain Florida vehicle insurance. Residents who move to Florida from out of state must change their driver license to reflect their current address. While some seasonal residents may keep their out-of-state licenses, it is recommended by state officials that residents secure a Florida license within 30 days.
Call the Tax Collector’s Office at 637-2141 for information about Florida’s requirements for a driver’s license. Appointments are needed for road tests.
Auto tags and insurance
Florida requires all motor vehicles to be registered and licensed. Proof of insurance and registration is required and will be requested of the driver of an auto if stopped by a law enforcement officer.
For new residents moving to the state, all vehicles must be registered within 10 days of enrolling children in school or gaining employment. However, visitors who stay in the state for extended periods may retain their out-of-state papers provided they visit for no longer than six months.
You may visit a local office of the Charlotte County Tax Collector to obtain a vehicle registration. You will also need to obtain a Florida title for your vehicle.
Headquarters for all of Charlotte County’s government activities is the County Administration Center, 18500 Murdock Circle, located off U.S. Highway 41 near State Road 776, but service may also be obtained at several satellite offices.
Call the tax collector at the county’s main administration phone line, 637-2141; or in Englewood, 6868 San Casa Drive, 474-7775.