A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
september 9, 1975
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners convened in regular session on Tuesday, September 9, 1975, at 9:00 a.m., in the Commissioners’ Room, Courthouse, Tavares, Florida. Present were: Thomas J. Windram, Vice-Chairman; C.A. “Lex” Deems; and Glenn C. Burhans. Commr. Hoskinson, Chairman, notified the Board members that he would be late and to proceed with the meeting. Commr. Carson was out of town for most of the day, but planned to return by 3:30 p.m. to be present at the second Public Hearing regarding the proposed millage increase for Lake County. Others present were: James C. Watkins, Clerk; Christopher C. Ford, County Attorney; and Andrea Gambrell, Deputy Clerk.
The Invocation was given by James C. Watkins, Clerk, and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by Thomas J. Windram.
At this time, Commr. Windram informed the Board that because of a personal tragedy that had occurred in his family, he would have to excuse himself from the Board meeting at 10:00 a.m. but expected to return before the Public Hearing regarding the millage increase at 3:30 pm. He further stated that a road closing in his district had been postponed until 11:30 a.m. this morning, and although he would not be present, he wanted the County Attorney and the Board to know his feelings on this proposed road closing. The County Attorney stated that he could voice his opinion at this time and that his feelings would be conveyed to the public at the specified time.
Commr. Windram stated that there have been constant problems in the Breezy Shores Subdivision involving these roads leading to the lake. He stated that it was difficult to control the activity that occurs during the late evening and that at times there is destruction of property. He informed the Board that he was in favor of closing these roads and trusted that after hearing the testimony, the Board members who would be present for this hearing would make the right decision.
At 9:05 a.m. Commr. Windram stated that it was time for the Board to consider the advertised Ordinance. The County Attorney read the proof of publication.
Commr. Windram stated that he would like to postpone this Ordinance until Commr. Hoskinson was present. On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Burhans and carried unanimously by those present, the Board postponed this ordinance until 9:25 a.m.
On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Windram and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved the minutes of the regular meeting of August 5, 1975 as amended. Amended copy is on file in the Minute Folder of September 1975.
At 9:15 a.m. Commr. Hoskinson arrived for the Board meeting.
At 9:25 a.m. the Board opened discussion regarding the proposed Ordinance. Mr. Glenn Middleton, Building Official, appeared before the Board and explained how the changes would affect his department and the reasons for the needed changes.
Mr. Hall, County Tax Collector, appeared before the Board and stated that according to the Ordinance, an individual must be in possession of a State or County Occupational License; however, there is no State Occupational License in Florida, and it is up to each county to decide if their county will issue occupational licenses.
On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Burhans and carried unanimously by those present, the Board placed Ordinance 1975-7 for its first and only reading by title only, which is as follows:
AN ORDINANCE AMENDING THE LAKE COUNTY BUILDING DEPARTMENT RULES AND REGULATIONS, ADOPTING BY REFERENCE VARIOUS STANDARD BUILDING AND ELECTRICAL CODES; PROVIDING FOR REGULAR AND SPECIAL BUILDING TRADE EXAMINATIONS; REGULATING THE ISSUANCE OF CERTIFICATES OF COMPETENCY TO VARIOUS BUILDERS AND CONTRACTORS; REGULATING THE ISSUANCE OF CERTIFICATES OF COMPETENCY TO NEW APPLICANTS; PROVIDING FOR EXAMINATIONS OF NEW APPLICANTS APPLYING FOR A CERTIFICATE OF COMPENTENCY; ESTABLISHING APPLICATION FEES FOR EXAMINATION OF NEW APPLICANTS; REGULATING THE DURATION OF A CERTIFICATE OF COMPETENCY; ALLOWING THE WAIVER OF A CERTIFICATE OF COMPETENCY FOR CERTAIN PERSONS; PROVIDING FOR THE REGISTRATION OF ALL CONTRACTORS OR SUBCONTRACTORS IN THE UNINCORPORATED AREAS OF LAKE COUNTY; FIXING CERTAIN TIME PERIODS FOR REGISTRATION; PROVIDING PROCEDURES AND CONDITIONS FOR REGISTERING WITH THE BUILDING DEPARTMENT; REQUIRING CERTAIN REGISTRATION QUALIFICATIONS, TO INCLUDE HOLDING A COUNTY OCCUPATIONAL LICENSE, FURNISHING A BOND, FURNISHING EVIDENCE OF PUBLIC LIABILITY INSURANCE, SHOWING PROOF OF COMPLIANCE WITH WORKMAN’S COMPENSATION LAW; FIXING A REGISTRATION FEE SCHEDULE; PROVIDING PENALITIES FOR LATE REGISTRATION OR A FAILURE TO RENEW REGISTRATION.
On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Burhans and carried unanimously by those present, the Board adopted Ordinance 1975-7 as amended on its first and only reading by title only.
Commr. Hoskinson stated that he had received notification from the Building Official regarding the appointment of members to the Board of Examiners. This was postponed until September 16, 1975 in order to give each Commissioner time to study the name of those submitted for this appointment.
planning and zoning
Mr. Willett, Director of Planning, appeared before the Board to brief the members on the Comprehensive Planning Act of 1975. A detailed memo containing the information about this act was presented to the Board and is on file in the Minute Folder of September 9, 1975.
Mr. Willett stated that in order to become eligible for the grant of the Comprehensive Planning Act of 1975, the County must submit an application of intent which states that Lake County intends to apply for the grant itself. He informed the Board that the County will not be bound in any way should it decide to complete this application of intent. On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Burhans and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved for the Planning Department to complete and submit the application of intent as presented by Mr. Willett and authorized the Chairman to sign same.
At this time, Mr. Willett presented to the Board for its information memoranda on the New Communities Act and the Florida Aquatic Preserve Act of 1975.
roads – county
Mr. Jim Spillers appeared before the Board regarding the conditions of the roads in Holiday Haven Campsites Unit 1 and 2. He stated that several weeks ago they had appeared before the Board and requested an estimate be submitted for a patch job but to date had not yet received the requested information.
Mr. Donoghue, County Engineer, was present and stated that the cost estimate had been mailed on September 4, 1975. He stated that the estimate totaled $2,400. Mr. Spillers stated that the residents would organize a meeting to discuss if enough funds were available to have the proposed work done on the roads in question.
At 11:30 a.m. the Chairman announced that the time had arrived to discuss the proposed road closing of Sunrise Drive and Southwind Drive in the Breezy Shores Subdivision.
Mr. Ford, County Attorney, informed those present that due to personal business, Commr. Windram was unable to be present; however, he had voiced his feelings to the Board about this road closing and trusted that the Board members present would make the correct decision after hearing the testimony of those present.
Mrs. James Knight, a resident of the area, stated that she would like this postponed until Commr. Windram could be present and also voiced her objection to the closing of these roads.
Mr. Ford stated that Commr. Windram had requested that this be postponed from September 2, 1975 at 2:00 p.m. to this time in order for Mrs. Knight to be informed since there was some question as to whether or not she was aware of the road closing and further stated that testimony should be heard. The Board has the authority to postpone the hearing again if it so deems.
At this time, the County Attorney briefed the public on what had taken place regarding this road closing up to the present time. He informed those present that when these roads are closed, those individuals who will come into possession of the land have executed deeds which deeds this land to the property owners of Breezy Shores Subdivision which will give these residents legal access to the lake and hopefully remedy the problem that is being caused by the public at this site.
Mr. Gunard C. Brautcheck stated that he was in possession of these deeds and that they were ready to be recorded.
Mr. James Knight appeared before the Board and stated his objections to the closing of this road and discussed the legality of closing just a part of a road. He further stated that if these roads were closed, it would prevent Mr. Hodges from having legal access to his property.
Mr. Hodges was present and stated that the closing of these roads would not affect access to his property in any way. At this time, Mr. Hodges discussed with the Board the extent of the County’s liability should an accident occur at the boat ramp leading to the lake. Mr. Ford stated that the County would not be liable because it does not own property on which the boat ramp is located.
Those residents appearing before the Board in favor of the road closing were: Mrs. Kay Gnann, Mrs. Eisenbrandt, Mr. Mike Blocker, Mrs. Kuras plus several other residents from the Breezy Shores and Joanna Shores Subdivision.
On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Burhans and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved the closing of roads as advertised subject to the necessary deeds being conveyed to the residents in the Breezy Shores Subdivision from the Joanna Shores Association, Mr. and Mrs. Gnann, Mr. and Mrs. Hodges, and Mr. and Mrs. Kurras, which will give those residents in the Breezy Shores Subdivision legal access to Lake Joanna.
Commr. Burhans informed the Board that he had to attend a funeral at 2:00 p.m. and would be late in returning for the afternoon session.
Due to the fact that there may not be three Commissioners present at 2:00 p.m., it was moved by Commr. Burhans, seconded by Commr. Deems and carried unanimously by those present that the advertised Zoning Violations be postponed until 3:00 p.m. or until a quorum was present at the afternoon session of the Board meeting.
recess and reassembly
At 12:30 p.m. the Chairman announced that the Board would adjourn for lunch at the Mission Inn and Country Club. The public and press were invited on a Dutch-treat basis.
At 2:30 p.m. Commr. Hoskinson, Commr. Deems, and Commr. Windram were present to begin the afternoon session of the Board of County Commissioners meeting.
zoning violation 75-68 Thomas a. cheatham
Norma Showley, Code Enforcement Officer, appeared before the Board and stated that junk automobiles are being stored on this property and this has been a recurring problem; however, when the vehicles are red-tagged, they are removed before the property can be found in violation, only to be used again at another time for storage purposes until red-tagged again.
No one appeared before the Board in defense of these violations. Discussion was held. It was moved by Commr. Deems that due to the fact that this property has been in violation on a recurring basis, the Board gives notice to Mr. Cheatham that his property is not to be used for the storage of junk vehicles and that if he comes in violation of the Zoning Code again, then the staff is authorized to take legal action rather than bringing this matter to the Board of County Commissioners, this was seconded by Commr. Windram and carried unanimously by those present.
The Code Enforcement Officer stated that last month the Building Official brought to the attention of the Board the matter regarding a vacant unsafe boat house located in Orange Blossom Estates which was referred to Mr. Ford, County Attorney. Mr. Ford stated that it was legal to declare this structure unsafe and dangerous to the public and could authorize the Building Official to proceed with his determination and have it removed. However, he stated that the Building Official should have a title search done through an Abstract Company so that proper notification can be given to the property owner or owners.
Commr. Hoskinson stated that this structure was located in a subdivision and that it was for the use of everyone and no one claimed ownership of the building. Mr. Ford stated that the County could probably tear it down; however, in order for the County to protect itself, he would urge that a title search be made.
On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Windram and carried unanimously by those present, the Board directed the Building Official to proceed with his action in declaring the structure to be unsafe and hazardous and was authorized to have a title search made through an Abstract Company. At this time, however, the Board did not authorize for the Building Official to remove the structure.
zoning violation 75-14 floyd turner
Norma Showley stated that the time limit had expired for this man to come into compliance. Commr. Deems stated that he was having difficulty locating land on which he could operate his business. On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Windram and carried unanimously by those present, the Board granted Mr. Turner another 90 days in which to come under compliance. The Board requested that the Department impress upon Mr. Turner that this will be the last extension granted to him.
At 2:45 p.m. Commr. Burhans returned for the afternoon session.
Commr. Hoskinson stated that he had been in contact with other counties and that it was the policy of those counties contacted that credit was not extended at the various landfills. Discussion was held regarding the deposit amount paid by the Commercial Refuse companies. The Board requested that Mr. Robert Alderman have the landfill operators review the deposit paid by the commercial companies and report back to the Board his findings.
Commr. Hoskinson presented to the Board a resolution from Lee County regarding the increasing trend of violence and the exploitation of sex in programming. This was read and filed.
planning and zoning
Commr. Burhans presented to the Board a letter from Carol Skinner, Chairman of the Goose Prairie Action Group, regarding the possible purchase of Goose Prairie by the State of Florida. Discussion was held. Commr. Hoskinson stated that Goose Prairie is on the list of the Resource Survival Committee which report has been accepted by the Board of County Commissioners and is recommended for purchase by the state. The Board requested that the Clerk write an appropriate answer to this letter.
On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Burhans and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved the cancellation of the following contractor bonds:
102-76 John N. Mattioda
889-74 Paul E. Smyth dba Decorator’s Helper
On a motion by Commr. Windram, seconded by Commr. Burhans and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved the Bonds and Gun Permit applications for Lawrence Reis, Theresa Allena Bright, Michael William Holbrook, and Michael H. Hatfield.
On a motion by Commr. Burhans, seconded by Commr. Deems and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved the request from Aldine Joyner to add a .38 calibre special serial number 887425 to his license because the original gun was lost. The Board requested that the Sheriff’s Department be notified of the loss of the original weapon.
The Board accepted and filed the monthly revenue and case report from the Traffic-Criminal Department for the month of August.
The Clerk requested the Board establish a time and date to advertise an Ordinance amending the Zoning Rules and Regulations by adding certain definitions. This was referred to Commr. Deems for his attention.
On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Burhans and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved travel for Mr. Donald Quagliotti, Civil Defense Director, to attend the Civil Preparedness Career Development Course Phase II in Athens, Georgia on October 5-18, 1975.
The Clerk presented to the Board for approval a CETA position for a Youth Counselor for the Division of Youth Services. The Clerk recommended that this be referred to Mr. Glyn Faircloth.
On a motion by Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Windram and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved the payment of $16,425.68 to Sandy Acres and $9,464.40 to Florida Sewer Service from the Escrow Account of King’s Cove Subdivision.
contracts and agreements
The Clerk reported to the Board that the Contract regarding the rental of the Juvenile Shelter had been returned along with amendments and comments by the Division of Health and Rehabilitative Services. Mr. Ford stated that he had reviewed the comments and would write to them about the matter and present it to the Board for approval of the amendments at a later date.
On a motion by Commr. Windram, seconded by Commr. Deems and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved for the following vouchers to be paid:
General Revenue 2636 – 2897
Fine and Forfeiture 424 – 470
Road and Bridge 1002 – 1088
Fish Conservation Fund 16 – 18
Auto Inspection 260 – 286
Northeast Hospital District 10
Northeast Ambulance District 16 and 17
Northwest Ambulance District 12
Construction Trust 15
Revenue Sharing 1 and 2
Emergency Medical Services 6
The Board requested that the voucher from D. C. Waters Ford be held for payment until the County Attorney can research as to the reason why this cost would not be paid through the insurance policy the County holds on its vehicles.
On a motion by Commr. Windram, seconded by Commr. Deems and carried unanimously by those present, the Board approved for the following changes to be made on the Indigent List:
ADD Robert White for Johnny Lutrell #2 $50
ADD B. E. Frazier for Floyd Rodeberry #2 $50
ADD Lydia Cornell for Annette Summerlin #2 $50
ADD Emmer Kenp for Elizabeth Creech #2 $40
ADD Alice Allman for James Allman #4 $40
ADD Julia Hicks for Randy Groesser #3 $40
ADD Victoria Monagas for Laura Maroles #1 $40
CANCEL Annie Evans for Mamie Brooks #4 $40
accounts – transfer
The Clerk presented to the Board requested transfers in the Civil Defense Department and the Pollution Control Department. These requests were referred to the Liaison Commissioner for each department.
contracts and agreements
The Clerk presented to the Board for the Chairman’s signature the certification of acceptance of subgrant award for the Youth Volunteer Counselor Program which was approved by the Board on March 4, 1975. On a motion by Commr. Windram, seconded by Commr. Deems and carried unanimously by those present, the Board directed the Chairman to sign the above-mentioned certification.
Commr. Windram presented to the Board a copy of a letter from the City of Mount Dora requesting the Palm Terrace Fruit Company remove its building at the entrance to the Golden Triangle Shopping Center which was severely damaged by fire. Commr. Windram stated that he understood that this building is under investigation regarding the nature of the fire and that a copy of this letter should be sent to the Fire Marshall.
The Clerk presented to the Board a letter regarding the availability of funds for Emergency Medical Services. This was referred to Dr. Langley, Chairman of the Emergency Medical Services Council.
Commr. Hoskinson presented to the Board a memo from the Department of Environmental Regulations enclosing a “permitting guide” for the Board’s information.
roads – county
Mr. Ford briefed the Board on the meeting that he and the Chairman attended in Brooksville regarding Hull Road. He stated that a state hearing examiner was present but that no formal decision had yet been made.
At 3:25 p.m. Commr. Carson arrived for the Board of County Commissioners meeting.
At 3:30 p.m. the Chairman announced that the time had arrived for the second public hearing regarding the proposed millage increase in ad valorem taxes for the 1975-1976 Fiscal Year.
At 3:35 p.m. the Chairman announced that the meeting would adjourn and reconvene at 3:40 p.m. in Courtroom B on the third floor of the Lake County Courthouse in order to accommodate the public that was present for this advertised hearing. The Board requested the Clerk to place a sign on the door to the Commissioner’s Room informing those who arrived late where the Public Hearing was being held.
At 3:40 p.m. the meeting reconvened. The Clerk read the proof of publication that had been received by his office.
At this time, the Chairman briefly reviewed each item in the 1975-1976 Budget and explained to those present where the additional funds would be spent and the additional financial expense the County had to assume on behalf of the employee’s retirement fund.
Mr. Frank Stewart appeared before the Board and commented on the fact that Lake County had the lowest millage last year in the State of Florida; however, he asked if all counties had the same items of expenditure as Lake County. Commr. Carson stated that the Office of the State Comptroller issues a list of classification of accounts to be used by all counties in the State of Florida.
Mr. W. D. Black appeared before the Board and stated that he would like the Board members to consider rolling back the millage to what it was last year because he could not afford to pay any more ad valorem taxes.
Mr. Richard Hiley stated that he understood the fact that the millage was rolled back last year; however, with the increased assessment he, as well as the majority of people in Lake County, paid higher taxes last year. At this time, he also expressed his opposition to the construction of the new Courthouse. Commr. Carson stated that this concept of the Courthouse was conceived about five years ago and that the Revenue Sharing funds were earmarked for this purpose. He further stated that due to the adoption of Article V, the new Courthouse was a necessity and was being constructed to serve the needs of the County for the next 20 years.
Mrs. Rebecca Price appeared before the Board and stated that she saw no reason why a reassessment had to be made. Commr. Hoskinson stated that the reassessment was ordered by the State of Florida, and the County had no alternative but to comply.
Mr. Al Newman appeared before the Board and voiced his views on the fact that a bond issue had not been presented to the people regarding the construction of the new Courthouse. Points of discussion among Mr. Newman and the Board members were the good credit rating of Lake County, the cost of the building if the payments were spread out over a long period of time, the additional expense the County must assume in the area of landfills and taking over the maintenance of secondary roads within the County that were formerly maintained by the Department of Transportation.
Commr. Windram informed the people that the State Association of County Commissioners has been attempting to get legislation passed stating that when the State Legislature institutes or passes a new bill, it be supplemented with a bill providing for its financing instead of leaving the financing to the individual counties.
Mr. Thomas Burns appeared before the Board regarding his property in the Green Swamp and the assessed value of it. The Board stated that questions on this matter could be answered in more detail by the County Land Appraiser.
Mrs. Ruby Sapp appeared before the Board and stated that in her opinion the Board members were doing the best possible job and urged the people of Lake County to support their local government to make it stronger and thus strengthen the entire system of government.
Mr. Thomas Cottom appeared before the Board and presented to the Commissioners letters and petitions from the citizens of Lake County protesting the ad valorem taxes. The Board members tried to explain that this increase did not affect the entire millage levied but only approximately ¼ of the total mills. The Board members attempted to explain what they face at Board meetings when the citizens come before the Commission wanting roads paved and services rendered, yet there are no funds to accommodate the various requests. Mr. Cottom stated that he felt the people would be willing to live with unpaved roads if it would mean a reduction in their taxes.
recess and assembly
At 6:05 p.m. the Chairman announced that the Board would recess for approximately five minutes. The meeting reconvened at 6:10 p.m.
Discussion was held regarding the legality of adopting a millage rate without an adopted budget. Mr. Ford stated that according to the State Statutes, the Budget and Millage rate can be done together but both have to be adopted by separate motion and that in his opinion there would be no problem adopting the millage at this time and then adopting the Budget before October 1, 1975.
The Board discussed the elimination of funds in the budgeted item under New Road Construction and a reduction of funds in the Reserve for Cash Balance to be carried forward in the General Revenue Fund.
On a motion by Commr. Burhans, seconded by Commr. Carson and carried, the Board approved a reduction in the County’s budget by reducing funds in the Reserve for Cash Balance to be carried forward in the General Revenue Fund in the amount of $100,000 and the elimination of budgeted funds for new road construction in the amount of $200,000, thereby reducing the County’s Budget for the 1975-1976 Fiscal Year by $300,000. Commr. Windram and Commr. Carson voted “no.”
Mr. Terry Edwards appeared before the Board regarding the workforce of the County. The Board stated that it was limiting the hiring of new employees within the County for this coming year. Discussion was held regarding the possible unionization of County Employees, and the Board members stated that nothing had been budgeted this year to cope with this problem should it arise.
On a motion by Commr. Burhans, seconded by Commr. Deems and carried unanimously, the Board adopted a resolution setting the millage rate of Lake County Ad Valorem taxes at 3.650 mills per $1,000 valuation for the 1975-1976 Fiscal Year.
On a motion by Commr. Windram, seconded by Commr. Deems and carried unanimously, the Board approved payment of the bill submitted by P & C Thompson Brothers Construction Company in the amount of $129,342.50.
There being no further business to be brought before the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 7:35 p.m.
J.M. Hoskinson, chairman
James C. Watkins, Clerk