The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in special session on Tuesday, September 14, 1993, at 9:00 a.m., in the Board of County Commissioner's Meeting Room, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: G. Richard Swartz, Jr., Chairman; Catherine Hanson, Vice Chairman; Rhonda H. Gerber; Don Bailey; and Welton G. Cadwell. Others present were: Annette Star Lustgarten, County Attorney; Peter F. Wahl, County Manager; Mary Shell, Executive Assistant to the BCC Office Manager; and Sandra Carter, Deputy Clerk.
The Chairman opened the meeting stating that this meeting was a continuation from the August 26, 1993 Transmittal Hearing on the Second 1993 Calendar Year Comprehensive Plan Amendment.
Mr. Mark Knight, Chief Planner, Planning & Development Services, appeared before the Board stating that the public hearing which was held on August 26, 1993 was continued until this date in order to allow staff to take a possible variance procedure before the Planning and Zoning Commission, for a recommendation, which they did on September 13, 1993. He stated that the variance procedure was discussed at length and various concerns were noted and suggestions made.
Mr. Knight stated that one of the Planning and Zoning Commission's major concerns was the fact that the procedure states that a variance will be provided for good cause, based on a hardship, and that they wanted it to define what good cause is. Good cause shall include, at a minimum: (1) demonstration that historic patterns of development have occurred in a given area of the County, and because two or more lots in this area were under common ownership as of the date of adoption of the Comprehensive Plan, historic development patterns could not continue and inconsistent development patterns would be created; (2) demonstration that adequate infrastructure is available and that such development would be consistent with existing surrounding residential land uses; or (3) demonstration that property ownership patterns for lots under single ownership in a given area of the County, as of March 2, 1993, are consistent with the non-aggregated lots, and because two or more lots in this area were under common ownership as of the date of adoption of the Comprehensive Plan, inconsistent development patterns would be created. He stated that they were asking what one would have to do to show hardship, in addition to the three criteria he alluded to.
Mr. Knight stated that the Planning and Zoning Commission's recommendation was that the variance be an administrative type procedure, if the three criteria were established, noting that, if one could fall under those three criteria, it would be administratively, but, in the event that one could not fall under those three criteria, that a variance, which would go before the Board of Adjustment, be the process from that point on.
Mr. Knight stated that the Planning and Zoning Commission also suggested that additional criteria be established for each of the three that would more clearly specify the administrative part.
Commr. Hanson commended the Planning and Zoning Commission's recommendation, stating that she had been asking for something that would give relief to those property owners that own lots in ongoing subdivisions and, so far, the County had not come up with anything that was viable. She stated that the County will have to come up with the criteria, but noted that what the Planning and Zoning Commission suggested would eliminate some of the red tape and the bureaucracy that goes with it.
Commr. Cadwell questioned whether it would be possible to have some guidelines drawn up that would be so clear that staff would not have to worry about putting themselves out on a limb for the variance, to which Mr. Knight responded that some guidelines could be drawn up, however, it would not be possible to do so by the time that this amendment is to get to the Department of Community Affairs (DCA), which is September 15, 1993.
Commr. Hanson stated that, from a planning point of view, what this does is continue the development of an ongoing subdivision. She stated that her complaint all along was that, if the County left the wording the way that is in the aggregation language, it would require a five acre tract in the middle of a subdivision that has been developing on 100 foot lots and she found that to be absolutely ridiculous.
Commr. Cadwell questioned the County Attorney as to whether she had stated that the aggregation language is part of the Comprehensive Plan settlement, to which she responded that she had.
Commr. Cadwell then questioned whether the language takes care of what the Board's intent is, to which the County Attorney responded that she feels it does.
Commr. Hanson stated that she feels it is important, when the Board gets down to the rules, that they look at historic patterns of development and what it means - does it mean existing homes, or does it mean individual ownership.
Mr. Knight stated that the language in question covers both individual ownership and existing homes.
Commr. Swartz questioned whether that means, if the lots are in individual ownership, it is the same as if the house is on it, to which Mr. Knight responded that that was correct, because one would have the ability to pull a building permit on that individual lot.
Commr. Hanson stated that she felt it was interesting that staff had stated there was no way to do this, however, the Planning and Zoning Commission says that there is a way, assuming that the County can amend the Comprehensive Plan. She stated that this is the kind of thinking that she believes the Board needs to be getting from staff and she wants to see from staff - how can the County find a way to protect somebody who has a few lots within a subdivision.
Commr. Gerber stated that she felt it could be handled another way, which would be to change the Land Use Map, during the next set of amendments, to reflect the subdivisions that are on the ground and that are partially built out and, in that way, the people coming in would not have to go before the Board of Adjustment (B0A) for a variance, because they would already be on the map, in the right land use.
Commr. Hanson interjected that she felt to do that would probably simplify things.
A brief discussion occurred regarding the matter, as well as the issue of the aggregation language and whether or not DCA would delete it.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one present who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
Commr. Hanson stated that the Board eliminated all the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) locations, but she feels that they need to leave Lake Mack in, because it is an ongoing CDBG and the County is not committed to it in any way.
Mr. Knight informed the Board that he had discussions with DCA about defining what would be a compliance issue and what would not be a compliance issue, however, noted that it is scheduled for the next public hearing and is not a part of this Comprehensive Plan amendment.
Commr. Swartz referred to the language "demonstration that adequate infrastructure is available", listed as the second criteria for good cause, on Page 2 of the handout given to the Board by Mr. Knight, regarding the potential amendment to Policy
1-12A.3 concerning aggregation of lots of record and questioned what was included in said criteria, to which Mr. Knight responded that it is not really defined.
Commr. Swartz stated that, if this is adopted, at some point the Board is going to have to amend its LDRs to deal with it, therefore, questioned the Board as to what said language meant.
Commr. Hanson stated that that was a difficult question to answer, noting the reason why.
Discussion occurred, at which time Commr. Swartz stated that he wanted to know what the Board's intention was regarding this issue, because if the Board is sending it to DCA, the Board is the one that is going to decide what LDRs are going to implement it.
Commr. Hanson stated that she did not feel that it matters at the present time because, if one is in a subdivision and has a paved road and it is in a rural designation, they still can only get one permit.
Commr. Swartz disagreed, stating that, if that road was put in and the infrastructure paid for, then that individual very likely has created common law vesting, which is going to allow him/her to do it anyway. He stated that the Board is forgetting that there are other ways to get vested, which he elaborated on.
Commr. Hanson stated that they are going to have to spend more money to get a determination of whether or not they are vested and she feels that the Board can make the process simpler, without requiring them to go through that type of determination. She stated that she feels the road should not be required, if they agree to do a special assessment when it is determined necessary. Discussion continued regarding the road requirement, at which time Commr. Swartz questioned staff about the fact that, in the current draft of the LDRs, where they deal with the Lot of Record issue, even with the language being discussed, would a road have to be put in, if one is going to get more than one building permit, even if it is for ten acres in a five acre area.
Mr. Greg Stubbs, One-Stop Permitting Center Coordinator and Director of Development Regulations, responded to Commr. Swartz's question, stating that the County's current regulations state that one only has to agree to a special assessment, but reminded the Board that they had agreed to change that, during the LDR amendment process scheduled for a special meeting (evening) to be held later this date.
Discussion continued, at which time Commr. Swartz questioned what the Board's attitude was going to be in the future, if, in fact, this were to become a compliance issue and the Board is back in the same boat that they are presently in. He questioned whether there was going to be an attitude of trying to identify those areas and reallocate some of the land where there is nothing into an area where they know that there has been development patterns and where lots exists.
Commr. Bailey stated that he feels it is going to be a long lengthy process to ever change the map and he did not know if he had the level of confidence to go back through all the hearing processes.
Commr. Cadwell stated that the first step would be to send the amendment to DCA and see if they are going to buy into it. He stated that, as long as the timeliness criteria is in it, people do not have what they think they have and the Board needs to realize that and state it publicly. He stated that the Board then needs to put that land where it can be used. He stated that it is not going to be a healthy process, but eventually the Board is going to have to deal with it.
Commr. Swartz questioned staff as to whether they knew of any cases where what the amendment is doing is not what the intent is, which is to find an individual who owns five lots that has been developing it at half-acre lots, or whatever, assuming that the road requirement was met, to which Mr. Stubbs responded, stating that previously the public could come in and obtain a variance from the Lot of Record Ordinance administratively and, if they could not obtain it administratively, they could go to the Board of Adjustment for a variance. He stated that the road requirement requires them to pave the road, to meet adequate infrastructure, but, in a lot of cases, that gives them the ability to go forward, rather than having no chance at all. He stated that to give them no ability to go for a variance stops everything.
Mr. John Brock, Senior Director of Planning and Development Services, stated that staff is going to have to develop some criteria for developing affected areas and then come up with percentages of development patterns within those areas, in order to come up with definitions to put the plan into action.
Commr. Swartz stated that the Board is going to have to very quickly develop some interim guidelines to implement the requirement, until the LDRs are actually changed, which he noted is going to require some very specific things, which he elaborated on.
It was noted that it would be 45 to 75 days before the County would know if the amendment met DCA's approval.
On a motion by Commr. Bailey, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried, the Board approved the amendment to Policy 1-12A.3, concerning aggregation of Lots of Record, as stated in a memorandum dated August 24, 1993, from Mr. Mark Knight, Chief Planner, Planning and Development Services, to the Board, and discussed this date.
Commr. Gerber voted "No".
The County Attorney, Ms. Lustgarten, informed the Board that they needed to make a decision about whether they were going to request, under the new rules adopted, DCA to actually review the amendment, noting that the Board had that option.
In an abundance of caution, the Chairman reopened the public hearing to see if there was anyone present who wished to comment on the overall proposed second calendar year Comprehensive Plan Amendment.
There being no one present who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried, the Board approved to transmit to DCA the overall second 1993 calendar year Comprehensive Plan Amendment.
Commr. Gerber voted "No".
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Gerber and carried unanimously, the Board approved to request DCA to review the overall second 1993 calendar year Comprehensive Plan Amendment.
Mr. Pete Wahl, County Manager, stated that there was concern expressed by the Board, when the County went through the first public hearing process, about the language in question not delaying the other issues. He requested the Board to, in the event that there begins to be a problem with any of the language, authorize staff to withdraw said language, so that the second calendar year time schedule is not violated.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously, the Board authorized staff to withdraw any portion of the second amendment, if it appears that it is going to delay the entire amendment process.
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 9:40 a.m. the Chairman announced that the Board would recess for ten minutes.
ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT SERVICES/LANDFILLS/SOLID WASTE
Mr. Pete Wahl, County Manager, informed the Board that, at a meeting held on April 21, 1993, they heard a presentation from Mr. Herb Flosdorf, from Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, regarding landfill mining and that they had voted to go forward and begin to prepare the Department of Environmental Regulation permit application, in such a manner that the Board would have some flexibility if it came back, following an economic analysis on landfill mining. He stated that the information they received in their backup material was provided by staff to answer any questions about the economic analysis. He stated that the County is running on a time crunch with regard to the DER permit application, therefore, he hoped to get a decision from the Board by September 21, 1993, so that staff can go forward and finalize the permit application.
Mr. Ron Roche, Director, Solid Waste Management Division, appeared before the Board stating that staff had received direction from them to look at some specifics, with regard to reclaiming the Astatula I Landfill, being (1) the cost of the pilot program at the Astatula landfill; (2) a comparison of what Lake County would do concerning landfill mining, as opposed to what Lancaster County is doing; and (3) the actual cost of mining a long-term program at the landfill. He noted that the Board should keep the following things in mind when reading Post, Buckley, Schuh & Jernigan's Technical Memorandum, dated September 9, 1993, regarding the Astatula I Landfill Reclamation Economic Analysis, which presents a general comparison of costs resulting from landfill mining/reclamation options:
1. Although the report references a disposal cost of $500/ton for hazardous waste that may be encountered, it should be noted that this could vary greatly, depending upon the type and classes of hazardous waste encountered.
2. Ground water may be encountered during the excavation portion of the mining/reclamation of Astatula I. The depth to ground water varies from as little as 12 feet to more than 30 feet. Should ground water be encountered, it is a possibility that the Department of Environmental Protection may require the County to manage any encountered ground water as leachate. The costs of leachate management have not been factored into this report.
3. It was necessary for PBS&J to make several assumptions in order to develop cost comparisons. The assumptions are set forth in the text and tables of the report. However, any changes in these figures could effect the total costs of these programs.
Mr. Omar Smith, Post, Buckley, Schuh & Jernigan, appeared before the Board and introduced Ms. Linda Nutting, who he noted was the Project Engineer for the analysis.
Mr. Smith reviewed the following three tasks involved with doing the analysis, elaborating on each:
Task 1 - Estimated cost of a field pilot program
Task 2 - Cost comparison with Lancaster County
Task 3 - Scenario comparison of full scale reclamation program
Commr. Swartz questioned whether the County could use some equipment on a trial basis, without paying for it, or, if the Board used the equipment and then chose to go to mining, whether anything that the County paid out would go toward the purchase price.
Ms. Nutting stated that there had been some discussions on that and noted that they would be willing to work with options.
It was noted that some private companies are doing it, at which time Commr. Swartz requested Mr. Smith to get him whatever information he could about the private companies, with respect to RFPs and pricing.
Discussion occurred regarding the three tasks that Mr. Smith alluded to, at which time Mr. Smith answered questions from the Board regarding same.
Mr. Smith then discussed the various charts attached to the memorandum alluded to earlier and answered questions from the Board regarding same.
Commr. Swartz stated that he would like to see (1) an analysis that recognizes that the Board does not pay twice for the waste-to-energy component, which he noted is the biggest cost and (2) that he would like to see a member or members of the Board go to Okeechobee and view their landfill.
Discussion continued, at which time Commr. Swartz stated that very shortly, possibly by 1995, because of the way that the plant is equipped, the County is going to have to deal with the mercury issue. He stated that there are two ways to deal with it, being (1) the County can go in and retrofit with carbon injections and hope that it is the same number that the Environmental Protection Agency and the State are going to require later or (2) the County can go to the wall and pull out fluorescent bulbs, batteries, etc.
He stated that the County could probably put a MRF (Materials Recovery Facility) in front of it, which will have a tendency to reduce the waste stream further. He stated that the County is going to have to work with Ogden Martin, in dealing with the issue. Discussion continued, at which time Commr. Gerber questioned whether DER had come back on any landfills in the State that had been capped and required excavation, in terms of what is showing up in the monitoring wells, to which Mr. Smith responded that he was not aware of any. He stated, however, that PBS&J had worked on a project in Palm Beach County where they closed out a landfill and put a closure cap on it, because it was a known contaminated site, and as part of that closure plan, DER required recovery and treatment of the ground water, which he noted was all done at one time.
Commr. Gerber then questioned how the monitoring wells are handled, once they are capped, to which Mr. Smith responded. He stated that one does not put a cap on a landfill and then, if there is still a problem, they pump the ground water. He stated that there are different steps in between. He stated that a curtain could be put on the sides of the landfill, however, it would cost approximately $1 million to do so.
It was noted that PBS&J would be coming back to the Board on September 21, 1993, possibly at 1:30 p.m., with some new figures, for discussion.
It was also noted that Commr. Cadwell would go to Okeechobee, to view their landfill, and report his findings back to the Board.
No action was taken at this time.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried unanimously, the Board appointed Mr. Claude Smoak to the Lake County Land Development Regulations Review Committee, representing the Agricultural Community position, as recommended by the Agricultural Advisory Committee.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Cadwell and carried unanimously, the Board appointed Mr. Terrell Davis to the Lake County Land Development Regulations Review Committee, representing the Agricultural Community At-Large Position.
Commr. Hanson stated that the Board had received correspondence from the Nassau County Board of County Commissioners requesting the Lake County Board of County Commissioners to consider the adoption of a resolution similar to the one adopted by them, opposing an increase in the millage rate proposed by the St. Johns River Water Management District, and correspondence from the Mayor of the City of Bradenton requesting similar action regarding increases proposed by the Southwest Florida Water Management District. She stated that, if the Board chooses to act on the matter, they need to do it right away. She noted that she was opposed to the increases in the millage rates.
Commr. Swartz stated that he is not that familiar with the St. Johns River Water Management District's budget, or the Southwest Florida Water Management District's budget, so before he would vote for something that he does not really know anything about, particularly with respect to the St. Johns River Water Management District, due to the fact that they have spent millions and millions of dollars in Lake County to correct years and years of abuse to the County's waterways, he would not vote to support such a resolution, as he does not feel that it would be appropriate.
Commr. Hanson stated that, with the poor economy and problems that are facing people today, she feels the districts should live within the budgets that they presently have.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he would be very reluctant to support such a resolution, because he does not know enough about it to have an opinion. He stated that, if the Board wanted to allow some time to study the matter and act on it at a later time, he would be willing to do so, however, he could not support it at this time.
Commr. Hanson stated that she did not feel there was sufficient time to do so.
A motion was made by Commr. Hanson and seconded by Commr. Bailey to approve a resolution stating that the Board opposes any increase in the millage rate by the St. Johns River Water Management District.
Under discussion, Commr. Swartz stated that he felt the main reason the St. Johns River Water Management District has probably increased their millage is due to the fact that the State has pulled back significantly in their funding. He stated that, by approving such a resolution, the Board would be saying to the St. Johns River Water Management District that they do not want them to complete the marsh flow-way, or even have the money to operate it, which he noted is absolutely essential to the down stream lakes in Lake County. He stated that, to support such a resolution, without even understanding what is in their budget and why, does not feel that it is good for Lake County.
The Chairman called for a vote on the motion, which failed by a 3 to 2 vote.
Commrs. Cadwell, Gerber and Swartz voted "No".
A motion was made by Commr. Bailey and seconded by Commr. Hanson to approve a resolution stating that the Board opposes any increase in the millage rate by the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
A brief discussion occurred, at which time Commr. Swartz noted that he had received correspondence from the Mayor of Bradenton regarding the matter, however, no one had offered to give a presentation to the Board regarding same.
The Chairman called for a vote on the motion, which failed by a 3 to 2 vote.
Commrs. Cadwell, Gerber and Swartz voted "No".
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 10:55 a.m. the Chairman announced that the Board would recess until 4:00 p.m. for the bond issue pertaining to the County's resource recovery facility.
Ms. Annette Star Lustgarten, County Attorney, noted that the Board had before them two resolutions which addressed the Preliminary Official Statement for both the 1993A bonds and the 1993B bonds. She stated that the Board would be authorizing the draft of the Preliminary Official Statement, at which time she noted that they had been distributed copies of a Preliminary Official Statement dated September 8, 1993. She noted that that copy is still going through revisions, so what they would be doing by approving the resolution would be authorizing the Chairman to approve insertions and changes and determine that the Preliminary Official Statement is final. She stated that she anticipated that would occur by early next week. She stated that this meeting was for the purpose of considering the two resolutions authorizing the draft Preliminary Official Statement.
Mr. Richard Wells, PaineWebber, appeared before the Board stating that what they had before them was a Preliminary Official Statement for both the Series 1993 A and B bonds, noting that they were not quite in their complete form, however, should be finalized by September 16 or 17, 1993. He stated that, together with the County's financing team, they were requesting the Chairman to authorize the mailing and distributing of the official statements, so that they could begin their marketing process.
Mr. Wells stated that he hoped they would be ready for mailing by September 20 or 21, 1993. He stated that the schedule had been changed slightly, noting that they planned to market the bonds on September 28, 1993; come back to the Board for the signing of the Bond Purchase Agreement on September 30, 1993; have a pre-closing on October 6, 1993; and close on October 7, 1993. He stated that the pricing will start on the morning of September 28, 1993 and continue through September 29, 1993, noting that that would allow them to finalize the documents and get them ready for the Chairman's signature by September 30, 1993.
Mr. Wahl informed the Board that staff had requested them to set aside the afternoon of September 23, 1993, for a special meeting, however, he was now requesting that that meeting be postponed until the afternoon of September 30, 1993.
A brief discussion occurred, at which time it was noted that said meeting would be held at 1:00 p.m., on September 30, 1993.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Cadwell and carried unanimously, the Board approved Resolution No. 1993-137, approving the Form of A Preliminary Official Statement in Connection with the County's Resource Recovery Industrial Development Refunding Revenue Bonds (NRG/Recovery Group Project), Series 1993A.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried unanimously, the Board approved Resolution No. 1993-138, approving the Form of A Preliminary Official Statement in Connection with the County's Resource Recovery Industrial Development Refunding Revenue Bonds (NRG/Recovery Group Project), Series 1993B.
For informational purposes, Ms. Lustgarten, County Attorney, informed the Board that, in anticipation of transferring the Jail to the Sheriff, the Board is required, by State Statute, to adopt an ordinance accomplishing that task, which she noted has to be advertised 15 days prior to the public hearing. She stated that, due to this fact, that issue would not be able to be heard by the Board until October 5, 1993.
Mr. Wahl, County Manager, stated that discussion had occurred, in the transition team meetings, of looking at an effective date for the transition of midnight, October 2, 1993. He stated that it is the end of a pay period for the County and is as close to the end of the fiscal year as they can get. He stated that, in his discussions with Ernst & Young, that seems to be the best time for the transition.
Mr. Wahl stated that, because of the advertising requirement, if the County cannot adopt the resolution until October 5, 1993, the Board could still authorize the Sheriff to act, on behalf of the Board, and as of 12:01 a.m., be the authority in control of the Jail. He stated that, at the most, the County would have three (3) days of liability for anything that the Sheriff did during that period of time.
Discussion occurred, at which time Commr. Hanson stated that her only concern is the fact that the Board has not seen the actual savings that the County will incur, by turning the Jail over to the Sheriff, and she was under the impression that that was to be part of the final approval.
Mr. Wahl, County Manager, stated that what staff was requesting, at this time, was permission to advertise, on a tentative basis, until the Board takes action on the evening of September 21, 1993.
RESOLUTIONS/STATE AGENCIES (CONT'D.)
Commr. Swartz stated that the two proposed resolutions which had been discussed and voted on (motions for approval failed) during the morning session, concerning opposition to proposed tax increases by the St. Johns River Water Management District and the Southwest Florida Water Management District, were being brought back before the Board for reconsideration.
Discussion occurred regarding the proposed resolutions, at which time it was noted that the language had been changed somewhat from the previous language.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Gerber and carried unanimously, the Board approved Resolution No. 1993-139, encouraging the governing board to adopt cost saving measures, in order to reduce the impact of the proposed increase in the millage rate by the St. Johns River Water Management District.
On a motion by Commr. Bailey, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously, the Board approved Resolution No. 1993-140, encouraging the governing board to adopt cost saving measures, in order to reduce the impact of the proposed increase in the millage rate by the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 4:20 p.m.
G. RICHARD SWARTZ, JR., CHAIRMAN
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK