The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in special session on Thursday, July 11, 1996, at 10:00 a.m., in the Board of County Commissioner's Meeting Room, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Welton G. Cadwell, Chairman; G. Richard Swartz, Jr.; Catherine C. Hanson; and Rhonda H. Gerber. Commr. William "Bill" H. Good, Vice Chairman, was not present due to illness. Others present were: Sue Whittle, County Manager; Sanford (Sandy) A. Minkoff, County Attorney; Ava Kronz, Office Manager, Board of County Commissioners; Barbara Lehman, Chief Deputy, County Finance; and Sandra Carter, Deputy Clerk.
AMBULANCES/CONTRACTS, LEASES AND AGREEMENTS
Commr. Cadwell informed the Board that there was a continuance of business from the Board Meeting of July 9, 1996 that needed to be taken care of, with regard to the contract between the County, Florida Regional Emergency Services, Inc. (FRES), and Florida Hospital Waterman, Inc. (Waterman), which would approve the assignment of interest of FRES to a new joint venture named Regional Emergency Services, Ltd., a Delaware limited partnership (Partnership).
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, referred to a handout that he had prepared since said meeting and distributed to the Board, for their perusal, with regard to the matter. He stated that he had attempted to put down what action the Board took and had sent said information to Mr. Louis Stone, Attorney for FRES, and they responded with an Agreement that included a lot of the things that were in the previous Agreement, but the operative paragraphs were on Page 3 of that Agreement, contained in Paragraphs 2. c. and d. He stated that the wording contained in said paragraphs was not the wording that he had sent them. He noted that Paragraph 1 of his handout would be similar to Paragraph 2. c. of the Agreement and Paragraph 2 of his handout similar to Paragraph 2. d. of the Agreement.
Mr. Bill Compton, Executive Director, Florida Regional Emergency Services, Inc., appeared before the Board stating that their redraft of the Consent to Assignment should be identical to the draft contained in the Board's packet of information for the Board Meeting of July 9, 1996, with the exception of a redraft that they did of what would have been Mr. Minkoff's Paragraphs 1 and 2, which he noted would be Paragraphs c. and d. of the Agreement. He noted that in Paragraph c. they changed the verbiage that stated that the existing Agreement would be amended to provide an entity solely owned by the current principals of FRES, and indicated the names of those individuals that were changed, to an entity owned by the majority of the current principals of FRES, in the event that something happened to one of them, it would not void the Agreement. Mr. Compton referred to Paragraph d., stating that FRES was not in a position to obtain consent from the hospital to open the contract, noting that there were two problems involving same, being (1) that the people who would have to approve it were not available, and (2) the people that were available were not as interested in doing it, as he had earlier indicated. He noted, however, that he would guarantee the absolute accuracy and timeliness of getting the requested study done and would coordinate the scope of that activity with any financial people from the County, as directed. He stated that the overall intent was to get a comprehensive study for the County, provided in the time frame required, without having to subject the hospital to opening the contract. He stated that the hospital is fine with the contract, as it presently is, and that they planned for it to go through the year 2000, for financial and operational planning.
Commr. Cadwell stated that Paragraph d. of the Agreement was substantially different than Mr. Minkoff's Paragraph 2, which is what he understood the Board's action was at the Board Meeting on July 9, 1996. He stated that, in his opinion, Paragraph d. does not give the County much leverage and questioned whether Mr. Compton could offer anything that would give the County some leverage. He stated that his concern was not so much a study, but a plan to eliminate the subsidy.
Mr. Compton stated that this was something that FRES could accomplish in 30 days; however, they were not in a position to obligate the hospital to open the contract that they have fixed, through the year 2000.
Commr. Swartz stated that he did not have a problem with taking the names alluded to earlier out of the contract, the issue for him was the partnership that currently controls FRES and that, under the proposed transfer, would continue to control 51% of it. He suggested changing Paragraph 1 to state that FRES has 30 days notice to change the contract, which he noted would be consistent with the contract; however, it spells out clearly that, if they do so without getting consent from the Board, it would give the County the ability to terminate the contract.
On a motion by Commr. Swartz, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously, by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved to include the County Attorney's language, contained in Paragraph 1 of his handout, as one of the requirements for consent of transfer, giving 30 days notice, as opposed to one year, and modifying the language, with regard to the principals, as indicated by the County Attorney.
Commr. Good was not present at this meeting.
Regarding the language contained in Paragraph 2 of the County Attorney's handout, Commr. Swartz stated that, given the nature of this transaction and the effect that it will have on the contract, he felt it was more critical than it has been in the past for the County to know the financial status and the interweavings that are occurring, especially since 49% of one of the entities that the County deals with is now a hugh for-profit company. He suggested that, rather than just having FRES provide the County with a study, they agree, within the transfer, that one of the consent items be a review of the issue of the subsidy, versus the rate structure, but that it contain language to the effect that the County and the County alone will decide what financial information it needs, in order to review the rate subsidy question, and to include, if necessary, audited reports of any entities that are involved in this contract. He stated that, having said information, he feels the County would be able to make a responsible decision, within the time frame, up to September, 1997.
Commr. Swartz stated that he was not sure totally eliminating the subsidy was the direction for the County to go, but was something that he wanted to look at and he feels that the County has to have the financial background to do that. He stated that, hopefully, the entities involved in the negotiation can come to an agreement that will be good for all parties and the citizens of Lake County. He stated that, in his opinion, failing to do that, the County will have achieved one very important goal, which is that when the first opportunity for a rate increase occurs, the County will have the information to decide whether or not there is any reason to give a rate increase, which will be at the County's sole discretion.
Mr. Compton stated that he and his partners would not be willing, at this point in time, or any time in the future, to share financial audited statements of the Partnership, for a not-for-profit entity. He stated that it does not have anything to do with the ambulance operation.
Mr. Compton stated that, if FRES does not go through with the joint venture, the County is not going to be any worse off, financially, than it is today with the ambulance service and, if the County still wants the study, FRES will do it and a make recommendations for the elimination of the subsidy; however, the financial stability of the hospital's ambulance service is not going to change. He stated that the hospital's intent in this situation is to remain whole, financially, and, if they have to reduce or eliminate the subsidy, they are going to want to get the rates to a reasonable, acceptable level, over a period of time, to become whole.
Mr. Compton stated that he would not have any problem with the verbiage of the financials, as long as it is related to the ambulance operation, as contracted by the County, because that is what they contract with the County for - ambulance operations. He stated that his business elsewhere has no effect on the hospital ambulance service whatsoever - it does not help them nor hurt them - they are two separate issues.
Commr. Swartz stated that, due to the fact that the County is going through the budget process, he would suggest that they be given the requested financial information no later than December 31, 1996, which he noted would give the Board time to review it before the contract renewal question comes up.
On a motion by Commr. Swartz, seconded by Commr. Gerber and carried unanimously, by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved that the language contained in Paragraph 2 of the County Attorney's handout and the appropriate paragraph in the proposed Consent to Assignment be changed to read that, by January 1, 1997, a plan and/or proposal regarding the reduction or elimination of the subsidy, and a rate study, as well as all financial information that the County, through the County Manager, may request, in order to verify that information, be provided to the County and that failing to provide said information would place the contract in default and provide for termination within 30 days, or as the contract may specify.
Commr. Good was not present at this meeting.
On a motion by Commr. Swartz, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously, by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the Consent to Assignment, based on the Agreement as amended this date, and authorized the Chairman to sign the Agreement.
Commr. Good was not present at this meeting.
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
At 11:10 a.m., the Chairman announced that the Board would recess for five minutes.
BUDGET WORKSHOP - FISCAL YEAR 1996-97
Ms. Sue Whittle, County Manager, reviewed the County's annual operating budget for FY 1996-97, as follows, at which time she answered questions regarding same:
Ms. Whittle stated that the County's tenets, which staff has incorporated into this budget, are that current revenues will support current expenditures, meaning that the County will live within its means. She stated that the County will maintain strong reserves and contingencies and will budget sufficient maintenance and repair dollars, in order to safeguard the investments that the County has in its capital facilities and equipment. She stated that there will be no increase in taxes and that the budget, as presented, is balanced at the roll-back millage rate of 4.909 mills, for the General Fund. She stated that the County will assure existing service levels and assure a competitive compensation and benefits package for the employees of the County.
Budget in Brief
Ms. Whittle stated that there were some increases in current revenues, noting that the General Fund had an increase of $1.3 million. She stated that there was a $1.3 million increase in impact fees, an increase in the infrastructure sales tax, and an increase in the gasoline tax. She stated that there were some decreases in current revenues and that the liability insurance funding was decreased by $1 million, which she noted was primarily workman's compensation. She stated that there was a $1 million decrease in tipping fees. She stated that the County will not have the Historical Preservation Grant next year and the County is showing a shortfall of approximately $300,000.00 in confiscated property revenues.
Long Range Financial Capacity
Ms. Whittle stated that staff incorporated the major policy considerations that the Board discussed through the year, in dealing with the County's long-range financial capacity. She stated that, this year, for the first time, staff was presenting the Board with pro forma budgets for two additional years of operating expenses, for all departments. She stated that staff was also, for the first time, incorporating a five year Capital Improvement Plan into the budget process. She stated that staff was looking at long-range needs, as policy considerations, being additional personnel for Law Enforcement; a number of capital projects, including Public Health Care facilities, the GIS Development Program, and the Expo Center; road construction and improvements; additional manpower and facilities for Fire and Emergency Services; and operating costs, including debt service costs, for Solid Waste Services.
Ms. Whittle stated that staff is dealing with debt management, noting that the County has provided adequate revenues to repay debt and they are working with the line of credit borrowing, so that they will have a plan to convert them to long-term debt at the appropriate time.
Ms. Whittle stated that, as a result of the goal setting sessions with the Board, staff was dealing with four (4) major focus areas and goals, being Environmental Conservation, Economic Stability, Strengthen Communities, and Excellence in Government Progress and Service. She stated that the budget reflects those four focus areas in all areas.
Ms. Whittle stated that last year the County committed to a total review, department by department, and the results so far are that the County has, at the base line, a decrease of 14 positions, which resulted in a budget savings of $464,403.00. Said deletions were the result of reorganizations and efficiencies in the areas of Growth Management, Aquatic Plant Management, and Solid Waste Services. She stated that the base line budget does not include any new positions, although she has three first priority recommendation areas, being Micro Computer Services Administrator, Micro Computer Secretary/Technician, and Training and Development Coordinator.
Ms. Whittle stated that 11% of the Capital Outlay budget this year is for road improvements, 52% for impact fee projects, 26% for land and buildings, 6% for vehicle replacement, 2% for the automation initiative, and 3% for other miscellaneous capital improvement programs.
Federal Grant Programs
Ms. Whittle stated that the major grants this year are for Affordable Housing, Section 8 Housing, Americorps, and Emergency Assistance.
Ms. Whittle stated that the Supplemental Programs expenditures that the Board funds are for Children's Services - $155,000.00; Social Services - $39,000.00; Veterans' Services - $155,308.00; We Care - $50,000.00 (for the third year); Horticultural Learning Center - $89,235.00 (for the second year); Recreational Grants to Cities - $250,000.00; D.A.R.E., C.O.P.S., REDIRECT - $76,538.00; and the Agricultural Education Service - $573,597.00, which she noted is a major investment in the community. She stated that staff was strongly recommending the implementation of a Youth Recreational Fund to Cities, in an amount not to exceed $40,000.00, noting that the County funded said program for the first time last year and that, up to this point in time, had been unable to work out all the details with the cities. She stated that she felt the County now had a program worked out with the cities, therefore, would strongly recommend that the County go forward with said funding for the coming year. She stated that the County had allotted $82,515.00 for computer enhancement, which she noted would allow the County to continue automation that has already been started, which staff feels greatly enhances the County's ability to get the job done.
Excellence in Government Progress and Service
Ms. Whittle stated that another major focus this year was Excellence in Government Progress and Service and that the County would be continuing the development in the work force and implementation of the master plan for training and education.
Reserves and Contingencies
Ms. Whittle stated that the County's reserves and contingencies were set at $7 million; debt service reserves at $4.5 million; and the insurance reserves at $3 million. She stated that she felt these figures were prudent and strong and that, in all funds, the County was providing reserves and contingencies that were adequate for the needs, while not being overly cautious with them.
Solid Waste Management Services
Ms. Whittle stated that the County has approximately $400,000.00 in Solid Waste for environmental grants and that staff was working on the plans to fund the $19 million line-of-credit repayment and the long-term care costs of closed landfills. She stated that staff was not recommending any increase in fees for this year.
Ms. Whittle stated that the Jobs Growth Investment (JGI) Trust Fund was started in 1995 and that, since that time, $384,000.00 has been allocated to said fund, which has resulted in 176 new jobs, documented; $29 million in capital investment; $2.8 million in payroll wages, and approximately $513,000.00 in new ad valorem taxes annually. She stated that the County has pledged $500,000.00 toward that fund for this year, in order to continue the trend.
Ms. Whittle stated that she continues the quest to make Lake County the model for excellence in public service and believes that staff is progressing in that area. She stated that she was very pleased to present the Board with the budget this year. She thanked the Board for their clear and early direction to staff, which she noted allowed them to progress through the process easier than in past years. She thanked the Constitutional Officers, her immediate staff, Department and Division Directors and their supporting staff, and Mr. James C. Watkins, Clerk, and his Budget and Finance staff for their unflagging efforts in producing the budget before the Board this date. She stated that she hoped the Board would find it to be user friendly and pointed out that one of the major things staff worked on this year was performance measures, which she noted will bring forth the accountability and responsibility that everyone is seeking in County government.
SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT SERVICES DEPARTMENT
Mr. Don Post, Senior Director, Solid Waste Management Services Department, appeared before the Board and distributed a booklet that his staff had put together, with regard to his budget, which he reviewed with the Board. He discussed the issue of tipping fees and assessments for FY 1995-96 and compared it to FY 1996-97, noting that there is a net decrease in the tipping fees of approximately $1.1 million and a net increase in assessments of approximately $112,000.00. He stated that, in the Operating Expense, the County is looking at going from $1.9 million to $1.8 million in the enhanced budget, a total savings of $25,000.00. He noted that part of the Solid Waste Management Services Department's operating expense takes into consideration an additional $83,000.00 that the County will now be paying Ogden Martin, for loss of equity credit. He further noted that the County has changed the methodology for how the County is factoring long-term care for its closed facilities, which changes the total dollar value for operating from $8.3 million to $7.7 million, a difference of $556,000.00.
Commr. Swartz requested County Finance to present to the Board, at a later date, an update on the monies due the County from Ogden Martin and as to why the County has not received said monies, to date.
Mr. Post reviewed the Budget Highlights for his department, as follows:
. Personal services, budgeted at $243,642.00, are 25% higher than the 1996 amended budget of $194,705.00, due to the transfer in of one position.
. Operating expenses include $6,089,658.00, for the service agreement with Ogden Martin, for the operation of the incinerator. This expense was budgeted in the Solid Waste Disposal cost center in 1996. Otherwise, operating expenses decreased $29,000.00.
. Debt service of $1.8 million includes interest expense on the $19 million line of credit and $800,000.00 in principal payment.
. The enhanced budget includes personal services of $5,232.00, to convert to a 40 hour work week for two positions, additional operating expenses of $29,255.00, and $3,400.00 in capital outlay, for a notebook computer.
Fiscal Support Services
. Personal services reflects the transfer out of 7 positions, for the scale house operations to the Drop-Off Facilities cost center. As a result, personal services are decreased by 55%, to $123,968.00, compared to $273,388.00 in 1996.
. Operating expenses decreased $26,832.00, as a result of this transfer.
. The recommended budget is $130,092.00, a 58% decrease from the 1996 amended budget.
. The enhanced budget includes an additional $2,500.00 in personal services, to convert to a 40 hour work week for one position.
Scales and Drop-Off Facilities
. The recommended budget is $287,191.00, an increase of 160% from the 1996 amended budget. This increase of $181,146.00 results primarily from the transfer of personal services from Fiscal Support Services mentioned above.
. The enhanced budget includes a request for a landfill attendant specialist, at a cost of $27,695.00, and an increase in hours from part-time to full-time, at a cost of $8,865.00.
Assessment Management Services
. Personal services reflects a decrease of 36%, from $321,698.00 to $205,347.00, from the 1996 amended budget, for the transfer out of one position.
. Operating expenses are $84,000.00 less, due to decreases in professional services, repairs, maintenance, printing, and binding.
. This program is partially funded by transfers from Fire and Emergency Services, County Transportation Trust, and MSBU/MSTU, for billing services provided. The 1997 transfer is $107,536.00, compared to $125,143.00 in 1996.
. The enhanced budget includes an additional $150,000.00 for modifications to the Customer Information System, for MSBU maintenance and monitoring, $96,347.00 in additional operating expenses, and a $12,000.00 decrease in personal services.
Special (Formerly Hazardous) Waste Management
. Personal services includes the deletion of one position, for a recommended budget of $219,488.00, compared to $288,484.00 in 1996, a 24% decrease.
. Operating expenses includes a decrease of $68,997.00, primarily due to a decrease in contractual services of $47,202.00, and a decrease of $17,109.00 in office supplies.
. The enhanced budget includes additional personal services of $8,511.00, to convert four positions to a 40 hour work week, and $2,000.00 for a bulk waste container, for solid waste disposal, at the Collection Center.
Recycling Programs Administration
. This cost center includes $7,993.00 for miscellaneous recycling expenses not covered by the grant.
Recycling Education Grant
. This cost center includes two positions, a recycling coordinator and a public education specialist, at a cost of $80,848.00.
. Capital outlay includes recycling containers for $23,148.00, $17,136.00 for used oil recycling igloos, and $37,915.00 for other grant-related capital outlay.
. The enhanced budget of $91,726.00 includes additional personal services of $1,965.00, to convert one position to a 40 hour work week.
Litter Control and Prevention Grant
. The recommended budget for 1997 is $20,249.00. This program provides partial funding for the Keep Lake County Beautiful program.
Waste Management Facilities Operations Administration
. Personal services reflects a decrease of 17 positions, or $434,075.00, for the transfer of 16 positions to new cost centers and the deletion of one position.
. Operating expenses are reduced by $7 million, for the transfer of the service agreement with Ogden Martin, for the operation of the incinerator, to the Administration cost center.
. The recommended budget includes $239,200.00, to fund closure and long-term care costs for closed landfills.
. The enhanced budget includes $5,518.00 in personal services, to convert two positions to a 40 hour work week, and $9,463.00 for the upgrade of two positions.
Waste Tire Grant III
. The Waste Tire grant is budgeted at $119,383.00, compared to $50,000.00 in 1996. These funds are used for the shredding of tires, paid for by a grant from the State.
. Capital outlay includes $54,000.00, for a pole barn to house cut tires until disposal, and $42,822.00, for roll-off containers for resident tire disposal.
. This is a new cost center, to provide for the sorting, baling, and loading of recycled products.
. The recommended budget for 1997 of $137,683.00 includes $95,245.00, for the transfer in of three positions and operating expenses of $42,438.00.
. This is a new cost center, to account for the operation of the Ash Monofill and Phase IIB landfills. These landfills accept waste that is not recyclable, or cannot be incinerated.
. The recommended budget for 1997 of $445,427.00 includes $107,937.00, for the transfer in of three positions, operating expenses of $177,490.00, and capital outlay of $160,000.00, to refurbish a bulldozer.
. This is a new cost center, to account for the disposal of construction and demolition materials not processible through other county programs.
. The recommended budget for 1997 of $231,681.00 includes $70,389.00, for the transfer in of two positions, operating expenses of $147,292.00, and capital outlay of $14,000.00, to repaint a dragline.
. Transportation operations provides for the movement of recycled materials, special waste, or leachate within the County to its appropriate disposal point.
. The recommended budget for 1997 of $226,945.00 includes $107,904.00, for the transfer in of three positions, operating expenses of $77,041.00, and capital outlay of $42,000.00, for a lowboy trailer.
. This program provides for a collection point, at the Astatula Landfill, for residential and special waste disposal and the processing of recyclable materials.
. The recommended budget for 1997 of $27,420.00 includes $24,630.00, for the transfer in of one position and operating expenses of $2,790.00.
Repair and Maintenance
. This is a new cost center, to provide for the general upkeep and minor repairs and current maintenance of Solid Waste Management Facilities and long-term care for the four inactive landfills, in accordance with federal and state regulations.
. The recommended budget for 1997 of $157,998.00 includes $80,200.00, for the transfer in of three positions, operating expenses of $14,798.00, and capital outlay of $63,000.00.
. Capital outlay consists of landscaping and signage of $33,000.00 and the purchase of a flatbed truck for $30.000.00.
Mr. Post stated that he would like to get input from the Solid Waste Study Committee regarding the issue of construction and demolition recycling within Lake County and whether it should be a private operation, or whether Lake County government should take the lead.
Commr. Swartz suggested that staff bring back to the Board a recommendation regarding the matter, because he feels it is an important area for the County to look at.
Mr. Post stated that the County has projected a total of 201,000 tons that it will be handling this fiscal year for in-county waste. He stated that there will be no additional need for out-of-county waste, because the capacity is being taken up by Lake County, as the County needs it, however, noted that Solid Waste would like to suggest that the County's projected increases be absorbed through increased recycling programs.
Commr. Swartz stated that, with regard to Ogden Martin's ability to contract for outside waste, he would like to know what their contractual allowance is, within the contract, as well as the status and terms of contracts they have outstanding.
Commr. Gerber interjected that the County Attorney had sent a memorandum to the Solid Waste Study Committee regarding the matter and that she would copy the Board regarding same.
Mr. Post stated that his staff has compiled information that shows some of the things that the County is doing, with regard to recycling, and that said information is to be part of a new handout (brochure) that the County will be providing to the libraries and new subdivisions in the County that will contain information such as Used Motor Oil Recycling, Lead Acid Battery Recycling, Antifreeze Recycling, Office Paper Recycling, Citizen Drop-Off Centers, Commercial Recycling, White Goods Recycling, Household Hazardous Waste, Yard Waste Mulching, Tires, and the County's Intermediate Materials Processing and Collection Transfer Center (IMPACT).
Mr. Post noted, for informational purposes, that his staff saved the County approximately $35,000.00 this year in mail-out costs (postage) associated with assessments, by utilizing a front and back concept, thus eliminating the need for two separate mailouts. He commended Ms. Cindy Heffler and his staff for coming up with an innovative way to save the County money.
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
At 12:30 p.m., the Chairman announced that the Board would recess for lunch and reconvene at 1:30 p.m.
SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT SERVICES DEPARTMENT (CONT'D.)
Mr. Post reviewed various charts, maps, and reports, with regard to the Recycling and Special Waste Programs. He discussed residential drop-off centers, at which time he noted that all the facilities only accept solid waste, except the Astatula Landfill, and that staff wants to expand the collection at all the facilities to furniture, white goods, used tires, household chemicals and recyclables. He requested the Board to authorize staff to look at procuring land, or leasing a site, in the Pine Lakes area, for a drop-off center, at a cost not to exceed $156,750.00.
It was noted that no action would be needed regarding the matter, due to the fact that said figure was in the enhanced budget.
Mr. Post discussed his staffing, at which time he noted that the total number of authorized positions in the current budget year is 53, with 6 temporary positions. He stated that he was asking for 50 positions, under the enhanced budget, for a total budget of $1,888,583.00, which he noted is lower than the current year's budget of $1,914,278.00.
Mr. Post discussed the Solid Waste Capital Improvements $19 million Line of Credit, Fund 421, noting that it is an update account of where the monies have actually been spent, so far. He stated that the Debt Repayment for said account amounts to $1,081,682.00; however, the County is working hard to get that cost lower than what is projected. He stated that, with regard to the Solid Waste Closure and Post Closure Care Costs, Fund 422, the Liabilities becomes less, as the County's estimated cash at the beginning of each year continues to increase. He noted what the County is currently doing, with regard to said account, versus what it has done in the past.
Ms. Whittle, County Manager, recommended that the Board approve the enhanced budget for the Solid Waste Management Services Department.
Mr. Post commended Ms. Sarah Lamarche and her staff for their help in putting his budget together and thanked the County Manager for her help and tolerance, as well.
The Board thanked Mr. Post for a job well done.
PUBLIC SERVICES DEPARTMENT
Mr. Jim Stivender, Jr., Senior Director, Public Services Department, appeared before the Board and presented his budget. He noted various changes that he had made in personnel, within his department, as well as the fact that Mr. Chuck Pula, Parks and Recreation Coordinator, was removed from his department and put under Mr. Mike Anderson, Senior Director, Facilities and Capital Improvements. He stated, however, that Mr. Craig Willis, Alternate Transportation Specialist, would be staying under the Division of Transportation, due to the fact that he handles rails-to-trails issues and will handle future MPO (Metropolitan Planning Organization) issues, as well.
Mr. Stivender reviewed the 3-Year Pro Forma Operating Budget for his department, noting that, under Contingencies, under Expenditures, it shows a debit of $795,434.00 for FY 1997-98. He discussed various Capital Outlay projects, such as the fact that $70,000.00 is being set aside each year, until the County reaches a total of $210,000.00, to purchase a 40 acre clay pit in south central Lake County; that there will be a roll-over of $370,000.00 from this year's budget to put towards the Building fund - the County hopes to have the full amount of $800,000.00 to construct the new Public Services building, with construction scheduled to begin sometime in November and completed by August of 1997; that the costs for resurfacing, restriping, and paving clay roads and the costs for special assessments will be increasing over the next three years; and that the figures for Other Equipment will be increasing, due to the fact that in FY 1997-98 the County has
buy-backs on heavy equipment (the County has graders and loaders that will come up on buy-back during those years and they are in a 5 to 7 year replacement cycle, thus, the large increase in this fund).
Mr. Stivender reviewed the Budget Highlights for his budget, as follows:
. Personal services are budgeted at $1,961,472.00, an 18% decrease from the 1996 amended budget. This decrease results from the transfer of 13 positions to Fleet Maintenance, a new cost center in 1997.
. Recommended operating expenses and capital outlay indicate a 10% decrease from the 1996 amended budget, due to the transfer of expenses to fleet maintenance.
. The overall recommended budget for 1997 is $3,043,293.00, a 15.2% decrease from the 1996 amended budget.
Sign, Signal and Striping Shop
. This is a new cost center for 1997. Previously, these activities were included in the Engineering cost center. Personal services is budgeted at $369,820.00, for a staff of 11 employees.
. Operating expense and capital outlay are budgeted at $250,226.00 and $100,700.00, respectively, bringing the total budget to $720,746.00.
. The recommended budget for personal services for 1997 is budgeted at $1,058,141.00, or a 20% decrease from the 1996 amended budget, due to the transfer of 11 employees to the Sign, Signal and Striping Shop.
. The enhanced budget for personal services includes a position for an Engineer II, at a cost of about $45,000.00.
. Overall recommended budget for 1997 is $1,747,358.00, a 20.6% decrease from the 1996 amended budget.
. For 1997, this cost center is included in the Engineering division.
. The overall recommended budget is $3.3 million for 1997, a 30% decrease from the 1996 amended budget of $4.7 million. This decrease results mainly from a decrease in capital outlay of $1.3 million from the 1996 amended budget.
. Capital outlay of $2.1 million includes $1,500,000.00 for road improvements, $430,000.00 for expansion of the current office building, sidewalk construction of $100,000.00, and machinery and equipment of $47,900.00.
. Grants and aids of $627,400.00 includes $472,000.00 in 9th cent gas tax to cities, $51,000.00 to Lifestream Behavioral Center for the transportation disadvantaged, $40,000.00 for transportation for senior citizens, and $64,000.00 to the City of Leesburg for airport improvements.
. Expenditures for 1997 consists of $150,000.00 for the County's share of road improvements, $300,000.00 for the property owner's share, and $10,000.00 for operating expenses, a decrease of 9.3% from the 1996 amended budget of $507,316.00.
Road Impact Fees
. The Road Impact Fee Special Revenue Fund receives the revenue collected from road impact fees, which must be recorded and spent by the district within six years of the date paid.
. Expected expenses for capital outlay for 1997 are $9.2 million, funded by current revenues of $3,539,348.00 and a beginning fund balance of $6,171,761.00.
. Road impact fees are expected to increase $1,084,000.00, or 44% over the 1996 amended budget.
. This is a new cost center for 1997, which was previously budgeted in Road Operations. Personal services includes $448,198.00, for a staff of 13 employees.
. Operating expenses are recommended at $384,689.00, including $175,000.00 for repairs and maintenance and $168,000.00 for operating supplies.
. Overall recommended budget for 1997 is $834,687.00.
. Grants and aids of $298,700.00 are budgeted for 1997, for projects approved by the BCC, under its five year recreation funding plan. These projects are paid for from infrastructure sales tax.
. Capital outlay of $76,400.00 consists primarily of $50,000.00 for Idamere Park. These costs are grant funded.
. The overall recommended budget is $774,592.00, a 9% decrease from the 1996 amended budget.
Alternative Transportation - Rails/Trails
. This budget consists of $300,000.00 in capital outlay for the purchase of land to connect the South Lake Rail Trail, of which $200,000.00 is rebudgeted from 1996. The majority of this expense will be reimbursed by the State within 18 months.
. The Boating Improvements budget consists of $125,000.00 in capital outlay for improvements at Lake Idamere and a boating improvement grant program for cities. These projects are funded by revenues received from the State.
. All activities involving mosquito management are recorded in a special revenue fund. For 1997, the total expenditures of this fund are budgeted at $679,838.00, $24,000.00 less than the 1996 amended budget, with $517,965.00 in support from the General Fund and $35,000.00 in state funding.
Aquatic Plant Management
. All activities involving the control of exotic and problematic aquatic plants are recorded in a special revenue fund. The recommended budget for 1997 is $317,898.00, a decrease of 15% from the 1996 amended budget. This decrease results primarily from the decrease in reimbursable expenses from the St. Johns River Water Management District.
. Funding sources include $66,000.00 in grant funding, $55,000.00 from the St. Johns River Water Management District, and $162,000.00 from the General Fund.
. The Fish Conservation Special Revenue Fund is used to record revenues received from the sale of fishing licenses in the County. These funds must be used for fish stocking, conservation, and related activities. Anticipated revenues in 1997 are $20,000.00. Beginning fund balance is estimated at $200,000.00.
. Expenses for 1997 consist primarily of $50,000.00 in capital outlay for the fishing pier and nature study area at Lake Idamere and $50,000.00 for the Summerall Park Ramp and Basin renovation.
Mr. Stivender stated that the Engineer II position that he is requesting for Transportation can be funded from grants, with the grants paying 90% of said costs, for this year. He stated that, under Professional/Contractual Services, the County budgeted $60,000.00 in the enhanced budget for a pool of workers that will be provided to the County for two to three days per week, through the Department of Transportation, in lieu of hiring additional employees. He discussed improvements that the County will be doing, other than buildings, such as the fencing of some county property and some small repair contracts under $25,000.00, for sidewalks, curbs, gutters and drainage structures, to be contracted as needed. He discussed various pieces of machinery and equipment that the County is planning to purchase, with old items being sold at auction. He discussed future projects that the County will undertake and how much the costs of undertaking said projects will increase over the next three years.
Mr. Stivender stated that the County anticipates spending approximately $100,000.00 for sidewalk construction and noted that staff is working on a five year plan for sidewalks throughout the County. He stated that the County plans to replace some computers that were purchased in 1990 and plans to replace a 4 x 4 utility vehicle, which will then be rotated down. He discussed network upgrades, licensing and software upgrades, and the need for two new printers, as well as a new copier. He stated that staff has recommended $1.5 million be set aside for the purpose of paving clay roads within the County.
Mr. Stivender discussed the number of additional personnel that he feels will be needed for his department, during the next three years, being a Fleet Maintenance Operations Director, a Secretary II, and an Operations Engineering Division Director. He discussed Special Assessment Projects, noting that they are anticipating total expenditures in the amount of $710,000.00.
Mr. Stivender stated that, for the year closing out as of July 1, 1996, collections were $2.5 million. He stated that the County had planned for $2.4 million, however, has spent $2.6 million, which is everything that has come in this year and a little more, even with the impact of the change in fees.
Mr. Stivender discussed the Fleet Maintenance budget, noting that there are 13 employees under said division. He stated that the Department of Transportation gave the County a building, as part of the SR 19 project, and they play to relocate it to another site in Astatula to be used for servicing all the vehicles in the Tavares area. He stated that the only thing that is being requested for this budget is a light duty diagnostic scanner, at a cost of $1,800.00.
Mr. Stivender stated that there were no major changes in the Parks Services budget, noting that the cost of a riding lawnmower, in the amount of $14,000.00, would probably be the only big capital expense for this budget. He reviewed the Grants and Aids Detail, noting that it has already been approved and will go into effect October 1, 1996.
Mr. Stivender stated that, under the Boating Improvement Grant Budget, Lake Idamere has been rebudgeted $50,000.00 for docking, lighting, and restrooms. He stated that the County is working on a Boating Improvement Grant Program for the cities, in the amount of $75,000.00, to be used for piers, docks, etc.
Mr. Stivender stated that, with regard to the Alternate Transportation-Rails/Trails budget, large amounts of money have been set aside for Phase II of the Rails/Trails Project; however, the County is in the process of doing some title and appraisal work, in the amount of $65,000.00, which will not be reimbursed. Additional funds, in the amount of $100,000.00, will be needed, should the alignment of the trail change, of which $90,000.00 for land purchases will be reimbursable; however, $10,000.00 for title and appraisal work will not be reimbursable. The total estimated cost of the project is $4,465,000.00.
Mr. Stivender stated that, with regard to the Mosquito Management budget, the total Capital Outlay, in the amount of $33,115.00, is to cover the cost of purchasing a 1/2 ton truck, in the amount of $16,800.00, which will be paid for out of state funds; a 1/2 ton truck, in the amount of $10,315.00, of which $6,485.00 will be paid for out of local money; and two vehicle monitoring systems, in the amount of $6,000.00. He discussed various pieces of equipment that will be purchased for said division, noting the reason for said purchases.
A brief discussion occurred regarding the fact that three mobile radios will be replaced for Mosquito Control, in the amount of $2,565.00. It was noted that the old radios will be junked.
Mr. Stivender noted that a 3/4 ton 4 x 4 extended cab diesel truck was being requested for Aquatic Plant Management, in the amount of $24,600.00; however, it was noted that said funds were in the enhanced budget and it was not clear as to whether the funds would be available for same.
It was noted that $100,000.00 had been budgeted under Capital Outlay for a fishing pier and nature study area for Lake Idamere and for the Summerall Park ramp and basin renovation project.
The Board thanked Mr. Stivender for his presentation.
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
At 3:30 p.m., the Chairman announced that the Board would recess for 10 minutes.
FIRE AND EMERGENCY SERVICES
Chief Craig Haun, Senior Director, Fire and Emergency Services, appeared before the Board and presented his budget, noting that by streamlining his department from five divisions to three, it resulted in a savings to the County of $36,759.00 - $21,429.00 in Fire Rescue and $15,330.00 in the General Fund, at which time he reviewed the Proposed Reorganization Summary with the Board, as follows:
. Increase (3) Deputy Chiefs to Division Head Level
. Decrease by 58% of Special Services and 20% of Technical Services Division Head Costs
. Reclassify A/C Director Position to A/C Coordinator
. Reduce Overtime
. Reduce Part-Time
. Reduction of Operational Expenses Due to Shared Operation
. 25% of Special Services and 10% of Technical Services Division Head Costs
Savings $ 2,898.00
. Eliminate Emergency Management Coordinator
. Eliminate O/T and Temporary Salaries
. Operational Reduction Due to Shared Operations
. 33% of Special Services and 10% of Technical Services Division Head Costs
. Upgrade Secretary III to Emergency Management Specialist
Chief Haun reviewed the Budget Highlights of his budget, as follows:
. The recommended budget for Animal Control for 1997 is a 19% increase over the 1996 amended budget, for a total request of $595,419.00. This program is funded in part by charges for services which are estimated at $71,760.00 for 1997.
. Capital outlay is budgeted at $40,000.00, for two replacement vehicles and two impoundment cages.
. The enhanced budget includes two additional animal control officers, for $91,960.00, increased operating expenses of $43,160.00, and increased capital outlay of $111,242.00, for a total of $746,030.00.
Animal Shelter Trust Fund
. The Animal Shelter Trust Fund is an expendable trust fund established to accept donations to the animal shelter. Donations are estimated at $2,650.00 for 1997, to be used for sterilization expenses.
Emergency Management Operations
. This program serves as the County's emergency management agency, as required by Florida Statutes. Total recommended budget for 1997 is $88,963.00, an increase of 2.8% over the 1996 amended budget.
. This program is funded in part by state funds, amounting to $26,648.00 in 1997, with the remainder coming from the General Fund.
Emergency Management Trust Fund Grant
. This program is funded entirely by revenues received from the State. The program consists of a public education specialist, with personal services expense of $33,466.00, operating expenses of $15,940.00, and capital outlay of $18,018.00, for a total budget of $67,424.00, the same as the 1996 amended budget.
. This program oversees all fire and emergency services programs in the General Fund and provides a forest fire protection contract for the County. The total recommended budget for 1997 is $53,066.00, a 5.6% increase over the 1996 amended budget.
. Personal services consists of 25% of the Fire Director's and Executive Secretary's salary and benefits.
Special Emergency Response Team
. The total recommended budget for 1997 for this program is $57,325.00, a decrease of 7.6% from the 1996 amended budget. This decrease results from a decrease in capital outlay.
. This program is mandated by federal law and is funded in part by hazardous materials charges for services. This revenue source is estimated at $7,000.00 for 1997.
. Fire rescue revenues and expenses are recorded in a special revenue fund. Revenues include fire structure assessments, estimated at $3,128,882.00 for 1997, capital development improvement fees of $297,069.00, interest earnings of $77,000.00, charges for services of $222,060.00, and other revenues of $196,950.00. Overall revenues are estimated to increase $178,000.00, or about 5%.
. Personal services are recommended at $2,273,219.00, a 4% increase over the 1996 amended budget. The department has 41 authorized positions and an estimated 200 volunteer firefighters.
. Capital outlay is estimated at $514,750.00, a 58% decrease from the 1996 amended budget.
. Reserves and contingency are estimated at $1,071,889.00.
County Ambulance Services
. County ambulance services revenues and expenses are recorded in a special revenue fund. Revenues include ad valorem taxes estimated at $652,000.00 for 1997 and interest earnings.
. The County contracts with Florida Regional Emergency Medical Services to provide ambulance services. The cost of this contract for 1997 is $500,000.00, the same as 1996.
. Personal services includes 25% of the Senior Fire Director's and Executive Secretary's salaries and benefits expense, for a total of $32,845.00 for 1997.
. The total recommended budget for 1997 is $882,985.00, an 18.8% decrease from the 1996 amended budget.
. This program is funded by a state grant and has a total budget of $67,000.00 for 1997, consisting of capital outlay of $62,000.00 and operating expenses of $5,000.00. Of the capital outlay budgeted, $50,000.00 is allocated to Florida Regional Emergency Medical Services and $12,000.00 for rescue equipment.
Fire Impact Fee
. This is a new impact fee, which began collections July 1, 1996. It is recorded in a special revenue fund and may be used only for capital outlay.
. Impact fees are budgeted at $264,214.00 for 1997.
. Capital outlay is budgeted at $180,000.00, to replace a pumper truck that is over 25 years old.
Chief Haun stated that the Animal Control budget was the only one of his budgets that increased, due to an increase in neutering charges and in the lawn care service.
Commr. Swartz stated that the County was getting ready to do mail-outs to individuals in the unincorporated area for garbage and suggested that staff put together an insert, with a return envelope, about the sterilization program and try to solicit contributions for same. He noted that the only cost to the County would be for the printing that would be needed on the forms.
Chief Haun briefly discussed the issue of volunteer firefighters and noted that they were requesting the replacement of three (3) command vehicles, with over 100,000 miles, and a hydraulic lift.
Chief Haun stated that, for FY 1996-97, he was proposing a reduction in the County Ambulance Services budget of approximately $200,000.00, which would result in the County being able to roll back the millage significantly. He stated that two things were eliminated within that budget, being (1) Contingency from this year, because it was not needed, and (2) surplus money from last year.
The Board thanked Chief Haun for his presentation.
Commr. Swartz stated that this is the second year that staff has brought the Board a budget that goes to roll-back; for the third consecutive year, there is no increase in Solid Waste disposal fees; the reorganization in Fire and Emergency Services has created a reduction in the budget of $36,000.00; fifteen (15) positions have been eliminated, overall; the Fire Chief is suggesting that the County is going to be able to do a roll-back on the ambulance district; and the County will be able to purchase a $180,000.00 pumper out of fire impact fees. He stated that staff made this budget so easy to understand and commended them for all their hard work in doing so.
It was the consensus of the Board to hold a workshop session on July 23, 1996, at 1:30 p.m., to look at any final issues that the Board may want to discuss or consider, with regard to setting the millage.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 4:55 p.m.
WELTON G. CADWELL, CHAIRMAN
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK