The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, July 6, 1999, at 9:00 a.m., in the Board of County Commissioners' Meeting Room, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were Catherine C. Hanson, Vice Chair; Robert A. Pool; Rhonda H. Gerber; and G. Richard Swartz, Jr. Commr. Welton G. Cadwell, Chairman, was not present. Others present were: Sue Whittle, County Manager; Sanford (Sandy) A. Minkoff, County Attorney; Wendy Taylor, Administrative Supervisor, Board of County Commissioners' Office; Barbara Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance; and Marlene S. Foran, Deputy Clerk.
Mr. Alvin Jackson, Deputy County Manager, gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Ms. Sue Whittle, County Manager, requested that Tab 6, a request for approval for the Chairman to execute a second amendment to the Interlocal Agreement between Lake County and the Town of Lady Lake relating to contribution of infrastructure sales tax funds for community recreation facilities, be pulled from the County Manager's Consent Agenda. She noted that Tab 21, a public hearing on an ordinance creating Article XII of Chapter 13 of the Lake County Code entitled "Motor Vehicle Title Loans", has been rescheduled on July 27, 1999; and Tab 25, discussion of request from the City of Leesburg for assistance on the road work involving County Road 44 - Main Street in downtown Leesburg, has been rescheduled on July 13, 1999.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Gerber and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved to reschedule the public hearing on an ordinance creating Article XII of Chapter 13 of the Lake County Code entitled "Motor Vehicle Title Loans" on July 27, 1999.
Commr. Cadwell was not present for the vote.
Regarding the Minutes of June 1, 1999 (Regular Meeting), the following change was requested:
Page 7, Line 18 - delete "Water Authority"; insert Public Health.
On a motion by Commr. Swartz, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of June 1, 1999 (Regular Meeting), as amended.
On a motion by Commr. Gerber, seconded by Commr. Swartz and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of June 15, 1999 (Regular Meeting), as presented.
Commr. Cadwell was not present for the votes.
CLERK OF COURT'S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Gerber, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved the following requests:
Accounts Allowed/Courts-Judges/Code Enforcement
Request for approval of Satisfaction and Release of Fine for Alan K. Saunders, in the amount of $250.00, dated May 24, 1999, and recorded in Official Records Book 1719, pages 1021 and 1022; and authorized proper signature on same.
Request for approval of Satisfaction and Release of Fine for Albert W. Joyce, Jr., in the amount of $250.00, dated May 24, 1999, and recorded in Official Records Book 1719, pages 1011 and 1012; and authorized proper signature on same.
Request for approval of Satisfaction and release of Fine for Mary Jean Morley, in the amount of $100.00, dated April 19, 1999, and recorded in Official Records Book 1710, pages 895 and 896; and the Reduction of Order of Fine, in the amount of $100.00, dated April 19, 1999, and recorded in Official Records Book 1710, pages 897 and 898; and authorized proper signature on same.
Request for approval of Release of Fine for Kathleen Ellis, in the amount of $4,500.00, dated September 15, 1997, which was not recorded in the Public Records of the Clerk of the Circuit Court; and the Second Order of Fine, in the amount of $6,200.00, dated October 10, 1997, and recorded in Official Records Book 1585, pages 45 and 46; and authorized proper signature on same.
Bonds - Contractor
Request for approval of Contractor Bonds, New, Cancellations and Riders, as follows:
1876-99 Robert J. Hamilton/4 H Plumbing, Inc.
4366-99 James A. Quarles (Residential Contractor)
5018-99 Varhol Electric, Inc.
5390-99 Jim Percy dba Jim Percy's Air Conditioning & Heating
5466-99 Richard N. Ream/Tropical Sign& Neon Service, Inc.
5568-99 William L. Heffner dba Controlled Comfort (Air Conditioning)
5703-99 S. Ernest Fishalow
5704-99 Gladys Iglesias/Regal Air Conditioning & Heating, Inc.
5705-99 Alan O'Cull/O'Cull Electric, Inc.
5706-99 Kevin Kennedy dba Special K. Electric
5707-99 Traditional Central Air, Inc.
5708-99 James Crandall/Emerald Electric of Central Florida
5709-99 George W. Moeller dba Lake Residential and Commercial Remodeling
5710-99 Eric L. Myers/United Refrigeration, Inc.
5711-99 Scott Smith Roofing, Inc.
5712-99 Michael Fugate/Electrical Contracting Systems
5533-97 Robert G. Houghteling dba Houghteling Construction
Edward C. Waters dba E.C. Waters, Inc.
Request to acknowledge receipt of unclaimed excess proceeds for tax deeds totaling $3,509.73.
Request to acknowledge receipt of list of warrants paid prior to this meeting, pursuant to Chapter 136 of the Florida Statutes, which shall be incorporated into the Minutes as attached Exhibit A and filed in the Board Support Division of the Clerk's Office.
Request to acknowledge receipt of monthly distribution of revenue Traffic/Criminal Cases, Month Ending May 31, 1999. Disbursements: $118,038.21; Same Period Last Year: $149,460.90.
Request to acknowledge receipt of Deer Island Community Development District Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 1999-2000, in accordance with Chapter 190.008(2)(b), Florida Statutes, for purposes of disclosure and information only.
Request to acknowledge receipt of Green Swamp Land Authority Financial Statements, dated September 30, 1998, in accordance with Government Auditing Standards.
Request to acknowledge receipt of State of Florida Auditor General Operational Audit of the State Attorney Fifth Judicial Circuit, Report No. 13496, for the period ending December 31, 1998.
COUNTY MANAGER'S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Swartz and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved the following requests with the exception of Tab 6:
Accounts Allowed/Roads-County & State/Signs
Request for approval to name an unnamed easement "Sandy Ridge Avenue"; authorization for Communications Systems to purchase, and the Public Works Department to install, a private road sign for Sandy Ridge Avenue; and approval to place a Postal Colony Road sign at the intersection of Postal Colony and Lake Nellie Roads as a matter of public health and safety. Total amount of these requests is $57.00.
Request for approval of grant application for Public Defender's Office S.A.F.E. project, including match of $2,878.00; and signature authorization for the grant and related documents, including EEO certifications.
Accounts Allowed/Budgets/Economic Development
Request for approval of return of Jobs Growth Incentive award monies to Trust Fund
account, in the amount of $7,635.00, due to Agri-Starts III, Inc. and Agri-Starts IV, Inc. not utilizing the entire JGI Trust Fund award monies prior to the expiration dates.
Request for approval to fund the two Regional Park Projects (Lake-Sumter Community College Recreational Facility and the City of Clermont - Hancock Recreation Area) recommended for funding of $75,000.00 each in Fiscal Year 98/99 and Fiscal Year 99/2000.
Request for approval of Check Request (Direct Pay) from the Sheriff for reimbursement from the Law Enforcement Trust Fund for a helicopter searchlight. The total payment is for $89,887.32.
Contracts, Leases & Agreements/Subdivisions/Planning
Request for approval to accept and execute an agreement between Lake County and Clermont Hills Lake County, L.P., for the issuance of six building permits on Lots 56, 57, 58, 59, 60 and 61 in the Weston Hills Phase II Subdivision prior to the acceptance and recordation of the final plat. Subdivision consists of 162 lots - Commissioner District 2.
Request for approval and execution of certificates for employees with one and three years of service.
Deeds/Rights-of-Way, Roads & Easements
Request for approval to accept Drainage Easement Deeds, Non-Exclusive Easement Deed, and Temporary Non-Exclusive Easement Deed, as follows:
Drainage Easement Deeds:
Town of Lady Lake, a Florida Municipal Corporation
Rolling Acres Road
The School Board of Lake County, Florida
Rolling Acres Road
Non-Exclusive Easement Deed:
Fennell Investments, Ltd., a Florida Limited Partnership
Rolling Acres Road
Temporary Non-Exclusive Easement Deed:
The School Board of Lake County, Florida
Rolling Acres Road
Contracts, Leases & Agreements/Roads-County & State
Request for approval and signature on an Interlocal Agreement with the City of Eustis for shared road maintenance responsibility on Morris Street (CR 3-5163).
Resolutions/Roads-County & State/Signs
Request for approval of Resolution No. 1999-118 authorizing the posting of speed limit signs in the Grand Island area on the following roads:
Devenshire Court (5-6447) Wood Breeze Court (5-6547A)
Berkshire Court (5-6347) Capri Isle Lane (5-6547)
Brendenshire Court (5-6347A) Biscayne Drive (5-6546)
Bristol Circle (5-6347A) Helen Drive (5-6445)
Stratford Court (5-6347D) Antone Drive (5-6445A)
Ashley Court (5-6347F) Francis Drive (5-6445B)
Grand Terrace Drive (5-6347B) Jean Drive (5-6445C)
Terra Court (5-6347C) Draw Drive (5-6543B)
Jefferson Street (5-6448) Fade Drive (5-6544)
Adams Street (5-6348) Pitch Drive (5-6643)
Jeremy Place (5-6349) Slice Lane (5-6742)
Nightwind Court (5-6548) Grand Island Shores (5-6249)
Oakbend Drive (5-6546A)
Resolutions/Roads-County & State/Signs
Request for approval of Resolution No. 1999-119 authorizing the posting of speed limit signs in the Dona Vista area on the following roads:
Pine Cove Place (5-6564) St. Louis Avenue (5-6762A)
McKinley Road (5-6661) Beach Drive (5-6762B)
Wiley Lane (5-6662) Myrtle Drive (5-6763)
Trefoil Lane (5-6663) Sunrise Trail (5-6765)
Horseshoe Drive (5-6664A) Holly Court (5-6766A)
Cumbermoore Lane (5-6664B) Oak Street (5-6861)
New York Avenue (5-6760) Lakeside Lane (5-6865)
Fifth Street (5-6760A) Umatilla Place (5-6959)
Chicago Avenue (5-6761)
Resolutions/Roads-County & State/Municipalities
Request for approval of Resolution No. 1999-120 transferring South Avenue (CR 3-5162) and Hollywood Avenue (CR 4-5768) west of Wall Street to the jurisdiction of the City of Eustis.
Assessments/Roads-County & State
Request for approval and authorization for the Chairman to execute Satisfaction of Assessment Liens for twenty (20) road assessments, as follows:
Assessment # Name Date Paid
654141 Teuko Rushing 5-18-99
689023 Stanley Lindsey 5-05-99
690001 Thomas & Barbara Tobin 5-20-99
690002 Thomas & Barbara Tobin 5-20-99
690004 Edward Creamer 5-12-99
690008 Peter Binkley 5-27-99
690020 William & Charlotte Kisner 5-18-99
690023 Roger Phillips 5-20-99
690024 Ethel & Marilyn Swager 5-11-99
690025 Ethel & Marilyn Swager 5-11-99
690026 Claire Hebert, Trustee 5-18-99
690027 Junior & Margaret Biller 5-03-99
690028 William & Charlotte Kisner 5-18-99
690031 Richard C. Rhynehart 5-18-99
690032 John & Barbara Walters 5-18-99
690033 David Blair 5-18-99
690034 Kenneth Stevens 5-04-99
690035 Mavis Chase 5-19-99
690036 Myron & Josephine Smith 5-10-99
691039 William McCullars 5-17-99
Contracts, Leases & Agreements/Deeds/State Agencies/Resolutions
Rights-of-Way, Roads & Easements
Request for approval and execution of a Maintenance Agreement between the Florida Department of Transportation and Lake County relating to the maintenance of a FDOT retention pond, being used as a "joint use retention pond" with Lake County, for the North Hancock Road project; and adoption of Resolution No. 1999-121and execution of a County deed transferring to FDOT a 35 foot drainage easement area obtained by Lake County for the expansion of said pond.
Grants/Municipalities/Solid Waste/State Agencies
Request for authorization for the Chairman to sign the Solid Waste Recycling and Education Grant Application Part One; authorization for the Chairman to sign the Recycling and Education Grant Application Part Two upon receipt from FDEP; authorization for the Chairman to sign quarterly reimbursement requests; authorization to encumber and expend funds during Fiscal Year 1999/2000; and authorization to execute interlocal agreements with fourteen (14) municipalities for application and use of grant funds.
Request for approval for the Chairman to sign the Waste Tire Grant Application request, execute the subsequent application and any and all reimbursement requests as needed throughout Fiscal Year 1999/2000.
PERSONAL APPEARANCES/PUBLIC HEARINGS
At this time, Commr. Hanson presented the following awards and plaques, as Ms. Lourdes Ramos, Personnel Manager, provided information on each individual:
Presentation of Plaques to Employees with Five Years of Service
Robert L. Barth, Mechanic II, Public Works/Special Services/Fleet Maintenance
John Brautcheck, Entomologist, Public Works/Special Services/Mosquito Aquatic (Not Present)
Carla Mitchell, Program Assistant - 4H, Cooperative Extension Service/Cooperative Extension
Presentation of Plaque to Employee with Ten Years of Service
Edmund J. Dagner, Jr., Chief Electrical Inspector, Growth Management/Building Services
Presentation of Plaque to Employee with Fifteen Years of Service
Judith M. Evans, Interim Expo Center Fairgrounds Manager, Facilities and Capital Improvement/Expo Center Fairgrounds (Not Present)
Presentation of Plaques to Employees with Twenty Years of Service
Christine Stephens, Fabricator II, Inspector II, Public Works/Roads Signs, Signals and Striping
George D. Harrison, Chief Maintenance Specialist, Aquatic Plant, Facilities and Capital Improvements/Building Maintenance (Not Present)
Presentation of Plaque to Employee with Twenty-Five Years of Service
Teresa M. Davis, Employee Benefits Technician, Fiscal and Administrative Services/Risk Management
Ms. Sue Whittle, County Manager, expressed congratulations to Mr. Bruce Thorburn, Communications Systems Director, for being instrumental in the successful passage of the E 9-1-1 Wireless Fee Legislation.
Commr. Hanson presented a plaque to Mr. Thorburn, at which time he expressed his appreciation to the Board of County Commissioners for their support of his efforts regarding the passage of the E 9-1-1 Wireless Fee Legislation.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, placed the proposed ordinance moving Code Enforcement Provisions from the Lake County Land Development Regulations to Chapter 8 of the Lake County Code, on the floor for its final reading, by title only, as follows:
AN ORDINANCE OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF LAKE COUNTY, FLORIDA; REMOVING SECTION 13.06.00, ENTITLED CODE ENFORCEMENT BOARD, IN ITS ENTIRETY FROM APPENDIX E OF THE LAKE COUNTY CODE, LAND DEVELOPMENT REGULATIONS; RELOCATING AND RENUMBERING SECTION 13.06.00 REGARDING THE CODE ENFORCEMENT BOARD TO CHAPTER 8 OF THE LAKE COUNTY CODE; REMOVING SECTION 12.07.00, ENTITLED CODE ENFORCEMENT, IN ITS ENTIRETY FROM APPENDIX E OF THE LAKE COUNTY CODE, LAND DEVELOPMENT REGULATIONS; RELOCATING AND RENUMBERING SECTION 12.07.00 REGARDING CODE ENFORCEMENT TO CHAPTER 8 OF THE LAKE COUNTY CODE; REPEALING SECTION 8-9 (A) REGARDING REHEARINGS; CREATING SECTION 8-10(D) REGARDING REQUESTS FOR REDUCTION OF FINES; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; PROVIDING FOR INCLUSION IN THE LAKE COUNTY CODE; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Mr. Minkoff explained that the purpose of the proposed ordinance was to reflect that Lake County Code Enforcement enforces all provisions of the Lake County Code and not just the Lake County Land Development Regulations; therefore, all sections regarding Code Enforcement are being moved from the Land Development Regulations to a new chapter in the Lake County Code.
At this time, Commr. Hanson opened the public hearing portion of the meeting.
There being no one present who wished to discuss this request, the public hearing portion of the meeting was closed.
On a motion by Commr. Swartz, seconded by Commr. Gerber and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved Ordinance No. 1999-74 moving Code Enforcement Provisions from the Lake County Land Development Regulations to Chapter 8 of the Lake County Code.
Commr. Cadwell was not present for the discussion or vote.
COUNTY MANAGER'S DEPARTMENTAL BUSINESS
ACCOUNTS ALLOWED/CONTRACTS, LEASES & AGREEMENTS
Mr. Mike Anderson, Senior Director, Facilities & Capital Improvements, appeared before the Board to present a request for approval of Change Order No. 2 to Boykin Enterprises, Inc. for an increase in scope of services for Christopher C. Ford Central Park in the amount of $51,3287.21. He explained that the project was complete and that this was the second and final change order to the contract. He stated that the change orders for the increase to the scope of services were for paving and grading, storm sewer, water distribution, S.R. 19 improvements, additions, and a guard rail. He briefly discussed each change order.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Swartz and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved the request for approval of Change Order No. 2 to Boykin Enterprises, Inc. for an increase in scope of services for Christopher C. Ford Central Park in the amount of $51,328.21.
Commr. Cadwell was not present for the discussion or vote.
CONTRACTS, LEASES & AGREEMENTS/MUNICIPALITIES
Ms. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, presented this request.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Gerber and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved the request for approval of an Interlocal Agreement between Lake County and the Town of Lady Lake relating to Annexation of Enclaves; and authorized proper signature on same.
Commr. Cadwell was not present for the discussion or vote.
ACCOUNTS ALLOWED/TAX DEEDS
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, presented the request for approval of application for tax deed by Lake County on all parcels, except homestead on property valued greater than $5,000.00, and homestead property where total taxes due are greater than $100.00. He noted that the County would be applying for tax deed on eleven (11) parcels.
On a motion by Commr. Gerber, seconded by Commr. Swartz and carried unanimously by a 4 - 0 vote, the Board approved the request for approval of application for tax deed by the County on all parcels, except homestead on property valued greater than $5,000.00, and homestead property where total taxes due are greater than $100.00.
Commr. Cadwell was not present for the discussion or vote.
COMMISSIONER GERBER - DISTRICT NO. 1
Commr. Gerber informed the Board that a ribbon cutting ceremony has been scheduled today, at 3:00 p.m., for the removal of a building on Main Street in the City of Leesburg.
COMMISSIONER POOL - DISTRICT NO. 2
Commr. Pool requested an update on the completion date of the north C.R. 561 bridge and stated that the project appears to be complete with the exception of the sodding of the embankments.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Jr., Senior Director, Department of Public Works, appeared before the Board and explained that the delay was due to the installation of the guard rail which was scheduled for completion by the end of the week. He stated that the barricades would be removed in the near future and the bridge would be opened to traffic before the start of the school year.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD
At this time, Commr. Hanson announced that the Board would hear questions, comments, and concerns from the citizens who were present in the audience.
Mr. Roger Hazelton, a resident of the City of Eustis, appeared before the Board to discuss traffic control on Lakeshore Drive between the City of Tavares and the City of Eustis. He distributed a packet of information titled "Report on Lakeshore Drive Residents to Control Traffic on Lakeshore Drive which was comprised of newspaper articles, a petition with 82 signatures and photographs illustrating the problems with traffic control along Lakeshore Drive. He discussed problems relating to speeding vehicles, truck traffic and an indifference on the part of various departments and various governmental entities in controlling the traffic on Lakeshore Drive. He stated that the residents met with the City of Eustis City Commission on March 17, 1999, and the City of Eustis Police Department provided excellent enforcement for approximately three (3) weeks and minimal police visibility thereafter. He noted that without police visibility the problems with speeding vehicles returns. He stated that they were requesting today 3-way stop signs at Woodward Avenue, Eustis Road, and Hermosa Road, speed limit signs, no truck traffic signs, no passing signs and a cross walk. He expressed concern that, on April 15, 1999, a delegation of residents presented a request for 3-way signs and speed bumps to the Lake County Community Traffic Safety Team and received little respect, time or interest in their concerns. He stated that the City of Eustis Police Department reported over 6,000 vehicles on Lakeshore Drive in one month and during a nineteen (19) day period a total of 177 citations were issued. He stated that it was important that permanent steps be taken to address traffic control along Lakeshore Drive.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Jr., Senior Director, Department of Public Works, addressed questions presented by the Board and the concerns expressed by Mr. Hazelton.
At this time, the Board directed staff to address traffic control problems on Lakeshore Drive between the City of Tavares and the City of Eustis; and to provide an analysis of the 177 violations reported by the City of Eustis Police Chief.
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 9:45 a.m., the Chairman announced that the Board would recess and reconvene at 10:00 a.m.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD (C0NTINUED)
Mr. Paul Ludtke, a resident of Lakes at Leesburg Mobile Home Park, appeared before the Board and distributed a handout comprised of a Lake Sentinel Newspaper article, dated June 26, 1999, and copies of Florida Statutes addressing taxation. He discussed assessments that mobile home rental park owners were passing on to the mobile home owner, and the park owners using the failure to pay said assessment as a cause for eviction. He explained that, under Florida Statutes, a mobile home was a motor vehicle and, as defined by law, shall not be subject to ad valorem taxes. He stated that he has received an eviction notice from his mobile home park owner because he has refused to pay the fire assessment. The Florida Constitution states that mobile home owners were not responsible for fees, charges, or assessments and refusal by the mobile home owner to pay such charges shall not be used by the park owner as a cause for eviction. He stated that the mobile home owners have been informed by the park owner that the Board of County Commissioners have mandated that said fees be paid by the mobile home owners. He requested that the Board provide a written statement that states that the Board of County Commissioners did not mandate that mobile home park owners collect assessment fees from the mobile home owner and that, under Florida Statute 723-031 (6), the mobile home owner was not liable for the tax.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, explained that the assessment was assessed to the owner of the real property, not to any owner of tangible personal property. He further explained that this was a complicated issue and requires a case by case review because every lot rental may have a different lease. He stated that some mobile home owners have lifetime leases that allow no cost to be passed through, others have leases that allow some costs to be passed through, and one category allows the landlord to pass through any cost to the mobile home owner. He stated that the documentation has to be reviewed for each mobile home owner to determine which category applies to the mobile home owner.
Mr. Joe Simister, representing mobile home owners in the Lakes at Leesburg Mobile Home Park, appeared before the Board to discuss the collection of taxes by the mobile home rental park owner.
Commr. Swartz clarified that, since 1991, the Board has stated that this was a tax that has been imposed and the mobile home park owner was required to pay said tax. The Board, in no way, has authorized or encouraged the mobile home park owner to pass the tax on to the mobile home owner in any way that was inconsistent with state law, and their own contacts and leases. He stated that it depends on the individual contracts and the prospectus as to what the mobile home park owner can charge.
Mr. Ed Havill, Lake County Property Appraiser, appeared before the Board and stated that this was just one of the problems with the fire assessment program and that the Board needs to become involved in these problems. He explained that the park owners that were getting billed by the County for less than the full fire assessment were charging the mobile home owners the full assessment. He discussed an article in the Lake Sentinel Newspaper, by Jake Vest, a nationally syndicated columnist, dated June 26, 1999, which indicated that Mr. Vest was assessed for 22 mobile home sites on his property and he has no mobile homes sites. He expressed concern that the fire assessment program in Lake County needs to be addressed.
Ms. Sue Whittle, County Manager, responded to a question presented by Commr. Hanson and stated that the Assessment Office has been working with the consultants for a year, and were checking the fire assessments by parcel. She stated that the Assessment Office has indicated that the problems with the fire assessment program have been corrected.
Commr. Hanson directed staff to follow up on the issue of the 22 mobile home site reported on the property owned by Mr. Jake Vest.
Mr. Vic Mars, a Lake County citizen, appeared before the Board and expressed concern that he was paying the same amount for fire protection on his mobile home as the man who lives in a million dollar house. He stated that there was a discrepancy, and it would seem that the most honest, justifiable way to correct this problem would be to put the fire fee on the basis of a millage rate. He stated that he was a firm believer in the American process of taxing for government services, however, to charge the person who was living on social security in a $10,000 mobile home the same fee as the wealthy was unjust.
Mr. Bob Barber, a resident of Lakeside Village Mobile Home Park, appeared before the Board and stated that it was a conflict of interest for the Board to vote for a fire tax because their own homes may be assessed at a value that would result in a higher fire assessment.
Mr. Ray Kerns, a resident of Woodland Heritage Mobile Home Park, appeared before the Board and expressed concern that the Board has driven a wedge between the residents and the mobile home park owners by assessing the park owner for the fire tax. He stated that he has no problem with the $82 fire tax being passed through one time; however, if the park owners are allowed to pass this tax through, a flood gate will be opened to allow more fees to be passed on to the mobile home owner.
Mr. Allan Hewitt, Water Resource Manager, Lake County Water Management, appeared before the Board and introduced Mr. John Wehle, Assistant Executive Director, St. John River Water Management District, who was present to present the draft Water 20/20 Supply Management Plan. He stated that the Environmental Protection Advisory Board has reviewed the draft plan in depth and are in the process of making a recommendation to the Board on the Water 20/20 Supply Management Plan.
Mr. John Wehle, Assistant Executive Director, St. Johns River Water Management District, appeared before the Board and introduced Ms. Barbara Vergara, Director, Water Supply Development Program, who was present in the audience. He distributed a copy of the Water 20/20 Supply Management Plan slide presentation, and a letter from the Lake County Water Authority dated May 20, 1999. He stated that the overall goal was to assure that there was water available for all reasonable beneficial users throughout the State of Florida through the year 2020 and to continue with a process that was updated every five (5) years to make sure that we are 20 years ahead of the game in the planning and problem identification. At this time, he briefly discussed the following:
Public 93% Increase
Agriculture 15% Increase
Other 9% Increase
Total 63% Increase
- Public supply demands are expected to double by 2020.
- Floridan aquifer can meet most, but not all of these needs without environmental harm to wetlands and springs.
- Alternative sources are available.
- Implementation strategies to deal with regional solutions will be necessary to avoid competing CUP applications.
- New sources may be needed as soon as 2004.
A. Inform you of Water 2020 concepts.
- Not enough fresh ground water to meet needs.
- Alternatives are available.
- Development of a plan to use these alternatives will require regional cooperation among utilities.
B. Your commitment to support a regional decision making process with other major users in east-central Florida.
Mr. Wehle stated that the St. Johns River Water Management District has taken a conservative approach and has chosen the higher side in terms of looking at the resources and the needs in developing the draft Water 2020 Supply Management Plan. He explained that the plan was built around capitalizing on the cheaper alternatives until such time that firmer numbers are available to indicate a need to go to the more expensive alternatives. He briefly discussed the St. Johns River Water Management District permit review process and explained that permits are turned down on occasion when the resource analysis indicates that water resources were not acceptable. At this time, Commr. Swartz requested that Mr. Wehle provide examples of permits that were reviewed and did not have water resources available.
Commr. Swartz expressed concern that, unless we clearly indicate our support of local sources first and allow inter-jurisdictional transfers as one of the first options, we will eliminate the encouragement for other jurisdictions to do a better job with their own water resources. He stated that we continue to allow the growth to occur in areas where the resources do not exist on the hope that we will not run out of the resources in other areas, or that withdrawing from other areas will not pull water down either in ground waters or surface waters to the extent that the natural system is damaged. He expressed concern that the Water 2020 Supply Management Plan continues the failed strategy that we have employed with trying to unsuccessfully manage and sustain growth. He encouraged Mr. Wehle to take these thoughts back to the St. Johns River Water Management District. He stated that the Florida Legislature must understand that Florida cannot continue to be the magnificent engine of commerce if it wants to maintain what it has been in the past. He expressed concern that all we are doing was finding another way to make sustainable that which is unsustainable.
Mr. Wehle explained that the Water 2020 Supply Management Plan requires a series of criteria to meet, the first being the local sources first option, before a county can go across a county line for water in terms of conservation. He stated that the issue was what are the policies and priorities of the state, and now, through House Bill 715, the priorities of the state are to come up with a plan to meet the demands of all reasonable beneficial users. He explained that the first water supply planning document will be drafted for the Board to review and will then be submitted to the Governor of Florida and the Legislature.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD (CONTINUED)
Ms. Sue Whittle, County Manager, reported to the Board that staff has checked on the fire assessment notice for the Jake Vest property and has indicated that Mr. Vest's property was adjacent to a mobile home park and a portion of that mobile home park shows as being on his property; therefore he had received an assessment notice for 22 mobile home sites. She explained that Mr. Vest had called the Assessment Office, an inspector was sent to the site and the problem was corrected.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 11:25 p.m.
_________________________________ WELTON G. CADWELL, CHAIRMAN
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK