The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in special session on Friday, April 6, 2001, at 9:00 a.m., at Trout Lake Nature Center, Eustis, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Catherine C. Hanson, Chairman; Welton G. Cadwell, Jennifer Hill; and Debbie Stivender. Commissioners not present: Robert A. Pool, Vice Chairman. Others present were: Sue Whittle, County Manager; Sanford A. Minkoff, County Attorney; Mr. Tad Stone, Senior Director of Emergency Services; Mr. Jim Stivender, Senior Director of Public Works; Ms. Sharon Farrell, Senior Director of Growth Management; and Bill Gilley, Senior Director of Solid Waste; and Toni M. Riggs, Deputy Clerk.
Commr. Hanson opened the meeting and noted that Mr. Hal Turville, Mayor of the City of Clermont, was present, as well as many staff members from the various cities.
Commr. Hanson turned the meeting over to Dr. Lance deHaven-Smith, deHaven-Smith Associates, Tallahassee.
PRESENTATION ON ISSUES AND OPTIONS - DR. LANCE DEHAVEN-SMITH
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that he has a presentation to make to the Board, and he has a specific agenda to review today, in response to the previous JPA meeting. He stated that, for those who were not present at the prior meeting of the cities and the County, which was held on February 23, 2001, he would stress again that the Board was getting started on this issue early, and they were doing the right thing in trying to do this for the whole County.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that single issue being dealt with by the cities and County is the land use issue, where they are going to allow development and how they are going to control it, and once they make a decision on these issues, this will drive the annexation policy. He stated that basically the smart growth strategy is to promote compact, contiguous development. Under the County's Comprehensive Plan, the County has a population projection, and the County is required to accommodate the population growth projected by the Bureau of Economic Business Research. He stated that he will be reviewing the history of Palm Beach County, which is similar to Lake County now.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that, at the last meeting, he showed them a chart about the population growth in Lake County, and where it was in relation to the cities in the unincorporated area, and most of the growth, since 1980, is heavily concentrated in the unincorporated area. He stated that this will continue, unless they do something like the joint planning areas, to allow the cities to expand in an orderly fashion. The JPA that has been drafted is a framework for the County to look at city by city, and at the end of the day, the Board may want to ask themselves if there is an order that they want to go in when considering the cities. He stated that the cities said that they would annex to the extent that they could and suggested that they should provide both water and wastewater treatment, which by requiring both of these, it adds a capacity requirement that some cities may not be able to meet. The County would use the city land use standards and basically treat the applications for development approval as if they were in the city. There was also the potential that the cities might provide other services in those areas, and he was going to suggest later in the day that they ask about services the County ought to provide, and it may be other types of countywide services, such as libraries. Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that the issues, that he sees that they need to think about as these JPAs come forward to the Board, include the size of the joint planning areas around the cities and providing compact development, which he explained, at this time. Another question with the JPA is how to serve the nodes that are already incorporated, which are now urban and city like, and whether the County is going to have the city reach out and do that, or is the County going to become an urban service provider, or is the County going to suggest that a new city be created. He stated that, as they look at the JPA, and the areas around the cities, they cannot think just in terms of what it means for the city service delivery, because the County does not want to box itself in, and it wants to be cautious and look at what it means to the County, in terms of its service delivery.
Dr. deHaven-Smith reviewed maps that he had gotten from the GIS center at the University of Florida, which included wastewater treatment sites in the County, and hurricane paths that have come through the County. He also had a map showing the traffic flows, and the average daily traffic on the roads, which he got from the Department of Transportation (DOT). He stated that, as the Board can see, the boundary that the County wants to create between urban and rural is starting to blur. He stated that there are some urban nodes that are already in the unincorporated area, and the County has antiquated platted lands from the 1950s, and from looking at the maps, it looks like Lake County is right in the path of an enormous population growth. The wastewater facilities are really along the corridors, which is good news, but the issue that the Board needs to be thinking about is community character and how to maintain it, and this should probably be the central goal, to keep those cities healthy, and to keep a really neat atmosphere. He stated that they also need to make sure that they address water pollution in the lakes, septic tanks, emergency evacuation, and service provision to the unincorporated area.
Dr. deHaven-Smith discussed Palm Beach County and explained that, when they started experiencing growth, they developed a growth cap in 1972, but it was declared unconstitutional.
Then they developed an urban growth boundary in 1975, and a 22,000 acre agricultural reserve area, to be used as a buffer between the everglades and urbanization. He noted that, after they got more urbanized, people began to complain, and the County tried to turn down applications for development approval (ADA) for commercial development, on some of the major intersections, and they lost two cases. He stated that there was a small subdivision called Horshoe Acres that was south of the agriculture reserve area, which had about 100 homes, it was one unit per five acres, and it became a very affluent area. The turnpike ran right through the agriculture reserve area, and on the other side of the turnpike, Highway 441 ran along the west side. He explained that there were several efforts to buy the 22,000 acres, and even though it could have been bought for $88 million, expressways cost $1 billion a mile in that area. So it may be very cost effective to buy it now, than to serve it later, which is a tough thing to explain to residents. He explained that the County could probably have bought land for about $500 million dollars all down their corridor to lock it in, and it would have been harder for the growth to sprawl out.
Dr. deHaven- Smith noted the following as lessons from Palm Beach County:
Large scale development
Back yards on borders
Evacuation, traffic, carrying capacity
Equal treatment before the law
De. deHaven-Smith stated that he would like to talk today about urban form, municipal policy, County service provisions, and the JPA review criteria.
Commr. Stivender questioned, if someone developed new regulations on golf courses, or developments around lakes, and the Board felt that they were state of the art, and it was something that they wanted to start doing in this County, would the Board want to go ahead and make that policy to have those, since Dr. deHaven-Smith indicated that the Board should treat every decision as a policy.
Dr. deHaven-Smith explained that, at the end of the last meeting, it was suggested that, when the Board reviews these JPAs, they are setting the long term growth pattern for the County, and they are going to lock themselves into arrangements that will impact the County in all kinds of other ways, so the Board wants to think through the long term issues, and then they can adopt the policies. He stated that he sees this more as a political problem, because a lot of these things are politically sensitive, and there are rights involved, and cities involved. He would suggest going through the process in a fairly orderly way, because they really do not want to do a policy, until they determine their reasons for wanting it, and not wanting it.
Commr. Hanson stated that, in summarizing what was said by Dr. deHaven-Smith, the County does have some real gems, but the cities could be a real tourism attraction, as well as a quality of life issue, and they need to support the cities, and they also have other areas, such as Paisley, that may be a part of a string of gems in the future, so there are some real challenges.
Dr. deHaven-Smith felt that the Board was getting into this at the right time, and that it would have been hard to do it earlier, because they were not getting the sense of urgency in the community to do it. He stated that the big political challenge is that they are caught between neighborhood activists who fight against everything, and developers who are in it for making money, and they get caught in between them. He explained that, in 1984, in Palm Beach County, the developers were suing the County over the road impact fee, and the County put a moratorium in place on all further development, because of an outrage on condo commandos. The County had zero gas tax in the 1980s, and the developers felt that the County was going to gold plate the community with their dollars, and they felt that the County should do their fair share. The County said that they would take the gas tax to the full six cents that they could levy, if they would stop the litigation over the impact fee. The neighborhood people and the condominium people said that they did not mind the development, as long as the traffic was reduced, and they put together a bond issue for a road expansion program. He noted that what the Board is faced with today is getting these people one at a time.
Mr. Jimmy Crawford stated that he is a land use Attorney, and in regards to the comment made by Commr. Stivender about policies and rules, he felt that his clients want rules that they know they can follow, and they know what they have after they follow them. Mr. Crawford stated that, if there is a better set of rules, then the Board can rely on these rules, and he was supporting that general idea.
Commr. Hanson stated that the Board needs to move on from here with the discussion, and then they can give those that are present an opportunity to address the Board with their comments or questions.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Senior Director or Public Works, stated that staff went to Palm Beach County in 1983 or 1984 and looked at their plan, and staff uses their plan as a guide, and in 1985, Lake County adopted its impact fees, and at the same time, in 1984, 1985, and 1986, Lake County adopted two pennies each year, which was very similar to Palm Beach County.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that Lake County has done a good job so far, and the County can have high quality urbanization in general, but it will take everything the County has got including land acquisition, zoning, being consistent in their decision making, and being very strict with their urban service provision. The toughest decision to be made by the County is the urban form pattern, and his suggestion would be to set the boundaries in an area far enough out where you are not destroying somebody's expectations of making a lot of money.
Discussion Session I: Urban Form
Dr. deHaven-Smith noted that the Board was basically in agreement with his suggestion that they are going to need pretty tough growth management policies to deal with this issue. He addressed the issue of smart growth, and the problem of density.
Commr. Hanson questioned whether this issue needed to be addressed today, because the issue of density will take care of itself over time, as long as the allowance is there for the higher density.
Dr. deHaven-Smith cautioned the Board that it will have to allow for higher densities, for the demand to generate the value.
Dr. deHaven-Smith addressed the issue of vested subdivisions and questioned the location of them, in Lake County.
Ms. Sharon Farrell, Senior Director of Growth Management, explained that the vested subdivisions are located everywhere in the County, and staff refers to the lot of record Ordinance when dealing with them.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, explained that the rules were tightened in the 1980s, and then they were loosened to make it easier to develop the subdivision, in the 1990s.
Commr. Hanson stated that the Board needs to re-look at its platted subdivisions.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that a bill passed through the House two days ago for a statewide Purpose of Development Rights Program, and he feels that the County needs some kind of policy.
Discussion occurred regarding land acquisition, with Commr. Hanson stating that the Water Authority has bought land, and the State has bought land in the Wekiva, but the County has not really bought much land for preservation purposes.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that, if the County had a clear policy on where its urban corridors are going to be, then the County could use that as a criteria to ask for land acquisition.
Commr. Hanson stated that she and staff did talk to Trust Republic Lands, when they were in Tallahassee, and they indicated that they would do a survey of the County, to find out how receptive the County and voters would be, if it was used as a growth management tool, for trails and parks, corridors and green belts, and all of the benefits that would be obtained through land acquisition, and then they would work on trying to remove obstacles. She explained that, if the County does not want growth on certain land, it is not right to regulate it to the point where they cannot use it at all, especially if the growth pressures are there without the public paying for it. She feels that it is a property rights issue.
Commr. Hill stated that, if you look at the geography of Lake County, there are a lot of areas that are already designated, and she was not sure that Lake County residents, unless you plan to pay them fair market value, are going to buy into that plan. In terms of other growth management tools, she stated that she still has not heard from the cities, as to identifying exactly how they want to grow up, out, or not at all, and also the County has identified areas that are off the rolls, as far as being able to be developed already. She questioned whether the County was going to develop through the corridors of where the road systems are now, and should the County's major growth be in corridors where there will be less impact, and should the Board be looking at the road system much heavier than they are anything else.
Commr. Hanson stated that she was looking at how the Board can differentiate between the urban and the rural, and her real belief, in the land acquisition program, is that of the agricultural reserve, and the fact that just regulation will not protect that property, or those areas, that the County does not want to see developed, or where it does not want to see an increase in density.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that, without very clear policies about these borders, whether it is in the city, or not in a city, the County will see continuous growth outwards, until it is all one big block. So the County is saying that it is going to have the cities expand in an orderly way and have city services delivered by cities, and that the County will help them by not supporting other service providers, and they will support their land use.
Commr. Hanson stated that it is in the interest of the cities that the County protect those boundaries, in order to keep the viability within the cities.
Dr. deHaven-Smith explained that the County has areas that are growing outside of these cities that are already urban, and the cities, in some cases, could reasonably go out and pick up some of those areas, and the Board needs to decide if it is going to agree with their growth planning areas, and their land development regulations. The Board has to ask themselves how far out they want them to go, how does it affect the overall urban development pattern in the County, and how will if affect the health of your existing downtown.
Commr. Cadwell noted that there has been one sub-committee meeting, and they discussed issues that they knew they agreed on, and they will be meeting again.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that the cities want the planning agreements in place as quickly as possible, and the Board wants to be as responsive as they can to them. He explained that the framework was to be developed under which the cities could submit their agreement, and there is no reason why the Board could not have a criteria that says that they want it submitted in a way that moves from this city to this city, or in more of a select order.
Mr. Turville stated that there are logical cities that ought to come collectively with their proposal, with the assumption being that they have worked out issues among themselves, before they ever meet with the County, and that is the only logical reason that they would proceed in that fashion, because the last thing that the County wants is a neighboring city telling the County to never agree to another city's proposal. He stated that, if the cities have really gotten together, as it relates to a geographic area, or common spaces, then he would think that the County would entertain those almost collectively. He feels that they should be given the opportunity to know that, if they are interested, there is a time frame on which these particular ones might be considered. Mr. Turville stated that the cities need to get this sorted out in some fashion, even if the County is not on board. He stated that, because the cities want to do things differently, they thought it was a good idea to break it into a two part process, so that the County could really look at what an individual city wants, because it may help them to know if they are really going to get into the services business, and where they anticipate putting those. He stated that there was mention about drawing a line where urban densities may occur, and there is a transition that will occur.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that the market ends up pulling people back into the city. He addressed the issue of a city having a land use deal, in terms of water supply.
Mr. Turville explained that some of the cities are already obligated to serve outside of their boundaries, based on grant monies, so there is already service even outside of what they would describe as a service area. He addressed one of the presumptions in the proposal and stated that one of the reasons that the cities might be more content with a narrower scope, rather than drawing what they used to describe as areas of influence, is the assumption that, over time, that can be adjusted.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that the County will want to have a very rigorous process for expanding the lines.
Mr. Turville stated that he felt there had to be a process for moving the line, because the document basically assumes that either party can contact the other, at any point, to renegotiate the deal.
Mr. Steve Richey stated, for the record, that he wanted to file an objection to the way that the meeting had been noticed and advertised for today. Mr. Richey stated that, at one point, he was not going to file an objection, until the Board gave special recognition to the Mayor of Clermont, to the exclusion to some of the other folks who tried to address the Board earlier in the meeting.. He stated that, when he called the County Manager's Office asking about this meeting, his office was advised that this was a private meeting, between the consultant and the County staff, and the public was not invited, and that the utilities, who had raised concerns and questions at the junior college, were not invited, nor were the cities invited. Mr. Richey stated that, as he looks around, there are a lot of cities not here, and if they are going to have a discussion with the cities, as participants in this process, he wanted the Board to know that all of the cities were not invited, and they were not noticed, or advised to be here, even if the workshop was for the County. He stated that the second thing was that they talked about the utilities having an interest in this process, and they were told that they were not invited to the meeting.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, stated that the meeting had been correctly advertised, and at the meeting, that was held at the college, they discussed and made very clear that the Commission needed to meet by itself, to talk amongst itself, so that it could go back, when they had the next meeting, in 90 days, with information developed from their discussion. Mr. Minkoff stated that, when they had the meeting with the League of Cities' representatives, which was their committee, which represents all of the cities, all of those cities discussed this meeting, and the fact that the discussion would be generally amongst the Commission itself, not that it was private, not that no one was invited, and all of those people were advised, and some of them are here.
Mr. Richey clarified the intent of his objection and stated that he also wanted to complain that, during the meeting at the college, they asked to be invited to that committee meeting, to be there as participants, and they were not advised of that committee meeting, and neither utility company was invited to that meeting, and they had asked about that meeting. He also wanted it noted that the people that are not here today were not invited to be here, and that there are people who would have been here, but they are not here today.
Commr. Hanson stated that, for the future, the comments will be held to the immediate Board, and the meeting will be opened up to comments toward the end of the meeting, and she appreciated the input. She clarified that this is a process, but they also have to have an opportunity to talk among themselves, but the point is well taken.
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 10:35 a.m., the Chairman announced that the Board would take a recess.
Discussion Session II: County Municipal Policy
Dr. deHaven-Smith questioned whether there has been any desire to have more incorporation by the cities.
Commr. Hanson stated that some people have mentioned Mount Plymouth and Sorrento, but she did not feel that there were enough people there that would vote to approve it. She noted that Four Corners would be a possibility, and she thinks that some of the areas, that are so urban, are probably going to need the city like services.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that the Board is going to try and keep its services fairly limited, as a County, unless it is going to become the urban service provider in those nodes.
Commr. Hanson stated that she believes that, at some point, they are going to require more services than the County is going to be able, or willing, to provide, in her opinion.
Commr. Hanson stated that, in regards to the question by Dr. deHaven-Smith about whether there are cities that the County is working with closely now, in terms of growth and development, she has not been able to anticipate where they would be, in relation to areas such as the Ocala National Forest, the Green Swamp, and the Wekiva, and the only other area would be around the industrial park, but right now there are not any cities really close to it.
Commr. Stivender stated that, in terms of whether the Board envisions the expansion of existing cities, she served on the City Council in Tavares, and their water and sewer services, and the fire service, have been expanded far beyond their boundaries. There was an old map showing a utility district where they would go eight miles out of town, to run water and sewer lines. She would think that the cities would want to go to the extent of their infrastructures, and they are authorized to do this through agreements with people. She stated that, when she was on the Council, their opinion was not to go out to the development, because there was a lot of infill and agriculture, and it would be too hard to service them for everything else, and therefore, only water and sewer was run to them. On the new map, they will be on the services, but they will never be a part of the City. She felt that, in regards to the question of whether they would be able to extend their water lines beyond what is already in place, as long as there is a mechanism in there that says, as things develop over the years, there is a need for that, then it could be addressed.
Dr. deHaven-Smith noted that the County could possibly end up with harder to serve, isolated areas, at some point, and that would be the only danger that he would see in this policy.
He explained that, by letting the cities sell water outside of their areas, it helps the financial capacity of the cities. He felt that this issue needs to be addressed in the JPAs. In regards to existing urban areas, the nodes, he questioned whether some of them will have their own wastewater treatment facilities, because, if the facilities slowly wear out and are not maintained, the residents would turn to the County for help, although the County may not have any real responsibility politically to respond. He questioned whether the County wanted to go and provide services in those areas.
Commr. Stivender stated that, in her opinion, the County should stay out of this issue.
Commr. Hanson stated that the area of Mount Plymouth and Sorrento is not really near any other city, and it may be an opportunity, and Astor has provided their own non-profit service. She feels that it would depend on the area, and the proximity to another city.
Mr. Tad Stone, Senior Director of Emergency Services, questioned whether there has been any Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) cases where some of these package plants, during failure, were basically dumped on the County.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that there have been cases where, if they prove that the development is there, the County has the responsibility for public health and safety of the community. He stated that the County can put standards in place for septic tanks and the wastewater treatment facilities themselves, to protect themselves. He further stated that, not only does the County need to look at the regulations, it needs to think like a city, because if the cities extend the water lines out, the JPAs could leave the County holding very small areas that they will have to serve, and it will cost a lot of money to build the facilities. He stated that, if the County posed the burden on just the residents that are there, it would be very expensive, and if they did not, then they would be charging other people to pay for their problem.
Ms. Farrell noted that the County tries to do two Small Area Studies a year, and currently they are doing the Mount Plymouth-Sorrento study. She further noted that the County is not currently providing water and wastewater to any given area.
Commr. Hanson stated that, as part of the joint planning area, the County, along with the cities, or individually, may need to look at doing some evaluations within those joint planning areas, for those issues that have been mentioned.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that some of the cities may not be able to provide wastewater treatment, and at the last meeting, the cities said that the County should provide both, but if the County is going to get into this business, the County may say that it will provide it in the joint planning area, but let the city control the land use issues in that area, and that could be different with each city.
Discussion Session III: County Service Provision
Dr. deHaven-Smith questioned whether there are services beyond the libraries that the Board envisions countywide.
Mr. Stone stated that, in terms of animal control, there are a couple of municipalities that still have their own animal control departments, but the County acts as the central shelter for the entire County. In terms of fire, the County currently provides service to the unincorporated area, and to four of the municipalities. The rest of the municipalities currently maintain their own firefighting forces. Mr. Stone explained that there is a countywide assessment in the unincorporated area, for assessment per structure.
Commr. Hanson stated that parks and recreation will be an area for discussion
Dr. deHaven-Smith suggested that the review criteria could have language that says that the County envisions delivering some services countywide, and that they are going to look at their own plans for those countywide services, as they review the JPA proposal.
In terms of dispatching 9-1-1 calls, Mr. Stone explained that the Sheriff basically handles the unincorporated areas, and some of the night time calls, for a couple of smaller municipalities, and EMS dispatches for County fire.
Dr. deHaven-Smith noted that the County may want to include language in the JPA that says that the County may want to talk to the cities about doing the dispatching for the city, or at least in the joint planning area.
Mr. Minkoff stated that, in regards to ambulance, the County currently has a countywide Municipal Service Taxing Unit (MSTU), and all of the cities have joined the MSTU. He noted that this took place last year. Mr. Minkoff stated that the County is currently in the process of developing interlocal agreements, to have some of the cities involved in providing advance life support systems within the framework of the whole emergency response program.
Ms. Sue Whittle, County Manager, explained that the County had a hospital based ambulance operation, and the hospital declined to provide services anymore.
Dr. deHaven-Smith addressed the issue of roads and stated that the Board can do a countywide road planning process and levy impact fees countywide, and that Broward County could be a model.
Mr. Stivender explained that the MPO includes urban areas, which includes the cities, and the County respectfully and directly ties to DOT. He stated that the County has utilized the Impact Fee Committee and staff members, to try and develop ideas on projects in and around the cities, which are brought annually to the Board for discussion. He noted that Clermont has a lot of input, because of their rapid growth, and the Board prioritizes that and adopts it annually. The cities also collects the impact fees, so if that is the growing area, that is where they are being collected. He noted that there are six districts in the County, and they are planning together. He explained that it is really project oriented, and it is really not tied to growth management, but more to prioritizing the project, and therefore, it does not really get into the transportation planning aspect. He noted that, with the MPO, there will be more discussion about transportation planning.
Mr. Minkoff noted that the County currently has no litigation with any of the municipalities.
Mr. Stivender explained that the State has the Green Swamp and the Ocala Forest, and there is an increase in population flowing into this area, and this is a key corridor in the central part of the State for traffic flow. He explained how the County is working with the DOT to keep the pressure off of the State Highways, and noted that the County just got word that one of their ideas, that was presented to their Congressman in Washington, is now in a bill that is doing a study from I-75 to Eustis, and the Expressway is already doing a study coming from Apopka up to Eustis.
Mr. Minkoff stated that the County has an interlocal agreement with the Orlando-Orange County Expressway Authority who is studying corridors in the north and south of this County.
Mr. Stivender stated that the County has also formed an alliance with Volusia, Brevard, and Metro-Plan Orlando to discuss issues.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that, in the criteria for the JPA, the County might have in there that the County will look at the overall transportation flow with them.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that recognizing that the County is probably going to have to get in the water and sewer business in the unincorporated area is important, because this is something that will be hard for the County not to do. He noted that this will make it so that the County can avoid the problem, in the long run, of the breakdown of a package plant, and this is being very realistic. He reminded the Board that, with private utilities, they can be selective of their areas for service, and they will have to want to do it. If they do not want to do it, then the County gets stuck with it. He felt that this was something that the County needed on the table for consideration, when reviewing the proposals.
Commr. Stivender stated that she does not feel that the County needs to get in the utility business, if they have private companies and cities providing the services, so the Board needs to address the fact that they do not end up with one in an area where the County, or a city, cannot take care of it.
Mr. Stivender explained that, in 1989 or 1990, a presentation was made to the Board on impact fees, for utility, sewer and water services, which amounted to about $2,000. He stated that, at the time, when the Board made the decision that the County was not going to get into that business, a lot of the cities really began to expand capacity and running lines out, because the decision had been made. In a lot of cases, the population, and where the lines are from the cities, cover a vast amount of that area.
Dr. deHaven-Smith felt that the Board still needed to have in the policy some criteria that leaves it open for the County to look at private utilities and public utilities.
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 11:25 a.m., the Chairman announced that the Board would recess for lunch and reconvene at 12 noon.
Discussion IV: Development of Review Criteria
Dr. deHaven-Smith explained that he had drafted the review criteria, as follows, and noted that the Board may want the cities to look at this draft list and get some reaction at the next city meeting.
JPA Review Criteria
(NOTE: No single criteria can be applied independent of all of the others.)
Objective is to promote compact, contiguous urbanization
(Language in Comprehensive Plan that can be referenced)
Mr. Minkoff stated that, at the previous meeting, they talked about creating Land Development Regulations (LDRs) that would be developed from the city and County regulations, to form a unified set of regulations for each JPA, which would probably be different. The cities then requested that, if the County was going to give a variance, it would have to go to the Board of County Commissioners, so that the cities could participate, and if the city was going to give a variance, it would have to the City Council, so that the County could participate, and that seemed to be agreeable to all of the city representatives that were present at the meeting.
Dr. deHaven-Smith addressed the idea of having visibility of lines of responsibility and stated that the County might have a situation where they are choosing between a utility that is private verus a utility that is public, and one of the problems that he sees around the State is that sewer delivery systems are so complicated that the citizens have no idea who they are paying and what they are getting and from whom.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that he will put this information together in a cleaner version, with backup material and anything else that the Board wants with it, and the Board can go ahead and let the cities see the list and get their input. He stated that the County might want to start talking to one or two of the cities about what they are seeing with this process and get some detail from them and let them run it by County staff, so they can react to it.
Commr. Hanson stated that she and Ms. Farrell talked to Dr. deHaven-Smith during lunch about a couple of cities that are ready to go, one being Clermont, and the other being Mount Dora. It seems like it would be very helpful to go ahead and perhaps start with Mount Dora, because that one would probably be easier to work with than Clermont, because Clermont is so big, and there are other ramifications. If the County was able to pull together Mount Dora and work with the cities and Ms. Farrell, then if the Board agrees, there will be an expense that the Board has not looked at, but asking Dr. deHaven-Smith to participate in that process, they could lay some of the groundwork for the others, as they go through that process, and the other cities could be involved and help design some guidelines. She stated that, as a County, they may be able to solidify a few more of their goals and objectives, as they move through that process.
Mr. Minkoff noted that Mr. Turville talked about concentric circles, and in dealing with Mount Dora, the Board will almost have to deal with Eustis and Tavares, if they are going to be looking at lines.
Discussion occurred regarding how the Board wanted to proceed with the process, with Dr. deHaven-Smith stating that he did not see any problem with just having Mount Dora, as long as they have addressed jurisdictional effects of their plan. He stated that the cities will want the County to adopt the template, with basically the agreement that they have today, and they will have to go through that given what the discussion has been, and see how it fits with everything.
Mr. Minkoff stated that the document says that, in this area, the city has the sole right to provide utilities, but not the obligation, so if someone was in the area that had to have utilities, they had to use the city's rules, but the city did not have to give them utilities, and this was one area that needed to be discussed.
It was noted that the Board did not feel that it needed to adopt a template before meeting with Mount Dora.
Mr. Minkoff noted that, from the discussion at the college, the cities were to meet again after this meeting of the Board.
Commr. Cadwell noted that he would talk to the cities again and see what they have to say about the discussion today.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that he was of the understanding that, with the template that they have now for the JPA, the Board may revise that and make it part of the Mount Dora JPA, and then on the basis of that, they might generalize it to the County, or modify it to generalize it to the County, but he would not do it, if it was going to cause problems with the other cities. If it does, then they can come back and work out the template, but this still does not preclude them from talking with Mount Dora now.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he believes that the Board should talk to the other cities first, before they work with Mount Dora, because they came as a group, and they are not here as a group, and he felt it would be counter productive to do anything without at least talking to them first. He anticipates them meeting again in the next two weeks. Commr. Cadwell stated that, if the cities say that it is all right to meet with Mount Dora, then they do not have to meet anymore, and then they need to wait until they get through with Mount Dora.
Dr. deHaven-Smith stated that, if the Board believes that there are cities that ought to be done first, based on the land development patterns, and their service delivery planning capacities, etc., then they ought to go ahead and do those.
COUNTY MANAGER/CONTRACTS, LEASES & AGREEMENTS
Commr. Hanson stated that she would like to entertain the thought of not having the Board Workshop on Tuesday, and to have it rescheduled.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he felt that this issue was probably the Chairman's call, but he was concerned about the employees, in relation to the future discussion of terminating the County Manager, Ms. Sue Whittle. He stated that, in terms of the workshop issues, he questioned staff whether they were time sensitive issues.
Ms. Whittle explained that there are two Solid Waste issues scheduled for Tuesday, a presentation by the Transportation Disadvantaged, and discussion on a Community Development District.
Commr. Hanson stated that she has talked to Ms. Whittle and Mr. Minkoff, and she was not sure that the Board would have a decision, with working with Ms. Whittle, by Tuesday. She had suggested that she be terminated, because, with her remaining here, it will divide the Board, the County, and the employees, and she believes that they just need to move forward, but she was not sure if Ms. Whittle could get with Mr. Minkoff and have representation from her attorney by Tuesday. She clarified that this did not have anything to do with the other issues, but she did feel that Tuesday will be too soon to get that together. Commr. Hanson noted that she was aware of the fact that this item was not on the agenda.
Mr. Minkoff stated that he has talked to Ms. Whittle a little bit, and she is going to have counsel, but she is time wise constrained a little bit, so Tuesday might be a little quick. He stated that it is possible, but unlikely, that she will be ready, at that point, to talk to the Board.
Commr. Hanson reminded the Board that they hire and fire the County Manager, and she would like to really encourage senior staff to stay where they are today, for a period of time, and until they can get new management. She stated that it is a tough time for everyone, but they need to work through it, and she wanted to assure them that she does not intend to get involved in employment issues beyond the County Manager.
Commr. Stivender stated that she did not mind moving her request, to terminate the County Manager, to April 17, 2001, so that the Board can have the scheduled workshop on Tuesday, because those issues of staff needed to be addressed. She clarified that she had requested that an agenda item be put on the agenda for discussion.
It was noted that the Board will hold a workshop on Tuesday, April 10, 2001, in the Training Room, as scheduled, and the agenda items were as follows: Litter Team Report; Universal Collection discussion; Transportation Disadvantaged; and Community Development Districts discussion.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting adjourned at 12:55 p.m.
CATHERINE C. HANSON, CHAIRMAN
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK