A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
OCTOBER 21, 2003
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, October 21, 2003, at 9:00 a.m., in the Board of County Commissioner’s Meeting Room, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Welton G. Cadwell, Chairman; Debbie Stivender, Vice Chairman; Catherine C. Hanson; Jennifer Hill; and Robert A. Pool. Others present were: William A. “Bill” Neron, County Manager; Mr. Sanford (Sandy) A. Minkoff, County Attorney; Wendy Taylor, Executive Office Manager, Board of County Commissioner’s Office; Barbara F. Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance; and Toni M. Riggs, Deputy Clerk.
INVOCATION AND PLEDGE
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Commr. Cadwell noted that the Board has one Addendum to the regular agenda.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff stated that, under the County Attorney’s business, he would like to discuss a possible closed session, which may be another day other than a normal Board meeting day, to discuss litigation.
Commr. Stivender requested that the following tabs be pulled for discussion: Tab 6 regarding the “Start with the Arts” Program; and Tab 9 regarding changing the size of the required numbers for addresses.
Commr. Cadwell noted that, when the Board addresses the consent items, Commr. Stivender can present her request.
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of September 3, 2003, Special Meeting, as presented.
CLERK OF COURTS’ CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Clerk of Courts’ Consent Agenda, Items 1 through 16, as follows:
Contractor Bonds New, Riders, and Cancellations
801-04 James L. Stinson dba Stinson Electric, Inc.
1174-04 Clifford C. St. Louis Sr/St. Louis Hearing & Air Conditioning Inc.
(Heating & A/C)
1200-04 James D. Bass dba Aquarian Plumbing, Inc.
1509-04 Charles J. Boutwell dba Commercial Electric of Lake County
4102-04 Raymond V. Wise/Wise Electric Service, Inc. (Electrical)
4535-04 John F. Kiley dba Kiley & Sons, Inc. (Plumbing)
4595-04 James D. Martin (Plumbing)
4628-04 Daniel R. Herndon dba Star Management
4684-04 Charles Pepper
4774-04 Joe P. Strickland, Jr./Strickland Electric, Inc.
4909-04 Juan Torres dba AAArons Electric, Inc. (Electrical)
5041-04 Scott Maassen/Hawkeye Plumbing Company, Inc. (Plumbing)
5297-04 Harry B. Bahner/Mott USA, Inc.
5359-04 Gregory Wayne David dba Greg David Electric (Electrical)
5467-04 David Sharp Electric, Inc.
5491-04 George F. Crispi (Electrical)
5608-04 John W. Scharnhorst, Jr. (Residential)
5653-04 John T. Jarrett dba Jarrett Electric
5654-04 Debbie Vanier dba V Homes, Inc. (Residential)
5696-04 Bun Long Ly/United World Electric, Inc.
5727-04 Frank L. DeSantis dba DeSantis Appliance & Air Conditioning Repairs
5728-04 Robert E. Shaffer dba Myriad Electrical Contractors
5850-04 Jeff Pospisil dba Sunshine Stucco, Inc.
6131-04 Anthologia, Inc. dba Garth A. Schweizer Landscape Architect (Landscape/Irrigation)
3083 Robert L. Prescott dba Prescott Electric, Inc.
List of Warrants
Request to acknowledge receipt - 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.
Satisfaction of Judgment
Request to approve and authorize signatures on Satisfaction of Judgment - State of Florida vs. Wayne Bernard Ellenberger, Case No. 1998 CF 000118(02) - in the sum of $750.00 - fully releasing and discharging the Final Judgment Assessing Attorney’s Fees dated the 8th day of June, 1998 and recorded in OR Book 1622, Page 1328, of the Public Records of Lake County, Florida.
Ordinance - City of Leesburg
Request to acknowledge receipt of City of Leesburg Ordinance No. 03-76, annexing certain property contiguous to the City Limits of the City of Leesburg, Florida. Passed and adopted at the regular meeting of the City Commission of the City of Leesburg, Florida, held on the 8th day of September 2003.
Southwest Florida Water Management District
Request to acknowledge receipt of the following from the Southwest Florida Water Management District:
Minutes of the Meeting of the Governing Board which was held on July 29, 2003 in Brooksville, Florida.
Agenda for the Governing Board Meeting to be held at 9:00 a.m., September 23, 2003, at District Headquarters, 2379 Broad Street, Brooksville, Florida.
Agenda for the Governing Board Meeting to be held at 9:00 a.m., September 24, 2003, at the Sarasota Service Office, 6750 Fruitville Road, Sarasota, Florida.
Ordinance - City of Fruitland Park
Request to acknowledge receipt of City of Fruitland Park annexation Ordinance 2003-007 and annexation Ordinance 2003-012, passed and ordained the 25th day of September 2003 by the City Commission of the City of Fruitland Park, Florida.
Lake County Water Authority - Budget
Request to acknowledge receipt of the Lake County Water Authority - Final Budget for Fiscal Year 2003-2004.
Unclaimed Excess Proceeds - Tax Deeds
Request to transfer funds - Unclaimed excess proceeds for tax deeds totaling $19,450.63.
Florida Public Service Commission
Request to acknowledge receipt - Florida Public Service Commission - Notice of Commission Customer Hearing to Verizon Florida, Inc., Sprint-Florida, Incorporated, BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc., Office of Public Counsel American Association of Retired Persons and all other interested persons. Docket No. 030867-TL: Petition by Verizon Florida, Inc. to reform intrastate network access and basic local telecommunications rates in accordance with Section 364.164, Florida Statutes. Docket No. 030868-TL: Petition by Sprint-Florida, Incorporated to reduce intrastate switched network access rates to interstate parity in revenue-neutral manner pursuant to Section 364.164(1), Florida Statutes. Docket No. 030869-TL: Petition for implementation of Section 364.164, Florida Statutes, by rebalancing rates in a revenue-neutral manner through decreases in intrastate switched access charges with offsetting rate adjustments for basic services, by BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc.
Hearings will be held: October 1, 2003, Duval County School Board, Jacksonville, FL; October 2, 2003, Orlando City Council Chambers, Orlando, FL; October 3, 2003, Robert J. Arenal Conference Center, Tampa, FL; October 8, 2003, Broward County Governmental Center, Ft. Lauderdale, FL; October 10, 2003, Marion County Commission Auditorium, Ocala, FL; October 13, 2003, Hagler Auditorium, Pensacola, FL; October 16, 2003, School Board of Lee County, Ft. Myers, FL; October 17, 2003, Sarasota County Administration Center, Sarasota, FL; October 30, 2003, 6:30 p.m., Crowne Plaza Hotel, Miami International Airport, 950 N.W. Lejeune Road, Miami, FL; November 4, 2003, 9:30 a.m., Betty Easley Conference Center, 4075 Esplanade Way, Rm 148, Tallahassee, FL.
Ordinances - City of Mascotte
Request to acknowledge receipt of City of Mascotte annexation Ordinances 2003-09-333, 2003-09-335 and 2003-09-337 passed and adopted by the City Council of the City of Mascotte, Lake County, Florida, at a regular council meeting the 22nd day of September, 2003.
Florida Public Service Commission
Request to acknowledge receipt - Florida Public Service Commission - Notice of Commission Hearing and Prehearing Conference to all Investor-Owned Electric and Gas Utilities and all other interested persons. Docket No. 030001-EI - Fuel and purchased power cost recovery clause and generating performance incentive factor. Docket No. 030002-EG - Energy conservation cost recovery clause. Docket No. 030003-GU - Purchased gas adjustment (PGA) true-up. Docket No. 030004-GU - Natural gas conservation cost recovery. Docket No. 030007-EI - Environmental cost recovery clause.
A public hearing will be held in the above dockets at 9:30 a.m., November 12, 2003 and November 13 and 14, 2003, Betty Easley Conference Center, Room 148, 4075 Esplanade Way, Tallahassee, Florida. The starting times on November 13 and 14, 2003, will be announced at the conclusion of the hearing on November 12 and November 13, 2003, respectively. The hearing may be adjourned early if all testimony is concluded.
Property - Lands Available
Request to acknowledge receipt - Property placed on the Lands Available List.
St. Johns River Water Management District - Final Budget
Request to acknowledge receipt of the St. Johns River Water Management District Fiscal Year 2003-2004 Final Budget. Adopted by the Governing Board at a public hearing held on September 24, 2003.
Changes to County’s Investment Policy
Request for approval of changes to the County’s Investment Policy. Background & Summary: In conjunction with the issuance of special assessment bonds for the financing of the property owner’s share of the special assessment cost, several changes are required to the County’s investment policy as follows:
Section VII. Authorized Investments, add Section K: “Investment in Special Assessment Bonds issued by the County to facilitate the financing of special assessment projects within the County. Such bonds are secured by a lien on the property and by a pledge of the 9th cent gas tax collected by the County.”
Section IX. Portfolio Composition: Add “Special Assessment Bonds Issued by Lake County-2%”
Section X. After the sentence, “In addition, no security shall have an estimated average return of principal exceeding five (5) years,” add “except for Special Assessment Bonds issued by the County which may have a maturity of seven (7) years.”
In addition, two changes are required as a result of an internal audit of the treasury management function by the Clerk’s Office. Those changes are:
Section XIV. Bid Requirement, add after the first sentence, “except for the reinvestment of certificates of deposit. Certificates of deposit may be renewed if the rate offered by the issuing bank exceeds the return of similar certificates at local banks.”
Section XVIII. Reporting, add book and market value to the investment report.
The complete investment policy with these changes underlined is included in the backup material.
Southwest Florida Water Management District - Budget in Brief - FY 2004
Request to acknowledge receipt of the Southwest Florida Water Management District Budget in Brief - Fiscal Year 2004 Annual Service Budget, adopted by the Governing Board on September 23, 2003, pursuant to the provisions of s.373.536(6)(a)(1), Florida Statutes.
Ordinance - City of Groveland
Request to acknowledge receipt of the Notice of Public Hearing for Annexation and Rezoning from the City of Groveland, as follows: Proposed Ordinance No. 2003-11-53, extending and increasing the corporate limits of the City of Groveland, pursuant to the provisions of Florida Statute 171.044, annexing 166.6 +/- acres of Lake County zoned AG to AG in the City of Groveland, will be considered at the following public meetings: Groveland City Council meeting as the Local Planning Agency (LPA) on October 20, 2003, at 7:00 p.m.; Groveland City Council meeting on October 20, immediately following the LPA meeting; and Groveland City Council meeting on November 3, 2003, at 7:00 p.m. The meetings will be held at the Puryear Building, 243 S. Lake Avenue, Groveland, Florida
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
Commr. Stivender requested that the following items, under the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, be pulled for discussion: Tab 6 regarding the “Start with the Arts” Program; and Tab 9 regarding changing the size of the required numbers for addresses.
Commr. Pool requested that Tab 3 regarding alternative janitorial services for the annex be pulled for discussion.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 3 through 18, pulling Tabs 3, 6, and 9, as noted, and approving Addendum No. 1, I. A. 1., as follows:
Clerk’s Office/Criminal Court Costs
Request from Budget and Administrative Services for approval of request from the Clerk’s Office for payment of Criminal Court costs for September 2003. The request exceeds the County Manager’s approval limit of $25,000.00. Total payment is for $39,540.00.
Agreement/Christian Home & Bible School/Choose Life License Plate Funds
Request from Community Services for approval of the recommendation that the Board of County Commissioners exercise its option for a one-year renewal of the agreement with Christian Home and Bible School for the appropriate expenditure of Choose Life License Plate Funds through September 30, 2004 and increase the amount of the agreement to $28,362.12.
Approval to increase Malcolm Pirnie contract by $21,424.00 for litigation support as a result of November 2003 trial date with Covanta (the original contract amount is $25,000.00).
Satisfaction and Release of Fine - Frazier
Request from Growth Management for approval and execution of a Satisfaction and Release of Fine for property owned by Rock D. Frazier (Case Number CEB 242-99).
Reimbursement to Citizen
Request from Growth Management for approval of request to reimburse a citizen $315.00 due to a staff error.
Change Order/Lake Emma Road Project
Request from Public Works for approval and authorization to execute change order #2 to the Lake Emma Road Widening & Resurfacing Phase II Project No. 2003-05 in the amount of $49,919.80 for additional work related to the project.
Satisfaction of Liens
Request from Public Works for approval and authorization for the Chairman to execute Satisfaction of Liens for six road assessments, as follows:
Assessment # Name Date Paid
685071 Jack & Carolyn Richard 06/25/03
691023 Mark A. Guarino 05/20/03
691060 Ben & Faith Knowles 08/25/03
694074 Wayne Massey 08/28/03
694110 Elbert & Lillian Baker 08/13/03
694153 Diane Attix 08/25/03
Judicial Center Floor Reconfiguration Project
Request from Public Works for approval and authorization to encumber and expend funds not to exceed $105,000.00 from the Infrastructure Sales Tax Fund (Fund 301) - Commissioner District 3; for the Judicial Center 3rd Floor Reconfiguration, Phase II, III and IV, Project Number 2003-07; and request authorization for the County Manager and Department Director to execute documents necessary to encumber and expend funds.
Resolutions/Agreement-Zureiq Investments/Roads-Maintenance System
Request from Public Works for approval and authorization to accept a Surety Bond in the amount of $50,000.00; execute a Developer’s Agreement for Maintenance of Improvements between Lake County and Zureiq Investments; and execute a Resolution 2003-179 accepting Silver Cove Drive (Part) (County Road Number 0167C) into the County Road maintenance system all relating to the Silver Creek, Phase 1 subdivision.
Final Plat - Manlow Park Subdivision
Request from Public Works for approval and authorization to accept the final plat for Manlow Park Subdivision, and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Manlow Park plat; accept a Letter of Credit for Construction of Improvements in the amount of $24,750.00; and accept a Developer’s Agreement for Construction of Improvements between Lake County and Manlow Properties, LLC. Subdivision consists of four lots – Commission District 2.
Letter of Credit - Spring Valley
Request from Public Works for approval and authorization to release a Letter of Credit in the amount of $24,495.00 that was posted for installation of landscaping of the Spring Valley, Phase 1 subdivision.
Resolutions/Agreement - The Siena Home Corporation/Roads-Maintenance System
Request from Public Works for approval and authorization to release a Letter of Credit for Performance in the amount of $143,428.00; accept a Maintenance Bond in the amount of $12,205.20; accept a Developer’s Agreement for Maintenance of Improvements between Lake County and The Siena Home Corporation; and execute a Resolution 2003-180 accepting Roper Boulevard (Part) (County Road 1048A) into the County Road maintenance system all relating to the Roper Boulevard – Section A. Section A consists of zero lots – Commission District 2.
Resolutions/Advertise Road Vacation - Hills of Lake Louisa
Request from Public Works for approval of Resolution 2003-181 to advertise Vacation Petition 1011 by Hills of Lake Louisa HOA, Inc. represented by Taylor & Carls, P.A. to vacate a recreation park known as Tract E on the Plat of Hills of Lake Louisa, located in Section 13, Township 23 South, Range 25 East, in the Clermont area – Commission District 2.
ADDENDUM NO. 1
Agreements/LifeStream Behavioral Center
Request from Community Services for approval of Agreements with LifeStream Behavioral Center for provision of Mental Health Services in the amount of $549,000.00; amending the existing Agreement (valid through 2006) to increase funding for transportation of persons needing involuntary examination (Baker Act) to $13,500.00; and authorization for the Chairman to sign both documents.
YOUTH RECREATION AND MIDDLE SCHOOL PROGRAM GRANTS –
Commr. Cadwell and Commr. Stivender presented checks to representatives from the following groups, and the representatives of organizations who were present at the meeting provided a brief explanation of their program and extended their appreciation to the Board for their support today, and in the past years:
South Lake Recreation
South Lake Dixie Boys League
South Lake YMCA
First Baptist Church of Leesburg
City of Eustis Recreation
Golden Triangle YMCA
Boys & Girls Clubs, Lake & Sumter Counties
Commr. Cadwell stated that all of the organizations that were recognized today fill a void that the County has been unable to fill at the current time, and the Board appreciates their means of recreation, and their active youth programs.
RESOLUTION 2003-137 DESIGNATING OCTOBER 2003 AS STATE FOREST AWARENESS MONTH TO JOE BISHOP AND KEITH CLANTON OF THE SEMINOLE STATE FOREST
Commr. Cadwell read Resolution 2003-137 designating October 2003 as State Forest Awareness Month and presented it to Mr. Joe Bishop and Mr. Keith Clanton of the Seminole State Forest.
Mr. Joe Bishop extended his appreciation to the Board for recognizing the Seminole State Forest and State Forest Awareness Month. Mr. Bishop stated that they do this every year during the month of October, and every State Forest is given the opportunity to provide some special attraction to get the public involved and this year they had a clean up on Blackwater Creek.
ANNOUNCEMENT - CLOSED SESSION
Commr. Cadwell announced that the Board will hold a closed session at 10:30 a.m., as advertised.
SEMINOLE STATE FOREST SCRUB COMMUNITY RESTORATION BY
JOE BISHOP AND KEITH CLANTON OF THE SEMINOLE STATE FOREST
Commr. Hanson stated that she sits on the Seminole State Forest Advisory Committee, and most of it is in the Wekiva, and she thought it was a good idea to have all of these items together and at one time on the agenda.
Mr. Joe Bishop, Forestry Supervisor II at Seminole State Forest, addressed the Board and stated that he has with him today Mr. Keith Clanton, OPS Biologist, who assists them on the State Forest. They are here today to talk about scrub community restoration on Seminole State Forest, which is approximately 26,000 acres. The location is approximately 20 miles north/northwest of Orlando. He addressed the acquisition of the Seminole State Forest, which started in 1989 with the Ocala Greenway CARL Project, a 6,000 acre tract, and stated that it was going to provide a wildlife corridor between the Ocala National Forest, and the Wekiva Basin. Mr. Bishop explained the importance of scrub, which is a home to a lot of threatened and endangered species, and stated that they have approximately 4,500 acres of scrub in some kind of degraded condition. He referred to a map that depicted the location of the Seminole State Forest, and the location of the scrub in the State Forest, and he explained the two primary types of scrub, as shown, as well as the endemics species of the scrub.
Mr. Bishop stated that they are finding a decrease in the number of scrub jays, because of the overgrown conditions. The major scrub populations in Florida occur in the Ocala National Forest, the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, and Lake Wales Ridge, with the Seminole State Forest being somewhat centrally located. He stated that the scrub jays are existing on both public and private lands, and later the Board will hear about the survey that was done by the County. All of their work is focused in and around the State Forest itself, and they have noticed significant changes in the jay populations. He pointed out the location of the scrub on the State Forest but noted that there is also a large amount of acreage in private ownership, probably areas that the State will never be able to acquire. Mr. Bishop discussed the history of scrub conditions noting information provided on a 1941, and a 1995, aerial. Mr. Bishop stated that their goal was to take about half of the 5,000 acres of scrub and really concentrate their efforts on trying to get it into a good condition for jays, and other scrub endemics. He clarified that their focus is not jays; their focus is scrub restoration. The three areas of their focus are the Ellis Scrub, the Sulfur Scrub, and the South Scrub, which total 2,300 acres. A need for aggressive management was identified and the idea to develop a restoration plan, in order to provide some kind of direction for them to pursue an accelerated program for the restoration efforts. Their goals included returning the scrub to where it can be managed with fire, so they set up target conditions, management techniques, and treatment cycles. Mr. Bishop discussed some of their special management operations, as shown by pictures, as well as completed treatments.
Mr. Keith Clanton addressed the Board and stated that he is a biologist working part time, and his job is basically to monitor two disjunct areas, vegetating monitoring, and banding and territory mapping, which he explained in detail.
Mr. Bishop explained that special consideration was given to the possible impacts on water, invasive exotics, recreational trails, an outbreak of the Southern pine beetle, and road conditions. He stated that public involvement and education is necessary and noted that the State Forest Board meets every three to six months. He also noted that they post signs on the forest when they are doing these very invasive restoration activities, to let people know what is going on in the area. There is also the Wekiva River Basin Eco-System Working group, which is a format for all public land managers to share and interchange ideas.
To close, Mr. Bishop stated that the restoration project itself was to enable them to use the prescribed fire that the land very much needs; to benefit threatened and endangered wildlife; and to reduce the threat of dangerous wildfires.
Commr. Hanson stated that the Forestry Service is a partner in Lake County that will not go unrecognized and does an outstanding job in the Wekiva and Seminole State Forest.
To address comments about fires, Mr. Bishop stated that usually fire is not their concern; it is the smoke, which has long reaching impacts.
Commr. Stivender extended her thanks to Mr. Bishop and stated that she knows he has worked with Land Planning Group (LPG) and Mr. John Kruse, Senior Planner, Growth Management, on the next presentation coming to the Board.
Mr. Bishop stated that they will continue to work with the County, because their information certainly benefits them.
UPDATE OF LAKE COUNTY’S SCRUB JAY PROGRAM
BY THE DEPARTMENT OF GROWTH MANAGEMENT
Mr. John Kruse, Senior Planner, Department of Growth Management, addressed the Board and noted that the Board was presented the final report on the Scrub Jay Survey, which was prepared by LPG Environmental & Permitting Services, Inc., Mt. Dora, Florida, and Environmental Management and Design, Orlando, Florida. Mr. Kruse explained that, about a year ago, this item came to his direction through Commr. Stivender. The program was a partnership with the following participants: US Fish and Wildlife Service who gave the County a grant in the amount of $59,000 for the project; the Board of County Commissioners; LPG Environmental & Permitting Services, Inc.; and the volunteers. He noted that, in the back of the report, there is a map that details the areas that they surveyed.
Mr. Kruse stated that the survey was conducted to find out the number of scrub jays; to determine what habitat they are using; to physically locate the areas of concern; to have data available for use in possible land acquisitions; and to use in preparation of a countywide habitat conservation plan. He explained that the data collected could be used to do additional studies and acquire additional grant money, and to use for development review. Mr. Kruse stated that they found a total number of 258 scrub jays, which excluded the Seminole State Forest data. This number was more than they had expected. Based on the latest survey data from 1992, there were about 118 more birds. Mr. Kruse noted that they were limited to public rights-of-way only, and there was only one person that consented to private property access, so there are still large tracts of land that they could not get on the survey. He pointed out that there was a draft map of scrub jay locations in the report, as well as tables with detailed information about the locations. He referred to Table 4 on Page 19, which showed the Number of Scrub Jays per Habitat/Land Use Type (North Metapopulation vs. Central Metapopulation), and stated that there was a total of 24.8% in the north metapopulation, residential area; and 40% in residential with the Xeric Oak. In the central area, it mainly consisted of abandoned citrus groves, which had 67% of the habitat. He explained the different trends in the two areas. Mr. Kruse stated that, from this point, they need to continue working with Seminole State Forest, Ocala National Forest, and documenting the bird locations. They also need to start preparing a habitat conservation plan for scrub jay and other species; to continue to volunteer for wildlife protection and restoration activities; to educate the citizens and politicians of Lake County about scrub jays and their habitat; and to continue to apply for federal and state assistance, for preservation, enhancement, and protection of the Florida Scrub Jay.
Mr. Kruse showed photographs taken by some of the volunteers and noted that there were almost 100 volunteers helping with the program. It was noted that there were approximately ten volunteers present in the audience. Mr. Kruse extended his thanks to the participants, and the volunteers, and to the Board.
Mr. Steve Adams, LPG Environmental & Permitting Services, addressed the Board and stated that they cannot thank the volunteers enough because they would never have been able to do this with just their staff, and the County staff.
Mr. Adams stated that, during regular development review, staff discusses subdivisions and other things, and they started finding the scrub jays in abandoned orange groves, along fence rows, and in scrubby wetland areas that were not considered as typical scrub jay habitat. Commr. Stivender started asking questions about how many scrub jays there are in the County and, because they did not have any idea, they went through the grant process, gathered volunteers and, after coordinating all of this, they came up with the number of 258. Mr. Adams stated that this should certainly not be used as the final number, because of access to private property, but it does tell them that there is a lot of property out there considered as typical habitat, particularly abandoned citrus groves, and frozen groves, which should be considered in the interim process, as they develop a habitat conservation plan on a countywide basis. He explained the development process used by large projects where surveys are required pursuant to the Land Development Regulations (LDRs), and explained that they really need to look at the lots of record. Mr. Adams stated that the Board used to have a Consolidated Residential Site Plan (CRSP) program to identify these types of things, and perhaps it is time for the Board to consider re-instituting some similar format where they do look for these items. Another area that has a potential for loss of this typical habitat is what he calls agricultural conversion - citrus groves cleared and planted in pine, or citrus groves cleared and put in pasture. There are no regulations that cover this type of thing, but he is certainly not suggesting the County pursue an ordinance, but perhaps just a simple notification process. He stated that the development of a habitat conservation plan on a countywide basis gives them a mechanism to mitigate, if the species is there. He noted that they also talked about the Land Acquisition Committee where the County has gone through a process to look at the acquisition of environmentally sensitive lands. They had discussion about Rails to Trails projects, wetlands, uplands and, an abandoned citrus grove may be something that ought to be considered in terms of habitat restoration. Mr. Adams felt that they could give the private owners a mechanism to mitigate for that species through this land acquisition program, and a countywide habitat conservation plan.
Mr. Adams stated that they are recommending that they move forward with some grant application process with the official wildlife service, and to move forward to do the habitat conservation plan on a countywide basis. It is also their recommendation to look at maybe re-establishing the CRISP program, or some similar program that they had in the past, to get people through the building permit process, as well as some sort of a notification process.
Commr. Cadwell stated that, over the last seven or eight years, there was a lot of talk about mitigation and what is beneficial and what is not beneficial, and he has heard different opinions on the scrub jay, in regards to two to five acre lots that do not affect the long range health of the scrub jay, and the population itself.
Mr. Adams confirmed that is does not affect the scrub jay, and the population, but they need to keep in mind that these are abandoned orange groves that are being utilized by this species, from a structural standpoint. He stated that setting aside a two acre lot, from a long term standpoint, would not be beneficial for that purpose, and that is why they trying to get something where they can mitigate in a larger context and work towards filling that gap between the Seminole State Forest, and the Ocala National Forest, in the Wekiva Basin area. By doing some of these things, it would give them the opportunity to buy those small lands and try to create that connection, and this may be something that the Land Acquisition Committee can do.
Commr. Hanson stated that Mr. Adams had mentioned two acre tracts, and five acre tracts, but the actual density is two to five dwelling units per acre, which is much higher than those mentioned.
Mr. Adams clarified that some of those residential areas are like The Plantation at Leesburg where people are feeding the birds, and it is very high density. There are other properties that have been developed at the corridor of Highway 27 and CR 48 that have scrub jays there. He explained that they are looking at a development in the South Lake County area that has seven families of scrub jays in abandoned groves, and they are looking at negotiating with the official wildlife service to decide what they are going to do for mitigation for this species.
Commr. Stivender stated that the County has the PEAR property that is along the Palatlakaha, and she wanted to know if this is an area that they could use for mitigation.
Mr. Adams stated that the PEAR property is an area that could potentially be used for mitigation, with some scrub restoration, where there could be a contribution in funds, but that would have to be done under some type of habitat conservation plan. He stated that it could be done by the individual developer, with County approval, and it would be a partnership with that particular individual and the County, or it could be done on a countywide basis where anybody could participate in that process. Their recommendation is that they do it on a countywide basis, and the Land Acquisition Committee could begin looking at properties and developing a priority list of what this County is interested in buying. He noted that there are a lot of agencies that buy wetlands versus people buying uplands, because people do not feel that is a threatened area.
Commr. Pool stated that the citrus industry is falling on hard times, and there may be many abandoned groves around the area, and the pressure is on the property owners to develop or sell their property, because there is no profitability in the citrus.
Commr. Stivender wanted to know what the time frame was today, if they moved forward with this item, and she wanted to know if staff needed something from the Board today.
Mr. Adams explained that the presentation today was just an update, and that they have completed their contractual obligation on this particular item. He would like to discuss a time frame with Mr. Kruse and come back to the Board some time in the future.
Commr. Stivender wanted to make sure that the volunteers and everybody that has been involved in this project know that this issue is not going to stop and that they need to keep moving forward with it, to get it accomplished, and that the timing has been very good.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he felt that Mr. Kruse has enough direction to continue to move forward with the program, and he needs to bring back those recommendations that were in the report, in some type of policy form.
PUBLIC HEARING -
SPECIAL ASSESSMENT PROJECT NUMBER 95 - JACARANDA AVENUE (PART)
POINCIANA DRIVE (PART) - CLERMONT AREA
Mr. Jim Stivender, Director of Public Works, addressed the Board to discuss Special Assessment Project Number 95 - Jacaranda Avenue (Part) and Poinciana Drive (Part), in the Clermont Area. Mr. Stivender stated that, unless there is an overwhelming support today for the project, staff would like to consider dropping this request. He stated that the property owners are not interested in the project, and the reasons have to do with price and what was explained to them in the beginning of their discussions.
Commr. Cadwell opened the public hearing and called for public comment. He noted that there were approximately 15 people in the audience who were not in favor of the project. He stated that the Board would certainly give them an opportunity to speak but he would assume by the show of hands that the Board would deny the project.
There being no public comment, the public hearing portion of the meeting was closed.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board denied Special Assessment Project Number 95 – Jacaranda Avenue (Part) and Poinciana Drive (Part) in the Clermont Area, and to execute the assessment roll and resolution.
PUBLIC HEARING -
SPECIAL ASSESSMENT PROJECT NUMBER 97 – QUIET LANE
IN THE CLERMONT AREA
Mr. Jim Stivender, Director of Public Works, addressed the Board to discuss Special Assessment Project Number 97 – Quiet Lane in the Clermont Area. Mr. Stivender stated that you actually have to come through Orange County to get to this property, and staff is recommending approval of the project. Staff did bid the project again, and the prices were more than the estimate. He stated that 18 of the 24 original property owners are recommending approval of the project. To answer questions about drainage, Mr. Stivender clarified that all of the water will be utilized in swales; there are no retention ponds; the percolation rates of the swales in this area are excellent; and there should be no standing water. One of the problems last year was the clay on the road and, because it was an interim special assessment, they were doing some grading there. Once they eliminate those washing clay soils and add grass to the swales, the percolation will improve. Staff is recommending approval of the request.
Ms. Elizabeth Slater, Quiet Lane, stated that, in September, 2001, the residents approached the County about having the road paved, and they were given a presentation at their homeowners’ association meeting. At that time, they were told that the low would be $5,000 per homeowner; the high bid would be $7,000 per homeowner. The price came in at 26% higher than what they had established at that time. In looking at the bids, Ms. Slater had questions regarding the following: the $25,000 mobilization fee; the $1,500 fee for removal of mailboxes; fencing relocation; and the $25,000 fee for clearing and grub. She hoped that the $25,000 was not for the removal of trees, because they were told at the meeting in 2001 that, if they went ahead and removed their trees, it would not affect the cost. Ms. Slater stated that she knows she can remove her trees for less than $25,000 and, for seven tenths of a mile, she knows that all of the trees can be removed for less than $25,000. She would like to say that she is in favor of the road, but she cannot blindly say that these prices are in line, and she has issues with these prices.
It was noted that there were approximately seven individuals present in favor of the request.
Mr. Stivender explained that J. Malever Construction Company, Inc. was the low bidder, for $283,430.00; the next bidder was $317,000.00. He explained the bidding process and how the contractor distributes his money and stated that the estimates for each part of the project are reviewed by staff. Staff did feel that the costs were in line for this job. He explained grub and clearing and that the costs for removing mailboxes and fences are averaged over the whole job and stated that, because construction is a supply and demand industry in this County, the price has gone up in this particular domain.
Commr. Hill stated that she received a letter from Thomas and Nancy Allen who had concerns about the price, and the width of the road, and she wanted to know if staff was able to talk to them.
Mr. Stivender stated that staff received the letter yesterday, and they will respond to it in writing.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved Special Assessment Project Number 97 – Quiet Lane in the Clermont Area, and to execute the Assessment Roll and Resolution 2003-182.
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 10:20 a.m., Commr. Cadwell stated that the Board is going to take a ten minute recess, and then the Board will reconvene its regular meeting and go into a closed session, which will be very short, and then go back into the regular session.
CLOSED SESSION - COVANTA
Commr. Cadwell reconvened the regular meeting, and Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, announced that, pursuant to Florida Statute 286.011, he requested a few weeks ago that they have a closed session today. They are going to discuss pending litigation and only discuss settlement negotiations and strategy sessions related to expenditures. He noted that the court reporter is here who will record the entire meeting including when they will begin and when they will terminate, including the names of the persons who are here. They are required to start this as an open session and, at the beginning, they will announce the estimated length of the session, about 20 minutes, the names of the persons attending, which will be the five Commissioners, Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, and himself. At this time, the Board went into a closed session.
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 11:05 a.m., Commr. Cadwell reconvened the regular meeting and announced that the closed session was closed, and the Board will now continue with its regular agenda.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA (CONTINUED)
BUDGET TRANSFER - JANITORIAL SERVICES
Commr. Pool stated that he had requested that Tab 3 regarding the janitorial services, be pulled for discussion. He wanted to know if the County was going to potentially have any cost savings, if they delete some of the work load of the other company and, he wanted to know if there was a deduction from the contract.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Director of Public Works, explained that $9,000.00 was deleted from the contract, and it was added to the $10,000.00, for a total of $19,000.00.
Commr. Cadwell stated that this request would send up some flags to him that they need to look at their janitorial services, since they are not doing a good job at the Tax Collector’s annex on Dora Avenue, and he knows that people in their office have said they are not completely satisfied. He stated that they certainly need to survey all of the facilities.
Commr. Pool stated that he appreciated Mr. McKee bringing this to the attention of the Board, and hopefully, his department will be happy and, at the same time, the County may save in the end.
Commr. Hill stated that they may want to ask the other Constitutional Officers how their buildings are being handled because their input is important to them.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from Budget and Administrative Services for a budget transfer - General Fund, Department of Public Works, Custodial Services Division, in the amount of $10,000.00 is requested. Transfer $10,000.00 from Reserve for Operations to Contractual Services. The Tax Collector’s Office has requested alternative janitorial services for the annex on Dora Avenue. Funds available in Reserve for Operations.
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND TOURISM
START WITH THE ARTS PROGRAM - GRANT
Commr. Stivender stated that she had requested that Tab 6 regarding the “Start with the Art’s Program be pulled so that they could promote the program. She stated that the County has helped fund this program for the last five years, and it is in coordination with the School Board system. It has been a very good program for the kindergarten through second grades, and it is getting arts back in the elementary schools where they have has been cut from the budgets.
Mr. Greg Mihalic, Director of Economic Development and Tourism, addressed the Board and stated that Lake County is the only county in the State that now has this program in all of its pre-schools and kindergarten programs.
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from Economic Development and Tourism for approval to request a Very Special Arts (VSA) Arts of Florida Grant in the amount of $3,000.00 for the Cultural Affairs Council’s “Start with the Arts” Program for the 2003-2004 year program.
LAKE COUNTY CODE - ADDRESSES
Commr. Stivender stated that she had requested that Tab 9 regarding the changing of the size of the required numbers for addresses be pulled to make the public aware that the County is going with the new size.
It was noted that this item is a request to advertise and public hearings will be held where people will be able to make their comments
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from Growth Management for approval to advertise a public hearing for a change to 18-101 of the Lake County Code changing the size of the required numbers for addresses.
COUNTY MANAGER’S DEPARTMENTAL BUSINESS
Commr. Stivender stated that Commr. Hanson had brought to her the item pertaining to the Howey Mansion, which is in her district, and she turned it over to Ms. Diane Kamp, Museum Director, and Mr. Greg Mihalic, Director of Economic Development and Tourism.
Mr. Mihalic addressed the Board and stated that, in August, he and Ms. Kamp visited with Ms. Marvel Zona who is the owner of the Howey Mansion. He stated that the Howey Mansion is a beautiful and architecturally and historically significant structure built in 1972 in Howey-in-the-Hills. The property is listed on the National Register of Historical Places and is ranked of “state importance” in that listing and not national significance, which would enable it to receive other grants and aids from federal programs that are available. In talking with Ms. Zona, she would like the County to buy the property from her. She has received a $2.5 million offer for the property as a single family home, and she has rejected that offer. She believes the property is worth between $3.5 million and $4 million. The property has no central heating or cooling system, and it is on a septic and well system and, any more intensive use of the property would require substantial upgrading of that infrastructure. Ms. Zona would like to see a holistic medicine education center there, and the new Howey Foundation and Yalaha Foundation are moving in that direction. Mr. Mihalic stated that Ms. Kamp looked at this as a touring facility and feels that there could be probably 3,500 people that would go through it a year, because of its location. She also felt that the maximum amount that could be charged would be $3.50 a tour, so it is difficult to see how you can amortize your acquisition cost, rehabilitation cost, as well as infrastructure cost that you would have hooking this into another system for a more intensive use.
Commr. Hanson stated that, when she and Ms. Kamp went to visit the Howey Mansion, she was led to believe that Ms. Zona would actually contribute the home to the County, and that whole situation has changed. Even with that, she recognizes that there would be tremendous costs in refurbishing and bringing the property up to code.
Mr. Mihalic informed the Board that Ms. Zona has written a letter to Ms. Kamp saying that she has now found a grant writer that is going to help her secure grants for the property, and staff certainly would be willing to assist her in any way in that effort.
Commr. Stivender stated that this was going to be her recommendation. She stated that Ms. Dottie Keedy, who lives in Howey and is the Tavares City Administrator, would be glad to help Ms. Kamp, and the Historical Society in Howey, to find ways to help Ms. Zona.
Commr. Hanson stated that the Howey Mansion would be a tremendous asset to the County, if it were in public ownership. She noted that there are not many sites of that caliber, but it would be really good for the County.
Commr. Cadwell stated that it was his understanding that the Board was not going to take any action today.
Commr. Stivender stated that the item was brought forth to let the Board know the status of the issue, and that staff is still working on it, but it is not a project that the County is taking on.
Commr. Cadwell stated that, as the County is assisting Ms. Zona, they need to make sure that their assistance would equate back to public good.
SCHEDULE FOR COMPREHENSIVE PLAN AMENDMENTS/RESOLUTIONS
Mr. Gregg Welstead, Director of Growth Management, stated that several months ago staff had an issue come up about the transmittal of a Comprehensive Plan Amendment, and there was some discussion as to whether the Board should formerly identify those deadlines. Staff felt that the most appropriate way would be for the Board to approve the schedule. He noted that the tentative BCC adoption hearing date will be flexible, because they will have to rely on comments from the Department of Community Affairs (DCA).
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from Growth Management for approval of the schedule for the Comprehensive Plan Amendments for 2004, Cycles 1 and 2 and Resolution 2003-183.
Commr. Hanson asked Mr. Welstead to bring the Board up to date on the Evaluation and Appraisal Report (EAR) process.
Mr. Welstead explained that the EAR has been transmitted to the DCA. Through their discussions with the DCA, they have said repeatedly that they do not want to see EAR amendments until the Future Land Use Map is amended. Staff is in the process of redoing the existing Land Use Map, to provide them with a baseline to update the Future Land Use Map.
Commr. Hanson stated that she believes it would be helpful for staff to get those comments from the DCA in writing.
Mr. Gregg Welstead, Director of Growth Management, addressed the request to hire additional personnel for Building Services, due to increased construction volume levels. Mr. Welstead stated that they have had a number of discussions concerning the turnaround time for plan review and inspections, and other items. They currently have one Associate Planner in Clermont, and they need additional personnel in this fast growing area of the County. He pointed out the attached information and stated that one of the key elements to remember is that, about two or three years ago, in April, 2000, there was a change to the fee structure, which tied fees to performance, based on a square footage basis. Since that time, no additional people have been hired. The revenue has increased to accommodate that increased growth, so the money is coming in but they are not hiring the people, so they are slowing down the process, until they get more people to satisfy the demand. In looking at the trend charts, there is a potential for a three to five year trend continuing in this direction. At this time, Mr. Welstead explained the personnel that the County currently has working in the noted areas and stated that all of the positions will be funded out of permitting fees.
Commr. Stivender referred to the plans examiner and stated that she wanted to know about the review process currently being used by the County and whether one of these positions would be designated to review the smaller items.
Mr. Dale Greiner, Director of Building Services, explained the process currently being used by the County in reviewing small projects and exactly what happens when a plans examiner is interrupted in his review of larger project plans, such as a Walgreens, or a Publix. Mr. Greiner stated that, when they add these other positions, they plan to add another plans examiner in Clermont, which will give them the ability to do a lot of the build outs, including commercial build outs in that area, which will expedite the process, because right now, they do not handle any commercial in that area. He stated that this issue will be addressed.
Commr. Pool questioned whether big groups, such as Walgreens and Publix, need to have so much time spent on their design, when most of their plans have been perfected to meet the southern building code standards.
Mr. Greiner explained that this is definitely the case, and they find that, usually with the larger commercial projects, the ability of the architect to do what is required is better. Mr. Greiner explained that many of the big projects come from out of state, and some are not very familiar with the Florida Building Code, which is very specific with respect to what they have to determine meets the plan.
Commr. Pool explained that the stores that are built statewide, such as Walgreens and Publix, have been built hundreds of times, so it is a repetitious procedure, and he was curious to know how many hours they have to spend on reviewing such a plan.
Commr. Cadwell stressed that all plans submitted to the County has their stamp of approval and he did not want to see the County become relaxed in their review process.
There was further discussion regarding the process used by the current staff in reviewing plans, and the verification process used to assure that the projects are meeting the minimum code requirements for plan review.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, explained that Mr. Greiner is involved in a statewide initiative to develop a prototype plan where a larger project, such as a Publix, can be built without going through the entire review, but he stressed that the Board needs to know that the larger projects do not always build the same plans, and that changes are made to these plans in every single location, which sometimes greatly impacts the building code.
Mr. Greiner stated that the Florida Building Commission has set up a prototype building plan review process statewide and, as bigger operations know that this process is in place, they can take their plans to the State and have them approved. Then the municipality is required to accept those plans, with the exception of any zoning changes. He explained that there are not that many building officials involved in this prototype process, which is a problem, even though Lake County is one of the premier people involved with the unified code process.
Commr. Stivender discussed the master filing of residential plans, for example, The Plantation, and stated that it would be helpful if staff could do this in other places.
Mr. Greiner stated that staff does a lot with master filing for residential, with the majority of it being in South Lake County, which speeds up the process tremendously, but it is difficult to master file commercial work.
To address Commr. Stivender’s concern about the average individual taking care of their own personal permit, Mr. Greiner explained that staff pays special attention to owner/builders, because they are concerned about what they are going to produce. He noted that most of the engineering plans on record were master filed through the manufactured building process in the State, with the new code.
Ms. Jean Kaminski, Executive Director of the Homebuilders Association, addressed the Board and stated that she supports the request for the positions. Ms. Kaminski stated that the money has been accruing for years, and there has been money left over every year and, by State Statute, it is to be used for building services. She stated that the need is there.
Commr. Cadwell stated that the County does not have any funds like this other than some enterprise funds, and he does not want to circumvent the Human Resources policies but, in a case like this where they need to bring additional people on board, and the funds are there, they need to find a way to expedite the process, so they can get the people hired.
Mr. Welstead stated that it would be nice, with situations like this that are strictly demand based, to be able to process them more expeditiously, particularly when they serve the customer and could possibly fluctuate the process.
Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, stated that this is a budgetary item and, in order to create new positions, it needs Board approval under the current regulations.
Commr. Cadwell asked staff to see about fast tracking the positions to the Board.
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from Growth Management for approval to hire additional personnel for Building Services, due to increased construction volume levels.
INFRASTRUCTURE SALES TAX CAPITAL PROGRAM - FUND 301
Mr. Jim Stivender, Director of Public Works, addressed the Board to discuss the 2003-2004 Infrastructure Sales Tax Capital Program, which was presented to the Board in the August workshop as a discussion item but was never actually approved by the Board. He presented the Board members with information regarding the Projects to Close Out Infrastructure Sales Tax Fund 301, which was revised from the August 19, 2003 BCC Meeting, as well as Fund 303.
Mr. Stivender reviewed the following figures with the Board in Fund 301:
Projects Under Contract or Pledged
Alco & Dexter Roads $ 861,000
JC Parking Lot & Bollards $1,125,000
JC 3rd floor Renovations $ 215,000
Leesburg - Main Street Imp. $ 400,000
Judicial Center $ 830,000
Citrus Ridge Library/A/E ($ 350,000 Moved to Fund 303)
Commr. Cadwell addressed the Main Street program and stated that, if the County is paying $100,000 a year, he wanted to know why they do not just go ahead and pay it all to the City of Leesburg ($400,000), even though they have a contract that sets forth the payment of funds. He asked staff to review this item.
Commr. Hanson made a motion, which was seconded by Commr. Hill, to approve the request from Public Works for approval of the 2003-2004 Infrastructure Sales Tax Capital Program and authorization to proceed with the projects, in order to close out Fund 301.
Under discussion, Commr. Hill stated that she appreciates Mr. James C. Watkins, Clerk of the Circuit Court, working with them on the third floor renovation to actually get the cost down. She noted that some changes were made which freed up some funds for other things.
Commr. Cadwell called for a vote on the motion, which was carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote.
INFRASTRUCTURE SALES TAX RENEWAL CAPITAL FUND 303
Mr. Jim Stivender, Director of Public Works, addressed the Board to discuss the request from Public Works for approval of the 2004-2008 Infrastructure Sales Tax Renewal Capital Program (Fund 303) and authorization to proceed with the projects. Mr. Stivender noted that they were able to cut the $131 million back to $68 million. He referred to the Citrus Ridge Library and stated that staff has been in negotiations with the architect, and the number is actually $407,000 for those services. This item will be coming to the Board on November 4, 2003. With the Fairgrounds Renovation ($1,045,497), staff realized that the electrical is in dire need of replacement, so they reallocated some of the money for a specific purpose ($110,000), because this involves a safety issue. He noted that Florida Power is on board with it, too.
Commr. Hanson stated that she has talked to Mr. Stivender about a community building in the Sorrento/Mount Plymouth area, and staff is working on that item.
Commr. Stivender stated that, if the Board is going to step up the completion time of these projects, she wanted to know if they are going to have a workshop on either borrowing money on the one cent, or doing some bonding.
Commr. Cadwell stated that the Board has directed staff two or three times to look at this possibility, so the Board probably needs to set up a time specific to have those discussions, especially on transportation.
Mr. Stivender stated that, as shown in the backup, this is the aggressive program that his staff put together. He stated that, even in five years, trying to address all of those issues associated with the South Lake Annex, the facilities here, the judicial center expansion, along with other facilities on the list that the Board is looking at right now, just to bring the architectural services forward in the first five years, the County is only going to collect about $20 million, but there will be about $50 million worth of work, either construction or architectural services. If this five year plan is how aggressive the Board wants staff to be, there are two parts, one, there needs to be advancement of loans to pay for it and, two, there is going to be a demand on staff, because they are gearing up a big program.
Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, stated that the related item that Mr. Stivender has added to the agenda today shows that a lot of the big ticket items in this future money is space needs. He explained that staff is making best estimates with lack of good information. In order to really proceed post haste, staff needs a good updated space need study, so they can better allocate the funds and, as part of that, there will be the prioritization on how they proceed. Mr. Neron stated that this will be a separate item that Mr. Stivender will be addressing with the Board later today. Staff can also look at some of the road projects that would not be so dependent on a space need study.
Mr. Stivender stated that there are no longer any impact fees being collected on some of the corridors including Lakeshore Drive, so they were on the sales tax list but, under the present condition of trying to balance the monies, they would have to build the corridors in several different stages instead of as one project; in other words, instead of phasing it over many years, it would be done all at one time, which is what staff is looking at doing first.
Commr. Hill noted that the projects listed are not ranked in any particular order, and she feels that the County Manager made a pretty good statement when he said they need a space study first before they rank some of the projects.
Commr. Cadwell stated that, if the Board approves a space study today, it is going to give them the information they need to help prioritize projects and develop a time frame, which may adjust some of the dollars. It was prudent that the Board approved the list today, and then the space study will show them where to adjust projects.
Mr. Stivender stated that, once the Board approves this request, they will have a workshop to discuss money, and a workshop in the budget process to move forward with the results of the space study. He noted that staff did ask for input from the Constitutional Officers on the space study, and they indicated to him that they were glad that the item regarding the Lake County Master Space and Facilities Plan for the years 2003-2018 was on the agenda today.
Commr. Cadwell stated he received a letter last week from the Honorable Don Briggs, Administrative Judge, which he forwarded to staff, and they need to meet with those folks.
Mr. Stivender noted that meetings have been scheduled.
Commr. Hill wanted to bring up the fact that, if they are going to do a referendum, the Green Space and Environmentally Sensitive Land project, as listed on the future projects, may be removed from this category, since this was not placed on the ballot under the sales tax referendum. She did not want people to misunderstand and think that they were approving this project, if they have another revenue source.
Commr. Hanson clarified that it was the intent of the Board for this item, as noted, to be included so she would not want to take it off now, but they may decide to in the future.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from Public Works for approval of the 2004-2008 Infrastructure Sales Tax Renewal Capital Program (Fund 303) and authorization to proceed with the projects.
Mr. Stivender informed the Board that, after reviewing the Voters Right to Vote Act, staff has decided not to put $15,000 toward the renovation of the old VFW Mount Plymouth facility but, instead, the Board has approved to use the fire station as the new voting site. In the mean time, staff is looking at what to do with the old site. The in-house architects have put together some sketches for the new facility (East Lake County Community Center), and they will be getting estimates.
Commr. Hanson stated that she appreciated Mr. Stivender working with the community on this issue.
DELAY SIX LANING/TAV-LEE TRAIL
Mr. Jim Stivender, Director of Public Works, addressed the request from Public Works concerning a 12 to 24 month delay for the US 441 six laning west of College Drive, for the purpose of incorporating the Tav-Lee Trail into the construction project, and stated that staff has been working with the City of Leesburg, and the City of Tavares, on this project for seven or eight years. Mr. Stivender explained that the delay in this project has been due to people changing positions, and the current project managers did not have any records of the correspondence, meetings, or discussions that had previously taken place between them. He explained that the City of Leesburg and staff met with the Department of Transportation (DOT) last month to look at addressing the Tav-Lee Trail. Mr. Stivender pointed out on a map the existing portion of the six lane that is now completed; and the existing portion that is under construction; and, as part of that, the Board had approved and funded a portion of the Trail (from Tavares to the Lake Sumter Community College). There was also a grant project for a trail down to Main Street, which is now completed. In July, 2004, both projects, from Tavares to 44B, and from the College back to Leesburg, are to go out to bid; one was done by a consultant, and one was done in-house. Mr. Stivender stated that they did not address a trail from College Drive (Cracker Barrel location) along the south side of the road (Baird Mobile Homes), where the right-of-way is restricted again. Staff is asking that the Board delay the bidding process, so the City of Leesburg has the opportunity to input a trail on the design plans for DOT, and to develop a negotiated price with DOT, for them to pay a portion of costs. The County would use impact fees, or other fees associated with the costs, and it would fund the section the same way it did with the other portion of trail and, at the same time, DOT would construct both portions simultaneously. The numbers would be in a resolution, or letter, that the Board would send to Mr. Mike Schneider, District Secretary, to ask for this delay, with the understanding that, in the 2005 or 2006 bidding process, staff would have all matters in order. He explained the right-of-way situation in this area, which staff and the State are working on together.
Commr. Stivender explained that she was working with the City of Leesburg in 1997, when this item was discussed and, as Mr. Stivender has stated, they have changed hands many times.
Mr. Robert Johnson, Deputy City Manager, City of Leesburg, stated that, after many discussions with DOT, he is now of the understanding that DOT acknowledges that they were responsible in many ways, because they did not listen to the cites, or partner with the cities and the County on this project, and that they are designed to move forward on this expedited schedule. He reminded the Board that this whole segment was expedited by the Governor, even though there is a perception today that they are talking about a delay. At the meeting with DOT, Mr. Johnson explained that the City of Leesburg had an engineer, that had been under contract for a year, to look at this corridor, and they had been sending DOT correspondence. He stated that he could show the Board bills that are being paid relating to these issues with DOT. He stated that they showed them that they have the ability to take their 90% drawings and insert the trail. The concern they have is that they will not have the opportunity to do the trail right if they stop at this point, at the 90% drawing stage. The City of Leesburg is also concerned about the design of the retention ponds. They are in the process of doing a trail master plan through the whole City of Leesburg. They just received $3.8 million from the State for the buying of about six and half miles of CSX right-of-way, and they will be doing that in the next six months. They have the Sleepy Hollow Sports Complex there, and they are committed to doing the design work. They would have to enter into a joint planning agreement with the County, in order to carry it outside of the city limits, but there is an offer on the table from County staff to commit County funds to construct the trail, and they would go ahead and do the design. They really do not believe they are looking at 18 to 24 months, based on the fees that have been presented to the city. They feel they can do the design work in about three months and work with DOT and County staff, and they are prepared to move forward and will be happy to share any documents that have been transmitted over the years.
Commr. Cadwell was concerned about the Governor expediting the project and now the City of Leesburg asking for a delay, but Mr. Johnson clarified that he was not asking DOT to hold up anything; he was asking them to do it right and, if the Board looks at the legislation that was signed by the Governor this last year, the Governor was not going to impose local jurisdiction regulations on DOT and their design, but that he was committed to working with jurisdictions and working out planning and logistical issues. Mr. Johnson stated that this has not happened on this project.
Mr. Stivender clarified that the section that is now under construction is part of the 9-11 advance, over $6 million statewide and, because of that advanced money going to the district, the residual left over was allocated for that project now ends up in this project.
Commr. Hill stated that there is an intersection at Sleepy Hollow and CR 44 that needs to be corrected and this will give the County time to redo that intersection, where major accidents have been occurring.
Mr. Stivender stated that the County was going to go ahead and redo that intersection, as noted, but this will give them more of a window to finish it.
Commr. Stivender stated that Ms. Dottie Keedy, City of Tavares, had to leave the meeting, but she wanted to make sure that the City was represented and that they want the Tav-Lee to continue.
Mr. Stivender clarified that a letter was sent to Mr. Schneider, and he received a quick response from him, and meetings were scheduled and discussion was clarified and they do understand the situation.
Commr. Hill stated that she has met with Mr. Stivender and has discussed the issue, and she wanted them to understand that there are sidewalks on both sides of the street going from Steak and Shake, to Cracker Barrel, which will help with the pedestrian traffic and, in the future, she is sure that the City will continue to look at the trail. She does not believe this is going to hold up what they are doing, and she believes that they will find out that, just as one project gets done, it will roll right into the next one. She felt that Mr. Stivender was doing a good job, and they are working with the City.
Commr. Hill made a motion, which was seconded by Commr. Stivender, to approve the request from Public Works for an extension of time for the US 441 six laning west of College Drive, for the purpose of incorporating the Tav-Lee Trail into the construction project.
Under discussion, Commr. Cadwell clarified that he has always been pro-trail but, to hold up this type of transportation project, for a trail that he thinks is going to be of marginal use, is a personal concern.
Commr. Hill stated that she does not think that they are really holding it up; it is just on another time frame, but it will work together. She clarified that the motion is not for a delay but for an extension of time.
Commr. Cadwell called for a vote on the motion, which was carried by a 4-1 vote.
Commr. Cadwell voted “no”.
ADDENDUM NO. 1 -
MASTER SPACE AND FACILITIES PLAN
Mr. Jim Stivender discussed the request from Public Works for approval and authorization to advertise for proposals for a Lake County Master Space and Facilities Plan, to be funded from General Fund - Special Reserve. Mr. Stivender noted that he had sent a letter to all of the Constitutional Officers to let them know that this item was on the agenda.
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from Public Works for approval and authorization to advertise for proposals for a Lake County Master Space and Facilities Plan for the years 2003-2018 at an estimated cost of $200,000.00 to be funded from General Fund-Special Reserve.
Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, stated that, when the Board approves the actual bid, staff would like to come back with the source of funding.
COMPREHENSIVE HEALTH CARE COMMITTEE APPOINTMENT
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the appointment of R. Patton McConnell as LRMC’s alternate member on the Comprehensive Health Care Committee; and the appointment of Duane Zimmerman as LifeStream Behavioral Center’s alternate member on the Comprehensive Health Care Committee.
LIBRARY ADVISORY BOARD APPOINTMENT
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the appointment of Jody Bryant Newman to the vacant District 2 position on the Library Advisory Board.
REPORTS - COUNTY ATTORNEY
SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT - LAKE COUNTY V. CARL BULLARD
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from the County Attorney for approval of Settlement Agreement in Court Case Number 2003-CA-2173 (Lake County v. Carl Bullard) and approval of Satisfaction and Release of Lien.
EXTENSION OF AGREEMENTS
Mr. Sandy Minkoff addressed the request for extension of agreements for dependency, Tabs 30 and 31, and stated that normally staff would recommend going out to bid on these, but this is only for a short period of time, until June 30th, when Article V will take place.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request from the County Attorney for approval of extension of Agreement with J. J. Dahl for juvenile dependency and termination cases (Tab 30), and a request from the County Attorney for approval of extension of Agreement with W. Scott Wynn for juvenile dependency and termination cases (Tab 31).
REPORTS - COUNTY MANAGER
SHORTFALLS - TRANSPORTATION DISADVANTAGED PROGRAM
Ms. Cindy Hall, Assistant County Manager, addressed the Board and stated that staff wanted to bring to the attention of the Board the level of service that the County is currently providing for bus trips through LifeStream, from the Transportation Disadvantaged Funds, and the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Funds, which is currently exceeding the County’s monthly allotment. Staff is working with LifeStream to try and develop ideas to resolve that issue, and they are expecting to come back to the Board very soon with some options. She has included on the cover memorandum about a $35,000 impact, which covers the month of October, and a couple of weeks into November. They are looking for direction as to whether they should continue with the current level of service, which is exceeding the current budget allocation, or making some reductions to some of the lower priority trips, as noted in her memorandum. There are some reserves in that fund that would cover the $35,000. Ms. Hall stated that she was looking for direction, on an interim basis, before staff comes back with some solutions to this issue.
Commr. Cadwell stated that, in looking at the very short window that staff is going to work in to find alternatives, he would prefer that they keep funding it at the current level, but staff needs to work fast on coming up with some alternatives.
Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, stated that staff knew that they were overspending, and he wanted to make sure that the Board was aware of this rather than cutting back the service, at the staff level. He noted that this was just a report for information, and staff will be coming back with an appropriate budget amendment, once they have a solution.
REQUEST FOR CLOSED SESSION
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, requested a closed session to discuss the Covanta litigation and, due to time, he suggested they have a Special Board Meeting on Monday, October 27, 2003, at 9:30 a.m.
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved to call a Special Board Meeting for the purpose of having a closed session to discuss Covanta, on October 27, 2003, at 9:30 a.m., for approximately three hours.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER STIVENDER - DISTRICT #3
Commr. Stivender extended her appreciation to everyone for their phone calls, letters, flowers, and cards that she received during her time of illness.
LAKE COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Commr. Stivender stated that she is the liaison to the Lake County Historical Society, and one of their Board members, Mr. Bob Cook, won the Florida Historical Society 2003 Executive Director’s Award for his outstanding performance in preserving our history. She noted that he is the one who brought the Florida Association here last year that was held at the Lakeside Inn, and she wanted him to be recognized for that.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER HANSON - DISTRICT #4
ST. JOHNS RIVER ALLIANCE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the appointment of Commr. Hanson to serve as the County Commissioners’ representative on the St. Johns River Alliance Board of Directors.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER CADWELL - CHAIRMAN AND DISTRICT #5
On a motion by commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request for approval and execution of Epilepsy Awareness Month Proclamation 2003-184 for the month of November.
On a motion by commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the request for approval and execution of National Philanthropy Day Proclamation 2003-185 on November 13, 2003.
LAKE COMMUNITY ACTION AGENCY
Commr. Cadwell explained that Commr. Hill had been the Board’s representative on the Lake Community Action Agency (LCAA) Board of Directors, but she has some scheduling conflicts.
Commr. Hill felt that for continuity, since Commr. Stivender is the liaison for the Childrens’ Commission, it would be somewhat of the same type program.
Commr. Cadwell noted that the Chairman usually makes the appointments, so he would ask that the Board appoint Commr. Stivender to the LCAA Board of Directors.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the selection of Commr. Stivender as representative on the Lake Community Action Agency (LCAA) Board of Directors.
EVALUATIONS - COUNTY MANAGER/COUNTY ATTORNEY
Commr. Cadwell noted that on the agenda is the discussion of the County Manager and County Attorney evaluations. He noted that the Board went through the evaluations and had discussion. Commr. Cadwell stated that the system that they use in deciding the raises for the other employees does not quit match this particular form that they are using for the County Manager, and the County Attorney, and they need to rectify this between now and next year, to make sure that the form they are using will fit into the rating system. In the event that the Board did not have one of those forms, he wanted to make sure that the Board gave the appearance that they are being fair with these two individuals and with all of the employees, so he did use that scale. He is recommending that the County Manager receive a two percent increase, and that the County Attorney receive a three percent increase.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved a two percent increase for the County Manager, and a three percent increase for the County Attorney.
Commr. Hanson stated that there was one other item that she wanted to bring up under her business. There is an issue that is kind of time sensitive and involves funding that the County could potentially receive for indigent health care.
Mr. Fletcher Smith, Director of Community Services, explained that the State, and the Federal Medicaid Office, have two programs that, by bringing in some additional match money, the State can bring down additional Medicaid dollars to enhance those providers who are delivering substantial services above and beyond what Medicaid covers to Medicaid recipients and charity patients. One of the programs is the Upper Payment Level Program, which was created in 2001. If a unit of local government has dollars allocated for health services in the community that support Medicaid and charity patients, they can send that money to the State of Florida and, in return, for every dollar they send to the State, they get a return of $1.60. The State will return the dollar that they sent to them plus an additional 17 1/2 cents, and that 17 1/2 cents can be spent to provide additional services to Medicaid and charity patients. A number of different hospital taxing districts are using the program currently in Florida, and a number of different counties are using it. It is crucial right now because the Agency of Health Care Administration has been negotiating with a couple of counties to include them in the funding this year, but one of the counties fell out and that leaves about $1 million on the table that they could possibly tap into. He noted that the hospital taxing districts are looking at participating in the program, but it is crucial that they act in the next matter of days, to develop a contract with them.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved to place on the agenda, the above noted item pertaining to health care.
Under discussion, Commr. Hanson explained that Mr. Smith needs direction to work with the Health Department, LifeStream, and the County to try and get the application to Tallahassee. There are some technicalities that need to be addressed by the North Lake Hospital Taxing District and the South Lake Hospital Taxing District. She stated there is a potential of the County getting an additional $175,000 that would be allocated to the providers, which would be the Health Department and LifeStream.
Commr. Hanson made a motion, which was seconded by Commr. Stivender, for the Board to give Mr. Fletcher Smith, Director of Community Services, the authority to go ahead with an application, as noted, subject to review and approval by the County Attorney, and to approve authorization for the Chairman to sign application subject to legal sign off.
Under discussion, Commr. Cadwell thanked Commr. Hanson for bringing this item forward to the Board.
Commr. Cadwell called for a vote on the motion, which was carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote.
MEETINGS - SALES SURTAX OVERSIGHT ADVISORY COMMITTEE
It was noted that the public meeting scheduled for 4:00 p.m. or soon thereafter, of the Sales Surtax Oversight Advisory Committee, to be held at the Magnolia Room, Lake-Sumter Community College, Leesburg, Florida, is a separate meeting, and it has been advertised separately from this meeting.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting adjourned at 12:20 p.m.
WELTON G. CADWELL, CHAIRMAN ATTEST:
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK