A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
JULY 18, 2006
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, July 18, 2006, at 9:00 a.m., in the Board of County Commissioners’ Meeting Room, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present were Catherine C. Hanson, Chairman; Welton G. Cadwell, Vice Chairman; Jennifer Hill; and Robert A. Pool. Commissioner Debbie Stivender was not present. Others present were Sanford A. “Sandy” Minkoff, County Attorney; Cynthia W. “Cindy” Hall, County Manager; Linda Green, Executive Associate, Board of County Commissioners’ Office; Barbara Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance; and Judy McAuley, Deputy Clerk.
INVOCATION AND PLEDGE
Mr. Ken Harley, Public Transportation Manager, Lake County Department of Community Services, gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, asked to move Tab 5 (MV contract amendment) from the County Manager’s Consent Agenda to the County Manager’s Departmental Business for a presentation by staff.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the Minutes of June 6, 2006, Regular Meeting, as presented.
CLERK OF COURT’S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the Clerk of Court’s Consent Agenda, Tab 2, as follows:
List of Checks or Warrants
Request to acknowledge receipt of list of checks or warrants paid prior to this meeting, pursuant to Chapter 136.06 (1) 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.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 3 through 12, less Tab 5, as follows:
Request for approval for budget adjustments from General Fund reserves to allow for the relocation of several County operations.
Request for approval to renew the current Microsoft Enterprise Agreement for three additional years and authorization to pay the first of three annual installments to Software House International (SHI) in the amount of $39,027.00.
Request for approval of the updated Mutual Aid Agreement for Fire Suppression and Rescue Services between Sumter County, Florida, and Lake County, Florida.
Request for approval of the disbursal of Transportation Impact Fee Credits in the amount of $1,975,844.31 to DeWitt Enterprises, Inc., for the construction of Hooks Street Phase III roadway project per the requirements of the Agreement signed on December 14, 2004.
Request for approval to award Lake Kathryn Community Development Block Grant Phase V Paving Project No. 2006-06, Bid No. 06-117, to Art Walker Construction, Inc., and to encumber and expend funds in the amount of $418,174.99 from the Community Development Block Grant, Commission District 5.
Request for approval of Resolution 2006-117 to advertise Public Hearing for Vacation Petition No. 1084, Harry Suggs, Representative Jim Stivender, to vacate right of way and cease maintenance on a portion of Suggs Road (#0379), located in Section 13, Township 23, Range 25, in the Clermont area, Commission District 2.
Request for approval of Resolution 2006-118 to advertise Public Hearing for Vacation Petition No. 1088, Anthony J. Daniell, to vacate right of way, in the Plat of Clermont Farms, located in Section 12, Township 23S, Range 25E, in the Clermont area, Commission District 2
Request for approval of Resolution 2006-119 to advertise Public Hearing for Vacation Petition No. 1089, Edward A. Neal, Representative Harold L. Downing, Esquire, to vacate rights of way, in the Plat of Lake Highlands Company, located in Section 23, Township 22S., Range 26E, in conjunction with re-plat known as Colina Bay, in the Clermont area Commission Districts 2 and 3.
Request for approval of an award of $32,000.00 from the Jobs Growth Investment Trust Fund to QuietFlex Manufacturing Company for the creation of ten new positions paying at least $15.66 an hour or higher.
COMMUNITY SERVICES - PROBATION SERVICES DIVISION
Mr. Tony Deaton, Director of Probation Court Services, accepted Proclamation 2006-110 which declares July 16 through 22, 2006, to be Probation, Parole and Community Supervision Week in Lake County. He noted that jurisdictions across the United States are recognizing these professionals this week for the significant role they play in the criminal justice system. He stated that these unsung heroes dedicate their professional lives to serving crime victims and to holding offenders accountable for the wrongs they have committed. Through their commitment and dedication to public safety, our communities are a safer place to live.
PUBLIC WORKS - PARKS AND TRAILS DIVISION
Mr. Bobby Bonilla, Parks and Trails Director, accepted Proclamation 2006-113 which designates July 2006 as Parks and Recreation Month in Lake County.
LAKE-SUMTER PERFORMING ARTS CENTER (PALS)
Ms. Barbara Mittermaier, PALS (Performing Arts of Lake and Sumter) President and Capital Campaign Co-Chair, thanked the Board for taking time for today’s presentation on a funding request for the Lake-Sumter Community College (LSCC) Performing Arts Center Capital Campaign. She explained that Mr. Hank Fishkind, Fishkind & Associates, Inc., who prepared the Economic Impact Analysis of the Proposed Performing Arts Center of Lake & Sumter Counties on the Lake-Sumter Community College Campus, was unable to attend the meeting today. She announced that Dr. Charles Mojock, President of LSCC, will be making the presentation.
Dr. Charles Mojock, President, Lake-Sumter Community College (LSCC), gave a PowerPoint presentation which included the following:
Referring to Table 1 on Page 10 of the Fishkind report, Commr. Pool asked why one group is so successful and one group is not. Dr. Mojock explained that the King Center in Melbourne is the model and has a strong participation rate. He pointed out that we have three times as many people in a one-hour driving radius as the King Center has in that same driving radius. Dr. Mojock agreed with Commr. Cadwell that Brevard County has a good demographic for supporting the arts. Dr. Mojock further explained that there is a lot of competition in Gainesville because of the University of Florida.
In response to a question by Commr. Cadwell regarding comments from the performing arts family, Dr. Mojock stated that step one would be to show that it is viable and that it has broad based community support where people have stepped up and contributed local dollars to make it a reality.
Commr. Pool stated that the key is whether to consider the utilization of the extra one cent and what that would cost and what could be pledged. He opined that the hoteliers have to buy into this idea of trying to create new overnight stays. He stated that he would like staff to give the Board some information to see exactly what the commitment might be on the Board’s part and what those dollars would generate for this facility.
Commr. Hanson stated that the County has made a significant financial contribution and commitment to other quality of life issues such as parks, libraries, trails and sports. She opined that we have often left out the cultural side. The County does heavily support the smaller, local venues through the tourist development dollars, in advertising particularly, but they do not need capital funds the way this project will. She agreed that we need to find out how many dollars can be generated with the one-cent TDC tax.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he supports this project and cannot argue with anything that has been brought forward today but some of the programs, the parks, recreation and libraries, are still in such infancy that they have to be weighed against this. He stated that a couple of libraries in his district are in portables. He stated that he is fine if some type of inventive revenue source can be found that the tourist development community and the cultural affairs community can agree with. He stated that the general revenues pot cannot be dipped into when weighed against all the other needs but he is willing to look at it if there is some other way to do it.
Dr. Mojock stated that everyone is in the same boat with budgets and more priorities and more needs than can be supported. He opined that timing is an issue and there is only so much time to make something happen to get to the next step. He stated that their request is substantial and will take more than the TDC dollars. He expressed appreciation for the Board’s candor and stated that he wants to know where they stand. If the Board does not see the possibility of additional funding from other sources, whether capital sources or other kinds of funds that can become available, they will not get to where they are looking to be. He stated that is something important that has to be said. He stated that they have been to the TDC and they asked for more information.
Commr. Pool stated that he did not suggest taking general fund dollars today but asked for a complete review of what we can do and what the State could commit and how these dollars could leverage themselves.
Commr. Hanson opined that this project should be looked at from a regional perspective. She stated that the County did commit significant dollars, kind of a one-time expenditure, to the library in South Lake. She stated that she is not saying we need to do general revenue but we need to find out what can be generated.
Dr. Mojock stated that they will be happy to work with staff.
Commr. Pool opined that the TDC was supportive of this concept and he stated that we will not be turning people away from Lake County because of the bed tax.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he does not want PALS to leave today with a negative feeling about the conversation because the Board is committed to try to find a way to make it work but he does not want them to leave today thinking the Board will take care of the $9 million. He stated that he is supportive of the project.
Mr. Greg Mihalic, Tourism and Business Relations Director, stated that the one cent increase in the tourist tax would generate a little more than half a million dollars per year in additional revenue. That is a flat amount and does not consider a growth rate. He noted that there have been steady increases in revenue in the last couple of years.
Regarding whether those dollars are bondable, Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, stated that she will talk with the County’s financial advisor and the bond counsel to find out exactly what flexibility there is to use the penny.
Commr. Hill noted that Commr. Stivender serves as Chairman for the TDC and the Cultural Affairs Council. She asked if those two Councils have a recommendation.
Mr. Mihalic explained that the TDC asked PALS to do an economic impact study and show the impact of the facilities on heads and beds and hotel room occupancy. He anticipates that study would be ready for the TDC’s September meeting.
Commr. Hill stated that she assumes the Board would get a recommendation from both Councils before going forward with a project and would find out how an extra penny would be split or not split.
Commr. Hanson agreed that those Councils probably will need the same information the County Manager will prepare. She stated that the Board is sending a message, if it moves forward, to the folks of the community. She opined that it could be a big step forward if we can find a way to do it.
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 9:40 a.m., Commr. Hanson announced a ten-minute break.
ORDINANCE - AMENDING LAND DEVELOPMENT REGULATIONS
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, placed the following proposed ordinance, amending Section 14.07.05, Land Development Regulations, entitled “Construction Requirements,” on the floor by title only for its final reading. He noted that, if adopted, it will be Ordinance 2006-67.
AN ORDINANCE OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF LAKE COUNTY, FLORIDA; AMENDING SECTION 14.07.05, LAKE COUNTY CODE, LAND DEVELOPMENT REGULATIONS, TO REQUIRE DEVELOPERS TO MARK SUBDIVISION ROADWAYS IN ACCORDANCE WITH FDOT STANDARDS AND PROVIDE TESTING REPORTS TO THE COUNTY; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; PROVIDING FOR INCLUSION IN THE CODE; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Commr. Hanson opened the public hearing. There being no public comment, the public hearing was closed.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Cadwell and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved Ordinance 2006-67, amending Section 14.07.05, Land Development Regulations, entitled “Construction Requirements,” to require developers to mark subdivision roadways in accordance with FDOT standards and provide testing reports to the County.
COUNTY MANAGER’S DEPARTMENTAL BUSINESS
BUDGET - MILLAGE RATES FOR TRIM NOTIFICATIONS
Ms. Regina Frazier, Budget Director, presented the proposed millage rates to be included on TRIM (Truth in Millage) notifications in accordance with the County Manager’s proposed Fiscal Year 2007 budget; and the request for approval of public hearing dates and times as follows: September 5, 2006, at 5:05 p.m. and September 19, 2006, at 5:05 p.m.; and the request for approval to advertise those public hearings.
Ms. Frazier stated that the proposed millage rates for Fiscal Year 2007 are:
Ms. Frazier explained that, if the Board approves these rates, the rates could be decreased but not increased without individually notifying every property owner in the County.
In response to an inquiry by Commr. Hanson regarding where the increase in revenues was generated, Ms. Frazier confirmed that there was a 33% increase in assessed values. Nine percent of that came from new construction and additions and 24% of that is from revaluations.
Commr. Cadwell pointed out that the revaluations are a one-time shot and are misleading if not figured into a five- or six-year history of what will happen. He stated that the nine percent needs to be looked at as the County’s growth rate and on which the provision of services is based.
Commr. Hanson noted that the number of permits is way down.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board set the millage rates to be included on the TRIM notifications in accordance with the County Manager’s proposed Fiscal Year 2007 budget as follows: General Fund 5.7470, Stormwater, Parks and Roads 0.6000, Ambulance Fund 0.5289 and Voter Approved Debt (for Environmentally Sensitive Lands) 0.2000; and approved the request for public hearing dates and times as follows: September 5, 2006, at 5:05 p.m. and September 19, 2006, at 5:05 p.m.; and approved the request to advertise those public hearings.
Ms. Frazier mentioned that August 8, 2006, is a targeted budget workshop date.
COMMUNITY SERVICES - ASSIST FRUITLAND PARK IN REPAIRING HOMES
Mr. Fletcher Smith, Community Services Director, presented the request for approval to commit $100,000.00 over a two-year period to assist the City of Fruitland Park in repairing homes in conjunction with the CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) Small Cities Competitive Grant Program. If the City receives State of Florida grant funding, specific details will be worked out through a Memorandum of Understanding or Interlocal Agreement.
Mr. Ralph Bowers, City Manager of the City of Fruitland Park, stated that the City’s generally good quality of life works against them when competing for Block Grant funds. The City is attempting to meet some unmet needs of people in limited circumstances with the repair of their homes. He stated that, if the County will participate with the City, it will greatly enhance their competitive ability in securing the funds from the State.
Mr. Smith confirmed that the reduction being seen on the federal end of the housing, mainly on the voucher program, would not affect these funds.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Cadwell and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the request to commit $100,000.00 over a two-year period to assist the City of Fruitland Park in repairing homes in conjunction with the CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) Small Cities Competitive Grant Program.
PROCUREMENT SERVICES/COMMUNITY SERVICES - FIRST AMENDMENT TO MV CONTRACT
Mr. Fletcher Smith, Community Services Director, presented the request to approve and execute the First Amendment to Agreement between Lake County and MV Contract Transportation, Inc., for Provision of Public Transit Services, changing the manner in which fuel is charged, implementing a rule requiring two attendees on stretcher trips, providing for an increase in trip charge for driver retention and adding certain service requirements to the contract. He explained that MV asked to amend the contract to have the County be responsible for purchasing the gas which actually saves the County money. MV planned to reduce the per trip rate by $2.31, dropping it from $21.44 to $19.13. In addition, there are a lot issues related to hiring and keeping good drivers and MV has asked the County to kick in $1.30 per trip to help increase the salaries of the drivers. The amendment addresses having all the new buses outfitted with wheelchair-accessible lifts and tweaking the maintenance of the vans. Mr. Smith stated that another big change would be to increase the stretcher transportation costs to $38.00 per hour. MV is facing challenges on stretcher trips because they have one driver but it is much safer to have two people. He recommended approval of the amendment.
Commr. Cadwell expressed concern because these are the same conversations the Board had with its last provider. He stated that he understands the fuel increases but added that MV bragged about being able to get and keep good people. He stated that, if we are going to consider contributing to the salary, he wants to make sure there is some official way to check that those dollars are going directly to drivers’ salaries. Commr. Cadwell asked if we are getting value back with the performance changes.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, stated that the contract would have to be amended slightly to get that financial information if that is the Board’s direction.
Commr. Hanson opined that is critical, particularly with changes in the middle of a contract. She stated that she has heard a lot of concerns about the stretcher trips.
Mr. Smith stated that EMS has been saddled with some of the stretcher trips. That is trying to be resolved so that ambulances will not be tied up.
Commr. Cadwell confirmed that EMS is not interested in getting into the stretcher trip business.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Cadwell and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the First Amendment to Agreement between Lake County and MV Contract Transportation, Inc., for Provision of Public Transit Services, changing the manner in which fuel is charged, implementing a rule requiring two attendees on stretcher trips, providing for an increase in trip charge for driver retention and adding certain service requirements to the contract; with the stipulation that dollars for drivers’ salaries will be able to be tracked.
PROCLAMATION - FLORIDA AIRBOATERS
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved Proclamation 2006-120 for Florida airboaters who were involved in rescue efforts in and around New Orleans, Louisiana, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
REPORTS - COUNTY MANAGER
GROWTH MANAGEMENT DATA RESEARCH
Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, stated that the Board requested data research from Growth Management relative to residential units based on rezonings. She stated that staff will have that information in a week or so.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER POOL - DISTRICT #2
MEETING WITH TARMAC
Commr. Pool stated that he met with Tarmac and they are very close to connecting to Conserve II water which will save about six million gallons a day from the Floridan Aquifer. He stated that the agreement is done and piping is in place.
SOUTH LAKE TRAIL
Commr. Pool announced that the South Lake Trail is progressing and will be an asset. It will be a regional approach in recreation in connecting the two communities.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER HANSON - CHAIRMAN & DISTRICT #4
REGIONAL LEADERSHIP COUNCIL
Commr. Hanson stated that she will be unable to attend the August 10, 2006, Regional Leadership Council meeting which is being held through the myregion.org “How Shall We Grow?” campaign. She asked Commr. Cadwell, as Vice Chair, to attend that meeting if possible.
CITY OF EUSTIS RESOLUTION NO. 06-37
Commr. Hanson referred to a July 13, 2006, letter addressed to the Commissioners, along with City of Eustis Resolution No. 06-37, (included in the backup material) from Eustis Mayor Jonnie Hale requesting that the County conduct a countywide Affordable Workforce Housing Summit with all the municipalities in Lake County.
Commr. Cadwell advised that there is a statewide group meeting on that issue also. He stated that he will look into it.
ARTICLE IN THE LAKE EDITION OF THE ORLANDO SENTINEL
Commr. Hanson addressed the article in Sunday’s Lake Edition of the Orlando Sentinel. She opined that Nin-Hai Tseng, Sentinel staff writer, did a very good job with the facts on her article but there were some obviously left out of columnist Lauren Ritchie’s article. She stated that she talked to Ms. Ritchie about that and it is unfortunate. She stated that she wants to apologize to the Board and to the LPA (Local Planning Agency) that the article was there and the perception that it left. She stated that she has never attempted to undermine the LPA at all. She stated that she has never supported a density higher than one unit to one acre in the Wekiva study area east of Eustis, which is mostly one unit to five acres, and she thinks that is what the LPA is recommending, with performance measures. She stated that, other than that, she has not been involved in that. She stated that she thinks the process that the group in question, Heritage Green, brought forward intrigued her because it actually brought together several property owners rather than being fragmented with individual developments. She added that it gave a more innovative approach, a concept toward development in a more comprehensive manner, not just the development, but providing for the open space. She stated that is pretty much as far as she got involved with it. She stated that they never really talked about density. She stated that she always assumed the density would be whatever the LPA suggested. She stated that she wanted to apologize for the article but she did not see any wrongdoing that she did. She stated that she thinks the Board recognizes that she has tried to find better ways for the County to grow rather than doing just what we have always done. She offered to answer any questions from the Board.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he was concerned when he first heard that Commr. Hanson had gone to the editorial board (Orlando Sentinel). He stated that he is assuming she did that based on her constant discussion of clustering and sector planning and such. He asked if that is the reason she was there.
Commr. Hanson stated that she was there because she supports that concept. She stated that she thinks it is very tough to make happen when there are several property owners coming together. She stated that Ms. Jane Healy (Editorial Page Editor and Vice President, Orlando Sentinel) asked if the density would be changed. Commr. Hanson stated that she responded “no,” that it would remain at one unit to the acre and she thinks that is where they started parting ways. She stated that, after the fact, in speaking with Attorney Bruce Duncan, she started realizing that they (Heritage Green) really had in mind having a greater density than one unit to the acre. Commr. Hanson stated that the concept, the process, can be very good and she thinks it is one, if it works, that could be replicated throughout the County in other areas that could have a designated boundary. She stated that she thinks there is some benefit there. She stated that it was not at all like the article came out.
Commr. Cadwell stated that, hopefully, the dust will stay clear until the LPA finishes their job and the Board goes through it.
Commr. Hanson stated that she did not see it in conflict, from her perspective at the time, with what the LPA was doing and she certainly was not looking to undermine them or the County Commission. She stated that she tries to be a realist but sometimes, perhaps, she is not.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD
Mr. Roy Hunter, Northeast Lake Chamber of Commerce, announced that free immunizations for children will be available July 27 at Spring Creek Elementary School in Paisley, Florida. He discussed a bus schedule that will go east and west beginning August 4. He stated that Northeast Lake Chamber of Commerce, Lake Eustis Area Chamber of Commerce, Sorrento Chamber of Commerce and Astor Area Chamber of Commerce support this. (Correspondence is included in the backup material.) Mr. Hunter stated that he and his wife will stay at home three weeks in support of a gasoline boycott by senior citizens. He stated that the North Lake Outpost supports this and he referred to a letter from Governor Jeb Bush (included in the backup material).
Ms. Nancy Howell, member of the Tourist Development Council (TDC), asked each of the Commissioners to hear from the other community performing arts theatres while researching the PALS (Performing Arts of Lake and Sumter) request. She stated that Bay Street, Melon Patch, IceHouse and Michael Quinn, who represents the City of Mount Dora for the community building project, were present at the June 21, 2006, TDC meeting. She asked the Board to ask for copies of TDC’s minutes for June 21 and March 15 regarding the PALS presentation. Ms. Howell asked that the Board come to them with a fair and equitable kind of formula that benefits all the theatres from a capital standpoint if the penny sales tax is approved.
COMMISSIONER POOL - DISTRICT #2 (CONTINUED)
Commr. Pool stated that, on Commr. Cadwell’s behalf, he attended the Paisley Elementary School program on trying to ensure that people who live in flood-prone areas could be protected. Commr. Pool thanked Mr. Jim Stivender, Jr., Public Works Director, and his staff and Mr. Travis Whigham, Forest Hills Association, for their efforts on this issue.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD (CONTINUED)
Mr. Barry Barnett stated that he owns property in Astor, Florida, on a road called Venetian Way and Veterans Road on which he wants to build a home. He stated that he is eager to pay an impact fee and will apply for permits. Mr. Barnett discussed his artwork and his history. He stated that today’s issue has to do with fireworks, skyrockets and display of fireworks. He stated that it is a statewide issue and there is great confusion on the issue. He stated that he called the fire marshal’s office prior to July 1 and asked that they question a sign put up for a public fireworks display. He stated that July 4 he was on his property and there was heavy discharge of firearms and semi-automatic weapons and on July 10 he found skyrockets on the back of his property. He stated that a captain in the fire marshal’s office said he looked into it and he dispatched a fire unit to the location where the public display was being held on Highway 40. Mr. Barnett asked the Board to look at the different rules, including the state statutes, regarding skyrockets and pyrotechnics and to consider an ordinance to address the issue.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, stated that, technically, skyrockets are not legal in the State of Florida. He stated that they are sold usually for agricultural-type purposes upon completion of an affidavit. He stated that some entities have attempted to pass more stringent ordinances and the State has pre-empted most of the regulation in the State. Some of the beaches prohibit shooting off fireworks because of the resulting garbage problem. Some others have tried to regulate more strictly the sale of fireworks, not accepting just the blanket affidavit. He stated that he can bring back information to the Board.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 10:45 a.m.
CATHERINE C. HANSON, CHAIRMAN
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK