REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF
AUGUST 28, 2007
Lake County Board of
INVOCATION AND PLEDGE
Pastor Ed Price from the United Faith Assembly of God, in Leesburg, gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Commr. Renick wanted to pull Tab 1 for discussion.
a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously,
by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the
Request for approval of the
transportation Standard Coordinator Contract between the Lake County Board of
for approval of the transportation
Standard Coordinator Contract between the Lake County Board of
Request for approval of low and very-low income impact fee waivers as refunds to lenders on behalf of qualified individuals.
Request for approval to award ITB# 07-827 for two (2) each 37' Insulated Telescopic Articulating Devices to Equipment Technology for the amount of $70,780.00.
Request for authorization to accept the final plat for Pillars Ridge and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Pillars Ridge final plat, accept a check in the amount of $46,200, and execute a Developer’s Agreement for Construction of Improvements between Lake County and Pillar Development, LLC. Pillars Ridge consists of 28 lots and is located in Section 11, Township 23 South, Range 25 East. Commission District 2.
Request for authorization to accept the final plat for Pillars Cove and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Pillars Cove final plat, accept a check in the amount of $3,080.00, and execute a Developer’s Agreement for Construction of Improvements between Lake County and Pillar Development, LLC. Pillars Cove consists of 15 lots and is located in Section 11, Township 23 South, Range 25 East. Commission District 2.
Request for authorization to accept the final plat for Hunter Oaks and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Hunter Oaks final plat, accept a performance bond in the amount of $443,622.30, and execute a Developer’s Agreement for Construction of Improvements between Lake County and Hunter Oaks, LLC. Hunter Oaks consists of 18 lots and is located in Section 1, Township 18 South, Range 26 East. Commission District 5.
Request for authorization to accept the final plat for Wandering Ponds, and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Wandering Ponds plat, accept a letter of credit for maintenance in the amount of $7,258.00, execute a Developer's Agreement for Maintenance of Improvements Between Lake County and Wekiva Trails LLC, and execute Resolution No. 2007-122 accepting the following road into the County Road Maintenance System: Tree Frog Lane (Co. Road No. 5583). Wandering Ponds consists of 11 lots and is located in Section 11, Township 19 South, Range 27 East. Commission District 5.
authorization to accept the final plat for Forest at Silver Lake and all areas
dedicated to the public as shown on the Forest at Silver Lake final plat,
accept a performance bond in the amount of $3,381,929.65, and execute a
Developer’s Agreement for Construction of Improvements between Lake County and
M/I Homes of Lake County, LLC. Forest at
Renick had a question about the additional $30,000 for the temporary housing
for the fire fighters out at
Mr. John Jolliff, Deputy Fire Chief, responded that there were six, including the crew that was currently in Minneola, two per day.
Commr. Renick stated that it was roughly 1100 square feet, and she would rather try to stay within the original budget and find something for that amount.
Commr. Stivender stated that this was in her district, and she did not have a problem with it.
Cadwell commented that it would not hurt to look to see if there was a way to get it done within the original budget.
Mr. Barnett Schwartzman, Procurement Director, related that it was competitively bid, and that this was the low bid out of the four bids they received.
Commr. Renick asked if they could just put a mobile home out there instead of a modular building for the short time that it would be there.
Jolliff explained that the public had access to it, and they had to have a
residential sprinkler, parking, and a lot of logistical things based on
that. He commented that they could
hopefully reuse it in the future, and the investment would be for other than
motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously, by
a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 1, the request from Budget for a budget
transfer - County Fire Control Fund, Department of Public Safety, Fire Rescue
Division and the transfer of $107,500 from Machinery and Equipment to Operating
Supplies ($79,130) and Buildings ($28,370). Additional funds are needed for
operating expenses for Fiscal Year 2007. Also, the purchase of a modular
building to be used as living quarters for the
Commr. Cadwell stated that he wanted to pull Tab 12, which was a request for authorization to proceed with a lease agreement with Blackwood Properties, LLC to lease space for records storage for the Clerk of Court and the Board, for discussion. He asked if the problem was that they were completely out of space, and he was concerned about the dollars they were going to have to spend to be able to use this space.
Commr. Stivender stated that when they purchased the Furniture Country Warehouse on County Road 473, it was supposed to be changed to climate controlled and used for the Supervisor of Elections, the Clerk, and anyone else that needed to store their materials out there safely. She commented that they purchased the building, and she wanted to know what it was being used for. She was concerned that they now had to have additional space.
Mr. Richard LeBlanc stated that the warehouse was intended to be used for the Clerk, but that currently that warehouse was being used by their maintenance staff, the Sheriff, and the Information Technology Department (IT) for storage, because those facilities did not require a conditioned space. He reported that they looked into the cost for conditioning the warehouse, and it was about $4 million, which was quite an enormous cost, so they decided to use that space for non-air conditioned storage.
Commr. Stewart wanted to know if they could reduce it from eight bays to six bays, because this would just be temporary until the new buildings were completed, to keep them going long enough until then.
Mr. LeBlanc explained that IT would get two bays, and the Clerk was scheduled for six bays to meet their square footage needs for the amount of storage they required.
Commr. Renick stated that when she first looked at this, she thought it was part of their budget and that they just needed it sooner and it was just being moved up. However, since this had not been budgeted and was in addition, she had a problem with it and thought they had a lot of questions for the Clerk.
Commr. Stivender asked Mr. Minkoff if those could be brought back and negotiated if they approved it.
Mr. Minkoff explained that they did not want to put themselves in the position where the landlord was really banking on them leasing, so if there were very serious concerns that could not be overcome, he preferred to deal in good faith with the landlord. He anticipated that the lease would be ready in a month or so for them to bring back.
motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously
by a vote of 5-0, the Board moved to postpone Tab 12, a request for
authorization to proceed with a lease agreement with Blackwood Properties, LLC
to lease space for records storage, and to have Commr. Hill meet with the Clerk
motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by
a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 11 of the
for approval of the Agreement to Annex between
GOVERNOR’S PROCLAMATION OF CERTIFIED PUBLIC MANAGER’S WEEK
Cadwell noted that the program was through the
PRESENTATION – OPTIONS FOR RELOCATION OF CR 46A
Cadwell stated that a speaker during the Citizen Question and Comment Period
last week brought up the relocation for
Stivender, Jr., Public Works Director, explained that they were looking at the
CR 46A corridor and analyzing exactly how wide the right of way was going to be
and who it was going to impact. He explained
that the initial option was running a corridor with a 200 foot buffer and a 50
foot right of way along the edge of Heathrow and the
Commr. Cadwell commented that some were concerned that they were going to readdress where that road was going to go, but that the Board was clear in saying that they wanted to stay out of state lands, and now they were working on the engineering of the road.
Commr. Stewart related that she, the Expressway Authority, DOT, and Mr. Stivender worked very hard with the residents to try to come up with a plan that would benefit each party the most. She opined that Mr. Stivender’s plan was the best one for everyone involved and dealt with the buffer for the Heathrow residents, saved many trees along the property line, reduced the amount of land that Mr. Taylor would lose, and would save the County from having to foot the bill for the additional cost of the land for the buffer.
Commr. Hill stated that she did not know if she wanted to support this plan, and she thought there was a large environmental concern. She was concerned that it would change the whole character of that area and felt that they should explore other alternatives. She also mentioned that DOT did not have a problem going through state property for Highway 40 and the expansion of Highway 42, and did not see why they could not do the same for this road.
Commr. Renick stated that she believed it was the environmental sensitivity of the land that was the concern and not just that it was state land.
Commr. Stewart added that Highways 40 and 42 were already there, and this would be a new road. She also commented that DOT and the Expressway Authority explored every option at length over and over again for many, many months to find an alternate route that would be acceptable to everyone.
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried by a vote of 4-1, the Board moved that they would send a letter to DOT stating that they supported Option 1, which was for a 100-foot buffer and a 150-foot right of way going through the Taylor property and that they felt that it was in the best interest of everyone involved.
Commr. Hill voted “no.”
Mr. Stivender noted that this would just give direction to the DOT; they would apply this to their plan as the public hearings moved forward; and this information would be brought forward at a public meeting.
Mr. David Hanson, Public Lands Manager, stated that this request was from council members and staff to approve the Mission Statement and the Goals and Objectives for the Public Land Acquisition Advisory Council (PLAAC).
Mr. Ken LaRoe, Chairman of PLAAC, presented an overview of the goals and objectives and the mission statement and commented that they had been working on them for about six months. He explained that the authorizing ordinance for the PLAAC stipulated that they do annual goal setting and present that to the Commission for approval. He mentioned that the idea of gaining and keeping the public trust weaved through the whole thing. He stated that the goals were to increase public awareness, to implement a proactive plan for property purchase, and to maintain and manage the property. He also noted that under each goal and objective, there was an action plan for staff and the committee.
Commr. Cadwell commented that the by-product of this program is something that they were going to be able to look back on forever.
Commr. Hill related that she was very concerned about the third goal of managing and maintaining the properties, and before any other referendum was attempted to extend this kind of program, they needed to make sure that was completed satisfactorily.
Mr. LaRoe commented that they had more work to do to increase awareness and that there was a lot to the management plan for the acquired properties.
Commr. Renick opined that Mr. Hanson was good at assessing and choosing properties that were not high maintenance or had a lot of invasive species.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the PLAAC Mission Statement and Goals and Objectives.
CERTIFICATE OF PUBLIC CONVENIENCE AND NECESSITY FOR LIFENET
Mr. Sandy Minkoff,
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one who wished to comment, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the issuance of a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity for LifeNet, a division of Air Methods Corporation.
VACATION PETITION NO. 1094 – SHAMROCK HOMES – BISCAYNE BLUFF
Mr. Jim Stivender, Jr., Public Works Director, stated that Vacation Petition No. 1094 was before the Board on other occasions and was to vacate a part of an easement that was in excess of what was needed for the retention at the site. He related that some of the residents were concerned because the grading was not up to par. He presented before and after photographs, showing that the property had been sodded, cleaned up, and properly graded and recommended approval to vacate.
Commr. Renick asked Mr. Stivender if they were relying on St. Johns River Water Management District to determine whether the drainage on this property was satisfactory.
Mr. Stivender responded that they triple checked the stormwater retention themselves, and it was on top of a hill with great percolation rates.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one who wished to address the Board regarding this vacation, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Vacation Petition No. 1094, Shamrock Homes – Keith Shamrock, to vacate a portion of a drainage easement, in the Plat of Biscayne Bluff, in the Grand Island area, and approval and execution of Resolution No. 2007-123.
PETITION NO. 1096 – LARRY SHERER – PLAT OF
Mr. Stivender stated that Vacation Petition 1096 was in the Plat of Mt. Plymouth in the Sorrento area in Commission District 4 and was to vacate the old right of way from the 1920’s and rededicate an easement for ingress and egress to the site, which was adequate for what they were doing out there. He explained that there was a wide right of way that was not necessary that they were vacating, and they were retaining an easement. He requested that they vacate the original platted right of way and accept an easement to replace it at a minimum width.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
Ms. Leslie Campione, representing the applicant, clarified that the purpose of the vacation was to allow the property owners on each side of the road to be able to develop their sites for commercial purposes without having that large right of way and so they would be able to use the easement for driveway purposes. She also commented that it would still give access to the property to the north, and they would not have such large setbacks and would be able to situate their buildings a lot easier.
There being no one else who wished to address the Board regarding the vacation, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Stewart,
seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved
Vacation Petition No. 1096, Larry F. Sherer, to vacate a portion of
VACATION PETITION NO. 1119 – RANDY
Mr. Stivender noted that they had just received some paperwork on this vacation petition, expressing concern and objection to it. He specified that this was Vacation Petition No. 1119, Randy Jones, to vacate a remnant piece of right of way, in the Plat of Lake Saunders Manor and in Chelsea Oaks South, in the Tavares area in Commission District 3. He pointed out on the overhead map that there was a stub out of old right of way and surrounding tracts of land that could go either way when it came to ingress and egress. He stated that there was no public purpose for the right of way on the east side, and they obtained a sketch showing how they would vacate a portion of right of way in the one subdivision and use it to develop three more lots in that subdivision accessing that road and not the other road. He commented that there were a lot of changes that occurred in that area due to previous road closings that not everyone was happy about. They looked at whether there was a public purpose for this, and found that there was no road going that way to access and that neither subdivision wanted to be connected to the other, so he recommended approval to vacate.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
Mr. Richard Wohlfarth, with the IBI
Group, the consulting engineers and surveyors of the property, stated it was
the desire of both the neighborhoods not to be connected, and during the PUD process
of the City of
Mr. Gerald Eltons, a resident of Tavares near the property, stated the small piece of property that was in question was probably better used in the long term being set aside for green space, an ecological area, or an additional buffer zone. He was concerned that there was currently little green space in that area and that there was no longer the wildlife in that area that there previously was. He did not think there needed to be another house put there, and they should think about the future.
Mr. Patrick McIntosh, a resident of
lot 31 in the subdivision, stated that they were trying to keep that as an open
space as directed by the City of
Commr. Stivender asked if the size of the lots that were proposed was close to the size of his and the other residents’ lots.
Mr. McIntosh responded that the residents were on one-third acre lots, and the proposed lots were not nearly the same size as theirs. He also commented that he and other residents had tried to purchase the land over the past ten years because they knew that at some point in time it would become problem, but he never received a response. He wanted to keep his subdivision, which had been there since 1958, a quaint subdivision. He also pointed out that they had a lot of backing in their neighborhood to ask that it be left as a green space. He stated that he had been taking care of that piece of property for ten years, including mowing it and maintaining it.
Commr. Stivender asked Mr. Stivender that if they did not vacate it, was the County responsible for maintaining it.
Mr. Stivender responded that it was a public right of way.
Mr. McIntosh stated that the County’s
maintenance ended just on the south side of his driveway, which was
Mr. Wohlfarth rebutted that this was
part of a PUD and was well within the limits of what was approved by the City
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board denied Vacation Petition No. 1119, Randy Jones, to vacate a remnant piece of right of way, in the plat of Lake Saunders Manor and in Chelsea Oaks South, in the Tavares area, noting that the densities were not consistent with what was in the area.
Mr. Brian Sheahan, acting Director of Planning and Community Design, Department of Growth Management, introduced the new format. He stated that Tab 1, Onsi Derias and Gehan Mekhiel, Rezoning Case No. PH30-07-5, had been withdrawn. He also informed the Board that Tab 3, Develco, LLC and John Park III, Rezoning Case No. 23-07-1 had also been withdrawn.
REZONING CONSENT AGENDA
The Chairman opened the public hearing regarding the Consent Agenda, Tab 4, which were Voluntary Revocation of Conditional Use Permits.
There being no one who wished to address the Board regarding the Consent Agenda, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Ordinance No. 2007-41, and the Consent Agenda, which were Voluntary Revocation of the following Conditional Use Permits:
CUP#93/7/4-2 Allen and Susan Tobin
CUP#01/1/4-5 Carl and Cheryl Krause
CUP#00/9/1-5 Devin and Angie Long
CUP#92/8/1-4 Jack Austin and John Newbold, Jr.
Lykes Brothers Inc./Good Earth LLC
CUP#637-3 A. Duda and Sons/St. Johns River Water Mgmt District
CUP#86/10/3-3 A. Duda and Sons/St. Johns River Water Mgmt District
REZONING CASE NO. CUP 07/8/1-5 – PAUL AND MARNIE LEWIS
Mr. Rick Hartenstein, Senior Planner, Growth Management, stated that this was Case No. CUP 07/8/1-5, and the owners and applicants were Paul and Marnie Lewis, who were requesting a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) in the Agricultural Zoning District to allow for a pet resort and spa, which was an upper-end type kennel and a caretaker’s residence associated with the pet resort and spa. He reported that the property was approximately nine acres and was east of Eustis on County Road 439. He also related that the Applicant was proposing a 75 by 100 foot two-story structure, with the pet resort and spa located on the first floor and the caretaker’s facility on the second floor. He added that LDR Section 3.0104(1) and (18) directed that the things that needed to be addressed in the CUP were the maximum number of animals permitted, setbacks, and impacts on animal noise and odor. He related that the applicants provided information stating that the total number of dogs would be 70, with 50 overnight borders kept inside and 20 daycare animals that would be picked up on a daily basis. He also mentioned that they submitted a management plan on how they would control excessive barking, which had been made part of the ordinance as Exhibit “C.” He reported that the issues of the CUP had been successfully addressed and the requirements of the LDR’s would be enforced during the site plan review and approval process. He related that staff had reviewed the application and was recommending approval.
Commr. Cadwell disclosed that he was partners with an agriculture operation that had property on Quail Grove Road, which was somewhere in the vicinity, but he was told by the County Attorney that it was far enough away that it was not a conflict.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
Commr. Renick and Commr. Hill wanted to know if the project would reflect the conceptual drawing that was presented, showing a residential look. Commr. Renick commented that they had agreed at a workshop a long time ago that they would do that from now on.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff,
Commr. Renick commented that she felt more at ease when she heard that there would be someone living on the premises who would be very aware of any barking problem.
Ms. Marnie Lewis, the owner and
applicant, stated that the actual building would be better than the conceptual
drawing that was presented. She also
stated that she currently owned the same kind of facility in south
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 2, Case No. CUP 07/8/1-5, by Paul and Marnie Lewis, and Ordinance No. 2007-42, with the language added to the ordinance stating that the final building would reflect the conceptual drawings presented.
APPOINTMENT TO ELDER AFFAIRS COORDINATING COUNCIL
Commr. Stivender stated that they had previously appointed Ms. Catherine Bailey, but her husband passed away and she would probably be leaving the area, so she had to resign. She wanted to recommend Ms. Sue Miller for that appointment.
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board appointed Ms. Sue Miller to serve as the County Commission District 3 representative to the Elder Affairs Coordinating Council to complete an unexpired term ending January 31, 2008 and serve a consecutive two-year term.
APPOINTMENT TO MPO TECHNICAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE
On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the appointment of Mr. Brian Sheahan, Acting Director of Planning and Community Design, Department of Growth Management, to serve as the appointed representative on the Lake-Sumter MPO Technical Advisory Committee and Mr. Gregg Madsen, Senior Planner, Department of Growth Management, to serve as the second alternate representative. Appointments are for indefinite terms.
ADDENDUM NO. 1-I.
RATIFICATION OF PROCESS RECOMMENDED BY TIP STRATEGIES
Ms. Cindy Hall,
Commr. Stivender commented that she agreed that Lake County Tax Collector Bob McKee had a lot of insight and knowledge to share with this committee, but she also thought asking Mr. Ed Havill to be on the committee as well, since he was the Property Appraiser and did the parcels, would also be beneficial, and that maybe the Board should add both of them on there.
Commr. Renick asked if Mr. Havill wanted to do that.
Commr. Stivender did not know, but thought they could ask him.
Commr. Cadwell commented that both of them worked closely together, and that Mr. McKee dealt with the day to day occupational licenses and other things in that office. He also asked the Board if they were interested in appointing a citizen or other appointee on that committee.
Commr. Stivender commented that she thought they needed someone from outside that was not normally in it, and that she thought there were quite a few people that probably had the experience to help with this plan.
Commr. Stewart mentioned that she attended the first meeting, and people on this committee were very highly qualified and had some wonderful ideas for leading this County into economic development.
Ms. Hall noted that the consultant had a finite group of people that he would like to work with, which she thought was between nine and thirteen.
Ms. Dottie Keedy, Director of Economic Growth and Redevelopment, stated that she thought that the committee would only meet when the consultant was in town, and they were planning about five more visits over the course of the next six months, unless they wanted to do a conference call type meeting.
Commr. Cadwell asked Ms. Keedy what her plan was for this work product once this group was through.
Ms. Keedy responded that it would come to the Board at least once before the final product was brought to them, and she did not know if this committee would actually make recommendations to the Board and thought the idea was just to assist the consultant in understanding the local economy as they moved through the process. She also thought that they would be doing some visioning forums in the different areas of the County.
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board ratified the process recommended by TIP Strategies for the steering committee.
CLERMONT’S REQUEST TO CONTINUE TO USE BUILDING SERVICES
Ms. Hall received a letter from Mr. Wayne Saunders, City Manager of Clermont, stating that they were in the process of working through an RFP to select organizations that would help them with their building services. She related that currently they continued to use the County’s building services on the fifth floor in the Administration Building and that he requested that the County continue to provide that service for them until they had their own in place, which should be the beginning of October. She stated that she wanted to bring that to the Board’s attention, and that it seemed to have been working out well.
Commr. Cadwell asked the Board if
anyone had a problem continuing to do that, and the Board gave consensus for
the City of
REPORTS – COMMISIONER HILL – VICE CHAIRMAN AND DISTRICT 1
SCHOOL IMPACT FEES
Commr. Hill stated that she attended the School Board meeting on August 27 in which they discussed the impact fee. She stated that they called a special meeting Wednesday, August 29, where she believed they would have a final vote to transmit. She wanted to clarify that it would come back to the Impact Fee Committee, and not to the new task force, as reported in some of the newpapers.
ANIMAL SERVICE ORDINANCE
Commr. Hill stated that they had an animal services ordinance that they had passed several years ago, and she talked to the Animal Services Department, who indicated they would not be opposed to meeting with the County Attorney to look at that ordinance to make sure that it was adequate and up to date and that there had been no changes within the law. She commented that they were taking on more responsibilities since a lot of the cities have closed their animal service, and that there were some city/county issues that might need to be addressed. The Board gave consensus for them to do that.
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER STIVENDER – DISTRICT 3
RECREATIONAL FEES CHARGED BY CITIES
Commr. Stivender related that the
County did away with the funding to the cities and came up with an agreement to
let the cities charge their own fees for residents coming in to use their recreational
facilities. She stated that she had
gotten an e-mail from a
Commr. Stewart remarked that it cost $100 to play little league.
Commr. Cadwell thought they would have that discussion that afternoon at the budget workshop.
Commr. Renick stated that there were several e-mails about this issue.
Commr. Cadwell directed the
Commr. Stivender asked if Ms. Hall could find out what the other cities were planning on doing.
Commr. Renick stated that besides
the money issue, they could not handle the number of kids that wanted to play
with the limited number of fields and facilities they had. She related that the $50,000 that they had
originally suggested for the fields at the
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
At 10:20 a.m., the Chairman
announced that the Board would recess until 1:08 p.m. at the
STAFFING LEVEL REVIEW
Ms. Cindy Hall,
Commr. Cadwell stated that in regard to the two internal auditors requested by the Clerk’s office, generally they met with the constitutional officers on those particular issues. He stated that he would like to meet with them and have not had an opportunity to do that yet, to see what the basis was for why they thought they needed that.
Commr. Stivender stated that he spoke to Mr. James C. Watkins, Clerk of the Circuit Court, this morning, who indicated that one auditor was needed for the construction of the expansion, but that he did not need to have two auditors.
Commr. Renick stated that the increased request for auditors might be because the County had increased their requests.
Commr. Cadwell commented that the third position on Page 1 for a Senior Planner might be one that they could put off.
Commr. Renick stated that the Environmental Technician position was one they had discussed that would be needed for the Public Lands Acquisition Program, and the second one for an Environmental Specialist was not an additional expense, but it was switched over from Environmental Services to Growth Management. She commented that she did not think they needed to fill a Planning Director position that was currently vacant.
Commr. Stivender commented that the Board had been pushing for the first two positions, so it would be hard for them to back out of them now, but she did not think that the Senior Planner was needed at this time and that they could use existing staff.
Ms. Hall clarified that they were going to eliminate the Senior Planner on page 1, but that they were keeping the first two positions, which were Environmental Technician and Environmental Specialist.
Commr. Hill commented that they had added 23 new positions last year to handle growth, and now was not the time to hire. She also mentioned that she was under the impression that they were only going to hire for positions having to do with fire and safety.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he wanted to find a way to add the functions that were listed on pages 1 and 2 without adding individuals.
Ms. Hall stated that they could reclassify the positions of the employees that were laid off in the Building Services Department into one of the proposed positions, without increasing the head count.
Commr. Cadwell stated that they were going to give Ms. Hall approval to move forward as far as the Environmental Technician and Environmental Specialist, understanding that they have got to be done using the current vacancies that they had. Also, he noted that they were still working on the Clerk’s position requests. It was also decided that they would eliminate the Anti-Litter Coordinator position in Environmental Services. He commented that with all the money that they were spending on construction and all that was happening, that the Facilities Development positions were important to fund.
Mr. Jim Bannon, Facilities Development and Management Director, noted that the construction budget was about ten times what it was than when he started in his position. He explained that the positions would be for oversight of construction projects. He assured the Board that his department was already very trim, and he was currently only looking for one extra employee to oversee and monitor the contractor, assess pay applications, and make sure that the projects were running smoothly. He reminded the Board that besides the larger downtown projects, there were other projections and projects currently happening, such as the fire station, health department, and the library.
Commr. Cadwell commented that they were going to be spending $180 million on the biggest capital improvement they ever had, and they needed to make sure they had enough people to check up on everything.
Ms. Hall stated that pages 3-6 were related to consultant services, and she had provided the Board with information regarding those, including a recommendation to make a $200,000 reduction to facilities development and management consulting services set aside for future consultancy design services to establish concept ideas, since they were currently caught up in that area.
Commr. Stivender asked if the $75,000 under Economic Growth and Redevelopment was what they approved for the strategic plan.
Ms. Dottie Keedy, Director of Economic Growth and Redevelopment, stated that the $75,000 was to hire a consultant for the annual report that they were required to do for the Development of Regional Impact (DRI) and to do another Notice of Proposed Change to deal with some of the changes in the Industrial Park and to clean up some issues that they had.
Mr. Daryl Smith, Environmental Services Director, explained that the $97,000 consultant fee on Page 5 was for them to oversee the operation of the facility, and it had been in place since they started it.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Jr., Public Works Director, explained that they used the figures from their previous year’s budget for the consultant services to show the Board an example of the type of services that they drew from this account for a variety of consultants for specific services. He noted that they did not include road projects or design projects with Project, Development & Environmental Studies (PD&E) and design work, because that was tied directly to sales tax or impact fees and not taken directly out of that. He commented that they budgeted $180,000 for these expenses, and that similar types of services were going to occur every year, but that they did not know exactly what to expect in every area.
DEPARTMENT OF GROWTH MANAGEMENT
Ms. Hall pointed out that page 8 relating to the Department of Growth Management explained how the Code Enforcement Lien fund worked and how they paid for demolition, as well as an explanation and purpose of the realtor classes.
Commr. Renick asked what the cost was for the realtor classes and questioned whether they were necessary.
Commr. Cadwell commented that before those classes were given, they were getting many calls from citizens asking questions about something their realtor told them regarding property that they had bought or were buying, and that since they started offering those realtor classes, those kind of calls have almost stopped, which he thought was a direct correlation to the classes.
Ms. Carol Stricklin, Growth Management Director, stated that those were less a service to the realtors than to the buying community. Ms. Stricklin commented that if they educated the realtors that were offering properties to the public as to how those properties could be used, it would lessen the most frequent complaints from people who could not use their lot for what they planned or would need a variance. It was also mentioned that there was no cost for the classes, only staff time.
DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY SERVICES
Ms. Hall noted that there were a number of questions asked relating to library videos and DVD’s and how the Mobile Irrigation Lab worked and where the funding came from for that.
Commr. Renick stated that since the Mobile Irrigation Lab was totally grant funded, they did not need to worry about that. She was concerned about the DVD’s in the library budget, however, since there were DVD’s available by mail in the private sector. She thought that the libraries had gotten too much into recreation instead of information and felt that they should cut that part back.
Commr. Hill stated that she agreed, and felt that educational DVD’s were one thing, but she felt that they were in competition with private industry regarding the entertainment ones. She felt that DVD’s could be ordered and were available even in the most rural areas.
Commr. Cadwell asked how that would effect their interlocal agreements with the cities regarding providing an equal level of service.
Ms. Wendy Breeden, Library Services Director, responded that if they did not supply recreational DVD’s and videos, than the cities would have to provide all of that circulation. She also thought that it would increase the intra-library loans, because people would order them from the other libraries. She also pointed out that about 15 percent of the collection budget was spent on DVD’s, but it accounted for over 40 percent of the circulation, so it was getting people into the libraries.
Commr. Cadwell commented that there was a large group of people, especially in the Astor and Paisley area, that were utilizing the library and the DVD’s that would not be easily able to access those in other ways because they may not have a credit card.
Ms. Breeden asked the Board to look
at the demographics of the
Commr. Stewart commented that she would rather students be reading a book than watching a video.
Ms. Breeden stated that the DVD’s brought residents into the libraries, and they did what they could to encourage reading and counter the trend away from books.
There was a consensus that the $43,144 that was budgeted for DVD’s for the County’s libraries be cut out of the budget.
Commr. Renick wondered if they needed five LYNX buses for the Clermont/Downtown Orlando Express, and stated that the data showed that they were averaging about 12 people per bus.
Mr. Ken Harley, Public Transportation Manager, stated that when they entered into the agreement with Lynx, maximum ridership was projected to be about 126 per day, and they were about halfway into their contract with them. He thought that ridership was actually growing.
Commr. Renick stated that it looked like it has leveled off since May, and she did not see any indication that they were increasing beyond that. She thought it worked out to about $40 a person that the County was paying.
Mr. Harley related that the subsidy when starting out with a new system initially was high, but that it has been reduced from $48 per rider to about $24, but as ridership increased, those numbers would drop. He commented that currently this was the least performing routes that LYNX had, but that new routes normally performed extremely poorly initially, especially express service routes, but then they substantially increased as time went on.
Commr. Renick was concerned that all the maintenance was going to fall to the County.
Mr. Harley responded the LYNX was still maintaining the buses as part of their rate structure, but that the cost of the service increased in the second year of the contract.
Commr. Cadwell asked about the funds that paid for this service.
Mr. Harley stated that it came out of the general fund, with a match that the Department of Transportation (DOT) provided. He also mentioned that they might want to look at commuter assistance programs for those people that were utilizing the LYNX service right now, which would be a lot less expensive for the County.
Commr. Renick commented that the
LYNX ridership was good in the
Commr. Cadwell directed Mr. Sandy
Mr. Minkoff explained that they could cancel or renegotiate within 120 days.
Commr. Stivender commented that the Lakexpress program was continuing to grow, and thought that the Public Transportation Specialist position listed on page 10 was needed to help with that as well as the Transportation Disadvantaged. However, she thought that existing staff could be used for the Office Associate position that was listed.
Mr. Harley stated that since they received federal funds, there were a lot more federal requirements that were associated with that, and that in February or March of 2008, the federal government would be coming to look at their system and all of their documentation to ensure that they were running the program in accordance with all of the federal guidelines that they were required to adhere to. He further explained that some of those things they still needed to put in place, and there was a lot of reporting that was required, especially in the national Transit Database reporting, and they needed an office-type person to help with that side of the operation. He also mentioned that they needed a Transportation Specialist, because with the Transportation Disadvantaged (TD) related things, such as the Transit Operation Plan, the monitoring that they had with the Florida Department of Transportation, Commission for Transportation Disadvantaged, agents to health care administration, and other agencies, there were a lot of regulations that they had to adhere to regarding the TD side of it. He commented that currently they were stretched thin and not able to keep up with the demands that were associated with both of those programs.
Commr. Cadwell pointed out that those positions were not in the budget, and including them would be increasing the bottom line as opposed to decreasing it, and he was not in favor of doing that at this time.
Mr. Harley related that they could use 50 percent of federal funds to offset positions that were funded by the Chairman.
Commr. Cadwell stated that the only way he would be agreeable to doing that is if they renegotiated their contract with LYNX and used some of that revenue for the positions, so that it did not affect the bottom line.
DEPARTMENT OF GROWTH AND REDEVELOPMENT
Commr. Cadwell mentioned that the Economic Development Council (EDC) had offered some reductions to some counties of the dues.
Ms. Hall related that the EDC reduced it by ten percent, from $1.10 to $1.00 per capita.
Commr. Renick commented that she realized that this was a valuable service, but that they needed to look at what the other counties were paying.
Commr. Hill stated that
Ms. Dottie Keedy, Economic Growth
and Redevelopment Director, stated that when they revised the contract to
reflect the $1.00 per capita reduction, she would define a scope of services, and
she had a copy of
Mr. Ray Gilley, President and CEO of
the EDC, stated that the fees for other counties ranged from $1.00 for Osceola
to a slight reduction in
Commr. Cadwell stated that they would leave the dues as they were and then would finalize their dues numbers when they went through the budget process.
DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM AND BUSINESS RELATIONS
Ms. Hall, in response to a question
from Commr. Hill, clarified that the Parks MSTU came from the unincorporated
residents, which was the funding source they used to budget the $50,000 for the
Commr. Hill, commented that even though that was in the Clermont area, they were hearing that they could not handle the amount of children in that area, because they were not getting funding from the County.
Commr. Renick commented that these were additional fields that were owned by the training center that they no longer wanted to maintain, and they wanted to partner with the County for the additional soccer fields. Commr. Renick also commented that even the increase in fees did not cover all of Clermont’s costs. She mentioned that they were hanging their hopes on the Conserve II property, and she did not know where they were regarding that.
Commr. Stivender opined that the problem of the shortage of sports facilities was throughout the County.
Commr. Cadwell opined that it was a different level of need on the south end, and they needed to have discussions about either re-opening the discussions on the Conserve II or some other solution. He also mentioned that they would talk about the recreation funding at the end of the meeting.
Commr. Renick asked if there was some of the advertising budget that could be cut.
Commr. Cadwell asked what percentage of their total budget came out of the general fund.
Ms. Hall responded that none of it did, and it was all supported by tourist tax.
Mr. Greg Mihalic, Tourism and Business Relations Director, commented that advertising was a transitory thing, and they were shifting in and out of advertising all the time, depending on the effectiveness it was producing.
Commr. Cadwell commented that they were only looking at the general fund dollars. He asked Mr. Mihalic to explain the two awards that they just won in regards to their advertising.
Mr. Mihalic noted that Information Outreach had just won five awards from their general advertising at the Florida Festivals and Events Association, and they also just won a sixth award for the printing and the design of the citizen’s guide, and commented that they produced world-class and world-quality advertising in house.
OFFICE OF EMPLOYEE SERVICES
Ms. Hall stated that page 17 contained information to answer some questions about the Wellness and Safety Expo, and they had a couple of recommendations to eliminate some funding for speakers on health and safety topics and the Wellness Incentive.
DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES
Commr. Hill asked in order to cover the litigation cost for the leachate deposal, if there was there a way to set aside at least $200,000 for that and separate that out in some way in the budget.
Mr. Daryl Smith, Environmental Services Director, responded that it would probably come out of reserves if they had to face up to a liability for that.
Commr. Hill commented that she wanted to make sure that the cost would be figured in to the total budget for solid waste. She also asked about clothing costs for employees.
Mr. Smith responded that they provided uniforms for their employees, and they had a laundry service where they got replacement uniforms on an ongoing basis.
Commr. Hill asked about the cost for the Loghouse Drop-off and other drop-off sites.
Commr. Renick stated that she would like to budget less and be assured of the cost savings of using some County staff for much of the work, and commented that they did not positively have to have these upgrades this year.
Mr. Smith stated that was correct and that they had actually started to do some work at LogHouse at this point in time, and they could reduce the cost if that was what the Board wanted to do.
Commr. Cadwell asked if those were funded out of the assessment or the general fund.
Ms. Hall answered that it was out of the assessment.
Commr. Cadwell commented that they could discuss that issue when they had discussions about the increases to the solid waste assessment, which was September 11.
DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
Commr. Renick commented that the Board members were big park supporters, but she was concerned about the $85,000 cost for benches and bike racks in a tight budget year and thought they could cut back there. She also asked about the $11,000 cost for the security fencing at Ferndale Preserve.
Commr. Cadwell commented that their parks system was in infancy and that this was just a small amount of what they really needed. He thought that this was one area that they did not need to cut out.
Commr. Stivender stated that they were getting positive feedback from the public, and she also did not think it was an area that needed to be cut out.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Jr., Public Works Director, stated that they needed to get rid of the existing barb wire fence as a condition of the grants, and they needed fencing because of vandalism of the site. He related that this was just one item to secure the site. He assured the Commissioners that Mr. Bobby Bonilla, Park and Trails Director, has done an excellent job spending the parks money to do everything the Board authorized him to do, and the $85,000 was to do the little things on a trail or a park that people were staging events on, bringing the attendance up dramatically. He commented that people were not using their parks two or three years ago, but that now every single covered pavilion of the County’s parks had an event scheduled weekly.
STAFF OR ORGANIZATIONAL MEMBERSHIPS
Commr. Stivender asked if the memberships that were paid for by the County were part of the staff’s employment requirements.
Ms. Hall stated that the memberships that they supported were those that they considered to be beneficial to the County.
Commr. Renick wanted Ms. Hall to go through and evaluate the memberships on the list to determine if they were essential to the job.
Mr. Stivender stated that his department put a management plan in place to determine who could have what memberships.
Commr. Cadwell asked Ms. Hall to re-evaluate and cut at least ten percent.
Commr. Stivender and Commr. Renick recommended that the departments and employees share publications to avoid redundancy, passing it around to other departments.
Commr. Hill suggested cutting the Chambers out of the budget.
Mr. Fletcher Smith, Community Development Director, explained that library services had certain memberships to the Chamber of Commerce as well as the Kiwanis, because that was their way of doing outreach and getting the Chambers to participate in the library events, such as reading and literacy activities.
Ms. Wendy Breeden, Library Services Director, explained that they had one individual membership for Kiwanis for the Library Services Department to co-sponsor a lot of literacy events and other things because of their involvement. She explained that they belonged to three library ones which allow them to advertise their programs in their venues.
Commr. Stivender commented that
Ms. Hall stated that she would be glad to look at that. She also commented that this was the first time a list of this type was compiled, and they would look for things that were duplications or that had always been there and got repeated.
Commr. Hill stated that they had
partnered on a business plan with the City of
Ms. Hall stated that the initial contract when they put this in place was a three-year contract, and after that the cost would start occurring, which they were starting to see for the year 2008. She thought that they could look at a cheaper way to do it.
Commr. Hill commented that it looked like their level of contribution was quite a bit.
Commr. Cadwell commented that they had previously looked into the cost of producing and televising the BCC meetings themselves, and that it evolved into the deal with Leesburg. He stated that they could look back at that deal to see if there was a better way to do it or whether they wanted to do it themselves.
Commr. Hill stated the college might have a different level of what they could do, but she wanted the Board to have a better understanding of the cost and whether that would escalate up. She also wanted them to look at the future scope of the programming and if the state regulations had changed for those channels.
ADDITIONAL MEDICAID FUNDING
Ms. Hall wanted to make sure the Board was aware that they might have some additional costs coming in from Medicaid, and they did not know at this point what that would be. She also stated that she submitted a memo with four additional items that she was aware of that have come up.
Mr. Fletcher Smith, Community Services Director, stated that the state has been shifting more of the Medicaid nursing home costs down to the County. He explained that back in the early 1970’s, the state implemented a cost share where the counties would pay a portion of the Medicaid costs. He related that back then, they locked it in at $55 per month per bed, or ten percent, but since the state was looking at cutting their costs also, they were proposing to increase it to $189. He clarified that this would come out of the general fund.
FUNDING OF OTHER PROGRAMS
Commr. Cadwell commented that the
way he anticipated funding recreation for the cities would be to look at the
money they set aside in the Job Growth Investment Fund, since they did not know
once the new strategy came out whether that was a viable thing to do any
more. He specified that there was $300,000
that was carry-over money from that, some of which he wanted to use to fund
recreation, as well as the
Commr. Renick commented that We Care has had its ups and downs, but that new people who were in place have made it a different program, and she thought it was worth funding. She also thought that they should give the doctors that donated their time some recognition at the end of the year.
Commr. Hill expressed concern about spending the money set aside for economic development.
TRANSPORT OF BAKER ACT CITIZENS
Ms. Hall stated that they had a number of conversations with the Sheriff related to the transport of Baker Act individuals, and related that the Sheriff felt that they could handle evening and weekend transport reasonably well, but wanted the County to take over weekday daily transport. She explained that they had talked with MV Transportation, Inc., who would be able to provide that service for $60,000; and Mr. Ken Harley, Public Transportation Manager, recommended that they hired their own person as the driver for about $37,000 using a vehicle that the County already owned.
Commr. Hill recommended that they look into possibly having retired deputies volunteer to do this.
Commr. Renick expressed concern about the risk of transporting Baker Act citizens.
Mr. Fletcher Smith, Community Services Director, stated that usually the attending physician will sign a clearance stating that the person was no longer a danger to themselves or others before they will release them to be transported.
Commr. Cadwell commented that this needed more research, and the liability was his biggest concern.
FIREFIGHTERS GRANT APPLICATION
Ms. Hall stated that this item was an application for a homeland security grant for additional firefighters that Mr. John Jolliff, Deputy Chief, Fire Rescue Division, Public Safety, had brought forward requesting approval to apply for the grant.
Mr. Jolliff stated that this grant would be for five years, and even though there would be many applications competing for this grant, they would hate to pass up an opportunity to try, and they had 30 days to apply. He also emphasized that the grant was to be used to add to the existing staff.
The Board gave consensus to apply for the Assistance to Firefighters Grant: Staffing For Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant.
OTHER BUDGET ISSUES
Commr. Stivender commented that the Board of County Commissioners had been cutting their budgets, and she was concerned that the Constitutional Officers were not. She stated that she had a problem with the Sheriff’s budget and the fact that he had asked for a 12 percent increase this year, especially since the municipalities were handling their own law enforcement for an increasing area, because of annexations, within their own borders. She thought they needed to ask him to cut back like they had done with the others.
Commr. Cadwell recommended that she let someone from the Sheriff’s office know that she was concerned about that.
LAW LIBRARY LOCATION
Commr. Hill commented that the law library had reduced their book collection and was primarily a computer research venue and a source of legal packets for citizens. She was concerned that the leased space for the law library was very costly. She thought that it could perhaps be divided up between existing libraries at pertinent places.
Commr. Cadwell commented that they had brought that up a few years ago, but there was resistance from either attorneys or judges, but they could look at that issue again.
Commr. Hill opined that less and less attorneys used the law library, because they usually did things by computer now. Also, she commented that citizens were using it mainly for computer research and to buy packets for civil cases, and they asked the librarians to help them through those processes.
Commr. Cadwell asked if the Law Library Board still existed after Article V.
Mr. Sandy Minkoff,
Commr. Hill thought that they might
be able to locate it in the south
Commr. Cadwell stated that they probably needed to call a meeting of the Law Library Board and at least let them know that they were looking at that.
BUDGET CUT DESIGNATIONS
Commr. Cadwell stated that they needed to have a discussion in regards to the $400,000 in cuts that they designated today and whether they wanted all of that to come off the bottom line, leave some in reserve, or some other action. He explained that they needed to direct staff so that they could create the millage. He commented that the millage they were going to create this year would be their benchmark, depending on what else happened. He opined that they should put $100,000.00 in reserves and take the rest off the bottom line, which would be approximately $300,000.00 to $350,000.00.
Commr. Stivender asked what the reserves currently were.
Ms. Regina Frazier, Budget Director, responded that total reserves in the general fund right now were $21,284,908.00, which was lower but in the range of what they historically have kept, and was 11.1 percent.
Commr. Hill commented that she would rather put in all in reserves, because they had a lot of unknowns coming up in January.
Commr. Renick stated that she was leaning towards putting all the cuts towards bottom line, but the reserves were not as high as she had thought they were, so she agreed with Commr. Cadwell’s suggestion.
There was consensus from the Board to put $100,000.00 in reserves and the rest of the cuts toward the bottom line of the general fund.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 3:40 p.m.
WELTON G. CADWELL, CHAIRMAN
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK