A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
january 4, 2011
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, January 4, 2011 at 9:00 a.m., in the Board of County Commissioners’ Meeting Room, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Jennifer Hill, Chairman; Leslie Campione, Vice Chairman; Jimmy Conner; Sean Parks; and Welton G. Cadwell. Others present were: Sanford A. “Sandy” Minkoff, Interim County Manager; Melanie Marsh, Acting County Attorney; Wendy Taylor, Executive Office Manager, County Manager’s Office; Neil Kelly, Clerk of Court; Barbara F. Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance; and Susan Boyajan, Deputy Clerk.
INVOCATION and pledge
Pastor Brooks Braswell from the First Baptist Church of Umatilla gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Commr. Campione requested that the Board have a discussion regarding the EOC (Emergency Operations Center) under her business.
Commr. Cadwell introduced Mr. Mark Starcher from Evergreen Construction Management, who was doing an internship for Lake Leadership that day.
Ms. Melanie Marsh, Acting County Attorney, asked to add a request for a closed session.
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Conner and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board moved to add the request for a closed session to the agenda.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he would vote against putting the EOC discussion on the agenda, because he thought they needed more information and backup about it before discussing that.
Commr. Campione expressed concern that they were incurring architectural design fees at this point and would continue to incur those fees, and if the Board felt that they did not want to continue in the same direction, she felt that they needed to make that decision soon. She believed that they were familiar with the different scenarios and costs that were involved to have that discussion today.
Commr. Hill asked when the next presentation about the EOC was scheduled.
Mr. Minkoff responded that the plan was to have the plans back and the full design in the March-April timeframe.
Commr. Cadwell commented that the fire and EMS workshop on January 11 would be an appropriate time to have that discussion.
Commr. Parks stated that he had understood that no engineering fees have been incurred to date, and he proposed that they could postpone this discussion for one week.
Mr. Minkoff explained that the project is under design, and the contract has been awarded to the architect to do that work.
Commr. Conner believed that this needed a comprehensive presentation which would include looking at an option of downsizing the project using only the federal grant, and he expressed concern about spending money for architect fees for a building that they may not build. However, he was concerned whether that project would be paid for by those federal dollars if they back out of that project or whether the County be responsible to pay for that with local dollars.
Commr. Cadwell opined that the federal government would not give them money if the County does not do what they were expected to do with it.
Commr. Hill suggested that they could postpone this until they could do a full analysis and have all of the parties available that could answer all of their questions, but they should keep in mind that they were using federal dollars for part of it.
Commr. Parks added that he believed that the architects were not so far along in the design process where they came up with schematic layouts and actual engineering which incurred the serious fees for design. He also stated that he believed he could be prepared in one week.
Commr. Cadwell asked whether there would be a discussion about not doing anything.
Commr. Campione stated that she was looking at that as an option as well as the option of using that money for hardening work on the building the County already owns rather than building an entirely new complex.
Commr. Cadwell assured the Commissioners that the state money would be gone after the three-year time period.
Commr. Hill reiterated that they would continue this discussion next week.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Conner, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of August 17, 2010 (Regular Meeting), October 19, 2010 (Regular Meeting), November 2, 2010 (Regular Meeting), November 23, 2010 (Regular Meeting), and December 7, 2010 (Special Joint Meeting) as presented.
CLERK OF COURTS’ CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Clerk of Courts’ Consent Agenda, Items 1 through 5, as follows:
List of Warrants
Request to acknowledge receipt of list of 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.
Notice from Florida Department of Environmental Protection
Request to acknowledge receipt of Notice from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection that it was processing an application for Blackwater Heartwood Salvage and asking that any objections be submitted in writing by January 1, 2011.
St. Johns 2011 Governing Board Meeting Schedule
Request to acknowledge receipt of St. Johns River Water Management District 2011 Governing Board Meeting Schedule to be held at Palatka District Headquarters, 4049 Reid Street, Palatka.
Resolution from City of Mascotte
Request to acknowledge receipt of Resolution 2010-11-439 from the City of Mascotte supporting a revision to the State of Florida DOT Interlocal Agreement for creation of the Lake-Sumter MPO to provide for an increased number of voting representatives in accordance with the results from the 2010 US census, along with transmittal letter of same.
Ordinance from City of Clermont
Request to acknowledge receipt of copy of Ordinance 2010-27-M from the City of Clermont which annexes a vacant parcel of land into the City limits, along with transmittal letter.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Conner and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 3 through 12 as follows:
Economic Development and Community Services
Request for approval and signature of the Amendment to Agreement between Lake County and the District Board of Trustees, Lake-Sumter Community College to provide funding for the Business Resources Center. The fiscal impact is $52,500.
Request for approval of the 2009/10 Consolidated Annual Performance and Evaluation Report (CAPER).
Fiscal and Administrative Services
Request for approval to (1) declare the items on the submitted list(s) surplus to County needs, (2) authorize the removal of all of the items on the submitted lists from the County’s official fixed asset inventory system records, and (3) authorize the Procurement Services Director or designee to sign vehicle titles.
Request for approval of award of term and supply contract 11-0801 for various agricultural chemicals to various vendors for use by various entities as described in the background section provided. Estimated fiscal impact for the County is $50,000.00.
Request for approval to realign EECBG fund budget in accordance with U.S. Department of Energy approval. Approve budget change request. (No fiscal impact).
Request for (1) approval of the Agreement between Property Owner (Ralph Allen Roane, Jr.) (residential) and Lake County for Energy Efficiency Retrofits through the Retrofit Pilot Program (2) Authorization for the County Manager to sign future amendments/modifications to the Agreement that do not involve financial impact. Commission District 3 (Fiscal Impact: The retrofits will be funded by the Energy Efficiency & Conservation Block Grant. Estimated expenditures associated with the commercial and residential retrofits, which will be addressed under an agreement with a contractor, are a total of $9,000.00.)
Request for approval of award of contract 11-0202 for construction of a driveway at Fire Station 109 to Smith Brothers Landscaping in the amount of $59,350.
Request for approval for the County Manager to sign and process the Sales Order and authorize expenditure of Rebanding Reimbursement funds for radio upgrades. The fiscal impact is $26,772.60.
Request for approval and authorization for Chairman to execute satisfactions of lien for the submitted sixteen (16) road assessments. Commission District 2, 3, 4, and 5. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for acceptance and execution of a Sovereignty Submerged Land Easement in the Palatlakaha River in conjunction with the CR 470/CR 48 road project. Commissioner District #3, No Fiscal Impact.
COUNTY ATTORNEY’S CONSENT AGENDA
Commr. Cadwell inquired whether the ordinance only required one hearing.
Ms. Marsh responded that it did require only one hearing, and they would schedule it as soon as they could meet the advertising deadline. She also noted that this would come back to the Board by the end of January or the first of February.
Commr. Conner pointed out that this was to continue the waiver of the transportation impact fees for commercial development another year, which he believed was a positive step to spur some type of commercial development.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Parks, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the County Attorney’s Consent Agenda, Tab 13 as follows:
Request for approval to advertise ordinance Amending Chapter 22 of the Lake County Code entitled Impact Fees to extend the suspension of transportation impact fee collection until March 1, 2012. There is no fiscal impact.
Ms. Susan Irby, Employee Services Director, presented the following employee awards:
Roberto Bonilla, Parks Director, Public Resources/Parks & Trails (not present)
Christopher Cuellar, Firefighter/EMT, Public Safety/Fire Rescue
David Merrill, Employee Services Supervisor, Employee Services
Eric Welhaven, Probation Officer, Conservation & Compliance (not present)
Jack Fillman, Assistant Fire Chief, Public Safety/Fire Rescue
Jason Rivera, Firefighter/Paramedic, Public Safety/Fire Rescue
Tina Smith, Senior Landfill Attendant, Public Works/Solid Waste
Martin Nemecek, Chief Plans Examiner, Growth Management (not present)
Elizabeth Wright, Office Associate IV, Fiscal & Administrative Services
Mr. Gregg Welstead, Director of Conservation & Compliance, presented this 20-year award to Rebecca Holland, Animal Control Officer, Conservation & Compliance/Animal Services and made a brief commentary about her service to the County.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, presented the 25-year award to Michael TerMeer, Senior Landfill Supervisor, Public Works/Solid Waste, commenting on his service to the County.
Mr. Darren Gray, Assistant County Manager, presented the 30-year award to Linda Lorentz, Office Associate V, Fiscal & Administrative Services/Budget, commenting on her service to the County.
consent rezoning agenda
Mr. Brian Sheahan, Planning Director, Department of Growth Management, reported that all of their cases were on the consent agenda today, that there were no changes to the agenda, and that the proof of advertising was shown on the monitor.
The Chairman opened the public hearing regarding the Consent Agenda items.
There being no one who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Conner and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Rezoning Consent Agenda as follows:
Tab 1 – Ordinance No. 2011-1
Rezoning Case No. CUP#01/6/1-1
Charles & Orpha Coward/Linda Ford
Request to revoke the CUP because the mobile home is no longer on the property. (AK#1771595)
Tab 2 – Ordinance No. 2011-2
Rezoning Case No. PH#34-10-5
Lady Lake Mobile Home Park, Inc.
Request to rezone 1.63 acres from Agriculture (A) to Community Facility District (CFD) for an existing wastewater treatment facility associated with the Lady Lake Mobile Home Park.
Tab 3 – Ordinance No. 2011-3
Rezoning Case No. CUP#10/3/2-2A
Lobe/Jewel Court Stables
Lake County Planning & Community Design
Request to approve an amendment to Conditional Use Permit (CUP)#10/3/2-2 to correct scrivener’s errors contained in the legal description of Ordinance #2010-17. All other conditions of Ordinance #2010-17 for the riding stable/academy shall remain in full force and effect.
Tab 4 – Ordinance No. 2011-4
Rezoning Case No. PH#18-10-2
Eagles Landing at Ocoee, LLC/Jack R. Amon
Amon Village PUD
Rohland June/June Engineering Consultants, Inc.
Request to rezone 33 acres from Agriculture (A) to Planned Unit Development (PUD) to facilitate development of a 60 lot residential subdivision at a density of 2.32 dwellings per acre.
COUNTY MANAGER’S DEPARTMENTAL BUSINESS
facilities development and management
Mr. Christian Swenson, Interim Facilities Director, stated that this agenda item was for approval of three projects that were separate but tied together and all centered around an agenda item that came before the Board last year regarding potentially combining fleet facilities at the County-owned property next to the Christopher Ford Industrial Park. He explained that currently the BCC Fleet is housed on Griffin Road in Leesburg in facilities which are quite substandard with a number of problems, and the Public Safety fleet is housed in leased space in Astatula under less than optimal conditions. He recapped that the Board directed them to do a detailed investigation of the County property that they owned, and they met with current fleet staff for both Public Safety and the BCC and determined that they needed approximately 30,000 square feet of space to work together. He related that there were two buildings on that site, which were 31,000 square feet and 9,000 square feet, and they did a cost estimate for the needs of the larger building which determined that it would require enclosing the whole building, repairing the current equipment, adding a fire suppression system, and modifying an area to make some office space for shift supervisors and storage at a cost of $356,589, which included construction work, soft costs, and a landscape buffer. He explained that the buffer to separate the two properties was requested by the homeowner’s association from the adjacent subdivision. He reported that they were proposing to pay for those improvements with general fund dollars as well as fire impact fee dollars.
Mr. Swenson related that the second project had to do with the previously-mentioned 9,000 square foot building which is on the same piece of property, and they are proposing to finish the interior construction that was already started on that building and make 2700 square feet of offices, work areas, and conditioned storage space which would be a complete interior remodel and include HVAC improvements, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, all the finishes, and modification of entrances for proper ingress and egress. He reported that the project costs to do that would be $329,070, which includes $272,070 for construction and $57,000 for the soft costs. He explained that the need for this building was a result of cancellation of a leased space that the County has on Old 441 where the staff is currently operating, which would save close to $60,000 per year. The proposed funds to pay for this would be budgeted funds from the general fund as well as fire fees. He noted that with the facilities gone on Griffin Road due to the demolition of the substandard metal buildings, they would have an empty site with the exception of a 600 square foot block building, which they feel could be salvageable, and add another 1,000 square feet for a public transportation facility which would include four offices, copy area, storage, and conference room, as well as bus parking for the transit system. He specified that it would cost $239,687 to do those improvements for construction and soft costs, and the Public Transportation staff was proposing to use grant funding, which would necessitate the building to be used for public transportation purposes.
Commr. Hill mentioned that soft costs were 20 percent of the total cost which included the permits and contingencies, and she asked how much of that was for permitting.
Mr. Swenson answered that it was roughly about 5 percent, with about 10 to 15 percent for contingency costs.
Commr. Campione asked whether the grant money used on the Griffin Road site would mean that that site would have to be used for public transportation indefinitely.
Ms. Marsh responded that usually it was for a specified period of years, but she would look at the grant to verify that for her.
Commr. Campione commented that she was impressed with the fact that they were actually adding value to the buildings in the Industrial Park by improving them and making them more marketable if they decided to sell these buildings in the future. She also believed it made sense from an efficiency standpoint to have all of those maintenance functions located in one location. She mentioned that she had asked about looking at the possibility of privatizing fleet maintenance, since it seemed to be a cost savings for other counties, and this location was a great central location that could be utilized by a private company that wanted to use it for its own fleet maintenance.
Commr. Conner commented that if they were serious about wanting to privatize their fleet maintenance, he thought that putting several hundred thousand dollars into a facility for fleet maintenance would be premature; however, if the Board did not want to look at that, there is no doubt that the Griffin Road and Astatula facilities were two glaring needs of dilapidated buildings.
Commr. Campione opined that if they seriously wanted to consider privatization, perhaps they should not make this decision today and get an analysis of that over the next 30 days and revisit this issue.
Commr. Cadwell commented that he believed it would add value to the building that would help them dispose of or lease it later on. He added that even though he was a long way from supporting privatization, he did not think this action would keep them from doing that.
Commr. Conner stated that he was in favor of looking at things to attempt to be more cost efficient, and he thought a study of this issue would give them data to compare their operation to what the private sector would do.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Campione and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 14 for the joint fleet facility project, the radio and communication building project, the public transportation facility project and their applicable budgets as well as the necessary budget transfer.
leased fiber customer order agreement with city of leesburg
Mr. Greg Holcomb, Public Safety Communications Technologies Manager, explained that this item for approval of the leased fiber customer order agreement with the City of Leesburg was in support of the last item that they just approved for Tab 14, and he specified that it involved relocating the fiber optics that were in the facility that was already leased through Leesburg to the new facility in Groveland. He noted that there were no other monetary impacts budgeted other than what was shown in the agenda item of $38,472.
Mr. Minkoff added that they were looking at the use of Power One for some of their remote facilities rather than T-1 or fiber lines, and he asked Mr. Steve Earls, Information Technology Director, to bring back a complete report to the Board on how they were doing that.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 15, the Leased Fiber Customer Order Agreement between Lake County and City of Leesburg in support of the Communications Maintenance Facility relocation from the current leased facility to a County owned facility. The fiscal impact is $38,472.
term and supply contract to wagner 3 ventures
Ms. Wendy Breeden, Public Resources Director, stated that they were requesting approval of the award of the term and supply contract to Wagner 3 Ventures for installation of permanent precast restrooms at County parks and public lands for a one-year term and for additional possible year terms. She reported that there has been a bid protest on this award which has been reviewed by outside counsel Lewis Stone, who recommended that the bid protest be denied, and the County Manager also supported that. She explained that the precast restrooms would go in some of their current boat ramp areas in public lands, so they would be using the boating funds and public lands funds for those.
Commr. Campione asked how quickly these restrooms would be installed and whether they would be in a position to open those lands up for public use after installing those.
Ms. Breeden responded that there were six in the budget for this year, and they would be much closer to opening those public lands up. She noted, however, that the Board would have to address how to staff opening and closing them, but they were in the process of looking how to accomplish that.
Commr. Campione opined that she was in favor of making the public lands more accessible, since she believed that people expected to utilize those lands.
Commr. Hill gave the bid protester or his representative an opportunity to comment if he was present, but no one present wished to address the Board.
Commr. Conner commented that he was impressed with the restroom facility the County added at North Lake Park and that it was nicely done, added a lot of value to the park, and was money well spent.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Campione and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 16 to award the term and supply contract 11-0201 to Wagner 3 Ventures for installation of permanent restrooms at County parks or similar properties on an as-required, as-ordered basis, Fiscal impact for FY 2010/2011 is $250,000.
waiver of damages for getford road stormwater project
Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, explained that the reason for this request to waive the liquidated damages on the Getford Road Regional Park and water retention area of $97,888 was that there were problems with the arrangements that were made to haul the dirt from this project off to several locations, resulting in difficulty finding a place for the dirt, and a lot of changes had to be made in that process which took more time than the contract completion time allowed. He commented that they have not had a problem of this size and magnitude since the C-25 job in Lady Lake in 2001 and that economic times usually cause these events. He noted that this problem only really affected the contractor and the County and that they did not entail $97,000 worth of additional work themselves. He also pointed out that the business expressed concern that they would not be able to keep their doors open if they received the $97,888 penalty. However, he wanted to identify those businesses as entities that they wanted to put on notice, as well as show other contractors, that the County wanted their projects to be done on schedule by entailing a penalty of time that they or the subcontractor could not bid on work. He recommended instituting this penalty and waiver of the monetary $97,888 penalty.
Commr Parks commented that the project looks good and prevents the pollution from running into Trout Lake, and he thought that the proposal was fair.
Commr. Campione stated that her understanding was that they had been in discussions with Eustis during the process for utilization of the dirt and trying to work out the details.
Mr. Stivender responded that the City of Eustis was not the initial location, but that ended up being the home for the dirt.
Commr. Campione commented that she believed they came out in a better position from the standpoint of what the public received as an end result of the project and the use of the dirt for the City, and she did not think liquidated or punitive damages of any kind were appropriate, since she did not think that the company did anything wrong.
Commr. Conner pointed out that the company did not honor their contract, and he was concerned about setting a precedent regarding projects going over the scheduled time period. He pointed out that the delay was 76 days, and he was willing to substantially reduce the $90,000, which he believed was harsh, but he believed that there needed to be some sort of penalty for not living up to their contractual obligation.
Commr. Hill noted that the City of Eustis was another entity that asked for the County’s help to utilize the dirt, and there was a benefit and no harm that came to the public as a result of this incident. She stated that she was willing to waive the $97,000, but the 20-month moratorium of not being allowed to bid on County projects would be a good way to get the message across about contract fulfillment.
Mr. Stivender mentioned that the moratorium was reduced from the original penalty of 24 months in order to allow the company to bid on October 1 for the 2012-13 fiscal year projects, and he added that this penalty was much more agreeable to the company than any cash penalty, which they felt would close their doors.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried by a vote of 4-1, the Board approved the recommendation to waive $97,888.00 in liquidated damages to be assessed on the Getford Road Regional Stormwater Pond Project No. 2009-06, Bid No. 09-0825, and to maintain the integrity of contract management, remove Aagaard-McNary Construction, Inc. and State Asphalt Corporation from Lake County’s bidder’s list for a period until September 30, 2012. Within this period, Aagaard-McNary Construction, Inc. and State Asphalt Corporation would not be allowed to bid, or work as a sub-contractor, on any Lake County Board of County Commissioners’ projects. Commission District 4. (Fiscal Impact: None)
Commr. Conner voted “no.”
appointments to sales surtax oversight advisory committee
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Conner and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board appointed the following individuals to the Sales Surtax Oversight Advisory Committee for four-year terms ending 11/19/2014, as follows: Bea Meeks (reappointment - District 2), Herbert Scott Smith (reappointment - District 4), Keith Mullins (reappointment – League of Cities), and Glenn Irby (League of Cities).
appointments to mpo bicycle & pedestrian advisory committee
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the reappointments of Scot Hartle (District 2) and Richard Dunkel (District 4) to upcoming vacant positions on the Lake-Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Committee (BPAC) to serve two-year terms beginning January 1, 2011.
appointment to mpo citizens’ advisory committee (cac)
On a motion by Commr. Parks, seconded by Commr. Campione and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the reappointment of Brian Herman (District 2) and the appointment of William Smalley (District 4) to upcoming vacant positions on the Lake-Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization Citizens' Advisory Committee (CAC) to serve two-year terms beginning January 1, 2011.
appointment of school board representative to zoning board
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the appointment of Jim Miller to represent the School Board on the Lake County Zoning Board to complete unexpired term and the next four-year term beginning February 1, 2011.
REPORTS – COUNTY ATTORNEY
request for closed session
Ms. Melanie Marsh, Acting County Attorney, requested to have a closed session on January 11 at 9:00 a.m.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously, the Board approved the County Attorney’s request for a closed session.
REPORTS – COUNTY MANAGER
discussion about legislative package
Mr. Minkoff reported that they made the changes that were discussed at the meeting last month. He also noted that Commr. Campione pointed out that Tab 2 of the legislative positions requesting funding of a new mobility center for Public Transportation was not really necessary at this time, since they would be doing the bus maintenance at the property at the Industrial Park with the approval at today’s meeting of Tab 14 regarding the fleet maintenance facilities.
Commr. Conner commented that he wanted to see a statement in the legislative packet in support of their schools, although he did not have anything specific to add since the school system has been closed, and he felt that it was important to communicate to their legislative delegation their support for public and charter schools.
Commr. Cadwell mentioned that they might be able to glean something out of the joint statement they had with the Florida League of Cities, Florida Association of Counties, and the School Board Association.
Commr. Conner stated that they had a joint statement that they could include in the legislative packet.
Commr. Campione pointed out that she would feel more comfortable if she knew what legislative positions the School Board was taking to make sure that they were not supporting something that conflicted with the Board’s positions.
Commr. Conner suggested that they approve this as is, and when the Chairman makes a presentation to the delegation, she can determine if she wanted to make a statement regarding the school system at that time.
Commr. Parks commented that he would have liked to have more time to explore the possibility of asking their legislators to expedite permitting and that he would like to have more workshops in the future to explore those issues.
Commr. Campione emphasized that the Commissioners should stay involved and put the pressure on their state legislators to continue to pursue these things and let them know that they are priorities for the Board.
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Legislative Positions for 2011, removing Tab 2 of the package, because it was deemed not necessary at this time since they were going to be doing the bus maintenance at the Industrial Park property.
Burn ban to be issued
Mr. Minkoff related that they would likely be issuing a burn ban later today or tomorrow that would be effective in all of Lake County as they continue to go without significant rainfall, and they would release that to the press to get as much publicity as they could.
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER HILL – chairman and DISTRICT 1
appointment of chairman of tourist development council
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Resolution No. 2011-1 appointing Commr. Cadwell as Chairman of the Tourist Development Council and all of the other appointments listed on the 2011 Liaison/Membership Appointments List.
discussion of county manager position
Commr. Hill suggested that they give the Board some time to reflect, settle in and readdress the issue of hiring a County Manager in six months.
Commr. Cadwell commented that he believed it would be beneficial for them to do that at this time and that it would give the new members on the Board have time to make a true evaluation of the job that Mr. Minkoff was doing. He added that if they were still not comfortable at that time, then they would have an open discussion of what they should do.
Commr. Parks stated that he would rather address the issue in the short term within a week rather than waiting six months, and he believed that it was of the utmost importance to have the right person for the position. He opined that Mr. Minkoff has done a wonderful job in a very tough time.
Commr. Campione commented that she thought they had to move rather quickly on this, because this is the key position in their county government, although she agreed that Mr. Minkoff has done a good job under the circumstances. However, she felt that they had to look for someone that has the qualifications and specific training for the position of County Manager. She was willing to discuss at this meeting or the next meeting ideas for making that happen.
Commr. Conner stated that they needed to make a decision, and asked what her plan was.
Commr. Campione suggested that each of the Commissioners find an appointee from the business community in the private sector that could convene as a committee who has the skills, background, and experience in going through this process of looking for an executive position and does that regularly. She explained that they would come together as a group and make recommendations or suggestions to the Board after about 30 days such as whether they should hire a head hunter or whether the committee would actually conduct a search of their own, individually or collectively. She opined that they should feel comfortable with the recommendations that the group makes if they feel comfortable with the appointees that are asked to serve.
Commr. Conner commented that he supported what Commr. Hill suggested regarding the six month extension, and he felt that 60 days was not enough time to evaluate any employee. He opined that the County has made great progress as an organization from what they were two years ago, including successfully and permanently downsizing government.
Commr. Campione commented that she was not willing to wait six months to revisit this, and she had a vision for Lake County and wanted to move in that direction as soon as possible. She added that their management has done a great job in dealing with the pressure of reduced revenues and economic challenges that have affected the private and public sector, but she already has a clear idea about what she wants in a county manager.
Commr. Conner indicated that he would not support turning this decision over to a committee, and he opined that sometimes being deliberate is wise.
Commr. Parks commented that he was interested in the process that Commr. Campione talked about, which he believed would involve him more in the process.
recess and reassembly
The Chairman called a 15-minute recess at 10:30 a.m.
discussion of county manager position (cont’d)
Commr. Hill announced that she would reluctantly not support the motion to delay the decision for six months, since it would place Mr. Minkoff and the Board in a six-month limbo with the outcome likely to be where they were today, but she would not support the committee approach. She stated that if the Board did move forward, she would support the head hunter approach to help them work through the process and unite them as a team.
Commr. Cadwell made a motion which was seconded by Commr. Conner that the Board not address this until the end of June 2011. The motion failed by a vote of 2-3.
Commr. Hill, Commr. Parks, and Commr. Campione voted “no.”
Commr. Cadwell commented that Mr. Minkoff was the best thing that the County had going for it for a long time, during its worst time.
Commr. Campione stated that she believed they had to move in a positive direction, and they had a choice to make this a positive move and an opportunity to turn a new page and bring in a manager that has specific skills in economic development, has worked in other communities closely with the private and business sectors, and has a lot of budget experience. She suggested that they hire a headhunter firm that had expertise in identifying those candidates that fit the skills, training, and background that they were looking for.
Commr. Conner stated that he did not support hiring a head hunter, and he asked if there was support on this Commission for a natural transition to Mr. Gray as County Manager at some point in time.
Commr. Parks stated that he would support that.
Commr. Campione commented that she was impressed with Mr. Gray in the time that she has worked with him so far, and she opined that he was the kind of candidate that they may be looking for. She also opined that he had a lot of hands-on experience, and she was impressed with his references and recommendations.
Commr. Conner asked whether they could leave things the way they were and move into the transition of what Mr. Minkoff referred to at the retreat, which was to make the transition for Mr. Gray to be the County Manager in the future. He proposed that they leave Mr. Minkoff as County Manager for a period of time, and then evaluate if they are ready to make the transition for Mr. Gray to be County Manager.
Commr. Campione suggested that they put Mr. Gray in as their County Manager and hire a headhunter, putting Mr. Gray in as a candidate, which would give the Board a chance to work directly with him.
Commr. Conner responded that it was not a good business practice to have someone apply for their own job, and he opined that they would be obligated to hire someone out of the area if they use a headhunter. He specified that six months was a reasonable amount of time for the transition that he was proposing to evaluate Mr. Gray’s performance, which he believed was good for the stability of the County. He also commented that a headhunter would bring someone in that none of them knew, which would exclude Mr. Gray from being County Manager.
Commr. Hill had concerns about the proposal to have Mr. Minkoff as the County Manager while having Mr. Gray performing the County Manager’s duties, and she commented that the County Manager and Deputy County Manager had two different responsibilities and duties.
Commr. Conner suggested that Mr. Gray be in charge of economic development.
Commr. Parks opined that it was definitely worthy of consideration, and he suggested that they look at this issue at next week’s meeting.
Commr. Hill stated that she would prefer to wait a week so they could have a discussion. After some dialogue, it was agreed by consensus that this discussion would be postponed until the workshop scheduled for January 11.
reports – commissioner conner – district 3
veterans memorial podium
Commr. Conner stated that they had previously discussed an expenditure of $7500 to sponsor the Metal of Honor podium for the Veterans Memorial in Leesburg, and he pointed out that the budget information for that was in their packet.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Cadwell and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the sponsorship of the Veterans Memorial in Leesburg and the budget transfer for same.
resolution recognizing lake county schools
Commr. Conner explained that he had envisioned the Board approving this and then asking Superintendent Moxley to come to a meeting to have this presented to her on behalf of the Commission.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Resolution No. 2011-2 recognizing the high quality and high grades of the Lake County School System.
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER campione – DISTRICT 4
visioning session at lake sumter community college
Commr. Campione related that they were scheduled on February 1 to have their visioning session at Lake Sumter Community College, and she asked the Board if they would support inviting those who have sent suggestions in and make an open invitation to those who wanted to participate in the session and that they post that on their web site. She noted that rather than just listening to presentations, they would be breaking up into small groups after an initial session, putting a Commissioner with each small group, and work together with the facilitator. She opined that this format lends itself to participation by members of the public and business community.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 11:25 a.m.
jennifer hill, chairman
NEIL KELLY, CLERK