A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
April 19, 2011
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, April 19, 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; Sean Parks; Jimmy Conner; and Welton G. Cadwell. Others present were: Darren Gray, County Manager; Melanie Marsh, Deputy 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 Courtney Vincent and Shannon Treen, Deputy Clerks.
INVOCATION and pledge
Pastor Brooks Braswell from the First Baptist Church of Umatilla gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mr. Darren Gray, County Manager requested to pull Tabs 3 and 4 to reevaluate them and bring them back.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Parks, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of February 15, 2011 (Regular Meeting), March 1, 2011 (Regular Meeting) and March 22, 2011 (Regular Meeting) as presented.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD
No one wished to address the Board.
CLERK OF COURTS’ CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Campione, 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 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.
Revisions to Retail Tariff Rate Schedule
Request to acknowledge receipt of Florida Public Service Commission’s Order Approving Revisions to Retail Tariff Rate Schedule LS-1 Lighting Service; Docket No. 110030-EI; Order No. PSC-11-0177-TRF-EI; Issued March 28, 2011.
City of Eustis’ Comprehensive Annual Financial Report
Request to acknowledge receipt of copy of the City of Eustis’ Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (audit report) for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2010 in accordance with the “Single Audit Act.”
Certificate of Authorized Officer of Covanta Lake II
Request to acknowledge receipt of Certificate of Authorized Officer of Covanta Lake II, Inc. for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2010 stating that it is in compliance with all indenture covenants, pursuant to Section 8.04 of the Loan Agreement dated November 1, 1988 between Covanta and Lake County.
City of Leesburg’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report
Request to acknowledge receipt of Comprehensive Annual Financial Report from the City of Leesburg for Fiscal Year Ending September 30, 2010.
SALES SURTAX COMMITTEE REPORT
Mr. Keith Mullins from Clermont, representing the Sales Surtax Oversight Committee, recapped that back in 2001 Lake County approved a one percent sales tax per a 15 year time period that was to be split three ways between the School Board, the Board and 14 municipalities. He added that a committee was created to monitor the spending of the various government entities and to ensure it was spent the way the voter’s had intended. He reported that the committee last met on March 21 to review the expenditures for the fiscal year ending September 31, 2010, and at that time they asked for clarification of the reports of the cities, School Board and the County. He reported that the sales tax money was being spent how the voters had intended.
Commr. Hill inquired about the lease payments mentioned in the report and whether they were covered within the sales tax.
Mr. Mullins explained that if it was capital equipment and had a five year life span, then it was covered.
Commr. Hill asked about the police video lease mentioned in the report.
Mr. Mullins explained that was for video equipment for the police cruisers.
Commr. Campione asked if it was a requirement to follow through with holding the capital item for a five year period.
Mr. Mullins explained that most of the items were major items like a fire truck or garbage truck and that no one was leasing small items.
Commr. Campione asked if there was a mechanism in place to track the items to see if any were being exchanged or given up prior to that five year period.
Mr. Mullins answered that he was not aware of having such a mechanism in place. He stated that if they got out of the lease early then they apparently did not need the equipment anymore.
Ms. Melanie Marsh, Deputy County Attorney, stated that in order to qualify for the money, the equipment had to survive for at least five years; however there was no requirement that it be retained for the five years. She added that she did not believe the items were being monitored or if they were being kept for five years.
Commr. Conner stressed that the oversight component of the committee was very important because it demonstrated that the funds were being spent in the manner in which the voters approved. He mentioned that a lot of projects had been undertaken because of the revenue received from the sales surtax, suggesting that staff could put together a list of completed projects so citizens could see how the funds were being used.
Commr. Hill mentioned that there was a break down of the expenditures by category however it would be useful to have a list of the completed projects for the next discussion of the extension of the sales surtax.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Campione, carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved to accept the Sales Surtax Committee Report.
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 5 through 12, pulling Tabs 3 and 4, as follows:
Fiscal and Administrative Services
Request for approval for the Board to (1) declare the items on the attached list(s) surplus to County needs, (2) authorize the removal of all of the items on the attached lists from the County’s official fixed asset inventory system records, and (3) authorize the Procurement Services Director or designee to sign vehicle titles.
Public Safety Communications Technologies
Request for approval of the attached Interlocal for the Public Safety Interoperable Communications (PSIC) Grant Program participation with Brevard County in the Florida Regional Domestic Security Task Force, Region 5. No Fiscal Impact.
Request for approval and signature on Resolution No. 2011-51 authorizing the posting of “No Parking On Right Of Way” signs on Loghouse Landfill Road (0835A) in front of the entrance to the landfill facility in the Clermont area. Section 11 Township 2, Range 25, Commissioner District 2.
Request for approval and signature on Resolution No. 2011-52 authorizing the installation of the "STOP" sign on Henry Street (7465) at the intersection with Church Street and Ball Park Road in the Umatilla area, Commissioner District 5, Section 24, Township 18, Range 26.
Request for approval and signature of Resolution No. 2011-53 to advertise public hearing for Vacation Petition 1165 to vacate a side yard easement in the Montverde area. No fiscal impact, Commission District 3.
Request for approval to award to Eau Gallie Electric, Inc., Melbourne, FL for two generators with light sets to support Public Works, Road Operations daily operations. Fiscal Impact $73,436.00.
Request for authorization to release a maintenance bond in the amount of $144,324.21 posted for Hartle Road Realignment. This project is located in Commission District 2. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for authorization to release a maintenance bond in the amount of $202,647.29 posted for Steve’s Road Phase III. This project is located in Commission District 2. There is no fiscal impact.
neighborhood stabilization program update
Ms. Cheryl Howell, Housing Division Director, showed a PowerPoint presentation giving an overview of the Neighborhood Stabilization Programs (NSP) I and III reporting that Lake County received $3.1 million in 2009 for NSP I and the same amount has been allocated to Lake County for NSP III. She added that the NSP partnered with Community Based Organizations (CBOs) to acquire and rehabilitate foreclosed or abandoned homes in the targeted areas of Clermont, Eustis and Leesburg defined by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). She stated that with the NSP I funds, 33 properties were purchased, 19 units were sold, and three rental units were currently being rented. She noted that with the NSP III program, the initial funds would be used to acquire 17 homes for purchase and eight to twelve units for low income rental. She stated a Request for Proposal (RFP) would be sent to interested developers who had the experience they were looking for and a history with the County. She added that since HUD approved which areas were eligible for the program, if they realized the initial areas were not selling, they could then submit an amendment to HUD to exchange those areas out. She related that by administering the program internally, the County has saved over $200,000 and would therefore have more control over purchases, spending and change orders. She noted the funds for NSP III would come back to the County and an annual cycle would then be created so the money would be redistributed to the agencies that were performing well. She stated that the rehabilitation standards would follow the Department of Community Affairs Building Code for NSP and would make energy saving measures when possible, such as replacing products and appliances with water efficient and Energy Star appliances. She reported $799,896.25 would be set aside to fund the low income rental housing as it was not expected that those families would be able to purchase homes through mainstream banks. She stated the acquisition and rehabilitation for low income rental housing was to purchase and rehabilitate three single family homes and an eight to twelve unit complex in which the developer would be responsible for ownership and management of properties. She reported that the budget for the low moderate and median income homes was $2.079 million and was projected to purchase 17 single family homes. She added that the coordination of all activities would be carried out by NSP staff, the Community Services Housing Division would subscribe to information on foreclosed properties to aid in identifying properties in the elected areas, they would work with the County agencies to identify distressed properties and the developer would maintain the properties until sold. She reported that the total administration budget for the project was $319,958, however, with the program income that would come back in with the annual cycle, 10 percent of that could be used for administration.
Commr. Campione asked if the administration budget of $319,958 would be enough to cover the administrative costs.
Ms. Howell replied “yes” and stated that the NSP III program was projected to have the impact of between $11 and $12 million over an eight or nine year period and after that period, the funds would be completely used up. She noted that after two years, the program should see income coming back in therefore 10 percent of that income would also fund administration. She added they were looking to bring on one additional staff member for the NSP program, so those funds were going to cover some soft costs and staff costs.
Commr. Cadwell stressed that the program itself needed to be sustainable since there was no other way to fund it.
Ms. Howell replied that they understood that and had looked at the program over a three year period and were aware that the counties did not have money to fund the program.
Commr. Campione asked if HUD’s decision on approved areas could be appealed because she was concerned about the areas in Mascotte and Groveland since there were many homes in foreclosure and opined that those areas should be a major focus point.
Ms. Howell answered that they could appeal HUD’s decision, however there were strict timelines to expend those funds. She added that the NSP I program income was still there and they could meet with the partner agencies and encourage them to observe those areas to see if they could move into those areas.
Commr. Campione asked where the program fit in to the mortgage programs that the County already offered, like Affordable Housing by Lake, and whether that program put the mortgage in place and provided for the repayment back to the County or to the partner.
Ms. Howell answered that she anticipated most participants would go through the mainstream vendors listed on the approved vendors list.
Commr. Campione questioned whether a business plan had been created and if the market of that area had been reviewed to make sure that selling those properties was actually attainable.
Ms. Howell remarked that they did look at the market as well as a number of different resources but noted that this information was not necessarily current anymore because once the data had been gathered, the information was a day late. She also commented that they could be more reactionary now since they had more latitude with the NSP I funds.
Commr. Campione asked if she would be tracking all of the purchases.
Ms. Howell clarified that they would be approving any purchase orders, acquisitions and change orders prior to reimbursement and would train the partner agencies prior to the program start.
Commr. Campione asked how the amount of the developer fee was decided.
Ms. Howell replied that the amount was decided by HUD.
Commr. Campione expressed her concerns about how the partners who were receiving the funds were selected since it was mentioned before that typically the companies that were hired were established and had a history. She mentioned that there might be businesses out there who would like to provide that type of service and wanted to make sure that those businesses were not precluded and added that those companies could be just as competitive as the companies who had been historically doing that.
Commr. Cadwell stressed being mindful during the selection process to make sure to choose companies with a background in those types of programs and that the selection should not be exclusive to the partners they had now.
Ms. Howell explained that it should be a competitive process since it would be the most beneficial and that the RFP would clearly define what requirements they were looking for. She added that they were not looking to exclude anybody in the process; however, they wanted to make sure that those organizations had a track record of working with those types of funds and would have a good understanding of the program. She stated that there was not a lot of time to spend on the process since there was a two year period to spend the funds.
Commr. Campione asked if Ms. Howell could bring them periodic reports and pictures of the properties that had been purchased and rehabilitated.
Mr. Darren Gray, County Manager, stated that was something that he and Ms. Howell had discussed previously and thought it would be great to receive periodic updates to the Board on how the program was doing.
Commr. Cadwell requested that Ms. Howell also give the Board a copy of the GIS map where the areas were located.
Ms. Howell stated she would get that information that day and she would be glad to come back and report on the program because she felt that was a great opportunity for the residents of Lake County.
Commr. Hill remarked that it seemed as if HUD had used data from the past to determine the areas in need, yet those areas may have already been impacted.
Commr. Cadwell mentioned that the difference in that program was they wanted to focus on and make a big impact on a whole community rather than targeting a few areas here and there.
Ms. Howell commented that realtors and specialists should be used to help determine which neighborhoods were of greatest need. She also mentioned with hopes of capitalizing on the NSP I program income they could use smart strategies with the NSP III program so that it was successful.
Commr. Hill noted that once the new census was adopted, they could then go back to HUD and show them which areas were truly in greatest need and they might be more willing to shift into those areas.
Ms. Howell agreed and added that HUD was constantly moving and changing rapidly.
Commr. Campione expressed concern that if things changed and funds were not available long term, they keep that in mind as the program was being administered; however, if the funds continued to come in and were being used for the designated purpose then the program was a success.
energy efficiency and conservation block grant
Ms. Amye King, Growth Management Director, recapped that the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) was a $2.8 million grant given to Lake County from the U.S. Department of Energy and related that she received great news about the County being a model for the grantees to follow.
Ms. Lori Barnes, Sustainability Planner, showed a PowerPoint presentation and provided a quarterly update on the EECBG. She stated that they have been working with Reynolds, Smith, and Hills, Inc. (RS&H) on a participation and efficiency study and design and operation of the rebate program, which was a socioeconomic evaluation that identified a target market for the rebate program and a geographic target area. She reported that RS&H reviewed 50 Energy Conservation Measures (ECM) and focused on maximizing energy cost savings and greenhouse gas reduction and identified areas where rebates and tax incentives could benefit the citizens. She noted 13 programs were recommended, four for the commercial sector and nine for the residential sector. She pointed out that they were currently working on refining the application process and forms for the rebate program and planned to encourage participation of the program by allowing individuals to apply for as many of the different ECM rebates as they were interested in. She reported that in the pilot program, individuals were selected randomly last year and Progress Energy visited both sites and recommended which areas were best to invest the EECBG dollars in, with Mark Cook Builders from Leesburg completing the improvements. She noted that they were working with Carbon Solutions America and Global Five on their marketing program, and those companies would come to make a presentation on the Comprehensive Marketing Program in June. She added that their energy efficiency conservation strategy was to reach out regionally and collaborate with other agencies including the Central Florida Energy Efficiency Alliance, the Kilowatt Crackdown Challenge, utility companies, and Energy Star in order to maximize the return on investment for the public and to market their rebate programs. She reported that they were collaborating with Lake Sumter Community College (LSCC) through an education sub grant and worked with the Home Builders Association (HBA) to develop the course curriculum to identify areas that would help existing contractors break into the green building industry. She noted that the college already offered their first course, resulting in 11 new certified agents from Lake County businesses who passed the Florida Green Building Certification Exam. She stated that they were also working with Lake Technical Center who hired a part-time instructor to give photovoltaic and solar thermal courses, as well as became qualified to provide the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners Exam. She added that the Department of Education was having a Policy Conference in May in Washington, DC and out of about 15 communities nationwide who received the EECBG funds, Lake County was nominated for their education sub grants, and they were hopeful that the County would be selected.
Mr. Richard LeBlanc, Staff Architect, continued the presentation and recapped that in 2005 the Board established a resolution to make sure all new County buildings were sustainably conscious. He announced that the second LEED certified building was 320 West Main Street which was currently occupied by the Property Appraiser and Tax Collector and the glass plaque would be presented in that building as soon as possible.
Commr. Conner asked if the certification happened after the building was built.
Mr. LeBlanc answered that the building was awarded the certification one year after construction.
Commr. Conner inquired whether the building was originally designed to become LEED certified or if it became certified as part of the grant.
Commr. Hill stated that the intent was to make the building LEED-like and to use as many energy efficient aspects as possible. She added that they did not set out for a LEED platinum because that would have added 10 percent to the overall cost of the building.
Commr. Conner pointed out that one of the reasons the School Board did not go through the formal process of becoming LEED certified was because of the expense. He asked if they were able to go through the process of getting that building LEED certified because of the grant.
Commr. Campione stated that they were able to become LEED certified because they had access to have someone come in and certify that those benchmarks qualified.
Commr. Conner asked what the total amount was that was spent to get the building LEED certified.
Mr. LeBlanc replied that it was about three percent of the construction costs, which were $3 million, and $20,000 for the architect services.
Commr. Parks clarified that the amount was for the extras built in to the project that made it LEED certified and not the amount spent to get the actual certification.
Commr. Conner added that it cost a lot more than that to get LEED certified when building a school, so it showed good stewardship on the Commission to build that LEED certified and actually receive the certification without costing a lot of money.
Ms. Barnes related that they were hoping to identify other county facilities that might qualify for LEED or Energy Star certification and were currently working with their consultant to collect utility data for county facilities for calendar year 2009. She added that the benchmarking of the facilities would be an ongoing effort, and by identifying the cost savings of the improvements, they could set aside those monies into a sustainability fund so that those types of programs and energy efficiency upgrades to county buildings could continue. She noted that the design of the performance contracting approach and the sustainability fund were in progress and they expected to have some recommendations for retrofitting county facilities by the end of the month. She reported that they were developing a scope for a Request for Proposal to identify a consultant or an inspection contractor to assist with the quality inspection program attached to the rebate program. She noted that the Public Works Engineering Department was working on traffic signal synchronization improvements and they anticipated completion that summer. She related that Public Works was considering a pilot program called a closed loop IT system that would minimize travel and costs associated with maintenance of the signals farthest away and would look at the grant to see if they could use any of those funds. She reported that they were about to initiate the recycling study to identify opportunities to expand upon the recycling operations and added that Public Works Administration decided to eliminate the expansion of the sorting line equipment at the landfill from the grant activities.
Commr. Conner asked if they were working with the Solid Waste Alternatives Task Force so that they were all going in the same direction.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, answered “yes” and stated that some of the changes made were based on their own decisions and discussions with the Task Force.
Ms. Barnes reported that the Greenhouse Gas Reduction activity involved a Landfill Gas Feasibility Study and their consultant, Shaw Environmental, worked on data collection and the program was moving forward very well. She noted that the Renewable Energy Technologies involved a solar pilot program where they selected the Horticultural Learning Center as the site and had TLC Engineering help with the Solar Feasibility Study to look at options for powering the building with solar. She added that it was possible to achieve a net zero building, meaning that all of the power for that building could be provided through solar. She commented that they were moving forward with the design and construction and planned to use a new technology called amorphous silicon. She showed a slide illustrating the expenditures and the EECBG fund balance as of March 31 and added that they would be tracking job creation through the rebate program and expected those numbers to increase once the program was well established. She related that in May they would bring a budget realignment to the Board to address the elimination of the recycling activity and would reallocate those funds to other needed projects and added that the marketing program would commence in June.
Commr. Hill asked if the grant was allowed to be amended since the recycling activity was eliminated and stated that she did not want to have to refund any of the money.
Ms. Barnes explained that according to their DOE Project Officer, they were not required to submit a formal amendment as long as they could provide substantial reasoning and could commit to not increasing the volume of waste to the landfills and added that they were allowed to reallocate funds across activities as needed based on request for proposals coming in lower or higher than expected from the original budget.
Commr. Parks asked if the grant could be used to conduct the waste stream study.
Ms. Barnes responded that the recycling study in effect was a waste stream analysis specifically geared toward identifying areas to expand upon recycling opportunities and reduce the volume of waste that was going into the landfills. She added that the original Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy identified Styrofoam as a particular area to investigate; however they would look at all types of waste.
Commr. Conner asked when the solid waste aspect of the grant would end.
Ms. Barnes answered that they were currently working on getting a task order approved for one of their continuing services consultants to initiate the study, and they expected the study to begin no later than the first part of May and indicated it would be completed in eight weeks.
Mr. Stivender added that the time frame worked well with their schedule, and they would like to have a workshop with the Board regarding solid waste some time in July or August.
Commr. Conner asked how the study coordinated with the Solid Waste Task Force.
Mr. Stivender commented that their completion date was the end of May so their report should be completed by late summer.
Commr. Campione asked if the sorting equipment could be sold.
Mr. Stivender responded that their intention was not to increase revenue from taxes and to sell off what they could at the appropriate time in the market and bring that revenue back for other needs at the landfill.
Commr. Parks expressed that the nomination for the education sub grant was good news and that it was important to keep the collaboration with the Home Builders Association.
Ms. Barnes noted that they were very pleased by the nomination and felt it was an attestation to working with LSCC and Lake Tech to design the sub grants to be able to offer those kinds of programs. She added that when they initiated the marketing program and the rebate program, they would have public meetings and invite contractors to encourage them to use the rebate program to market their services.
Commr. Campione asked for clarification on the International Energy Conservation Code and how it related to the Florida Building Code.
Ms. Barnes answered that the Florida Building Code Commission was currently planning to incorporate updated energy standards into the Florida Building Code that year. She added that funding with the grant had been set aside to help bring the inspectors and architects in the building community up to date on the changes associated with that new Energy Code.
Commr. Campione asked if they would consider using LSCC, Lake Tech and the HBA as a way to notify the inspectors and architects of the changes.
Ms. Barnes answered that they would work with the HBA to get the word out about the program; however, the Building Department had a consultant in mind who regularly handled code training that they would use to implement the program.
Commr. Parks questioned if most of the costs of LEED certification were labor related.
Mr. LeBlanc answered “yes” and stated that the $20,000 was for services of the architect, but they were not using the architect to get the certification; they were just implementing sustainable consciousness in all of the building designs and added that some of the upgrades to the system cost about $90,000.
Commr. Campione stated that she would like to see hard numbers and know exactly how much money was being saved by taking certain measures and added that she was excited to hear about the Horticultural Learning Center using solar energy and hoped it could be a great model for other buildings in the county. She also asked if the County had to match the funds from the federal government in order to be a participant in the program.
Ms. Barnes explained that the EECBG had two different types of grants, one was an entitlement grant that was provided to communities that met certain population and geographic area criteria, and the second was a competitive grant for communities who did not qualify for the entitlement grant, and though some communities did provide matching funds in order to improve their chances of selection, Lake County qualified for the entitlement grant and did not need to match any funding.
Commr. Campione asked what jobs would be created once the rebate program was up and running.
Ms. Barnes answered that they anticipated being able to report job retention and creation in accordance with the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act calculation and explained that it was based on the number of hours invested for which the EECBG funds were used as payment.
Commr. Campione asked if she would be the tracking that information.
Ms. Barnes answered “yes” and stated that it was a requirement as part of the quarterly reporting to federalrecovery.gov and the Department of Energy.
recess and reassembly
The Chairman announced that there would be a 15-minute recess at 10:26 a.m.
tindale-oliver & associates, inc.
Mr. Gray addressed the Board, stating that Lake County retained the services of Tindale-Oliver & Associates, Inc. to prepare the fire and rescue assessment fee study for the County. He added that the fire rescue assessment program was last updated in 2008, and they were there to present the draft report results and methodology to the Board prior to submitting a final report. He noted that no action would be required that day, and he would bring the fire funding discussion back at the May budget workshop.
Ms. Nilgün Kamp, Associate Principal, gave a PowerPoint presentation regarding the fire assessment update study, noting that it was last updated in 2008 and was based on 2006 incident data and the fiscal year 2008/2009 proposed budget. She related that there were two primary purposes of the study, one was assessment methodology which determined the assessable budget including only expenses related to fire protection and first response and could not include advanced life support (ALS). She added that the second purpose was to distribute the cost in an equitable manner among the land uses. She described the steps involved when calculating rates. She stated that the first step was to come up with an assessment factor which measured the portion of the budget that could be funded with fire assessment. She then reviewed the chart for incident distribution and noted that ALS made up about 20 percent of the budget, therefore 80 percent was used for the assessable budget. She stated that the second step was to determine an assessable budget by reviewing the expenses, then subtracting any dedicated revenues and adding assessment related factors. She showed a few charts for the expenses, revenues and assessment related factors and noted that for the review of expenses the assessable budget was brought down to $16.5 million, the dedicated revenues made up $462,000 and the assessment related factors added up to $928,900 for a total of $16.9 million; however they expected to only receive $16.4 million. She stated that for the third step, once the budget was determined, they had to distribute that among land uses and looked at only the non-ALS incidents for multiple years and noted that residential land use was higher in frequency than the non-residential land uses; therefore more of the costs were allocated to residential. She then summarized the fourth and fifth steps and indicated that compared to the previous study, the percent for all of the land uses went down, and compared to the adopted rates, the residential land use increased whereas the rest went down.
Commr. Parks asked if there was a way to break it down by location of the fire stations since there might be a higher cost to provide the service in some areas than in others and if they had ever done assessments like that.
Mr. Steve Tindale, Chief Executive Officer, responded that the cost per call would vary drastically depending on the number of people per station and added that they do have counties who have dramatically different MSTU’s and millage rates for different districts.
Commr. Hill commented that she was surprised that fire was still 80 percent of the budget.
Ms. Kamp stated that most studies only reviewed fire and not first response, and they separated them because legally they were allowed to charge for first response.
Commr. Hill asked if it was legal to change any of the percentages.
Ms. Kamp replied that it was legal to change them across the board but not to pick and choose venues.
Commr. Hill commented that there were a lot of brush fires that happen in non-residential areas and it was a high cost to the County to fight those types of fires.
Ms. Kamp responded that there were jurisdictions that charged vacant land separately and if interested they could try to look at that separately.
Commr. Campione added that because of the brush fires that do happen in rural areas of the County this was something that should be taken into consideration because even though the assessment charge would change, there were costs involved for the County.
Commr. Hill asked if that type of category could be addressed within the MSTU since it would be assessed county wide.
Mr. Tindale added that was really a matter of policy, and it was an extensive process to tag the property to determine which type of property it was and whether it was vacant or not. He stated that the current policy was to not go through that process however if the decision was made to start doing that then there would need to be a change in the reporting processes and they should use a specific assessment for the vacant property.
Commr. Cadwell commented that they looked at this years ago and realized that the costs associated with that process was not worth it once they saw what the return would be. He also added that he thought the report was good news for the Commercial, Industrial and Hotel/Motel/RV parks and it would be well accepted in the community.
Commr. Campione noted that this would be an eight dollar per year increase for residential.
Commr. Parks clarified that the increase was not effective today and they were not deciding on that today.
Commr. Campione noted that if they did not go with the added eight dollar per year for residential, then the industrial and commercial assessment would have to be lowered proportionately.
Commr. Parks commented that if the assessment changed, it could be made up for with the MSTU.
Mr. Gray added that the MSTU was based on ad valorem, and it could be used for any fire related service.
Mr. Gray commented that Tindale-Oliver worked really hard putting this study together and that this data was the best they have had in a very long time. He added that the fire department was doing better about documenting all of their calls which helped when looking at what was spent for the assessment money versus the MSTU money and this could be used to check them in future years to make sure they were on track.
Commr. Parks stated that the other side of this was to reduce the cost as much as possible yet still have an efficient fire service.
Mr. Gray asked if it would be more conservative to go to a 75/25 split on the assessment rather than the 80/20 split.
Ms. Kamp responded that there was a yearly review for the program to see if anything was out of line and to see which areas needed to be looked at.
Mr. Gray added that they should look at lowering the assessment and increasing the MSTU to make sure they were not using assessment money for other purposes.
Commr. Campione asked if Tindale-Oliver would be able to bring back another report with the new 75/25 allocation.
Ms. Kamp responded that this was just a draft report so they could make any needed changes.
Mr. Gray pointed out that they were currently working on a couple of scenarios based on the report and would present those options at the Budget Workshop. He added that they wanted to make sure the citizens would not be paying any more taxes than they were currently.
sr 50 project development & environment study
Amy Sirmans, FDOT Project Manager, stated that they were giving an update since the January meeting, adding they had met with and received input from residents, the Lake Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) staff, County staff and City staff and would be going to the Public Alternatives Meeting on May 12.
Ms. Lynne Marie Whately, Consultant Project Manager, showed a PowerPoint presentation and recapped that this project was the State Road 50 Realignment Project in Groveland, with project limits of about 2.1 miles long from CR 565 (Villa City Rd) to CR 565A (Montevista Rd) and that they were looking at realigning to the north side of downtown Groveland. She added that the intent of the project was to move some of the heavy truck traffic in downtown to a new alignment so that the city could do some redevelopment to their downtown. She related that SR 50 was policy constrained, so at a maximum it would be a new four lane roadway. She stated that they would be evaluating stormwater management, the environmental impacts as well as the impacts associated with neighborhoods and businesses. She noted that on January 20 they had a kickoff meeting, and the key feedback they received was to remove heavy truck traffic, but the local business owners wanted them to do their best to still keep some traffic in Groveland. She stated that they were looking at two alternatives, the realignment option and the truck route option. She illustrated slides for the two options and described each scenario. She added that a downside of the realignment concept with one way traffic was that there were two traffic signals on SR 33 where the distance between them was pretty close possibly causing trucks to stack up. She noted that the two way traffic option would be very similar, but with the addition of a roundabout or traffic circle at the eastern end of downtown that could convert the one way traffic to two way traffic. She stated that for the truck route options there would be an intersection at SR 50 and SR 33, and trucks or travelers that wanted to continue on through would make a right hand turn and continue on around town. There would be a straight connection right into Groveland for travelers that wanted to continue into the city. She also added that the truck route option would work either way, remaining as one way or converting to two way streets. She showed a few slides detailing the options for the South Lake Trail and noted that currently the trail was being planned along Crittenden Street, but the City was considering whether to bring it into downtown or to move it to be with the new realignment. She mentioned that the Alternatives Public Meeting was scheduled for May 12 where they would be presenting those alternatives and the options for the trail.
Commr. Cadwell questioned if any of these trail options had been narrowed down or if she was going to present all of them at that meeting and if they were learning towards two way or one way streets.
Ms. Whately stated that she would present all, however the impression they had currently was that they liked the Orange Street option and added that three of the commissioners were leaning towards two way streets. She noted that there was a project website available and the information presented at the meeting would be on the website which is www.sr50groveland.com. She mentioned that after the public meeting, they would refine the alternatives, continue with the environmental evaluation and look at going to a public hearing at the end of the year with hopes of wrapping up the project early to mid next year.
Mr. T.J. Fish from Lake Sumter MPO wanted to thank the Board because if the County had not taken the lead and funded the study, they would not have been moving so quickly to a solution for Groveland.
Commr. Hill stated that she would like to see their input on the safety aspect of the trail.
Ms. Amy Sirmans added that they did meet with the Bicycle/Pedestrian Committee to get their feedback and also wanted to thank everyone for their support.
Commr. Campione expressed concerns that she heard from business owners in that area about what those changes might do to their visibility and added that she wanted to make sure that was kept in mind throughout the process. She also commented that it might be worth looking into having the commercial businesses shift their land uses over to the new aligned area.
Commr. Hill stated that change was difficult and added that the construction phase would be inconvenient and would hurt financially, but they should look at the bigger picture, and in the end everyone should be very pleased.
Commr. Cadwell commented that there were many ways to recreate their downtown and promote their businesses, but they would have to think differently than they had before.
Commr. Hill noted that there was a Community Redevelopment Area (CRA) in place that would help some of those property owners reconvert and reinvent themselves.
COUNTY MANAGER’S DEPARTMENTAL BUSINESS
cr 33 corridor pd&e
Mr. Greg Moore, Project Manager with Dyer, Riddle, Mills & Precourt, Inc. (DRMP), showed a PowerPoint presentation of the CR 33 Corridor Project Development Environmental Study update. He stated that the study limits started at SR 50 and went approximately three miles north up to Simon Brown Road. He noted that the historical growth in that area was impressive and reported that the 2010 census data stated there had been a 90 percent increase in population since 1990. He added that they were predicting the traffic to increase as well and projected in 2019 there would be an increase of about 126 percent based on the model year of 2009. He stated that the project would also provide a connection between the South Lake Trail and the West Lake Trail, which was part of the County’s Master Plan that was more of a long term vision but was included in that project. He showed a slide that referenced Mascotte’s plan of using property owned by the city to have a future park at the intersection between CR 33 and SR 50 and added that they were also talking about a future city hall and a fire station. He explained that the study process was a blend of public involvement, engineering and environmental analysis and planning to come up with concepts that were publicly acceptable, environmentally sensitive, technically sound and affordable. He stated that public involvement was the most important part of the process and added that they held public meetings as well as several stakeholders coordination meetings. He mentioned that the notification techniques that were used went beyond the normal requirements for a PD&E project and added that they used postcard mailings which cut costs of postage and reached more citizens. He noted that they also advertised in newspapers and sent letters to elected and appointed officials and created a project website which is www.cr33study.com. He then described the recommended improvements and noted that they viewed the project in three segments: SR 50 to Underpass Road, Underpass Road to Pebble Rock Road and Pebble Rock Road to Simon Brown Road. He stated that the existing intersection on SR 50 had both safety and operational challenges, noting there was a speed issue and crash history as well. He related that the option settled on would make SR 50 to Underpass Road a four lane facility and to provide a trail connection on one side and sidewalk on the other. He added that option would not cause any relocations or business displacements since the key to that project was to try to eliminate any kind of severe impacts like that. He related that the central segment of Underpass Road to Pebble Rock Road would become a two lane divided facility with a planted median, and left turn lanes with the trail on the left side. He stated that with the northern section of Pebble Rock Road to Simon Brown Road, they decided to provide a three lane section with sidewalks on both sides, which would best accommodate the large number of residents in that area. He then showed a slide of the summary of impacts of the project, noting a total cost of $9.47 million, and reported that there were no appreciable or environmental concerns. He summarized some of the enhancements to the corridor, mentioning the trail connections and the bicycle/pedestrian improvements. He noted that the City might be able to receive some grant funding, so they could incorporate that as the project moved forward. He explained that the City approved all of those recommendations, and the project phasing would start with the section of SR 50 to Underpass Road, which was about one-third of a mile, since that area had the greatest need for improvement.
Commr. Parks asked if the City owned the park and how many acres it was.
Mr. Moore replied that the property was currently City owned, and he was not exactly sure how many acres it was but would get that figure.
Commr. Parks asked if there was a master plan for the park.
Mr. Moore answered that there was, and the plan was to implement just the park, the parking area and the loop trail around the property, and eventually it would become the City Hall complex and a fire station, but that plan would most likely be further down the road given the economic climate. He added that the trail connection in the South Lake Trail had not yet been extended from Groveland, and he did not know whether the City’s park would be done first or the extension of the trail.
Commr. Parks asked if there was room for active recreation like ball fields.
Mr. Moore stated that the only things he saw on the site were a parking area, a picnic pavilion and some basic amenities.
Mr. Jim Stivender mentioned that was one of the last PD&Es that had been funded through impact fee programs and stated that they had some funds left over that they could look at in the fall to see if they could fit in some other recommendations. He added that Mascotte had been a very good partner with that project and recommended approving the resolution.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Parks, carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Resolution 2011-01-440 from the City of Mascotte for completion of the CR 33 Corridor Project Development Environmental Study (PD&E).
REPORTS – COUNTY ATTORNEY
bp oil spill lawsuit
Ms. Melanie Marsh, Deputy County Attorney, reported that there was a federal lawsuit in Louisiana regarding the BP oil spill in the gulf where the Judge there issued a pretrial order allowing counties, governments and individuals in the State of Florida to file a claim. She stated that the deadline was April 20, 2011 should the Board decide to file a claim, but advised against it.
Commr. Conner asked if the lawsuit was for economic damages or for the clean up damages.
Ms. Marsh responded that the claim form had an area to list loss of revenue, damage to property and clean up costs, and there was currently a motion pending in a Louisiana federal court to determine whether there was a need to go through an administrative process first before filing a lawsuit.
Commr. Conner commented that he did not know if they could prove a loss of revenue.
Commr. Parks added that revenues for the whole state went down.
Commr. Cadwell noted that as of yesterday the Governor had not entered into the lawsuit.
Commr. Hill stated that it may be referring to tourism dollars, and it would be hard to argue that it affected the County.
REPORTS – COUNTY MANAGER
economic development action plan
Mr. Darren Gray recapped that several months ago they created an Economic Action Plan listing several goals along with action steps and would bring an update to the Board each month with that being the first update.
Mr. Adam Sumner, Director of Economic Development and Tourism, gave a PowerPoint presentation regarding the Economic Action Plan. He reiterated that going forward, there would be monthly updates starting with Economic Development and Growth Management. He referred to slides that stated their vision and mission and the goals of the plan and added that each of those goals had at least five action steps behind them. He stated that they asked to receive public input via the web and through public meetings and added that they also had every department in the County write a description of what they do, how it affected economic development and asked their thoughts on how things could be done differently and what other programs they would like to see implemented. He related that they also reorganized and combined Tourism and Business Relations with Economic Growth and Redevelopment for the new Office of Economic Development and Tourism. He then reviewed the action steps for the goals and stated that with the newly combined office, their most important goal was to fully implement the Business Retention and Expansion Program with a minimum of two site visits per week. He added that they had to coordinate with each business owner or manager so that they could get a true understanding of each business. He related that they were working with staff to create a business retention day where each Commissioner would go to a different local business on the same day. He noted that they would continue working directly with municipalities on a daily basis since a lot of the cities had programs that help drive tourism, like Tavares with the seaplanes, Leesburg and Umatilla with their airports and Clermont with their park. He added that they were also trying to increase the brand awareness of Lake County to let everyone know why the County was so great and would continue attending industry specific tradeshows that focus on the target industries. He pointed out that they started a website called HowWeHelpBusiness.com where they post information at least twice each week. He added that they were working with the School Board, Lake Tech and LSCC to facilitate relationships and help companies grow through finding the training amenities that they need that already existed in the County. He stated that the TDC (Tourist Development Council) grant process was approved on March 22 and they had already talked to at least six qualified respondents who would be submitting proposals. He noted that they would be creating a Tourism Industry Business Retention and Expansion Program where they would try to visit one company each week and added that staff was completing a database of which businesses to visit and would prioritize those based on where they could get the best data. He mentioned that they are always looking for new events to help generate overnight purchases in Lake County.
Ms. Amye King, Growth Management Director, continued the presentation with the action steps for Growth Management and stated that they were primarily working on rebranding and restructuring the department and were publicizing their updated and streamlined processes. She added that they currently offered about 15 permits online but wanted to expand that to do remote permitting for all residential, commercial and industrial projects. She related that they also planned to automate all of their applications so that they could be submitted directly online instead of having to print the application and send it in. She noted that as part of their advocate program they were beginning to meet with contractors, developers, engineers and citizens so that they could reduce the re-submittals and re-inspections and to also inform them of updated codes. She added that the second part of the advocate program was to assign a Growth Management staff member to work with an Economic Development and Tourism staff member to be responsible for a project from the beginning to the end. She stated that they were cross training staff on all processes to help expedite the projects through the system. She noted that they were working on streamlining the data input and retention processes and had heard from contractors that the actual inspections were being completed quickly, but the actual processing of the application was not. She added that they had always measured the permit output by the number of days it took to complete, but now they would like to start measuring it in smaller increments. She mentioned that she met with a contractor recently that told her he received three permits in 45 minutes and noted that prior to some of those changes, those permits could have taken three days. She related that through the ISBA (Interlocal Service Boundary Agreement) process, the idea was to have joint Land Development Regulations with the cities to try to avoid some of the confusion and to create a process to determine whether certain applications needed to come to the County at all. She explained that all building permit data from 1996 had been incorporated into the GIS interactive map and stated that had become very useful for real estate agents, citizens and staff because it was a quick way to find out what kind of permits were on the property. She added that the last action step was for staff to recommend revisions to the Land Development Regulations that encourage economic development by clarifying or rescinding certain existing regulations that may stand in the way of progress of job creation.
Mr. Gray stated that they made a commitment to have the online permitting done in six months, and they were working well towards that goal and were partnering with other counties as well as the South Lake incubator. He added that they would be updating the Board monthly on the progress and would give the Board a reason if the goal was not able to be met.
Commr. Parks opined that it was monumental for Lake County to have economic development and the expedited permitting.
Commr. Cadwell pointed out to Mr. Gray that the County currently had only two inspectors, and he would like for him to bring back Tab 3 for discussion since it was pulled from the agenda today.
Mr. Gray explained that he did not pull Tab 3 because he felt the position was not needed; he pulled that Tab because there were a few ideas he wanted to explore and bring back to the Board.
Commr. Campione explained that there was a complaint received from a company who was out of the area who tried to submit an application, but they were required to file an owner’s affidavit in order to complete the process which caused a lot of problems for that company. She recommended that the process be changed to allow the application to continue but with a requirement of having the documentation back by a certain number of days or before the process got to a certain stage, and there would be no official response given until received.
Commr. Hill added that she thought that was a confidentiality type question where the owner did not want to alert the area.
Commr. Campione explained in that instance the company was anxious to get the process started and there were just a lot of problems.
Commr. Campione thanked the staff and added that everyone was doing a great job, and she appreciated the opportunity to get a monthly report.
Mr. Sumner stated that the focus of the presentation in June would be on tourism and added that they were working on an advertisement campaign with USA Today’s Vacation Guide for Tourism and that they would have data on all the events that the County sponsored for that presentation.
joint meeting with school board
Mr. Gray reminded the Board of the joint meeting with the School Board on Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 1:00 pm at Lake Tech in Eustis. He added that he and Commr. Hill would be meeting with Chairman Stivender and the Superintendent next week to discuss the agenda which would include impact fees, the Economic Development Action Plan and recreational facilities.
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER HILL – CHAIRMAN AND DISTRICT 1
Orlando Transportation Funding Task Force
Commr. Hill reported attending the Orlando Transportation Funding Task Force meeting and noted that in the course of the discussion they had incorporated Lake County’s Public Works into their Task Force discussion, and she felt proud because the County was ahead of the curve in many items being discussed. She added that the Task Force asked if Lake County would join them to provide input as a regional partner.
Mr. T.J. Fish added that Task Force included representation from airports, Volusia, Seminole, Orange and Osceola Counties.
Commr. Cadwell stated that the County should be involved.
Mr. Fish opined that they might want to include public transportation, since the Task Force was trying to tackle all aspects of transportation including roads, expressways, transit systems and the future of rail.
Ms. Marsh suggested that the Board vote on the item.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Parks, carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved to place Commr. Hill’s request to attend the meetings of the Orlando Transportation Funding Task Force representing Lake County on the agenda.
Commr. Hill stated that she would make sure to include other members if needed.
Mr. Fish added that he expected to hear back about how many municipalities were wanted and mentioned that the overall goal of the Task Force was that four or five counties would be working simultaneously toward a common goal.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Parks, carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Commr. Hill’s request to attend the meetings of the Orlando Transportation Funding Task Force representing Lake County.
judicial center expansion
Commr. Hill reported that they met with the partners on the Judicial Center expansion project and noted that the project was on schedule.
Commr. Cadwell mentioned that the jaywalking was getting very dangerous at the parking garage and asked Mr. Kelly if he could look into that.
Mr. Kelly commented that they routinely remind the employees and noted that citizens added to that problem as well.
reports – commissioner parks – district 2
Minneola Athletic Complex
Commr. Parks asked Mr. Gray if he could provide an update on the Minneola Athletic Complex at the next Board Meeting on May 3, 2011.
Mr. Gray responded that he and Mr. Minkoff were currently working on that and would provide an update at the next Board Meeting.
economic value of trails
Commr. Parks asked if a resolution recognizing the economic value of trails could be added to a future agenda.
Commr. Hill stated that they would put the resolution on a future agenda.
memorialize an avid cyclist
Commr. Parks asked if a pavilion or kiosk along the South Lake Trail could be named after Mr. Harry Nickel, an avid cyclist who was killed recently.
Mr. Gray answered yes and added that they were also working on Commr. Conner’s request regarding Idamere Park and would bring both of those back.
reports – commissioner conner – district 3
road safety issues in south lake
Commr. Conner reported that he was still working on a couple of unresolved road safety issues in South Lake County, citing difficulties with the DOT as a reason for the delay.
historical society annual banquet
Commr. Conner thanked Commr. Parks for attending the Historical Society Annual Banquet Friday night and added that he wanted the Board to continue supporting them because they were doing a great job at the Historical Museum.
REPORTS – COMMISsIONER CADWELL – DISTRICT 5
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Conner, carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the execution of Proclamation No. 2011-50 declaring May 1-7, 2011 to be North American Occupational Safety and Health (NOASH) Week and May 4, 2011 to be Occupational Safety and Health Professional (OSHP) Day.
lake sumter ems discussion
Commr. Hill asked if they wanted to bring back an RFP for an Operational Auditor Self Assessment or use an on call auditor that they already had regarding the EMS Audit, and she mentioned that everything needed to be in place by October.
Commr. Cadwell related that he, Mr. Minkoff and Mr. Gray had met regarding the different options of the new EMS Board and would like to bring back some of those options to the Board to discuss. He added at that point, they could take those options to the City Managers and elected officials of each city to get their input and explained that he did not want to take a new plan to the old EMS Board, since it still included Sumter County, and the new EMS Board may not look anything like it did currently.
Commr. Campione asked if they had to use an RFP or RFQ to retain an auditor to come in and do an operational type audit and added that they needed to use that as an opportunity to evaluate the operations and efficiency.
Commr. Cadwell agreed and stated that a new operational plan was almost complete, and that was what they needed to look at, not what was being done currently.
Commr. Conner opined that he liked Commr. Campione’s suggestion where all of the Commissioners were on the EMS Board. He related that for the efficiency and operational audit, the key was to get someone with experience in that specific discipline to do the study.
Commr. Parks mentioned that he had talked to Mr. Neil Kelly, Clerk of Courts, about the audit, and his staff had the capability to do efficiency and operational type audits, but depending on the scope of the audit, they might need outside help.
Mr. Kelly explained that it would be critical to get the scope of the audit finalized first, and then if needed, they could bring in some outside expertise to help.
Commr. Parks commented that a good place to start with creating the audit scope was from the study that Mr. Minkoff provided the Board.
Commr. Cadwell opined that the Board should give ideas to the County Manager for the scope of the audit, and he could then bring those back to the Board for approval. He added that they could then give the scope to the Clerk for him to determine what his auditors could do and what the cost would be for hiring outside help.
Commr. Campione asked why they should go that route when the County could just hire someone.
Commr. Cadwell stated that they thought of using the Clerk because he was available to do the audit and it would most likely cost less; however, his recommendation was to do an RFQ.
Commr. Campione opined that it would be more appropriate to put together an RFQ.
Commr. Parks added that he was fine with that, but was just thinking of the cost.
Commr. Conner commented that they would not know the cost until the RFQ and added that the Clerk’s workload was probably heavy as it was.
Mr. Kelly pointed out that they prepared an audit calendar for the year with an understanding that some audits would come up that were pressing and more critical so they could adjust the schedule as needed. He added that he would not know what outside expertise would be needed until they reviewed the scope of the audit.
Commr. Conner opined that the County should hire someone through an RFP or RFQ, and then maybe defer to the Clerk if they realize it would be too costly.
Mr. Gray noted that he could work with Mr. Kelly’s Office and use their expertise as they were putting together the RFQ.
Mr. Kelly added that the Internal Audit Office of the Clerk’s Office was willing to assist in the process in any way.
Mr. Gray stated that the next step was to get the cities involved, and a suggestion was to work through the League of Cities. He added that he could meet with the City Managers at their normal monthly meetings, and take that to them to discuss and get their input after the scope of services was done.
Commr. Cadwell commented that if the EMS Board make-up was done by then, that could also be presented at that meeting.
Commr. Campione emphasized that they were committed to maintaining the level of service that the cities expected and were moving forward with the process of evaluating how EMS could operate more efficiently.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Conner, carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the request was approved for the Board to bring suggestions for the scope of service for the RFQ to the County Manager in one week so that the County Manager could bring back the RFQ for approval. The Board would also continue to work on the new alignment of the Lake EMS Board to bring back to the Board for consideration.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 12:40 p.m.
JENNIFER hill, chairman
NEIL KELLY, CLERK