A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
may 21, 2013
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, May 21, 2013 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: Leslie Campione, Chairman; Jimmy Conner, Vice Chairman; Timothy I. Sullivan; Sean Parks; and Welton G. Cadwell. Others present were: David Heath, County Manager; Melanie Marsh, Deputy County Attorney; Wendy Taylor, Executive Office Manager, County Manager’s Office; Neil Kelly, Clerk of Court; and Courtney Vincent, Deputy Clerk.
INVOCATION and pledge
Pastor Blake Appleby from the First Baptist Church of Umatilla gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mr. Heath requested to pull Tab 3, a proclamation recognizing three students from East Ridge High School in Clermont for their service to the community, from the agenda because all of the students could not attend the presentation. He stated that Chief John Jolliff, Public Safety Director, would present the proclamation at the school later in the week.
Commr. Campione requested that there be a brief discussion on Tab 8, a request from Growth Management for authorization to submit a grant application for a regional employment center in East Lake County.
Mr. Heath asked that the consent agenda be approved before the discussion took place.
Commr. Cadwell requested that Tab 32, approval and presentation of a proclamation for Emergency Medical Services Week, be moved ahead in the agenda. He then stated that he was being considered for reappointment as chairman of the Community and Economic Development Steering Committee of the National Association of Counties (NACo), and this consideration required a letter of endorsement from the BCC.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Parks, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved adding the request for a letter of endorsement to the agenda.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Sullivan, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved sending the letter of endorsement for Commr. Cadwell.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Conner, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of April 23, 2013 (Regular Meeting) as presented.
Citizen question and comment period
Mr. Scott Taylor, a resident of Sorrento, asked that the Board and those present observe a moment of silence and prayer for the victims of the tornado that struck Moore, Oklahoma on May 20, 2013.
The Chairman asked for a moment of silence.
Ms. Becky Afonso, Ride Director for Bike Florida, Inc., reported that the Orange Blossom Express Spring Bicycle Tour rode into Clermont from Lakeland on Monday, March 25, 2013. She stated that the City of Clermont and the Clermont Downtown Partnership made the participants feel very welcome and that Commr. Parks and the Lake County Economic Development Center (EDC) were remarkable in their efforts to assist Bike Florida with the event. On behalf of Bike Florida, she presented Commr. Parks and Mr. Robert Chandler, Economic Development and Tourism Director, with plaques as a token of appreciation for their efforts.
CLERK OF COURTS’ CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Sullivan and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Clerk of Courts’ Consent Agenda, Items 1 through 3, 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.
Audit of the Lake County Historical Society
Request to acknowledge receipt of the BCC-107 Audit of the Lake County Historical Society.
Country Greens Community Development District’s Fiscal Year 2014 Budget
Request to acknowledge receipt of a copy of Country Greens Community Development District’s Annual Operating and Debt Service Budget for Fiscal Year 2014, provided in accordance with Chapter 190.008(2)(b) Florida Statutes, along with cover letter dated April 24, 2013 stating that the public hearing is scheduled for June 24, 2013 at 5:00 p.m. at the Hampton Inn, 19700 US Hwy 441, Mount Dora.
Proclamation for emergency medical services week
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved Proclamation No. 2013-46 proclaiming the week of May 19 through May 25, 2013 as Emergency Medical Services Week in Lake County.
Commr. Cadwell presented the proclamation to Mr. Eric Pence, Mr. Cody Rowinsky, and Ms. Nicole Rowinsky of Lake EMS.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
Commr. Campione commented on Tab 8, a request from the City of Mount Dora for the County to join then in a grant request to facilitate the development of a master plan for the regional employment center in East Lake County, stating that she appreciated that the City was moving forward with this. She mentioned that she had met with representatives from the City to discuss other opportunities where the County could assist in this endeavor because the County was not in a position to make a monetary contribution. She asked the Board if the County could provide technical assistance as the plan was being formulated, look at the possibility of using the ISBA process to address this specific area and help Mount Dora move its process along, and help with the branding aspect such as finding the right name for the employment center.
The Board agreed with Commr. Campione’s suggestion.
Commr. Cadwell asked why the City of Mont Dora was not having the property owners participate monetarily.
Commr. Campione replied that there were several large owners and a lot of small owners and while there was a willingness to cooperate, there was not necessarily a willingness to participate at this point as far as financing the endeavor.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 4 through 22 as follows:
Request for approval of the FY 2013-14 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Proposed Projects detailed in the 2013-14 One Year Action Plan. The fiscal impact is $917,886.00 (Expense - 100% Grant Funded).
Conservation and Compliance
Request for approval to terminate services provided by Vinton Veterinary Services under contract 11-0828 for convenience, and authorize the procurement office to execute all related implementing documentation.
Request to approve minutes from the Lake 100 Meeting held on April 17, 2013 and the Mount Dora Land Use Summit held on February 8, 2013; both of these meetings were attended by more than one county commissioner.
Economic Development and Tourism
Request for authorization to submit a grant application to the Florida Humanities Council to fund the 2nd Annual Wings & Wildflower Festival in the amount of $2,000. No matching funds are required, and the fiscal impact will be $2,000 (Revenue) if awarded.
Request for authorization to submit a grant application. This is a joint grant request to facilitate the development of a master plan for a regional employment center in East Lake County. The City of Mount Dora has allocated $75,000 to match grant funds requested. There is no fiscal impact to the County.
Request for approval of contract award for the mitigation of sand skinks at the North Shore Trailhead and Overlook to Conservation & Restoration Resources, LLC in the amount of $39,800 for the purchase of two (2.0) sand skink credits from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approved conservation bank - Morgan Lake Wales Preserve Conservation Bank. The fiscal impact is $39,800 (Expenditure). Commission District 2.
Request for approval to allocate an additional $25,000 towards the South Lake Regional Park project for associated closing and preplanning costs. The fiscal impact is $25,000 (Expenditure). Commission District 1.
Request for approval (1) to apply for Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation Grant and (2) for authorization for the County Manager or his designee to sign future related paperwork that does not involve fiscal impact. Should grant be awarded, approval will be requested to accept the equipment and no local matching funds are required. The fiscal impact is $9,000 (Revenue).
Request for authorization to release a Maintenance bond in the amount of $6,249.00 posted for Golden Eagle Boulevard. This project is located in Commission District 1. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for approval and signature of Resolution No. 2013-52 to advertise Public Hearing to vacate a portion of a right of way easement along Wilson Lake Parkway in the Groveland area. There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 1.
Request for approval and signature of Resolution No. 2013-53 to advertise Public Hearing to vacate a portion of right of way in the Plat of Wolf Branch Estates. No fiscal impact. Commission District 4.
Request for approval and signature of Resolution No. 2013-54 to advertise Public Hearing to vacate right of way in the Plat of Groveland Farms (PB2, Pg. 10). There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 1.
Request to approve issuance of purchase order for one (1) Case SR200 Skid Steer Loader to Trekker Tractor (Tampa, FL) for the Public Works Department, and authorize the Procurement Office to execute all implementing documentation. The fiscal impact is $53,500.00 (Expenditure).
Request to approve Interlocal Agreement between Lake County and the City of Mt. Dora for the maintenance of a portion of the right-of-way of 5th Avenue, also known as CR Old 441. There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 4.
Request to approve issuance of a purchase order for two (2) 3/4 ton, 4x2, Crew Cab, 4 Door Trucks for the Public Works Department, and authorize the Procurement Office to execute all implementing documentation. The fiscal impact is $42,926.00.
Request to approve an agreement with Kimley Horn & Associates for additional professional services associated with the CR 466A project. The fiscal impact is $71,351 (Expenditure). Commission District 5.
Request for authorization to release a maintenance bond in the amount of $104,764.00 posted for Terrace Grove. There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 2.
Request for authorization to award #6860B Washington Avenue Area Stormwater Retrofit Phase 2, Project No. 2013-05, Bid No. 13-0034, to Paqco, Inc., in the amount of $222,135.75 (Expenditure). The Engineer's estimate was $405,277.08. Commission District 5.
Request for approval to award contract 13-0214 (attached) for various site renovations at the Area 3 Road Maintenance Facility to Matrix Prime Builders (Leesburg, FL). The fiscal impact is $33,018 (Expense).
COUNTY ATTORNEY’S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Sullivan, seconded by Commr. Parks, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the County Attorney’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 23 through 24 as follows:
Request to approve a Release of Fine for property owner, Melody Andress. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for approval to donate Alt. Key 1261511 to Lake Eustis Village Property Owners, Inc.; approval of Resolution No. 2013-55 declaring the property as surplus and authorizing the donation; and approval for Chairman to execute the County Deed. There is no fiscal impact.
Public Hearings: Rezoning
Commr. Campione stated that the rezoning case for MCUP# 13/3/1-2, Cemex Construction Sand Mine, had been postponed until November 19, 2013.
Vacation Petition No. 1189 – Woodland Drive
Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, stated that Vacation Petition No. 1189 was for a dead-end public right of way on Woodland Drive in Commission District 4. He mentioned that the area was part of a very old plat that was part of a subdivision, and there were no plans to develop the property. He opined that there was no need to keep the public right of way and recommended the Board approve vacating the property.
Commr. Campione asked what would happen to the right of way property.
Mr. Stivender stated that it would be split between the two surrounding properties.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one present who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing and reserved comment to the Board.
Commr. Campione stated that this vacation petition was in her district and if there were no plans to bring a road through that right of way space, then she agreed it would be prudent to vacate the property.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Sullivan, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Resolution No. 2013-56 for Vacation Petition No. 1189 to vacate a portion of public right of way known as Woodland Drive.
Ordinance amending LDR regarding nonconformities
Ms. Melanie Marsh, Deputy County Attorney, placed the proposed ordinance on the floor for its first and final reading by title only, as follows:
An ordinance of the Board of County Commissioners of Lake County, Florida; amending the Lake County Code, Appendix E, Land development regulations; amending chapter I, entitled “general provisions”, section 1.08.00, entitled “nonconforming development”, in order to provide for continuation or termination of nonconforming development as prescribed by the lake county 2030 comprehensive plan, and to incorporate provisions related to nonconformities from other chapters of the land development regulations; amending chapter ii, entitled “definitions”, in order to add definitions for nonconforming structures and nonconforming uses; amending chapter iii, entitled “zoning district regulations”, section 3.02.00, entitled “bulk regulations”, in order to repeal lot of record provisions and delete provisions related to nonconformities to be incorporated in chapter I, LDR, by this ordinance, and amending section 3.07.00, entitled “adult entertainment establishments”, in order to repeal provisions related to nonconforming adult entertainment uses to be incorporated in chapter I, ldr, by this ordinance; amending chapter ix, entitled “development design and improvement standards”, section 9.03.00, entitled “off-street parking regulations”, in order to repeal provisions related to nonconforming parking lots to be incorporated in chapter I, ldr, by this ordinance; and amending chapter xi, entitled “signs”, in order to repeal section 11.03.00, entitled “provision for converting existing nonconforming signs to ground signs”, to be incorporated in chapter I, ldr, by this ordinance; providing for severability; providing for inclusion in the code; providing for filing with the department of state; and providing for an effective date.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
Mr. Fred Mummaw, a resident of Lake County, addressed the Board to thank the Commissioners; the Planning and Zoning Board; Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney; Mr. David Heath, County Manager; and Mr. Brian Sheahan, Planning Division Manager, for their help with the new code. He opined that this would be a great help to the tax base and the businesses of Lake County.
Mr. Dennis Williams, a resident of Lake County, addressed the Board to thank the Commissioners and Mr. Sheahan for their efforts on this ordinance. He stated that the great responses received from the contractors, developers, suppliers, and taxable base were greatly appreciated and would help beautify the County.
There being no one else who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing and reserved comment to the Board.
Commr. Campione stated that her initial concern had been to make sure that they would still be looking at code provisions regarding parking and not eliminating those requirements as a result of addressing nonconforming uses and allowing additions to nonconforming structures, but that had been addressed by the ordinance.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Sullivan, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Ordinance No. 2013-25 amending portions of the Land Development Regulations concerning nonconformities.
Ordinance amending LDR regarding lot grading
Ms. Marsh placed the proposed ordinance on the floor for its first and final reading by title only, as follows:
An ordinance of the board of county commissioners of lake county, Florida; amending the following sections of the lake county code, appendix e, land development regulations; amending chapter iii, entitled “zoning district regulations”, section 3.02.05, entitled “setbacks”, by allowing impervious surface to be located within side and rear setbacks, with conditions; amending chapter ix, entitled “development design and improvement standards”, section 9.07.14, entitled “grading”, by providing for an increase in the allowed height of retaining walls from five to six feet, and by providing for an increase in spacing between retaining walls used in terracing from five to six feet; providing for an exemption to lot grading requirements to allow two areas with a maximum size of 4 feet by 4 feet each for mechanical equipment, step-off pads, pool equipment and other similar uses to encroach into the side or rear setback, with conditions; providing for severability; providing for inclusion in the code; providing for filing with the department of state; and providing for an effective date.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one present who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing and reserved comment to the Board.
On a motion by Commr. Parks, seconded by Commr. Sullivan, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Ordinance No. 2013-26 amending portions of the Land Development Regulations (LDR) concerning lot grading.
Ordinance regarding access and temporary structures
Ms. Marsh placed the proposed ordinance on the floor for its first and final reading by title only, as follows:
An ordinance of the board of county commissioners of lake county, Florida; amending the Lake county code, appendix e, land development regulations; amending chapter x, entitled “accessory and temporary structures and uses” in order to update chapter x pursuant to the lake county 2030 comprehensive plan, reorganize it and add two new sections; adding section 10.02.05 “temporary sales office” and section 10.02.06 “temporary construction office”; providing for severability; providing for inclusion in the code; providing for filing with the department of state; and providing for an effective date.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one present who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing and reserved comment to the Board.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Conner, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Ordinance No. 2013-27 amending portions of the Land Development Regulations concerning accessory and temporary structures and uses.
COUNTY MANAGER’S DEPARTMENTAL BUSINESS
conservation and compliance
resolutions regarding animal services trust fund and fees
Mr. Jim Stivender, Interim Conservation and Compliance Director, addressed the Board to provide an overview of the current programs and fees of the Animal Services Division and identify potential enhancements to the Division. He began with the spay/neuter program, stating that Statute encouraged the reduction of the unneeded and unwanted proliferation of cats and dogs throughout the State, which made spay and neutering programs very important. He mentioned that the County had provided this service in the past and was looking at providing it again, but some adjustments to the program were needed to enhance it and make it more available to the public. He proposed that the Animal Control Sterilization Trust Fund, which was specifically used for the donations received from the public, be renamed The Animal Services Trust Fund, and explained that the funding source would come from donations, fines and livestock auctions and would be used for animal adoption programs and a spay/neuter voucher program. He reported the initial plan for the voucher program was to provide 1,000 vouchers on a first come, first served basis for low-income residents where qualified individuals would receive the $50 voucher to help cover the cost of the procedure. He added that the County was working with local veterinarians to ensure that they would be interested in receiving the vouchers and reducing the cost to the resident, and the vouchers were for the independent veterinarians to perform the procedure that because there was no desire for competition between the veterinarians and the County.
Mr. Stivender then discussed pet registration, stating that the major purpose of pet registration was to track rabies vaccinations, reunite lost animals with their owners, track spayed and neutered animals, accept online donations for Animal Services, and generate revenue to support operations. He remarked that the State encouraged online pet registration, which was used by Hernando, Palm Beach and Seminole Counties, through the company PetData and the website could be customized to the needs for Lake County. He noted that PetData provided customized forms and a website, online tag lookup and a professional call center, managed notice mailings and reporting as well as license and vaccination data processing, and provided assistance with online donations. He added that PetData also worked closely with the veterinarians for mandatory vaccination reporting as well as with pet licensing by providing all tags and supplies, performing reconciliation of payments and data, and reporting monthly licensing activity, all at no cost to the veterinarians. He opined that this would be easier for the veterinarians because it would provide a streamlined and consistent data source and prevent duplication of services. He stated that the startup costs were relatively inexpensive because the revenue for PetData was based on how many pets were licensed. He then discussed the fees, mentioning that there was a credit card convenience fee of $1.95 for making payments online, the proposed one-year license for sterilized pets was only going to increase from $5 to $8, and because $3.90 of the license fee was going to go to PetData, it meant that the County would actually be receiving less money per license. He opined that this would not be a problem because the increase in the number of licenses sold would make up the difference. He stated that the three-year license for sterilized pets was increasing from $5 to $20, which equated to a 20 percent discount compared to three one-year licenses, and he added that senior citizens would receive a 50 percent discount off of the licensing fees. He stressed the importance of getting the animals adopted and licensed.
Ms. Marsh discussed the legal issues, stating that the County’s current Code required rabies vaccinations and animal licenses and allowed for complaint-based enforcement where Animal Control would ask for proof of vaccination only when responding to a complaint on an animal. She reported that the current fines for not having animals vaccinated were $150 for the first violation and $500 for repeat violations. She noted that Florida Statutes required a 45-day notice prior to renewal of animal licenses and also required that there be a written agreement and a refundable deposit if Animal Control releases an unsterilized animal to a rescue group or other individual in order to ensure that the unsterilized animal is sterilized within 30 days of leaving the shelter, but Animal Control was not doing either. She remarked that using PetData would remedy that notice situation. She added that Statutes also required rabies vaccinations. She stated that the proposed ordinance, which staff was requesting approval to advertise, would decrease the fine for a first violation to $50 and repeat violations to $150, would bring the County Code in line with Statutory requirements, would establish the written agreement and refundable deposit process, and would clarify that the 45-day notification for renewal of animal license would be done by the County.
Mr. Stivender stated that staff had reviewed adoption fees as a way to encourage more adoptions. He noted that all of the surrounding counties had lower adoption fees than Lake County, at an average of $43 for a cat and $61.25 for a dog, while Lake County’s fees ranged between $75 and $90 for a cat and $110 to $150 for a dog. He opined that the County would need to standardize and reduce the fees to remain competitive with neighboring counties in order to increase adoption rates and proposed a flat fee of $40 for a cat and $50 for a dog. He remarked that the next step to move forward with the programs would be to approve advertising the public hearing for the Animal Services Ordinance for June, and to go live with PetData on or before the first of October, which would give staff a chance to work with PetData to ensure the website worked smoothly. He added that there would be an Animal Services workshop in October. He requested that the Board approve the Spay/Neuter Voucher Program, the resolutions for the Animal Services Trust Fund and the revised fee schedule, the contract with PetData, and advertising to amend the County’s existing Animal Services Ordinance.
Commr. Campione opined that pet registration was dependent on the public supporting the program as opposed to County enforcement, which was something residents would not appreciate. She remarked that public awareness was important to the overall mission to promote adoptions and sterilization and to protect the community from rabies. She suggested that earmarking the revenue from pet registration specifically for Animal Services to help promote adoptions, sterilization and rabies protection would help to ease the concerns of County residents and garner support for the program.
Mr. Heath replied that he would need to report back to the Board in several weeks as to whether or not Commr. Campione’s suggestion would be possible, because the Board had already committed to improving Animal Services at the expense of the other departments, and he did not want to segregate the funds and then have to lay off someone from Animal Services.
Commr. Campione commented that the funds should be going specifically to Animal Services because she wanted to reassure residents that the pet registration revenue was not going into the County’s General Fund.
Commr. Cadwell stated that the pet registration fees would not be generating a profit; the Board would still need to supplement the budget for Animal Services.
Commr. Conner asked if the fine for not registering a pet was the same as the fine for not having an animal vaccinated for rabies.
Ms. Marsh replied that it was.
Commr. Conner opined that it would be more problematic to have a pet that was not vaccinated as opposed to one that was not registered. He agreed with Commr. Campione’s comment about not wanting to force pet registration on residents, stating that the County did not have the manpower to go door to door to ensure compliance, and the key to the program working was voluntary compliance. He suggested that the first violation for not having a pet registered should be a warning and the second violation would be a $50 fine. He added that the $50 fine for the initial violation for not having a pet vaccinated against rabies was fine because it was a public safety issue.
Commr. Campione agreed with Commr. Conner’s suggestion. She added that perhaps the fines could be withheld for the first year the program was implemented to give residents a chance to utilize the program.
Commr. Campione mentioned that she had thought that the veterinary records stored with PetData would allow the County to send notices to pet owners reminding them when it was time to register and vaccinate their pets.
Mr. Stivender stated that there would be a billing system associated with PetData, and notices would be sent to pet owners based on the veterinary information provided. He specified that they would not be able to track the animals that had never received a vaccination.
Commr. Conner asked who would be responsible for sending out the reminder notices.
Mr. Stivender replied that PetData would be responsible for sending the notices.
Commr. Conner requested that the Board review the notices, because the initial communication to the pet owner was critical to encouraging compliance with registering pets as well as ensuring animals were vaccinated. He stated that the Board should approve the notice that PetData provides, which should include a brief letter stating what the County was trying to accomplish and why so as not to give a false impression to residents.
Commr. Campione replied that PetData should be able to tailor the notice to include that information.
Mr. Stivender added that PetData customized the notices to the county, using the County’s logo, colors, and messages, which was part of the approval process.
Commr. Parks asked what other methods of outreach would be utilized.
Mr. Stivender suggested that the County needed to issue press releases over the summer to get the message out regarding pet registration, sterilization and vaccination as well as the programs the County was implementing in order to help gain public support in advance of the online registration going live.
Commr. Campione mentioned that she had been informed that there were some billboard owners who were willing to donate space on billboards currently not under contract.
Commr. Conner added that the cities in the County would hopefully be willing to help spread information on the County’s Animal Services programs.
Commr. Sullivan remarked that the County had come a long way in fixing Animal Services since he had taken office, and he thanked staff for their work.
Mr. Heath suggested moving the Animal Services workshop from October to September so the Board could review the notices before PetData went live on October first. He also suggested bringing the ordinance back and suspending fines for non-registered pets during the first year and instead focusing on education and encouraging residents to use the online registration program.
Commr. Campione remarked that she had discussed the voucher program with some of the County’s veterinarians, and there was a lot of support for the program. She noted that the $50 voucher would not completely cover the fee for spay/neutering for all veterinarians and expressed concern over the voucher program only being for low income residents, suggesting that it should be open to everyone as an effort to promote sterilization in the County.
Commr. Cadwell remarked that they needed to keep this program in perspective of everything that they still needed to do outside of Animal Control, because Animal Services was not being required to take the same cuts as the other departments.
Commr. Campione noted that the trust fund money could not be used for anything but Animal Services. She asked how much was left in the trust fund.
Mr. Stivender replied that a couple hundred thousand dollars were left.
Commr. Conner and Commr. Parks supported Commr. Campione’s suggestion to open the voucher program to everyone regardless of income.
Commr. Campione commented that taking away the qualification process and red tape associated with that would help encourage more people to sterilize their pets.
Commr. Conner added that $50 was a small amount, and half of that would be spent in staff time trying to determine whether or not people qualified for an income-based voucher.
The Chairman opened the floor for public comment.
Ms. Debbie Shank, a resident of Mount Dora, expressed her support of the upcoming changes to Animal Services. She reported that Dolly’s Foundation, a rescue group for pit bulls, had opened its free spay and neuter program for pit bulls to Lake County residents. She then mentioned that she had forwarded an email to the Board from Mr. Shane Smith from Georgia who had agreed, based on approval from the BCC, to come to the County Shelter and ask for a pardon to clear the shelter. She stated that the shelters throughout the County were full and needed help with such basics as providing food to feed the animals in their care. She stressed the importance of advertising the animals available for adoption because no one knew where the County shelter was located.
Ms. Hailey Webber, a resident of unincorporated Lake County with Misfit Animal Rescue, stated that their shelters were full, and it took a lot to feed and care for the animals. She asked when the adoption fees would be reduced.
Commr. Campione stated that the reduced fees would be effective as of today.
Ms. Webber stated that she participated in adoption events every weekend and reiterated that no one knew where the County shelter was located. She stressed the importance of advertising, because no one would adopt pets from the shelter if no one could find it. She opined that a low cost spay/neuter clinic would not hurt local veterinarians, because people that would use the low cost clinic would not be able to afford the more expensive veterinarians, and since these people were not using the local veterinarians anyway, having the low cost clinics would not hurt their business. She stated that she took her adoptable dogs to a low cost clinic and mentioned that people who adopted pit bulls were going to low cost clinics. She then commented that the Board had mentioned the use of advertising to promote registration and vaccination of pets, but had not mentioned advertising to promote adoptions.
Commr. Campione specified that they would advertise to promote adoptions, as well as to promote registrations.
Mr. Vance Jochim, a resident of Tavares and writer of a blog called fiscalrangers.com, remarked that many of the problems with Animal Services became apparent because of the two audits performed on the department. He stated that one of the three pillars of good management was having a working audit function, and he opined that the County was now conducting good audits. He also commented that there had been a big improvement in operations management for the County. He then discussed rabies shots, stating that he had been bitten by a dog when he was in Iraq and had needed rabies shots, which was not a fun experience, and ensuring that pets were vaccinated was very important.
Ms. Carolyn Maimone, a resident of Tavares, thanked the Board for looking into the issues with Animal Control because it had been a concern of hers for a long time. She opined that the audit report was fantastic. She commented that the photographs that the County posted of pets available for adoptions were not at the same level as other rescues in that they did not make the animals look marketable and appealing. She explained that the County’s pictures resembled prison photos instead of attractive pictures of adoptable pets. She opined that if the County took better pictures of the animals, more people might adopt them, and she volunteered her time to help implement her suggestion of taking better pictures. She stated that she registered her pet through her veterinarian every year when she brought her pet in for its vaccinations and asked whether all veterinarians in the County provided registration services. She also asked if registering a pet was the same as getting a license for a pet.
Commr. Campione replied that registering a pet was the same as licensing and that not all veterinarians provided registration services.
Mr. Scott Taylor, a resident of Sorrento, stated that there was an organization out of Salt Lake City, Utah, whose primary function was to take photographs of the animals to make them look more appealing to people looking to adopt. He reported that this organization had a very high success rate around the country and made a huge difference.
Ms. Andrea Vance, a resident of Sorrento, mentioned that she and her family went to numerous rescues and shelters throughout the County when they were looking to adopt a dog, but they did not go to the County shelter because they did not know where it was located. She stated that she had looked through the newspaper every day, and she suggested that it might be a good idea if the County advertised in the community or free papers under the pet section and direct residents to the County shelter where there were animals available for adoption.
Mr. Stivender thanked staff for their hard work to improve Animal Services. He also introduced Ms. Cyndi Nason as the new Animal Services Division Manager.
On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Sullivan, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the spay/neuter voucher program on a first-come, first-served basis without the income restrictions; approved Resolution No. 2013-57 for the Animal Services Trust Fund and Resolution No. 2013-58 for the revised fee schedule; approved the contract with PetData; moved the workshop on Animal Services to September so the Board could approve the outgoing message from PetData regarding pet registration; and approved advertising an ordinance amending the current Animal Services Ordinance with the stipulation that no fines will be charged for non-registered pets in the first year.
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
The Chairman announced at 10:19 a.m. that there would be a ten-minute recess.
Presentation from FDOT regarding CR 46A alignment study
Mr. Stivender recapped that the PD&E study for the Wekiva Parkway project was conducted by the Expressway Authority beginning in 2005 and was completed and approved in May 2012. He mentioned that in 2007 the Board approved a letter recommending the final alignment of CR 46A to be sent to the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), but in March of 2012 the Board asked FDOT to reevaluate the CR 46A alignment.
Mr. TJ Fish, Executive Director of the Lake-Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), explained that the MPO had come before the BCC numerous times throughout the years regarding the entire Wekiva Parkway Project Development and Environment Plan, and MPO staff had consistently expressed their concern with the intersection proposed in the study of CR 46A and SR 46 throughout the study process. He stated that the MPO believed that CR 46A should be the primary flow for the area and not SR 46, because CR 46A was projected to carry more regional traffic than SR 46 for the Mount Plymouth/Sorrento community. He added that the MPO supported the Wekiva Parkway financing plan. He noted that now that the project was into the engineering and design phase, it was customary to go back and re-evaluate the plan to ensure all data is up to date, and this supported the realignment of the intersection.
Mr. Ashraf Elmaghraby, District 5 Project Manager with the FDOT, recapped the timeline of the Wekiva Parkway project and then noted that the project was moving into design and production with the goal of finishing the parkway by 2021. He mentioned that FDOT had made a commitment to listen to the concerns and suggestions of property owners neighboring the project as well as the surrounding community and work to provide an economical and safe solution. He reported that the traffic study determined that two lanes would be sufficient until the year 2034 and that the two options were to either build a two-lane divided road with a median or to build the easterly two-lane undivided road that would leave a 120-foot buffer in addition to the 50-foot buffer promised in the PD&E study. He stated they had lowered the profile of the road so that residents of the RedTail community would not be able to see the road from their property. He explained that the SR 46 widening project to the Wekiva Parkway involved expanding the existing SR 46 into a four-lane, divided roadway that would have a bike lane and would terminate at the Wekiva Parkway interchange. He stated that a typical section would be developed once a design alternative was selected, and access to adjacent properties would be evaluated during the design stage. He reported that the first alternative considered was similar to Alternative 1A from the PD&E study but also included a lower profile for the two-lane road, and the alignment was shifted further east, away from the RedTail community. He added that Alternative 1 would modify access to properties along existing CR 46A and would require the relocation of the Hojin Street connection to CR 46A. He reported that Alternative 2 was similar to the previous option in that the alignment was shifted further east from the RedTail community and was a two-lane road, but he added that it would have continuous movement to support a higher volume of traffic. He stated that Alternative 3 shifted the alignment further east, dividing the affected parcels, and it also eliminated access to the RedTail community at the existing CR 46A, reduced impacts to floodplains, and would create a “T” intersection between SR 46 and CR 46A. He reported that Alternative 4 was similar to Alternative 3 in that the alignment was shifted further east, dividing the affected parcels, but that it utilized a continuous flow of traffic similar to Alternative 2. He mentioned that another alternative, PD&E Alignment Alternative 1C, looked at going into the State forest outside the affected properties; however, this alternative violated the Wekiva Parkway and Protection Act, impacted the floodplains, required additional wetland mitigation, required remediation of karst features and sinkholes, and reduced the limits of widening along existing SR 46. He then discussed the evaluation matrix which addressed specifics for each alternative such as the estimated total cost, the impacts to the wetlands and floodplains in acres, the number of affected parcels, and the acquisition and schedule risk. He explained that the construction costs listed for each option were strictly estimates, and the differences between them were not significant enough to impact the decision of which alternative to recommend. He specified that it came down to the actual impacts to the surrounding area and the risk involved that shaped the recommendation. He reported that, after reviewing the data, the FDOT recommended that the Board adopt Alternative 2 of the CR 46A Realignment which included the westerly alignment, the additional buffer along the west right of way line, a depressed profile, and continuous movement for CR 46A with existing SR 46 terminating at a “T” intersection with CR 46A.
Commr. Campione asked if Mr. Elmaghraby believed that Alternative 2 was a better design and overall improvement compared to the original alignment proposed in the PD&E Study.
Mr. Elmaghraby replied that Alternative 2 was an alternate version of the proposed PD&E alignment and was an improvement from the original proposal. He stated that the second study provided more information that allowed the alternative to be fine-tuned to the needs of the area.
Commr. Campione asked for clarification on what the lower profile road would mean to the residents of RedTail.
Mr. Nick Benedico, Design Consultant with CDM Smith, stated that the profile for the road had been lowered about eight feet below the existing grade, so the trailer portion of a truck might still be visible for someone standing at ground level from a home in RedTail. He added that someone standing on the second story of a home might still see the road from their home.
Commr. Campione asked what section of CR 46A would have a lower profile, explaining that part of Alternative 2 went through a floodplain area. She also expressed concern that the realignment for CR 46A would be visible from the community’s clubhouse.
Mr. Benedico replied that the profile would remain at the existing grade in the floodplain area, and a culvert connection would be added to allow the floodplain to function properly. He also stated that the topography of the area would help mitigate road visibility from the clubhouse.
Commr. Campione asked if there had been any arrangement made with regards to the cost of acquiring the right of way from the Taylor property.
Mr. Elmaghraby replied that the right of way acquisition process had not yet started.
Commr. Campione asked what would happen if an agreement could not be reached between the Taylors and the State for the right of way.
Mr. Elmaghraby replied that Mr. Taylor had indicated that he would not fight against the right of way acquisition for Alternative 2, but there had not been a discussion on price for the right of way at this time.
Commr. Campione expressed her concern regarding the potential for complications once the negotiations over price began despite Mr. Taylor’s willingness to sell his property for right of way. She then noted that the evaluation matrix had estimated the total costs for Alternative 2 at $20.6 million, which included the best estimates for the costs of construction, right of way acquisition, environmental permitting, and geotechnical remediation. She mentioned that Alternative 2 had a low risk for right of way acquisition while Alternative 4 had a high risk, since FDOT anticipated that it could involve additional time, litigation, and funds. She stated that since Alternative 4 only had an estimated total cost of $17.8 million while Alternative 2 had an estimated total cost of $20.6 million, there was room for negotiations with Alternative 4 should additional funds be needed for the right of way acquisition due to the savings in construction costs.
Mr. Elmaghraby argued that the difference in the estimated costs between Alternatives 2 and 4 was negligible because those numbers were statistically equivalent in engineering and technical terms. He explained that if Alternative 4 was selected, it would divide the property in half and it would complicate the right of way negotiations.
Commr. Campione asked why Mr. Elmaghraby thought that right of way negotiations would impact scheduling when eminent domain procedures would prevent any such delay.
Mr. Elmaghraby explained that a judge might question the entire project should it end up in litigation and could potentially put the entire project on hold. He stated that there was no way to predict or quantify the outcome of such a risk, especially since any risk to the CR 46A realignment could potentially impact the Wekiva Parkway project as well.
Commr. Campione asked if FDOT would override the decision of the BCC should the Board vote to approve a different alternative.
Mr. Elmaghraby stated that FDOT would prefer Alternative 2, and that at this time the risk against Alternatives 3 and 4 could not be afforded by the State.
Commr. Conner commented that federal funds were involved and asked if Alternative 4 could jeopardize the use of those funds.
Mr. Elmaghraby replied that if the FDOT changed from the preferred alternative, then it could cause a re-evaluation and would risk the loss of the federal funds, because any further changes would affect the schedule of the project as well as the aspects of the project.
Commr. Campione asked whether the FDOT would be responsible for paying any damages to property owners at RedTail as a result of the project.
Mr. Elmaghraby stated that the project would not directly impact the RedTail community.
Commr. Campione questioned whether a judge looking at an eminent domain case might determine that there was a valid purpose for moving CR 46A further away from the homeowners of RedTail if the County decided that it did not want to see those types of offsite impacts.
Mr. Elmaghraby explained that that was the reason for moving the road further to the east and lowering the profile, as well as to honor the requests of the RedTail community.
Commr. Campione questioned whether a judge would consider the water feature on the north end as a result of the floodplain being cut in half a valid reason to move the road.
Mr. Elmaghraby replied that if Alternative 4 was selected, there would be closer impacts to the flooding area near the intersection of SR 46 and CR 46A. He remarked that both alternatives resulted in impacts to the floodplain.
Mr. Benedico added that even though Alternative 2 had a greater impact on the floodplain, those impacts were not related to the functionality of the floodplain, which would be maintained by including the culvert and running the necessary hydraulic analysis. He specified that the difference would be in how the FDOT would need to compensate for the impact, which was part of the reason why Alternative 2 was still the better option.
Commr. Campione asked if the FDOT had looked into accessing the Taylor property from Hojin Street, because Mr. Taylor owned other lots that would provide an access to the west end of the property.
Mr. Benedico replied that they had not looked into that because Mr. Taylor could sell those properties, and then the FDOT would not have access to them anymore. He explained that since they were individual parcels, they had to look at the individual access to each parcel, regardless of ownership.
Commr. Parks asked Mr. Elmaghraby why he thought the courts might become involved in the acquisition of right of way for the realignment project.
Mr. Elmaghraby replied that it was difficult to justify why a parcel would need to be divided in half during an eminent domain case, and there was a high risk involved based on previous eminent domain cases.
Commr. Campione stated that all of the commissioners had met with Mr. Taylor and all had received emails from concerned residents regarding the realignment project.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
Mr. William Smalley, a resident of the RedTail community in Sorrento, presented a group of over 400 petitions to the Board opposing the current approved alignment of CR 46A from residents of the Sorrento area. He remarked that it was his understanding that the alignment of CR 46A had been determined in a vindictive way based on a dispute between two land owners, and he noted that the residents of RedTail were suffering the consequences of this decision. He asked what the actual cost of the project was, because the difference of $3 million between alternatives was a significant amount of money. He stated that there has been talk about 4F, a federal rule about how federal funds are used, which he considered a catchall that the FDOT used and was supposed to have historical significance, architectural significance, and must be financially feasible. He commented that provision 4F of the FDOT Act of 1966 was not a mandate, it was only a recommendation. He asked where Rule 4F was when Native American burial grounds were desecrated during the reconstruction of I-4. He stated that he did not support the current alignment of CR 46A, and he opined that Alternative 4 was the best alternative for the County and the local residents.
Ms. Andrea Vance, a resident of Sorrento, stated that her husband built out on CR 46A more than 30 years ago when hardly anyone lived there. She remarked that theirs was the first property next to the RedTail community heading towards SR 46. She opined that Alternative 3 would cut their pasture through the middle of the property, so they did not support that alternative. She stated that she and her husband supported either Alternative 1 or 2. She mentioned that in regards to Alterative 4, they did not like the idea of the road being on State land. She added that the CR 46A alignment project was not a secret when the RedTail community was built.
Ms. Nancy Prine, a resident of Orlando representing the Friends of the Wekiva River, stated that Friends of the Wekiva River had been involved with the Wekiva Parkway project for a number of years, and they recommended that the Board approve Alternative 2. She remarked that the Friends of the Wekiva River had always thought it was important to keep the CR 46A realignment out of the State forest.
Mr. Scott Taylor, a resident of Sorrento, stated that he supported both Alternative 2 and Alternative 1. He clarified that the accusation that the CR 46A alignment had anything to do with a feud between him and RedTail owners was not true. He expressed his hope that SR 46 could remain as only two lanes until such time as CR 46A needs to be four lanes, which would be some time in the 2030’s, which would be consistent with the County’s Comprehensive Plan. He stated that Alternative 2 was the best option.
Ms. Loretta Satterthwaite, a resident of Apopka representing the Orange Audubon Society, stated that they had worked many hours on the Wekiva Parkway, and they did not support Alternative 4. She added that they thought it would create a slippery slope to start changing locations of things after agreements have been made. She stated that the Orange Audubon Society supported Alternative 2.
Commr. Campione commented that Alternative 4 did not cross into State lands.
Ms. Satterthwaite replied that Alternative 4 brought the road closer to those State lands, and they would prefer the road was kept west of that area.
Ms. Linda Bystrak, a resident of Leesburg representing the Oklawaha Valley Audubon Society, stated that they were also endorsing Alternative 2, as it was more protective of the wildlife in the Wekiva area. She opined that the RedTail residents knew that this project was coming before they moved into the area, so they should not be arguing against the suggested alignment. She remarked that they did not want to see the project delayed any further.
Ms. Jeanne Etter, a resident of Sorrento, stated that she had moved to Sorrento in 2000, and within a few months she had started working with members of that community on this road issue. She remarked that the CR 46A realignment project was not a surprise because she had been told about it when she purchased her property, and she had spent the last 12 years on different committees attending numerous meetings regarding this project. She mentioned that there are people living in that area outside of RedTail who were also being affected by the CR 46A realignment project, and it was time for the project to move forward. She stated that she supported Alternative 2.
Ms. Helen McCormick, a resident of Mount Plymouth, stated that Alternative 4 was so close to the original design of CR 46A that it did not make sense as a viable alternative, and it still interfered with the wildlife corridor. She clarified that she knew that Alternative 4 did not go into State property, but it did not minimize impact to the wildlife corridor, which was the purpose for realigning CR 46A. She opined that since Mr. Taylor would be required to give up property no matter which alternative was selected, the Board should vote in favor of whichever alternative Mr. Taylor preferred. She remarked that moving CR 46A further west would benefit the people of Mount Plymouth the most because it would make CR 46A more convenient. She also commented that there were no actual homes in the RedTail community at this time, so the project would not immediately affect any of the property owners, and anyone who moved to that property would be aware of the road. She stated that she was in favor of Alternative 2.
Ms. Heather Brush, a resident of Sorrento, stated that she was in support of Alternative 2 because it would be unreasonable and a hardship for the road to go anywhere but the west edge of Mr. Taylor’s property. She opined that if the property was divided, it would make it impossible for Mr. Taylor to continue using the property to support livestock. She asked how a group could be opposed to the road when they had known for years, even before the neighborhood was built, that the realignment was going to take place.
Ms. Suzanne Caporina, a resident of Winter Park representing Easter Seals Camp Challenge, stated that they were in support of Alternative 2. She explained that for Alternative 4, the curve that goes into CR 46A becomes a safety hazard with the access from left and right turns onto Camp Challenge Road accessing Camp Challenge. She specified that they supported Alternative 2 because it put the curve further west. She noted that Easter Seals Florida was currently seeking to provide year-round child care services as well as employment services for individuals with disabilities at Camp Challenge, so the access to Camp Challenge Road was a concern. She asked how the access for turning onto Camp Challenge Road would work, mentioning that they were not sure if there would be cutouts in the roadway for right and left turns. She also stated that they were in favor of the two-lane design with a lower speed limit, and they were in favor of having a bike trail on the south side of the road on Camp Challenge property.
Commr. Campione suggested that Ms. Caporina meet with representatives from the FDOT to discuss the specifics she had questioned.
Mr. Tim Bailey, a resident of Sorrento, stated that he had served on former Governor Jeb Bush’s committee on the Wekiva Parkway Study. He explained that the alignment illustrated in Alternative 1 was not what was illustrated by the Wekiva Study Committee; it was much more towards the eastern portion of the land and not up against the RedTail community. He opined that the residents of the Wekiva did not have previous knowledge that the road would be there, because the original plan had been different. He noted that RedTail was building a house contiguous to his land, and the property owners were oblivious to the fact that they could be overlooking CR 46A. He commented that another misrepresentation was that FDOT had said they had community support, when such actions as the submission earlier in the meeting of 400 petitions against the proposed alignment spoke to the contrary. He also reported that the attendees at three meetings he had attended where the FDOT had been present were in support of Alternative 4. He opined that the further the road was from the residential community, the better the lifestyle would be. He noted that the lowest grade possible for the road was at water level, so the claims from FDOT that lowering the grade would mitigate noise were not accurate because only a small portion of the road would be able to be lowered. He stated that he lived on SR 46 and understood how the noise would carry through the community. He asked the Board to support Alternative 4.
Ms. Catherine Hanson, a resident of Sorrento, stated that she had served on the Wekiva Study Commission. She mentioned that the Commission agreed with placing CR 46A in a position where it would not interfere with the wildlife corridor in the area, and that at the time of the Commission it had not been made clear where specifically the road would go. She noted that there was a wildlife corridor where the interchange of CR 46A and SR 46 would be located, and that needed to be considered in the design standards.
The Chairman stated that she had received a speaker card from Ms. Susan Brooks, a resident of Sorrento, who was in support of Alternative 4 but did not wish to speak.
There being no one else who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing and reserved comment to the Board.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he supported Alternative 2.
Commr. Campione mentioned that this was in her district. She stated that in December 2012 when the Board had to decide whether to move forward with contracts regarding ownership and maintenance pertaining to the Wekiva Parkway Project, she had questioned the planned alignment for CR 46A because of the concerns that had been expressed to her from residents of that area. She remarked that she had been told that leaving CR 46A at its current location was not an option because it went against the Wekiva Parkway Act. She also noted that she had been advised to approve the agreements in 2010 in order to avoid jeopardizing the entire Wekiva Parkway Project, and then there would be time to go back and answer the questions she had regarding the CR 46A alignment. She stated she voted to move ahead with the project because she did not want to risk derailing it, and then the Board was given the opportunity to relook at the CR 46A alignment. She commented that Section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act of 1996 was the barrier preventing moving CR 46A onto State land, and she opined that if backing from the environmental community had been obtained early on, this might have been prevented because the section of State land that the road would impose upon was not not open to the public and any impacts to the wildlife corridor could be mitigated. She mentioned that she had been told that putting the road along the eastern boundary of Mr. Taylor’s property was too expensive, even though she could not find any evidence to support that claim. She remarked that while putting the road along the eastern boundary would have had a horrible visual impact and would have divided Mr. Taylor’s land from the State forest, it would have been easier to overcome from an eminent domain standpoint because it would not have cut through Mr. Taylor’s property. She opined that no real qualitative or quantitative analysis had been conducted on this option, and there was no evidence supporting why Alternative 2 was better than Alternative 4 with regards to wildlife. She added that it was a misperception that there would not be litigation over Alternative 2. She argued that it would be better to select Alternative 4 because either option would split the property, and she suggested swapping a portion of the State land adjacent to the Taylor property for an equal portion of the Taylor property in order to create the necessary wildlife corridor to the west. She stressed that the point was that there were ways around the division of property and the environmental issues of Alternative 4, and the data in the PD&E study did not support the arguments against that alternative. She opined that it was a disservice to the taxpayers to move forward with Alternative 2 when there was only a verbal agreement from Mr. Taylor, and it was possible that an agreement on the property might not be able to be reached without litigation and paying more money. She stated that Alternative 4 was the best location for the road, that eminent domain procedures would take care of the compensation and damages, and accommodations could be made either to allow Mr. Taylor access to utilize the western part of his property or considerations could be made to acquire the separated property for conservation purposes. She remarked that Alternative 2 would have negative impacts on the RedTail community, and she was concerned that more consideration was being given to the wildlife than to the people who lived in the area.
Commr. Parks stated that he respected and supported the comments made by Commr. Campione and opined that there would be future litigation on the Taylor property despite the verbal agreement made by Mr. Taylor, because it was not binding and could be changed or fought in the future. He stated that he supported Alternative 4 because it was estimated to cost less than Alternative 2, and he did not agree that a few million dollars was a negligible amount.
Commr. Sullivan remarked that there were going to be winners and losers regardless of what alternative was selected. He opined that $3 million was a lot of money, not a negligible amount, and it would be tougher to go to Alternative 4, but it caused the least amount of economic impact to the local community. He stated that he liked Alternative 4, but Alternative 2 made sense as well. He explained that he was still undecided on how he would vote.
Commr. Conner opined that there would be many unintended consequences if the Board approved Alternative 4. He stated that the decision for the original alignment had been made before he became a commissioner, and this is about the fifth time the Board has revisited the issue. He remarked that he wanted to make the right business decision with regards to the road alignment. He agreed that there was a lot of risk with not having a price negotiated with Mr. Taylor, but he did not like the use of eminent domain to obtain the property because he did not think it was the right way to do business. He stated that he supported Alternative 2, which was close to the alignment that had been initially approved.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he had always believed that the best alignment was the western most option from the Wekiva River.
Commr. Campione opined that a lot of people would pay the price if Alternative 2 was selected because those affected would not be compensated by anyone and would have to bear the impacts of the project. She emphasized that local residents outside of the RedTail community would also be greatly impacted by the approval of Alternative 2. She then conceded that Alternative 2 was at least a better alternative than the original alignment proposed for CR 46A.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Conner, and carried by a vote of 3-2, the Board approved Alternative 2 for the realignment of CR 46A.
Commr. Campione and Commr. Parks voted, “No.”
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER SULLIVAN – DISTRICT 1
Vietnam veterans welcome home celebration
Commr. Sullivan reported that he had attended the Vietnam Veterans Welcome Home Celebration and Parade that had taken place in the City of Tavares on Saturday, May 18th, 2013. He remarked that it was a great event that was long overdue, and he thanked Commr. Parks for reading Proclamation 2013-37 honoring Vietnam Veterans at the ceremony.
reports – commissioner parks – district 2
Vietnam veterans welcome home celebration
Commr. Parks reported that he had attended the Vietnam Veterans Welcome Home Celebration and Parade and suggested that Proclamation 2013-37 be displayed prominently in the County Administration Building.
Lake county’s annual backpack food drive
Commr. Parks reported that the County’s Annual Backpack Food Drive was going well, and he mentioned that an article was going to be published in the Daily Sun that would discuss the children who benefitted from the fundraiser as well as the situations that necessitated the assistance. He added that the article would also help to address the root of the problem of childhood hunger.
appreciation to staff for assistance with meetings
Commr. Parks expressed his thanks to staff members for their help with a meeting in Heritage Hills in Clermont regarding an issue about noise from an adjacent mine, the Parks and Trails Committee meeting, and the South Lake Mayors and Managers meeting.
REPORTS – COMMISsIONER campione – CHAIRMAN & DISTRICT 4
Request to send letter regarding school impact fees
Commr. Campione requested to send a letter to the Lake County School Board requesting to resume the discussion for a recommendation on School Impact Fees.
The Board agreed for Commr. Campione to send the letter.
Lake tech update
Commr. Campione reported that the State funds were being allocated to Lake Tech to allow the school to proceed with the first phase of advancing its advanced manufacturing curriculum. She stated that the ultimate goal for the school was to create an advanced center for manufacturing in Lake County that would service all of Central Florida.
Lake county fairgrounds update
Commr. Campione reported that she had been approached by someone who was interested in purchasing the County Fairgrounds site, and she suggested having staff review and reconfigure the original plans for the County-owned property next to the County landfill considered as an alternative site for the Fairgrounds to see if it could become a viable option for the location of the County Fairgrounds.
Commr. Conner stated that staff had already determined that that was not a viable site.
Commr. Campione replied that it was her understanding that it was not a viable site based on the proposal from the Lake County Fair Association, and her suggestion was to see whether modifying the plans would make it a viable space.
Commr. Conner stated that there was a lot of opposition to that in the Royal Harbor community.
Commr. Cadwell asked for clarification that the money received from the sale of the previous County Fairgrounds was going to go specifically to the purchase of the new site.
Commr. Conner remarked that no one had identified where there were funds available to relocate the fairgrounds.
Commr. Campione suggested that Commr. Conner meet with the Fair Association, because they had ideas on funding. She opined that the Board had made the process harder than it needed to be, and it gave the impression to the Fair Association that they were stonewalling rather than looking for solutions. She stated that there were opportunities for a fairground that could be used as a multipurpose site that could have other functions and become a big economic generator for the County. She commented that the Board needed to find a way to work with the Fair Association on this issue.
Commr. Conner stated that he thought it had been determined that the site next to the County landfill was not a viable site, and he did not understand why the consultants for the Fair Association would suggest a site before conferring with County staff to determine the viability of the site. He added that he did not think they were stonewalling the Fair Association, because he thought it had been decided that the Fair Association would be looking at other properties.
Mr. David Heath, County Manager, commented that the Board had a work session regarding the fairgrounds, and the consultants hired by the Fair Association missed the scale of the property when the footprint for their site plan encroached into the landfill’s operations. He stated that the Board had requested that staff go out and look at sites, and over the last year the County Attorney’s Office had been working to identify sites. He explained that according to the Fair Association, the prerequisites for the potential site included that the property be approximately 70 acres, and staff had attempted to find property in a manageable area central to Lake County. He mentioned that the Fair Association had broadened the scope further and were looking at things such as utilities, accessibility and road access, and this has pushed the potential sites further from central Lake County and were now looking at commercially oriented properties with a lot of access. He noted that the price of the potential properties had increased greatly, so as a result, it has hindered the process. He explained that the original plan had been to use the proceeds from the sale of the existing fairgrounds to purchase another site, but unfortunately the sites that the Fair Association are interested in cost more than the appraised price of the current fairgrounds, which has stalled the process. He stated that because the Chairman had been approached by someone who was interested in buying the current fairground site, the Chairman had asked Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, if there was a way that they could relook at letting the fairgrounds use a portion of the property next to the landfill without encroaching into the landfill operations. He reported that Mr. Stivender had indicated that there were some constraints in terms of some of the monitoring wells, but he thought that there might be a solution if the Fair Association could whittle down their expectations for 40 acres in lieu of 70 acres. He stated that last week he participated in a conference call with the Fair Association, and based on their input staff was now looking at some of the site development costs and trying to identify 40 acres adjacent to the landfill.
Commr. Campione commented that the point was to find the most economical solution and that it was possible that this could be accomplished by looking at a scaled back version.
Commr. Conner stated that he did not like that site for a number of reasons, including the opposition expressed by the Royal Harbor community. He explained that traffic was a concern as well because there was only a single two-lane road in and out of the property, and he opined that it was not an ideal site for the fairgrounds.
Commr. Parks asked if they would continue to discuss other sites around the County.
Commr. Campione explained that the Fair Association was trying to focus on a site that could work economically for them, which was why they had wanted to look at the County-owned property again. She specified that the site adjacent to the landfill was the most economically viable option, because there would not be an upfront land cost, and that would allow the funds from the sale of the current fairgrounds to go into improvements to the site.
Commr. Cadwell opined that the Board should keep moving forward on the fairgrounds issue. He also commented that staff should double check that there is no relationship with the City of Eustis regarding that property.
Commr. Campione replied that after talking with representatives of the City, they did not think there were any ties to the property. She added that some consideration had been given to the idea of doing a land use change on the fairgrounds site so that it could continue to be used for fairgrounds but also allow it to be consistent with the light manufacturing uses that were prevalent in that area, which would make it more marketable.
Commr. Conner agreed with Commr. Parks that they should continue to look at other sites even as they moved forward with reviewing the landfill site, because he did not think 40 acres would be sufficient space for the fairgrounds.
Mr. Stivender mentioned that there was property to the east of the site that could be used for overflow parking. He added that the property was vacant land, but the owner was not interested in selling the property.
The Board agreed to Commr. Campione’s request to look at the site development costs associated with using the County-owned property adjacent to the landfill for the County Fairgrounds.
Addressing concern from residents regarding dispatch center
Commr. Campione reported that she had been approached by some residents of her district who were concerned about a news story which gave the impression that the BCC was putting pressure on the cities to join the Dispatch Center. She specified that it was the Sheriff who negotiated the contracts with the cities regarding their participation with the Dispatch Center, not the BCC.
Commr. Conner stated that he had been interviewed for that news story, and he had told the reporter that the County Commission does not tell the cities what to do and did not get involved in city business. He added that he was not aware that there was a controversy when he had been interviewed. He also remarked that one of the reasons the entire Board had supported the Emergency Operations Center was to expand the Dispatch Center so that the cities could participate.
Commr. Campione stated that it was a great idea to encourage the cities to participate in the Dispatch Center, but the city participation and the actual negotiation of agreements were between the individual cities and the Sheriff’s Office.
East lake community park ribbon-cutting ceremony
Commr. Campione reported that she would be attending the ribbon-cutting ceremony for East Lake Community Park in Sorrento on Thursday, May 23, 2013 at 11:00 a.m.
reports – commissioner cadwell – district 5
Tourist Development Council Meeting Update
Commr. Cadwell reported that he had attended the Tourist Development Council (TDC) meeting on Monday, May 20th, 2013, and two of the proposed projects carried favorable recommendations from the TDC. He stated that the proposed projects would be brought before the Board at the June 18, 2013 BCC meeting.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 12:29 p.m.
leslie campione, chairman
NEIL KELLY, CLERK