A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
April 7, 2015
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, April 7, 2015 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: Jimmy Conner, Chairman; Sean Parks, Vice Chairman; Timothy I. Sullivan; Leslie Campione; and Welton G. Cadwell. Others present were: David Heath, County Manager; Sanford A. “Sandy” Minkoff, County Attorney; Wendy Taylor, Executive Office Manager; Neil Kelly, Clerk of Court; Barbara F. Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance; and Victoria Bartley, Deputy Clerk.
INVOCATION and pledge
Mr. Choice Edwards, a spokesperson and leader for Florida Independent Voting, gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mr. David Heath, County Manager, relayed that there was an addendum added to Tab 11, that Tab 3 needed to be pulled to be considered with Tab 35, and Tab 6 needed to be considered with Tab 33.
Mr. Robert Anderson, Human Resources Director, presented the following employee awards, commenting briefly on the employee’s service to the County.
Steve Gaston, Professional Standards Coordinator
Public Safety/Fire Rescue Administration
George Dore, Branch Supervisor
Public Resources/Library Services Division/East Lake Library
Michell Bass, Fire Lieutenant/Paramedic
Public Safety/Fire Rescue Division
Chief John Jolliff, Public Safety Director, presented Ms. Bass with a plaque and gave an overview of her accomplishments with the Fire Rescue Division.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Campione, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of March 10, 2015 (Regular Meeting) as presented.
citizen question and comment period
There was no one who wished to address the Board at this time.
presentation of proclamations
Child Abuse Prevention month proclamation
Commr. Conner presented Proclamation No. 2015-25 proclaiming the month of April 2015 as Child Abuse Prevention and thanked all the various organizations for the work they have done and will continue to do to help children and break cycles of abuse.
National Library Week in Lake County proclamation
Commr. Sullivan read and presented Proclamation No. 2015-27 proclaiming the week of April 12 to 18, 2015 National Library Week in Lake County to the Library Advisory Board and thanked them for their hard work and commitment.
CLERK OF COURTS’ CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Sullivan and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Clerk of Courts’ Consent Agenda, Items 1 through 4, as follows:
List of Warrants
Request to acknowledge receipt of the 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.
Receipt of Year-End Inventory Observations Report
Request to acknowledge receipt of Inspector General Report- BCC-129 Year-End
Inventory Observations FYE 9-30-14.
Receipt of Purchase from Lands Available List
Request to acknowledge receipt of the list of property placed on the Lands Available List Lake County has until June 08, 2015 to purchase from Lands Available List before it is available to the public.
Order from the Florida Public Service Commission
Request to acknowledge receipt of Notice of Proposed Agency Action before the Florida Public Service Commission in re: Application of Transfer of Certificate No. 531-W from W.B.B. Utilities, Inc. to Lake Idlewild Utility Company in Lake County. Copy of Order Approving Net Book Value And Initial Customer Deposits And Final Order Approving Transfer of Certificate No. 531-W From W.B.B. Utilities, Inc. To Lake Idlewild Utility Company in Lake County attached to said Notice.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Parks, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 7 through 30, pulling Tab 6, as follows:
Request for approval and signature on the Amended and Restated Agreement between Lake County and Feed and Instruct the Hungry (FAITH) Neighborhood Center, Inc. for Annual Grant Funding. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for award of term and supply contract 15-0204 for construction of bus stops for the County's public transit system to EltonAlan Inc. (Jacksonville, FL). The actual fiscal impact for the contract effort will be dependent upon quantities actually ordered. The full value associated with the currently estimated quantities is $931,032 with an estimated initial order value of $116,266 for construction of 22 non-shelter bus stops. The effort is 100% FTA grant-funded. Such funding is currently available in the amount of $664,262.
Request that the Board approve the change orders described below in regards to the Altoona Community Center project. The fiscal impact of these change orders is an estimated $73,615.28.
Request for approval of the Altoona Charter School Department of Economic (DEO) grant modification time extension. The fiscal impact is $206,605.00 (Fully Grant Funded - Expense).
Request for Chairman's signature on Certification of Local Government Approval for Nonprofit Organizations - Emergency Shelter form on behalf of the Lake Community Action Agency for their 2015 Emergency Solutions Grants Grant Application. There is no fiscal impact. An addendum was added that was a last minute grant application from Lake County Community Action Agency.
Community Safety and Compliance
Request for approval of Interlocal Agreement between the City of Clermont and Lake County for the use of state funding in the amount of $300,000 awarded to Lake County for a South Lake Water Initiative Engineering Consultant to assess water demand projections and infrastructure capacity in South Lake County. The fiscal impact is $300,000 (Expenditure), which is entirely grant funded.
Request for approval to apply for U.S. Department of Justice; Bureau of Justice Administration; Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program FY 2015 grant in the amount of $250,000 over 36 months to create a pilot Mobile Mental Crisis Team. This is a pass-through grant to Lifestream; there is no fiscal impact.
Request for approval and execution of the Modification and Extension of Lease Agreement with John R. Prickett, Jr. for lease space for the Tax Collector's Office in Eustis. The fiscal impact for FY15 is $24,990.00.
Request for approval for the County Attorney to execute the Stipulated Final Judgment in Court Case No. 2014-CA-002259, Lake County vs. Julia Ann Rector, et al. (Parcel Number: FP39) for right-of-way needed for the CR 466A Road Project. The total settlement and fiscal impact is $185,000.00 (Expenditure).
Request for approval of Lease Agreement between Lake County and PRVR of Tavares, LLC, for lease space located at 2004 and 2008 Classique Lane, in Tavares, to relocate the Housing Division of Community Services. The estimated fiscal impact is $14,400 for FY15.
Facilities Development and Management
Request for approval of a Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) of $202,590 and other project related costs, and contingency allowance of $25,633.91 for the project entitled “Lake County North Wing 3rd Floor Renovations”, and authorize County staff to complete all associated implementing documents. The fiscal impact is $228,223.91 (Expenditure).
Fiscal and Administrative Services
Request for approval to assign the County contract currently awarded to GMB Engineers & Planners, Inc. (GMB) for transportation engineering to Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc. (VHB) due to corporate acquisition proceedings; and to authorize the procurement office to complete all implementing documentation. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for approval to award contract 15-0014 to Mid-Florida Armored & ATM Services (Tampa) for armored car services. The estimated fiscal impact for the initial one-year term is $26,000 (Expenditure).
Request for approval of award of contract 15-0016 to Public Financial Management Inc. (PFM, Orlando) for provision of specialized financial advisory services on an as-needed basis. The average annual fiscal impact is estimated at $30,000.
Request for approval and signature of the Statement of Work between CDW Government LLC and Lake County Board of County Commissioners for the planning, design, and implementation of a Microsoft Enterprise Mobility solution. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for approval of contract 15-0429 for On-Call Voice and Data Cabling Infrastructure Services to the four vendors cited below, and authorization for the Procurement Office to execute all supporting documents. The fiscal impact for the initial project is $33,969. As future needs cannot be quantified at this time, the annual fiscal impact will depend on actual requirements. The annual average expenditure under a previous term and supply contract for these services was $50,000.
Request for approval of an agreement with the City of Leesburg to provide Ethernet Internet Access Services to the Lake County Library system, and authorize Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation. The annual fiscal impact pre E-rate discount is $192,000. 80% of cost is reimbursable through the E-Rate Universal Services Program for a net annual fiscal impact of $38,400.
Request for approval and execution of Interlocal Agreement between Lake County and South Lake Hospital for County-wide Communications System. The fiscal impact is $1,776.00 (Revenue) annually.
Request for approval and signature of Duke Energy Protected Critical Infrastructure Information Limited Release Form. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for approval and execution of: (1) Memorandum of Agreement for Participating Orlando Urban Areas Securities Initiative (UASI) Agencies by the Lake County Board of County Commissioners; and appointment of the Lake County Emergency Management Manager as the primary representative for Lake County to the UASI Working Group; and (2) Authorization for the County Manager to sign future amendments/modifications that do not involve financial impact. The fiscal impact to Lake County has not been determined. No local match is required.
Request for approval of the TRIP Supplemental Agreement between Lake County and the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) for the construction of the N. Hancock Rd Phase III A Project, from CR 50 to Fosgate Rd, with FDOT in the Minneola/Clermont area (FM#435515-1-58-01). The fiscal impact is $96,793 (TRIP Grant 50% funded).
Request for approval of Resolution No. 2015-34 designating County maintained roads within the Mount Plymouth Neighborhood as appropriate for golf cart signage and operation of golf carts in accordance with Section 15-15, Lake County Code (see attached Exhibit A). The fiscal impact is $1,762.20 (Expenditure).
Request for authorization to award Thomas Avenue Sidewalk; Project No. 2015-01, Bid No. 15-0002, to Estep Construction, Inc., in the amount of $169,741.00, and to encumber and expend funds in the amount of $169,741.00 from the Federal/State Grants Fund for the Thomas Avenue Sidewalk project. The fiscal impact is $169,741.00 (100% grant funded).
Request for approval to accept a negotiated value for right of way for the Hartle Road Extension, as per the Donation Agreement with Senninger Irrigation, Inc., approved December 2, 2014. The negotiated value of $216,000.00 is 25% above the appraised value of $173,100.00. The agreement provides this amount in transportation impact fee credits to Senninger Irrigation. The property is located in the Clermont area.
Lake County Water Authority presentation
Mr. Mike Perry, Executive Director Lake County Water Authority, displayed a graph of the Lake Minnehaha water levels on the monitor. He summarized that the lake water levels are doing well and have recovered from the previous droughts thanks to new record levels of rain fall. He explained that they are at the level that they prefer to be at, but due to the fact that the levels are higher than usual, there are cases where the lake water is now encroaching on developed land. He reported that a mobile home park had been built in a marshy wetland area on Lake Palatlakaha where the elevated rain levels have caused flooding concerns. He mentioned that when the water would get high, people would drive their boats or jet skis which causes erosion, so an ordinance had been passed that specifies that motorized water vehicles can only be utilized when the lake reaches above 97 ft., but notes that this is not followed in most cases. He reported that other than that, most of the county is satisfied with the current water level. He displayed on the monitor a graph of the water levels in the Harris Chain of Lakes, which are all currently at regulation schedule except for Lake Apopka.
Commr. Campione inquired if there was a downside to not operating the dam.
Mr. Perry responded that the downside was that the longer water sits not being processed, the more the water quality declines due to the nutrients in the soil. He mentioned that upsides to not operating the dam are the cost savings. He clarified that the North Shore areas were being used for storage, and they had recently been able to pump some water off of the North Shore back into the lake. He clarified that the best option would be to wait for water levels to rise rather than to pump it, as pumping is very expensive and the district does not want Lake Apopka to be lowered any further so that the soil on the bottom of the lake is not stirred up and cause additional water quality degradation. He concluded that they hoped for a good amount of rainfall in the summer, without any tropical activity.
Commr. Campione clarified that if there was tropical activity, then water treatment could begin as soon as the district allowed water into their facility.
Mr. Perry remarked that the district has a natural circulation route for the water through a created marsh called a flow-way, but as two-thirds of Lake Apopka resides in Orange County, the district focused more on the discharge of the lake.
Commr. Cadwell clarified that a Nutrient Reduction Facility (NuRF) had been discussed, but it had been thought that the water quality would take too long to improve for the public to approve of, even if the end result would be so much better.
Mr. Perry commented that this was a global problem that would require a global solution. He clarified that the Cherry Lake dam had been releasing water but currently had no outgoing flow as the water levels had reached a good point. He mentioned that the schedule for that lake had been created in 1959, well ahead of Emerald Lake’s, and that it was a misconception that they were following Emerald Lake’s schedule, as their levels are kept lower.
Commr. Parks clarified that holding the water at higher levels for longer periods would be damaging. He relayed that the Water Initiative meetings had been trying to manage more of the recreational aspects of the lakes.
Commr. Cadwell pointed out that while there was a marked increase in quality and clarity in places like Lake Yale, the process takes so long to see the outcome that it is difficult to keep people enthused.
Commr. Campione thanked the Water Authority and its volunteers for all the lake cleanup that they do.
public hearing: budget presentation
Mr. Steve Koontz, Director of Fiscal and Admin Services, gave a presentation on the Mid-Year Budget Amendment for the Board’s approval. He explained that the Mid-Year Budget Amendment is to make adjustments to the FY 2015 Adopted Budget after having studied the audited fund balances and adjusted for any unforeseen changes. He reported that with the mid-year changes, the supplemental budget for FY 2015 is $361.36 million. He summarized that the changes to the general fund included an FY 2015 adopted reserve of $11.5 million or 9.3 percent of operating expenses, an adjustment for final inmate medical invoice from Armor, an adjustment to the Animal Services trust fund, a final payout for three senior staff from the Property Appraiser’s office, a rebudgeted jail re-piping project and facilities maintenance work order software, and additional funding needed for an infrastructure sales tax reauthorization referendum. He reported that $268,492 was received from the Sheriff’s Office by the BCC in October 2014, but during the FY 2014 year end closeout process, an accounting adjustment was made, and the Sheriff is now requesting $193,307.11 to be returned. He specified that this is not an increase in this year’s budget, but a balance to last year’s. He relayed that changes to other funds included an increase of $2.2 million to the county transportation trust fund balance due to a carry forward of resurfacing and maintenance projects, an adjustment to the fire services impact fee trust to fully fund F.S. 90 Clermont, and an adjustment to the Historical Courthouse Renovation project carryforward and budget for furniture and a phone system as one of the infrastructure sales tax capital projects. He stated that the requested action is for the approval of the amended budget for FY 2015 to include the mid-year budget amendment and approval of the resolution adopting a supplemental budget of $361,363,974 for FY 2015, a budget transfer of $20,500 for printing or mailing absentee ballots for the Sales Tax Referendum, and direct pay of $193,307.11 to the Sheriff’s Office.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one who wished to address the Board at this time, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
Commr. Campione clarified that the total $7.96 million in mid-year changes was the sum total of changes across all 56 funds.
Mr. Koontz explained that staff estimated the ending fund balance for FY 2014 at about $13.2 million, which takes into account the allowable 95 percent of the total budget as per Florida statute, but since the County had actually brought in 97 percent from higher revenues and lower expenses than estimated, there was a $2.6 million adjustment.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Sullivan, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Amended Budget for Fiscal Year 2015 to include reconciliation of beginning fund balance and other adjustments, the budget transfer of $20,500 for printing/mailing absentee ballots for the Sales Tax Referendum, and the direct pay of $193,307.11 to the Sheriff's office.
Ms. Amye King, Community Liaison Manager, presented to the Board a review of the proposed Tavares ISBA and amendment to the Mount Dora JPA. She explained that an ISBA, Interlocal Service Boundary Agreement, is an agreement adopted between a county and one or more municipalities, which may include one or more independent special districts as parties to the agreement. She explained that annexations have occurred over the last decade that have encroached into rural areas causing service issues, especially in Fire and Rescue, and have led to new higher density neighborhoods surrounded by rural areas because of the availability of water and sewer, and so the Tavares ISBA was created in order to mitigate these issues. She reported that the City Council’s first reading of the Tavares ISBA was April 1, 2015, and adoption is scheduled for April 15. She relayed that the ISBA provides for automatic aid for the next 20 years, allows for non-contiguous annexations in the ISBA with property owner consent, has an agreement not to annex outside the ISBA, and requires that central utilities be provided for any development including all non-contiguous parcels. She related that the ISBA also provides for consistency with Land Development Regulations and the Comprehensive Plan and covers services such as solid waste, fire hydrants, sharing equipment and resources, E 911 system, addressing, and fire and rescue services. She remarked that parties to this ISBA include the City of Tavares, Lake County, the Town of Astatula, the City of Leesburg, and the City of Mount Dora who have agreed to the boundary. She specified that Mount Dora’s Joint Planning Area requires a boundary amendment in the Bay Road area to coincide with the proposed Tavares ISBA.
Chief Jolliff detailed that automatic aid would include having the closest units respond to incidents, the utilization of the Automatic Vehicle Location System (AVL), having Lake EMS dispatch all calls, the utilization of common run cards, billing of medical calls at $100 per call and fire calls at $500 per call, calls made by Tavares to county buildings will be addressed at the same rate, and a quarterly “true-up” to address allocation of costs. He explained that this will be similar to other Fire Rescue Agreements, that the City of Tavares Automatic Aid Agreement will be effective July 1, 2015, and the needed funds have been budgeted. He reported that there are areas of the city and within the unincorporated County that will receive enhanced services.
Ms. King concluded that the requested action is for approval to advertise the Interlocal Service Boundary Agreement Ordinance and to adopt an amendment to the Mount Dora JPA.
Commr. Parks clarified that there is not currently a list of the non-contiguous parcels that Tavares plans to annex.
Ms. King clarified that Tavares has not proposed any annexations that are non-contiguous at this point.
Commr. Campione put forward one issue they had recently dealt with in Clermont where an annexation occurs and a land use change is requested of the city. She reported a scenario where there were County residents that are not happy with what was being proposed and wanted to be represented, but the city councils did not view them as their constituents because they were outside of the city limits and the County had given away their jurisdiction. She remarked that they needed to figure out how to address and correct that, because it is a problem that affects County residents when they abdicate their jurisdiction on land use cases.
Commr. Parks opined that he had some of the same questions and would be open to addressing them.
Mr. Minkoff, County Attorney, pointed out that the proposed ISBA for Tavares is very compact, so it is very unlikely that there would be any far away annexations like in Clermont, but the only way to address that would be to eliminate the provision of the ISBA that the cities wanted in order to have access to automatic aid.
Commr. Campione commented that the City of Mount Dora thought that they would not necessarily have to annex and were mostly concerned with utilities as opposed to actually annexing. She inquired if there was some way they could give themselves standing in those zoning cases so they could represent their constituents.
Mr. Minkoff explained that they did have standing, but the problem that led to these ISBAs was that annexations were being made that were not legal because they created enclaves. He relayed that they were not giving up the jurisdiction because they had not objected to any of those annexations.
Commr. Parks inquired if there was a process within the ISBA that would allow them to address the issue of the commercial parcels only being cherry picked to be annexed and the residential parcels being left off.
Commr. Campione added that the cities got more benefits from the commercial parcels by annexing that way because it gave them the tax base and the fire assessments, which by extension the County loses.
Ms. King pointed out that under a previous ISBA, Commr. Campione had requested the planning staff to check for policies in the Comp Plan that would address those types of contiguous, logical, and orderly annexations which will being included in an upcoming cycle.
Commr. Campione asked for the locations of the fire stations to be pointed out on the map displayed on the monitor. She clarified that one Tavares fire station may still receive calls from other cities due to its proximity, but will be compensated according to the schedule. She inquired what the fiscal impact would be for Tavares compensating other cities.
Chief Jolliff remarked that it usually takes from 2 to 3 months to determine what the average might be as different months are busier than others, but staff has submitted a fiscal impact of $1,000 from July to the end of September.
Mr. Heath reported that he and Chief Jolliff had a monthly meeting to discuss these numbers and that they really depended on the jurisdiction, but they are still within the anticipated budget. He mentioned that the Board has been responsible for the fire assessments for the City of Tavares for any County buildings for the past two years.
Commr. Campione inquired if there was a way to add language to the ISBA that would give the Board more say in situations where annexing occurs.
Mr. Minkoff clarified that they could remove the non-contiguous annexation, but the city may not react positively to that since they would be asked to renegotiate the agreements they have with other cities.
Commr. Connor opined that their current agreement with the cities is a good compromise on both sides, and while there have been some valid points raised, it would be difficult to change that after already approving six ISBAs and that the agreements hinge on that language.
Mr. Heath remarked that it would be unfair to Tavares to change the language in the middle of the proceedings, particularly as this is the last ISBA. He suggested they approach the cities about addressing the non-contiguous annexations as the automatic true-ups occur.
Commr. Cadwell commented that they would be able to go through the ISBAs systematically during the true-up, and they would be able to let the other cities know that this issue would be coming up by approving the ISBA advertisement today. He opined that the Board should have an internal policy before they start to renegotiate in order to ensure consistency. He specified that the annexation issue needed to be addressed, but it should be done as the true-ups occur in the way that the ISBAs were designed. He reiterated that the trade-off for the cities having access to the fire system was the non-contiguous annexation.
Commr. Campione specified that she was concerned that the citizens’ right to be represented was being infringed upon and that they and the cities needed to address that. She urged staff to start working on that language and talking to others to find out what everyone might be able to agree upon.
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Sullivan, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved for staff to advertise a Public Hearing for the Tavares ISBA and authorized the signature of First Amendment to the Joint Planning Area between Lake County and the City of Mount Dora.
There was consensus on the Board that staff will review the language to address the concerns for annexation in existing agreements.
Mr. Heath conveyed that he would reach out to the cities and report back their reactions on if they are willing to have a Comp Plan amendment or amend their ISBAs. He explained that these are 20 year agreements, and the true-ups are only for addressing the rates of compensation for the medical and fire calls.
Mr. Minkoff submitted that they have been monitoring every annexation that goes forward, and there has not been an increase in the amount of annexations of the past year, but will report their findings to the Board.
RECESS AND reassembly
The Board reconvened at 10:40 A.M.
Keep Lake County Beautiful committee
Mr. Brian Sheahan, Director of Community Safety and Compliance, gave a presentation on the steps necessary to fulfill the requirements for the Keep Lake Beautiful affiliate membership. He explained that in December 2014 the Board approved pursuing affiliate membership in the Keep America Beautiful (KAB) program and that the first of two required trainings was completed in February, with the second scheduled for May. He reported that the Community Litter Index is the touchstone of the KAB program and that a Community Appearance Index must be completed annually by each affiliate member. He relayed that the Litter Index portion of this survey provides a baseline that is used to measure the success of the program on littering behavior. He related that Lake County’s baseline survey and been performed in March 2015 where 56 corridors had been surveyed with a total of five coastlines, and four lakes and Haines Creek were included with each corridor being ½ to 1 mile in length. He explained that the Index graded on a scale of 1 to 4, with 1 being the best with minimal to no litter and 4 being the worst with extreme amounts of litter, but the majority of Lake County’s sites fell between 1 and 2 with no 4s. He specified that the littered sites that scored a 3 were the Leesburg Airport located on 441, the Lake Harris Shoreline located northwest of the Dead River, Mt Homer Road located in the Eustis Area, the US 441 Gateway located in Orange County, and the CR 452 Gateway located in Marion County. He mentioned that as a part of their affiliation requirements, they are proposing the formation of a Keep Lake Beautiful Committee of 9 members, comprised of one commissioner, two elected municipal representatives, one business owner/chamber representative, one School Board member, one civic organization member, and three citizen representatives. He relayed that the committee will prioritize and monitor programs, set goals, provide objectives, report to the BCC annually, and meet quarterly. He mentioned that the terms would initially expire January 2017, but thereafter be 4 year terms. He related that this would be a Sunshine Committee requiring minutes to be taken and would be staffed by Community Safety & Compliance at present. He proposed that the mission statement would be “To beautify Lake County by engaging our community” and displayed the proposed logo on the monitor. He explained that the next steps in the affiliation process are to participate in the second required training in May 2015 and to submit the package to complete affiliation requirements. He reported that a Targeted Community Clean Up event in the problem areas is being planned that will utilize the Waste Haulers for clean-up, as they are required to participate in six clean ups per year by contract. He concluded by requesting that the Board adopt the Resolution for the Keep Lake Beautiful Committee and move forward with the KAB application.
Commr. Cadwell clarified that the commissioner on the Keep Lake Beautiful Committee would serve as a full member as opposed to a liaison. He opined that serving on committees as liaisons has been very effective.
Mr. Heath clarified that it would be a Sunshine Committee whether or not the commissioner served as a member or a liaison, but the KAB program does not require a commissioner to be a member of the committee, so they could be only a liaison if the Board wished.
Commr. Campione mentioned that there may be places in the community that had not been surveyed, but may have litter problems as well, and perhaps the members of the community could point them in the direction of these areas. She clarified that they would be visiting the same locations when they do the annual survey and inquired if they could add locations.
Commr. Conner pointed out that they had surveyed 56 locations, and only 5 of them had been given a 3 rating and zero had been given a 4, so they should concentrate on those more problematic areas.
Commr. Campione opined that there are other areas that may be a 3 or 4 rating that have not been identified.
Commr. Sullivan commented that Keep Lake Beautiful is being established in order to get communities involved, and input is essential to ensure that Lake County is beautiful everywhere.
Commr. Cadwell remarked that the point of this program is to physically do clean-up projects, but it also sends a subliminal message to the community about keeping their area beautiful and promoting environmental consciousness.
Commr. Conner opined that the clean-up days, such as the one in the Sorrento-Mt. Plymouth area, are a great way to identify a particular area for litter pickup and that it was impressive that there were so many people in the community who wanted to pitch in.
Commr. Cadwell specified that this program is community driven, not government driven, and that the energy put into it will define what it turns into.
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Sullivan, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Resolution No. 2015-35 creating a Keep Lake Beautiful Committee and to fulfill requirements of Keep America Beautiful affiliate membership requirements, with the modification that the county commission member would serve as a liaison, not a voting member.
Presentation on Economic Growth's Quarterly Update
Mr. Robert Chandler, Director of Economic Growth, gave a presentation on the 1st Quarter Update on Economic Development and Tourism Activities. He displayed several graphs on the monitor which illustrated that in Lake County the unemployment rate is down by 1.0 percent, jobs are up by 3.1 percent, wages are up by 2.0 percent, permits are up by 80.0 percent, tax receipts are up by 7.2 percent, and gross sales are up by 10 percent. He explained that the Economic Development and Tourism Department had merged with Growth Management to form the Economic Growth Department and the anticipated outcomes of this include increased efficiencies and customer service, full-service concierge from conception to permit, a singular message regarding the County’s approach to development and growth, and better communication and collaboration between divisions. He relayed that Commr. Parks had recently gone on a mission trip to New York for the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission (EPC).
Mr. Rick Weddle, EDC President, gave an overview of the New York conference, or Orlando-On-The-Road, and explained that it had been a business development, marketing communications, and media relations trip. He mentioned that they had kicked off the trip with a series of proclamations, including one declaring March 1-7, 2015 as “Orlando You Don’t Know the Half of It” Week, which is the slogan from the new branding campaign. He remarked that they had 34 delegates from both the public and private sector on the trip representing Orlando who had attended events with several companies, such as Akerman, Skanska, CBRE, and NBC/Universal, and concluded the conference with a site selection consultant meeting. He explained that the end result of this trip equated to 94 group and individual connections, a total of 79 group presentations comprised of 67 contacts from 31 companies and 12 site selector consultants, and 13 individual meetings comprised of 6 site selector meetings and 7 business briefings, the development of two active projects, four new project possibilities, and a site selector consultant adding Orlando to the current search for a high profile sporting event. He relayed that they also had several New York media interviews and meetings with organizations such as CNN Money, Popular Mechanics, and FOX Business Online, and the results for were a total of 381,102,980 impressions (the circulation of the stories that have been exposed to it) giving an end total of over $1,326,000 in ad equivalency (what the advertising would have cost). He opined that he had never seen a press trip generate so much editorial coverage in such a quick amount of time.
Commr. Parks commented that the trip had been extremely well organized and thanked Mr. Weddle for putting it together. He mentioned that they would not have been able to do this trip just as Lake County, and being a part of the EDC afforded them this opportunity, because they are more associated with the Orlando area and are not really well-known on their own. He relayed that the site relocation specialist had appreciated how regional the group was thinking and acting, as it is rare to have multiple counties and cities cooperating so well.
Mr. Weddle remarked that the industry goes where it is invited and stays where it is welcome, and this trip was about making the invitation. He opined that they relied on Lake County as well, because the organization works much better when they all pull together. He relayed that the comment about the various counties’ cooperation with each other had been much remarked upon throughout the conference.
Mr. Chandler reported that Lake County has had two site visits thanks to this event. He opined that it was very important that they embrace the regional approach, while still being distinct. He displayed on the monitor two graphs demonstrating where they are in regards to lead generations from the last four quarters, where 10 official lead sources have come to Lake County directly and 15 have come through the EDC, with 15 of those leads coming from manufacturing. He explained that the County had several business recruitment wins with Coreslab, which the Lake County EDT worked closely with the City of Leesburg to close deal and will be the first project located in the new 470 Commerce Center with 80,000 square feet, 55 employees, and $8,000,000 worth of capital investment; and the Quietflex Relocation and Expansion, where the EDT assisted with the relocation to ensure company remained in Lake County and went from 60,000 to 120,000 square feet. He reported that they did not win Project Horizon, but the bid did prove that Lake County can compete as it made the final four and impressed one of nation’s top site selectors, indicating that the 470 Commerce Center is an attractive regional destination and remarked that it was a full team effort between Lake County, Leesburg, the Orlando EDC, and the EFI. He commented that the Wellness Way Sector Plan had been transmitted to DEO on November 18, 2014; and that they had received the DEO’s “Objections, Recommendations and Comments” Report (ORC) on February 6, 2015. He mentioned that the Economic Growth staff is managing the response to the ORC, and they anticipate bringing it back to BCC in July 2015 to hopefully be approved. He explained that the Business Opportunity Centers had consulted with 214 distinct clients in over 954 consulting sessions for a total of 1,711 hours of consulting and had hosted 57 distinct training events with a total of 677 distinct attendees for 1,043 hours of instruction. He relayed that according to the Economic Impact Report, those consulting and training sessions resulted in 159 jobs being created, 10 jobs being retained, 30 businesses being started, and $3,023,874 in total capital formation.
Mr. Chandler commented that the other side of the Business Opportunity Centers was that while the SBDC services continue to achieve strong return on investment, the Incubator program has not met expectations. He reported that they are currently in talks with Lake Sumter State College to reconfigure that contract. He explained that this reconfiguration will entail the Business Opportunity Centers continuing to serve as an entrepreneurial hub with LSSC managing the entire BOC program, but phasing out the incubator program. He submitted that the LSSC’s goals were to develop and coordinate an integrated system of diverse support services available to businesses (SBDC, SCORE, Career Source Central Florida, etc.) and to utilize or mobilize LSSC infrastructure, talent, and resources to develop unique and innovative programs to support local businesses. He specified that staff was researching alternative locations in the South and Northeast to better serve as markets and achieve cost savings. He reported that the groundbreaking for the new Center for Advanced Manufacturing facility was held on October 30, 2015 and that $1.4 million in funding was awarded from the State in 2013 and 2014 with an additional $2.8 million needed to complete the complex. He related that classes are currently being offered in the current facility and that $100,000 has been allocated in 2014 EDT budget for the complex which would be used to purchase equipment that would allow Lake Tech to begin offering more diverse training opportunities before the full facility is completed or can also be used as a match to pursue other funding sources.
Mr. Chandler mentioned that staff will bring back the interlocal agreement for BCC approval at a later date. He pointed out that workforce and education represent two of the greatest challenges impacting economic development in Lake County due to the fact that the various organizations working to correct the issues do not always coordinate well. He remarked that they were putting together a Lake County Work Force Task Force of Lake County EDT, local workforce, and education partners comprising of organizations like the BOC, LSSC, Lake Tech, Lake County Schools, UCF, Career Source CF, Goodwill, Florida High Tech Corridor, and the Education Foundation to meet on a regular basis in order to create a platform for all local workforce and education partners to communicate and collaborate on programs to improve Lake County’s workforce conditions and will have their first meeting late spring or early summer and will meet quarterly. He reported that other business retention and expansion updates included finalizing the Made In Lake database at www.madeinlake.com and planning “Manufacturing Summit” for Summer 2015, that the Senninger Irrigation Project is expecting to execute expansion plans by end of 2015, the groundbreaking at Granville Road, and the Four Corners Community Summit which was the second in a series of meetings with non-municipal communities in Lake County for determining the potential for Lake County to assist with community and economic revitalization. He relayed that they had a partnership with GroFlorida, a program similar to SBDC, who have awarded a scholarship to SkyBolt. He explained that Lake County receives one scholarship per year as part of their partnership that they can assign to a Lake County business which involves technical support, peer review and mentor matching for second stage companies. He related that they had worked with the South Lake Chamber to form a Technology Committee to ensure that Lake County maintains a presence in the regional technology sector movement, which is rapidly growing. He displayed on the monitor two graphs illustrating that TDT revenues were up by 15 percent and surpassed $2.4 million for the first time in 2014. He mentioned that the application submittal deadline for the TDC Capital Projects 2015 Spring Cycle is April 20, 2015, and they have not received any applications at this time.
Ms. Carmen Cullen, Executive Director of Educational Foundation of Lake County, presented an update on the Renaissance Faire at Lake Idamere. She explained that the thirteenth annual Lady of the Lakes Renaissance Faire was relocated to Lake Idamere from Hickory Point Recreational Complex and was expanded to two weeks as an agreement with the Lake County Office of Economic Development and Tourism and the Education Foundation Board of Directors. She pointed out that studies indicated that moving a faire from an existing site could result in a 50 percent decline in visitors and that increasing a faire to two weekends has been shown to result in a 30 percent increase in revenue and a 70 percent increase in expenses, with an average of 3 years to rebuild and expand. The Education Foundation Board agreed to relocate and expand as they found it to be in the best interest of the county short term and as a potential to rebuild the faire for expansion in future years. She specified that the completion of the project would not have been possible without major donations and in-kind labor from many companies and volunteers that came to an estimated total of $80,000. She reported that there had been some challenges with the relocation, including the parking and the busing system during Education Day, but opined that the permitting process was the most arduous and unduly costly for a non-profit organization and suggested that a new set of eyes look over the process, particularly the necessity of some of the questions. She relayed that the faire attendance increased to 18,000 and the net profit was $77,000, which they feel is a great success. She remarked that that career and tech academies love the Renaissance fair for its real life applications, which is proven by the 145 high school students who spent four months perfecting their roles and the six culinary departments who cooked and served $62,000 worth of faire food. She explained that the volunteer hours exceeded 11,800, which give them faith that Lake County residents have a vested interest in being a part of their School Family and that they believe the fair will have an impact on the economic development of Lake County as it grows.
Commr. Campione thanked Ms. Cullen for her report and suggestion about the non-profit permitting process. She commented that it was helpful to have this kind of information.
Commr. Conner opined that this project was one of the reasons Lake County is such a great place to live and noted that it pairs well with the concept of “Orlando You Don’t Know the Half of It” since it required so many entities’ cooperation to make it happen. He thanked Ms. Cullen and Commr. Cadwell for all their work on the project.
Mr. Steve Bishop, President of the Florida Region of USA Volleyball, presented an update on the Hickory Point Beach Volley Ball Complex. He reported that they had several upcoming local events that include Adult Volleyball Leagues, Florida High School Sand VB League, and Beach Volleyball Clinics for Juniors; upcoming state and regional events that include the Florida High School Sand Volleyball Challenge, the Florida High School Sand Volleyball Championships, and seven separate tour stops in the Florida USAV Beach Series; several national events that include the national Collegiate Sand Volleyball Association (NCSVA) Club Qualifier, two USA Jr. Beach Tour National Qualifiers, the ROX East Coast Jr. Beach All-Star Championships, the ROX Volleyball Series National Championships, and the US Amateur Beach Championships. He commented that Hickory Point was the official site of the first high school sand volleyball league in the state of Florida which had previously not been classified as a championship sport. He explained that these events have been bringing in athletes from across the state and the country who had never heard of Tavares before. He relayed that they had been able to secure an international event with the North, Central America and Caribbean Volleyball Confederation (NORCECA) Continental Tour stop, which is the only stop of NORCECA in the United States in 2015 and is usually held in California at the Olympic training grounds, and will represent a total of 35 countries. He mentioned that they will be attracting the spectator base from the NORCECA tour stop to also play in the Adult Amateur Beach Championship event. He related that they had several other events coming up which included an Adult Coed Beach Series, a Southern Sand Holiday Volleyball Tournament for Juniors, Sand Soccer, and other possible sports such as sand tennis, footvolley, and sand flag football. He remarked that they had implemented several marketing initiatives including a Florida Region Box Truck, a marketing video, and a DIG magazine ad, which he displayed on the monitor. He explained that they were able to produce the ad through the Economic Growth Department’s grant program. He specified that they were the only beach volleyball tour in the state of Florida that has a full time, certified athletic trainer at each event, and they had recently signed a partnership agreement with Cora Health to be the official sports medicine partner of Hickory Point Beach. He mentioned that they were in talks to host 2016 events with several collegiate volleyball leagues and a possible Hickory Point Beach Volleyball Academy.
Commr. Parks commented that several officials from the New York trip had remarked on the complex and how they wished it had been located in their districts, so Hickory Point is getting a lot of attention and good press.
Mr. Bishop reported that they had been contacted by six different counties asking for consultations for building similar complexes.
Commr. Sullivan noted that this is what the Economic Development team is trying to accomplish with tourism and building their core of “Real Florida, Real Close”, and it is good to see that this project has been successful.
Mr. Chandler relayed that the Clermont Boathouse had their grand opening on February 28, 2015. He mentioned that there is a need for increased seating capacity at existing Lake County facilities in order to win bids for larger sporting events, so they are currently researching the cost and feasibility of renting versus purchasing temporary bleachers as a County sponsored capital project, and they will bring back a recommendation at the next TDC meeting. He explained that they were focusing on how to best capitalize on the resources available on the Lake County side of the Lake Apopka North Shore Restoration Area. He related that they had recently conducted a tour with James Currie to determine potential bird watching infrastructure improvements, who indicated that Lake County could be one of the top birding destinations in the entire country if they plan it out correctly, and they had ideas for potential projects such as bird blinds, vehicle paths, trails, and increased marketing effort. He commented that the tourism website has gone live at lakefl.com and specified that it would have cost from $50,000 to $100,000 if they had outsourced it, so staff is to be highly commended for making the site so user-friendly, streamlined, and visually appealing. He noted that their strategy for attracting Orlando visitors to Lake County has been implemented with the tagline “Take A Vacation From Your Vacation” and “Experience Real Florida, Real Close” which are being utilized in ad space in a variety of different locations including Visit Florida, Trip Advisor, and as a 5’ x 4’ tension fabric in the Orlando Sanford International Airport. He displayed the ad that will be looping in the Orlando Sanford International Airport that will be running and commended staff again for giving movement to what would otherwise be still photos. He reported that the tagline for Florida residents is “Unwind from the Grind” which will be featured in venues like Pandora, the Orlando Sentinel, and Visit Florida. He remarked that they have been campaigning for Bass Fishing as one of their targeted segments, which is getting off the ground with stickers and a lakebigbass.com microsite within the new tourism website. He noted that they have an endorsement contract with local angler, Tim Frederick and displayed on the monitor photos of the branded fishing boat and jersey. He explained that the Major League Fishing TV show, the highest rated fishing show on TV today, has been secured for their entire season to begin filming in mid-October and airing in the spring of 2016. He specified that this will entail 13 two hour episodes, that each episode will rerun 3 times, and that it will be aired on the Outdoor Channel, World Fishing Network (WFN), and NBC Outdoors networks. He mentioned that their team had exhibited at the Bassmaster Classic in Greenville, South Carolina and at the FLW Tour Expo in Kissimmee to help promote bass fishing. He remarked that they had a full-page ad on back page of FWC Regulation Book, which is given to every angler that gets a permit and that both the Scott Martin Challenge and Fishing University have filmed in Lake County in the past six months.
Mr. Chandler reported that they would be highlighting boating and kayaking in Sierra magazine and will be bringing travel writers on family trips to inspire them to write about Lake County. He commented that How to Do Florida is returning to film a hiking trip in late May 2015 and noted that the kayaking episode that they filmed here was the highest rated show of the 2014 season. He related that the “Ride Real Florida, Real Close” stickers will be put in 2,000 V.I.P bags for the Leesburg Bikefest as a part of the Progressive Insurance promotion. He relayed that they are in discussions about researching the feasibility of relocating the Welcome Center to the Lakeridge Winery and will hopefully have an answer by the end of the summer. He noted that they had recently had the 2nd Annual Swingthoughts.com Lake County Classic Golf Tournament in Harbor Hills and had the Bike Florida Share the Road Celebration of Cycling Annual Conference in Clermont. He reported that they had hosted the 2nd Annual Tourism Forum, which had been well attended by tourism partners across the county. He specified that they were working with the Eustis Sailing Club to help with growth plans and provide more regional exposure. He mentioned that there were two other very successful events with Oakley Big Bass, which managed to increase their numbers by 40 percent thanks to their success, and the Fishers of Men Tournaments, who want to return in the future.
Commr. Cadwell commented that the TDC is very excited about the direction they are going in with their website and thanked Ms. Kelly LaFollette, Communications Director, and her team for the wonderful job they had done with it. He reported that he had seen the Major League Fishing show on TV and remarked that it had come across like an advertisement for Lake County.
Commr. Parks observed that they were concentrating on the reality of what will bring money into Lake County and put together an incredible marketing plan. He pointed out that their manufacturing percentage of labor is twice the average of Florida, which is something that they can continue to build upon.
Commr. Conner commended the quality of work that Ms. LaFollette and her team had been able to produce considering they had been short-staffed for part of the project.
Commr. Conner presented Proclamation No. 2015-26 declaring March 23-29, 2015 as "Orlando. You Don't Know the Half of It Week" to Mr. Weddle and remarked that there has been an overwhelmingly positive response to the new campaign.
Recess and reassembly
The Board reconvened at 12:45 P.M.
Parks and Trails Update and Budget Presentation
Ms. Wendy Breeden, Public Resources Director, presented the Board with an overview of Parks and Trails operations and the proposed FY 2016 Budget. She displayed on the monitor an organizational chart that illustrated that Parks and Trails is a part of three divisions under the Public Resources department with a staff of 30 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers and is divided into Administration, Capital Projects Contractual Services, Active Recreation, Public Lands Passive Recreation, and Trails Passive Recreation.
Mr. Bobby Bonilla, Parks and Trails Division Manager, explained that the Lake County Parks and Trails mission is to develop and maintain a clean, safe and attractive parks and trails system for the health and enjoyment of all County residents and visitors while promoting recreation, sports and tourism, as well as to preserve and restore lands to protect water resources, habitat and wildlife corridors while promoting eco-tourism through educational passive recreation opportunities. He mentioned that to assist Parks and Trails in this mission and to better serve the diverse needs of Lake County residents and visitors with the goal of providing quality parks and recreation, the BCC has established with public input and involvement the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board consisting of nine members and a commissioner liaison, represented by Commr. Parks. He noted that the nine voting members are members of the community who are here to serve the citizens of Lake County and make recommendations to the BCC. He specified that they also had the adopted Parks and Recreation master plan and the adopted Trails master plan, which are both county-wide documents, and the Public Lands program that was enacted in 2005, all used as resources to help them complete their mission. He explained that the County recognizes that a balanced, quality park system enhances quality of life, provides economic benefit, and that a recreation system should include a variety of active and passive parks, trails, open space, and other recreation opportunities. He remarked that the Parks and Trails Division manages over 3,939 acres in active parks, passive parks, linear trails, blueway trails, and cemeteries. He displayed on the monitor a graph detailing the percentage breakdown of where they stand with each individual section. He specified that the passive parks includes the public lands properties totals the largest maintain acreage at 85.9 percent. He mentioned that they had 15 active parks totaling 491 acres and provide families with facilities for specific sports or games, as well as playground areas and pavilions. He reported that there are a total of 543 acres of passive parks in Lake County, and that their recreation is driven by the natural landscape such lakes, forests, hiking trails, or cultural resources. He remarked that they had a total of 2,812 acres of public land properties and the County’s primary focus for these parks was to restore and maintain their ecological function and to provide educational paths and recreational activities to the citizens and visitors of Lake County. He commented that they had 15 boat ramps totaling 78 acres, not including the 15 acres of the McDonald Canal Boat Ramp that is currently awaiting capital improvement by the St. John’s River Water Management District. He relayed that Lake County has a total of 46 active and passive recreation trails, 20 miles of multipurpose trails and 26 miles of hiking trails, and that these trails contribute to the community by providing people of all ages with an attractive, safe, and accessible place for recreation and transportation.
Mr. Bonilla related that Lake County has 139 miles of recreation water-based trails called “blueways” scenically located along the lakes, rivers, and canals of Lake County. He noted that Lake County had a total of 15 acres in their 7 cemeteries. He specified that the Parks system offers several varied amenities to the citizens and visitors of Lake County, including over 54 ball- and multi-purpose fields and 42 different kinds of courts, as well as 27 restrooms and 43 playgrounds. He explained that services provided by the Countywide Park included the parks being open with park staff available for 7 days a week, extended hours of operations at several manned parks, hosted over 4800 sport events, and hosted and partnered in 110 nature-based events. He mentioned that several recent Parks and Trails accomplishments included hosting sports events at the Minneola Athletic Complex, North Lake Community Park, and East Lake Community Park. He noted that some of the passive parks’ accomplishments included embodying Real Florida Real Close by providing nature-based events while promoting passive eco-tourism through educational recreational opportunities. He pointed out that there had been many South Lake Trail improvements and maintenance such as ADA improvements, trail amenities, and tunnel improvements. He specified that two recent capital project accomplishments were the construction of the Green Mountain Scenic Overlook and Trailhead; the Minneola Athletic Complex’s ballfields, paved parking, internal trail, and building; the Johns Lake Boat Ramp’s new paved parking; P.E.A.R. Park’s new restroom, pickleball courts, and tennis courts; and the East Lake Community Park’s new restroom, though it is not yet open to the public. He reported that some of the Division’s efficiencies include an increase in volunteers and partnerships, greater participation on selected committees and boards, in-house development of educational brochures and maps, the newly implemented electronic playground inspections, preliminary planning of capital projects up through the construction phase, project management being performed in-house, phased development, recycling and reusing materials, more open parks with less operating funds per park, cross training staff in multiple disciplines, an outsourced and contracted A.M. shift at the four busiest parks, the relocation of key personnel to field locations, the restructured public lands program and sharing of resources, and the mapping of trails with a new iPhone application. He displayed on the monitor a graph listing the 2014 estimates of population for Lake and the surrounding counties and explained that based on their population, they are spending approximately $17.05 per resident, per year for Parks and Recreation Services. He noted that of the surrounding counties, Lake County is ranked sixth in terms of total park acreage, but fifth in active recreational acreage. He reported that the proposed budget for 2016 was for a total revenue of $5,281,961, which reflects a status quo budget while maintaining the current levels of service. He pointed out that this number excludes possible changes to health and property insurance rates, workers’ compensation rates, COLA, FRS rates, and fleet and facility maintenance costs. He displayed on the monitor a detailed breakdown of expenses and the percentages of the total proposed budget that they represent, of which repair and maintenance represents 52.73 percent. He displayed a graph on the monitor with the current list of capital projects descriptions with their funding sources and explained that they utilize the $350,000 they receive annually from the sales tax as the primary source of capital improvement. He noted that jobs do not begin until they have the money to complete them, so they will not be left half-finished for any period of time, and that they work to share resources to keep up with their expansive acreage. He concluded that they are accessible and open to those they serve and that they are connecting thousands of children and adults to nature, sports, and the outdoors every day.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
Mayor Chris Bell, of Fruitland Park, remarked that he served on the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board as the representative from the Lake County League of Cities. He explained that historically Fruitland Park has been very active in supplying recreation to northwest county residents in partnership with Lake County. He related that Lake County had awarded them grants in order to build and maintain fields, but the grants have been discontinued as the County has become more active in recreation. He reported that due to budget constraints, they have had to relocate funds from certain parks into others in order to keep any of them open and serviceable to the public. He mentioned that the BCC had agreed to start talks with the City of Fruitland Park last year to establish the Northwest Community Park that is called for in the County Master Plan, but those talks have unfortunately yet to start. He specified that the current problem is that they had tried to establish their soccer program at the eventual park site, but due to safety concerns about the area, the program had to be discontinued. He pointed out that the neighboring Camp Geneva had allowed them to use their multipurpose field on a temporary basis. He asked the Board to consider starting in on the talks for the park and inquired if the County could assistance them in establishing a multipurpose field at that site in the meantime.
Mr. Vance Jochim, a writer of a blog about governmental fiscal issues, pointed out that there are still six public lands not open according to the charts shown in Mr. Bonilla’s presentation. He recommended that they should not buy land without setting aside funds to develop and use it, because it prevents others from utilizing it when it is tax land. He proposed that no more land acquisitions should be approved until all existing public lands and parks are fully opened, and they should develop a capacity or usage tracking system to justify any future growth, to prove that capacity is being reached before other land is bought. He opined that cities should not be subsidized for parks as they have their own tax base and should be able to pay for it. He suggested that the Board should apply for funds from any of the newer fund sources that are being provided under Amendment 1. He commented that the Board should set a cap for budget amounts to prevent the addition of any unforeseen costs.
Commr. Parks clarified that the 491 of active park acreage that includes South Lake Regional Park is partially undeveloped, which significantly affects some of the other metrics and makes them less competitive. He noted that the RSQ for the South Lake Regional Park will be discussed in an upcoming meeting and voiced his appreciation that Mr. Bonilla had included the shareholders in his presentation as there were many interested parties looking to be included at the meeting in December, so both the cities and the leagues will be involved.
Mr. Bonilla commented that the RSQ has already been approved by the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, and the County Attorney’s office has looked it over as well.
Commr. Campione clarified that they charged the parks impact fees to only unincorporated houses that are built and inquired if it was possible to do so by interlocal agreement if the city was willing to cooperate, so that they might have more funding.
Mr. Minkoff opined that they may be able to impose recreational impact fees on a countywide basis for the regional parks that are available to everyone. He noted that there was a similar system with the libraries, where the county gives a credit against it if the city imposes their own impact fee, so that citizens do not have to pay twice. He mentioned that they had studied parks’ impact fees before the economic downturn happened, and so it had been put on the backburner.
Commr. Campione remarked that there could be an opportunity with the Wekiva Parkway and the other activity in the Mount Dora/Eustis area to provide for park needs and this idea could be very helpful if they could get the cities on board.
Commr. Parks inquired if any talks about reducing duplication of services in public safety had occurred between the cities and the County.
Mr. Bonilla responded that they were in the middle of a phased development process, so they are not able to put out feelers to address the unincorporated population as fast as they would like. He remarked that they needed to concentrate on building more multipurpose fields, and they have the land, just not the fields.
Commr. Campione inquired about what funding source they were exploring to address the soccer field situation in Mayor Bell’s area.
Mr. Heath clarified that it had been a $100,000 request.
Mr. Mike Stone, a Parks and Recreation Advisory Board Member, remarked that the importance of sports participation has greatly increased because it affects quality of life. He opined that getting kids involved in sports is one of the most important things this County can do to start manufacturing the future workers that will be here for their economic development and that they need to develop both kids’ bodies and minds. He mentioned that they appropriate less money for what they have now than they did five years ago, but they do have to maintain what they have for safety and quality of life.
Commr. Campione pointed out that when these parks become lighted, they become great locations for regional tournaments, which in turn generates hotel tax dollars, so that should perhaps be a motivation to get the lighting finished in their existing parks in order to utilize them as part of their economic development efforts.
Commr. Conner opined that they do need lights, because the parks are not usable for months out of the year without them. He commented that tournaments should not be the justification for the lights, because the users are already there and they need to be intellectually honest about their funding reasoning.
Commr. Cadwell relayed that the TDC is discussing allotting less money for capital and hoped that they might be able to have a discussion about what the Board’s philosophy is toward spending more money on advertising as opposed to capital.
Commr. Sullivan opined that they need to have a discussion about finding the revenue to support quality of life.
Commr. Parks agreed that if the TDC wants to redirect the funding towards marketing, then they need to have a conversation to address the issue.
Commr. Cadwell remarked that he would work on setting up the talks to address Mayor Bell’s request.
Commr. Conner clarified that the Miracle Field is anticipated to start construction in May and will last through October.
Mr. Bonilla explained that once the field itself was complete, they would be able to send out the bidding packages in pieces, in order to be the most cost effective. He clarified that the cities of Groveland and Clermont will be consulted with about the possibility of sharing resources for the South Lake Regional Park RSQ.
REPORTS – COUNTY MANAGER
Mr. Heath explained that on the consent agenda, they had approved a PFM as a financial advisor and that they would have a work session in the upcoming month on the possibility of refinancing two bond issues, as the current bond market is extremely favorable. He commented that they could generate significant savings if they could refinance the sales tax and the public land debt, so they would be working with TFM and possibly issuing an RFP for a bank loan.
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER PARKS – VICE-CHAIRMAN AND DISTRICT 2
RESOLUTION FOR PEOPLE AS THE TOP TRANSPORTATION PRIORITY
Commr. Parks explained that a resolution was being requested by the South Lake Chamber of Commerce as the South Lake area was recently designated as a pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly community at the bronze level. He mentioned that this resolution would express that the Chamber had support from the County for those pedestrian and bicycle related efforts, so they could achieve the platinum level of that designation. He noted that the resolution also encouraged them to think about what they could do to make their roads more pedestrian and bicycle friendly.
On a motion by Commr. Parks, seconded by Commr. Cadwell, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Resolution No. 2015-33 to establish people as the top transportation priority in Lake County.
national basketball championship
Commr. Parks congratulated the Montverde Academy for winning the national basketball championship for the third year in a row and remarked that perhaps they might be able to introduce a few of the students at one of their meetings in the summer like they do with the high school state champions.
four corners meeting
Commr. Parks commented on what a successful meeting they had yesterday in the Four Corners area, that they had received some great input, and thanked everyone who had attended. He remarked that he was excited about what might happen with the road, gateway, and sidewalk projects in that area and was looking forward to the follow-up meeting in June.
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER CADWELL – DISTRICT 5
four corners meeting
Commr. Cadwell remarked that the Four Corners meeting had been positive and noted that the money for some of the projects they had discussed was there if they invest their resources and capital.
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER CONNER – CHAIRMAN AND DISTRICT 3
death of jack wallace
Commr. Conner reported that Mr. Jack Wallace of the Building Blocks Ministry and Kiwanis Club had passed away unexpectedly earlier that week and expressed his condolences.
relocation of sheriff’s office
Commr. Conner related that Sheriff Gary Borders had given him a tour of his new office in the Historic Courthouse and asked Mr. Heath to investigate the cost of the Sheriff’s relocation in comparison to what the new construction cost would have been.\
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 2:00 P.M.
jimmy conner, chairman
NEIL KELLY, CLERK