monday, april 15, 1957


The Board of County Commissioners met in special session in the County Commissioners Room in the Courthouse at Tavares on Monday, April 15, 1957, at ten o’clock a.m., for the purpose of receiving bids on materials for building a barn at Minneola and such other matters as may be brought before the Board, with the following present:  Chairman Cowart; Commissioners Singeltary, Hooten, Simpson, and Cross; and Clerk Owens. (Attorney Duncan was absent attending Legislature in Tallahassee.)  Chairman Cowart called the Board to order.

Mr. Karl Lehmann appeared before the Board and gave a report on the meeting in Sanford regarding the St. Johns and Indian Rivers project.  Mr. Lehmann stated the Lake County Commissioners were called for, but no one was present, and he did not speak for this Board but represented the Lake County Chamber of Commerce, which has adopted a resolution in favor of building the St. Johns and Indian Rivers canal.  A delegation from Eustis was present at the meeting and presented 3 resolutions from City Council, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Boating Club.

bids for purchase of materials for building county barn

Notice having been advertised for the purchase of materials for building a County Barn at Minneola, the following bids were received:


Total for materials as advertised                                             $2,729.55


Total for materials as advertised                                             $3,154.00

Alternate bid for blocks only – 5700 - $969.00

                                                   250 – 37.50


1400 lineal feet ½” reinforcing rods @ 7 cents per foot

1400 lineal feet 5/8” reinforcing rods @ 10 cents per foot

75 cubic yards concrete:

2500 pound test @ $16.60

3000 pound test @ $17.10

3600 pound test @ $17.60

5700 8x8x16 concrete blocks @ .179 per each

250 8x8x8 half blocks @ 12 cents each

100 bags mortar cement @ $.30 each

10 yards mortar sand @ $3.50 per yard


Total for materials as advertised                                             $2,937.75

On a motion by Commr. Hooten, seconded by Commr. Cross and carried, the bid of Sanger Builders Supply, Clermont, to furnish Lake County materials as advertised for building the County barn at Minneola for the sum of $2,729.55 was accepted.

Clerk Owens announced that he has advertised the Fish Conservation Bill as requested by the Board and mailed the bill and proof of publication to Mr. Duncan, Tallahassee, Florida.

juvenile court

A delegation of citizens from Leesburg appeared before the Board regarding the juvenile situation in Lake County.  Rev. Hoyt Tatum, pastor of Morrison Memorial Methodist Church, was the spokesman for the group.  He stated that they have mailed each member of the Board a letter regarding this matter and asked to have read a letter which would clear up this matter more fully.  Mrs. Ralph G. Daukins read the letter complaining of (1) lack of physical facilities for juveniles, (2) inadequate number of juvenile counselors to carry the workload of dependent and delinquent children, and (3) inadequacy of funds budgeted to compensate properly the counselors employed.   Mr. Bill Cumba stated he does not feel there is any need for a separate Juvenile Court for Lake County, but they should have additional counselors, as the number now employed is inadequate to contact all the children and families, and they should have improvement in the food for the children while being detained.  Sheriff McCall, being present, discussed the food served to the children, which in his opinion is better than the food the children received at home, stating he is allowed $1.25 per day to buy food for each child.  Judge Hall again pledged his willingness to waive his $1,500 salary if it is needed for facilities or to hire additional personnel and also again pledged his willingness to cooperate and work with the Board of County Commissioners.  Mrs. Hinebaugh stated she feels the need is for additional counselors and not another judge and offered her assistance for volunteer clerical work in the Juvenile office.  Judge Hall stated he thinks the Juvenile Court needs additional counselors.  Mr. Metzer, pastor of the First Christian Church, Leesburg, stated if additional counselors would solve the problem, he thinks they should have additional counselors.  Judge Hall stated that it costs $2,000 to keep a boy in the Industrial School for a year and more for girls.  Commr. Hooten stated he thinks a committee should be appointed to study this problem and report to the Board in order that the Board will be informed on the matter.

Mr. Tom Waddell, representing the Tax Committee appointed by the Governor, stated they are interested in the administrative cost of governmental operations, and he thinks the County Judge is doing a good job as Juvenile Court Judge.  Kinne Pearce stated he thinks the Court should have one more counselor and more office help.  Commr. Singeltary stated he is not in favor of volunteer office help, as this is the County’s responsibility, and if the help is needed, the County should supply it.  Mr. Cumba asked that $6,000 be added to the budget for Juvenile Court.  Commr. Singeltary stated the Board will have to check the budget and see what can be done.  They may have to wait for the new budget.  This Board is interested in the welfare of the children and will do what they can to help.

After the above discussion, Commr. Hooten made a motion, seconded by Commr. Singeltary and carried that a committee be appointed (one from each District) to make a study of the inadequacy of the various phases of the Juvenile Court and make recommendations to the Board as to how this problem should be solved, in order that a study may be made by the Board.  The following were appointed on the Committee:

Rev. Hoyt Tatum, Minister of the Morrison Memorial Methodist Church, Leesburg, FL

Mr. L. Day Edge, Groveland, Florida

Mr. W. F. Williams, Clermont, Florida

Mr. John W. McCormick, Mount Dora, Florida

Mr. Joe B. Kennedy, Eustis, Florida

Clerk Owens announced that the title of the bill to create and establish a separate Juvenile Court in Lake County has been sent to the paper today for advertising on the instructions to Mr. Duncan by the Board Saturday.

Commr. Cross stated the doctors are having a Directors meeting sometime this week, and he will attend this meeting and see what can be worked out on space for the mentally ill.  Mr. Owens reported that Commr. Talton from Orange County advised that they have entered into an agreement with the Florida Sanatorium for care of the mentally ill, and the Hospital is adding another story to take care of the mentally ill.  Orange County advanced $75,000 as a loan without interest to be paid back as patients are admitted and the cost credited to the advance.  It will cost $25 per day for mentally ill patients, and the average cost will be $22 per day for indigent patients.  Mr. Owens stated if Lake County is not able to work out a deal with the Eustis Hospital, it may be able to work to work out a deal with the Florida Sanatorium in Orange County.  Commr. Singeltary reported he has been offered a site for an Old Folks Home.

Clerk Owens reported to the Board that the Right of Way Map on the bypass off of Road 44 at Leesburg has been received from the State Road Department and turned over to the Abstract Company for title search to be made.

Mr. Owens presented a letter from E. L. Atkinson, member of the County Medical Fly Committee, requesting space for the State Plant Board and the USDA in the County building in Tavares, as this would serve to centralize their activities.  No action was taken on this matter.

Mr. George McClure, representing the Libby-McNeil Company, appeared before the Board regarding drainage of the Little Everglades.  Mr. McClure asked that the culverts be restored to the original depth, as they have been lowered 2 or 3 feet, but if they are restored to the original depth, he thinks this would solve the problem.  Commr. Singeltary suggested that Mr. McClure and Commr. Cowart get together and work this problem out.  Commr. Cross stated this is OK by him unless they make a dam out of the County road; then he is not in favor of it.  The Board agreed to go look at the property that Mr. McClure is complaining about and see what can be worked out.

On a motion by Commr. Hooten, seconded by Commr. Simpson and carried, the Clerk was instructed to advertise in the Clermont Press for bids for the purchase of materials for building the County barn at Minneola.

Commr. Cross stated that the Board should take advantage of the American Oil Company’s offer to furnish oil at the original unit price for 1957 of $0.1263 per gallon in excess of the original amount contracted for; therefore, the Board agreed not to advertise for additional oil, as it would have to pay a higher price if they entered into a new contract.

On a motion by Commr. Singeltary, seconded by Commr. Cross and carried, the time of the Board meetings were changed back to ten o’clock a.m. instead of nine o’clock as previously voted on.




/s/ Frank E. Owens                                                                  /s/ J. C. COWART           

CLERK                                                                                   CHAIRMAN