JANUARY 17, 1974

A special meeting of the Lake County Board of County Commissioners was held on Thursday, January 17, 1974 at 9:00 o’clock A.M. in the Commissioners’ Room, Courthouse, Tavares, Florida, for the purpose of interviewing architects and consultants concerning the construction of the Lake County Courthouse Complex and any other business that might be brought before the Board

The Chairman called the meeting to order with the following members present:  James R. Carson, Jr., Chairman; C.A. Deems; J.M. Hoskinson, Thomas J. Windram, and Glenn C. Burhans.  Others present were:  Christopher C. Ford, County Attorney; Norma Coven and Debby Potter, Deputy Clerks; and Keith Reeves, Consultant to the Board.


The following firms and representatives appeared and gave presentations to the Board:

Gutmann, Dragash, & Matz, Architects Inc. of Sanford, in joint venture with Jack R. Jones Architect, Inc. of Leesburg.

Carl Gutmann, Richard Matz and Jack R. Jones


Environmental Design Group, Inc. of Winter Park

Chuck Braun


Reynolds, Smith & Hills of Orlando

Bill Weber and Howard Bochiardy


Watson & Company

Bernard W. Brender and Henry Morgan


After the presentations, Mr. Reeves made comments to the Board concerning the four firms interviewed, with his final recommendation being Gutmann, Dragash, and Matz in joint venture with Jack R. Jones and Environmental Design Group, Inc., as second choice.

recess and assembly

The meeting recessed for lunch at 1:30 o’clock P.M. and the Chairman announced the Commissioners will have lunch at the Fiesta Restaurant and the press and public are invited on a dutch-treat basis.

Upon reconvening at 2:45 P.M. the Board members resumed the discussion regarding the architectural firms, and the Chairman asked the Attorney for recommendations concerning balloting of the Commissioners.  Mr. Ford recommended that no secret ballot be taken, that determination of the sequence of the firms selected be by motion duly made and carried by a majority vote of the members.

Courthouse – Cont.

Commr. Hoskinson moved that Watson & Company be named third firm, and Reynolds, Smith & Hills be named the fourth firm.  The motion was seconded by Commr. Burhans, and carried unanimously.

Commr. Deems moved that the order of preference of the first and second firms be as recommended by Mr. Reeves, i.e. Gutmann, Dragash & Matz and Jack R. Jones number one, and Environmental Design Group number two.  The motion was seconded by Comm. Hoskinson, and the Chairman voted “no” and announced the motion carried.

Mr. Ford informed the Board once negotiations are commenced with Gutmann, Dragash & Matz and Jones and possibly not fulfilled, and negotiations are attempted with the second firm, the first firm cannot be reconsidered.

On the motion of Commr. Deems, seconded by Commr. Windram, and carried unanimously, the Clerk was instructed to request Gutmann, Dragash and Matz and Jack Jones to be present on Friday, January 18, 1974, at 9:30 A.M. to discuss negotiations.

Bonds – misc.

On the motion of Commr. Hoskinson, seconded by Commr. Burhans, and carried unanimously, a firearm bond for Otis Gray Smith was approved.

Planning and zoning

Attorney Ford reported on the meeting of the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council relative to the Three Rivers Project.  He advised the Council voted to appeal the Board’s decision, and recommended the Board defend the suit for the purpose of explaining and expounding on the principles of the Board’s action.  Mr. Windram stated he feels Lake County should be represented in Tallahassee, but does not feel it is Lake County’s responsibility to fight Major Realty’s problems.

Mr. Ford further requested that he be allowed to employ associate counsel in Tallahassee and to make investigation relative to the procedure of the hearing.  On the motion of Commr. Hoskinson, seconded by Commr. Windram, and carried unanimously, Mr. Ford was authorized to employ an associate counsel and to proceed with the necessary investigation and preparations to defend the Board’s position in the case.

Commr. Burhans made the following statement concerning his “aye” vote:  “By the “aye” vote do not mean to imply approval of the project, but do mean to imply disapproval of East Central Florida Planning Council’s action to appeal Lake County’s decision, because I feel the local Board should have the final say in local government matters.”

There being no further business to bring before the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 4:00 o’clock p.m.




james r. carson, jr., chairman



James C. Watkins, Clerk