The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in special session on Thursday, January 21, 1988 at 9:30 a.m. in the Board of County Commissioner's Meeting Room, Lake County Courthouse, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Glenn C. Burhans, Chairman; Thomas J. Windram; Claude E. Smoak, Jr.; James R. Carson, Jr.; and Don Bailey. Others present were: Christopher C. Ford, County Attorney; James C. Watkins, Clerk; Bob McKee, Executive Assistant to the Clerk; Michael C. Willett, County Administrator: Katherine A. McDonald, County Administrator's Assistant; and Sandra Carter, Deputy Clerk.
James C. Watkins, Clerk, gave the Invocation and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by Commr. Burhans.
Mr. Watkins, Clerk, opened the meeting by stating that, it was felt that the more informal this meeting is the better, as this is intended to be a work session.
Mr. Bob Messmer, Hellmuth, Obata, Kassabaum, Inc. (H.O.K.), appeared before the Board and stated that the document that will be reviewed this date, the Revised Space Program, dated January 15, 1988, for the new Criminal Justice/Jail Facility, has been a very well thought-out study, which has been revised several times. He felt that this latest revision will meet the County's needs, now and in the Eorseeable future, and will meet the $34.5 million budget for the County.
Mr. Chris Ford, County Attorney, informed the Board that almost 50,000 square feet (cut down from 398,000 to 348,000 square feet) has been deleted from the program, at this stage.
Mr. Bob Buchanan, Correctional Services Group, Inc., appeared before the Board to review the Revised Space Program, item by item, and to answer any questions that might be presented by the Board. He stated that it was decided, by H.O.K. and himself, that one of the ways to come in at budget, or under, was to finish the majority of space in the facility, but, to also determine what components of the facility could b e left unfinished, to save construction dollars. The Jail, however, was not included, as it was felt that the Jail should be completely finished. He stated that his group worked with the Sheriff, Judges, Public Defender, State Attorney, etc. to determine what their needs would be at the time of opening, as well as four to five years thereafter, and on through the year 2015.
Commr. Carson questioned whether the Detention Administration square footage indicated provides for the expected space requirement for a maximum 1,000 inmate Jail, and was assured by Mr. Buchanan that it does. Mr. Buchanan informed the Board that the County should never have to require a larger kitchen, laundry, intake and booking area, or office space. All of said areas have been sized for a 1,000 bed facility.
Mr. James Watkins, Clerk, stated that it was the Committee's recommendation to put in a laundry and kitchen large enough to expand, as needed, as these tend to be the most expensive areas to add to in the future.
Discussion occurred regarding which departments would remain in the present Courthouse and which ones would relocate to the new facility.
Mr. Watkins stated that County Probation is one department that, if need be, can be eliminated from the space program, for the new facility, as it can be housed in the Old Courthouse or in the present Courthouse.
Discussion occurred regarding the maintenance of the new facility and where maintenance will be housed. Mr. Buchanan stated that his team allowed very little space for maintenance, in the new facility, as it was his understanding that the current County Maintenance Department would service the facility. His team originally had allowed a rather large maintenance area, however, determined that said space could be cut. The only space that would remain, for the maintenance of the Jail, is the locksmith area, which needs to be secured and within the confines of the Jail.
The County Attorney suggested that this is one area that might need to be looked into, in more detail, as when traveling around to the various facilities, it was noted that one of the continuing comments was that the facilities did not have enough of this type space, and it was vital to the operation of the buildings. Mr. Watkins, Clerk, concurred with this suggestion.
Commr. Windram questioned whether space had been provided for the E911 functions, in the new facility.
Mr. Buchanan stated that space had been provided, to an extent, as his team was not sure what the E911 department had recommended.
Mr. Watkins stated that the County had not addressed an emergency operations center, as defined by Civil Defense or Emergency Management of the United States government, as there is a difference between an area to handle E911, the Sheriff's communications center, and a full blown nuclear fallout emergency management center. However, E911, as the County has gotten to this point, has been provided space in the facility.
A brief discussion occurred regarding this subject.
Commr. Carson questioned whether the 10,265 net square feet, listed for the Sheriff's Department in the new facility, is going to be sufficient through the year 2015.
Sheriff Griffin stated that it would, in his opinion. He stated that all of his departments would be moving into the new facility, except Civil, and that space had been saved by incorporating records and warrants.
A brief discussion occurred regarding State and Federal law requirements that adults and juveniles be separated, at all times; therefore, space had been provided for separate fingerprinting and photographing functions.
Discussion occurred regarding space requirements for the Jail infirmary, as well as dry storage. Mr. Buchanan stated that the Board may want to change the size of the dry storage area, as he felt that it was undersized, for the size of the facility.
Mr. Watkins shared with the Board the fact that every Jail that was visited, and kitchen staff that was questioned, informed the Committee that this area was not large enough, in their facilities.
Discussion occurred regarding space requirements for the courtrooms.
Mr. Buchanan stated that no one is exactly sure how many courtrooms are going to be needed. In comparing Lake County with comparable sized counties (where this County will be in the year 2000 to 2010), the number of courtrooms recommended is consistent with what other counties are utilizing at present. He stated that his team is recommending that two (2) large courtrooms be finished, with one (1) left unfinished.
At this time, Commr. Carson questioned the need and relative cost of a "ceremonial" (later changed to "major') courtroom.
A brief explanation was given, by Judge Aulls, regarding the need for this type of courtroom and the particulars surrounding it.
It was noted by the County Attorney that H.O.K. understands that this Board wants conservative, yet dignified (similar to the courtrooms in the present Courthouse), functional courtrooms.
Mr. Messmer informed the Board that his firm completely understands, and is in concurrence with, the feeling of the Board regarding the County's budget and desire for quality workmanship of the facility.
Mr. Frank Milner, Silver Lake area, gave input from the audience regarding a request for better acoustics in the new facility, as it is very difficult, at times, to hear and understand what is being discussed.
Commr. Windram brought to the attention of the Board the need for a good sound system to be installed, as well.
The issue concerning the number of courtrooms for the new facility was brought up for further discussion. Mr. Buchanan stated that his team is recommending that four (4) courtrooms be finished and that two (2) be left unfinished. Four would be available for use when the facility opens in 1990 or 1991. He stated that, as a planner, he feels very strongly about the number of courtrooms suggested, due to the fact that projections indicate that the courtrooms will, indeed, be needed, based on the growth of Lake County's criminal justice system.
Discussion occurred regarding the number of cases coming before the judges which require use of the courtrooms. Judge Aulls stated that, on a daily basis, three courtrooms are utilized quite frequently, and at times, even four. He also stated that ninety percent (90%) of courtrooms are used for criminal functions, as civil functions in courtrooms are relatively minor. He does trials quite often in his chambers that do not require a jury, therefore, do not require the use of a courtroom. He stated, however, if the functions are moved, as suggested, to the new facility, he would recommend that the present Courthouse retain two large courtrooms to be used in the forseeable future.
Commr. Carson questioned whether it was felt that the present Courthouse would need to have more than two judges, on a permanent basis, by the year 2015.
Judge Aulls indicated that said need would be there, as Lake County has the second highest case load in the State of Florida, and he would anticipate the need for at least one more trial judge, by the time the new facility is ready to move into, and possibly the need for an additional judge later on.
Judge Aulls stated that he felt the present Courthouse should retain three (3) full-time judges' chambers and one (1) visiting judge's chamber, and that the new facility should have one courtroom per judge. Therefore, the new facility should have four (4) finished judges' chambers and two (2) unfinished judges' chambers.
At l0:30 a.m. Commr. Smoak excused himself from the Board Meeting, due to minor complications brought on by an accident that he was involved in, on the way to the meeting.
After further discussion, it was the consensus of the Board that the new facility have the number of judges' chambers, as indicated earlier (four Einished, two unfinished), thereby allowing the courtrooms in the present Courthouse (three) to be available for use by other departments.
The County Attorney, Chris Ford, made a recommendation that the Board allow a year or so before making the courtrooms available, in the present Courthouse, due to the fact that in the near future, these courtrooms may be needed, and courtrooms are the more expensive space in the Courthouse.
Discussion continued regarding what size the judges' chambers, reception areas, and secretarial areas should be in the new facility.
Commr. Carson questioned whether the Law Library, in the present Courthouse, would need to be duplicated, for the new facility.
Judge Aulls stated that approximately eighty percent (80%) of the books in the present Law Library are for civil trials and use, therefore, only the books that are required for criminal law will be duplicated. The State furnishes some of the books that will be needed.
A brief discussion occurred regarding the need for a Media Room, for the press, in the new facility, and as to what size it should be.
It was noted that all present were in agreement with Pages 25-27 of the Revised Space Program, dated January 15, 1988; therefore, said pages were approved as presented.
Commr. Carson questioned whether there was a law concerning the availability of law books to prisoners, and if so, what would be the procedure used in providing access of said law books to the prisoners.
Mr. Buchanan stated that space had been incorporated in the new Jail facility for a small (with a very limited number of books) Law Library.
Discussion occurred regarding the size of the Laundry and Central Supply areas, and the need for them to be sized for future growth, rather than having to add on, at a later date.
Mr. Watkins stated that, in touring other Jails, Laundry and Central Supply were the areas that were the most praised or the most criticized.
Discussion occurred regarding detention housing and the fact that one hundred and ninety-two (192) single cells will be dedicated for this function (48 of which will be included in Intake and Classification). There will also be three hundred and eighty-four (384) double cells, which results in seven hundred and sixty-eight (768) beds), sixteen (16) medical single cells (male or female), and twelve (12) mental health single cells, totaling nine hundred and eighty-eight (988) or roughly 1,000 beds.
Commr. Carson brought up for discussion the proposition of housing other inmates, such as for the Border Patrol, or the Federal Government.
Sheriff Griffin informed the Board that, at present, the Federal Government will pay $45.00 per day to house and feed their prisoners, and stated that he could make money on a deal such as this.
Mr. Buchanan stated that this program is known as C.A.P. (Cooperative Agreement Program). He stated that he had spoken with the II. S. Marshall, in Tampa, and that he had indicated the need for twenty-five to thirty (25 to 30) beds, which he would be willing to pay $50.000.00 a piece, up front, to cover the cost of construction, as well as a per diem rate (the County will be paid for thirty inmates, whether there is one or thirty) for the use of said beds, for a period of five to fifteen (5 to 15) years (which is negotiable).
Further discussion occurred regarding this program.
Mr. Buchanan informed the Board that the U. S. Marshall stated that he would welcome the opportunity to meet with the Board, at any time, regarding this issue.
On a motion by Commr. Carson, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried unanimously, the Board approved and authorized the proper signatures on a letter to the Federal Marshall advising them of the Board's interest in participating in the Cooperative Agreement Program, and to request an expression of their interest in dealing with Lake County.
The County Attorney, Chris Ford, stated that, so far, the directions to H.O.K. and Mr. Buchanan, regarding the study, has been to comply with the American Correctional Association (which he has been doing), and would recommend to continue to do so, in order to prevent any litigation in the future.
Mr. Messmer stated that the Government will not bring suit against any County that meets with the American Correctional Association standards.
A brief discussion occurred regarding single versus double celling. It was noted that the American Correctional Association does not condone double celling, and also noted that the Jail Administrator, Captain Stu Perkins, prefers single cells.
RECESS & REASSEMBLY
At 12:lO p.m. the Chairman announced that the Board would recess for Lunch and would reconvene at 1:30 p.m.
Discussion occurred regarding adding 500 square feet to the figures for the Dry Storage area, making a total, overall, of 23,650 square feet of finished area, and 4,870 square feet of unfinished area.
Further discussion occurred regarding the E911 system, where it should be located, and how much space should be allotted for it.
Mr. Buchanan stated that the Dispatch/Communications Center of the Sheriff's Department has been allotted 1,600 square feet (1,000 feet to be finished, leaving 600 unfinished), and that space had been incorporated in this area to house the E911 system. It was felt that if the E911 system will not be housed in this area, then 1,600 square feet will be too much space for the Sheriff's Dispatch/Communications Center, and should be cut back. He suggested possibly carpeting and drywalling the 600 square feet that will be left unfinished, for future use. He also stated that the Fire Dispatch, Emergency Dispatch, etc. will also be housed in this area.
Discussion occurred regarding PSAPs, how many will be located in the cities, and whether or not one should be located in the new facility.
Sheriff Griffin informed the Board that according to the law, PSAPs has to be housed in a secure area (where the public does not have access to it), and no city in Lake County has such an area -only the Sheriff's Department can secure it properly.
On a motion by Commr. Carson, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried, the Board approved for the E911 system to be housed in the Dispatch/Communications Center of the Sheriff's Department, in the Criminal/Justice Jail Facility.
Commr. Windram was not present for the vote.
Discussion occurred regarding various other areas of the Sheriff's Department, and as to how much space should be allotted for each.
Mr. Watkins brought to the attention of the Board the need for sufficient storage space of items confiscated, awaiting trial. He stated that this is one of the areas that is easy to cut, hut should be looked at carefully, as it really needs to have size to it, to be able to house the items that come in. This area has to have personnel present at all times, and has to be easily accessible to the Sheriff's Department personnel, and to the public. It was noted that the space allotted for this purpose was sufficient.
Discussion occurred regarding the State Attorney's Office, and the fact that, by law, the County is required to provide space for the operation of said office. The law spells out how much space has to be allotted for this purpose.
Mr. Bob McKee, Executive Assistant to the Clerk, stated that the amount of space to be provided, is based on pay grades, and each pay grade generates a certain amount of square footage.
Discussion continued regarding the State Attorney's Office, the Victim Witness aspect of the State Attorney's Office, and the Public Defender's Office.
Discussion occurred regarding the General Space requirements of the Clerk's Office, such as the staff's coffee area and lounge, smoking area, general storage, reception area, etc., and the space allocated for the Director, his secretary, the Assistant Director, receptionist, etc.
Mr. Buchanan informed the Board that as far as Felony, Misdemeanor, Traffic, and Juvenile are concerned, he did not allow for unfinished space - all the space indicated is finished. He stated that, if possible (given the restraints of the site), a drive-up window will be installed, where one can drive up and pay traffic fines, child support payments, and where attorneys may drop off pleadings, etc., rather than having to come into the building, which would minimize traffic. A number of facilities already have this feature.
A brief discussion occurred regarding whether it would be most beneficial to have one large copy room, or center, or most beneficial to have several copiers located throughout the facility. It was agreed, by all present, that several copiers located throughout the facility would be the least costly (in terms of personnel having to leave their work areas) and most efficient.
Discussion occurred regarding the space requirements for County Probation, which it was noted is self-sustaining, and also noted that Lake County is one of the few counties in which it is.
The next space requirement discussed was for Jury Management.
Mr. Watkins stated that, in his opinion, the public areas, such as the Jury Pool Room, should receive first class treatment, in order to make the public's stay here a more enjoyable one.
Commr. Windram brought to the attention of the Board the fact that additional parking certainly needs to be planned for, with this new facility.
Mr. Watkins stated that parking is something that has been stressed all along, and should be allowed for.
Discussion occurred regarding State Probation and Parole Services, and how much space has been allocated to this department.
Mr. Watkins suggested that, if anything is designed for State Probation and Parole, it should be a court liaison type office, and feels that they would be willing to rent said space.
Commr. Windram and Commr. Carson stated that they feel this department should be located elsewhere.
The next area brought up for discussion was the General and Ancillary Support Areas, and their space requirements. Mr. Buchanan stated that his team was recommending an exercise room, for all staff, and a cafeteria consisting of 1,400 square feet, which should be a profit making venture, and could be run by private enterprise.
On a motion by Commr. Carson, seconded by Commr. Windram and carried unanimously, the Board approved to eliminate 8,950 square feet in the Revised Space Program, dated January 15, 1988, for the State Probation and Parole Department, for the new Criminal Justice/Jail Facility.
Mr. Buchanan stated that he would like to contact State Probation and Parole, and see how much space they would need for a liaison office, and then possibly add 200 to 300 square feet back to the study, for said office.
The Board noted that this was fine, as long as they were willing to pay for the space.
On a motion by Commr. Carson, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried unanimously, the Board approved to include a second sally port to the space study and set it up for bids.
On a motion by Commr. Bailey, seconded by Commr. Carson and carried unanimously, the Board approved to add 1,000 additional square feet to the Dry Storage area, making a total of 1,500 square feet overall.
On a motion by Commr. Carson, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried unanimously, the Board authorized the Clerk to look into the matter of allotting space, in the new facility, for a drive-up window, for the purpose of paying traffic fines, child support payments, etc., and if the Clerk feels that it would be beneficial, to authorize the architects to add said space to the study.
The County Attorney, Chris Ford, recommended that the Board keep the square footage, allotted for the State Attorney's Office, in the architect's study, in order to prevent any future legal complications.
On a motion by Commr. Carson, seconded by Commr. Windram and carried unanimously, the Board approved the Revised Space Program, dated (January 15, 1988, as presented and amended.
Mr. Pete Karamitsanis, Sr. Vice President, Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum, appeared before the Board and stated that what his firm would like to do, from the design standpoint, is come to the Board with the Conceptual Design Plan, which does not get into details, etc., however, covers overall concepts of how the different departments relate and how the building sets on the site. He suggested that the Board take the following steps:
- Have a Conceptual Design Meeting
- Revise drawings
- Rank firms at the Tuesday, January 26, 1988 Board Meeting
On a motion by Commr. Carson, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried unanimously, the Board approved to place the Conceptual Design Meeting for February 2, 1988, at 2:00 p.m. and requested that nothing else be scheduled on the Board Agenda for that date.
The County Attorney, Chris Ford, brought up for discussion the item of the Sunshine Law, in regards to several of the Commissioners traveling together for on-site fact finding inspections. He distributed a memo regarding this law, and stated that it would be better if the Commissioners traveled individually.
Further discussion occurred regarding the desperate need that the County has for parking, where new parking will possibly be located, and how much space will be allocated for it, for the new facility.
At this time, the County Attorney, Chris Ford, complimented H.O.K. for their cooperation and for working so hard on this project, and brought the following items to the attention of the Board:
- The Board needs to look at the needs of the Health Department, as the Health Department may be in the way of the project.
- The Board needs to consider the purchase of additional land, which is in the way of the project.
Mr. Watkins, Clerk, stated that housing and other buildings that are presently in the way of the project are important to the project, but not essential. The County can work around said buildings.
The Chairman, Commr. Glenn Burhans, informed the Board that the proposals from the three construction management firms will be turned in to the Board office by 5:00 p.m. today, and will be opened Friday morning, January 22, 1988, at 8:30 a.m., for review.
Commr. Windram brought up for discussion the item of the Resource Recovery Plant.
The County Attorney, Chris Ford, elaborated on it and requested permission to continue to use Mr. William A. Worrell, P.E., Resource Recovery and Environmental Engineering, and if necessary, request advice from another engineer; and to continue negotiations with Alex Brown & Sons, for financial advice. He also requested permission to consult, if need be, with a tax attorney, as it can make a material difference in dollars to the County.
On a motion by Commr. Carson, seconded by Commr. Bailey and carried unanimously, the Board authorized Commr. Windram and the County Attorney, Chris Ford, to continue to interview and learn all they can about the firms which they have interviewed, and any others whose names may show up, and keep the Board informed as to their progress and activities, from time to time, as they have information to report.
A considerable amount of discussion continued regarding the Resource Recovery Plant, however, no further action was taken at this time.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting adjourned at 4:15 p.m.
GLENN C. BURHANS, CHAIRMAN
JAMES C . WATKINS, CLERK