A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
APRIL 20, 2004
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, April 20, 2004, at 9:00 a.m., in the Board of County Commissioner’s Meeting Room, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Debbie Stivender, Chairman; Jennifer Hill, Vice Chairman; Welton G. Cadwell; Catherine C. Hanson; and Robert A. Pool. Others present were: Sanford A. “Sandy” Minkoff, County Attorney; William “Bill” Neron, County Manager; Wendy Taylor, Executive Office Manager, Board of County Commissioner’s Office; Barbara Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance; and Judy Whaley, Deputy Clerk.
INVOCATION AND PLEDGE
Commr. Cadwell gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, stated that there is an Addendum No. 1 which contains one Consent Agenda item and one Departmental Business item. He requested that Tab 11 of the Consent Agenda be pulled for verbal changes and requested that an update for the Cooper Memorial Library be added to the agenda.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Minutes of March 16, 2004 (Regular Meeting) as presented.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Minutes of March 23, 2004 (Regular Meeting) as presented.
CLERK OF COURTS’ CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Clerk of Courts’ Consent Agenda, Tab 2, Items 1-10, as follows:
List of Checks or Warrants Paid
Request to acknowledge receipt of list of checks or warrants paid prior to this meeting, pursuant to Chapter 136.06 (1) of the Florida Statutes, which shall be incorporated into the Minutes as Exhibit A and filed in the Board Support Division of the Clerk's Office.
Contractor Bonds - New - Riders - Cancellation
4431-04 Kenneth B. Coker d/b/a Tech Services (Class B A/C)
4814-04 Scott Vannuys (Plumbing)
5108-04 James Griffis d/b/a James Griffis Masonry LLC
5140-04 Kenneth B. Coker d/b/a Tech Services (Electrical)
5765-03 Byron M. Greenlee, II d/b/a G. W. Electric, Inc.
5799-04 James Buchanan & Anthony Lanci d/b/a/ Everything Electric
6169-04 Simplex Inc.
6170-04 Rennie J. Ladines of U & R Electric, Inc. (Electrical)
5259-04 Principal’s name change: from Stormy Frasier to Stormy Frasier, Inc.
5520-05 Principal’s name change: Ben Sikes d/b/a Ben Sikes Electric, LLC
5380-04 Douglas Basham (cancelled and voided as of May 1, 2004)
Lake-Sumter Community College - Financial Statement Audit
Request to acknowledge receipt of a copy of Report No. 2004-171, a Financial Statement Audit of Lake-Sumter Community College for the Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 2003.
Public Service Commission
Request to acknowledge receipt of notice: Before the Public Service Commission, In re: Petition for approval of revisions to Sections 3.02 and 3.05 of Part III, New Service Extensions, Tariff Rules and Regulations, by Progress Energy Florida, Inc., Docket No. 031107-EI, Order No. PSC-04-0307-CO-EI, Issued March 18, 2004 - Consummating Order, by Order of the Florida Public Service Commission the 18th day of March 2004.
Southwest Florida Water Management District
Request to acknowledge receipt from the Southwest Florida Water Management District of the Agenda for the Governing Board Meeting, March 30 and 31, 2004; and the Approved Minutes of the Meeting of the Governing Board, January 27, 2004.
City of Minneola - Voluntary Annexation Ordinances
Request to acknowledge receipt of the following voluntary annexation ordinances from the City of Minneola: Ordinance 2002-31: 9.5 acres, as described - M I Debco, Inc., Owner, and Steven J. Richey, P.A., Applicant, passed and ordained the 26th day of November 2002. Ordinance 2002-32: 25 acres, as described - Ruba Properties, Inc., Owner, and Steven J. Richey, P.A., Applicant, passed and ordained the 26th day of November 2002. Ordinance 2003-03: 15 acres, as described - Ruba Properties, Inc., Owner, and Steven J. Richey, P.A., Applicant - Transmittal to the Florida Department of Community Affairs, passed and ordained the 14th day of October 2003. Ordinance 2003-12: 241.59 acres - Minneola Heights, LLC, Applicant - Transmittal to the Florida Department of Community Affairs, executed the 14th day of October 2003.
Satisfaction and Release of Fine
Request for approval and signature authorization of Satisfaction and Release of Fine that fully releases and discharges Lake Erie Corporation from Order of Fine in the amount of $1,500.00 dated June 19, 2002, and recorded in OR Book 2134, Pages 259 through 260, of the Public Records of the Clerk of Court of Lake County, Florida, on June 25, 2002; the Second Order of Fine in the amount of $2,000.00 dated August 14, 2002, and recorded in OR Book 2159, Pages 920 through 921, of the Public Records of the Clerk of Court of Lake County, Florida, on August 16, 2002; and the Third Order of Fine, in the amount of $1,750.00, dated October 17, 2002, and recorded in OR Book 2192, Pages 1800 through 1801, of the Public Records of the Clerk of Court of Lake County, Florida, on October 18, 2002.
Satisfactions of Judgments
Request for approval and signature authorization of Satisfaction of Judgment, State of Florida vs. Charles Rex Adams, Case No. 1986CF000565(03), in the amount of $250.00, which fully releases and discharges the Final Judgment Assessing Attorney’s Fees and Costs, entered on the 28th day of July 1986, and recorded in OR Book 886, Page 517, of the Public Records of Lake County, Florida.
Request for approval and signature authorization of Satisfaction of Judgment, State of Florida vs. Gloria Ann Hudson, Case No. 9600488CFA01, in the amount of $750.00, which fully releases and discharges the Final Judgment Assessing Attorney’s Fees and Costs, entered on the 7th day of April 1997, and recorded in OR Book 1512, Page 0731, of the Public Records of Lake County, Florida; and recorded in OFF REC 632, Page 659, of the Public Records of Sumter County, Florida.
Brendenwood Water System, Inc.
Request to acknowledge receipt of Notice of Application for a Transfer of Majority Organizational Control - Notice is hereby given on March 29, 2004, pursuant to Section 367.071, Florida Statutes, of the application for transfer of majority organizational control of Brendenwood Water System, Inc., which is the holder of Certificate No. 339 - W in Lake County. The majority organizational control of Brendenwood Water System, Inc. is being transferred from Paul E. Day to Deborah J. Miller. The application does not request a change in rates or charges. Notice describes territories that will be affected by the application - Order No. 10184 and Order No. 22398.
Policy for Collection of Dishonored Checks
Request from County Finance for approval of a policy to establish guidelines essential to the collection of dishonored checks.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
Commr. Stivender noted that Tab 11 will be pulled for discussion.
Commr. Hill requested that Tab 4 be pulled for correction of a number.
Commr. Hanson requested that the Addendum’s Consent Agenda item be separated from the regular Consent Agenda. She stated that she will recuse herself on the Addendum item because her son works for Wharton Smith, Inc.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 3 through 16, pulling Tabs 4 and 11, excluding the Addendum item, as follows:
Office of Budget
Budget transfer – Renewal Sales Tax Capital Projects Fund, Department of Public Works, Capital Projects Division, in the amount of $1,895,357.00 is requested. Transfer $1,895,357.00 from Roads to Sidewalks ($270,756.00) and Resurfacing ($1,624,592.00). The County has committed to spending 5% and 30% of the Renewal Infrastructure Sales Tax budgeted for road projects for sidewalks and resurfacing respectively. In order to accurately budget and track this commitment, separate object codes are needed. This transfer will move the appropriate portion of the money budgeted in road projects since the inception of the Renewal Sales Tax in Fiscal Year 2004 to new object codes for sidewalks and resurfacing. Funds available in Roads.
Budget transfer – General Fund, Office of Procurement Services, Reprographics Section, in the amount of $1,430.00 is requested. Transfer $1,430.00 from Reserve – Reprographics to Machinery & Equipment. Reprographics plans to purchase a professional binding system to provide an alternative for all departments to prepare visually appealing presentations and books. Funds available in Reserve – Reprographics.
Budget transfer – Landfill Enterprise Fund, Department of Environmental Services, in the amount of $76,600.00 is requested. Transfer $76,600.00 from Reserve for Operations to Regular Salaries (Landfill/Leachate - $30,372.00, two positions), Regular Salaries (Residential Drop-offs - $12,418.00), Regular Salaries (Transportation/Hauling - $16,913.00). Nine positions in the Environmental Services Department were unfunded during the Fiscal Year 2003-2004 budget process in order to present the most conservative budget possible. Overtime and temporary help have now exceeded the cost of funding five of the positions. More funding is requested to reinstate the five positions. Funds available in Reserve for Operations.
Approval to participate in the Summer Library Reading Partnership Pilot Grant project on behalf of the Leesburg Public Library grant and signature of grant agreements.
Approval of Special Master Agreement for Roy L. and Marie S. Baker (SM-4-03).
Program Analysis and Contract Management
Approval to submit an application for the Rural Capital Assistance Support Grant Program (formerly known as the Shirley Conroy Rural Grant) for the purchase of buses and communication equipment for the Transportation Disadvantaged Program; approval of Resolution 2004-59.
Approval to submit an application for the “Special Volunteer Program” grant; it is a three-year grant and involves Lake County Emergency Management, Lake County Fire Rescue, Lake County Volunteer Program, Lake County Health Department and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.
Retroactive approval for the Assistance to Firefighters grant submitted on April 2, 2004 for radio equipment in the amount of $699,950.00; it is a federally funded grant by the Department of Homeland Security and will require a 30 percent local cash match ($209,985.00).
Approval of Resolution 2004-60 to advertise Public Hearing for Vacation Petition Number 1024 by Lake County Public Works to vacate a right of way, in the plat of Lake Highlands Company, and an easement located in Section 28, Township 22 South, Range 26 East, in the Clermont area – Commission District 2.
Approval and authorization to release a Letter of Credit for Performance in the amount of $52,198.30; accept a Letter of Credit for Maintenance in the amount of $39,145.10; execute a Developer’s Agreement for Maintenance of Improvements between Lake County and J & J Building & Development, LLC; and execute a Resolution 2004-61 accepting Willow Grove Lane “Part” (County Road Number 1045B), Still Meadow Drive “Part” (County Road Number 1045C), Baybrook Lane (County Road Number 1045D), Copperleaf Way “Part” (County Road Number 1047C), into the County Road maintenance system all relating to the Bent Tree, Phase 1 subdivision.
Approval and authorization to accept the final plat for Spring Lake Pines, Phase 3 Subdivision and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Spring Lake Pines, Phase 3 Subdivision plat. Spring Lake Pines, Phase 3 Subdivision consists of eight lots – Commission District 1.
Approval and authorization to accept the final plat for Estates at Lake Susan, Replat of Subdivision and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Estates at Lake Susan, Replat of Subdivision plat. Estates of Lake Susan, Replat of Subdivision consists of 11 lots – Commission District 2.
Approval and authorization to release a Letter of Credit for Construction of Improvements in the amount of $161,198.00 that was posted for Stonegate at Silver Lake subdivision.
Approval and authorization to release a Letter of Credit for Performance in the amount of $935,814.00; accept a Surety Bond in the amount of $40,000.00 for Maintenance; accept a Developer’s Agreement for Maintenance of Improvements between Lake County and Zureiq Investments; and execute Resolution 2004-62 accepting Silver Cove Drive “Part” (County Road Number 0167D), Wood Crest Way “Part” (County Road Number 0163) into the County Road maintenance system all relating to the Silver Creek, Phase 2 subdivision.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA (CONTINUED)
Office of Budget - Impact Fees
Regarding the Interlocal Agreement with the City of Mascotte relating to the collection of Lake County Impact Fees by the City, Commr. Hill stated that the fiscal impact is $17,763.00 rather than $54,200.00.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the request from Budget for approval of an Interlocal Agreement with the City of Mascotte relating to the collection of Lake County Impact Fees by the City.
Regarding accepting the final plat for Heathrow Country Estate Homes, Phase 1 Subdivision, and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Heathrow Country Estate Homes, Phase 1 plat, Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, stated that the amount of the Surety Bond will be $671,278.04, with the understanding that the bond must be in hand before recording of the plat. He explained that the water and sewer have not been completed yet by the City of Eustis.
On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the request from Public Works for approval and authorization to accept the final plat for Heathrow Country Estate Homes, Phase 1 Subdivision, and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Heathrow Country Estate Homes, Phase 1 plat; accept a Surety Bond for Construction of Improvements in the amount of $671,278.04; and accept a Developer’s Agreement for Construction of Improvements between Lake County and 46/46A LLC. Heathrow Country Estate Homes, Phase 1 consists of 99 lots – Commission District 4.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA - ADDENDUM NO. 1
PUBLIC WORKS - CONSTRUCTION MANAGER SERVICES
On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved to award a contract for Construction Manager Services to Wharton Smith, Inc., in accordance with Bid/RFP Number 03-087.
Commr. Hanson stated, for the record, that she recused herself because her son, Keith Hanson, is an employee of Wharton Smith, Inc. (Form 8B Memorandum of Voting Conflict for County, Municipal, and Other Local Public Officers was submitted by Commr. Hanson and is included in the backup material.)
2003 COMPREHENSIVE ANNUAL FINANCIAL REPORT (CAFR)
Ms. Barbara Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance, stated that the Board has received a copy of the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) (a copy of the Report is included in the backup material) and that Mr. John Vodenicker of Ernst & Young will give a presentation on the audit of the financial statements. She recognized members of her staff who worked on the Report. Staff members present were Mr. Kevin McDonald, Ms. Kristy Mullane, Ms. Louise Kicklighter and Ms. Karen Huffman; not present were Ms. Tracy Zeller, Mr. Steve Heitzner and Ms. Norma Grayson. Ms. Lehman announced that the 2003 CAFR will be posted on the Clerk’s web site, ( http://www.lakecountyclerk.org ).
Mr. John Vodenicker, Partner, Ernst & Young LLP, presented the Annual Report for September 30, 2003. He stated that the CAFR includes reports of the Constitutional Officers as well as the single audit of the County’s federal and state programs. He remarked that staff did a very commendable job because of the implementation this year of capitalizing infrastructure. He noted that the Finance Department and Public Works Department did a significant amount of work in recording infrastructure, such as streets, on the books for the first time.
Referring to Page 15 of the CAFR, Mr. Vodenicker read, for the record, Paragraph 3 of the Report of Independent Certified Public Accountants, dated February 20, 2004.
“In our opinion, the financial statements referred to above present fairly, in all material respects, the respective financial position of the governmental activities, business-type activity, each major fund and the aggregate remaining fund information of Lake County, Florida at September 30, 2003, and the respective changes in financial position and cash flows, where applicable, thereof and the respective budgetary comparison for the general fund, road impact fees fund, and county sales tax fund for the year then ended in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States.”
Mr. Vodenicker pointed out that the CAFR, beginning on Page 19, contains a very detailed overview in the Management’s Discussion and Analysis that talks about changes in the County’s financial position over the last two fiscal years. Pages 46 and 47 compare the final budget to actual numbers in the General Fund. He noted that the General Fund total revenue budget was $78,870,624 and actual collections were $84,128,492, for a favorable budget variance of $5,257,868. The budgeted expenditures were $80,007,890 and actual expenditures were $73,899,204, for a favorable budget variance of $6,108,686. Actual revenues exceeded expenditures for the year in the amount of $10,229,288 and, after transfers in and transfers out, the General Fund ended the year with a balance of $26,025,452.
Mr. Vodenicker referred to a five-page handout of Required Communications, including a letter dated April 20, 2004, which was presented to the Board (a copy is included in the backup material). He stated that certain communications with auditors and those who appoint them are required by the federal government and by the new Sarbanes-Oxley Act. For the record, he noted that, on Page 2 of the handout, all of the significant accounting policies are reported in Note 1 of the Financial Statements. The only change over the prior year was that under GASB 34 (Governmental Accounting Standards Board Statement 34), the County is required to report on infrastructure in its financial statements and, this year, the infrastructure was retroactively booked. He stated that the net impact to the financial statements was approximately $76 million which is the amount of infrastructure which was put onto the books. Not only is the gross amount of the cost of infrastructure recorded, but the depreciation was also accumulated, creating a net number. The handout talks about judgments and estimates in Lake County under the section titled “Auditors’ Judgments About the Quality of Accounting Principles” on Page 2. The section on Page 3 explains that Ernst & Young LLP is an independent auditor that has not done any additional work, other than performing the audit, that would be perceived as impairing their independence. Still referring to Page 3, Mr. Vodenicker noted that there were no significant audit adjustments posted, there were no disagreements with management, no material weaknesses were noted in the internal control structure, there were no serious issues in performing their audits, and no material errors, irregularities and illegal acts were identified. He stated that new fraud standards are required next year but those standards have been implemented early, which include inquiries of management and different reviews that must be performed to get more assurance that no fraud is taking place in County government. He stated that none were found or disclosed.
Commr. Hanson commented that there is an implication that there may have been some fraud in previous years but this new implementation means the auditors are looking at different standards this year than in the past.
Mr. Vodenicker confirmed that is correct in that more procedures are being done. He explained that, in the past, inquiries were made of senior management only and the auditors are now interviewing and posing the question “have you been asked to do something this year that you felt was not appropriate” to people who actually do the day to day transactions. He added that adjusting journal entries are also being reviewed.
Mr. Vodenicker then gave a PowerPoint presentation entitled “Lake County, Florida Financial Analysis” (a printed copy is included in the backup material) which included the following:
• Statement of Net Assets. Some more significant changes include: Cash and Investments, Unrestricted, were increased on a countywide basis by $10,373,000; in part of the Net Assets, depreciation, a non-cash item, is recorded. Governmental Capital increased by $87,221,000 including the significant increase by adding the one time recording of $76.6 million for infrastructure.
• Revenues (All Governmental Fund Types/Per Fund Financial Statements). Per Capita. He noted a significant increase in population from 231,072 in 2002 to 240,716 in 2003.
• Taxes (All Governmental Fund Types). Per Capita. Ad valorem taxes were up while infrastructure surtax is down because of three-way sharing rather than two ways.
• Expenditures (All Governmental Fund Types/Per Fund Financial Statements). Per Capita. Continuing to do more and more transportation costs. The Court-related expenditures have been growing, while the capital outlays have declined.
• Landfill Enterprise Fund
• Comparative Financial Analysis. Explanation that the graphs on the following pages are prepared on a per capita basis. Populations are: Lake County, 240,716; Seminole County, 394,878; Marion County, 271,096; and Alachua County, 231,296.
• Governmental Fund Types - Total Revenues. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties.
• Governmental Fund Types - Tax Revenues. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties.
• Ad Valorem Taxable Assessed Value. Per Capita. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties. About 5% increase for Lake County.
• Governmental Fund Types - Intergovernmental Revenues. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties.
• General Government Expenditures. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties.
• Governmental Fund Types - Public Safety Expenditures. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties.
• Governmental Fund Types - Debt Service Expenditures. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties.
• Days Fund Balance Meets Total Expenditures. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua. Continues to remain strong for Lake County. Surpluses, without any revenues coming in, could carry Lake County for 238 days.
• Enterprise Fund Net Assets. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties.
• County-Wide Long-Term Debt Outstanding. Graph for Lake, Seminole, Marion and Alachua Counties. Lake County has a very little outstanding long-term debt as of September 30, 2003, in comparison to the three other counties.
In summary, Mr. Vodenicker stated that, in Ernst & Young’s opinion, the audit of the federal and state programs found no noncompliance matters in the federal and state programs, and the internal control systems were adequate to monitor those programs this year.
Commr. Hanson opined that the comparison between the long-term debt and the taxable assessed value indicates that more money could be spent and still get more taxable assessed value. Having not done that, the County still remains pretty strong in taxable assessed value without the government funding it.
In response to an inquiry by Commr. Stivender, Mr. Vodenicker stated that the general fund balance, as a percent of expenditures, is 30%.
Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, commented that, in being somewhat fair to the other counties in the comparison of long-term debt, two of those three counties have water and sewer systems, and that debt is probably reflected in their numbers.
PROCLAMATION TO DEPARTMENT OF JUVENILE JUSTICE
Ms. Cindy Smith, Department of Juvenile Justice, introduced Mr. John Carnahan, Assistant State Attorney; Ms. Sandy Chavis and Ms. Jill Thompson, Deputy Clerks; Mr. Jeff Balliet, Department of Juvenile Justice Program Office in Ocala; and Ms. Debi MacIntyre, Co-Chairman for the Department of Juvenile Justice Council. Also present were Department of Juvenile Justice staff members Mr. Michael Barker, Ms. Cindy Clayton, Ms. Kim Dixon, Ms. Ruby Floyd, Ms. Diane Louis, Ms. Judy Muller, Mr. Gary Valuet and Mr. Ralph Warner.
Commr. Stivender then read Proclamation 2004-48 which proclaimed April 25 through May 1, 2004, as Juvenile Justice Week in Lake County.
HARTWOOD MARSH ROAD
PROJECT DEVELOPMENT AND ENVIRONMENTAL (PD&E) STUDY
Mr. John Moore, P.E., of TEI Engineers & Planners (TEI), gave a PowerPoint presentation (a printed copy is included in the backup material) on the Hartwood Marsh Road Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study which included the following:
• Project Location Map - From U.S. Highway 27 to the Lake/Orange County Line. There are sharp curves midpoint through the alignment and improving those curves will be looked at in this project.
• A PD&E Study is...A formalized process utilized to ensure that transportation projects are developed with due consideration of both engineering and environmental aspects, as well as public involvement.
• Study Process - Data collection, public involvement, alternatives development and analysis and identified recommended alternative through documentation.
• Planning Partners - Lake County, City of Clermont, Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), Orange County, and citizens and stakeholders.
• Data Collection Overview - Background information, traffic count data, crash data, land uses, cultural and natural features and environmental features.
• Average Daily Traffic (ADT) Volumes - As the corridor sits right now, the two-lane road is adequately handling the traffic although it is a very low level of service. Once the Lake County and Orange County sections are completed, there will be a dramatic increase in traffic. The corridor is being planned for acceptable ADT levels of service.
• Levels of Service - Ranked A through F. The proposed plan year is for acceptable level of service at the cusp of D and E levels. In peak hours, traffic will not fly but will be moving and accept the capacity.
• Crash History (1999-2002) - U.S. Highway 27 intersection and surrounding driveways, 42 crashes; Danbury Mill Boulevard, one crash; South Hancock Road, 10 crashes; and Foxhole Road, one crash.
• Corridor Issues - Roadway Traffic Capacity. Vehicular/Bicycle/Pedestrian Safety. Traffic from S.R. 50 and U.S. 27. Natural and Cultural Features. Coordination with Other Studies.
• Identified Public Concerns - Identified through telephone calls, public meetings, small group meetings and e-mail: Project Need. Neighborhood Impacts. Impacts to Natural Resources (one small wetland area will be skirted). Safety (improved lane widths, improved alignments). Pedestrian and Bicycle Accommodations (on-road bike lanes, sidewalks). Noise. There is currently an issue with noise on the corridor, predominately truck traffic. TEI proposes, during the final design phase of the project, to do a noise analysis. In order to do the analysis and develop appropriate mitigation techniques, further information must be available such as vertical and horizontal alignments.
Commr. Pool remarked that Kings Ridge homes closest to the road are impacted. He opined that a 1,600 to 2,400-foot wall may have to be constructed, beginning at the east side of the Publix complex.
Mr. Moore concurred that the section from U.S. Highway 27 over to Hancock Road would be impacted. Because that area is not flat, knowing the relative elevations is necessary to determine if a wall would work or be feasible. He continued the presentation as follows:
• Typical Section - 100 feet. Between U.S. 27 and South Hancock, four-lane, urban, divided, sidewalks, bike lanes, raised grass median which could be landscaped in the future.
• Typical Section - 120 feet. East of South Hancock, primarily through the sand mine property, gives some additional latitude as far as landscaping on the periphery and provides more of a setback. Curb to curb still very much the same as the 100-foot section.
Commr. Pool stated that he has had many calls requesting an eight-foot or ten-foot sidewalk on one side, instead of a five-foot sidewalk on each side of the road, for a trail concept. In working with the McKinnon Corp., owners of a large amount of property in Orange County and in Lake County, they agree that a trail corridor concept might be better than two five-foot sidewalks. He suggested that connecting to east and west trails might work out very well. He opined that one eight-foot sidewalk might be cheaper than a five-foot sidewalk on each side.
Mr. Moore confirmed that this section would accommodate that concept. He stated that, even if an enhanced sidewalk/multi-use trail were to be constructed on one side, the five-foot sidewalk on the other side should be kept to minimize crossing the road. He agreed that multi-use is a great idea and there is enough width, particularly on the 120-foot section, that the setback from the curb line can be increased.
Commr. Pool added that everywhere he goes, the request is for more trails and more connectivity to trails.
Mr. Moore concluded the presentation with the following two points:
• Public Involvement - Coordination and Presentations with neighborhood groups, public agencies and citizens advisory groups. Newsletters were sent, a website was maintained, and press releases and advertisements ran in the local newspaper.
• Project Schedule - Culmination of the PD&E study phase.
Mr. Moore introduced Ms. Colleen Jarrell of TEI.
Commr. Stivender opened the public hearing.
Ms. Cecelia Bonifay, attorney, Akerman Senterfitt, spoke on behalf of Center Lake Properties, Pineloch Management, Tarmac, and McKinnon Corp. She stated that the Tarmac sand mine encompasses a lot of property where the new proposed alignment would be. She stated that Levitt and Sons has contracted to purchase a 160-acre tract on the south side of Hartwood Marsh Road and are also developing The Regency to the west in the City of Clermont. She expressed excitement at the PD&E study and urged the Board to move forward on the project, to allocate funding and to make it a top priority. She stated that her clients are committed to work with the County, through the Lake Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), to try to make sure that funding is obtained.
In response to an inquiry by Commr. Hanson regarding controlled access and traffic lights, Ms. Bonifay opined that she does not see a lot of access points onto this road because the idea is to move traffic back and forth. She noted that planning is happening now for these larger scale developments and that access points, from a safety standpoint, need to be planned. She stated that innovative designs are being researched. She stated that major intersections need to be planned in conjunction with her clients and County staff.
Commr. Pool stated that landowners have been very cooperative and willing to give up rights of way to make this a safer corridor and everyone agrees this is a good idea and a good concept. He remarked that, if the 2.4 mile segment in Orange County is agreed to, another major east-west connector to State Road 429 will be established and will benefit the people.
Ms. Bonifay commented that the development community may need to participate in some enhancements in an effort to provide a nice parkway.
Mr. Arlen “Ted” Bellville, president of Vistas at Lake Louisa homeowners association, expressed concern with traffic problems on several sections of the road. He noted a severe safety issue in the Vistas as a result of the Hancock Road extension to the south. He inquired about the status of a traffic light to relieve that issue. He stated that this is a good project that needs to happen and opined that the trail is a good idea and should extend all the way into Lake Louisa State Park.
Commr. Stivender noted that there was no further public comment.
In response to an inquiry by Commr. Cadwell regarding the need for this project, Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, confirmed that, even if no other developments were approved in this area, there is a level of service issue that the County is trying to anticipate. There are a certain number of existing lots and, added to the existing traffic, a four-lane road is needed in this location.
Mr. Stivender clarified that discussions are being held on the following: looping the extension on South Hancock Road back over to Lake Louisa Road, potentially signalizing the intersection, taking Lake Louisa Road and bypassing the Vistas subdivision, possibly putting a road through a 230-acre parcel owned by the City of Orlando and the City’s interest in selling a portion of that frontage for government purposes. He mentioned Hartle Road and the Avalon Road intersection as they relate to this corridor. Mr. Stivender stated that he had a call yesterday from Orange County stating they will install the traffic signal at Avalon Road in eight to nine months and that the money has been approved by the Department of Transportation. He explained that anything above the amount to install the signal will be paid for by the City of Winter Garden and the maintenance will be incurred by the City.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Final Study recommendations from TEI Engineers & Planners for the Hartwood Marsh Road Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD
Arlie “Beau” Jarrell
Mr. Arlie “Beau” Jarrell addressed the Board regarding an infirm landowner who obtained an open-end, year-to-year permit to put a mobile home/modular unit for an elderly family member to act as his caretaker. He remarked that the mobile home is approximately 200 feet from the existing residence and there are no walkways between the two. He stated that homes in his area are in the $300,000 to $400,000 range and expressed concern that property values will go down because of the mobile home. Mr. Jarrell stated that he has spoken with Commr. Pool and Code Enforcement.
Commr. Pool explained this particular situation and suggested that an addition to the home should be considered as opposed to allowing a detached structure.
Mr. Minkoff stated that it was decided, in discussions with Mr. Gregg Welstead, Growth Management Director, that these sections of the Code will be presented to the Local Planning Agency (LPA), requesting that they focus each month on land development questions in an effort to come up with some suggestions to bring back to the Board. He commented that, in this case, to make the structure a permanent addition, when it is a temporary use, would be a difficult solution. He explained that unattached accessory residences are currently allowed, without having an infirm use, in many of the County’s zoning categories. Those accessory residences are permanent and subject to impact fees whereas a temporary structure for an infirm person is not subject to impact fees.
Commr. Pool clarified that permits for structures relating to the infirm must be renewed in person annually and only a few renewals have been denied in the past, specifically, when a different person applied for the renewal permit. He reiterated his suggestion that there be an addition to the existing structure as opposed to a detached structure.
Mr. Jarrell opined that a legal, family lot split cannot be done on the five-acre parcel in question and there is no ingress and egress access to the mobile home. He remarked that a $60,000 addition to the existing home would upgrade the property value whereas placing a mobile home on the property, at a cost of $60,000, might devalue the subject property and surrounding properties.
Commr. Cadwell pointed out that, in some cases, a temporary detached structure is the only option for the care of an infirm person and in the past many of the permits were issued to place a mobile home beside an existing mobile home.
Mr. Jarrell stated that, as the current rule is written, he could, technically, move every relative he has onto his property in a mobile home to care for an infirm person for the cost of $275.00 per permit.
Commr. Hanson remarked that regulations sometimes must be modified because they are taken advantage of or become something different from the original intent.
Mr. Jarrell stated that installation of the mobile home has stopped and asked whether any Lake County department has stopped the installation.
Commr. Stivender stated that staff will follow through on Mr. Jarrell’s questions and on suggestions for changes to the rules and regulations.
At 10:17 a.m., Commr. Cadwell left the meeting to return to meetings in Tallahassee, Florida.
Mr. Travis Whigham stated that there is no public transportation for residents in Forest Hills, Lake Kathryn, Pine Lakes and surrounding areas to get to doctor visits or to go to work. He requested that Lake County Transit make three trips daily (early morning, noon, and late afternoon) to pick up Lake County residents and take them to the Volusia County line to connect with Volusia’s bus line, and bring them back in the afternoon. He stated that it is a 28-mile drive to the nearest Health Department or grocery store. He pointed out that residents can go to Ocala or Orlando on Lake County Transit but cannot go to Deland.
Commr. Stivender stated that she will give this information to Mr. Ken Harley, Lake County Public Transportation Director. She remarked that the Transportation Disadvantaged Coordinating Board is currently working on RFPs (Request for Proposal) for the coming year.
Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, stated that a consultant is in the process of updating the transportation plan for presentation to the Board. Public participation will be part of that process and Mr. Whigham’s name will be given to the consultant for follow up purposes.
Ms. Mary Eisnor, who lives on Forest Drive in the Pine Lakes area of Eustis, requested that the Board do what they can to stop the rumored sale of the grader and two helicopters which are used by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. She stated that equipment belongs to the citizens of Lake County and is necessary because it is impossible to use the roads in her area when it rains. She explained that a letter to the appointed Sheriff was not answered. She stated that there has been a wonderful improvement to the Sheriff’s department over the last 25 years and she expressed her displeasure with the current Sheriff.
Commr. Hanson stated that she does not feel grading County roads should be the responsibility of the Sheriff and asked that management consider a recommendation on which roads, especially the collector roads, might need to be brought into the County system and maintained by the County.
Mr. Neron stated that staff will research the issue, countywide, and bring a report back to the Board.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, explained that since 1982 all roads are required to be paved to be brought into the County maintenance system and that is what the special assessment program was about. He stated that the vast majority of rights of way are 50 and 60 feet that still qualify for special assessment. Some in the south end of the County are only 12 and 24 foot rights of way with no possibility of riding a grader down them on the easements.
Commr. Pool pointed out that, if the roads are currently being graded by the Sheriff’s Department, those could be maintained by the County if appropriate.
Ms. Marice Musser, who has lived on Forest Drive in Pine Lakes for 30 years, stated that her road has been dedicated to the County. Four years ago she could not get out on her road, nor could an emergency vehicle get in. She stated that they need the grader and the helicopters.
Mr. Stivender stated that the biggest dilemma with Forest Drive is that a third of the road goes through a wetland. The 100-year flood plain is four feet above the level of the existing road and the road is in the Wekiva Protection Area. He stated that a blanket permit is being looked at for all roads within the Wekiva Protection Area that would deal with the special regulations for stormwater.
Commr. Hanson asked that the process on Forest Drive be moved forward quickly because the residents on that road have been willing to pay assessments for a long time.
Mr. Whigham, in readdressing the Board, stated that the County has the responsibility to be able to get an emergency vehicle, fire or ambulance, to the homes of all residents. He stated that it is important to have good roads and agreed that he is highly against selling the Sheriff’s grader and helicopters.
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
At 10:35 Commr. Stivender announced that the Board would take a five minute recess.
COUNTY MANAGER’S DEPARTMENTAL BUSINESS -ADDENDUM NO. 1
PUBLIC WORKS - ALAMEDA SANDRA AND OSWALT ROAD
Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, displayed a map (a copy of the map is included in the backup material) of the intersection of Alameda Sandra and Oswalt Road and explained the request for approval to place temporary barricades on Alameda Sandra where it intersects with Oswalt Road for the purpose of stopping traffic from cutting through the Crescent Lake Club subdivision. He stated that an April 12, 2004, letter of support was received from the board of directors of the Crescent Lake Club Homeowners’ Association (a copy of the letter is included in the backup material). He informed the Board that materials for the concrete barrier and signage will cost the County approximately $1,100. As the traffic pattern in the area changes with the intersection improvements, including signalization, a request may be brought back to the Board to remove the barricade. This is all done with the understanding that the Lakeshore Drive/Oswalt Road intersection design, right of way acquisition and construction will be expedited. He stated that schools, emergency medical services, the fire department, the utility companies and others will be notified prior to the placement of the barricade. It is expected that the barricade can be put up within two weeks.
On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the temporary closure of Alameda Sandra until such time as a light at the intersection is installed and it is determined to be safe to reopen; with public notification and with the support of the Crescent Lake Club Homeowners’ Association.
Mr. Stivender commented that this same situation will be addressed tonight with the Vistas at Lake Louisa because they are now the cut through to Publix and Walgreens. He advised the Board that the paperwork on the Hancock Road alternative will be brought to them as soon as it is ready.
COOPER MEMORIAL LIBRARY - TEMPORARY FACILITY
Commr. Pool stated, for the record, that he will recuse himself because his brother, Dan Pool, owns one-half of the building called Hughes Supply. He stated that he will not participate in the discussion and will abstain from the vote. (Form 8B Memorandum of Voting Conflict for County, Municipal, and Other Local Public Officers was submitted by Commr. Pool and is included in the backup material.)
Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, gave an update on two options for an alternate site for the Cooper Memorial Library which has to move from its current location because of problems with mold. He referred to the backup material, which is a comparable study on two sites. One site is the Hallmark store, over 9, 000 square feet, by the old Publix building, which will require carpet and reworking of walls. The other site is the Hughes Supply building, an older facility in downtown Clermont which has block walls and will require the replacement of lighting and bathroom remodeling. Staff analyzed lease rates and renovation costs for both buildings and determined that total project costs, over three years, would be $403,867 for the Hughes Supply building and $581,321 for the Hallmark store. Per square foot, over three years, the Hughes Supply building will cost less than the Hallmark store property.
Mr. Bill Neron, County Manager, stated that the City of Clermont is holding a workshop on the library issue and County staff has been invited to attend and participate. He asked for a general direction from the Board regarding continuing pursuing this project, finalizing costs, working on a lease agreement and bringing a recommendation back to the Board. By making an investment in a facility and signing a three-year lease, staff will have time to work with the City and other possible funding partners. Should a decision be made to build a new facility, the lease will allow time to apply for a library grant.
Mr. Stivender noted that it might take three months to reopen the library.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, which was seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried by a vote of 3-0, the Board approved continuing pursuing the project, finalizing costs, working on a lease agreement, and bringing back a recommendation to the Board in a week or two on a temporary facility to house the Cooper Memorial Library.
Commr. Pool abstained from the vote. Commr. Cadwell had previously left the meeting.
Everyone commended staff for the excellent work in locating options for this project.
Commr. Hill asked if the City has entertained the thought of building a new facility with the County at this location.
Mr. Stivender explained that there are options, including building a two-story facility on the existing site, and that talks are ongoing with the City of Clermont.
REPORTS - COUNTY ATTORNEY
ODONTOLOGY SERVICES FOR LAKE COUNTY MEDICAL EXAMINER
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, stated that there has been a request by the Lake County Medical Examiner for a slight monthly increase for Dr. Kenneth Cohrn who performs professional forensic odontology services.
Commr. Hill stated that she has a copy of the fascinating book Dr. Cohrn puts together and remarked that he speaks across the country regarding forensic dental services.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved an Amendment to Agreement between Lake County Board of County Commissioners and Kenneth Cohrn, D.D.S. for Forensic Odontology Professional Services for the Lake County Medical Examiner.
WEKIVA BILL UPDATE
Mr. Minkoff gave an update on the Wekiva bills. He explained that the Senate bill (S1214), mostly unchanged, has been through all the committees and that the House bill (H849) has also been through all the committees. Two amendments were filed April 19, 2004, one by Rep. Fred Brummer and one by Rep. Randy Johnson. Rep. Johnson’s amendment appears to take the Senate bill and put it into the House bill. Rep. Brummer’s bill has adopted some things in the committee report and has not included others. Ms. Sarah Bleakley of Nabors, Giblin & Nickerson, acting as Lake County’s lobbyist, is continuing to work to get the committee report adopted by the legislature.
Commr. Hanson stated that, although the spur (which would link the Wekiva Parkway with State Road 46) is back in with Rep. Brummer’s bill, the open space issues were very important in working through the process. It is important that property owners with very low densities be given credit for open space. She stated that it is important that Rep. Carey Baker be made aware of certain issues that are critical to the whole package.
Mr. Minkoff stated that Rep. Baker has been working with Commr. Cadwell and with Sarah Bleakley and is generally supportive of the County’s position. He stated that, because Ms. Bleakley is meeting with the representatives on a daily basis, more letters of support may not be needed from the Board but he will call on them if necessary.
ANNEXATION LEGISLATION UPDATE
Regarding pending state legislation on annexation, Mr. Minkoff reported that it is scheduled for hearings on April 21, 2004. He remarked that there is a positive feeling that the legislation will pass. The Senate bill is almost completed and legislators are trying to find a bill in the House to hitch it to so that it could be passed by both sides.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER HILL - DISTRICT #1
MARCH OF DIMES
Commr. Hill announced that the March of Dimes walk is at 8:00 a.m., Saturday, April 24, 2004, at Wooten Park in Tavares. She invited everyone to come for the festivities, even if they do not want to walk.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER POOL - DISTRICT #2
LAKE COUNTY FAIR
Commr. Pool remarked that the Lake County Fair was a huge success and well attended. He expressed gratitude to all who worked hard on the event.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER HANSON - DISTRICT #4
LAKE COUNTY PARKS
Commr. Hanson requested that a Town Hall meeting be held specifically to discuss parks. She stated that there needs to be a community park in the Umatilla area, a community park in the Mount Plymouth-Sorrento area and a regional park between the two that would also serve the cities of Eustis and Mount Dora. The regional park probably should be somewhere east of Eustis in an effort to better serve citizens of Lake County. She informed the Board that the Orlando Sentinel is closing its plant in Sorrento and suggested that location would make an excellent community park and community center. Commr. Hanson suggested that a donation by the Sentinel of their building and 13 acres could be the start of a park and other properties to the east probably could be purchased. Potentially, about 38 acres might be available in that area.
At Mr. Minkoff’s suggestion, Mr. Neron stated that he will work with the Chair in contacting the managing editor of the Orlando Sentinel.
In response to a comment by Commr. Hanson regarding the Master Plan’s conclusion that community parks would be no smaller in size than 50 acres, Mr. Neron stated that is an overall goal. The study suggests buying enough property for future growth, but the study is a guideline.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER STIVENDER - CHAIRMAN & DISTRICT #3
LAKE COUNTY FAIR
Commr. Stivender stated that crowds at the Lake County Fair appeared to be larger this year. She mentioned that future fair dates probably should not conflict with Easter Sunday.
MONTVERDE RIBBON CUTTING
Commr. Stivender announced that she, Commr. Hill and Commr. Cadwell attended the recent ribbon cutting for the new Montverde Community Building and Library.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER HILL (CONTINUED)
FESTIVAL OF READING
Commr. Hill announced that she attended the Festival of Reading event which was presented by the Lake County Library System. The Festival was held at Donnelly Park in Mount Dora on April 17, 2004, and included an awards ceremony for the Bookmark Design Contest winners. She commended Ms. Wendy Breeden, Library Services Director, for coordinating the event.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 11:15 a.m.
DEBBIE STIVENDER, CHAIRMAN
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK