JUNE 14, 2005

The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, June 14, 2005, 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: Jennifer Hill, Chairman; Catherine C. Hanson, Vice Chairman; Welton G. Cadwell; Debbie Stivender; and Robert A. Pool. Others present were: Sanford A. “Sandy” Minkoff, County Attorney; Cynthia W. “Cindy” Hall, County Manager; Linda Green, Executive Associate, Board of County Commissioners’ Office; and Judy Whaley, Deputy Clerk.


Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.


Commr. Hill introduced Mr. Ray Goodgame, City of Clermont Council Member; Mr. Joe Teri, City of Minneola Council Member; Dr. Wellington Estey, Vice President, Educational Services, Lake-Sumter Community College; Ms. Nancy Fullerton, Board of Trustees, Lake County Water Authority; Ms. Ann Wettstein Griffin, Board of Trustees, Lake County Water Authority; Ms. Elaine Renick, City of Clermont Council Member; and Mr. Jim Yatsuk, Mayor, City of Mount Dora.


Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, stated that there is an Addendum No. 1 with an item for the County Attorney’s reports portion of the meeting.

Commr. Hill asked that Tab 5 (County Manager’s Departmental Business) be addressed after the presentation on library facilities. Under Commr. Hill’s reports, she will discuss her participation on a selection team for the replacement for Rodger Amon, Administrator, Lake County Health Department.


On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 1 through 4, as follows:

Growth Management

Request for approval of Annual Maintenance and Support Contract (Customer Number 131095) for Environmental Research Systems Institute, our GIS software vendor for all County GIS licenses.

Procurement Services

Request for approval to declare the items on the attached lists surplus to County needs and authorize disposal as described; authorize the removal of all the items on the attached lists from the County's official fixed asset inventory system records; and authorize the Interim Procurement Services Director to sign the vehicle titles.

Public Safety

Request for approval for the Department of Public Safety's Fire Rescue Division to support the National Fire Safety Council, Inc., endeavor to provide fire safety and injury prevention educational materials through voluntary community business support.

Public Works

Request for approval of the request for $31,500.00 in additional funds to purchase wetland mitigation credits from ECOBANK to offset the impact of 0.49 acres of wetland due to the proposed construction of the realignment of Sleepy Hollow Road.



Commr. Hill introduced Mr. Cecil Beach and Mr. Darro Willey of Beach/Willey, Library Consultants, who gave a presentation on the Lake County Library System Facilities Plan 2005-2020. (A printed copy of the April 6, 2005, Final Report, prepared by Carter Goble Lee, Columbia, South Carolina, in association with Beach/Willey, is included in the backup material.)

Mr. Beach stated that Beach/Willey did a Facilities and Services study for Lake County in 1996-1997. He remarked that the County has made great progress and has moved along the lines of the recommendations of the 1997 report.

Mr. Beach referred to the map of the fourteen library service areas. He stated that the modular buildings, which are in use at some libraries, should be replaced at some point with permanent buildings. In referring to a possible joint library between Lake County, the University of Central Florida (UCF) and Lake-Sumter Community College (LSCC), he opined that the wave of the future is sharing resources, not turf guarding. If there is a good arrangement and a good agreement and a good site, the joint library can work. He stated that the site in Clermont is an exceptionally good site for a joint library. Construction money can be saved but there may not be a lot of savings in the operations because of the need for multiple librarians. Overall, it should be a much better library with more resources for everybody who uses it. He asked the Board to seriously consider the joint library. He suggested that a committee from the public and from academia should work closely together on an agreement.

Regarding Clermont, Mr. Beach stated that it probably could be served from a large library built in conjunction with LSCC and UCF. He acknowledged that there is interest in having a library downtown and one alternative of the report suggests building a smaller downtown library. An acceptable site for the larger library is not readily available downtown. He emphasized that building costs are going up every week; therefore, the sooner buildings are done, the cheaper they will be.

Commr. Stivender stated that she met with Groveland’s Mayor and City Manager yesterday and that she has talked with Mascotte’s City Manager. She stated that they have concerns that the projections are incorrect in their area because of population growth. She requested that those projections be reviewed. Groveland and Mascotte feel they will need a larger, shared facility.

Mr. Beach confirmed that they will look at those projections. He advised that every projection that was made ten years ago for Lake County was wrong. The study recommends a larger library on the present site if possible.

Commr. Pool advised that he and Ms. Wendy Breeden, Library Services Director, recently attended a meeting in Orange County and asked for money for libraries. Orange County has a countywide ad valorem tax for funding libraries while Lake County funds out of the general fund. He stated that it is important that Lake County consider options in the future.

Mr. Beach confirmed that more and more counties are moving to a tax for libraries. People want to see libraries grow and referendums for a tax for libraries have been successful in Florida.

Commr. Pool stated that Orange County, which has a $33 million library budget, will potentially look at options and opportunities for a library in Lake County. However, they do not feel it is their responsibility because of the small number of Orange County patrons who would use it. He explained that the level of borrowing will be discussed further. He advised that Orange County did not provide any money.



Mr. Fred Schneider, Director of Engineering, Department of Public Works, presented the request for approval to submit the following three grant applications to the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) for the Fiscal Year 2006/2007 County Incentive Grant Program: Hartwood Marsh Road (Clermont area); County Road 466 (Lady Lake area); and County Road 470/County Road 48 (Okahumpka/South Leesburg area). The County Incentive Grant Application deadline to the FDOT office is June 30, 2005. The project on CR 470/CR 48 is about 50% completed and design is beginning now on the other two projects. All three projects are to go from two lanes to four lanes. FDOT is being asked for about $10 million and the County’s share will be about $20 million.

On a motion by Commr. Cadwell, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the request from the Public Works Department to submit the following three grant applications to the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) for the Fiscal Year 2006/2007 County Incentive Grant Program: Hartwood Marsh Road (Clermont area); County Road 466 (Lady Lake area); and County Road 470/County Road 48 (Okahumpka/South Leesburg area).


Commr. Stivender announced that she will be leaving today’s meeting about 11:20 a.m. to give a Flag Day speech in Leesburg.






Ms. Cecelia Bonifay, Attorney, Akerman Senterfitt, stated that she notified staff yesterday that a written request had been sent advising that LPA#05/4/9-2, Richard Bosserman and Charles Bosserman, Cecelia Bonifay, Akerman Senterfitt, Tracking #8-05-LPA, has been withdrawn based on the fact that the property was annexed into the City of Clermont.



















Mr. Gregg Welstead, Growth Management Director/Deputy County Manager, informed the Board that Attorney Cecelia Bonifay, Akerman Senterfitt, has asked to present a request for a continuance on seven of her Comprehensive Plan Amendment cases.

Ms. Cecelia Bonifay, Attorney, Akerman Senterfitt, requested that Comprehensive Plan Amendment Agenda Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 8 (as listed above) be postponed for a period of 90 days. She stated that the Board determined last year to redo the entire Comprehensive Plan and advertised two cycles of Comprehensive Plan Amendments. She stated that the Board then determined that there would only be one Comprehensive Plan cycle this year with a filing date of January 7, 2005. Ms. Bonifay stated that these cases were filed and have been sitting for six months under review. She explained that, during this same period, staff has been collecting data and talking to Clermont and Mount Dora regarding the Joint Planning Agreements (JPA), and working up new land use criteria. She stated that the applicants in all of these cases were instructed that they could only go with the category that was requested because there were no alternate adopted land use categories. She advised that other locales, municipalities and counties, have been using text amendments to limit land use densities and intensities by actually putting a cap on specific projects. She stated that this may not be the preferred way but this is the way the Florida Department of Community Affairs (DCA) has been dealing with it; and, in fact, encouraged that rather than coming in and asking for an urban density for four units per acre when you know you will come down to a density of two units per acre.

Ms. Bonifay stated that, when these cases were before the Lake County Local Planning Agency (LPA), the LPA was instructed that they could not consider anything (densities) in between and that they had to either vote them up or vote them down. She stated that, since then, there has been a discussion between herself, County Attorney Sandy Minkoff and DCA. She suggested that we go back to the LPA with these, if that is this Board’s recommendation, with the revised densities that she will be asking for. She stated that staff told her that these would all be reviewed on the highest density, regardless of what was requested, whether there was a developer’s agreement or a text amendment or whether asking for only one unit per acre. She stated that would be the Catch 22 with DCA unless the text amendment is done.

Ms. Bonifay stated that, based on that, and the fact that in all of these cases they are asking for less than what that Comprehensive Plan policy would allow, the applicants are asking for 90 days to sit down with staff. If the project is within a JPA, talks with the cities should continue. She stated that, after meeting with Mount Dora on at least two of the residential cases, her clients are coming in with densities that are what the city is looking at in the JPA. She stated that the same thing applies with some cases in south Lake County. She opined that they are a lot more in sync than they are out of sync but they need the time to refine that and make sure the Board clearly understands what it is they are asking for and that staff has really looked at it in that context as opposed to the maximum density allowed.

Ms. Bonifay opined that that is not prejudicial. She stated that the harm that could come from moving forward on this today to these landowners and the applicants outweighs any potential inconvenience. She acknowledged that people showed up today. She stated that the Lake Sentinel did not check with any of the landowners because “urban densities” are not being requested today and several of these have been withdrawn.

Commr. Cadwell asked Ms. Bonifay if she is saying that DCA now will accept text amendments that pretty much become developer’s agreements.

Ms. Bonifay replied, “Absolutely.” She stated that they don’t want them in the form of a developer’s agreement but they are specific to the actual individual parcel. She stated that many of the municipalities have been doing that. She stated that Tavares does that and adjoining counties do that. She stated that, while that may seem the antithesis of planning in the sense that you are doing it site specific, DCA has utilized this because many times there are no interim categories. She stated that part of the problem with the County’s overall Comprehensive Plan is that, in the past, zonings moved with Comprehensive Plan Amendments so developer’s agreements would be done on the zoning. She stated that those agreements would say how the commitment would be enforced. She stated that the system is now bifurcated with a separate LPA and a Zoning Board. She stated that, furthermore, the County will not even allow Comprehensive Plans to be filed until after Comprehensive Plan Amendments have been adopted if the zoning is not consistent with the existing land use. She stated that the County has deprived itself of the ability to see a site plan and know the exact density at the time a Comprehensive Plan Amendment is done. She stated that DCA says, in instances like that, the way you deal with it is to do a text amendment that is specific to the property; or you can have a general policy that says redo overlay zones and the overlay zones can then delimit the exact density, intensity or other policies that might be applied on a site specific basis; then DCA looks at that. She stated that every time a case goes to DCA and the applicant had to ask for Urban Expansion, even though they have agreed in a developer’s agreement to only develop at two units per acre, DCA says, “I’m sorry, because there is no text in your Comprehensive Plan which limits that, we have to treat it as four-to-one.” She stated that hurts the applicant and makes them look as if they are paving over the County or doing high urban densities. She stated that, in most cases, anything that has been approved in the last year or two has had the zoning go with it before the change was made, therefore, locking in a lower density. She stated that is what DCA is doing and she has numerous examples and has even prepared some text. She stated that because all of this happened between the time of the LPA meeting and today’s meeting, she is asking for an extension.

Commr. Cadwell asked if a 90-day extension will get Ms. Bonifay even closer to the normal adoption.

Ms. Bonifay stated that if staff were sharing as much with her and the applicants as they are sharing with the public she would not be here today. She stated that she got Errata Sheets yesterday for today’s hearing on an application that has been pending for six months. She stated that she has not gotten the benefit of the land use map that staff took to Clermont for a public meeting. She stated that what she is now proposing will be consistent with what Lake County is proposing in its plan.

Commr. Cadwell remarked that, perhaps, the language Ms. Bonifay is talking about using was adopted by DCA over time when dealing with older Comprehensive Plans. He expressed that he would not want this Board to do something that DCA is trying to do to right some things in the old plans when that may be accomplished in the new Comprehensive Plan.

Ms. Bonifay stated that the timing was that they had to be here today because of the schedule the Board set. She stated that, in most of these residential cases today, none of the densities are over 2.5 units per acre. She stated that, in several of the cases, the client has agreed to one unit per acre and that, if that is the way the Comprehensive Plan will be, they can at least be tested. She stated that if the Board wants more rural or very low densities at one-to-one but also wants central water and sewer, they need to see if that will work.

Commr. Cadwell reiterated that this Board should not go down a road and adopt something with a fix-it plan that DCA created for older Comprehensive Plans when the County will have a new Comprehensive Plan.

Ms. Bonifay stated that it is not just for older Comprehensive Plans.

Commr. Cadwell opined that it should not be needed with the new Comprehensive Plan.

Ms. Bonifay agreed that the applicants would go back through the LPA and she needs 90 days to try and stay in this cycle. She stated that the LPA understood that they had to vote for four units per acre or vote “no” on all the residential; and had to vote on the maximum amount of square footage on any commercial project or deny it. She opined that she would have enough time to go back to the LPA and come back to this Board within the 90-day window.

In response to a request to verify Ms. Bonifay’s comments and whether the timeframe can be met, Ms. Amye King, Planning Manager for Comprehensive Planning, encouraged the attorneys to work with staff in incorporating some of the things they are talking about into the new Comprehensive Plan without a 90-day continuance and certainly without text amendments that are site specific. She stated that staff is doing the data inventory analysis that applicants have been asked to do for years for Comprehensive Plan Amendments. She stated that over 1800 responses on the surveys have been received and staff has talked to over 400 people in public meetings. She encouraged everybody to work together. She advised that memos are online that propose densities just as Ms. Bonifay has suggested, such as the 2.5-to-one, the one-to-one and mandatory clustering in some areas. Ms. King again encouraged no 90-day continuance and no text amendments, site specific. She remarked that staff should work with both Ms. Bonifay and Mr. Richey with the new Comprehensive Plan.

Commr. Hanson asked if it would be a better option if the Suburban category were kept, perhaps with another name, allowing one unit to the acre with clustering.

Ms. King confirmed that those categories are not available now but staff is working toward those categories and plans to propose those categories formally to the LPA. Probably by September, the LPA will have a very good idea of what it will be recommending to the Board. She stated that staff’s fear is that, if these amendments are given a 90-day continuance, we will be proposing a new Comprehensive Plan while revising the old Comprehensive Plan in virtually the same season. She opined that will be quite confusing to the State and to the public. Again, she discouraged the continuance. Ms. King explained that the old designations do not fit Lake County anymore but they were right at the time. The 2025 plan is being looked at now. She opined that the categories that Ms. Bonifay’s staff and Mr. Richey have been talking to them about are appropriate, the one-to-one clustering and the possibility of a point system in the rural areas for transitioning areas. She stated that Suburban and timeliness are not working now so other categories will be considered.

In response to a question by Commr. Hanson regarding mandatory clustering in the future language in what is now called the Suburban category, Ms. King stated that is probably the top priority for consideration. She opined that some of the Suburban areas are still more appropriate to be Rural with one unit to five acres.

Commr. Pool explained that some cities do not embrace clustering and want to see lower densities. If the LPA was considering one or two units per acre but told to judge it as though it was four units, perhaps these votes would have changed based on additional information from DCA. He asked Ms. King if that is correct.

Ms. King replied that she would not know without going back to the LPA. She opined that DCA has worked with people in the past during settlement agreements to do text amendments but it may not generally be associated with regular cycles.

Commr. Stivender asked Ms. King how she would work with the attorneys in order to accomplish what they are trying to do, and what the Board is trying to do, without a continuance.

Ms. King replied that staff would get very specific guidance from them regarding what they really want to see as opposed to the Urban Expansion that they were cornered into requesting.

Commr. Cadwell remarked that, if delayed and if something different comes up that the LPA did not have in front of them, he would not want to hear anything that does not go back to the LPA first.

Regarding the timeframe for the new Comprehensive Plan, Ms. King stated that the LPA has already looked at the Goals and Objectives and is in the process of receiving Policies for all the Elements and will realistically be looking at the first version of the map in August or September.

Commr. Cadwell stated that he would not want to give these folks false hope and that nothing will change regarding his thoughts if nothing changes if given a 90-day continuance. He stated he would hope that some questions will be answered when the new map is available and that some of these cases will go away. He stated that he hesitates to allow any type of delay although, in fairness to everyone, he is not totally opposed to it.



Mr. Steve Richey, Attorney, representing Mary Eddy and Extreme Groves Investments, LPA#05/4/7-2, stated that it is not unusual in settlement proposals to do site specific zoning classifications. He stated that it absolutely is the rule right now that most jurisdictions, specifically Sumter County and Marion County, do site specific comprehensive plan policies as policies are going through. He stated that he has fourteen of them pending in Sumter County and they are all site specific comprehensive plan policies because of the rapid growth and development in that county. He stated that, therefore, DCA (Florida Department of Community Affairs) wants more site specific evaluation of things.

Mr. Richey stated that three months ago he met with staff and suggested that this zoning be conditioned to one unit per acre rather than Urban Expansion at four units to the acre. He stated that it was consistent with the draft JPA (Joint Planning Area) map that was presented to him. He stated that he asked staff to tell him the mechanism they wanted and he was advised to go to Clermont and get Clermont to sign off on whatever he was proposing and then he would not have a problem. He stated that he was unable to do that. He stated that he proposed a developer’s agreement, which is what is done in a lot of jurisdictions. He stated that the site specific policies limiting density and intensity are attached to the developer’s agreement. He stated that he proposed that to the LPA (Lake County Local Planning Agency) and the LPA was advised that those developer agreements were not appropriate and, therefore, they had to vote it up or vote it down. He stated that, on his particular case, there were several members of the LPA who found the proposed one unit per acre to be appropriate but they had no way to condition that based on the conditions they were presented. He stated that the LPA voted the case down.

Mr. Richey stated that he wants the opportunity to go back to the LPA with either a comprehensive plan policy or developer’s agreement. He stated that a developer’s agreement, signed in 1991, was recorded by Lake County in the Public Records against this piece of property which limits the density to one unit per acre. He stated that he does not want to hold up his project and his comprehensive plan, while awaiting the overall Lake County Comprehensive Plan, because the last time the County went through this process, there was a two-year administrative hearing process to resolve it. He stated that the reason the Board had a cycle this time was to allow property owners to apply for a comprehensive plan, have the Board look at it and judge it on whatever conditions were presented, and submit it to DCA. He stated that, if the Board throws him into the whole County process, he has the potential of having that two-year delay.

Commr. Cadwell stated that the Board will send a good Comprehensive Plan to DCA so that the administrative review process will not be necessary.

Mr. Richey stated that, no matter what is sent to DCA, somebody will be unhappy and some of those people will have the financial ability to challenge it. He reiterated that he met with staff and proposed a developer’s agreement and everything that has been historically done at DCA. He stated that information is back that DCA does accept these and they accept them on non-challenged, non-administrative hearing processes all the time. He stated that he does not think it is fair for the Board to consider the case today without input from the LPA because they were split on some of these cases. He reiterated that he wants it to go back to the LPA and he has no problem sitting down with staff and discussing this particular Comprehensive Plan Amendment (LPA#05/4/7-2) and how it fits in with the County plan. He reiterated his reluctance to be part of the two-year battle he sees coming on the overall Comprehensive Plan if what he can do is acceptable in this cycle after going back to the LPA.

Mr. Richey reiterated his request for the delay. He stated that he tried to do what he is asking today before it went to the LPA, through working with staff, but that did not work out. He stated that more information is now available from DCA that they accept these kinds of things.


Commr. Hanson disclosed for the record that she met with Attorney Cecelia Bonifay regarding Agenda Nos. 2 (LPA#04/5/1-4), 4 (LPA#05/4/1-4), and 6 (LPA#05/4/2-4).

Commr. Hill thanked Commr. Hanson and commented that these are legislative issues, therefore, disclosures by the Board members are not necessary.

Commr. Hanson remarked that she has consistently voted against large land use amendments for Lake County. Her concern is that once that category is there, and the land use is changed to Urban Expansion, even though the language may be in the text, the category becomes much easier to be changed a few years later if it has not been developed. She stated that she does not have a problem postponing the cases but not to just have them move forward in the same direction. She recommended allowing the 90-day continuance.

Mr. Richey stated that he does not want to come back before the Board with these cases unless there is input from the LPA.

Board members agreed there should be input from the LPA.

Ms. King confirmed that there is room on the LPA’s agendas during the next 90 days and that would allow time to advertise.

Commr. Cadwell stated that people have, over the years, asked for delays purely to let the crowd die down. He asked Mr. Richey and Ms. Bonifay if the information being presented today gives them an honest chance for the LPA to change its mind on anything.

Mr. Richey stated that he earlier said he thought there were questions raised and several LPA members indicated that one unit per acre versus four units per acre was something they could embrace but they did not have that option. He answered, “Yes,” to Commr. Cadwell’s question. Mr. Richey stated that there is no use going back to the LPA unless there is the potential of a positive result based on their input. He stated that he does not suspect, knowing the folks that are here today, if this were to be delayed every month for the next six months, that there would be any diminished interest with regard to these cases. He stated that he has committed and met with the school system regarding this one unit per acre. He stated that staff looked at these cases at the maximum, the four units per acre, and he opined that they ought to look at them at one unit per acre or whatever is being proposed.

Commr. Cadwell requested, for staff purposes, some of the correspondence with DCA which gives examples of when they have used this (text amendments) and whether the reason was as a patchwork or as a good planning policy in the long run.

Mr. Richey stated that he has fourteen examples that he will submit to staff.

Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, stated that he was part of the DCA conversation with Ms. Bonifay. He asked the Board to understand that DCA does not recommend text amendments as a preference. DCA said if a Comprehensive Plan Amendment with limiting text language is submitted, they would evaluate it with the limiting language. Mr. Minkoff stated that there was nothing in the conversation where DCA said this is the way we think you should do things.

Commr. Cadwell reiterated that he is not opposed to leaving the cases in the system but he hopes that these cases are evolved into the County’s regular Comprehensive Plan that is being created. He stressed that that would be his goal and some cases will make it and some will not. He remarked that amending the map a few months before a brand new map will be adopted does not make sense.

Ms. Bonifay stated that the Board did advertise a Comprehensive Plan cycle and made people spend their money and work through the holidays to meet the Board’s deadline of January 7, 2005. She opined that staff has said that they have not coordinated these with the applicant and that is a good reason why certain individuals moved ahead. She stated that there was total uncertainty as to where the staff was going and there was no communication, essentially, during the six months about thinking about limiting density in some way and staff is coming up with the same density in its new map. She confirmed Mr. Richey’s remarks that they spent two years in litigation over the Comprehensive Plan in 1990 and 1991. Ms. Bonifay stated that the applicants want to stay in the system and she committed that they will use all of their best efforts to work with staff and see if these would, at the proposed reduced densities, fit into the overall planning framework. Ms. Bonifay stated that she does not see this as setting a precedent. She agreed that DCA said this is not their preference but it is a way in which DCA is accommodating changes. She stated that it would behoove us to have more land use classifications so that densities do not range from one-to-five to four-to-one because that is a huge gap.

Commr. Hill opened the Public Hearing. She explained that the applicants’ representatives have asked for a 90-day continuance to work with staff and bring the cases back to the Lake County Local Planning Agency (LPA); therefore, discussion will be on the request for a 90-day continuance.

Egor Emery

Mr. Egor Emery, Lake County Conservation Council, stated that the public’s time is very important and he has spent time on these projects and on other projects going back to 1991. He expressed appreciation to staff for their work so far and for Ms. King’s comments today. He stated that text amendments manage the Comprehensive Plan on a micro scale and he has a great deal of difficulty with that wisdom. He pointed out that the Comprehensive Plan is comprehensive and is supposed to be evaluated on the individual cases that come forward. He stated that he does not want to see micro issues going back and forth between the Board and DCA. He asked how a continuance would work. He stated that these cases have been in the pipeline. The process is supposed to be that they come before the Board under the Comprehensive Plan, and the Board evaluates them “yea or nay.” He pointed out that he and a lot of these citizens do not get compensated for being at the meeting. In 90 days many of the folks in the audience will be back in school and cannot be here. He pointed out that he was not notified in advance of the request for a 90-day delay. He asked that these cases be kicked out and started again under the new Comprehensive Plan, freeing up staff so they can concentrate on the new Comprehensive Plan. The Comprehensive Plan needs to be done now so that it can come before the public for participation and involvement. He stated that developer’s agreements can be changed and that a developer’s agreement from 1991 is before the Board today to be changed, he believes, in opposition to the current Comprehensive Plan. He urged the Board to kick these cases out of the system or hear them and vote on them.

Commr. Pool asked Mr. Emery if any of today’s projects should have four units per acre.

Mr. Emery stated that he looks at the Comprehensive Plan and evaluates on all the objectives and reads it and chooses whether the information meets those conditions and looks at the staff report and does the same thing. He stated that he does not consider whether two or three density would be better.

Commr. Pool stated that, when staff explained to the LPA that this is either four units per acre or forget it, the LPA voted correctly that it should not be four units per acre. But, with information that the project would be 2.5 units or could be, with a text amendment, one unit per acre, those things can change. He stated that the right information with the right densities should be brought forward then everyone could make the right decision, yea or nay.

Mr. Emery stated that his information, as a citizen, comes from the proposal and from the Comprehensive Plan.

Commr. Pool stated that it comes from the newspaper that says it will be four units per acre and that is not what it is going to be.

Mr. Emery responded that he attended the LPA meeting and is familiar with the specifics.

In response to an inquiry by Commr. Hanson regarding the next submittal date for Comprehensive Plan Amendments, Ms. King confirmed that the next submittal for applications probably will be January 2006 but the date is up to the Board. Staff recommends January 2006.

Bob Curry

Mr. Bob Curry, a resident of Seminole Springs and a director of the Lake County Conservation Council, stated that Agenda No. 5 (LPA#05/4/5-4) is a commercial project, has nothing to do with housing density, and should not and could not be included in the continuance for the purpose of density. It should be handled today or withdrawn. Secondly, he opined that staff has been impugned today and the reason really is the lack of due diligence by the attorney’s office in getting the information they needed to proceed. He opined that the planning staff did proceed at good speed and with good cooperation with the people involved.

Commr. Hanson noted that Agenda No. 5 is a request for Urban Expansion.

Mr. Curry replied that the request is for Urban Expansion to make it commercial space but it is for a strip mall on SR 44 near the corner of CR 437. He stated that the reason for recommending denial by the LPA and staff was that it was inappropriate expansion of the commercial space in that area. He reiterated that it is not a density issue.

Manuel Mejia, Jr.

Mr. Manuel Mejia, Jr., a resident of Astatula, stated that his reason for attending today’s meeting is Agenda No. 1 (LPA#05/4/6-3) but the request for a continuance causes him to see images of deals being cut in the proverbial smoke-filled room; that some type of deal has been cut and then it comes back 90 days later and a lot of people here today will not be here in 90 days. He stated that the continuance, in effect, circumvents public comment. He asked that the continuance not be issued. He asked the Board to hear these cases so the process will be open for comment.

Commr. Hill noted that, even if the cases go back to staff, the cases will be brought back to the Board for public comment.

Mr. Mejia replied that he was noting the image or perception.

Charles Lee

Mr. Charles Lee, representing Audubon of Florida, stated that they recommend going forward with today’s agenda, not accepting the continuance. He stated that they would recommend, on the substance of the matter, that the Board follow the good recommendations of its professional staff. He stated that, following the progression of today’s discussion early in the advocacy for the continuance, particularly of Ms. Bonifay, he had a vision of seeing the Secretary of the Department of Community Affairs standing at the podium saying, “This is the way we would recommend you proceed. We think this is among the highest and best methods of planning and zoning and comp plan administration that we could offer you.” He stated that then, as the discussion progressed, particularly when Mr. Minkoff relayed what the Department of Community Affairs actually said that he heard on the telephone, it evolved to the point of what was actually said was DCA would consider reviewing an amendment to that effect. Mr. Lee remarked that there is a big difference between the advocacy that started out and what was reported by an objective observer on the telephone. Mr. Lee encouraged the Board to check directly, and in detail, with the Department of Community Affairs. He remarked that since the whole basis of this advocacy of continuance was posited on those representations, he opined that it is also flawed on those representations. He stated that the County is, in a very commendable fashion, looking at the entire 2025 plan and it should not end up with any inference of the predisposition of these items being somehow pipelined into that process or being something that is even remotely on the table at the time of looking at that plan. He stated that there are two logical choices of action for the Board today and logical choices of action for the advocates for the applicants here today. Choice number one is to go forward with today’s agenda; vote it up or down on the basis of the facts presented and on the basis of the advocacy and of staff’s recommendation, which should have the heaviest weight. Mr. Lee stated that the other choice would be for the applicants to simply withdraw these applications, not continue them and not leave them hanging over the head in any future process. Mr. Lee concluded that, like Mr. Richey and Ms. Bonifay, he is paid by his organization to be here but the vast majority of citizens and constituents in this audience are not being paid, they are taking time off work. He referred to the Neighborhood Lakes item that came before the Board a few months ago, and noted that there is a pattern here. He stated that the pattern is that the advocates tiptoe up to the Board, count noses and decide whether they have the votes, and if they do not have the votes, they try to pull their cart away from the precipice of defeat. He suggested, on behalf of the constituents, that the Board not reward that behavior, and that they be judged up or down on the facts and that good comprehensive planning be done in the future.

James Yatsuk

Mr. James Yatsuk, Mayor of the City of Mount Dora, stated that City of Mount Dora Resolution 2005-16, which passed unanimously on May 17, 2005, was discussed at the City’s last Council meeting and the unanimous consensus was that no one had changed their minds on any portion of the resolution. He stated that he believes nothing in the resolution will change in the next 90 days and the Council has been adamant about proceeding with the JPA process with Lake County. He read from City of Mount Dora Resolution 2005-16, as follows:

“Section 2. In the spirit of collaborative planning, the Mount Dora City Council respectfully requests that Board of County Commissioners of Lake County refrain from transmitting or adopting new Future Land Use Map amendments within the Joint Planning Area until such time as Mount Dora and Lake County reach consensus on the assignment of future land uses and planning policies.”

Mayor Yatsuk stated that we want to have this as part of the Comprehensive Plan for the County and we want to have it as part of the JPA with the County.

Jack Champion

Mr. Jack Champion, a resident of Eustis, urged the Board to vote no on the 90-day extension. He stated that would put it so close to having some definitive information regarding the revised Comprehensive Plan that it should wait and be dealt with as part of that more broad focus rather than specific to a particular piece of property. Mr. Champion commented that Ms. Bonifay unmercifully attacked the members of the Growth Management staff repeatedly at the recent LPA meeting and today she suggests a conspiracy of the staff for not making a map available to the attorneys. He remarked that Ms. Bonifay’s phrase, “their little map,” does not indicate a willingness to work together. He urged the Board to vote this down and wait for the updated Comprehensive Plan.

Jeanne Etter

Ms. Jeanne Etter, a Mount Plymouth resident, stated that staff has a tremendous task in putting together the Lake County Comprehensive Plan. She stated that she is disturbed that the 90-day continuance is being requested with the suggestion that, perhaps, the process can be speeded up. She urged the Board to let staff finish the Comprehensive Plan so that it is the very best thing that we can have for all the citizens of this County and, if it means that these petitioners have to wait another year, so be it. She stated that the Comprehensive Plan should be finished on the schedule that they have and not feel the pressure that they have to meet a milestone in order to hear this again in 90 days or 120 days. She stated that today’s process should be finished today.

Grace Lindblom

Ms. Grace Lindblom, 50% owner of a piece of property on Agenda No. 3 (LPA#05/4/3-4), stated that she has owned this property and paid taxes on it for 25 years. She stated that they bought it as a grove; it froze the night after the closing took place, and they have never gotten a crop off of it. She stated that they have been waiting 25 years and another 90 days is not a long time to wait. She stated that, if approved today, they would be allowed four units per acre but they are not asking for that but there is no way to ask for one. She stated that she did speak with a member of the LPA and he indicated that one or two units to the acre, something that is realistic for the property, will be opened up. She stated that they do not want four units to the acre but they are not allowed to swear and sign that they only want one unit to the acre. She asked, therefore, for another 90 days to find a way to get the one unit to the acre that they are asking for.

Sean Parks

Mr. Sean Parks, a member of the Lake County Local Planning Agency (LPA), stated that staff has been very responsive and has talked about meeting with, and responding to, the applicants. He disagreed with Ms. Bonifay’s comment about that. In speaking for himself, not the LPA, Mr. Parks stated that his impression, when those cases were heard by the LPA, was that it was not just about finding something in between. He stated that it was an issue of density, period, and whether to increase it at all or leave it the same. He cautioned the applicants that, if it comes back to the LPA, some of the cases were strictly an issue of keeping the density exactly as it is, not finding something in the middle. He remarked that, in his opinion, the decision in at least half of the cases was to leave the density as it is now.

Ben Champion

Mr. Ben Champion, a resident of Lake County, stated that he attended the LPA meeting and it seemed that what came through loud and clear was that it does not make sense to make exceptions for a few people but that rules are needed that make sense across the board for land planning. He stated that we are on the cusp of having a new development plan that is well thought out and that has everybody’s opinions, including developers, citizens and staff. He strongly urged the Board to not continue this because it seems very clear that these Comprehensive Plan Amendments are facing defeat. He stated that the LPA voted down these amendments and the applicants know that, if the vote happens today, that they will lose most, if not all, of the Comprehensive Plan Amendment requests. He stated that the applicants hope the public will not be able to miss another day of work if this is continued. He expressed sympathy for Ms. Lindblom but stated that she has not been waiting 25 years for a Comprehensive Plan Amendment. He pointed out that staff has recommended that this not be continued. He strongly urged the Board to not continue the cases but to give them a vote.

Ed Norcross

Mr. Ed Norcross, who lives on State Road 44 almost directly across from MerryGro Farms, stated that he bought his property four years ago. Shortly afterward, MerryGro wanted to change their zoning. He stated that he is worried about the population and new homes in that area but that he is most worried about the wildlife and the water. He remarked that the City of Eustis last week talked about putting a restriction on water. He asked what will happen to the water if MerryGro gets five houses to the acre. He stated that Sorrento Springs is growing fast in his area. He stated that he used to have rabbits, raccoons, armadillos and other wildlife all over his property but he has only seen two sandhill cranes and their baby and one gopher turtle since last year.

Susan Morris

Ms. Susan Morris, speaking for the Summer Lake-Grace Groves property team (LPA#05/4/3-4), stated that growth management plans change over time and communities and citizens are part of making that happen. She stated that, assuming this would not be a one or two-year process, they would be willing to wait until December 2005 or January 2006 to make this happen on their particular piece of property. She stated that they believe what they are doing is positive. She stated that the applicants have parts that are 5.5 units per acre but are trying to get to one unit on other parts and are willing to lower it to get an overall lower density and use clustering. She stated that she has been part of a planning process in the community and some people do not want any growth. She stated that staff has been helpful in pushing staff meetings for them. She stated that, if given a definite timeframe that they could see where they are in the communities’ goals, it would work for the applicants. She opined that they have somewhat gotten pushed into considerations or problems with other properties being overlaid onto this one. She reiterated her request for a shorter time frame of four or five months. Ms. Morris stated that, no matter how great the plan is today, there will always be changes and exceptions and the amendment process will always be needed and it will be in the County’s benefit.

Cindy Barrow

Ms. Cindy Barrow, a resident of Clermont and a member of VOICE (Voters Organization Involved in Children’s Education), stated that VOICE has followed the Black West Properties, also called Center Lake Properties (LPA#05/4/4-2), amendment request from March 8, 2005, at the Clermont City Council meeting to the LPA meeting and now to the Board meeting. She stated that they are requesting that the Board hear these proposed amendment changes today. She stated that there is a terrible problem with school overcrowding and 90 days will not change that problem. She stated that the property values of this County will go down because of what is happening in the Lake County School System. She stated that she very much would like to have the amendments heard today. She stated that she has been told that she has no right to a voice because she has lived in Lake County eleven months. She stated that lawyers request developments to be approved and the Board approves them and residents have the right to a voice. She stated that her father has lived in Lake County 20 years and she has been connected to this community.

Ed Havill

Mr. Ed Havill, Lake County Property Appraiser, stated that he has seen both sides of this story over the years as Property Appraiser in Lake County. He stated that properties like these file for greenbelt classification (agricultural) which saves them taxes and tax shelters their property while they decide on a future use for their property. He stated that some are marginal agricultural operations while some are bona fide. On the other hand, when these people buy these properties, they know what the current rules and regulations are and what they can do with this property. He stated that Lake County has seen a great increase in real estate prices and is facing some major changes in the Property Appraiser’s Office because of the greenbelt classification. The classification was created by Florida Statute (F.S.) 193.461 to enable bona fide farmers to be in the business of growing crops, etc., and was not done for real estate speculation. He stated that five-acre tracts are selling in Lake County for $30,000, $40,000 and $50,000 an acre on property that people are claiming to be bona fide farmers. Mr. Havill stated that F.S. 193.461 allows the Property Appraiser to take away that greenbelt classification if the property is upzoned at the request of the owner. He stated that he is putting the public on notice that he is in the process of doing that, so these properties, and any other properties that have the greenbelt classification, will have problems in the future with that tax shelter. He stated that the Board’s staff, who works for the Board and the taxpayers, has made recommendations on these properties. Staff has “no dog in this fight” versus hired attorney guns who want 90-day or 120-day extensions and it is quite possible this is to shut down the public input in the hearings. Mr. Havill concluded by stating, “Don’t delay, vote today.”

Steve Luche

Mr. Steve Luche stated that he does not think anybody is against smart growth or one house per acre. He stated that they are here to express their disgust at the fact that there is such a tremendous increase in new housing use. He stated that the citizens do not want northern Lake County to suffer the same fate southern Lake County is suffering because of over-development and too many cars. This obviously leads to higher taxes for roads and more children which mean more taxes for schools, which is not a bad thing. He stated that these things have to be taken into account.

Shane Connelly

Ms. Shane Connelly, owner of property adjacent to Agenda No. 2 (LPA#04/5/1-4), stated that, if this case is continued, and even reduced to one house per acre, it will not change how the neighbors are situated. All of the neighbors own at least five acres and some have more than twenty acres and that will not change in 90 or 120 days. She suggested that the Board vote today or have these people pull out and start again after the new plan is completed.

Keith Schue

Mr. Keith Schue, a member of the Lake County Local Planning Agency (LPA), stated that he is speaking as an individual, not on behalf of the LPA. He stated that a lot has been said regarding what representations have been given to DCA and what DCA has said. He opined that the County Attorney has very accurately described DCA’s viewpoint on how these things should be handled. Mr. Schue reminded the Board that a year ago each of them agreed that it was very important for the County to give a devoted effort toward the comprehensive planning process and that is why the Board created a Local Planning Agency. The Board asked the LPA to look at what kind of future land use categories make sense and the LPA is doing that. He explained that the LPA is contemplating types of categories that relate to modest density that might be appropriate in some of these areas. He stated that what the Board is being asked to consider today, or possibly come back with in 90 days, is the antithesis of that. He stated that the Board is being asked to look at the scenario of an archaic Urban Expansion land use designation, four units per acre, and then have, somehow related to that, a parcel-specific policy amendment somewhere else in the Comprehensive Plan and that the future of that land is somehow tied to those two things together. He stated that is taking the notion of piecemeal land use to the next level and is the antithesis of sound comprehensive planning where categories are assigned appropriately by looking at the context of the region. He encouraged the Board to not support that kind of process. If that were to go forward in the future, he opined that there would be a Comprehensive Plan that nobody will be able to make sense of.

Carol Peters

Ms. Carol Peters, a resident of Eustis, requested that the Board recommend denial of the continuances today. She stated that there has been no reason seen today that there will be a new Comprehensive Plan within 90 days or that the Board has any reasons to agree to Urban Expansion in these areas. She pointed out that the LPA has recommended denial and that the planners have recommended denial and there is nothing today in the Comprehensive Plan that says the Board should be approving this.

Sherri Boam

Ms. Sherri Boam, a resident of south Lake County and an active member of VOICE (Voters Organization Involved in Children’s Education), stated that VOICE has followed several of these applicants through the Board’s process, through the LPA and through the Zoning Board. She stated that the LPA discussed densities and the difference between a one-to-five and a four-to-one and having something in between. She stated that the comments she heard from the LPA members were that a one-to-one is still five times the impact it is now. It is still five times the impact on our schools and everything else. She stated that, while she hears the applicants crying that they do not get a fair shake and in Mr. Richey’s own words, “it brings a tear to my eye,” the Board has a choice. The Board can hear them today or can ask that they withdraw. She stated that the citizens are not asking the Board to take away the applicants’ right to build; they have a right to build now at the current densities. She asked that the Board not continue this. She asked the Board to ask the applicants to withdraw the cases; otherwise, hear them today and allow the citizens to speak on each individual one.

Bob Lumas

Mr. Bob Lumas, a resident of Zellwood, stated that all of the citizens have the right to know all of the facts, whether for or against the extensions. He stated that, basically, it appears there has been a discrepancy with the LPA as far as what they were voting on, whether one-to-four or whatever. He stated that, in fairness, it would be his recommendation to grant the 90-day extension because everyone needs to have an equal shake. He asked the Board to continue the 90 days to make sure they may possibly go back to the LPA and be reheard under different circumstances.

Robert Kelly

Mr. Robert Kelly, President of Citizens Coalition of Lake County, stated that his younger brother, a builder, age 40 with three children, is leaving Detroit to move south. Mr. Kelly had asked his brother to move to Lake County but after about a month of analyzing things, his brother concluded that the schools are terrible, the growth is terrible, management has a lot of issues and the builders are going crazy. Mr. Kelly stated that he is beginning to hear people say they do not want to move to Lake County because the quality of life is clearly going down, not up. He opined that these Comprehensive Plan Amendments were filed in January 2005 because they wanted to get in before a new plan and they wanted the higher densities. A new plan may lower the densities. He stated that the Black West project (Center Lake Properties LPA#05/4/4-2) has gone to the City of Clermont. It came back to the County, where it was turned down, and then went back to the City of Clermont for discussion under the JPA. He stated that the developer’s attorney clearly is trying to confuse the City Council in trying to get pieces of it approved. Now, the case is back here and they are asking for a 90-day continuance. Mr. Kelly stated that this is a very simple matter and the Board has a very good understanding of what the public and the community wants and it has a recommendation from staff. He asked the Board to vote for the good and benefit of the overall community, to deny a continuance and to do the same thing the LPA did. He asked the Board to vote on and deny these projects.

Hank Scott

Mr. Hank Scott, of Long and Scott Farms, stated that they have been a bona fide farm for over 42 years and have paid taxes all those years. He stated that they have supported and fed the community for 42 years. He stated that they are for smart growth and that they care about the community and its future. He stated that the continuance is only fair for everyone involved in order to do the right thing and make the right decision and to get all the information needed to do it right.

Billy Long

Mr. Billy Long, of Long and Scott Farms, stated that they did apply for the Comprehensive Plan change in January 2005 because they wanted to gain a little time. He opined that was a mistake. He stated that they would like to have the 90 days to get themselves in order. He stated that they are a bona fide farm and have been here over 40 years. He asked for the 90 days to try to work everything out.

A motion was made by Commr. Hanson and seconded by Commr. Cadwell that the Board would not allow the text amendments that would go along with Land Plan Amendments to the Lake County Comprehensive Plan, as a broad policy.

Commr. Hill asked if Commr. Hanson is asking to withdraw all of these applications until the next cycle.

Commr. Hanson replied, “No,” but they may be withdrawn with that in mind.

Under discussion, Commr. Pool stated that the text amendment would allow them to identify the exact density they want and not exceed that density. The applicants have to ask for four units today even though they do not want four units per acre. Regarding the motion, he asked Commr. Hanson if she does not want to accept a lower density.

Commr. Hanson opined that it is going to be a very confusing situation. She commented that, once the precedent is set, the same thing will happen countywide. She stated that it has been pointed out today that we are very close to completing the new Comprehensive Plan. While having nothing to do with the motion, she pointed out that, if the applicants were to withdraw, they could apply for the next round of amendment changes, giving time to get much of the language worked out. She opined that it will create a bureaucratic nightmare to have these amendments separate from the land use plan.

Commr. Pool stated that he does not want to give the impression that we are trying to increase densities when, in fact, our goal is to lower densities. If a project is approved, the newspaper reports it as four units per acre when, in reality, it may be one unit per acre. He reiterated that he wants to be sure people know the Board is not trying to increase densities by Commr. Hanson’s motion.

Commr. Hanson reiterated that the motion would not allow text amendments.

Commr. Cadwell further explained that, if that is a patchwork policy that DCA has used, we do not want staff to even look at that for consideration. If staff is not going to look at that for consideration, there is no reason to delay the hearing today.

Commr. Pool stated that he wants densities lowered and Commr. Hanson and Commr. Cadwell want densities lowered. But, the key is that we do not want to approve something that is set at four units per acre, and the public goes away thinking we have done that when, in fact, it could be one unit per acre. He stated that he wants to make sure Commr. Hanson and Commr. Cadwell recognize that may limit the Board’s ability.

Commr. Pool asked Mr. Minkoff if passing the motion to deny text amendments would prohibit the Board from allowing lower densities, if lowering densities is the Board’s intent.

Mr. Minkoff responded that it would be a broad policy by the Board so it could be changed at any time and it would not prohibit the Board from doing anything. He opined that the intent of the motion is to use the new Comprehensive Plan land use map as the way to do that as opposed to doing it on a per-case by per-case basis.

Commr. Pool stated that he does not disagree with that.

Commr. Hanson stated that the applicant would not be prohibited from putting in a lower density.

Commr. Cadwell opined that, by making the motion, Commr. Hanson is just being honest with the applicant that we can go ahead and hear them today but we are not going to utilize that language. If we delay, we are not going to use that language.

Commr. Hanson reminded the Board and the applicants that Commr. Stivender will be leaving the meeting about 11:20 a.m.

Mr. Richey stated that he has four administrative hearing processes that he has settled with DCA which, in fact, do exactly what the Board has talked about.

Commr. Hanson stated this would be exclusive of administrative hearings. She explained that text amendments are an attempt to change what we have done in practice. This motion would allow us to continue as we have always done and would not allow those text amendments.

In discussing whether the Board has used text amendments in the past, Mr. Minkoff explained that the only time is when the Board of County Commissioners has approved a Comprehensive Plan Amendment and DCA objected. In order to get DCA to remove its’ objection, the landowner agreed with DCA to those limitations. But, in all of those cases, the Board of County Commissioners approved the Comprehensive Plan Amendment without any conditions whatsoever. He remarked that, as he understands the motion, it would be to say that we would not, on the initial Comprehensive Plan approval, agree to put conditions on it or put an asterisk on the Plan. The Board has never done that.

Commr. Cadwell remarked that we have never done it but, as he understands it, the delay is being requested so the Board will consider doing it on these cases.

Mr. Richey stated that the Board has done text amendments as part of the adoption process, such as Highland Lakes and Royal Highlands. He stated that those were not administrative challenges and were done as part of the adoption process where the density was conditioned and limited. He stated that, as with Royal Highlands, we agreed not to increase the density but we amended the map to Urban Expansion. He reiterated that we have done that. He stated that not all of them have grown out of the administrative hearing process. He stated that, between transmittal and adoption, there have been conditions placed on the back-up for the adoption hearing which DCA has accepted and not challenged them, based on what was presented. He stated that has, in fact, happened. He stated that, in fact, it is not unusual for us to not condition Comprehensive Plan Amendments until the adoption process, which is the second hearing. He stated that they did that on the employment center on U.S. Highway 27 and these are two examples where the map was changed and where conditions were part of the Comprehensive Plan Amendment.

Commr. Hanson commented that she feels the motion is appropriate.

Commr. Cadwell agreed that it makes sense.

In response to a question by Commr. Hill, Commr. Hanson stressed that she is not considering these cases with her motion.

Commr. Pool reiterated that he wants to continue to have this Board look at lowering densities. He stated that when an approval is given for four units per acre that is what they have; even though the Board may understand it may be one unit per acre. He stated that he wants the Board to understand that it has the opportunity, through a text amendment or a developer’s agreement, to reduce it to one unit per acre. He stated that something may be approved today and the press will be exactly right when they say, “the Commission approved four units per acre,” even though it was not the goal. Commr. Pool agreed that the new land use and the proper map is the right way to go but the Board should not tie its hands today and never try to lower density when it should.

Commr. Hanson opined that, with the Comprehensive Plan changes and improvements, there will be a much cleaner way to do it.

Commr. Pool agreed with that for the future.

Commr. Stivender asked for clarification from Mr. Minkoff that, if the motion passes and cases are heard and approved today, can the Board then say, “No, we only want one unit per acre on that land use amendment?”

Mr. Minkoff stated that, if the motion passes, the Board would not consider trying to place conditions on these cases as they are heard.

Commr. Pool stated that is the reason the applicants are asking for a continuance so that they can give the accurate information to the LPA for the density they really want.

Mr. Richey stated that he has one complicating factor because the Board recorded a restrictive covenant against his client’s property that limits his client to one unit per acre. He opined that would not be fair unless the Board takes that restriction off.

Commr. Hanson stated that she would assume that those that are already in place would remain in place.

Commr. Cadwell commented that, if our staff thinks that the Board thinks it is good policy to do these text amendments, we will not have any Comprehensive Plan Amendments that do not have that language in them at some point. He observed that DCA did not say this is great planning; instead, they said there are some areas where some growth is needed, and there is no land use category in that particular county, and it can be controlled a little with this vehicle. Commr. Cadwell stated that Lake County does not need that vehicle if our new map is right.

Commr. Hill asked for other discussion, questions or comments. Seeing none, she called for a vote on the motion which passed by a vote of 4-1.

Commr. Pool voted “No.”


At this time, Commr. Hanson announced, for the record, that she will recuse herself from the vote on Agenda No. 3 (LPA#05/4/3-4, Summer Lake-Grace Groves), because she sits on a bank board that has a partial ownership in the property. (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.)

Commr. Cadwell asked if there will be a motion regarding the postponements or any other requests from the applicant before we move forward.

Ms. Bonifay stated that, if the Board wants to give the applicants due process today, and if there will be a fair and impartial hearing, then this Board needs to adjourn. She stated that Ms. Stivender has already indicated she is leaving at 11:30, so there will only be four Board members present and she does not know what other conflicts other Board members may have this afternoon. Ms. Bonifay stated that she would have to consult with her clients. She expressed that she is very concerned with the motion that the Board just passed. She stated that the applicants came in with proposals that would limit density on these and this Board has just taken an action that it does not want to see densities limited because that could be the new policy on the Comprehensive Plan. She opined that is absolutely ludicrous in the sense that the Board determines the policy. She stated that she does not know what they are supposed to present today because the presentation on all of these is for lower densities. She stated that, if the Board is telling her that it has already predetermined the position that this Board, without the benefit of hearing from the applicant, or due process, has made up its mind, based on the opposition that was heard today, she has a real problem. She stated that not one of these applicants wanted to go with Urban Expansion in four units per acre but the Board has just told her it will accept nothing less. She opined that there will be a continuance one way or the other because she cannot misrepresent what her clients have asked for. She stated that what they asked for was not a political ploy. She expressed that it is very unfortunate that the Board is having various interest groups dictate the policy on what private owners can and cannot do and what they can even offer to the Board. Ms. Bonifay stated that she is at a real loss as how to proceed at this point and that she needs a recess. She stated that she, as an officer of the court and somebody who has been given instructions as an advocate of her client, needs the recess and needs to know from Mr. Minkoff how we are going to proceed today. She stated that Mr. Minkoff may need to talk to each of the Board members.

Mr. Minkoff pointed out that this is not a judicial proceeding; it is a legislative proceeding, and due process does not really apply. He stated that the Chairman does have the request for continuance in front of her and explained that the Chair has great latitude in how to run the meeting.

Commr. Hill stated that she will entertain a motion for a continuance for the cases; if not, there will be a 15-minute break. She reminded everyone that Commr. Stivender will be leaving the meeting at about 11:30 a.m.


At 11:00 a.m., the Board took a 15-minute break.





















At 11:15 a.m., Commr. Hill announced that there was no motion on the continuance before the break; therefore, the Board will now proceed with the first Comprehensive Plan Amendment.

Commr. Hill stated that these are Comprehensive Plan Amendments and they are legislative, not judicial. She noted that there was a lengthy public hearing on these cases before the Lake County Local Planning Agency. Audio tape of that meeting is available, detailed meeting minutes were taken and extensive staff reports were written for the Board’s review.

Ms. Cecelia Bonifay, Akerman Senterfitt, asked for a clarification. She stated that one of the recommendations was to get through this comprehensive planning process and several people said it would be great to let the developers start over at the next cycle. She stated that it is not equitable to have taken their money and not give them, in essence, a hearing so that they can ask for what they really want. She stated that, if the Board would entertain it, what they would do is move these to whatever the next cycle would be after the Comprehensive Plan is completed. Ms. Bonifay clarified that she is asking that these applications be moved into the next cycle, based on the date established by the Board, knowing that it would not be any time before January 2006.

Commr. Cadwell asked if they would be judged under the new Comprehensive Plan.

Ms. Bonifay stated that they would be judged under whatever Comprehensive Plan is in effect at the time they come before the Board.

Commr. Cadwell remarked that once the new Comprehensive Plan is adopted, applicants could certainly reapply and start the whole process over again. He asked Ms. Bonifay if she is asking to hold these cases until the new Comprehensive Plan is in place.

Ms. Bonifay answered, “Correct,” and remarked that she is hoping that, by working with staff in the interim, some of these may never come back to the Board.

Commr. Cadwell clarified that, if the Board decided to do that, the Board would go through its’ process and adopt the new Comprehensive Plan. These cases would then go back to the LPA for their recommendation under the new rules, new map, new Comprehensive Plan and then come forward. He asked Ms. Bonifay if the only thing she is asking now is not to have to reapply, basically, and that she would see where they fall under the new Comprehensive Plan.

Ms. Bonifay replied “Right.”

Ms. King stated that staff will work for a date in January 2006 and does hope to work with all applicants through the process.

Commr. Cadwell asked Ms. Bonifay to verify that nothing will be done until the new Comprehensive Plan is adopted; that her application will be looked at just as any other would, as an amendment to that new Comprehensive Plan, and that some of them may go away if the Comprehensive Plan takes care of their problems.

Ms. Bonifay confirmed that is correct.

Commr. Pool agreed this is the right way to go.

Commr. Hill asked Ms. Bonifay if that is her request for all of her applicants.

Ms. Bonifay confirmed that her request is for all of her applicants.

Commr. Hanson asked that Agenda No. 3 be voted on separately because of her conflict on that case.

A motion was made by Commr. Stivender and seconded by Commr. Pool that Agenda No. 1, LPA#05/4/6-3 (Long & Scott Farms, Inc.); Agenda No. 2, LPA#04/5/1-4 (MerryGro Farms, Inc.); Agenda No. 4, LPA#05/4/1-4 (Baucom Real Estate, Limited Partnership); Agenda No. 5, LPA#05/4/5-4 (FL Land Partners, LLC); Agenda No. 6, LPA#05/4/2-4 (Ramlee Holdings, Limited Partnership); and Agenda No. 8, LPA#05/4/4-2 (Center Lake Properties, Ltd.) come back once the new Lake County Comprehensive Plan has been approved and adopted and go through the procedure.

Under discussion, Commr. Cadwell wanted to be sure everybody understands that what is being done is that the new Comprehensive Plan will be in effect before any of these cases are heard and they will be balanced against the new Comprehensive Plan. When that process starts, these cases are in the process because they would have the right to reapply in that process anyway.

Commr. Hill called for a vote on the motion which passed unanimously, by a vote of 5-0.

On a motion by Commr. Stivender, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved that Agenda No. 3, LPA#05/4/3-4 (Summer Lake-Grace Groves) come back once the new Lake County Comprehensive Plan has been approved and adopted and go through the procedure.

Commr. Hanson abstained from the vote.

Commr. Hill asked Mr. Richey, as the representative for Mary Eddy and Extreme Groves Investments (Agenda No. 7, LPA#05/4/7-2), if he wishes for his case to be heard or if he has a recommendation.

Mr. Richey asked if the previous cases were withdrawn or being continued until the first cycle next year.

Commr. Cadwell explained that the cases, while not being continued, will start over in the process but they do not have to reapply. He added that the cases will go back to the LPA.

Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, suggested that it might be correct to say that the cases would be in abeyance until the new Comprehensive Plan is completed.

Commr. Stivender stated that the applicant would not have to pay fees and start the whole process over.

Mr. Richey confirmed that his case, if approved by the Board, would be held in abeyance until the first cycle after the new Comprehensive Plan is written; and, if it were to be resolved in that Comprehensive Plan process, then it would not proceed.

Commr. Cadwell stated that the case would be weighed against the new Comprehensive Plan, go back before the LPA and go back to staff for analysis.

Mr. Richey acknowledged that the fees that were paid would be applied to it but he asked if there would be a refunding of the unexpended fees if the case were to be withdrawn today.

Commr. Cadwell pointed out that if Mr. Richey did withdraw the case, and then decided to go through that process, he would have to start over and repay those fees.

Mr. Richey agreed and acknowledged that he would have to refile at whatever those fees were. If held in abeyance, he acknowledged that he would get the benefit of the fees that have been paid no matter what the fees are next year.

Commr. Stivender confirmed that is right.

Mr. Richey, after speaking with his client, stated that the proposal to hold his case in abeyance is acceptable.

On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Stivender and carried unanimously, by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved that Agenda No. 7, LPA#05/4/7-2 (Mary B. Eddy & Extreme Groves Investments) would be held in abeyance until the first cycle after the new Lake County Comprehensive Plan is approved.


At 11:25 a.m., Commr. Stivender left the meeting.



On a motion by Commr. Pool, seconded by Commr. Hanson and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board appointed Ms. Brenda Muniz as Montverde Public Library's member representative on the Lake County Library Advisory Board to complete a term ending February 28, 2007.


On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Pool and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board appointed Dr. John Pellosie as the Lake County Health Department's representative on the Comprehensive Health Care Committee to serve until a new administrator is appointed to the Lake County Health Department.





Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, explained the Joint Stipulation Agreement between Lake County, Florida, and Timothy and Lisa Edmondson for right of way on Shetland Trail in the Hilltop Subdivision, Lake County, Florida. This is an eminent domain action to obtain fee simple title to right of way and the amount of $10,000.00 will be paid for the land plus $2,491.50 for attorney’s fees. He advised the Board that the Edmondsons are still objecting to the special assessment and that issue will be dealt with separately.

On a motion by Commr. Hanson, seconded by Commr. Cadwell and carried unanimously, by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the Joint Stipulation Agreement between Lake County, Florida, and Timothy and Lisa Edmondson for right of way on Shetland Trail in the Hilltop Subdivision, Lake County, Florida.



Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, announced that Lake County has been awarded a 2005 NACo Achievement Award for the program entitled Pet-Friendly Hurricane Shelters. The shelters were open in Lake County during the hurricanes last year. She stated that the NACo (National Association of Counties) award is a real honor for Lake County.


Ms. Hall informed the Board that thirteen County employees will be graduating June 17, 2005, from the 18-month Certified Public Manager’s program. She will be attending the graduation ceremony in Tallahassee.



Commr. Cadwell stated that Mr. Roy Hunter of the Northeast Lake Chamber of Commerce brought forward a report card on Spring Creek Elementary School in Paisley. The charter school is an “A” school again this year. Under Florida’s No Child Left Behind requirement, 100% of the criteria were met. Eighty-one percent of the students are at or above grade level in math, 79% meet the State standards in writing and 83% of the students are at or above grade level in reading. Commr. Cadwell noted that there is student capacity at the school if anyone would like to apply.


Commr. Cadwell reminded the Board members that the 2005 Florida Association of Counties (FAC) Conference will be held June 21-24 in Tampa.



Commr. Pool announced that he has completed the Florida Association of County’s (FAC) voluntary County Commissioners Certification program and will be attending the graduation ceremony next week at the FAC Conference.



Commr. Hill announced that a reception will be held for Ms. Cindy Hall, Lake County’s new County Manager, Tuesday, June 21, 2005, at 9:00 a.m. The reception will be followed by the regular Board of County Commissioners meeting.



Commr. Hanson noted that she and Ms. Hall attended an informative presentation by the Smart Growth Coalition of North Central Florida in Ocala a couple of weeks ago. The presentation included information on a software program developed by Dr. Hank Fishkind that does an analysis on the financial impacts, plus or minus, of any project that goes in, whether residential, commercial or industrial. The program analyzes the impact, particularly ad valorem, on the community and the negatives on the services that are demanded. That is part of the decision-making process that is not looked at now because we do not have the ability to pull it all together for an analysis. She added that Dr. Fishkind pointed out that a $300,000 home has a big financial impact the first year after it is built but each year after that, because of the Save Our Homes constitutional amendment, revenue increases are limited. In other words, we are not able to take advantage of inflation that may be occurring on the value of a home, unless it is resold.

It was the consensus of the Board that Ms. Hall will provide additional information on the software program that was developed by Dr. Hank Fishkind.



Commr. Hill informed the Board that she has been asked to participate on the interview/selection team to select a new Administrator for the Lake County Health Department.


There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 11:40 a.m.