REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF
NOVEMBER 20, 2007
Lake County Board of
INVOCATION AND PLEDGE
Reverend John Barham, United Methodist Church of Tavares, City of Tavares, gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously, by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of October 16, 2007 (Regular Meeting), and October 23, 2007 (Regular Meeting), as presented.
CLERK OF COURTS’ CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously, by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the following requests:
List of Warrants
Request to acknowledge receipt of list of warrants paid prior to this meeting, pursuant to Chapter 136.06 (1) of the Florida Statutes, which shall be incorporated into the Minutes as attached Exhibit A and filed in the Board Support Division of the Clerk's Office.
Unclaimed Proceeds for Tax Deeds
Request to acknowledge receipt of unclaimed excess proceeds for tax deeds totaling $65,688.35.
Notice from Southwest Florida Water Management District of Second Extension
Request to acknowledge receipt of Notice from Southwest Florida Water Management District of Second extension of Water Shortage Order 07-02; More stringent actions to be considered on November 30, 2007.
Southwest Florida Water Management District Five Year Water Resource Program
Request to acknowledge receipt of Southwest Florida Water Management District Five Year Water Resource Development Work Program, pursuant to Subsection 373.536(6) (a), Florida Statutes.
Southwest Water Management District Meeting Agenda
Request to acknowledge receipt of Meeting Notice – Southwest
Water Management District Governing Board Meeting Agenda for October 30, 2007,
to be held at 9:00 a.m., at the Sarasota Service Office,
Ordinance from City of
Request to acknowledge receipt of Ordinance No. 2007-31 from the City of Fruitland Park, annexing property into the City of Fruitland Park, in compliance with F.S. 171.044(3), which was adopted on October 25, 2007.
Request to acknowledge receipt of excess fees returned to Board of County Commissioners from Clerk of Circuit Court, in the amount of $1,410,190.34.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously, by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 3 through 19, pulling Tab 3, Item 1, and pulling Tab 6, as follows:
Request for approval of Budget Change Requests and Unanticipated Revenue Resolution.
Transfer – Approval of request Transportation Disadvantaged Fund, Department of
Community Services, Public Transportation Division. Transfer $1,135,206 from
the CTD Trips org code to a new org code for the
to approve Resolution No. 2007-179 to amend the Fire Control Fund in order to
receive unanticipated revenue for Fiscal Year 2008 in the amount of $22,865
deposited into Hazard Mitigation Grant and provide appropriations for the
disbursement for Grant Program Repair and Maintenance. A Hazard Mitigation Grant was awarded to
Request for acceptance of the FY 2007-08 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Funding Approval/Agreement, to authorize the Chairman to sign it, and to direct the Department of Community Services to implement the programs covered under the Agreement. The Chairman is requested to sign the three copies of the CDBG Funding Approval/Agreement.
Request for approval of amendments to the FY 2003-06 Local Housing Assistance Plan.
Growth Management Request for permission to advertise proposed ordinance changing Section 3.01.02 Classification of Uses, of the Land Development Regulations reducing the minimum width requirement for single family dwelling units.
Request for approval of single source determination with Honeywell International, Inc. to provide an annual service repair and parts for the major digital controllers of the HVAC system.
Request for approval to submit a grant to the United States Fire Administration to Firefighters Grant Program. Application period is October 22, 2007 through November 4, 2007 with awards given out early next year. Matching funds will be used from this year’s budget.
Request for authorization to submit
Cost-Share Applications to St. Johns River Water Management District for the
following drainage & water quality improvement projects:
for approval of agreement for change order to the intersection at CR 565A / SR
50 Intersection in the City of
for approval of the Interlocal Agreement between
Request for approval of the scope for design proposal of Washington Ave. Drainage Improvements by Inwood Consulting Engineers. Tracking # STR 08003 - Commission District 5.
for approval of Resolution No. 2007-180 to raise the speed limit on
Request for approval and signature of Resolution No. 2007-181 to advertise public hearing for Vacation Petition No. 1124-Lake 64, to vacate lots, tracts and unnamed right of way, in the Plat of Groveland Farms, in the Groveland area - Commission District 2.
Request for approval and execution of a purchase agreement with Michael A. Cortez, for right of way and authorization for the Chairman of the Board of County Commissioners to sign any and all documents necessary for closing, in conjunction with the Lakeshore Drive (#1040) / Oswalt Road (#0840) / Loghouse Road (#0835) Intersection Project located in Clermont. Commission District 2.
Request for approval and execution of a purchase agreement with Corbin and Bethyal Knox, and authorization for the Chairman of the Board of County Commissioners to sign any and all documents necessary for closing, for property within the Forest Hills/Lake Mack Flood Buy Out Program. Commission District 5.
Request for approval of changes made to executed Interlocal Agreement and authorize Chair to initial those changes.
Renick requested the Board review with her Tab 13, the Interlocal Agreement
Commr. Cadwell stated perhaps Mr. Jim Stivender could give them an update on all of the projects.
Mr. Jim Stivender, Director of Public Works, stated that it would be 2015-2017 before they will see construction so there are a few years ahead before getting concerned.
FLORIDA HEALTH KIDS CORPORATION GRANT
Mr. Fletcher Smith, Community Services Director, requested acceptance of the grant they are receiving from the Florida Healthy Kids Corporation (FHKC), stating they submitted a Phase II Grant for continuing Outreach activities from November 1 to the end of June, 2008, and funding was approved in the amount of $85,676.78.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously, by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the acceptance of the Florida Healthy Kids Corporation Phase II Grant in the amount of $85,676.78.
Smith requested approval of the Standard Coordination Contracts between
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously, by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved both Standard Coordination Contracts between Lake County and Zion Gates of Hope and between Lake County and Faith Group Home, Inc.
MEDICAID NON-EMERGENCY TRANSPORTATION PROGRAM
Mr. Smith requested the submission of a Resolution to the legislative delegation supporting the restoration of the Medicaid Non-Emergency Transportation Program and to keep the Medicaid transportation services within the Coordinated Transportation System.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the submission of a Resolution to the legislative delegation supporting the restoration of the Medicaid Non-Emergency Transportation Program and to keep the Medicaid transportation services within the Coordinated Transportation System.
ECONOMIC GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT
INCENTIVE PACKAGE FOR FLOWERS FOODS
Dottie Keedy, Economic Growth and Redevelopment Director, addressed the Board
regarding the request for approval to make a formal offer to Flowers Foods for
the incentive package. She stated that
Flowers Foods is a food service company located in
David Weaver, Chief Broker in
Commr. Cadwell commented on the fact that Mr. Weaver stated that Flowers is looking at other sites and thinks that in talking to some members of the IDA, that although they liked the project, they did not approve the package because of the land sale price and the lack of a firm commitment on the part of Flowers.
Mr. Weaver stated that the company personnel did not want to appear to the community or the Commissioners that they were not grateful for consideration.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he had spoken with Ms. Keedy and had sent word to the Chairman of Flowers that the Board is not in a bidding war, that the offer is as it stands and if the Board approves it today then Mr. Weaver needs to take that back to them.
Mr. Weaver stated that they have tendered some offers to see what they want to do and this is entirely acceptable to them as far as logistics are concerned, but the concern the IDA may have is that they did not want to sell the land at less than full price because they felt it might compete with other properties around.
A discussion ensued regarding the sale prices for properties in the Christopher C. Ford Park and Ms. Keedy stated that the last property the County sold was the Prestige Agreement which was $110,000 per acre, and the County’s property sold for about $30,000 per acre a year or so ago.
Mr. Minkoff stated that he thought the Prestige Agreement was the correct number, but sometimes the property value is discounted in order to get the right company to purchase.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the Incentive Package for Flowers Foods.
Ms. Dottie Keedy, Economic Growth
and Redevelopment Director, addressed the Board recommending approval of an
Incentive Package for Niagara Bottling Company, aka
Mr. Ray Gilley, President and Chief
Executive Officer of the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission (EDC),
addressed the Board stating that their role as the County’s partner is to
assist in identifying and bringing opportunities to local communities to
consider and make good decisions on them, explaining that the role and
responsibility of the community is to understand and weigh-in on the benefits
of the opportunity against the demands on the community in which it will be
located. In the case of
Mr. Brian Hess, Director of
Operations for Niagara, presented an overview of
He commented that they had received over 70 job applications from people who currently drive to Orlando and that Lake County needs Niagara, the bakery and as many other companies as can bring in good jobs. He explained that the company provides private label bottled water for grocery stores, putting other people’s labels on their product, which eliminates advertising costs, and gives them a competitive advantage. He specified that what sets them apart is that they are a vertically integrated company, they make all of their own bottles and caps, and are a highly technical business and that some of the primary jobs in the business are production managers, line supervisors, quality assurance supervisors and technicians, maintenance technicians, management trainees, forklift drivers and others. He stated the jobs are very important and good paying and are not entry level jobs. Also, employees are sent to various countries to obtain training for the skills they need to productively contribute to the company. He explained that marketing research shows that for every one manufacturing job created, four additional jobs are created in the community, some of which are electrical contractors, local restaurants, and construction specialists.
Mr. Hess explained Niagara had been
recruited for two years by the State, County and the City of
He commented that what makes this
project very unique is that they are environmentally conscious and the
operation has been designed to be the most environmentally friendly bottler in
the country. They have designed a bottle
that uses half as much plastic as the average soda bottle and about one-third
as much plastic as Gatorade bottles and is 20 percent lighter than the next
lightest bottle in the country which is an engineering feat that will be
unveiled in March. He reported that they
recycle 100 percent of everything that comes into their facility whether it is
cardboard, plastic, pallets, or water, noting that every ounce of water that
does not go into a bottle would go into a proposed reclaimed water line to
either Groveland or private individuals toward irrigation of lawns. He also mentioned that they have been offered
$800,000-$900,000 from the State in roadway improvement funding which would
come back into the County. He requested
that the Board approve the incentives with the condition that they are approved
Commr. Renick stated that she was sympathetic to the situation the company finds themselves in; however, it does not change how strongly she feels about the project. She stated that she actually found out about the project from a Sentinel reporter and before that she did not know about this project and was not sure their confidentiality agreement served them well.
Mr. Hess addressed Commr. Renick’s statement by saying that they met with Commissioner Hill and with over fifteen County staff, including the County Manager, Building and Planning Departments, Economic Development Director and others.
Mr. Hess requested support from the people of the County who recruited them to come here and would appreciate the Board’s consideration.
Commr. Stewart stated that she was made aware of this project the day before the public was made aware of it and that this was an unfortunate situation for everyone, because the County does need jobs. She explained that she met with Mr. Peykoff and Mr. Hess and was impressed and noted that they were doing a lot that other companies are not doing by recycling, reducing the plastic in the bottles, and working to reduce the energy costs in their businesses. She commented that twenty years ago she would have welcomed the company with open arms and that it would have been wonderful for Lake County, but right now water is too critical, and that the County’s population is outgrowing the water supply, and in a few years the County will be relying on alternative water. She related that at a time when we should be considering much stricter methods of conservation, she cannot condone any business which will take water from Lake County and sell it elsewhere, noting that it has nothing to do with him or his company.
Mr. Hess responded to Commr. Stewart
by saying that he appreciated her comments and thought that she had the best
Commr. Hill stated she met with the EDC Director and the County Manager and she was under the impression that the company would either be receiving a CUP from Groveland or from St. John’s and the water issue would not necessarily be in the Board’s ballpark and that the company had other alternatives they were reviewing, such as trucking water in or using well water. She explained that the water is controlled by the State of Florida, and that all utilities, whether local or private, have to go through a process with the State to receive their water and that had nothing to do with the Board and that the incentive package was the main focus of the Board. She commented that she did not understand how they could invest $50 million without having that permit in hand to continue the business.
Hess stated they did not intend to get a CUP permit, their intention was to
purchase the water and they had assurances that the water supply was
there. Upon finding out that the water
supply was not there, Mr. Hess stated they had to react and be creative. He agreed that the State and
Hill stated that she did not want to give incentives to the company until she
thinks that the State has made a decision of how they want to proceed in
providing water for the State of
Stewart stated that it seemed premature asking for incentives before being
Mr. Hess replied stating that it will be easier than they think and felt there would be articles in the paper about the efforts they are making and hoped that the Board would approve.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a 4-0 vote, the Board denied the request from Economic Growth and Development for approval of the Incentive Package for Niagara Bottling Corporation.
Mr. Hess made a public announcement to that they were going to deliver 36,000 bottles of water to Clermont Dodge would be made available to the citizens of Clermont for pick up tomorrow due to the boil water notice in Clermont.
SOUTHEAST TELECOM VOICEMAIL SYSTEM
Mr. Doug Woodyard, Telecommunications Manager, requested approval to purchase the new countywide voicemail system from Southeast Telecom (SETEL) from Sarasota County, Bid #5079, noting that the cost to upgrade the system would be $45,000. He stated that this machine handles roughly 3900 calls a day during normal business hours, 400 calls an hour and can take 24 calls at a time. He stated that the machine would not only be voice mail for the County, but also a front end machine that handles all the outer offices for the Clerk for jury duty selection, the Public Defender, the Department of Environmental Health, Growth Management, State Attorney and several other offices. He stated that the reason for the upgrade is to allow for more reliability, more capacity and to give them a three year manufacturer’s warranty. He stated that this is a budgeted item for approval.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the purchase of the countywide voicemail system from Southeast Telecom.
CAGAN CROSSING LIBRARY FURNITURE
Mr. Barnett Schwartzman, Procurement Services Director, requested approval to award OEC Business Interiors, Inc, Designers West Interiors and Library Interiors of Florida, Inc., to provide furniture, warehousing (if necessary) and installation of the furniture for the Cagan Crossing Library. Mr. Schwartzman stated that they received bids from four companies and they are recommending the award to three of those companies on a split order basis based on low pricing, and this is a departmental item coming before the Board due to the dollar amount.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the request to award OEC Business Interiors, Inc., Designers West Interiors and Library Interiors of Florida, Inc., to provide furniture, warehousing and installation of furniture for the Cagan Crossing Library.
BIG PRAIRIE WATERSHED MANAGEMENT PLAN
Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, requested approval from the Board to be a
cooperative partner with Southwest Florida Water Management District on the Big
Prairie Watershed Management Plan, which encompasses Groveland to the
Renick commented that it was wonderful that
Stivender responded by stating that ten years ago they had a flooding problem
due to backups in
Renick stated that she thought about
Mr. Stivender explained that the study will show exactly what is proposed and how the County will participate, whether or not it was supported. Mr. Stivender stated that the County is a $750,000 investor in the fund and will definitely have a voice in it.
Commr. Renick thought Southwest Florida Water Management District would have the final say on this.
Stivender stated that they are being very proactive by trying to work this out
with the counties. He suggested that
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the request to be a cooperative partner with Southwest Florida Water Management District on the Big Prairie Watershed Management Plan, dependent upon St. John’s participation as a partner.
BUDGET AMENDMENT FROM FY 2007
Ms. Eve Reynolds, Office of Budget, requested approval to amend the Fiscal Year 2008 budget to include purchase orders and project carry-forwards from Fiscal Year 2007. She stated that all the items in this carry-forward amendment were approved by the Board in prior fiscal years; however, work was not completed by September 30 and would continue into Fiscal Year 2008. Consequently, the remaining balances on those purchase orders and projects must be carried forward. She stated that this process occurs every year to accommodate activities that span two or more fiscal years and that the amount of the carry-forward cannot be accurately determined until the final bills were paid for the year which occurred the second or third week in October. She reported that there were also organizational changes this year in some departments, and these changes were reflected in the document; however, there were some accounting adjustments which need to take place to ensure that purchase orders end up in the proper location. She commented that after discussion by the Board and public comment, they request approval of the carry-forward budget amendment for all funds in the amount of $33,874,667.
Commr. Renick commented that she understands the carry-forward budget, but requested a change be made in order to foster trust with the public. She explained that the public would prefer to hear about this during budget hearings, and not find out that there would be a $30 million carry-forward after the close of the budget process and would like to ask the staff to make every effort to bring this earlier while going through the process.
Commr. Cadwell stated they would have to bring an estimate because there would not be a definitive figure.
Commr. Renick felt that even if it were an estimate, it would have been discussed during the budget process instead of coming back later with a large figure.
Commr. Cadwell stated that between now and the start of the budget process again perhaps there should be discussion on how to handle this situation.
Commr. Hill was concerned about the perception of the public, but that this money was already encumbered in the other budget that was being brought forward and did not change the bottom line, except for the fact that the money was there.
Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, stated this carry-forward amount was not approved as part of the budget process because what was approved was from 2007 forward, but stated what can be done in the budget process for next year would be to state an estimated amount of money which was likely to be carried forward and would be brought to the Board at a later date. She stated that some indication or estimate can be stated during the process.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the carry-forward budget amendment for all funds in the amount of $33,874,667.
COMPREHENSIVE HEALTH CARE COMMITTEE APPOINTMENT
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and unanimously carried by a 4-0 vote, the Board appointed Dr. Chad Watkins as representative to the Comprehensive Health Care Committee to complete an unexpired term ending August 16, 2008 and serve a consecutive three-year term.
TRANSPORTATION ALTERNATIVE FUNDING TASK FORCE APPOINTMENTS
Commr. Hill commented that there is no stated time limit for the Task Force to complete their report and questioned the completion date.
Cadwell stated that this would not be finalized today and requested a week to
speak with Mr. T. J. Fish, Executive Director, Lake-Sumter Metropolitan
Planning Organization (LSMPO), and Ms. Cindy Hall,
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and unanimously carried by a 4-0 vote, the Board appointed the following individuals to the Transportation Alternative Funding Task Force: Mr. H. Bennett Walling for District 1; Mr. Virgil Clark, District 2; Mr. Fred Johnson, District 3; Mr. Bud Beucher, District 4; and Mr. Duane K. Booth, District 5.
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Hill, and unanimously carried by a 4-0 vote, the Board appointed Commissioner Welton Cadwell to the Transportation Alternative Funding Task Force, as a liaison from the Board.
REPORTS – COUNTYATTORNEY
ORDINANCE TO EXTEND EFFECTIVE DATE FOR LDR SECTION
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, addressed the Board stating that they have approval to extend the Ordinance that was passed eighteen months ago regarding platting of new lots until the School Board had approved it. They had hoped that the Comprehensive Plan would be completed and that concurrency would be enacted by this time, but since that has not occurred, the Ordinance extends the date for an additional year for an effective date for that LDR Section.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and unanimously carried by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the request to advertise the proposed ordinance relating to Chapter V-A, LDRs, entitled Necessary Public Services and Facilities regarding the expiration date for the School Concurrency Ordinance.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER HILL – VICE CHAIRMAN AND DISTRICT 1
DESIGN OF SR 46A
Commr. Hill reported that the State of the County address was delivered to the South Lake County Chamber and was well accepted. She also expressed her appreciation to Mr. T. J. Fish, Executive Director, LSMPO, for again reviewing with her the alignment of SR 46A, realizing the outcome cannot be changed but hoped to incorporate a higher design. She stated that the approval should not be done hastily and that she had several suggestions such as requiring contiguous property to be placed in the conservation easement in addition to the right of way for the costs of two lanes, so that if four lanes are constructed then right-of-way would be in place. She also wished to address roadway improvements keeping in mind stormwater, trails, sidewalks, lighting, landscaping, and saving as many oak trees as possible in designing the road. She explained that pedestrian safety features should also be included making it appear to be a boulevard rather than an expressway.
Commr. Stewart responded by stating that they realize eventually it may have to be four-laned and that has been taken into account. She stated that there would be a berm with landscaping going up, which had been moved further away to save many of the buffer trees and Mr. Taylor, at his own expense, was looking at the layout of the land and would move the old oak trees worth saving.
Commr. Hill questioned whether they would be designing for a possible trail or sidewalk with lighting in mind.
Commr. Stewart replied that at the present time there are no funds available to put asphalt down.
Commr. Renick stated that they are not to the point where DOT has had their public hearings.
REPORTS – COMMISSIONER RENICK – DISTRICT 2
Commr. Renick mentioned that it had been suggested that she be a part of the Lake County Water Alliance. She stated it seemed there was a misunderstanding during the workshop about the County not wanting to be a water provider, and wondered whether the Board should reconsider participating as a voting member or included as a liaison. She commented that the Water Alliance was all about alternative water sources and perhaps they could not look at that without also looking at what measure were going to be made in terms of conservation.
Cadwell stated that the Board took quick action that day, and one of the things
he thought after leaving the meeting was that all they would be doing was helping
them obtain the CUP and the alternative water supply project in
Commr. Renick stated that the main issue was whether or not they wanted to get into the water business by being a water provider.
Commr. Hill stated that she would like Commr. Renick to remain with the Water Alliance for information purposes.
Commr. Cadwell stated that since they took action to withdraw from the Water alliance, it should be placed on the agenda for today.
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Hill, and unanimously carried by a 4-0 vote, the Board placed the Water Alliance issue on today’s agenda.
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Hill, and unanimously carried by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the request to rejoin the Water Alliance at their request and that Commr. Renick serve as a representative for the Board.
PUBLIC LANDS ACQUISITION ADVISORY COUNCIL (PLAAC)
Commr. Renick stated at the present time they were inundated with applications and suggested that they might want to start placing applications on file for future purchases as additional funds become available.
Commr. Cadwell stated that he did not think that was advisable because a parcel they have been seeking may become available and that even though it may be cumbersome to keep the applications, he felt it was necessary to keep the parcel inventory available.
Mr. David Hansen, Public Lands Manager, stated that they have 37 properties at the present time which are essentially on the same playing field and have passed muster through Mr. Hansen, the Council and through their Greenprint Model. He commented that should there be a next step by prioritizing those in a formal fashion relatively simple like size, contiguity, manageability, partnership opportunities and things of that nature, but there was still an issue of who is going to do it. He explained that as far as having a moratorium on applications, he already started intimating that a moratorium may be coming and that the application would be put on file, and the sellers were agreeable to that. He noted that it is a buyer’s market right now, which was to their advantage.
Commr. Stewart questioned whether or not the properties will be prioritized.
Cadwell was concerned that if there were put on file, the prioritization would
be determined by only one person, because they would not be brought forward.
Commr. Cadwell requested that the Board allow him a week to consider the matter, and perhaps it should be added to the agenda.
Renick stated that some questions for Commr. Cadwell to think about were
whether there would be a cutoff and whether they let people know that they have
many properties ahead of them and that they will place their application on
file; and another issue was whether or not they would prioritize properties
that were pretty far along in the process as well as those that they did not
even have appraisals on, and whether they looked at them as two separate groups
or whether they should be lumped together.
She stated they would bring this issue back at the next meeting.
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT STEERING COMMITTEE
Commr. Stewart, as liaison to the Economic Development Steering Committee, stated that at the League of Cities meeting their member reported that the Steering Committee there was a lack of participation, and that a number of people had dropped out.
Commr. Hill stated that Ms. Melissa Demarco, Representative for the League of Cities, said that the consultant was very good and was doing a good job, but the participation level is low.
Dottie Keedy stated that the committee had only met twice because the
consultants come from
Commr. Renick stated that they needed to get a correction in the newspaper as it had the time for the Visioning Session in Clermont as 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. when it was actually 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Commr. Hill questioned whether they, as a Board, could attend the Visioning Sessions.
Ms. Keedy replied they could attend and that she sent out a reminder yesterday to her email list.
Commr. Stewart mentioned that they have businessmen still becoming members of the Committee.
Ms. Keedy stated that the Committee was very informal and anyone could attend and participate.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD
Ms. Barbara Lightner, founder of
Joining Hands, Inc. of
She explained that the charities should be able to keep the money from Bingo to help their community, and that was not happening. She noted that six charity halls closed because they are not able to compete and the eight charities in Lake County that were still operating were on the verge of closing because of the jackpots the commercial bingo halls offered. Also, the commercial Bingo halls do not show the charities they are supporting, but hers have the information on the walls.
Commr. Cadwell responded to Ms.
Lightner by stating that the Ordinance they created took a long time to prepare
and was a little contentious, but if there is an enforcement problem, the
Ms. Lightner did not want the commercial halls to close down because small charities would still need them, but wanted them to operate in a lawful manner.
Roy Hunter, of
Bob Funk of
Bill Calhoun, of
Mr. Cadwell explained that they had obtained a zoning clearance letter which any citizen could obtain by making application.
Mr. Calhoun cautioned staff in being careful about the content of memos to applicants which could be misconstrued.
Mr. Caldwell stated that confidentiality posed a difficulty and the Board would discuss how better to handle clearance letters from this point forward.
Rob Kelly, representing the Citizens Coalition of Lake County, commented that
they support the decisions of the Board on both Flowers and
Mr. Kelly stated that regarding incentives for having companies come to Lake County, he felt it was important to look at how the incentive packages are used, and asked the Board to consider a mechanism which could be put in place to measure the results and the return on that investment over a contracted period of time so adjustments could be made for taxpayers to get the best return possible on the investment given out. He requested the Board to implement a mechanism to measure the results as the packages are offered and put in place.
mentioned that they also had a question about the tax abatement issue and thought
the term “tax abatement” typically is interchangeable with the term “tax
exemption,” and by definition tax abatement means to reduce and put an end to
our taxes. He noted there is not a
provision in law for tax abatement in
Renick stated that this issue was very different between the two
companies. She stated Flowers was not
asking for a tax abatement and
Commr. Hill stated that the standard county incentive package was available to anyone, and the IDA would then make all the considerations and look at the criteria. She stated that she did not think the tax abatement was part of that package, or that they had ever given a tax abatement.
Ms. Mary Reamer of
Rick Joyce, a member of the Industrial Development Authority (IDA), addressed
the Board over his concerns regarding comments that were made about the IDA
with regard to the Flowers and
He also mentioned that Flowers would use one million gallons of water a month.
Joyce pointed out that IDA is limited to determining whether or not a company
making application for a JGI fund award meets the financial criteria which
He asked if water usage was going to be a criteria by which they would have to determine whether or they would or would not award JGI funds, and asked that the Board set a threshold for the IDA so that they would not be in a position to make unpopular decisions again.
Commr. Cadwell commented that it is probably not a water issue but rather a natural resource issue and that is something that needs to be discussed.
Mr. Joyce requested direction from the Board in this matter.
John Harris from unincorporated
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
At 11:40 a.m. the Chairman announced that the Board would recess until 1:00 p.m., at which time the Impact Fee Workshop would be held.
Commissioner Cadwell reconvened the meeting at 1:00 p.m., stating the purpose of this session was a Workshop on Educational Impact Fees.
AMENDING CHAPTER 22, LAKE
He stated that on page 3 of the Ordinance, lines 14-17, allow the cities to join in the County Park Impact Fee if they wish to do so.
Mr. Minkoff stated that the next change was found on page 11, line 33, which changed the membership of the Impact Fee Committee from the current 10 members to 11 members and that the additional member would be a citizen-at-large.
The next changes Mr. Minkoff referred to were on page 14, the first of which begins on line 16, paragraph four which was a new provision that stated when someone gets a waiver for low or very low income that there will be a Recapture Agreement signed. It was proposed that the Agreement would be enforced for 10 years and if the homeowner sold its property to someone who was not also qualified, they would then have to pay the impact fees if sold within that ten year period, and he thought Ms. Hall would like to change that to five years.
Commr. Hill stated it was still listed as 10 years and wanted to know if it should be stricken through and changed to 5.
Mr. Minkoff stated that Mr. Fletcher Smith, Public Works Director, would monitor and administer this.
Commr. Cadwell stated that it should read 5 years.
Mr. Minkoff stated that the next substantive change was on line 32 of page 14, paragraph 5, which would allow builders without a buyer at the time construction begins to enter into an Agreement with the County stating they are planning to sell the home to a qualified person and would like to defer impact fees in order to build the house. If the builder did not sell to a qualified person, they would pay the impact fees plus interest, but if the builder sells it to a qualified person then the fees would be waived, assisting the builder in constructing spec houses.
He referred to the bottom of page 15 and top of page 16 which rewrites the prepayment section which had been substantially changed from what it was stating that now it is limited to a twelve month period. He stated now if they prepaid, they would be required to get the building permit within twelve months or it would automatically change into a credit. He stated that previously they were good forever, noting that if they elected to prepay and then change their plans they could not get their money back. He thought the idea behind this was that it would allow someone on the process when there was a change coming to be able to fix the fees that were due and would be advantageous for commercial development. He explained that he had tentatively provided the Effective Date to be April 1, until after any additional school impact fees were adopted.
He stated that on page 18, lines 6 and 36, they enlarged the times people can ask for refunds. In paragraph 3 it was changed from 180 days to 365 days and in paragraph 1 from 30 days to 180 days. He explained that Paragraph 4 on page 18, is a new paragraph stating that the County Manager will be allowed to issue refunds stating that when a single family residence is built, impact fees are paid at the time the building permit is obtained, and the home is sold to a person who would qualify for an impact fee waiver, the County Manager could approve the refunds and eliminate a step.
He mentioned that on page 19 they have provided that for refunds that are not caused by County error, that there would be an administrative fee set by the Board, which would be the actual cost of processing the refund. He reported that subsection 1, on page 19, line 38, exempts people from paying impact fees if they are replacing a home or commercial building that was destroyed, with a new building or dwelling the same size or smaller if they rebuild or replace within six years from the date of destruction. He specified that the reason for this change was to limit the timeframe, but still allow enough time for people to get through the insurance process.
Mr. Minkoff stated that regarding administrative fees on page 23 there have been a couple of changes. He explained that currently the administrative fees were taken out of the impact fee, and this change adds the administrative fee to the impact fee. He explained that at the time this was presented, they did not have the consultant’s study back on what the fee should be so as it stands the fee would be a maximum of 3 percent up to $300, but he anticipated that the administrative fee would be $100 or less for issuance of permits.
stated that on page 23, line 44, there is a change to eliminate the appeal to
the Board of County Commissioners, and the
Mr. Minkoff stated that the Administrative Ordinance had already been approved to advertise so there was no action to take today.
Renick was concerned about appeals on page 23, and that instead of having the
Board as the final say, it was the
Commr. Cadwell stated that the County Manager would do that before, but it would still have to come to the Board for ratification and now Mr. Minkoff is saying it would have to go to the State and commented that he did not have a problem with it still coming to the Board.
Mr. Minkoff stated he thought it was Ms. Wickwire’s attempt to eliminate that step to the Board.
Renick stated it was done purposely to give the staff and the
Commr. Cadwell explained that the bottom line would be that they would say no and the Board would say yes and he thinks that power should be kept with the Board.
Mr. Minkoff stated that with those three changes they will have it advertised and because it increases fees they are treating it as two public hearings and will be on December 11, the same day as the school impact fees.
Mr. Randy Young, of Henderson, Young & Company, presented
to the Board the Proposed School Impact Fee which had been reviewed and
recommended by the School Board and reviewed by the County’s Impact Fee
Committee. He mentioned that this may be scheduled for action in December, and
Mr. Young commented that the impact fee the Board had adopted
on behalf of the School Board in
He commented that interest is a real cost that the School Board had to pay and that he disagreed with the Homebuilders Association about this issue.
Commr. Hill commented that they have reviewed this together many times, and clarified that everything had been corrected.
Mr. Minkoff stated that the transportation study created a separate category for transportation impacts for lower income housing and that was not included in the schools.
Commr. Hill questioned if that was not something that needed to be included within the schools. She stated that she wanted to make sure that proportionate share has been brought up.
Mr. Young stated that she was correct, and that proportionate share mitigation was a separate requirement of the Growth Management Law for school concurrency as well as transportation.
Commr. Cadwell inquired whether the recommendation of the Impact Fee Committee not to use the interest cost in the formula was based on the economy or was it because of their concern that it was indefensible or there was no court case.
Mr. Young stated that they had heard both arguments expressed very articulately. He commented that the cumulative effect of those beliefs led to a substantial vote from the committee to present as it stood.
Commr. Renick stated that Mr. Minkoff had made the statement
it appeared to be a legal issue rather than a policy issue, but at the time of
the Impact Fee Committee meeting they did not have an answer and still do
not. She explained they knew it had been
Mr. Minkoff stated he did not know about the other two counties Mr. Young mentioned and that he had not looked at those. He commented that he has no case law necessarily that would say it is incorrect, but they have some concerns and worked out with the School Board that they would request an opinion. He commented that at this point they are unable to have an opinion from someone who deals in this area. He also indicated that this was defensive, and they do not have an opinion that says it is not defensible and was not sure he would discuss in a public meeting what his thoughts would be. He mentioned that he thought the School Board was willing to defend their ordinance if adopted at the full amount to provide the legal defense, and to provide any refunds to pay any damages to be awarded if that were the case.
Mr. Steve Johnson, attorney for the School Board, stated that the School Board had not taken any formal action on that position and there would be a meeting prior to the Board of County Commissioners’ December 11 meeting to bring up that topic and discuss that issue. He stated he would like to make it clear that there had been no formal decision about that one way or the other.
Mr. Jimmy Connor stated that to a large degree he thought Mr. Minkoff outlined the position that the School Board had taken in their discussions this year, which may not have been formalized, and they never discussed “damages”. He thought Mr. Johnson was correct that a formal position needed to be taken, particularly if there was going to be the potential for litigation.
Commr. Renick questioned whether there would be a formal position before the December 11 date.
Mr. Jimmy Connor stated that 1.1 mill is the maximum they can go pursuant to their financial advisors who have scrutinized public financial management and who have told them that they do not want to incur debt they cannot repay and where debt is more than the 1.1 mill, not only for fiscally prudent reasons, but also to be sure they do not jeopardize the improvements and the strong bond ratings the School Board has been able to accomplish over the past few years. He stated they are borrowed out to the maximum based on their financial position and wanted to make clear that they do not have wiggle room from 1.1 to 1.5 mill, noting that 1.1 is even one-tenth further than they used to be.
Mr. Minkoff stated there was an agenda item for approval to advertise the draft Ordinance, and the only changes to the Ordinance as to the current Code are to reflect the updated study. He noted that the June 28 date was used, and he would prefer that not be changed so it could be advertised today, which as agreed to by Mr. Young. He also commented that the proposed Ordinance has the proposed fees at the maximum amount from the study on page 3 of the Ordinance which could be reduced at the Public Hearing, but if the smaller amount were to be advertised, they could not increase it without advertising again.
Commr. Hill asked whether they can or cannot go ahead and have another sales tax brought up at the Impact Fee Committee meeting.
Mr. Minkoff stated that the discussion at the Impact Fee Committee came from the Lake-Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization (LSMPO) which is looking for alternative funding for transportation, and the question was raised whether the School Board had the ability to levy an additional sales tax and if they did, could the sales tax that currently goes to the school be taken and put into transportation. He stated that statutorily the School Board has the ability to levy an additional one-half cent sales tax that takes a referendum by the voters. He explained that it was legally possible to collect that one-half cent sales tax and to also share in the local option tax, and there is no legal prohibition against that. He commented that they had an Interlocal Agreement with the School Board where they agreed to accept the one-third cent and that they would not ask for the additional one-half cent, so that Interlocal Agreement would have to be amended. Also, there were some bonding issues, because the original bond issue for the one-cent indicated that it was to fund schools, transportation and other projects. He thought if they went in that direction, the new referendum could cure that, noting that those were issues they would have to look at.
Mr. Connor stated that they had a written document stating
that by accepting the sales tax, they would not go for a half-penny sales tax,
stating they none of them would give any consideration to breaking their
word. He commented that one of the most
successful endeavors Lake County ever had between the Lake County Commission
and the School Board was the extension of the sales tax and that every high
school in Lake County has been renovated and brought up to modern technology
because of that successful venture. He
thought that they would be very unwise to even consider breaking their word to
the people of
Mr. Minkoff stated that if approval is given today to advertise the meeting would be December 11, 2007, at 5:05 p.m., and the Administrative Order would be first and the School Impact Fee shortly thereafter.
On a motion by Commissioner Stewart, seconded by Commr. Renick and carried unanimously by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the request to advertise the Ordinance amending Chapter 22, Lake County Code, School Impact Fees.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 2:25 p.m.
WELTON G. CADWELL, CHAIRMAN
NEIL KELLY, CLERK