A REGULAR MEETING OF THE VALUE ADJUSTMENT BOARD
AUGUST 19, 2008
The Lake County Value Adjustment
Board met in regular session on Tuesday, August 19, 2008, at 8:30 a.m., in the
Board of County Commissioners’ Meeting Room,
Commr. Cadwell called the meeting to order at 8:30 a.m. and noted that a quorum was present.
MINUTES OF JULY 15, 2008 ORGANIZATIONAL MEETING
The Chairman asked for approval of the Minutes of the July 15, 2008, meeting.
On a motion by Mr. Metz, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a 3-0 vote, the VAB approved the Minutes of the Organizational Meeting held on July 15, 2008, as presented.
SELECTION PROCESS FOR NEW ATTORNEY
Mr. Metz interjected by asking if the two firms from outside the County were disqualified because of their association with other county governments. He questioned whether those qualifications came from the Statute or elsewhere.
Mr. Minkoff stated that the qualifications came from the Statute but there was also a Department of Revenue clarification issued late last week which confirmed that in their view the attorney could not represent a government anywhere in the State.
Metz quoted the Statute in part as follows: “. .Private Counsel may not
represent the property appraiser, the tax collector, any taxing authority, or
any property owner in any administrative or judicial review of property taxes.” He commented that he felt this provision was
placed in the Statute to avoid conflicts of interest. He went on to say that a person representing
a county in the panhandle would have no conflict of interest with anything being
Mr. Minkoff explained that the Florida Association of County Attorneys (FACA) has a message board (“listserv”) where attorneys from all counties can post messages or questions and that recently there had been a lot of discussion on attorney representation for the VAB because some of the counties initially interpreted the Statute just as Mr. Metz. He commented that there were only one or two lawyers in some of the small panhandle counties which justified some of the county attorneys participating in more than one county to keep the costs down. He explained that the Department of Revenue indicated that this practice was not acceptable and, therefore, the VAB was bound to follow the ruling as it now stands.
Mr. Metz then stated that he understood they were, therefore, back to the two qualified applicants.
Mr. Minkoff responded that was correct and that an attorney would have to be in place by September 1, 2008. He commented that the Statute requires that the attorney must have training by the DOR before they can do anything, but the training was not available as of this date.
Commr. Cadwell commented that he did not know Mr. Bone, but that Ms. Tucker had worked for the County previously and had done an excellent job, but had left to go into private practice.
Mr. Minkoff agreed with Commr. Cadwell’s comments regarding Ms. Tucker.
Mr. Metz stated that it was his understanding that they had personal knowledge of Ms. Tucker’s abilities.
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Mr. Metz and carried unanimously by a 3-0 vote, the VAB approved the appointment of Ms. Leigh Tucker as the attorney to represent the Value Adjustment Board.
Minkoff stated that he would present her with a contract so that she could work
with the Clerk to schedule another organizational meeting to start the process
after September 1, 2008. He remarked
that the School Board and
Mr. Metz pointed out that the attorney selected, Ms. Tucker, had presented the lowest bid in terms of the hourly rate requested.
REPRESENTATION OF THE PROPERTY APPRAISER’S OFFICE
Minkoff reported that the Property Appraiser had requested that the
was a general consensus of the VAB that the
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the VAB, the meeting was adjourned at 8:40 a.m.
WELTON CADWELL, CHAIRMAN
NEIL KELLY, CLERK