NOVEMBER 18, 2008

The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, November 18, 2008, 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:  Welton G. Cadwell, Chairman; Jennifer Hill, Vice Chairman; Jimmy Conner; Elaine Renick; and Linda Stewart.  Others present were: Sanford A. “Sandy” Minkoff, County Attorney; Cindy Hall, County Manager; Wendy Taylor, Executive Office Manager, County Manager’s Office; Barbara F. Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance; Neil Kelly, Clerk of Court; and Susan Boyajan, Deputy Clerk.


The Reverend Dr. Isaac Deas gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.


Commr. Cadwell recognized various Constitutional Officers, School Board members, and elected city officials who were present.


Newly elected Commissioner Jimmy Conner and incumbent Commissioner Welton Cadwell were sworn into office by Neil Kelly, Clerk; and incumbent Commissioner Jennifer Hill was sworn into office by the Honorable Mark Hill.  A reception was then held in their honor.


Commr. Renick stated that she wanted to add the Scenic Byway Resolution to the Agenda.

On  a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board added that to the Agenda.

Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, stated that she wanted to make a change on Tab 22 to delete the part of that item that requests approval for the remaining funds of $12,532 from the 2007-2008 Youth Recreation Assistance Program to go towards the 2008-09 Youth Recreation Assistance Programs for the municipalities, because they have already funded that and did not need to do that at this point.


            Commr. Conner stated that the October 21, 2008 Minutes as transcribed were accurate, but on Page 13, Line 12, he did note that not all of the evaluations had been done and thought that that should probably be in the record so that it would be more accurate, and he had a question about the compensation increase and whether there was a vote or consensus.

            On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried by a vote of 5-0, the Board voted to add “All but one evaluation was submitted” to the record.

            Commr. Cadwell responded that there was no motion made regarding the compensation and that they could discuss that at their Board Retreat.

Commr. Renick stated that she wanted to make sure that on Page 10, Line 23 and 24 of the October 21 Minutes, that when they were talking about the temporary fire station in South Lake County, everyone understood that they were not looking to build another fire station.  She added that they may use the temporary building that used to be in Ferndale that possibly could be moved.

Commr. Cadwell suggested changing the word “site” in that passage to “home.”

On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of August 19, 2008 (Value Adjustment Board Meeting), as presented; and October 21, 2008 (Regular Meeting), as amended.


Mr. Neil Kelly, Clerk of the Circuit Court, stated that they have received some last minute information relating that item number 2 was being withdrawn by the City, and item number 3 would be heard by the City’s Planning and Zoning Board on December 1, 2008.  He requested approval of the remaining items.

On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously, by a 5-0 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.

Fiscal Year 2009 Pine Island CDD Meeting Schedule

Request to acknowledge receipt of Fiscal Year 2009 Meeting Schedule for Pine Island Community Development District.

            Fiscal Year 2009 Central Lake CDD Meeting Schedule

Request to acknowledge receipt of Fiscal Year 2009 Meeting Schedule for Central Lake Community Development District.

Annexation Ordinance from the City of Groveland

Request to acknowledge receipt of Ordinance #2008-08-28 extending and increasing the corporate limits of the City of Groveland.

Town of Montverde Annual Finance Report for year ended September 30, 2007

Request to acknowledge receipt of copy of Annual Finance Report for the Town of Montverde for the year ended September 30, 2007.

Annexation Ordinances from City of Mount Dora

Request to acknowledge receipt of Annexation Ordinance 2008-1023 – Church Property 0-4.34 Acres +/- generally located on State Road 44, North of US Hwy 441, Mount Dora, Florida.

Request to acknowledge receipt of City of Mount Dora Annexation Ordinance 2008-1023, Church Property – 4.34 Acres +/- generally located on State Road 44, North of US Hwy 441, Mount Dora.  This property is occupied by Lighthouse Baptist Church.

Excess Fees from the Clerk in the amount of $344,401.14 for FY 2008

Request to acknowledge receipt of Excess fees from the Clerk to the Board of County Commissioners, in the amount of $344,401.14, for Fiscal Year 2008.

            Draft Five-Year Water Resource Development Work Program

Request to acknowledge receipt of Draft Five-Year Water Resource Development Work Program, pursuant to Section 373.536(6)(a)(4), Florida Statutes.


Commr. Renick requested pulling Tabs 4, 9, 16, and 17.

On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Conner, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the County Manager’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 3 through 26, pulling Tabs 4, 9, 16, and 17, as follows:


Request to approve Budget Change Request and Resolution No. 208-182 to amend the Section 8 Fund in order to receive unanticipated revenue for Fiscal Year 2007-08 in the amount of $38,420 deposited into County Program Revenue (HUD Housing Assistance) and provide appropriations for the disbursement for Housing Assistance Payment for activities pertaining to Section 8 operations.

            Community Services

            Request for approval for the County Manager to sign all Inmate Medical bills above the signature approval limit for the department director of Community Service for FY 2008/2009. This would be effective beginning October 1, 2008.

            Request for approval and signature of 3 copies of Amendment 1 to the FY 07-08 CDBG Partnership Agreement with the Town of Montverde.  Commission District 3.

            Request for approval and signature of 3 copies of Amendment 1 to the FY 07-08 CDBG Partnership Agreement with the Town of Astatula.   Commission District 3.

            Request for approval and authorization of the Chairman to sign the Agreement for annual grant funding between Lake County and LASER.

            Request for approval and authorization for the Chairman to sign the contract between Lake County and LifeStream Behavioral Center, Inc. for delivery of substance abuse services through the Medicaid Certified Match Substance Abuse Program.

            Request for approval and authorization for the Chairman to sign the Fourth Amendment to the FY 2005-06 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Partnership Agreement between the Forest Hills Association and the County.  Commission District 5.

            Request for approval of the FY 2008-09 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Funding Approval/Agreement, authorize the Chairman to sign it, and 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.

            Conservation And Compliance

            Request for approval of Release of Fine – Owner’s Name:  Scott R. and Tina L. Brockie, Case#2007040047.  Commission District 3.

            Environmental Utilities

Request for approval of Amendment #2 amending the Arthropod Control FY 07/08 Certified Budget by increasing the budget revenue by $487.54 and allocating $487.54 for the purchase of chemicals; approve Amendment #1 amending the Arthropod Control FY 08/09 Certified Budget by increasing the budget revenue by $487.54 and allocating $487.54 for the purchase of chemicals.


            Request for approval to (1) declare the items on the attached list(s) surplus to County needs, (2) authorize the removal of all of the items on the attached lists from the County’s official fixed asset inventory system records, and (3) authorize the Procurement Services Director or designee to sign vehicle titles.

            Request for approval of purchase and utilization of services through Coleman Technologies in support of the County Wide Radio System support network utilizing Florida State Contract # 250-000-09-1.

            Public Safety

            Request for approval of lease agreement with the City of Leesburg for fiber connections.  Commission District 1.

            Request for approval to transfer funds to Public Works for reimbursement of work completed at Fire Station #21, 25100 CR 44A (Lake Norris Area) Eustis, Florida. Work included upgrade of paving to existing road adjacent to the fire station and fire station parking lot. Funds were appropriated for the project in 2007/2008 budget.

            Request for approval of the updated Interlocal Agreement with the City of Mascotte starting Fiscal Year 2008/2009 for First Responder Fire Rescue Services in which the County shall reimburse the City a total of $104,517.00 per annum for the fire rescue services provided to the County.  Commission District 3.

            Public Works

            Request for approval to pay the City of Tavares $27,468.00 from the 2007-2008 Youth Recreation Assistance Program for unincorporated children from $40,000.00 available.

            Request for authorization to award CR-452 Intersection with #6745 Apiary Road Project No. 2009-01 to C. W. Roberts Contracting, Inc. in the amount of $414,864.50, and encumber and expend funds in the amount of $414,864.50 from the Road Impact Fees Benefit District 2 Fund. Commission District 4 and 5.

            Request for authorization to award CR-452 Intersection with #6549 South Fish Camp Road and #6847 Fish Camp Road Project No. 2009-02 to Barracuda Building Corporation in the amount of $208,774.00, and encumber and expend funds in the amount of $208,774.00 Road Impact Fees Benefit District 2 Fund. Commission District 4.

            Request for authorization to accept the final plat for Sugar Hill Estates, and all areas dedicated to the public as shown on the Sugar Hill Estates plat, accept a letter of credit for maintenance in the amount of $30,000.00, execute a Developer's Agreement for Maintenance of Improvements Between Lake County and Grand Island Holdings, Inc.; execute Resolution No. 2008-184 accepting the following road into the County Road Maintenance System: Sugar Court (County Road No. 6544B); accept a letter of credit for construction of sidewalk improvements in the amount of $43,100.75; and execute a Developer’s Agreement for Construction of Sidewalk Improvements between Lake County and Grand Island Holdings, Inc. for the Sugar Hill Estate. Sugar Hill Estates consists of 21 lots and is located in Section 31, Township 18 South, Range 26 East. Commission District 5.

            Request for authorization to release a letter of credit for performance in the amount of $5,120.50, accept a maintenance bond in the amount of $13,000.00, execute a Developer's Agreement for Maintenance of Improvements Between Lake County and Richard H. Langley and execute Resolution No. 2008-185 accepting the following road into the County Road Maintenance System: Robbins Ridge Court (County Road No. 2728). Robbins Ridge consists of 4 lots and is located in Section 4, Township 21 South, Range 25 East. Commission District 3.

            Commr. Renick commented that the $627,162 figure given in Tab 4 was different than the $517,314 amount that they actually had to pay to Grubbs Emergency Services, and she wondered if they had made an earlier payment of that difference of $109,848 and whether that would go into reserves or returned to FEMA.

            Mr. Doug Krueger, Budget Director, explained that they did not have to return that to FEMA, and that was their share of federal FEMA reimbursement for expenses.  He noted that the amount that was being paid to the contractor was less than that, but the full amount was actually incurred by the County and would go back into the general fund to reimburse those expenditures.

            Commr. Cadwell wanted to recognize Mr. Kristian Swenson, Road Operations Director, Public Works, for working this through the process, and he commented that they would not have gotten this money without his hard work.

            Commr. Renick opined that the travel and per diem expense listed in Tab 9 was rather high, but she learned from Ms. Wendy Breeden, Library Services Director, that that was incurred from local travel within the county for library meetings.

            Ms. Breeden stated that all of their meeting groups have pared down a number of their meetings, and pointed out that the branch managers and library directors were meeting every other month instead of every month.  She also noted that the Festival of Reading Committee was going to be meeting mainly by conference call.

            Commr. Renick commented that this was currently in the budget, but she thought that cutting down travel as much as possible was something that they should emphasize for the future.

            On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 4, the request from Budget for approval of unanticipated Revenue Resolution No. 2008-183 receiving funds from Federal and State Disaster Relief, and approve a Check Request to pay the final invoice for debris removal for Hurricane Frances.

            On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 9, the request from Community Services for adoption of the FY 2008/09 Annual Plan of Service and Combined Budget for the Lake County Library System.

            Commr. Renick mentioned that Commr. Conner had asked to see the other bids for Tab 16 and commented that it was very helpful to see the others.  She related that there was a large difference in the per acre price for the hand crews for chain saw clearing, with the range being from $100 to $1500 an acre, and she thought that there might have been a mistake made there.

            Mr. David Hansen, Public Lands Manager, explained that they shortlisted the three firms that they were considering putting under contract, which were LPG Environmental and Permitting Services, Eco-Logic Restoration Services, and Wildlands Conservation and then discussed whether they would all be needed.  He stated that they currently had firms under contract, including LPG, to do general environmental service type things.  He stated that Eco-Logic was the firm that they felt most comfortable with regarding both the units that they described and the cost per the units to do various tasks, and he felt that Eco-Logic’s cost came out lower overall.

            Commr. Stewart commented that it was hard to compare the companies, because they all did business in different ways and employed different people, and where one was higher in one area, it was lower in another area.

            Commr. Conner asked if any firms other than LPG were from Lake County.

            Mr. Hansen responded that he thought LPG was the only Lake County firm.

            Commr. Renick stated that limiting jobs just to Lake County firms can be detrimental, since there could be firms near the county line that would be the best choice.  Also, that policy sometimes results from other counties eliminating Lake County firms from consideration during their RFP process.

            Commr. Conner advised the Board that one of the things that he would be looking at in the future on every issue was that Lake County firms get a good look from the County Commission.  He suggested having a discussion about instituting a policy giving them the latitude to award it to a local firm if the price was within three or five percent of the other firms that were bidding.  He asked what the price difference was between the company that was being recommended and LPG.

            Commr. Stewart assured Commr. Conner that this issue has been raised before and that they have discussed how important it was for Lake County businesses to receive their business.

            Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, responded that this was not a bid for price but for a series of continuing services that may vary over time, and each of the firms submitted a whole slew of different prices for different types of things that they would be using them for.  She added that price was a consideration, and she asked them to give some samples of their prices on different elements, which was taken into account.

            Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, explained that the two firms that were not chosen refused to lock in and guarantee their rates, but the chosen firm stated that they would keep their rates steady, and that was a large factor in that decision.  He added that LPG had several contracts with the County for environmental work and other things, but he did not think the County had a contract for restoration work with anyone else at this point.

            Commr. Cadwell stated that if they could not find a way to do that policy-wise, then they would need to find a way to monitor it to see if the local firms were getting enough consideration.

            On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 16, a request from Community Services to award RFP 08-0251 for restoration and land management tasks to Eco-Logic Restoration Services, LLC.

            Regarding Tab 17, Commr. Renick asked why the broker’s commission went up to 4 ½ percent from 3 ½ percent if there was a second broker involved in selling the property and if that was typical of real estate transactions.

            Commr. Cadwell suggested that they postpone this item, since Mr. Barnett Schwartzman, Procurement Director, was not present.

            Commr. Conner asked if any in-county real estate brokers applied for this.

            Ms. Dottie Keedy, Economic Growth and Redevelopment Director, stated that she did not know the answer to that, but explained that they put out an RFP and turned it over to Procurement, who chose them based on their qualifications.

            Ms. Melanie Marsh, Deputy County Attorney, explained that the 4 ½ percent co-broker fee would be split so that each broker would get the 2.25 percent, which was standard.

            Commr. Renick pointed out that it would cost them more if two brokers were used.

            Commr. Conner commented that there needed to be a compelling reason not to hire the person from Lake County who applied and that they needed to get the message to their staff that all things being equal, they should make sure that someone from Lake County was being considered.

            On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Conner, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board moved to postpone Tab 17 regarding the award of RFP 08-0257, Industrial Real Estate Broker to CB Richard Ellis, Inc. (CBRE).


On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Conner, and carried unanimously, by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the County Attorney’s Consent Agenda, Tabs 27 through 34, as follows:

            Request for approval of Third Amendment to Lease Between Lake County and Data Graphics.  Commission District 4.

            Request for approval to advertise proposed Ordinance relating to Chapter V-A, LDRs, entitled Necessary Public Services and Facilities regarding expiration date for the School Concurrency Ordinance.

            Request for approval of Maude Prewett Gap parcel to Ellen Meisse as part of the Purchase Agreement approved on June 17, 2008 and authorizing the Chairman to execute the closing documents.  Commission District 5.

            Request for approval of Purchase Agreement with Earl A. Ruprecht, Trustee for right-of-way needed for the CR 466, Segment B Road Widening Project.  Commission District 5.

            Request for approval of Purchase Agreement with Joy L. Scarborough for right-of-way needed for the CR 466-Segment B Road Widening Project.  Commission District 5.

            Request for approval to disburse the overbid proceeds for Tax Certificate #2163 of May 29, 2002 in the amount of $19,970.83.

            Request for approval of Progress Energy Distribution Easements for the Judicial Expansion Projects that include the Central Energy Plant and Governmental Office Building (320 Main Street) and authorize Chairman to execute Distribution Easement documents.  Commission District 3.

            Request for approval of declaration of the County owned property, identified as Alternate Key 1402417 located in Lake Frances, as surplus for the purpose of disposal.  Commission District 3.



            Ms. Nancy Fullerton, Vice President of the Alliance to Protect Water Resources, Inc. (APWR) commented that the Clermont Chain of Lakes needed help to prevent the decline of its water quality, and one of the best methods for doing that was to stop untreated stormwater runoff from entering the lakes.  She mentioned that last year they applied for and received a Water Authority community mini-grant to produce and mail their brochure, which they designed and wrote themselves, to the Clermont Chain of Lakefront homeowners to inform them of ways to protect the water quality of the lakes.  She reported that the July 2006 algae bloom in Lakes Minnehaha and Minneola was the motivator for APWR’s Waterway in Peril initiative and started to renew the fear of the effects of untreated stormwater flowing into the lakes.  She explained that their initiative was based on several beliefs, which were (1) the chain is a waterway in peril; (2) prevention is wiser than cure; and (3) the lakes belong to and benefit everyone, so therefore they must care for them.  She also stated that they must protect and restore the aquatic vegetation.  She commented that funding had been an obstacle in government’s ability to help with this problem, and she mentioned that the history of the County’s stormwater tax started with a newspaper article from May of 1997 about a study in 1991 which said it would cost at least $116 million to cure Lake’s stormwater problems.  In June 1999, the Save Our Lakes Committee made stormwater pollution its main focus, and after much debate over the stormwater funding method, in September 1999 a plan was approved that became the taxing method that the County currently operates under.

Ms. Fullerton stated that APWR was asking the County to evaluate the stormwater management program.  She noted that it was their understanding that the projected stormwater balance in 2006//07 was $7,173,218, but this year she understood that the County transferred funds from stormwater to parks and recreation.  She related that they believed it was the County’s responsibility to use the money levied by the stormwater taxing unit on water quality projects, and they would like more money spent on the Clermont Chain of Lakes.  She also pointed out that there are approximately 187 outflows of untreated stormwater into the lakes.  They would like the Board to engage in ongoing discussion with the Water Authority and the cities regarding stormwater solutions.  She emphasized that there was money to be spent on construction, studies have been completed, projects identified, and it was past time for action.  She commented that everyone needed to work together and that the County’s lakes and rivers were too valuable to lose.  However, she acknowledged that currently there is an improved focus on stormwater projects both in the County and in the Water Authority and that the County was partnering with the Water Authority and the City of Clermont on a high-priority Hook Street stormwater retrofit project to treat runoff into Lake Minnehaha.  She stated that she understood that currently the County’s 2008-09 budget had $9,774,028 in a stormwater account and presented a study by the County that had many projects identified.  She opined that it was time to start getting construction projects going.

            Commr. Cadwell suggested that the Board have Ms. Hall set up a date for a workshop so that they could discuss and get educated about the stormwater plans for the next five years and include the cities and the Water Authority to ask them to bring their projects forward.  He added that some of the cities have their own stormwater utilities and have projects that the County coordinates with on a staff level, but not particularly on an elected official level.

            Commr. Renick stated that there were some that felt that the County has drifted away from the emphasis on stormwater and that they needed to refocus on that as a major direction that they were going to take.  She mentioned that they had the plan in place, knew what they needed to do, and it was just a matter of going forward with it.


            Mr. Fletcher Smith, Community Services Director, stated that they first came before the Board on October 28 regarding the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, and they obtained permission to work with Guardian Community Resource Management to help them prepare an application to HUD (Housing and Urban Development) to use the $3.1 million that they received.  He mentioned that there were 4100 houses in Lake County that were in foreclosure.  He commented that $3.1 million would not have a real significant effect on that, but they have been working with a number of community partners, including Habitat for Humanity and Homes in Partnership.  They have had several meetings, including one with all the municipalities to discuss the problems they were experiencing in their jurisdictions and how they wanted to see some of the funds spent.  He reported that they have prepared a draft of a plan that went on the County web page on November 10, which would meet the 15-day public inspection requirement for having the plan come back to the Board on November 25 for final approval and submission to HUD.

            Mr. Bill Gearing, Community Enhancement Coordinator, gave a power point presentation on a strategy for the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, where the County would fund, work with, and make agreements with various non-profits, who would be the ones buying and rehabbing the properties and turning them into affordable housing or supportive-housing type facilities.  He mentioned that the plan was currently on the website and would be there through November 24 as required by the bill to be available for 15 days for public comment.  He related that they basically used statistics from HUD to develop a map with help from GIS, which they were using in their plan.  He showed where they believed their greatest destabilization could happen in the County, based on the decline of home values, the percentage of loans that were high cost, unemployment rates, and properties that had been vacant for at least 90 days.  He showed a map they made using this data that was color coded to show where the highest risk parts of the County were supposed to be as well as foreclosed properties that he found, which were represented by dots on the map.  He stated that they were looking for foreclosed properties that would cost under $120,000 to buy, rehab, and resell them at affordable prices.  He commented that most of the foreclosed properties were in the city limits of Leesburg, Eustis, and Clermont, so they would be working with those cities to execute this program.  He reported that they would probably be able to do about 29 homes and that they were required to put at least 25 percent of the funds they receive into the low income category.  He noted that the goal of the program was to stabilize neighborhoods and emphasized that it was a requirement that they get their plan to HUD on December 1, or they would lose the money.

            Commr. Renick commented that the Board did not have to necessarily go with the option of creating permanent supportive housing.  She clarified that this program would not be saving people from foreclosure, but would help neighborhoods that were spiraling downward because of vacant homes that were not being taken care of and ruining residents’ property values.

            Commr. Hill stated that she was comfortable with working with Habitat for Humanity and those types of organizations to provide affordable housing, but she was a little bit more uncomfortable with community resident housing.

            Commr. Cadwell explained that a situation may come along where the purchase of a building by another nonprofit such as LifeStream would stabilize that community.  He also pointed out, however, that he thought they would run out of money before they even got to that category.  He thought they should give direction to staff of their higher priorities, but to bring things like that back to them for discussion if they see something in another category.  He asked if anyone from the public wanted to comment on this issue.

            Mr. Vance Jochim stated that he was concerned that this would bring people into a neighborhood that would not have a lot of income into the homes and might not appreciate the values of the neighborhood.  He was also concerned that there would not be input from other residents in the neighborhood regarding who these people would be.

            Ms. Leslie Campione stated that LifeStream purchased homes like this all the time, and residents did not necessarily even know they were in their neighborhood.   She commented that in some instances there may be only two or three individuals living in one of those homes who were supervised.  She opined that they would be very good stewards of that neighborhood.

            Mr. Jim Fischer with Habitat for Humanity stated that they were very excited to be partners in this program and that it came at a very unique time in the County.  He related that they had about 60 applicants recently, and they have boiled it down to 34 applicants who were in the screening process with them right now for their general program.  He commented that this would work very well and come from the areas they were specifically talking about.


            Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, mentioned that they would be seeing three major stormwater projects in the next three months totaling almost $6 million.  He commented that there has been a lot of discussion and activity regarding the location of the Minneola interchange and the interface with the proposed Hancock Road Extension and North Grassy Lake Road.

            Ms. Kelly Peterson of Gladding Jackson gave a power point presentation and started by looking at the existing access on the Turnpike, noting that to the north of the proposed location was the existing interchange with US Hwy 27 and to the south was the interchange at Hwy 50.  She commented that there was not sufficient access on the Turnpike to allow access from the high growth areas in Minneola and north Clermont and that the turnpike essentially blocks north/south movement in the region.  She related that the proposed full-access interchange would be designed and constructed in coordination with the Hancock and North Grassy Lake Road improvements, and the proposed location essentially splits the difference between the two existing interchanges and would provide the north/south major collector that tied into the roadway network all the way to Tavares.  She went on to explain that the Hills of Minneola was the catalyst for this interchange, but there was a lot of need in the region, which was illustrated by the proposed and approved future developments in the area totaling 930,000 square feet of commercial retail, 2 million square feet of office, 1.4 million square feet of industrial, and 13,000 single and multi-family residential units.  She showed the preliminary concept that they were working on in conjunction with the Turnpike to develop, and she mentioned that the design does include the potential for a second loop in the northeast quadrant, which would not be built initially.  She related that the benefits of this new regional access to the Turnpike for Lake County, the City of Minneola, the Town of Montverde, and the City of Clermont residents would include congestion relief and some economic benefit resulting from the new access to the interchange.  She stated that they have worked in coordination with the City of Minneola project, and they were at the final stages of the alternatives analysis.  She also reported that they were at the beginning of the comparative evaluation of the build versus a no-build scenario, and they hoped to obtain SEIR approval by August of 2009.

            Commr. Renick commented that she did not think that current residents and landowners in that area were happy with this project and that she thought this was for the benefit of future residents, but she understood that this was the solution for what was there now and appreciated all the work they put in on it.

            PUBLIC HEARING


            Mr. Stivender recapped that the countywide five-year work program was approved in August and mentioned that the Lake Shore Drive and Harder Road intersection had been in design for several years and was identified in the Transportation Construction Program as a 2010 project.  He explained that they were able to secure all the right of way and all the permits over the summer and were in a position to put turn lane improvements and a signalized intersection at this location.  He noted that this was a safety project, since there have been accidents resulting from the 8,000 cars a day going through this intersection, and they wanted to move forward with moving this from a 2010 project to a 2009 project.  He related that they had a project that was somewhat on hold in the Clermont area that they utilized the $500,000 from to move forward with this.  He pointed out that pricing was good right now, and they were excited about being able to move forward with this project.

            The Chairman opened the public hearing.

            Mr. Jim Purvis, a resident of the City of Clermont, was concerned that $500,000 was being diverted from the Hook Street project in Clermont.  He inquired what impact that would have on the development that was depending on completion of Hook Street before they could move forward and get their final permits.

            Mr. Stivender responded that there was $3.8 million set aside, and the phase that was in operation which cost $1.5 million could still go forward.  He added that there was some DOT (Department of Transportation) money available that could extend the project even further.  He assured Mr. Purvis that the project he was concerned about would still happen.

            Commr. Renick pointed out that the Lakeshore Drive project was ready to go, but they were still trying to obtain right of way for the Hooks Street project.

            There being no further individuals who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing.

            On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 44, the request to advertise for bids for the #1040 Lakeshore Drive with #1039 Harder Road Intersection Improvement Project No. 2009-04 at an estimated cost of $500,000.00 from Road Impact Fees Benefit District 5 Fund.  Commission District 2.


            The Chairman announced at 11:15 a.m. that there would be a ten-minute recess.




Mr. Doug Krueger, Budget Director, noted that Tabs 38 and 39 were similar in that they were adjustments to last fiscal year 2007-08 to essentially realign budget appropriations to match actual expenditures by major category within the fund in the department.  He explained that the only difference between Tabs 38 and 39 was that on Tab 39, in addition to these realignments of expenditure for budget appropriations, they were also appropriating $125,668 in state mutual aid that Lake County Fire Rescue provided in support to the City of Deland during the wildfire earlier this year.

On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 38, the budget change requests to reconcile budgeted to actual expenditures for all major object codes for FY 2007/08 in accordance with County Policy LLC-36 and generally accepted accounting principles.


Commr. Renick expressed concern about the overtime issue and wanted to discuss that.

Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, explained that there seemed to be two areas that were emerging as to what has contributed to the overage of the firefighter overtime. She specified that one was that the Fire Department in the past has hired firefighters that they have called overhires for the purpose of supplying overtime needs as other fire fighters were called out.  However, in the past two to three years those overhire positions have been permanently assigned to the Bay Lake Station and to stations where it was part of their first response agreements with other entities to have three people per shift, which has taken them out of the pool for overtime and put them into assigned positions.  The other area that they were looking at was that firefighters get a fairly large share of money in their contract on an annual basis as part of their salary that is overtime, but the $400,000 total may not have been counted in their salary projection systems, so they need to go back and look at their process to make sure that they were capturing that.  She noted that the department has already issued a memo to all of the personnel in the Fire Rescue Department with ways to curtail overtime for the current year, and they were taking it very seriously that the overtime seems to be coming in higher than they have budgeted in the past.  She assured the Board that they would be monitoring that very carefully and that Mr. Krueger and the Budget Office were putting together methods to monitor all revenues and expenditures on a very regular monthly and quarterly basis to report to the Board, and they were putting together processes that would help in the future to alleviate this issue.

Commr. Cadwell asked Mr. Krueger if his department would be able to track this.  He commented that it was the department’s responsibility to make sure they had the right numbers initially at the start of the year.  He pointed out, however, that he did not know any fire department that has ever budgeted the right amount of overtime, and every year they have had to adjust the overtime for fire services.

Mr. Krueger assured him that he would be able to track that, and hopefully they would get closer than what they were able to this year to what the actual expenditures would be.

Commr. Cadwell commented that the only way to completely cure any type of public safety overtime issues was to hire more people than they could afford.  However, he noted that they needed to keep that in mind and try to budget close to the actual cost.  He also thought that they needed to monitor that to avoid a large end of the year adjustment.

Commr. Stewart related that she felt comfortable after Mr. Krueger explained to her the new policies that were put into place to keep this from happening again.

Commr. Conner asked Mr. Krueger to inform them of what the total figures were regarding the issue with the salaries, the overtime, and the remedy he was requesting.

Mr. Krueger specified that the appropriation for overtime was approximately $900,000, and they spent $1.9 million total on overtime.  He explained that they were asking adjustments in this budget to move $654,000 out of reserve for operations into their salary line item, because they did not need the full $1 million, since they already had some surplus monies in the personal services category.

Commr. Renick pointed out that the whole overtime issue was really unique to fire services.

Commr. Conner stated that there had to be a better way to manage the overtime, because they had gone from $600,000 in 2004/05 to $1.9 in 2007/08, which was a dramatic increase.  He commented that there were probably some budgeting issues, but there were some monitoring expenditure issues that they have to stay on top of.  He opined that the solution was for the Board either through policy or some other type of action to require on a quarterly basis year to date expenditures so they could see well in advance where there was a problem.

Commr. Hill pointed out that the historical numbers could be misleading, because there were four hurricanes in 2004/05 resulting in a lot of FEMA money, which may have gone to overtime that may have actually been greater than this year.  She also noted that the County currently has a lot more personnel and stations than they had in 2004.  She stated that the County Manager had assured her that the money was actually spent appropriately and noted Mr. Krueger had the monitoring under control with a program to fit this particular model that would go with the firefighters’ contract, since it was a little different than the rest of the County employees.

Commr. Renick also expressed concern about the computer program that did not kick out these payments for personnel.

Ms. Hall commented that that should not be an issue, because the overtime component of it needed to be manually calculated, and so it was something that they could build in.

On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 39, Resolution No. 2008-186 to recognize revenue from the State of Florida for the provision of mutual aid to Deland during a declared state of emergency and the attached budget transfer to cover overdrafts as well as budget transfer to cover overtime and operating supplies overdraft; and approval to reduce a portion of the administrative fee paid to the General Fund.  This item reflects final budget adjustments for FY 2007/08.



Mr. Fletcher Smith, Community Services Director, stated that they were asking for approval of the public housing agency payment standards for this upcoming year 2009 and that each year HUD publishes and sets forth what is the acceptable amount of rent that they would pay on one through five bedroom unit apartments, which was shown on an attachment to their agenda cover sheet.  He explained that HUD allowed the housing agents to pay anywhere between 90 to 110 percent of that rate, and they paid up to 90 percent of this rate in Lake County.

On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 40, the request from Community Services for approval of the public housing agency payment standards for fiscal year 2009 effective January 1, 2009.


Mr. Ken Harley, Public Transportation Director, asked for approval of an agreement with Florida Department of Transportation (DOT) for their Transit Block Grant, which was used to help offset their fuel costs in public transportation.  He specified that the amount of the grant was $345,941; they were matching that with $345,000; and their 2008/09 budget was predicated upon receiving this grant from DOT.

On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 41, the request from Community Services for approval of the Joint Participation Agreement between the Florida Department of Transportation and the Board of County Commissioners and supporting Resolution No. 2008-187 for the Public Transit Block Grant.



Mr. Dave Vasquez, Fleet Maintenance, Procurement Department, stated that Tab 42 was recommending that the Board approve the final negotiated contract for a CompData System for the Fire Rescue Electronic Identification System.  He mentioned that this was originally approved back on August 19, 2008, but further action to approve the final pricing contract was required and that the cost was $230,000 over a five-year term.

On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Tab 42 for approval of the final negotiated contract with CompData Systems for the Fire Rescue Division Electronic Identification System.



Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, pointed out that there were a lot of issues back in 2003 and 2004 about having a study done, because not all of the properties involved were included in those developments.  He related that in 2006 they entered into an agreement with Minneola to manage the project, which was funded through impact fees, and since they were the leading agency and the annexations were occurring in the city, it felt appropriate for the city to manage the overall project.  He noted that there were some changes in city administration which delayed the project until June of 2007.  He commented that there were a lot of issues that occurred, such as school site location and reprioritization of projects, that were included in the study, and this presentation by HNTB was regarding the recommended project from the City.  He also mentioned that there might be some people that would want to speak regarding this project.

Mr. Luis Diaz with HNTB Corporation stated that they started this project the summer of 2007 and that he would give them a quick briefing of the whole project, the process that they went through, and the final selected recommendation to the Minneola City Council that they were bringing to the Board for approval.  He stated that the project started at US Hwy 27, went east along North Grassy Lake/ Citrus Grove Road to the intersection with Turkey Farm Road and North Hancock Road, and then south to Old County Road 50.  He reported that they were currently in the PD&E Study phase to come up with an alignment of the corridor, and the purpose of the study was mainly to maximize the use of the project corridor to handle future traffic demands, minimize impacts to the surrounding community, and improve traffic safety in the area.  He explained that the project was needed because there was a lot of growth in the area of Minneola, Clermont, and the Turnpike interchange, and there were issues with the capacity of the existing roadway network in the area.  He also mentioned that they had to coordinate with the surrounding developers to make sure that all the issues in the area were being addressed.  He related that they had a very thorough public involvement process, including newsletters, widely advertised public meetings, and briefings before the city council; and throughout the life of the project they had a Project Advisory Group made up of county staff, city staff, and the MPO.  He explained that some of the concerns brought up at the public meetings included protection of the environment, noise, traffic, safety along the corridor, right of way on North Grassy Lake Road, and that the developers bear part of the cost of this project, and some later concerns were regarding loss of homes, multi-use trails, and economical spending.

Mr. Diaz explained that they looked at the alternative alignments and evaluated them while keeping in mind the needs and desires of the community, projected traffic volumes and capacity, available right-of-way, and avoidance of sensitive lands.  He stated that the alignment they originally came up with started at US Hwy 27, headed east, tied into the improvements that were proposed by Founder’s Ridge in that area, was realigned in order to get rid of some of the 90 degree turns that currently existed, avoided the cell tower, and minimized impacts to existing properties; and he went through the available alternatives.  He specified that the recommendation that was made to City Council was Alignment A on the north side and Alignment C on the southern section, but at the September 16 meeting, City Council decided to go with Alignment A in the north section and Alignment C2 in the southern section, which was the one being forwarded to the Board for final approval, including a shifted Hills of Minneola, a shifting in the southern portion, and to have the ponds relocated based on public comment. However, he commented that this alignment was located on the east side of the utility easement and has some impact to some of the property in the north.  He related that the next step after approval would be to go into design and right-of-way acquisition when funds become available.

The Chairman opened the public hearing.

Mayor David Yeager, City of Minneola, commented that Turkey Farm Road had not been improved for years and that this was a very important decision.  He asked the Board to hold off on this and to make sure to check the cost of whatever alternative they decide on.  He pointed out that someone would be affected by any of the alternatives that were proposed and that because of financial concerns, it will take a while to fund this.  He opined that the C2 alignment was an improper alignment for what they were trying to achieve, including a major way to get to the Turnpike.  He clarified that he was speaking on behalf of himself, and not on behalf of the City Council.

Mr. Bruce Bradford, owner and developer of Big Sky Estates, gave a chronology of events on this piece of property and informed the Board that he purchased this in December of 2004.  He related that they started their design about May of 2005 and sent the drawings down to the Engineering Division of Public Works for review, at which time the County stated that they wanted another 20 feet in addition to the 15 feet already given along the west boundary to be able to shift the road a little more to the right.  They got their preliminary plat approved in August of 2005 which reflects the current design.  He also mentioned that it took until December of 2007 to get the road paved by the developer of Pine Bluff, which held up the final approval of his project.  He received his final plat from the City of Minneola in April of 2008, and he was in town to put a model home on Lot 1 when he heard about the selected alternative of the road at the City Council meeting.  He emphasized that the possibility of the alignment coming through his property has put his project on hold, and he stated that he needed the Board to make a decision that day, since this has already cost him a great deal in interest and he needed to figure out what to do.  He also related that his loan matures on January 1, 2009 on that piece of property.  He noted that he was willing to negotiate expeditiously for acquisition of right of way.

Mr. T. J. Fish, Executive Director of the MPO, related that they have been working with Minneola and county staff on the planning of this for several years.  He noted that this road and the concept of providing this network to a potential interchange was in the adopted MPO 2025 plan and that once this road and the interchange were provided, it will provide relief on SR 50 and Old 50, which have failed concurrency and were over capacity.  He also pointed out that once the engineers were hired to design the road, they would find out if there were flaws with the C2 alignment.

Mr. Sam Oppelaar, City Manager of Minneola speaking on behalf of himself, thanked the HNTB staff for the excellent study they provided for them and offered his support for the Board’s consideration.

Commr. Renick mentioned that the School Board also had a voice in this decision, but that they could still open the school without this road being built.

Mr. Stivender noted that the reason this was on the agenda now was because of the time schedules of what was occurring out there, and they were concentrating from Hancock north to Fosgate, which was the north corner of the school.  He stated that their timeline and lack of capital dollars did not allow them to construct this by the time the school would open, but meanwhile they could work on design and right of way acquisition and hope that some of the large developers such as the Hills of Minneola could help fund the construction of this road.

Commr. Renick felt that they should make a decision quickly on this issue, since it has already been going on too long.  She did not think there was a large difference in the monetary cost of the possible alignments, but the C2 alternative chosen by the City Council reduced the cost to people of the loss of their homes, which is why they did not go with the preferred change from the engineers.  She stated that she believed that this was still a good route, and she recommended approval of the route approved by the City Council.

On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Alignment A in the north section and Alignment C2 in the southern section as the Final Alignment for the Minneola Collector Road PD&E Study.

Commr. Hill inquired whether they were going to rename some of the roads that currently contained confusing names.

Mr. Stivender stated that they were in the process of renaming several roads in that area, and that would all be worked out as part of the process.



On a motion by Commr. Conner, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the execution of Resolution No. 2008-189 appointing Mr. Andrew O’Keefe and reappointing Ms. Ann Dupee, Mr. Bud Beucher, Ms. Nancy Howell, and Mr. Vic Donahey to vacant positions on the Tourist Development Council for four-year terms beginning December 1, 2008.


On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Conner, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the appointment of Ms. Joanne Close to the vacant Commission District 2 seat on the Library Advisory Board to complete an unexpired term ending February 28, 2011.



Commr. Hill inquired whether there was a workshop scheduled in December.

Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, stated that they were looking to schedule one for that month and that they had tentatively scheduled one on the 12th.  However, she related that there was a conflict on that day, so they may look at changing that possibly to the 18th.

Commr. Cadwell noted that myregion.org was going to meet on the 12th with the entire Central Florida legislative delegation, and Lake County would need to have a representative there.

Commr. Renick gave direction to Ms. Hall to invite the Constitution Officers to the workshop.


On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Proclamation No. 2008-190 for Hospice Month.



On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill, and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Green Mountain Scenic Byway Resolution No. 2008-192 to help obtain the national designation.


Commr. Renick directed Ms. Hall to send a letter to Tallahassee of the County’s continued support of Promise Ranch’s pursuit of a conservation easement.  She recapped that Promise Ranch was a 1500 acre parcel near Umatilla, and she reported that they have been scheduled December 3 before the Cabinet aides and scheduled on December 9 before the Cabinet and the Governor.



Commr. Conner mentioned that he recently learned that there was money in the budget in the County’s Economic Growth and Development Department to hire a marketing person, which he did not support.  He believed that their EDC (Economic Development Council) Director for the County should be the marketing person, especially since it was listed in her job description.

Commr. Cadwell stated that they had a discussion regarding that position during the budget process, and they were trying to send a message to the business community that they were committed to economic development.  He commented that the new employee would be an additional person to reach out to the business community and market to the existing businesses, and he thought there was going to be enough for more than one person to do.  He was concerned that not filling that position would send a bad signal to the business community.

Commr. Hill opined that they needed to put the people and the money in place to do this, and economic development would not just jumpstart itself.  She commented that there was so much to be done, and she was looking forward to having the second person there.  She also pointed out that they have put in place a whole committee which would need to be directed.


Commr. Conner thanked all the employees that helped him transition and mentioned that the Clerk of the Court, the County Manager, and the County Attorney’s Offices had all been very helpful to him.  He appreciated the welcome that the staff has given him and the fact that the atmosphere has been very accommodating.



            On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved Proclamation No. 2008-191 for Hunger and Homelessness Week.


            Mr. Jim Purvis, a resident of Clermont, started by strongly complimenting the caliber of the current leadership and staff of Lake County, stating that the staff was second to none.  He also mentioned that he had sent several e-mails to Mr. Stivender concerning the terrible, deteriorating condition of Hartwood Marsh Road between Hwy 27 and the county line.  He pointed out that it was now serving as a major arterial road to Winter Garden businesses, and the traffic has increased immeasurably on that stretch of road, which was not built for that type of traffic.  He was greatly concerned about the sections on either side of the road that dropped off steeply, and he felt that this matter urgently needed to be addressed as a matter of public safety.  He urged the Board to have staff immediately look into this matter and move forward on it.


            There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 12:50 p.m.



                                                                        WELTON G. CADWELL, CHAIRMAN