REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
DECEMBER 2, 2008
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, December 2, 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; Elaine Renick; Jimmy Conner; 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; Neil Kelly, Clerk; Barbara F. Lehman, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance, and Ellie McDonald, Deputy Clerk.
Reverend Dr. S. William Tyson, from the Union Congregational Church in Tavares gave the Invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
SELECTION OF CHAIRMAN AND VICE-CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD
Commr. Cadwell opened the floor for appointment of the Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Board for 2009.
Commr. Hill stated that everything was moving smoothly with the present leadership and with his approval she would like Commr. Cadwell to remain as Chairman.
Commr. Renick commented that she agreed that the present leadership was running smoothly and suggested Commr. Hill to remain as Vice Chairman.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the appointments of Commr. Cadwell as Chairman and Commr. Hill as Vice Chairman for 2009.
Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, commented that she had informed everyone by email that there was a slight change in Tab 3, Item 1, to include a new account number, 4541345. She stated that they had an Addendum to approve the 2009 Legislative Position and authorize the Chairman to present Lake County’s positions to the Lake County Delegation on December 12, 2008; and to approve 2009 Legislative Positions approved by the Florida Association of Counties (FAC), which was listed under Presentation. She stated that she had been asked by staff to postpone Tab 8 to December 16, 2008. She also requested that Tabs 4 and 6 be pulled for comments.
Commr. Renick noted a change in the Minutes of November 4, 2008, on page 10, line 5, stating that for purposes of clarification the language should read “reducing” rather than “changing” since it was referring to a dollar figure regarding Sponsorship.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously, by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of October 28, 2008 (Regular Meeting), as presented; October 28, 2008 (Special Joint Meeting); and November 4, 2008 (Regular Meeting), as corrected.
CLERK OF COURT’S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Conner and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Clerk of Court’s Consent Agenda, as follows:
List of Warrants
Request to acknowledge receipt of 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.
Monthly Distribution of Revenue
Request to acknowledge receipt of Monthly Distribution of Revenue Traffic/Criminal Cases, for the Month Ending October 31, 2008, in the amount of $186,378.56. Same period, last year: $201,884.05.
ST. JOHNS RIVER WATER MANAGEMENT DISTRICT MEETING SCHEDULE
Request to acknowledge receipt of 2009 Governing Board Meeting Schedule for St. Johns River Water Management District. Meetings are held at Palatka District Headquarters, 4049 Reid Street, Palatka, Florida.
CITY OF FRUITLAND PARK ORDINANCE
Request to acknowledge receipt of copy of Ordinance 2008-016 amending the boundaries of the City of Fruitland Park by including within the City approximately 1.0 acres of property generally located north of Eagles Nest Road, West of U.S. Highway 441, and south of Lake Ella Road, and rezoning the property from Lake County “C-2” (Community Commercial District) to “C-2” (General Commercial) within the City Limits of Fruitland Park.
FLORIDA HEALTHY KIDS PROGRAM
Mr. Fletcher Smith, Director of Community Services, stated that Tab 4 requested approval to serve as the lead agency in Lake County to work with various agencies and organizations within the County that have contact with school age children and their parents to provide them with training to enroll their uninsured children in the Healthy Kids Program. He commented that approximately two years ago they had a grant from Florida Healthy Kids to enroll uninsured children which resulted in an enrollment of more than 311 children in a seven month period. He stated that the focus in Lake County would be putting these organizations together and to provide training for those organizations and agencies to assist parents in completing and submitting applications to the State to insure their children.
Commr. Hill stated that the program was still under the State and that the County would simply be the lead agency.
Mr. Smith mentioned that there seemed to be a disconnect from the State level down to the local level for getting children enrolled in this program.
Commr. Hill mentioned that it appeared the State was trying to cut this program and she was concerned they were trying to shift the cost to the County.
Mr. Smith commented that the only money involved was $1,000 to assist the County in coordinating the meetings and stated that it was a great program providing insurance for uninsured children.
EXTENDED MEDICAL/HEALTH COVERAGE FOR OVER-AGED DEPENDENTS
Ms. Susan Irby, Employee Services, stated that Tab 6 was a request to amend the County’s current medical plan extending the dependent age eligibility in accordance with Senate Bill 2534. She stated that this Bill allowed over-aged dependents (aged 25 to the end of the calendar year in which they turn 30 years of age) to be covered so long as they meet certain criteria including that they were not married and do not have their own dependents. She explained that the interpretation of the Bill and its impact on Statute by the County Attorney’s office, as well as recommendation from Blue Cross, insists that the County comply with this mandate and asked the Board’s approval to implement this process. She further stated that the dependents must be a student or live in the State of Florida.
Commr. Stewart expressed her desire to make it clear to the public that the County is complying with this as a requirement of the State.
Commr. Conner commended the County for the impressive manner in which it has been able to keep health care costs under control in a market where there is a lot of volatility with annual double-digit rate increases. He commented that the recommendation before the Board and reason for charging the COBRA premium was to keep the County’s health care costs at a minimum premium to the employees.
Commr. Cadwell stated that the value of the County’s Wellness Program and what it offers cannot be underestimated and they are beginning to reap the benefits of the program.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
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 3-14, with Tabs 4, and 6 having being pulled for discussion, and postponing Tab 8, as follows:
Request from Budget for Change Requests and Check Request.
Budget transfer - Environmental Recovery Fund, Department of Environmental Utilities, Water Quality Services Division to transfer $6,000 from Reserve for Operations to Repair and Maintenance. Water Quality Services receives two to four calls per month requesting heating oil pump outs. This service was previously contracted out; however, vendor rate increases have made this method uneconomical. Public Safety transferred an existing trailer to Water Quality Services, which will be refurbished to include a 300 gallon double-wall tank, pump, compressor, hoses, and ladders, etc. Refurbishing the existing trailer will allow Water Quality Services to provide more convenient pump out services, and potential revenue for recovered heating oil. Funds are available in Reserve for Operations. After this transfer, the balance in the Reserve for Operations account will be $102,292. The new account number for Home Heating Oil is 4541345 as noted by Ms. Cindy Hall, County Attorney.
Budget transfer - Affordable Housing Assistance Trust Fund, Department of Community Services. This transfer will consolidate and realign State Housing Initiative Partnership (SHIP) expenditures with the appropriate budgetary account.
Approval of request for payment of invoice for inmate. The request exceeds the County Manager's approval limit of $25,000. Total payment is for $37,440.42.
Request for approval and authorization of the Chairman of the Board of County Commissioners to sign the amended and restated agreement between Lake County and the Lake County School Board to provide all students with the opportunity to participate in the Career, Adult & Community Education Driver’s Education Program - Behind the Wheel Training.
Request for authorization to release a maintenance bond in the amount of $117,850 posted for Overlook at Lake Louisa Phase II. Overlook at Lake Louisa Phase II consists of 105 lots and is located in Section 7, Township 23 South, Range 26 East. Commission District 2.
Request for approval to advertise for bids for the Hollondel Road Regional Stormwater Pond at an estimated cost of $2,000,000.00 from Stormwater Management Fund. Commission District 3.
Request for approval and signature of Resolution No. 2008-200 authorizing the posting of 45 MPH speed limit signs on the paved portion of Dewey Robbins Rd (2824) from US 27 to end of pavement at Turkey Lake Rd, south of Leesburg.
Request for approval and execution of Resolution No. 2008-201 authorizing the posting of 45 MPH speed limit signs on the newly paved portion of North Hancock Rd (1345) (formally known as Turkey Farm Rd) from Jim Hunt north to the unpaved section south of Citrus Grove Rd, in Commission District 2.
Request for approval and execution of Resolution No. 2008-202 accepting 7th Street (County Road No. 6587C) into the County Road Maintenance System. 7th Street (County Road No. 6587C) is located within Section 32, Township 18 South, Range 28 East. Commission District 5.
Request for approval and execution of the submitted Subordination of Utility Interest Agreement between Lake County and the City of Eustis for the submitted project. Board signature is required because of County commitments relating to relocations and cost. Commission District 4.
Request to approve and accept the submitted list of public right of way deeds that have been secured in conjunction with roadway and / or stormwater projects. (Commission Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
COUNTY ATTORNEY’S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Hill and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved Tab 15 as follows:
Request from County Attorney for approval of the Second Amendment to Lease Agreement between Lake County and Florida Central Railroad Company, Inc. (“Florida Central”) relating to railroad right of way.
Jenny Born, Accounting Technician
Public Safety/Fire Rescue Division
Neal Milligan, GIS Analyst
Public Works/Engineering Division/Right-Of-Way
Robert Zimmerman, Environmental Specialist
Environmental Utilities/Water Quality Services
Steve Earls, Information Technology Director
Office of Information Technology
Denise Haynes, Office Associate II
Public Works/Road Operations Division Maintenance Area II
Cheryl Thomas, Financial Analyst (N/P)
Tourism & Business Relations
Carol Griffin, Scales Supervisor
Environmental Utilities/Solid Waste Disposal Operations Division
Arts and Cultural Alliance
Joseph Teri for service from 2007-2008 (N/P)
Industrial Development Authority
Kristen Bartch for service from 2004-2008 (N/P)
P. Shannon Elswick for service from 1998-2008
Richard Joyce for service from 2005-2008 (N/P)
Terry Miller for service from 2005-2008 (N/P)
Dr. Charles Mojock for service from 2002-2008
Keith Mullins for service from 2000-2008
Gregory Nelson for service from 2001-2008 (N/P)
Margo Odom for service from 1997-2008 (N/P)
David Pape for service from 2006-2008 (N/P)
Raymond San Fratello for service from 2005-2008
Scott Strong for service from 2001-2008 (N/P)
Glenn Tyre for service from 1991-2008
Library Advisory Board
Mary Malaszek for service from 2003-2008
Stan Melnick for service from 2007-2008
Public Land Acquisition Advisory Council
Carol Johnson for service from 2003-2008(N/P)
DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMIC GROWTH AND REDEVELOPMENT UPDATE
Ms. Dottie Keedy, Director of Economic Growth and Redevelopment, addressed the Board stating she would be presenting a departmental update and to introduce their partners from Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission (Metro Orlando EDC) and Enterprise Florida. She discussed their Strategic Plan which was adopted earlier this year noting that the Plan had four over-arching recommendations which were: to coordinate efforts with allies and leaders; enhance and diversify tax base through innovation, industry attraction and business development; promote quality of place; and develop, retain and attract talent. She commented that under those four recommendations were thirteen more specific recommendations for implementation and that she placed her departmental update in the context of those recommendations. She explained that the first recommendation was to create a county-wide partnership to support economic development and that they had been working with Metro Orlando EDC who has been tasked to put the Economic Development Council together. She stated that the second recommendation was to develop and expand internal resources for economic development which has been accomplished by fully staffing her department. As Director, she stated that she focuses on business recruitment; is the spokesperson for the department; and coordinates all functions and staff assignments. She stated that Mr. Cary Pierce recently joined their department as Business Development Coordinator and will focus on marketing and business retention, and expansion; Ms. Lori Barnes, Senior Planner focuses on redevelopment projects, development review and fast-track permitting; and Ms. Linda Green, Office Associate, focuses on the administrative functions. She reported that within the budget this year funding had been approved for incentive programs, marketing, and economic impact software.
Ms. Keedy mentioned that they were working on a consistent incentive program to replace the program they had which would be brought to the Board in January. The third recommendation was to strengthen leadership base and expand involvement and understanding of economic development which would be accomplished through their Economic Development Advisory Board; Chamber Alliance of Lake County; and Leadership Lake County. The fourth recommendation was to plan for adequate sites and infrastructure to support business and industrial development. She stated that the Christopher Ford Commerce Park was developed in the early 1990’s and was moving into Phase III and would be bringing a Notice of Proposed Change to the Development of Regional Impact (DRI) allowing them to build out the remainder of the park. She commented that they were also working with property owners in South Lake and Leesburg to provide infrastructure for industrial properties, and with the City of Mount Dora for the proposed office Employment Center. She explained that they developed a program to continue to support the retention and expansion of business as well as continuing to participate in the Industry Visitation Program with the Business Resource Center at Lake-Sumter Community College (LSCC) and the Chambers of Commerce. She stated that at the present time she was working on four projects with existing businesses on expansion within Lake County.
Ms. Keedy stated that the next recommendation was to develop an entrepreneurship program and that she was working with the LSCC Business Resource Center on a successful entrepreneurship program and the University of Central Florida (UCF) to fund staff at the Leesburg Business Incubator. She reported that they have launched a Lake County website for the Virtual Entrepreneur Center, noting the website as www.flvec.com which provides information to business owners starting or expanding a business. She also mentioned that she works with UCF Small Business Development Center located on the South Lake Campus of LSCC. Another recommendation was to initiate an external marketing campaign by completely redesigning their website which should be completed by January, working on a quarterly newsletter, and a marketing program for business attraction. She remarked that protecting and promoting green spaces and natural resources was a recommendation to promote business locations in downtowns and directing development to sites with existing infrastructure.
Ms. Keedy also spoke about promoting arts and entertainment, and development of an online registry for Lake County artists which has been turned over to Tourism to administer and the expansion and promotion of higher education opportunities with linkages between the college and the business community. She reported that she is a member of the Robotics Steering Committee along with Commr. Stewart.
Commr. Stewart commented that Ms. Keedy had introduced her to Robotics Teams last year and that it was a fabulous program where kids build robots using math and science skills. She stated that they have been working hard to get it started in the County noting that last year they had one team and this year they have two teams, one in Eastridge and one in this area. She explained that it takes approximately $6,000 for each high school team to get their materials and attend the competition and that they were working on raising those funds.
Ms. Keedy stated that the goal of the committee is to provide an opportunity for all Lake County students to be on a robotics team. She explained that the team purchases a kit which contains a laptop with all the technology, pieces and parts to assemble the robot and travel to UCF for the first level of competition. She commented that it was a great way to introduce students to careers in science and technology.
Commr. Stewart explained that they had prepared an evaluation of the expense of having a team in every school which was surprisingly low because they depend a lot on volunteers which keeps the cost significantly lower.
Commr. Conner questioned whether they could discuss the possibility of joint funding with the School Board for the high schools and what the appropriate venue would be to do so. He suggested that the funding opportunity be offered 50/50 with the School Board for each of the County’s seven high schools which would cost $21,000 from the County and $21,000 from the School Board. He commented that if Ms. Keedy would be willing to provide them with the hard cost figure, they could try to split the hard cost and give the School Board the incentive to get involved. He suggested that it be placed as an Agenda item seeking joint funding with the School Board, the County and the business community.
Commr. Cadwell suggested that procedurally they would bring the issue back under their business and would add it to the Agenda to take action today and move forward.
Commr. Conner stated that he was asking that the Board let Ms. Keedy work with the LPA to make sure they have a fair amount of industrial zoning in the proper places designated in the Comprehensive Plan.
Commr. Cadwell stated that they needed to make it clear that Ms. Keedy is there at the Board’s request, because different people have been received differently at the LPA.
Mr. Brian Sheahan, Planning Director, stated that the LPA was wrapping up the map and hoping to finalize it at the December 11 meeting. He reported that they have spent a great deal of time putting industrial, commercial, and office on the map, particularly in South Lake, including getting the South Lake Chamber’s recommendation for properties in that particular area and the appropriate future land use categories. He stated that he was confident that it had been looked at, but thought that Ms. Keedy’s additional input would be valuable.
Commr. Conner stated that based on what Mr. Sheahan just related to them the LPA has already addressed that, so he wanted to withdraw his request to have Ms. Keedy go to the LPA since they were so far along on the process. He added that it was an issue they want to discuss at the appropriate time to make sure they had enough industrial zoning.
Commr. Renick asked the Board about having Ms. Keedy look into the numbers for working with Clermont to get central water and sewer to a Clermont site that she felt was very appropriate for an industrial park. She thought it would be more effective than a lot of the other incentives to actually have the sites ready to go with what they need.
Ms. Keedy stated that she had money in her incentive funding and agreed with Commr. Renick that it was really in some ways a better incentive than giving cash.
Commr. Cadwell pointed out that this strategy worked in the Chris Ford park and thought it would be a good idea to look into that form of incentive.
Mr. Mike Bobroff, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Metro Orlando EDC stated that the twenty-year partnership that exists between the EDC and the County is very strong, and their work is to tell the world that Lake County and this region is a great place to do business. He commented that ultimately that is going to diversify the economy and improve the quality of life for many people. He mentioned that they were very proud of the fact that two-thirds of their total budget comes from the private sector. He explained that they are a full service operation, founded on three different economic development principles: attraction and recruitment of new industries to a region; helping the existing local industries to expand or stay there, because there are pressures to move elsewhere; and to create new business opportunities. He then introduced Mr. Declan Reiley, Vice President, Business Development of the Metro Orlando EDC, whose group is responsible for the majority of the recruitment.
Mr. Reiley addressed the Board stating that the EDC is responsible for five primary lines of business. The first line of business is marketing the region and what comprises the region. He also stated that the EDC has a very highly regarded public relations program that generates about 50 million business related P.R. impressions each year, and they have multiple websites that collaborate seamlessly with their partner county websites. He stated that the second line of business is international business development, and they try to get the message out on a global scale that Central Florida and Metro Orlando is open for international business and trade. They have two or three full time professionals in the international business development area of the EDC that travel internationally to initiate and arrange trade meetings between Central Florida businesses and other businesses. He explained that the third primary line of business is technology industry development, noting that over the last several years they have had some great success with credibly establishing a reputation for Metro Orlando as a place where technology thrives and that there is a lot of creativity and innovation going on in the technology arena that often overlaps with the entertainment and military presence within Metro Orlando. He mentioned that the fourth line of business is film, entertainment and digital media development, in which Lake County has had some real success. He related that Bridal Bootcamp, a reality television show, was shot in northern Lake County last year and will air this Spring on TNN. Also, the criminal forensics television show, Dr. G Medical Examiner, was shot in, and regularly returns to, Lake County. He noted that the spirit of cooperation the advanced planners receive from law enforcement agencies in Lake County is second to none. The fifth line of business he talked about was business retention and recruitment expansion. He then displayed a slide showing the prospect management process and explained in detail the fundamental steps within the process.
Ms. Liefke Cox, Director of Enterprise Florida, Inc. (EFI) explained that EFI was created in 1996 as the State’s replacement for the Department of Commerce and is the State’s one economic development organization partnered with each county via a primary partner. She stated that they are responsible for creating high wage jobs in Florida, trying to increase the average wage in Florida, and bringing in companies that can create high wage jobs. She explained that their Divisions are comprised of Business Recruiting & Retention; Marketing; External Affairs; and International Trade & Business Development, which are very similar to the Orlando EDC Divisions. She reported that they have EFI locations throughout the world, and seven field offices in Florida. She referred to a slide showing EFI’s locations across the world stating that they hold international trade missions which are attended by them and the Orlando EDC. She commented that they bring leads back and help the businesses make exporting deals with Florida.
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
At 10:30 a.m. the Chairman announced that the Board would recess until 10:40 a.m.
COUNTY MANAGER’S DEPARTMENTAL BUSINESS
STUDENTS RIDING FREE ON LAKEXPRESS IN DECEMBER AND JANUARY
Mr. David Hope, Fixed Route Coordinator, addressed the Board and stated that Tab 18 was a request to allow free rides to students for the months of December and January. He commented that any student may ride free of charge, whether they are fifteen years of age or fifty years of age, by presenting their student identification card.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved Tab 18 allowing students to ride LakeXpress free in December and January.
ADJUSTMENTS TO FISCAL YEAR 2008-09 BUDGET
Mr. Doug Krueger, Budget Director, stated that the Board was being asked to approve Resolution No. 2008-203 modifying the Fiscal Year 2008-09 budget to recognize purchase orders that were entered in Fiscal Year 2007-08, but remained open as of September 30, 2008. He stated that these were some of the major purchase orders of about $57 million which included $9.5 million for the radio system and $34 million for the Property Appraiser and Tax Collector facilities, parking garage and energy plant in downtown Tavares as well as several road projects. He mentioned that in addition, they were asking the Board to approve the re-budget of three projects that were inadvertently left off the re-budget amendment brought before the Board in October which was $100,000 in Job Growth Incentive (JGI) funds and approximately $404,000 related to projects at the landfill. He noted that this was a public hearing which was properly advertised in the Orlando Sentinel on Friday, November 28, 2008.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Renick and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved adjustments to the FY 2008-09 budget appropriating the balance of funding on various purchase orders from FY 2007-08 that remained open as of September 30, 2008, as well as re-budgeting funding for three projects from FY 2007-08 that remained unexpended as of September 30, 2008, and approved Resolution No. 2008-203 adopting a supplemental budget for Fiscal Year 2008-09.
ORDINANCE RELATING TO CHAPTER V-A, LDRS, ENTITLED NECESSARY
PUBLIC SERVICES AND FACILITIES REGARDING EXPIRATION DATE FOR
THE SCHOOL CONCURRENCY ORDINANCE
Mr. Sandy Minkoff, County Attorney, stated that Tab 20 was the first of two public hearings as follows:
AN ORDINANCE OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF LAKE COUNTY, FLORIDA; AMENDING CHAPTER V-A, ENTITLED NECESSARY PUBLIC SERVICES AND FACILITIES, SECTION 5A.01.02, ENTITLED APPLICABILITY, IN ORDER TO EXTEND THE EXPIRATION DATE; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; PROVIDING FOR INCLUSION IN THE CODE; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Mr. Minkoff stated that this Ordinance prohibits new residential lots and buildings from being built unless they have assurance from the School Board that there is adequate school capacity for those homes. He stated that this was an interim step while they were going through the school concurrency process. He commented that he was pleased to note that in December Mr. Sheahan will present to the Board the actual School Concurrency Amendment for approval. He commented that once approved and the LDRs have been updated, they will be able to withdraw this Ordinance. He stated that it was their goal to withdraw the Ordinance by March 2009, but this would extend it through the end of 2009.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one who wished to address the Board, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Hill, seconded by Commr. Renick and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the first reading of the proposed ordinance, as read by title only, amending Chapter V-A, entitled Necessary Public Services and Facilities, Section 5A.01.02, regarding expiration date for the School Concurrency Ordinance.
APPOINTMENTS TO THE LAKE-SUMTER METROPOLITAN PLANNING
ORGANIZATION BICYCLE & PEDESTRIAN ADVISORY COMMITTEE
Commr. Cadwell stated that Mr. Scot Hartle, representing District 2, and Mr. Richard Dunkel, representing District 4, were seeking reappointment to the Lake-Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization (LSMPO) Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Committee.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the reappointment of Mr. Scot Hartle, representing District 2, and Mr. Richard Dunkel, representing District 4, to the LSMPO Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Committee to serve two-year terms beginning January 1, 2009.
APPOINTMENTS TO THE LAKE-SUMTER METROPOLITAN PLANNING
ORGANIZATION CITIZENS’ ADVISORY COMMITTEE
Commr. Cadwell stated that Mr. Brian Herman, representing District 2, and Mr. Donald Griffey, representing District 4, were seeking reappointment to the LSMPO Citizens’ Advisory Committee (CAC).
On a motion by Commr. Stewart, seconded by Commr. Renick and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the reappointment of Mr. Brian Herman, representing District 2, and Mr. Donald Griffey, representing District 4, to the LSMPO Citizens’ Advisory Committee to serve two-year terms beginning January 1, 2009.
CURRENT STATUS OF CONSTRUCTION AND RENOVATION PROJECTS
Mr. Jim Bannon, Director of Capital Construction and Facilities, presented his quarterly report on construction projects under his purview. He began with Phase One of the downtown projects comprised of the 320 West Main Building, which will house the Tax Collector and Property Appraiser; the parking garage; and the central energy plant. He stated that their projected completion date is May 2009, and that the project was on schedule, within budget, and expected savings in the project as they move forward.
Commr. Cadwell interjected that he had several comments from the Constitutional Officers about how great the architects have been to work with through this process and what a good selection that was.
Mr. Bannon agreed that they have a great relationship with the architects and everything has moved smoothly. He mentioned that the Phase Two Downtown Project was the Judicial Center expansion and renovation of the existing building. He stated that fifty percent of the documents were completed and that they were scheduled to present the Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) to the Board in February or March 2009. He reported that the Historic Courthouse re-roofing had been completed in November and they are working on the cornice restoration which should be completed by February 2009. He commented that the contract for the Public Works Special Project Facility, the supply canopy, equipment, and office space for Public Works Road Operations was awarded to Mark Cook Builders and that construction began November 17, 2008, with a projected completion date of April 2009. He stated that the Horticultural Learning Center went out to bid in November and was expected to go on site in the New Year. He reported that construction will begin on Fire Station #110 in Clermont before the end of the year; that the Paisley Fire Station was in the bidding and permitting process, noting that they demolished the old fire station in October with construction to begin in January with a duration of approximately 10 months; that five fire stations were being assessed to bring them up to current code; and that a new driveway apron would be completed at Fire Station #121 for Lake Norris in December. He explained that they had been given approval by the Board to move forward with the Clermont Sheriff’s Substation, previously the Dodge Dealership, for a new configuration design to consist of an office area of approximately 8,000 square feet, and a shop maintenance shop area of approximately 9,000 square feet. He commented that a more detailed presentation would be brought to the Board at a later date. He stated that construction would begin in the New Year to increase lab space at the Water Resource Lab by an additional 720 square feet. He commented that the Animal Control Addition for kennel and office space was under design investigation and that the Board of Adjustments had approved a setback variance in October. He explained that the BCC Warehouse Expansion project of approximately 13,000 additional square feet, with 10,000 dedicated to Clerk storage and 3,000 square feet for IT storage, could go out to bid in January. He stated that his department monitors The Cooper Memorial Library on occasion and that it was progressing very well. He mentioned that the Scale House at the landfill was a minor project for the replacement of cracked scales, wind damaged building skin, and re-roofing, and that the construction documents had been completed.
Commr. Cadwell pointed out for everyone’s benefit that the updates of these projects are presented on a quarterly basis.
Commr. Conner commented that PPI had made a concerted effort to use local subcontractors and explained that there has been a concentrated effort from the leadership of this Commission to emphasize the importance of using local subcontractors.
Commr. Cadwell requested a list of the local companies who have benefited from the contracts on the downtown construction projects.
Commr. Conner questioned whether there was a budget for the Sheriff’s substation, and given the change in the economic climate in the State and the Nation with sales tax revenues being down, wanted to know the County’s bonding capacity.
Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, stated that they had $1 million budgeted for the substation. She explained that during the summer their underwriters presented an analysis on the bonding capacity. She stated that they had initially envisioned a second bond issue of $90 million but the scope of the project was trimmed down to approximately $65 million. She stated that they had recently met with their financial advisors and it was noted that with the continued degradation of the credit companies that issue bond insurance there were some additional challenges to be reviewed to see how that might affect a future bond issue. She commented that it was likely that the $65 million bonding capacity they had in the summer would continue to be reduced. She stated that they anticipate bringing a new financial analysis to the Board in the February/March timeframe when Mr. Bannon and the consultants come back with the GMP of the Judicial Center in order for the Board to have full information of what bonding capacity they could comfortably assume and would make decisions on the project at that time.
Commr. Cadwell explained that they were assuming that on the expenditure side they would bring that dollar down before they start cutting things because the market would draw that money down.
Ms. Hall stated that initially the entire project was to be in the range of $200 million and they the estimate made at that time would eventually come in at approximately $180 million. She explained that the first $90 million the County bonded was scheduled to fund the current construction, and that the approximately $30 million leftover would be carried forward to Phase Two. She stated that issue would be a discussion needed in February once they know the prices.
Commr. Conner stated that a discussion was needed now in order to make sure Phase Two was being designed in a manner to be built in phases if necessary and he wanted to make sure the architects knew their bonding capacity. He commented that a critical component today, not in March or February, was to know the total budget for this project, noting they were only at 50 percent design at the present time. He explained that he did not want to come back in March to find the design 100 percent complete with funds falling short by $30 million. He commented that at that point the architects would tell them they would have to go back and redesign the building. He opined that it was a critical component of this Board’s responsibility to get the dollars in front of them, to know what the budget would be, and design in accordance with the funds available.
Commr. Hill stated that was one of the things they have done by having several scenarios in that phasing within the different designs, all depending on the financing available.
Mr. Bannon commented that they went from a major renovation to a minor renovation of the existing building and also identified shelling of a couple of the floors within the existing courthouse.
Commr. Conner stated that he was not talking about those projects, but rather the Phase Two new construction components of the Judicial building.
Mr. Bannon stated that was those comments were related to Phase Two.
Commr. Conner stated that Mr. Bannon was speaking of renovations and he was talking about the new construction component and asked if the $95 million would cover shelling those floors.
Mr. Bannon stated that the presentation in March would bring all that information to the Board.
Mr. Douglas Kleppin, AIA, Executive Associate with HLM/Heery International, Inc., stated that the scope of work had been tailored to match the budget noting that he was going on completed cost as opposed to the funding operation. He stated that they had reduced the cost of the courthouse construction in Phase Two by the shelled space and a series of value engineering items that took it down commensurate with the reduction from the $90 million to the $65 million in effect. He explained that they had reduced the dollar for dollar deficit on the second bonding issuance with their construction costs.
Commr. Cadwell commented that they were mirroring the design to their revenues.
Mr. Kleppin stated that they were unsure of what the GMP would be since the construction market is unsettled and they need to assess that with the GMP to see what other measures they need to take if there is a difference in the bonding capacity.
Commr. Renick interjected that she often felt uncomfortable without the figures before them. She stated that she understood trying to mirror the design to the revenue coming in, but also thought they could choose a very conservative number now suggesting a worst case scenario in order to have a guideline for moving forward. She opined that the conversation lead to spending whatever they could afford instead of trying to spend the minimum available to accomplish their needs, and those are two different things.
Commr. Cadwell asked Ms. Hall if their financial advisors could make a presentation to provide them with an outline in the next month or so.
Ms. Hall commented that they could. She mentioned that when the prices are in and Mr. Bannon and his consultants come back to the Board in the February/March timeframe, there would be items which could be cut out. She stated that they have looked at putting together a financing plan for this building, looking at different pieces and parts to try to pull it together and the assumption that the footprints of the building would remain intact. She explained it was obvious that shelling out a couple of the floors was one of the options that did reduce the price, but believed it was the direction of the Board to leave the footprints of the building intact and that there was a certain cost to do that. She mentioned that they have looked at different sources of money to pay for that and it is not based 100 percent on how much sales tax bonds they could issue, and that they would be glad to sit down and go through all the options for funding. She commented further that if the footprints of the building were reduced, they would have to start the project over and that the entire programming and work flow would have to be reconfigured, and there had been a lot of cost already. She stated that they would be glad to come back with a financial workshop with their financial advisors and go through what their assessment is and the different options available.
Mr. Kleppin stated that the project was 100 percent designed and that the 50 percent relates to the status of the construction documents that have been prepared. He commented that they were almost at the 90 percent construction document stage which was what they needed in order to present the Board with a GMP.
Commr. Conner expressed his concern for the cost of the building without the scaled down version within the nearest $10 million.
Mr. Glenn Mullins, Vice President of PPI Construction Management, stated that he could speak to the construction costs. He explained that their ballpark estimate for Phase Two which was the new courthouse building, including the roundabout, and an allowance for the furniture going into the building, was $94,682,000 and that within that figure, the furniture allowance was $3 million and the roundabout was approximately $4 million. He stated that there was a contingency in that number, that it was construction cost, not project cost. He commented that the existing courthouse renovation was not included in that figure, as it was still under design and they were developing scope for that.
Commr. Conner stated that this information brought him some comfort because it informed them that they could bond $65 million and have $30 million leftover on bonding from Phase One. He commented that the $4 million for the roundabout would need to be discussed at some point and time.
Commr. Cadwell noted that there were several items in the design that needed to be discussed for renegotiating good faith with the City of Tavares and brought back to the table to let Tavares know what they would or would not be able to do. He stated that they should obtain a list of things in the site plan which were negotiated with Tavares to locate any cost savings there and bring that back to the Board as well.
Mr. Minkoff stated that there was probably a ninety-day timeframe if they were going to go to the City and ask to have the roundabout removed. He remarked that they cannot wait until March because construction, theoretically, cannot be approved until that roundabout is part of the site plan.
ADDENDUM 1-A - LEGISLATIVE POSITION
Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, stated that they had added two additional Legislative Positions for the County, one allowing for more stringent water restrictions as approved by local jurisdictions; and another giving local jurisdictions control of Consumptive Use Permits (CUPs) for bottling plants.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved Item A of Addendum 1 to approve the County’s legislative position and authorize the Chairman to present it to the delegation.
ADDENDUM 1-B - LEGISLATIVE POSITION BY THE FLORIDA ASSOCIATION
Commr. Cadwell requested approval of the 2009 Legislative Positions approved by the Florida Association of Counties.
On a motion by Commr. Renick, seconded by Commr. Stewart and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the 2009 Legislative Positions approved by the Florida Association of Counties.
REPORTS - COUNTY MANAGER
U. S. CENSUS - COMPLETE COUNT COMMITTEE
Ms. Cindy Hall, County Manager, reported that the U.S. Census Bureau had requested them to host the development of what is called the “Complete Count Committee.” She stated that she was working with Mr. Christopher Patton, Public Information Coordinator, Information Outreach; and Ms. Wendy Taylor, Officer Manager, County Manager’s office, to organize a group of individuals throughout the County who have access to all County sectors in order to educate every citizen as to the importance of completing the 2010 Census. She explained that a U.S. Census representative would be conducting the meeting, but that her office would send letters to a number of people inviting them to participate on this Committee. She commented that this would be an ongoing process for about a year.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER HILL - DISTRICT 1
DOWNTOWN TAVARES CONSTRUCTION
Commr. Hill stated that she appreciated Commr. Conner’s discussion of the building construction and explained that they were trying desperately not to reduce the footprint of the Judicial Center because it would be hard to go back and increase it later, and would be utilized by the citizens of Lake County for the next 50-100 years. She commented that it should be designed appropriately for its function, and did not want to make short cuts in this important building. She stated further that it was to be the peoples’ building and should be built to a standard where business could be transacted in comfort and safety with easy public access.
Commr. Hill stated that she would like to discuss further the costs of the Robotics Program. She commented that she had always thought it was a public/private venture and if they were going to expend funds they would want to encourage the business community to step forward. She explained that the program benefits students with the education component of Economic Development and perhaps that was something the IT businesses should be involved in rather than having the County always take the lead. She commented that rather than using new or additional dollars perhaps the County could reallocate, or redistribute, funding that they have in school projects that might not be needed this year. She explained that she did not want to touch the $100,000 summer program, but if they had the dollars already in a program slated for school, this might be a good project to encourage involvement of the School Board, the County and businesses in the County.
Commr. Stewart explained that they have a committee working very hard right now to get business partners involved. She stated that they got a late start this year and that was why they were seeking money this year. She commented that next year they should be up and running by getting private partners make donations. She expressed their desire to be successful enough to never ask for any outside money.
Commr. Cadwell mentioned that similar other projects always do better when they have a commitment from the government. He explained that the County Manager would bring back a proposal with options of where they could obtain the funds to assist in this endeavor.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER RENICK - DISTRICT 2
MT. PLYMOUTH / SORRENTO ADVISORY BOARD
Commr. Renick expressed her desire to postpone their workshop with the Constitutional Officers regarding space needs within the Downtown Tavares Construction. She also commented that the Mt. Plymouth/Sorrento Advisory Board should be discussed because it seems to be dysfunctional and wondered if it should be dissolved.
Commr. Stewart stated she had thought it would be much easier to eliminate that board, but the community was very strong on the direction they want to go in the future and she felt that this committee needs some say so in it. She commented that she had faith that they would come together and get the job done. She explained that they have had health issues with two of the members and that the Board had given her permission a few weeks ago to let Growth Management come up with the LDRs for the committee to review and keep what they liked and change the things they did not like. She stated, however, if it got back to where there was dissention and not being productive, she would support dissolving the committee. She did, however, conclude that she would like to give it one more shot because the committee has the true interest of that community at heart and could make some good decisions for them.
EMERGENCY GATE AT THE VISTAS
Commr. Renick asked that staff bring The Vistas back before the Board with regard to fire issues. She explained that she was not suggesting the road be opened, but that with new technology available an emergency gate could be installed which would open to the sound of the sirens and would not be opened for traffic. She commented that the road had been closed with a discussion of a berm which would not allow fire service to get through. She mentioned that she had discussed this idea with residents of The Vistas. She stated that after the Board’s decision she had spoken with Chief James Dickerson, Assistant Fire Chief, and Fire Chief Gary Kaiser and then met with Mr. Sandy Minkoff, Ms. Cindy Hall and Mr. Jim Stivender. She commented that she and Chief Kaiser met with the representatives from the Homeowners Association and they agreed during that meeting to go forward with the gate and has now heard that they are not in agreement to install the gate. She stated she would like to have this discussion again and that they had previously leaned towards a berm rather than an emergency gate.
Commr. Stewart commented that she thought they had already looked into the emergency gate and had decided it would not work.
Commr. Renick explained that discussion was about the old crash gates and this gate has been designed within the last two years with new technology.
Chief Gary Kaiser, Public Safety Director stated that there is a single lane gate available that would be operable from the 800 MHz police radios and would not be operable by any means other than Fire Rescue and Emergency Medical Services (EMS).
Commr. Cadwell wanted to know if they had talked with the Homeowners Association about sharing that cost with the County like they were going to do with the berm.
Commr. Renick stated that the costs were theirs and thought, although she had not gotten estimates, but that she got the impression that it should not be terribly expensive to get the gate.
Commr. Cadwell asked that they obtain some pricing for an emergency gate.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER STEWART - DISTRICT 4
Commr. Stewart stated that she would like to know if they could get any help for the one remaining Robotics team for competition this year. She commented that their committee has been working hard on it but have not been successful. She stated the team was from a combination of schools comprised of Mt. Dora, Mt. Dora Bible, Tavares and Eustis.
Commr. Cadwell asked that Commr. Stewart obtain the information and actual dollar figures they need and they could bring that discussion forward at the January Board meeting.
EAGLE FASTENER & SUPPLY, LLC
Commr. Stewart recognized Mr. Marty Morrison’s business, Eagle Fastener & Supply, LLC in South Lake who distribute fasteners and industrial supplies in Lake, Orange, Seminole and Osceola counties. She stated that in spite of the hard times everyone is going through, he contacted the Board to help him and his employees in supporting the Guardian Ad Litem Program. After directing him to the Guardian Ad Litem Program, she learned that his business would be making donations to help children caught up in the court system.
CERTIFICATE OF APPRECIATION
Commr. Stewart stated that the Board had received a Certificate of Appreciation from Lake Community Action Agency for their Financial Resources and Commitment to the Citizens of Lake County.
REPORTS - COMMISSIONER CADWELL - DISTRICT 5
Commr. Cadwell reported that Ms. Wendy Taylor, Executive Office Manager, County Manager’s Office, would be distributing the committee appointments to the Board today containing a list of all Commissioner Liaisons to those committees. He stated that there would also be a listing of who served on the various committees now and explained that if there was something a Commissioner was interested in to write the choices down even though another Commissioner may already be on that committee. He commented that they would try to get everyone into their fields of interest, noting that they move around on those committees at times.
REDESIGNING THE LAKE COUNTY FLAG
Commr. Cadwell stated that they spend a lot of time internally with branding and the County’s new logo and thought it was time to redesign the County flag. He mentioned that he had a brief conversation with Mr. Neil Kelly, Clerk of the Court, and would like to get with the other Constitutional Officers together to see if they were interested in bringing forth some different designs for a new flag. He stated that they would obtain information as to whether this could be done by Resolution. There was a consensus of the Board for staff to work on obtaining information about redesigning the County flag.
CITIZEN QUESTION AND COMMENT PERIOD
Ms. Peggy Belflower, 43505 Indian Mound Trail, which is located in unincorporated Lake County, in District 4, stated that she was here to discuss a two-fold issue. She stated that her initial purpose for appearing today was to ask the Commission to consider creating a policy that if a committee is put on hiatus or halted, or its work is stopped for any period of time that it would take an actual vote of the Board, not just the action of the Liaison to that committee or advisory board. She stated that this was brought to her attention when the Mt. Plymouth / Sorrento Planning Advisory Committee was put on hiatus. She commented it was not made clear in the Board meeting that was what was being done. She explained that it was referenced that staff was going to write the LDRs and take them back to the committee when they were ready, but was not really made clear that the committee was put on hold. She stated that it was only after she sent an email to staff requesting notification of the hiatus that it was placed on the website and she expressed her appreciation.
Commr. Cadwell interjected that it was his recollection of the meeting that while the Board did not take any action, no motion was made as one was not needed, but there was a consensus that this was probably the best thing to do. He commented that he had a different opinion of that meeting than she did.
Ms. Belflower commented that it probably was understood by each of the Commissioners that the committee was being put on hiatus until those LDRs were prepared by staff and ready to take back to the committee in six months, but actually putting the committee on hiatus was never mentioned in the meeting so it was unclear to the public that was what was being done. She stated that there was a subsequent letter, a copy of which she received from staff, which went out to the committee members explaining the hiatus, but still the public was not put on notice of that fact. She commented that the consensus was fine, but she would prefer that any committee or board that is put on hiatus, or halted for any reason, would require a vote of the County Commission so that it was a public event and not just a possible vague reference.
Ms. Belflower stated that due to the fact she had attended the Mt. Plymouth / Sorrento Planning Advisory Committee for the past two years, she thought Commr. Stewart made a very good decision when she suggested the Committee should go in hiatus so that the staff could write the LDRs as the committee was not accomplishing much due to conflict within the committee. As a citizen observer in that District and one who attends most of the meetings, she thought it would be a very good idea to sunset the committee as it does not seem to be able to come to agreement on any one thing. She noted that it was not just the people working on this committee today, but even after restructuring the committee with new and different members added to it, they still have trouble functioning as a working committee. She stated in summary that she would like two things: (1) that the BCC consider creating a policy where a vote would be taken if any committee is halted or put on hiatus; and (2) to sunset that particular committee and turn its work over to the LPA which is in contact with the Mt. Plymouth /Sorrento community and its desires. She expressed her appreciation to the Board for their time and to Commr. Stewart for trying to make the committee better with the hiatus.
Ms. Christine Harris of Mt. Dora addressed the Board stating that she serves in the capacity as an attorney for the State Department of Insurance and wanted to put on record that in January 2006 in this very building she was attacked by two officers from the Tavares City Police Department under the direction of Lake County School Superintendent Anna Cowin and School Board Chairperson Jimmy Conner. For that reason, she stated that she objects to Mr. Conner serving as a Commissioner on the Lake County Board. She reported that she had submitted information regarding a request for the League of Cities to be reviewed for payment as there has been a legal case against them which has been completed and the funds need to be approved. She requested that the Board review the budget and submit payment to her in full.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 11:50 a.m.
WELTON G. CADWELL, CHAIRMAN
NEIL KELLY, CLERK