february 6, 2015

The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in a special workshop session on Friday, February 6, 2015 at 8:30 a.m., in the Emergency Operations Center, Training Room A, Tavares, Florida.  Commissioners present at the meeting were Sean Parks, Vice Chairman; Timothy I. Sullivan; Leslie Campione; and Welton G. Cadwell.  Others present were David Heath, County Manager, and Susan Boyajan, Deputy Clerk.

registration and welcome

Mr. Brian Sheahan, Director of Community Safety and Compliance, welcomed everyone to the Keep America Beautiful (KAB) Community Training and commented that they are moving forward to enhance the community and make it a more beautiful place to live. He recognized the Commissioners and elected officials who were present.  He explained that the training was mandatory in order to meet all of the obligations of being a member of the KAB organization.


Commr. Campione thanked everyone for coming to the workshop and stated that she was glad that they are interested in this topic and that people care about things like litter and the appearance of the community.  She hoped that they could mobilize people throughout the county to have a sense of pride in the community and get involved in this endeavor in both the municipal and rural areas.

keep america beautiful overview

Ms. Cecile Carson, Keep America Beautiful Trainer, commented that she has experienced reluctance of companies to locate their businesses in unkempt locations with a lot of litter.  She stated that in order to permanently change the issue of litter, they would need to change people’s behaviors, including a mindset to recycle whatever materials possible.  She mentioned that Florida has the second most number of affiliates than in any other state, and she believed this also ties into the concept about how they build and sustain vibrant communities.  She commented that it was important that a Keep America Beautiful affiliate had a good representation in their organization as they move forward in the government, business, civic, and volunteer sectors of the community.  She explained that their organization concentrated on working on the public spaces; how to become a cleaner, more beautiful environment; reduction of their waste; and recycling of what they can.  She stated that she wanted the participants to get the structure and foundation in place at this point.  She indicated that they generated a positive impact on the environment, including attracting businesses that saw the clean connection, and inspired the next generation of environmental stewards, noting that they had a lot of resources available for kindergarten through sixth grade and a youth advisory council for high school students.  She related that the mission of Keep America Beautiful is engaging individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community’s environment.  She explained how each organization and group, such as a neighborhood association or business, knits their efforts together.

Ms. Carson remarked that the “three legged stool” concept illustrated that government, business, and civic groups needed to be involved in order for their effort to be stable and as strong as it could be; and she displayed a list illustrating some of their supporters, pointing out the number of government and nonprofit alliances and partnerships with Fortune 500 sponsors that have been with Keep America Beautiful for 60 years since its founding such as Coca Cola and Pepsi.  She discussed some of their anti-litter public service messages, including older and newer campaigns and those that encourage recycling initiatives.  She mentioned that Lowe’s announced last week that their affiliates for the third year in a row have an opportunity to apply for part of a $1 million grant from the Lowe’s Foundation, and Lake County would be eligible for those grants when they get through this process.  She added that the Wrigley Company and Foundation provides the funding for their youth educational initiatives and helps support the youth advisory council, with other companies providing garbage bags, air transportation, and other materials and services.

Ms. Carson related that Keep America Beautiful started as a messaging organization when it was founded in 1953 along with the origin of the interstate road system and during the time of the second highest production of automobiles, due to the generation of litter from things that were bought at gas stations and other businesses that were starting to be built along those roadways.  She elaborated that the companies who created the products which were getting thrown on the roadways decided to get together to try to address this, since it was not the image they wanted for their companies, and she specified that Lassie was their first spoke dog for their national publicity efforts in the 1950’s by showing proper disposal of a piece of litter in front of the Capitol in Washington D.C.  She added that KAB was present with the National Parks Service for the first recycling initiative four years ago across that same area.  She related that the message from the Crying Indian Earth Day campaign in 1971 stating that people start pollution so people can stop it was the tipping point that shifted their message about environmental awareness, and she specified that KAB received 20,000 letters the first week after that commercial came out, with the numbers continually going up.  She noted that as a result of that reaction, the organization concentrated their efforts on how to get people engaged, and the affiliate program was created.  She elaborated that they currently have a presence in every state, with over 600 affiliates and 25 state affiliate organizations, and are continuing to grow as a part of that movement.  They are trying to build a framework to help people do what they want to do locally to make a difference and make it the most effective program that it can be.

Ms. Carson explained that they use an integrated approach to try to change behavior consisting of a five-step management process along with four behavior strategies.  The first step is to get the facts through surveys and research, and they ask the members of the team during affiliation training to find out what are currently the ordinances and written expectations in place about litter and solid waste, get the facts about what the initiatives are that are going on in education, identify where the gaps are, and do a community appearance index which is a visual assessment of their community where they go back to the same locations for three years in a row for field testing.   She related that the next steps are to identify and involve people; create a plan with achievable goals, which would be done in the second training as part of the strategic planning process; focus on results; and celebrate their successes afterwards to provide positive reinforcement.  She commented that their affiliates’ long-term data shows sustainable results of between 75 and 90 percent litter reduction and recycling results that go up and stay up if they have the right types of containers in place.  She illustrated the behavioral strategies that move them from start to finish, which were written expectations such as laws and policies, clear consequences or incentives, tools and technology, and education and school programs; and she commented that although their research shows that there is only a small percentage of the general population that litters, they make big problems for the rest of them.

Ms. Mary Jean Yon, a representative of Keep Florida Beautiful, related that Keep Florida Beautiful is available to them as a resource, and she specified that there were currently 40 affiliates in Florida, as well as efforts to have all of those groups talking and learning from each other.

Ms. Carson assured everyone that the affiliates were willing to share their information, and the program they do each year as part of their national conference called “Steal This” funded by the Steel Recycling Institute encouraged members to take someone else’s idea and make it their own and something completely new and different during the field testing process.  She elaborated that a lot of what they do is built on the history and involvement of what and how things get done.  She related a story about one of their 17- year old youth advisory council members who their organization supported and taught how to do a cleanup after he had the idea to do that, and she noted that members get a lot of materials and resources that would help them get started and moving forward in that process.  She added that they also have weekly to monthly webinars as part of their initiatives that are available on their website about their focus areas, such as litter prevention, waste reduction and recycling, and beautification, all of which have an interactive part which enables participants to ask questions; and she mentioned that they also had a number of tools that could be downloaded.  She related that they require their affiliates on an annual basis to do a cost benefit analysis, which involves counting their volunteer hours and multiplying that by the independent sector volunteer value of a little over $22 an hour currently and which includes the in-kind value of materials such as bags and food that is donated for the cleanup, and they balance that against the dollars that are provided by government.  She elaborated that currently their ratio is for a return of $34 on the investment of one dollar that is invested by government or a local affiliate. 

Ms. Carson commented that the ultimate goal was for clean rivers and neighborhoods, and the best way to do that is to prevent the litter from being thrown out in the first place and for it to be recycled instead.  She concluded that Keep America Beautiful is there as the County’s resource and assistant as they move forward with their programs and activities, and she informed everyone that there was an outline of tasks that would need to be completed in roughly the next four months, including organizational structure, community appearance index, and a focus area survey, which is an analysis that currently is being done in those three focus areas and in the areas of written expectation and education pieces, noting that this is a process which everyone needed to be involved in.  She related a story regarding an initiative started by the local government in Denton, Texas, intending to enhance code enforcement, improve the entranceways, and write a sign and landscape ordinance, which resulted in great strides made in sustained reductions in litter and a large corporation relocating their headquarters to that city because of the activities of Keep Denton Beautiful which transformed that area from one of widespread litter to a beautiful community that the residents could take pride in and brought in economic development opportunities.  She commented that people are watching the efforts involved in these initiatives even when no one is aware of it, and she was proud that their community got engaged and that Keep Denton Beautiful was still doing that work and growing 25 years later making it a cleaner, greener place than before they started, noting that others were able to continue that process after she left to work for the state program.  She summarized that she wanted to help them build a similar program here in Lake County also.

In response to a question from a member of the audience which asked whether KAB was associated with the federal government, Ms. Carson responded that KAB was a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization which has partnerships with a number of agencies such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture and EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), although currently they provide no funding to KAB for those initiatives.  She added that they are the lead organizers for a program called Give and Go which is for students at colleges and universities to help clean their dorm rooms out and do something good with the unwanted items, partnering with Good Will Industries to make that happen.  In response to another question from the audience, Ms. Carson clarified that there was no requirement to do a national KAB program along with the local efforts and added that the organization asks the affiliates as part of maintaining good standing to do one litter prevention, one beautification, and one waste reduction activity per year, but they could pick as much or as little as they want to do in addition to that.  She answered another inquiry by explaining that every affiliate is an independent organization which is primarily responsible for determining their organizational structure and funding amounts, and affiliates in good standing by doing what was previously mentioned are eligible for their grants, which range from $500 to $25,000, for projects.  She added that they are hoping that the Florida Department of Transportation provides funding again for the affiliates for 2016, and affiliates needed to have all of their work done by June in order to be eligible for that funding.  She indicated that she would discuss how they could be a part of that and accomplish those tasks in the next four months.

recess and reassembly

There was a fifteen-minute recess at 10:00 a.m.

community training and organization

Commrs. Parks, Sullivan, and Cadwell left the workshop at 10:00 a.m.

Ms. Carson had everyone in the room introduce themselves and state what group they are representing, who included Mr. Ronald Parks, a member of the Lake Gem Residents Alliance; Ms. Debra Parks, President of the Lake Gem Residents Alliance; Ms. Connie Harvey, Vice President, Lake Gem Residents Alliance; Mr. Redmond Jones, City Manager for the City of Groveland; Ms. Sue Carroll, GIS Coordinator for Lake County; Mr. Todd Luce, representing the Sheriff as part of his command staff; Mr. Skip McCall, Solid Waste Division Manager; Mr. Glen Burns, a resident of Montverde and a member of the Green Mountain Scenic Byway; Ms. Peg Lindsey, a member of three environmental groups in Lake County; Ms. Wendy Breeden, Public Resources Director; Ms. Kelly Lafollette, Communications Director; Mr. Ron Clooney, Lake County Code Enforcement Manager; Ms. Janie Davis, Public Hearing Coordinator for Lake County Code Enforcement; Ms. Elisha Pappacoda, Public Information Officer; Ms. Lori Conway, Road Operations Division Manager; and Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director.

Ms. Carson explained that the purpose of this portion of the workshop is to walk everyone through the organizational structure, go through the community appearance index video and step-by-step instructions on how to do the litter index portion of that, help them set up a plan to implement that, and go through the focus area inventory or survey, which was an analysis looking at the three focus areas, specifically the written consequences for the ordinances, what the educational initiatives are, and what kind of technology is happening in those areas.  She explained that at the end they will look at job responsibilities to help divide those three tasks up and a general timeline for hopefully accomplishing all of that by June in order to be able to receive the FDOT money discussed earlier, and she reported that there is a state Keep Florida Beautiful affiliate meeting in June in which she was hoping to have this group recognized at that point.  She mentioned that the national conference would be held in the first week of February at the Orlando Hilton Hotel in downtown Disney.  She pointed out a page in the booklet stating what KAB and the local affiliates do and noting that affiliate efforts are visible but go deeper, resulting in community transformation and people coming together and also more engaged.  She explained that Page 9 contained the flow chart of the process of becoming an affiliate and completing the requirements, including submitting an application, creating a team, completing the requirements, attending the affiliate training, setting up the organization, broadening their understanding, and implementing the programs which will ultimately improve the community environment.  She commented that they were putting the foundation and the structure in right now, which needed to be done before they got involved in a lot of wonderful projects, programs, activities, and grant opportunities.

Ms. Carson related that organizational structure usually falls into four key components, which were what kind of structure they were going to have from a government standpoint, the documents that support that structure, their identity comprised of their name and logo, and administration or the community leaders that would be part of the ongoing organizational structure and process.  She mentioned that the KAB affiliates are currently almost equally divided into the two basic categories of governmental and non-profit organizations, and there are some hybrids within those categories, noting that a third of government affiliates also have a 501(c)(3).  She added that 50 percent of the non-profits have some type of contractual relationship with government, such as for money to help pay for projects, salary, and activities or providing office space and things of that nature.  She stated that she believed that their initial structure would be government-based.

Mr. Sheahan elaborated that the priority is to get their affiliation, and then the Board will decide on ultimately what the makeup would be.  He emphasized that it was very important to the Board to include their municipalities and their special communities, and he mentioned that he sent out invitations to people involved in those entities and will include them as soon as possible.

Ms. Carson gave some examples of some variables that they have in county and regional programs, such as Keep Southeast Ohio Beautiful, which encompasses nine counties and 37 communities, sets up their structure with a representative from every county as well as ones from select communities that want to have a position on their governing body, and has a larger task force that meets on an annual basis to do an annual plan; and a county organization in Texas in which the municipalities and special communities created their own mini taskforce which sends one representative up to the County level programs from each of those groups.  She commented that the numbers of members for any one of the organizations is small enough that they could get the work done but large enough to carry out the tasks; however, it is not intended that everyone who serves on that board actually be the main volunteer, and they will want to be engaging other individuals and groups.  She recommended that the County adopt a resolution, ordinance, or some type of adopted legislation that recognizes the creation of Keep Lake County Beautiful and the initial organizational structure, as well as bylaws or guidelines for things such as selection of members, times of meetings, and basic job duties.  She then discussed identity and branding, giving examples of commonly-recognized symbols of companies such as McDonalds and Coca Cola, and she displayed examples of a variety of different logo designs done by their affiliates.  She explained that they require that the affiliates keep the name in the format of starting with the word “Keep” and ending with the word “Beautiful,” such as Keep Lake County Beautiful.  She also recommended that the logo contain a depiction of something the locality is known for, such as a state flower or tree from the area.  She also noted that there were guidelines on their website that would assist them with putting that logo together, and their design staff at Stanford would be able to help them as well to format their logo once they decide what they want.  She mentioned that many of the logos have some type of environmental feature in them.

Ms. Kelly Lafollette, Communications Director, related that the County has a very similar branding standards manual for their brand, and she indicated that her department would come up with the design for the logo.

Ms. Carson indicated that Page 11 of the manual contains a description of an executive director position, noting that each affiliate is required to have someone with this title, and she pointed out the list of the executive director’s recommended skills and responsibilities.  She elaborated that this individual will be the main contact person for Keep America Beautiful, who will receive their enews every two weeks and information about grant opportunities, and that person will also be responsible for reporting back to them through the annual report, submitting the cost benefit analysis that is done on an ongoing basis, tracking volunteer hours, the semi-annual report, and the meetings of the task force.  She added that a requirement for the affiliation is to list the name, address, and all of the contact information for that individual.  She related that the other piece of the administration is the board members, and she noted that Page 19 states some of the roles and responsibilities for board members.  She elaborated that they would be looking at people who would be in the governance role regarding board actions, policies, procedures, and whether they are sticking to the mission of their organization; as well as the role as volunteer and be responsible for implementation.  She explained that the ten basic responsibilities for a board member or committee involves organizational planning discussed earlier, and she stated that they would look at goal setting for one to three years.  She gave examples of large goals that other affiliates have set and suggested that the governing board think of and envision what they want the community to look like 10 or 20 years down the road.  She added that the board members also would help with public image and tasks and create opportunities to be in front of elected officials for positive moments. 

Ms. Carson conducted a brainstorming process to get everyone to think about who long-term should be involved with their affiliate, divided up into government, business, and civic organizations.  She started with the business sector and indicated that those might be future funders of activities or future board members who could serve on the task force.  The largest private sector employers which were deemed by the audience included the hospitals, car dealerships, Wayne Densch distributors of Anheuser Busch, home improvement stores, nurseries for landscape materials, convenience stores, furniture stores, farms, Chambers of Commerce, waste haulers such as WCA and WastePro, developers and contractors, the Realtor’s Association, electric utility companies such as Duke and SECO, restaurants and fast food companies, Publix, insurance companies, the Lake County Bar Association and attorneys, hotels, and gas stations.  Ms. Carson mentioned that there was some messaging that could be put on containers at gas stations and parks that really make a difference in the amount of littering.

Ms. Carson asked everyone to list the volunteer organizations in the County for the category of Civic Organizations they could involve in their KAB efforts, and the responses included the PEAR Association, Florida Native Plant Society, Rotary and Kiwanis, Audubon Society, scouting programs, 4-H Club, Trout Lake Nature Center, Lake Sumter State College, churches, Florida Freewheelers cycling group, Green Mountain Scenic Byway, Coalition for Lake Apopka Ecotourism, running clubs, kayak clubs, Florida Trails, Boys and Girls Clubs, ROTC, Habitat for Humanity, Master Gardeners and garden clubs, Homeowners’ Associations, school system including volunteer service hours needed for the Bright Future Scholarship program, National Honor Society, Leadership Lake, retired teacher’s and law enforcement organizations, service clubs such as the Shriners Club, card clubs, and the St. Johns River Alliance.

Ms. Carson asked the audience to think about whether there are specific departments, government employees, or elected officials that they would like to include under the category of government entities they could possibly involve, and the responses included the Economic Development and Tourism staff, Parks and Trails, Public Works, the Sheriff’s Office, and libraries.  Ms. Carson related that Waste in Place, their pre-kindergarten (pre-K) through sixth grade resources, included children’s books, and she explained that they added the books to the program when it was determined that they needed something besides the activity that could be taken home with the student when they added pre-K resources two years ago.  Other suggestions were the MPO (Metropolitan Planning Organization), the Water Authority, bus system advertisements, fire departments, Main Street USA programs for municipalities, historical societies, state legislators, city councils and officials, the Lake Correction Institute, community services, the Forest Service, and the School Board.  She summarized that they now have some targets and ideas as they move forward and can begin to prioritize who might be able to help in certain areas and whether there were some members of these organizations that they want to bring into leadership roles.

Ms. Carson stated that she would next brainstorm a mission statement, which was a roadmap of where they wanted to go, with those present and explained that the mission for Keep American Beautiful is to engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community environment.  She elaborated that some affiliates will tweak or change that mission statement to focus on their own goals, and some will tie in the three focus areas.  She asked everyone to brainstorm what type of words should be included in that mission statement that would really capture what they wanted to accomplish long-term for Lake County, and the responses included economic development, quality of life, community engagement, encouragement of pride, and a vested interest.  She commented that the challenge most people have is that they try to put too much into their mission statement, since it should be short, simple to remember, and able to be put on the back of a business card in a font easy enough to read.  She gave examples of mission statements which stated, “engage and encourage the community to have pride and an invested interest in the quality of life,” and “to transform public spaces into beautiful places.”

Commr. Campione commented that people might not make the connection that they were talking about cleanliness if they do not include some sort of a reference regarding litter in the mission statement.

Ms. Carson responded that they could reference engaging the community for a clean, green, and beautiful environment, which would indicate pride without using the word “pride” specifically.  She pointed out that they would not be starting from scratch and would have a worksheet that would help them ask some questions and formulate what that mission statement was.  She explained that normally there were two or three people that would work on the mission statement and present it back to the larger group.  She then recapped that they decided that they would be a government-based organization from a structure standpoint, noting that they would need governance documents such as an adopted resolution or an ordinance that would give recognition of the group, a list of the board members, the name of the executive director,  job duties and descriptions, a logo, and a mission statement; and she mentioned that they should think about some budget considerations for the first year as an affiliate, such as the affiliate fee of $400 a year after completion of the process as well as conference fees, projects, and activities.

Ms. Lafollette mentioned that she thought they would use the slogan “Keep Lake Beautiful.”

Commr. Campione responded that that would be fine, as long as there was no confusion that they were only addressing lake and water body cleanup.

Mr. Sheahan commented that the catchphrase could be “Keep Lake Beautiful,” but the public information requests and the literature would send the message.

Ms. Carson explained that the Community Appearance Index was an annual requirement for affiliation that includes a required litter index done approximately the same time each year, and they will set a baseline during the first year so that they could determine if the behavioral strategies implemented actually are making the area cleaner.  She added that although another use of the litter index is to identify the places most in need of help, she emphasized that it was intended to look representatively at the whole county in unincorporated areas and municipalities, as well as residential and business areas to get a broad perspective of the litter condition in the community, as well as to help them identify the sources of litter, including motorists, pedestrians, loading docks, solid waste collection, and uncontainerized waste from dumpsters.  She also related that there were optional indices and materials to deal with illegal signs, graffiti, junked vehicles, and outside storage; and she added that the focus area survey, which looked at current conditions in the three focus areas, was also required.  She explained that the first step in the process of doing a community appearance index is identifying the county’s exterior boundary, and she recommended dividing the county up into a minimum of five areas.

Commr. Campione suggested that they work within each of the five County Commission Districts.

Ms. Carson continued to explain that they would look at ten sites which were one-half to one mile in distance within each area as observation areas where they would look at the litter conditions.  She recommended that everyone in the team go together to do this or at least that everyone goes out the same day with the same set of instructions after everyone comes together in one place to go through the training and watch the video as a group.  She elaborated that the process typically starts in the morning, and the scoring would be on a scale of 1 to 4, followed by a conversation to ensure everyone on the team is on the same page as to what the numbers mean.  She added that a tidy appearance with minimal or no litter would result in a score of a 1; slightly littered would be a 2; a score of 3 would indicate visibly littered that would catch someone’s eye; and a score of 4 would be for a continuous or extreme amount of litter which indicates a lack of concern about that area or that it is an illegal dump site.  She showed a video illustrating a team going through the process of a visual assessment using the litter index and giving visual examples of different areas which represent the four scores as well as more specific things to look for in those examples.  The video also related that after completing the Community Appearance Index, their affiliate will use the results for the Keep America Beautiful pressure points for behavior change, education, ordinance, enforcement, and resources and tools to design local litter prevention, beautification, and waste reduction recycling programs to change attitudes and behaviors about littering.  Ms. Carson pointed out that the manual referred to in the video has photographs which illustrate areas representative of the four scores discussed to help them make a decision on their score sheet.  She added that the score could include a comment about a notable condition at one location within the site, which could be a positive or negative one.  She explained that using GIS is an important part of making sure that there was a random sampling of both major and residential roadways.  She recommended that each site they are looking at not include more than one land use to keep the results consistent.

Commr. Campione commented that she believed that they would want to include the ones that they know for a fact are always a problem so that they can measure whether they were making progress.

Ms. Carson mentioned that they also have a walkable version of the survey which also looks at the appearance of the structure, infrastructure, sidewalks, and signage; as well as a litter index for schools, school zones, and waterways.  She related that litter was a place to begin, and they had the tools they could use as optional pieces to get to the next level.

Mr. Sheahan recapped Ms. Carson’s comments about the importance of including areas that the observers are not familiar with in order to give them a fresh perspective and related his concern about the political aspect of informing a city that some of its areas are in bad condition while noting that other cities are doing a good job keeping their city looking great.

Ms. Carson responded that the City of Dallas used roadways to delineate locations.

Mr. Sheahan added that they wanted to cross jurisdictional boundaries when doing that so that it remained neutral.

Ms. Carson mentioned that some communities might want to do their own litter index once the County gets into the program further.

Mr. Sheahan commented that it might set up a competition to identify a corridor as an issue, which could help the cleanup further.

Ms. Carson explained that each score is done on a separate score sheet and that there is one score sheet for each area.  She added that there was also an excel spreadsheet that will do the numbers calculations for them after the data is entered.  She pointed out that they have found that there was usually a consistency in the scoring by the teams, although some people may not see the same thing depending on where they are seated in the vehicle, but they get an average.  She reported that the mean average for all of their affiliates is a 1.68 right now, which was a slightly littered condition overall, with the ones that were new and just starting seeing higher scores than those that were in the program longer.  She mentioned that Georgia had decided to look at the school districts, concentrating on whether they could make a difference in the middle schools, and the scoring determines why the affiliate picks a specific area for cleanup efforts.

Mr. Sheahan opined that the five Commission Districts within Lake County would make a good way to divide up the areas, since each one includes rural and urban areas.

Ms. Carson added that they also include water, which was an important factor as well, and she clarified that the 50 total areas that would be scored would give them an accurate statistical representation.  She also indicated that two teams could be used if there was a large and spread-out geographical area to cover that would be difficult for only one team to do so, but the key is for everyone to hear the same instructions and that it is all done in the same day if possible.

Commr. Campione clarified that they could work with the Water Authority and the Sheriff’s Office to cover the waterways on the same day as the rest of the surveying, using the same scoring and procedure.

Ms. Carson added that they have had youth groups and former elected officials do this.

Mr. Sheahan opined that it might be better for the County to split the effort among multiple teams.

Ms. Carson agreed that the County’s topography would warrant having more than one team, and she specified that each team would have a driver and at least three scorers that would go into each of the areas.  She commented that this would be used to identify where they have litter conditions and issues, figure out what was working, and share best practices.  She related that the steps for the community appearance index were to determine what their areas are, identify the 50 sites, set the dates for training and doing the index, and compile the data; and she added that they recommend keeping the same sites for three to five years.  She stated that the focus area inventory survey concentrates specifically on the areas of the behavior strategies and the pressure points for change, including education, ordinances, written expectations, enforcement, and the resources and tools that they use.  She presented an example of the survey, which initially asks the broad overall impression of their community when someone new arrives, and she noted that it is intended on being a data collection.  She specified that some of the other questions on the survey include who was responsible for education and enforcement of the litter laws, who was responsible for the ordinances, whether the County participated in the Great American Cleanup program or any other types of cleanup initiatives, what is going on in the schools, who is responsible for waste management, and public and private recycling opportunities and initiatives.  She explained that the focus area inventory survey can be done by one to two people, mentioning that she had seen it done as an Eagle Scout project and done by college students and interns.  She added that the first step is to identify who they would ask to answer those questions, and she recommended that it is done within 7-10 days.  She stated that the next step is to compile the data, and she noted that these steps will result in some observations and recommendations becoming apparent and help them with some goal setting.  She concluded that the process typically takes four to six months, and their goal was to have this ready for the FDOT funding to be available by June 6.  She commented that some of the things discussed that day would have to simultaneously occur to be able to meet that goal.

Commr. Campione commented that each Commissioner would want to give them some of their ideas.

Mr. Sheahan suggested that they do some of the preliminary work of mapping out the general areas first and then giving them to the Board for their approval.

Ms. Carson asked if there were any suggestions about who would be the best sources for the focus areas.

Mr. Sheahan opined that he can identify about half of them, and he mentioned that the County staff prides themselves on their relationships with the cities and other entities.  He also suggested that they keep the core group very small for expeditiousness, and then they could expand that out.

Ms. Carson mentioned an affiliate who also started out with a small group and then added more representation that was community based after receiving support from many community groups that wanted to work with them to help achieve their goals.

Mr. Sheahan set a target date of April 6 for the litter survey, since it would take about six to eight weeks to get that coordinated, and he clarified that the observations and recommendations could be done simultaneously in order to meet their deadline in June.

Ms. Carson indicated that there were three samples of reports available for the County to reference, and she related that she usually gets everything emailed to her at one time.  She also mentioned that they do a monthly assessment report confirming what they have in so far from the affiliate and the things that they still need until everything is submitted.

Mr. Sheahan drew the five districts on a large map in the front of the room.

Ms. Carson suggested that they choose some starting points on the map and then go back and map out where the land uses are.

Commr. Campione recommended that they look at the area around Hwy 44 towards Haines Creek, 44B which is known as the Donnelly extension from US 441 up to Hwy 44, and a segment in the Shockley area.

Mr. Jim Stivender, Public Works Director, pointed out that they need to overlay all of the Adopt-A-Roadway groups and to look into what they look like compared to other parts.

Ms. Carson commented that this could be a catalyst if those groups are not very active.  She also reminded everyone that they needed to have a representative sample of roadways for the survey, including some residential streets and neighborhoods and the secondary as well as the primary arterials, and she suggested that the best day to do this typically would be on a Saturday, since it was not a day when trash is picked up; however, if they do this on a trash day, she recommended that the scorers are aware of that for those areas in order not to skew the objectivity.

Commr. Campione also recommended that they choose an area on one of the side streets going north off of SR 46 in the heart of Mount Plymouth-Sorrento.

Other roadways that were recommended for the survey were the Black Bear Scenic Byway, Hwy 19, CR 445, CR 25 towards Lady Lake, Marion County Road near Grand Oaks, Mount Homer Road in Eustis off of Kurt Street, Old Hwy 441 between Mount Dora and Tavares, an area between Paisley and Lake Mack, CR 561 towards CR 455, CR 455 through Ferndale going into Montverde, a segment out in Pine Lakes or Cassia, the Huff Road area, the Groveland CRA area through Hwy 50, areas in enterprise zones, lake shores and canals, areas in Howey-in-the-Hills and Yalaha, the major entrance points or gateways into the county, the Four Corners area, and an area from the county line to Renningers on US Hwy 441.

Ms. Sue Carroll, GIS Project Coordinator, clarified that she will create a one-mile radius around each of the above-mentioned spots, and they will define an actual road route within those areas based on those locations.

Ms. Carson reminded everyone that the requirement was for a minimum of 50 sites, but they might need to look at more areas than that in order to be able to get some balance and to get a sample of business and residential areas as well as waterways.

Ms. Lafollette suggested that they use a “Go-Pro” type camera to record the litter index survey in progress for reference.

Ms. Carson thanked everyone for attending the workshop and commented that she is looking forward to working with everyone over the next several months.


There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 12:40 p.m.



jimmy conner, chairman