A regular MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
January 26, 2021
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 9:00 a.m., in the County Commission Chambers, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Sean Parks, Chairman; Kirby Smith, Vice Chairman; Douglas B. Shields; Leslie Campione; and Josh Blake. Others present were: Jo-Anne Drury, Interim County Manager; Melanie Marsh, County Attorney; Niki Booth, Executive Office Manager, County Manager’s Office; Gary J. Cooney, Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller; Kristy Mullane, Chief Financial Officer; and Josh Pearson, Deputy Clerk.
INVOCATION and pledge
Commr. Parks welcomed everyone to the meeting and said that it was also being broadcast via Zoom Webinar; additionally, Mr. Erikk Ross, Director for the Information Technology (IT) Department, would explain how the process would work for individuals participating virtually. He said that Mr. Jon Cherry, with LifeStream Behavioral Center, had been invited to attend the meeting to give a presentation on his organization. He then said that the Pledge of Allegiance would be led by Mr. Chuck Rossi, Service Desk Administrator for the IT Department. He explained that Mr. Rossi served a total of 24 years in the United States Air Force, enlisting three times, until he retired in 2016 as a Technical Sergeant. He elaborated that Mr. Rossi enlisted and served from 1976 to 1980 at Eglin Air Force Base in the 20th Surveillance Squadron, and again from 1980 to 1984 with the New York Air National Guard in the 105th Tactical Fighter Group, supporting computer operations during both enlistments. He remarked that Mr. Rossi’s final enlistment came after the 9/11 attacks when he served from 2001 to 2016 at the Stewart New York 105th Airlift Wing supporting C-5 Galaxy aircraft radar and radio systems, noting that during this time, he was deployed overseas twice to Europe in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom with the 494th Air Expeditionary Group. He then thanked Mr. Rossi for his service.
Pastor Greg Watts from Liberty Baptist Church in the City of Tavares gave the Invocation, and Mr. Rossi led the Pledge of Allegiance.
virtual meeting instructions
Mr. Ross explained that this meeting was being livestreamed on the County website and was also being made available through Zoom Webinar for members of the public who wished to provide comments during the Citizen Question and Comment Period later in the agenda. He elaborated that anyone watching though the livestream who wished to participate in the meeting could follow the directions currently being broadcast through the stream; furthermore, he relayed that during the Citizen Question and Comment Period, anyone who had joined the Zoom Webinar using their phone could press *9 to virtually raise their hand, and anyone participating online could click the raise hand button to let the County know that they wished to speak. He said that when it was time for public comment, he would read the person’s name or phone number, unmute the appropriate line, and the speaker would be asked to provide comments. He stated that everyone would have three minutes to speak, and after three minutes an alarm would sound, letting them know that their time was up. He remarked that they previously notified the public that comments could be emailed through 5:00 p.m. on the previous day, and those comments were shared with the Board prior to the current meeting. He said that anyone wishing to provide written comments during the meeting could visit www.lakecountyfl.gov/commissionmeeting, and any written comments submitted during this meeting would be shared with each Board member following the meeting.
Ms. Jo-Anne Drury, Interim County Manager, said that Tab 8 was being pulled and would be brought back at a later date.
Mr. Tommy Carpenter, Director for the Office of Emergency Management, discussed the opening of cold weather shelters in the previous week. He also reported that the Emergency Operations Center remained at a level two monitoring, and that the Florida Department of Health’s (DOH) coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) information hotline was open Monday through Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., at 352-268-9299. He then shared these COVID-19 statistics as of the previous day: there were 20,644 total positive tests in Lake County, noting that one week prior it was 17,228; as of the previous Friday, there were currently 2,845 positive cases in quarantine and being monitored by the DOH, with 160 currently under investigation; total number tested was 215,417, while two weeks prior it was 185,053; and Lake County’s overall positivity rate was 9.59 percent, noting that his previous report was 9.3 percent. He indicated that when compared to surrounding counties, Lake County still had the lowest overall positivity rate. He reported that Sumter County was first among surrounding counties with 10.85 percent of their estimated population vaccinated, and Lake County was at number two at 8.03 percent; additionally, the state average was 5.79 percent. He indicated that the number one age group for those testing positive was 45-54, number two was 25-34, the third most affected age group was 35-44, and the fourth most affected age group was 55-64; furthermore, Lake County’s median age for COVID-19 cases was 44, and there had been 387 deaths. He then reported information on the county’s three local hospitals as follows: there were a total of 926 beds available with 745 currently being utilized, 172 remaining available, and a 18.57 percent available bed capacity; there were 104 total intensive care unit (ICU) beds available with 72 being used and 32, or 30.77 percent, available; and there were 142 COVID-19 patients admitted, with 25 of those in ICU. He said in regards to the county’s long-term care facilities, the total cumulative number was 1,289 positive COVID-19 cases to date, including staff and patients, with 135 positive residents, 93 positive staff, and 121 total deaths. He indicated that for Lake County schools from January 16, 2021 through January 22, 2021, there had been 85 positive cases including 69 students and 16 employees, with 659 people quarantined to include 606 students and 53 employees. He then shared information regarding COVID-19 testing locations throughout the county. He explained that Lake County had an agreement with Adult Medicine of Lake County from November 19, 2020 through December 30, 2020 to perform rapid tests and the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) nasal swab test with no cost to the county residents; however, there was a $7 cost share to the County. He concluded that there were 16,169 tests completed, with $113,183 funded from the County.
Mr. Aaron Kissler, Administrator/Director/Health Officer for the DOH in Lake County, displayed COVID-19 data and said that the number of cases and positivity rate had decreased in the last few weeks, though the county’s hospitalization rate was still fairly high. He commented that they continued to perform contact tracing and promote public health messages. He said that they were still performing testing for outbreaks and that they still performed some testing; however, most of their testing operations had been transferred over to vaccine operations. He commented that Lake County was doing well for vaccinations, with 34,227 county residents who had been vaccinated. He said that the hospitals had been doing vaccinations and were starting to perform community vaccinations, and that CVS Pharmacy and Walgreens continued to perform long-term care facility and nursing home vaccinations. He added that the DOH were still performing their vaccinations and that they were able to administer roughly 14,000 vaccinations at the Clermont Arts and Recreation Center; additionally, this was one of the highest number of vaccinations given per site in the state for many days when this site was running. He stated that the two sites currently in operation included the St. Patrick Catholic Church, which was starting the second dose of the Moderna vaccine. He commented that they had 23,000 vaccines as of the previous day, and that the number of vaccines could be higher than this due to overfills in each vial. He stated that they just started appointments for the second dose and that on the current day, they would be starting a pilot program for the Sharecare system; however, in the meantime, they would be doing callbacks for the individuals to receive the second dose. He said that they would be announcing a City of Groveland site for second doses shortly, and reiterated that they were doing well with vaccine numbers.
Commr. Parks expressed appreciation for the County’s partnership with the DOH and said that they were working extra hours to get as many individuals vaccinated as possible. He encouraged using a reservation based system, and noted that there was going to be an opportunity for this with Sharecare. He asked to confirm that one could get a second appointment scheduled when getting the first dose.
Mr. Kissler confirmed this and commented that they would be doing a pilot program at the City of Leesburg site; additionally, the DOH would eventually be using it in their clinics to schedule appointments. He mentioned that there might be a waiting line at the appointments, but they would try to keep it as small as possible. He said that they would be finishing with the second doses and that they hoped to be able to transition everything into the appointment based system, especially as they received more consistent vaccine deliveries. He commented that it was mostly a supply issue currently, and he mentioned the Johnson and Johnson vaccine possibly getting approved.
Commr. Campione asked that for those who would not have set appointments, if there would be blocks of time for the second vaccines.
Mr. Kissler said this was correct and that it was currently one hour. He noted that there would be several opportunities for individuals, and the first opportunity would be a call out for a point of dispensing (POD) site. He mentioned that even if an individual went after the week that they were designated to go, it was still fine; additionally, it looked like they could go even past that. He encouraged everyone to come back for their second vaccination.
Commr. Campione encouraged letting individuals know what to expect when coming back for their second shot, and expressed interest in anything the Board could to do help with messaging.
Mr. Kissler believed that the appointment site was being opened up to second doses as well, and commented that St. Patrick Catholic Church would be a location for second doses only in the current week. He added that more vaccines would be given to the appointment site, and that they had put in for 700 vaccines per day starting out; furthermore, they hoped to get to 1,000 vaccines per day. He mentioned that at their second dose sites, they would probably be between 1,500 and 2,000 people per day. He summarized that individuals would have multiple PODs with backup PODs, dedicated second dose sites, potential appointments, and the DOH would also be trying to contact individuals regarding their second dose. He said that they were part of a system called Florida Shots which allowed them to coordinate and work between who had received first and second doses.
Commr. Campione asked about out of county and out of state individuals.
Mr. Kissler replied that the DOH was not discouraging individuals from outside the county due to it being a federal program. He said that they asked people for proof of residency, and that the mission was targeting Lake County residents for vaccination and prevention. He added that if they vaccinated many individuals early, then their immunization would start earlier and they would have less risk of being a transmitter, as well as contracting the illness.
Commr. Campione inquired about individuals under 65 years old in the dental field being vaccinated.
Mr. Kissler responded that the DOH told individuals to look at the executive order, and recommended that they get vaccinated if they had patient contact in their profession. He added that those individuals could volunteer with the DOH and that they could be vaccinated.
Commr. Smith asked if there was a number for the people successfully contacted and given an appointment for the second dose. He also mentioned that he had received many phone calls and emails from individuals saying that they had never been contacted for the second dose.
Mr. Kissler clarified that the second dose appointments started on the current day, and that he could provide that number in the near future. He said that the DOH was finding some email addresses and phone numbers challenging to read and that they were working on this; furthermore, they would have some press releases and some open days. He also commented that if the DOH ran low on vaccines, then they would stop doing first doses for a while.
Commr. Smith requested the percentage of people who received the first dose and who had received the second dose.
Commr. Shields asked about no-shows for reservations and if there were people on standby.
Mr. Kissler replied that they would mix as they went along so they would not have waste, and they also overbooked a bit due to having some no-shows. He said that they were trying to keep lines down as much as possible, and they were trying to make sure that the people waiting in line were trying to get a vaccine. He relayed that the average line had been about a two hour wait and that the lots reached capacity at some point; however, the DOH would ask them to come back in a few hours. He said that they were providing around 2,000 vaccines per day at the City of Clermont site, and he commented that they could not book appointments out too far.
Commr. Parks reiterated that Sharecare was coming today, and relayed his understanding that it would eventually be a centralized portal for different PODs, including updates and information.
Mr. Kissler confirmed this and thanked the County for putting up a system prior to that. He stated that the DOH was also interested in mobile seniors because they could transmit the illness and they took care of many homebound individuals.
Commr. Parks thanked Mr. Carpenter, Mr. John Molenda, Deputy County Manager, and Mr. Ross. He mentioned that the County reservation system had been written and worked on by staff.
Mr. Carpenter responded to Commissioner Shields’ earlier question about the reservation system and said that individuals cancelling was an issue being seen nationwide. He commented that Mr. Ross’ office had been managing reservations onsite so that when someone received their first shot and within 15 minutes, they scheduled their second appointment. He mentioned that for cancellations, they were able to look in real time to give those reservations to someone else who was eligible; furthermore, not one dose had been wasted. He added that while the Pfizer vials were five doses, they were able to provide six or seven doses. He then commented that Sharecare training would start at 10:00 a.m. on the current day, and the goal was to get the training done along with the appointment system and the associated call center. He relayed that they wanted to avoid walk-ups and lines, and mentioned that they had an agreement for the Sears site, which was about 68,000 square feet. He said that the PODs had worked well but were not long term solutions; furthermore, this was a longer term solution, and his goal was to get Sharecare online as soon as possible. He then recalled that at the previous Board of County Commissioners (BCC) meeting, the Board approved to have an appointment based program for vaccinations, which then gave residents the ability to choose between first come, first serve or an appointment. He said that on January 12, 2021, the DOH gave Lake County 3,000 first doses of the Pfizer vaccine, and that on the afternoon of that day, the County launched their appointment system and within 10 minutes, all the appointments were taken. He said that they opened a POD from January 13, 2021 to January 16, 2021, and they had fine-tuned their process to reduce the number of staff and make efficiencies. He mentioned that on January 19, 2021, the County partnered with the DOH to provide Pfizer first dose shots to Lake County schools for staff aged 65 and older, and to the nurses, for a total of 250 shots on that day. He commented that the schools would work on their follow up shots during the week of February 15, 2021, and he noted that the Pfizer vaccine had a minimum of 21 days between shots; however, it was fine to wait until a week after that. He said that the County received less than 3,000 doses during the week of January 19, 2021, but were able to open Lake-Sumter State College for vaccinations on January 21 and 22, 2021. He also mentioned that Lake County was the first in the state to implement Sharecare with an appointment center, along with a call center; furthermore, training would start on the current day at 10:00 a.m. He said that for a State-sponsored site, they would have to make do with the amount of vaccines they had, and he thought that the County and DOH staff could ramp up the former Sears site at Lake Square Mall to be a high volume vaccination center. He added that the agreement for this site began on January 25, 2021, and was valid through September 30, 2021, with 68,450 square feet of available space at a cost of $26,000 per month. He elaborated that the cost of the lease had always been eligible for reimbursement under the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) public assistance program, and it was recently found out that it would be 100 percent reimbursable. He indicated that he had heard that with the new administration in Washington D.C., there was a strong focus on supporting the states and getting the vaccine out. He commented that the current shortage was the vaccine, and he thought that moving forward, the shortage would be staff being able to administer it. He reiterated the goals to get the Sears site and Sharecare online, and to make that available as soon as possible.
Commr. Campione asked if Mr. Kissler could help the County come up with a place where people could find the most up to date information.
Ms. Jo-Anne Drury, Interim County Manager, presented an update on the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and emergency rental assistance (ERA) funding. She recalled that on September 29, 2020, the BCC authorized the Chairman to execute any additional agreements that may be received related to the CARES Act, and that since September 30, 2020, 25 CARES Act agreements or amendments had been executed by the Chairman. She then displayed a list of CARES Act related agreements. She commented that the Florida Department of Emergency Management (DEM) notified the County on January 14, 2021 that the sub-recipient agreement with the State for CARES Act funding could be extended from December 30, 2020 to June 30, 2021. She said that significant costs related to vaccine administration were anticipated, and that CARES Act funding could possibly be used to assist with these costs; therefore, staff was recommending to reallocate $1 million in CARES Act funding from public safety wage reimbursements to the County vaccination program. She said that for ERA, on December 27, 2020, the President approved a second COVID-19 relief package. She added that the County was notified that it would receive direct funding from the United States (U.S.) Department of the Treasury for ERA, that the Board authorized acceptance of the grant on January 12, 2021, and that the County received about $11 million on January 21, 2021. She explained that the purpose of this funding was for rent and utilities assistance, though there was no assistance to homeowners with mortgages. She commented that they could provide up to 12 months of assistance for past due balances, and up to three months to prepay the rent for eligible households. She reviewed the federal requirements that they must have a lease, there had to be a documented financial hardship due to COVID-19, the household had to be at risk of becoming homeless or housing instability with proof of a past due or eviction notice, and the household had to be at 80 percent of the area median income (AMI); furthermore, this was approximately $58,000 for Lake County. She added that the household would also have to provide numerous sources to support the income. She noted that payments would go directly to the landlord or utility provider, along with priority being given to certain households at 50 percent of the AMI or a family where at least one member had been unemployed for at least 90 days prior to applying. She reiterated that the County had received just over $11 million, of which at least 90 percent must be spent on eligible household assistance, noting that they were recommending that $10 million go towards rent and utilities, in addition to $1,085,380 going toward administration. She reviewed information related to the phase one and two rental assistance programs, providing the following information for phase one: a maximum award of $4,000; an income limit of 120 percent of the AMI; assisted 895 families; awarded $2.8 million; 501 families, or 56 percent of the total, were renters with past due rent and utilities; and $1.8 million was paid directly to landlords/utility providers. She then provided the following information for phase two: a maximum award of $4,000; no household income restrictions; could pay applicants directly; 3,506 households assisted; $13.4 million awarded; 515 households, or 14 percent, were renters with past due balances; and $1.2 million was paid directly to landlords. She said that the anticipated participation for the new program was estimated to be 1,000 households based on the experience of those phases of rental assistance. She elaborated that this was due to the following items: the income limit being more restrictive than in phase one and two; the applicant would have to show that they were at risk of homelessness or housing instability; the payments would have to go to a landlord or utility provider; and the more extensive documentation required. She showed the proposal based on the estimated number of households and stated that they were proposing rental assistance with a maximum award of $9,000 for up to 12 months of arrears, plus the current month, and two additional months could be prepaid if a household member was on unemployment at the time of the application. She commented that they were proposing a $1,000 maximum award for utility assistance for up to 12 months of past due utilities, plus the current month, recommending to partner with United Way of Lake and Sumter Counties as they did for phase one. She relayed that all expenditures must be completed by December 31, 2021, and that they were proposing to open the application portal on February 15, 2021 for four weeks as the initial launch. She also indicated that they were proposing to use the Ernst and Young, Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) call center again.
Commr. Shields asked if there was anything in the award criteria about getting people back on their feet.
Ms. Drury replied that as part of the administration, they had to contact the landlord and utility provider and get their assurance that they would accept the payment and not evict. She added that by paying three months forward, this gave the family a chance to stabilize.
Commr. Campione commented that it would be nice to track how the impact worked out, but noted that this could be challenging to do. She then asked if there was any opportunity to have some of the homelessness issue worked into this, such as rapid rehousing.
Ms. Drury clarified that there had to be a lease in place and it had to be past due; however, the County received frequent inquiries for people in need of immediate housing and they had other CARES Act funding which could help with that.
On a motion by Commr. Smith, seconded by Commr. Campione, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the following items: authorize an extension of the sub-recipient agreement with the Florida Department of Emergency Management; approve the Emergency Rental Assistance plan as presented; authorize an extension of the contract with Ernst & Young, CPAs; authorize a sub-recipient agreement with United Way of Lake and Sumter Counties for the administration of utility assistance; and authorize the County Manager to make program and expenditure adjustments to the Emergency Rental Assistance program as necessary during administration of the funding.
On a motion by Commr. Blake, seconded by Commr. Campione, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the minutes for the BCC meeting of October 13, 2020 (Regular Meeting) as presented.
citizen question and comment period
Commr. Parks said that this was the audience’s opportunity to ask questions and comment about anything on the agenda except for zoning or a public hearing. He asked if there was anyone on Zoom Webinar who wished to speak.
Mr. Ross replied that there were no hands raised on Zoom Webinar.
A concerned citizen in attendance asked about a sign in Magnolia Point which indicated that the manager of John’s Lake, LLC, wanted to vacate a portion of unimproved right of way. He also inquired if this impacted Magnolia Point.
Commr. Parks responded that this would be a public hearing later in the agenda and that he could ask a question at that point.
CLERK OF the Circuit COURT and comptroller’s CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Shields, seconded by Commr. Campione and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller’s Consent Agenda, Items 1 through 4, as follows:
List of Warrants
Request to acknowledge receipt of the 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.
City of Minneola Ordinance 2020-11
Request to acknowledge receipt of Comprehensive Plan Amendment Ordinance 2020-11 from the City of Minneola.
St. Johns River Water Management District 2021 Governing Board Meeting Schedule
Request to acknowledge receipt of the St. Johns River Water Management District 2021 Governing Board meeting schedule.
Lands Available List
Request to acknowledge receipt of property placed on the Lands Available List.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
Commr. Parks said that Tab 8 had been pulled, and he thought that the Board should possibly address the consent agenda and then Tab 27, which was for an agreement with LifeStream Behavioral Center, before going to the public hearings.
Commr. Smith indicated that he would like to have discussion on Tab 7 but that they did not have to pull it; rather, it was just a funding issue. He explained that the Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller found efficiencies within his office and gave the County back quite a bit of funding, and he thanked the Clerk for that. He elaborated that the Clerk requested to purchase a management system that was required due to COVID-19, and he questioned that instead of using funding from the Clerk’s savings, could the County see if they could piggyback on the CARES Act to purchase this because it was a situation with COVID-19. He said that he would like to have the funding changed to at least allow the Interim County Manager to see if the funding could be used through the CARES Act.
Commr. Parks thought this was a great idea.
Commr. Campione said that the County had funding that expired at the end of 2020, and if they had another source of funding they could work from, then it was a great idea.
Ms. Drury stated that the County would be applying to the DEM for an extension of the funding that ended on December 30, 2020 and that the DEM could allow the County to leave it open until June 30, 2021. She added that this seemed to be an eligible expense.
Commr. Parks encouraged staff to use CARES Act funding for items that were ethical and reasonable.
On a motion by Commr. Smith, seconded by Commr. Shields and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Consent Agenda, Tabs 3 through 21, pulling Tab 8, with a modification to Tab 7 to allow the Interim County Manager to see if this item would be eligible for CARES Act funding, as follows:
Request approval for the County Manager to execute a Receipt of Beneficiary of Trust and Acknowledgment and Consent of Trust Termination and any subsequent documentation required to disburse funds to the Animal Shelter from the Donald C. Abel and Patricia T. Abel Revocable Trust Agreement. The current fiscal impact is $30,000.00 (revenue).
Request approval regarding the following County-owned properties:
1. Award bid to the highest bidder for purchasing Alternate Keys 1335396, 1416710, 1479428, 1514771, 1520118, 1537606, 2581034 and 3307763.
2. Authorize the Chairman to execute any necessary closing documents.
The total fiscal impact is $21,527.00 (revenue). Commission District 5.
1. For the continued utilization of various State of Florida Information Technology related hardware and software contracts on an as-needed basis.
2. To authorize the Office of Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation.
The estimated annual fiscal impact is $1,200,100.00 (expenditure) and is within and will not exceed the Fiscal Year 2021 Budget.
Management and Budget
Request approval to commit funds as a local government match for the 2021 legislative priorities in the amounts of:
1. $750,000.00 for the Hurricane Proof Multi-Use Emergency Building.
2. $1,125,000.00 million for the public safety radio microwave system.
The local match funding will come from the Infrastructure Sales Tax Fund if the projects are funded by the State Legislature during the 2021 legislative session.
Request approval to:
1. Purchase Tyler Content Management (TCM) module for Tyler Technologies Integrated Financial System as requested by Lake County Clerk of Courts.
2. Authorize the Office of Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation.
The fiscal impact is $85,695.00 (expenditure) for Fiscal Year 2021 and estimated at $10,875.00 for additional fiscal years the module is utilized. These amounts are within and will not exceed the Fiscal Year Budgets.
AGENCY FOR ECONOMIC PROSPERITY
Request approval of an amended agreement with the State of Florida Department of Economic Opportunity to revise the "Commencement Date" for the Florida Job Growth Infrastructure Grant awarded to Lake County for design and engineering of the Round Lake Road Expansion and the construction of a master lift station facility by the City of Mount Dora, within the Wolf Branch Innovation District. The fiscal impact is up to $2,500,000.00 (revenue). Commission District 4.
PUBLIC SAFETY AND DEVELOPMENT SERVICES
Emergency Medical Services
1. To purchase six ambulances and related equipment utilizing Contract 19-0702 with ETR, LLC (Sanford, FL) and Contract 19-0519 with Stryker Sales Corporation (Redmond, WA).
2. To authorize the Office of Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation.
The fiscal impact is $1,850,210.03 (expenditure) and is within and will not exceed the Fiscal Year 2021 Budget.
PUBLIC SERVICES AND INFRASTRUCTURE
Request approval to utilize Sourcewell (a cooperative purchasing public agency) Contract 120716-NAF to purchase a fleet service vehicle. The fiscal impact is $87,767.00 (expenditure) and is within and will not exceed the Fiscal Year 2021 budget.
Housing and Human Services
Request approval of Unanticipated Revenue Resolution 2021-11 to accept funds from the U.S. Department of Treasury for the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) Program. The fiscal impact is $10,999,317.00 (revenue/expenditure).
Parks and Trails
Request approval of:
1. A Maintenance Memorandum of Agreement for On System Multi-use Trail Project with the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) for the maintenance of the State Road 50 Multi-use Trail, also referred to as the South Lake Trail/Coast To Coast Trail (South Lake Trail Segment 4).
2. Supporting Resolution 2021-12.
There is no fiscal impact from this action; however, there is an anticipated future annual recurring cost estimated to be $20,000.00 for maintenance costs, once the trail is completed (expenditure - Parks MSTU funding). Commission District 1.
Request approval of Contract 20-0925 with AIM Engineering & Surveying, Inc. (Fort Myers, FL) for a Project Development and Environment Study for Wekiva Trail Segment 5, for approximately 5.5 miles, from Disston Avenue in Tavares to Tremain Street in Mount Dora. The fiscal impact is $498,443.66 (expenditure) and is within the Fiscal Year 2021 Budget. Commission Districts 3 and 4.
1. Of Contract 21-0901 with Habitat Restoration & Wildlife Protection Services, LLC (Eustis, FL) and Kleinfelder Southeast, Inc. (Mount Dora, FL) for environmental studies and assessments throughout the County.
2. To authorize the Office of Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation.
The annual fiscal impact is estimated to be $130,000.00 (expenditure) and is within and will not exceed the Fiscal Year 2021 Budget.
Request approval of Resolution 2021-13 to advertise a public hearing to vacate an unimproved right of way in the unrecorded Map of Pittman, located west of State Road 19, south of Ravenswood Road, and north of Lake Road in the Altoona/Umatilla area. The fiscal impact is $2,295.00 (revenue - vacation application fee) and is within the Fiscal Year 2021 Budget. Commission District 5.
Request approval to release a:
1. Performance bond of $66,916.83 provided for completion of sidewalk improvements in Louisa Grande, located south of Clermont.
2. Maintenance bond of $230,606.50 that was provided for the maintenance of improvements.
There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 1.
Request approval to release a performance bond of $65,835.00 provided for completion of sidewalk improvements in Serenoa Village 1 Phase 1A2, located south of Clermont. There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 1.
Request approval to release a letter of credit of $235,303.75 for the construction of road improvements on Wilson Lake Parkway for the Bellevue at Estates at Cherry Lake subdivision in Groveland. There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 1.
1. Of Contract 20-0921 with Advanced Commercial Contractors, Inc. (Eustis, FL) for on-call construction of bus shelters and related services throughout the County.
2. To authorize the Office of Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation.
The annual fiscal impact is estimated to be $727,435.00 (expenditure - 100 percent Federal Transit Administration funded) and is within and will not exceed the Fiscal Year 2021 Budget.
Request approval of the Office of Transit Services Title VI Plan, with Limited English Proficiency Plan, and supporting Resolution 2021-14. There is no fiscal impact.
agreement with lifestream behavioral center
Commr. Parks asked for Tab 27 to be addressed at the current time.
Mr. Kelvin Coachman, Director for the Office of Housing and Human Services, introduced Mr. Jon Cherry, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for LifeStream Behavioral Center, who would be presenting on the $1.2 million County allocation which provided operating expenses for local substance abuse and mental health.
Mr. Cherry commented that LifeStream Behavioral Center provided services in seven central Florida counties, but their home was Lake County, with 700 of their 900 staff based there. He explained that they provided healthcare services for those with mental illness and substance use disorders, and that they were part of the Public Safety Health Network through their designation as a Baker Act receiving facility; additionally, they were part of the county’s social services safety net. He indicated that LifeStream was the only entity in Lake County that had volunteered as a public Baker Act receiving facility, and that they worked with the court system, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office (LCSO), and other entities to ensure that beds were available for those individuals. He mentioned that they also had a Marchman Act addictions receiving facility, and that they operated a community treatment team for individuals that needed help to maintain themselves in the community. He said that they started medically assisted treatment clinics that used alternate medications for individuals addicted to opiates, and that they had psychiatric outpatient clinics across the county, along with a mobile response team for individuals 0-27 years old who were in crisis. He explained that the total budget for LifeStream was now slightly over $61 million and that approximately $45 million was expended in Lake County. He stated that the County’s allocation was $1,223,000, and the State provided an allocation for indigent services which required a local match that the County and the mental health provider had to provide. He relayed that about half of the mental health funding was expended in LifeStream’s crisis stabilization unit, which was the Baker Act receiving facility. He added that they had $49,000 in outpatient clinic services for mental health for adults, and it was about $116,000 for children. He said that their outpatient medical services for adults and children was about $102,000 to support the medical staff; additionally, mental health residential was $40,000 for a total of $888,987. He mentioned that on the substance abuse side, the funding went toward the addictions receiving facility and their detox unit for $300,000, along with $35,000 for outpatient services for a total of $335,000. He commented that there was a question about the contract indicating a minimum of about $150,000 to be spent for substance abuse service, and he said that this dollar amount was in their contract prior to his arrival in 2000. He assumed that at that point in time, the County wanted to assure that at least $150,000 was spent toward provision of substance use disorder services. He stated that about a quarter of the funding provided by the County was spent to match substance use disorder services, and about three quarters of that funding was for mental illness and mental health disorders.
Commr. Parks thanked him for presenting. He relayed that Commissioner Smith had some questions about this and wanted to do his due diligence to make sure everything was vetted and thorough.
Commr. Smith thanked Mr. Cherry for taking his call recently and said that he had helped him out immensely. He expressed appreciation for this presentation.
On a motion by Commr. Smith, seconded by Commr. Shields and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved an agreement with LifeStream Behavioral Center, Inc. for Fiscal Year 2021 funding.
recess and reassembly
The Chairman called a recess at 10:23 a.m. for seven minutes.
public hearings: REZONING
rezoning consent agenda
Mr. Tim McClendon, Director for the Office of Planning and Zoning, displayed the advertisements for that day’s rezoning cases on the overhead monitor in accordance with the Florida Statutes. He said that Tabs 1 and 2 were heard by the Planning and Zoning Board on January 6, 2021 and were approved on the consent agenda. He relayed that staff would request that the Board accept the Planning and Zoning Board recommendation and approve Tabs 1 and 2, after which staff would present Tab 3.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one who wished to address the Board regarding any cases on the Rezoning Consent Agenda, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Shields, seconded by Commr. Blake and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the Rezoning Consent Agenda, Tabs 1 and 2, as follows:
Tab 1. Ordinance No. 2021-1
Rezoning Case # RZ-20-34-4
Dilday Property Rezoning
Rezone the subject property from Medium Residential District (R-3) and Agriculture (A) to Medium Residential District (R-3).
Tab 2. Ordinance No. 2021-2
Rezoning Case # RZ-20-37-5
May and Whitaker Property
Rezone 27.89 +/- acres from Agriculture (A) and Agriculture Residential (AR) to Planned Unit Development (PUD) to accommodate residential subdivision development and consideration of central sewer system connection waiver.
rezoning regular agenda
Rezoning Case # RZ-20-29-5
Shoreline Ranch Rezoning
Rezone from Rural Residential (R-1) and Agriculture (A) to Planned Unit Development (PUD) to establish a sixty (60) lot residential subdivision with equestrian and non-intensive agriculture uses, recreational amenities and requesting a waiver to LDR Section 9.04.01.A.1.B (access).
shoreline ranch rezoning
Mr. McClendon presented Tab 3, Rezoning Case # RZ-20-29-5, Shoreline Ranch Rezoning. He explained that the case was located on the south side of Wiygul Road, within Commission District 5, and the tract size of the property was 350 gross acres. He said that the request was to rezone the property from Rural Residential (R-1) and Agriculture to planned unit development (PUD) to develop a 60 lot residential subdivision. He displayed the current future land use (FLU) of Rural, which allowed up to one dwelling unit per five net acres, and he also showed the concept plan, noting that it was a clustered rural-type subdivision with two lots fronting along Wiygul Road. He relayed the following staff analysis findings: the request was consistent with the Comprehensive Plan (Comp Plan), which allowed residential and equestrian type uses, and the Land Development Regulations (LDRs); there was a waiver request built into the PUD that would allow a single shared driveway to the two lots along Wiygul Road for transportation purposes; the equestrian would be limited to lots two acres in size or greater; 174 of the 350 acres were uplands; the base density was 35 lots; there was a Comp Plan allowance to transfer one additional dwelling unit for every five acre of wetlands, noting that the applicant could theoretically build up to 72 lots within this 350 acres, though the applicant was only requesting 60 lots; and the request was consistent with multiple policies within the Comp Plan, as well as the open space requirements for a minimum of 35 percent. He mentioned that there was significant opposition at the Planning and Zoning Board hearing, and staff would have the opportunity to address some issues that came up during that meeting. He said that a concern was for buffers between this site and the neighborhood to the west, noting that a type B buffer would be required and would effectively border the entire project. He also stated that for stormwater, the applicant would be required to meet not only the LDRs but also the St. Johns River Water Management District (SJRWMD) requirements, which included keeping any potential runoff on this specific site. He recalled that the floodplain had been brought up, and said that the applicant would be required to comply with all FEMA, Comp Plan and LDRs requirements, including compensating storage onsite if any development was in the floodplain. He relayed that for lot sizes along Lake Dalhousie, staff opined that the proposed one acre lots were comparable and compatible with the existing development around the entire lake; additionally, from staff research, the smallest lot along the lake was about three-quarters of an acre in size. He concluded that the Planning and Zoning Board recommended approval of this project.
Ms. Melanie Marsh, County Attorney, said that if the Board had any conversations with the applicants or the residents, they needed to disclose them on record.
Commr. Parks said that he had discussions with Mr. Steve West, President of the Lake Dalhousie Estates Homeowners Association (HOA), and Mr. Phillippe Pai, a resident of Lake Dalhousie Estates.
Commr. Smith commented that he had ex parte contact through email and phone.
Commr. Shields mentioned that he had spoken to Mr. Pai and the applicant’s attorney.
Commr. Blake stated that in the previous week, he had a Zoom Webinar meeting with Mr. Lance Pauli and Mr. Pai, along with another Zoom Webinar meeting on the previous day with the applicant’s attorney.
Commr. Campione relayed that she had several conversations with Mr. Steve Bakich, a property owner in the area, and Ms. Merideth Nagel, the applicant’s attorney. She then asked that if this were to be platted without a PUD and this request being made, what would be the minimum lot size and how many lots could be developed.
Mr. McClendon replied that the base density there was one unit per five acres, and that there was a Comp Plan requirement for applicants to go through the PUD mechanism once 50 dwelling units was exceeded. He said that currently, the applicant could move forward with a 50 lot subdivision by platting and meeting the code requirements.
Commr. Campione inquired if a five acre tract would be needed for each parcel, and Mr. McClendon confirmed this, noting that it came down to what could be done from an engineering standpoint. Commissioner Campione then asked if the five acre minimum requirement was an upland, a wetland, or a combination. She commented that if she were to take the acreage without the wetlands, then divide that number by five acres, then it seemed to be around 30 to 35 plots.
Mr. McClendon confirmed this and added that it would be required to be uplands at that point.
Commr. Campione inquired if the density transfer was at the discretion of the BCC or if it was automatic.
Mr. McClendon said that the Comp Plan treated it as automatic and that it was an allowable transfer.
Commr. Campione inquired that if a PUD request came in and there were wetlands and uplands, was the Board required to grant the maximum allowed lots or could they grant something less.
Ms. Marsh replied that with it being a PUD, the Board could tailor it to what they thought would be most compatible with the area, noting that they could lower the number of lots.
Commr. Campione asked if there could be conditions, such as the size of houses, to make it more compatible, and Ms. Marsh confirmed that this could be done under the PUD.
Mr. McClendon noted that the minimum house size for homes within the Agriculture district was 850 square feet.
Commr. Campione opined that the adjacent Lake Dalhousie Estates was probably one of the nicest subdivisions in the county, and she thought that the Board had to factor in the reality of the area. She explained that when she looked at cases like this, she considered the worst case scenario if the property owner did something on their own without rezoning, noting that there could be a worse scenario than if there was a compromise.
Commr. Blake asked to clarify that it was a unanimous Planning and Zoning Board recommendation, and Mr. McClendon said this was correct.
Commr. Smith asked that if the PUD was approved and the landowner went to sell their property, would they have to stick with the PUD.
Mr. McClendon confirmed this, adding that any changes would have to come back before the Board.
Ms. Nagel said that the applicant had met with the neighbors, and she showed a concept plan. She pointed out that they had a second entrance and that residents of Lake Dalhousie Estates were concerned about their own subdivision being used as an access point; therefore, the cul-de-sac was moved and the County was agreeable to having one entrance. She also thought that the neighbors had valid concerns over the location of a boat dock, and she showed where their boat dock was.
Commr. Campione asked how long her client had owned this property and if they were a developer.
Ms. Nagel clarified that they were under contract and did not own it yet. She also explained that the applicant was not building these houses; rather, they were going to get the entitlements to build the infrastructure, sell the lots, and custom homebuilders would come in.
Commr. Campione inquired if lots would be sold to the end user or developers, and if they had done anything else in Lake County.
Ms. Nagel opined that they had two nice projects in the county, and they did not sell to bulk builders, noting that the lots were sold to the people who were going to live there.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
Mr. Pai said that he was not opposed to the development but that residents were looking for good neighbors. He displayed a letter he had sent to the Commissioners and relayed that through his research, there were no homes less than one acre on the lake. He stated that Lake Dalhousie Estates had an average of over three acres, and the rest of the lake had an average of over five acres on the lake. He opined that the proposed development was not harmonious or consistent with development around the lake, and he wanted the Board to consider a responsible long term tax base. He expressed concerns for transiency with smaller homes and smaller lots, and said that larger homes and lots would be more valuable. He also indicated concerns for the preservation of Lake Dalhousie Estates’ present and future value, along with flooding and environmental impacts on the existing lake. He showed the rezoning staff report and asked if they could move some of the lots along the lake so that it would be more harmonious with the current development. He also submitted a FEMA floodplain overlaid over a satellite picture.
Ms. Kim Bakich, a resident of Lake Dalhousie Estates, expressed concerns for the possibility of 10 to 20 years of construction affecting residents on lots 13 through 16 on the end of Timberline Drive. She asked that a substantial and aesthetically pleasing six to eight foot solid wall be constructed by the developers in order to be a buffer for construction noise and as a delineation between the developments. She also indicated concerns for noise, foot traffic and policing of her neighborhood’s recreation center.
Mr. Rob Sullivan, a resident of Lake Dalhousie Estates who would share a property line with the proposed development, expressed hopes for a plan with stipulations to ensure responsible planned growth. He expressed concerns for his street remaining as a cul-de-sac, and for structures such as tiny homes and mobile homes. He supported a plan stipulating an architectural wall or fence along the property line that divided Lake Dalhousie Estates from the new development, and he also indicated concerns for water management.
Ms. Janet Depaz, a resident of Lake Dalhousie Estates, expressed concerns for water runoff into the lake, along with septic tanks and drain fields. She also indicated concerns for her well going dry, and she opined that the area needed to be rural to keep the environment healthy.
Ms. Ella Finlayson, a resident on Lake Dalhousie, expressed concerns for development causing the loss of wildlife, and she did not want another boat ramp due to how busy the lake was.
Mr. West provided information about Lake Dalhousie Estates and said that the residents wanted responsible development consistent with their community and the homes surrounding the lake. He relayed a concern for inconsistent square footage with the homes in Lake Dalhousie Estates, and he showed an image containing information about lakefront homes in Lake Dalhousie Estates, noting that there was a 2,500 square foot minimum. He also indicated concerns for one acre lots on the lakefront, commenting that Lake Dalhousie Estates’ lots were in excess of 3.44 acres. He asked if it was possible to take the 11 one acre lots and possibly reduce them to around five lots of two acres each.
Commr. Campione asked for an exhibit to be displayed that showed linear footage along the lake. She inquired if it was a small lot, a boat ramp, or the park.
Mr. West clarified that it was their HOA lot with a beach and a dock.
Commr. Campione pointed out that the smallest one would be 164 feet, and the largest linear footage across would be 250 feet.
Mr. West said that lot eight was a house and that they had the smallest lake frontage, though the others were in excess of this. He also entered a letter from a Lake Dalhousie Estates resident into the record.
Mr. Mark Sorensen, a resident on Lake Dalhousie, expressed concerns for placing 11 homes and a boat ramp on the lakefront. He commented that the land surrounding the subject property was R-1, and he supported having the property be consistent with the neighborhood. He also said that he had a backup contingency contract with the subject property owner that was fully executed, and that he was willing to buy the property.
Mr. Joe Lobato, a neighbor of the subject property, indicated that the rear of his two acre property near Rusty’s Pond had a designated conservation and drainage easement, and a FEMA designated flood zone. He displayed a FEMA picture of his property and also a plan for the proposed development, noting that a portion of the property was in the flood zone. He expressed concerns for the proposed development causing flooding on his property, and he thought that the subject property was not meant for what the applicant wanted due to wetlands and the flood zone.
Commr. Parks noted he had received comment cards for residents who did not wish to speak, and that Mr. West could speak for a longer period of time.
Mr. West opined that residents around the lake were not opposed to the proposed development, though they wanted a responsible plan. He mentioned concerns for the floodplain and for if there was enough room to place a swale. He reemphasized the size of his neighborhood’s homes on the lakefront, and expressed concerns for the possibility of 800 to 1,500 square foot homes in the proposed development.
Commr. Parks asked if anyone else wanted to make a comment.
Ms. Finlayson asked if there would be restrictions in the proposed development and if they would have an HOA.
There being no one else who wished to address the Board regarding this matter, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
Ms. Nagel asked Mr. Gary Cooney, Lake County Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller, to swear in Mr. Rick Hartenstein, an engineer with Wicks Engineering Services representing the applicant.
Mr. Hartenstein said that he was a certified land use planner and relayed his background.
Ms. Nagel recalled that she had asked him to engage in a measurement of lot sizes around Lake Dalhousie. She displayed a document with these measurements.
Mr. Hartenstein commented that these measurements were the shoreline distances of the proposed 11 lots, and that the measurements were the lot frontages along the lakeshore, rather than the road. He mentioned that they ranged from 105 to 140 feet. He said that the measurements for Lake Dalhousie Estates ranged from 110 feet of lakeshore frontage to 337 feet, and most were 170 to 200 feet. He also opined that the proposed frontages were compatible with the rest of the lake.
Ms. Nagel showed an overhead of the lake from the geographic information system (GIS) map. She asked to confirm that the Lake Dalhousie Estates lake lot sizes went into the lake, and Mr. Hartenstein confirmed this. She inquired if any of the applicant’s lots went into the lake, and Mr. Hartenstein denied this and said that they were all uplands. She asked that when looking at uplands to uplands, would he agree that this was consistent in the neighborhood.
Mr. Hartenstein said that the applicant’s proposed lots were smaller than those in Lake Dalhousie Estates, though he opined that they were consistently close.
Ms. Nagel asked to confirm that they had exceeded the open space requirements of the LDRs.
Mr. Hartenstein confirmed this and added that they were required to have 20 percent open space or 34.86 acres, and they had provided 34.89 acres.
Ms. Nagel also asked about the impervious surface requirements.
Mr. Hartenstein replied that if they maxed out this development for impervious surface, they could have 34.86 acres of impervious surface; however, they currently only had 3.97 acres of impervious surface, or less than one percent.
Ms. Nagel inquired about the total number of lots that could be in this development.
Mr. Hartenstein stated that they could have had a maximum of 72 lots, based on 174.3 acres of uplands divided by five, for 34.86 lots, then taking 186 acres of wetlands that received a credit of one dwelling unit per five acres of wetlands. He elaborated that dividing this by five equaled 37.2 lots from wetland credits, and adding this to the previous number totaled 72.06; however, they chose to only have 60 lots.
Commr. Campione asked that if they took their upland acreage and divided it by the zoning requirements, how many lots could they subdivide.
Mr. Hartenstein commented that it was still based on one unit per five acres, so the uplands would still be 34.86 acres.
Commr. Campione inquired if they would be able to plat the wetland lots into five acre tracts.
Mr. Hartenstein said that it was still based on one unit per five acres per the LDRs and the Comp Plan, noting that it did not have to be a minimum five acre lot; rather, it said one dwelling unit to five acres.
Commr. Campione asked if he was testifying that they could subdivide the property currently and yield 72 tracts.
Mr. Hartenstein clarified that under the Agriculture zoning, they could still have less than five acre lot sizes, but it would still be under the density of one unit per five acres. He added that they would probably be up around 40 lots and that there was no minimum lot size other than the Comp Plan indicating that if they did this in the Rural FLU, they had to have a minimum of one acre.
Commr. Campione asked about the average acreage of the lot sizes around Lake Dalhousie.
Mr. Hartenstein clarified that he did not average all of the lake lots and that he was looking for lots that would be close and comparable to the proposed lots.
Commr. Campione commented that for example, if they were to go from lot 9 through 14 of Lake Dalhousie Estates and move it over to this amount of lakefront, there would only be five or six lots if they were going to have comparable lot sizes.
Mr. Hartenstein replied that if it was going to be exact, then this was correct.
Ms. Nagel opined that they had to compare uplands to uplands, and said that the proposed development had an acre of uplands along each lot; additionally, she also opined that the relevant point was the amount of shoreline on each lot. She explained that for water issues, they would have to deal with the SJRWMD and meet FEMA requirements, and they would have to have environmental reports and comply with state and federal rules for endangered species. She commented that for the homeowners’ restrictions, there would be no reclaimed materials, no mobile homes, no modular homes, site entry driveways, only appropriate pets, landscaping required, and an architectural review committee. She opined that it would be a nice subdivision and said that it would be gated, with the smallest lot being one acre. She reiterated that they were only asking for one variance for a shared driveway so that they would not have to traverse wetlands to make another interior road.
Commr. Campione asked if they could include in the PUD that it would be a gated community.
Ms. Nagel said that she would have to speak to her client, but this is what they always had done.
Ms. Marsh indicated that there could be a requirement that the community be gated and that the roads not be public.
Commr. Campione asked about separation distance issues with wells and septic tanks, noting that having depth kept it further from the lake.
Ms. Nagel said that they would have to meet the requirements of where the drain field was placed.
Commr. Campione thought that these were the kinds of things that the Board had a responsibility to consider to ensure compatibility.
Ms. Nagel thought that they had proposed a great development in a great location, and that it complied with the Comp Plan and LDRs.
Commr. Smith asked if the lakefront lots would be sold individually to someone who wanted to build a custom home, and Ms. Nagel confirmed this. Commissioner Smith then asked if it would be conceivable that a person could buy two lots and place one house on it.
Ms. Nagel replied that this could be conceivable, provided that it was fine with the SJRWMD.
Commr. Campione asked if they would be unable to plat over 50 lots without a PUD, and Mr. Hartenstein confirmed this.
Commr. Parks inquired about the resurfacing responsibility for these roads if the PUD was approved.
Mr. Fred Schneider, Public Works Director, responded that they would typically be maintained by the County if they were public roads; however, if it was gated, they would have to be private roads maintained by the HOA.
Commr. Campione asked about lot sizes in Agriculture zoning with a Rural FLU.
Mr. McClendon mentioned that from the Comp Plan side, density was all based on upland lands on a property, and the zoning had a minimum lot size in accordance with the gross acreage requirements of each zoning district. He relayed that Agriculture was listed at one unit per five acres; therefore, there could be a five acre Agriculture lot, but three quarters of that lot could be in wetlands and still meet that classification under the zoning.
Commr. Campione questioned what could be platted on this property if this request was not before the Board. She relayed her understanding that it would be one unit per five acres, divided into all of the acreage.
Mr. McClendon said that his interpretation would be that it would be up to 50 lots, and once this threshold was passed, one was required to go through the PUD process.
Commr. Campione opined that designing a subdivision plat was probably more preferable than trying to go the straight zoning route; however, she opined that the lots on the lake should be slightly larger to be consistent with the adjoining subdivision. She commented that it seemed like there were some things the Board could do to assure that there was a level of quality to give assurance that it would be compatible.
Commr. Blake thanked the residents for attending the meeting, though he did not think that many of the concerns rose to the level that he would disagree with the unanimous approval of the Planning and Zoning Board. He thought that this project was compatible, and he relayed his understanding that there was a one unit per 3.8 acre density for Lake Dalhousie Estates; furthermore, the overall density for the proposal was one unit per five acres. He commented that he did not agree with all of Lake County’s rules, though they were obligated to follow them. He remarked that the environmental concerns would be addressed by the SJRWMD and that this was not something the Board took into consideration for a project like this.
Commr. Blake then made a motion for approval of this item, as presented, and Commissioner Smith seconded the motion.
Commr. Parks said that he would not support this motion at this point. He believed that the County needed stronger criteria for their subdivisions so there would be more certainty, noting that the Board was hearing this case under the current criteria. He relayed that he still had questions and that he could entertain tabling the case. He stated that the size of the proposed homes was not clearly in the record, and he questioned the funding plan for the 25 year operation and maintenance on the roads within the subdivision. He relayed that the compensating storage plan was not presented, and he opined that it was unclear as to where the excavation would occur. He also opined that it was not known for sure if the septic tanks would pollute Lake Dalhousie, and he thought that the County should consider performance criteria for septic tanks above the State standard, particularly those close to lakes. He questioned how the proposed rezoning could affect property values and what types of uses would be allowed, and he said that it was unclear whether the buffers would use native plants to promote the conservation of natural resources.
Ms. Nagel asked if his position could be changed if amendments were made to the PUD at the current meeting.
Commr. Parks commented that the best he could ask for was likely a tabling.
Ms. Nagel expressed concerns for a tabling affecting time and money, and she thought that they could address most of his concerns by making an amendment to the PUD. She commented that it was impossible for the applicant to come before the Board at this phase with all of the water engineering done; furthermore, they would not be able to do the project if they did not satisfy the State, the County and the SJRWMD. She relayed that the applicant was prepared to say that the community would be gated, and that they were planning a private road system that the HOA would be responsible for. She said that they could also make some concessions on minimum square footage.
Commr. Parks clarified that the County would not be asking for the entire engineering of the site, and noted that they could add conditions. He expressed a preference for tabling this case for one meeting, or possibly 30 days.
Commr. Campione agreed about the compensated storage and said that it might require that some of the lot lines and density to be shifted away, which could please the residents of Lake Dalhousie Estates. She thought that comment about the wall was legitimate and that it needed to be considered, and she opined that the lakefront lots should be larger. She added that Commissioner Parks’ comment about public facilities and roads was something that the Board should be considering in the future until they came up with a plan to address roads in new subdivisions without burdening the public facilities budget.
Ms. Nagel opined that the applicant had done everything right, had come out of a Planning and Zoning Board meeting with a 5-0 vote, and had designed a subdivision that exceeded the requirements; furthermore, she expressed concerns for stalling this development based on future hopes for other developments. She reiterated that they would not be able to develop if there were water issues, and she opined that tabling was an issue.
Commr. Parks relayed that these were questions that he had, following the standards of review, and that this was how he was basing his decision. He noted that the Board had often looked for a tabling to try to get a solution.
Commr. Campione clarified that the zoning allowed something and that the Board was not taking that away; rather, going over 50 lots is what brought it in front of the Board. She added that they wanted to make some modifications to the straight zoning rules, and she mentioned negotiating something that addressed compatibility with the adjoining neighbors. She opined that the Board was being fair about it, and that the idea of tabling the case for a few weeks to come up with some details was fair, unless they could come up with the details at the current time.
Commr. Blake opined that if this level of scrutiny had been applied, Lake Dalhousie Estates never would have been approved. He commented that the Board had lamented the housing shortage in Lake County, and that of all the projects that had come before him, one unit per five acres of density was the most compatible. He expressed a concern for the county having the reputation where one did not want to invest money on the front end to bring a project forward because it would be a sunk cost if it was denied.
Commr. Shields said that he did not see a negative to making the lakefront lots larger to be more compatible.
Commr. Campione noted that this was a rural area and opined that it deserved a level of scrutiny.
Commr. Parks did not think that there was a vote to approve or deny at the current time.
Commr. Blake withdrew his motion, and Commissioner Smith withdrew his second.
Commr. Shields commented that his issue was protecting the lakefront lot owners and making sure that the lot sizes and homes that would be built were compatible. He added that he would look at the linear feet, the size of the lots, and whatever the Board could put in to protect those individuals.
Ms. Nagel asked if the Board was expecting the applicant to match lakefront to lakefront. She said that they had displayed the widths to show that they were compatible.
Commr. Campione opined that there was a significant disparity and that there was room where they could probably cut out a few lakefront lots and make them all slightly larger.
Ms. Nagel noted that there were some lots that were 140 feet wide, which she opined would be close enough. She said that she had never known of any legal standard that required their lakefront lots to be the same as the people across the street.
Commr. Campione proposed that since they had 12 lots currently, to remove four and make them into eight.
Ms. Nagel noted that if they had more interior lots, then they would have more impact on the wetlands and would have to construct roads, along with losing some of the impervious surface ratio (ISR). She added that it was a minimum of an acre on the lake, which she opined was compatible.
Commr. Parks said that the Board all looked through the standards of review and had to interpret that, in addition to whether the Board individually had enough information to support it or not. He thought that these issues could be worked out with a tabling, noting that the neighbors did not indicate opposition to them developing there at all. He also opined that tabling for 30 days would be good.
Ms. Marsh proposed that if the Board was going to table it, then they should select a specific meeting, noting that their next two meetings would be February 9 and February 23, 2021.
Commr. Parks suggested February 23, 2021.
Ms. Nagel asked if they could push for February 9, 2021 due to her being unable to attend on February 23, 2021.
Commr. Parks indicated that he was amicable with this.
Commr. Campione stated that this would give a few weeks. She relayed that no one had seen homeowners’ documents, and she proposed possibly putting those items into the PUD. She added that she could provide the Board with a minimum house size.
Ms. Nagel commented that at the current meeting, they could require 2,500 square feet, which is what Lake Dalhousie Estates had. She also said that she could not get the project fully engineered to indicate exactly where the water storage would be, and that this was cost-prohibitive at this stage.
Commr. Parks said that she could answer the concerns that she had heard, and it would have to be in the ordinance. He mentioned that staff could help her with this. He did not think that she needed to complete the engineering for water, and he stated that she could meet with the Commissioners, Ms. Marsh, and Mr. McClendon.
Ms. Nagel commented that they would get those meetings arranged.
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Shields and carried by a vote of 4-1, the Board postponed Tab 3, Rezoning Case # RZ-20-29-5, Shoreline Ranch Rezoning, to the February 9, 2021 BCC meeting for a vote at that time with additional conditions based on the discussion which occurred at the current meeting.
Commr. Smith voted no.
public hearing: amended fiscal year 2021 budget
Ms. Allison Teslia, Director for the Office of Management and Budget, said that the purpose of this presentation was to hold a public hearing on the mid-year budget amendment. She explained that the purpose of the mid-year budget amendment was to make adjustments to the fiscal year (FY) 2021 budget to add previously unanticipated revenues and expenditures, and also to include any necessary changes that had been identified. She noted that the current countywide budget included previously approved unanticipated revenue resolutions, which was currently at about $557.49 million, and the currently proposed changes today were approximately $18.04 million, which would bring the supplemental budget to roughly $575.53 million. She showed a summary of the total changes, which was about $7.9 million for the General Fund and included the following items: a decrease of approximately $224,000 in ad valorem revenues due to adjustments for the final property values as of October 1, 2020, which included Value Adjustment Board adjustments; an increase in lease revenue of roughly $27,000 for the recently approved tower agreement and space at the extension services building; a recognition of about $9.5 million for CARES Act funding; an adjustment for changes to the beginning fund balance of roughly $1.6 million; and other various adjustments totaling about $233,000. She then relayed the following adjustments to the General Fund expenditures: a decrease of about $59,000 in community redevelopment area (CRA) payments due to the changes in property values as of October 1, 2020; an increase of approximately $713,000 for CARES Act related expenditures; for the Lake County Supervisor of Elections, there was a roughly $854,000 increase for a new facility; for the Lake County Clerk of Circuit Court and Comptroller, there was an increase of about $260,000 for technology improvements requested at the time of redistribution of excess fees at the end of FY 2020; for the Lake County Sheriff, there was an increase of roughly $56,000 for an evidence warehouse; and there was an approximate $5.9 million increase to reserves, with about $195,000 in other miscellaneous adjustments. She commented that for FY 2021 adopted reserves, the County had $15.5 million total, which was 9.9 percent of operating expenses; furthermore, after the mid-year adjustment, the total reserves would be about $21.6 million, which would be 13.8 percent of operating expenses. She mentioned that the current Board policy was a goal of seven to twelve percent of operating expenses, and the long range target was 16 percent of operating expenses, as recommended by the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA). She showed a summary of changes for the other funds, which was about $10 million and included the following items: software upgrades for the building fund; major adjustments resulting from grant reconciliations included about $1.1 million in the transit fund and a reduction of roughly $782,000 in the federal/state grant funds; and major adjustments related to capital projects included a re-budget of approximately $6.4 million for road resurfacing projects, a re-budget of about $498,000 for the Wekiva Trail Project, roughly $165,000 for additional judicial center upgrades, and about $1.7 million in other adjustments primarily related to changes in beginning fund balance for those funds.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one who wished to address the Board regarding this matter, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
Commr. Smith said that he was happy to hear that the reserve amount was increasing.
Ms. Teslia read the requested action for approval of an amended budget for FY 2021 to include a reconciliation of beginning fund balance and other adjustments, and approval of the resolution adopting a supplemental budget of $575,527,683 for FY 2021.
Commr. Parks thanked staff for seeing these moves six months to a year out.
On a motion by Commr. Blake, seconded by Commr. Smith and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved an amended budget for FY 2021 to include a reconciliation of beginning fund balance and other adjustments, and Resolution 2021-10 adopting a supplemental budget of $575,527,683 for FY 2021.
public hearing: vacation petition lake highlands company
Mr. Schneider presented a public hearing for vacation petition #1257. He explained that the applicants were Mr. James Fant, Manager of John’s Lake, LLC, Ms. Crystal Guesman, for the Estate of Ms. Ann Warren, and Ms. Rhonda McKinley, also for the Estate of Ms. Ann Warran and as Manager of Daleon, LLC; additionally, the applicants were represented by Mr. Donald Curotto, with Shutts and Brown LLP, and Mr. Robert White, with White & Luczak. He displayed the site location and noted that it was south of State Road (SR) 50 in the City of Clermont area, in Commission District 2. He showed the proposed location, which was east of Good Hearth Boulevard, south of SR 50, and commented that it was an old platted right of way that currently connected from Magnolia Point Boulevard to the west. He displayed an image of the proposed vacation and indicated that staff had met with the concerned citizen from earlier in the meeting to address his concerns. He explained that the purpose of the request was for the future development of John’s Lake Landing, phase six; furthermore, staff did not receive any letters of support or objection.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
There being no one who wished to address the Board regarding this matter, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Smith and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Resolution 2021-15 to vacate unimproved right of way in the plats of Lake Highlands Company, located east of the future extension of Good Hearth Boulevard and west of Magnolia Pointe Boulevard, in the Clermont area.
public hearing: vacation petition on cook road
Mr. Schneider presented a public hearing for vacation petition #1248. He said that the applicants were Cra-Mar Groves, Inc., Ms. Courtney Violette, and Ms. Diana Violette, who were represented by Mr. Kurt Ardaman, with Fishback Dominick, Attorneys at Law. He explained that the proposed vacation was located in the City of Clermont area, in Commission District 2, off U.S. Highway 27. He displayed the area that would be vacated and noted that two property owners would be affected; however, they would be provided an easement to be turned into a private access roadway. He added that the purpose of the request was to eliminate this portion of the public right of way to eliminate any trespassing and littering; furthermore, staff did not receive any letters of support or objection. He mentioned that if approved today, the applicants would dedicate right of way that would provide for a clay road cul-de-sac, and he showed an image of this. He also said that the County would maintain the road from there to the north up to Schofield Road. He requested approval of this item.
The Chairman opened the public hearing.
Mr. Ardaman commented that there was a significant amount of trespassing and raucous behavior there, and he thanked staff. He relayed that they were having the escrow already executed for the private easements, along with the deed for the cul-de-sac; additionally, they were obligated to construct the clay portion of the roundabout within the next 12 months. He requested that the Board adopt staff’s recommendation.
There being no one else who wished to address the Board regarding this matter, the Chairman closed the public hearing.
On a motion by Commr. Shields, seconded by Commr. Blake and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Resolution 2021-16 to vacate right of way and cease maintenance on a portion of Cook Road, located east of U.S. Highway 27 and south of Schofield Road, in the Clermont area.
ordinance regarding simulated gambling
Mr. McClendon presented a simulated gambling facilities ordinance, noting that there were two proposed ordinances for the Board’s consideration. He elaborated that one included a licensing and permitting scheme, and the alternative was a moratorium proposal. He indicated that simulated gambling facilities, or electronic game rooms, had been problematic for law enforcement and code enforcement and that according to the Lake County Sheriff, there had been 60 complaints through 2020 including breaking and entering, robbery and drug use. He said that there were 19 known facilities in Lake County that operated as electronic game rooms, and he noted that these facilities were defined as a premise at which electronic games are provided to members of the general public, and that utilize electronic equipment for entertainment, amusement or prize giveaways. He commented that simulated gambling facilities fell under Neighborhood Commercial (C-1) zoning and were considered a general retail use, which would be a permitted use in all C-1 districts. He said that for the licensing and permitting scheme, the ordinance had multiple definitions and set up a permitting requirement and fee system which would include the following: initial permit applications must be obtained within 30 days of any approval, with about a 60 day staff review or turnaround time; yearly permit renewals; multiple submittal requirements that an applicant would have to provide staff for review; fees would have to be established by the BCC; and signage requirements. He then listed the following limitations on business operations: prohibition of alcohol sales and consumption on premises; no tobacco sales on premises; prohibition of minors from entering these sites; and employee background checks. He also listed safety and security requirements including security cameras and multiple staffed security guards on premises, along with licensing fees would need to be adopted with any ordinance that moved forward. He presented research from what other municipalities and counties were doing, noting that the City of Leesburg regulated these facilities similar to the proposed ordinance; however, the Cities of Clermont, Eustis, Mount Dora and Minneola prohibited them. He added that the Cities of Tavares and Mascotte did not regulate them and let them operate as a standard C-1 zoning district. He commented that in the City of Jacksonville, the fees were tied to the number of machines within these facilities. He then discussed the proposed moratorium ordinance and said that it had the same definitions as provided by the licensing scheme; furthermore, the proposed moratorium would last until August 2021, and would allow staff more time to create other alternatives. He read the requested action to either move forward with approval to advertise either the moratorium on simulated gambling or the permitting and licensing scheme.
Ms. Marsh said that at the request of Commissioner Parks, staff originally brought an ordinance in February 2020 to prohibit the use outright in the unincorporated area. She elaborated that at that point, the same industry representatives who were present at the current meeting had come and asked the Board to not do that yet and to gather more information; therefore, it had been tabled. She stated that this was just bringing it back to the Board and that if the Board did not want to do a moratorium or licensing scheme, they could leave the code as is so they would continue to be a C-1 use, or the Board could bring back the straight prohibition on these uses.
Commr. Parks recalled that his concern back in February 2020 was not necessarily banning it outright within the county, recognizing there were existing businesses; rather, he wanted to make sure that more businesses were not opening up because of what he was hearing in places like Four Corners, around the City of Clermont, and some unincorporated areas around the cities. He asked if the proposed ordinances limited it to the current number of businesses within the county.
Ms. Marsh replied that this draft did not have a limitation but that the Board could include it. She said that generally in this scenario, if there were 19 businesses, they would have 30 days to apply and if they did not, or if they did not reapply yearly, then it was essentially being put out for a bidding war for those businesses to fill those empty slots. She added that it was somewhat creating a monopoly for the businesses that were there, and as long as they were continuing their licenses, the County would be prohibiting any others from coming to the unincorporated area. She stated that if the Board wanted to do the moratorium and workshop this, then the County would prohibit any new uses before August 27, 2021; additionally, if they wanted to go with the licensing ordinance, then it would come back for adoption at the first or second meeting in February 2021.
Commr. Parks asked if the licensing ordinance would allow more businesses.
Ms. Marsh clarified that it currently had no limit, though if the Board wanted to advertise it, she could add in that limit if it was part of their motion.
Commr. Blake relayed that he was not in favor of a moratorium or the regulation of this. He believed that people had the right to do what they wanted with their discretionary income as long as it was not harming someone else, and he noted that there were many establishments in the county that might have more proclivity for law enforcement calls than others. He said that he did not want the County to get in the business of micromanaging some of these locations.
Commr. Parks stated that he did not want to shut any of those businesses down, but mentioned that there were issues with them, noting that people from the Four Corners area had spoken up on this.
Commr. Campione asked about surrounding counties. She also noted that if Lake County left this open ended, they could possibly become a magnet.
Commr. Shields stated that Polk County outlawed them.
Ms. Marsh added that Seminole County had a regulation which sparked litigation, and that St. Johns County had put one in effect but did not enforce it.
The Chairman opened the floor for public comment.
Mr. Michael Hatfield, an attorney representing 23 game rooms in Lake County, hoped that the Board would place a short moratorium on expansion. He commented that there were other game rooms operating that were not a member of this organization, which he opined had done everything to self-regulate and be responsible. He relayed that they had donated 800 pounds food to food banks and that there was an upcoming food drive. He said that they were trying to set a high standard to stop the criticism being given to these game rooms, and he thought that they were starting to show a social commitment to the community. He opined that these rooms could be safe, could meet the highest COVID-19 standards, and could operate at the hours that were most functional for the County. He mentioned that they were working with the LCSO and that they looked forward to continuing with community service projects to show a commitment to Lake County. He reiterated that they were trying to increase the standard of these businesses.
Mr. Kelly Mathis, an attorney also representing game rooms in Lake County, commented that they had worked with the County Attorney and that the regulatory ordinance did many things to address the concerns from the previous year. He specified that it got a handle on the existing game rooms, noting that there was a permitting process, a rigorous application process, criminal background checks, and the ordinance would provide for the Lake County Sheriff’s safety and security concerns. He believed that these regulations were fair and appropriate, noting that the Lake County game rooms supported this ordinance. He encouraged the Board to advertise and pass the ordinance.
Commr. Parks asked which ordinance he supported.
Mr. Mathis clarified that they supported the regulatory ordinance and that they thought the ordinance was fine as written. He said that if the Board did not want to go that direction, then they would at least support a moratorium. He also thought that limiting the number of permits was fair, noting that other businesses had limitations. He thought that there were about 22 game rooms currently and that the limit on the number of permits could be set above that. He said that with the appropriate permitting fees, annual fees, and electronic device fees, this was an ordinance that should have no fiscal impact to the County.
Commr. Parks asked if he would be amicable with what the County had written, but possibly adding a limitation to keep it at 23 game rooms with some number per year additional.
Mr. Mathis commented that they would be fine with that.
Commr. Parks opined that this would not be out of the ordinary, and he proposed to possibly take what staff had done and add a limitation on additions per year.
Commr. Shields inquired if this could be done by commission district, noting that there was pressure on Four Corners.
Commr. Smith addressed Commissioner Blake’s comments and relayed that there had to be regulations for some things.
Commr. Blake expressed a concern for granting limited government monopolies.
Commr. Smith stated that he was more in favor of a moratorium which would give him time to educate himself on this issue and listen to concerns. He also noted that the ordinance would require an armed guard, and he mentioned the cost associated with this.
Mr. Mathis said that between Mr. Hatfield and himself, they represented virtually all of the game rooms in Lake County; furthermore, they were in favor of this.
Commr. Smith mentioned that there might be a monopoly and that this was not wanted either.
Mr. Mathis clarified that the Board did not have to limit them.
Commr. Parks said that a moratorium could help answer the question of limitations, or some criteria that could be added.
Commr. Shields asked if the businesses in Four Corners would be up to this standard.
Mr. Mathis replied that the game rooms they represented had made an effort to make sure they cleaned up everything, and they could look into the Four Corners area; however, the regulation would establish minimum standards that all of them in the county would have to meet.
Commr. Campione commented that if the Board were to adopt the regulatory scheme, it would give them a chance to see if it worked. She also asked if they would have created a property right or interest that they could not later take away.
Ms. Marsh thought that the Board could still prohibit them in the future, though the ones there today could finish out their leases. She mentioned that there was no guarantee that the County would not get sued.
Mr. Mathis said that an option may be to put this in place as a trial, noting that it could be modified later.
Commr. Smith commented that if it was modified later, then the people following the rules could be upset. He thought that the Board needed to do a moratorium.
Commr. Campione noted that they would keep letting existing businesses operate without any of the added requirements, except ones that were self-imposed.
Commr. Parks relayed his understanding that if they did the moratorium, there would be no more that were allowed.
Ms. Marsh confirmed this and said that it was basically status quo. She explained that those that were there could continue to operate, but no new businesses that qualified as internet gambling could open.
Commr. Campione stated that the Board could also adopt the regulatory ordinance, put a limit on new businesses, and see how it went. She added that if it went fine, then the Board could lift their limit later.
Commr. Parks said that he was amicable with the ordinance that staff had written, with the limitation, but he also understood the moratorium to address the issue of future expansion and issuance of permits. He clarified that he was not doing this to be a revenue source, and he opined that they should just cover their costs from staff to implement the licensing.
Mr. Mathis noted that this was only the first step in the process of advertising it, and indicated an understanding that it would still come back for a second reading.
Ms. Marsh explained that if the Board did a moratorium, it would go to the Planning and Zoning Board in the following week, and would then come back for two readings. She said that if the Board did the licensing ordinance, it would come back for adoption at their first meeting in February 2021.
Mr. Mathis stated that this could give them time to meet with Commissioner Smith and address any concerns.
Commr. Parks inquired if the Board could add this limitation in February 2021.
Ms. Marsh replied that if the Board wanted the licensing ordinance and wanted to add the limitation, she would recommend doing that on the current day so she could advertise that limitation. She mentioned that they could always remove the limitation before adoption, but they could not do it conversely; however, they could adjust some of the security issues and those types of items.
Commr. Campione said that she did not like the idea of getting too much into the regulatory side of this, but she also did not like the idea of getting rid of these businesses altogether. She supported coming up with a reasonable approach to get a handle on some items that had given the community and law enforcement issues; additionally, she liked the idea of the licensing ordinance to see if it would work.
Commr. Shields noted that if the Board did not pass the ordinance, then it would not help the perception of the industry.
Commr. Parks said that the Board could advertise the ordinance with a restriction to the current number of businesses, and could change that at the meeting in February 2021. He asked if it could be advertised for the second meeting in February 2021.
Ms. Marsh clarified that it could be advertised for the first meeting in February 2021, or they could bring it back at the second meeting.
Commr. Smith relayed that he was more comfortable with the second meeting in February 2021.
Ms. Marsh said that her suggestion was to set a number if the Board was going to put the limitation in; furthermore, they could always come back and increase that number in the following year if it appeared that it was working well. She mentioned that they could choose 25 or 30 if they wanted to give leeway for other businesses to have the opportunity to come into the community.
Commr. Campione said that they could say 25, with no more than five in each district.
Ms. Marsh noted that most of them were already in South Lake. She also believed that there were a few in the Town of Lady Lake area.
Commr. Parks commented that they could do things like no more than one per year, per district. He said that if they picked 25, they could still change that number.
Ms. Marsh confirmed that they could always change their ordinances at the hearing or later in the year.
Commr. Campione supported picking 25 for now, and she asked to confirm that they knew they had 22.
Mr. Mathis thought that this was the number.
Mr. McClendon relayed that staff was aware of 19.
Commr. Parks stated that the Board could say 25 and that it would probably be fine.
There being no one else who wished to address the Board regarding this matter, the Chairman closed the floor for public comment.
Commr. Campione made a motion to advertise an ordinance regulating simulated gambling facilities through the use of permits, fees and inspections, with a limitation included in the ordinance for no more than 25 of these facilities, for the February 23, 2021 BCC meeting.
Ms. Marsh relayed her understanding that Commissioner Parks only wanted to charge the application fee and the annual fee. She asked if there was any desire to charge based on device.
Commr. Parks said to leave the fees as they were, noting that he was only interested in what it cost to permit. He inquired about the fees within this ordinance.
Ms. Marsh thought that it was about $100, but commented that the staff time to review these applications was costing about $750.
Commr. Campione opined that they needed to cover their staff time but that it did not have to be a revenue stream.
Ms. Marsh commented that they could take the fee out of the ordinance and just leave it as a reference to the County’s annual fee schedule, which could be adjusted each year as needed.
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Smith and carried by a vote of 4-1, the Board approved to advertise an ordinance regulating simulated gambling facilities through the use of permits, fees and inspections, for the February 23, 2021 BCC meeting, with a limitation included in the ordinance for no more than 25 of these facilities.
Commr. Blake voted no.
appointments to the planning and zoning board
Commr. Campione said that these were applications from individuals who were currently serving, and it was up to Commissioner Shields and Commissioner Smith to decide.
Commr. Smith relayed that he was fine with Mr. Timothy Morris, and Commissioner Shields said that he was fine with the District 1 applicant.
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Smith and carried by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved to reappoint the following individuals to the Planning and Zoning Board, and approved of a potential ethical waiver for each: Ms. Kathryn McKeeby for District 1; and Mr. Timothy Morris for District 3.
Commr. Blake was absent for the vote.
appointment to the parks, recreation and trails advisory board
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Shields and carried by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved to appoint Ms. Mollie Cunningham as the Lake County School Board Representative to the Parks, Recreation and Trails Advisory Board and approval of a potential ethical waiver.
Commr. Blake was absent for the vote.
appointment to the elder affairs coordinating council
On a motion by Commr. Shields, seconded by Commr. Smith and carried by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved to reappoint Ms. Susan Saunders to the Elder Affairs Coordinating Council as a District 1 member.
Commr. Blake was absent for the vote.
appointments to the board of building examiners
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Smith and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved to reappoint the following members to the Board of Building Examiners to fill vacancies for terms that ended January 14, 2021, and approved an ethical waiver for Mr. George Marek if appointed: Mr. George Marek, P.E. to fill the vacancy for Engineer; Mr. James A. Moore to fill the vacancy for a Certified Building Contractor; Ms. Lori Brown to fill the vacancy for a Business Member; and Mr. Ray Newman to fill the vacancy for a Consumer Member.
appointments to the affordable housing advisory committee
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Smith and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved to appoint Mr. Nathanial "Joe" Jamieson for the resident actively engaged in banking or mortgage banking industry in connection with affordable housing, and Ms. Danielle Roberts for the resident who is actively engaged as a real estate professional in connection with affordable housing, to the Affordable Housing Advisory Committee to fill two vacancies, along with supporting Resolution 2021-17.
Town of montverde fire rescue transition to county
Ms. Drury said that the Town of Montverde had reached out to the County to inquire about the potential to transition their volunteer basic life support (BLS) fire service to Lake County Fire Rescue. She added that the Town would have a general workshop in February 2021, and they had requested that County staff attend to present some options for fire service delivery. She commented that with the Board’s consent, they would attend the workshop, present some options, and then report to the Board on the outcome of that workshop.
Commr. Parks opined that this was great, and he praised the Town of Montverde for thinking long term and finding an option that helped them out.
Ms. Drury stated that the Board retreat was coming up on February 16, 2021, at the Tavares Pavilion on the Lake. She mentioned that she had emailed each of the Board members with a compilation of the Commissioners’ priorities, and a proposed agenda that was proposed to be facilitated by the University of Central Florida (UCF) Institute of Government.
commissioner shields – district 1
emails to commissioners
Commr. Shields noted that some emails from residents came to all five Commissioners, and he asked how it was known who would reply.
Commr. Campione replied that they did not really have a method to do this, noting that they were each elected countywide. She thought that if someone sent something to all of the Board members, then it was on each one of them to decide whether to respond.
Commr. Shields commented that he was wondering how to keep items from falling through the cracks.
Commr. Parks noted that Commissioner Shields represented everyone in the county just like the other Commissioners, and noted that the administrative assistants could also help.
Commr. Campione relayed that if it was a code enforcement issue, usually their assistant would forward it to the appropriate party.
Commr. Parks encouraged him to rely on staff, but commented that Commissioner Shields would especially want to respond if they were in his district.
Commr. Campione said that whether it came to one Board member or all of them, they had to decide whether to send it to a staff person or to answer. She said it seemed like there could be a better way to ensure that things did not fall through the cracks.
Commr. Parks thought that a great topic to discuss was the role of administrative assistants and what they could do to help. He opined that they were doing great work, but noted that the Board could get that coordination clarified.
commissioner smith – vice chairman and district 3
thanking mr. john molenda
Commr. Smith thanked Mr. Molenda for helping him make phone calls to constituents and customers to provide assistance and ensure they knew what was going on with COVID-19.
commissioner campione – district 3
MEETING REGARDING WEKIVA RIVER DESIGNATION
Commr. Campione mentioned that she recently had a Zoom Webinar meeting regarding the Wekiva River Wild and Scenic River designation, noting that the river had been designated basically like a national park. She commented that she had been doing this for a number of years because the river was in her district, Commission District 4. She relayed that there had been some issues there regarding construction and concerns about the river, and she opined that this was a good watchdog group. She noted that Mr. Charles Lee, with the Florida Audubon Society, was in that group, and that the Friends of Wekiva on the Seminole County side were very engaged.
AFFORDABLE HOUSING ADVISORY COMMITTEE REQUIREMENT
Commr. Campione said that under the Affordable Housing Advisory Committee (AHAC), the State law changed and one of the Commissioners had to sit on that board as a voting member. She mentioned that there was a training requirement and that she had to participate in a regional Zoom Webinar meeting with other county commissioners from various places. She relayed that good ideas were discussed which Lake County could hopefully vet and bring back to the BCC. She added that they were complimentary of Lake County because the County had been working on housing, along with the chambers of commerce. She indicated that they were interested in the school districts being able to use surplus property for housing, noting that this was an item that The Lake 100 and the Lake County School District had been involved with.
EXPRESSING APPRECIATION FOR STAFF
Commr. Campione expressed appreciation for staff for their work on COVID-19 issues in light of the challenges, including not having a level of influence over the decisions made by the DOH, noting that they were partnering to serve the community. She also expressed appreciation for the work of Commissioner Parks.
Commr. Parks thanked Commissioner Campione for getting the word out.
Commissioner Campione said that if each of the Commissioners were able to impact the people who came to them to ask for information, then they would be covering that much more territory.
COMMENTS ON FDOT
Commr. Campione said that Mr. Schneider had a meeting with the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) secretary for District 5, and said that there had been a lingering flooding issue at Lake Woodward. She thought that FDOT would make the needed improvements, and she also mentioned the possibility of having access to the Wekiva River on the Lake County side. She explained that once they completed the bridge, there would be FDOT property adjacent to the river where the County had hoped could be a place to access the river. She added that Mr. Schneider had also discussed issues with Lake Joanna and the possibility of teaming up with FDOT to use some of their property or to begin construction of a pond on their property to address the pollution in that lake.
VIRTUAL OPENING OF NEIGHBORHOOD LAKES TRAILHEAD
Commr. Campione relayed that there had been a virtual opening of the Neighborhood Lakes trailhead, noting that they now had the first Wekiva trailhead that would connect them into Orange County. She added that one would be able to get to South Lake from Sorrento on the trail in the future.
commissioner parks – CHAIRMAN AND district 2
THANKING LAKE COUNTY FIRE RESCUE
Commr. Parks thanked Lake County Fire Rescue for a charity event they hosted in the previous weekend in the City of Leesburg. He added that he was asked to be a judge at the event.
CONGRATULATING VETERANS OF FOREIGN WARS POST IN CLERMONT
Commr. Parks congratulated the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) post in the City of Clermont, noting that they had a recent celebration of their 75th anniversary there and that he was able to participate.
CLERMONT CITY COUNCIL MEETING
Commr. Parks relayed that he spoke at the Clermont City Council meeting two weeks prior, and that Mr. Schneider and Mr. Jeff Earhart, with the Lake County Public Works Department, did an excellent job speaking about roads. He thought that the County could also start having dialogue at City of Minneola meetings as well to address questions about plans for roads.
THANKING MR. BOBBY BONILLA
Commr. Parks mentioned that he heard that Mr. Bobby Bonilla, Director for the Office of Parks and Trails, did a wonderful job presenting the Trails Master Plan to the Town of Montverde, and he thanked Mr. Bonilla for doing this.
Commr. Campione asked if the City of Minneola ever adopted the trails master plan.
Commr. Parks relayed his understanding that they had not adopted it, though the County would have some new dialogue with them in March 2021.
Commr. Campione recalled that this was a link that they needed to connect around Ferndale Preserve and the Apopka Loop Trail.
Commr. Parks thought that there was a question about a crosswalk, and relayed that there were meetings set up in March 2021.
recess and reassembly
The Chairman called a recess at 1:25 p.m. for five minutes.
Ms. Marsh reported that she had previously asked for this closed session as authorized by Florida Statutes 286.011 to discuss pending litigation against the County. She noted that once the closed session started, it would be confined to settlement negotiations or strategy sessions relating to litigation and its expenditures. She added that a court reporter would record the entire session, from when they began to when they ended, and would include all discussions in the proceedings, including the names of all persons present at any time and whoever spoke. She elaborated that none of the session would be off the record. She commented that the court reporter’s notes would be transcribed and that when the litigation was concluded, they would be made public. She explained that at the beginning of the session the entity was required to give notice of who would be there, and they were required to do an advertisement, which she had a copy of; furthermore, the advertisement ran on January 15, 2021, in the Daily Commercial. She said that individuals who would be at the meeting today would be the County Commission, the Interim County Manager and herself, and she anticipated that they would likely spend between 30 minutes to an hour in this closed session. She indicated that they were ready to begin and asked for the recording equipment to be shut down.
RECESS AND REASSEMBLY
At 2:05 p.m. the Chairman announced that the Closed Session had ended and that the Board meeting was reconvened.
discussion regarding board retreat
Commr. Blake expressed that his preference was probably not to pay UCF $1,500 to facilitate the Board Retreat. He remarked that something he liked about previous years was that it was a chance for the Board to have an informal discussion. He also relayed his understanding that UCF would force the Board to use their protocols.
Commr. Parks said that the thought behind the facilitator was because the Board had not done a complete potential change of the strategic plan in 10 years; furthermore, it was a request from the new County Manager. He mentioned that he and Commissioner Shields had just had a retreat with a facilitator who had asked them to wear masks, though everyone was spread apart. He commented that he could get clarity on the protocols.
Commr. Campione asked if he liked how the other meeting with the facilitator went.
Commr. Parks thought it was helpful because they were looking at if a planning council was relevant anymore, where they were not relevant, and whether they needed to consider wholesale changes. He said that if the County was going to be changing their strategic plan wholesale, and the new County Manager’s request was to be part of this meeting rather than facilitating it, then he would like to have someone lead it.
Commr. Campione questioned whether it would be helpful or a hindrance. She mentioned that they had not had a facilitator in the past, but because the County Manager was new, she could see where there could be an advantage to having a facilitator so that the County Manager could be a participant. She hoped that as a result of the Board’s discussion at their retreat, they could come up with new ideas and approaches; therefore, having a facilitator might foster that. She noted that if it was disliked, they could schedule another workshop for just them.
Commr. Parks did not think that it was the intent to do more sessions with a facilitator, and this was only to get them started with the new County Manager’s first week.
Ms. Marsh said that for masks, the County had communication from UCF and masks were mandatory; additionally, if someone refused to wear a mask, then their instructor had been told to leave.
Commr. Parks stated that he was aware of mask fatigue as an issue, and that he would get more information.
Commr. Campione opined that this would be a long time to have a mask on in a location where they knew they would have the ability to be spaced apart.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 2:12 p.m.
SEAN PARKS, chairman
GARY J COONEY, CLERK