preliminary copy – for review only
A regular MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
May 22, 2018
The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, May 22, 2018 at 9:00 a.m., in the Board of County Commissioners’ Meeting Room, Lake County Administration Building, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Timothy I. Sullivan, Chairman; Leslie Campione, Vice Chairman; Sean Parks; Wendy Breeden; and Josh Blake. Others present were: Jeff Cole, County Manager; Melanie Marsh, County Attorney; Niki Booth, Executive Office Manager, County Manager’s Office; Neil Kelly, Clerk of Court; Kristy Mullane, Chief Deputy Clerk, County Finance; and Josh Pearson, Administrative Specialist, Board Support.
INVOCATION and pledge
Pastor Buddy Walker from Faith Christian Fellowship gave the Invocation and Commissioner Sullivan led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mr. Jeff Cole, County Manager, indicated that Tab 31 was added under Commissioner Sullivan’s business after the agenda had been published.
Commr. Breeden said that she wanted to discuss the Hidden Rivers development near Shirley Shores Road under her business.
On a motion by Commr. Breeden, seconded by Commr. Blake, and carried unanimously by a 5-0 vote, the Board approved the Minutes of April 10, 2018 (Regular Meeting), April 11, 2018 (Special Meeting) and April 18, 2018 (Special Meeting) as presented.
citizen question and comment period
Mr. Vance Jochim, a Tavares resident who writes a blog about local government issues, stated that the Tavares City Council held a meeting earlier that week that included two hearings on planning and zoning developments. He opined that neighbors of both the Shirley Shores and Dead River Road developments were affected by substandard county roads which cause traffic issues, and also opined that the County expressed that there were no funds to repair the roads. He noted that transportation impact fees would be discussed in the current meeting, though stated that the request to increase them was only 70 percent of what a 2017 study recommended to charge. He opined that the County should be charging 150 percent, as growth needs have not been funded for several years due to the Board of County Commissioners (BCC) previously setting a transportation impact fee rate of 15 percent. He commented that recently, an ambulance could not pass a traffic jam on Dead River Road, as there are ditches on both sides of the road. He stated that the County had discussed floating bonds for a new animal shelter and other needs, though roads had not been included, and suggested that they be considered a priority for the County. He also opined that the County should address the issue of when cities annex properties on one or both sides of a county road by mandating that the cities maintain the roads after annexing surrounding land.
Mr. Dave Serdar, a resident of Fruitland Park, commended several individuals including the winners of the 2018 Lake County Community Service Awards. He expressed support for environmentalism, and opined that the Lake County Sheriff’s Office personnel had not received a significant pay increase in seven years. He thanked military veterans and noted the upcoming Flag Day.
Mr. Don Kehr, a member of the Shirley Shores Community Group, said that the Tavares City Council voted 3-2 in the previous week to approve the Hidden Rivers development with certain conditions. He opined that the Tavares City Council did not consider the BCC’s concerns about the project and that they denied having a meeting with the BCC to discuss it. He displayed a map that was reached as a consensus compromise on the situation, and relayed that Lake County Code states that where a proposed subdivision is adjacent to a collector road, it shall be planned to avoid having lots fronting that collector road. He opined that the Code indicates that there shall be no driveways on a collector road for the project due to it being a subdivision. He said that his community group worked nine months to significantly compromise on the situation, and noted four driveways on Shirley Shores Road according to the previously agreed upon map. He then displayed the map that was approved by the Tavares City Council, indicating that it showed six lots on Shirley Shores Road, 12 total lots that were two acres each in size and 12 total driveways on the project. He noted text on the map reading that individual lot lines and development details were conceptual and subject to change, limited by requirements of the ordinance. He recalled that Ms. Melanie Marsh, County Attorney, sent a letter to the City of Tavares with reference to two maps that the BCC later narrowed down to one for recommendation, and requested that the BCC reissue a letter and specify that the project would be limited to four driveways on Shirley Shores Road.
proclamation 2018-45 emergency medical services week
Mr. Jerry Smith, Executive Director of Lake Emergency Medical Services (EMS), asked that Lake EMS staff, Mr. Jim Dickerson, Lake County Fire Chief, and Fire Rescue staff stand and be recognized.
Commr. Sullivan read Proclamation 2018-45 and thanked the personnel for their service. He stated that he had received messages from citizens about the great work that first responders perform in the county. He added that Lake EMS responds to approximately 44,000 calls per year and the Lake County Fire Department runs about 24,000 calls annually, and said this was a great accomplishment.
CLERK OF COURTS’ CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Parks, seconded by Commr. Campione and carried by a 4-0 vote, the Board approved the Clerk of Courts’ Consent Agenda, Items 1 through 5, as follows:
Commr. Breeden was not present for the vote.
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 Tavares Ordinance 2018-10
Request to acknowledge receipt of Ordinance No. 2018-10 from the City of Tavares amending the boundaries of the City of Tavares by annexing under the terms and conditions of the Interlocal Service Boundary Agreement between the City of Tavares and Lake County approximately 0.22 acres of non-contiguous property located at 12944 Lake Dora Circle; rezoning the property from County Mixed Home Residential (RM) to City Residential Manufactured Home Subdivision (RMH-S).
City of Clermont Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and CRA Annual Report
Request to acknowledge receipt of the City of Clermont’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and the CRA Annual Report for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2017.
Lands Available List
Request to acknowledge receipt of property placed on the Lands Available List. Lake County has until July 24, 2018 to purchase property from Lands Available List before it is available to the public.
Lands Available List
Request to acknowledge receipt of property placed on the Lands Available List. Lake County has until July 31, 2018 to purchase property from Lands Available List before it is available to the public.
COUNTY MANAGER’S CONSENT AGENDA
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Blake and carried by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the Consent Agenda, Tabs 4 through 23, as follows:
Commr. Breeden was not present for the vote.
Request approval of Proclamation 2018-51 designating June 2018 as Tobacco-Free Parks Month. There is no fiscal impact.
Request for approval and execution of Resolution 2018-52 authorizing the County Attorney or designee, in conjunction with approval from the County Manager, at a public sale to refrain from bidding or bid an amount less than the amount of the final judgment (“short sell”) when the judgment is $25,000.00 or less and it is in the best interest of the County. Additionally, authorize the County Attorney or designee, to short sell the judgment to be awarded in the following foreclosure cases where it is anticipated that the final judgment will be more than $25,000.00: Lake County v. James I LLC, et al., Case No. 2017-CA-1837 (11722 Pala Verda Avenue, Leesburg, FL, Commission District 3) and Lake County v. William A. Stephens, et al., Case No. 2018-CA-223 (15425 Lake Little Road, Clermont, FL, Commission District 2). The fiscal impact cannot be determined at this time.
Request for approval of an Amended and Restated Metropolitan Planning Organization Agreement for Staff Services. The fiscal impact is $28,000.00 (revenue).
Request for approval of seven resolutions, Resolution 2018-53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58 and 59 instituting Eminent Domain proceedings for acquisition of property needed for portions of the Citrus Grove Road Project and approval to proceed with pre-suit negotiation offers. The fiscal impact cannot be determined at this time. Commission District 2.
PUBLIC SAFETY AND COMPLIANCE
Planning and Zoning
Request approval to advertise an amendment to Lake County Code, Appendix E, Land Development Regulations, Section 13.03.02, entitled “Membership, Rules of Procedure, Voting, Relief, Salary” to allow for the appointment of a Board of Adjustment member residing outside of a commission district with a vacancy if no acceptable applicants are available that reside within the commission district. There is no fiscal impact.
Request approval of an Automatic Aid Agreement for fire protection and other emergency services with the City of Eustis. There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 4.
Request approval of a First Amendment to the agreement with the University of Florida Board of Trustees regarding Medical Director and Associated Medical Director Services. There is no fiscal impact.
Request approval to award contract 18-0918 for renovations at Fire Station No. 59 (Pennbrooke) to Rodriguez Contract Services Corp., dba Brodway Contracting (Kissimmee, FL). The fiscal impact is $192,500.00 (expenditure). Commission District 1.
Request approval to award contract 18-0914 for improvements at Fire Station Number 70 in the Leesburg area to Ryan Fitzgerald Construction, Inc. (Mount Dora, FL). The fiscal impact is $64,200.00 (expenditure). Commission District 3.
INFRASTRUCTURE AND INTERNAL SUPPORT SERVICES
Request approval to award contract 18-0202 to Oelrich Construction (Jonesville, FL) for Construction Manager Services in support of a new Animal Shelter to be located on 7 acres of County-owned land east of State Road 19 and south of County Road 448 in Tavares. The immediate fiscal impact is $37,000.00 (expenditure - pre-construction services). Commission District 3.
Request approval to award contract 18-0003 to Dickerson Architects, Inc., to provide architectural design and construction administration services for the new Animal Shelter. The fiscal impact is not to exceed $583,641.00 (expenditure). Commission District 3.
Request approval of contract 18-0416 for purchase of Office Products to Staples, Inc., and authorize the Office of Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation with services to commence on July 1, 2018. The estimated annual fiscal impact is $140,000.00 (expenditure).
Request approval and execution of a Third Modification Agreement to the Library Drainage Easement Agreement with Cagan Crossings, LTD, Cagan Crossings Loan, LLC, and Orchard at Cagan Crossings, LLC ("Cagan"). There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 1.
Request approval to accept a performance bond of $284,691.04 associated with Right-of-Way Utilization Permit #7287 and Commercial Driveway Connection Permit #53132 issued to construct a turn lane and driveway for Overlook at Grassy Lake, a subdivision in Minneola. The fiscal impact is $800.00 (revenue – permit application fees). Commission District 2.
Request approval to:
1. Release a payment and performance bond of $2,530,251.38 posted as surety for the completion of an extension of Sawgrass Bay Boulevard Phases I and II, located in Clermont; and
2. Accept a maintenance bond of $276,402.96 for the maintenance of the improvements to Sawgrass Bay Boulevard Phases I and II; and
3. Execute Resolution 2018-60 accepting Sawgrass Bay Boulevard “Part” (County Road No. 0360) into the County Road Maintenance System.
There is no fiscal impact. Commission District 1
Request approval to award two term and supply contracts for leachate collection system cleaning services to Jetclean America, LLC, dba Florida Jetclean (Odessa, FL), and Progressive Environmental Services, LLC (Portsmouth, VA), and authorize the Office of Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation. The estimated annual fiscal impact is $40,000.00 (expenditure).
Request approval to award contract 18-0001, to Booth, Ern, Straughan and Hiott (Tavares, FL), and southeastern Survey and Mapping Corporation (Orlando, FL) to provide on-call survey and mapping services. The estimated fiscal impact for Fiscal Year 2018 is $20,000.00 (expenditure).
COMMUNITY AND TECHNICAL SUPPORT SERVICE
Request approval to apply for U.S. Department of Justice; Bureau of Justice Administration; Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program FY 2018 grant in the amount of $750,000.00 over 36 months to continue and expand the Mobile Crisis Response Program. This is a pass-through grant to LifeStream Behavioral Center. There is no fiscal impact.
Request approval for Willie Roshell to assume the Mortgage and Note executed by Collin Roshell on December 8, 2017, recorded in O.R. Book 5039, Page 660, under the Lake County State Housing Initiative Partnership (SHIP) Demolition and Reconstruction Strategy; approval of an exception to the income categories limitation in the Local Housing Assistance Plan (LHAP) Demolition and Reconstruction Strategy; and authorization for the County Manager to execute any necessary assumption documents. The fiscal impact cannot be determined at this time.
Parks and Trails
Request approval of contract 18-0438 for Poured in Place Rubber Surface Repair and Maintenance for County parks and trails facilities on an as-needed basis to William Medley Construction, dba Medley Sports Construction (Sorrento, FL), and authorize the Office of Procurement Services to execute all supporting documentation. The estimated annual fiscal impact is $30,000.00 (expenditure).
public hearings: REZONING
rezoning consent agenda
Mr. Tim McClendon, Director of 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 the consent agenda consisted of three cases and that the Planning and Zoning Board recommended approval of the cases on May 3, 2018. He relayed that staff would request that the BCC accept those recommendations and approve the consent agenda as presented.
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. Parks commented that when Tab 3 returned for adoption, the County would be adding design criteria for the Town of Montverde to be included on that project and he had disclosed this to the applicant’s attorney.
On a motion by Commr. Parks, seconded by Commr. Blake and carried by a vote of 4-0, the Board approved the Rezoning Consent Agenda, Tabs 1 through 3, as follows:
Commr. Breeden was not present for the vote.
Tab 1. Ordinance No. 2018-24
Rezoning Case # RZ-18-04-1
Thousand Trails RV Park Rezoning
Rezone existing recreational vehicle park from Neighborhood Commercial (C-1) and Agriculture (A) to Recreational Vehicle (RV) zoning district.
Tab 2. Ordinance No. 2018-25
Rezoning Case # CUP-18-04-1
Thousand Trails RV Park Rezoning
Amend Conditional Use Permit (CUP) 933A-3 for the 269.17 acre Thousand Trails RV Resort with a new CUP ordinance to accommodate additional RV spaces and accessory uses within the Recreational Vehicle (RV) zoning district.
Rezoning Case # FLU-17-10-2
Vista Grande FLU amendment – Transmittal
Amend the Future Land Use Map (FLUM) to change the Future Land Use Category (FLUC) on approximately 25.06 +/- acres (Alternate Key Nos. 2873728, 3778275, and 1029503) from Rural Transition FLUC to Urban Low FLUC.
public hearing – dock and deck repairs Ordinance 2018-23
Ms. Marsh placed the proposed ordinance on the floor for reading by title only as follows:
AN ORDINANCE OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF LAKE COUNTY, FLORIDA; AMENDING LAKE COUNTY CODE, CHAPTER 6, ARTICLE III, SECTION 6-22, ENTITLED “ADOPTION AND ENFORCEMENT”; EXEMPTING CERTAIN DOCK AND DECK REPAIRS FROM BUILDING PERMITTING REQUIREMENTS; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; PROVIDING FOR INCLUSION IN THE CODE; PROVIDING FOR FILING WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
Commr. Sullivan clarified that the ordinance would be exempting the replacement of the walking surface of existing and legally permitted docks or decks on residential property from requiring building permits under certain conditions.
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. Blake indicated that he had previously brought this issue to Ms. Marsh, and that she had since been developing the change to help citizens who live on lakes by streamlining the dock and deck repair process.
Commr. Campione opined that this would be a good modification to the current code to make it more user friendly for citizens wanting to upgrade existing structures that have already been permitted. She added that it would also eliminate having to visit County buildings in the City of Tavares and pay fees for the process.
Commr. Breeden thanked Commissioner Blake for bringing the issue forward.
On a motion by Commr. Blake, seconded by Commr. Campione and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved Ordinance 2018-23 amending Chapter 6 of the Lake County Code to provide an exemption from building permitting for the replacement of the walking surface of an existing, legally permitted dock or deck on residential property under some conditions.
advertisement of public hearing amending transportation impact fees
Mr. Fred Schneider, County Engineer, said that the purpose of his presentation was to approve advertisement of a public hearing amending the Lake County Code, Chapter 22, Article III, entitled “Transportation Impact Fees” as requested at the May 8, 2018 Board meeting to modify the transportation impact fee and eliminate the prepayment of impact fees from the code. He added that the draft ordinance would also provide a revised transportation impact fee rate structure for the north and central impact fee districts. He displayed a map showing these current impact fee rates for mid-size single family homes: $500 in the central and north districts; and $2,706 in the south district. He showed a chart comparing Lake County’s transportation impact fee to surrounding counties with regard to the mid-sized single family dwelling unit, including Marion, Orange, Osceola, Polk, Seminole, Sumter and Volusia Counties, and he noted that Osceola County has a number of districts that utilize mobility fees.
Commr. Campione pointed out that Osceola County’s rural impact fee district charged $7,247 for a mid-sized single family home.
Mr. Schneider commented that Osceola County’s central core district is transit oriented and has less need for car travel due to the ability for citizens to walk, bike or utilize public transportation. He mentioned that the need for road capacity was much less in the core area when compared to a rural area where trip lengths are higher and utilize more of the roadway. He then displayed a chart showing the County’s unfunded priority projects, noting that in the central district, there was still a need for County Road (C.R.) 466A Phase 3B with a cost of $7 million, and said that expanding the two lane Rolling Acres Road was a key request from the Town of Lady Lake due to being over capacity between C.R. 466 and U.S. 27. He said that the Round Lake Road project in the north district was broken up into two phases and that phase one would be primarily built as a section between Wolf Branch Road and State Road (S.R.) 44. He stated that the County was currently conducting a Project Development & Environment (PD&E) study on the Round Lake Road project that was expected to take another six to eight months, but would define the alignment and the need for four lanes when compared to two lanes. He indicated that there would be a public hearing before the BCC for approval of moving forward with that alignment or choosing a different option.
Commr. Sullivan asked if the Rolling Acres Road project was just from U.S. 27 to C.R. 466, noting that The Villages Elementary of Lady Lake School and industrial buildings were located near that area.
Mr. Schneider confirmed this, and clarified that he was not showing the proposed future project on Rolling Acres Road from C.R. 466 south to C.R. 466A. He remarked that the displayed costs were the construction costs, and that the County attempts to form agreements with developers for right-of-way. He said in the south impact fee district, there was the Citrus Grove Road Phase 2B project, and most of that project had already been funded through County impact fees, County funds and legislative appropriation. He stated that Citrus Grove Road phase four runs from north Hancock Road over the Florida Turnpike bridge, that was being built at the State’s cost, and over to Blackstill Lake Road, and the developers would be working with the County for the dedication of right-of-way and constructing that road, most likely through impact fee credits. He mentioned that Hooks Street was a key project for the City of Clermont with four previous phases, and the last phase would be from north Hancock Road east to Hartle Road which would involve open development properties and the County could work with those developers for design, providing right-of-way and assisting the County with building the road. He then showed a chart for annual revenue projections, noting current impact fee rates in Lake County. He said that the annual revenue projection for the central district would be approximately $321,000 based on revenue received in Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 and the County received about $386,000 in revenue from the north district in FY 2017. He added that approximately $3.8 million in revenue was received from the south district in the same time period, and reiterated that these figures were based on single family homes and other land uses being proportionally the same. He also displayed annual revenue projections for proposed impact fee rates for the three districts. He showed another chart showing five year impact fee revenue projections, and said that impact fees must be expended within six years of collection to ensure that the fee payer benefits from that fee. He said that over five years and at a $500 rate, the south district would collect $3.87 million, the central district revenue would be less than $1 million and the north district would generate $1.77 million. He commented that at a rate of $2,706, the south district would produce nearly $21 million, the central district would generate $5.25 million, and the north district would be close to $10 million. He mentioned that the total cost of unfunded projects in the south district was $25.75 million, but said the County could construct Citrus Grove Road Phases 2B and 4, and part of Hooks Street with those revenues. He commented that in the central district, the County could construct C.R. 466A phase 3B and part of another project; additionally, in the north district, the County could fund the C.R. 437 realignment and most of Round Lake Road phase one. He said that the funds the County often has is start-up money for design, and the County can receive matches from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to begin moving the project forward to construction. He stated that if there was no design or PD&E study on record, it would be unlikely that FDOT would have funded the $13 million for the C.R. 466A project or other projects that received construction dollars. He indicated that the County also works with public/private partnerships for construction funding. He also mentioned the evaluation of fee category options resulting in fair assessments due to numerous impact fee categories previously being reduced to about a dozen. He elaborated that job creation industries could be examined, and noted that family owned retail businesses were currently in the same category as fast food restaurants that was four or five times the rate of what the family business might contribute. He expressed that narrowing down the categories led to simplicity in some cases, but also reiterated that some categories may need to be reevaluated. He also expressed interest in evaluating benefit and fee districts optimized to encourage higher growth in core, suburb and rural areas of the county, noting that Osceola County has shown that there is a significant difference between those areas. He mentioned aligning revenues with goals, recalling that at the May 8, 2018 meeting, it was discussed that moving forward with a mobility fee would also involve reasonable collections that meet expectations. He said that at the current time, the County had an impact fee that was collected and put back into a district to fund construction; however, with a mobility fee, the County could concentrate on certain areas of roadbuilding. He summarized with the requested action for the BCC to approve advertising a public hearing amending the Lake County Code, Chapter 22, Article III, entitled “Transportation Impact Fees”, providing the following: amend Section 22-37 of the Lake County Code to increase the impact fee rate in the north and central impact fee districts to match the south district rates; and repeal Section 22-11, Prepayment of Impact Fees.
Commr. Campione asked to clarify what projects the transportation impact fee could be used to fund, and said that the County had a backlog of road projects.
Mr. Schneider replied that impact fees can only be used for road capacity projects including building a new road or widening a two lane road to four lanes. He noted that construction projects such as bike lanes, paved road shoulders, sidewalks and trails cannot use this funding; however sidewalks and trails that are included as part of new road projects can be funded by impact fees. He added that sales tax revenue is generally used to fund new traffic lights, though impact fees can be used for signals if the capacity of the intersection is also being increased, such as by constructing a new turn lane. He said that delay is a significant consideration in traffic signal studies, and that building a new traffic signal can reduce delay and increase capacity.
Commr. Campione asked why the County had previously chosen to charge percentages of the recommended total fees from the study, and noted a previous citizen comment about charging 150 percent. She opined that charging that amount would be illegal, and said that the studies were not an exact science and are meant to indicate a fee limit that can be defended.
Mr. Schneider replied that this was correct and the County’s impact fee calculation was conservative. He elaborated that in the past, counties would have state roads as part of their trip length calculation; however, Lake County removed state road trips from that calculation. He commented that other measures are taken to create a conservative calculation, and the BCC has the option of adopting impact fees at that rate or a lower percentage. He indicated that some of the current rates were caused by economic issues experienced from the years 2007-2010, and when the issue came back to the BCC, the rate of an 87 percent discount for single family homes was $500. He expressed that the south Lake Chamber of Commerce and the south district cities noted that the County could not fund the necessary roads at that rate, so they requested a specific study that broke out the south district for a 30 percent discount.
Commr. Campione recalled at that time, the Minneola Turnpike Interchange was an upcoming project and the road network was significantly lacking.
Commr. Parks stated that the interchange would not have been able to be built if the County did not construct the supporting roads.
Mr. Schneider added that the County contributed approximately $10 million for north Hancock Road up to the interchange and also provided about $2 million in cash and $5 million in credits to the developer for extending the road to C.R. 561A.
Commr. Campione asked if cities have the ability to charge transportation impact fees.
Mr. Schneider responded that currently, cities were included by agreement in the countywide impact fee district. He added that if a city wanted to charge a separate road impact fee, then his recommendation would be to remove that city from the County’s impact fee program to avoid double charging impact fees. He mentioned that he was unsure if it would be possible for the County to adopt a 70 percent fee with a city adopting the other 30 percent, for example.
Ms. Marsh said that the County would have to return to the consultant and have them analyze if there is some way for the County to still charge a fee over what the city would be charging. She remarked that typically, if a city passes an ordinance that conflicts with one of the County’s, then the city’s ordinance will govern. She reiterated that if a city wanted to charge their own impact fee, the County would remove them from the program and redirect those funds to other areas in that impact fee district.
Commr. Parks opined that he would want to avoid this type of situation, and expressed an interest in bridging gaps with the cities.
Mr. Schneider said that Lake County has a unique countywide program where all of the cities have opted in, and that other counties may have separation between the County and cities. He expressed that the County has successfully integrated cities into the program through annual meetings with them to discuss road impact fee projects; however, there was not significant funding to offer the north and central districts due to a lack of revenue from the fee.
Commr. Breeden asked if he could address how the districts were created and if the maximum impact fees were the same for each of the districts. She also inquired if changing one district’s fee differently would require another study.
Mr. Schneider replied that impact fees are generally consistent throughout a county unless there is an additional fee, such as a mobility fee. He relayed that in Lake County, a specific study was conducted in the south district utilizing countywide traffic modeling and the same consultant that was involved with the Wellness Way corridor. He stated that the study showed that the businesses and residences being built in the south district would benefit from the fee they paid within that district, and they would not be overcharged when considering that benefit. He added that for the north and central districts, his suggestion was that if the BCC raised or lowered the fee at the same rate for both districts, it would still be consistent with the previous study. He opined that raising or lowering one district’s fee more than another would require the County to reevaluate the program; however, there would be no issue with lowering the south district’s fee and raising the others.
Commr. Breeden indicated that she had talked to some citizens in the central district, and they were not observing the same growth pressures as in the cities of Clermont, Mount Dora and the town of Sorrento. She expressed interest in a $1,500 impact fee for the central district. She said that the central district could be looked at in another year, and the County may have mobility fees by that time.
Mr. Schneider said that in the central district, there were some large projects that the City of Groveland was considering along U.S. 27. He added that the City of Leesburg and The Villages were expanding to C.R. 470, and that there were other Developments of Regional Impact (DRIs) approved that could move forward.
Mr. Kehr expressed support for the proposal. He opined that he had previously raised concerns about the roads near the lakes by the Hidden Rivers development and at that time, Commissioner Sullivan directed Mr. Schneider to develop an impact fee study for that area. He commended Mr. Jimmy Crawford, attorney representing the Hidden Rivers developer, for also previously supporting impact fees to fix roads. He opined that the roads must be fixed and that impact fees were the only way to accomplish this. He commented that in the County’s current ordinance, all of the fees are paid when the building is permitted, and he opined that the BCC should consider in the proposal that fees should be due earlier. He said that developer projects have long buildouts of about 1.6 homes per year, and the County does not receive fees until a later time.
Commr. Parks asked if lane widening was a project that could be funded by impact fees. He said that a road with 16 foot wide lanes could lead to vehicles driving more slowly, and making them wider could speed up traffic.
Mr. Schneider replied that this typically would not be an impact fee project, and it would depend on what the road currently is and what it is proposed to be. He said that many roads built in the City of Tavares, such as David Walker Drive, were impact fee projects.
Commr Campione said that previously when there was concurrency, fees would be collected at the time of platting. She noted that to perform a reservation, the developer would pay upfront to reserve enough capacity, and this was how the County was able to get fees paid up front. She said that the current impact fee law indicates that the impact occurs when the house is built and citizens reside in it and start driving on the roads.
Mr. Schneider commented that there should not be a significant problem on the revenue side, though it would shift the timing of collection where there may be a slight reduction while developers transition from prepaying at one time to paying at another. He relayed that revenue would still be collected and that one subdivision with a few hundred homes would not change the revenue source used to build significant roadways.
Commr. Parks commented that from the south district’s perspective, having the 70 percent percent of the fee and being able to fund road projects that have directly supported economic development also helped to not place burdens on residents. He said that every house that is built has a car that will impact the roads, and opined that the County should consider expanding different categories within each district which could benefit residents who are not in subdivisions. He mentioned that a high impact fee could be a burden on a single family home, but that he had not observed a potential subdivision avoiding south Lake County because of impact fees.
Commr. Campione said that subdivisions are unique in the way that developers can absorb those costs. She expressed an interest in balancing out the high fees that citizens experience when constructing a house on property they own, and said that it is a different case than when houses are bought in subdivisions where developers can roll costs together.
Commr. Breeden said that the BCC would be considering these items when looking at mobility fees.
Commr. Campione stated that a mobility fee may be able to help with this, but Osceola County’s approximate $7,000 fee for rural areas would be the opposite of what she wanted to accomplish. She opined that impact fees could not be tailored for both an individual building on a single lot and a large developer constructing a significant subdivision. She suggested that a moderate approach to impact fees could find common ground between both scenarios.
Commr. Sullivan said that it was difficult to have different impact fees by categories, and that he was interested in exploring mobility fees. He stated that there was a requested action because growth was a significant concern in the county, and there were subdivisions that already had rights of development. He commented that if those developments occur, it would be a massive undertaking and would greatly affect the county’s transportation systems. He mentioned that a mobility fee study would be long term, and opined that the BCC would have to act quickly.
Commr. Breeden requested that the BCC vote on the north and central impact fee districts separately.
Mr. Cole indicated that staff would return with a mobility fee workshop on August 21, 2018.
Commr. Blake noted that he would support this action if fees or taxes were lowered in another area, such as the school impact fee. He commented that impact fees do not only affect new growth, and that citizens that have lived and paid taxes in Lake County for a significant period of time would still would be required to pay the fee.
Commr. Campione agreed that it is difficult when a citizen who has paid taxes in Lake County for a long period of time must pay the same fees as a new resident; however, there were road projects in the county that required impact fee funding. She noted that she had considered the fees in Seminole, Sumter and Marion Counties, mentioning that the West district fee is $1,271 in Seminole County, and the countywide impact fees are $2,600 in Sumter County and $1,397 in Marion County. She expressed support for moving these figures forward for the public hearing, and they could be lowered later. She remarked that there would likely be some citizens from the Home Builder’s Association of Lake-Sumter (HBA-LS) to comment at the hearing. She also remarked that repealing Section 22-11, Prepayment of Impact Fees, as part of the requested action would prevent a developer from prepaying a lower fee for an entire subdivision.
On a motion by Commr. Breeden, seconded by Commr. Campione and carried by a vote of 4-1, the Board approved the advertisement of a Public Hearing amending the Lake County Code, Chapter 22, Article III, entitled “Transportation Impact Fees.”, to repeal Section 22-11, Prepayment of Impact Fees.
Commr. Blake voted no.
Commr. Campione stated an intent to move ahead with advertising a change to impact fees to be the same as the south district, though the fees could be lowered at the adoption hearing.
Ms. Marsh clarified that the BCC could approve a lower fee than what would be advertised, though they could not approve a higher fee.
Commr. Parks commented that from the perspective of being in the south district with the proposed north and central district rates, he felt raising the fees would be responsible when considering new developments such as the Wolf Branch Innovation District. He said that the County would have to consider situations where the individual is affected, and that it was a difficult decision; however; he opined that it would not be responsible to place burdens of future subdivisions on residents.
Commr. Breeden said that she supported the action, though she wanted to reevaluate the central district. She proposed bringing the City of Tavares north of Lake Dora and west of David Walker Drive or Kurt Street into the central district, and opined that some cities, including the City of Leesburg, were not having as successful economic development as other areas in the county.
Ms. Marsh replied that changing impact fee district boundaries would require amending a different section of the code and a separate ordinance. She added that if district boundaries change, any funds collected up to that point would have to be used in their original district.
Commr. Parks asked if changing geographical boundaries would require ensuring that there would be a dual rational nexus to the impact.
Mr. Schneider indicated that staff would have to research the issue. He also said that when the district boundaries were first developed, it was considered that certain areas may have more impact from interchanges, turnpikes or major roads when compared to others.
Commr. Campione said it must be shown that the impact fee revenue being collected is used to fund projects for the roads being impacted. She asked that before the public hearing for adoption, if staff could provide the BCC with a chart of the overall revenue that would be collected with the proposed adopted amount. She also inquired if the BCC adopted a mobility fee at a later date, then would it be possible in the meantime to break out additional impact fee categories for the purposes of commercial and economic development.
Mr. Schneider indicated that he could examine different categories that the BCC mentioned in previous meetings, such as different medical categories including hospitals, doctor’s offices and urgent care facilities.
On a motion by Commr. Campione, seconded by Commr. Parks and carried by a vote of 4-1, the Board approved the advertisement of a Public Hearing amending the Lake County Code, Chapter 22, Article III, entitled “Transportation Impact Fees.”, to amend Section 22-37 of the Lake County code to increase the impact fee rate in the north and central impact fee districts to match the south district rates.
Commr. Blake voted no.
recess and reassembly
The Chairman called a recess at 10:15 a.m. for 15 minutes.
work sessions – fy 19 budget presentations
offices of animal services, emergency management, fire rescue and public safety support
Mr. John Molenda, Assistant County Manager, said that there would be a presentation from the Public Safety side of the County’s Public Safety and Compliance departments.
Ms. Whitney Boylston, Director of the Office of Animal Services, said that with the Lake County Animal Shelter, the County can shelter, reunite and rehome lost, abandoned and impounded domestic animals. She said that the shelter serves residents who have lost or found a pet, those who need assistance to rehome their own pet, and those looking to adopt an animal. She said the shelter cares for over 6,000 pets annually and provides temporary shelter as the facility works for a positive outcome for each of them. She remarked that her office directs the public to resources when they have a need and promotes responsible pet ownership. She commented that the office’s veterinary staff provides thousands of sterilizations, surgeries, and is also able to provide additional medical procedures to the extent that its resources allow, and she also recognized the large quantity of volunteers that provide extra care and enrichment to the pets in the County’s care. She commented that her office officially achieved its no-kill designation in January 2018 by achieving a live release rate of over 90 percent, and she thanked the community for its help with this success. She said that when considering the first half of FY 18 from October 2017 through March 2018, her office had nearly doubled the amount of pet adoptions with a 94 percent increase over the previous year. She also said that the live release rate was significantly higher for the shelter’s cat and dog population. She relayed that the County had joined the Million Cat Challenge, which is a shelter initiative that was launched about five years prior with the goal of saving one million cat lives across the country, and noted that the Lake County Animal Shelter was recognized as a top performing shelter due to its euthanasia of cats being reduced by over 50 percent. She stated that her office was also participating in the Shelter Animals Count program, which is a nationwide database of sheltering statistics and allows Lake County to benchmark against other counties in the country. She remarked that Lake County had joined national adoption promotions including Clear the Shelters and Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl, and the shelter was hosting an average of approximately 100 visitors per day and around 2,500 visitors per month. She said that her office launched a working cat adoption program which helps find placement for cats with an undesirable temperament, and 136 cats were placed through that program in FY 17. She noted the shelter’s “Sit! Stay! Play!” program which allows newly adopted dogs and owners to meet with her office’s volunteer trainer for the animal to receive basic obedience training, and she relayed that all of her staff had been inoculated for rabies and there had been improvements in training and staff development for the shelter team. She indicated that her office had implemented a nationally recognized safety assessment for dogs that is endorsed by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and said while it is not pass/fail, it provides important information that helps the shelter guide matchmaking and identify concerns. She noted a number of improvements to the shelter including renovated floors, painting, reorganization, and expanded cat housing. She relayed that the shelter began a pilot program in August 2018 where the building was open on Sundays, and that the program’s success led to the shelter officially opening with full staffing on Sundays; however, the shelter would be closed on Wednesdays for deep cleaning and staff training. She stated that her office’s volunteer and foster programs were more accessible than before with online registration and opportunities for orientation, and she relayed that over 500 animals had been fostered since October 2017 and that this was a 70 percent increase when compared to the previous year. She indicated that proactive reunification is an important part of the no-kill objective, and the shelter had overhauled its process; for example, there was now an office associate assigned to admissions to better monitor animals entering the shelter and assist citizens who call because they are missing a pet. She said the office had taken advantage of its shelter management software system to create a volume of reports that enable examining data and becoming more efficient with database decision making. She displayed benchmarked counties for dog intake in FY 17, noting that Lake County was just below Pasco County and fourth in the benchmarks; however, Lake County was significantly higher than Pasco County for cat intake in the same time period and ranked third in that category with 3,230 cats. She displayed a graph of adoption and euthanasia trends from the calendar years 2016 through April 2018, noting a significant increase in adoptions and a reduction in euthanasia in early 2017 when the BCC resumed responsibility for the Lake County Animal Shelter. She indicated that adoptions tend to cycle with seasons and she was expecting the shelter to have another successful summer.
Mr. Cole added that a large spike in adoptions occurred after Ms. Boylston joined the Office of Animal Services.
Ms. Boylston continued her presentation, and said that Lake County had the highest live release rate among benchmarked counties from January 2017 through October 2017, which could include returning a pet to its owner, an adoption, a transfer to a rescue partner, or returning a community cat to the field. She showed a graph that displayed the percentage of animal intake resulting in euthanasia for benchmarked counties, and pointed out that Lake County was at the bottom with only five percent. She displayed a chart showing a year-to-date comparison of shelter services from October 1 to March 31 in FY 17 and 18, noting that they had significantly increased the number of adoptions and reduced the usage of euthanasia in FY 18; additionally, the County had an increased live release rate, which is calculated by dividing the number of pets that experience a live outcome by all sheltered pets with an outcome. She displayed a chart with the office’s adopted FY 18 budget and proposed expenditures of $1,492,614 for FY 19, stating that there would be a 5.2 percent reduction.
Commr. Parks said that he appreciated her efforts, and asked about a recent pet adoption event in collaboration with firefighters.
Ms. Boylston replied that the “Rescue Me” adoption event was held on May 19, 2018 and that approximately 300 citizens attended. She relayed that there were many adoptions and animals fostered and expressed interest in holding the event again.
Commr. Sullivan inquired about the decrease in her office’s operating expenses.
Ms. Boylston responded that a significant factor in that reduction was that her office cancelled its contract with the Texas-based PetData, Inc., which was the licensing company her office was using. She elaborated that the contract would expire at the end of June 2018, and said that the County amending Chapter 4 of the Lake County Code removed the mandatory licensing requirement so her office would no longer have to spend that money.
Commr. Campione asked if there was an opportunity with the cancellation of that agreement to use existing data on pet owners to inform them that the program was discontinued, encourage them to continue supporting the shelter and provide them with opportunities to contribute donations.
Commr. Sullivan stated that it was important to recognize the animal shelter volunteers and they are a great group that contributes work and services to the shelter at no cost to the County.
Commr. Breeden added that volunteers also perform fundraising for the animal shelter.
Ms. Boylston said that volunteers are essential to her office and enable much greater positive outcomes. She commented that volunteers also contribute fundraising to financially support pets that require outside medical attention.
Mr. Cole indicated that she started an honor program for volunteers in May 2018.
Ms. Boylston specified that her office conducted a volunteer appreciation luncheon and that there is a tiered recognition system based on the number of hours contributed.
Mr. Thomas Carpenter, Director of the Office of Emergency Management, said that his office provides these services: commanding the Lake County Emergency Operations Center (EOC); maintaining and updating the Lake County preparedness plans; overseeing Lake County’s Emergency Notification System; coordinating countywide training and exercises; managing the county special needs registry; reviewing and approving healthcare emergency management plans; and processing and approving Lake County special events. He stated that his office has four full-time employees (FTEs) with a director, an operations coordinator and two emergency management associates. He mentioned that the county had experienced two hurricanes in the previous few years with Hurricane Matthew in October 2016 and Hurricane Irma in September 2017, and that his office managed Hurricane Irma response and recovery. He remarked that the office also facilitated public assistance funding and hazard mitigation grant funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and indicated that they activated 14 emergency shelters for the Hurricane Irma response, with five additional shelters added from the County’s secondary list to its primary list. He reported that for Hurricane Irma, nearly 5,000 people and over 600 pets were sheltered and over 45,000 sandbags were provided through public distribution points, including the new Lake County Fire Rescue Station 39. He said that his office assisted Lake and Sumter Emergency Recovery (LASER) in managing these items: 375 total cases; long-term recovery efforts for 60 homes including complete roof and interior rebuilds; and 7,310 volunteer hours by 282 volunteers. He stated that his office also coordinated the FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance Teams (DSATs) who responded to Lake County after Hurricane Irma from September 21, 2018 to November 11, 2018 and who assessed 20,298 homes, 267 businesses and interacted with 26,624 survivors. He elaborated that FEMA also registered 423 survivors who were underinsured or had no insurance. He relayed that his office requested National Guard troops to assist with sheltering during Hurricane Irma due to the possible impact of evacuees from south Florida, and the County received 72 troops before shelters were scheduled to be opened on September 9, 2017. He indicated that his office coordinated with other agencies for assistance with working as emergency shelter managers during Hurricane Irma including the Lake County Sheriff’s Office and their school resource deputies, and the City of Mount Dora’s school resource officers. He added that nine of the fourteen Hurricane Irma emergency shelters were pet friendly, and his office coordinated with other agencies such as the City of Clermont and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office for staffing leadership positions at the EOC. He also said that volunteers were utilized from Lake County’s Adopt an Emergency Shelter Program during Hurricane Irma, and that the Florida’s Natural Growers facility in the City of Umatilla served as the county’s logistical staging area during that time for meals ready to eat (MREs), water and tarps. He added that Real Life Christian Church in the City of Clermont and Lake Yale Baptist Retreat were both used for host sheltering for approximately 40 citizens after the weather passed and the schools closed. He said that the former JC Penney store at Via Port mall was utilized for the Food for Florida program and assisted over 24,000 residents in five days, and there were over 50,000 people who went to the mall to seek assistance. He also stated that the Lake County Agriculture Extension Center and the Highlander Hut in the City of Clermont were both used as FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs). He displayed a graph with benchmarks for special needs populations, and defined special needs as individuals who have a medical dependency on oxygen and require electricity. He elaborated that there were five shelters with generators to provide electricity to these citizens, and remarked that Lake County was ranked fourth among surrounding counties for its special needs population. He elaborated that there was an increase of 282 special needs citizens when compared to the previous year and he expected that number to continue rising. He showed another graph with benchmarks for healthcare facility emergency plan annual reviews, and said that the Florida State Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) requires each of those facilities to submit to the County a comprehensive emergency management plan annually. He elaborated that his office reviews those plans, provides feedback, and approves them for their license through AHCA, and relayed that currently Lake County was fifth among surrounding counties for the annual number of these reviews and that number was expected to rise as more facilities come into the county. He displayed a benchmark for his office’s funding composition, and noted that they were the second smallest budget with Sumter County being the smallest in terms of grant funding and General Fund dollars. He mentioned that his office’s budget was currently composed of 53 percent General Fund and 47 percent state and federal grant funding, and said that when comparing FY 18’s adopted budget to FY 19’s proposed budget, there would be a decrease in personal services and operating expenses. He elaborated that for capital outlay, his office had budgeted funds to replace an existing vehicle that met the Office of Fleet Management’s replacement guidelines. He remarked that for FY 18, there was additional funding given to LASER due to Hurricane Irma to help them increase their operations for their long-term recovery process that it was planned for FY 19; however, it was planned to return to the normal $5,000 grant and aid to LASER for their funding. He concluded that when comparing the current year’s budget of $463,035 in total expenditures to the following year’s proposed budget, there would be an overall 9.1 percent decrease.
Commr. Breeden thanked him for his presentation, and expressed hope that his office’s workload would be smaller in the next year.
Commr. Sullivan said that it was a great effort across the community to serve the needs of the public, and commended him for his efforts.
Mr. Dickerson said that the Office of Fire Rescue’s primary mission is to protect life and property for the citizens and visitors of Lake County; however, the office also provides additional services countywide, regionally and throughout the state. He elaborated that countywide, the office provides a Special Operations Response Team (SORT), wildland fire suppression, rural search and rescue, and antivenom response for venomous snakes. He stated that in addition to countywide response, his office is affiliated with the Florida Urban Search and Rescue Task Force 4 for use of the County’s fire rescue team, and that Lake County Fire Rescue is included in the Florida State Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan for statewide deployments. He relayed that locally, his office offers many community outreach programs such as the smoke detector blitz with the American Red Cross, fire extinguisher training, and fire safety education for school children. He noted that his office had 219 FTEs and two part-time employees, and said that 213 of the FTEs were committed to operations. He relayed that his office had the following accomplishments in the previous year: upgrading the Town of Lady Lake and Harbor Hills fire stations from basic life support (BLS) to advanced life support (ALS); completing construction of the Altoona fire station; placing three new Lifepaks in service; upgrading vehicle extrication equipment on five frontline fire trucks; and completing over 1,400 hours of community outreach. He also said that his office accomplished the following goals: enhanced command and control for field operations by adding three lieutenants; participated in four Keep Lake Beautiful (KLB) neighborhood cleanups with two in Bassville Park, one in the Town of Sorrento and another in the City of Umatilla; and implemented an antivenom response program in partnership with Miami-Dade Fire Rescue and the University of Florida. He relayed that his office applied for and received the State of Florida EMS matching grant funding to train and certify 18 employees as paramedics, and also signed an automatic aid agreement with the City of Mount Dora Fire Department. He added that the Office of Fire Rescue was reorganized to reduce personnel costs while improving efficiencies, and remarked that the office executed a sick leave management policy which reduced usage by five percent and netted an overtime savings of approximately $150,000. He said that Lake County had over 24,000 calls for service in 2017, which represented an eight percent increase over 2016, and that this had been a consistent trend for the past ten years. He displayed a graph showing benchmarks for calls for service in surrounding counties, noting that some fire departments that provide fire-based transport services typically receive higher numbers of calls; however, between the three benchmarked counties that do not use fire-based transports, Lake County had the highest number of calls. He stated that Lake County Fire Rescue had 25 fire stations, and showed a chart with benchmarks for other central Florida counties. He noted that other than Polk County, Lake County had the largest service area of the benchmarked counties. He showed a graph displaying how Lake County Fire Rescue compared to other counties for annual funding per station, pointing out that Lake and Polk Counties were the lowest; however, those two counties have the largest service areas in central Florida. He commented that Lake County provides emergency services at a low cost to citizens, displayed a chart showing how the County’s per capital cost compared to other counties, and stated that Polk County was the only county with a lower cost per capita. He relayed that Lake County’s daily staffing per fire station was lowest when compared to the benchmarked counties, and clarified that the number was the total number of daily staff divided by the number of stations. He said that his office’s fire assessment and ad valorem revenue was expected to increase slightly; however, the revenue received from grants would be significantly lower because the office’s Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant funding would sunset in December 2018. He elaborated that the 15 SAFER positions would be funded directly out of the Office of Fire Rescue’s personal services, which would cost about $750,000 in additional expenses in the following year and approximately $900,000 in the FY 19-20 budget. He indicated that his office’s beginning fund balance would continue to decline due to offsetting the rise in operational costs, and pointed out that grant revenue would be reduced by 81 percent due to the lost SAFER Grant and not having an EMS matching grant; as a result, the office’s fund balance had declined and the office’s overall revenue was down approximately $700,000 over the current year. He commented that at the BCC’s strategies workshop in March 2018, it was noted that his office’s current budget would not sustain current operations. He clarified that as the Office of Fire Rescue continued upgrading fire stations from BLS to ALS and improved field supervision, the personal services and operational costs continued to outpace the revenue stream. He displayed the graph that was used at the strategies workshop to illustrate the decline in the office’s beginning fund balance, the increasing costs, and insufficient revenue, and stated that the graph was a ten year representation of revenue, expenditures and fund balance. He added that Fire Rescue had been spending funds from the fund balance over the past several years to cover the costs of fire protection service enhancements and sustainment. He relayed that in June 2018, Ms. Jennifer Barker, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, would be addressing the BCC about fire department revenue.
Commr. Parks thanked the men and women of the Office of Fire Rescue for their service. He inquired about the status of a strategic plan, and asked if certain fire trucks were out of service due to staffing concerns and a lack of budget.
Mr. Dickerson replied that the increasing amount of ALS fire stations and the loss of some paramedics had placed the office over budget by about ten percent. He stated that some measures had been taken to reduce costs, and this had been conducted with as minimal impact to operations as possible. He indicated that the only truck that had been taken out of service was located at Fire Rescue Tower 112; however, it was the second unit at the station. He stated that the office was trying to reduce its budget, and that the budget was a concern.
Commr. Parks said he appreciated the efforts to be budget conscious but that there must be enough personnel to be responsive and save lives. He expressed interest in further discussing the office’s budget, and asked if the office was attempting to follow the one, three, and five-year (1-3-5) strategic plan.
Mr. Dickerson responded that the office was following the plan to the best of its ability, though it is based on budget. He expressed that he had hired a deputy fire chief that would become active in July 2018 and would assist with planning. He indicated an intent to follow the 1-3-5 plan and attempt to execute it, though it would be dependent on revenue.
Commr. Parks expressed support for a citizen’s advisory board to assist with planning, and asked if there was a benefit to leasing fire trucks. He also said there was an ever changing role of the fire department in coordinating with other offices and communities, noting that the new fire station in Altoona is similar to a community center. He asked if there was anything else that could be done to expand that role, such as firefighters being the first line for health and wellness.
Mr. Dickerson replied that there was a benefit for leasing fire trucks in that newer trucks would be kept on the road. He added that Volusia County leases their fire trucks, replaces trucks often, and pays approximately $1 million per year into that fund. He opined that leasing should be an option and part of an ongoing discussion. He said that as fire stations continue to be built and remodeled, there is always an opportunity to perform wellness checks in the community. He indicated that this can depend on call load, but would be a future consideration for his office. He recalled attending the Rescue Me pet adoption event on May 19, 2018 and seeing 25 off duty firefighters there.
Mr. Cole reiterated that staff would be returning on June 19, 2018 to discuss the budget assessment, and said that costs continue to increase, the SAFER Grant was ending and revenues were not keeping pace with those increased costs.
Commr. Parks said that the current number of stations was important in keeping the cost per capita low, and this should be considered due to Lake County’s population growing so quickly.
Mr. Dickerson noted that the Town of Sorrento’s fire station saw an increase in calls over 13 percent when compared to the past year and this increase could be contributed to the area’s growth.
Commr. Breeden asked if he was observing an unusual amount of turnover for paramedics.
Mr. Dickerson replied that it was not an unusual amount, and said that approximately 25 percent of the people that leave the department go to other fields such as nursing. He relayed that some paramedics go to other fire departments and that the City of Orlando is always recruiting due to their higher pay and large workforce. He remarked that his office typically loses about six to eight paramedics per year and this was normal for an organization of that size, and stated that there were currently a considerable number of individuals in paramedic school that would be able to contribute to ALS service beginning in January 2019.
Mr. Greg Holcomb, Director of the Office of Public Safety Support, said that his office provides the following services: management of the countywide radio system and infrastructure; management of the six countywide 911 centers; 911 development review; and facilitation of addressing functions throughout the county for new development. He stated that his office consists of seven FTEs providing system and technology support for public safety and the countywide addressing function. He remarked that his office’s accomplishments included providing support for Hurricane Irma by running the logistics operation during the EOC activation, and being awarded the two 911 state grants which resulted in excess of $750,000 being received by the County; additionally, he specified that the first grant for recorder replacements had been completed, and the next grant, which would bring some next generation services to 911 including text to 911, was still in progress. He added that his office had established a continuity of operations plan for the six 911 answering centers that would allow a relocation to a new facility and continued service if an unplanned evacuation occurs. He also said that his office completed some database application programs which enhanced their 911 and addressing components. He indicated that his office had continued to look for partnerships such as the interagency communications interlocal agreement with the City of Apopka, where the County had land available to offer to the city who would then build a radio tower there to result in approximately a $400,000 savings to Lake County and the radio tower was needed for public safety response and the growth in that area.
Mr. Cole clarified that the radio tower had been temporarily put on hold to evaluate all potential options for locations, though the BCC’s approved agreement was still in place.
Mr. Holcomb said that the City of Apopka was aware of this and they would support the County’s efforts. He continued his presentation, stating that his office deployed the database application for 911 which reduced information technology (IT) costs, ensured continuity, and increased cellular 911 location capabilities within the County’s 911 center. He mentioned that recent reorganization efforts, including the EMS transition and bringing addressing into 911 services, created savings and service efficiencies throughout the county. He displayed a graph showing radio users in service when compared to surrounding counties, and noted that Lake County had 3,397 radios for law enforcement, fire rescue, medical services, utilities and transportation, and he commented that Lake County compared in the middle with surrounding counties. He showed another graph with benchmarks for 911 calls for service, and commented that both Lake County’s technology and its number of calls were in the middle of the benchmarks. He displayed a chart with benchmarks for the number of 911 address points maintained, stating that Lake County was close to 200,000 address points, and he noted that this benchmark was also in the middle, though it had been rising due to growth in the county. He showed a slide with the office’s proposed budget of $4,180,729 in total expenditures and pointed out that expenditures would have a total increase of 0.5 percent. He also noted that the budget for personal services rose 17 percent and that this was attributable to moving the addressing component to 911 services. He indicated that this allowed his office to reduce general fund expenditures while allowing them to take those costs out of the County’s available 911 funds. He explained that his office’s funding sources were the General Fund at nearly 60 percent and 911 funds at around 40 percent. He said that operational expense increases were identified and were based on 911 and some of its enhancements, and indicated that the office’s capital outlay decreased based on budgetary constraints and postponing projects that could be completed in later budget cycles.
Commr. Parks asked to clarify why the radio tower project was on hold.
Mr. Holcomb said that citizen comments and the capabilities of the area were being considered, and explained that geographically, the location services the County’s needs based on the City of Apopka and growth in the Town of Sorrento; however, given that the County was building a fire station and other projects there, such as roadways, other areas that would be more conducive to the community were being considered.
Commr. Sullivan praised the technology and efficiency behind the County’s 911 services and hoped that the new radio system would keep Lake County on the cutting edge of technology.
Mr. Cole said that the County was working with the cities on interlocal agreements after the BCC directed staff to move forward with purchasing new public safety radios. He indicated that the County also had request for proposals (RFPs) for a bank loan to fund both the new animal shelter and public safety radios. He relayed that staff would return on July 10, 2018 with a presentation about those options.
agency for economic prosperity
Ms. Erika Greene, Interim Executive Director of the Agency for Economic Prosperity and the Office of Elevate Lake, said that the presentation would include all of the economic prosperity components to include the Office of Elevate Lake, the Office of Visit Lake and the Office of Fairgrounds and Events Center. She stated that the Agency for Economic Prosperity provides assistance and manages services for both the businesses of Lake County and its visitors, and the agency works with numerous partners to support business in the county. She said that her agency had 13.5 FTEs including three employees for the Agency for Economic Prosperity, five employees for the Office of Elevate Lake, 3.5 employees for the Office of Visit Lake and two employees for the Office of Fairgrounds and Events Center. She commented that the Office of Elevate Lake serves as a liaison between companies and government with the goal of creating a business friendly environment and quality jobs for the residents of Lake County, and stated that the team consists of the Agency for Economic Prosperity Executive Director, an Office of Elevate Lake Director and Associate Director, and three managers of business development. She indicated that the Office of Elevate Lake’s services follow the Lake County Economic Action Plan which includes these directives: to ensure that the county remains business friendly; to promote cooperation and coordination between the County and municipalities; to promote workforce development, business retention and expansion; to support start-ups and entrepreneurs; to promote business recruitment and attraction; and to protect and improve the quality of life of Lake County residents. She said that her agency’s three managers and business opportunity centers (BOCs) are located in the northwest, northeast and south areas of the county. She added that the managers work in those areas to collaborate with and engage chambers of commerce, to support new and existing businesses, and to facilitate special projects. She remarked that her agency’s contractual relationships are with business and event recruitment with the Orlando Economic Partnership (OEP) for the primary service of business attraction. She specified that the organization has many businesses coming into the area that are looking for an ideal location, and Lake County is among the considerations being promoted to those businesses. She stated that her office also has BOCs and small business development centers which offer a primary service of business consultation, training and seminars for entrepreneurs and businesses seeking growth. She indicated that her agency was also able to renegotiate the contact with the OEP to save over $242,000. She said that her office accomplished the creation and facilitation of chamber and business roundtables by meeting with chambers of commerce and city staff to receive feedback and answer questions; consequently, the office was able to identify projects or other efforts that would be valuable to work on in the coming year. She said that the office also assisted the City of Leesburg with their seaplane ramp and dock to allow the planes to land and receive repairs or maintenance. She expressed that the office had a contract with the Florida Virtual Entrepreneur Center (FLVEC) which is a Florida high tech corridor and web based program that currently had 13 businesses representing the Cities of Eustis, Leesburg, Minneola, Mount Dora, Clermont and the Town of Sorrento, and said that the businesses are from the construction, technology, healthcare, manufacturing, aerospace, media, marketing and business mentoring areas. She commented that the office also had the Four Corners Area Council Bus Tour which was an initiative that was able to bring together the Commissioners and planning or economic development representatives from Lake, Orange, Osceola and Polk Counties. She elaborated that the bus tour included a lunch and a meeting with the Commissioners to discuss area initiatives and potential future outcomes. She commented that her office also launched the Economic Development Ad Valorem Grant incentive program targeting new and existing Lake County businesses who are expanding and building infrastructure. She explained that her office previously did not offer an incentive program, and said that ad valorem taxes were in a percentage rollout and if businesses met the criteria, they could be reimbursed with some of those funds and invest them back into the growing business. She said that the office collaborated with Lake County schools for the Teachers in Industry Institute program that afforded the schools a grant to fund the participating teachers, and provided information sharing with educators to connect them with businesses. She indicated that the Economic Development Division was rebranded as the Office of Elevate Lake, and the office was anticipating continuing its joint visits with the Public Works Department and also its city team meetings. She opined that these meetings reduced redundancy, enabled enhanced communications, and facilitated being able to answer questions and share initiatives and concerns. She said that in FY 17, the office had a total budget of $2,570,779 which was in line with Marion, Seminole and Sumter Counties. She displayed benchmarks for funding for supporting functions including the office’s SBDC and Metro-Orlando Economic Development Center (EDC) contract at $442,193, which was providing benefits to the county’s businesses and helping them grow. She relayed that there were 7,980 businesses in Lake County, which was an increase of 264 businesses over the previous year, and remarked that Lake County pays an average of $322 per business to support BOCs and OEP, consulting businesses, business roundtables, training, networking, etc. She showed a graph with the office’s proposed budget of $1,204,966, pointing out that there would be a slight increase to personal services due to position changes and salary adjustments. She commented that the office’s operating expenses would be decreased in the coming year by decreasing payments to OEP in the previous year by $150,000 from the $292,193 paid to them in 2018, and she indicated an intent to reduce the payment to OEP to $50,000 in 2019. She mentioned that with this reduction, her office could have valuable access and still pay a reasonable amount for reasonable service. She added that Lake County would still have full access to services; however, the County would stop paying for referrals that are not received.
Commr. Breeden asked if any businesses had applied for the Economic Development Ad Valorem Grant.
Ms. Greene responded that no applications for the grant had been received, though the office was marketing it. She added that it was a new grant, and businesses that were growing and expanding could be engaged in it.
Commr. Campione asked to clarify that the grant was not from other business’ ad valorem taxes, but instead from that particular business contributing over $1 million of capital. She also asked if the City of Mount Dora was aware of that program, and commented that it may be worth assuring that due to the Wolf Branch Innovation District and its recruiting efforts. She said that was an area where that type of investment would occur and it would contain the targeted industries.
Ms. Greene confirmed that the grant was from particular businesses contributing over $1 million of capital, and remarked that there was also criteria for employees businesses hire and salary ranges, and the business would receive some of their tax money back in a percentage rollout. She also added that Wellness Way would be another area to consider for marketing the grant.
Commr. Parks thanked her for the presentation, and asked for an update on the office’s concierge service. He also inquired about the counter connection, and mentioned the importance of the concierge service demonstrating good customer service skills to the average citizen trying to obtain a permit and continually improving the County’s reputation of being more service friendly. He opined that the County should consider visits to businesses conducted in a public way due to feedback from citizens concerning perceptions that the Office of Elevate Lake and city efforts for economic development does not affect them.
Ms. Greene replied that the office’s managers make the best attempt by attending chamber of commerce meetings and performing ribbon cuttings, and the office’s goal is when a new business reaches out, that they can be connected successfully. She added that the office still had the concierge system, and they were working with the Office of Planning and Zoning to make sure businesses were fully connected.
Mr. Cole stated that Ms. Greene had been serving in an interim role and that she had done a great job. He relayed that Mr. Brandon Matulka, Executive Director of the Agency for Economic Prosperity, was recently promoted to replace Mr. Robert Chandler, and noted that the County was in a period of transition in the fall of 2017 when the concierge system was retooled. He said that the office had continued its momentum under Ms. Greene, and Mr. Matulka would assume his new position at the end of the week. He added that Mr. Matulka had many forward thinking ideas about how to change and enhance the program.
Commr. Campione stated that in previous years, the County would hold economic development vision sessions and other events for the community to provide their input and see where the County was moving. She opined that those were beneficial opportunities, and she suggested a workshop with Mr. Matulka to hear his ideas and brainstorm ways to add value to businesses and make them feel connected.
Commr. Parks agreed, and suggested going out to the county and listening to citizens’ thoughts on new ways to help their businesses.
Mr. Cole said that this was a good idea, and relayed that he had spoken with Mr. Matulka in the previous week. He relayed that Mr. Matulka was mapping out his vision and direction for the program, and commented that there were discussions about a meeting in the next few months to receive the BCC’s input.
Commr. Sullivan remarked that Mr. Matulka had done a good job representing the county at the Four Corners events that occur frequently.
Mr. Matulka indicated that he had worked with the Office of Elevate Lake for the past two and a half years, mainly focusing on the southern part of the county. He stated that he had seen the importance of his new role and the responsibility that the office has to Lake County, and that he liked the BCC’s ideas for coming together and moving forward with the vision. He added that city partners must be brought into that discussion so that all parties are in line and moving in the same direction. He commented that meetings at the onset would be a good opportunity, and also suggested developing a potential structure for quarterly meetings.
Ms. Kathy Pagan, Associate Director of the Office of Visit Lake, said that one of the office’s accomplishments was hiring Akers Media and Watauga Group to serve as the Lake County advertising agency, and she drew attention to a picture of a county advertising campaign that said “zero wait time from here”, which she opined was unique for the County. She indicated that while Akers Media ran that campaign for only six weeks, it generated over 97,000 website clicks and over 21 million impressions. She listed the following accomplishments for Tourism Development Council (TDC) event sponsorships: sponsored 124 events, with 72 of those being sporting events and the other 52 involving general tourism; awarded approximately $712,000 in total sponsorship funds; and generated over $268 million in economic impact. She said that with the TDC co-op marketing program, the office was striving to continue it and make it grow, and the program had grown about 80 percent. She indicated that the office participates in co-op programs with local stakeholders to focus funding on where it would be best utilized such as expos, conventions the businesses attend, marketing, billboards and mailouts. She commented that her office was using every method possible to connect, engage and bring more visitors to Lake County, and stated that in the past five years, the economic impact was over $771 million including transportation costs, retail sales, lodging, food and entertainment. She continued listing her office’s accomplishments, remarking that its “Real Florida, Real Close” initiative launched along with corresponding promotions. She said that the Office of Visit Lake experienced significant success with this new brand including an increase in social media presence by 750 percent. She indicated that by using search engine optimization and geo-targeting, the office had attracted thousands more Facebook followers. She mentioned that the office had also developed new partnerships, including city and regional partnerships for some sporting events, and they continue to provide a new market share of future opportunities. She commented that there was a four way partnership with her office, the City of Clermont, central Florida Sports Commission and the USA Canoe/Kayak Sprint National Championship to provide strategic exposure to those types of events and bring them to Lake County. She remarked that there would be other opportunities to partner with cities, including Gran Fondo Cycling, Leesburg Bassmaster and a tri-city festival with the Cities of Eustis, Mount Dora and Tavares. She mentioned an upcoming tourism expo to bring in stakeholders and share ideas and practices to evaluate how the County can best serve them, and there would also be a meeting planners’ roundtable discussion to see how the office can bring more connection to that market. She thanked the BCC for approving the interlocal agreements for the Lake County Disc Golf Trail and the lease amendment for the Hickory Point Beach fieldhouse, though she noted that the fieldhouse was still under construction. She specified that the Hickory Point Beach fieldhouse would allow the office to have new and improved events, and that the $50,000 capital amendment would also help to improve the signage and sidewalks, and provide parking deterrents and landscaping. She said that once her office would be hosting larger and more prominent tournaments, courtesy of the fieldhouse, they would be bringing in the American Volleyball Coaches Association and have a five year extension for the Sunshine State Athletic Conference High School State Championships. She also expressed excitement for working with the Lake-Sumter State College Beach Volleyball Conference Championships and the Coastal Collegiate Sports Association which could include Florida State University, Louisiana State University, the University of South Carolina, and Florida International University, and she hoped there would be a summer groundbreaking for the fieldhouse. She listed these events that the office hosted: the 5th Annual Wings & Wildflowers Association in the City of Leesburg; Bassmaster in the City of Leesburg; and the Bass Pro Shop Big Bass Tour, which she noted Bass Pro Shop extended or hoped to soon extend another three years to continue through the year 2021, and she also mentioned that three previous fishing events created $3 million in economic impact in Lake County, had over 1,000 participants and created over 4 million social media impressions. She also indicated that there are a considerable amount of golfing events in the county, and that Lake County and its partners have led to golfing events continuing to return, sometimes for decades, despite competition from other areas. She relayed that her office would host the upcoming American Beach Tour Junior National Championship, and mentioned that the USA Canoe/Kayak Spring National Championship would be returning in the year 2019 and that the Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) Amateur Disc Golf World Championships would possibly be an upcoming event in the year 2020. She said that thousands of athletes from across and outside the county come to participate in Lake County’s events. She stated that for efficiencies, her office continued to update and streamline the Tourism Sponsorship funding process and application; furthermore, the County has targeted demographics and worked with its peer to peer contacts to affirm what the demographics are searching for by launching themed landing web pages for each niche market including SportsinLakeFL.com, LakeCountyDiscGolfTrail.com and LakeBigBass.com. She said that the office has also used mechanisms to assist its local stakeholders and create new and unique ways to solve problems that they have according to their needs. She elaborated that this could involve using a checklist for sports teams rather than hotel forms that must be filled out, and commented that her office strives for creative solutions that benefit the County’s sports and tourism partners in the best way to serve them. She opined that Lake County locals were her office’s best brand advocates and the authenticity they bring when helping the office host visitors in Lake County is unmatched. She displayed a benchmark for tourism revenue, noting that it increased by 16 percent from around $2.7 million in the previous year to approximately $3.1 million. She also noted that Lake County was behind some of the larger counties in this benchmark, but said that the County performs very well among smaller counties. She displayed another graph for tourism development tax rates, stating that Lake County was in the middle range among benchmarked counties at four percent. She also displayed a chart for promotional budget benchmarks, noting that Lake County had over a $1 million budget that only included sponsorships such as Leesburg BikeFest, Renninger’s Flea Market, extravaganzas, the Renaissance Faire, the central Florida Sports Commission, and television shows including “how to Do florida”, but did not include the Akers Media contract. She elaborated that Lake County put many resources into its promotions when compared to other counties, and she said that for the proposed budget, the personal services budget would include a portion of the FTEs from the Office of Communications. She relayed that any extra funds that are received are rolled into promotions, as this allows the office to serve more stakeholders and tourism partners. She stated that the office budgeted $20,000 for the disc golf trail, and reserves were being used to pay off some of the capital for the fieldhouse. She commented that the increase in operating expenses reflects what the office is putting into promotional activity, and opined that Central Florida is the most competitive tourism destination in the world. She concluded by saying her office would strive to stay relevant, continue to strengthen its partnerships and collaborations, look for new opportunities that would bring people to Lake County with its hometown appeal, and know that the county’s location and people are the best ambassadors.
Commr. Parks asked about return on investment numbers and what they would approximately be. He also inquired about the economic impact from this.
Ms. Pagan replied that the office spends almost half of every penny for promotions and showing what Lake County offers to events, families visiting, tournaments, and art and patron events. She stated that there are a host of activities occurring, and that the economic impact from these events can be hundreds of millions of dollars, and relayed that three fishing events generated over $3 million in economic impact.
Commr. Breeden said that the Office of Visit Lane has done a great job by developing niche markets, and this was having a significant impact on tourism and what people are finding in Lake County. She also suggested developing a market for arts and culture.
Ms. Pagan responded that there was much to offer in the county for the patrons of arts and culture events and going forward, her office would strive to showcase that as well.
Commr. Sullivan commented that a great example was how many of the arts centers now participate in state funding that was brought to their attention by the County. He added that state funding is a continuing source of revenue to keep those places open and functioning.
Mr. Cole Scharlau, Manager of the Office of Fairgrounds & Events Center, said that the office is the venue for the annual Lake County Fair, weekly Farmers’ & Flea Market and also hosts various private and public events throughout the year. He displayed the office’s organizational chart, noting the program manager and one full-time office associate for a total of two FTEs; however, the office also utilizes some part-time labor and security help. He listed these events that the office hosted: the Farmers’ & Flea Market on every Thursday; the annual Vintage Motorcycle Swap Meet; multiple concerts and private parties; the 96th Annual Lake County Fair; gun shows; and dog shows. He said that in FY 17, the office hosted 21 public and private events and averaged 298 spaces rented for each Farmer’s Market day. He commented that during Hurricane Irma cleanup efforts, the office acted as a staging area for Duke Energy, who had many trucks and were dispatching their linemen from the location, and the office also worked with the contractor for the vegetative debris contract to dump debris in the area before hauling it away. He mentioned that for efficiencies, the office collaborated with the Office of Communications and a website was designed that would act as a reservation system for both the Farmers’ & Flea Market and events. He relayed that most of the groundwork had been laid, though the site would still need to be implemented and was planned to go live in July 2018. He indicated that there was further cooperation with the Office of Communications to redo all of the office’s maps and building schematics so that the reservation maps would be color coded. He displayed the proposed budget for FY 19 of $287,488 in total expenditures and pointed out a 5.8 percent overall decrease, with most of it being due to the removal of facilities’ chargebacks. He also noted that the capital funds of $55,000 were a result of excess net revenue from FYs 15 and 16 which the office had carried forward to use on capital projects at the fairgrounds.
Commr. Breeden said that the fairgrounds’ budget was primarily covered by incoming event fees.
Mr. Scharlau stated that his goal was to remain revenue neutral and that this goal was exceeded in his four and a half years with the County.
Mr. Cole added that this was why the office’s capital outlay was being carried forward year and again, and it was felt that any excess revenue that is collected should be reinvested into the program. He provided an update on the fairgrounds, recalling an earlier discussion about relocating it, and said that an appraisal was obtained on the current location. He indicated that the County had been working closely with the Lake County Fair Association on relocation, and staff would be bringing a use agreement back to the BCC in June 2018 for the Board’s consideration to enter into with the Lake County Fair Association to allow them to seek grant funding for the development of the new site. He indicated that the Lake County Fair Association and the County had similar needs, and that going forward, the next step would be the use agreement and identifying potential revenue from the County and the Lake County Fair Association for relocation. He mentioned that the County was planning to continue operating at the current site until it was sure that enough resources were on hand to develop the new site so that would not be too much downtime between the Lake County Fair Association and the County’s work at the fairgrounds.
Commr. Parks expressed gratitude for the website work and said that the most recent Lake County Fair was great. He commented that he was looking forward to continued discussion about the fairgrounds relocation and creating a revenue generator out of an existing asset. He stated that new meeting space could all be provided year-round on existing land that the County has and that economic impact could be brought in along with it.
Mr. Cole said that one of the County’s limitations in attracting more events to the fairgrounds is that there is not a large air conditioned space and while the large pavilion is used in the winter months, it still becomes warm in the summer months. He explained that the vision was to have at least one large under air facility on the site and if grant funding could be obtained from the federal government, the facility could also be hardened and used as a human and pet hurricane shelter.
Ms. Greene said that the Agency for Economic Prosperity’s proposed budget would maintain the current levels of service for the Offices of Elevate Lake, Visit Lake, and the Fairgrounds and Events Center. She elaborated that the budget included funding for the Wellness Way technical consultant and the Lake-Sumter State College Disc Golf Course, and commented that resort tax revenues were expected at $3,075,863 which would be an increase of 11.8 percent. She relayed that the final proposed budget of $9,330,181 in total expenditures would have a savings of 12.5 percent due to renegotiating a grants & aids contract and also a change in the reserves from $4,685,295 to $4 million. She concluded by specifying that the agency was including two FTEs in the Office of Communications in that budget.
infrastructure and internal support services
Mr. Kristian Swenson, Assistant County Manager, presented an organizational chart of the Infrastructure & Internal Support Services section of the County, pointing out that it is comprised of the Offices of Facilities Management, Fleet Management, Procurement Services and the Public Works Department and that their budgets would be discussed in the current meeting; however, he informed the BCC that the Public Works Department’s budget would be presented on June 5, 2018. He stated that the Office of Facilities Management is responsible for the oversight and coordination of building construction and maintenance with County buildings. He showed a slide with the office’s organizational chart and noted that it is divided into two sections, with the first being Contracts & Administration and the second section being Maintenance. He indicated that the Contracts & Administration section handles any construction work that is privatized along with private maintenance contracts. He relayed that the Maintenance side handles the work performed by in-house forces, and commented that there were 26 FTEs within the office. He listed these recent accomplishments for the office: construction of the southeast and northeast Tax Collector’s Offices, located in the Cities of Clermont and Tavares, respectively, and noted that they provide driver’s license and other tax collector services; construction of Fire Station 14 in Altoona; and the Public Defender’s Building renovation. He remarked that the office had these projects in progress: the Lake County Courthouse renovation, which was a phased project to be completed in the year 2021; the Hickory Point Beach fieldhouse; the new Lake County Animal Shelter; the second floor of Cagan Crossings Community Library; and Fire Station 39 in the Town of Sorrento. He mentioned that the office would continue to work on efficiencies by adopting a robust new maintenance program called ARCHIBUS that provides better tracing of work, better management of the County building inventory, and keeps track of the history and modifications to buildings. He mentioned that an audit was also completed on the chiller and boiler usage at the energy plant on Alfred Street, and the office was implementing the information from that audit. He said that other efficiencies included continuing light-emitting diode (LED) light conversions and the replacement of broken automatic faucets with solar powered automatic faucets. He stated that the office was also beginning the process of remote monitoring building power status to indicate when power is lost, if there is a generator in the building and if it is being used, and if a generator is failing. He displayed benchmarks showing that Lake County had 154 buildings in its inventory, and displayed another graph showing benchmarks for the square footage of County-maintained buildings, noting that Lake County had approximately 1.9 million square feet. He displayed a chart showing benchmarks for total facilities staff, and stated that Lake County had 27 staff members and was the second lowest county on the benchmark. He then indicated that Lake County had a maintenance cost of $2.53 per square foot. He displayed a graph showing the number of square footage maintained per facilities staff member, and noted a figure of approximately 72,000 which was close to the County’s neighbors. He showed a budget comparison between counties, and commented that the previous year’s budget was about $4.9 million and very economical. He stated that because the office had a smaller group of staff members, a considerable amount of maintenance is done through outsourcing or privatized work. He displayed a chart comparing Lake County’s outsource maintenance to its neighbors, and pointed out that Lake County did this the most. He showed a slide for the office’s FY 19 proposed budget of approximately $4.7 million, which would be a 3.6 percent decrease from the previous year.
Mr. Rodney Keith Stevenson, Director of the Office of Fleet Management, said that his office was responsible for all of the County’s vehicles and heavy equipment. He stated that the office had 18 FTEs including a financial analyst and two supervisors, with one dedicated to the administrative side and the other is responsible for actual maintenance and repairs. He displayed a picture of a plaque that was awarded to the office for being a Blue Seal of Excellence certified shop for the third year in a row, and said that the office’s staff continues to maintain their certifications and add new ones. He also said that the utilization of County vehicles was reviewed in the previous year and the result was the reassignment or repurposing of 12 vehicles to save the County those purchases. He reiterated that the office had the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) award for the shop, and also noted that employees held 85 ASE certifications and 13 Emergency Vehicle Technician (EVT) certifications between them, with the latter allowing work on fire trucks and ambulances. He indicated that his office produces monthly performance measures that are distributed to upper management and throughout the shop to let staff know how they are performing and what is being tracked throughout the year. He commented that the office measures contract performance, and mentioned that there were several contracts written for the procurement of parts and outsourcing of services; furthermore, the office could have up to 100 invoices on a given day that must be monitored for contract compliance. He remarked that the office also monitors its Wright Express fuel credit card for purchases at retail gas locations, and this is monitored on a monthly basis to avoid potential misappropriations. He displayed benchmarks from FY 16, noting that Lake County’s fleet had 909 vehicles which would place the County in fourth among the benchmarked counties. He displayed another graph showing total fleet FTEs per county, and noted that Orange County was the largest with 66 FTEs and Lake County had the second lowest number with 19. He relayed that Lake County only had 10 technician FTEs and said that even with the low number of staff, the County was still managing 91 assets per technician due to staff that have trained across multiple lines to be able to keep vehicles on the road even with that workload. He stated that the annual number of work orders was also considered and Lake County had the third highest number among benchmarked counties, and he specified that work orders are generated each time a vehicle comes in for repair. He said that even though there had been some replacements in the past five years, Lake County’s fleet is one of the oldest fleets in the area; however, the office has been able to keep those vehicles on the road and in service for an average age of 10 years. He showed a chart for different categories of service in FY 16, pointing out that in Lake County, the only categories that were not touched were Emergency Medical Services (EMS) vehicles and waste vehicles including garbage collectors, though the office maintains landfill vehicles. He commented that the proposed budget would include a six percent increase due to an 11 percent reduction in the previous fiscal year, and that the increase represented a small correction to realign with what is more realistic. He mentioned that the office is a completely internal service fund and every dollar taken in must be expended in the fund.
Mr. Barnett Schwartzman, Director of the Office of Procurement Services, said that the office has these three primary functions: procurement; fixed asset management where the office accounts for every fixed asset that is an item over $1,000 within the County; and document services which consists of the print shop and the reproduction equipment within the departments. He relayed that the office had eight FTEs with five dedicated to the procurement function, one dedicated to the fixed asset function, and one in document services along with a part-time employee in document services. He said that the office tries to perform an excellent service for contractors and automated solicitations are sent to these groups, and he elaborated that vendors are contacted if needed to update their address. He displayed a picture of a recent award from the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials, and elaborated that the office was one of four Florida counties to receive an award of excellence in the previous year for many of the automated processes that the office had implemented. He indicated that the office had these efficiencies; restructured contracts for flexibility including multi-vendor contracts in case one vendor fails; automation initiatives through Procurement Automation Workflow System (PAWS) for task orders, change orders, workflow, reviews and records that used to require paperwork; and consolidation, streamlining and reassignment of commodity codes that are used for each service that the County buys or might buy, for vendors to register, and for the County to issue solicitations. He remarked that the office was a member of the Purchasing Officials of Lake Cooperative Purchasing Program to work with other groups and obtain lower prices, and this cooperative includes cities, towns, the Lake County School Board and sometimes the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. He said that these groups can pool their requirements to obtain the economy of scale pricing for products. He showed a benchmark for total procurement department FTEs, noting that the closest counties to Lake County’s six FTEs were Alachua, Marion and Pasco Counties. He showed another chart with the number of staff who hold a procurement certification, with Lake County’s three personnel comparing closely with Alachua, Pasco, Marion and Polk Counties. He said that the number of solicitations issued is an area that is hard to compare because there could be different thresholds involved, and the County’s threshold for formal procurement was 25,000, with other counties possibly having different levels; however, Lake County had a true solicitation count of 151 in FY 16. He displayed a graph benchmarking the total number of purchase orders, noting that Lake County had 1,525 and was close to Alachua, Marion and Pasco Counties. He noted that the County issues many blanket purchase orders for multiple items in the same order, and its lower number of orders reflects that. He showed a slide for the number of purchase orders issued per procurement FTE and said that Lake County was close to equivalent across the board. He said that the total value of all solicitations was difficult to count and that Lake County’s number was based strictly on the dollar value of its formal solicitations, and he stated that for purchasing card volume, Lake County was at approximately $3 million for the year. He specified that the County had a state contract for its purchasing card to provide a 1.3 or1.5 percent rebate on its use which was about $20,000 in the past year, and the rebate had been as high as $90,000 or $120,000 in previous years because the carriers and haulers for trash used to accept the card for payment. He relayed that the office was continually looking for ways to increase this figure in a smart and efficient way, and noted that other counties were using their purchasing cards to a greater extent than Lake County, such as Polk County paying all or as many of its bills as possible with the card. He added that nearly 200 purchasing cards had been issued to County employees and that a considerable amount of time is spent reviewing those purchases. He showed a benchmark for total organization purchasing dollar volume, noting that Lake County’s approximate $92 million figure being mainly comprised of purchasing cards and solicitations, though said that it could be different for the other counties. He said that the office’s overall budget of $862,161 in total expenditures would have a 3.4 percent reduction for the year based on underfilling a few positions and also considering the need for a new large print, large scale copier for the print shop.
appointments to the women’s hall of fame selection committee
On a motion by Commr. Parks, seconded by Commr. Campione and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved the reappointments of the following members to the Women’s Hall of Fame Selection Committee to serve one-year terms ending June 12, 2019: Ms. Phyllis Smith, representing District 1; Ms. Mary Butts Kelly, representing District 2; Ms. Debbie Stivender, representing District 3; Ms. Tracy Belton, representing District 4; and Ms. Jean M. Martin, representing District 5.
Mr. Jeff Cole, County Manager, indicated that in March 2016, the Board voted to support a Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services application for U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service grant funding, and said that the funding would be used for the acquisition of 12.24 acres of the 43 acre Cannon property north of the Via Port mall in the City of Leesburg with the intent of bringing all of the 43 acres into County ownership. He recalled that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service notified the State in September 2016 that funding for the first phase was approved, but in March 2018 they reversed the 2016 award so that no funding would be made available for the acquisition. He said that after the reversal, the property owner contacted him in April 2018 to offer a new proposal that included donating 9.75 acres to the County, designating 11 acres as green space and developing the remaining 22.5 acres into a mobile home complex. He commented that staff evaluated the proposal and land, and it was determined to not be of significant value to the County because the property was limited in size and did not have road access; however, the property owner indicated that it would later have access. He noted that the County was originally supportive of preserving endangered plant species, and that the 9.75 acres proposed to be donated to the County has limited endangered species of plants with the bulk of them being on the section of the property that was planned for development. He remarked that there are significant challenges with maintaining controlled burns to manage endangered species of plants in an urbanized area and for a dense development, and there were also concerns about future management costs. He relayed that he was planning to decline the property owner’s offer.
Commr. Parks said that he would like to see the evaluation. He also opined that with plant management, fire would not have to be used.
Commr. Breeden relayed that the property was in her district, and that she met with Mr. Bobby Bonilla, Director of the Office of Parks and Trails, Ms. Wendy Poeg, Recreation Coordinator with the Office of Parks and Trails, and Mr. Cole to review the property in detail. She commented that because of the reasons that Mr. Cole stated and specifically how the endangered plant species are located on the parcel that the owner wanted to develop, she concurred with Mr. Cole’s position and recommended denying the proposal. She opined that if the County could have acquired the entire parcel, then the effort would be worth it.
Mr. Cole clarified the evaluation that staff conducted was in preparation for a meeting with Commissioner Breeden, that the background could be provided to any of the other Commissioners, and that a meeting could be scheduled to review it.
new director of office of human resources & risk management
Mr. Cole introduced Mr. Jim Kovacs, new Director of the Office of Human Resources and Risk Management. He said that Mr. Kovacs joined the County on May 14, 2018 and provided many forward thinking ideas.
Mr. Cole indicated that County offices would be closed on May 28, 2018 in honor of Memorial Day.
commissioner parks – district 2
local update of census addresses
Commr. Parks distributed an article from Florida TaxWatch to the BCC, and said that regarding the upcoming U.S. Census, Florida is a donor state for federal tax dollars. He stated that the article suggests Lake County should be considering the Local Update of Census Addresses (LUCA) process and he opined how there is a lack of understanding about the process that has led to it being ignored. He indicated that the County and cities going through the process could affect millions of dollars of federal tax money coming back to the county. He requested a future update on the process.
east central florida regional planning council presentation
Commr. Parks expressed a desire to discuss aspects of fiscal sustainability, stating that he and Commissioner Breeden attended a presentation on the subject at the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council. He explained that fiscal sustainability means there is a tool or model based on real data that would help to determine the fiscal impact of a policy or development decision. He said that the BCC currently does this with grants, giving the example of when receiving a 20 year grant, the County analyzes what the 20 year operational cost would be to determine if this cost would exceed the grant funding. He commented that there was considerable development coming to the county, and a significant question is if the BCC approves a project, will that project be a fiscal drain on a future Board when providing that service. He remarked that he was looking for modeling and data collection that the County could incorporate in its approval process, and noted that the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council had other counties’ models that could be provided to Lake County.
Commr. Campione asked for an example from the presentation.
Commr. Parks said that in Osceola County, the future cost of a large development over 15 years could be determined.
Commr. Breeden said that there were many good principles to the model, but a caveat would be that applying it to Lake County with some of the examples given would show less dense developments to also be less fiscally sustainable. She commented that this would have to be weighed against quality of life.
Commr. Campione asked who developed the model and also indicated an interest in analyzing it.
Commr. Parks clarified that he was considering larger subdivisions, and he also noted that the model already existed. He mentioned that there were other areas that use this data and have models that could help Lake County make a decision. He said that the model should not be mandatory, but could be a customized tool to avoid approving developments that would be a long term fiscal drain on the County.
Commr. Breeden suggested that an individual from the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council could make a presentation to the BCC.
Commr. Sullivan said that staff could research the model and bring it back for applicability to the things happening in Lake County.
florida turnpike meeting in minneola
Commr. Parks said that there was a recent Florida Turnpike meeting in the City of Minneola about a mainlining project, and that the City and Turnpike Authority did a good job with the event and it was very informative.
2018 lake county community service awards
Commr. Parks mentioned that he attended the 2018 Lake County Community Service Awards, and remarked that it was a good event which recognized citizens and businesses that serve the community.
east ridge high school academics
Commr. Parks congratulated East Ridge High School in the City of Clermont for being a top five percent high school for academics out of over 20,500 public schools nationwide, according to the U.S. News & World Report. He said that he hoped the County could continue to promote this, and that this achievement benefits everyone.
Commr. Parks wished everyone a happy Memorial Day.
commissioner breeden – district 3
pine meadows conservation area
Commr. Breeden said that the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Pine Meadows Conservation Area occurred on May 18, 2018. She noted that there were already citizens utilizing the site, and encouraged the Board to visit.
Commr. Breeden stated that she would be attending the veteran’s memorial service at the Florida National Cemetery, and that there would be other Memorial Day events happening in the county.
arlington ridge and gi shavings
Commr. Breeden commented that the Arlington Ridge community in the City of Leesburg had ongoing concerns about the nearby GI Shavings wood shavings plant. She noted a letter sent to the City about noise complaints, and opined that the County’s ordinance should be examined so that the County is not preventing cities from controlling or considering noise issues within their city limits. She expressed interest in performing a noise study at Arlington Ridge, and said it likely would cost $3,000 or less, but not more than $5,000.
Commr. Sullivan asked if the County was receiving a grant for noise monitoring machines.
Mr. Cole clarified that through the Office of Emergency Management, a grant was received for machines to monitor hazardous materials.
Commr. Breeden said that this would not be a solution, but would be a step to determine the extent of the problem.
hidden rivers development
Commr. Breeden said that the City of Tavares approved the 70 lot plan for the Hidden Rivers development on Shirley Shores Road. She noted the BCC’s earlier consensus to favor a 64 lot plan that would include fewer lots facing Shirley Shores Road, and was unsure if the BCC could change what was already recommended to the City of Tavares.
Commr. Sullivan asked if the BCC had exhausted all its possibilities to change what was happening with the development. He stated that the BCC had tried its best to get the City of Tavares to realize the requirements that the Board would prefer, but the BCC cannot control what happens in the municipalities. He asked if the annexation would then encompass Shirley Shores Road to be a city road because it would be surrounded by the City of Tavares on both sides.
Commr. Breeden clarified that the road would only be surrounded on one side.
Commr. Sullivan commented that the road would not fall under the Interlocal Service Boundary Agreement (ISBA).
Commr. Breeden asked if the County could require the City of Tavares to take over the road.
Mr. Schneider replied that it would be a very short segment of the entire roadway, and the County typically does not turn over a quarter mile section of a three mile road. He indicated that he was unsure if it fell under the ISBA language.
Ms. Marsh mentioned that the ISBAs are set up so that if more than 50 percent of the road is surrounded by the city, then the County would talk to the city about them taking jurisdiction. She relayed that all of the ISBAs are worded differently with some being mandatory and others specifying that jurisdiction should change only if the situation is practicable. She remarked that the County did not meet the 50 percent threshold for the road, and echoed Mr. Schneider’s comments that a tiny segment of a road would not typically be turned over to a city.
Commr. Campione recalled that the driveway issue was what the letter to the City of Tavares was addressing and that was the only leverage that the County had. She explained that even if a certain number of driveways was abided by, that did not prevent the property owner from creating an internal situation where multiple lots would utilize one driveway. She said that if the objective was to lower the number of lots on Shirley Shores Road, then using driveways as a lone issue would not further that goal. She commented that the BCC had tried to get the City of Tavares to look at the character of the area and the long term benefits of a lower density development, though did not think that driveway connections would change the City of Tavares’ plan.
Commr. Breeden opined that the issue concerned the language on the approved development map that said the development could change in the future, and the County could possibly address this with driveway permits.
Commr. Campione opined that the best thing for the County to do was to send a letter to the City of Tavares specifying a maximum number of allowed driveways under Lake County Code for Shirley Shores Road. She said that the code could not be applied to the City of Tavares to guide how subdivisions are designed.
Mr. Kehr recalled that the BCC supported a 64 unit map with a total of 10 driveways, and requested that the BCC ask the City of Tavares to require that the development be limited to 10 driveways.
Commr. Campione clarified that the County did not have a formal agreement or negotiation with the City of Tavares and that the BCC only provided their input to the City.
Mr. Kehr indicated that he would be comfortable with the County allowing ten regular or double driveways, or four double driveways on Shirley Shores Road which was part of the previously agreed upon plan. He opined that this was a safety issue on an already unsafe road.
Ms. Marsh noted that the County’s driveway connection process is an administrative process set up in the Lake County Code, and staff must follow the requirements of the code. She added that meeting all conditions for a driveway would require the permit to be issued and that the reference to no driveways on a collector road pertains to a conflict in the code. She explained that one section of the code indicates that a residential driveway cannot be present on a collector road, while other sections of the code discuss both minor and major collector roads. She said that it would depend on the County’s access management provisions and that the BCC could not set a specific number of driveways; however, the Board could recommend a number of driveways to the City of Tavares.
Commr. Campione commented that a letter could be sent explaining the code and how it could be interpreted concerning the distance between driveways.
Ms. Marsh replied that this was previously sent to the City of Tavares to indicate that lots with 200 feet of frontage would be permitted one driveway and if the lots were smaller than that, they would utilize joint driveways. She explained that the BCC could send another letter to the city so that they would have that information when they conduct their development review and plat the land.
Mr. Jimmy Crawford, attorney representing the Hidden Rivers developer, said that the last information sent to the City of Tavares’ Attorney was eight months in negotiation and examination by the County and said that a 64 lot plan was preferred. He elaborated that the November 17, 2017 plan was found by the BCC to be most compatible and that the Public Works Department would grant driveway permits based on road frontage. He said that the subdivision was designed in reliance upon the County’s letter and that every lot on Shirley Shores Road was wider than 200 feet and would still have joint driveways. He commented that the safety issue was the jurisdiction of the County and that the Public Works Department informed the developer that they would require safety measures, most likely including speed tables at the time of preliminary planning for construction.
Commr. Breeden asked why the developer would not consider going back to the 64 lot plan.
Mr. Crawford replied that the final lot count had not been determined due to studies concerning floodplain and wetland issues. He commented that the plan could have up to 67 lots and that the 64 lot plan was proposed and rejected in August 2017, and mentioned that the subdivision was redesigned at one point according to Commissioner Campione’s suggestion of no driveways and all internal roads. He said that to pay for those roads and the additional sewer and water, the developer proposed 90 lots; however, the 90 lot plan was unfavorable to the developer, the City of Tavares, and the development’s neighbors.
Commr. Campione recommended for staff to look at the access management provisions of the Lake County Code and to consider making future changes if there are conflicting provisions and to address similar situations in the future when considering what happened with the Hidden Rivers development. She expressed interest in better coordination with cities in areas where there are county maintained roads that are rural and lower capacity in order to maintain the character of the area. She opined that developers would prefer higher densities.
Ms. Marsh stated that the development was already approved by the City of Tavares, though the letter could still be sent and the Public Works Department could help deal with access management issues.
Mr. Schneider said that the County has had in place for approximately 25 years its access management rules, which apply to arterial and major collector roads. He explained that this segment of Shirley Shores Road was classified as a minor collector road, so the access management rule does not apply to it. He indicated that the County’s preference is that subdivisions access internally as a safety. He commented that in the County’s transportation planning appendix to its Land Development Regulations (LDRs) that has been in place for about 25 years, there is Section 1.b, Access and Access Management, where it is stated that parcels with frontage of 100 feet or less shall be limited to one driveway. He relayed that after working with the developer in the current case, they agreed to use 200 feet of frontage. He said that Section 1.b also mentions that “no new residential development shall create any lots or parcels for single family or duplex residential uses having direct access on an arterial or major collector roadway”. He stated that when examining the existing code and if the road is a minor collector road, then there is a preference; however, if a development would have direct access to the roadway, then the County would work with the developer for traffic timing, joint driveways, and similar factors. He indicated that he did not think that the development could be restricted any further based on the current reading of the code, though Section 9.04 of the Lake County Code states that “where a proposed subdivision is adjacent to or encompasses an arterial or collector road, it shall be planned so as to avoid having lots fronting on the arterial or collector road in such a manner as to direct access from the road”, and he noted that this section does not distinguish between major and minor collector roads.
Commr. Campione said that if the major collector road rule was applied to enforce internal access, then the development would end up with a greater number of lots that are not desired; however, using fewer lots would create more driveways on the minor collector road. She said that 200 feet of frontage would help mitigate some of the issue.
Commr. Sullivan indicated that he would be willing to sign a letter on behalf of the BCC explaining the Lake County Code provisions.
Commr. Parks agreed that sending a letter that asked the City of Tavares to adhere to the Lake County Code would be expressing the present discussion to the city.
Commr. Campione expressed interest in reviewing a draft of the letter to ensure that it accomplishes the BCC’s goal of persuading the City of Tavares to adhere to the Board’s previous requested action and reinforce that the reasoning behind this was that the BCC was interpreting the code as best they could under the current circumstances to limit the number of driveways based upon the size of the lots. She indicated that when receiving permits for driveways, the County’s code would be applied.
Ms. Marsh asked if the BCC wanted the issue brought back at the next meeting, and the Board confirmed this.
Commr. Sullivan inquired if this would be timely enough, and Mr. Kehr indicated that the developer had three more days to make a decision.
Mr. Crawford said that the developer was close to moving forward. He relayed that the City of Tavares required the developer to use curb and gutter streets which added approximately $350,000 to the project and the developer had to reengineer that back into the project. He recapped that the plan was to move forward with what the City of Tavares approved in the previous week.
Mr. Cole asked to clarify if the BCC wanted a letter to be drafted and executed in the current week.
Commr. Sullivan replied that if the developer had to act in the next three days, then the letter would have to be sent out quickly; however, he noted that the letter would be unlikely to have any impact.
Commr. Parks said that the letter would pertain to when the development begins going through the City of Tavares’ development review.
Mr. Crawford stated that the letter could have an impact if the County or the opposition to the development believed that the developer would significantly change the plan and add more lots because of the language in the development map about the lot lines being conceptual and subject to change. He said that concerning the standard Planned Unit Development (PUD) language, there was significantly more detail in the PUD concept plan than what would normally be included. He commented that the actual PUD states that the development shall be built substantially in accordance with the plan, and mentioned that the developer did not intend on changing the plan drastically. He indicated that if the BCC did not want to increase the number of driveways on Shirley Shores Road from what was approved, the developer also had no plans to increase them.
Commr. Campione suggested that the letter refer back to the BCC’s preferred 64 lot plan and stated that this would be the Board’s best interpretation of what the code allows.
Commr. Sullivan noted a consensus to move forward and direct staff to write a letter.
commissioner campione – VICE CHAIRMAN AND district 4
pine meadows conservation area
Commr. Campione said that the Pine Meadows Conservation Area opening was great, and that Mr. Bonilla, the Office of Parks and Trails, and the Office of Communications all did a great job. She commented that the County worked with a limited budget for the project, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) and the St. John’s River Water Management District were doing a good job with the ongoing restoration. She relayed that she took an airboat ride to see the work that had been accomplished and areas that still required debris and vegetation removal. She said that there is tremendous potential for the people who enjoy the site, and continued development of the trail system should lead to more people being able to visit the site.
home builders association of lake-sumter (HBA-LS) meeting
Commr. Campione mentioned that she had attended a recent HBA-LS meeting and talked to them about the conceptual design criteria for the Mt. Plymouth-Sorrento area. She noted some concerns from the HBA-LS about the criteria, but said that it was a productive discussion that included different types of guidelines that worked and others that were inflexible and yielded negative impacts for project quality and affordability. She relayed that the City of Mount Dora was moving forward with adopting a plan similar to the Montverde design criteria for their pending PUDs. She said that there would be a future workshop with the HBA-LS to receive their input and discuss what they would be comfortable with; additionally, she would return with Mr. Tim McClendon, Director of the Office of Planning and Zoning, and the actual maps to show the association the area that the County was talking about due to concerns about the amount of space under consideration.
lake county school board meeting
Commr. Campione indicated that she attended a Lake County School Board meeting on May 21, 2018, and they had a workshop focusing on school safety measures. She said that they had an excellent presentation that explained these current available options for schools under the state legislation: school resource officers provided directly by the Lake County Sheriff’s Department or law enforcement agencies; school safety officers provided by the Lake County School Board or hired through an agency; and the School Safety Guardian Program that can utilize school personnel that are retired or active law enforcement officers, military personnel or Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) instructors. She relayed that the Lake County School Superintendent had reached out to all of the cities, and there were currently informal agreements for 16 schools to utilize police departments in those cities, and there were six schools in the unincorporated area and the City of Fruitland Park that did not reach an agreement regarding cost. She indicated that the 16 schools planned to cost share with each of those police departments for their officers, and the Lake County School Board would need to discuss officer costs with the Lake County Sheriff’s Department for the other six schools. She said that the Lake County School Board had a one-time allocation which would be used for the year 2018, but they were still lacking in funds depending on what they were able to negotiate with the Lake County Sheriff’s Department and municipal police departments; however, the cost was not insurmountable for the first year. She added that after the first year, the Lake County School Board would not be able to fund the school safety officers. She mentioned that there was discussion at the meeting about placing an additional millage rate on a referendum in the fall of 2018 to have it for the following year. She also noted a presentation about a study that had been performed by a consultant which showed overwhelming support by Lake County citizens to have a sworn law enforcement officer at every school in the county. She said that there was also support for the School Safety Guardian Program in combination with having a sworn officer on each campus, and there was additional support for the cost involved for these officers; furthermore, the study found that approximately 70 percent of citizens supported a small tax increase to fund the officers. She said that the Lake County School Board would still need to refine details concerning agreements and funding with the cities and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. She said that additional funding would have to be implemented through the BCC using the Lake County School Board’s language, and the BCC would need to adopt an ordinance. She recalled talking to Ms. Marsh about the timeframe, and Ms. Marsh suggested that the ordinance would need to be approved by August 1, 2018 and public hearings would need to be held in July 2018. She added that the Lake County School Board would need to have their request finalized in June 2018 to allow time for the request to be on the general ballot in November 2018.
Mr. Cole said that the BCC previously expressed interest in having a joint meeting with the Lake County School Board, and asked if that meeting should be delayed to see how this issue moves forward.
Commr. Campione replied that the meeting should be delayed, and opined that meetings between Mr. Cole and the Superintendent of Lake County Schools would be most effective.
Mr. Cole relayed that he and Ms. Marsh were scheduled to meet with the Superintendent of Lake County Schools in the following week.
COMMISSIONER BLAKE – DISTRICT 5
pine meadows conservation area
Commr. Blake congratulated Mr. Bonilla for the ribbon cutting ceremony at the Pine Meadows Conservation Area.
dock and deck repairs ordinance 2018-23
Commr. Blake commented that Mr. Tony Lopresto, Director of the Office of Building Services, cooperated with him on a good compromise for Ordinance 2018-23 which would be acceptable to contractors.
commissioner sullivan – chairman and district 1
sommer sports’ bid
On a motion by Commr. Parks, seconded by Commr. Breeden and carried unanimously by a vote of 5-0, the Board approved for the Chairman to execute the letter endorsing Sommer Sports’ bid to host the 2019-2020 USAT Multisport Festival National Championship in Lake County.
Commr. Sullivan said that Memorial Day is to recognize the personnel that have given the ultimate sacrifice for their country. He remarked that he would be speaking at a Memorial Day ceremony in the City of Groveland, and that there would be other ceremonies throughout the county.
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 1:24 p.m.
timothy i. sullivan, chairman
GARY J. COONEY, CLERK AD INTERIM