MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING OF THE GILCHRIST COUNTY BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS HELD FEBRUARY 22, 2000.
The Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners, in and for Gilchrist County Florida, convened in a regular meeting on Tuesday, February 22, 2000, at 5:00 p.m. in Bell City Hall, located in the Bell Train Depot at 3240 W. Rail Road Lane, Bell, Florida, with the following members present to-wit:
Randy Durden, Chairman
John Rance Thomas
Sue B. Suggs
Others in attendance were: Joseph W. Gilliam, Clerk of Circuit Court, Sam Mutch, County Attorney, Sam Ferguson, Director of Finance, Karen Heaton, Deputy Clerk, John Middleton, Sue Middleton, Iris Roberts, Art Ingram, Lee Shaltenbrand, Bryan Harms, Scott Pariseau, Michael Kern, Aline A. Kazokas, Tracy Crook, Diane Avery, Al Sifferlen, Gary Grunder, Barbara Wray Suggs, Jeff Jordan, Tracey Wray, Risa Klemans, Rhonda Johnson, Robert Klemans.
John Thomas stated that John Middleton was present to address the Board.
Joe Gilliam requested that the Board rescind resolutions 99-68 and 99-72 for budget entries 017 and 021. These entries were adjustments to the carry forward that should have been a decrease instead of an increase.
Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion to rescind resolution # 99-021. Commissioner Thomas seconded the motion and the vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner Thomas made a motion to rescind resolution #99-017. Commissioner Suggs seconded the motion and the vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner Suggs mad a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson to approve budget entries 052-056. The motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Bush to approve budget entry 057.
Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion to approve the minutes of January 18, 2000. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and unanimously approved.
Mr. John Middleton came before the Board on behalf of the Gold Wing Road Riders Association (GWRRA) Chapter FL1-I from Old Town, Florida. The chapter has planed a rally for May 26th and 27th at Hart Springs. They are requesting that the Board reduce the $2.00 entry fee to $1.00 for those members who are not retired. The chapter has rented Pavilions A and B for Friday and Saturday. Many members will also be camping. Mr. Al Sifferlen affirmed that the Park has reduced the entry fee in the past for large groups. Those that are camping have the entry fee included in the camping fee. Commissioner Suggs made a motion seconded by Commissioner Thomas to reduce the fees to $1.00 for the Goldmine Road Riders. The motion passed unanimously.
Sam Mutch stated that Kim Yozgat completed the work on the Bond Estreature Policy for the Clerk in December 1999. Joe Gilliam is revising the Alachua County Clerk’s Bond Estreature Policy.
Amendment to Subdivision Regulations- The Planning and Zoning Commission will have a report at the next meeting. The Planning and Zoning Board is recommending that all major subdivisions be required to have paved roads, with a minimum wearing surface of 20 feet. They are following the recommendations of the North Florida Regional Planning Council. They will not be recommending the requirement to pave streets in front of minor subdivisions.
Amendment to Setback Requirements for Fences- The Planning and Zoning Board has recommended a variable with approximately 10 feet of setback from paved roads, 5 feet of setback from unpaved roads. They also recommended to incorporate the requirements for clear site triangles as adopted by the State of Florida for the County.
Mr. Mutch mentioned that there has been no action since October 1998 on the Ginnie Springs I and Ginnie Springs II lawsuits. The cases had been suspended at that time taking into consideration that the litigants were going forward into an administrative hearing. The Court gave Watson and the County 30 days after the rendition of the order in the administrative case to file answers and this has not been done. Mr. Mutch has requested a case management meeting with Judge Cates to determine which way the County should proceed.
Mr. Mutch reported that he had received a call from one of the Commissioners in regards to the Mud Bogging. The mud bogging had taken place on February 12 even though the Board of County Commissioners had made it known to the property owners that this was not a permitted use. Mr. Mutch informed Ron McQueen and gave him the appropriate steps to take to stop the conduct which would be to give a “cease and desist”order to Mr. Durrance. Mr. Mutch then received a call from Mr. Pomeroy regarding the matter. Mr. Mutch had suggested that if Mr. Durrance wished to have mud-bogging on his site, he should either request a re-zoning from Industrial to Commercial Intensive, or ask for a text change in the Industrial District Regulations to permit mud-bogging by special exception. If Mr. Durrance builds a permanent facility for the mud-bogging, it would no longer be covered by the “Festival Ordinance”.
Mr. Mutch related to the Board that there had been a question about hunting lodges in the A-6 zoning district. The Land Development Administrator had received a request by a land owner to place a hunting lodge on approximately 26,000 acres in Gilchrist County. His intent was to have a private hunting lodge catering to individuals and corporations. There exists at the present time one (1) hunting lodge on the site and a number of other lodges would be constructed with a central lodge for messing facilities. Mr. Mutch stated that this use as stated is a permitted use within the A-6 District according to the amendments to the agricultural districts and as permitted by Section 4.5, Gilchrist County Land Development Regulations, as amended by Ordinance 97-13. Mr. Mutch attached a memo to his report regarding his findings. According to the Land Development Regulations, hunting lodges are permitted, one (1) dwelling unit per 160 acres or one (1) development unit per 80 acres.
Mr. Mutch received a call from Shay Nugent, with Court Cost Containment, concerning a request from Ron Jaworski who is one of our special public defenders. Mr. Jaworski has requested compensation for his services on a dependency case that exceeded one year. Mr. Mutch had also discussed this with Mr. Jaworski earlier that day. Mr. Mutch referred to a letter he had sent to Mr. Jaworski and Diane See stating that after one year of service on a dependency case, they would be entitled to payment for another year of representation at the contract rate. Joe Gilliam reminded the Board of the negotiations for the contract. At the time, there were four special public defenders with an estimated 15 cases per year. There are currently two special public defenders and approximately 40 active cases. Dependency cases tend to go back and forth to Court for 6 months, 1 year, or longer. If this contract were made retroactive there would not be available funds in that budget to cover the cases from last year. Ms. Nugent contends that the compensation for cases exceeding one year should be retroactive. After discussion by the Board, Commissioner Durden instructed Sam Mutch to contact Ms. Nugent, Mr. Jaworski, and Ms.See to see if they will agree to October 1, 1999 being the effective date for this compensation.
Mr. Mutch had also been requested by Ron McQueen to look into the issue of using public roads as taxi ways for airplanes. Mr. Mutch explained that there is currently one subdivision in Gilchrist County which mixes that type of traffic. The subdivision was approved in 1989. The subdivision evidently did not go forward to the Division of Aviation. The airport does need to have a license from the State Department of Transportation. The D.O.T. was unaware that the taxiways were also used for vehicle traffic to and from the residences. Mr. Mutch spoke with Ken Davis who is the Chief Counsel for District Three D.O.T., he referred him to Bureau of Aviation Department of Transportation in Tallahassee. There was nothing in the statutes concerning the mixing of traffic but there was a concern of liability, especially since the County maintains those roads and the roads are not paved. The other concern is the FFA would have trouble with the airpark because the vehicles can readily access the runway. The suggestion from the aviation specialist from the DOT was for the County to prohibit aircraft on public right-of-ways. There is a Federal Aviation Regulation that prohibits the use of rights-of-way for take offs and landings except in emergency situations. Mr. Mutch recommended that the Board vacate the roads in that subdivision if the subdivision owner or the operator of the aircraft wishes to continue to permit taxiing on those roads. The Board of Commissioners could prohibit aircraft on public right-of-ways or vacate the roads and require the airpark to place signs warning people about possibility of aircraft on the road and that they should give way to the aircraft. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to advertise for a resolution vacating the roads in Shady Bend Subdivision with a public hearing March 20, at 6:00 p.m. Commissioner Bush seconded the motion. Mr. Brian Harms, Aline Kozokas, and Tracy Crook, residents of Shady Bend Subdivision addressed the Board regarding the roads in this subdivision. The motion carried unanimously.
Public Hearing / Barbara Wray Suggs / Petition to Vacate and Close a Public Road
A “Petition To Close And Vacate Public Road” was submitted by Barbara Wray Suggs to close N.E. 62nd Place. Resolution 00-3 was prepared by the County Attorney for the following:
Northeast 62nd Place that runs through the following property: North 90 feet m/l of SW 1/4 of SW 1/4 of Section 34, Township 7 South, Range 16 East. (Parcel #34-07-16-0000-0002-0010); and Government Lot 3 and Government Lot 6, of Section 34, Township 7 South, Range 16 East; and SW 1/4 of Section 34, Township 7 South, Range 16 East, less the NE 1/4 of the NE 1/4 of SW 1/4.
Sam Mutch read the short title of Resolution 00-3:
A RESOLUTION OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF GILCHRIST COUNTY, FLORIDA CLOSING A PORTION OF NORTHEAST 62ND PLACE IN GILCHRIST COUNTY, FLORIDA, GIVING INSTRUCTIONS TO THE ATTORNEY TO PREPARE DEEDS CONVEYING TITLE FROM THE PUBLIC TO THE ADJACENT PROPERTY OWNERS GIVING INSTRUCTIONS TO THE CLERK OF THE COMMISSION TO RECORD THE DEEDS IN THE OFFICIAL RECORDS AND TO CONVEY THE DEEDS TO THE ADJOINING PROPERTY OWNERS.
Commissioner Suggs stated that she had spoke with Mrs. Suggs, her daughters and daughter-in-law regarding this petition. Commissioner Suggs suggest that the Board consider the vacation of the portion of the road.
Mrs. Barbara Wray Suggs explained to the Board that they had put in another access road for Mr. Richard Douglas and that he did not have a problem with the closing of this road. She has ordered a survey of the road from Gene Parrish in order to provide a legal description for the easement. Mrs. Suggs is planning to relocate the road across the field to the Dive Shop. They had changed the location of the entrance to the Dive Shop to meet this plan. This would better facilitate parking and traffic flow to the business.
The Board discussed the petition with Mrs. Suggs and reviewed the ariel of N.E. 62nd Place. Mr. Mutch pointed out to the Board that the petition would also have to be signed by the other property owners who have access to their property by this road. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to close the portion of 62nd Place that runs from the South line of Section 34 (by Mr. Douglas’ home), North, approximately 1/4 mile to the 90 degree turn. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas.
Tracy Wray came before the Board stating that she is the daughter-in-law of Barbara Wray Suggs and that she would like for the Board to table the motion. Mrs. Wray stated that her property is accessed by this road and that she and her husband are in the middle of divorce proceeding. She wishes to consult with her attorney before a decision is made to close the road.
Others who came before the Board, in regard to the petition, were; Gary Grunder, attorney for Barbara Suggs, Rhonda Johnson, and Risa Klemans.
Considering that Mr. Douglas had access to his property in the past by a county maintained road, Commissioner Durden stated that he would not agree to closing this road until a similar county approved rock road was built up to his house.
Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Thomas, to table the motion until the meeting on March 20, at 6:45 p.m. The vote of the Board was unanimous.
Joe Gilliam reported to the Board that he had met with the architects ADG, Inc. regarding the Courthouse Renovations and the Judicial Complex. They are still waiting on the engineering on the exterior fire escapes and the elevator. A target date of March 15 was given to have those specifications ready to bid. Regarding the new facility, the architect has requested a detailed survey of the existing Courthouse property including the adjacent lot and the Roberts’ property lot. Mr. Gilliam obtained a quote from Gene Parrish, to survey the boundary surveys on lots 27, 30 and 35 and both horizontal and vertical measurements of all ground features locating all phone, electrical and sewer lines. The quote was for $2,645. Mr. Gilliam stated that this could be paid from the grant funds. Commissioner Bush made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, to approve the cost of the complete survey of the property for the new Judicial Facility. Commissioner Suggs filed a conflict of interest for this motion and left the room. The Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Mr. Gilliam mentioned that the RFP for a construction manager had been completed and submitted to Sam Mutch for his review. An advertisement has been placed in the Gainesville Sun and the Gilchrist County Journal and a pre-construction conference has been scheduled for March 3. Proposals will be received through March 15.
Regarding the new Judicial Complex, Mr. Gilliam requested the Board to reconsider the decision to split the Clerk’s Office when moving to the new facility. He stated that this would present several problems if the functions were split. It was initially thought that Official Records could remain in the existing Courthouse. After considering it, he realized that this would not be possible. Only one person works in Official Records, therefore other personnel would have to come over during her absence or lunch hour. There is also a lot of interaction between Court records and Official Records. An additional 1,385 sq. feet would be needed in the new Judicial Complex for Official Records. Commissioner Bush made a motion to adjust the project to an additional 1,385 sq. feet for the Clerk. Commissioner Thomas seconded the motion and the vote of the Board was unanimous.
Mr. Gilliam suggested that the Board investigate some avenues of financing the construction project. The Finance Department will gather information for the Board to consider.
At the last Board meeting, Mr. Gilliam had brought a request from a FHP Officer for the purchase of a radar detector. Mr. Gilliam contacted Lafayette County And Levy County and found that these counties purchase radar detectors for their FHP Officers out of their General Revenue Fund. The radar detector that he has requested cost $2,250. After discussion by the Board, Commissioner Bush made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Thomas, to purchase the radar detector and to limit the purchase of radar detectors to one per year. The motion passed by majority vote as follows:
Suggs - No
Bush - Yes
Thomas - Yes
Wilkerson - Yes
Durden - Yes
Mr. Gilliam referred the Board to a letter from the Suwannee River Economic Council requesting the Board to write a letter of support on their behalf to the Farmers Home Administration for funding. This will be the thirteenth consecutive year for this funding for the Weatherization Program. Commissioner Suggs stated that some concerns have been brought to her attention regarding the Senior Program and the Suwannee River Economic Councils procedures in dealing with those problems. Commissioner Suggs made a motion that the Board not send a letter of support until these issues are resolved. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and unanimously approved.
Bids on the Dump Truck:
Mr. Gilliam reported that they have received one bid for a dump truck for the Road Department. After looking at trucks on the State Contract, it was decided to put out a competitive sealed bid. Only one bid was received. This bid was for an ‘International” and was higher than the State Contract of $63,944. After discussion by the Board, Commissioner Suggs made a motion to reject all bids at this time. Commissioner Wilkerson seconded the motion and the vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner Suggs informed the Board that the Road Department’s chipper broke down. The department contacted several equipment dealers and obtained quotes to replace the motor. The cost would be approximately $5,000 for a motor with a warranty. A motion was made by Commissioner Suggs, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, to authorize an expenditure for a new motor for the chipper, not to exceed $5,000. The motion carried unanimously.
Commissioner Wilkerson related to the Board that Central Florida Electric Coop. Had assisted the Road Department with the clearing of some heavy limbs on CR 232 West. Commissioner Wilkerson asked that a letter of appreciation be sent to them, to the attention of Fred Hiers.
Commissioner Suggs requested that a letter of appreciation also be sent to the Department of Transportation for the installation of a culvert on State Road 26 and S.W. 15th Court. This culvert was put in at no cost to the County.
Mr.Gilliam mentioned that recently there had been some problems in advertising for the Board. These problems were due to the rescheduling of the meeting and that the Planning Council had already advertised for the prior date. As a result a notice was placed in the Journal that the March 1st meeting would be held in Trenton instead of the location in Bell. A notice would also be posted at Bell City Hall.
Mr. Gilliam also explained to the Board, that with the recent petitions to close roads, additional responsibilities had been placed on his office. Mr. Gilliam pointed out that his office would help with the scheduling but that it should be the responsibility of the Planning and Zoning department to take care of the advertising and administrative duties. The Board discussed and agreed that those responsibilities concerning Land Development Regulations and the Comp Plan would belong to the Planning and Zoning administrator.
Roll-Off Truck, Solid Waste:
Sam Ferguson reported to the Board on the available financing for the roll-off truck. The truck will be purchased for $72,870 for Atlantic Truck Center. The original bid from the dealer, offered a 5 year fixed rate of 6.2%. Tri-County Bank quoted a 6.4% rate and Capitol City quoted a 5.8% rate. Commissioner Thomas made a motion to accept the Capitol City 5.8% rate to purchase the roll-off truck for Solid Waste. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
Mr. Ferguson also reported on the extended warranty for this vehicle. It currently has a basic vehicle warranty of two years unlimited milage, two years unlimited milage for the drive-train and five year unlimited milage for the cab and for the frame. An extended warranty on the engine will cost $490 for three years or 50,000 miles. Commissioner Thomas made a motion to approve the extended warranty contingent upon that it begins at the end of the two years from the basic warranty. Commissioner Wilkerson seconded the motion. The vote of the Board was unanimous.
Linda Walker requested that the Board approve an expenditure to repair the Freight Liner ambulance. Commissioner Suggs moved to approve the expenditure. Commissioner Bush seconded the motion. The vote of the Board was unanimous.
Workshop for Special Assessment for Fire:
Commissioner Durden suggested that a committee be formed to study various methods of calculating the assessment. Commissioner Durden will provide a list of names for the committee to be approved at the March 1 meeting.
Road Closing / Mitchell Gentry:
A petition to vacate and close a public road had been submitted by Mitchell and Theresa Gentry at the Board of Commissioners meeting on February 7, 2000. Mr. Mutch prepared Resolution 00-04, and presented it to the Board for their approval. Commissioner Thomas made a motion to approve Resolution 00-04. Commissioner Bush seconded the motion. The vote of the Board was unanimous.
A RESOLUTION OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF GILCHRIST COUNTY, FLORIDA CLOSING A PORTION OF AN UNIMPROVED ROAD FOUND IN SECTION 18, TOWNSHIP 8 SOUTH, RANGE 15 EAST IN GILCHRIST COUNTY, FLORIDA, GIVING INSTRUCTIONS TO THE ATTORNEY TO PREPARE DEEDS CONVEYING TITLE FROM THE PUBLIC TO THE ADJACENT PROPERTY OWNERS, GIVING INSTRUCTIONS TO THE CLERK OF THE COMMISSION TO RECORD THE DEEDS IN THE OFFICIAL RECORDS AND TO CONVEY THE DEEDS TO THE ADJOINING PROPERTY OWNERS.
Whereas, the Board of County Commissioners received a request by all of the adjoining property owners along a portion of an unimproved road found in Section 18, Township 8 South, Range 15 East to vacate the portion of an unimproved road found in Section 18, Township 8 South, Range 15 East adjacent to their properties; and
Whereas, the Board of County Commissioners determined that the requirements for road vacation were met by the adjoining property owners, including the fact that the road is not required to provide access to any other property and is not required for any public purpose; and
Whereas, the Board of County Commissioners advertised the road closing to the people of Gilchrist County and has held public hearings at which the public has had the opportunity to be heard.
NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Board of County Commissioners of Gilchrist County, Florida:
1. That portion of an unimproved road found in Section 18, Township 8 South, Range 15 East described as follows is hereby abandoned by the public:
The north 30 feet of the east 3/4 of the south 1/2 of the north 1/2of the northwest 1/4 of the northwest 1/4; and the south 30 feet of the east 3/4 of the north 1/2 of the north 1/2 of the northwest 1/4 of the northwest 1/4; all in Section 18, Township 8 South, Range 15 East, Gilchrist County, Florida.
2. That portion of the unimproved road found in Section 18, Township 8 South, Range 15 East that has been abandoned by the public shall be conveyed to the adjoining property owners in a manner so that each of the property owners along that portion of the road that has been closed shall receive title to that portion of the right-of-way from their property line fronting the road that was closed to the centerline of the road;
3. The county attorney shall prepare the quit claim deeds to the adjoining property owners for each property owners’ portion of the road; and,
4. The clerk of the commission shall record each quit claim deed in the official records of Gilchrist County and then shall convey the deeds to the respective property owner.
Passed this 22nd day of February 2000 on a motion by Commissioner Thomas; Second by Commissioner Bush.
EMA/County Coordinator Report:
Joe Gilliam presented the County Coordinator’s report to the Board. Ron McQueen was not present due the Florida Emergency Preparedness Association Conference.
A letter was received from Senator Stancil’s office in regards to the “Local 12 ˝ % Match” for the Damage Assessment Cost.
The North Central Florida Local Emergency Planning Committee has requested that the Board of County Commissioners approve a Proclamation for Hazardous Materials Spill Prevention Week to be recognized March 19 to March 25, 2000. Commissioner Suggs moved to approve the Proclamation for Hazardous Materials Spill Prevention Week. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush and unanimously approved.
A Proclamation has been prepared by the Department of Juvenile Justice to recognize Juvenile Justice Week. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to authorize the Proclamation and recognize Juvenile Justice Week March 19 to March 25, 2000. Commissioner Bush seconded the motion. The vote of the Board was unanimous.
Mr. Gilliam referred the Board to a request from the Eighth Judicial Circuit Court to approve Bennett A. Hutson for conflict case appointments. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve Bennett Hutson for the conflict attorney list. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
The Board discussed a letter from Sheriff Turner, dated February 16, 2000. Sheriff Turner advised the Board of his decision to suspend participation with the County regarding the use of jail inmates on the county work squad. His decision follows an industrial accident at the county jail on February 16 involving a county employee. He request that any county employees charged with the duties of supervising a work squad receive a safety course prior to supervising such a detail.
Mr. McQueen has requested that the Board authorize the chairman to sign a Disaster Relief Funding Agreement to receive reimbursement for the opening of shelters during Hurricane Floyd. Commissioner Thomas made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Bush to approve the agreement. The motion carried unanimously.
Sam Ferguson submitted a request to the Board from the Sheriff’s Office for authorization of plumbing repairs at the county jail. The estimated cost is $2,050. The Board discussed the repairs that have been made recently and over the past few years and the jail inspection report. It was determined that between $85,000 and $90,000 have been spent in the past eighteen months on the jail. Commissioner Durden and Joe Gilliam will make inquires into contracting the housing of inmates in another county. They will bring estimates to the March 1 meeting. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to direct the Chair to obtain estimates of possibly moving the housing of inmates to another county. Commissioner Thomas seconded the motion and the vote of the Board was unanimous.
The Board also considered the issue of liability with the present condition of the jail. After further discussion, Commissioner Suggs moved to deny the request to authorize the repairs for $2,050. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and unanimously approved.
Commissioner Suggs stated that she had contacted Lee Mills to find out the status of certain projects. Progress has not been made on CR 232. Mr. Mills indicated that he was behind schedule due to an employee resigning and another employee had been out on sick leave. With regards to the Land Fill Road, he is waiting for some utility issues to be resolved. To help get back on schedule, Mr. Mills requested to have two county employees help do the field work for about two weeks. Mr. McQueen is to contact Mills Engineering regarding the sewer system at the jail. The Board agreed put out a bid for the resurfacing of CR 236.
There being no further business to discuss, a motion to adjourn was made by Commissioner Thomas at 8:35 p.m., seconded by Commissioner Bush, and unanimously approved.
Randy Durden, Chair
Joseph W. Gilliam, Clerk