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Thursday, February 3, 2011

9:00 a.m. session


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09:05:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I would like to introduce the

09:05:40 honorable Reverend Scott who is going to give the

09:05:44 morning prayer this morning.

09:05:45 Please rise for the prayer and remain standing for the

09:05:48 pledge of allegiance.

09:05:48 >>REV. SCOTT: Thank you, sir.

09:05:55 We are always reminded of your work.

09:06:01 Thank you.

09:06:01 Bless the Lord O my soul and all that is within me.

09:06:05 Bless his holy name.

09:06:07 Father God, we come before your divine and holy

09:06:10 presence one more time to thank you for all your mercy,

09:06:12 all your blessings, all your love that you have granted

09:06:15 us, my father.

09:06:17 You so abundantly give to each of us in our lives.

09:06:24 We are depending on you knowing there's no one else, my

09:06:27 father, we can put our trust in.

09:06:29 Father, we ask that you guide this council, guide the

09:06:32 mayor, my father, guide our speakers, to do your will,

09:06:36 your way.

09:06:37 All our footsteps, my father, in the way you would have

09:06:41 us to go.

09:06:42 Remove us from our sins, forever to be reminded that

09:06:45 only you, my father, in our lives are first in

09:06:48 everything that we do.

09:06:51 Father, we ask that you grant us your love, your

09:06:53 wisdom, owe are grace as we travel this journey in

09:06:56 times like this, we truly need a savior, father.

09:07:01 There's so much going on in the world today.

09:07:03 We love your love and protection, your shield as we

09:07:06 travel throughout the streets and wherever we may

09:07:08 journey.

09:07:08 Keep us safe individually and collectively in our

09:07:11 homes.

09:07:13 Whatever the issues are, father God, we know that you

09:07:16 are the greatest counselor, the greatest God there is,

09:07:19 my feat, so we will we will always knowledge you in

09:07:25 everything we do. In Jesus name I do pray.

09:07:28 Amen. Amen. And amen.

09:07:30 [ Pledge of Allegiance ]

09:08:06 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

09:08:07 Roll call.

09:08:07 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Here.

09:08:10 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Here.

09:08:10 >>GWEN MILLER: Here.

09:08:11 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Here.

09:08:14 >>CURTIS STOKES: Here.

09:08:15 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Here.

09:08:16 Motion to approve the minutes?

09:08:19 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: So moved.

09:08:20 >> Second.

09:08:20 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

09:08:22 Opposes?

09:08:22 At this time we will have review of the agenda.

09:08:27 No, I'm sorry, Mr. Frank Crum, you are right here, who

09:08:32 is the chair of the black history committee is going to

09:08:34 come make a presentation at this time.

09:08:36 Thank you.

09:08:36 >> Frank Crum: Good morning honorable chair Scott.

09:08:43 Good morning, honorable City Council.

09:08:44 It is such a pleasure to be with you all this morning

09:08:46 in such a public forum.

09:08:48 And it's also such a pleasure to have Mr. Harold Scott,

09:08:52 a former city employee and also member of the black

09:08:54 history committee deliver the invocation this morning.

09:08:57 Again, on behalf of the City of Tampa black history

09:09:00 committee, we bring you greetings.

09:09:02 As you can see, the members around me are hardworking

09:09:04 city employees.

09:09:05 Just a few of Tampa's most valuable employees.

09:09:08 And we are here for a very special reason.

09:09:11 We are here to tell you about the 23rd annual City

09:09:13 of Tampa black history celebration.

09:09:16 The 23rd celebration is going to be taking place at

09:09:21 the Tampa Convention Center on Wednesday, February

09:09:24 16th, and it begins at 11 a.m.

09:09:27 But it's also important for you to know that prior to

09:09:30 that, the black history living museum will take place

09:09:34 at 10:30 a.m., also at the Tampa Convention Center.

09:09:37 So that's two wonderful events in the same day.

09:09:40 A little bit about who we are.

09:09:42 The City of Tampa black history committee has been in

09:09:44 existence since 1988.

09:09:47 But since 1999 we have given out scholarships to

09:09:50 deserving high school seniors.

09:09:52 Today, we have given out more than $65,000 in

09:09:56 scholarships to worthy young men and women, and we

09:09:59 thank the City of Tampa, we thank Mayor Iorio and

09:10:03 individuals like yourselves for being leaders in

09:10:05 supporting us.

09:10:06 One of the things about the black history living museum

09:10:08 that you should know is that we are going to give time

09:10:10 to our young people.

09:10:11 We are going to have individuals and young people from

09:10:15 the partnership school, from the hope Bible church

09:10:20 academy as well as Eisenhower middle school.

09:10:22 They are going to be roll playing, men and women from

09:10:25 our nation's history.

09:10:26 In terms of the black history celebration, our theme is

09:10:32 enter to learn, serve, the importance of HBCU which

09:10:37 stands for historically black college and university.

09:10:40 Hillsborough County does not have a historically black

09:10:42 college or university.

09:10:44 However, the lives of many people within the city have

09:10:47 been touched by individuals who have graduated from

09:10:50 those institutions, including our Mayor Pam Iorio.

09:10:54 Our keynote speaker is going to be president of Florida

09:10:58 A&M university Dr. Walter L. Smith.

09:11:01 So again, council, I would like to invite you as well

09:11:04 as the general public out to the event, the City of

09:11:06 Tampa black history committee is here at the service of

09:11:09 the council as well as all of city government, and we

09:11:11 thank you for your time.

09:11:12 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. Crum.

09:11:17 Thank you to all the committee.

09:11:19 We look forward to this.

09:11:20 This is a very nice brochure and very well thought out

09:11:24 and planned program.

09:11:29 Doctor Walter Smith, the president emeritus of Florida

09:11:34 A&M, and a tremendous program, I see rod Carter is

09:11:43 going to be --

09:11:44 >> The emcee of our program.

09:11:45 He's also a graduate of an HBCU.

09:11:48 >> Great.

09:11:50 Thank you very much.

09:11:51 [ Applause ]

09:11:56 >> It also important to note that our city clerk

09:11:59 Shirley Foxx-Knowles is another graduate of an HBCU and

09:12:04 also a member of our committee.

09:12:10 [ Applause ]

09:12:10 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you very much.

09:12:13 Now we will have review of the agenda.

09:12:14 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Good morning, Mr. Chairman, members

09:12:17 of City Council.

09:12:17 Before you, you have the addendum to today's agenda.

09:12:20 The first item on the addendum is a request for a new

09:12:26 business item to be added to the agenda, a memorandum

09:12:28 from the chairman requesting the administration hire an

09:12:34 independent auditor to review the claims made by

09:12:38 affected homeowners regarding the unusually high water

09:12:41 bills.

09:12:41 Mr. Chairman, I'm wondering whether you wish to have

09:12:45 that discussed at the same time as item number 52.

09:12:48 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Yes.

09:12:49 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Which is the status report regarding

09:12:51 --

09:12:51 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Yes.

09:12:52 That's the intent of that.

09:12:53 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Okay, thank you.

09:12:54 Also, Mr. Chairman, members of council, item number 38

09:13:01 is a memo-you received a memorandum from assistant

09:13:05 chief John Bennett from Tampa Police Department

09:13:08 regarding solicitation in the rights-of-way that have

09:13:10 been distributed to you.

09:13:12 I just want to bring to the public's attention that

09:13:14 item number 38 is set for public hearing, and that

09:13:19 takes place after 9:30.

09:13:21 And items that are set for public hearing are discussed

09:13:25 during that public hearing and not during agendaed

09:13:28 public comment.

09:13:28 So my point is if you are here to speak on a

09:13:32 solicitation ordinance, the time to have do that is at

09:13:34 the public hearing, not at the agendaed public comment.

09:13:37 Whereas the item such as the high water bills, item

09:13:40 number 52, is an item that is set for staff reports.

09:13:44 So if you are here to speak on that item, or any item

09:13:48 that's not set for a public hearing, the item to do so

09:13:50 is at agendaed public comment.

09:13:52 Continuing on, Mr. Chairman, members of council, item

09:13:57 50, staff report regarding naming of 35th street,

09:14:03 reverend Madison Murray, you received a request to have

09:14:05 that item continued to March 3rd of 2011.

09:14:09 Item 51, a resolution approving a plat of Avian park

09:14:14 Westshore, Land Development Corporation is requesting a

09:14:17 continuance of that resolution to February 17, 2011 to

09:14:21 coincide with a separate roadway agreement needed for

09:14:24 the plat which will be presented concurrently with the

09:14:26 resolution.

09:14:27 I mentioned item 38.

09:14:30 I mentioned item 52.

09:14:32 You have received a memorandum from Bonnie Wise

09:14:36 regarding the report on the revenue collected from

09:14:39 impact fees.

09:14:40 And with regard to item 54, you have received a

09:14:42 memorandum from Jean Dorzback stating -- I believe, if

09:14:50 I recall, there's not much to report or anything to

09:14:52 report on the Bayshore traffic mitigation.

09:14:54 The request then, council, do you still wish to have

09:14:57 her appear or do you wish to just receive and file her

09:14:59 report?

09:15:00 >> We can receive and file given the other issues that

09:15:06 may take a little while, so we'll receive and file.

09:15:08 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Then she will know not to appear for

09:15:11 item number 54 under staff report.

09:15:13 Other than that, members of City Council, I am not

09:15:15 aware of any other changes to today's agenda, and I

09:15:21 present to the you for your approval.

09:15:22 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Is there a motion?

09:15:22 >> So moved.

09:15:23 >> Second.

09:15:24 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

09:15:25 All in favor?

09:15:26 Opposed?

09:15:26 Time for public comment.

09:15:28 Those who wish to address council may come forward now

09:15:31 may line up and speak to council relative to anything

09:15:35 on the agenda that's not a public hearing item.

09:15:40 Three minutes.

09:15:42 State your name and address and to make any comment.

09:15:44 You may come forward now, please.

09:15:46 >> My name is Don Bailey and I want to enter something

09:15:53 into the record and then read a brief editorial that

09:15:56 was in the "St. Pete Times" in 2008.

09:16:02 It been getting worse and worse every year to try to

09:16:04 find a free space to view the Gasparilla parade.

09:16:08 We walk by these huge fenced-off sponsored areas with

09:16:12 maybe a half dozen people inside, or see several empty

09:16:17 stands because most of us can't afford them, and the

09:16:20 organizers take a huge amount of people and try to

09:16:22 stuff them into a small area to see the parade and

09:16:27 catch beads.

09:16:28 Even the most timid people have a tendency to become

09:16:31 aggressive in this situation.

09:16:33 And if this continues, it will get worse, and someone

09:16:37 will get seriously hurt or killed.

09:16:39 I think that we need to rethink the situation before

09:16:42 this happens.

09:16:43 Either put the reserve seating and sponsors on one side

09:16:47 and limit the size and number of them.

09:16:50 I was attacked one year with my young daughter by my

09:16:53 side.

09:16:54 Normally, we look for open areas to stand and stay away

09:16:57 from the rowdy crowds.

09:16:59 But with the limited space, we were smashed in with

09:17:02 them.

09:17:03 Tampa, please do something about this.

09:17:05 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you, sir.

09:17:08 Next speaker.

09:17:08 >> John Jones, 1704 west Jetton Avenue, Tampa.

09:17:18 Mr. Chairman, council members, I am the president of

09:17:21 Historic Hyde Park neighborhood association.

09:17:24 We recently passed a resolution that is in the package

09:17:28 just presented to you.

09:17:29 But I would like to read it to you at the moment.

09:17:35 Be it resolved by the Historic Hyde Park neighborhood

09:17:38 association westbound the goal of reducing the negative

09:17:41 impact of the Gasparilla parade and related events,

09:17:44 HHPNA neighborhood respectfully requests an audit by

09:17:51 the Tampa City Council of all the impact and expenses

09:17:55 associated with Gasparilla and all arrangements related

09:17:59 there to.

09:17:59 HHPNA respectfully requests that the neighborhoods

09:18:03 along the parade route should be included in all the

09:18:07 planning processes and meetings related to the

09:18:10 Gasparilla.

09:18:11 HHPNA has the objective of improving the access to the

09:18:14 parade -- to the neighborhood including but not limited

09:18:20 to eliminating the corporate tax and reserve seating

09:18:25 within the neighborhood along the parade route between

09:18:28 Howard and Rome Avenue to create more family-friendly

09:18:31 viewing area as indicated in the motion, HHPNA dated

09:18:38 February 15, 2010.

09:18:42 HHPA also requested the council have a representative

09:18:46 that is directly responsible to the council and the

09:18:48 citizens of the annual Gasparilla parade.

09:18:52 Passed and adopted unanimously by our board on January

09:18:56 13th.

09:18:57 We are not opposed to Gasparilla.

09:19:00 Many of us don't go anymore simply because of the

09:19:03 difficulty of getting down there and some of the bad

09:19:05 behavior in the past.

09:19:05 We just want to make it a better product for the City

09:19:07 of Tampa and for the neighborhoods that abut the area

09:19:13 and for the citizens who have come down and tray to see

09:19:15 the parade.

09:19:16 Thank you.

09:19:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: So your request, so I can be clear,

09:19:19 your request is that City Council request an audit of

09:19:22 the Gasparilla?

09:19:25 >> That is correct.

09:19:26 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, next speaker.

09:19:28 >> Is the overhead on?

09:19:33 My name is Jack Wyatt, South Delaware Avenue.

09:19:37 I am the past chairman, president of HHPNA and the

09:19:42 chairman of the Gasparilla committee for this thing.

09:19:45 We have been working on this since 2008.

09:19:48 Actually when we started they were giving us one

09:19:51 Port-o-Let for every 125 people.

09:19:53 There was hardly any Port-o-Lets for anybody.

09:19:58 Plus 21,000 people in the reserve seats, and they

09:20:01 advertise 450,000 people.

09:20:03 That means 430,000 people in our neighborhood.

09:20:05 And that was kind of ridiculous.

09:20:07 So we started this, and we have gotten some success,

09:20:10 and the fact that what we have done the last two years,

09:20:12 our children haven't been at risk down there because of

09:20:21 all the schools involved.

09:20:22 And we wanted our four tenths of a mile without the

09:20:25 corporate tents.

09:20:26 The corporate tents we can't even see.

09:20:27 If you look up here, this is our neighborhood, four

09:20:30 tenths of a mile.

09:20:31 Our neighborhood can't even get to the parade in this

09:20:33 particular area.

09:20:34 But yet -- and this is going on -- we requested.

09:20:38 We didn't even have a meeting of the minds of anybody.

09:20:41 We thought that we could at least talk about it.

09:20:44 And we got nothing from the administration at that

09:20:46 particular time.

09:20:47 So we are trying to find out what these corporate tents

09:20:50 are doing.

09:20:50 So what we did, we actually got some costs in your

09:20:53 second tab, it's a tab in your book.

09:20:57 It shows you in there that the city is only making $200

09:21:01 from a parade permit for this, yet spending almost $823

09:21:05 that you for this parade, and somebody is making money

09:21:07 off of this.

09:21:10 Where that money goes, I have no idea.

09:21:12 They won't tell you.

09:21:12 They have a 1.7 million budget or something.

09:21:15 And they say they have a $45 million impact but nobody

09:21:18 has seen that impact.

09:21:19 As a co-sponsor of the parade you would think the city

09:21:22 would have a copy of that.

09:21:23 They don't.

09:21:24 And I can't discuss it because I have seen it and I

09:21:26 can't discuss it unless I get permission from Ye Mystic

09:21:30 Krewe.

09:21:30 What we are trying to say is all this money is going

09:21:33 out.

09:21:33 We think in that agreement that you have, which is tab

09:21:35 3, is that they do have an exclusive use of this

09:21:38 parade.

09:21:39 But if you go to the agreement -- and you can read

09:21:41 it -- you go to the last page of the agreement, it

09:21:45 defines what this parade route is.

09:21:47 Let me read it.

09:21:48 The term March raid route shall mean those public

09:21:50 rights-of-way over which the parade event will be held,

09:21:55 together with all such other public or city-owned areas

09:21:59 reasonably requested by the crew for the purpose of

09:22:02 only -- and I put only in there -- supporting and

09:22:06 staging the parade event.

09:22:07 I believe that that money is in support -- isn't

09:22:13 supporting the parade.

09:22:14 And I think we ought to audit, find out where that

09:22:17 money is going and let's plan as a community.

09:22:19 We can't even help plan our own neighborhood.

09:22:21 We can't go to the parade.

09:22:22 The problem with this parade is what they have done is

09:22:25 concentrated the people, coming from the college into

09:22:28 the Willow area, yet can't get to it unless you go all

09:22:31 the way to Bayshore Gardens.

09:22:33 We asked them, can you move them?

09:22:35 No, we can't move them.

09:22:37 Why can't you?

09:22:38 We have to go talk to that neighborhood association.

09:22:40 Well, they didn't come talk to us.

09:22:42 We think this thing could be so much better.

09:22:44 I'm from New Orleans.

09:22:45 They don't have that there.

09:22:46 I'm not comparing it.

09:22:48 But they do somewhat -- we are paying for one day,

09:22:52 $523,000 for cops.

09:22:54 Okay.

09:22:55 Or two days if you count -- now, in New Orleans, they

09:22:59 have a $2.8 million budget for 36 parades.

09:23:04 Are we doing something wrong?

09:23:06 I don't know.

09:23:08 And any consideration, we'll take it.

09:23:09 (Bell sounds).

09:23:11 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.

09:23:11 Thank you, sir.

09:23:12 >> Al Steenson, 14100 west Leila Avenue, Tampa.

09:23:20 This morning representing the Gandy sun bay south civic

09:23:24 association.

09:23:24 I'm here to speak on items 53 and 55.

09:23:30 I note from the addendum that was transmitted last

09:23:33 night that Mrs. Wise has already submitted a memo and I

09:23:39 respectfully request that I get a copy of that today,

09:23:42 and also when convenient to send it to our association

09:23:48 e-mail address electronically, so I may didn't it to

09:23:54 our membership.

09:23:55 With regard to item 55, I don't know who is going to

09:24:03 come forward with the report on 55, but when I was here

09:24:08 back in October, I expressed our concerns regarding the

09:24:12 WalMart at Gandy and Lois, and I told you that if our

09:24:16 concerns manifest themselves, I would be here, and if

09:24:21 we didn't I would also be here.

09:24:23 I am happy to tell you we are not having any problems

09:24:25 on Lois, Pearl, Lois, Gandy.

09:24:29 Now, there is one issue -- and this is where it may get

09:24:32 sticky -- we don't have a problem with transportation.

09:24:39 We have got a problem with the sidewalk.

09:24:46 WalMart has done their part.

09:24:47 You see that?

09:24:48 It goes all the way from there, and the light you see

09:24:51 is Lois Avenue.

09:24:52 Okay.

09:24:55 It stops right here.

09:24:56 Can you see it?

09:24:57 Let me move it up a little bit.

09:24:59 It stops right there.

09:25:06 Now, there's the rest of the street.

09:25:08 These people are walking to and from the WalMart.

09:25:11 Now, Ms. Dorzback told me last week that you can't use

09:25:15 sidewalk money, you can't use transportation impact fee

09:25:18 money for sidewalks.

09:25:19 Well, I submit to you that at this particular

09:25:24 establishment, the WalMart, 145,000 square foot store,

09:25:27 people are walking to it, they have done their work,

09:25:29 they paid this city $487,000 in impact fees.

09:25:33 I think this city has an obligation to protect

09:25:36 pedestrians that are come to and from that store, and I

09:25:40 respectfully request that this be reviewed.

09:25:44 And let's finish the sidewalk at least down to Pearl.

09:25:48 There's some portions that were put in because of some

09:25:51 modifications made to some buildings down the street.

09:25:55 But there's three or four commercial driveways that

09:25:58 doesn't require concrete.

09:25:59 We need this sidewalk all the way to Pearl.

09:26:01 I respectfully request the administration look into

09:26:03 this and build us a sidewalk.

09:26:08 Thank you very much.

09:26:09 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

09:26:12 Anyone else from the public wish to address council?

09:26:15 Okay.

09:26:28 >> Tanya Wideman, 3706 west Oklahoma.

09:26:32 I received a call from an being ex-co-worker two or

09:26:36 three days ago that just got water service, not even

09:26:40 two weeks ago, and the city charged them 318.15 for

09:26:47 three days of garbage pickup, which I have been going

09:26:50 to his house, picking up his trash, putting it in my

09:26:54 trash can because he does not have a garbage can.

09:26:57 So I took the time to break it down.

09:27:01 But five days of service, that means he's paying 63.63

09:27:06 a day per trash pickup.

09:27:09 If you multiply that by five, that's how you come up

09:27:12 with the equation of $318.15.

09:27:17 Now, if you go by the average, meaning the neighbors in

09:27:21 the neighborhood, their solid waste pickup, even if you

09:27:25 multiply it by 26.51 which is pretty much the average

09:27:29 rate of what we are charged monthly, you pay 26.51

09:27:33 times 12, which is a yearly rate, you still come out to

09:27:37 318.12.

09:27:39 How can this gentleman be charged for five days of

09:27:42 garbage pickup which the city has not picked up garbage

09:27:45 because he doesn't have a garbage can?

09:27:48 And in a two-week period, he has a $318 -- well, total

09:27:55 500, but he's not disputing the rest because it's new

09:27:58 service and deposit.

09:28:00 But $318.15?

09:28:03 I need a job with sanitation if they are paying that

09:28:07 much.

09:28:09 [ Applause ]

09:28:14 [Sounding gavel]

09:28:14 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, thank you.

09:28:15 Next speaker.

09:28:16 >> My name is Pastor Frank Williams, Paradise

09:28:24 Missionary Baptist church, 1102 east Scott street.

09:28:31 I have been here to get some issues resolved but don't

09:28:34 seem to help.

09:28:34 I took a family down to the Gasparilla parade.

09:28:38 Can one of you all tell me what Jose did?

09:28:42 Jose Garr par that was his name, wasn't it?

09:28:45 You all celebrate that.

09:28:46 Can you all tell me, give me an interpretation of that

09:28:50 day, what it mean?

09:28:51 >>MARTIN SHELBY: The purpose of public comment is for

09:28:55 you to address council.

09:28:56 It's not supposed to be --

09:28:59 >>> But can't you answer my question?

09:29:00 It's a legitimate question I'm asking.

09:29:05 >>MARTIN SHELBY: The purpose of public comment is for

09:29:06 you to pose the questions.

09:29:07 If council wishes to address them later on, that's

09:29:09 their prerogative, sir.

09:29:10 But it's not supposed to be a question back and forth.

09:29:14 >>> Okay, okay.

09:29:15 I knew you weren't going to answer.

09:29:17 But let me -- let me tell you something.

09:29:21 I'm also up here for the panhandling.

09:29:26 Is this the right time?

09:29:28 >>MARTIN SHELBY: No, sir, that would be during the

09:29:29 public comment when the public hearing is open.

09:29:31 >> I'll wait.

09:29:34 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Thank you, sir.

09:29:35 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Anyone else?

09:29:42 Council, there appears to be, I think, two items for

09:29:49 consideration that we may need to take up under new

09:29:52 business.

09:29:52 One is the issue of the Gasparilla.

09:29:55 So, Mr. Fletcher, you just speak to that for a moment.

09:30:00 Evidently there's a contract with the city.

09:30:03 And it's my understanding anyone getting public

09:30:05 dollars, that the mayor outlined a new process for

09:30:10 auditing.

09:30:11 Would you speak to that real quickly?

09:30:14 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Yes.

09:30:15 Under the city's nonprofit ordinance, there is a number

09:30:18 of standards that folks that get items of value, cash,

09:30:25 land, different things from the city, and there is

09:30:30 potentially an opportunity to audit.

09:30:33 The way that works is it applies to any transaction

09:30:36 that occurs after the effective date of the ordinance.

09:30:40 We have to look at that and see if there's been a

09:30:42 transaction with that nonprofit, which would subject

09:30:45 them to the ordinance.

09:30:46 >> They are receiving public dollars, though, right?

09:30:52 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: My understanding is that they are

09:30:54 receiving in-kind contributions, not actual cash, which

09:31:00 is not outside the scope of the ordinance, but that it

09:31:05 was subject to the a contract prior to the effective

09:31:07 date, it may or may not be subject --

09:31:10 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, why don't we take this up under

09:31:12 new business and make a request?

09:31:14 >>MARY MULHERN: I have a pretty Clare memory of us

09:31:17 approving that contract with event makers every year

09:31:20 for Gasparilla.

09:31:21 So I'm sure there is a contract on this.

09:31:24 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: We do have a multi-year contract.

09:31:28 I can try to take a look at that before we come back.

09:31:31 >>MARY MULHERN: I'm pretty sure that we approved it

09:31:34 this year and the other years that I have been on

09:31:36 council.

09:31:37 And it may be a multiyear contract but it does come in

09:31:40 front of us every year, I believe.

09:31:43 >>THOMAS SCOTT: I know we had it this year.

09:31:44 But we can address it when we take up new business as

09:31:48 to the auditing on it.

09:31:49 Okay?

09:31:50 Thank you.

09:31:52 I thought there was another issue Rayed from the

09:31:55 sidewalk.

09:31:59 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Mr. Fletcher, could you repeat that

09:32:03 statement about -- I want to be clear about this -- the

09:32:10 contract, if it is prior to the ordinance.

09:32:14 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: We can put new conditions and

09:32:17 standards on folks that are doing business with the

09:32:19 city.

09:32:20 What we can't do is retroactively through a legislative

09:32:24 act change the term of contract.

09:32:26 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Right.

09:32:26 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: So what I need to do is see

09:32:30 whether we have entered into any kind of arrangement

09:32:34 with the nonprofit that does Gasparilla, since that

09:32:38 ordinance went into effect, standing here at the moment

09:32:40 I just don't know that.

09:32:41 >> That's why I said under new business, be prepared to

09:32:45 come back and address that.

09:32:46 Then under new business, there's nothing wrong with

09:32:49 council requesting an audit.

09:32:52 That's the other issue.

09:32:53 The other issue was the sidewalk which Mr. Al Steenson

09:32:57 brought up that we may want to take up under new

09:33:00 business as well.

09:33:06 I know it's on the agenda but he was talking about the

09:33:10 sidewalk that we got, I think, $440,000 impact fee.

09:33:13 All right?

09:33:16 >>GWEN MILLER: The lady came up from sanitation,

09:33:20 charging Mr. Sweeney for his garbage but p he doesn't

09:33:23 have a garbage can.

09:33:24 Mr. Fletcher, would you meet with her and see what you

09:33:27 can do to help her?

09:33:28 >> I thought we would address that when that comes

09:33:31 under water.

09:33:32 All of that is part of the water issues.

09:33:34 Certainly he can do that but that all comes understood

09:33:36 the water report under staff reports.

09:33:39 At this time, we will move to the item number 2.

09:33:43 Councilman Stokes, do you want to read that?

09:33:47 >>CURTIS STOKES: He ordinance presented for first

09:33:49 reading consideration.

09:33:50 An ordinance authorizing installation and maintenance

09:33:52 encroachment proposed fire escape over a portion of

09:33:57 public right-of-way, alleyway lying north of 7th

09:33:59 Avenue and east of north 17th street in map of Ybor

09:34:02 City as more particularly described herein, subject to

09:34:05 certain terms, covenants, conditions and agreements as

09:34:08 more particularly described herein, providing an

09:34:10 effective date.

09:34:13 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Second.

09:34:13 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

09:34:14 All in favor?

09:34:16 Opposes?

09:34:17 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried unanimously.

09:34:19 Second reading of the ordinance will be held February

09:34:22 17th at 9:30 a.m.

09:34:24 >> we move to our committee reports.

09:34:26 Public safety, Councilwoman Miller.

09:34:29 >>THOMAS SCOTT: I move res-

09:34:31 >>GWEN MILLER: I move resolutions 3 through 9.

09:34:34 >>CURTIS STOKES: Second.

09:34:34 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Than all in favor?

09:34:37 Parks and recreation.

09:34:38 Councilman Stokes.

09:34:40 >>CURTIS STOKES: I would like to move 10 through 17.

09:34:42 >> Second.

09:34:43 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

09:34:44 All in favor?

09:34:45 Opposes?

09:34:45 Public works, councilman Miranda.

09:34:48 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Move items 18 through 26.

09:34:51 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Second item 22 is a two-part contract.

09:34:59 Under that it's 8.5 is WMBE participation and 11% on

09:35:04 the second contract for WMBE participation.

09:35:07 Okay.

09:35:07 On item 26, there's a 2% WMBE participation.

09:35:13 Moved and seconded.

09:35:15 All in favor?

09:35:15 Opposes?

09:35:16 Finance Committee, councilman Mulhern.

09:35:18 >>MARY MULHERN: I move items 27 and 28.

09:35:22 And I need to read the title of 29, move a resolution

09:35:27 presented for second reading and adoption, resolution

09:35:30 amending the rules of procedure 6 A, 6 H and rule 9 B

09:35:35 governing meetings.

09:35:37 City Council of the City of Tampa providing an

09:35:38 effective date.

09:35:38 >> Second.

09:35:42 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded actually by councilman

09:35:45 Miranda.

09:35:45 All in favor?

09:35:47 Building and zoning.

09:35:48 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: I move 30, 33.

09:35:52 I would like to say on item 33, I think we need to

09:35:54 bring that back, because it's only giving $65,000 to

09:35:59 the homeless coalition, and $55,000 today doesn't go

09:36:04 far.

09:36:07 Shall we hold this?

09:36:08 >> Well, I want to make some comment.

09:36:10 I was prepared to vote on it but my question is, in

09:36:14 that we are having a workshop on the 24th and

09:36:16 having the homeless coalition appear before us --

09:36:21 >> Move that to the 24th.

09:36:23 >>THOMAS SCOTT: However, I'm not sure we need to hold

09:36:26 this up.

09:36:26 My concern is that under the scope of service for the

09:36:31 homeless coalition, in the document, the back-up

09:36:35 material, there's a report that's required and I have

09:36:40 not seen any reports.

09:36:41 So my concern is in dealing with the homelessness, we

09:36:44 need to have access to these reports and review all the

09:36:46 scope of services, what has taken place, and that we

09:36:49 are going to be addressing the homeless issue.

09:36:52 Number 30.

09:36:52 >>MARY MULHERN: Number 30, okay.

09:36:56 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Under the scope of service, if you get

09:36:59 the backup materials on exhibit A, that's a scope of

09:37:04 service that we are giving money to nonprofits in that

09:37:08 contract, to provide any calls for a number of

09:37:13 quarterly reports, policies, reviews and all of that,

09:37:17 that I have not seen.

09:37:18 So my concern is that we are addressing this issue of

09:37:22 homelessness in our community, and it's coming back

09:37:25 before us on the 24th.

09:37:26 That is something that we might want to look at and

09:37:28 take up.

09:37:29 Yes.

09:37:29 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Mr. Chairman, I just got a notice

09:37:32 that the homeless coalition is received with the

09:37:36 $65,000 for now.

09:37:38 So let's move 30 to 33.

09:37:40 >> Okay.

09:37:42 I don't have a problem with that.

09:37:47 Come on up from the homeless coalition.

09:37:50 State your name and address.

09:37:51 >> Rayme Nuckles, CEO, homeless coalition, 2105 north

09:37:56 Nebraska.

09:37:57 >> Mr. Nuckles, under the contract of the scope of

09:38:00 service, my issue is only 24.

09:38:04 Can you be prepared to address that when you appear

09:38:07 before council?

09:38:07 >> Correct.

09:38:08 In the past, the way the contract has been fulfilled,

09:38:12 normally, we provide the documents, and then we are

09:38:16 paid for those.

09:38:18 What has occurred is there's a lag time this year, and

09:38:22 producing the contract, the annual contract to the

09:38:27 coalition.

09:38:28 >> Okay.

09:38:29 Thank you.

09:38:30 Moved and seconded.

09:38:31 >>MARY MULHERN: Second.

09:38:36 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

09:38:37 Opposes?

09:38:39 Under number 32, that's 13 new jobs, by the way.

09:38:42 I would mention that under the QTI program, knew jobs

09:38:50 coming to Tampa.

09:38:51 Transportation committee.

09:38:52 Councilwoman Capin.

09:38:53 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I move items 34 through 47.

09:38:58 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

09:39:00 16% WMBE, their participation on item 37.

09:39:05 Moved and seconded.

09:39:06 All in favor?

09:39:07 Opposes be? Okay.

09:39:09 We will move now to our 9:30 public hearing items.

09:39:16 Item 38.

09:39:19 >>MARTIN SHELBY: If there could be a motion to open

09:39:25 the public hearing on just 38.

09:39:27 >>MARY MULHERN: Move to open.

09:39:29 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

09:39:31 All in favor?

09:39:31 Those who wish to be heard at this time that wish to

09:39:33 speak to 38.

09:39:35 You may come forward.

09:39:36 Those addressing item 38.

09:39:38 You may come forward at this time.

09:39:39 >> Derrick with the St. Petersburg tiles.

09:40:02 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Excuse me, sir.

09:40:03 If we could hold our conversation down so that council

09:40:05 can hear each speaker, we would appreciate that very

09:40:07 much, please.

09:40:08 If you can hold your conversation down, if you can hold

09:40:12 your conversation down.

09:40:14 Please.

09:40:16 So that we can hear the speakers.

09:40:18 Thank you.

09:40:18 >>> Good morning.

09:40:22 I would like to address item number 38 on the agenda,

09:40:26 the ordinance that will ban roadside solicitation and

09:40:29 panhandling.

09:40:30 Take a look around you.

09:40:33 A vote for this ordinance will negatively impact the

09:40:37 folks in this room wearing green, and many more like

09:40:42 them that sell newspapers.

09:40:46 Hundreds of people are trying to make an honest living

09:40:51 by selling newspapers.

09:40:53 They serve thousands of Tampa Bay residents that choose

09:40:56 to buy their Sunday paper by this convenient means.

09:41:00 They have developed friendships and relationships along

09:41:02 the way within the community that will surely be

09:41:06 missed.

09:41:09 This ordinance will cripple their means of earning an

09:41:12 income.

09:41:13 A vote yes will add to the unemployment rate in the bay

09:41:18 area, a message that will undoubtedly be heard by big

09:41:22 businesses, area employers, and those that are

09:41:27 currently unemployed.

09:41:30 A vote yes will add to our homeless crisis which is

09:41:35 already overburdened.

09:41:38 A vote yes will have an effect on the crime rate.

09:41:44 And last, a vote yes will merely pass the buck to our

09:41:47 neighbors.

09:41:50 Look out Lakeland, Orlando and Jacksonville.

09:41:53 These problems could be coming your way.

09:41:56 There is a reasonable solution, and I propose that is

09:42:03 simply an ordinance that would ban roadside

09:42:06 solicitation and panhandling during the weekday, Monday

09:42:09 through Friday.

09:42:11 This would be fair to all, and it would address the

09:42:16 safety issue because we have submitted traffic data

09:42:19 that clearly shows that there are less cars on the road

09:42:23 Saturday and Sunday.

09:42:24 Thank you for your consideration.

09:42:25 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you very much.

09:42:28 Council, before the next speaker comes up, we have

09:42:30 another 50, 60 people downstairs that want to speak.

09:42:34 I guess at this point, I think we need to probably

09:42:38 limit the public comments to probably two minutes or

09:42:42 less.

09:42:45 Let me hear from council.

09:42:50 >>CURTIS STOKES: Thank you, Chairman Scott.

09:42:51 I think in order to give everyone the opportunity to

09:42:53 speak on this issue, if we can limit the time to a

09:42:56 minute, minute and a half, if that's okay.

09:42:58 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Can we do that, clerk?

09:43:04 >>GWEN MILLER: If we give a minute we are already

09:43:06 going to give extra time.

09:43:07 >>THE CLERK: It will be a minute and a half.

09:43:09 >>GWEN MILLER: So a minute so most people are going to

09:43:14 be hearing the same thing.

09:43:16 We are going to be hearing repetitious.

09:43:18 Maybe a minute.

09:43:19 They can still get that extra half.

09:43:21 You will be getting a minute and a half.

09:43:24 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Why don't we set it for two minute and

09:43:25 then let's see where the time is.

09:43:27 Then we may have to make that adjustment as we go

09:43:29 along.

09:43:30 Why don't we do that?

09:43:31 >>CURTIS STOKES: Okay.

09:43:31 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Please understand everybody

09:43:33 downstairs, I hope they hear me, we will start out with

09:43:35 two minutes, which actually gives them two minutes and

09:43:37 a half.

09:43:38 As time goes on we may have to adjust that.

09:43:40 But please understand that, you know, that we have some

09:43:44 other public hearings, a lot of public hearings this

09:43:47 morning.

09:43:47 But we will try to accommodate you all as much as

09:43:49 possible.

09:43:51 Thank you very kindly.

09:43:51 Next speaker.

09:43:52 Two minutes.

09:43:52 >> Good morning.

09:43:56 Rayme Nuckles, north Nebraska, homeless coalition.

09:44:03 I have the pleasure of being able to serve with

09:44:05 councilman Caetano with the committee on the Board of

09:44:10 County Commissioners.

09:44:11 They gave us an opportunity to examine the cause of the

09:44:13 panhandling and homelessness because of lack of access

09:44:16 to affordable housing and jobs, in identifying,

09:44:20 allocate resources that can be used to address these

09:44:22 causes.

09:44:23 We don't want to be known as a community whose answer

09:44:26 to homelessness related issues is to criminalize the

09:44:29 situation.

09:44:30 But rather as a community that responds to the needs of

09:44:32 our neighbors, with services to programs and end

09:44:36 homelessness.

09:44:39 On page 10 of the solicitation of roadways, there are

09:44:43 four conclusions in the report.

09:44:46 So this gives everyone else an opportunity to speak

09:44:48 today.

09:44:49 I'll just point out there's two areas, provide

09:44:52 panhandlers with alternatives for incarceration and

09:44:55 involuntary commitment that includes an array of social

09:44:59 services, as another essential component and providing

09:45:03 citizens a safe structured alternative mechanism for

09:45:06 donating to homelessness a as a creative solution that

09:45:10 has been effective in other places.

09:45:12 When I moved to this community in 2001 I heard Tampa

09:45:15 was going to be the next great city.

09:45:17 My charge to the community is, are we going to be that

09:45:21 next great city?

09:45:22 And how are we as a community going to help our

09:45:25 homeless neighbors?

09:45:26 Thank you.

09:45:27 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

09:45:31 What I would like to do, council, if we can just get

09:45:34 through -- write your questions down and we'll come

09:45:38 back to it.

09:45:38 Okay?

09:45:40 Yes, sir.

09:45:40 >> Morris Hintzman, CEO, Metropolitan Ministries, 2002

09:45:45 north flab Avenue.

09:45:47 Good morning, council.

09:45:51 I am the chief beggar in this city on p behalf of the

09:45:56 homeless.

09:45:59 It's not something to be proud of but it's not

09:46:01 something to be ashamed of either.

09:46:05 We have engaged over 100,000 of our citizens along with

09:46:11 the Salvation Army's support, St. Vincent DePaul and a

09:46:18 host of other smaller nonprofits that are trying to

09:46:22 deal with this issue.

09:46:26 Not the issue of panhandling but the issue of the

09:46:28 homeless.

09:46:31 We are dealing with 20% more people this year than we

09:46:34 did a year ago and have done it with five percent less

09:46:41 resources than we have ever done.

09:46:47 The people in this room that are gathering to speak,

09:46:51 the homeless, I consider them my friend.

09:46:53 I hope they consider me their friend.

09:46:59 I would only say this in addition to what remain my

09:47:08 said.

09:47:09 -- Rayme said.

09:47:12 I met a man named Leonard Schlemmer.

09:47:18 He picked up his mail at Metropolitan Ministries.

09:47:21 He stole a loaf of bread from a convenience store.

09:47:24 That was wrong.

09:47:25 It was against the law.

09:47:26 Leonard Schlemmer went to jail.

09:47:28 Leonard Schlemmer met an unsavory character in jail.

09:47:35 The mistake was Leonard Schlemmer told him he had to

09:47:38 pick up two checks at Metropolitan Ministries.

09:47:42 When I drove in one morning, the crime tape was around

09:47:45 the motel next to us.

09:47:46 Leonard Schlemmer was dead.

09:47:52 I ask you if there's anything I can do to help, and

09:47:55 they didn't give me his name at the time, but they came

09:47:57 to see me in a couple of hours, and they asked me if I

09:48:01 knew him.

09:48:03 I said, yes, I am the one who put him in my car, went

09:48:07 to First Florida and got his checks cashed for him.

09:48:10 Others were doing it for half the money.

09:48:12 (Bell sounds)

09:48:13 I'm just saying there's more to this.

09:48:15 There's more to this.

09:48:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

09:48:17 Thank you, sir.

09:48:21 Thank you for the work that you do.

09:48:22 >> My name is Linda Karson. I live at 26 Adalia

09:48:25 Avenue, and I am a taxpayer and a voter and a citizen

09:48:28 of Florida.

09:48:29 People who are begging on the streets are not

09:48:32 distractions.

09:48:33 They are reminders.

09:48:34 They are reminders of thousands of our neighbors who

09:48:38 have lost their homes because of foreclosure.

09:48:41 They are reminders of the large number of people who

09:48:44 have lost their jobs.

09:48:46 They are reminders that so many of our women and men

09:48:52 and children are homeless and desperate.

09:48:54 How can we call people who panhandle a distraction?

09:48:57 People on their cell phones while they are driving, and

09:48:59 people who are text messaging, or putting on makeup or

09:49:03 smoking in their cars are distracted.

09:49:05 Merchants who put wares on the sidewalks to attract

09:49:10 people to come into their stores, people dancing on the

09:49:13 corners trying to get people into their stores are

09:49:16 distractions, and, yes, people running for office and

09:49:21 their volunteers waving on the corners with campaign

09:49:24 signs everywhere are distractions.

09:49:27 Just remember, please, that everyone on the corner,

09:49:29 everyone in their cars and everyone living in their

09:49:33 streets and in tents and shelters has a story, and many

09:49:36 are not that different from our own.

09:49:40 How do we walk or drive past people like they don't

09:49:43 exist?

09:49:43 How do we turn them -- people on the corners are

09:49:48 reminders that our state is in crisis.

09:49:50 And we have had to send back millions in dollars in

09:49:54 federal aid for housing because we were unable to

09:49:57 administer the fund.

09:49:59 Government and social services have been cut

09:50:01 drastically and we have seen a dramatic decline in

09:50:05 donations for our charities because many of our donors

09:50:07 are now homeless and hungry and have lost their homes.

09:50:14 We need to change the nickname from the sunshine state

09:50:19 to the pan handling state because it is one of the only

09:50:22 ways left to make a living here.

09:50:23 To paraphrase Martin Luther King, our homeless people

09:50:26 and our hungry neighbors live on a lonely island of a

09:50:31 variety ocean of economic prosperity.

09:50:33 Even though Florida is suffering, look at the contrast

09:50:36 of our corners and the people driving by them in their

09:50:40 fancy SUVs and cars.

09:50:44 Our homeless languish on the corners of American

09:50:46 society, and the corners which for their sakes, I hope,

09:50:50 have the longest red lights.

09:50:52 They are exiled in their own land, and who are we but

09:50:55 them?

09:50:57 How can we punish them?

09:50:59 >> Thank you.

09:50:59 >> I want to say one more thing.

09:51:01 >>THOMAS SCOTT: No, ma'am.

09:51:02 >> Okay, thank you.

09:51:03 But I am very happy as a citizen in this room --

09:51:08 [ Applause ]

09:51:09 [Sounding gavel]

09:51:10 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, listen.

09:51:11 When you clap like that, you are holding up the next

09:51:14 speaker, and time is moving.

09:51:17 This is not a performance.

09:51:19 It is government in action.

09:51:20 We want to hear from everybody, please.

09:51:22 Thank you.

09:51:22 >> Good morning.

09:51:23 Sonya Long, 709 north Gilchrist.

09:51:27 It's a pleasure to speak to you again this morning.

09:51:29 I come to you telling you that this partial ban is not

09:51:35 a partial ban, it is a disguise, it is a full ban.

09:51:39 Looking at the street, and the areas of the partial ban

09:51:44 would definitely drastically impact people that are

09:51:48 working on Sunday, doing the papers, doing a job that

09:51:52 is something that you can be respected and feel good

09:51:55 about yourself to continue to support your family.

09:52:01 It's not the best job, but it is something that you can

09:52:04 still feel dignified.

09:52:06 Try to put us on the -- trying to put us out of sight

09:52:11 is not going to help.

09:52:12 Hiding the people that are homeless is not going to

09:52:15 help.

09:52:15 They are still there.

09:52:16 And putting us out of work is not going to do anything

09:52:20 but increase our unemployment ratio right now.

09:52:24 I have challenged people to come out on a Sunday and

09:52:26 see what we do and be there, and in one has.

09:52:29 It's easy to sit behind a desk and say this is what we

09:52:32 can do, and we should do this and ban that, until you

09:52:36 have sat in my seat and walked in my shoes.

09:52:40 I too have a college degree.

09:52:42 I too have worked in corporate America.

09:52:44 And it has been because of the economy that I have had

09:52:47 to go and find other means to survive for my family.

09:52:51 Please don't take the only dignity and respect that I

09:52:54 have to continue to maintain some type of home for my

09:53:00 family.

09:53:01 This is a very important thing.

09:53:02 This is not a partial ban, this is the full ban, and

09:53:05 it's a disguise.

09:53:07 We will not be able to produce any type of income if

09:53:12 you vote yes on this.

09:53:14 And I really appreciate it for your time.

09:53:17 Thank you.

09:53:19 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

09:53:19 Next speaker.

09:53:20 >> Good morning.

09:53:26 I'm sorry Mr. Caetano had to leave the room.

09:53:29 He seems to be -- I'm a contractor from "St. Pete

09:53:37 Times."

09:53:38 I'm looking at the partial ban.

09:53:39 Just for your information, the partial ban streets on

09:53:43 the list that would be banned is every single one of my

09:53:47 locations where I presently sell newspapers.

09:53:50 There's not one left off of that partial ban.

09:53:54 As you can see from the support here today, the people

09:53:57 are very conscientious about losing this Sunday job

09:54:01 that's in some case it is only one I can find.

09:54:04 In other cases to supplement their income.

09:54:07 If you are looking at the ban that's been proposed,

09:54:10 it's going to be voted on today, it does remind you of

09:54:13 the St. Petersburg ban.

09:54:14 I was at the City Council meeting ban for

09:54:20 St. Petersburg, and every person that spoke -- and

09:54:23 there was over 400 of them -- they didn't get their

09:54:27 minutes cut down to two minutes but they we are all

09:54:29 able to be speak for three minutes.

09:54:30 But everybody's referral, we don't want to hurt the

09:54:37 newspaper people, we don't want to hurt the people who

09:54:39 go out there and try to earn an honest living.

09:54:42 And they ask if there was something that council could

09:54:44 do to keep them in business, and the muscular dystrophy

09:54:48 in business without putting them out of work and off

09:54:52 the street.

09:54:53 Unfortunately, the council in St. Petersburg didn't

09:54:56 want to alter their vote, so they voted to ban people

09:55:02 altogether.

09:55:02 I hope this council will look at that and try to make a

09:55:06 right judgment for these people.

09:55:08 Thank you.

09:55:08 >> State your name for the record.

09:55:09 >> Dave Driskel.

09:55:11 >> Thank you, sir.

09:55:12 Next speaker.

09:55:12 >> Good morning.

09:55:17 I'm Sarah Romeo.

09:55:18 I'm a CEO for Tampa crossroads.

09:55:21 For those of you who don't know, Tampa crossroads

09:55:23 developed a program here, the first in the nation, to

09:55:26 help homeless female veterans.

09:55:29 We still operate that program, and we are developing a

09:55:31 number of other projects, some with the help of NFP

09:55:35 funds to help house and care for homeless females and

09:55:39 children.

09:55:39 What we are seeing on the streets now, and what we are

09:55:42 seeing in our community, is a cry for help.

09:55:48 Passing a law of panhandling in our community is not

09:55:51 going to fix the problem.

09:55:52 If problem here is we do not have the resources to deal

09:55:55 with the high number of homeless people and the needs

09:55:57 in our community right now.

09:56:00 There have been a couple of committees who have met to

09:56:02 discuss this issue.

09:56:04 The report that's in front of you all this morning, I

09:56:06 think if you will really look at that report very

09:56:08 closely, you will see that that is very, very heavy

09:56:11 input from legal, law enforcement, from sheriff, the

09:56:17 police department and all the areas.

09:56:18 I don't see a heavy input of people who are on the

09:56:21 front lines.

09:56:21 And by the front line I mean the people in my company

09:56:24 and the people that I work with, the people who are out

09:56:26 on the street a lot of Thursday to do point and time

09:56:30 count.

09:56:30 I don't see a front line representation to let you know

09:56:33 what's really going on in this community.

09:56:35 As a former lawmaker I can tell you that what you are

09:56:37 about to do is exacerbate a problem.

09:56:40 You are not going to fix anything by banning

09:56:43 panhandling.

09:56:43 The way to fix the problem is to provide resources for

09:56:47 people who have lost their homes, they have lost their

09:56:49 jobs, and they have lost all hope in our community.

09:56:51 That's what you are going to ban today.

09:56:53 You are not going to fix a problem by pushing people

09:56:56 further back into neighborhoods and on different roads

09:56:58 and streets.

09:56:59 The fix is to provide the resources for the homeless

09:57:02 people in our community.

09:57:04 Thank you.

09:57:06 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

09:57:06 Next speaker.

09:57:06 >> My name is Darrin Driskel.

09:57:11 I too am an independent contractor for the

09:57:13 St. Petersburg times. I want to start by reminding

09:57:15 everybody again -- I said this a year ago -- we at the

09:57:18 St. Petersburg times have over 400 people combined, the

09:57:21 "The Tampa Tribune," our solution to the problem we are

09:57:23 listening to today.

09:57:25 Let me rephrase that.

09:57:25 We are a solution to the problem that is going on out

09:57:28 there today on the streets.

09:57:29 Today, if you heard the president Obama speak in the

09:57:34 state of the union, he said we live in a crippled

09:57:37 economy.

09:57:38 We are in a state of emergency.

09:57:39 That's exactly what we are in.

09:57:40 Any ban that is enforced today whether that be partial

09:57:43 or full ban is going to have, as you heard today, a

09:57:46 very, very great impact on many, many lives here.

09:57:50 I sat here a week ago or two weeks ago, I heard

09:57:53 councilman Caetano name certain street.

09:57:58 He wanted to remove the streets from where he reside.

09:58:01 He doesn't even have the dignity to sit here and listen

09:58:03 this.

09:58:04 And I'm not taking shots.

09:58:05 Homelessness is not going away.

09:58:07 Panhandling is not going away, no matter what we do

09:58:09 today.

09:58:10 If the police have to start arresting people that

09:58:11 continue to do this, if this thing is passed today,

09:58:14 then it's going to cause taxpayers money to arrest

09:58:16 them, to incarcerate them, it's going to take the

09:58:18 police away from the great job they are doing serving

09:58:21 this community of ours.

09:58:22 I'm very, very fearful of that.

09:58:24 Today, if this ban is in force, I too could be

09:58:27 homeless.

09:58:28 I would have to go home and explain ton my teenage boys

09:58:31 your father has lost his jobs, I came here four years

09:58:35 ago in a high value market of homes, put my life

09:58:38 savings on a home.

09:58:39 That's all gone now.

09:58:40 If I lose this contract today not only myself as well

09:58:42 as these other 400 people, multiply that by 3 or 4

09:58:46 average, you are talking about effecting over 2,000

09:58:48 peoples lives here with a decision that you make.

09:58:52 We urge you as you have heard it to consider this

09:58:53 five-day ban, if indeed this is what you want to do.

09:58:57 This solve's everybody's problems.

09:58:58 This allows the charities to do their thing.

09:59:00 This allows us to do our thing.

09:59:02 This keeps the people employed.

09:59:03 To me, it just astonishes me that we can be talking

09:59:07 about this under these tough economic times that we are

09:59:10 dealing with today.

09:59:12 But as I heard them say two weeks ago, America is the

09:59:15 greatest country in the world, and I believe that.

09:59:17 The land of opportunity.

09:59:19 Please, please think slowly, carefully, of the impact

09:59:24 and effect you are going to have on many, many lives

09:59:26 today.

09:59:27 I want to thank you for your time and listening to us

09:59:29 speak today.

09:59:30 And I know you will make the right decision.

09:59:31 God has a plan for all of us, and I believe in this

09:59:34 tough time that God is going to do the right thing.

09:59:37 Thank you very much E.

09:59:40 [ Applause ]

09:59:41 [Sounding gavel]

09:59:42 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Next speaker.

09:59:42 >> I am one of those people that this affects.

09:59:49 I'm from Wisconsin.

09:59:50 I'm a veteran.

09:59:51 I have worked for corporate America, Sarah Lee for 20

09:59:57 years.

09:59:58 I don't get my pensions until I turn 62.

10:00:01 That's eleven years photographer now.

10:00:03 I have been homeless on the streets for four months.

10:00:07 I need this job to eat.

10:00:11 Thank you.

10:00:11 >> Good morning.

10:00:18 My name is Harry overt, North Tampa Street, former

10:00:23 staff sergeant, United States Army rangers, first

10:00:26 battalion 75th, in Iraq, earned two purple hearts

10:00:31 and silver star.

10:00:32 My Social Security card burned up in a fire.

10:00:35 Without them two documents I cannot gain employment.

10:00:37 I sell papers to put a couple of bucks in my pocket so

10:00:41 I can get something to eat.

10:00:42 I don't do drugs.

10:00:43 I don't drink.

10:00:44 I need this job.

10:00:46 I trust you will vote fairly, and whatever you decide,

10:00:48 I have to a bid by that and I have to agree with that.

10:00:51 But I implore you, look at all these people sitting

10:00:54 here.

10:00:54 For a lot of us, this is our only means of income.

10:00:57 Granted it's not a lot of money.

10:00:59 It's a couple of dollars and loose change but it helps

10:01:01 us get by.

10:01:03 We are not stealing from nobody.

10:01:04 We are not asking anything for anything.

10:01:07 I'm just asking you please can I keep my job today?

10:01:09 Thank you for listening to me.

10:01:10 >> My name is Craig warn, Marty circle Tampa, I am here

10:01:19 as a newspaper vendor, and what you are looking at is

10:01:24 possibly unintended consequences.

10:01:25 I appreciation the enormity of the task.

10:01:28 I ask you to empathize with us.

10:01:31 I too am a veteran.

10:01:33 It's been brought up that public safety is an issue.

10:01:35 I would much rather be on the median than riding a

10:01:39 bicycle in this traffic or than trying to cross Florida

10:01:42 Avenue at Busch Boulevard.

10:01:43 Believe me, it's difficult.

10:01:47 I too want to show you, I used to sell in the county,

10:01:51 and I received this ticket on December 12th for

10:01:54 conducting business along roadway and now I'm on

10:01:58 probation.

10:01:58 This is my community service hours.

10:02:00 I'm asking you to consider this and please don't

10:02:03 criminalize our behavior again.

10:02:05 I hope you will do the right thing.

10:02:07 Thank you.

10:02:07 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Next speaker.

10:02:08 Thank you.

10:02:08 >> Craig Ericson, 1515 east Fletcher.

10:02:15 It's been devastating, especially me.

10:02:18 I live in a tent.

10:02:20 This money is the only money I make all week.

10:02:26 I have had a degree in computer technology.

10:02:34 As far as public safety is concerned, in one month,

10:02:37 eight bicyclists killed.

10:02:39 Bicyclists killed.

10:02:41 One was killed again this last week.

10:02:43 It's not happening to us.

10:02:44 We stress safety out there.

10:02:46 We wear safety vests.

10:02:47 We do not do anything that's not safe out there.

10:02:51 We are doing the best I can just to survive.

10:02:53 And we are done if this ban goes through.

10:03:01 Thanks for your time.

10:03:04 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you, sir.

10:03:05 Next speaker.

10:03:05 >> My name is Connie la Sheridan N.2009 I had a job.

10:03:11 2010 I was on unemployment.

10:03:14 It ran out.

10:03:15 This is the only job I have left.

10:03:18 Like myself and everybody else, half of us are

10:03:21 homeless.

10:03:22 We have no other place to go.

10:03:24 So if you take that away from us, it will just get

10:03:27 worse.

10:03:28 Without the economy, what are we going to do?

10:03:33 Where are you going to put us in, jail?

10:03:35 Maybe that's safer for us.

10:03:36 Because at least we will be able to eat.

10:03:38 We'll have a roof over our heads.

10:03:40 But if you take that, what next?

10:03:44 Ship us off to a desert island?

10:03:46 We are people.

10:03:47 We are humans just like everybody else.

10:03:49 We deserve respect like we respect you guys.

10:03:51 Thank you.

10:03:52 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:03:54 Next speaker.

10:03:54 >> Sandy Kay Kirby, 1404 candy court.

10:04:06 I work with "St. Pete Times" so I can support myself.

10:04:15 I make enough money during the week to keep everything

10:04:17 going for the week, and try to keep -- keep my -- keep

10:04:26 my roof over my head, too.

10:04:28 I hope you guys don't ban us.

10:04:30 Thank you.

10:04:36 >> Frederick Smith, 7908 North Florida Avenue.

10:04:40 2008 I was making $85,000 a year driving a tractor

10:04:44 trailer.

10:04:45 I had a massive heart attack, lost my job, lost my

10:04:47 home, lost my truck.

10:04:52 This is the only means of money that I have right now.

10:04:55 I really don't see why there's a problem with selling

10:04:58 newspapers.

10:04:59 You have got New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Chicago,

10:05:02 L.A., Dallas.

10:05:04 They have street vendors on every corner up there, and

10:05:07 they are not doing any problems.

10:05:08 I just want to keep my job.

10:05:10 >> Thank you.

10:05:14 >> Good morning.

10:05:16 My name is Maria Newcomb.

10:05:18 In 2006 I worked for a leading lab.

10:05:20 I lost my job.

10:05:21 And if it wouldn't have been for Dave Driskel who is my

10:05:24 boss, I am one of his drivers, I would have had

10:05:27 nothing.

10:05:27 I had two teenagers that I supported on my own, and

10:05:30 have for all their lives.

10:05:32 And if it wasn't for them, I would have had no reason

10:05:35 to live and I would have been alone with all of these

10:05:37 other people in green on the street.

10:05:41 Dave Driskel put me to work, gave me a job, gave me

10:05:45 self-esteem to go on, and I am here.

10:05:48 I took the day off from my job to come and support all

10:05:50 of these people.

10:05:51 You guys pass this ban, it is going to effect everyone

10:05:57 in this room.

10:06:00 These people work hard.

10:06:01 I'm on the streets with them every Sunday.

10:06:04 They work hard.

10:06:06 They stay clean because we make them.

10:06:09 We make sure they are safe.

10:06:11 We take care of them, and they take care of us.

10:06:14 You take their jobs away, it will make things so much

10:06:18 worse.

10:06:20 These are good people who deserve to be treated as

10:06:23 people, not as pets or not as trash.

10:06:28 I implore you to look around and think about what you

10:06:31 are doing.

10:06:32 Thank you.

10:06:33 >> Thank you.

10:06:35 Next speaker.

10:06:36 >> Good morning ladies and gentlemen of the council.

10:06:41 My name is Ken lever, I live in Lutz, Florida.

10:06:44 I was here at the last meeting.

10:06:45 I don't know if you remember me.

10:06:46 If you do this partial ban, everybody here is going to

10:06:49 go hungry.

10:06:51 Everybody here votes for people.

10:06:53 Everybody here just wants to make enough to survive.

10:06:57 Our economy is terrible.

10:06:58 You people sit up here, voted in, and you control our

10:07:02 lives so much, you making it where we can't work.

10:07:07 Dave Driskel gave me a job.

10:07:09 I drive for Dave.

10:07:10 I make enough money to pay my rent and light bill and I

10:07:14 do side jobs through the week.

10:07:15 Please consider this partial ban, because if you vote

10:07:18 this in as an ordinance, you are going to hurt a lot of

10:07:21 people.

10:07:22 There's going to be a lot more hungry people out there.

10:07:24 Your crime rate is going to go up, and it's going to be

10:07:27 bad.

10:07:27 The problem is the panhandlers.

10:07:31 If you do a partial ban, five-day a week ban on this,

10:07:34 they'll go away.

10:07:36 Jerry's kids, the firefighters can still do their

10:07:39 thing, muscular dystrophy, Metropolitan Ministries, the

10:07:43 newspapers, we can still survive.

10:07:46 Think about this, please.

10:07:48 We humbly ask you.

10:07:50 There's more people downstairs that want to say

10:07:51 something to you.

10:07:53 Thank you for your time.

10:07:55 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:07:58 >> John dinger, 908 east Lake Avenue.

10:08:03 We recognize the complexity of this issue that you guys

10:08:06 have to make now.

10:08:08 And thank you for struggling to discover how best to

10:08:12 serve this city.

10:08:12 I'm here to represent the underground network, a

10:08:14 community of about 55 ministries, small nonprofits.

10:08:17 I work with every stratum of our city.

10:08:21 We are proud to work in a city that has not passed an

10:08:24 ordinance like this.

10:08:25 It communicates that we are generous and care about

10:08:28 people who have no means to support themselves.

10:08:30 And I think there's something right about living in the

10:08:32 city where you can find a meal if you need it.

10:08:34 I think it's good that we have a huge population of

10:08:37 homeless here, not because that they are homeless, but

10:08:40 that they are here, and that the other cities have run

10:08:43 them off, but we have welcomed them as community

10:08:46 members.

10:08:50 Hurting and homeless and poor feel a little more cared

10:08:53 for, possibly less hated, and our city should be a

10:08:55 point of pride for Tampa.

10:08:57 I can't tell you how many homeless friends have

10:08:58 expressed that Tampa is a city where you don't have to

10:09:01 go hungry.

10:09:02 And don't we want to preserve this relationship with

10:09:04 the poor?

10:09:05 The rich and the poor share the same sidewalks.

10:09:08 It beautiful, the economic culture and diversity.

10:09:12 And many of us who are not needy.

10:09:13 We have cars and houses and families and full-time

10:09:16 jobs, appreciate the opportunity to give a dollar here

10:09:18 or there to a traveler or person that has no other

10:09:21 option.

10:09:22 They are needy people.

10:09:23 They are fathers, brothers, mothers and friends.

10:09:26 I want and cherish the opportunity to give a sandwich

10:09:28 or a dollar to a neighbor in need.

10:09:30 Don't you?

10:09:31 Please do not pass this ordinance.

10:09:32 I also want to point out that we have read your minutes

10:09:35 and know that you don't actually have the data to

10:09:37 support this safety issue.

10:09:41 That's problematic.

10:09:42 You don't spend money to put a traffic light at a

10:09:44 street corner where there are no accidents.

10:09:46 And the same principle should be applied here.

10:09:49 Please do not pass this ordinance.

10:09:51 Also, I put myself in the shoes of our needy neighbors.

10:09:54 Maybe I got sick and lost a job, a lot of the stories

10:09:56 that you heard here today.

10:09:57 You get a ticket that you can't pay and you are in real

10:10:00 trouble and the next time you have -- you Nestlé will

10:10:04 because you are on the streets -- you are going to go

10:10:05 to jail.

10:10:06 And this small step right now is a slippery slope to

10:10:09 the criminalization of poverty.

10:10:10 Please do not pass this ordinance.

10:10:13 We recognize this is a complex decision, and you must

10:10:16 consider our friends in need, our soccer moms that feel

10:10:19 threatened by strange men next to their car, those of

10:10:22 us that cherish the role in our community, and we

10:10:26 respect the decision you make but want you to not think

10:10:29 that this is actually beneficial to our community.

10:10:31 Please do not pass this.

10:10:32 (Bell sounds).

10:10:33 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:10:34 Next speaker.

10:10:34 >> I'm Lucia Eaton.

10:10:41 I myself work one day a week.

10:10:44 Money that I get from this helps with my medical.

10:10:47 My medication, my medical bills, everything else I

10:10:50 need.

10:10:50 My personals and everything.

10:10:51 So this don't need to be passed.

10:10:57 Because we have a lot of people out there that are

10:10:58 homeless, that need medical attention, and medication.

10:11:03 So, please, thank you.

10:11:11 >> My name is Dean Wright. I live at 811 Hillsborough

10:11:15 Lane --

10:11:20 I come to express myself.

10:11:21 I don't come to fight.

10:11:25 I kind of wonder -- it probably needs problem solving.

10:11:32 But I will say I have worked the last two Sundays.

10:11:39 I walk about 12 miles to get to work.

10:11:44 It's what I got to do.

10:11:49 It's just something I have got to do.

10:11:51 And I will say that Sunday on North Dale Mabry and

10:11:56 waters, talked to me and asked me, I just tell them my

10:12:07 boss say stay on the sidewalk, stay off the road, and I

10:12:11 know.

10:12:13 He said he doesn't like arresting people for the

10:12:15 violation, but he will if he has to.

10:12:19 And I just wanted to express myself.

10:12:24 I guess I'm very nervous.

10:12:25 But I also contained of wonder, is there a better way

10:12:35 than arresting people?

10:12:36 Is there a way to -- I kind of wonder, is there

10:12:42 something else that can be done instead of finding

10:12:44 people, arresting people for staying on top of the

10:12:46 sidewalk?

10:12:47 Because a lot of people have done a lot worse things

10:12:51 and they got away with it.

10:12:53 But if I step into a road I can get arrested.

10:12:57 So thanks.

10:13:04 >> My name is Susan Lyon.

10:13:08 When I appeared last time, we were told as a

10:13:12 neighborhood group that you would wait until the county

10:13:15 made their decision before you passed anything.

10:13:18 And from what I know, the county made their decision

10:13:21 yesterday.

10:13:23 And it had nothing to do with a partial ban.

10:13:25 This partial ban will not help anyone.

10:13:29 It will drive the people that we don't want in the

10:13:32 neighborhoods in the neighborhoods.

10:13:34 It's not a simple solution because I know you are tied

10:13:37 up with legal technicalities of what you can ban and

10:13:40 what you can't.

10:13:42 But now you don't let them beg in the evenings, there's

10:13:48 got to be a way that you can do this legally, and you

10:13:51 have got a mass of lawyers out there to figure out how

10:13:55 you can do a ban on people you have in a idea who we

10:14:01 are rolling down our windows to.

10:14:03 And not hurt the people who are out there trying to

10:14:06 sell newspapers.

10:14:08 That's not anybody's idea.

10:14:11 The newspaper people have been out there selling

10:14:13 newspapers as long as I can remember on Sunday morning.

10:14:16 There's got to be a way that you can do it.

10:14:20 So don't go making a knee jerk reaction and do a

10:14:25 partial ban on this because nobody wants this partial

10:14:27 ban.

10:14:27 They either want a total ban, or they want to help the

10:14:31 newspaper people.

10:14:33 This is not the answer to your problem.

10:14:41 If you need to talk with the county, talk with the

10:14:43 county.

10:14:43 Right now, it a very difficult situation.

10:14:46 We all understand that.

10:14:49 But don't throw the baby out with the bath water.

10:14:52 Thank you very much.

10:14:54 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:14:54 >> Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.

10:15:00 My name is Zee Harris.

10:15:03 No address.

10:15:03 Basically what I want to say is the rest of my family

10:15:07 said it for me.

10:15:08 Please don't take our job away from us, because this is

10:15:10 the only thing that we have to survive, and we get by

10:15:15 on from day to day.

10:15:16 And to have shelter over our head, to stay at the

10:15:22 Salvation Army, and we are really not doing anything

10:15:27 wrong, just selling, you know, just selling newspapers.

10:15:34 I ask you please don't take our jobs away from us.

10:15:37 Thank you.

10:15:37 >> Thank you.

10:15:40 Next speaker.

10:15:40 >> Good morning.

10:15:44 My name is Oscar Entrialgo, 2913 Armada drive.

10:15:50 Back in 2007 I spoke to the waste manager.

10:15:55 I had some physical or mental issues going on and I

10:15:59 could not work no more.

10:16:00 And I met Dave Driskel with "St. Pete Times."

10:16:04 I have been working with him since 2008.

10:16:06 Now when I lost my job with waste management, I became

10:16:09 homeless, and I was living at the Salvation Army.

10:16:11 When I got this job with "St. Pete Times," I have been

10:16:16 a dedicated employee since 2008.

10:16:18 Dave has helped me a lot.

10:16:19 And now I have an address.

10:16:22 And the only reason I have an address is because I have

10:16:24 this job right here.

10:16:25 I cannot get a job, a physical job that will hurt me

10:16:30 because my mental case is telling me that I can't.

10:16:34 So right now I am only going to use it for rent but I

10:16:40 do actually make enough money because I have regular

10:16:42 customers who come out of their way looking for me, and

10:16:45 they are very disappointed that I might not be out

10:16:49 there no more selling.

10:16:51 We are not out to harm anybody.

10:16:53 I remember when St. Pete barred the panhandlers from

10:16:59 St. Pete.

10:16:59 They all came to Tampa, Florida and it doubled.

10:17:02 It wasn't as bad as it is now.

10:17:04 But I feel that you can make some kind of arrangement

10:17:08 maybe one to two Saturdays, no ban, ban everybody, and

10:17:12 then allow Sunday for the people to sell papers.

10:17:16 Give us a chance.

10:17:17 This is all we have.

10:17:18 I know that I will be homeless again if I lose this

10:17:20 job.

10:17:21 Thank you very much.

10:17:21 >> Amen.

10:17:29 I want to congratulate each one of them that came out

10:17:31 and spoke to you all.

10:17:33 I thought I was going to have to come down here and

10:17:36 represent them.

10:17:36 >> State your name for the record, please.

10:17:38 State your name for the record.

10:17:39 >> Huh?

10:17:42 Frank Williams, paradise missionary Baptist church.

10:17:46 I think you all know me by now

10:17:51 I'm glad these people come out to represent themselves.

10:17:54 I can't understand why this is even on the agenda.

10:17:59 All of us are poor.

10:18:00 I'm poor Mace.

10:18:01 I ain't got money.

10:18:02 You mean to say I can't get out there and pick up some

10:18:04 cans or beg?

10:18:05 You are not going to give me nothing.

10:18:07 Why don't you invite these poor poem to your house?

10:18:10 Feed them.

10:18:11 Clothe them.

10:18:12 Let them take a shower.

10:18:14 Since we are passing all kind of laws that are

10:18:17 ridiculous, laws that shouldn't be on the books.

10:18:19 We are passing them.

10:18:20 And you all are living off the taxpayer, and yet you

10:18:26 all want to hinder these people from making a dollar.

10:18:29 Gee-whiz, what's wrong with us?

10:18:31 You all want to us become like Cairo, Egypt?

10:18:34 Get out there and protest against the government?

10:18:38 The government is supposed to represent the people.

10:18:40 We are the people.

10:18:41 We are the government.

10:18:42 But you all handicapping us.

10:18:44 And we don't like it.

10:18:46 And you want to know something?

10:18:47 We ain't going to keep taking this abuse.

10:18:49 Jesus Christ say in the Bible, whoever considers them

10:18:54 poor is a blessing for those who consider them poor.

10:18:56 You all don't consider the poor.

10:18:58 You all only consider yourself.

10:18:59 You all forgetting that you all was elected, you were

10:19:03 elected by the people.

10:19:04 But I don't think all of you all was elected by the

10:19:07 people.

10:19:07 Some of you all might have been appointed built

10:19:09 supervisor of election.

10:19:11 And I guarantee you, he didn't do his research, but you

10:19:17 all don't do it because you all are afraid of losing

10:19:20 your job.

10:19:20 And if you pass this ridiculous law, each one of you

10:19:24 all need to impeach yourself.

10:19:26 God bless you.

10:19:26 [Sounding gavel]

10:19:31 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Next speaker, please.

10:19:33 >> Good morning.

10:19:34 Jim Lake, 4218 west San Pedro, I'm also a lawyer for

10:19:38 the "The Tampa Tribune."

10:19:39 I want to thank you very much very much for all the

10:19:41 time and consideration you have given this issue.

10:19:43 And I want to say, as I know you have considered the

10:19:49 poor, and you have considered the people, and I know

10:19:51 you are doing that as you hear from them this morning,

10:19:53 and we appreciate that.

10:19:54 You have heard how important street solicitation is for

10:19:56 the people in the room.

10:19:57 I just want to emphasize to council how important that

10:20:00 is to readers.

10:20:02 10,000 copies.

10:20:03 Tribune are sold on Sunday in Tampa and in Hillsborough

10:20:05 County.

10:20:06 More than 800 readers have signed petitions that I am

10:20:10 going to hand a copy to the clerk saying, we oppose

10:20:13 banning safe and responsible weekend sales of

10:20:16 newspapers on roads in Tampa and Hillsborough County.

10:20:18 And I just -- when you have already heard about this

10:20:23 morning, the one I have written council about, which is

10:20:25 to allow this activity, and that very narrow window of

10:20:29 time, daylight hours on Saturday and Sunday, not on

10:20:31 weekdays and not in the evening.

10:20:33 Thank you very much.

10:20:34 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:20:35 Next speaker.

10:20:35 >> Bill Bosoll.

10:20:43 I work for "St. Pete Times."

10:20:45 I can't hold a job because my back.

10:20:48 My knees hurting.

10:20:50 And this is all I can do right now.

10:21:00 They won't let me have it.

10:21:01 >> Thank you, sir.

10:21:02 Next speaker.

10:21:02 >> Good evening, distinguished members.

10:21:06 My name is Charles Eady.

10:21:09 I'm a third generation resident of Tampa Bay area.

10:21:14 My grandfather used to run a series of bakeries in

10:21:17 Tampa Bay back in the early 40s.

10:21:19 Now may know the name early.

10:21:23 When it comes to safe and responsible sales, we do

10:21:25 check our people.

10:21:26 In the mornings, we make sure that they have their vest

10:21:29 he is, they don't go out and sell papers until day

10:21:33 break, so there is no question of whether or not they

10:21:35 are out there in the fog.

10:21:38 You all have to excuse me, I am a bit nervous here

10:21:41 speaking to an august body like this.

10:21:42 I usually don't speak to government.

10:21:47 We also have rules about how to handle things.

10:21:49 If somebody should call them, in a car at a red light,

10:21:54 if people stop in the middle of an intersection, they

10:21:56 wave them off, not to hold up traffic.

10:21:59 We have no panhandling.

10:22:01 If any of our people should slip and fall, we do

10:22:03 address that.

10:22:05 But most of them do not.

10:22:06 I have only had one case of that ever, and I have been

10:22:08 with this company now for three years.

10:22:10 And also before we send them out, and we have a little

10:22:13 talk with them every afternoon, dive has a meeting

10:22:16 every morning, and I also have one, also.

10:22:21 I heard a continuing theme.

10:22:23 It's not a crime, it part of the solution.

10:22:25 I think that's a good saying.

10:22:26 I think that is what we are trying to do here, get

10:22:31 people employed.

10:22:32 I know a lot of these people desperately need a job.

10:22:34 I need a job.

10:22:35 I myself suffer from a heart condition and blood

10:22:38 pressure.

10:22:38 That's kind of hard to find somebody to drive a truck

10:22:42 for a living class B, and once your blood pressure

10:22:46 goes, there goes that.

10:22:48 That's not easy.

10:22:50 So, anyhow, that's what I would like to say.

10:22:53 Please, if we could take a look at the Monday through

10:22:56 Friday ban.

10:22:57 I believe that's the best solution.

10:22:58 And it will help out everyone, the panel panhandlers.

10:23:02 I do know of the existence, the problems.

10:23:05 I think that might address that issue, and also the

10:23:09 charities and hard working individuals that are behind

10:23:11 me have an opportunity to make some money.

10:23:14 Thank you ad and God bless.

10:23:20 >> My name is James Williams, 6513 Yosemite drive.

10:23:25 I would like to address the issue but collection from

10:23:28 charities, primarily.

10:23:29 My wife and daughter, granddaughter, great

10:23:34 granddaughter, benefit from the MBA association.

10:23:40 And I believe the majority of it stays in this area.

10:23:47 It goes to St. Josephs hospital.

10:23:49 And we do give on our own, but we also give the public

10:23:55 taking, donate there.

10:23:57 And I would like to see that carried on.

10:23:59 And on the agenda, the newspapers and the people that

10:24:02 are taking up on the streets that are homeless, I hate

10:24:07 to see the term panhandling, but personally, I have

10:24:10 given them money, they never harassed me, they never

10:24:16 beat on the windshield.

10:24:16 The same thing with the now people.

10:24:18 They have never bothered me.

10:24:22 If I donate money they say thank you.

10:24:25 And these are tough times.

10:24:26 And I would hate to see them lose income.

10:24:30 A dollar helps.

10:24:32 Thank you.

10:24:37 >> My name is Tanya Wideman.

10:24:41 I have been living here.

10:24:42 And I'm not homeless.

10:24:43 I have two children, one in college, doing

10:24:48 exceptionally well.

10:24:49 And I have a son in prison that I helped put there

10:24:53 twice, and I would give anything if he would just take

10:24:56 one day, one day, one Sunday, like these people, and

10:25:00 decide to earn 10, 15, some type of decent money.

10:25:06 I respect what they are doing more so than my own child

10:25:09 that's sitting in prison to work just one day.

10:25:13 And he's going to go out and he's going to be the one

10:25:16 that you are going to go home and you are going to find

10:25:18 out that he's not out there panhandling, he's not

10:25:21 homeless, he's just lazy.

10:25:23 So I'm asking you simply, do not pass this.

10:25:31 I agree with the Monday through Friday.

10:25:33 I live off the stretch they keep showing as the 711

10:25:41 Dale Mabry.

10:25:41 I understand panhandling is a problem.

10:25:43 But don't take decent people that's willing to work

10:25:48 almost for little or nothing or whatever it is.

10:25:50 If that's all they have, please don't take that,

10:25:52 because today is me.

10:25:56 Tomorrow you don't know if it's going to be you.

10:25:58 But I have more respect for them for one day of work or

10:26:02 two days of work than a child that I have raised that

10:26:04 won't work even if you paid him.

10:26:06 Thank you.

10:26:06 >> I'm Wendy Cartwright.

10:26:14 I work for Tampa crossroads for the past six months.

10:26:18 It's been a life altering experience.

10:26:20 Talking about this ban is not going to get to the root

10:26:24 of the issue.

10:26:24 It's going to make the situation worse.

10:26:26 A partial ban is going to make the situation worse.

10:26:29 The people out on the street just want jobs.

10:26:33 They want their lives back.

10:26:36 I did the homeless count and I talked to so many of

10:26:38 those people.

10:26:39 They are veterans.

10:26:40 They could be us.

10:26:41 We need to look at the root issue and get resources to

10:26:46 help these people.

10:26:47 A ban is not going to do that.

10:26:48 Thank you.

10:26:49 >> Ron Rotella, Westshore alliance.

10:27:05 A letter to City Council members and copy for the

10:27:06 clerk.

10:27:07 We have stated our position before as far as

10:27:11 solicitation and vending within the right-of-way.

10:27:13 And we support an ordinance similar to

10:27:16 St. Petersburg's.

10:27:17 And I do think there is some merit to consider

10:27:20 uniformity should the county commissioners go forward

10:27:23 with their ordinance, which it appears that they will.

10:27:27 However, you have an ordinance before you today for

10:27:31 second reading, and I guess you will either vote up or

10:27:34 down or revised, and we have two suggestions, if you

10:27:39 proceed with today's ordinance that we think will

10:27:41 enhance the ordinance you are considering.

10:27:44 One, 30 feet from an intersection is really not

10:27:48 sufficient.

10:27:48 I think safety people and law enforcement people will

10:27:54 tell you at a minimum it should be 100 feet.

10:27:56 And I will point out that there are some significant

10:28:00 collector roads in the Westshore business district, and

10:28:02 that's where I am addressing my comment to is the

10:28:04 Westshore business district.

10:28:05 Cypress, Lois, and Spruce are collector roads.

10:28:10 So thank you.

10:28:19 >> My name is -- Irvin. I sell St. Pete Times

10:28:25 newspapers.

10:28:25 I have been selling newspapers for about four years or

10:28:27 better.

10:28:28 I enjoy the job.

10:28:31 It's a job.

10:28:32 It's a lot of work.

10:28:33 I work 23 to 24 miles every Sunday.

10:28:40 It puts a dollar in my pocket.

10:28:52 I hope you all will consider this selling papers, get

10:28:57 our Sunday news, get up early in the morning, work

10:29:02 seven hours to sell newspapers.

10:29:04 Many peoples say it's great to see you here.

10:29:08 It's good to see you, rain or shine, hot or cold, on

10:29:11 the job.

10:29:12 And they come by and buy papers.

10:29:15 So it's a privilege to sell papers.

10:29:16 And I hope you will consider what's going on here.

10:29:20 Thank you very much.

10:29:20 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:29:29 >> Good morning.

10:29:31 My name is Mack McLaughlin, 4301 south Coolidge,

10:29:36 Tampa.

10:29:39 I support a complete ban for all panhandling on the

10:29:42 street.

10:29:43 I do not object to people who are in green behind me

10:29:48 working on Sunday selling newspapers.

10:29:50 I grew up.

10:29:52 I was there was a newspaper man on the corner, about

10:29:54 every single corn had one.

10:29:56 Every evening on the way home, buy a newspaper from the

10:29:59 gentleman, buy one on the way to work.

10:30:01 The people I object to are the people who sit there and

10:30:04 say, homeless vet, please help.

10:30:09 Homeless, can't steal, too honest, please help, God

10:30:13 bless.

10:30:14 And they are sitting down.

10:30:16 I object to the people who are walking in amongst the

10:30:19 traffic when traffic is stopped.

10:30:22 What kind of role model are we for the young people of

10:30:25 today?

10:30:26 Yesterday, I saw two young men wearing football

10:30:29 uniforms, with a football helmet Meg begging money for

10:30:32 their football organization.

10:30:34 I contribute to my church.

10:30:36 I contribute to the United Way campaign.

10:30:39 I give money to Metropolitan Ministries.

10:30:43 I give food to Metropolitan Ministries.

10:30:45 I do not believe we should have people begging for

10:30:48 money on the corners.

10:30:50 And that includes the fire department and any other

10:30:53 charitable organization that should be supported by the

10:30:56 community chest or the United Way or whatever it may be

10:30:59 called in various cities.

10:31:01 Thank you.

10:31:01 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We have a number of people that are

10:31:05 lining up outside want to come in.

10:31:08 However, we cannot under the fire rule allow them in

10:31:10 unless some of you who already have spoken exit at this

10:31:14 time so they can come in if you don't mind, please.

10:31:21 If you hold your conversation down, please.

10:31:23 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Mr. Chairman, if you could also ask

10:31:27 that the people who are in the Mascotte room downstairs

10:31:30 or waiting in the lobby and have not spoken, if they

10:31:34 choose to speak at the public hearing come into

10:31:37 chambers now.

10:31:38 >>THOMAS SCOTT: That's exactly what we are doing.

10:31:39 If we can hold it.

10:31:41 Please, if you can hold the conversation down, please.

10:31:42 >> My name is Melanie Lawson, Executive Director of the

10:32:40 Tampa Bay MDA district.

10:32:46 The fill the boot campaign has been a 50 year tradition

10:32:49 for MDA across the United States in numerous cities and

10:32:57 in Canada.

10:32:58 The Tampa fire department and Tampa Fire Rescue fully

10:33:02 support this MDA fill-the-boot program.

10:33:07 Department-wide and on duty.

10:33:10 The Tampa Fire Rescue has provided numerous dollars to

10:33:16 our families, the children, and adults that MDA serves

10:33:20 in our local Tampa area.

10:33:23 Last year alone, 20 some, they raised over $53,000

10:33:29 through on-street solicitations.

10:33:33 Firefighters are trained public safety officers who

10:33:37 have extensive experience in on-street, and oftentimes

10:33:43 in very hazardous conditions.

10:33:46 The firefighters employ a number of safety measures,

10:33:52 oftentimes wearing their fill the boot uniforms and/or

10:33:56 safety vests, and we also have extensive signage out on

10:34:00 the streets that they collect

10:34:04 MDA also has a liability insurance policy in the amount

10:34:08 of $2 million for each occurrence so that firefighters

10:34:13 are covered, and there is no liability issues for the

10:34:17 city.

10:34:19 Recently, MDA provided all council people with samples

10:34:24 of ordinances that are working out beautifully in other

10:34:28 cities where firefighters collect for MDA.

10:34:32 I bring your attention to the ordinance that was passed

10:34:36 in 2008 for Alachua County.

10:34:45 Whereas 7 a.m., Friday morning, prior to Labor Day, all

10:34:52 people are allowed to solicit funds, and that is

10:34:57 carried through until 12 p.m. midnight on Labor Day.

10:35:09 We aren't here to ask you to vote yes or no on this but

10:35:11 for a compromise.

10:35:12 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you for your time.

10:35:14 Thank you.

10:35:15 Anyone else wish to address council?

10:35:22 Yes, sir, come on down.

10:35:25 Anyone else may come forward, yes.

10:35:26 >> Good evening.

10:35:30 I represent the "St. Pete Times," and we do sell

10:35:33 papers.

10:35:34 Dave Driskel is my supervisor.

10:35:36 And people are homeless out there on the streets.

10:35:42 But you got the homeless -- get rid of them, don't get

10:35:50 rid of us.

10:35:51 We are there standing making a living.

10:35:54 Amen?

10:35:55 And it just one day a weak, Lord.

10:35:59 I'm not just attacking.

10:36:03 I'm here to let City Council know, get rid of those

10:36:07 people that's flying the sign out there, and let us,

10:36:11 you know, do what we got to do.

10:36:17 And I thank you.

10:36:19 Have a nice day.

10:36:21 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:36:21 >> There's a hand-held Mike there.

10:36:36 Someone can give that to you.

10:36:37 >> My name is Vicki Pollyea.

10:36:45 I'm not here because I'm the president of the

10:36:47 neighborhood association.

10:36:48 You all know me because I come here as a representative

10:36:50 of my neighborhood.

10:36:51 Today I'm to tell you that the reason that I get to

10:36:53 come here in this wheelchair which is partially funded

10:36:57 by muscular dystrophy association.

10:36:59 I have one of the 43 diseases that is covered by the

10:37:03 MDA.

10:37:04 You heard a lot of good interesting information about

10:37:07 muscular dystrophy association.

10:37:13 All I can say is it's because of them that I have hope,

10:37:14 and it's because of them that I have this wheelchair,

10:37:15 and it's because of this wheelchair that I get to come

10:37:18 down here and bother you about other issues.

10:37:20 This is an important issue.

10:37:22 For 56 years, firefighters have been able to safely

10:37:25 collect money for the muscular dystrophy association.

10:37:29 The MDA does not get United Way money.

10:37:32 It is all due to people reaching into their pockets.

10:37:36 This is a very serious issue about homelessness,

10:37:39 poverty, panhandling, just try to find a way to allow

10:37:44 the firefighters a couple of days to raise this money

10:37:46 which stays here in the Tampa Bay, St. Petersburg area.

10:37:50 It doesn't go anywhere else.

10:37:52 It stays right here, buys me my equipment, helps other

10:37:56 people that I know and care about.

10:37:57 I really appreciate your time.

10:37:59 Thank you for considering this.

10:38:20 >> My name is Laura Whitt, and I'm here on behalf of

10:38:26 MDA but I'm here because I have a seven-year-old son

10:38:29 that has Dushane's muscular dystrophy, and this year,

10:38:33 this past year, during the telethon, donations are down

10:38:38 because of the economy.

10:38:40 Everything is going on.

10:38:41 So there's so much that gets injected directly into our

10:38:45 community and all around the area.

10:38:51 As anybody from the MDA can tell you, St. Petersburg

10:38:53 has definitely suffered because they do not get direct

10:38:58 donations any longer.

10:38:59 We need to keep this money in our communities because

10:39:01 helps fund wheelchairs, helps fund summer catches, it

10:39:06 helps fund the clinics that are in the hospitals that

10:39:09 help out with these children and these adults around

10:39:11 this area, and, you know, they are so close.

10:39:18 In the last five, ten years, they are isolating this

10:39:21 stuff, finally coming to human trials with some of the

10:39:23 stuff that has never made it to human trial.

10:39:28 And I have hope that in my son's lifetime that he will

10:39:31 live past the age of 20.

10:39:33 But we can't do it without money.

10:39:35 And this is a wonderful organization.

10:39:39 So if you can just come to some kind of -- I don't

10:39:44 know, just some kind of compromise like she said to

10:39:48 allow us to continue funding these things that we so

10:39:51 desperately need.

10:39:52 I want my son to live past 20.

10:39:54 You know, I don't want him to fall through the cracks.

10:39:57 And with this the association here in Tampa, he's not

10:40:00 falling through the cracks.

10:40:01 Thank you very much for your time and consideration.

10:40:03 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:40:06 Next speaker.

10:40:06 >> I'm Diane from the muscular dystrophy association,

10:40:12 fund-raising coordinator there.

10:40:14 I had the opportunity to meet with a few of you this

10:40:17 week.

10:40:17 The proposed ordinance won greatly effect the

10:40:19 fund-raising effort that professional firefighters do

10:40:22 on behalf of our local MDA families.

10:40:25 The collection campaign, MDA have generous support not

10:40:31 only from our firefighter but from the community at

10:40:33 large.

10:40:33 The loss of this would impact funding of crucial

10:40:36 research that is making dramatic progress in the search

10:40:38 for treatment and cures for neuromuscular disease.

10:40:41 The money raised to support MDA funds at clinics at St.

10:40:44 Anthony's and St. Josephs hospital Tampa, diagnostic

10:40:49 and medical care for their disease at in a charge.

10:40:52 Funds are also go to help provide a weeklong summer

10:40:57 program for our children of this community.

10:40:59 Additionally, association fund have support groups of

10:41:03 families living with neuromuscular disease an

10:41:06 opportunity to meet with one another.

10:41:08 Modifying the proposed ban on roadside solicitation

10:41:10 could have a far reaching impact on MDA's ability to

10:41:13 support our families right here in the community.

10:41:15 We hope that a compromise can be developed, and that

10:41:17 will allow qualified nonprofit organizations to benefit

10:41:20 from roadside campaigns.

10:41:23 Thank you so much.

10:41:25 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Next speaker.

10:41:26 Ma'am, can you come back, please?

10:41:27 You need to state your name.

10:41:29 >> Diana McLane.

10:41:32 >> Diana McLane?

10:41:34 Thank you.

10:41:34 >> My name is Dorothy Kidd.

10:41:44 I live at owes mate drive.

10:41:47 I'm here on behalf of the firefighters that take up for

10:41:51 MDA.

10:41:54 I have four generations in my family that have braces,

10:41:59 wheelchairs, and med, a buy prescriptions.

10:42:08 We all go to the MDA clinic here at Tampa, Florida, St.

10:42:13 Joseph.

10:42:15 Please don't take away the firefighters taking up money

10:42:17 for us.

10:42:25 If the gentleman had this disease or his children had

10:42:28 this disease, he would understand what MDA does for us.

10:42:37 Thank you.

10:42:37 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you, ma'am.

10:42:45 >> My name is Hakim, last name Aquil, 6301 North

10:43:10 19th street, and I'm here today to talk to the City

10:43:12 Council members and those who may hear my voice that we

10:43:16 always have to remember that we are human beings, and

10:43:20 we all have the same will and desire.

10:43:23 And for people that has to come and ask for

10:43:27 continuation over livelihood, I feel that that's

10:43:32 irresponsible for the leadership in this city, because

10:43:35 if a person wants to work, and this being one of the

10:43:38 greatest so-called super powers, then why we don't have

10:43:42 the power to make the lives of people better.

10:43:44 I myself was a vendor for the newspaper, not that I

10:43:47 have to have sold the newspaper, but I sold the

10:43:50 newspaper because I wanted to be connected with people

10:43:53 that was less fortunate.

10:43:54 And today I have a few photos that I want to show you

10:43:58 that when my friend ask, why are you out here selling

10:44:01 the paper?

10:44:01 I say because it teach me humanity, teach me to think

10:44:05 about those less fortunate.

10:44:07 And sometimes we are on top and we don't see the need

10:44:10 and the desires and those who are less fortunate.

10:44:13 So I will show you a few photos and let you know that

10:44:17 when I say teaching humility because of the people I

10:44:21 saw in my life, saw the other people in my life too,

10:44:29 and I treat them equally the same.

10:44:32 These are just a few of the snapshots that hi want to

10:44:59 share with council, share with those who are less

10:45:02 fortunate that have not been able to contribute to

10:45:04 America.

10:45:05 And I'm showing some form or fashion we have, because

10:45:08 if you buy anything, you are paying taxes, and taxes

10:45:11 are what keep this great country great.

10:45:13 I thank you.

10:45:14 God bless you.

10:45:14 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:45:21 >> My name is Ed Cronyn. I live on Vasconia Street.

10:45:28 Right in the heart of council district four and proud

10:45:33 to be served with a council member with heart and

10:45:35 compassion.

10:45:36 You heard of a lot of originals today who help people

10:45:39 depend on asking for money on the streets.

10:45:42 You have also heard from religious originals, and I

10:45:45 think it's very important you heard them.

10:45:48 Despite the fact they may not work the "St. Pete Times"

10:45:51 or those other worthy originals, these are people who

10:45:53 need money, and they rely upon our charitable giving.

10:45:57 I guess I am asking you today is consider a very

10:46:00 conservative form of government, one which allows

10:46:02 resources to flow based upon personal decisions rather

10:46:05 than overarching, way too aggressive laws and

10:46:09 prohibitions on people can and can't do in terms of

10:46:12 their lives of who they want to and how they want to

10:46:16 and the resources directed to them whether they are on

10:46:18 their way to work or send a check in every month.

10:46:21 Tampa is striving to be a world class city.

10:46:24 Let's be a world class city.

10:46:26 Let not take our lead from people who are motivated by

10:46:31 fear or what's been done in other cities across the bay

10:46:33 or is being done in the county around us.

10:46:35 We are a world class city.

10:46:36 We deserve a world class solution that takes compassion

10:46:39 into account rather than advancing the motto of our

10:46:41 favorite team of show no mercy and take no prisoners.

10:46:45 Thank you for consideration.

10:46:47 Please show mercy and compassion and limit the

10:46:49 government to what it really needs to do rather than on

10:46:54 economic considerations.

10:46:55 Thank you for your consideration.

10:46:56 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:46:57 >>> Ed Tillou.

10:47:04 I live at Sulphur Springs.

10:47:06 I'm trained as a safety engineer, and to me this is a

10:47:10 transparent subterfuge as a safety issue, these people

10:47:16 wearing vests like they do.

10:47:17 If you want to deal with real safety issues, such as

10:47:21 bicycle safety, I heard a report that identified what I

10:47:25 think it was that killed admiral Collins.

10:47:27 The people who use cell phones while they drive.

10:47:30 They are still doing it even though panels could be put

10:47:33 over them to keep them from doing that.

10:47:34 There's nothing done about that.

10:47:36 I think it was this past week someone was killed.

10:47:39 By a person like that down at Martin Luther King and

10:47:42 I-75.

10:47:43 Those are real safety issues as opposed to this

10:47:46 transparent subterfuge.

10:47:52 A lot of the legal challenge depends on the 14th

10:47:55 amendment, and there's some amendment to fashion a

10:47:58 right from two wrongs.

10:47:59 I think there's something more central to this that the

10:48:03 last paper touched on.

10:48:04 That's a first amendment consideration.

10:48:07 Freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

10:48:10 If people want to give money to a panhandler, they are

10:48:14 setting an example of a better way to be.

10:48:16 And some prohibitions of that eliminate that freedom of

10:48:22 expression by example.

10:48:25 That's the whole way the church grew.

10:48:30 And our background was Hugano, not French Hugano from

10:48:38 the Pyrenees.

10:48:40 My research seems to indicate that Deviaz who settled

10:48:46 Safety Harbor -- that was the second oldest city in the

10:48:49 country but not continuously settled. The Miranda

10:48:50 family seems to have come from the Pyrenees, too, like

10:48:57 ours.

10:48:57 And we played a behind-the-scenes role in the bill of

10:49:01 right, the first amendment.

10:49:02 Now, it's said the Lord is the cry of the poor.

10:49:09 Maybe Benedict the 16th will.

10:49:12 And I know the Diocese of St. Petersburg has very

10:49:14 powerful orders once they get pointed in a certain

10:49:16 direction.

10:49:17 They could carry something to and through the Supreme

10:49:19 Court.

10:49:22 So I don't think the first amendment considerations of

10:49:24 this have been weighed.

10:49:28 The first amendment, people setting a better example, I

10:49:30 care about my fellow human being, I am doing it up

10:49:34 front rather than just contributing.

10:49:36 And I think that's something that shouldn't be taken

10:49:39 away from those people.

10:49:41 (Bell sounds).

10:49:42 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

10:49:43 Anyone else from the public?

10:49:44 Anyone else from the public wish to speak on this issue

10:49:48 may come forward now at this time.

10:49:50 Yes, on this issue.

10:49:52 Anyone else downstairs that needs to come up?

10:49:55 Anyone else downstairs?

10:49:56 Okay, then, what we need to do, council, what I would

10:49:59 like to do is take testimony now from our legal, from

10:50:04 the police department, and from the administration.

10:50:09 And I want legal to come, because it's very clear

10:50:13 that -- I thought we tried to make this clear a few

10:50:18 weeks ago what our options are under the Constitution.

10:50:26 Let me just say that it is not my intent to put anyone

10:50:31 out of work, those who make a legitimate living by

10:50:36 selling the newspaper.

10:50:38 I want you to know I hold you in the highest standard

10:50:41 of respect.

10:50:42 There is no disrespect from me personally, and I don't

10:50:45 think on this board.

10:50:49 For those who collect donations for the firemen, MD and

10:50:54 all of that, we appreciate the work you do.

10:50:58 It is a very difficult issue for this council and for

10:51:01 this community at this time.

10:51:03 It's a difficult issue because we are limited as to

10:51:05 what we can do.

10:51:09 It is my understanding from our legal -- he can address

10:51:12 this -- that pretty much we can't separate out and

10:51:18 allow to do certain things, to apply across the board

10:51:23 to everybody.

10:51:23 My understanding is there is a Tampa law that was

10:51:26 padded, and that was struck down by the Supreme Court

10:51:29 because of that.

10:51:30 So you need to understand, this is not an attempt to

10:51:35 ban those selling newspapers, not an attempt to ban

10:51:39 those who solicit for the different charity

10:51:44 organizations, but under the law, we have to pass an

10:51:51 ordinance that governs everybody consistently and

10:51:54 fairly across the board.

10:51:55 There is no way to separate that out as I understand

10:51:58 it.

10:51:59 I want to ask council to speak to that, and we'll come

10:52:01 back and take up additional questions.

10:52:03 We'll have chief come as well and then staff and then

10:52:06 take questions from council.

10:52:07 Mr. Fletcher.

10:52:08 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: City attorney.

10:52:12 As you indicated, there are significant first amendment

10:52:16 constraints on council's options when addressing this

10:52:21 issue.

10:52:23 The ordinance that is before you that was passed on

10:52:26 first reading would ban transactions between

10:52:32 pedestrians and people in vehicles when the vehicle is

10:52:36 in the travel way, arterial roadways, interstates and

10:52:41 the ramps for those interstates.

10:52:47 That is what council indicated previously was of

10:52:49 interest in terms of a limited restriction on

10:52:53 solicitation in --

10:52:56 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Excuse me, if you all could turn off

10:52:58 your cell phones, please.

10:52:59 I think there's a sign that says no cell phones allowed

10:53:01 in chambers.

10:53:02 If you could silence them, put them on vibrator turn

10:53:06 them off, please.

10:53:07 Thank you.

10:53:07 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

10:53:10 Historically in Tampa, in many cities and counties

10:53:13 within Florida, there were permitting programs that

10:53:16 allowed people to pull permits for limited activities

10:53:20 in the right-of-way, certain number of times per year,

10:53:22 certain limited locations.

10:53:25 That was pursuant to a state statute which was

10:53:28 subsequently amended to require that if you have a

10:53:31 local permitting program, that certain nonprofit

10:53:35 entities be exempted from that permit process.

10:53:41 That statute and related statutes, a series of court

10:53:47 cases have been struck down.

10:53:49 The Florida torn general has issued an opinion

10:53:51 recommending the Florida legislature change those

10:53:54 statutes.

10:53:55 There is the state case law and federal case law

10:53:59 indicating that when we regulate activities that are

10:54:03 speech related, as soliciting and vending is, in city

10:54:07 rights-of-way, that we have to treat everyone the same.

10:54:09 We can't make different rules depending on whether you

10:54:13 are a charity, or a panhandler, or a vendor.

10:54:17 We have to treat them all the same across the board.

10:54:21 So that puts us in the place where we are today.

10:54:25 The options available essentially to council are to

10:54:28 either allow pretty much open solicitation on the

10:54:33 rights-of-way, which we have in place today pursuant to

10:54:37 an ordinance adopted by council, to go with a limited

10:54:44 prohibition on certain roadways as is before you now.

10:54:49 Those choices of which roadways and the manner of

10:54:54 restriction need to be based solely on public safety

10:54:58 issues.

10:54:58 We can't decide for some other policy reason we want to

10:55:03 regulate some roadways and not others.

10:55:05 Again, the touchstone here is we treat everyone the

10:55:09 same from the basis of regulating and protecting public

10:55:13 safety of the motorist and the individuals in the

10:55:16 rights-of-way

10:55:17 So before you takes those streets that by design and by

10:55:23 function are more at risk based on the analysis by our

10:55:29 police department and our transportation department.

10:55:32 I think they will also tell you that the simple act of

10:55:36 being in the right-of-way is risky, and doing business

10:55:40 with the vehicles in the rights-of-way is risky.

10:55:43 But they will also tell you that this approach provides

10:55:46 you with some regulation, narrowly tailored, regulating

10:55:54 speech to keep it as narrowly tailored as possible to

10:55:57 protect the public safety concern while still

10:56:01 protecting public safety.

10:56:03 So that's what's before you all today.

10:56:07 I would be happy to answer any legal questions before

10:56:10 we have chief Bennett and the city's transportation

10:56:14 director present their information.

10:56:18 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Just one question.

10:56:22 Then councilman Miranda.

10:56:24 This is narrowly tailored, using your words.

10:56:29 Also, as I understand it, it does not prohibit those

10:56:35 who are selling newspapers to do that.

10:56:39 However, those have been identified, is that accurate?

10:56:45 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: That is correct.

10:56:46 To give a little more context on that.

10:56:48 St. Petersburg banned these transactions, soliciting or

10:56:52 vending in the rights-of-way, for collector roads,

10:56:55 arterial roads, interstates and ramps for interstates.

10:57:03 That has been a topic of much discussion for this

10:57:05 council and elsewhere.

10:57:07 In looking at our information what's proposed is just

10:57:10 the arterial roadways, which are those roadways as Ms.

10:57:15 Dorzback will discuss in more detail, higher volume,

10:57:21 higher speed, and also happen to be the roadways where

10:57:23 we have our highest rates of accidents.

10:57:25 So that's why we have focused on the arterials and the

10:57:30 interstates.

10:57:30 The other collector roads and the local or neighborhood

10:57:33 roads would be available for solicitation or vending in

10:57:36 the rights-of-way.

10:57:41 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.

10:57:41 I appreciate your comments.

10:57:44 But I would like to go into more detail since we are

10:57:46 bringing it up under health, safety and welfare.

10:57:49 How many people are killed in the United States in

10:57:50 automobile accidents?

10:57:52 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: That would be --

10:57:54 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Wait a minute, I got the floor.

10:57:56 Over 38,000.

10:57:57 Do we ban cars?

10:57:58 No.

10:57:59 How many people killed in motor cycle accidents?

10:58:03 Do we ban motorcycles?

10:58:04 No.

10:58:05 How many people killed riding bicycles?

10:58:08 Do we ban bicycles?

10:58:10 No.

10:58:11 How many people killed crossing a road?

10:58:13 Do we ban that?

10:58:14 No.

10:58:15 What I'm saying is, there's an idea here that

10:58:20 everything we are doing is right.

10:58:21 I'm not saying it's all wrong, but by passing this

10:58:24 ordinance, you are going to put the panhandlers back

10:58:27 into the neighborhood.

10:58:29 That's why I think we have to vote against it.

10:58:32 And that's one of the things that I don't think any

10:58:35 neighborhood wants.

10:58:35 Let me also say -- and I'm sure you read the Alachua

10:58:38 County ordinance which simply states that the Friday

10:58:43 before Labor Day, you can do the MDA, the panhandling

10:58:49 for three or four days consecutive S.that going to kill

10:58:53 America?

10:58:53 Is that going to kill Tampa?

10:58:54 I don't think so.

10:58:56 Let me also say that that same ordinance could be

10:58:59 expanded, but on Sunday from six in morning until two

10:59:03 you can sell newspapers and panhandle.

10:59:06 You know why I say that?

10:59:07 I have never seen a panhandler on Sunday from six to

10:59:12 two in the afternoon.

10:59:12 Never.

10:59:14 But you see there's people trying to make a living.

10:59:17 We haven't addressed that.

10:59:20 So what we make is all these roads you mentioned.

10:59:23 However, is 22nd street covered under this ordinance?

10:59:26 Is 26th Avenue covered?

10:59:28 Is Columbus drive east covered under this ordinance?

10:59:31 So there's roadways that I don't believe are covered in

10:59:34 this ordinance that I believe we should have a

10:59:37 substitute ordinance that would allow it to a

10:59:41 compromise so that I don't put over 150 people out, but

10:59:44 more importantly than that, not only am I putting 150

10:59:49 people out of a job, but it's a multiplier effect.

10:59:53 Those businesses that hire those people inside the

10:59:57 buildings to produce whatever that product is are also

11:00:00 going to be laid off to some degree.

11:00:03 So that multiplier effect has never been brought.

11:00:05 This council always talks about, I want to save every

11:00:08 small business there is.

11:00:09 So do I.

11:00:10 But at the same time, I'm killing a small business?

11:00:14 Is that what I am hearing?

11:00:16 So I would like to propose the Alachua County ordinance

11:00:20 as modified, way just said, so that those days before

11:00:24 Labor Day you can do that.

11:00:27 You know, we don't realize how lucky we all are.

11:00:33 We can walk.

11:00:34 We can talk.

11:00:34 We can live in a free country.

11:00:37 We can do about anything we want to do.

11:00:42 As you get sick, as your child gets burned, what

11:00:45 happens then?

11:00:46 Are we forgetting about that?

11:00:48 Are we getting to that part of society?

11:00:50 Yeah, I goat a lot of money.

11:00:55 It's just wrong to do it the way we are doing it,

11:00:57 because you are driving the nail back into the

11:01:00 neighborhood where exactly are the same people you are

11:01:03 trying to save.

11:01:04 So we are going to take a vote, I guess, because this

11:01:06 is on the agenda.

11:01:08 I'm not asking anybody to change their vote.

11:01:11 I'm just asking them to examine their conscience.

11:01:15 If this is the right thing to do, or to bring in a

11:01:17 substitute ordinance under first reading that would

11:01:21 allow it during those -- that holiday period on Labor

11:01:25 Day so that the MDA and all those fund that they create

11:01:30 nationwide, through Jerry's kids -- and I'm sure you

11:01:34 have seen them all -- so that somebody may have a life

11:01:37 in the future that they don't have to live with this

11:01:40 disease.

11:01:42 So these things can happen in an orderly fashion.

11:01:46 Certainly.

11:01:47 I mean, sporting events.

11:01:49 Listen, they say in a alcohol.

11:01:52 There's more drunks in sporting events at this city and

11:01:57 throughout the country in the world.

11:01:59 Do we arrest them all?

11:02:00 I don't think we have enough police officers.

11:02:02 It would cause a riot.

11:02:06 Bad air from all the emissions from those cars all

11:02:08 concentrated in one area.

11:02:10 Do we ban them?

11:02:11 Absolutely not.

11:02:12 So what I'm saying is we have to live in a society

11:02:14 where all could be included and inclusive.

11:02:18 So I know it's election time, but I'm not worried about

11:02:24 that.

11:02:25 I'm not worried about winning or not winning.

11:02:29 I'm more worried about being me.

11:02:31 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.

11:02:35 Could you -- [ Applause ]

11:02:38 [Sounding gavel]

11:02:39 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Please.

11:02:39 Could you address the questions raised, and also I

11:02:43 think he's proposing, only solicitation during the

11:02:46 weekend or Labor Day which means a ban all the rest of

11:02:49 the year?

11:02:50 I'm assuming that's what it is.

11:02:51 So before everybody gets happy, it's only addressing

11:02:56 one weekend out of the whole year.

11:02:57 But go ahead.

11:02:58 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Just two points.

11:03:01 I would defer to Ms. Dorzback on exactly which roadways

11:03:05 are covered as arterial roadways.

11:03:08 The map I have, it does look like either all, or at

11:03:11 least most of 22nd street is covered as a ban, and

11:03:15 Columbus as well.

11:03:17 But I would defer to her to give you exactly if it's

11:03:19 all that stretch or just portions of it.

11:03:24 And then on the issue of determine certain weekends,

11:03:30 but otherwise certain times during the week, again that

11:03:32 would be something that we would need a safety

11:03:34 professional such as Ms. Dorzback or chief Bennett to

11:03:37 provide us a predicate for making those distinctions

11:03:41 between the different times of the year or the

11:03:43 different times during the week.

11:03:46 And I would defer to them both on that, and those

11:03:49 questions should be posed to them.

11:03:51 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilwoman Miller and then

11:03:55 Councilwoman Mulhern.

11:03:56 >>GWEN MILLER: Mr. Fletcher, it was raised earlier, it

11:03:59 was suggested that they sell papers on the weekend,

11:04:02 Saturday and Sunday.

11:04:02 Would that be Constitutional?

11:04:04 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: That goes back to the same

11:04:06 question.

11:04:07 The choices we make in terms of which roads are allowed

11:04:11 for solicitation and which are not have to be based on

11:04:14 a factual evidence that would support a differentiation

11:04:18 between either the roadways or the time during the

11:04:22 week.

11:04:23 And so Ms. Dorzback, or chief Bennett works need to

11:04:28 address that.

11:04:28 We would need empirical information that suggests that

11:04:33 we can make that distinction, and that's outside of my

11:04:36 expertise as an attorney.

11:04:37 >>GWEN MILLER: You stated earlier about -- can that be

11:04:41 brought back in --

11:04:44 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Not without change in the statute

11:04:46 by the Florida legislature.

11:04:47 At this point we would not be able to legally implement

11:04:50 a permit system.

11:04:51 >>GWEN MILLER: And they sell papers on Tuesdays and

11:04:56 Fridays.

11:04:57 Would that be in conflict with what we are doing, the

11:05:00 partial ban?

11:05:03 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Well, it would only be in conflict

11:05:06 with the ordinance that's before you to the extent that

11:05:09 they are on roadways that are covered by the ban.

11:05:12 So as all the other newspapers would still be able to

11:05:16 sell on the collector roadways, and the roadways not

11:05:20 covered by the ban, but what is before you does not

11:05:24 differentiate between days of the week or times of day,

11:05:28 because our indication from the transportation

11:05:30 department is that they did not feel they have evidence

11:05:34 sufficient to make those distinctions.

11:05:36 >>GWEN MILLER: In listening to the people, those

11:05:38 collector roads, which is off arterial roads, if you

11:05:42 travel, there's not that many cars that go that way,

11:05:45 and in a neighborhood, so how much could they make be?

11:05:50 They say their livelihood, making their living from day

11:05:53 to day.

11:05:54 So we are taking away from them their lives.

11:05:57 >> And that's a decision for you all to make.

11:06:01 That's the tension you are dealing with here between

11:06:03 the different competing interests.

11:06:05 And we can provide you the factual information based on

11:06:09 the professional background of city staff.

11:06:11 We can provide you with constraints.

11:06:14 But it's ultimately you all's decision to make those

11:06:16 policy choices.

11:06:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilwoman Mulhern.

11:06:21 >>MARY MULHERN: I had some questions I wanted to ask

11:06:28 either Mr. Nuckles if he's still here, or.

11:06:39 >> Rayme Nuckles, coalition.

11:06:42 >> Thanks.

11:06:43 You called it a task force.

11:06:45 Everyone keeps telling me that this county -- and it

11:06:47 wasn't just the county, it was the mayor had appointed,

11:06:53 had our police force or police department attending

11:06:56 those meetings, and also her chief of staff, and also

11:07:00 our legal department in meeting with the county on this

11:07:03 issue for, like, three months, four months.

11:07:08 >> About six months.

11:07:09 >>MARY MULHERN: And people need to know that this

11:07:12 council wasn't allowed to or in fact invited to those

11:07:18 meetings other than one council could be there and we

11:07:21 were discouraged from going because it would have been

11:07:23 a violation of the sunshine law.

11:07:25 So this committee that has been meeting for all this

11:07:29 time really didn't include -- it only could include one

11:07:33 of us.

11:07:34 It happened to be Mr. Caetano.

11:07:37 So all of -- the report that you referred to, we just

11:07:42 got that a few days ago.

11:07:44 And I have read it because I would do my homework.

11:07:47 And I studied this issue and tried to find out

11:07:50 everything I could.

11:07:50 But what I couldn't find in there -- I really didn't

11:07:57 find a recommendation from anybody in there.

11:07:59 I didn't find -- we finally, I think, got

11:08:03 recommendation from major Bennett about his feeling

11:08:07 that -- or his findings that this panhandling is a

11:08:13 safety problem.

11:08:13 But I didn't hear from you what you feel would be

11:08:21 appropriate.

11:08:23 I didn't hear from anyone.

11:08:25 And it's interesting.

11:08:26 I mean, I didn't hear from anyone, any homeless

11:08:29 advocate really until today about what we should do.

11:08:33 I mean, we are balancing what to do for everyone in

11:08:37 this city, for these people who don't want to lose

11:08:39 their jobs, for the people who are reduced to

11:08:41 panhandling, and to the people who are -- feel somehow

11:08:47 threatened by it.

11:08:48 So what would you, as an advocate for the homeless

11:08:53 organization, what can we do?

11:08:59 >> First of all, I wasn't the author of the report that

11:09:02 came from the Board of County Commissioners.

11:09:04 That was from the administration.

11:09:07 Many of us supplied information to be included in the

11:09:11 report.

11:09:12 So I can't take any credit or discredit for that

11:09:16 report.

11:09:16 I can just tell you that we supplied information for

11:09:19 the report.

11:09:22 What I can refer to is in 2002 we were before this

11:09:27 council to present to City Council the ten-year plan to

11:09:32 end homelessness.

11:09:34 We have been advocating forever since I have been the

11:09:36 CEO of this organization since December of 2002 for

11:09:41 additional resources to meet the needs of this

11:09:43 community when it comes to homelessness.

11:09:49 As the economy has declined, homelessness has

11:09:51 increased.

11:09:52 More people are living doubled up.

11:09:54 We found that last week when we did our homeless count.

11:10:00 Several of you were involved --

11:10:03 >>MARY MULHERN: Well, maybe you can tell me this.

11:10:05 I participated in the homeless count as a volunteer

11:10:09 this last weekend and two years ago.

11:10:12 And so I talked to a lot of people on the streets, and

11:10:15 some of them were panhandling and some of them, you

11:10:17 know, most of them weren't, but there were some people

11:10:20 who did do that.

11:10:22 What did you find, in the count two years ago or in

11:10:28 this count?

11:10:29 Are a lot of people, a lot of homeless people

11:10:32 panhandling?

11:10:33 >> Well, since we just had the count on Thursday, you

11:10:36 know, we haven't -- based off of -- I ran the phone

11:10:45 bank the entire day from 4 a.m. until 11:45 p.m.

11:10:49 And the phone calls that were come in were individuals

11:10:52 who were living doubled up, talking about, you know, I

11:10:57 talked to a lady, a Hillsborough County employee, who

11:11:01 lost her job, was laid off, moved into a residence with

11:11:06 another family member, and they were then evicted by

11:11:10 the sheriff just on Tuesday prayer to the count because

11:11:13 that family was also foreclosed on.

11:11:15 So we are talking about the human need, the economy --

11:11:20 >>MARY MULHERN: Right, but you are not answering my

11:11:22 question.

11:11:22 Are they reduced to panhandling?

11:11:26 What are you finding?

11:11:27 I mean, who would know better than you?

11:11:30 >> Well, what I'm telling you is the data has not been

11:11:34 entered into our system.

11:11:35 So what I can tell you is based off of the information

11:11:37 that we took, there weren't that many people who called

11:11:42 were panhandling: I haven't had an opportunity to

11:11:45 review all the other data.

11:11:47 We are looking at over 10,000 individuals and families

11:11:49 in our community who are homeless.

11:11:53 And that's a lot of data to go through.

11:11:58 The coalition has not taken a position on whether they

11:12:00 are for or against panhandling.

11:12:03 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.

11:12:03 >> The position at the coalition members took was that

11:12:07 we have always requested additional need for services

11:12:11 and needs of the residents of this community.

11:12:13 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay.

11:12:15 We -- okay, thank you.

11:12:16 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilwoman Capin.

11:12:18 >>MARY MULHERN: I wasn't done.

11:12:22 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, I'm sorry.

11:12:24 >>MARY MULHERN: Can somebody from either the

11:12:26 lawyers -- if Mr. Driskel is still here maybe co-tell

11:12:33 me.

11:12:34 I think you said that -- this isn't a law question,

11:12:40 this is about employment.

11:12:41 How many people, overall, how many people -- are you

11:12:46 the sole contractor who hires the vendors?

11:12:51 >> For the St. Petersburg times.

11:12:52 >>MARY MULHERN: And how many people are employed?

11:12:56 >>> I have 120 and my partner has 38.

11:12:59 >> And then do you know the numbers for the Tribune?

11:13:03 >> Tribune has approximately, I believe, 100.

11:13:07 >> So almost 300.

11:13:12 >> About 250, 260.

11:13:14 >> Total for the Trib and "St. Pete Times."

11:13:16 Is that it?

11:13:17 Or are there other people who -- are you the only

11:13:20 contractor who hires these vendors?

11:13:23 >> For "St. Pete Times," yes.

11:13:25 And the Tribune, they have a couple of contractors that

11:13:28 hire them for the Tribune.

11:13:29 >> Okay.

11:13:30 So you think -- what do you think the total number

11:13:32 employed by the Trib and the "St. Pete Times"?

11:13:34 >> About 260 in Hillsborough County.

11:13:40 Of the county.

11:13:41 >> And are you still vending in Hillsborough County?

11:13:45 >> Very limited.

11:13:46 We have lost about 35 positions over there in the last

11:13:49 two months.

11:13:52 The committee that you were addressing that was made up

11:13:55 of people who basically wanted a seven-day ban.

11:14:00 Basically everybody on the committee was there to say

11:14:04 why they want a seven-day ban, including your

11:14:09 representative from your City Council, Mr. Caetano, who

11:14:11 openly came out and said he wants a seven-day ban.

11:14:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Excuse me, council, we have taken

11:14:18 public hearing.

11:14:19 If you have a question to speak to the question.

11:14:22 >>MARY MULHERN: No, he answered my question.

11:14:24 Thank you.

11:14:24 >>THOMAS SCOTT: You need to speak to the question so

11:14:26 we can keep it moving right now.

11:14:27 >>MARY MULHERN: All right, all right.

11:14:30 I guess then my -- was there anyone here from the

11:14:36 sentinel?

11:14:39 >> No.

11:14:41 >>MARY MULHERN: So they vend on Tuesdays and Fridays,

11:14:46 basically on 22nd street?

11:14:48 >> All over.

11:14:49 >>MARY MULHERN: All over.

11:14:53 Then I have one more question for major Bennett.

11:14:55 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, I want him to give his report

11:15:00 before you do that.

11:15:00 >>MARY MULHERN: I'm sorry, I'll wait.

11:15:10 >>THOMAS SCOTT: I wanted council to talk to the legal

11:15:12 issue, then Mr. Ta the police department, and then Jean

11:15:18 Dorzback.

11:15:18 >>MARY MULHERN: I'm sorry, I thought we already --

11:15:21 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We haven't heard from the chief.

11:15:22 So if you will come, chief Bennett.

11:15:24 >> Chief Bennett, assistant chief, Tampa Police

11:15:32 Department.

11:15:33 We appreciate again the opportunity to come forward and

11:15:36 discuss the public safety part of this very

11:15:40 compassionate issue for the community.

11:15:42 And passionate issue for that matter.

11:15:45 We have attended all the root cause workshops with the

11:15:50 county as well as, of course, discussed this as a

11:15:52 public safety matter on several occasions in several

11:15:55 forums, and I bring us back to the same data that

11:16:00 drives our decisions on a daily basis.

11:16:04 We are a preventive original.

11:16:06 Our goal is prevent crime and reduce opportunity of

11:16:08 risk.

11:16:09 And I bring back that anybody inside the intersection,

11:16:13 whatever intersection that may be, has potential of

11:16:15 risk and danger.

11:16:16 And that comes down to the person in the intersection,

11:16:20 the motor vehicle, and the responding law enforcement

11:16:23 groups that have been to deal with violations of the

11:16:26 law in the intersection.

11:16:30 Somebody soliciting in the intersection is technically

11:16:33 defined as a pedestrian.

11:16:34 There are rules and regulations to cross the roadways

11:16:36 on signalization, especially in the major

11:16:38 intersections.

11:16:40 When we look at our data, we have shown that the police

11:16:44 have responded to approximately 2300 calls, over 100

11:16:47 days, about an average of three a day.

11:16:49 On top of that, there's been an arrest at least once

11:16:53 out of those four occasions because we have about one

11:16:57 arrest a day over the past 100 days of analysis.

11:17:00 That creates risk.

11:17:02 It creates risk to the officer, creates risk to the

11:17:04 motoring public and creates risk to the person that's

11:17:07 in the intersection.

11:17:08 We continue down that public safety risk analysis by

11:17:11 saying that if you are in the intersection and you are

11:17:13 engaging the motoring public there's a risk to the

11:17:16 person that's soliciting.

11:17:18 There's a risk to the drivers who are distracted from

11:17:20 all the many things, that we know you can be distracted

11:17:24 in driving.

11:17:25 An intersection is inherently a dangerous place.

11:17:27 That's why all the rules of the road tend to center

11:17:29 around approaching an intersection.

11:17:31 And that zone typically starts about 100 to 150 feet

11:17:35 away from an intersection.

11:17:37 The lane shifting changes, all the rules of engagement

11:17:41 change as you approach an intersection, which is why an

11:17:43 intersection is a dangerous place, even if you are

11:17:46 following the design of the intersection.

11:17:48 Because they are not designed for that, we elevate that

11:17:51 risk by having somebody operating in and within that

11:17:55 intersection without crossing it on signalization as a

11:17:58 pedestrian would normally do that.

11:18:01 I added the data of our crash analysis showing that we

11:18:04 have had on average 133 pedestrians injured in our

11:18:08 roadways over the past three years.

11:18:10 The past two years of that has been slightly higher

11:18:13 than average.

11:18:14 We also are higher on pedestrian fatalities, not to

11:18:19 mention our total fatalities.

11:18:20 So as we look to quantify and then legislative

11:18:27 legislate risk, in the roadways, whether it's one

11:18:30 person or 50 persons, whether it's seven days a week or

11:18:33 during daylight hours, we are managing risk.

11:18:35 We are managing the risk to the people in the roadway,

11:18:38 the motorists, and then again every officer -- and I'll

11:18:42 bring in a mode of compassion here, I can guarantee you

11:18:46 that all 300 of those calls that officers responded to

11:18:49 was due to some violation whether witnessed or

11:18:52 response, and could have yielded an arrest.

11:18:54 So it shows you that there's warnings being given,

11:18:57 discussions being given in the intersection on how to

11:19:00 navigate the current ordinance with safety, but yet it

11:19:03 still end up as at least one arrest in every one of

11:19:07 those four encounters.

11:19:08 That's putting our officers at danger in the middle of

11:19:11 moving traffic because it's not like you can go to a

11:19:13 call, call time out and move to a safe area to figure

11:19:16 out what's going on.

11:19:17 They have to engage the person in the environment that

11:19:19 they are in in the beginning.

11:19:22 And it adds danger to the police officers working in

11:19:25 those intersections.

11:19:26 I also discuss the idea of configuration of the people

11:19:30 who are putting in the intersection with the vest.

11:19:34 There's confusion between an solicitor and a

11:19:37 construction worker who may have a proper maintenance

11:19:39 or traffic plan to navigate around areas with equipment

11:19:43 and training and skill sets to go with that.

11:19:46 All of these things add to the risk category, not to

11:19:50 mention that it hard to quantify at this point, but the

11:19:54 rear enders of stop and go traffic.

11:19:56 When the light turns green, traffic expect to go.

11:19:58 The intersections have been congested.

11:20:00 We know that we have challenges with the motoring

11:20:05 public every day with volume.

11:20:06 So every time you create a stop and go environment

11:20:09 that's not designed in the intersection by regulations

11:20:11 of traffic control signals, law enforcement direction,

11:20:14 you are adding to the opportunity for rear-end

11:20:16 collisions, and actually the people are standing there

11:20:20 could be the fodder of those crashes as cars start to

11:20:24 depart from each other in a collision.

11:20:26 We know it's a risk.

11:20:28 We understand that.

11:20:29 And of course we understand all the root causes.

11:20:41 And the causes in the intersection, but we can say

11:20:45 without a doubt, with our data and our experience,

11:20:48 being in the intersection, operating in the

11:20:49 intersection, outside the regulations and the design of

11:20:53 the intersection is inherently dangerous.

11:20:55 >> Any questions at this time?

11:21:00 >> Let me ask the question I was going to ask.

11:21:04 >>THOMAS SCOTT: You have a question.

11:21:04 And then councilman Capin.

11:21:08 >>MARY MULHERN: Your data is based on calls gotten so

11:21:11 there are actually legitimate -- what did you say, one

11:21:14 arrest a day?

11:21:16 >>> We created a signal to track this so we can do some

11:21:19 analysis around it, about four month ago now.

11:21:22 And what we wanted to do, if a citizen called in and

11:21:26 said somebody was being aggressive, it was kind of

11:21:29 lumped under a broad signal, and you couldn't separate

11:21:32 this activity from other activities.

11:21:34 So we created a special suffix and we ran that data to

11:21:40 be see if the trend is going up, staying the same.

11:21:43 We added about 300 calls of service.

11:21:45 >> Over four month?

11:21:47 >> No, over foe three months.

11:21:48 About is hundred days.

11:21:49 So about three a day.

11:21:50 >> Three a day, and one --

11:21:53 >> And obviously we are make being one arrest a day.

11:21:56 >> So that's based on our current law?

11:21:58 >> That's based on our current law.

11:22:00 >> Councilwoman Capin, then councilman Stokes.

11:22:05 >> When you said the rear end is hard to quantify,

11:22:16 could you explain?

11:22:17 >> Well, when you go to a rear-end collision, typically

11:22:21 you are going to find the person that struck somebody

11:22:23 in the rear, arguably 99% of the time is going to be at

11:22:27 fault.

11:22:28 But what they are going to say is they expected the

11:22:30 person in front to go, and because they didn't go it

11:22:32 caused a chain reaction.

11:22:34 When they saw the light was green people are moving and

11:22:36 stopping and you rear end somebody, they are going to

11:22:38 be at fault for following too closely or careless

11:22:41 driving.

11:22:41 But it's the rip he'll effect of somebody trying to get

11:22:44 out of the road after the light turns green, which of

11:22:46 course is still a violation of the current ordinance,

11:22:49 but all those things kind of see them every single

11:22:53 moment, witnessed by a police officer.

11:22:56 We get the tail end of that problem, which is the

11:22:58 crash.

11:22:58 So most folks when we get to the crash scene says,

11:23:03 well, I had a rear-end accident because this person

11:23:05 didn't go.

11:23:06 Why they didn't go doesn't necessarily make it to the

11:23:08 police report.

11:23:08 That's why it's hard to quantify: But they are all

11:23:12 surrounding intersections.

11:23:13 And legally does it matter why they didn't go?

11:23:17 As far as the crash is concerned, legally, does it

11:23:19 matter why they didn't move in the crash?

11:23:23 >> Well, there is a statute for obstructing the flow of

11:23:26 traffic.

11:23:26 >> Okay.

11:23:27 >> If you have to stop for something that's in the

11:23:32 roadway, technically, let just say it's a pedestrian.

11:23:36 >> Right.

11:23:36 >> That's illegally crossing in the intersection and

11:23:39 you stopped because you don't want to hit a pedestrian

11:23:41 regardless of whether they are right or wrong, and the

11:23:43 person hits you in the rear, and of course if that

11:23:46 testimony doesn't get to the officer, it's left to,

11:23:49 well, I had to stop, whether it be a dog crossing the

11:23:52 street or pedestrian in the roadway or a bicyclist that

11:23:55 just came out of traffic, and that person hit them in

11:23:58 the rear, technically they are going to be at fault.

11:24:01 >> Okay.

11:24:03 Thank you.

11:24:04 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilman Stokes.

11:24:07 >>CURTIS STOKES: Thank you, Chairman Scott.

11:24:08 A quick question of Mr. Fletcher E.

11:24:12 Mr. Fletcher, if we go ahead with the partial ban

11:24:15 today, can we still limit it to days of the week?

11:24:20 Is it possible to do that?

11:24:24 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: That's the evidentiary part that

11:24:26 we were discussing earlier.

11:24:29 The chief and Ms. Dorzback would need to speak to that

11:24:32 as to whether or not they can give you testimony,

11:24:37 expert testimony, that there is a safety difference

11:24:40 between the periods that we are talking about.

11:24:43 So they would need to be able to provide that.

11:24:45 We can't just anecdotally decide we think one way is

11:24:49 safer than the on the.

11:24:50 We have to have some empirical evidence to support

11:24:52 that.

11:24:52 >> Can Ms. Dorzback give us that information today?

11:24:56 >> I was going to have her come as soon as we are done

11:24:58 with legal, she can come and give her report.

11:25:01 >>CURTIS STOKES: Okay.

11:25:02 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Do you need to ask legal a question?

11:25:04 Ms. Dorzback will you come at this point?

11:25:15 >>JEAN DORZBACK: Transportation manager.

11:25:16 We have a lot of information that we have been asked to

11:25:18 provide.

11:25:19 And I just want to point out that that information

11:25:21 doesn't change in terms of the roadway, regarding

11:25:25 whatever policy issues is being discussed.

11:25:30 We have rules, regulations, permitting, criteria,

11:25:34 standards, and we apply all of that, on a regular

11:25:38 basis, in whatever regard we are doing in terms of our

11:25:42 roadways.

11:25:42 Let me just say for clarification purposes in terms of

11:25:45 the roadway that you have under consideration today,

11:25:49 for the partial ban, you have identified -- we have

11:25:52 identified arterials, interstates and ramps as part of

11:25:56 this ordinance.

11:25:56 I just want to mention the difference between the

11:26:00 arterials and the collectors, that's all on the record,

11:26:03 and clear it with everyone.

11:26:05 We basically consider an arterial roadway to be the

11:26:08 major roadways that most vehicles would travel on to

11:26:13 get for a long distance trip.

11:26:15 Those include our interstates, our ramps, the state

11:26:18 roadway systems, and any other roadway that would carry

11:26:21 a person to key locations or at a high volume, or for

11:26:26 long distance trip.

11:26:28 And we have outlines what falls into that category.

11:26:33 We also have collector roadways that we identify that

11:26:37 basically are roadways that have a lesser intense level

11:26:41 of volume and speed and trip lengths, and those are a

11:26:48 lesser nature than arterial roadways, and we have a set

11:26:51 of criteria that goes with that in differentiating

11:26:54 between the two.

11:26:54 So this is a standard way of identifying the function

11:26:58 of the roadway, whether it falls into one category or

11:27:03 the other.

11:27:04 And we don't look at the functioning of the roadway to

11:27:09 difference whether there is a holiday or weekend or

11:27:13 daytime.

11:27:13 The functioning of the roadway is a constant N.terms of

11:27:19 that being different on the weekends, that's not the

11:27:22 case in terms of the roadway function.

11:27:25 So one of the issues was whether the consideration for

11:27:32 just weekends versus weak days, and again our position

11:27:35 on that is that even though we may have a lesser volume

11:27:39 on the weekend than during the weekday, you have

11:27:42 special events, you have detours, you have other

11:27:45 situations that allow those roads to continue to

11:27:48 function on the weekend in the manner that they need to

11:27:52 in order to carry the traffic that may be using those

11:27:54 roadways or those times.

11:27:59 One of the reasons we don't have the data currently

11:28:02 that we would like to have -- we are working on doing

11:28:05 that -- is we had our traffic counters involved in a

11:28:08 very serious accident a couple of years ago.

11:28:10 They were out on the roadway collecting the data that

11:28:13 we need to make different engineering planning and

11:28:16 design decisions, and one of our staff members was

11:28:19 killed, and the other one was seriously injured.

11:28:22 So whether you have a purpose to be on the roadway or

11:28:25 not, our goal is to minimize the pedestrian interface

11:28:30 with the roadway at all times, because it is a very

11:28:32 dangerous situation to be on the roadway or be crossing

11:28:37 the roadway.

11:28:39 So again, we continue to work with the police

11:28:42 department to maintain our goal of minimizing accidents

11:28:48 that will occur on the roadway.

11:28:50 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, any questions?

11:28:54 Councilman Stokes.

11:28:56 >>CURTIS STOKES: What we do acknowledge is there isn't

11:28:59 much traffic on those roads on the weekends?

11:29:02 >>JEAN DORZBACK: I have received information recently,

11:29:04 the Department of Transportation has several continuous

11:29:07 counts count stations that collect data.

11:29:10 These are not people, these are machines that count the

11:29:13 vehicles.

11:29:14 And they have several stations that collect the data on

11:29:17 the weekdays and the weekend.

11:29:19 If you look at those volumes, generally speaking, the

11:29:23 volumes are less on the weekends than during the

11:29:25 weekday.

11:29:27 That is true.

11:29:28 However, there are situations where if the volume is

11:29:32 lower, the human-based behavior tendency is for, in

11:29:37 many cases, for the speeds to go up, because there's

11:29:40 less traffic, people have the tendency to want to get

11:29:42 where they are going quicker, and so we see very often

11:29:46 that the speeds increase when the volumes drop, and of

11:29:49 course the higher the speed, the hair for the chance of

11:29:51 an accident occurring.

11:29:54 Stokes stoke thank you very much.

11:29:56 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Any other questions?

11:29:58 Councilman?

11:30:04 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Chief, you said you had about 300

11:30:07 calls and you were making one arrest per day?

11:30:09 >> Yes, sir.

11:30:10 >> Were any of those victims people selling newspapers?

11:30:15 >> When you say victims, you mean a arrestees?

11:30:17 >> Yes, sir, the arrestees?

11:30:21 >>> Not that I am aware of.

11:30:22 >> It hasn't been brought to my attention.

11:30:25 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: So most of them have been

11:30:26 panhandlers?

11:30:27 >>> Well, of course, violating one of those ordinances

11:30:30 and/or was aggressive, or we also, as apart of the

11:30:34 warning process, have a memorandum with FDOT, Florida

11:30:39 Department of Transportation, to exercise a trespassing

11:30:41 rule in the intersection if we need to: So it's one of

11:30:44 those three categories.

11:30:45 >> So in your opinion you feel it would be safe for a

11:30:48 newspaper people as they are selling newspapers like on

11:30:51 a weekend, it would be a safe --

11:30:55 >>> Councilman, I can't separate the risk between

11:30:57 people selling papers or panhandling.

11:31:00 Just being in the environment is dangerous.

11:31:04 You are in an area.

11:31:05 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: I yeah, I understand.

11:31:07 >>> It's dynamic.

11:31:09 On the arrest data to me doesn't match up or correlate

11:31:12 to the risk factor being in the intersection.

11:31:14 The intersection, being in the intersection is

11:31:17 inherently dangerous.

11:31:18 And we have shown that.

11:31:19 We have responded to calls.

11:31:21 We have made arrests.

11:31:23 And it continues to put that picture of danger into the

11:31:29 intersection by operating in it.

11:31:30 >> So I presume they have training and told what to do

11:31:33 or what not to do.

11:31:34 So it would alleviate some of the problems of them

11:31:38 being arrested for violating or interfering with

11:31:43 traffic?

11:31:43 >> Well, I mean, I think the thing of that we can't

11:31:46 separate is the fact that if you are selling a

11:31:48 newspaper, on the motorist side, there's a desire to

11:31:53 have the paper.

11:31:54 One of ordinances is aggressiveness.

11:31:56 We haven't had a report of a newspaper person being

11:31:58 aggressive, you know, to market the newspaper.

11:32:01 So that transaction is mutual.

11:32:03 It's not contentious.

11:32:05 So that probably lends itself to why there's no arrests

11:32:09 in that category.

11:32:10 >> Thank you.

11:32:13 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, the issue, for City Council, is

11:32:17 under the statute we cannot separate out.

11:32:19 That's the dilemma we have.

11:32:21 We have got to keep it in context that we cannot

11:32:24 separate out.

11:32:24 If I can separate it out, believe me, I would do that.

11:32:27 But what I have been told from legal, we can't do that.

11:32:31 And be Constitutional.

11:32:33 That's the dilemma that we have.

11:32:34 The dilemma is you cannot separate newspaper vendors

11:32:38 out from those who are panhandlers or out from those

11:32:41 who are out collecting for nonprofit organizations.

11:32:45 That's the dilemma that we have.

11:32:47 And so if we could do that, I will be the first one to

11:32:50 do it.

11:32:52 Terry camp is in my church, works for the Tribune who

11:32:57 is a contractor who said to me, pastor, is there

11:33:00 something else we can do other than this?

11:33:01 You are affecting my business.

11:33:04 The issue is, it is a legal one that we are faced with

11:33:08 here.

11:33:13 >>CURTIS STOKES: Question.

11:33:13 If we don't want to single out newspapers, this is a

11:33:18 question to you, Chip, is it possible that we allow

11:33:21 some sort of panhandling on Tuesday, Friday, Sunday, to

11:33:25 allow the newspapers or anybody to be able to sell

11:33:28 their wares, or to solicit on weekends?

11:33:33 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Again, we need to have --

11:33:37 >> We are not singling out newspapers.

11:33:39 >> Well, I would like not to have this conversation

11:33:48 right now but this is also what we can't do.

11:33:50 We can't, without a factual predicate, we can't pick

11:33:54 certain times of day or certain days of the week that

11:33:58 would indirectly favor a sector that we can't directly

11:34:06 spell out.

11:34:09 If, for instance, you knew there was a group of people

11:34:11 who solicited on Mondays, and only on Mondays, you

11:34:14 couldn't decide that you were going to have a ban every

11:34:17 other day of the week except Monday.

11:34:20 Simply because you were trying to facilitate that

11:34:24 activity.

11:34:25 That would be seen by the courts without a factual

11:34:28 predicate like we are talking about where there's a

11:34:30 difference in some safety factor.

11:34:35 That would be seen as doing something indirectly that

11:34:38 you can't do directly.

11:34:39 So that's why we keep going back to you need an

11:34:44 evidentiary predicate for differentiation between

11:34:47 roads, between differentiation between days of the

11:34:49 week, or times of the day.

11:34:50 >> So if we left it to the roads and allow partial

11:34:57 solicitation on, say, Tuesday, Friday, Sunday, is that

11:35:02 possible?

11:35:03 >> Only if there is an evidentiary predicate to suggest

11:35:06 that Tuesday is different than Monday.

11:35:08 >> (speaking from audience).

11:35:18 >>THOMAS SCOTT: No.

11:35:19 [Sounding gavel]

11:35:20 Council, please understand, according to legal, the

11:35:24 compromise here is the best solution.

11:35:26 I'm telling you.

11:35:30 Please, please, please.

11:35:31 [Sounding gavel]

11:35:32 You only have several options.

11:35:34 Ban it completely, or you do a partial ban based on

11:35:38 arterial roads so those who are selling papers still

11:35:41 can continue to do that within certain parameters.

11:35:47 Councilman Miranda, then Councilwoman Mulhern.

11:35:54 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Of the roads that would be allowable

11:35:56 to do, would it be then that we become more dangerous

11:36:01 there now because whatever traffic is there is really

11:36:03 going to slow down?

11:36:06 And you are going to have rear-end collisions and so

11:36:08 forth and so on?

11:36:10 If you are saying that the partial ban is for main

11:36:15 roads that use a lot of traffic, and I understand that

11:36:18 and appreciate that.

11:36:20 And then you are saying that it will be allowable in

11:36:23 roads that have less traffic, and an assumption could

11:36:28 be said that that would mean that if somebody is used

11:36:32 to driving in a slow area, at a slow speed, without too

11:36:36 much distraction, all of a sudden this is to the

11:36:42 neighborhood -- and that's what we are talking about --

11:36:44 not main roads, not roads that carry a lot of traffic,

11:36:46 but roads that are very narrow, that carry much less

11:36:50 traffic, and now you are surprised that everything is

11:36:54 backed up, I would make an assumption -- and again this

11:36:58 is an assumption -- that these roads will be just as

11:37:01 dangerous, if not more dangerous, than any road in the

11:37:03 city, because now whatever you had in a larger area of,

11:37:08 let's say, 130 square miles, you are dumping into a

11:37:12 smaller area that may be 25 miles.

11:37:14 So the assumption would be that more sellers and more

11:37:21 panhandlers who create an enormous problem inside the

11:37:24 neighborhood, not outside the neighborhood.

11:37:27 And that being said, before you answer it, let me say

11:37:30 that if way heard from the legal department is true,

11:37:33 then the ordinance from Alachua County is

11:37:36 unconstitutional.

11:37:38 I don't know if it is or not.

11:37:40 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Let me address.

11:37:45 That because of the first amendment component the court

11:37:47 applies what is called strict scrutiny.

11:37:50 They don't just look at what the ordinance says, they

11:37:54 look at the evidence supporting the ordinance F.there

11:37:55 is evidence information, traffic counts, traffic

11:38:00 accident, et cetera, that is supported treating certain

11:38:02 weekends differently, treating certain days of the week

11:38:05 differently, then you can treat certain days or

11:38:06 weekends differently.

11:38:09 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: But let me just say this.

11:38:10 And then I won't speak again, because this is my second

11:38:13 time.

11:38:14 Mr. Chairman, I know you are keeping time on all of us

11:38:16 that have spoken more than once.

11:38:19 But I'm not going to question you whether it accurate

11:38:21 or not.

11:38:24 Let me say this.

11:38:27 I think we are creating a larger problem by being

11:38:30 partial.

11:38:34 I will never support a partial

11:38:36 Because it goes into the neighborhood.

11:38:40 I'm willing to compromise.

11:38:44 Alachua County -- I don't need a traffic count to tell

11:38:48 you there's more traffic on Monday than there is on

11:38:50 Tuesday.

11:38:50 I mean, there's more traffic on Friday than there is on

11:38:53 Thursday.

11:38:54 And there's much less traffic on Sunday, maybe 50%

11:38:57 less, because I travel the roads all the time.

11:39:04 But that as it may, if this council chooses today to

11:39:06 work on that ordinance to pass the partial, I won't

11:39:09 vote for it.

11:39:10 I will vote for a full ban because that solves it all.

11:39:14 Not that I want to hurt the good people here.

11:39:16 But I'm not going to dump this into a neighborhood.

11:39:19 I refuse to do that.

11:39:21 I'm looking for a compromise to work this out if I can.

11:39:27 In the public setting.

11:39:28 We can't speak to each other, seven members of this

11:39:30 City Council.

11:39:30 So this is how we dot.

11:39:32 And I think you all understand that and can appreciate

11:39:34 that.

11:39:36 So what I am saying is, let's try to work it out.

11:39:39 If we can't, I will never support the partial ban

11:39:42 because pfft disruption it's going to cause to the

11:39:46 city.

11:39:48 And in my opinion may be even more unconstitutional

11:39:52 than what we have now, because are moving something

11:39:54 from somewhere outside the neighborhood to inside the

11:39:56 neighborhood that was never there.

11:39:58 Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

11:39:59 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilwoman Mulhern has the floor.

11:40:03 >>MARY MULHERN: I just want to clarify here.

11:40:07 I thought we heard -- and I know we all know from our

11:40:12 own experience that isn't as much traffic on a Sunday.

11:40:17 I'm sure there's evidentiary data to support that,

11:40:22 FDOT, I'm sure the city, the county.

11:40:24 So if we were to entertain that, I don't believe that

11:40:27 that would be a problem.

11:40:31 I don't believe that one day a week is going to harm

11:40:39 anyone.

11:40:41 I just want everyone to know that this council, I don't

11:40:44 know, I'm pretty sure none of us has had a good night's

11:40:48 sleep in about four months.

11:40:52 And we care about everyone in this city, and we are

11:40:55 trying to do the right thing.

11:40:58 And it's difficult when you have an overwhelming

11:41:02 constant battering in the newspapers.

11:41:05 The same newspapers who want us to allow them to sell

11:41:09 their papers in the intersection are beating us up

11:41:13 every day, and are not reporting on anything that we

11:41:17 heard.

11:41:19 We had two people ask us, of however many people spoke

11:41:22 today, we had two people ask us for a complete ban.

11:41:27 The drum roll for us to ban panhandling, where are

11:41:31 those people?

11:41:32 Where are those people from the city that think this is

11:41:35 such a huge danger?

11:41:37 Are they here today?

11:41:42 So I just want everyone to know that as far as we are

11:41:45 concerned, there isn't a good solution.

11:41:48 There's nothing we can do to make everyone happy.

11:41:52 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilwoman Capin.

11:41:54 >>MARY MULHERN: I'm not done.

11:41:55 And to suggest that we take or think that we take

11:41:59 anyone's livelihood lightly is not true, and, you know,

11:42:08 it's a tough spot to be in.

11:42:09 And the City Council has come to be kind of the

11:42:16 scapegoat for everyone's frustration with the economy

11:42:19 and a lot of on the things, and people like to have an

11:42:24 enemy, and we are it this month and this last few

11:42:27 months.

11:42:27 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Let me remind Councilwoman Mulhern and

11:42:31 all of the council persons, I am the chair.

11:42:34 I will be respected.

11:42:37 We have a rule that allows only to speak two times.

11:42:42 The chair has gone over that graciously because it's a

11:42:45 tough issue.

11:42:46 And so I want to call the attention, I will not be

11:42:50 disrespected.

11:42:51 You will respect me as the chair.

11:42:53 Okay.

11:42:53 And so I went over those.

11:42:56 Everybody here has spoken at least two times.

11:42:58 We have gone over that.

11:43:00 Councilwoman Capin.

11:43:02 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Thank you, chairman.

11:43:03 I want ton ask my council members if they would

11:43:08 consider, because the data that we have is a year and a

11:43:16 half ago, if they would consider an outside study, if

11:43:26 in fact there is factual predicate for the weekend,

11:43:34 from banning the weekends.

11:43:38 I would like to know if council would entertain that in

11:43:42 order to get the empirical evidence to support what we

11:43:49 are proposing today.

11:43:54 I have not seen the evidence that is factual predicate

11:43:59 for the weekend, and I would like to ask council if

11:44:06 they would entertain an outside study.

11:44:11 I think there is a factual predicate for this.

11:44:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Excuse me.

11:44:19 >>YVONNE CAPIN: For traffic counts.

11:44:21 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilman shall Miranda.

11:44:23 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: You said Miranda.

11:44:27 >>THOMAS SCOTT: I do apologize.

11:44:31 Councilman Caetano.

11:44:34 The distinguished gentleman from new Tampa now has the

11:44:37 floor.

11:44:38 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: I have to disagree with Ms.

11:44:42 Capin.

11:44:43 We just had the county participate in a six-month

11:44:45 study.

11:44:46 I don't think we need money to spend to get another

11:44:48 study, because that's what government is great for.

11:44:50 They study, they study, and study.

11:44:53 It's not necessary.

11:44:55 I don't think we should vote on this today.

11:44:57 I think we should wait till the county comes out with

11:45:00 their determination of what they are going to do.

11:45:03 They spent a lot of time on this.

11:45:05 And there was some news yesterday in the newspaper.

11:45:10 And I would like to ask Mr. Fletcher a question.

11:45:14 Are you aware that there is a state senator that has

11:45:17 legislation that will be pending -- I don't know

11:45:20 whether it's been filed under the transportation

11:45:22 bill -- to ban panhandling?

11:45:26 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: No, I am not aware of anything

11:45:28 that has been filed, nor have we communicated directly

11:45:31 with personally with any legislate oars on this topic.

11:45:34 >> It probably has not been filed, but I did talk to

11:45:36 their office, and they are contemplating on filing a

11:45:41 bill in the state that would change our statute.

11:45:45 I don't know if it's been done yet.

11:45:47 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: That's certainly within the P

11:45:51 purview of the legislature, if they were to fix the

11:45:53 statute that I described when I opened the discussion

11:45:55 earlier, that would certainly solve many of the issues.

11:45:58 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Okay.

11:45:59 I don't feel we should vote on this today.

11:46:01 Let's wait for the county.

11:46:03 Then we are going to have conflicting rules and

11:46:05 regulations.

11:46:07 I don't think we should do it.

11:46:08 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, let me just say, so we can bring

11:46:11 this to a close here, bring to the a close.

11:46:14 Let me just say to all of us, and to the public here

11:46:17 today, I have spent a great deal of time on this

11:46:21 particular issue, meeting with legal, meeting with the

11:46:24 chief of police, meeting with persons out in the

11:46:27 community, and first of all, this is an issue that we

11:46:30 have been dealing with the last two years, as I recall,

11:46:33 so for those who think this is an issue based on the

11:46:36 election, I want to point out, this started two years

11:46:40 ago, okay?

11:46:42 And we put it off and put it off waiting on the county

11:46:44 to come forward with something.

11:46:47 Secondly, I point out, particularly to Councilwoman

11:46:50 Mulhern, I don't know where you have been, but

11:46:52 everywhere I have been in materials of a political

11:46:55 forum, the outcry has been for a total ban, know it a

11:46:57 partial ban, but a total ban.

11:46:59 So I want you to know I am not disfavoring anybody

11:47:02 here, because even where I have gone they want a full

11:47:05 outright ban, period, seven days a week, okay?

11:47:08 My position is that a partial ban is somewhat of a

11:47:12 stop-gap measure that will allow those to sell

11:47:16 newspapers to continue, whether they are selling during

11:47:18 the week on Tuesday and Friday or Sunday and Saturday,

11:47:21 still have the opportunity to do that, to address the

11:47:25 problem where they are occurring now.

11:47:28 The problems that are occurring now is on major

11:47:30 arterial roads.

11:47:32 And so my intent is to try to address those problems.

11:47:35 Then you can always come back, should that not work.

11:47:39 You can always come back.

11:47:40 The other thing is, Mr. Fletcher and I spoke to him

11:47:43 about that.

11:47:44 That has not been any evidence where there has been a

11:47:46 complete ban where they have gone into the

11:47:48 neighborhoods.

11:47:49 Will you speak to that rale quickly, please?

11:47:52 That's been my understanding.

11:47:53 >> Based on our communication was other jurisdictions

11:47:56 including some from the city-county working group on

11:48:01 this issue, was that really there has been movement,

11:48:07 say, to parking lots or things like that, but not into

11:48:11 neighborhoods.

11:48:12 That's anecdotal.

11:48:13 But that's been reported.

11:48:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you, sir.

11:48:19 Also, I will say the county on yesterday moved the

11:48:21 report they had, the report basically is to do what

11:48:26 they already have in place, and that is a total ban.

11:48:28 They already have that in place.

11:48:29 So they are coming back, councilman Caetano, they asked

11:48:34 the attorney to come back with an ordinance for a total

11:48:36 ban.

11:48:37 So they are not doing anything other than what they

11:48:38 already have on the books as well, Plant City, temple

11:48:43 ter ration, also the county.

11:48:44 Let me further state, let me further state, from my

11:48:48 opinion, from my opinion, that this is a compromise to

11:48:52 address the issue on a major arterial road that will

11:48:55 allow -- that will allow the newspaper vendors to

11:48:59 continue.

11:49:01 The law does not allow us, the law does not allow us to

11:49:04 distinguish or separate out.

11:49:08 So as a result of that, this is a compromise, a

11:49:10 stop-gap measure that you can always address should it

11:49:14 not work.

11:49:15 That was my intent to try to find a happy -- I will

11:49:18 tell you, the chief of police want a total ban.

11:49:21 However, they have agreed to support at least put

11:49:25 information in the record for what may be here today,

11:49:27 because that is a good start for us moving forward.

11:49:30 Now, in closing, and I see we need to vote on this

11:49:34 because it's going to move towards 12 and councilman

11:49:37 Miranda will not be here this afternoon -- please

11:49:40 understand, this is a difficult situation.

11:49:43 This is a tough issue.

11:49:48 Please, if we cannot have the talking, please.

11:49:55 I know what it is to be poor.

11:49:57 I grew up poor.

11:50:01 I know what it is to sell newspapers.

11:50:03 I have done that.

11:50:08 I know what it is to be hungry.

11:50:13 I know what it is to be not know where your next meal

11:50:21 is going to come from.

11:50:22 I know what it means to be abused by a feat, an

11:50:26 alcoholic.

11:50:26 I know all of that.

11:50:27 I walked that road.

11:50:28 I lived that life for years.

11:50:31 It pains me to see persons coming in here and beg us to

11:50:34 do this.

11:50:34 But, at the same time, even when my own parishioner

11:50:40 came and said, don't do this, it pains me.

11:50:44 But we are stuck between what the law says, what is

11:50:52 legally defensible.

11:50:56 Our options are few.

11:50:57 But what we can do is address the issue of the

11:51:00 homelessness on the 24th, which we have put on our

11:51:04 agenda to be addressed.

11:51:07 At least let's move forward today with this partial ban

11:51:10 and then address the issue on the 24th relative to

11:51:13 the homelessness.

11:51:17 Now, I don't know what the -- whether the votes are

11:51:20 here today or not.

11:51:21 That's up to council.

11:51:21 But at this time I will call for the reading of the

11:51:23 ordinance so we can movie.

11:51:24 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Need a motion to close.

11:51:27 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Motion to close?

11:51:29 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Before we do that, can we amend

11:51:31 the 30 feet to 100 feet as Mr. Rotella had suggested?

11:51:35 Because 30 feet in some of my streets in my district,

11:51:41 they are still going to be conducting business there.

11:51:43 And they are very busy intersections.

11:51:47 It's the second busiest intersection in this city.

11:51:50 Bruce B. Downs and Cross Creek.

11:51:51 And this was told to me by our traffic engineer Mr.

11:51:55 Mike -- I can't think of his last name.

11:51:57 The guy that runs the red lights.

11:51:59 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Legal?

11:52:05 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Mr. Chairman, as we looked at that

11:52:07 issue, 30 feet is what is in your ordinance.

11:52:13 That is one definition.

11:52:16 Frankly the least restrictive definition, orb tightest

11:52:21 definition within the intersection.

11:52:22 The other number that was discussed and put forward by

11:52:26 the transportation department was 150 feet.

11:52:29 That is used in a number of design standards and

11:52:31 studies as well.

11:52:32 So if you were going to change it -- and Ms. Dorzback

11:52:38 can speak to that -- we would recommend 150 feet.

11:52:41 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, is anyone going to read the

11:52:46 ordinance?

11:52:46 If not I will read it.

11:52:49 Close the public hearing.

11:52:49 Is there a motion?

11:52:50 Motion to close?

11:52:52 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: You can close the public hearing but

11:52:54 I still have the right to express my vote when I vote.

11:52:57 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.

11:52:58 Is there a motion?

11:52:59 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Mr. Chairman, I want to make a

11:53:01 motion to amend to 150 feet.

11:53:06 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, counsel, do you want to address

11:53:09 that issue for us? Do we close the public hearing on

11:53:11 that or do we need to wait?

11:53:16 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Before we close the public

11:53:18 hearing, I would ask Ms. Dorzback to be speak to what

11:53:21 the two numbers mean, why there's a difference, and

11:53:24 what would be the basis for using 150 if council

11:53:27 chooses to go that direction.

11:53:33 >>JEAN DORZBACK: Transportation manager.

11:53:34 The 30 feet that was previously referenced is basically

11:53:39 out of Florida statutes.

11:53:41 That has to do with stopping, standing or parking as it

11:53:43 relates to an intersection.

11:53:46 That is, as I said, in the Florida statute, a minimum

11:53:49 distance that can be put in, in terms of designing the

11:53:52 intersections, and that was originally proposed.

11:53:55 There have been discussions about what really

11:53:57 constitutes the intersection in terms of safety.

11:54:02 We use a distance of 150-foot in doing our intersection

11:54:05 analysis in terms of determining where accidents are

11:54:11 occurring.

11:54:13 This standard of 150-foot is referenced in the

11:54:15 multitude of national criteria, handbooks.

11:54:22 Basically the 150-foot comes out of the fact that as

11:54:26 you approach an intersection, there's a certain zone of

11:54:30 influence that occurs as you get closer to the

11:54:32 intersection.

11:54:33 As you approach an intersection, vehicles, drivers

11:54:37 start making a decision as to what is going to be the

11:54:41 movement of that intersection and start positioning

11:54:43 their vehicle in terms of where their destination is.

11:54:46 So there's weaving that occurs in the intersection

11:54:49 area, and that envelope, the two streets are

11:54:53 intersecting and drivers are making a decision on where

11:54:56 to go, is where the most conflict occurs.

11:54:59 So it's well established through, as I said, many

11:55:03 reference design guidelines, that when doing certain

11:55:07 design, accident analysis, and other planning and so

11:55:10 forth, that the 150-foot from the point of intersection

11:55:14 is what we consider the envelope of the intersection,

11:55:17 and the most dangerous point, because the more conflict

11:55:21 there is, the more opportunity there is for accidents.

11:55:25 That could be vehicle to vehicle or pedestrian to

11:55:27 vehicle accidents.

11:55:28 >> If I may, Mr. Chairman, just to make sure we are all

11:55:33 clear on what the motion is.

11:55:37 On page 3 of the proposed ordinance before you on line

11:55:40 15, there is a reference to the first 30 feet of the

11:55:47 approach.

11:55:49 The change would be to revise that to read the first

11:55:52 150 feet of the approach, and that is only on the

11:55:57 approaching roadway.

11:55:58 It doesn't speak to -- it only the approaching roadway,

11:56:03 intersecting roadway, not 150 feet from any part of the

11:56:07 roadway.

11:56:11 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Chairman, if I could ask the

11:56:13 attorney a question.

11:56:13 I am not a lawyer, and I certainly don't want this to

11:56:16 run forever on and on and on.

11:56:18 But is that a substantial change, and this at second

11:56:21 reading, at 30 feet is five times greater.

11:56:26 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: The most basic test as to whether

11:56:29 or not we have to go back to first reading is whether

11:56:31 or not we have to change the title.

11:56:33 In this instance, we would not have to change the

11:56:37 title.

11:56:39 It has been this council's policy when they have had a

11:56:45 change in policy, substance, to go back to first

11:56:51 reading, but technically, I don't know that that's

11:56:53 absolutely required in this instance.

11:56:55 >> So then what you are saying is if I have a zoning

11:56:58 matter that's 50 feet and it comes and changes to five

11:57:00 times 50, 250 feet that makes no difference?

11:57:04 >> It has not been the practice of this council to --

11:57:08 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I'm asking the volume of size, sir.

11:57:09 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: The volume --

11:57:13 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: It's different on everything that

11:57:14 comes in.

11:57:14 You know that and I know that and I am going to be

11:57:17 disrespectful.

11:57:18 I want to make sure that whatever is done is done that

11:57:24 it's right, and there's no litigation that will change

11:57:29 it.

11:57:34 You are the ones that are going to defend it, not me.

11:57:37 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Right.

11:57:38 Back to the most basic rule is the first reading is by

11:57:43 title.

11:57:48 If the setback you are indicating was in the title,

11:57:50 then it would have to be read, go back to first

11:57:54 reading.

11:57:55 What more often happens in a land use proceedings is

11:57:57 they have to change the site plan, which changes the

11:58:01 title.

11:58:02 But as I indicated, the city's practice has been when

11:58:05 there is a significant change between first and second

11:58:08 reading to go back to first reading.

11:58:10 >>MARTIN SHELBY: If I can follow up, Mr. Chairman, a

11:58:17 distinction, Mr. Fletcher, if I can add to that, is

11:58:19 this is not a quasi-judicial matter.

11:58:22 This is a legislative matter as well.

11:58:24 It's also a fairly debatable standard.

11:58:26 There's not a particular property interest involved in

11:58:28 this.

11:58:30 There is a notice and an opportunity to be heard.

11:58:31 This is a public hearing.

11:58:32 People have turned out.

11:58:32 People have given input to council.

11:58:34 And based on that input, council is deliberating.

11:58:37 And whatever motion it makes is based on the evidence

11:58:40 that it heard.

11:58:40 >>> Mr. Chairman?

11:58:49 >> No, sir, no, sir, I'm sorry.

11:58:50 So we have an amendment.

11:58:53 Is it an amendment, I guess it is?

11:58:55 >>MARTIN SHELBY: It's a motion to amend the ordinance.

11:58:56 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Which is five times restrictive.

11:59:05 There is a motion.

11:59:05 All in favor of the amendment signify by saying Aye.

11:59:08 Opposes?

11:59:12 >>THE CLERK: The motion failed with Capin, Miller,

11:59:14 Scott, Miranda, and Mulhern voting no.

11:59:16 >>THOMAS SCOTT: That's correct.

11:59:18 Back now to the main ordinance.

11:59:20 Motion to close, please.

11:59:21 >> So moved.

11:59:23 >> Second.

11:59:24 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

11:59:26 Opposes?

11:59:28 Okay.

11:59:28 Then I will release the gavel and read item 38.

11:59:34 Madam Chair, I move the following ordinance on second

11:59:36 reading for adoption, ordinance of the city of Tampa,

11:59:39 Florida amending City of Tampa code of ordinance

11:59:41 chapter 25, transportation amending section 2-1373

11:59:45 public safety requirement for soliciting businesses or

11:59:49 contributions within the street right-of-way, providing

11:59:51 for severability, repealing all ordinances or part of

11:59:54 ordinances in conflict therein, providing an effective

11:59:56 date.

11:59:56 >>GWEN MILLER: Do we have a second?

11:59:59 >>THOMAS SCOTT: You read which chapter?

12:00:05 I'm sorry.

12:00:06 Amending --

12:00:08 >>THOMAS SCOTT: 38, right be? That's the one I read.

12:00:09 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, so I need to read.

12:00:28 There's a change in the draft, typo.

12:00:33 Let me read it again.

12:00:35 I move on second reading the following ordinance, an

12:00:40 ordinance of the city of Tampa, Florida amending City

12:00:42 of Tampa code of ordinances chapter 25, transportation,

12:00:45 amending section 25-173 -- is that accurate? -- public

12:00:50 safety.

12:00:51 >>MARTIN SHELBY: That's correct, Mr. Chairman.

12:00:52 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Public safety requirement, for

12:00:56 soliciting business or contributions from within street

12:00:59 rights-of-way providing for severability, repealing all

12:01:02 ordinances or part of ordinances in conflict therewith,

12:01:05 providing an effective date.

12:01:05 >>MARY MULHERN: I second that, and I would like to say

12:01:08 that we passed this a few weeks ago as an attempt at a

12:01:12 compromise to keep people employed selling newspapers,

12:01:18 and despite discussion about other options and the

12:01:21 recommendations about selling on the weekends, there

12:01:24 obviously wasn't going to be support for that, and we

12:01:27 didn't get the legal department to even support it.

12:01:32 So this is the most -- this issue and this ordinance is

12:01:40 the most difficult thing that I have had to do on

12:01:43 council.

12:01:44 It almost convinced me not to even run for reelection

12:01:47 because I don't feel like this addresses any of the

12:01:50 problems.

12:01:51 I believe there were very eloquent speakers here today

12:01:55 to talked about panhandling being a symptom of a

12:01:59 disease, and the disease is our incredible, terrible

12:02:04 economy, the terrible economy we are in, the

12:02:07 unemployment, the homelessness, the foreclosures.

12:02:10 So I'm supporting this as a compromise out of

12:02:17 compassion and with the hopes that the St. Pete times

12:02:20 and the Tribune will realize that we are giving them an

12:02:24 opportunity to continue to do this, and they are just

12:02:26 going to have to do it in other places.

12:02:29 And we just have very few options here.

12:02:32 >>GWEN MILLER: Mr. Miranda?

12:02:35 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I am not going to support it.

12:02:36 It's like putting a person on a respirator and only

12:02:39 giving them half the energy to equipment to run the

12:02:43 equipment.

12:02:43 I they row rather die.

12:02:46 I will tell you I will not support a partial because it

12:02:48 does nothing but put the problem away into a smaller

12:02:51 area, all the neighborhoods, and it does not allow be

12:03:04 the same volume of sales.

12:03:05 So in order to say, now, let's do it, halfway, cone of

12:03:13 uncertainty do anything halfway where there's no

12:03:16 traffic way or where there's a one way or where there

12:03:18 is no way.

12:03:19 They have put me in a no-way situation write can't

12:03:22 support something that I feel is going to complicate

12:03:27 the problem.

12:03:27 No one has come here and said such and such a city has

12:03:30 done this and it works marvelous there.

12:03:34 I have found no evidence in any other reports that I

12:03:36 have heard today where those things were explained that

12:03:40 partial makes life easier.

12:03:41 It does not.

12:03:43 So I would support a full, even though I don't like it,

12:03:46 but I would support a full over something that's

12:03:49 partial.

12:03:50 So if this fails and somebody makes a motion for a

12:03:53 full, I will support it.

12:03:55 Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.

12:03:56 >>GWEN MILLER: Reverend Scott.

12:03:59 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, Madam Chair, let me just say

12:04:01 this.

12:04:03 We have passed the time for recess.

12:04:07 What we need to understand is a compromise, 14 years of

12:04:11 being a public servant has taught me that there are

12:04:14 times that you cannot get what you want so you come to

12:04:19 a compromise.

12:04:20 Pleas understand all of you out there, if you get a

12:04:22 total ban, you are not selling newspapers nowhere.

12:04:25 In a where.

12:04:28 For a total ban.

12:04:28 A partial ban, at least I have a chance, and I have an

12:04:31 opportunity to find me another location where traffic

12:04:36 is traveling.

12:04:37 You can shake your head all you want, but you want a

12:04:39 total ban?

12:04:40 I guarantee you, I guarantee you, if these folks right

12:04:47 here don't change by March 1st you will have a

12:04:49 total ban in this community.

12:04:50 I guarantee you.

12:04:51 >>GWEN MILLER: Mr. Caetano?

12:04:55 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: I still think we should wait

12:04:57 until the Hillsborough County commission comes out with

12:04:59 whatever they are going to come out with.

12:05:00 They met for six months.

12:05:01 And done a lot of study and spent a lot of money on

12:05:05 this.

12:05:06 My vote will be the same as the last one.

12:05:10 Thank you.

12:05:11 >>GWEN MILLER: Mr. Stokes are?

12:05:15 >>CURTIS STOKES: Thank you very much, Ms. Miller.

12:05:17 In the spirit -- what we have done today is come to a

12:05:21 conclusion that what we have done is put a Band-Aid on

12:05:24 this issue.

12:05:24 I think there's a clear difference between homelessness

12:05:26 and panhandling.

12:05:29 My appeal is to the corporate community and

12:05:34 philanthropic community we need to step up and solve

12:05:38 this issue of homelessness.

12:05:39 Let's reach out to Metropolitan Ministries, community

12:05:41 cafe, homeless coalition, and the Tampa crossroads to

12:05:45 help solve this problem.

12:05:47 Because what we have done today is put a Band-Aid on it

12:05:56 but we have to do something today.

12:05:57 Thank you.

12:05:58 >> We have a motion and second.

12:06:00 Vote and record.

12:06:03 Okay, Ms. Capin.

12:06:05 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I did not vote for this at the first

12:06:07 reading, and I will not be voting for it at the second

12:06:09 reading.

12:06:11 And I feel that it is not a solution, it is not a

12:06:18 solution.

12:06:18 It will continue.

12:06:22 And I agree that we have to start somewhere.

12:06:25 I'm hoping that we will look at the illness instead of

12:06:34 the symptom.

12:06:35 And the other thing I want to point out is there is a

12:06:44 predicate -- and I would like to point out that we have

12:06:46 a day and night ban, and I want to know that it was --

12:06:58 and I am going to read it because I wrote it here --

12:07:01 from a discrimination that is between night and day,

12:07:07 and what fact did we have to make that discrimination

12:07:13 when we passed this ordinance that we are in today, not

12:07:20 the motion that's here now, but what we have been

12:07:23 working with is between a day and night, and what fact

12:07:30 were brought before us to make that decision?

12:07:32 I was not here.

12:07:33 But it was made.

12:07:34 And what studies came to us for that?

12:07:39 Other than it's dark at one time and light at the next.

12:07:43 I will not be supporting it.

12:07:44 I do not believe it is a solution.

12:07:47 Thank you.

12:07:47 >>GWEN MILLER: Any other comments?

12:07:50 We have a motion and second.

12:07:51 Vote and record.

12:07:52 >>THE CLERK: The motion fails with Capin, Caetano,

12:08:08 Miller, Miranda, and Stokes voting no.

12:08:11 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.

12:08:18 All right.

12:08:18 Then the motion fails.

12:08:19 Then we stand in recess until 1:30.

12:08:23 Thank you very kindly.

12:08:24 (Noon recess.)


12:08:27 >> Tampa City Council will now come to order.

13:37:22 Roll call.

13:37:33 [Roll Call]

09:08:07 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Here.

09:08:10 >>GWEN MILLER: Here.

09:08:11 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Here.

09:08:14 >>CURTIS STOKES: Here.

09:08:15 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Here.

13:37:35 Okay.

13:37:35 We are back for our afternoon session.

13:37:37 We will pick up on item 39.

13:37:39 Could I get a motion to open --

13:37:41 >> Move to open all hearings through 49.

13:37:46 >> Second.

13:37:47 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:37:48 Opposes?

13:37:49 We need to swear all the witnesses in.

13:37:51 If you are going to be speaking, it's time to be sworn,

13:37:54 please.

13:37:54 (Oath administered by Clerk)


13:38:12 >> Item 39?

13:38:16 Anyone to speak on item 39?

13:38:18 >> Move to close.

13:38:19 >> Second.

13:38:19 >> An ordinance for second reading, vacating, closing,

13:38:27 discontinuing, abandoning a certain right-of-way a

13:38:31 portion of the that alley lying south of west Hilda

13:38:34 street north of west Cayuga street, east of north

13:38:38 Highland Avenue, and west of North Florida Avenue, in

13:38:41 meadow brook, a subdivision in the city of Tampa,

13:38:43 Florida and Hillsborough County, the same being more

13:38:47 fully described in section 2 hereof, subject to certain

13:38:50 covenants, conditions and restrictions as more

13:38:53 particularly described herein, providing an effective

13:38:54 date.

13:38:54 >> Second.

13:38:57 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Mulhern and Capin

13:38:59 being absent at vote.

13:39:03 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 40.

13:39:03 Anyone wish to be heard on item 40?

13:39:05 >> Move to close.

13:39:06 >> Second.

13:39:07 >> Moved and seconded.

13:39:08 All in favor?

13:39:10 >>GWEN MILLER: I move to adopt the following

13:39:12 ordinance, an ordinance authorizing the installation

13:39:13 and maintenance of encroachment existing on proposed

13:39:17 canopies by Florida health science centers over a

13:39:22 portion of the right-of-way known as south Magnolia

13:39:25 Avenue as more particularly described herein subject to

13:39:28 certain terms, covenant, conditions and agreements as

13:39:31 more particularly described herein providing an

13:39:34 effective date.

13:39:34 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

13:39:36 Record your vote, please.

13:39:37 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin and Mulhern

13:39:44 being absent at vote.

13:39:52 He.

13:39:52 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 41.

13:39:54 >> Good afternoon.

13:39:55 Abbye Feeley, land development coordination.

13:39:58 Item number 41 through 49 on your agenda this afternoon

13:40:01 require certified site plans.

13:40:03 Those site plans have been certified by the zoning

13:40:05 administrator and are available for your review.

13:40:09 When we get to item number 43 I have AP a substitution

13:40:13 on an exhibit but other than that everything can move

13:40:16 forward and staff has copies of those site plans if you

13:40:18 would like to see.

13:40:18 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 41.

13:40:24 Anyone wish to be heard on item 4 is?

13:40:27 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Move to close.

13:40:28 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Second.

13:40:29 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:40:31 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: An ordinance being presented for

13:40:32 second reading and adoption.

13:40:34 An ordinance amending ordinance number 2010-159 passed

13:40:39 and ordained by the City Council of the City of Tampa

13:40:42 on October 21, 2010, which approved a special use

13:40:46 permit 4(COP-X) for 208 South Howard Avenue, correcting

13:40:50 a scrivener's error by substituting a revised exhibit

13:40:54 "A" for the exhibit "A" that was supplied in error,

13:40:59 providing for severability, providing an effective

13:41:00 date.

13:41:03 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Second.

13:41:03 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

13:41:05 Record your vote.

13:41:12 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin and Mulhern

13:41:15 being absent at vote.

13:41:16 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 42.

13:41:20 Item 42.

13:41:21 Anyone wishing to be heard on item 42?

13:41:24 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Move to close.

13:41:25 >> Second.

13:41:26 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:41:27 Opposes?

13:41:28 Councilman Stokes, item 42.

13:41:30 >>CURTIS STOKES: An ordinance being presented for

13:41:32 second reading and adoption, an ordinance repealing

13:41:34 ordinance 99-261 approving a conditional special use

13:41:37 permit S-2 for alcoholic beverage sales, small venue

13:41:40 and making lawful the sale of beverages regardless of

13:41:43 alcoholic content beer wine and liquor 4(COP-X) for

13:41:46 consumption on premises only at or from that certain

13:41:49 lot, plot or tract of land located 1701 and 1702 North

13:41:53 Franklin Street, Tampa, Florida as more particularly

13:41:55 described in section 3 hereof providing for conditional

13:41:58 special use permit to expire one year from the

13:42:01 effective date, providing for repeal of all ordinances

13:42:04 in conflict, providing an effective date.

13:42:07 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by councilman Miranda.

13:42:08 Record your vote.

13:42:09 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin and Mulhern

13:42:17 being absent at vote.

13:42:20 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 43.

13:42:22 Staff wanted to speak on item 43, I think it is.

13:42:24 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Land Development Coordination.

13:42:29 I do have a substitute exhibit B-1 oh, B-2 and boundary

13:42:34 sketch.

13:42:35 These items were revised per the direction of City

13:42:37 Council and were handled by Ms. Coyle so they need to

13:42:43 be substituted.

13:42:44 This was a reduction of that outdoor area associated

13:42:46 with the request.

13:42:47 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Anyone wish to be heard on item 4 p 3?

13:42:58 >> Move to close.

13:43:00 >>CURTIS STOKES: Second.

13:43:01 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:43:03 Councilman Miranda, item 43.

13:43:05 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Is that the one I'm supposed to

13:43:08 read, Abbye?

13:43:10 I just want to make sure it's fine.

13:43:12 >>ABBYE FEELEY: It just the exhibit.

13:43:17 The ordinance should be correct.

13:43:19 >> Move an ordinance for second reading and adoption,

13:43:23 approving a special use permit S-2 for alcoholic

13:43:26 beverages large venues wine and liquor 4(COP-X) for

13:43:29 consumption on premises only at or from that certain

13:43:32 lot, plot or tract of land located 912 North Franklin

13:43:35 Street, Tampa, Florida as more particularly described

13:43:38 in section 2 hereof imposing certain conditions based

13:43:40 upon the location of the property providing for repeal

13:43:43 of all ordinances in conflict providing an effective

13:43:45 date.

13:43:45 >> Second.

13:43:49 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Along with all the document received

13:43:50 earlier.

13:43:51 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

13:43:52 Record your vote, please.

13:43:53 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin and Mulhern

13:43:56 being absent at vote.

13:43:57 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 44.

13:44:00 Item 44.

13:44:01 Anyone wish to be heard on item 44?

13:44:03 >> Move to close.

13:44:04 >> Second.

13:44:05 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:44:06 Opposes?

13:44:07 Councilwoman Miller.

13:44:08 >>GWEN MILLER: I move to adopt the following ordinance

13:44:11 for second reading, an ordinance approving a special

13:44:13 use permit S-2 for alcoholic beverage sales, small

13:44:16 venue and making lawful the sale of beverage containing

13:44:19 alcohol regardless of alcoholic content beer wine and

13:44:22 liquor 4(COP-R) for consumption on premises only in

13:44:25 connection with a restaurant business establishment at

13:44:27 or from that certain lot, plot or tract of land located

13:44:30 at 2908 West Gandy Boulevard, Tampa, Florida, and more

13:44:35 particularly described in section 2 hereof providing

13:44:38 for repeal of all ordinances in conflict, providing an

13:44:40 effective date.

13:44:40 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by councilman Miranda.

13:44:43 Record your vote.

13:44:44 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin and Mulhern

13:44:52 being absent at vote.

13:44:53 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 45.

13:44:55 Item 45.

13:44:56 Anyone wish to be heard on item 45?

13:44:59 >>GWEN MILLER: Move to close.

13:45:00 >> Second.

13:45:01 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:45:02 All right.

13:45:03 Councilman Caetano, item 45.

13:45:05 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: An ordinance being presented for

13:45:07 second reading and adoption, an ordinance rezoning

13:45:09 property in the general vicinity of 2612 North Tampa

13:45:11 Street in the City of Tampa Florida and more

13:45:14 particularly described in section 1 from zoning

13:45:16 district classifications RM-16 residential multifamily

13:45:20 to PD planned development, retail, convenience, goods

13:45:23 and shoppers goods and office, business/professional,

13:45:28 providing an effective date.

13:45:28 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by councilman Miranda.

13:45:32 Record your vote, please.

13:45:33 >> You get those names messed up.

13:45:42 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin and Mulhern

13:45:44 being absent at vote.

13:45:45 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 46.

13:45:49 Item 46.

13:45:50 Anyone wish to be heard on item 46?

13:45:52 >>GWEN MILLER: Move to close.

13:45:53 >> Second.

13:45:55 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:45:56 Councilman Stokes?

13:45:57 >>CURTIS STOKES: An ordinance being presented for

13:45:59 second reading and adoption, an ordinance rezoning

13:46:00 property in the general vicinity of 2908 west Azeele

13:46:03 street and 408 south Gomez Avenue in the city of Tampa,

13:46:07 Florida and more particularly described in section 1

13:46:09 from zoning district classification PD planned

13:46:12 development, office, medical, and RM-24 residential

13:46:15 multifamily to PD planned development, office, medical,

13:46:18 providing an effective date.

13:46:18 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Is there a second?

13:46:21 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Second.

13:46:21 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by councilman Miranda.

13:46:23 Record your vote.

13:46:24 >>THE CLERK: Emotion carried with Capin being absent

13:46:34 at vote.

13:46:35 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 47.

13:46:36 Anyone wish to be heard on item 47?

13:46:39 >>GWEN MILLER: Move to close.

13:46:40 >> Second.

13:46:40 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:46:41 Opposes?

13:46:42 Councilwoman Mulhern, do you want to read that?

13:46:44 >>MARY MULHERN: I move an ordinance being adopted at

13:46:50 second reading, and ordinance rezoning property in the

13:46:52 general vicinity of 3710 west Azeele street in the city

13:46:55 of Tampa, Florida and more particularly described in

13:46:57 section 1 from zoning district classifications PD

13:47:01 planned development, institutional, professional,

13:47:04 administrative, to PD, planned development, office,

13:47:06 medical and CN uses, providing an effective date.

13:47:08 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by councilman Miranda.

13:47:12 Record your vote.

13:47:12 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin being absent at

13:47:20 vote.

13:47:20 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 48.

13:47:24 Item 48.

13:47:24 Anyone wish to be heard on item 48?

13:47:26 >> Move to close.

13:47:29 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

13:47:30 All in favor?

13:47:31 Opposes?

13:47:33 Councilman Miranda.

13:47:34 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Move an ordinance for second reading

13:47:36 and adoption, an ordinance rezoning property in the

13:47:39 general vicinity of 3908 west Horatio street in the

13:47:41 city of Tampa, Florida and more particularly described

13:47:43 in section 1 from zoning district classifications PD

13:47:46 planned development office business professional, to

13:47:48 PD, planned development, office, business,

13:47:51 professional, school and related uses, providing an

13:47:53 effective date.

13:47:54 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by councilman Caetano. Record

13:47:56 your vote, please.

13:47:57 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin being absent at

13:48:02 vote.

13:48:03 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 49.

13:48:05 Anyone wish to be heard on item 49?

13:48:07 >> Move to close.

13:48:08 >> Second.

13:48:09 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

13:48:10 Councilwoman Miller.

13:48:11 >>GWEN MILLER: I move to adopt the following ordinance

13:48:14 upon second reading, an ordinance rezoning property in

13:48:16 the general vicinity of 3010 west DeLeon Avenue in

13:48:21 the city of Tampa, Florida more particularly described

13:48:23 in section 1 from zoning district classifications RM-24

13:48:26 residential multifamily to RO residential office

13:48:29 providing an effective date.

13:48:31 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by councilman Miranda.

13:48:33 Record your vote.

13:48:34 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin being absent at

13:48:42 vote.

13:48:43 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Item 50 has been continued.

13:48:53 We voted on that this morning.

13:48:55 51 and 52 we voted on this morning, right?

13:48:59 We are now down to 52 which is the water issue.

13:49:01 Councilman Miranda, since he has to leave.

13:49:07 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I reviewed this for many times and

13:49:09 spoke to the water department often, like every day,

13:49:11 once or twice.

13:49:13 I have come to have my own personal conclusions what is

13:49:15 going on.

13:49:17 Yes, there is part blame everywhere.

13:49:20 But I think we have to look at what has been constant,

13:49:25 and the constant has been since June -- and I can only

13:49:28 speak from my experience -- since June I noticed an

13:49:32 increase of something that I never had an issue with.

13:49:34 That's hey water bills.

13:49:35 It started multiplying, multiply being, multiplying, in

13:49:39 crescendo like they say in music in December and

13:49:42 January.

13:49:43 To a high amount.

13:49:44 What's so interesting about that?

13:49:46 That prior to June, it was not under the water

13:49:49 department, it was another department.

13:49:50 I'm not blaming anyone.

13:49:52 But what I'm saying is, I know the individuals here, I

13:49:55 know how they work, and I know how they demand

13:49:58 everybody earn their salary.

13:50:00 I am know not saying they didn't earn it before.

13:50:03 But what I am saying is, we have taken an attitude that

13:50:05 it's always somebody else's fault, not to anyone's

13:50:08 fault but ours.

13:50:10 However, I have received evidence that I have seen

13:50:12 myself where a case comes up, that the water is 18, 202

13:50:20 units, all of a sudden goes to 200 some, and the next

13:50:22 month it's 400 some, and the house is vacant.

13:50:26 They do send a gentleman out there from the water

13:50:29 department.

13:50:29 He goes out, tells the guy, turns the water off, they

13:50:32 look at the meter, not running.

13:50:33 Then they tell them go inside, turn everything on.

13:50:36 And it starts to work.

13:50:38 Like it's supposed to.

13:50:39 However, it goes from one to nine.

13:50:43 Ten is going to come next.

13:50:44 Instead of ten it comes to 100 because there was a dead

13:50:48 or defective meter.

13:50:49 And this was presented.

13:50:52 I have got the case.

13:50:52 I don't know if I have given it to Mr. Brad Baird yet.

13:50:56 There's another individual who was an individual, had

13:50:59 another property sitting, he was nice enough to take

13:51:01 photographs of the meter itself

13:51:03 At the time it was read, and photographed it.

13:51:05 They don't match.

13:51:07 So what I'm saying is, we have got a complex problem,

13:51:10 and the problem has no simple solution, and no one

13:51:14 answer to it.

13:51:15 And I think we have taken the right steps by saying no

13:51:18 one is going to get charged but the basic charge of the

13:51:20 first tier until we find out what's going on.

13:51:24 Like any other big company, with all the thousands we

13:51:27 have got over 125,000 water meters out there that we

13:51:30 read on a basis, I really believe that it's got to

13:51:34 change, and I did have lunch with the mayor last week,

13:51:36 and we discussed it for about an hour and a half, and I

13:51:41 think we have come to the conclusion that these

13:51:45 individuals that have a problem should be metered

13:51:48 monthly right now, and that the system has to be

13:51:50 changed, because look at any utility.

13:51:53 Electric, your phone, your TV, whatever you have,

13:51:58 electronically, how do you get the bill, every two

13:52:02 months?

13:52:03 No, every month.

13:52:04 Yes, it's going to be at a charge, and yes, there might

13:52:06 be some adjustments that have to be made, but I'm a

13:52:09 firm believer like you are, Mr. Chairman and the rest

13:52:11 of us, that these things should be done on a monthly

13:52:13 basis.

13:52:14 I don't know of any other utility that does it every

13:52:16 two month.

13:52:17 Maybe there are, but I don't know about it.

13:52:18 And I'm sorry that I have to leave, but these

13:52:20 appointments that are made during these hectic times in

13:52:26 our lives I can't change.

13:52:27 But I will be back.

13:52:28 And whatever is made has got to be approved by the

13:52:31 majority of council.

13:52:32 And I leave in the your lands to do the right proper

13:52:34 things, and I think you will.

13:52:35 But keep in mind that whatever happens, when the

13:52:39 drought is going to change back, and whoever stays here

13:52:42 and asks the questions, ask about the revenue.

13:52:45 I don't want to make it look good and then we do

13:52:48 something and then the bonding agency says, whoa, you

13:52:51 have done it to such degree that now you are going to

13:52:54 lose your status of a AA-rating and down to an A-rating

13:53:00 and pay more for the same amount of money and in

13:53:02 essence we are not helping no one.

13:53:03 So I leave you with that in mind.

13:53:05 I'm sorry I have to leave.

13:53:06 And that's what my short little statement is.

13:53:08 And thank you for what you do.

13:53:12 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you, sir.

13:53:17 Yes, sir?

13:53:18 >>> Can I come up?

13:53:24 Because the issue but the water bills.

13:53:26 I was here this morning and then you guys --

13:53:30 >>THOMAS SCOTT: During public comment?

13:53:31 >> Yes, it is, sir, public comment.

13:53:34 My water bill.

13:53:34 >> Go ahead.

13:53:35 >> My name is Jorge Astorquiza, Tampa, in the Drew Park

13:53:47 area.

13:53:48 The house has been vacant over one year and the

13:53:51 situation is this.

13:53:51 I got a bill for 3,243, on a vacant building.

13:54:00 I complained to the city, and I was bounced back and

13:54:02 forth from the city, and not answering whatever the

13:54:05 case may be.

13:54:06 I requested an inspection of the property, and the

13:54:11 meter, of course, and I had a man by the name of Ron

13:54:15 Carderoni, supervisor of maintenance came over and

13:54:20 checked the meter, and took the meter apart.

13:54:25 I'm sorry, I had a visit from inspector number 213 from

13:54:29 the city who came over, inspected the meter and left me

13:54:32 a card indicating that there were no leaks in the

13:54:36 building, no leaks whatsoever.

13:54:38 Mr. Carderoni went all around the building and found no

13:54:45 leaks.

13:54:45 In fact, he went a little further than that.

13:54:47 He put in a new meter.

13:54:49 The meter was checked by Mr. Joe Reed at the Spruce

13:54:57 location, and this man is supposed to be an expert in

13:54:59 meters.

13:55:00 There was nothing wrong with the meter.

13:55:02 However, we had a bill of $3,243.

13:55:07 However, during those months, I was being billed on a

13:55:10 monthly basis around $32, 33.

13:55:14 Around 32, 33, because some months were $32.

13:55:18 Some 33 and some months 31 and some change.

13:55:21 So there was a difference from one month to the other.

13:55:24 However there, was no water consumption.

13:55:26 Now, I spoke to a lady named Maria in the city

13:55:33 department, and she indicated to me that my meter had

13:55:38 not been read for over one year, which is quite

13:55:41 unusual, because meters are supposed -- I think maybe

13:55:46 the city doesn't care about reading meters.

13:55:51 However, whether the meter was read or not, to me

13:55:53 that's immaterial.

13:55:55 The fact of the matter is, it was billed on a monthly

13:55:58 basis, and the amount of money which was paid, and paid

13:56:01 up to date, all my bills, except for $3,243, which

13:56:10 reflect a usage of 60,300-gallons a month, which is

13:56:16 highly unusual.

13:56:16 Now, I sent a letter to Mrs. Regarr, the supervisor of

13:56:24 the accounting department, with copies, a CC of Mr.

13:56:30 Elias Franco and Mr. Brad Baird.

13:56:34 I still have not received an answer from them.

13:56:36 Now, the issue is this.

13:56:40 Mrs. Regarr had the audacity to tell me -- so I presume

13:56:46 all the homeless in Tampa are on my property, right?

13:56:52 However -- very serious about that.

13:56:58 Now, Mr. Carderoni, when he inspected my property, he

13:57:03 went around the property and all the spigots around the

13:57:06 property, all the others had seals, because the

13:57:10 building is vacant.

13:57:12 And he went inside.

13:57:13 (Bell sounds)

13:57:17 Am I finished?

13:57:18 >> Yes, your time is up.

13:57:19 >> I'm sorry, but I beg you to solve this problem,

13:57:22 because I don't think $3,243 in a month you use.

13:57:30 Thank you very much for listening to me.

13:57:32 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Council, before Mr. Daignault comes up,

13:57:35 I want to address -- whoever comes up.

13:57:38 But before they come, I need to address a few concerns

13:57:41 that I have.

13:57:42 First of all, as you very well know that I called for

13:57:46 an independent audit on Tuesday morning, as I recall.

13:57:52 Again, we got a memo from the administration on

13:57:54 Tuesday, late Tuesday afternoon.

13:57:57 I think all of us had that same memo.

13:58:02 Sir, if you could hold it, please.

13:58:04 Please.

13:58:05 This is council's chamber.

13:58:11 I got a memorandum from the administration late

13:58:14 afternoon addressing, I guess, some of the issues.

13:58:18 I think you all got the same memorandum.

13:58:20 And the memorandum that did point out says the second

13:58:27 line, as mayor I am responsible for the administration

13:58:29 of city government, and if we fall short in meeting the

13:58:32 expectation of the public, then I take responsibility

13:58:35 for any deficiency.

13:58:37 First of all, I want to clear under the charter, that

13:58:39 is accurate.

13:58:40 That is very accurate under the charter.

13:58:42 However, I do point out that this has been ongoing

13:58:46 since December, as I understand.

13:58:50 Those persons have been coming to us with their

13:58:52 concerns, and pretty much administration, the staff was

13:58:56 saying that based on their investigation that

13:58:59 everything seemed to be -- the blame seemed to be more

13:59:03 on the customers from the running toilet, leaking

13:59:07 toilets, you know, sprinkler heads and all of that, and

13:59:11 at no point appeared to be any solution coming to be

13:59:15 citizens who was really reaching for some answers to

13:59:18 their problem.

13:59:21 In this same memorandum, however, it began to state in

13:59:24 the last part of it an improvement, they would examine

13:59:28 and make recommendation on the following, which they

13:59:30 finally admit that there may be the bill needs to take

13:59:38 place, I think some call center issues, analysis of our

13:59:42 water system needs to be enhanced, so they do outline a

13:59:45 number of things there that were not brought to our

13:59:47 attention outlined in the previous reports.

13:59:50 All the reports I have had pretty much, even as late as

13:59:56 the 25th, 26th, says leaking faucets, sprinkler

14:00:00 heads, toilets and that sort of thing.

14:00:02 And the mayor does outline in her memo that she wants

14:00:07 to appoint an internal task force.

14:00:09 Well, I said it needs to be an independent audit.

14:00:12 That way, you know, you are getting a separate opinion,

14:00:16 independent opinion to come in and take a look at our

14:00:18 system.

14:00:19 We just heard this gentleman talking today about a

14:00:22 $3,000-some water bill.

14:00:25 Last meeting we were told it wags the tier system of

14:00:27 that we implemented, but we had to implement that based

14:00:29 on SWFWMD's recommendation to us.

14:00:32 Well, I took it upon myself also -- and let me just

14:00:35 pass this out -- to call all the surrounding counties

14:00:40 and municipalities.

14:00:42 They also are governed by SWFWMD, have a tier system,

14:00:46 and in calling all those, the question I asked, Plant

14:00:49 City, Temple Terrace, St. Petersburg, Pasco County,

14:00:54 they have not had a similar response.

14:00:57 There has been no complaints in terms of high water

14:01:01 bills usage and all of that.

14:01:02 So apparently there seemed to be the only problem

14:01:05 seemed to reside here in Tampa, and not in the

14:01:08 surrounding areas who have a tier system, and also

14:01:12 under SWFWMD.

14:01:13 So, again, I believe that we need an independent audit

14:01:18 to address the concerns and issues that we have for us,

14:01:21 in order to at least lend credibility to the city

14:01:24 government and let people know that we are doing the

14:01:26 best we can in terms of trying to address their

14:01:28 concerns and their problems.

14:01:30 So I wanted you to see that.

14:01:32 Councilwoman Mulhern.

14:01:34 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you.

14:01:38 Mr. Chairman, I just got an e-mail from some of my

14:01:40 neighbors in my block about their water bills doubling

14:01:44 just yesterday.

14:01:46 And I don't think we have gotten ours recently.

14:01:50 So probably mine will be that way, too.

14:01:53 I really appreciate all the research and the work that

14:01:56 Chairman Scott has put into this, and although it would

14:02:02 probably be helpful to have an independent audit, I

14:02:06 don't think that -- for one thing, what is City Council

14:02:10 doing, dealing with water use complaints?

14:02:13 The water department complaints?

14:02:15 We are the City Council.

14:02:16 We shouldn't have to be dealing with this.

14:02:18 How is it that we had a room full of people take a day

14:02:22 off work and come here to complain that they were

14:02:24 getting charged wrongly for their water bills?

14:02:26 The administration has to fix this.

14:02:28 I don't want to hear about a task force.

14:02:30 And I don't want our taxpayers to have to pay for an

14:02:33 independent audit.

14:02:35 And I don't want us to sit here meeting after meeting

14:02:38 dealing with this problem that needs to be fixed within

14:02:42 your department instead of making excuses and blaming

14:02:44 it on the customers.

14:02:45 Figure out what went wrong.

14:02:46 It looks like the mayor started to get to admit that

14:02:49 perhaps there were some problems.

14:02:51 I actually stopped my car when I was driving, because I

14:02:55 saw a meter reader out there, about two weeks ago, and

14:02:59 I asked him, I said, what do you think is going on?

14:03:02 And he said, well, he outlined three things.

14:03:05 Okay.

14:03:06 Maybe you should talk to one of your meter readers

14:03:09 because he has some ideas.

14:03:10 One of them was that the upgraded meters were now

14:03:16 reading correctly and they hadn't been reading before.

14:03:18 And these were just his theories of somebody who works

14:03:22 for you.

14:03:22 One of them was that the change in the billing system,

14:03:26 we have somebody new, we have a new system, we probably

14:03:28 have new personnel.

14:03:30 Look at that.

14:03:31 The other thing he said was perhaps people were having

14:03:34 difficulties, he said.

14:03:36 Often when you look at the meter, you can't read it

14:03:38 because the face of it is scratched up or there's dirt

14:03:41 or throws roots on top of it.

14:03:43 So it's perhaps the human error that the meter readers

14:03:47 can't read it correctly.

14:03:48 Okay.

14:03:49 This is not my job, and this is not any of our job to

14:03:52 fix this.

14:03:52 You need to fix this.

14:03:53 You need to quit blaming the customer and you need to

14:03:56 figure out what is going wrong in your department.

14:03:59 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, part of the issue is, there's no

14:04:04 forum other than here is why the customers have been

14:04:07 coming to the forum here, so we haven't addressed the

14:04:10 issue because they were here before us as elected

14:04:13 officials, and so because they vote for you and elected

14:04:17 you as well, they are now bringing the problem to us

14:04:20 because of they believe that we should be able to

14:04:23 address their concerns.

14:04:24 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you --

14:04:27 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Under the chart her it is the

14:04:27 administration's responsibility.

14:04:30 I agree with that.

14:04:30 That's in the memo. Yes.

14:04:31 >>MARY MULHERN: Mr. Chair, this is the third meeting

14:04:38 we have talked about or the second?

14:04:41 >> Third.

14:04:42 >>MARY MULHERN: Third meeting so that means over a

14:04:44 month we have been talking about this.

14:04:46 We approved the budget.

14:04:48 We deal with -- zoning and land use.

14:04:52 The administration hires people to do what's going on

14:04:56 in the water department and, now, we have had a lot of

14:04:59 layoffs.

14:05:00 Maybe there was a problem that people we know we

14:05:02 combined departments.

14:05:04 I don't know, but that is not our job to do it.

14:05:06 And I'm not going to vote for the taxpayers to have to

14:05:08 pay for an audit when for some reason, you know,

14:05:14 everybody makes mistakes.

14:05:16 You know, we are all in this crunch budget.

14:05:19 We have to deal with it.

14:05:20 So maybe something, you know, something went wrong.

14:05:24 Figure out what it is and fix it.

14:05:24 >>GWEN MILLER: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

14:05:31 You say we had two or three times, and the staff has

14:05:34 told us and we asked them to come back this time.

14:05:36 Why don't we give them a chance?

14:05:37 Maybe they found out what the cause and they can fix

14:05:40 it.

14:05:40 Let's give them an opportunity to know what they found

14:05:43 out and if they can fix it.

14:05:45 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilman Caetano?

14:05:46 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Yes.

14:05:47 The meeting I had last Friday, which Mr. Daignault and

14:05:51 Mr. Baird came to, was pretty well attended.

14:05:55 We had well over 100 people there.

14:05:56 And some of them got their answers, but some weren't

14:06:00 satisfied westbound the answers.

14:06:02 I know I spoke to one of my constituents who owns three

14:06:05 businesses, and one of his bills spiked three times

14:06:10 what went to $4900, and it's a business place, but his

14:06:15 other businesses are in the same district, but they are

14:06:19 consistent.

14:06:20 I have given those to Mr. Baird.

14:06:21 He's going to work on it.

14:06:23 But the thing is, when you call customer service, you

14:06:26 get a message, your call will be monitored.

14:06:29 Mr. Baird, do they monitor those calls?

14:06:31 Do we have a recording of all those calls?

14:06:40 >>BRAD BAIRD: Water department.

14:06:43 I don't believe we have the software at this time to

14:06:45 monitor those calls, but let me check into that, and

14:06:52 next time we will report back.

14:06:54 We are trying to come up with some enhancements to that

14:06:56 phone system that would help in those areas, and to add

14:07:00 messages to let you know what the wait time is so that

14:07:04 you can make that choice.

14:07:06 But our call center has been overwhelmed.

14:07:08 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Because I did call, and I got

14:07:12 tired of waiting so I hung up.

14:07:13 I spoke to the mayor last night.

14:07:15 I called her and she was at home.

14:07:16 And I asked if she was going to appoint anybody from

14:07:20 this City Council to that panel, and she said, no, they

14:07:23 are all going to be internal people from the

14:07:26 administration.

14:07:28 She did make a suggestion to me that she would like to

14:07:31 see the last two tiers removed from this, and I

14:07:35 consulted with Mr -- our city attorney if this would

14:07:41 affect our bond issue.

14:07:42 And he just informed me that it will not affect our

14:07:45 bond issue.

14:07:45 He has checked with Bonnie Wise.

14:07:47 So later in the meeting I will bring that up.

14:07:49 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All right.

14:07:54 We'll hear from administration on this issue.

14:08:04 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Administrator for public works,

14:08:07 utilities services, and I appreciate this opportunity.

14:08:10 First of all, I need for you and our customers to know

14:08:13 that while we have said that we think that the weather

14:08:18 conditions coupled with high tiers coupled with the

14:08:21 change to twice a week watering have all contributed to

14:08:24 the higher bills, but we are not saying these are the

14:08:29 only reasons for higher bills.

14:08:31 Frequently, it's a combination of reasons.

14:08:34 It's not just one simple reason that we find folks to

14:08:39 have high bills across the city.

14:08:41 As we have said before, we are going to continue to

14:08:46 investigate each case, to resolve that issue, and we

14:08:50 are not going to shut off anyone's service.

14:08:54 We will make appropriate adjustments and correct errors

14:08:56 when we find them.

14:08:59 We have not laid blame on our customers for any of

14:09:03 these mistakes -- or any of these issues.

14:09:06 We have not laid blame on our customers.

14:09:08 We have been asked to tell you and report to you what

14:09:12 we have found, and we have done that, and we have been

14:09:15 asked, what is the cause of these?

14:09:18 And we have gone out to investigate.

14:09:20 And as we have said repeatedly, there are multiple

14:09:24 issues as we go out there and investigate each

14:09:27 individual's property.

14:09:30 What we have just handed out is a compilation of again

14:09:38 what we have found when we have gone and done

14:09:38 investigations.

14:09:39 You will see that about 74 of them we have discovered

14:09:42 leaks.

14:09:42 We are not representing that the leaks are the only

14:09:46 cause for the high bills.

14:09:47 We are saying this is what we have found.

14:09:50 We are saying we have found 50 other issues, other

14:09:54 cases, and attached to this cover sheet are the address

14:09:58 by address details of what we have found during our

14:10:03 investigation.

14:10:04 Additionally, I am not trying to represent that this is

14:10:07 the only calls that we have received.

14:10:10 We have received calls.

14:10:11 We have phone calls coming in through the mayor's

14:10:14 office, through my office, through Brad's office,

14:10:17 through the customer service center.

14:10:19 We have e-mails coming in.

14:10:22 We are taking them, and we are processing them.

14:10:24 We are trying to resolve them as quickly as we possibly

14:10:27 can.

14:10:28 Some of them are resolved by customer service

14:10:31 representatives.

14:10:32 Some of them can be resolved in the billing area, and

14:10:35 some of them we have to get down to an inspection at

14:10:38 the site.

14:10:38 And so, again, what I am representing here is those

14:10:43 that have processed through the process so far, and

14:10:46 that we have either inspected, found other solutions

14:10:49 for, or we still have pending, but that is not all of

14:10:52 the calls.

14:10:52 And again, I am not trying to represent anything other

14:10:55 than this is where we are with our investigations at

14:10:59 this point.

14:11:03 On January 19th, we provided you with a list of 24

14:11:07 reasons and contributing factors for high bills.

14:11:11 In addition to those, we are finding -- we continue to

14:11:14 find more reasons.

14:11:15 We have found meter reading errors, and we have found

14:11:19 billing errors, in our billing.

14:11:22 We have found recording errors at the time of meter

14:11:25 change-out.

14:11:26 When we find these errors, and we determine the cause,

14:11:29 we are we are correcting them.

14:11:31 The issue of the new meters and the new people in

14:11:35 reading the meters, those are all issues that we have

14:11:37 addressed.

14:11:38 I mean, we have mentioned Bev as possible causes.

14:11:41 But we are finding that there is not one cause that has

14:11:45 affected everyone.

14:11:47 They are all totally different.

14:11:49 And it depends on a lot of factors.

14:11:51 It depends on the configuration at their house, in

14:11:55 their configuration in our computer system, et cetera.

14:11:57 So the only way that we can be sure that we have each

14:12:00 customer's service correct, and their billing correct,

14:12:04 is to go one by one.

14:12:06 And I know that's an onerous process, but that's what

14:12:09 we are doing.

14:12:11 As the mayor said in her letter, she's established a

14:12:14 task force.

14:12:15 Well, the water department and the city utilities staff

14:12:18 have been meeting for the past two and a half weeks.

14:12:21 This week, on Monday morning, we added the I.T., the

14:12:26 folks from I.T., the internal auditor, revenue and

14:12:29 finance folks, purchasing, and the chief of staff to

14:12:31 our group.

14:12:35 We are pursuing several initiatives, in addition to

14:12:39 continuing those inspections that we keep having come

14:12:42 into our system.

14:12:44 As stated in the mayor's letter, we would by far prefer

14:12:49 monthly reading, and we are pursuing that monthly

14:12:52 reading instead of doing it every two months with an

14:12:55 estimate in between.

14:12:56 For the near term, what we are looking at is

14:12:59 Hillsborough County has a contract, and we would like

14:13:03 to piggyback on that for meter reading.

14:13:06 We would like to have that contractor read three -- I'm

14:13:11 going to call them zones, we call them cycles -- and

14:13:13 read them every month for a period of time so we can

14:13:15 see how their reads are comparing to what we have been

14:13:18 doing.

14:13:19 And what's going on at that residence.

14:13:24 That contract will have to come to you so in the

14:13:27 not-too-distant future we will be bringing that to you

14:13:30 for your approval.

14:13:31 Long-term, we would like to advertise for and do meter

14:13:34 reading every month for everyone's meter throughout the

14:13:38 city.

14:13:38 (Bell sounds)

14:13:39 So long-term we would like to advertise that.

14:13:41 We would hire sufficient contracted people, that

14:13:45 between the contracted meter readers and the city meter

14:13:48 readers, we could read the entire city on a monthly

14:13:51 basis.

14:13:55 We have staffing and training at our customer service

14:13:57 centers.

14:13:59 As council member Miranda mentioned before he left,

14:14:03 there are new folks in there.

14:14:04 There are some new organizations in there.

14:14:07 And we are still coming up to speed with this new

14:14:12 organization.

14:14:15 We have some vacancies that we need to fill there, and

14:14:17 we are going to bring in some temps, about six temps to

14:14:21 try to help with the call volume.

14:14:25 In the phone system, we have to expand the phone system

14:14:27 for the additional people that we are talking about

14:14:29 bringing in there, and that's underway in the process.

14:14:33 Again, for the near term, we want to have the wait

14:14:35 times on the message, and the phones when folks call

14:14:38 there.

14:14:39 And longer term, we want to expand that capability to

14:14:43 both assist the customers in knowing how long they will

14:14:45 be in the queue, and also help our customer service

14:14:48 reps to know who is calling and try to get that

14:14:51 information to them quicker.

14:14:56 We need to redesign our bill.

14:14:58 We totally agree that our billing -- our bill document

14:15:02 is not very user friendly.

14:15:05 And there can be some issues in there.

14:15:07 How we do the calculation, because we do an estimate in

14:15:12 between, and then read over a two-month period, it's

14:15:17 not a simple matter of determine what your bill charge

14:15:22 should be.

14:15:24 We can show you how to do that.

14:15:25 But again it depends on your meter configuration, and

14:15:29 it depends on again where we are in the two-month read

14:15:33 or whether it's an estimate.

14:15:37 We have software modifications that we think can be

14:15:41 done even with our -- we have an old, 17 years old, MMS

14:15:46 system, which is our computer software that reads the

14:15:50 data and spits out the bills.

14:15:53 It is 17 years old, but there are still some upgrades

14:15:56 that we can do to it that would help us.

14:16:00 And we also want to address currently on our bill --

14:16:05 and this has been, therefore, some time, it says, if

14:16:08 you are in arrears, it says pay by this date or your

14:16:11 service will be discontinued.

14:16:13 We would like to change that message to basically say

14:16:17 your account is past due by this amount, please pay by

14:16:20 a certain date and not talk about the discontinuance of

14:16:23 service.

14:16:27 Additionally -- and we mentioned this when we were here

14:16:30 last time -- we plan to have plumbers, additional folks

14:16:34 helping us with the inspections.

14:16:35 And we do expect them to be here by next week.

14:16:41 In addition to those initiatives that we talked about,

14:16:44 we would like to recommend the temporary suspension of

14:16:47 the top two tiers of the billing tier structure.

14:16:51 As you know, those tiers were put in place, southwest

14:16:56 Florida water management did come and ask the council,

14:16:59 asked the city to implement a drought surcharge.

14:17:03 Now, it was great debate at the time, and we were at

14:17:06 the end of a drought.

14:17:08 The discussion was if you implement a drought surcharge

14:17:11 that it means that everyone who is paying their water

14:17:15 bill, whether it's tier 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, doesn't matter

14:17:20 with they are in the billing structure, they will be

14:17:21 impacted by the drought surcharge.

14:17:24 The council at the time, and the discussion at the

14:17:26 time, was instead of that, we should try to address the

14:17:30 high users, and we should do it on a full-time basis,

14:17:33 and that's why those rates or those higher tiers were

14:17:37 implemented.

14:17:38 We would recommend that they be suspended until SWFWMD

14:17:43 determines or declares a drought, until they approve a

14:17:48 phase 3 water use restriction which would be at drought

14:17:52 time.

14:17:53 So, council members, that's information I have to

14:17:58 provide for you this afternoon and be glad to answer

14:18:00 any of your questions.

14:18:03 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilwoman Mulhern.

14:18:04 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you for letting me speak again.

14:18:09 You know, I'm a designer, graphic designer.

14:18:11 That's one of my jobs.

14:18:12 I'm not a statistician.

14:18:14 I'm not a data person.

14:18:16 But I could figure out with an excel spreadsheet how to

14:18:23 look at what you need to look at, to figure out if

14:18:25 there's a pattern here, which clearly there is.

14:18:29 You have identified a pattern.

14:18:31 Dana Shores, Lake Magdalene, New Tampa.

14:18:35 Okay.

14:18:36 So I asked either at the last meeting or the one before

14:18:39 for you to do that for us.

14:18:40 And I don't see that here.

14:18:42 But I shouldn't have to ask you to do this.

14:18:44 And I'm hoping you have done it and you are just not

14:18:47 sharing it with us.

14:18:48 But in this great research that Chairman Scott did, I

14:18:52 just noticed the third page, he talked to Hillsborough

14:18:57 County, and one of the things they told him was -- and

14:19:00 this is what I was asking you to do for me.

14:19:03 So maybe your system already has the capability of

14:19:05 doing this.

14:19:06 Our automated billing system has built-in parameters

14:19:10 and limit threshold based on customer class types,

14:19:15 i.e., residential multifamily and commercial, that will

14:19:18 identify usage that is over a certain percentage of the

14:19:21 customer's history.

14:19:22 So this is what we know we have.

14:19:25 Okay.

14:19:25 It's not just the 500 complaints that you are

14:19:29 investigating right now.

14:19:33 We are still getting e-mails -- it's on the third

14:19:37 page -- we are still getting e-mails from more and more

14:19:41 people.

14:19:42 So you need to low at your system.

14:19:43 I don't think it's productive for you to go and go out

14:19:47 to every one of these customers who are complaining and

14:19:52 check and see if they have leaks, because as you

14:19:55 admitted yourself, you are not claiming that those

14:19:58 leaks are causing it, and so many of these customers

14:20:00 have said to us, look, I didn't use, you know, three

14:20:05 swimming pool's worth of water in the last month, or,

14:20:08 you know, had people stealing water from me.

14:20:11 So I think -- I just -- you know, you need to do that

14:20:19 analysis that shows whose water bills, I don't know

14:20:24 starting when, when the complaints started coming in

14:20:27 really heavily, whether it was December or whenever it

14:20:28 was, whose water bills more than doubled.

14:20:32 This is what I asked for earlier, so maybe you have it

14:20:36 and you are not sharing it with us, and who whose has

14:20:40 tripled, whose quadrupled, group those by areas, so we

14:20:44 know if it's a problem that is only happening in

14:20:46 certain areas.

14:20:47 Do we know that?

14:20:50 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: We have done a number of analyses,

14:20:53 yes, ma'am.

14:20:53 >>MARY MULHERN: Do we know if it's only happening in

14:20:56 areas not based on complaints but based on what we bill

14:20:58 people?

14:20:59 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: We can show you usage, yes.

14:21:01 The usage is based on what goes through the meters, and

14:21:05 it's reported in our system.

14:21:06 And I can show you, yes, where those --

14:21:11 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay, I'm asking for that again,

14:21:13 because you didn't provide it.

14:21:14 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: I'm sorry I didn't take that from

14:21:18 our last conversation.

14:21:19 >>MARY MULHERN: Well, it wasn't a conversation.

14:21:21 It was request.

14:21:22 It was made very clearly, and then recorded.

14:21:26 I'll make it as a motion when we are done westbound

14:21:28 this discussion.

14:21:29 But as far as going out to visit every complainant, why

14:21:35 don't you just take their last three bills, average

14:21:39 them, and send them a new bill, and then figure out

14:21:42 what the problem is on our side?

14:21:45 And fix it.

14:21:49 I mean, you are not even claiming anymore that this is

14:21:51 a problem of -- I mean, you know, we actually had a lot

14:21:57 of rain for this season recently.

14:22:00 I don't know if people are suddenly watering, that

14:22:03 there's suddenly this spike in water usage.

14:22:07 Like I said before, it defies logic.

14:22:09 And I resent the fact that we have to sit here and tell

14:22:13 you how to do your job.

14:22:15 And I know -- it's not you.

14:22:17 I know that you are told that you have to just not

14:22:22 admit there's anything ever anything wrong with our

14:22:25 processes, but, you know, there comes a point where it

14:22:30 becomes absurd.

14:22:31 So I want to see you fix this.

14:22:34 And I don't need -- we are supposed to go through here

14:22:37 and read about every one of these complaints, and the

14:22:40 reasons you think they might have, you know, might have

14:22:44 happened?

14:22:44 There's no, you know, measurement that somehow, because

14:22:48 they had one leaky sprinkler head that that was causing

14:22:52 them to use, you know, ten times as much water.

14:22:54 So this I don't consider to be of any use to us.

14:22:58 So unless -- I am going to make a motion, unless you

14:23:04 fix the problem as I suggested -- I'm back -- come back

14:23:10 to us with the data again.

14:23:13 Of all the people whose bills have doubled, tripled,

14:23:17 quadrupled or more, and then look for some patterns

14:23:22 there, why it's happening to those particular customers

14:23:27 in those areas.

14:23:28 And if it is -- and I also think that this idea about

14:23:32 the tiered system, it seems like Mr. Scott's --

14:23:37 Chairman Scott's research has, you know, kind of

14:23:40 negated that as a theory because these other

14:23:43 municipalities have tiered systems, and it's not

14:23:47 happening there.

14:23:47 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Other questions by --

14:24:00 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Council, if I could.

14:24:02 >>MARY MULHERN: (off microphone) show us how many

14:24:09 commerce water bills had more than doubled by, I guess,

14:24:14 over the last couple of billing cycles, or just in

14:24:21 comparing their current and their last bills.

14:24:24 So what is that?

14:24:27 Three, six months?

14:24:29 90 days, whatever that is.

14:24:31 And show us -- I want to see that.

14:24:34 How many bills this happened to, and then the total

14:24:37 number of customers, you know.

14:24:39 And you can split it up as to however you want.

14:24:42 But at the very least I need to see that.

14:24:45 It will be helpful to see if it's residential, if they

14:24:49 are multifamily, if they are commercial.

14:24:51 But, really, it just to see if we have a systemic

14:24:55 problem, or is this local?

14:24:59 And then you can investigate where it is.

14:25:01 But I just think going on to every customer.

14:25:05 How much how much is that costing us to find out

14:25:07 basically not much?

14:25:11 Maybe they had a leak or maybe they didn't.

14:25:18 P.

14:25:19 >> was that a motion?

14:25:21 >> I think the motion is you want data.

14:25:23 >>MARY MULHERN: I want data to show how many water

14:25:25 bills have increased exponentially.

14:25:28 >> Second.

14:25:29 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, my only concern of the issue at

14:25:31 this point is based on just the report -- remember we

14:25:36 just had a gentleman here for us in Drew Park.

14:25:38 Drew Park is not on here.

14:25:40 >>MARY MULHERN: Right.

14:25:41 That's why I am saying of all the water bills, all of

14:25:44 our customers, how many of them are doing that --

14:25:48 >>THOMAS SCOTT: I will tell you, I am not going -- I

14:25:50 knocked on doors last weak end.

14:25:55 My water bill with the City of Tampa, then start

14:25:58 talking about nothing was done, and went down and

14:26:03 treated unfairly and disrespected.

14:26:06 I mean, I don't know what the answer is.

14:26:11 But I do know that we have a serious problem.

14:26:14 And personally, I just think of that we should do an

14:26:17 independent audit so we can get to the bottom of this.

14:26:19 That's just me as one council person.

14:26:21 I hear what you are saying.

14:26:23 But, again, then we are told, there was a tier system,

14:26:29 one part of the problem was a tier system.

14:26:31 Well, when I called all the other jurisdictions, they

14:26:34 were like, well, they have a tier system, they have not

14:26:37 encountered the problem that we are encountering.

14:26:39 So to me it's more than just a tier system.

14:26:41 It more than just somebody -- there has to be more than

14:26:47 what we can see here based on what I'm seeing.

14:26:50 >>MARY MULHERN: That's why I want them to give this

14:26:53 data, because what's happening is they are just giving

14:26:57 us these lists, and they are still going out, you know,

14:27:00 and coming up with non-answers for what's going on.

14:27:04 So you have to look at the whole system.

14:27:06 And I don't know.

14:27:11 I don't think we should have to have an independent

14:27:14 audit, because this is their job to fix this.

14:27:16 And I'm just frustrated that it's not getting done, and

14:27:20 that I have to tell you what you need to do to look at

14:27:25 this system.

14:27:26 So is anybody going to second my motion?

14:27:29 >>CURTIS STOKES: I seconded it: My question is they go

14:27:32 back and look at the last three water bills, and it's

14:27:38 still going to be the same problem.

14:27:39 They have to go out and find out why they are still

14:27:41 having problems.

14:27:42 Just looking at it is not going to solve the problem,

14:27:44 because they can't tell you why, just looking at the

14:27:48 bills.

14:27:48 But we need to find some way for them to go out there,

14:27:51 find out what's causing these problems, because there's

14:27:55 got to be a reason why, and there still might be some

14:28:00 other reason why.

14:28:01 But just looking at my water bills, what is it going to

14:28:06 tell me?

14:28:07 It can't tell you nothing why it going up my bills.

14:28:11 You have to investigate it, research, and find out

14:28:14 what's going on with it.

14:28:14 >>MARY MULHERN: I know.

14:28:16 I'm looking for system-wide.

14:28:21 >>CURTIS STOKES: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

14:28:21 I think we determined that it may or may not be the

14:28:25 computer system, it may or may not be a leaky faucet or

14:28:28 sprinkler head is off.

14:28:32 We have come up with a lot of different scenarios, what

14:28:35 it may or may not be.

14:28:37 But I agree with Councilwoman Mulhern, this is digging

14:28:44 too deep, it's not an administrative matter but there's

14:28:47 a bigger issue of what's causing the problem.

14:28:49 And the task force will focus on finance, technology,

14:28:54 innovation, internal audit, purchasing, but there's got

14:28:57 to be something other than that that's causing this

14:29:03 spiked water situation.

14:29:04 Is it an equipment issue?

14:29:07 I don't see that as part of what's going on.

14:29:12 We have addressed the customer contact issue, hiring

14:29:16 temps and getting that done, but there needs to be

14:29:19 something at the top line that focuses on this issue.

14:29:23 And I agree that limiting the two -- Le eliminating the

14:29:28 two bottom tiers, but I would like to see them expand

14:29:31 to commercial and to the apartment community as well.

14:29:33 Because what I am afraid of, there's a small business

14:29:36 that will start to get affected like this gentleman,

14:29:38 and they are going to have to make that decision at

14:29:40 some point, do I purchase material?

14:29:43 Do I pay my water bill?

14:29:45 Or do I let someone go in order to maintain the water

14:29:49 situation?

14:29:50 So I think it needs to be expanded if we go that route

14:29:54 to eliminate.

14:29:58 And I agree with Reverend Scott, though I applaud the

14:30:00 administration for taking this issue, and wanting to do

14:30:04 an internal audit.

14:30:07 Sometimes, a different set of eyes, looking at an issue

14:30:10 is different than an internal set of eyes.

14:30:13 So I think we need to ask someone look at it other than

14:30:19 ourselves, and come up with two different conclusions

14:30:23 about what's going on.

14:30:28 Though you guys do a great job, but I think sometimes

14:30:30 if we had a different set of eyes, independent set of

14:30:34 eyes looking at it, that we could come to a conclusion

14:30:37 much quicker.

14:30:38 Thank you.

14:30:42 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Thank you.

14:30:42 Waive heard here is that it is the administration's

14:30:46 responsibility.

14:30:49 And the administration has set forth a task force.

14:30:55 Now, what I would like to know, is there a time line on

14:30:58 this or time deadline for response as to -- how much?

14:31:08 >> 45 days.

14:31:13 >>YVONNE CAPIN: 45 days?

14:31:13 I was looking in my book here.

14:31:15 I apologize.

14:31:16 So in 45 days, we are to have answers to all these.

14:31:21 What I would like to add is there's different requests

14:31:25 here to add to that and come back in 45 days with what

14:31:31 Councilwoman Mulhern said, with what councilman -- yes,

14:31:43 actually.

14:31:44 >>GWEN MILLER: 45 days would be perfect.

14:31:53 >>YVONNE CAPIN: 45 days would be perfect.

14:31:56 [ Laughter ]

14:31:56 Okay.

14:31:56 So you would like to see it in two weeks.

14:32:05 I was trying to work with the task force and just have

14:32:10 a special request.

14:32:11 So while you are looking at that data, to be able to

14:32:16 input and make, as Councilwoman Mulhern said, a

14:32:23 spreadsheet and see if there is clusters, or look into

14:32:27 that.

14:32:30 But I don't know, 45 days, it's fine with me.

14:32:36 >> There's a motion on the floor.

14:32:38 Yes, sir?

14:32:39 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Just a clarification on the motion.

14:32:41 The motion is to have it come back.

14:32:44 Was your motion -- you said two weeks.

14:32:46 Is that the intent of the motion?

14:32:47 That data?

14:32:50 >>MARY MULHERN: (off microphone).

14:32:52 >> there's a motion and a second.

14:32:54 Second by councilman Stokes.

14:32:56 All in favor?

14:32:57 Opposes?

14:32:59 Okay.

14:33:00 Any other questions?

14:33:02 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Council, if I could cover some of

14:33:05 the issues here.

14:33:05 Council member, I will get that information to you this

14:33:07 afternoon.

14:33:09 We have been looking at this very systematically.

14:33:12 When we say we are going to an individual's house and

14:33:14 looking at their house, we don't just go out there to

14:33:18 look for a break in something.

14:33:20 We go through their billing system, their account,

14:33:23 their meter, we take it from soup to nuts for their

14:33:26 entire process.

14:33:29 And we do pick up that information and look at this as

14:33:34 a success item I can issue.

14:33:35 We have things that occurred in our system.

14:33:37 For example, when they connected the new pipeline up in

14:33:40 New Tampa, it was done by a contractor.

14:33:44 There was debris in the line.

14:33:46 We plotted where the debris went so we can track that

14:33:51 compared to on the complaint.

14:33:52 We are looking at and plotting how the meters that we

14:33:55 have replaced, take out old meter, put in a new meter.

14:34:00 How does that compare with the high incidence of high

14:34:03 bills?

14:34:04 So we are looking at this systematically.

14:34:08 And as I am trying to say, we do not have the one item

14:34:14 that fits everybody's problem.

14:34:16 We are not finding that there is one problem that fixes

14:34:20 everybody's situation.

14:34:22 So we are going to continue to do this.

14:34:24 We are doing it again system wide, and again we'll

14:34:29 provide, head over to your office this afternoon a

14:34:32 series, actually, of maps of the city, where we have

14:34:35 plotted the high bills.

14:34:37 You will see that this afternoon.

14:34:39 But that doesn't answer the question.

14:34:41 We still need to know -- we still have to go property

14:34:44 by property, did the water go through the meter?

14:34:47 And if it did, we have pulled meters and tested the

14:34:52 meters.

14:34:52 If the meter is testing properly, then the water went

14:34:55 through the meter, and from that meter reading, is the

14:34:59 bill correct?

14:35:00 I mean, those are the things that we are doing and --

14:35:05 >>MARY MULHERN: But you need to look at it

14:35:06 statistically, too.

14:35:08 I mean, that's what I'm saying.

14:35:09 Look at this statistically.

14:35:11 What are the patterns?

14:35:12 You can't -- you know, you are going to go to every

14:35:15 water user and go through their system?

14:35:18 If you see enough patterns in the data, then you won't

14:35:21 have to go to every single house, right?

14:35:24 Is that correct?

14:35:25 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: No, ma'am, that's not correct.

14:35:27 I wouldn't say that was correct.

14:35:29 Because --

14:35:30 >>MARY MULHERN: No, but how do we know that?

14:35:32 Because we haven't seen how many bills have doubled or

14:35:35 tripled out of the total number of water bills.

14:35:37 That's the real reason I need to see the numbers.

14:35:40 So if you are just going to show me a map, that's not

14:35:43 what I am asking for.

14:35:44 I'm asking to see the numbers of individual water bills

14:35:51 that have doubled, tripled or whatever, and then within

14:35:54 that, then the maps would help.

14:35:56 So that's what I am asking for.

14:35:58 You understand that, right?

14:36:00 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: You will see that.

14:36:05 >>CURTIS STOKES: Mr. Daignault, who is going out doing

14:36:07 the investigations?

14:36:08 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: We have three technicians.

14:36:10 Someone mentioned Ron Carderoni, and he and three

14:36:19 others free the water department.

14:36:21 I expect to have some additional plumbers next week

14:36:23 helping us do that, contracted plumbers helping us and

14:36:26 adding to that staff next week.

14:36:28 >> At what rate?

14:36:32 Plumbers are usually $100 plus an hour?

14:36:34 >> We are negotiating that rate.

14:36:37 >> Purchasing department just sent over this afternoon

14:36:44 four plumbers with quotes.

14:36:46 Two of them were seriously out of line with the other

14:36:49 two. But the other two were $198 a visit.

14:36:53 >> How many hours do we expect them to go out and very

14:36:56 investigate?

14:36:58 >> They are paid by the visit.

14:36:59 So it will vary depending on how much they have to look

14:37:02 at.

14:37:04 You know, we are dealing with technician, maybe two or

14:37:07 three a day per technician.

14:37:11 I expect it to be about the same rate.

14:37:13 >> So we have $300, $400 a day?

14:37:18 >> Yes, 3 or $400 a day per plumber.

14:37:22 >> Five days a week?

14:37:26 >> Well, I will tell you this.

14:37:28 And I hear what you are saying, but I want to tell you

14:37:31 right now, we have 500 complaints.

14:37:34 I'm sure it's more than that times $100 an hour, that

14:37:37 will pay for itself.

14:37:38 And you can find out versus these plumbers going out

14:37:41 and still come back and may not have an answer.

14:37:43 That's what I'm saying.

14:37:44 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay, you convinced me.

14:37:48 I'll support your --

14:37:51 >>THOMAS SCOTT: If you have 500, and you know it's

14:37:53 more than this now.

14:37:54 500 complaints, and you are paying $100 an hour?

14:37:57 Come on.

14:37:57 >>MARY MULHERN: All right.

14:38:00 I will make a motion --

14:38:04 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, councilman Caetano.

14:38:06 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Have we explored the cost of

14:38:09 replacing the billing system that we now have?

14:38:12 Because it's 17 years old, and you evidently modified

14:38:16 it.

14:38:16 It could not be working properly.

14:38:19 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: I have not gotten the costs to

14:38:23 replace that system.

14:38:24 We can certainly find out the cost to have replace that

14:38:28 software system.

14:38:29 It would take some time to advertise, select that

14:38:34 replacement, and then implement it, get it into place.

14:38:39 But, yes, sir, we can give you --

14:38:41 >> You don't necessarily have to put it out for bid.

14:38:44 You can explore and get some quotes, what something

14:38:47 like that would cost.

14:38:48 I don't think you need to put it out on a bid process.

14:38:50 I'm sure you get some quotes from someone.

14:38:52 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: I can tell you the price, the cost

14:38:55 of what it would be.

14:38:56 But for the city to actually implement it would require

14:38:58 that we advertise.

14:39:01 >> Okay.

14:39:01 I have another question.

14:39:05 I have spoken to Pasco County.

14:39:07 I went to a new house the other day, was just sold.

14:39:09 I looked at the meter.

14:39:10 I told this to Mr. Baird last night.

14:39:14 They have a badger system.

14:39:16 That's the name of the meter.

14:39:18 There's a little gadget there that looks like a piece

14:39:20 of PVC.

14:39:21 A guy drives by and it's electronically read.

14:39:24 So I believe it's a lot faster, and you can read your

14:39:28 meters every month electronically.

14:39:31 Maybe that's a process.

14:39:34 Now, the wastewater, how many steps does the wastewater

14:39:37 go through before it becomes reclaimed water?

14:39:43 >> The water coming out of our advanced wastewater

14:39:49 treatment plant is reclaimed water.

14:39:52 That's what we discharge from the plant.

14:39:54 >> All right.

14:39:55 What I am getting at, there are only 24,000 people who

14:39:59 have the right to use reclaimed water because they have

14:40:01 it.

14:40:01 Correct?

14:40:03 They have it available?

14:40:07 >> It's about 5,000 customers, or 5,000 folks whose

14:40:12 property has reclaimed available to it.

14:40:18 >>BRAD BAIRD: 9 thigh available and over 4,000 hooked

14:40:20 up.

14:40:20 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: So the people that don't have it

14:40:25 available to them are paying the same rate as somebody

14:40:26 that has it available?

14:40:27 Am I right?

14:40:30 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Everybody pays the same rate for

14:40:32 their sewage treatment, their sewage collection and

14:40:35 treatment.

14:40:35 The people who have reclaimed are paying for reclaimed.

14:40:39 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: They pay the fee, but a person

14:40:42 that doesn't have it is still paying the same rate

14:40:45 without the availability of reclaimed water?

14:40:48 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Yes, sir, but there is no

14:40:49 difference between somebody that has reclaimed and

14:40:53 somebody that does not have reclaimed with regard to

14:40:56 their sewage.

14:40:57 Their sewage, from their house back to the plant, the

14:41:00 treatment at the plant, and the discharge, all of that

14:41:03 is the same for a person whether they have reclaimed

14:41:07 water, or do not have reclaimed water.

14:41:09 And so, therefore, the cost is the same.

14:41:12 From the plant back to somebody's house so that they

14:41:15 can use it as reclaimed.

14:41:16 That's what they are paying for, if they have reclaimed

14:41:19 water, and only those who have it pay that fee.

14:41:22 >> How much do they pay for reclaimed water?

14:41:29 >> It's a dollar twenty per CCF.

14:41:33 >> So a person that doesn't have reclaimed water and is

14:41:35 evidently using a lot of water in their house, they are

14:41:37 going to go to a higher tier?

14:41:41 >> Potentially, yes, sir.

14:41:42 >> Yes.

14:41:43 And that's not fair.

14:41:45 When you are paying for reclaimed water that they don't

14:41:47 have the availability to use.

14:41:49 >> They are not paying for any reclaimed water, sir.

14:41:52 I know they are not because they don't have it there,

14:41:54 but they are still paying the same rate as a person

14:41:56 that has reclaimed water, but the reclaimed water

14:41:58 person is paying that extra fee for reclaimed water.

14:42:02 That's my point.

14:42:03 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well --

14:42:08 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Does it make sense?

14:42:11 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Again, the people who use reclaim

14:42:14 pay for it.

14:42:14 The people who have sewage service pay for that.

14:42:17 And nobody is being double charged.

14:42:21 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Not being double charged but a

14:42:22 person paying the normal sewer charge like everybody

14:42:25 else doesn't have reclaimed water available to them.

14:42:27 That's my point.

14:42:28 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Sir, I think you have seen many

14:42:31 presentations on what it would take to expand the

14:42:35 reclaimed system.

14:42:36 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: That still doesn't answer my

14:42:41 question.

14:42:43 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, we really need to kind of move in

14:42:45 a minute.

14:42:46 But councilman Caetano, in my report to you, if you

14:42:51 noticed on that last page there, number 6, it talks

14:42:55 about Hillsborough County has 455,000 commerce.

14:43:01 Number one, they discover errors before the billing

14:43:05 goes out

14:43:07 Secondly, and they state in their thing, however, we

14:43:11 understand errors do occur.

14:43:13 And we only had 20 billing errors out of 455,000 bills

14:43:19 generated, which is well under the American water works

14:43:24 association national benchmark standard for water

14:43:26 utility bills of 14 errors per 10,000 bills.

14:43:34 So you all may need to talk to Hillsborough County.

14:43:38 They seem to be a lot more efficient, and they have

14:43:42 455,000 customers to our 124,000 commerce, and they are

14:43:46 saying they only have 20 billing errors.

14:43:49 And we already have 500.

14:43:53 So, again, there's just something inherently wrong here

14:43:59 that needs to be dealt with.

14:44:04 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Excuse me, but Dana Shores is in the

14:44:06 county.

14:44:09 There's a lot of our customers --

14:44:15 >>THOMAS SCOTT: But they are on the city system,

14:44:16 though.

14:44:17 They are on the city system.

14:44:18 I'm talking about Hillsborough County.

14:44:20 I'm only speaking to Hillsborough County's system.

14:44:22 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: We have 124,000 accounts, 300,000

14:44:29 people served.

14:44:29 I think the county has 150,000 accounts and they serve

14:44:35 450,000 people.

14:44:35 But I think they have 150,000 account.

14:44:37 But that's a very good recommendation.

14:44:40 >>THOMAS SCOTT: No, they said they have 455,000 bills

14:44:43 generated.

14:44:46 That's what they said here.

14:44:50 That's what it says.

14:44:51 In their report.

14:44:54 Now, this is directly from them.

14:44:56 If that's the case then it's on them.

14:44:58 Is there anything else you want to provide to us, Mr.

14:45:01 Daignault?

14:45:02 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: No, sir, thank you.

14:45:04 >>GWEN MILLER: I have a question on the audit.

14:45:05 If we go for an independent audit, do you have to take

14:45:08 it out for bid?

14:45:09 And how much would that cost?

14:45:11 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: I don't have a price.

14:45:13 It would have to be bid one way or the other, yes,

14:45:16 ma'am.

14:45:17 >>GWEN MILLER: It would have to go out for bid?

14:45:20 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Yes, ma'am, I believe so.

14:45:21 >>GWEN MILLER: If they are going to prepare it

14:45:29 anyway --

14:45:30 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Would I be guessing if I told you a

14:45:31 price.

14:45:32 >> I'm sorry?

14:45:33 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Would I be guess field goal I told

14:45:35 you a price.

14:45:36 I don't have a number.

14:45:37 But --

14:45:41 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Whether it's an independent audit or

14:45:42 send a plumber at $100 an hour, taxpayers are going pay

14:45:46 it.

14:45:47 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Rate payers.

14:45:51 >>YVONNE CAPIN: That is correct.

14:45:51 But he how much is that audit going to cost?

14:45:56 There are a lot of parts to this for an audit.

14:46:00 It's not just someone coming in and looking.

14:46:03 There are a lot of parts to it.

14:46:07 >>THOMAS SCOTT: That's right.

14:46:07 >>YVONNE CAPIN: And we already have those parts in

14:46:08 place.

14:46:13 It at that department.

14:46:14 And I am looking at it.

14:46:15 If they are already in place, and they are saying we

14:46:17 are doing this -- to me, it is, again, I'm having a

14:46:27 hard time duplicating that work and that audit, it's

14:46:34 not a -- it's not that easy.

14:46:36 It's not that easy and it's going to cost a lot of

14:46:39 money.

14:46:41 And we already have these people in place.

14:46:43 >>THOMAS SCOTT: You know what, Councilwoman?

14:46:46 If that is true, and it may be, then the problem should

14:46:49 have been fixed before now.

14:46:51 If that is the case.

14:46:52 We have the people in place, the issue should have been

14:46:55 fixed before now.

14:46:56 We wouldn't have all those people here the last meeting

14:46:58 screaming about their water bill.

14:47:02 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I can empathize request them, but we

14:47:04 are looking at spending more money, and it is -- well,

14:47:12 if it going to go out for bid, we find out how much is

14:47:15 it going to cost.

14:47:18 How much is an independent audit going to cost?

14:47:20 I would like to know before.

14:47:24 >>MARY MULHERN: You know, this is what I said to start

14:47:29 with.

14:47:30 I didn't think we should have to ask for an independent

14:47:34 audit because this is the water department's job.

14:47:37 To get this right, and the billing people to get this

14:47:40 right.

14:47:41 So I don't know.

14:47:42 We could make a motion to get, you know, find out for

14:47:46 you to tell us what an audit would cost, or I could

14:47:49 make a motion.

14:47:50 I'm convinced after this discussion an independent

14:47:54 audit would be a good way to go because it doesn't

14:47:56 sound like we are getting the information we need from

14:47:58 the staff.

14:47:59 But are they going to do that if we make a motion?

14:48:04 >> Well, I guess my question, councilman, we have

14:48:09 raised a question.

14:48:10 How many people have been laid off in the water

14:48:12 department?

14:48:18 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Over what time frame?

14:48:23 >> Over the last two years.

14:48:24 Over the last two years.

14:48:25 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: And does that include the water

14:48:29 meter reading, billing --

14:48:31 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Whatever is in the water department.

14:48:33 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Well, that's new to the water

14:48:35 department.

14:48:35 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Over the last year?

14:48:44 >>BRAD BAIRD: These numbers will not be exact.

14:48:46 I don't have them on the top of my head.

14:48:47 But as part of the consolidation, when we took on the

14:48:51 on the support services, we reduced or laid off 10 or

14:48:58 11 people at the supervisory level, and then before

14:49:02 that, over the last year, we had significant reductions

14:49:06 in engineering and planning that I believe would amount

14:49:13 to another 20 or so positions.

14:49:16 And people.

14:49:20 I think about 30.

14:49:22 >>THOMAS SCOTT: 30 people over the last year?

14:49:25 >>BRAD BAIRD: I think so.

14:49:27 >>THOMAS SCOTT: In the water department over 30 people

14:49:28 laid off.

14:49:29 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: When people are using water to

14:49:38 water their lawns, they'll get pushed to a higher tier,

14:49:42 so their water bills are going to be higher.

14:49:46 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: I'm sorry, sir.

14:49:51 When people use more water --

14:49:54 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: When they -- go ahead, finish

14:49:57 answering.

14:49:57 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: As you continue to use more water,

14:50:00 the more amount that you use moves into the higher

14:50:04 tier.

14:50:05 That is correct.

14:50:06 >> Are they paying the same rate for that extra water

14:50:08 when they go to that higher tier as a person who has

14:50:11 reclaimed water?

14:50:12 What is reclaimed water cost?

14:50:16 >> I think we said it was 1.20 per CCF.

14:50:20 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: So they are subsequently going to

14:50:22 pay more money, because they are going to be in a

14:50:25 higher tier in order to water their lawns?

14:50:30 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Correct, if reclaimed is not

14:50:33 available and they use potable water, that's correct.

14:50:36 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Do you think we need a special

14:50:37 rate for people who do not have reclaimed water?

14:50:42 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: I think that potable water, whether

14:50:44 it goes to the lawn or whether it goes to the house, is

14:50:47 treated the same and cost it is same to get to the

14:50:50 house.

14:50:51 So it's difficult to determine what's going to the lawn

14:50:54 and what's not.

14:50:55 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Let's move on.

14:51:05 We have people out there.

14:51:06 Have administration send a -- a resolution?

14:51:14 Are you aware of the resolution?

14:51:18 We voted on the motion.

14:51:22 We voted on councilwoman's motion.

14:51:25 I didn't make a motion.

14:51:26 I didn't make one.

14:51:27 >> Jan McLean, city attorney's office, for the record.

14:51:33 Mr. Daignault had indicated that one of the

14:51:36 recommendations that the administration was proposing

14:51:40 was suspension of the top tiers that had been

14:51:44 implemented through our last rate increase, and I

14:51:48 have -- I do need to make a correction.

14:51:54 Mr. Daignault indicated that the tiers would then be

14:51:58 activated again at such time as the southwest Florida

14:52:03 management district might implement a water shortage

14:52:06 order, and that's not the way that this resolution is

14:52:09 set up.

14:52:11 That would require additional resolution for rate

14:52:15 making.

14:52:16 This resolution is set up to suspend the tiers until

14:52:19 such further action of the council, and then if the

14:52:22 council wanted to revisit implementation of tiers and

14:52:25 rates or any kind of conservation rate structure, that

14:52:29 would be taken up later on.

14:52:31 But this resolution suspends the tiers that have been

14:52:36 in question.

14:52:36 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Last two tiers?

14:52:40 >>> The upper two tiers, that's correct, and arena

14:52:43 estate the -- and reinstate the two tiers.

14:52:48 >>THOMAS SCOTT: So when did you all come up with this?

14:52:52 >> I drafted this over lunch time.

14:52:54 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Over lunch time you drafted a

14:52:58 resolution, bring it to City Council, we haven't read

14:53:00 it, we haven't seen it, we don't know what's in there.

14:53:02 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Mr. Chairman, if I may, after this

14:53:05 question was asked at the last council meeting, we

14:53:07 researched what the process would be.

14:53:10 We thought -- my expectation, what I was told was there

14:53:13 may be a motion of council to do this.

14:53:15 So we prepared that.

14:53:17 We are not advocating that council take action on this

14:53:20 at this time.

14:53:20 It's available for council.

14:53:22 We figured out a way to do it if council would like to.

14:53:25 But I don't think we are requesting that council -- I

14:53:28 don't believe the administration is requesting -- I'm

14:53:31 certainly not requesting that you all do that at this

14:53:32 time.

14:53:34 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilman Caetano said he had a

14:53:35 conversation with the mayor last night relative to

14:53:37 this.

14:53:37 I had no knowledge.

14:53:41 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I didn't make at three-way call.

14:53:43 [ Laughter ]

14:53:44 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, no, I didn't call the mayor, but

14:53:47 I am the chairman of council.

14:53:48 I would think that due to respect I would have received

14:53:51 a call last night.

14:53:54 Go ahead.

14:53:54 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: I called the mayor to see if

14:54:00 someone was going to be on that task force from this

14:54:03 City Council.

14:54:03 She said no, it was all going to be other people that

14:54:06 were going to be no people from the City Council.

14:54:09 And she did mention that to speak to Mr. Fletcher to

14:54:14 make sure that the bonds would not be jeopardized by

14:54:20 suggesting that we get rid of the last two tiers.

14:54:23 Now, she didn't say suspend them temporarily, as the

14:54:26 resolution is saying.

14:54:30 But I think we should bring that back on the 17th

14:54:36 so that everybody has a chance to study the resolution.

14:54:39 >>MARY MULHERN: I would like to have -- to amend that.

14:54:43 Actual report showing us that the tier system actually

14:54:46 is causing the bills to go up, and that is -- I mean,

14:54:52 we haven't heard that.

14:54:53 And Mr. Fletcher, I'm not sure that ESP that you

14:55:00 figured out what council might want to do or you

14:55:02 actually -- you know, we could actually ask for a

14:55:04 resolution if we wanted one, and then you could do the

14:55:13 work and come back to us.

14:55:13 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: At the last council meeting there

14:55:14 were a number of council members that made a request to

14:55:16 do this.

14:55:17 It was discussed at the time, we thought we would have

14:55:20 to do an extensive notice process to make this change.

14:55:24 Because of the manner which this one was adopted, we

14:55:27 have figured out a way to do that without that

14:55:29 extensive bidding process.

14:55:32 >>MARY MULHERN: Well, this would be the council that

14:55:34 was passing the resolution so at least you would have

14:55:37 since you were doing all this work and put all the

14:55:40 thought into it speak with the chair in the future.

14:55:43 To ensure that we all have together.

14:55:45 >> I had been under the impression that the chairman

14:55:48 had been contacted about this, but we were certainly

14:55:51 making sure the tool was available if council wanted to

14:55:53 go forward with this.

14:55:54 >>THOMAS SCOTT: I received a call at exactly 1:35 p.m.

14:55:57 before coming in to start at noon that a resolution

14:56:01 would be coming.

14:56:03 I have not seen the resolution.

14:56:04 I have not discussed that with anybody.

14:56:08 At 1:35 p.m. this afternoon, I came in here to start

14:56:11 the meeting, I got a call, and it just so happened I

14:56:15 looked at it and saw who it was.

14:56:18 Otherwise, I probably wouldn't have answered.

14:56:32 >>CURTIS STOKES: Do we have --

14:56:35 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: The resolution covers commercial

14:56:38 and multifamily.

14:56:39 It would take that back so this would be covered.

14:56:41 >>MARY MULHERN: We need a staff report explaining

14:56:50 what's the data behind us doing this.

14:56:52 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: I would defer to the water

14:56:55 department and Mr. Daignault.

14:56:56 >>MARY MULHERN: I'm not asking for it right now.

14:56:58 I'm asking for that to come back.

14:57:04 Mr. Caetano's motion.

14:57:07 The 17th.

14:57:09 I haven't heard that that is causing the problem.

14:57:11 I mean, if it is, absolutely let's get rid of it.

14:57:15 But I haven't seen that.

14:57:16 I haven't heard that.

14:57:17 We need the information before we pass a resolution to

14:57:21 change it.

14:57:21 >>THOMAS SCOTT: My comment is when this first came up

14:57:28 we were told, this is the recommendation with SWFWMD

14:57:33 that weighed to do this.

14:57:35 Is that right?

14:57:36 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: It was the recommendation from

14:57:37 SWFWMD.

14:57:38 I will tell you consistently that as long as we follow

14:57:41 the rate making process you can set rates as you see

14:57:44 fit, and SWFWMD can't tell you --

14:57:48 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We were told that we had to do this.

14:57:50 Now we are being told -- then we were told also we had

14:57:54 to do it because our bond rate would be in jeopardy.

14:57:58 So I voted on that based on to make sure that the city

14:58:03 did not lose its bond rating and we could move forward,

14:58:06 okay?

14:58:06 Now I'm being told that we can he take off a couple

14:58:12 tiers, there would be no impact to the bond rate.

14:58:14 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: I can't tell you today that SWFWMD

14:58:17 will not have a regulatory issue with this change.

14:58:19 I don't know what their position will be.

14:58:22 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, don't you think someone, since

14:58:24 they sent us a message and told us we have to do it,

14:58:28 wouldn't it be wise to check with them to see if maybe

14:58:30 this will have an impact upon the tier or the bond and

14:58:33 all this other stuff?

14:58:41 Now we are saying, okay, let do this without all the

14:58:43 facts and all the information.

14:58:45 I just got a real problem with the way this thing is

14:58:47 going.

14:58:48 I want to tell you.

14:58:49 Mr. Fletcher, I have a lot of respect for you.

14:58:51 You sat in my office yesterday.

14:58:53 We talked.

14:58:54 Okay.

14:58:54 At no point did this come up at all.

14:58:58 When I vote on an issue, I want to know what I am

14:59:01 voting on, have all the fact, all the details.

14:59:04 We don't know what the impact is going to be, the

14:59:06 implication is going to be.

14:59:07 We don't know.

14:59:11 I can't vote on this today.

14:59:12 >>GWEN MILLER: Mr. Caetano made a motion to bring it

14:59:16 back on the 17th.

14:59:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All right.

14:59:18 That's your motion, councilman?

14:59:21 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Yes.

14:59:22 We have a meeting that day, correct?

14:59:26 >>MARY MULHERN: I mean, I thought we were going to get

14:59:30 a staff report.

14:59:31 You can have a resolution with it but what we need is

14:59:33 the information before we are going to even entertain a

14:59:35 resolution.

14:59:36 I think it needs to include a report on how it would

14:59:40 affect our bond rating, and if SWFWMD, you know, you

14:59:43 need to talk to SWFWMD, you know.

14:59:45 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Mr. Chairman, I'm sorry to interrupt

14:59:48 council.

14:59:49 But also as part of that, when you have something doc

14:59:51 agendaed you also have a section that says financial

14:59:53 impact.

14:59:54 So my suggestion would be to include the financial

14:59:56 impact on the revenues as well relative to what impact

15:00:08 that would have.

15:00:09 And, of course, the source of the funds and what that

15:00:11 would affect.

15:00:11 >>MARY MULHERN: But if that rate change could affect

15:00:15 the bond rating.

15:00:21 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Ms. Mulhern, at the last meeting they

15:00:23 had up in New Tampa, almost everyone that spoke --

15:00:27 there was probably at least 100 people that spoke --

15:00:29 and they all said get rid of the tier system.

15:00:34 Evidently, there was a gentleman there that had

15:00:38 dialogue with Steve.

15:00:39 That gentleman that was sitting there on the right side

15:00:41 claims to be an engineer, he spoke for quite a long

15:00:46 time.

15:00:48 I don't know if he made any sense.

15:00:49 You heard him.

15:00:50 You know more about water than I do.

15:00:52 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, now --

15:00:57 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Brad, can you tell me you are

15:00:59 waiting for some kind of report from somebody?

15:01:04 >>BRAD BAIRD: From the gentleman to the right?

15:01:07 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Last night you told me you were

15:01:09 waiting for a report.

15:01:11 >>BRAD BAIRD: Oh, that's to do with automatic meter

15:01:13 reading and automatic meter reading infrastructure.

15:01:16 We have retained an expert.

15:01:19 I think I said at previous meetings, to review what is

15:01:24 best if we transition to automatic meter reading, the

15:01:29 costs, financial package, what technology would be best

15:01:32 for Tampa.

15:01:32 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

15:01:39 Ma'am, were you trying to speak?

15:01:45 I saw you get up.

15:01:46 I didn't know if you were trying to address council, or

15:01:48 trying to address administration.

15:01:50 >>> Cory Cutler, Southwest Florida Water Management

15:01:53 District.

15:01:54 You had raised questions how it relates to your permit

15:01:57 and why the district encouraged the drought rate.

15:02:02 During the severe drought last year that you all are

15:02:04 very familiar with, and again we appreciate the actions

15:02:06 that you took at that time, the district was

15:02:10 encouraging all the communities to consider drought

15:02:13 rate, and this is the structure that your council chose

15:02:16 to implement that.

15:02:21 That's how that came to be.

15:02:22 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

15:02:29 So-so, in essence, Mr. Fletcher, it sound like council

15:02:35 came up with this tier system.

15:02:40 You said we were encouraged to come up with a tier

15:02:42 system and this is the system we chose.

15:02:44 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Mr. Chairman, there is an ongoing

15:02:47 statewide fight between the water management district

15:02:49 and local governments over rate setting.

15:02:53 As a governmental attorney I will tell you, you always

15:02:55 have the authority to set your own rate.

15:02:57 The water management district had at times taken the

15:03:00 position that they can mandate how rate are structured.

15:03:04 So it is one of these situations where I believe firmly

15:03:07 that it's your right to have these tiers or not as you

15:03:11 choose.

15:03:12 That doesn't mean that the regulators are going to

15:03:15 agree with me on that issue.

15:03:18 So I can tell you unequivocally that I believe that

15:03:20 action related to these tiers will not affect our

15:03:22 permit.

15:03:23 Can I promise you the water management district will

15:03:24 agree with me?

15:03:26 No.

15:03:27 >>THOMAS SCOTT: But my point beyond that, though, is I

15:03:29 don't recall us designing the tier system.

15:03:33 I thought it was brought to us already outlined, as I

15:03:36 recall.

15:03:36 >> By the water department, yes.

15:03:38 >> Again, it was brought to us by the water department,

15:03:48 this tier system already set.

15:03:50 And pretty much.

15:03:51 because I know the dialogue discussion that we had to

15:03:53 do this was based on recommendation of SWFWMD, and

15:03:57 maintaining our bond rating.

15:03:58 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: And councilman Miranda can

15:04:02 probably speak to the.

15:04:03 But we had numerous meetings with the director of the

15:04:05 water management district.

15:04:19 >>CURTIS STOKES: Was it possible not only the top two

15:04:21 tiers but eliminate the tiers down to the point where

15:04:23 it doesn't affect our bond rating?

15:04:25 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: We can look at being more

15:04:29 aggressive.

15:04:30 But procedurally, if we go back past this one

15:04:40 resolution, we would probably have to do a rate making

15:04:43 in the study.

15:04:43 So the answer to your question is yes, but we can't do

15:04:46 it as quickly or efficiently as we can with just these

15:04:48 two tiers.

15:04:49 >>THOMAS SCOTT: There's a motion on the floor to come

15:04:53 back on February 17 which includes all the information

15:04:56 that we requested.

15:05:00 We need to restate that motion clearly.

15:05:02 You understand all the financial impact relative to

15:05:06 reducing it to the top two tiers and all the

15:05:09 information requested by Councilwoman Mulhern?

15:05:14 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: On the resolution and whether or

15:05:15 not the rate, the higher rate tiers are related to

15:05:22 these issues.

15:05:23 >> And the financial impact and all of that.

15:05:25 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Under staff reports.

15:05:37 >>CURTIS STOKES: Can you also come back with the

15:05:38 possibility of lowering the rates down to the point

15:05:40 where it wouldn't affect our bond rate being, not just

15:05:43 the top two tiers but possibly down to tier 3?

15:05:49 >> If we do anything but the top two tiers it's

15:06:02 possible it will affect our bond rating. So to take

15:06:05 away the top two tiers and going further down, I'm not

15:06:08 Bonnie but we had this discussion today, and it will

15:06:10 affect our bond rating.

15:06:11 >> If the top two tiers go away that our bond rating

15:06:25 could be affected.

15:06:26 So the concept of going even further down would

15:06:28 definitely impact our bond rating.

15:06:30 >> But Mrs. Wise said no.

15:06:36 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: There's a difference between

15:06:37 violating our bond covenants and potentially affecting

15:06:40 our bond rating.

15:06:41 The bond rating is much more of a, in my view,

15:06:45 subjective review by a rating agency.

15:06:47 A bond covenant is a clear objective standard that we

15:06:49 have to meet.

15:06:51 We have evaluated.

15:06:53 This would not violate our bond covenants.

15:06:56 I can't speak to whether it would affect our bond

15:06:58 ratings.

15:06:58 I think that would be appropriate for Mrs. Wise to

15:07:01 address.

15:07:01 >>MARY MULHERN: I would like to add that to the motion

15:07:09 that we have the budget director here to address our

15:07:11 questions.

15:07:14 >>THOMAS SCOTT: That's why it important.

15:07:16 Here we have a resolution where you don't have all the

15:07:18 information.

15:07:18 That's why it's important to get all the information,

15:07:20 all the fact, so you can make an informed decision, not

15:07:23 a reckless decision.

15:07:24 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: That's why we moved it to the

15:07:34 17th.

15:07:34 >>THOMAS SCOTT: But until we took the strong action, I

15:07:37 said I have problems with passing it today because we

15:07:39 don't have all the information.

15:07:41 >> We listened to you.

15:07:42 >>MARTIN SHELBY: A reminder to City Council that your

15:07:46 water department is an enterprise fund.

15:07:49 It has revenues and it has expenditures.

15:07:51 And the numbers have to match in order to be run as a

15:07:54 business.

15:07:55 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Right.

15:07:55 We understand.

15:07:56 There's a motion.

15:07:56 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Have we passed that motion?

15:08:01 >> I'm trying to dot.

15:08:02 Is it all right?

15:08:03 >> Yes?

15:08:04 >> I have a motion and second.

15:08:05 All in favor?

15:08:06 Opposes?

15:08:06 Okay.

15:08:07 Thank you very kindly.

15:08:08 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Another issue, Mr. Chairman.

15:08:11 I want to commend Mr. Brad Baird.

15:08:14 He's doing a great job.

15:08:15 Every time I call him, and I know a lot of my residents

15:08:18 in my area have talked to him.

15:08:20 With that being said, I would like to make a motion to

15:08:22 ask the legal department to come back with language

15:08:25 that amend it is city code to require the water

15:08:28 department to average residents' water bill when it's

15:08:31 been discovered that there has been no reasonable cause

15:08:35 for spikes in the usage of the bill.

15:08:47 Understand of that?

15:08:49 >> Might need to restate it.

15:08:50 I didn't get it.

15:08:51 >> My motion is to ask the legal department to come

15:08:53 back with language that amend it is city code to

15:08:55 require the water department to average a resident's

15:08:57 water bill when it has been discovered that there is no

15:09:01 reasonable cause for the spikes in the usage of the

15:09:05 bill, as what's happening now.

15:09:08 There's no reason why these bills have been going up.

15:09:10 We don't have a definite reason.

15:09:13 >>THOMAS SCOTT: But the question comes back, though,

15:09:14 still, even if you average it out, the gentleman said

15:09:22 today I have a $3200 water bill, my spigot is sealed.

15:09:31 There's nobody in the place.

15:09:32 Are you going to average his bill and he still he's to

15:09:33 pay?

15:09:34 Talking the previous bills.

15:09:35 All right.

15:09:35 I thought you were talking about including that high

15:09:37 bill.

15:09:38 Moved and seconded.

15:09:39 All in favor signify by saying Aye.

15:09:41 Opposes?

15:09:41 >>MARTIN SHELBY: I don't know whether it was the maker

15:09:45 of the motion's intention.

15:09:46 Did you want to inquire how long something like that

15:09:48 would take?

15:09:48 Do you want to have a date for it to come back?

15:09:52 >> I think by the 17th.

15:09:54 Today is the 3rd.

15:09:55 Two weeks.

15:09:55 >> when you are dealing with motions you can't change

15:10:08 rates without going back to do a study to find out what

15:10:10 the implications are going to be, not on your bond

15:10:13 covenant -- this particular bond issue that is affected

15:10:16 by these rates does not have a reserve requirement.

15:10:19 We are not required to put any money aside for these

15:10:21 bonds.

15:10:22 If the rating gets affected, we may have to put one

15:10:25 year of reserves in that.

15:10:27 That's going to have an impact on the rates.

15:10:28 It's not -- and I am not trying to make it simple and

15:10:31 you know it's not a simple process, but there are many

15:10:34 steps when dealing with enter praise funds and rather

15:10:36 rate setting, it's not simply a matter we'll do a

15:10:39 motion and change the rates.

15:10:40 Sometimes it requires a study to be done, and it's a

15:10:43 very complex problem.

15:10:44 We look at this particular issue on these two tiers.

15:10:47 We have come to the conclusion that the impact would be

15:10:50 minimal at this particular point.

15:10:52 That doesn't mean it will have no impact.

15:10:54 But it will be minimal.

15:10:55 Anything beyond then you have to go back and look at

15:10:57 those issues.

15:10:58 That's all we are trying to say.

15:10:59 >>MARY MULHERN: I think that's at least the third

15:11:02 opinion we have heard on this from the administration.

15:11:03 >>SAL TERRITO: I am speaking from the legal

15:11:09 department.

15:11:10 Just trying to explain to you how the process works.

15:11:12 That's your decision, the administration's decision,

15:11:14 how you want to do this.

15:11:15 There are implications.

15:11:17 That's all I am going to say.

15:11:19 >>MARY MULHERN: I am speaking to the administration.

15:11:21 Please don't bring us resolutions when you don't even

15:11:23 know if we can --

15:11:33 >> I was addressing the last motion, know it the

15:11:35 previous motion.

15:11:36 I wasn't trying to address the previous motion.

15:11:38 >>MARTIN SHELBY: If I can, just to ask the maker of

15:11:41 the motion, Mr. Caetano.

15:11:43 Mr. Caetano, that being said, would your motion then be

15:11:47 more appropriate to have a staff report from the legal

15:11:50 department on the 17th to talk about the

15:11:53 feasibility of having an average of, let's say, two or

15:11:56 three prior bills?

15:11:59 >> Yes.

15:12:01 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Of addressing your concern.

15:12:03 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Yes.

15:12:03 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Mr. City attorney Kursk come back

15:12:07 with a report by the 17th in that respect?

15:12:11 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: We can certainly look at it before

15:12:12 the 17th.

15:12:13 This issue actually, from a rate making standpoint, is

15:12:16 a little more complicated than the other one because we

15:12:18 don't have prior history, which weighed a prior

15:12:21 history, prayer to the resolution that was passed last

15:12:24 spring.

15:12:24 So that's a simpler analysis.

15:12:27 We have to look at this a little more closely, and we

15:12:29 will endeavor to have something back to you on the

15:12:32 17th.

15:12:32 >>THOMAS SCOTT: So do we need to rescind the motion we

15:12:43 just made?

15:12:43 >> No.

15:12:44 Week draft an ordinance.

15:12:46 That's the simple part.

15:12:46 The harder part is figuring out what the financial

15:12:48 impact will be.

15:12:49 >>MARTIN SHELBY: I think you need a second to that

15:12:52 motion.

15:12:53 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We already voted I think.

15:12:54 Council Mulhern seconded that motion.

15:12:56 >>MARTIN SHELBY: I'm sorry, madam clerk, do you have

15:12:59 the vote on this?

15:13:01 >> We voted on it.

15:13:02 >> For the legal department to come back.

15:13:10 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Can be we just add that to the

15:13:12 motion?

15:13:13 Excuse me, Mr. Chairman.

15:13:14 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Mr. Caetano just made a motion

15:13:22 relative to wanting to see the feasibility of amending

15:13:25 prior bills when the discrepancy is not resolved.

15:13:30 It was that particular motion seconded, madam clerk?

15:13:34 >> Yes.

15:13:35 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Was that motion voted on?

15:13:37 >> Yes.

15:13:40 To have Brad Baird come back.

15:13:42 >>MARTIN SHELBY: So basically you are amending the

15:13:44 motion to have the legal department rather than

15:13:46 Mr. Baird.

15:13:46 Is that correct?

15:13:47 >> Yes.

15:13:47 So we don't need to take any further action then.

15:13:50 >> No, sir.

15:13:53 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: That's why we have guys like you.

15:13:55 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.

15:13:56 Item 53.

15:14:01 We did that one? Item 55.

15:14:04 Did we do that?

15:14:05 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: I'm here for item 53.

15:14:09 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Yes, go ahead.

15:14:12 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: We provided a memo to council,

15:14:15 actually Bonnie Wise provided a memo to council, the

15:14:19 request last time was the information that was provided

15:14:21 previously be expanded to go back to 2004, and so that

15:14:27 memo is there.

15:14:28 This shows what impact fees have been received and what

15:14:32 impact fees by district have been expended since 2004.

15:14:53 >>CURTIS STOKES: Mr. Daignault, it looks like the

15:14:55 revenue received, 4.7 million, in the amount expended

15:15:00 1.1 million?

15:15:03 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: I'm sorry, I can't hear you.

15:15:05 Too much noise going on here.

15:15:08 >>CURTIS STOKES: Looking at the amount of impact fees

15:15:10 received, 4.7 million, the amount expended 1. is

15:15:17 million.

15:15:17 >> That is correct.

15:15:22 >>CURTIS STOKES: Given the amount what needs to be

15:15:25 done, does this money sit there in anticipation of

15:15:28 being used?

15:15:29 Or is that in addition to the TIF funds that can be

15:15:32 used as well?

15:15:36 >> This is transportation impact fee fund.

15:15:39 They can only be used for expansion of a road system so

15:15:45 they are very specific on their use.

15:15:47 There are projects identified against the funding for

15:15:49 each of these areas.

15:15:53 >>CURTIS STOKES: Okay.

15:15:53 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Specifically outlined on each

15:16:00 project?

15:16:00 For instance, the so-called bridge to nowhere, okay, is

15:16:04 that money allocated to that bridge project?

15:16:12 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: We do it kind of backwards from

15:16:14 what you said.

15:16:14 We have revenues and expenses, and the balance we have

15:16:17 a list of projects for the balance of that amount of

15:16:21 money in that district.

15:16:22 So the bridge project is one of those projects that we

15:16:26 would spend that impact fee money on, yes, sir.

15:16:29 >> That bridge project, I understand, is about $15

15:16:32 million.

15:16:34 >> Yes, sir.

15:16:35 >> How much do we have in there, did you say?

15:16:38 >> This would be university north.

15:16:54 12,000 expended and 900 received during this period of

15:16:58 time.

15:16:59 This is not showing a balance, fund balance.

15:17:01 This is showing the amount of money that was received

15:17:03 and the amount of money that has been expended from

15:17:06 each of those he areas from impact fees.

15:17:17 >>Are any other questions?

15:17:18 Motion to receive and file?

15:17:20 Is there a motion?

15:17:22 >> So moved.

15:17:22 >> Second.

15:17:23 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

15:17:24 All in favor?

15:17:26 Opposes?

15:17:27 All right.

15:17:27 Item 565.

15:17:29 This is the WalMart impact fee.

15:17:33 >> Yes, sir.

15:17:34 Council member, Steve Daignault, administrator public

15:17:37 works utility services.

15:17:38 We have been watching the WalMart area.

15:17:44 We have not observed any traffic issues there.

15:17:46 I understand that Mr. Steenson was here this morning.

15:17:48 He has an interest in a sidewalk being built.

15:17:51 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Right.

15:17:52 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Again, it is not impact fee money

15:17:54 that we would use for that.

15:17:55 But we do have other fund.

15:17:56 And we agree with him.

15:17:58 And so we'll get that into our process, and we'll use

15:18:01 the appropriate funds and address the sidewalk issue.

15:18:04 >> So then you will get that taken care of.

15:18:06 Okay.

15:18:07 Yes?

15:18:08 >>MARY MULHERN: This is on the former item.

15:18:11 53.

15:18:13 Condition you e-mail Mr. Steenson that impact fee

15:18:16 report that we got?

15:18:20 >> A copy of this?

15:18:22 >>MARY MULHERN: He wanted it to go to -- I think he

15:18:25 said to his neighborhood association but maybe it's

15:18:27 something.

15:18:35 >> You are talking about the memorandum off?

15:18:36 I did that this morning by e-mail to Mr. Steenson.

15:18:38 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay.

15:18:42 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Mr. Daignault, can you come back and

15:18:44 report to us on the sidewalk issue that was raised?

15:18:49 >>STEVE DAIGNAULT: Yes, sir.

15:18:52 To identify the funding used?

15:18:55 >> How much time do you need to bring that report back

15:18:57 to us?

15:18:58 >> We can tell you in two weeks, tell you where it is.

15:19:01 >>MARY MULHERN: So moved.

15:19:03 >> Second.

15:19:04 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

15:19:04 Opposed?

15:19:05 Thank you very much, Mr. Daignault.

15:19:06 Okay.

15:19:07 Item 56.

15:19:08 >>MARY MULHERN: It's basically a one-day project, that

15:19:21 Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council has been doing it

15:19:23 just to support --

15:19:24 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Do you want to make a motion?

15:19:26 Go ahead.

15:19:26 >>MARY MULHERN: I want to move the resolution.

15:19:30 >> Second.

15:19:31 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.

15:19:32 All in favor?

15:19:33 Opposes?

15:19:34 Okay.

15:19:34 Thank you.

15:19:35 Item 57.

15:19:38 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Yes, council.

15:19:39 After talking with members of City Council,

15:19:41 individually regarding recommending a date for the

15:19:50 strategic planning session it's my recommendation it be

15:19:53 taken up when the new council is seated on April

15:19:57 2nd.

15:19:57 With all due respect I believe it would be appropriate

15:19:59 to raise the issue once the new term starts.

15:20:10 I have no recommendation at this time.

15:20:12 You could either agenda the item for that date or just

15:20:15 I could bring it up under new business.

15:20:17 Whatever council's pleasure is.

15:20:18 >>THOMAS SCOTT: What you need now?

15:20:22 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Whether you want this item to come

15:20:23 back on April 7th on the agenda or bring it back

15:20:28 under new business to ask when the new term starts with

15:20:30 the City Council being seated.

15:20:33 >>THOMAS SCOTT: What's the pleasure, council?

15:20:34 Strategic planning.

15:20:40 You will bring it back.

15:20:42 Okay.

15:20:43 The last issue that I think -- into new business, we

15:20:47 had a request from the Hyde Park neighborhood

15:20:49 association relative to a when that's about the

15:21:00 Gasparilla, the audit request.

15:21:03 Any other new business?

15:21:05 Councilman Stokes?

15:21:07 >>CURTIS STOKES: No new business.

15:21:08 >>MARY MULHERN: I was just going to say with regard to

15:21:11 that, I would be happy to be on this committee that you

15:21:16 asked us to form for the Gasparilla, unless perhaps the

15:21:21 South Tampa council person would want to do that.

15:21:24 But if you don't want to, I would.

15:21:27 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Yes, I would.

15:21:29 Thank you very much.

15:21:30 Hyde Park is in my district.

15:21:35 You have the whole city.

15:21:36 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Sunshine.

15:21:40 Sunshine.

15:21:43 >>YVONNE CAPIN: That's right.

15:21:44 Thank you.

15:21:44 >>MARTIN SHELBY: And the other thing I am not familiar

15:21:48 with, council, is with regard to this committee

15:21:51 depending on what its role is and what its role may

15:21:55 become.

15:21:55 It may turn into a sunshine committee where doesn't

15:21:57 exist as a sunshine committee now.

15:21:59 That's something else you may have to take into

15:22:01 consideration.

15:22:01 >>THOMAS SCOTT: So he's addressing that.

15:22:05 Do you have any new business?

15:22:09 Councilwoman?

15:22:10 >>GWEN MILLER: No.

15:22:12 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Council Councilwoman Capin?

15:22:15 >>YVONNE CAPIN: No.

15:22:16 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: No.

15:22:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: You don't have any new business?

15:22:19 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: I did it already.

15:22:20 >>THOMAS SCOTT: You always have new business.

15:22:24 Okay, yes, sir.

15:22:25 >>GWEN MILLER: Motion to receive and file.

15:22:31 >> Second.

15:22:32 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

15:22:33 We are waiting on Mr. Fletcher to get an answer.

15:22:40 Do I have new business I need to do?

15:22:45 There's a new business item here, request from

15:22:48 Executive Director of the Hillsborough County Planning

15:22:49 Commission requesting to appear before council on

15:22:52 February 17th for five to ten minutes to discuss

15:22:56 our comprehensive plan issues.

15:22:57 Moved and seconded.

15:22:58 All in favor by saying Aye.

15:23:00 Opposes?

15:23:01 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Mr. Chairman, question for you, sir.

15:23:03 Did you want that to appear at a time certain?

15:23:06 For instance, in the morning?

15:23:07 Or did you want it to appear under staff reports?

15:23:10 >> Staff reports is fine.

15:23:13 Then also I want to announce today sadly to council,

15:23:20 Mr. Moses Knott who is our person citizen who is always

15:23:25 here passed away last night.

15:23:29 So that is sad news for us.

15:23:32 As everyone knows, he is one citizen who has

15:23:35 consistently appeared before council, raising his

15:23:38 issues and concerns, bringing to this council's

15:23:41 attention for years and years and years and years and

15:23:43 years, passed away last night, and sadly, he will be

15:23:49 missed.

15:23:50 So what I would like to do is pause for a moment of

15:23:52 silence.


15:23:57 (Moment of silence)

15:23:59 Amen.

15:24:10 Okay.

15:24:10 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: He was a great guy.

15:24:16 Had he been sick long, do you know?

15:24:35 >>THOMAS SCOTT: No, he was diagnosed with cancer some

15:24:38 time back, as I understand.

15:24:41 Mr. Fletcher, are you ready to address council on this

15:24:45 contract issue?

15:24:47 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Yes.

15:24:47 The question was whether or not our contract with Ye

15:24:50 Mystic Krewe would be subject to the not-profit

15:24:55 ordinance.

15:24:56 Those contract do predate the ordinance.

15:24:57 So on its face it would not.

15:24:59 But as was indicated we do regularly have transaction

15:25:02 was them, and I need to go back and do somebody

15:25:05 additional research to see if you have had subsequent

15:25:07 transactions that would subject them to the nonprofit

15:25:12 entity ordinance.

15:25:13 >>THOMAS SCOTT: So the city contract predates the

15:25:15 ordinance?

15:25:18 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Yes.

15:25:19 We had some permits that we approved for the event.

15:25:21 But that's different than the contract.

15:25:23 The contracts were approved in 2009.

15:25:28 The most recent amendments of the contracts were in

15:25:31 2009.

15:25:31 >>THOMAS SCOTT: So there is nothing that council can

15:25:36 do in requesting an audit?

15:25:39 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: I think you can still request the

15:25:41 audit.

15:25:42 I have no concerns about that.

15:25:43 I think we have to do some additional research.

15:25:46 >>THOMAS SCOTT: I need a motion to request an audit.

15:25:50 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I make a motion we request an audit.

15:25:51 >>MARY MULHERN: Second.

15:25:54 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor?

15:25:56 Opposes?

15:25:56 >>MARY MULHERN: I would like to make a motion also

15:26:00 that Mr. Shelby look into this for us, what council can

15:26:06 do about -- I guess we need to request an audit, but

15:26:11 look into the contract and the permitting.

15:26:16 >>MARTIN SHELBY: I'll ask Mr. Fletcher for a copy of

15:26:19 the contract.

15:26:19 I would be more than happy to assist in any way I can.

15:26:22 Thank you.

15:26:24 >>CURTIS STOKES: How often do we do this, audit

15:26:27 nonprofits?

15:26:28 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: To my knowledge, this would be the

15:26:30 first one other than the zoo when we had the issue with

15:26:34 you the zoo some years ago.

15:26:37 >>CURTIS STOKES: What are we looking for?

15:26:42 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: I can't answer that.

15:26:43 In the zoo there were specific allegations of

15:26:45 mismanagement.

15:26:46 There were some requests that were made earlier.

15:26:50 Once I do some more research I may be able to tell you

15:26:53 what we could get at from an audit.

15:26:56 For instance, some of the issues that were raised, I'm

15:26:58 not sure that by ought auditing the Krewe, for example,

15:27:01 we would get to how the nonprofit managing the event is

15:27:04 making certain charges that seems to be the issue.

15:27:09 I think that's an excellent question.

15:27:10 I don't think I have an answer for your question.

15:27:15 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Then I can amend it to audit the

15:27:17 nonprofit that is taking in the money.

15:27:21 >>MARTIN SHELBY: May I make a suggestion?

15:27:25 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: I can't tell you standing here

15:27:27 today whether we can or not.

15:27:28 This came up this morning.

15:27:29 It's going to take a little bit of work.

15:27:31 We don't have anybody with that nonprofit so I'm not

15:27:33 sure we can do that but I will certainly look into it.

15:27:36 >>YVONNE CAPIN: So my motion will put this into motion?

15:27:39 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Yes.

15:27:40 >>MARTIN SHELBY: If I can, Councilwoman Capin, it may

15:27:43 be more appropriate rather than to ask for an audit to

15:27:47 be ask for a staff report back as to how these issues

15:27:50 can be addressed, including perhaps having an audit,

15:27:54 and then council can make an informed decision after

15:27:57 the administration has a chance to review the material

15:28:00 that was provided today.

15:28:00 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.

15:28:03 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I will amend my motion.

15:28:04 >>MARY MULHERN: Can I make a friendly amendment?

15:28:08 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Yes.

15:28:11 >>MARY MULHERN: As part of that report if we could see

15:28:13 what we have available to us now, how much we are

15:28:17 spending on police, every city expenditure that goes --

15:28:23 even in kind that goes for Gasparilla.

15:28:29 >>CURTIS STOKES: We could limit that to city

15:28:31 expenditures, is that right?

15:28:35 >> Yes.

15:28:37 >>THOMAS SCOTT: So the amendment is to request we have

15:28:39 a staff report back to look at all these issues and

15:28:44 what is the spending the public dollars relative to

15:28:49 Gasparilla.

15:28:49 Right?

15:28:50 >> Yes.

15:28:51 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Council that may take some time.

15:28:53 There's been a lot front loaded for the 17th.

15:28:55 >>MARY MULHERN: More than 45 days?

15:29:00 >> What is our next regular meeting?

15:29:03 >>MARTIN SHELBY: After the 17th would be March

15:29:06 3rd, I believe.

15:29:06 >>THOMAS SCOTT: March 3rd.

15:29:10 So the motion is March 3rd.

15:29:14 Do we have a second?

15:29:16 Moved and seconded.

15:29:17 All in favor say Aye.

15:29:19 Opposes?

15:29:20 Okay.

15:29:21 Our last one issue is American Legion post 5,

15:29:28 oratorical contest.

15:29:29 I would like to invite the winner of 2009 and the

15:29:32 winner of 2010 Kaitlyn, I don't know the last name, to

15:29:37 come before City Council on 2010 -- 2011 to present her

15:29:42 short speech.

15:29:43 This is from councilman Miranda's office.

15:29:47 So I'm making that motion.

15:29:48 >>GWEN MILLER: Motion and second.

15:29:52 All in favor?

15:29:56 Opposes?

15:29:57 >> Thank you.

15:29:57 Any new business to come before council?

15:29:59 If not we stand adjourned.

15:30:00 Thank you.



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