TAMPA CITY COUNCIL
Thursday, January 29, 2009
9:00 a.m. Session
The following represents an unedited version of
realtime captioning which should neither be relied
upon for complete accuracy nor used as a verbatim
The original of this file was produced in all capital
letters and any variation thereto may be a result of
third party edits and software compatibility issues.
Any person who needs a verbatim transcript of the
proceedings may need to hire a court reporter.
09:05:16 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Good morning.
09:05:17 Tampa City Council will now come to order.
09:05:18 And the chair will yield to the honorable Linda
09:05:23 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Good morning, everyone.
09:05:24 It's my pleasure this morning to introduce my friend
09:05:28 and my Rabbi, the Senior Rabbi from congregation
09:05:31 Schaarai Zedek, Rabbi Richard Birnholz.
09:05:36 He is a community leader and will lead us in the
09:05:38 Let us all rise and follow the invocation and the
09:05:41 pledge of allegiance.
09:05:42 Thank you, Rabbi.
09:05:44 >> Thank you.
09:05:45 This is a special prayer not only for our City Council
09:05:48 and city but for this special weekend.
09:05:51 Gracious God and sustainer of life, we come before you
09:05:54 this morning with grateful hearts as we celebrate many
09:06:00 By coming together as one community, defined not by
09:06:04 our boundaries but by our commonality.
09:06:09 We celebrate a Tampa tradition of Gasparilla pride and
09:06:14 of Super Bowl that has helped define who we are.
09:06:18 Just as our parents and grandparents fill the crows
09:06:24 nest of voyages past and our stadium, so do we thank
09:06:28 you for allowing us to safely line the streets and sit
09:06:32 in the seats where they too have gone before us.
09:06:37 Our prayer this morning, God, also marks a celebration
09:06:40 of generosity.
09:06:42 Through your divine guidance, our krewes as Gasparilla
09:06:48 and our players on the field reverse the traditional
09:06:51 pirate role of taking and turn it instead into one of
09:06:58 Be with them as they throw their beads and their
09:07:00 autographs, bringing the blessing of smiles to
09:07:03 children's faces, and thank them for the showering of
09:07:07 gifts which they bestow upon this community every day,
09:07:12 individual by individual, family by family,
09:07:15 corporation by corporation, and group by group.
09:07:20 Let our prayer this morning also reflect a celebration
09:07:23 of celebration, for everything there is a purpose and
09:07:27 a time for every season under heaven, a time to laugh,
09:07:32 but also a time to think of those in our community who
09:07:36 still cannot laugh, a time to dance, but also a time
09:07:40 to remember, that for some in our community today, the
09:07:44 joy of dancing has been muted, and a time to rejoice,
09:07:49 as long as we never forget to acknowledge that the
09:07:52 ability to rejoice comes from you our maker.
09:07:56 Keep us safe, O God, on our floats, in the streets, in
09:08:00 the stadium, but most of all, in our world, which is
09:08:05 in such great need of your peace.
09:08:08 Be with our City Council.
09:08:10 Bless them and help them to understand the importance
09:08:13 of the task that they undertake, and thank them for
09:08:17 all that they do for our community's benefit.
09:08:25 (Pledge of Allegiance)
09:08:36 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We will now have our roll call.
09:08:52 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Here.
09:08:57 >>GWEN MILLER: Here.
09:08:58 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Here.
09:09:00 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Here.
09:09:02 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Here.
09:09:09 The chair will yield to the honorable Gwen Miller for
09:09:14 firefighter of the quarter and the commendation for
09:09:17 the police Officer of the Month.
09:09:26 >>GWEN MILLER: It's an honor to be here this morning
09:09:28 to honor our firefighter and police officer for the
09:09:30 quarter for the month.
09:09:32 At this time I would like the chief to come up and
09:09:37 tell various things about the captain.
09:09:44 >>> Good morning, Chairman Scott, members of the
09:09:47 Thank you for allowing me to come before you.
09:09:49 I'm honored to be here to represent the firefighter of
09:09:51 the quarter.
09:09:53 For more than 28 years captain Rigoberto Martinez has
09:09:56 worked for Tampa Fire Rescue.
09:09:58 He's currently assigned to engine 20 in Tampa Palms.
09:10:01 And during his career he's done a commendable job
09:10:04 working his way up through the ranks and being a fine
09:10:07 example for others to follow.
09:10:09 Captain Martinez is known as a very giving person, but
09:10:13 just before the holidays this year he went above and
09:10:16 beyond any normal measure of giving.
09:10:19 On November 14th, 2008, captain Martinez and his
09:10:23 crew responded to a reported vehicle fire on
09:10:26 interstate 75.
09:10:28 When they arrived at the scene, the crew discovered
09:10:30 that the car was not on fire but the engine had blown
09:10:34 The car belongs to a family of four, a mother, father,
09:10:37 and their two sons, eight and ten years old.
09:10:41 Captain Martinez was told that his family was on a
09:10:43 desperate trip to leave Florida and relocate the to
09:10:50 Houston following the murder of their teenaged
09:10:53 When the car broke down the family was traveling with
09:10:55 all of their worldly possessions including two pets.
09:10:59 They had very meager resources.
09:11:00 Recently they had purchased the car for about $300,
09:11:03 and had about $400 in their pocket and that was all of
09:11:09 their earthly belongings.
09:11:10 Standing on the side of the busy interstate captain
09:11:13 Martinez pondered the circumstances that were facing
09:11:16 this family, and he decided that he had to help.
09:11:19 Captain Martinez arranged to have the family and all
09:11:22 of their possessions moved from the interstate to fire
09:11:26 station 20.
09:11:28 Once everyone was safe at the fire station, captain
09:11:30 Martinez called his wife, who is standing here with
09:11:33 him today, and she brought two large suitcases for the
09:11:36 family to use.
09:11:38 Captain Martinez then called a cab, paid for the fare
09:11:42 so they could get to the bus station, and he also gave
09:11:45 them a significant amount of money out of his own
09:11:48 pocket to allow the family to continue their trip to
09:11:50 Texas on the bus.
09:11:53 Just like the Biblical good Samaritan, captain
09:11:56 Martinez did not leave a stranger in need, stranded on
09:11:59 the roadside.
09:12:00 He sheltered them.
09:12:02 He made sure they were able to continue their journey.
09:12:05 And for his selfless and inspiring act of kindness, we
09:12:10 proudly introduce to you captain Martinez, Tampa's
09:12:15 firefighter of the quarter.
09:12:20 [ Applause ]
09:12:22 >> I do want to say, normally, you know, we have a
09:12:25 large amount of staff here.
09:12:26 They are all busy working.
09:12:28 As the rabbi indicated they are all busy working
09:12:31 events for the Super Bowl.
09:12:32 But some of the crew is here, and certainly captain
09:12:36 Martinez and his wife, and we are very proud of his
09:12:42 [ Applause ]
09:12:46 >>GWEN MILLER: On behalf City Council I would like to
09:12:51 give you a commendation.
09:12:58 I would like to present this to you.
09:13:00 And now the private sector.
09:13:06 >>> Tom Wagner of the Florida Aquarium.
09:13:13 That's an inspiring story.
09:13:15 Here is a membership for you and your family for an
09:13:17 entire year's visit to the Florida Aquarium.
09:13:27 >> Tickets to the Lowry Park Zoo.
09:13:30 We thank you for everything you do and we want you to
09:13:32 come spend the day at the zoo on us.
09:13:39 >> Good morning, council.
09:13:41 It is indeed a pleasure.
09:13:42 I'm Michelle Patty from attorney referral service to
09:13:47 extend this gift certificate for doing an outstanding
09:13:53 God bless you.
09:14:05 >> Steve Stickley representing Stepp's towing service.
09:14:09 On behalf of Jim and Judy Stepp of Stepps towing
09:14:14 service we would like to present there statue to you
09:14:16 and a gift certificate to Lee Roy Selmons.
09:14:21 We really appreciate what you did.
09:14:25 Thank you very much.
09:14:35 >>STEVE MICHELINI: Glad to meet you, sir.
09:14:37 I have got a couple things for you.
09:14:40 I would like to recognize you first with Bern's
09:14:44 steakhouse, David laxer.
09:14:46 They are going to present with you a $100 gift
09:14:49 certificate so you can go enjoy yourselves over there.
09:14:52 The RIGATONI's restaurant, you can have lunch or
09:14:57 dinner over there, enjoy yourselves with them.
09:15:00 On behalf of the towing association, they are
09:15:04 presenting you with a gift certificate of your choice
09:15:06 to Outback, Carrabas, Lee Roy Selmons.
09:15:13 For Bryn Allen studios, you have a family portrait.
09:15:18 You are going to get anew one and have that done.
09:15:20 And we have a very special award.
09:15:22 And I would like to thank captain wade over there.
09:15:28 We talked yesterday briefly about what you had done,
09:15:31 and I can tell you that there's an outpouring of very
09:15:35 kind thoughts going towards you and your family, and
09:15:39 in that regard, I have a donor, Mr. Kenji from the
09:15:46 Westin hotel and they are going to present with you a
09:15:48 $500 gift certificate with you to do as you please for
09:15:52 coming out of your pocket and helping a family in
09:15:55 And I would like to tell you also that we all know
09:15:57 that the firefighters do such a wonderful job for us
09:16:00 We are all so appreciative for what they do on a daily
09:16:04 This was above and beyond the call of duty.
09:16:06 And Mr. KANJI is so grateful for what happened, he
09:16:11 wanted to return the favor.
09:16:12 So I'll be getting with the chief and providing that
09:16:17 for you.
09:16:20 [ Applause ]
09:16:27 >> This is overwhelming.
09:16:28 I want to thank everyone.
09:16:30 And all these gifts and everything.
09:16:31 I didn't expect anything in return.
09:16:33 When I was helping this family I thought it was the
09:16:36 right thing to do.
09:16:37 I would like to thank Danny Lewis from Bill Currie
09:16:42 But I also received this watch from him.
09:16:46 And I thank everyone once again.
09:16:51 [ Applause ]
09:17:00 >>GWEN MILLER: Now I would like to present our Officer
09:17:02 of the Month, who is detective Gary Sandel.
09:17:11 Would you come up with Chief Hogue?
09:17:15 >>CHIEF HOGUE: Thank you, council.
09:17:17 Thank you very much again for the opportunity to
09:17:18 recognize the police Officer of the Month, which is
09:17:21 detective Gary Sandel.
09:17:24 You can see Gary is standing here in uniform today.
09:17:29 Of course like the firemen and everybody else,
09:17:32 everybody is at Super Bowl this week and that's where
09:17:35 Gary is at, too.
09:17:37 So he's doing that duty in the downtown area.
09:17:42 Gary is a homicide detective like I said, and there is
09:17:45 no more important job in the police department than
09:17:48 finding who committed the murder and getting justice
09:17:51 for that victim, and really closure for the family,
09:17:55 and it's a particularly difficult job, and it's a job
09:18:00 that requires great skill and talent as a police
09:18:06 Only our best people are ever even considered for the
09:18:08 job and only the very, very, very best actually get
09:18:11 the job.
09:18:12 And Gary is one of those people.
09:18:15 And we are giving him the Officer of the Month for a
09:18:21 particular case he did.
09:18:22 It was a difficult case.
09:18:23 It was a year-long investigation.
09:18:26 A witness in a drug trafficking case was murdered by
09:18:33 the drug trafficker, or had murdered, and so that's a
09:18:42 particularly heinous event where a witness is going to
09:18:46 testify against them and then they have them killed so
09:18:49 they can get away with their drug trafficking and then
09:18:52 of course murder on top of it.
09:18:55 The investigation like I said took a year.
09:18:57 He had to interview over 50 people.
09:18:59 He did over 300 hours of interviews.
09:19:02 You can't imagine the amount of evidence and all of
09:19:06 the forensics that go with this investigation.
09:19:11 And then on top of that, as tedious and difficult as
09:19:16 all that is, when you go to testify as a lead
09:19:19 detective in a homicide case, you better hang on
09:19:22 because you are going to be on the stand about two
09:19:24 days to somewhere around five days sometimes.
09:19:28 Being grilled about every minute detail about your
09:19:34 Study it, understand it and be prepared to deliver it.
09:19:36 And that's exactly what Gary did.
09:19:38 And we have one convicted and we have two ready to go
09:19:42 to trial, still on this case.
09:19:44 But this was a great case that he worked, and for that
09:19:47 we have made him our Officer of the Month for January,
09:19:52 and he does a great job for us and I would just like
09:19:54 to congratulate him.
09:19:56 Thank you very much.
09:19:56 [ Applause ]
09:20:05 >>GWEN MILLER: I would like to give this commendation
09:20:07 to you, and I present it to you.
09:20:11 And the private sector is going to give you some gift.
09:20:13 I would like to start with a gift certificate to
09:20:17 Charlie's restaurant.
09:20:20 >> For the Florida Aquarium, congratulations, to you
09:20:23 and your family as well as members of the Florida
09:20:25 Aquarium to enjoy.
09:20:30 >> Michelle Patty.
09:20:32 But this is a bittersweet moment for me, because my
09:20:36 family was a victim when our son was murdered, and
09:20:42 Michael was major at the time.
09:20:45 Everybody was told that it couldn't be stopped.
09:20:47 But because of the diligence of the police officer, it
09:20:50 And so when I read your BIO, I couldn't help but feel
09:20:56 for the family.
09:20:56 So as a family, it does bring closure, it does make
09:21:00 the healing a little better that you all go that extra
09:21:03 mill to bring us closure.
09:21:05 Today I just want to say thank you from the bottom of
09:21:08 my heart and all the victims out there who feel like
09:21:10 no one cared and to see that you stepped up means a
09:21:13 whole lot.
09:21:15 Thank you so much.
09:21:26 >> Steve Stickley with Stepp's towing.
09:21:29 We would like to present this statue.
09:21:35 We would like to present that to you and a gift
09:21:38 certificate to Lee Roy Selmon.
09:21:40 We appreciate all the hard work and effort you put
09:21:42 into it.
09:21:42 Thank you.
09:21:44 [ Applause ]
09:21:47 >> Representing Tampa Lowry Park Zoo, we want to say
09:21:51 thank you and invite you and your family to come out
09:21:53 and spend the day at the zoo on us.
09:21:56 Thank you so much.
09:22:06 >>STEVE MICHELINI: On behalf of a variety of different
09:22:08 folks, and I think you already heard the list.
09:22:13 On behalf of Bryn Allen studios we are providing you
09:22:16 with a family portrait so you can have your pictures
09:22:18 taken for you and your family.
09:22:20 On behalf of David laxer at Bern's steakhouse $100
09:22:24 gift certificate so you can enjoy dinner there, and in
09:22:27 your leisure time at Rigatoni's on Kennedy Boulevard,
09:22:33 a certificate for lunch or dinner, your choice.
09:22:35 On behalf of the Hillsborough County towing
09:22:39 association, gift certificate of your choice, Lee Roy
09:22:45 And then on behalf of the other folks, they are going
09:22:51 to give you four tickets to the IMAX theater at
09:22:55 Channelside theaters so you can enjoy yourself there.
09:22:58 After you have had dinner, your choice.
09:23:03 Let me say very quickly that we all appreciate how
09:23:06 much all of the officers do for all of us at TPD, for
09:23:10 the firefighters.
09:23:11 They are always out there for us.
09:23:13 And when you need them, they respond.
09:23:15 And we are grateful for what they do for us on a daily
09:23:19 Thank you and congratulations.
09:23:21 [ Applause ]
09:23:24 >> Good morning, council members.
09:23:34 >> I want to thank Chief Hogue, major McNamara, all
09:23:37 the staff.
09:23:40 Specifically, the squad I work with, they are all
09:23:45 And great backup here.
09:23:46 My wife Laura.
09:23:49 And thank you very much.
09:23:50 [ Applause ]
09:24:02 >>GWEN MILLER: At this time I would like for the
09:24:03 Copeland park, we'll call you up one at a time in just
09:24:11 a moment.
09:24:15 Before I start, this officer here, he does a fantastic
09:24:31 job for the City of Tampa.
09:24:34 He does it with football, cheerleaders, everybody.
09:24:39 He's going to help you out.
09:24:40 So today we are going to give one first to Benny
09:24:50 crystal, Hall of Famer.
09:24:52 Come forward.
09:24:54 This commendation is presented to you by City Council
09:25:00 to Mr. Benny crystal for being inducted into the all
09:25:06 American youth Hall of Fame for 2008.
09:25:08 Tampa City Council would like to take this opportunity
09:25:10 to applaud and congratulate you.
09:25:14 It is citizens like you who make Tampa stand out and
09:25:18 be known as a city that others mimic.
09:25:22 Tampa city extends best wishes to you and in your
09:25:29 [ Applause ]
09:25:31 >> This is going to be brief.
09:25:39 On behalf of City Council, thank you.
09:25:46 On behalf of unity football league, which we are small
09:25:48 but we are growing, it is our aim and ambition to help
09:25:53 the youth of Tampa as much as possible to try to get
09:25:57 them off the street to learn to be successful
09:26:01 Thank you.
09:26:02 [ Applause ]
09:26:05 >>GWEN MILLER: I would like for the Copeland park
09:26:13 saints football team to come up.
09:26:16 These are the champions of the City of Tampa.
09:26:27 And on behalf of City Council, I would like to present
09:26:30 to Copeland park saints football team for recognition
09:26:34 of winning the 2008 all American football national
09:26:37 championship in the 11 and age group of Copeland park
09:26:44 Tampa City Council would like to take this opportunity
09:26:46 to applaud and congratulate you for representing City
09:26:48 of Tampa in the national competition.
09:26:50 We are sure that with your continued dedication and
09:26:53 your academic and extracurricular activity, you will
09:26:57 go very far.
09:26:59 So the Tampa City Council gives best wishes to you, so
09:27:02 you can move forward and grow to your potential.
09:27:05 >> Well, thank you.
09:27:14 We want to thank Tampa City Council.
09:27:17 I want to thank the youth football conference.
09:27:19 We are a small conference in Tampa.
09:27:20 But it really isn't about football, it's about the
09:27:23 fundamentals of football on and off the field.
09:27:26 We hold our children to a high standard.
09:27:30 If they don't have the grades the coaches are in line
09:27:33 to make sure they don't play or make sure they have
09:27:34 some sort of punishment.
09:27:36 I want to thank you unity again.
09:27:39 He reaches out.
09:27:39 Whenever we need anything, he is there for us.
09:27:41 The league is there for us.
09:27:48 I want to also thank my awesome, awesome coaching
09:27:52 staff, my defensive -- offensive coordinator,
09:28:02 defensive coordinator, assistant Mr. Jesse Brown, and
09:28:10 also want to thank Leslie.
09:28:15 In Copeland park, it's hard, struggling, but true
09:28:19 champions you have to go through it in order to see
09:28:22 For them last year they were in last place.
09:28:24 They went from worst to first.
09:28:25 This year they didn't accept anything less than going
09:28:28 and winning.
09:28:28 I want to thank everybody else, too.
09:28:33 [ Applause ]
09:28:39 >> Now we are going to present to you the soul
09:28:52 Council members, these are the Martin Luther King Jr.
09:29:16 soul steppers, and they are the ten-year-old and
09:29:21 The Tampa City Council would like to recognize them
09:29:23 winning the 2008 all American football national step
09:29:26 competition, and the ten and under age group of the
09:29:31 Martin Luther King soul steppers.
09:29:34 The Tampa City Council would like to applaud and
09:29:36 congratulate you for representing the City of Tampa in
09:29:39 national competition.
09:29:40 We are sure that with continued dedication in your
09:29:43 academic and extracurricular activities you will go
09:29:46 very far.
09:29:47 So the Tampa City Council extends best wishes to you
09:29:49 and hope you will move forward and grow northbound
09:29:52 your potential.
09:29:57 >> Gwen, they have to show us their stuff, though.
09:30:01 [ Applause ]
09:30:05 >>> Thank you, City Council.
09:30:07 On behalf of Soul Steppers, we want to extend our high
09:30:11 and gracious thanks to Mr. Omenagru who has been there
09:30:17 for us, who has been the Executive Director of the
09:30:19 Unity Youth Football League and also Ms. Willis who is
09:30:25 the national step director, and we just want to extend
09:30:27 our thanks and graciousness for making it possible to
09:30:31 be here today.
09:30:33 [ Applause ]
09:30:38 >> My name is Sandra Walker. I'm the coordinator of
09:30:40 the Soul Steppers for over five years.
09:30:48 Thank you.
09:30:48 >>GWEN MILLER: Okay, these are the 15-year-olders.
09:30:57 Right here.
09:31:05 These are the Martin Luther King soul steppers.
09:31:07 These are the championships for the 15 years old.
09:31:12 They won the championship for the 2008.
09:31:13 I would like to present this to you.
09:31:19 >> Thank you again, to unity and City Council.
09:31:23 It's been a long struggle for us and we have come a
09:31:26 long way.
09:31:27 This is our first opportunity going to such a big
09:31:30 event, and we are very thankful.
09:31:33 We took first place, all three teams took first place.
09:31:37 That was really exciting for us.
09:31:39 So thank you again for the opportunity.
09:31:46 >> And Martin Luther King soul steppers, they won the
09:31:51 championship for the 2008.
09:31:59 >> Thank you again.
09:32:05 God bless.
09:32:06 (demonstration performance).
09:34:39 >> On behalf of the unity football conference, we have
09:34:42 been about five years, with the start program, and we
09:34:47 try our best to care to our inner city.
09:34:59 Ken was one of the organization sponsors when we
09:35:02 started charity.
09:35:02 And I told a story of our program.
09:35:08 And I went to the P.O. box, and I open it up and I
09:35:15 look at the amount of a check.
09:35:18 I said, this can't be right.
09:35:19 So I go down to the bank.
09:35:21 I said, I want to deposit.
09:35:24 Can you make sure this is right?
09:35:26 She said, yeah, that's right, that's right.
09:35:28 So would you come up?
09:35:30 You have been gun of the guides of our program since
09:35:37 we started.
09:35:38 Mr. Bill Weber.
09:35:39 You two guys have always been here for us.
09:35:42 When we get low, we need something, we call and you
09:35:45 have been gracious to our program.
09:35:46 I told them to come and thank you.
09:35:50 [ Applause ]
09:35:52 Again I would like to thank the City of Tampa Parks
09:35:57 and Recreation Department.
09:36:00 There's some things that go on.
09:36:02 But with the help of the parks and recreation team,
09:36:08 get those bumps ironed out so we could be.
09:36:12 I'm so proud, each year it seems like we go to a
09:36:15 different area and this year it was Copeland's turn.
09:36:20 It's a great foundation program.
09:36:22 These kids get the opportunity to compete against
09:36:27 teams like in Connecticut and Virginia.
09:36:33 For Copeland it's really successful up in the north
09:36:39 section of town, and getting a national title we have
09:36:42 some dollars, but I commend them all.
09:36:49 Do you want to say a few words?
09:36:51 >> Thank you, everybody.
09:36:57 Football has always been very important to me.
09:36:59 It was one thing that was stable in my life when
09:37:02 everything else wasn't.
09:37:03 And I saw in his kids myself.
09:37:06 And that's why I helped him.
09:37:07 He's a great guy.
09:37:12 [ Applause ]
09:37:14 >>> I thank you, Mrs. Miller.
09:37:19 We can call at any time.
09:37:21 I appreciate her being the Councilwoman she is for the
09:37:24 City of Tampa.
09:37:25 Thank you again, council.
09:37:27 [ Applause ]
09:37:31 >> Thanks to all of you today and congratulations on
09:37:35 winning the title.
09:37:38 We are going to have Mr. Thom Snelling come and make a
09:37:40 presentation at this time.
09:37:45 >>THOM SNELLING: I can't top that one.
09:38:00 I can barely walk.
09:38:03 Thom Snelling, growth management development services.
09:38:06 And the city's green officer and bring you some good
09:38:09 You probably already know that the city did receive
09:38:13 its Florida green local government designation and was
09:38:16 a gold standard.
09:38:18 It represented a lot of hard work that we have
09:38:21 achieved over this administration with Mayor Iorio.
09:38:25 I'm very grateful that she allowed me to go forward in
09:38:28 this effort, and to take on this challenge.
09:38:35 But as it developed, it was really -- you have
09:38:39 received these booklets.
09:38:41 I didn't print more of them out because you have them
09:38:44 electronically and frankly I wouldn't be green if I
09:38:48 printed these in color.
09:38:49 So you have them in your e-mail boxes.
09:38:51 You can take a look at it and it really highlights a
09:38:53 lot of things that happen.
09:38:55 As Mayor Iorio said, in the press conference before,
09:39:01 along the effort of sustainability the city has always
09:39:05 And she allowed me to bring it over the edge and take
09:39:11 some credit for that.
09:39:12 What's going to happen next is that the Florida Green
09:39:14 Building Coalition will make a formal presentation in
09:39:17 about three or four weeks.
09:39:18 But the reason it's taken so long, they have to
09:39:20 actually make our certificate.
09:39:22 The certificate is made out of recycled paper.
09:39:24 But one of the neat things about that and why it taken
09:39:26 so long is the paper from which it used is harvested
09:39:33 logs maybe 200 years old from the bottom of the
09:39:37 Suwannee river, old pine and cypress, and that's what
09:39:42 they make the seal out of.
09:39:44 It's really kind of a neat thing.
09:39:46 You can go online and take see how they do that.
09:39:49 So you are getting the old Florida pine, Florida
09:39:53 growth pine, without destroying Florida growth pine.
09:39:56 It really interesting.
09:39:58 Also, just for my own indulgence, I want to thank the
09:40:03 mayor for allowing me to do this.
09:40:04 I also want to thank my boss for helping me stay
09:40:07 focused on some of the efforts when I got a little
09:40:09 befuddled once in a while which direction to move, and
09:40:13 also Laura helped me a great deal to pull this
09:40:16 together, and as council, I said this before when I
09:40:19 talked at the press conference.
09:40:21 This was an effort everybody can be proud of.
09:40:24 It's a city award but everybody had a piece of it.
09:40:27 It's something you can take a lot of pride in.
09:40:30 We reached the gold level certificates.
09:40:35 That means we achieved 41% of the various things that
09:40:38 you can accomplish.
09:40:40 The next level is to continue to work over the next
09:40:45 year or so, to continue to move forward, to go after
09:40:48 those points that we didn't achieve, and to really
09:40:51 start to hone in on those programs and those policies,
09:40:53 to get us to that next level.
09:40:55 That's where a lot of my efforts will be spent over
09:40:57 the next year for sure.
09:41:01 That's really it.
09:41:01 I know you have a very busy agenda, unless you have
09:41:04 some specific questions for me about it.
09:41:05 You have the document in your e-mail.
09:41:08 That concludes my report.
09:41:10 I will be back in a couple of weeks to talk about the
09:41:12 other portion.
09:41:12 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Let me just thank you and the
09:41:16 administration and those who worked hard.
09:41:18 Also, I want to recognize and thank councilman
09:41:23 Dingfelder who did a lot of work in drafting and
09:41:27 putting it together.
09:41:28 I think we also owe them a great deal of thanks for
09:41:31 the hard work into this effort.
09:41:36 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
09:41:38 And, I don't deserve it because that was a real
09:41:43 community effort.
09:41:44 We have folks in the community that now Thom is
09:41:46 working with who were so involved in this green
09:41:50 I was just so pleasantly surprised to get the phone
09:41:53 call last week that we had gotten this gold award.
09:41:57 And I apologize I wasn't able to be at the ceremony,
09:42:01 but if I had been, I would have congratulated you and
09:42:03 the mayor and Cindy and your whole team on your hard
09:42:07 and fast work.
09:42:08 And it is a first step, but you have got to take the
09:42:13 first step to get on down the road.
09:42:15 And we appreciate it, Thom.
09:42:18 >>THOM SNELLING: This really helps us focus for our
09:42:21 next effort.
09:42:22 It really helps us hone in where we have to
09:42:24 concentrate next.
09:42:25 So I appreciate that, and thank you, and keep up.
09:42:31 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: I wanted to add my congratulations.
09:42:33 And as the new administration in Washington is looking
09:42:36 ahead to green jobs, and we need to be there saying,
09:42:40 yes, we have got this goal, we are working towards
09:42:43 that, and we recognize that our whole community by
09:42:47 focusing on sustainable development, can move ahead.
09:42:51 >> I think we will move ahead, Councilwoman, because
09:42:56 it's just us and Tallahassee.
09:42:58 Those are the only two cities that reached gold and
09:43:00 only two counties so there's really only four of us
09:43:04 leading the way in the State of Florida.
09:43:06 Tampa can be very proud they are in that elite group.
09:43:08 Hopefully that will go towards something to say, let
09:43:11 make sure we keep encouraging them to do more and some
09:43:13 of those infrastructures, green jobs, and they start
09:43:17 looking at Florida a lot closer.
09:43:18 Thank you all.
09:43:19 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.
09:43:25 >> Joyce wigs, 1515 union street, Mary McCloud Bethune
09:43:34 I simply have one question.
09:43:37 We have been struggling with a police problem --
09:43:41 Okay, ma'am, ma'am, today, we don't have public
09:43:43 comment today.
09:43:45 This is not a regular meeting.
09:43:46 It's our workshop day.
09:43:48 We will take public comment after each workshop
09:43:51 pertaining to the issue.
09:43:53 But this is not our regular council meeting today.
09:43:55 This is our workshop day.
09:43:58 >>> I am sorry.
09:44:06 I would suggest, however, if you want to address
09:44:08 council, you remain to the end of the workshops, and I
09:44:12 can allow opportunity.
09:44:13 But other than that, we need to focus kind of on
09:44:16 what's here.
09:44:17 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Mr. Chairman, since they are here
09:44:23 and since they are confused, I hate to make them wait
09:44:26 what might be an hour or two.
09:44:28 Do you want to give them two or three minutes and go
09:44:30 ahead and speak their peace and waive the rules?
09:44:36 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: I second the motion.
09:44:38 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: There's not a huge crowd or
09:44:40 anything, a little flexibility.
09:44:41 I make that motion to waive the rules and allow one of
09:44:43 them to speak right now, let us know what your issue
09:44:47 >>THOMAS SCOTT: A motion we waive the rules and allow
09:44:49 three minutes to one of the speakers.
09:44:50 All in favor signify by saying Aye.
09:44:53 So moved.
09:44:55 >> Thank God for his grace and mercy.
09:44:57 Good morning.
09:44:58 I am Laura bell Harris, 1515 union street, Tampa,
09:45:01 Florida, that development commonly known as the Mary
09:45:06 McLeod Bethune high-rise.
09:45:09 Back in October, we came, we had a complaint, and I
09:45:13 must admit that I failed to ask for the completed
09:45:16 report from the Tampa Police Department.
09:45:21 We had concerns about one police officer, dusty
09:45:26 Rhodes, who is antagonizing the community.
09:45:29 My question at that time and still is, is he abusing
09:45:33 his privileges as a police officer?
09:45:36 Or is the general population bearing false witness
09:45:39 against officer Rhodes?
09:45:41 Today, Gloria McGill and her daughter Andrea are here
09:45:46 because Ms. McGill is a dialysis patient.
09:45:50 She has one daughter Andrea, and a son.
09:45:53 Andrea provides transportation for her mother to
09:45:57 treatment three times a week.
09:45:59 Officer dusty Rhodes has threatened the daughter and
09:46:02 the son, if you are seen in North Boulevard homes you
09:46:05 will be arrested.
09:46:08 The son was arrested.
09:46:09 He was incarcerated for about a period of four days
09:46:12 along with some other residents in the North Boulevard
09:46:16 area, and when they went to court, everything was
09:46:20 But it's going on.
09:46:22 We need help.
09:46:23 They called me just hoping that we could get some
09:46:28 Well, you know I can't.
09:46:29 So that's why I'm here begging for your help.
09:46:32 Thank you.
09:46:32 I would also like to again request that completed
09:46:35 report from Tampa Police Department, specifically
09:46:39 about the duties and performances of officer dusty
09:46:44 I appreciate the police, and so glad you acknowledge
09:46:49 the policemen and all.
09:46:51 We need them.
09:46:52 But at the same time, there's no dancing in North
09:46:57 There's no rejoicing in North Boulevard.
09:46:59 There's no laughter in North Boulevard because that
09:47:03 has become a private count of an tag nation through
09:47:08 officer dusty Rhodes, according to what I have been
09:47:10 told, and I do hope I'm wrong.
09:47:13 Thank you.
09:47:13 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Mr. Chairman, thank you.
09:47:19 Officer Rhodes has been transferred.
09:47:23 He is no longer at that project.
09:47:25 And I think these people would be entitled to whatever
09:47:28 police report is available.
09:47:31 He is working at the water treatment plant.
09:47:35 And those his position.
09:47:36 So he's not there anymore.
09:47:37 But they deserve to get that report, if there is a
09:47:41 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Yes, if you all recall, this came
09:47:44 before us several months ago.
09:47:46 At that time I met with the chief and Mr. Smith from
09:47:51 It is my understanding that he was moved, transferred.
09:47:56 So I don't know where this is coming from, okay?
09:47:58 So I would -- why don't we just forward this over to
09:48:02 administration for whatever action that they need to
09:48:05 take or for whatever report they requested.
09:48:07 So if we receive a motion to forward this to
09:48:12 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: So moved.
09:48:13 >>GWEN MILLER: And in writing that dusty Rhodes has
09:48:17 been transferred to another area.
09:48:22 We need to have that in writing so when he comes, you
09:48:24 all will know that he's not supposed to be there.
09:48:32 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.
09:48:35 All in favor say Aye.
09:48:37 >>GWEN MILLER: We need a motion that in cases where
09:48:41 sons and daughters have come to pick up their parents
09:48:44 they should not be arrested as trespassers, because if
09:48:48 your parent is sick you are going to come pick them
09:48:51 So we need to have something in writing to let them
09:48:52 know that you are picking up your parents, that they
09:48:55 won't be harassing and carried to jail.
09:48:57 So we will ask for that to be put in writing, also.
09:49:03 We are going to send it over today for them to do
09:49:08 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Is it council's motion then to do
09:49:09 this request in the form of a letter from the chair or
09:49:12 as a motion?
09:49:13 >>GWEN MILLER: No, it needs to go from the Housing
09:49:16 Authority, because they are the ones who have the
09:49:19 right to do the trespass.
09:49:21 >>MARTIN SHELBY: The issue is that I don't know
09:49:22 whether council has the authority to do that, to make
09:49:24 that request.
09:49:26 A decision of the Housing Authority and of the TPD.
09:49:29 >>GWEN MILLER: For the Housing Authority to put
09:49:32 something in writing.
09:49:34 If you carry your parents to the doctor or something,
09:49:36 they have a right to come pick them up.
09:49:38 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Second.
09:49:41 >>THOMAS SCOTT: So let me understand, are we sending a
09:49:43 letter to the Housing Authority?
09:49:45 >>GWEN MILLER: Right.
09:49:45 Because they are the ones that make that rule.
09:49:48 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.
09:49:50 To send a letter to the Housing Authority.
09:49:58 Considering a policy where one has to transport their
09:50:01 parents to the doctor for dialysis, that there be such
09:50:05 a policy.
09:50:06 >>GWEN MILLER: It may not be dialysis.
09:50:11 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Medical.
09:50:12 >>THOMAS SCOTT: That's what I say, medical reasons.
09:50:15 All in favor?
09:50:16 Okay, thank you.
09:50:19 Thank you very much.
09:50:20 Before we move to our workshop, we have three items
09:50:22 that we need to dispose of real quickly.
09:50:24 We'll move to our workshop.
09:50:26 >>MARTIN SHELBY: If you can, Mr. Chairman, that will
09:50:30 require a very brief recess to change over for the
09:50:33 clerk, just a few minutes.
09:50:36 How long do you think it will take?
09:50:37 Two minutes.
09:50:38 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, then, we'll take a three-minute
09:54:26 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Tampa City Council is called back
09:54:28 to order.
09:55:54 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Tampa City Council will now come to
09:55:56 Roll call.
09:55:59 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Here.
09:56:00 >>GWEN MILLER: Here.
09:56:01 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Here.
09:56:04 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Here.
09:56:05 We'll take up item number 1.
09:56:08 This is a public hearing.
09:56:09 This is on the comprehensive plan amendment.
09:56:15 >>GWEN MILLER: So moved.
09:56:16 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Second.
09:56:17 (Motion carried).
09:56:21 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Someone is addressing the plan
09:56:32 >>JULIA COLE: Legal department.
09:56:33 This is the second reading of a comprehensive plan
09:56:36 amendment that you heard two weeks ago.
09:56:44 This is coming back to you as a result of some pending
09:56:46 litigation that we had in which the city did not
09:56:49 prevail on a comprehensive plan amendment.
09:56:53 You heard the full presentation pretty much at first
09:56:55 reading, so I think at this point if you want to take
09:56:59 additional testimony or have additional questions, we
09:57:01 can deal with those.
09:57:02 Otherwise, we can just go ahead and close the public
09:57:06 And I do not know if there's anybody here.
09:57:10 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Is there anyone here to address City
09:57:12 Council to address City Council on the comprehensive
09:57:16 Anyone to address City Council?
09:57:17 >>GWEN MILLER: Move to close.
09:57:18 >> Second.
09:57:18 (Motion carried).
09:57:20 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We can go ahead and vote on it.
09:57:25 >>JULIA COLE: We have the ordinance.
09:57:26 You will need to read the ordinance.
09:57:27 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: (off microphone)
09:57:33 Move an ordinance presented for second reading, an
09:57:36 ordinance amending the Tampa comprehensive plan,
09:57:38 future land use element, future land use map, for the
09:57:41 property located at 3809 west Estrella street, from
09:57:46 residential 6 to community mixed use 35, providing for
09:57:49 repeal of all ordinances in conflict, providing for
09:57:52 severability, providing an effective date.
09:57:55 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded by Councilwoman
09:57:58 Record your vote.
09:58:09 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Dingfelder not
09:58:17 present at vote and Mulhern absent.
09:58:18 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We move to the next two items.
09:58:22 If you are going to be addressing council, please
09:58:25 stand and be sworn.
09:58:31 (Oath administered by Clerk)
09:58:35 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay, motion to open both.
09:58:40 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Would you do one at a time, please?
09:58:43 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Move to open number 2.
09:58:45 >> Second.
09:58:46 (Motion carried).
09:58:47 >>JULIA COLE: Legal department.
09:58:48 This is a second public reading on a rezoning
09:58:51 application which was the subject of pending
09:58:54 litigation which was remanded back to City Council as
09:58:57 a result of the decision of the circuit court.
09:59:00 You heard your testimony and evidence during your
09:59:03 first reading public hearing.
09:59:04 There was changes that did need to be made to the site
09:59:07 plan, and Abbye Feeley is here to discuss whether or
09:59:12 not those conditions have been complied with.
09:59:14 It is a public hearing.
09:59:15 And I'm not sure if there is anybody here from the
09:59:17 public who would like to speak.
09:59:19 Thank you.
09:59:22 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Land Development Coordination.
09:59:24 The site plans were submitted to the Land Development
09:59:28 Coordination and certified by the zoning administrator
09:59:30 for second reading today.
09:59:33 We have those and will provide copies to the clerk.
09:59:37 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Anyone from the public wish to address
09:59:41 Anyone here from the public wish to address council?
09:59:44 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Move to close.
09:59:45 >> Second.
09:59:45 (Motion carried).
09:59:46 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
09:59:51 >>GWEN MILLER: You can read it.
09:59:55 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I can read?
09:59:57 Thank you very much.
09:59:58 >>GWEN MILLER: Yes.
09:59:59 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I want to make sure again that this
10:00:02 before me is the same as in the ordinance.
10:00:04 Mr. Chairman, I move an ordinance presented for second
10:00:07 reading, an ordinance rezoning property in the general
10:00:09 vicinity of 3809 west Estrella street in the city of
10:00:13 Tampa, Florida and more particularly described in
10:00:15 section 1 from zoning district classifications RS-75,
10:00:19 residential single-family, to PD, planned development,
10:00:23 business/professional office, retail, lawn and garden,
10:00:27 providing an effective date.
10:00:27 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Got a second?
10:00:31 >>GWEN MILLER: Second.
10:00:32 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by Councilwoman Miller.
10:00:34 Record your vote.
10:00:42 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Dingfelder being
10:00:44 absent at vote and Mulhern being absent.
10:00:47 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.
10:00:48 Item number 3 is a continued public hearing.
10:00:50 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Mr. Chairman, I have a conflict and
10:00:58 filled out the form so I can't weigh in on this.
10:01:01 >>MARTIN SHELBY: And that's because you are within the
10:01:03 noticed area?
10:01:05 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: I own some property in the noticed
10:01:08 >>MARTIN SHELBY: I believe councilman Dingfelder the
10:01:11 I will have that paperwork provided and submitted to
10:01:15 the clerk.
10:01:16 Thank you.
10:01:18 >>ERIC COTTON: Land Development Coordination.
10:01:19 This is for VO-9-43.
10:01:23 Petitioner is Stan Bobo for property at 2402 South
10:01:27 MacDill Avenue.
10:01:29 Petitioner is requesting a 2(COP-R) designation for
10:01:31 beer and wine in conjunction with a restaurant.
10:01:35 The site is located in a CG zoning district, allows
10:01:37 for restaurant use.
10:01:39 The property is roughly 3300 square feet, the seating
10:01:45 area, provided on-site, and -- (static) -- the
10:01:57 surrounding neighborhood.
10:01:58 This is across the street from the property.
10:02:03 Additional pictures.
10:02:04 The petitioner, the DRC did find it inconsistent based
10:02:08 on objections from transportation which would be part
10:02:11 of the way which you can waive as part of the waivers
10:02:13 that are enumerated in the code.
10:02:15 The code requirements are listed in the staff report.
10:02:17 If you have any further questions.
10:02:20 If you have any questions, I'll be available.
10:02:22 Thank you.
10:02:24 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Officer Miller.
10:02:28 >>> Officer Miller, City of Tampa police.
10:02:30 We have no objections to this wet zoning.
10:02:34 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Petitioner?
10:02:37 >>STEVE MICHELINI: This previously was a restaurant.
10:02:41 It had alcoholic zoning before which was in use and
10:02:44 then it dried up when it became vacant and is now
10:02:47 being renovated and turned into a restaurant.
10:02:50 We are respectfully requesting the wet zoning be
10:02:53 One of the reasons why you have all the waivers is
10:02:55 because in the new process, as an existing
10:02:58 establishment, as you know it's already built, and
10:03:01 it's extremely difficult to meet the new requirements
10:03:04 that are outlined in the code.
10:03:05 So that's why we are requesting the waivers, and we
10:03:08 respectfully request your approval.
10:03:15 >>ERIC COTTON: Land development.
10:03:19 Between first and second reading finance you would
10:03:21 instruct the petitioner to add.
10:03:29 Between 25 and 27.
10:03:31 >>STEVE MICHELINI: We agree to make the amendment.
10:03:33 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Anyone from the public wish to address
10:03:35 Anyone wish to address council from the public?
10:03:37 Move to close.
10:03:38 >>> Second.
10:03:39 (Motion carried).
10:03:40 >>GWEN MILLER: Ordinance for first reading, an
10:03:44 ordinance approving a special use permit S-2 for
10:03:46 alcoholic beverages sales, small venue and making
10:03:49 lawful the sale of beverages containing alcohol of
10:03:51 more than 1% by weight and not more than 14% by weight
10:03:56 and wines regardless of alcoholic content, beer and
10:03:58 wine, 2(COP-R), for consumption on premises only in
10:04:02 connection with a restaurant business establishment on
10:04:05 that certain lot, plot or tract of land located at
10:04:08 2402 south Dale Mabry Avenue Tampa, Florida described
10:04:14 in section 2 hereof approving waivers as set forth
10:04:17 herein, waiving certain restrictions as to distance
10:04:19 based upon certain findings, providing for repeal of
10:04:22 all ordinances in conflict, providing an effective
10:04:25 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded by councilman
10:04:29 All in favor --
10:04:31 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Before we vote I was going to ask
10:04:33 a question, but I'll ask it later after we vote.
10:04:37 >>MARTIN SHELBY: It's going to come back for second
10:04:40 So if you wish for second reading.
10:04:43 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: I'll do it at second reading.
10:04:46 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Should the motion state what they
10:04:49 agreed to?
10:04:51 >> Yes.
10:04:53 Then waiver of condition number 3, think it was,
10:04:58 All right.
10:04:59 That's included in the motion.
10:05:00 All in favor signify by saying Aye.
10:05:05 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Dingfelder and
10:05:07 Saul-Sena abstaining, Mulhern being absent.
10:05:09 Second reading and adoption will be on February
10:05:11 19th at 9:30 in the morning.
10:05:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We'll move to our workshop.
10:05:19 Let me also read for the record --
10:05:24 >> Special called meeting, I'm sorry.
10:05:26 Do you want to read that into the record?
10:05:28 >> This is a memorandum from Councilwoman Mulhern.
10:05:32 I will be unable to attend council meeting on January
10:05:35 29, 2009 due to family obligations.
10:05:47 Motion to close?
10:05:48 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I guess I'll wait till tonight on
10:05:50 this water report but I don't want to interfere with
10:05:53 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Motion to receive.
10:05:54 >> So moved.
10:05:55 >> Second.
10:05:55 (Motion carried).
10:05:56 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We need to close the special session.
10:06:03 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Move to close.
10:06:04 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Second.
10:06:05 (Motion carried)
10:06:06 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Recess?
10:06:20 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Before we recess, I just became
10:06:22 aware of the fact that now when people -- you know,
10:06:26 I'm big on sidewalk cafes, they improve the quality of
10:06:31 When we changed our rules, I didn't understand that we
10:06:33 changed our rules that somebody who has an inside
10:06:35 restaurant wants to put out some cafe tables and want
10:06:38 to be able to serve wine, have a liquor license for
10:06:43 that area, they have to go back to square one and file
10:06:46 the whole thing from the very get-go, which seems to
10:06:49 me to discourage the idea of having sidewalk cafes
10:06:52 which we have identified which add vitality and making
10:06:57 restaurant ears lives miserable.
10:07:00 We made it tougher than we had initially.
10:07:01 And I don't see why we did that.
10:07:04 I don't think it was council's intent.
10:07:06 What I would like to do is ask for a report back in 30
10:07:09 days on what our process is now about sidewalk cafes.
10:07:17 Maybe we can address this now, because I don't believe
10:07:22 it was council's intent.
10:07:23 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, let's recess the special
10:07:25 meeting, and then we can address that when we go to
10:07:30 our workshop.
10:07:31 We stand in recess for about three minutes.
10:13:33 [Sounding gavel]
10:13:34 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Tampa City Council will now come to
10:13:35 And we'll move into our workshop schedule.
10:13:40 At this time we'll ask Ms. Miller to come and workshop
10:13:43 on affordable housing.
10:13:45 Oh, yes, roll call.
10:13:52 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Here.
10:13:54 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Here.
10:13:55 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Here.
10:13:57 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Here.
10:14:01 Not getting used to all these breaks.
10:14:03 Okay, thank you, madam clerk, for keeping us straight.
10:14:07 Ms. Miller, welcome.
10:14:09 >>CINDY MILLER: I'm Cindy Miller, director of growth
10:14:11 management development services.
10:14:13 And there has been sort of a series of motions for us
10:14:17 to talk about sort of a year end report of last fiscal
10:14:25 Also wanted to address what is occurring as to
10:14:27 homeless issues, and homelessness within our
10:14:30 And then I would also like to say the third point to
10:14:33 be able to talk a little about things to come.
10:14:36 So Mr. Rayme Nuckles and I will be sort of tag teaming
10:14:45 So if the PowerPoint can be brought up, please.
10:14:50 Our housing and community development division is led
10:14:52 by Sharon West, the manager for that division, and
10:14:55 first I would like to review for you some of our
10:14:59 accomplishments and productions from the last fiscal
10:15:04 This gives you an idea to what our funding -- what has
10:15:08 occurred with funding.
10:15:09 Home funding is our federal program.
10:15:10 You can see for this particular program, funding has
10:15:15 gradually been decreasing.
10:15:17 We hope to get better news in the future as we look at
10:15:20 the stimulus package and other initiatives from
10:15:23 The SHIP program, you can see the decline from 4.3
10:15:29 million to 3.5.
10:15:31 Now, the reason for this is program income that comes
10:15:34 back into the program.
10:15:35 You may remember that a few years ago we had a
10:15:39 stoppage on a number of our programs.
10:15:41 And what basically happened here is that as people
10:15:46 would sell their homes, or refinance, or go through
10:15:49 other new and beneficial situations, any liens we had
10:15:56 on those homes come back to us.
10:15:57 I think you can certainly know from our real estate
10:16:00 market right now, those kind of transactions are not
10:16:03 So what you saw in '07, sort of the '06-07 time
10:16:08 period, we had program income.
10:16:09 Now we are looking at less than that.
10:16:12 It also has, I believe, interest rates are down.
10:16:17 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Supportive income, can we be a
10:16:22 little less formal today, Mr. Chairman?
10:16:26 Anyway, do these numbers include that?
10:16:30 >>> The second line is the program --
10:16:32 >> Oh, I was looking at the bottom.
10:16:34 So that's where you are talking about.
10:16:38 >>> So from the state standpoint the allocation has
10:16:40 been stable but our program income is decreasing.
10:16:45 Down payment assistance, we had a banner year last
10:16:49 year, where our staff basically did a Yeomans job of
10:16:55 getting down payment assistance to folks as first-time
10:16:58 home buyers.
10:16:59 And this kind of level of financing, can't do this
10:17:05 every year but it did mean people were able to get
10:17:07 into homes for the first time, over $5 million in down
10:17:10 payment assistance, which in very general terms
10:17:12 depending on income eligibility, folks can apply for
10:17:17 20% down payment assistance, and it can be higher than
10:17:21 20% under certain income categories.
10:17:23 We also provided funding to the center for women, 48
10:17:27 homes received repairs because of our grants going to
10:17:31 center for women, federal funds.
10:17:35 Self-reliance, 13 homes, $125,000 from community
10:17:40 development block grant.
10:17:41 The spring also received funds from CBDG for roof
10:17:44 replacement which had 102 beds within the facility.
10:17:47 >> The center for women, I know they had a little bump
10:17:49 in the road in the last year or so.
10:17:55 Have they come around and everything is straightened
10:17:57 >> They came around beautifully.
10:17:59 All repairs were appropriately inspected.
10:18:01 All fees were appropriately paid.
10:18:02 And they have new procedures, that they a sure us it
10:18:08 will not happen again.
10:18:10 We monitor and very if I all of that.
10:18:12 >> I want to plug center for women.
10:18:16 In their long history, it's been a great organization,
10:18:20 started by Helen Gordon Davis and others, and I was
10:18:24 sorry to see they had a little bump in the road last
10:18:26 you're and I'm glad to hear they have come back
10:18:29 >>CINDY MILLER: And I won't say the benefit but the
10:18:31 good thing, if you are going to have a bump in the
10:18:33 road, I'm glad it was our staff that identified it and
10:18:36 took the corrective measures to work with our various
10:18:38 divisions to get it back to smooth sailing again.
10:18:43 We also had multifamily rehabilitations through CDBG,
10:18:48 Methodist placed elevators, Tampa Housing Authority
10:18:51 received grants as well, and project return for
10:18:53 stairwells repaired.
10:18:55 I want to emphasize here, we can do large grants.
10:18:56 We also do smaller grants through the community
10:18:58 development block grant process.
10:19:00 And very often the smaller projects receive a very
10:19:03 definite benefit.
10:19:04 And we are happy that is helping with multifamily
10:19:08 Also had multifamily construction, San Lorenzo terrace
10:19:12 was completed in June 2008.
10:19:15 Home funds of $500,000 of total construction cost was
10:19:19 also implemented.
10:19:22 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Where is San Lorenzo terrace?
10:19:28 I'm not familiar with that project.
10:19:31 >>> West Tampa area.
10:19:33 I have to get you the exact address.
10:19:35 We don't have it handy here.
10:19:40 In-fill construction, CDC completed eleven homes and
10:19:45 East Tampa completed homes three homes.
10:19:51 If you want to be able to work with these two
10:19:54 organizations, we would be very happy to have them
10:19:56 come and make application either through us or through
10:19:58 these organizations.
10:20:01 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Good.
10:20:02 >>> Owner occupied rehabilitation, we again through
10:20:06 our state funds, 27 homes received rehabilitation, and
10:20:10 through TIF funds in the East Tampa CRA two homes had
10:20:15 additional supplements for a total of 29 homes.
10:20:18 I would like to address some of the changes we have
10:20:22 made in this program for the rehabilitation of owner
10:20:25 occupied homes.
10:20:27 We found basically as we looked at this program that
10:20:31 when you look at the past, we basically -- I want to J
10:20:35 just use very blunt language -- we force the home
10:20:38 owners to invite people into their homes.
10:20:41 There were contractors selected by the city based upon
10:20:43 a low bid price.
10:20:45 I don't know how you feel, but I don't know that I
10:20:47 would necessarily welcome someone to work in my house
10:20:51 if I had never had a chance to review their regard, if
10:20:54 I never had a chance to be able to at least have an
10:20:56 option or a selection.
10:20:58 I think most of us would want that.
10:21:01 And also while I believe our staff does a fantastic
10:21:05 job in vetting contractors, a person needs to be
10:21:10 comfortable with who is walking through the front
10:21:13 door, because their lifetime possessions are often
10:21:16 here, so we made some changes.
10:21:21 First of all to outline what we are talking about
10:21:23 overall is we can provide deferred payment loan,
10:21:26 deferred payment loans mean the person never has to
10:21:29 repay us as long as they stay the owner-occupant of
10:21:33 their home, no principal, no interest.
10:21:35 That's our city-wide program.
10:21:37 We also have in total up to $80,000 in East Tampa for
10:21:42 eligible participants.
10:21:43 And again this is some additional TIF funds being
10:21:48 What we are doing is building contractors, it is wide
10:21:52 open to anyone who is licensed, may submit bids for
10:21:54 these services.
10:21:55 They must be licensed and registered to do business in
10:21:57 the City of Tampa.
10:22:00 We require the contractors to go with our staff for
10:22:04 mandatory site visits.
10:22:05 They must be present when everybody else is.
10:22:07 We found that there had been in past years where folks
10:22:11 would sometimes go visit the homeowners in a separate
10:22:15 We do not believe that's appropriate.
10:22:16 We think everybody needs to be there at the same time
10:22:19 to answer any questions and keep it a very open
10:22:22 transparent process, as well as to make sure that the
10:22:25 home owner is comfortable that there are city
10:22:29 representatives when someone comes to their homes.
10:22:31 We have an independent cost estimator, and I sort of
10:22:35 talk about it being my academy awards program.
10:22:38 The envelope is handed to our purchasing director, or
10:22:41 to his department, with a cost estimate going to them,
10:22:45 so that no bidder, no city staff, knows the estimate
10:22:51 to repair the house.
10:22:52 We don't want anyone to be able to say that we have
10:22:55 done anything to provide information that is
10:22:59 inappropriate for bidders to have until the time
10:23:03 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: I have a question.
10:23:05 Does the homeowner determine what it is that needs to
10:23:08 be fixed, whether it's the bathroom or kitchen?
10:23:10 And then the city checks it out and agrees with that?
10:23:14 >> Exactly.
10:23:15 We do the cost estimator and our staff does a
10:23:17 walk-through with the owner.
10:23:19 They will identify what they would like to see done.
10:23:21 We may also identify some things that need to be
10:23:23 brought up to code.
10:23:24 And from that standpoint, we then try to balance such
10:23:28 as the $50,000 number as to the repairs that are
10:23:32 It does need to also fit within that $50,000 maximum
10:23:35 rehabilitation cost.
10:23:37 But they do have input all the way through the
10:23:39 And they are making application to us to have these
10:23:42 types of repairs.
10:23:43 This is over and above the center for women work.
10:23:46 That is also another rehabilitation opportunity.
10:23:51 We then solicit bids based upon the write-up, but
10:23:56 basically the bid verse a listing of what's to be done
10:23:59 but without any cost included.
10:24:01 So we may get, very frankly, eight or nine bids now,
10:24:04 because as we all know, it's a slower market.
10:24:07 And we basically then present to the homeowner all
10:24:11 responsive bids that are within 10% of our cost
10:24:15 Again, we believe the homeowner should have the choice
10:24:19 of who is walking into their house.
10:24:22 The homeowner --
10:24:28 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a question.
10:24:29 >> Should I go back to this one?
10:24:31 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Yes.
10:24:33 The 10% above or below the cost estimate will be
10:24:36 deemed responsible.
10:24:37 The homeowner, which is fine, may select a responsive
10:24:40 bid, that is within 10% of the city's cost estimate.
10:24:43 Who pays for the difference?
10:24:47 >>> It is authorized under our federal or state
10:24:49 program to be able to do that.
10:24:51 It is paid for by the city funding.
10:24:57 This is considered a reasonable wage.
10:25:02 The homeowner does not have to pay the difference and
10:25:04 the state funding mechanism allows to us pay that
10:25:07 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: So if it's a $10,000 project, so
10:25:10 long as it's from nine to eleven then it's a
10:25:13 responsive bid.
10:25:13 >>> That's correct.
10:25:16 Whereas what occurred before, we also simply went with
10:25:18 low bids.
10:25:19 We might have thought a reasonable estimate was
10:25:21 $10,000 and it came in at $15,000.
10:25:24 So this gives us sort of a double check in both
10:25:28 Now, if we find that something is way beyond the 10%,
10:25:33 I can work with the purchasing director and determine
10:25:37 if our sets are set up properly, whether we need to go
10:25:41 back out to bid.
10:25:42 So we have a procedure for that.
10:25:43 Maybe thereby was something missed that perhaps the
10:25:46 contractors see something on the bid list that
10:25:49 identifies there's more work that needs to be done.
10:25:52 I think we all know when there's rehabilitation you
10:25:54 open up a wall, downtown know what you are going to
10:25:56 see behind it.
10:25:57 So there is either an amendment or addendum issue at
10:25:59 that point, or we review all of the bids to see if
10:26:02 it's reasonable, if there is a valid reason for going
10:26:05 beyond that 10%.
10:26:08 >> Not to be too cynical or anything, but I like the
10:26:13 direction you are going that gives the homeowner some
10:26:15 ownership in this process, and I think that's good.
10:26:19 The concern -- and I'm sure it would jump at you as a
10:26:22 former auditor, what kind of pressures might be on the
10:26:26 homeowner now, you know, because once these bidders
10:26:30 are aware of the process, you know, could they be
10:26:32 aggressive toward the home owner? Could they entice
10:26:36 the homeowner with additional "we'll throw in this,
10:26:40 we'll throw in that?"
10:26:42 I'm sure you have some safeguards and have thought of
10:26:45 >>> Any bid theory goes to the homeowner separate
10:26:48 reply is automatically thrown out of the bid.
10:26:51 That is a responsible bid.
10:26:54 >> Everyone is aware of that?
10:26:56 >> Everyone is aware of that and we have had to
10:26:58 officially do that in a couple of cases because we did
10:27:04 find than sweeteners were put in there, and I'll just
10:27:06 let it go at that.
10:27:07 And we also felt -- we heard this from homeowners, we
10:27:11 heard this from relatives, neighbors, anyone that
10:27:14 might be assisting them, that we want to make sure a
10:27:17 homeowner never feels intimidated.
10:27:19 That is why the contractors have to go together as a
10:27:24 group to do the walk-through with our staff present.
10:27:28 We do not allow them to go separately.
10:27:30 And if we ever find out they do, they are out of it.
10:27:33 >> Do they get tossed out of the program for awhile?
10:27:35 >> Not out of the program but out of that particular
10:27:37 >> Maybe it needs to be even harsher.
10:27:40 >> If we find it happens regularly.
10:27:44 That's a good suggestion.
10:27:45 We'll take a look at our procedures on.
10:27:47 That but we do not want folks to ever feel intimidated
10:27:50 that they have entered into a city program sponsored
10:27:54 by state funding, and that they ever have a reason to
10:27:58 be concerned.
10:28:03 In addition, we also have access for the homeowner to
10:28:08 check with the Better Business Bureau, to check with
10:28:10 construction services, to check with any complaints
10:28:13 filed that we may have within the city public records.
10:28:18 So that is also something that's available to the
10:28:21 homeowner so they can select the contractor that they
10:28:24 want to do the work.
10:28:25 We believe these have been very good encouraging
10:28:30 improvements to our program.
10:28:31 And we also believe it gives the homeowner the
10:28:35 authority to be able to do what they feel is the right
10:28:38 thing to do.
10:28:40 With that I am going to transition now and ask that
10:28:43 Mr. Nuckles come up and talk about the things
10:28:51 happening from that standpoint and then come back with
10:28:54 more of the future.
10:28:56 >> Thank you.
10:29:00 >> Rayme Nuckles: It good to talk with you about the
10:29:15 coalition today.
10:29:16 I'm CEO of the homeless coalition, 501(c)3.
10:29:24 I want to thank Cindy and Sharon and staff for always
10:29:27 being diligent in working with us on a number of
10:29:29 issues that have arisen over the last year, and we
10:29:33 couldn't be as successful as we are without their
10:29:35 assistance so we really appreciate them.
10:29:50 In 2007 our homeless count was 9,532.
10:29:54 By law, we are required through the HUD homeless
10:29:57 housing assistance grant to complete our homeless
10:29:59 count during this year, 2009.
10:30:03 And normally it would have been held during this week,
10:30:06 but because of the Super Bowl, we requested to delay
10:30:11 that so we wouldn't be competing for volunteers,
10:30:14 because it takes about 500 volunteers to complete that
10:30:19 It quite the task.
10:30:22 During that survey, there were 16% of those 9,000 were
10:30:27 children, 17% were family, and with all of the
10:30:32 activities that are occurring in the economy, we
10:30:34 anticipate there's an increase of 25 to 30% in
10:30:38 homelessness in our community.
10:30:41 Including Tampa and Hillsborough County.
10:30:44 With the statistics that we are already gathering from
10:30:47 the providers with regard to the services that they
10:30:52 have been requested to assist with, and all the
10:30:54 different individuals in our community who lost their
10:30:58 jobs, or whenever they are going to, because of the
10:31:00 economic times, we are anticipating quite an increase
10:31:03 in homelessness.
10:31:05 I know our office, which normally doesn't provide
10:31:11 direct service, because of the economy, and because of
10:31:14 the number of requests from individuals and case
10:31:18 managers and local organizations, they are asking more
10:31:22 of our assistance this year, and we are providing more
10:31:25 and more case management through our offices as well.
10:31:28 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We understand that the number of
10:31:37 homeless persons because of the economy, we believe
10:31:40 that number is 25 or 30% higher than last year?
10:31:43 >>> Yes, sir.
10:31:44 Than 2007.
10:31:46 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Right.
10:31:47 >> Some of the other statistics that arose in 2007
10:31:51 were 47% were Caucasian, 32% were African-American and
10:31:58 12% Hispanic.
10:32:02 56% had income.
10:32:05 56% of the homeless in our community have an income.
10:32:10 37% of those are employed.
10:32:16 So as you can see there's quite a bit of challenge.
10:32:18 18% are veterans.
10:32:20 91% of those became homeless here in Florida.
10:32:25 43% of those are homeless for the very first time, and
10:32:28 we anticipate that that will be a larger increase in
10:32:36 We have delayed that count.
10:32:37 We requested that delay from HUD.
10:32:40 We were approved.
10:32:41 And that count will take place on February 26th of
10:32:44 this year.
10:32:45 So we are delaying it a month.
10:32:50 Some of the subpopulations that we end up dealing with
10:32:53 are drug and alcohol addiction, mental health issues,
10:32:57 and physical disabilities.
10:33:02 Interesting component within our community, because of
10:33:05 HUD assistance grant application and its requirements
10:33:11 for us, we have come to the understanding that we only
10:33:15 have 15% of bed capacity in our community.
10:33:23 The slides are a little out of order and I didn't
10:33:26 catch this, but I'll come back to the students in
10:33:32 Hillsborough school system in a minute.
10:33:34 I'll talk a little about our unmet needs and talk a
10:33:36 little about our success.
10:33:39 Over 5,000 beds that are -- that we consider part of
10:33:43 our unmet needs according to the grant when we submit
10:33:47 that on an annual basis.
10:33:48 You can see where we need additional beds in our
10:33:53 1900 for emergency shelter, 1300 for transition will a
10:33:57 housing, and over 1700 in supportive housing beds.
10:34:04 That doesn't negate the fact that we need more beds
10:34:08 for low income individuals in our community.
10:34:11 This is just based off of statistics that HUD gives
10:34:16 out to review.
10:34:17 And you had a question?
10:34:20 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Yes, thank you.
10:34:21 What is the difference?
10:34:21 I just can't remember between transitional housing and
10:34:25 permanent supportive housing.
10:34:27 Emergency is like I'm desperate tonight, I need
10:34:31 something tonight, I gather.
10:34:32 >>> Correct.
10:34:33 >> But what's the difference between transitional and
10:34:36 >>> Transitional is normally a program those provided
10:34:39 at a particular location where there may be units
10:34:44 located within a facility, very similar to Salvation
10:34:50 Army, transitional housing program for women and for
10:34:56 Or Metropolitan Ministries.
10:34:58 Their program is transitional for all the families who
10:35:00 go through their program at Metropolitan Ministries.
10:35:04 Permanent supportive housing is housing located
10:35:07 throughout the City of Tampa where case managers
10:35:10 actually go to that apartment and provide case
10:35:14 management services and connect them all to mainstream
10:35:18 services within our community.
10:35:28 >>GWEN MILLER: You said have income.
10:35:30 >>> 57%.
10:35:31 >> They pay a fee for housing?
10:35:33 How do they do that?
10:35:36 >>> Anyone in permanent supportive housing normally
10:35:39 pays 30% of their income for housing.
10:35:42 In transitional housing, most programs do not charge.
10:35:49 That's part of their requirement to participate, and
10:35:53 that's what HUD fund them for.
10:35:57 Most of the transitional programs in the community
10:36:01 from the Spring to Salvation Army, those are two of
10:36:06 the larger transitional housing programs in the
10:36:11 So there's no requirement for them to pay a fee to
10:36:15 access services
10:36:21 Some of the other unmet needs, we look at case
10:36:24 management, employment training, transportation, and
10:36:26 health care.
10:36:27 The three major areas that I would say that are
10:36:31 funding concerns are prevention funding, to keep
10:36:36 people from becoming homeless, and assisting
10:36:42 individuals that may be who need help to pay for the
10:36:51 We paid mortgage payments this year which hasn't been
10:36:53 the case in the past.
10:36:58 Keeping people from becoming homeless.
10:37:00 Outreach to chronic homelessness, in all of
10:37:04 Hillsborough County, specifically in the downtown
10:37:05 area, Tampa Heights, and now we have quite a lot of
10:37:13 influx from migrating from Tampa to Brandon area.
10:37:21 So we have some issues that we are dealing with in the
10:37:24 Brandon area.
10:37:28 So we are sending more of our outreach teams in health
10:37:34 care to the Brandon area as well.
10:37:36 We are working specifically, very closely with several
10:37:39 neighborhoods, trying to help them with their homeless
10:37:42 issues in their neighborhood.
10:37:45 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Providing transportation out to
10:37:48 >>> Pardon me?
10:37:49 >> Sending a lot of cases out to Brandon?
10:37:51 >>> We are not sending them there.
10:37:53 They are going there on their own, because they are
10:37:56 having difficulty accessing services.
10:37:58 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.
10:37:59 >>> And we are trying to send services to them, and
10:38:03 also working with the "I am hope" cafe.
10:38:09 Now, they are doing a really good job in that area as
10:38:12 well trying to meet the needs of the homeless in that
10:38:15 With regard to our ten-year plan from the success
10:38:19 that's occurred, customer service centers, we are
10:38:23 still working with Hillsborough County, one of the
10:38:26 things of that we identified in the ten-year plan, if
10:38:29 you recall, was homeless customer service center.
10:38:33 And because of the downturn in the economy and the
10:38:36 lack of public funds that are available, and the lack
10:38:40 of community support from a perspective of really
10:38:46 moving that customer service center together, we have
10:38:49 instituted a plan with Hillsborough County, and health
10:38:56 and human services, to review the opportunities at the
10:38:59 neighborhood service centers, throughout Hillsborough
10:39:02 County, using the neighborhood service centers.
10:39:05 So we are in a phase at this point where we are trying
10:39:09 to implement that instead of actually opening a
10:39:11 homeless customer service, and really looking
10:39:14 intuitively at all the different funding sources and
10:39:17 being a lot more creative and trying to save federal
10:39:21 money from that perspective.
10:39:24 One of the great things we have been working on with
10:39:26 the testimony Tampa family health centers is the
10:39:29 recuperative health centers.
10:39:32 As you all know a couple of years ago, the president
10:39:36 of the homeless coalition passed away, John Darby, and
10:39:40 he worked at Tampa family health centers, and Tampa
10:39:43 family health centers was working with the coalition
10:39:46 to develop a recuperative care center for individuals
10:39:51 who may leave the hospital, and to keep them from
10:39:54 recurring into emergency rooms and keep our emergency
10:39:57 room expenses down.
10:40:05 With grant applications from a number of different
10:40:06 funding sources and through the state and through
10:40:09 federal government, we'll be opening up a 16-bed
10:40:13 facility in the northern part of Tampa, which is
10:40:16 actually in Hillsborough County.
10:40:18 We are accessing water from the City of Tampa and had
10:40:24 some challenges, and Cindy and the water department
10:40:27 really helped us expedite that, so we hope to be able
10:40:29 to open the facility in the first part of March.
10:40:33 So you will all be receiving an invitation to that.
10:40:37 We want to make sure that you have an opportunity to
10:40:39 come and see the development.
10:40:43 It's a wonderful facility.
10:40:47 The day that we were actually doing it to sign off on
10:40:56 providing the final part of the funding, I was amazed.
10:40:58 I had not been out to the site for quite some time.
10:41:03 It feels good to be able to complete another section
10:41:05 of the ten-year plan.
10:41:07 And so you will be getting an invitation from Tampa
10:41:11 Family Health Centers, and I hope that you will be
10:41:13 able to attend.
10:41:14 With regard to low income housing, there are a number
10:41:17 of our partners through the homeless coalition who
10:41:22 continue to work on housing and have made some
10:41:27 I know many of you are aware that Metropolitan
10:41:30 Ministries with the help of the city and county and
10:41:32 homeless coalition will be opening up a new permanent
10:41:35 housing location in Sulphur Springs and the city
10:41:40 provided funding on a number of locations for homeless
10:41:43 issues, and we have several other new creative
10:41:47 opportunities that are presenting itself to us this
10:41:50 year, especially with the challenges, and we hope that
10:41:54 we can continue to be partners in the homelessness in
10:42:00 our community, and we appreciate the support that you
10:42:02 provide to us.
10:42:06 >>THOMAS SCOTT: One question I want to ask Mr. Nuckles
10:42:10 is given the downturn in the economy and increase in
10:42:12 homelessness as well as cutback on public funding, so
10:42:16 how are you making up the difference?
10:42:20 >>> Well, this year was the first year that with
10:42:22 regard to state funding, we lost about $800,000 from
10:42:28 the state, competitive, because of economic crisis
10:42:35 within our state, all that would normally apply, we
10:42:41 weren't funded.
10:42:42 It has been challenging.
10:42:45 We are working with many of the providers on looking
10:42:48 at different funding sources, bringing people together
10:42:51 and talking about consolidating different
10:42:55 opportunities, looking at our HUD homeless assistance
10:43:00 grant and other funding sources that we tried to tap
10:43:03 into before but much more aggressive from that
10:43:08 I personally believe that this is going to be a
10:43:10 challenge for us, in the stimulus package that was
10:43:16 approved at the House yesterday which is going to go
10:43:21 before the Senate.
10:43:22 There is extra funding through the emergency shelter
10:43:23 grants program that will provide quite a lot of
10:43:29 The state will receive some money, and the city and
10:43:32 the county will also receive money through that once
10:43:34 it's finally approved.
10:43:38 And my understanding is it's going to be about four
10:43:40 times what the city normally gets.
10:43:42 So that should be somewhere around 500 to $700,000
10:43:47 with when you only get about 115.
10:43:54 And the county gets around 400 so they will get over a
10:43:58 So from that perspective, it will be very good for the
10:44:02 local individuals in our community to access those
10:44:07 It's going to continue to be a challenge.
10:44:09 And we all as a community will have to step up to the
10:44:12 And work together to meet the needs of the people in
10:44:17 our community.
10:44:20 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: I want to congratulate you on
10:44:22 recognizing that if you couldn't build the services
10:44:24 center you wanted to that you are using the
10:44:26 neighborhood service centers that exist and providing
10:44:28 some of the information and support.
10:44:32 I thought that was very innovative of you all.
10:44:35 Yesterday, I took a tour of the old county jail, look
10:44:39 at it as a potential place for transportation hub, and
10:44:43 I thought, well, lots of housing here, and I looked at
10:44:47 it for about five minutes in that awareness and
10:44:51 thought, this place is so miserable, it's so awful,
10:44:54 I'm sure people would rather literally be out on the
10:44:56 streets than be in this old jail.
10:44:59 So that idea went away.
10:45:06 As we is city are log at making housing, renovating,
10:45:10 making houses available, I would assume after the
10:45:14 permanent housing stage, I assume that you're
10:45:18 trying -- ultimately you are trying to prep the people
10:45:21 who are homeless for the ability to be stable enough,
10:45:24 have some job skills, get their medical needs done, so
10:45:27 they will be able to afford to rent or buy something
10:45:31 that gives them ultimate stability.
10:45:36 >>> Exactly.
10:45:37 Working with all the providers in the community
10:45:39 southbound quite a challenge, and we have over 85
10:45:41 different organizations who are part of the homeless
10:45:43 coalition throughout the county, you know.
10:45:45 I only have seven members on my staff.
10:45:48 We have grown quite a lot since I have been with the
10:45:50 organization, and it's very difficult for us to meet
10:45:55 the needs of the entire county.
10:45:59 We rely on the partners to meet the need.
10:46:04 But as we as an organization and staff grow, and our
10:46:10 expertise grows in this area, we always get pulled
10:46:13 into a number of different issues.
10:46:16 So developing partnerships with the university has
10:46:19 been probably one of the best components that we have
10:46:24 been able to address the last year, using students,
10:46:28 using faculty.
10:46:29 >> Who do you work with?
10:46:31 >> From both universities.
10:46:33 University of Tampa.
10:46:34 University of South Florida.
10:46:37 A number of different departments.
10:46:38 It could be the social working department, marketing
10:46:43 We have had quite a lot of success.
10:46:45 Public health.
10:46:50 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: As Linda mentioned, the jail.
10:46:52 I looked at that about a year ago and was told there
10:46:55 was too many code violations, that this place is
10:46:57 sitting there.
10:46:58 I guess it's owned by the stay state now.
10:47:00 It's going to be a major hub for transportation.
10:47:03 Is there a possibility that we can consolidate with
10:47:06 the county, and probably relinquish some of the staff
10:47:12 on both sides to make more money available?
10:47:16 It's all coming out of the same pocket, essentially.
10:47:19 Is that possible?
10:47:27 In other words, you're running a homeless coalition
10:47:30 here, and the county is running one half a mohel down
10:47:34 the road.
10:47:34 >>> No.
10:47:35 >> They are not separate?
10:47:36 >>> No, the county doesn't run a homeless coalition.
10:47:43 As the state law provides in statute, the homeless
10:47:46 coalition is the lead agency with regard to homeless
10:47:49 issues, advocacy, education, liaison services, between
10:47:54 the city and the county.
10:47:57 The city and the county -- the city does not provide
10:48:00 any direct service when it comes to homelessness.
10:48:05 The county has a homeless recovery program.
10:48:08 And so from that perspective, I don't see that there
10:48:14 is a duplication of services.
10:48:15 >> Okay.
10:48:16 Where do we rank with other cities in the State of
10:48:19 Florida as far as homeless?
10:48:22 >>> We have the largest homeless population in the
10:48:28 I a tribute that because we do a really good job at
10:48:32 counting the homeless.
10:48:34 And we take about three months out of the year with
10:48:38 planning and implementation and specifically on that
10:48:43 day, we spend a 24 hour time period and using all of
10:48:47 our prayers and the volunteers from the community to
10:48:51 count the homeless in our community.
10:48:53 And that's not just the City of Tampa.
10:48:55 That's all of Hillsborough County.
10:48:59 Statutewise, that's what we are required to do.
10:49:01 >> Thank you.
10:49:04 >> Thank you for the opportunity to be here.
10:49:06 Again we appreciate your support.
10:49:10 >>CINDY MILLER: I have just a few more slides to wrap
10:49:13 I will be asking, Mr. Chair, members of council, to
10:49:15 probably come back in future weeks.
10:49:16 We have a couple of things still on our plate.
10:49:19 We had an affordable housing advisory committee.
10:49:21 We still need to come back to with our recommendation
10:49:24 as to how we should be modifying plans, if at all.
10:49:29 We need to come back to, I believe, before the first
10:49:35 meeting in March, possibly the second meeting in
10:49:37 February, but we will be having that on your agenda.
10:49:41 If I could have the PowerPoint, please.
10:49:46 I'll come back, also mention some new programs, and
10:49:50 then transition into some of the things to come.
10:49:52 For 2009 funds, we have identified $1 million for down
10:49:57 payment assistance so we can open up now.
10:50:01 It's not the $5 million we did last year, but at least
10:50:04 there's a million dollars we feel comfortable we can
10:50:07 use for down payment assistance.
10:50:08 So anyone who is currently a first-time home buyer,
10:50:14 that is working with a credit union or bank, working
10:50:19 with a realtor, we are taking applications through our
10:50:23 partners, through the lending brokers as well.
10:50:29 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Limits per home?
10:50:31 >>> It's basically 20% down payment, up to $50,000
10:50:35 based on certain income levels and 60,000 for other
10:50:39 income levels.
10:50:40 Now, the home can't be $300,000.
10:50:43 It has to be, I believe, $185,000, maximum.
10:50:51 Frankly, very few of our customers are looking at
10:50:54 We are more about the 135 to 150,000 level.
10:50:57 So anyone who is working out again, citizen 1 million
10:51:03 won't go as far as the other money but at least it's a
10:51:05 We hope again there will be more opportunities there.
10:51:07 The neighborhood stabilization program, we are very
10:51:09 happy to see last week that HUD had awarded us
10:51:14 $13.6 million.
10:51:16 Talking a little about what we can be doing when it
10:51:19 comes to transitional housing or homeless issues.
10:51:23 For neighborhood stabilization rental program we
10:51:25 intend to work with various social service entities to
10:51:27 provide funds for transitional housing.
10:51:30 That's the $3.4 million we are mandated to do.
10:51:33 A 50% median income for a family of four, what our
10:51:40 focus group is.
10:51:41 From that standpoint, that's $28,000 for a family of
10:51:45 four basically.
10:51:46 So we are working with folks from that standpoint.
10:51:48 And then home buyer program, roughly in actual
10:51:52 dollars, $8.8 million.
10:51:56 And we will be back to you in the future on that
10:51:58 program as well.
10:51:59 But I need to see the grant, and we don't have the
10:52:02 grant yet.
10:52:03 It will be four weeks, we understand, from HUD before
10:52:05 we actually see the contract document.
10:52:09 We also had promised, and I believe Councilwoman
10:52:12 Miller, this is a question that came from you.
10:52:14 What can we also do in a variety of our neighborhoods
10:52:18 including East Tampa, other CRAs?
10:52:21 We have identified right now home and SHIP funds of
10:52:25 about a million dollars that we will use to supplement
10:52:27 the neighborhood stabilization program.
10:52:29 And we do believe that most of us will be using East
10:52:32 We have also, from the historic preservation trust
10:52:35 fund standpoint, identified use of $500,000 of trust
10:52:39 fund money, where we are looking there is in West
10:52:43 Tampa, an historic area.
10:52:45 We had houses that need additional work, because of
10:52:50 historic significance or architectural enhancement.
10:52:53 HUD doesn't pay for that.
10:52:54 So this would be for supplements there.
10:52:56 Also at the south end of the East Tampa CRA, the
10:52:59 neighborhood there is part of the Ybor City national
10:53:02 historic district.
10:53:04 So these would be funds also used there.
10:53:07 So again funds being used in East Tampa.
10:53:09 And we are now basically -- we will basically be
10:53:13 looking at over $15 million to be able to have the
10:53:16 neighborhood stabilization as well as the supplemental
10:53:18 And we are going to keep looking for supplemental
10:53:20 funds as we go.
10:53:22 And that concludes my presentation.
10:53:26 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Any other additional questions?
10:53:29 Well, thank you very much for that report today.
10:53:35 Very good job.
10:53:36 Thank you.
10:53:37 Anyone from the public --
10:53:39 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Mr. Chairman, before they -- I want
10:53:41 to make a motion.
10:53:42 Cindy, you indicated getting back to us on the NSP
10:53:46 program which I know we are all very concerned about,
10:53:48 and want to be involved in.
10:53:51 So would 60 days or 90 days be appropriate to come
10:53:57 back and give us an update on that?
10:54:00 >>> Either 60 or 90, whichever is convenient.
10:54:03 >> How about a report in the spring 90 days to come
10:54:08 back with the NSP, as you further develop it and get
10:54:11 guidance from the folks.
10:54:12 >>> Thank you.
10:54:13 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: Second.
10:54:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Seconded by councilman Caetano.
10:54:22 All in favor?
10:54:23 Thank you.
10:54:24 >>MARTIN SHELBY: I don't believe there's anybody here
10:54:26 that is going to offer public comment.
10:54:32 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Okay.
10:54:34 Thank you.
10:54:34 Then we'll move to our next workshop.
10:54:56 Appeal process to the circuit court.
10:54:58 >>JULIA COLE: Legal department.
10:55:00 As you had requested the legal department to review
10:55:03 our appeal processes and come back with some
10:55:06 recommendations relating to appeal to circuit court
10:55:11 and also look at what other jurisdictions have done.
10:55:13 I provided with you a memorandum that very simply goes
10:55:18 through the various appeals that come to City Council,
10:55:21 and also provide some information about other
10:55:23 jurisdictions going to circuit court directly on their
10:55:27 appeal process.
10:55:28 And to answer what I think was the first question, can
10:55:31 we legally do it that way?
10:55:33 The answer is yes, we can legally do it that way.
10:55:36 However, what was interesting as I was going through
10:55:38 this process, and I did spend some significant amount
10:55:40 of time going to different jurisdictions and how they
10:55:43 handle them.
10:55:44 The one thing that I note -- and I mention this in my
10:55:47 memorandum -- is that what we have in the city is a
10:55:51 lot of different processes for our quasi-judicial
10:55:58 They all have different standards of review, different
10:56:01 notice requirements, some of them come directly to
10:56:03 you, as City Council, some of them go to boards, and
10:56:08 come to City Council.
10:56:09 Some of them start with our zoning administrator, go
10:56:11 to the different boards, and then come to you.
10:56:13 And in actually looking to see what recommendations I
10:56:18 could make in terms of our appeal process it became
10:56:20 very complicated because we have so many different
10:56:22 kinds of appeals.
10:56:24 When I did look at other jurisdictions, the
10:56:27 jurisdictions that are comparable size, to have spent
10:56:33 some time log at the code, have gone through the
10:56:35 process of actually codifying consistent processes for
10:56:40 all of the quasi-judicial proceedings.
10:56:43 And really ours have a lot of inconsistencies that
10:56:48 they really pull together for different purposes, and
10:56:50 have created processes that I think are very difficult
10:56:53 for everybody to understand.
10:56:55 And you heard me in front of you many times trying to
10:56:58 describe those processes, for different types of
10:57:01 appeals that come here.
10:57:04 And I indicated in here, you right now have
10:57:06 approximately five different kinds of appeals that
10:57:09 come to you and they all have different processes,
10:57:12 procedures, standards, and they come to you in
10:57:15 different formats.
10:57:16 So what we are recommending at this point is given the
10:57:20 fact that all of our processes are very interest
10:57:23 consistent, they are very difficult to understand,
10:57:26 they are located in different portions of the code, to
10:57:30 figure out where those processes are, is that the
10:57:32 legal department review our processes and actually
10:57:36 come back to you to make recommendations on creating
10:57:41 consistent processes for all of the equivalent
10:57:46 Let me give you an example of that.
10:57:49 Our variances go to a variety of different boards.
10:57:53 ARC, Variance Review Board.
10:57:56 In fact you hear variances when you are hearing your
10:57:59 planned development.
10:58:00 They all have different processes.
10:58:02 What we should be having in our code is a consistent
10:58:05 way variances are reviewed.
10:58:07 And then you make a decision about which board it goes
10:58:09 But everybody, members of the public, lawyers, City
10:58:14 Council understand, you go to a specific place, that's
10:58:16 the standard review for a variance, and this is the
10:58:19 notice requirement, this is what you have to do to get
10:58:22 one, and this is why it should be denied, and create
10:58:25 that type of consistent procedure.
10:58:29 The other thing that we could look at, at that point,
10:58:32 is once we have created and made recommendations on
10:58:34 consistent processes, for all of your different
10:58:37 proceedings, housing, where they are easily found,
10:58:42 make sure all the notices are the same, so everybody
10:58:45 knows what the playing field is.
10:58:46 Then we can start to really analyze where the
10:58:48 different processes are going.
10:58:50 As I stated, you have different types of appeals.
10:58:53 And I think that's the example that we are talking
10:58:56 Sometimes you have appeals that start off with the
10:58:59 zoning administrator, they go to the Variance Review
10:59:01 Board, ARCs, BLC, and then they come to you, and those
10:59:07 are several different appeals in the process.
10:59:09 You have a standard of review for that.
10:59:11 You have a policy that come to you from board.
10:59:14 There's a standard of review for that.
10:59:16 So we can then start to look at it and make some
10:59:20 Do we want to have two separate appeal processes for
10:59:24 our zoning administrator appeal, where it's appealed
10:59:29 once, appealed again.
10:59:30 Do you want to have a different mechanism of appeal?
10:59:33 Go to circuit court, as an example.
10:59:37 But it was very difficult for me to just pull out a
10:59:40 couple of little processes and create a separate
10:59:42 mechanism for them, because it really does need to be
10:59:49 consistent to begin with, so that way, when you get
10:59:51 into circuit court, you have a process that you can
10:59:53 explain to a judge, and in fact in analyzing this and
10:59:57 reviewing this, and having some conversations for our
11:00:00 litigation folks, over the years, some of the biggest
11:00:03 problems we have with our litigation has been the
11:00:05 failure of the city to follow its own processes.
11:00:09 And the truth of the matter is it's very hard to
11:00:11 follow processes when it's not real clear in the code
11:00:14 where the processes are located, how they are supposed
11:00:16 to be analyzed, what their standards of review are.
11:00:20 So at this point the recommendation of the legal
11:00:23 department is to allow us six months to continue
11:00:26 through that process, make a recommendation, codifying
11:00:31 or quasi-judicial procedures in such a way that they
11:00:34 are all located in one place in our code, that they
11:00:37 are consistent, for consistent processes, and at that
11:00:41 point we can make some policy decisions about where
11:00:44 our processes should go.
11:00:46 I would also note that this is a really good time to
11:00:49 do this.
11:00:50 We are looking at our Land Development Code anyway.
11:00:52 We have to because we have a comprehensive plan update
11:00:56 that obligates us legally to adopt land development
11:00:59 regulations to come into play.
11:01:01 So I really do see this as part of that full package,
11:01:04 as we move forward, and by the end of this year,
11:01:08 coming into the beginning of next year, analyzing and
11:01:11 making recommendations of the development code.
11:01:17 And I think Mr. Shelby has some comments he wanted to
11:01:19 make on this issue.
11:01:20 >>MARTIN SHELBY: City Council attorney.
11:01:23 I have had opportunities to speak with Julia about
11:01:27 this, and with Chip Fletcher, city attorney, and also
11:01:30 members of T.H.A.N., talked with Randy Baron, and I'm
11:01:36 very sensitive to the community's concerns, but I have
11:01:40 to share with you my professional assessment of the
11:01:44 process as it presently exists; is the need of change.
11:01:51 And I note change to some is difficult, but I will
11:01:56 tell that you a lot of what has been created in the
11:01:58 city code was an excellent suggestion at the time, and
11:02:02 it was an excellent process, but those times have
11:02:05 And what is legally required for a hearing in 2009 is
11:02:13 very, very different than what a hearing was required
11:02:16 to have in 1990.
11:02:18 And the code needs to catch up to that.
11:02:21 And the City Council now is seeing some very difficult
11:02:24 cases that are going to litigation.
11:02:28 And it is my assessment that if we do not address
11:02:31 these changes in a comprehensive fashion, it was going
11:02:34 to become very painful for both the city and for the
11:02:41 I'll give you an example.
11:02:44 In order for somebody to determine what their legal
11:02:48 property rights are, legally, it is my opinion that
11:02:52 that should be addressed by an attorney, by -- for the
11:02:58 sake of argument, let's say -- and we talked about
11:03:00 this but haven't gotten to that point yet, a property
11:03:04 rights hearing officer to hear that, an attorney who
11:03:07 is well versed, who can hear both sides of the issue,
11:03:11 and then apply that to the law and make a legal
11:03:15 Presently what happens now -- correct me if I am
11:03:17 wrong -- it's a zoning administrator determination who
11:03:20 is not an attorney, who then, if it's not
11:03:23 satisfactory, gets appealed to a Variance Review Board
11:03:26 which is a board of volunteers and not attorneys, and
11:03:28 if that is not legally sufficient or acceptable to
11:03:30 people, then it gets a polled to this body, which in
11:03:33 reality, even though it acts quasi-judicially, is a
11:03:38 quasi-judicial, and if that's not satisfactory the
11:03:41 city gets sued and it goes to circuit court.
11:03:45 That's really one of those issues that we need to
11:03:47 address the fact that the decision needs to be made by
11:03:49 somebody that hears both sides of the issue because
11:03:52 presently now the zoning administrator only hears the
11:03:54 evidence that's been presented by the person who is
11:03:56 asking for the interpretation.
11:03:58 So those are the kind of things that that kind of
11:04:01 thing might not necessarily need to go but the other
11:04:06 thing that's interesting is in the 1970s,
11:04:08 Hillsborough County and the City of Tampa were very
11:04:11 avant-garde in creating the Tampa, Hillsborough County
11:04:14 city-county Planning Commission, and that was unique
11:04:16 at the time and it served its purpose wonderfully.
11:04:20 But the City of Tampa with regard to rezonings does
11:04:22 not have an initial review entity.
11:04:25 The first time a case is heard and the community comes
11:04:28 out is before this body.
11:04:30 Other cities have zoning boards, which give the
11:04:33 opportunity for everybody to hear what's coming,
11:04:36 resolve the issues before it comes to the board that
11:04:39 makes the final decision.
11:04:41 Those are the kinds of things that I think they are
11:04:44 policy decisions.
11:04:46 I'm also concerned about the fact as Julia said, the
11:04:49 City of Tampa has three different boards that grant
11:04:57 And perhaps at the time that they are created, there
11:05:01 was a very good reason for creating boards with
11:05:04 overlapping responsibility.
11:05:05 But maybe the time for public policy decision and
11:05:09 discussion with the community to revisit the need for
11:05:11 those boards.
11:05:13 City Council spent an inordinate amount of time trying
11:05:16 to fill very explicit overlapping positions that to
11:05:23 this day as we speak now are still vacant.
11:05:25 And I'll give you another example.
11:05:29 You have a public Nuisance Abatement Board.
11:05:31 Maybe it's worth to have a discussion combined with
11:05:33 the Code Enforcement Board, and combine those duties
11:05:36 so you don't have those people who invest their time
11:05:40 to serve as a volunteer on the public Nuisance
11:05:43 Abatement Board but do not have the present cases to
11:05:46 be able to serve their community.
11:05:48 So in the totality of things, I understand that there
11:05:55 is a concern about wanting to send everything to
11:05:59 circuit court, and I understand why that is for
11:06:03 members of the community, if that's the first time
11:06:05 that they have to enter discussion.
11:06:09 It's an expensive proposition because they are not
11:06:12 They have to hire somebody.
11:06:14 So all of that being said, I support the legal
11:06:16 department, and I assure you that I intend to look
11:06:19 very closely.
11:06:21 What I would like to do is before bringing council
11:06:27 recommendations is to have work, to at least have a
11:06:30 matrix put together to explain to you what the process
11:06:33 is and how it can be improved and to give council
11:06:38 options and share that with the community, share that
11:06:40 with the development community, share with builders,
11:06:43 share that with T.H.A.N. and improve the process.
11:06:45 The goal is to not make things faster necessarily,
11:06:49 although I think in the long run that would be the
11:06:52 The goal is to make things better so that the City
11:06:54 Council is not put in very difficult positions, that I
11:06:59 as your attorney don't appreciate seeing you in.
11:07:03 So I just want you to know that I will work very hard
11:07:05 to take this opportunity at the comp plan requiring
11:07:09 changes to chapter 27 to work very closely to make
11:07:11 sure that these processes can all be revisited and
11:07:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilman Dingfelder.
11:07:19 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: I have some very strong feelings
11:07:23 about this be, as you know, but I agree with you
11:07:26 completely that our process should be consistent and
11:07:30 we should consolidate them.
11:07:32 That's become pretty obvious, as I have been around
11:07:35 City Hall now for eight years, that it is always
11:07:43 strange to me that depending on which of those five
11:07:45 appeals are headed our way, through different
11:07:48 processes and different rules and different standard,
11:07:51 and it never made any sense.
11:07:52 So I'm wholly in favor of you all cleaning that up and
11:07:55 fixing that.
11:07:58 What I would not want to see you do, unless you have
11:08:01 clear direction from council, is to spend too much
11:08:04 time going down the road of new processes, going
11:08:09 directly to circuit court, et cetera, et cetera,
11:08:11 because council hasn't given that direction yet.
11:08:15 And if you don't want to ask us right now, then don't.
11:08:17 And do what you need to do up until then, but don't
11:08:21 spend too much time on that, until you get direction
11:08:24 from council, because I think that's a very public
11:08:26 debate that needs to happen before we go down that
11:08:30 And I don't want to see you all spending a lot of time
11:08:33 researching, drafting, et, until we get that.
11:08:36 We already heard loud and clear from T.H.A.N.,
11:08:40 homeowners association, two weeks ago, that they are
11:08:45 still not in favor of those type of direct appeals.
11:08:48 And I think that council needs to move very cautiously
11:08:53 in that regard.
11:08:55 As far as the hearing master and special masters are
11:08:57 concerned, if we possibly need to insert some of those
11:09:01 into the process to comply with some of the courts
11:09:05 more recent rulings in terms of finding of fact and
11:09:08 that sort of thing, then maybe that's appropriate.
11:09:12 But again I think we need to be cautious, not to add
11:09:16 too much extra money into the process, because
11:09:19 whenever you are hearing a hearing officer or special
11:09:21 master, you have extra money, and the city doesn't
11:09:23 have extra money right now to get into a lot of that.
11:09:27 So we are being paid to do that sort of thing.
11:09:32 We have done it, in probably the entire city history.
11:09:36 I think we can continue doing it.
11:09:38 But if you feel for legal reasons we can't, we have to
11:09:41 hire a special master.
11:09:43 >> The last thing I want to say and it just dawned on
11:09:46 me speaking of special masters and hearing officers, I
11:09:50 have seen on one or two occasions, what I perceive as
11:09:55 conflicts in terms of the hearing master that we hire.
11:09:59 I don't want to seep us hiring any hearing master or
11:10:01 special master that we also might see in front of us
11:10:06 for any other reason at that podium.
11:10:11 And I have seen that on at least one or two occasions
11:10:14 in my six years on council.
11:10:16 So, in other words, if we are going to hire hearing
11:10:20 officers and special masters, let's hire them from
11:10:22 Pinellas County, Polk County, or Pasco County.
11:10:25 But I don't want to see Hillsborough land use
11:10:27 attorneys, you know, being hearing masters, and then
11:10:30 showing up in front of us on behalf of clients, you
11:10:33 know, at the next meeting.
11:10:35 So, anyway with, all that, I appreciate your efforts.
11:10:41 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: I agree with what you just said.
11:10:44 As long as we are going to look at things, I have to
11:10:47 share with you a model that's been very successful in
11:10:49 the past, and that is, to hear from the public, all
11:10:54 side of the public with the staff, with council
11:10:56 members, in a discussion session, which is sort of
11:10:59 what we have here.
11:11:00 The public participation in this is absolutely
11:11:05 And I just wanted to underscore what Mr. Dingfelder
11:11:08 said about don't spend a lot of time on this, until we
11:11:10 have some understanding from the public and some
11:11:14 buy-in because otherwise it's not using your limited
11:11:17 time well.
11:11:19 Lastly, I want to throw something else out.
11:11:22 When I was first on council a number of years ago, we
11:11:25 had an independent tree board.
11:11:27 And I forget which mayor.
11:11:28 I think it might have been agreeing, but got rid of
11:11:34 the tree board and folded those interests another into
11:11:38 Variance Review Board.
11:11:40 And the tree board had to have people on it who were
11:11:42 arborists and who really knew about trees.
11:11:46 And people on the Variance Review Board, there's not
11:11:49 necessarily anybody on there with those particular
11:11:52 professional --
11:11:54 >>> There's one.
11:11:55 One slot.
11:11:56 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Well, I have heard a lot of concern
11:11:59 from the community is concerned about trees that the
11:12:05 level of understanding that is brought -- the tree
11:12:09 issue now is so much less because there isn't this
11:12:12 specialized board.
11:12:13 So perhaps, you know, if your drive is toward
11:12:17 professionalism, and you all are lawyers, and you
11:12:20 think lawyers are good.
11:12:21 Well, maybe we noticed to have a tree hearing master
11:12:24 who is an arborist rather than a lawyer.
11:12:28 I mean, if we are talking about technical tree issues,
11:12:32 I think what we all want is objectivity, transparency,
11:12:37 and professionalism.
11:12:39 So I think that should be the undergirding for us as
11:12:44 we move forward.
11:12:47 Community involvement.
11:12:49 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, we have varying opinions on
11:12:52 Let me just say, one is, I'm hearing Ms. Cole and Mr.
11:12:57 Shelby say that they need to go into a workshop
11:13:00 fashion, bring back to us for recommendation.
11:13:02 I support that.
11:13:02 I think this is long overdue.
11:13:09 One thing is, you know we had a hearing before on this
11:13:12 hearing master process and all that.
11:13:15 I spent ten years in that process.
11:13:19 You may not agree with that.
11:13:20 From the legal standpoint it protects the city.
11:13:26 If we don't intend a lot of money over here, Ma spend
11:13:29 government Meg money to keep going to court and
11:13:32 getting sued.
11:13:32 So keep that in mind.
11:13:34 So the interest is to develop a process that's legal,
11:13:40 that's fair, and that meets the test of the courts,
11:13:44 And then I will tell you, what we did with
11:13:48 Hillsborough County and have a hearing zoning master
11:13:50 but still come before the board of county commission
11:13:53 and then it's appealed to the circuit court and goes
11:13:58 there. So that to me is very reasonable, and has
11:14:00 worked well, and has proven to be very effective over
11:14:03 the years, you know.
11:14:05 Then when you bring issues before us with zoning, and
11:14:09 what I'm hearing now, that we could be sued
11:14:12 personally, I mean, you have got to consider all of
11:14:16 that, okay?
11:14:17 So I'm in favor of crafting something, bringing it
11:14:21 back to us in the workshop format.
11:14:26 You know, giving us what your thoughts are, where you
11:14:28 are headed so we can take that and look at it.
11:14:31 But at the end of the day you have to understand, what
11:14:34 you said is that the legal process or the courts
11:14:41 haven't changed since 1985.
11:14:44 Therefore you have to have something that's in place
11:14:46 that you can defend.
11:14:47 And so when it goes to court, we can win and not be
11:14:52 We just got sued, have to pay all this money.
11:14:54 So on one hand, council, we can lose a lot more money
11:14:59 by going to court every other week, every other month,
11:15:02 on all these cases.
11:15:03 So that's where I am on it.
11:15:06 Anyone else?
11:15:09 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Since you mentioned my name, I'll
11:15:12 feel the need to just quickly respond.
11:15:14 I think that it's very easy for us to overreact to a
11:15:18 very recent case.
11:15:21 And I won't get into that case.
11:15:23 But, you know, we didn't lose that case for the
11:15:29 reasons that are being described here.
11:15:31 We weren't being threatened with personal lawsuit for
11:15:33 the reasons that are being described here.
11:15:36 There were many, many other factors that came into
11:15:39 play, which I will not get into.
11:15:41 But, you know, it's very easy to overreact to those
11:15:44 types of threats.
11:15:45 And I appreciate that.
11:15:46 None of us want to be sued individually.
11:15:48 I have now been on council six years, I have never
11:15:50 been sued individually.
11:15:55 Gwen, have you ever been sued individually?
11:15:57 >> No.
11:15:58 >> Linda?
11:15:59 >> No.
11:15:59 >> These guys have 30 years between them.
11:16:01 There's always that threat out there because that's
11:16:03 what the federal law says.
11:16:04 But it's not like, you know, it not like it's
11:16:07 happening and it's not like it's been happening and
11:16:09 it's not like the city is being dragged into court
11:16:11 weekly on these type of land use issues.
11:16:14 You know, we have to do the best job we can, and legal
11:16:17 council does a great job in protecting us, and as a
11:16:20 result we don't get sued that often, and we never get
11:16:23 sued personally.
11:16:23 So let's just not overreact and swing that pendulum
11:16:28 too far for reasons that in my opinion aren't there.
11:16:32 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Well, your attorneys are telling you,
11:16:34 you have to understand, you have legal counsel that
11:16:37 are telling you, unless this process is corrected,
11:16:41 that you are going to be sued even more.
11:16:44 That's what I'm hearing them say.
11:16:47 You are treading on dangerous ground.
11:16:51 You pay attorneys money to advise you, okay?
11:16:55 And let me finish.
11:16:58 See, a lot of things didn't happen in the past, but
11:17:02 it's changed now, okay.
11:17:04 The court system has changed.
11:17:06 The interpretation of the law.
11:17:07 And more laws have been written, you know.
11:17:09 So you have to understand that.
11:17:11 And so that's what I'm hearing the attorneys advise us
11:17:15 and say to us.
11:17:16 Yes, Mr. Shelby.
11:17:19 >>MARTIN SHELBY: What you are saying, Mr. Chairman, is
11:17:21 And I fully understand where council member Dingfelder
11:17:23 is coming from.
11:17:24 But as an aside, when I first came to the City of
11:17:30 Tampa, and saw all these boards created with all of
11:17:36 this complicated process, to find out that that was
11:17:40 the result of a settlement of a lawsuit that has long
11:17:44 since passed, and I'm referring to the Lykes
11:17:47 settlement, and how bound to resistance to change
11:17:53 things are perhaps because of a decision way back
11:17:56 when, times have changed.
11:18:00 Things that have controlled in the past should not
11:18:02 necessarily, especially if the law has changed and the
11:18:05 different requirements, bind future City Councils.
11:18:08 So what I am asking to do is to -- and I appreciate
11:18:11 that, Mr. Chairman.
11:18:13 What I am asking for is to bring back in a workshop
11:18:16 form a matrix so we can fully understand and have the
11:18:19 community understand what the public policy decisions
11:18:22 are, not for stifling discourse but to actually
11:18:29 improve it.
11:18:29 And that's my request.
11:18:30 So I suspect -- Ms. Cole, would you say six months for
11:18:34 a workshop?
11:18:34 I know it's going to take awhile after that.
11:18:38 Maybe even five months.
11:18:40 But I would like to be able to take drafting of the
11:18:43 matrix to get our arms around the process and revisit
11:18:50 things like the Lykes decision and what role council
11:18:52 can play in improving the process.
11:18:55 I guess before making the motion if you want to hear
11:18:58 from the public.
11:18:59 I don't know if you can do that.
11:19:05 >>JULIA COLE: Legal department.
11:19:06 I was going to reiterate what Mr. Shelby said.
11:19:08 And I think coming back to the initial premise was, I
11:19:12 think in order for us to be able to make these policy
11:19:14 decisions we need to look and see what our processes
11:19:17 actually are.
11:19:19 I came to you as you recall a couple years ago to talk
11:19:21 about the idea of a zoning hearing master, and what we
11:19:24 have seen over the last few years is the idea of
11:19:29 having some kind of initial review of your zoning.
11:19:32 I think it's important, becomes more important, how
11:19:35 you deal with that issue, I think as a policy decision
11:19:38 for you all to look at, but that's a question we are
11:19:42 going to have to respond to, as well as how you do
11:19:44 with your appeals by making sure your processes are
11:19:48 consistent and I think by highlighting exactly what
11:19:50 they are, and what the different directions you can
11:19:52 go, I think would be a good step in getting -- to be
11:19:56 able to make those decisions in a way that's
11:19:58 transparent and everybody understands.
11:20:01 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Let's take public testimony at this
11:20:03 Anyone wishing to address council may come forward.
11:20:06 State your name and address.
11:20:08 >>JOHN GRANDOFF: Suite 3700 Bank of America Plaza.
11:20:11 I'm a member of the Florida Bar.
11:20:13 And I would like to just give you a few reflections I
11:20:16 had in this process over several years in appearing
11:20:20 before you.
11:20:20 The Snyder case is the case we are talking about back
11:20:23 in '85 that basically says that city boards need to
11:20:26 separate their judicial function from their
11:20:28 legislative function, and I think we have gotten a
11:20:30 little bit off course.
11:20:34 And I think from my standpoint, way deal with, with my
11:20:38 clients in giving them advice, it's become very
11:20:40 blurred as to what is the judicial function of City
11:20:43 Council and what is the legislative policy making
11:20:46 And my suggestion, I think it would make your life a
11:20:51 lot more simpler if you got back to more policy and
11:20:55 less judicial tangling in these matters.
11:20:58 And I practiced in several other jurisdiction that is
11:21:01 have discreet quasi-judicial hearing officers, or
11:21:05 hearing masters.
11:21:06 I think Mr. Dingfelder's suggestion that you go out of
11:21:08 the city for those persons was an excellent
11:21:12 suggestion, to avoid any appearance of impropriety.
11:21:15 I think the problem of staffing the boards is an
11:21:20 indication of how difficult this process has become.
11:21:23 Conversely, I think if you establish these boards, I
11:21:26 think you will have a lot of applicants, very able
11:21:28 applicants come forth and say, I'd like to handle
11:21:31 those kinds of cases and decide those cases in a
11:21:34 quasi-judicial manner.
11:21:36 It gets it off your plate.
11:21:38 You stick to judicial policy making matters.
11:21:40 And you don't get into these kinds of cases.
11:21:45 Let's me tell you from a circuit court perspective, we
11:21:48 do not want -- in the development bar, I guess you
11:21:53 would call it that, he would don't want every case in
11:21:55 the world sent to circuit court.
11:21:56 We are not coming from that direction.
11:21:57 I think a finite amount of cases belong in the circuit
11:22:00 court, and only those very, very finite cases should
11:22:05 go over.
11:22:05 The majority of these appeals can be handled by
11:22:07 hearing officers.
11:22:10 Practically speaking the process is difficult for
11:22:12 folks that do not have attorneys.
11:22:14 I have represented folks pro bono at the last minute
11:22:17 that all of a sudden find themselves in an appeal.
11:22:20 30 days are running.
11:22:21 They have a huge record to copy.
11:22:22 They don't have a court reporter.
11:22:24 Process gets delayed.
11:22:25 You have to reset.
11:22:26 It gets very confusing.
11:22:28 It's difficult for the city clerk's office.
11:22:29 I think if you could funnel all of these appeals to a
11:22:33 certain process, these properly staffed, you would
11:22:36 have good results, you would have good personnel
11:22:39 handling it, you have bona fide decisions, I think you
11:22:42 would have less cases going to court, and I think
11:22:44 everyone would be all the better.
11:22:45 I think the attorneys and the land use bar would be
11:22:50 very enthused about working with the city attorney's
11:22:53 office on coming to a process, because it would help
11:22:55 all of us, and helps us give better legal advice.
11:22:58 Right now it's hard to give advice to a client to
11:23:01 where the appeal is going, what is the standard of
11:23:04 review, what are my rights, and I give a lot of
11:23:08 maybes, and "I can't really tell you" but I will know
11:23:13 when I get to the end of it, and that's very hard
11:23:15 advice to give.
11:23:16 And I think it would be very helpful.
11:23:18 I just want to give you my impressions.
11:23:20 >>THOMAS SCOTT: That sound like you made a 180-degree
11:23:25 turn since a year and a half two, years ago.
11:23:29 Thank you, sir.
11:23:36 >>> My name is Sue Lyon.
11:23:38 I'm here representing T.H.A.N.
11:23:40 I'm not an eloquent speaker.
11:23:44 I'm certainly not a lawyer.
11:23:46 My opinion will be different from theirs.
11:23:51 T.H.A.N. repeats our objection to change the process.
11:23:56 While we understand the time and effort constraints
11:23:58 that council is under, it is our belief that citizens
11:24:01 are best served by their appeal being heard in the
11:24:04 fastest, lowest-cost and fair way.
11:24:08 The process of going before a board is already costly,
11:24:11 time consuming, and frightening.
11:24:14 Although there are costs and time associated with
11:24:17 appeals to City Council, the time and expense
11:24:20 associated with a court appeal would be far greater.
11:24:24 This undue burden is something our citizens should not
11:24:26 have to do, and only the wealthy would be able to go
11:24:30 to court.
11:24:32 You are the only recourse we have, that a citizen has,
11:24:37 when they have done something they thought would make
11:24:39 their life easier, and after appearing before a board,
11:24:43 they have been told they have done something wrong.
11:24:47 And now they have no place to turn.
11:24:51 This was probably the first time they have ever
11:24:55 appeared before a board.
11:24:56 They certainly have never appeared before City Council
11:25:01 T.H.A.N. took a stand years ago to have this process
11:25:04 move from the courts to City Council.
11:25:07 We feel this is a basic right of the people to appeal
11:25:10 to their elected offices.
11:25:14 T.H.A.N. supports the legal departments request for
11:25:16 postponement, but we respectfully ask that we be
11:25:19 included in the process.
11:25:21 Thank you very much.
11:25:21 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Thank you.
11:25:27 >>STEVE MICHELINI: I think that everyone is in favor
11:25:32 of consolidation and simplification, because the
11:25:35 process is very complicated.
11:25:37 And many times the staff isn't even sure which process
11:25:41 you are supposed to be following depending on the
11:25:45 And it does lead to a lot of duplication, leads you to
11:25:49 go, and many cases you are filing petitions in one
11:25:52 venue and find out you are not really supposed to be
11:25:54 in that venue, and you are halfway through the pro
11:25:58 Sometimes we are here before you at City Council and
11:26:00 we shouldn't be here on some of these appeals.
11:26:03 So I would strongly encourage you to do something to
11:26:07 streamline and consolidate the process.
11:26:09 I do have an equal concern as Sue Lyon has expressed
11:26:15 that going to circuit court does add a lot of burden
11:26:18 and expense to people who can least afford it.
11:26:20 I was before you three or four weeks ago advocating
11:26:23 that somebody be placed in the standard and
11:26:27 enforcement people for people who were lost and didn't
11:26:29 know what to do in that process.
11:26:31 And the same thing should apply here.
11:26:32 There is no one there to help them, unless as John
11:26:35 said, that he stands up and asks people pro bono.
11:26:38 I do the same thing.
11:26:39 People that need help, and they are lost.
11:26:42 And they simply have no place to turn.
11:26:44 And if you eliminate their ability to come to City
11:26:46 Council and express that same concern, then they have
11:26:51 no place else to go.
11:26:53 They can't afford to be taking on a legal services
11:26:58 kind of thing and they are going to be shuffled
11:27:00 So I would advocate that you look very carefully at
11:27:04 how you handle that part of the process.
11:27:08 And again look at the standards and enforcement
11:27:10 process in terms of having someone there to assist
11:27:13 It's another board.
11:27:14 It another board where people are being brought before
11:27:17 a tribunal and they don't know what to do.
11:27:20 And I'm not saying they are being harshly treated.
11:27:24 Just like in the variance review board.
11:27:26 But the allocation of justice is not the same when the
11:27:32 Titans are before you battling it out as they are when
11:27:40 the small folks are here asking for whatever it is
11:27:42 they are petitioning for.
11:27:43 And I am also standing by to assist in any review
11:27:46 process and be happy to sit down with the legal
11:27:48 department and talk about ideas with them as well.
11:27:51 So thank you for your consideration.
11:27:54 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
11:27:56 My apologies.
11:27:57 I was in the back discussing some city issues with a
11:27:59 city department head working on things that had to be
11:28:02 corrected in the next day or two.
11:28:05 I did hear some of the conversation.
11:28:06 I'm sorry I didn't hear all of it because I was in one
11:28:09 room and the television is in the other.
11:28:11 But before we go any further, I would like to see the
11:28:17 number of cases that we have overturned from the
11:28:24 Variance Review Board.
11:28:25 In other words, with eight cases, and did only one get
11:28:30 reversed? Were there eight cases and five got
11:28:34 And if the clerk's office can go back further, a
11:28:37 couple of years ago, to see how many cases have some
11:28:43 In other words, maybe I'm right and maybe I'm wrong.
11:28:46 But what I'm saying is this -- in my opinion, when
11:28:51 they get here, it's becoming a lot more political than
11:28:56 when it was before the variance review board.
11:28:58 And I'm not saying the Variance Review Board is
11:29:01 correct or not correct.
11:29:02 I'm saying that for some reason, you have a class, and
11:29:07 it's not about a class of people.
11:29:09 It's an ordinance about one subject matter.
11:29:11 When it comes before us without the Variance Review
11:29:13 Board, oh, no, you can't do that.
11:29:16 The same incident comes before us, and I can find out,
11:29:22 comes before us on the same type of issue, and we say,
11:29:25 oh, my God, did you that?
11:29:30 But we ourselves, I included, when it comes before us,
11:29:35 you can't do that, it against the law.
11:29:38 But when comes to the Variance Review Board and comes
11:29:41 here on appeal, it changes.
11:29:44 So that was my preference for saying, you know what?
11:29:48 Maybe this is not the correct body.
11:29:51 And I'm not talking about the members of the body for
11:29:54 these things to continue on long-term.
11:29:57 Maybe a nonbiased, in my opinion -- and here again
11:30:01 this is just my opinion -- judicial system, which they
11:30:04 are elected, can be a better quality for the
11:30:10 individual to get a much sincere, and to protect the
11:30:15 integrity of the Variance Review Board.
11:30:17 For me to say that I agree or disagree with the
11:30:24 Variance Review Board is not the case.
11:30:27 The case was heard before that body.
11:30:30 That body may, their estimates based on whatever facts
11:30:35 were created and presented, before them.
11:30:40 And when you come up to a field, it says that you can
11:30:43 only hear the case as it happened, and only those that
11:30:48 testified in that case can only be heard.
11:30:56 However, it not about people with money or people
11:30:58 without money.
11:30:58 It about the right thing to do, or the wrong thing to
11:31:03 When you sit down, and you see attorneys representing
11:31:07 them in the Variance Review Board, I don't think they
11:31:10 are doing that for free.
11:31:14 I know some firms pick out one or two cases a year,
11:31:17 and they do it for the love of practicing law, and
11:31:22 that's wonderful.
11:31:24 It would be the same attorneys, at the same item,
11:31:30 going to a different venue, representing the same
11:31:33 client at more than likely the same cost.
11:31:37 When you see an individual who has no attorney, they
11:31:41 should be treated -- hopefully they are not treated
11:31:44 any differently than those that do have
11:31:48 I don't know of any judges in the judicial system who
11:31:51 would treat an individual any difference if he or she
11:31:57 or they or groups of persons do not have
11:32:04 So, I mean, that's the only reason for my suggesting
11:32:10 And I'd like to hold this until we get how many times
11:32:16 we have overruled the Variance Review Board.
11:32:27 And I'm not saying that they should have been
11:32:28 overruled, and I'm not saying they should have been
11:32:31 sustained on their hearing.
11:32:32 It's that I have a memory that tells me it becoming
11:32:37 more common to overturn the Variance Review Board than
11:32:43 when not to.
11:32:44 And maybe I'm not correct on my memories.
11:32:47 But that's the way my feeling is from inside my heart,
11:32:51 that there's something that I just don't like too
11:32:55 much, is that overturning and overturning and
11:32:58 overturning the same board.
11:33:02 Maybe we ought to hear the variance review thing and
11:33:06 let the court decide.
11:33:07 And I don't want to do that either.
11:33:09 I think the public is entitled.
11:33:11 And there's other cases.
11:33:12 And I won't get to them now.
11:33:13 But there's other chapters of law that we have that
11:33:16 you can't even appeal.
11:33:20 And I think that's wrong.
11:33:22 You can't appeal nowhere.
11:33:24 In the other case.
11:33:26 And that went up with a lot more evidence and a lot
11:33:30 more convictions.
11:33:32 Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
11:33:39 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Anyone else from the public?
11:33:40 What I heard, councilman Miranda, they would like to
11:33:43 come back in six months with a matrix for workshop.
11:33:49 In the meantime what I sugar is the information that
11:33:52 they are requesting be given to us as soon as
11:33:54 possible, is available.
11:33:59 >> So moved.
11:34:00 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Second.
11:34:01 >>MARTIN SHELBY: So that motion --
11:34:03 I am going to release the gavel.
11:34:05 I am going make a motion.
11:34:06 My motion is going to be what you all requested and
11:34:09 that is come back to us in six months, providing them
11:34:15 a workshop on the process, on streamlining the
11:34:20 Second, before that time, provide us information that
11:34:23 Mr. Miranda, councilman Miranda has requested in terms
11:34:26 of how many appeals were overturned in terms of the
11:34:32 variance board.
11:34:33 How many do you want, two years, three years?
11:34:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Three years would be more than
11:34:39 >>THOMAS SCOTT: For that process in clarity, I'm
11:34:42 hoping that the process you are recommending as you
11:34:44 come forth, so T.H.A.N. will understand that it's a
11:34:48 process that municipalities perhaps already have
11:34:52 what's available that comes, you know, without
11:34:54 going -- we cannot stop a person from going to circuit
11:35:00 That's the due processor due right to do that.
11:35:04 But instead having a process, you know, zoning board
11:35:08 or hearing master, whatever, then City Council,
11:35:13 whatever process you come back.
11:35:17 Council discuss it.
11:35:20 A matrix for.
11:35:24 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Our suggestion is do flow charts with
11:35:27 options and I understand what Mr. Dingfelder said
11:35:33 there, would no work that done that would create a
11:35:35 recommendation that is only Reg one recommendation.
11:35:37 It would be council's option.
11:35:39 Public policy decision about how it wishes to proceed
11:35:42 depending on the type of appeal, and from where it
11:35:46 >>GWEN MILLER: We have a motion and second on the
11:35:48 All in favor of that motion say Aye.
11:35:49 Opposed, Nay.
11:35:50 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Thank you thank you very much.
11:35:54 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: I had an opportunity to chat with
11:35:57 Cindy Miller with he we took that little break about
11:35:59 the sidewalk cafe report that I would like to ask for,
11:36:02 and we clarified that what I'm interested in is a
11:36:05 report back in 30 days from her department on somebody
11:36:10 who currently has a restaurant with ten feet in front
11:36:13 of it, who is on a commercial street, who wants to put
11:36:16 some cafe tables out there, and when they want to be
11:36:20 able to serve wine or beer, whatever their liquor
11:36:24 license suggests, that they not have to go back to
11:36:27 square one and do a complete $1900 application for
11:36:32 those additional tables.
11:36:35 I want a report on where we are now, and when changed.
11:36:39 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Motion by Councilwoman Saul-Sena,
11:36:41 seconded by councilman Dingfelder.
11:36:43 (Motion carried)
11:36:46 New business?
11:36:46 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: May I bring up the water report,
11:36:52 >> Yes.
11:36:53 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I'm saying that here again, there's
11:36:57 supposed to be rain in Tampa.
11:36:58 I hope it does.
11:36:59 We are using a lot more water than the city has the
11:37:04 capability of producing because of the shortness of
11:37:05 different things.
11:37:09 For instance, on watering days in the week of 1-11 to
11:37:12 1-17 we used 7 million more a day.
11:37:16 In the final week of that month we used 12 million
11:37:20 gallons a day more.
11:37:22 In the prior week before that, 14 million gallons of
11:37:25 water more.
11:37:26 If it keeps up, we will not have enough water to
11:37:30 supply in the month of April and May, unless nature
11:37:35 reverses itself and gives us a lot of water.
11:37:38 You will have water but have low water pressure.
11:37:41 So what I'm saying is please conserve.
11:37:44 And I wish the city had a bunch of signs, Super Bowl
11:37:46 or no Super Bowl, the facts are conserve water.
11:37:50 And they have all these electrical signs this they can
11:37:52 put up for detours.
11:37:54 Put them up, conserve water.
11:37:56 Let the public know that there is a dire need in this
11:37:59 city, and in this whole state really, that we are in a
11:38:03 drought situation, and this is critical.
11:38:05 It's not to say not to come to Tampa.
11:38:08 Come to Tampa all you want.
11:38:09 Spend all you want.
11:38:10 I love to see that.
11:38:11 But drink a little water only.
11:38:17 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Mr. Dingfelder.
11:38:19 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: I have seen e-mails in your office
11:38:22 about the Port Tampa fire station, and the fire chief
11:38:31 has been making great efforts to try to locate a new
11:38:34 location for the fire house down there.
11:38:35 They have identified a location on Interbay that he
11:38:39 was bringing to us to purchase, but then the Port
11:38:43 Tampa community down there has been really, really
11:38:45 unhappy with that location.
11:38:47 So it looks like the fire chief pulled back a little
11:38:50 bit, at least temporarily off of that location.
11:38:53 He and real estate staff have gone down there twice
11:38:55 now, and met with the neighborhood, doing a good job
11:38:58 of communicating on that issue.
11:39:01 In the meantime, the subject came up about the
11:39:05 property, the Rembrant property.
11:39:07 You all remember the Rembrant housing project that was
11:39:11 next to Robinson high school that eventually got torn
11:39:14 down, and now the school board owns that property.
11:39:17 The City of Tampa, two, three years ago, approached
11:39:20 the school board and said, you know, we would like to
11:39:22 trade you.
11:39:23 We have an acre of road that we actually own between
11:39:28 Robinson and the Rembrant property, called Rembrant
11:39:31 And we would like to trade you that street, which is
11:39:34 about an acre or so for the corner of the Rembrant
11:39:38 property, the southwest corner, so we can build a fire
11:39:41 house down there. Wouldn't it be great to have a fire
11:39:43 house near the high school and a future elementary
11:39:46 Anyway, the city tried to do that several times and
11:39:48 the school board put some effort into it but basically
11:39:52 rebuffed that offer.
11:39:55 Folks in Port Tampa said that's not good enough, we
11:39:58 need to go back to the school board one more time and
11:40:00 see if we can revisit that issue.
11:40:02 So long-winded request, I just want to give you all a
11:40:05 little background and update.
11:40:07 Port Tampa neighborhood association has asked City
11:40:10 Council to send a letter to the school board to reopen
11:40:12 that issue and to continue working with the city fire
11:40:16 department and real estate for the possible trade, to
11:40:21 put a fire house there on the Rembrant property.
11:40:23 So that would be my motion.
11:40:27 >> Second.
11:40:28 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Moved and seconded.
11:40:29 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: I'll work with Mr. Shelby on the
11:40:34 letter for Mr. Chairman to sign.
11:40:37 >>JOSEPH P. CAETANO: What's the reason the residents
11:40:39 don't want the fire house?
11:40:43 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: The proposed site on Interbay?
11:40:45 They had numerous reasons, but basically, Joseph, I
11:40:49 don't know if you have driven down there. It sort of
11:40:50 the entryway to Port Tampa, and there's some Victorian
11:40:56 homes on the left-hand side there, which is actually
11:40:58 some of the most beautiful homes in Port Tampa, and a
11:41:01 lot of them are historic, and there's a parcel of
11:41:06 property about an acre and a half squeezed between two
11:41:10 of those Victorian homes.
11:41:13 And that's where the chief was proposing it, which is
11:41:17 high and destroy and everything else, but they felt
11:41:19 that was an inappropriate place for a building that's
11:41:23 going to be as active and busy as a fire house.
11:41:28 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Let me raise one question, Mr.
11:41:30 Fletcher, on that last motion.
11:41:32 Are we within the charter to do that?
11:41:34 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Chip Fletcher, city attorney.
11:41:43 Was the request that a letter be sent from council to
11:41:46 the school board?
11:41:48 >> The school board.
11:41:49 Requesting they reopen.
11:41:51 >>JOHN DINGFELDER: Than they revisit, reopen this
11:41:56 discussion about Rembrant.
11:41:57 The city has been in negotiation on that issue.
11:42:00 Kind of cajoling the process.
11:42:05 >>> We talked about the government affairs to the
11:42:09 I think if a letter is drafted in a way that provides
11:42:11 to the school board for the council on this issue, I
11:42:16 think that's probably fine but it needs to be clear
11:42:18 that it's not speaking for the mayor, or the sense of
11:42:23 the council, and I would be happy to review it to make
11:42:27 sure it's clear.
11:42:31 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Councilwoman?
11:42:33 >> Nothing.
11:42:34 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
11:42:36 The cafe report that I asked for from Ms. Miller, if
11:42:40 it could come on the 19th.
11:42:41 Because that's our regular session just under staff
11:42:46 February 19th.
11:42:48 >>THOMAS SCOTT: We will include that in the original
11:42:50 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Thank you.
11:42:51 >>THOMAS SCOTT: All in favor signify by saying Aye.
11:42:53 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Aye.
11:42:57 And I wonder if we can get a report from the legal
11:42:59 department on the 19th on how we are coming with
11:43:02 the question whether HCC needs to abide by the rules
11:43:10 of the Barrio Latino.
11:43:11 >>> If you want me to take a minute I can do that
11:43:15 right now.
11:43:15 >> That would be great.
11:43:15 >> We are working with HCC.
11:43:17 And I know this has been reported somewhat in the
11:43:20 press, is my understanding.
11:43:21 We are working with HCC to request an opinion from the
11:43:23 attorney general's office.
11:43:25 They have a process by which they review things like
11:43:28 this where you have got a statute that is unclear,
11:43:32 between two public entities is unclear, and we will be
11:43:35 submitting letters in the future I suspect to get some
11:43:41 The statute is not clear.
11:43:43 At that point, once we get that determination, we will
11:43:46 move forward consistent with that determination.
11:43:48 >> Is there anything that we as City Council can do to
11:43:53 enforce the city's position?
11:43:54 >>> I don't think so at this time.
11:43:56 The issue is there's a statute that exempts both the
11:44:00 school board and the community colleges from certain
11:44:05 local approvals.
11:44:07 Building code requirements are clearly exempted.
11:44:10 General zoning, we believe they are required to meet.
11:44:13 What the status of the historic districts is, and
11:44:17 their requirements, is not as clear.
11:44:19 I believe that our position should be that they are
11:44:24 covered, and they are by that district, but the
11:44:29 statute is not a mod early of clarity, and in an
11:44:32 effort to resolve this issue in a productive way, we
11:44:35 thought the better way was to get an opinion from the
11:44:38 attorney general's office to clarify that issue.
11:44:40 So it's really an interpretation of the statute.
11:44:41 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Thank you.
11:44:43 Will you tell us when you hear back?
11:44:48 >>CHARLES FLETCHER: Yes, I will.
11:44:48 >>THOMAS SCOTT: One last thing.
11:44:52 I would like a letter of commendation to hose Garcia,
11:45:01 together Tampa Bay.
11:45:02 His organization has rehabbed 20 homes in the West
11:45:05 Tampa area from union to Pine Street, out to union
11:45:09 >>GWEN MILLER: That's a motion and second.
11:45:12 All in favor?
11:45:15 >>MARTIN SHELBY: There's one matter I would like to
11:45:17 bring to council's attention N.march you are going to
11:45:19 be hearing a third party appeal.
11:45:21 And council's rules may have to be tweaked to address
11:45:24 the kind of circumstances that case will provide.
11:45:29 So, council, I may next week be bringing you some
11:45:32 proposed changes, or modifications that may need to be
11:45:35 made to address the concerns, to meet the legal
11:45:38 requirement that will have to be addressed in that
11:45:41 So I just wanted to keep you apprised of that.
11:45:43 And I will get it to you if I am able to.
11:45:47 I will keep you posted either way.
11:45:48 But it may be brought in early next week to be put on
11:45:51 the agenda if it needs to be.
11:45:54 I will bring you up to date on that.
11:45:55 >>THOMAS SCOTT: One last thing to all of those that
11:45:58 attended the special discussion meeting, it's been
11:46:00 requested again that we only allow council member to
11:46:04 be at the dais here and not the general public because
11:46:08 this is our meeting date so it clear.
11:46:13 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Mr. Chairman, can the chairmen
11:46:15 council member then sit with the on the people?
11:46:17 Because the purpose is to have a conversation, a
11:46:22 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Yes.
11:46:23 I think the issue --
11:46:24 >>LINDA SAUL-SENA: Not to have the people up here but
11:46:27 for those who want to be at the same level and council
11:46:29 members be there but I will get with council and see
11:46:32 how to reconfigure their cameras.
11:46:35 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Motion to receive and file.
11:46:37 >> So moved.
11:46:38 >> Second.
11:46:38 (Motion carried).
11:46:39 >>THOMAS SCOTT: Any other business?
11:46:40 If not, we stand in recess till 5:01.
11:46:46 (The City Council meeting recessed.)
The preceding represents an unedited version of
realtime captioning which should neither be relied
upon for complete accuracy nor used as a verbatim
The original of this file was produced in all capital
letters and any variation thereto may be a result of
third party edits and software compatibility issues.
Any person who needs a verbatim transcript of the
proceedings may need to hire a court reporter.