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Tampa City Council

Monday, September 9, 2013

5:01 p.m. Budget Discussion


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05:05:37 >> CHAIRMAN MIRANDA: City Council is called to order.

05:05:44 Roll call.

05:05:45 >> DEPUTY CLERK: Do you wish to give the invocation and

05:05:53 pledge?

05:05:53 >> The invocation will be led by Mrs. Shirley Foxx-Knowles.

05:06:03 >> Please rise and remain standing for the pledge of

05:06:07 allegiance.

05:06:08 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Good evening.

05:06:11 Let us pray.

05:06:12 Father, thank you for this day in time and for all those

05:06:15 assembled for this budget hearing.

05:06:18 We thank you for your grace and your mercy and for the

05:06:22 numerous gifts you have provided.

05:06:24 Thank you for the opportunity to live, work, and play here

05:06:28 in the wonderful City of Tampa.

05:06:31 Thank you, Father, for our mayor and our council members who

05:06:34 are servants of the people.

05:06:37 Continue to give them the wisdom they need to make the best

05:06:40 decision for us all.

05:06:42 Continue to guide them and make them instruments of your

05:06:46 will.

05:06:48 Increase in them the gift of faith, hope, charity, and

05:06:52 compassion in the decisions they will make today and the

05:06:56 gift of understanding to those coming before this council.

05:07:00 Father, continue to bless the City of Tampa, our state and

05:07:04 this great country.

05:07:06 Continue to bless our citizens and keep us all in your care.

05:07:11 These blessings we ask and thanks we give in your name.

05:07:16 Let us all say amen.

05:07:19 [ Pledge of Allegiance ]

05:07:30 >> Roll call.

05:07:38 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Here.

05:07:42 >>FRANK REDDICK: Here.

05:07:44 >>MARY MULHERN: Here.

05:07:45 >>HARRY COHEN: Here.

05:07:46 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Here.

05:07:47 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Here.

05:07:49 Need a motion from council members to open the hearing for

05:07:52 operation budget.

05:07:54 A motion by Mr. Suarez.

05:07:55 Second by Mr. Cohen in opening this hearing.

05:07:57 All in favor of the motion please indicate by I saying aye.

05:08:01 Opposed nay.

05:08:01 The ayes have it unanimously.

05:08:02 Mr. Cohen.

05:08:03 >>HARRY COHEN: Thank you, Mr. Chair.

05:08:05 This is the first public hearing for the City of Tampa

05:08:08 fiscal 2014 budget.

05:08:10 The proposed millage rate is 5.7326 mills which is 4.39%

05:08:17 more than the rollback millage rate of 5.4914 mills.

05:08:22 Property tax funds are used to support the general fund

05:08:26 operating budget of the city.

05:08:28 This fund includes such departments as fire, rescue and

05:08:31 police, human resources, parks and recreation, and public

05:08:34 works.

05:08:36 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much, Mr. Cohen.

05:08:37 Presentation for the budget.

05:08:39 Ms. Little.

05:08:44 >>SONYA LITTLE: Good afternoon, council members.

05:08:46 Thank you for the opportunity to come before you for the

05:08:49 first of two of our public hearings related to the city's

05:08:55 2014 fiscal year budget.

05:08:59 If you will recall, we had been traveling down this road for

05:09:05 quite some time as it relates to preparation and completion

05:09:07 of the 2014 budget.

05:09:10 On June 6th we had the first workshop with the second

05:09:13 workshop occurring on June 27th.

05:09:16 You will also recall that Mayor Buckhorn presented a

05:09:20 balanced budget to City Council at a meeting held on July

05:09:24 25th.

05:09:26 This process has been a long process, but we have had many,

05:09:31 men dedicated people who are working with us to deliver a

05:09:35 balanced budget to City Council.

05:09:38 If I may, I would really like to thank our budget department

05:09:43 where staff is serving as our accounting budget officer, Mr.

05:09:50 Rogero, and our two budget managers who have put in a great

05:09:55 deal of time and led a whole team of budget staff in

05:09:59 preparation of the budget, Ms. Peggy Curtain and Mr. Michael

05:10:05 Perry, and their entire team.

05:10:07 I would also like to especially thank our citizens advisory

05:10:12 board who has worked very closely with our budget staff as

05:10:17 well as each of our departments during this preparation for

05:10:21 the budget.

05:10:22 Mr. Greenlee served as chair.

05:10:26 Ms. Kimberly Overman.

05:10:28 Mark Anderson.

05:10:29 Tony Desisto.

05:10:32 Gina Grimes.

05:10:34 Willie Stokes.

05:10:35 All of them put in a great deal of effort and time and

05:10:39 represented each of you and our community to the best of

05:10:41 their ability, and we are very appreciative of all of their

05:10:46 input.

05:10:48 Additional city staff that supported us, a great deal during

05:10:52 this process, was Ms. Lorena Hardowitz, as well as Sal

05:11:01 Territo, assistant city attorney.

05:11:03 Thanks to everyone.

05:11:05 We would not have been able to deliver a balanced budget

05:11:08 without the efforts of all of these parties.

05:11:12 And national you, because you are a very vital part of the

05:11:17 process as well.

05:11:18 So thank you for being accommodating to us.

05:11:21 Whenever we call up to request one-on-one meetings and also

05:11:25 accommodating us for our public meetings.

05:11:30 If I can ask that the presentation be brought up on the

05:11:33 screen, please.

05:11:40 The information that we will provide for this public hearing

05:11:42 is all information that huff seen before.

05:11:44 We deliver the actual budget, the mayor did, on July

05:11:49 25th, and the slides you will see in this public hearing

05:11:52 are just a recap of all the great detail that's included in

05:11:54 the budget book.

05:11:58 Where we started.

05:12:01 We started out for fiscal year 2014 with a 19.2 million

05:12:06 budget shortfall.

05:12:11 This is a large number, but certainly smaller than what we

05:12:13 experienced in '13 and fiscal year 13 we were at

05:12:17 $27.8 million where we started with a budget shortfall.

05:12:21 But to this year, the contributing -- the major contributing

05:12:26 factors -- obviously there are many -- but the major

05:12:29 contributing factors to the 19.2 million shortfall are,

05:12:32 number one, safety intersection program revenue.

05:12:37 Due to changes in behavior with our red lights program, the

05:12:41 revenues will be $2 million less than in the prior year.

05:12:46 Projected to be $2 million less.

05:12:48 We also -- and you will recall, we had a great deal of

05:12:51 conversation regarding our ERP system, our new computer

05:12:55 system, that will improve our efficiency city-wide.

05:13:00 That contributed to a revenue shortfall in 2014 of

05:13:04 $6.5 million.

05:13:08 Communications services taxes, where we are experiencing a

05:13:13 decline in that revenue, primarily attributable to changes

05:13:17 in technology.

05:13:18 So the taxes that the city is receiving is actually

05:13:23 statewide are going down as it relates to communications

05:13:26 services taxes.

05:13:28 We have also talked about decreases in our convention center

05:13:32 revenues where because of sequestration, the convention

05:13:36 center lost several large conventions.

05:13:39 So we are projecting a decline in revenues of $3.4 million.

05:13:47 Related to our expenditures, we have budgeted for increased

05:13:54 personnel costs of $3.7 million.

05:13:57 That's primarily consists of merit and step increases as

05:14:02 well as pension costs.

05:14:05 We also are budgeting for increase in our stormwater

05:14:08 operations of $1.1 million.

05:14:10 And that's the subsidy coming from our general fund because

05:14:16 assessments that we collect annually are not sufficient to

05:14:20 cover all of our stormwater operations and maintenance for

05:14:24 the entire program.

05:14:29 Our solutions.

05:14:35 How did we balance the budget?

05:14:36 We started out with a $19.2 million shortfall.

05:14:40 We were excited to hear that property tax revenues increased

05:14:45 for the first time since 2008.

05:14:50 In fiscal year 2010 and 11 we had a decline of 12% for both

05:14:57 years, and fiscal year 12 there was a 4% decline, and in 13

05:15:02 we had a 1% decline.

05:15:04 So to come in for fiscal year 14 at over 6% is a huge COUP

05:15:11 for us and we are very excited about that.

05:15:13 So we expect to generate an additional $7.3 million as it

05:15:18 relates to an increase in property tax revenue.

05:15:26 Our departments during the budget process were asked to come

05:15:28 up with operating budget reduction scenarios, ranging

05:15:33 anywhere between 1 and 5%.

05:15:36 Again, as the administration took a look at these proposals,

05:15:41 which keeping in mind no layoffs, and no decrease in

05:15:45 services, we were still able to generate $2.7 million in

05:15:50 savings as a result of departmental reductions.

05:15:56 We also made an early payment to our general employee

05:16:02 pension fund, and as a result of that accelerated payment or

05:16:05 early payment, we are not paying anything more, but as a

05:16:08 result of paying it early, we are looking to generator

05:16:12 realize $5, 000,000 in savings.

05:16:16 So where does that get us?

05:16:21 After taking into account part of these remedies, that gets

05:16:26 us to a revised shortfall of $11.7 million.

05:16:32 Leaving to be taken from our reserve $7.5 million.

05:16:36 Having a balanced budget.

05:16:39 Because we anticipate the need to use some of our reserve

05:16:45 funds again, I wanted to give you a snapshot of where we

05:16:50 were last year.

05:16:50 At the beginning of fiscal year 2013, our adopted budget

05:16:54 anticipated use of fund balance of $8.3 million, now that we

05:16:59 are near the end of our fiscal year projecting out to

05:17:03 September 30th, we believe that instead of $8.3 million,

05:17:07 instead we'll only have to use $5.5 million for the '13

05:17:13 fiscal year, and again the proposal for 14 is $7.5 million.

05:17:19 Even though we are using our reserves again, that will leave

05:17:22 us in '14 all factors considered remaining constant at $95

05:17:31 million in the bank in our reserves, which is 25% of general

05:17:36 fund expenditures, still well above our 20% policy.

05:17:47 In total, what we have is an $830.9 million budget, largely

05:17:57 comprised of our general fund which comprises 43% or $354

05:18:02 million of the total budget, with enterprise funds coming in

05:18:08 closely behind at 38% of the total budget or $314.5 million.

05:18:16 Our enterprise fund comprised of the water, waste water,

05:18:20 solid waste.

05:18:24 I will go back to that slide.

05:18:26 If you take a large loop of the pie, the general fund pie,

05:18:31 we break that down to this slide to talk about just our

05:18:36 general fund expenditures because that's the heart of the

05:18:39 matter.

05:18:39 The issue that we are trying to address with balancing our

05:18:42 budget.

05:18:43 Our general fund budget is $354.4 million with a large

05:18:50 majority of it, 63% being attributable to our public safety.

05:18:57 We also have 14% attributable to our central government,

05:19:01 which is comprised of admission, the clerk's office,

05:19:07 counsel, human resources, just our central government, or

05:19:10 the core of the way that we do business here in the city.

05:19:15 It is also comprised of 43.5 million or 12% for parks and

05:19:19 rec, and roughly $6% or $20.9 million for our public works

05:19:28 department.

05:19:35 And then a few slides ago I mentioned we were excited that

05:19:38 the property tax revenue did D go up but clearly want to

05:19:42 point out that we are maintaining a millage rate of 5.7326

05:19:47 mills for the seventh consecutive year.

05:19:51 And from what I understand the city has not increased its

05:19:54 millage rate for probably about 20 years now.

05:19:59 So we are proud of that fact.

05:20:01 But as we move forward in this process, we'll respectfully

05:20:05 request that you consider adopting the proposed budget that

05:20:08 you also, in today's public hearing, and you will get to

05:20:11 that later on, have the first reading of the ordinance as it

05:20:17 relates to the millage rate, adoption of the millage rate,

05:20:21 with the second reading for the ordinance for the millage

05:20:25 rate occurring in the second public hearing.

05:20:33 Investing in strong neighborhoods, very critical to what we

05:20:36 do, how we live, work and play.

05:20:39 For the 14 budget year, we are budgeting -- starting in '14

05:20:48 for the CIP, we are budgeting $15.5 million, and that

05:20:52 includes complete streets, parks facilities, Perry Harvey

05:20:57 park, sidewalk construction, street resurfacing,

05:21:01 streetlights, transportation signage and so forth.

05:21:06 When we delivered the budget on July 25th we also

05:21:13 provided you with district maps that identified some of the

05:21:17 major projects occurring that would also fall under the

05:21:19 category of investing in strong neighborhoods.

05:21:30 For the five-year CIP, you obviously have a great detail

05:21:40 deal of detail.

05:21:41 We would like to highlight a couple of the major categories

05:21:44 of funding that will be available that's budgeted for the

05:21:48 five-year plan, will have the parks and rec at just over $17

05:21:56 million.

05:21:57 The two major parks, Julian B. Lane and Perry Harvey, but we

05:22:03 also have public works and stormwater projects, numerous

05:22:07 transportation projects, which will also include and enhance

05:22:12 the Bayshore sidewalk construction, streetlights and bridge

05:22:15 repair throughout the city.

05:22:20 On the enterprise side, we'll have significant improvements

05:22:23 to our water and wastewater departments, to those systems.

05:22:28 Under wastewater they will rehab the collection system,

05:22:33 rehab for the pumping system, and facility improvements for

05:22:38 Howard Curran. We have plant rehab upgrade, and

05:22:49 improvements to pressure, to water pressure.

05:22:55 As I mentioned before, we are currently in the first of two

05:23:05 public hearings, the second of which will be held on

05:23:07 September 25th.

05:23:08 So with that, I would welcome any questions that you may

05:23:12 have.

05:23:12 >> Thank you very much, Ms. Little.

05:23:16 Yes, sir, Mr. Reddick.

05:23:18 >>FRANK REDDICK: Thank you, Mr. Chair.

05:23:21 I'm pleased to know that no employees will be laid off, and

05:23:27 I'm pleased to hear that they will also receive a 2% raise.

05:23:35 But I'm disappointed in the budget for this reason.

05:23:39 For the last two and a half years, we have been on this come

05:23:44 up and debated the issue about the homeless population, the

05:23:47 homeless situation.

05:23:49 We recently had TPD stand before us and say they had 134

05:23:56 officers that they were training to help address the social

05:23:59 services address the homeless population.

05:24:01 But when I look at this budget, and correct me if I am

05:24:06 wrong -- I don't see one dime, not one nickel going toward

05:24:11 the homeless population, homeless services, homeless issue

05:24:16 that we have been addressing and tackling for the last two

05:24:19 and a half years.

05:24:20 So I just want to know from the management standpoint, are

05:24:27 administration serious about this issue? Because they have

05:24:30 a $400 million budget and not have one dollar allocated to

05:24:39 the homeless population in Tampa, it's very disappointing.

05:24:42 And I don't know if you are prepared to answer that question

05:24:45 now, but I would like some response from administration.

05:24:52 How come you are overlooking the serious issue we have in

05:24:55 this community when we have debated it, and discussions for

05:24:59 two and a half years by this council, by the administration,

05:25:03 and no one saw fit to put a dollar in the budget to address

05:25:08 it?

05:25:09 But we are training 134 officers to help out with the

05:25:13 homeless issue in this community.

05:25:15 If someone will give me a response to that, I bow greatly

05:25:19 appreciate it because I think that's a big issue.

05:25:21 I don't know if you want to address it today or get back

05:25:24 with me, get back with this council.

05:25:26 And I have another question.

05:25:27 >>SONYA LITTLE: If I could just do the best I can,

05:25:31 Councilman, with just a little bit of information for you.

05:25:33 Under our nondepartmental, the city does partner with a few

05:25:37 nonprofit organizations who provide direct assistance to the

05:25:41 homeless.

05:25:45 So there are some funds in the budget that go towards those

05:25:48 nonprofits and supporting services for the homeless.

05:25:53 Now, I am also aware, but I don't have the great details,

05:25:57 but I could get back to you on that, that the city has

05:26:00 several representatives that we do serve on tax forces that

05:26:05 are countywide that are working to come up with solutions,

05:26:11 not just for the immediate area, but our entire surrounding

05:26:16 area.

05:26:16 And I would be happy to get back to you with additional

05:26:19 information.

05:26:19 >>FRANK REDDICK: And what you are speaking of, you have

05:26:24 homeless coalition, where you have $65,000 allocated but

05:26:30 that's the same as the budget for the previous year.

05:26:32 So nothing went up.

05:26:35 And speaking of the nondepartment budget, let me say this.

05:26:41 I see where three agencies received cuts, and do you have a

05:26:50 justification for why those three departments received cuts?

05:26:55 >> That there was available funding that would be available

05:26:58 for nondepartmental and nonprofit.

05:27:01 >>FRANK REDDICK: Right.

05:27:03 And you have three that received cuts.

05:27:08 You have three, four that received increases.

05:27:12 So I'm wondering how those three were targeted when you gave

05:27:18 an increase to the Sports Authority, gave an increase to the

05:27:23 League of Cities, you gave an increase to the Tampa Bay

05:27:27 partnership, and you gave an increase to the conference of

05:27:31 mayors membership.

05:27:32 So why those three, those four, received increases when

05:27:41 there are three agencies that have been cut, if there's

05:27:45 justification for that?

05:27:46 >>SONYA LITTLE: I can tell you in the case of the Tampa

05:27:48 Sports Authority we are under contractual obligation, that

05:27:51 we really have no control over.

05:27:55 We have representations that sit on the board there, and,

05:28:01 the however, we have contractual obligations to cover

05:28:04 operating expenses where we share those with the county.

05:28:10 So I can tell you from that perspective, we have very

05:28:16 limited control.

05:28:16 >>FRANK REDDICK: All right.

05:28:19 My last question, I noticed when I was reading the budget,

05:28:24 it seems like $6 million allocated for downtown or

05:28:29 Channelside.

05:28:30 And when you look at the neighborhoods in this city, there's

05:28:36 a disparity there.

05:28:38 Why is $6 million allocated to one community.

05:28:41 Take, for example, when I broke it down, and if I can

05:28:45 remember this correctly, I was looking at this, had

05:28:48 Westshore, somebody received 200,000-some, and downtown and

05:28:56 Channelside received $6 million.

05:28:59 I'm wondering why they received such a huge amount versus

05:29:02 other people deserving of those funds as well?

05:29:06 Now, unless I read that wrong, that's what my paper says.

05:29:09 >>SONYA LITTLE: We are checking.

05:29:11 We are not certain what you are referring to but we are

05:29:13 checking to see what you might be referring to, Councilman.

05:29:17 >>FRANK REDDICK: Okay.

05:29:18 And how much funds do we have in parks and recreation and

05:29:29 pools?

05:29:35 The budget in '13-14 for pools.

05:29:38 >>SONYA LITTLE: Councilman, in 13 for the five-year budget,

05:30:46 we budgeted 3.5 for 13, $3.5 million in '13, and so far, we

05:30:59 completed construction on Williams at $1.5 million, and I

05:31:03 believe we have started construction on Jenkins, so 2.5

05:31:08 million the aquatic pool program.

05:31:15 >>FRANK REDDICK: So we have a balance of maybe 2.5 million

05:31:20 is left?

05:31:21 Is that --

05:31:26 >>SONYA LITTLE: The Williams and Jenkins pool expended the

05:31:40 entire budget at $1.5 million and $2.5 million respectively.

05:31:45 >>FRANK REDDICK: So as of now we have no dollars allocated

05:31:52 for the pools?

05:31:55 >>SONYA LITTLE: As of now, we do not.

05:31:58 >>FRANK REDDICK: And that's for 13 and 14?

05:32:01 >>SONYA LITTLE: For 14.

05:32:02 >>FRANK REDDICK: And Mr. Chair, so the next time funds will

05:32:08 be available for pools, it will be in the next five-year

05:32:11 plan?

05:32:13 >>SONYA LITTLE: In '15 unless there is a midyear budget

05:32:17 amendment.

05:32:17 But as it stands now, the two pools that have either been

05:32:23 completed or are budgeted for completion is Williams and

05:32:27 Jenkins.

05:32:27 >> So the five-year, unless there's an amendment?

05:32:36 >>SONYA LITTLE: Yes.

05:32:37 >>FRANK REDDICK: Thank you.

05:32:39 >> Before I go further, I did make a mistake.

05:32:43 Yolie Capin sent me a memo saying due to her husband's

05:32:47 illness she will not be in the budget process today's

05:32:50 meeting.

05:32:50 I need a motion to receive and file that.

05:32:52 I have a motion by Mr. Suarez.

05:32:54 Seconded by Mrs. Montelione.

05:32:57 The ayes have it unanimously.

05:32:59 Ms. Mulhern?

05:33:01 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

05:33:03 First, I would like to ask Councilman Reddick the three

05:33:09 agencies that had a decrease in funding.

05:33:12 I think one of them was the Ybor City museum.

05:33:16 Would you tell me the other two, just because I don't have

05:33:19 it handy.

05:33:23 I just wanted to bring up a question.

05:33:24 And I don't know if this could change between now and our

05:33:28 second reading.

05:33:30 Or second hearing on the budget.

05:33:32 But this is something that I have been questioning through

05:33:36 many different pieces, and the budget directors every year,

05:33:42 when we come to these nondepartmental expenses, there's

05:33:45 really no real process for people to apply, and for there to

05:33:52 be any kind of vetting, and it seems that mostly by -- just

05:33:59 by tradition, the same entity gets the same amount of money

05:34:05 or maybe there's a little bit of change from year to year.

05:34:08 And I would just like to echo Councilman Reddick's question

05:34:13 about why three of the agencies were singled out for cuts

05:34:16 when overall we had, you know, an increase in property tax

05:34:21 revenue this year.

05:34:22 So it seems like there ought to be a way to at least

05:34:26 continue giving them the same subsidy.

05:34:31 Tampa Bay, Ybor City museum, and I'm not sure what the

05:34:34 others were.

05:34:35 >> I think one of them was television.

05:34:38 >> And the speak up Tampa Bay, I think?

05:34:42 The cable consortium, and Hillsborough County small

05:34:46 business?

05:34:46 No, no, I'm reading the wrong -- oh, the Mendez drug

05:34:50 prevention program.

05:34:51 Yes, so there are not some of our big awards either.

05:34:57 So they are some of the smaller institutions that are not

05:35:00 for profit.

05:35:01 So I would really like to see us have more of a process that

05:35:05 where people -- there's some kind of accountability both on

05:35:09 our end and on the end of the not for profits who are

05:35:13 getting the funding to show how they are using it, what the

05:35:16 money is going towards, how much of an effort they are

05:35:19 putting in to raising their own dollars toward those not for

05:35:24 profit enterprises.

05:35:25 And it's just something, you know, that I have been talking

05:35:28 about since I have been on council and haven't seen much

05:35:33 move toward them, but now I think we are hearing from some

05:35:36 of the people who are losing funding that they count on at

05:35:41 their institution.

05:35:41 I hope maybe in the next year we can look at that having a

05:35:45 better process and maybe with some new people in the

05:35:49 administration, new chief of staff, we can look at that.

05:35:52 I remember talking to Santiago Corrada about this before he

05:35:56 was even chief of staff and he was just overseeing a lot of

05:36:00 not for profits and wondering why it happened that way, and

05:36:04 didn't really get an answer.

05:36:05 And a couple of questions.

05:36:07 One is, you might have said this and I just didn't hear it.

05:36:10 But why did our electricity costs go up so much?

05:36:15 >>SONYA LITTLE: TECO had an 8% increase.

05:36:17 >>MARY MULHERN: Well, that's interesting to know.

05:36:20 And was that part of our franchise agreement?

05:36:23 Did we know that was coming?

05:36:25 >>SONYA LITTLE: They are required by statute, or the Public

05:36:29 Service Commission, to provide sufficient notice.

05:36:31 So they did provide sufficient notice to the city and all

05:36:35 residents as well.

05:36:37 It's not just the city.

05:36:39 >>MARY MULHERN: I would like to suggest -- and I have been

05:36:42 talking to staff and to TECO about this -- but really in the

05:36:46 sunshine state we should be looking at solar power, and we

05:36:49 could be -- if we were installing solar on some of our

05:36:54 parking garages, over some of our parking lots, you know, on

05:37:00 the roof of some of our buildings, we could be reducing our

05:37:03 energy costs and paying back into the grid.

05:37:06 And I think that really it's time for us to start looking at

05:37:10 that in the next year.

05:37:12 I hope we'll start doing.

05:37:13 That but I am talking to staff and TECO about how we can go

05:37:16 about that.

05:37:17 And then another question.

05:37:21 Oh, one other question.

05:37:22 This is sort of -- maybe not directly to do with

05:37:25 homelessness but to do with the kinds of services for

05:37:28 housing that we provide.

05:37:31 And I'm wondering, all of those department reductions, I'm

05:37:37 wondering if one of them is the housing director position

05:37:43 that has not been filled.

05:37:46 We had a housing director, and it's been quite awhile since

05:37:52 she retired V.we filled that position?

05:37:54 >>SONYA LITTLE: That was not one of the positions that has

05:37:58 been eliminated.

05:37:59 And from way understand, it's not final.

05:38:01 It's very close to being final.

05:38:08 >> Good evening.

05:38:10 Bob McDonaugh, economic development.

05:38:12 Yes, we have offered the job to a housing director from

05:38:16 rocky mountain, North Carolina and she has accepted and she

05:38:18 will begin work the first week of November.

05:38:22 There's actually been actively reaching out to her staff, or

05:38:26 staff-to-be, to get act limb rated with what we do here and

05:38:29 how the we do it.

05:38:30 >>MARY MULHERN: That's really great to hear because I know

05:38:32 I heard a lot of people, some of the programs of that we

05:38:35 used to have where there was some outreach to help elderly.

05:38:43 To just do repairs on their homes.

05:38:45 There was a of diversion program.

05:38:48 And I think because we haven't had the staff to help them

05:38:50 that hasn't been happening.

05:38:51 >> I think once you meet her you will be very excited

05:38:54 because one of the criteria we were looking at was somebody

05:38:56 who has redevelopment experience, and she is very strong in

05:39:00 that area.

05:39:01 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I'm really tickled that somebody from

05:39:03 North Carolina is moving to Tampa.

05:39:07 I heard everybody was afraid we were going to move to North

05:39:09 Carolina.

05:39:10 Evidently it's not that rosy up there.

05:39:15 [ Laughter ] I just want to make sure I heard right.

05:39:19 I want to remind somebody of that.

05:39:23 Not you, Ms. Little.

05:39:24 >>SONYA LITTLE: Thank you.

05:39:27 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Okay, Mr. Cohen.

05:39:28 >>HARRY COHEN: Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.

05:39:30 I just want to follow up on questions Councilman Reddick

05:39:34 asked and one that Councilwoman Mulhern asked.

05:39:37 As regards to pools, I'm a little bit confused about exactly

05:39:41 how much money is left in this five-year planning cycle for

05:39:48 aquatics.

05:39:50 I know that we spent some on Williams and Jenkins.

05:39:53 I also understand of that we are not spending any new moneys

05:39:56 this year.

05:39:57 How much money will actually be available, though, in fiscal

05:40:04 year 2014 and 15 for allocation to new or additional pool

05:40:09 projects?

05:40:10 >>SONYA LITTLE: The only thing that's available in '14 as a

05:40:15 new project for pools is the Jenkins project that I

05:40:18 mentioned, that $2.5 million.

05:40:20 We have not, as it stands right now, every year annually, we

05:40:26 revisit the CIP.

05:40:27 So when we start preparing for 2015, then we'll consider at

05:40:31 that point if additional funding is available.

05:40:34 >>HARRY COHEN: And how do you determine that?

05:40:39 >>SONYA LITTLE: With recommendations from our parks and rec

05:40:42 department.

05:40:43 >>HARRY COHEN: And where would the money you would get?

05:40:46 If they recommended to you that they wished to renovate a

05:40:48 pool or two, where would the funding come from to pay for

05:40:52 that?

05:40:53 >>SONYA LITTLE: From any of -- historically we use CIP

05:40:58 funding.

05:40:59 As it stands right now for this year and next year there's

05:41:01 no additional CIP funding.

05:41:04 But as we move into preparations for 2015 and beyond, we

05:41:11 will identify any funding available through our CIP program

05:41:16 and also any other eligible revenue streams such as our new

05:41:30 tax or any additional -- primarily --

05:41:33 >>HARRY COHEN: I know that you can't be a prognosticator,

05:41:36 but given that your team is upward trending in the property

05:41:40 tax revenue, what is your sense of when there is going to be

05:41:47 money available to start to use some of these things that

05:41:50 people have been waiting for for so long?

05:41:54 >>SONYA LITTLE: We are very hopeful. With this '14-fiscal

05:41:58 year we are starting to see what we call the upward trend or

05:42:03 upward part of the hook.

05:42:08 I think that if you ask any nationally recognized

05:42:12 economists, everybody treads very carefully as far as their

05:42:18 economic outlook out very far.

05:42:20 What we continue to hear is slow to moderate.

05:42:24 It's no secret that there is quite a bit of construction

05:42:26 going on in the City of Tampa.

05:42:29 So that being said, we are projecting very conservatively,

05:42:34 but we still believe that we are going to, in '15,

05:42:38 experience another increase in our property tax revenues.

05:42:42 But you have to keep in mind that as far as our general fund

05:42:46 is concerned, that even with the increase in the property

05:42:49 taxes that we realized this year, property taxes alone still

05:42:53 don't even cover public safety by itself.

05:42:58 So, you know, we have to weigh that, the services we

05:43:02 provide, when it comes to property taxes, and the likelihood

05:43:07 that there will be anything like upward property tax

05:43:12 anywhere in the future to be available for projects.

05:43:14 >>HARRY COHEN: Just a comment.

05:43:16 I share some of Councilman Reddick's disappointment over

05:43:20 some of the -- some of our collective inability to put more

05:43:25 money into parks and rec.

05:43:26 And also into some of the infrastructure programs that I

05:43:32 think are very critical, particularly the canal dredging

05:43:35 program.

05:43:35 But I also want to say that I'm very heartened in this

05:43:42 budget that we are continuing to spend money on pipe

05:43:44 replacement and upgrading our stormwater system, and our

05:43:49 drinking potable water system.

05:43:52 I know there's a lot of money being spent where people can't

05:43:55 see it, replacing our very old pipes, and that's obviously

05:43:59 something that we have to keep on top of.

05:44:02 And we see from time to time what happens when we don't.

05:44:05 I want to follow up on Councilwoman Mulhern's question about

05:44:10 TECO.

05:44:12 I noticed that TECO actually withdrew their latest

05:44:16 residential rate hike request after coming up, after making

05:44:22 some sort of a deal on that.

05:44:26 I didn't see anything related to commercial utilities

05:44:31 included in that.

05:44:32 It appeared to me that it only covered the residential

05:44:36 increase.

05:44:37 Is there no part of that that affects the city in a positive

05:44:43 way, that would allow us to pay maybe a little bit less than

05:44:46 what you are forecasting?

05:44:48 >>SONYA LITTLE: It could be, and we'll adjust our forecast,

05:44:50 but we have not received the official notification from

05:44:53 TECO.

05:44:54 Until such time as we receive the official notification and

05:44:57 we are able to adjust our forecast at that point -- and just

05:45:01 so you will know, when we prepare to forecast as it relates

05:45:05 to our electric costs right now, our budget staff actually

05:45:09 met with TECO analysts to come up with our figure.

05:45:11 So as such time as we do receive the official notification,

05:45:16 we'll meet with the representative again and adjust

05:45:19 accordingly.

05:45:22 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Suarez, then Ms. Montelione.

05:45:25 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Thank you, chair.

05:45:27 You know what questions I usually ask.

05:45:28 But before I do that, I want to ask you a quick question

05:45:32 with the nondepartmental detail within the budget.

05:45:37 Part of it is, when it comes to nondepartmental is our TIF

05:45:44 financing transfer for those projects that we are going to

05:45:47 use CRA dollars to enhance certain areas of the city that

05:45:53 are used in those particular areas.

05:45:55 Is that correct?

05:45:56 >>SONYA LITTLE: That's correct.

05:45:58 >>MIKE SUAREZ: So if we take that off the table, and I take

05:46:01 what my colleagues have said to heart in terms of the

05:46:03 process that it takes to actually put some of the other

05:46:07 dollars that we have in there.

05:46:11 Just from my untrained eye when I look at it, most of it is

05:46:14 on those entities that are physical assets that we own, you

05:46:20 know, like the Tampa Convention Center, Florida Aquarium,

05:46:24 you know, some other aspects that we put money into, whether

05:46:29 through bonding or other aspects, that we have a deep

05:46:33 financial risk already involved.

05:46:36 And part of the reason why we have a certain number that we

05:46:39 give to them is primarily because we are projecting our --

05:46:43 protecting our own assets that we put money into, to

05:46:48 continue to make sure we do that.

05:46:51 What so what I am reading --

05:46:53 >>SONYA LITTLE: You are exactly right.

05:46:54 >>MIKE SUAREZ: But I think part of what my colleagues said

05:46:59 is if we have a process and a written-out idea of what we

05:47:02 use these nondepartmental dollars for, I think it would be

05:47:06 helpful for us, especially during this time of the year.

05:47:08 >>SONYA LITTLE: Yes, sir.

05:47:10 >>MIKE SUAREZ: A question I have.

05:47:12 And I always ask you about debt.

05:47:13 I look at the debt numbers.

05:47:15 We have about $700 million in debt or maybe a little more

05:47:19 than that?

05:47:21 Dennis is right there.

05:47:22 He should know.

05:47:25 [ Laughter ] your brain turned off?

05:47:28 Is that what you're saying?

05:47:43 >>SONYA LITTLE: About 800 million.

05:47:46 >> My rough math says between 700 and 800 million.

05:47:50 When we talk about debt all the time, which is some

05:47:53 short-term debt obligations, long-term debt obligations,

05:47:58 they are split up between revenue funds, specific projects.

05:48:01 One of the things that I think if you don't mind explaining,

05:48:04 we don't have any general obligation bonds available.

05:48:07 Tell me the difference between an enterprise fund dollar

05:48:10 commitment and a Geo bond commitment.

05:48:17 What's the difference of the two?

05:48:18 >> Sure.

05:48:20 What Councilman Suarez is referring to relates to any debt

05:48:23 at issue that is secured by primary pledge of our property

05:48:27 tax revenues.

05:48:29 The city does not have any outstanding debt where we take

05:48:32 property tax revenues and pay the debt service.

05:48:36 An those bonds or loans.

05:48:39 All of our property taxes are primarily used for general

05:48:42 governmental expenses that we talked about.

05:48:45 Public safety.

05:48:48 >>MIKE SUAREZ: And by not having large -- for any general

05:48:52 obligation bond commitment, it gives us a freer reign in

05:48:59 terms of what we are able to do.

05:49:00 So the reason why we create enterprise funds, if I am wrong,

05:49:04 is to make sure those revenue generating aspects of what we

05:49:08 do are put back into those things that we need to fix.

05:49:13 So stormwater, enterprise funds, you know, also solid waste,

05:49:20 water, so that we are constantly using those dollars to put

05:49:25 back into the system so that we can make sure that that

05:49:29 system gets better, doesn't get -- even though it's getting

05:49:34 aged, you know, we are able to replace things.

05:49:36 Sometimes we don't have all the money and sometimes we

05:49:38 supplement it with other aspects.

05:49:40 But at least it's not coming out of the general revenue of

05:49:43 the property tax part of it as opposed to a revenue

05:49:47 generating part of it.

05:49:48 >>SONYA LITTLE: Absolutely.

05:49:50 And if I could, just in one clarification as it relates to

05:49:53 our enterprise funds, we also technically consider our

05:50:00 parking system, just as a remainder, an enterprise fund, and

05:50:05 that's a general fund that does subsidize parking system.

05:50:08 However, water, wastewater, solid waste enterprise funds are

05:50:13 totally self-supporting and 100% of their operations, as

05:50:17 well as 100% of their outstanding debt.

05:50:22 >>MIKE SUAREZ: And one of the things you put in your

05:50:26 presentation before is our obligation for the parking is

05:50:31 lessened significantly, and hopefully some day, some day

05:50:34 soon, we'll have those parking resources paid off so that we

05:50:37 can start actually making money off of parking instead of it

05:50:40 being a lost leader for us. In terms of out debt structure,

05:50:48 where are we at in relation to other cities our size?

05:50:51 Are we horribly behind in terms of our debt?

05:50:55 Are we in the middle?

05:50:56 Are we one of the golden children out there that are doing

05:50:59 real well with our debt?

05:51:00 Where are we at?

05:51:01 And you can tell us the truth.

05:51:03 It's okay.

05:51:03 >>SONYA LITTLE: And I like the term you used golden child

05:51:07 because I'm really excited about.

05:51:09 This you did mention our general obligation, the fact that

05:51:12 we don't have any outstanding debt.

05:51:14 Even though we don't have any outstanding debt, we are still

05:51:17 rated by the rating agencies, Moody's and Fitch ratings,

05:51:21 they take a look, even though we don't have any general

05:51:24 obligation debt, they look at our city's overall health and

05:51:29 well-being, financial condition.

05:51:31 We are currently rated by Moody's as a double-A1 which is

05:51:37 one notch behind triple A, the highest rating that any

05:51:42 municipal entity can get in the country.

05:51:44 So we are very solid and very strong.

05:51:46 On each of our enterprise funds we are very solid and rated

05:51:50 as well.

05:51:50 >>MIKE SUAREZ: And I think earlier this last fiscal year we

05:51:54 readjusted debt in order to make sure that are we stay on

05:51:57 track, or I should say beginning of last year, we stay on

05:52:01 track in terms of our enterprise funds, moving some of our

05:52:05 debt around?

05:52:06 >> Yes, sir.

05:52:06 >> Thank you, chair.

05:52:09 Ms. Montelione?

05:52:11 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Thank you, chair.

05:52:12 My colleagues touched upon a lot of the things that that I

05:52:18 also am concerned about, especially, you know, the homeless

05:52:24 issues.

05:52:24 We are having technical difficulties over there?

05:52:31 And, you know, when I look at the forward, way call for the

05:52:40 budget book, and it talks about the goals for the city,

05:52:47 there are only four.

05:52:49 Changing Tampa's DNA, safe streets, strong neighborhoods,

05:52:53 and management and budget goals.

05:52:57 But many things that heir on the list within those goals are

05:53:03 funded not strictly from city dollars, but they are funded

05:53:07 by, as Mr. Suarez pointed out, CRA money, they are funded by

05:53:12 federal programs, and money that we receive from the federal

05:53:16 government.

05:53:19 But we don't in some cases have any skin in the game, as

05:53:23 they say.

05:53:23 And I think that's what we are all looking for.

05:53:26 We are looking for the increase in certain budgets,

05:53:34 efficiencies in other departments in order to give us those

05:53:39 extra dollars that we are seeking, and, you know, there was

05:53:44 one project that I was disappointed to see cut from when you

05:53:49 made the first presentation, which was the expansion of the

05:53:55 New Tampa recreation center.

05:53:56 I have been asking about that particular project since the

05:53:59 day I got elected and have been asking to see, you know,

05:54:04 plans or, you know, what was going on, and I was never able

05:54:07 to get those, and the Parks Department did reach out to me

05:54:11 after they heard me talk about it on camera, and said they

05:54:14 would get them over to me, but I don't believe I ever did

05:54:17 see those.

05:54:19 The money saved did not -- expanding that center, and that

05:54:24 center has served more than just the people who live in New

05:54:27 Tampa.

05:54:28 They have a gymnastics program at that center, and that

05:54:33 gymnastics program was very successful in the competitions,

05:54:41 regional competitions, and you could put them on par with

05:54:45 any very expensive private program.

05:54:49 And yet this program is open to any child within the city

05:54:54 who wants to participate at a very reasonable cost.

05:54:58 So the money that was allocated initially was 1.5 million --

05:55:06 1.6, almost, million dollars.

05:55:09 Where does that money go?

05:55:11 >>SONYA LITTLE: I understand that -- may I ask what you are

05:55:16 referring to?

05:55:20 >>LISA MONTELIONE: The first presentation that you gave to

05:55:21 us on the budget included a line for the New Tampa center

05:55:25 expansion, 1.571 million.

05:55:31 But it's not in this budget.

05:55:32 >>SONYA LITTLE: What's currently in the budget is part of

05:55:35 the five-year plan.

05:55:37 I believe it's $800,000, that's part of the five-year plan.

05:55:43 And that their entire appropriations was approximately $500

05:55:49 that you now.

05:55:50 I do understand that that is something, a project that's

05:55:53 still on the parks and rec radar to get done.

05:55:58 So 100% of the funding has not been --

05:56:04 >>LISA MONTELIONE: But it's been put off year after year

05:56:07 after year.

05:56:07 It's been there since before we were elected.

05:56:10 And it's still there.

05:56:11 And from what I understand it's going to be -- still not

05:56:15 going to be fully funded until after perhaps the next

05:56:19 election, in 2016 or 2017.

05:56:26 It seems to be something that is being pushed and moved down

05:56:30 the road, but we never seem to get there.

05:56:32 And that's a concern to be me, I think for somewhat obvious

05:56:38 reasons.

05:56:39 There are other projects that are listed.

05:56:42 And it was very handy to have the map of all of our

05:56:45 districts, and those projects charted out, so thank you for

05:56:49 that.

05:56:50 That was very clear and prosecute precise information that

05:56:53 you gave us.

05:56:54 But some of the projects, at least in my district and

05:56:56 probably it's true for the others, are projects that doesn't

05:57:01 require city money.

05:57:03 There is transportation projects that are Hillsborough

05:57:06 County money.

05:57:09 The expansion of segment A, or Bruce B. Downs from Bearss to

05:57:13 Palm Springs, that's listed on my list of projects in

05:57:19 district 7, but we are not funding that project.

05:57:21 Correct?

05:57:22 >>SONYA LITTLE: I will check.

05:57:29 >>LISA MONTELIONE: There's also the upgrade in relocation.

05:57:32 It says Bruce B. Downs, Bearss to Tampa Palms Boulevard,

05:57:41 which I don't believe is funded by us.

05:57:45 >>SONYA LITTLE: Now, if a project is on there, we do have

05:57:48 skin in the game, and what I am trying to find out for you

05:57:51 is exactly how much and what for.

05:57:55 And if we don't own the road, we can't run the project.

05:58:00 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Well, that's why I'm thinking it says

05:58:03 upgrade and relocation.

05:58:05 I'm sure that's not -- that's utility money, not

05:58:08 transportation money, and Mr. Rogero is shaking his head

05:58:14 back there.

05:58:14 He knows these projects intimately, I'm sure.

05:58:17 >>SONYA LITTLE: We are getting the answer for you but if

05:58:20 it's on your map we have some skin in the game.

05:58:22 >>LISA MONTELIONE: It just gives the appearance that, you

05:58:27 know, those major projects, is something that the still is

05:58:32 investing in. The only reason why we are doing the upgrade

05:58:34 and relocation, at least, I believe, is because it's a good

05:58:39 time while the county is tearing up that road for us to go

05:58:42 in and do that.

05:58:43 Because that makes sense.

05:58:45 But if the county wasn't upgrading or expanding that road,

05:58:49 we wouldn't be doing that project.

05:58:50 >>SONYA LITTLE: Maybe, maybe not.

05:58:52 It all depends on what the needs are and what the assessment

05:58:56 is.

05:58:56 So it's kind of hard to tell, but it's certainly prudent

05:59:01 that if the county is going in, and we can capitalize on

05:59:04 economies of scale, that we do consider those projects and

05:59:07 prioritize them.

05:59:08 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Well, I would say there were quite a few

05:59:13 projects in the north side of my district which is great

05:59:15 because it's an area that has not received upgrades to

05:59:18 roads, sidewalks and such for many, many years, but the

05:59:22 northern part of my district really there's not a whole lot

05:59:28 in the budget for that.

05:59:30 And I'm a bit disappointed, and the citizens, really we are

05:59:35 looking forward to that expansion especially when they saw

05:59:38 it in the original presentation, and to have that just

05:59:40 disappear without explanation was a blow that was noted.

05:59:55 You know, the transportation issue, when we talk about the

06:00:00 safe streets and the goals, once again, we are talking about

06:00:08 providing multimodal access, pedestrian, bicycle, and, you

06:00:15 know, other transit options, but our sidewalk system, you

06:00:18 know, putting in sidewalks is still something that is way

06:00:25 below the funding level necessary.

06:00:27 So I think that if we are going to talk about pedestrian

06:00:31 safety, achieve factor -- and I know you had a good program

06:00:36 to enhance the enforcement of some of the sidewalks and

06:00:44 trying to improve pedestrian safety, but we are still number

06:00:46 one in the country in pedestrian and bicycle death, and not

06:00:50 necessarily right here within the city of limits or just

06:00:53 downtown, but the way we fund sidewalks -- and to what level

06:00:59 we fund sidewalks and crosswalks -- is something that I

06:01:03 would like to see changed and enhanced along with other

06:01:08 services that my colleagues already spoke about, energy

06:01:14 efficiency and services to the homeless.

06:01:16 And the very low income.

06:01:18 Even people who aren't homeless, we talk about all the time,

06:01:25 Mr. Snelling and I, the near homeless.

06:01:28 And that's disappointing as well.

06:01:32 There are a lot of good things in the budget but I think we

06:01:35 are still falling short.

06:01:37 >>SONYA LITTLE: Well, when we are dealing with limited

06:01:39 resources, I mean, we did gain more property tax revenues

06:01:44 but, again, that doesn't get to us an area that we would all

06:01:47 like to be. As we move forward and our economy improves and

06:01:50 we are able to generate additional revenues, you know, you

06:01:53 have to keep in mind we delivered a balanced budget without

06:01:56 any cuts in services whatsoever.

06:01:58 So we are still dealing with limited funds.

06:02:02 So as we move forward, all of these suggestions are very

06:02:06 well taken.

06:02:06 All of these requests are very well taken.

06:02:09 And until we can generate additional dollars in order to

06:02:12 consider all of those requests, our hands are somewhat tied.

06:02:16 But, you know, your comments are not falling on deaf ears.

06:02:21 >>LISA MONTELIONE: And can you just update me where we are

06:02:24 with the ERP?

06:02:25 I know your building construction services and code

06:02:31 enforcement are relying on that project to bring some

06:02:34 efficiencies, and with those efficiencies we see improved

06:02:37 services without necessarily spending extra money.

06:02:40 >>SONYA LITTLE: You can't imagine how much we are all

06:02:44 looking forward to getting full implementation.

06:02:47 We just completed the first wave, which is primarily as it

06:02:55 relates to our financial system, or portion of our financial

06:02:57 system.

06:02:58 It's a very long process, and that we have five additional

06:03:02 waves to come.

06:03:04 Our next related to human resources.

06:03:08 We just completed after a year and a half the initial stage.

06:03:12 And it's a huge undertaking, yes.

06:03:16 We will eventually be able to benefit from efficiencies,

06:03:20 transparencies, all the people looking forward to it, but we

06:03:26 have some time before we get full implementation.

06:03:28 >>LISA MONTELIONE: And just one last thing about code

06:03:31 enforcement.

06:03:32 You know, had we have been talking about the need for

06:03:37 enhanced code enforcement services.

06:03:40 Every single ordinance practically, except for those that

06:03:45 Chief Castor is charged with enforcing, but every other

06:03:48 ordinance falls under code enforcement.

06:03:52 Whether it's an alcoholic beverage lounge that's operating

06:03:56 outside of their permitted hours, or if it's a dilapidated

06:04:00 structure that needs tending to because it's a blight on our

06:04:03 neighborhood, and everything in between falls under code

06:04:06 enforcement.

06:04:07 And giving them the tools that they need and the funding

06:04:10 that they need to accomplish that is paramount.

06:04:15 And I think, you know, we have a long way to go, and

06:04:20 actually analyzing all of the functions that they do, and

06:04:27 giving them the tools and resources, ERP, I was hoping it

06:04:32 was going to be here already.

06:04:35 It was fall, wasn't it, 2013 was the original

06:04:38 implementation?

06:04:40 >>SONYA LITTLE: We are doing well on timing.

06:04:42 It's just a long tedious process to convert the entire city.

06:04:46 It's long.

06:04:46 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I mean, that's the things that are near

06:04:51 and dear to my heart.

06:04:52 Thank you.

06:04:53 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Council, council member Montelione.

06:04:58 At this time, are you finished, Ms. Little?

06:05:00 I want to make sure you are.

06:05:02 And then we are going to go to comments, presentation by

06:05:05 individuals who worked so hard this past year with the city

06:05:08 to make sure that we are informed, got the information from

06:05:14 the citizens advisory board members, or the spokesman, you

06:05:18 all are welcome to come up and speak.

06:05:20 I can say that. We are very proud of the work that you have

06:05:22 done, and your suggestions have always been taken to heart

06:05:27 and we look forward to you.

06:05:28 >> Kimberly Overman, the vice chair of the Citizens Advisory

06:05:35 Committee on the Budget and Finance.

06:05:39 I am Councilwoman Lisa Montelione's appointee, I guess is

06:05:44 the word, and we had an absolutely fabulous committee

06:05:49 working very hard this year.

06:05:51 Our purpose is really to review and study the budget.

06:05:56 It's sort of like trying to force a bunch of information

06:06:05 through a fire hose.

06:06:06 We started in the spring.

06:06:07 We started meeting in October, November of this year in

06:06:10 order to avoid choking on the amount of data we were able to

06:06:15 get from the budget department which was absolutely

06:06:17 fabulous.

06:06:19 They did a great job of providing us the information we

06:06:21 needed.

06:06:23 I think I have a presentation here and I'm not sure how to

06:06:26 make it work.

06:06:27 There it is, great.

06:06:35 We actually have, most of the committee members are actually

06:06:38 here, and if they would like to stand when I mention their

06:06:41 names.

06:06:41 George Greenlee was mentioned earlier, the chair.

06:06:44 I'm the vice chair.

06:06:46 Mark Anderson, he has been on the committee for quite some

06:06:51 time.

06:06:51 Tony DeSisto.

06:06:55 Steven Liverpool, our newest committee member and has the

06:06:58 most fire hose to deal with as far as learning curve.

06:07:01 Even Metser and Willey Stokes, most of which have been here

06:07:07 a couple of years and Steve is our newest addition.

06:07:10 The learning curve is interesting and it's amazing, and I

06:07:14 really appreciate the committee's efforts to put forth the

06:07:17 amount of effort it takes to learn all the different

06:07:19 departments and all that's going on.

06:07:22 We were not able to do what we needed to do without the

06:07:27 valuable assistance of Lorena Hardwick, Councilman Suarez's

06:07:34 legislative aide, and C. Jo Ford, Councilman Cohen's

06:07:40 legislative aid.

06:07:41 The two were great in helping us organize the meeting.

06:07:44 When you are trying to get eight or ten people together all

06:07:47 at the same time when we all have different roles in life,

06:07:50 we don't work together like you guys do.

06:07:52 Getting us all on the same page to meet 19 times since last

06:07:58 November is pretty amazing.

06:08:01 And they did a marvelous job of helping us accomplish that

06:08:04 goal.

06:08:05 In addition to that, I want to thank Dennis Rogero.

06:08:13 Congratulations again.

06:08:13 And Sal Territo.

06:08:17 Chief assistant attorney.

06:08:19 They made themselves very available to answer questions to

06:08:21 help us understand the rules of engagement when city

06:08:26 municipal go governments, and it was very helpful to

06:08:31 understand everyone's role.

06:08:32 We had an amazing experience.

06:08:34 This year, we started early.

06:08:36 We started meeting actually in November 2012, and in

06:08:41 addition to the meeting, we also went and did site visits.

06:08:46 We visited solid waste.

06:08:50 That was a stinky job.

06:08:52 We visited the water department, stormwater.

06:08:57 We visited some of the parks area.

06:09:00 We did tour the convention center.

06:09:03 We really got a chance to really feel for not only the very

06:09:08 different -- various different departments but many of the

06:09:10 fabulous city employees that were within these areas, and it

06:09:15 became readily obvious the commitment that many of the

06:09:17 employees have to doing a fabulous job in services and the

06:09:21 resources that we have available to us, and made us very,

06:09:26 very proud, and should make you very, very proud for as hard

06:09:30 as they do work.

06:09:31 It became obvious that they were working very hard.

06:09:39 Without Mrs. Little, Greg Spearman, Greg Bayor, Parks and

06:09:49 Recreation Department, Rick Hamilton from the convention

06:09:52 center, Kimberly Crum from MR, as well as Mike Herr, all the

06:10:00 public works department, Jean Duncan, Irvin Lee, Anthony

06:10:06 Kasper and the entire solid waste team, to help us

06:10:09 understand what really our needs were when it came to --

06:10:16 where is that slide?

06:10:18 There we go.

06:10:20 Oh.

06:10:21 There we go.

06:10:24 There we go.

06:10:24 We just covered that.

06:10:26 And literally, it was a wonderful thing to have those

06:10:32 individuals.

06:10:33 In addressing the fact that we have seen a fall in revenues

06:10:37 over the years.

06:10:38 Our commit really looked at our revenues to determine what

06:10:42 our course of funds were.

06:10:44 Well, in addition to property tax, which we kept level over

06:10:46 the years, what other resources were available to help

06:10:50 mitigate some of the increases and expenses that we have

06:10:54 seen over the years?

06:10:55 And as you know, inflation is something that we will have to

06:10:59 continue to deal with, not only because of increases --

06:11:04 increases in personnel costs but also increases in other

06:11:07 products, services and resources.

06:11:09 As we mentioned -- or was mentioned earlier an increase in

06:11:13 electricity cost.

06:11:15 We have to come up with innovative way to address those

06:11:18 issues.

06:11:20 Mrs. Little actually mentioned much of this information so I

06:11:23 don't need to review this again, but what our committee was

06:11:27 most focused on is the fact that we do have -- we do have a

06:11:32 balanced reserve.

06:11:34 It's set aside to help us when revenues are short as we just

06:11:39 experienced in this time crunch, or this recessionary

06:11:42 period.

06:11:43 But as it is, without having as we have had in years past as

06:11:51 Mayor Buckhorn mentioned in his presentation of the budget,

06:11:54 he thanked the administration for doing proper planning, our

06:11:58 goal is to find ours where is we leave that same legacy to

06:12:02 whoever ends up following you and all of us further down the

06:12:05 road.

06:12:05 So that balance is so important to protect.

06:12:08 While we have a guideline of keeping at least 20%, and we

06:12:12 are at 25, the jury is still out on whether it's a wise I

06:12:17 Deet to use those fund balances.

06:12:19 Without looking for other ways to address our overall

06:12:22 budget.

06:12:23 So the important part was to take a look at the fact that we

06:12:26 have been continually, over the last three years, dipping

06:12:30 into that reserve.

06:12:32 Now, there's been some really good reasons.

06:12:34 We have seen some improvement in the area of, you know,

06:12:39 opportunity.

06:12:40 We have seen some increases in revenues which is great.

06:12:45 We have seen property taxes going up, seeing an acceleration

06:12:50 as Mrs. Little mentioned earlier of making an earlier

06:12:53 contribution to the pension plan, savings, resources.

06:12:57 There was a workforce efficiency study done in 2010 that

06:13:01 actually some of those steps have been implemented over the

06:13:06 two years and actually have resulted in higher revenues.

06:13:09 And we are seeing some of that in the expectation of

06:13:13 additional revenues in 2014.

06:13:16 But we are still seeing a deficit of 7.5 that we are having

06:13:21 to pull out of our emergency reserves.

06:13:24 And as a financial planner, I really defend emergency

06:13:32 reserves.

06:13:33 Our primary goal is to come up with recommendations that not

06:13:36 only have a budget that we are spending more than we were

06:13:38 bringing in but also what opportunities we could find to

06:13:43 increase the revenue.

06:13:46 The first was in an area that is a repeat of last year's

06:13:51 recommendation, but it becomes even more important now

06:13:54 because we have had several years of cutbacks, not

06:13:57 necessarily in terms of laying off individuals, but we have

06:14:01 not rehired a lot of individuals.

06:14:03 And you have an awful lot of very hardworking city employees

06:14:06 that are looking forward to that 2% increase.

06:14:09 However, it may be a good time to go back and actually

06:14:14 implement a manpower study.

06:14:17 Manpower compensation studies does a lot of thing.

06:14:20 It allows human resources to know exactly what skills are

06:14:23 available in our workforce.

06:14:25 It also allows us to know what workforce needs we have.

06:14:29 A good example that in visiting the water department, it

06:14:35 takes, I think, five to seven years, if I am not mistaken,

06:14:38 for a new employee to be up to speed with all the

06:14:42 certifications necessary to be able to be available to

06:14:45 assist us in protecting our water sources.

06:14:50 That's a succession plan nightmare.

06:14:53 So having a work study -- a manpower work study and the

06:14:58 compensation plan in place, based on our current population,

06:15:02 can help us actually plan for having the professional, the

06:15:07 city employees that we really need, in place and given our

06:15:11 long-term goals.

06:15:12 So we strongly recommend that that be considered and done

06:15:15 especially in a year that we are looking at increasing some

06:15:17 compensation to those employees that are still here and

06:15:20 working so hard.

06:15:22 Utilizing that compensation study, to really evaluate not

06:15:25 only the existing employees compensation but to make sure

06:15:29 that when we are offering compensation to individuals, based

06:15:32 on those roles why where we find a need, that we are doing

06:15:35 it in a way that we can find the best way to be able to

06:15:39 protect and provide the services to our city employees.

06:15:42 Another area that we mentioned last year -- and I think it

06:15:47 will be important, especially changing interest rates -- is

06:15:50 top readdress the issue of amending the city's charter, to

06:15:55 align with the state investment policy, to take advantage of

06:16:01 the diverse side, selection of investments.

06:16:06 It just means we have the ability and flexibility to do

06:16:12 that.

06:16:12 Sometimes it's Nace to have some flexibility when it's

06:16:15 important, when we find ourselves in volatile markets, or in

06:16:19 markets that are very thinly traded or raises interest rates

06:16:26 or revenues are very thinly -- there's a small spread, to

06:16:29 have some flexibility to be able to bring as much revenue in

06:16:33 with a certain amount of risk.

06:16:35 Our charter is very conservative.

06:16:37 So we want to make sure that we address that issue.

06:16:40 >> Excuse me if I may.

06:16:42 You mentioned of that risk.

06:16:45 Tell me about the risk.

06:16:47 Every time you ask more for more money you are taking a

06:16:50 greater risk, aren't you?

06:16:52 >> Well, this is true.

06:16:53 There is a certain amount of risk associated with investing

06:16:57 our general fund reserve dollars they have to set aside, and

06:17:00 then other funds as they are made available, until they are

06:17:03 used within the city.

06:17:06 I'm not suggesting going to options or anything like that.

06:17:11 The state charter is actually fairly conservative.

06:17:14 Ours is even more conservative.

06:17:16 What this would do is just allow us to move into investments

06:17:19 that heir slightly more -- have slightly higher level of

06:17:27 risk both in terms of upside and down side.

06:17:30 And what it would still require, the budget and finance

06:17:34 department would have to measure those risks and decide

06:17:36 whether they were appropriate, but without being able to, we

06:17:40 are sort of tying their hands, when there may be an

06:17:43 opportunity to increase rates of return on the investments

06:17:46 that will hold in reserve, and in an environment where

06:17:49 there's little to know investment on guaranteed funds,

06:17:53 basically, there's little interest rate whatsoever, are they

06:17:56 losing money in value?

06:17:58 It may be to the advantage of having some flexibility to

06:18:02 address that issue.

06:18:04 So we do feel it would be appropriate to consider using the

06:18:08 safe a investment policy as a guideline.

06:18:12 But until the actual charter is amended, there's no way to

06:18:16 do it at this point.

06:18:19 There were several issues, and we have all seen it in the

06:18:21 paper and other issues, that around business taxes.

06:18:27 When we are not raising property taxes, if we don't raise

06:18:30 the millage, and if we need to have additional revenues

06:18:33 coming into the city, we can use the existing programs that

06:18:37 we have in place, and if the ERP program makes it easier to

06:18:42 be able to address those issues, I think it's very important

06:18:45 for us to come up with innovative ways to be able to collect

06:18:48 on fees that we have on our books.

06:18:52 Especially given we are in an economic environment where we

06:18:55 have seen in the newspaper over the last year the

06:18:57 significant number of investor-owned properties that have

06:19:01 been purchased with investor money, which means

06:19:05 non-homesteaded property typically, at a very high rate in

06:19:10 2013.

06:19:12 That means that those properties are either vacant,

06:19:16 foreclosed on, or are rental properties.

06:19:18 And without having a proactive way of communicating with the

06:19:23 purchaser of that property, or the occupant of that

06:19:26 property, it is difficult to discern what revenue we are

06:19:30 leaving on the table.

06:19:32 Our code enforcement people are doing a very good job of

06:19:36 cleaning up the mess that's left by either bank-owned

06:19:41 properties or vacant properties or abandoned properties, and

06:19:43 they have their hands full dealing with that, and property

06:19:46 owners in the neighborhood are feeling the pinch when they

06:19:49 see that their neighborhood is turning into a nightmare, and

06:19:54 their property values are going down.

06:19:56 That does not help us.

06:20:00 Having enough in our ordinance to allow code enforcement to

06:20:04 be able to collect those funds, or the business tax

06:20:06 department to be able to collect those funds, from corporate

06:20:11 and individuals that are required to make those payments,

06:20:14 shall actually help us in raising revenues in our city, and

06:20:19 that's important.

06:20:21 To have the ordinances in place we need to have the ability

06:20:24 to collect on it, especially when the economy hands us a

06:20:27 greater number of individuals that are required to make that

06:20:30 payment.

06:20:30 And we don't currently, as best we can, see that there's

06:20:34 been a proactive method of actually doing that 2010, we

06:20:37 actually sent out the mailer to all non-homesteaded

06:20:42 property.

06:20:43 And found that we were able to actually raise rental tax

06:20:47 revenues, or rental certificate revenues, by about 150,

06:20:52 200,000.

06:20:54 We shouldn't leave that on the table.

06:20:56 And I'm sure if we were able to do a similar exercise this

06:21:01 year. So we recommend developing a better mechanism,

06:21:04 collecting rental certificates, a better mechanism for

06:21:07 collecting bank-owned property, and vacant property, plus

06:21:11 those properties.

06:21:12 So that will be important.

06:21:14 We also will have sound, since we are dedicating about 12%

06:21:18 of our budget to parks and rec, that it would be very

06:21:22 helpful if our citizens knew what was going on in those

06:21:26 facilities.

06:21:26 And so it would be wise to invest in an outreach or a more

06:21:32 customer service method of using our Web site, as well as

06:21:38 community outreach in terms of helping our citizens know

06:21:41 that those programs are out there.

06:21:44 I happen to know that in the pool in my area the majority of

06:21:50 the citizens don't know that you need to actually have a

06:21:52 recreational park and rec tax to be able to use the pool.

06:21:56 This year they do.

06:21:58 But many of their responses are, never had to pay that

06:22:03 before.

06:22:03 So the good news is in some facilities we are actually

06:22:07 collecting the recreational fee, but there's still some

06:22:11 confusion by the general public, and we are investing those

06:22:14 dollars in our community, we want to the make sure that our

06:22:16 community is aware of them and take advantage of them.

06:22:19 The more that want to, the more recreational fee revenue we

06:22:24 have coming in the door to help improve our overall budget

06:22:27 in parks and rec, and as we heard earlier that's a

06:22:31 challenge.

06:22:32 The committee also believes that it's important, when we are

06:22:35 looking at another enterprise entity in the area of parking,

06:22:38 and parking revenues.

06:22:40 It is important to consider ways that we can increase the

06:22:42 revenue to cover the deficits that are in that area of our

06:22:45 budget.

06:22:46 By expanding the boundaries, raising rates, to market rates

06:22:51 rather than where they are now, because they have not been

06:22:54 raised in many years and are under the market rate, and they

06:22:57 are offered as competitors in the area, even if they are at

06:23:01 a slight discount, they are still below what the market has

06:23:05 to bear.

06:23:06 So where allowed we suggest you actually review those

06:23:11 contracts and actually increase parking rates to increase

06:23:18 parking revenues.

06:23:21 Next Slade.

06:23:26 Fleet efficiency.

06:23:26 In looking at the budget, we spend a lot of money on cars --

06:23:32 vehicles, fire trucks, ambulances, a variety of different

06:23:36 vehicles.

06:23:36 And it is a wide variety of different vehicles.

06:23:39 With that, we have found that there is a discrepancy in

06:23:45 terms of how old the vehicles are, when they should be

06:23:48 replaced, and what's the best use for vehicles that may be

06:23:51 older.

06:23:54 We are recommending a fleet study to actually make sure that

06:23:59 we are approaching purchasing vehicles and maintaining

06:24:01 vehicles in the most efficient manner.

06:24:02 If we have vehicles that are beyond their best use age, and

06:24:06 it's costing us more to maintain it, then looking at ways

06:24:10 that we can actually shift resources maybe out of fleet

06:24:13 maintenance or into other areas, or increase the training

06:24:17 for more complex vehicles to allow for those individuals to

06:24:21 have some career advances or improved skills, but doing a

06:24:26 fleet maintenance study will allow us to take a look at

06:24:29 fleet size, energy efficiencies, maintenance, mileage

06:24:34 limitations, those kinds of things can assist us in making

06:24:36 the best use of the investment of the vehicles that we are

06:24:39 using for our city employees.

06:24:44 We also are leaving some money on the table, which probably

06:24:46 will cause a bit of anxious for anybody.

06:24:49 But as we were recently made aware, a five cents of the 12

06:24:56 cents gallon local option, that we are not taking full

06:25:00 advantage of.

06:25:01 Many of our communities across the state are, in fact, using

06:25:05 their local tax option to allocate resources in the area of

06:25:09 transportation.

06:25:10 When we have great transportation needs in the City of

06:25:14 Tampa, we seem to always have a challenge in trying to find

06:25:18 the right resources for roads, rights-of-way, bicycle paths,

06:25:24 sidewalks, all of those items involve transportation.

06:25:28 If there's a way that we could actually utilize that local

06:25:32 gasoline tax, Hillsborough County could possibly receive as

06:25:37 much as $7 million for that.

06:25:40 We are leaving it on the table because we don't want to

06:25:43 actually exercise that option, or ask Hillsborough County to

06:25:48 exercise that option.

06:25:49 I think it would be wise at this point given that we have

06:25:53 emphasis on the need for improved transportation systems

06:25:56 within this area, that we have issues to consider in Tampa

06:26:04 over the next year.

06:26:10 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mrs. Montelione.

06:26:11 Excuse me.

06:26:12 >>LISA MONTELIONE: This list, before you go to the next,

06:26:15 seems very familiar.

06:26:16 Because some of these things were on the recommendation from

06:26:21 last year, were they not?

06:26:24 >> Uh-huh.

06:26:25 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I thought so.

06:26:26 >> I understand priorities.

06:26:28 However, we still think they are a good idea.

06:26:32 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I know the subject, talked to a lot of

06:26:35 us because three of us are on the MPO as well.

06:26:38 But the parking, collection boundaries and time for

06:26:42 collection, raising parking rates to market conditions, one

06:26:46 of the things thatch we talk about in some of the other

06:26:49 committees and boards that I sit on is we want to encourage

06:26:52 people to take other methods of transportation, or to walk,

06:26:56 or use a bicycle.

06:26:58 And if there's free parking, and an abundance of free

06:27:03 parking, it doesn't incentivize people to carpool or find

06:27:07 another way to get where they are going.

06:27:09 So I think, you know, I understand the economic development

06:27:12 side of what we did specifically in Ybor City, because we

06:27:17 wanted to have people who frequent, you know, or we want to

06:27:21 encourage people to go to Ybor City, and we took away, you

06:27:27 know, the expense that you had associated with parking in

06:27:33 Ybor City.

06:27:34 It still costs, I think, a dollar.

06:27:36 But those garages are expensive to maintain.

06:27:39 So I thought I remembered hearing that last year.

06:27:43 And I know -- and actually, I think Ms. Mulhern answered

06:27:47 that question last year when the committee gave their

06:27:49 report, was how many of these recommendations are repetitive

06:27:53 from the year before?

06:27:54 So if she asked the question last year, and you were out of

06:27:57 the room for a moment, but I'm asking the question this

06:28:00 year, another one of those -- how many years are the same

06:28:06 recommendations going to be coming up?

06:28:09 >> If we still think it's a good idea, ware coming back.

06:28:12 >> You have to take political heat about whether you do or

06:28:18 not.

06:28:18 Our job is it's in the citizens best interest to pay our

06:28:23 bills.

06:28:23 It's our interest to the provide resources to the citizens,

06:28:26 but we also recognize using innovative ways to what we

06:28:32 already have in place can matter.

06:28:35 An hour longer time on the meter isn't going to keep

06:28:39 somebody from going to a hockey game.

06:28:43 But being able to not have to take it at all because they

06:28:49 walked three blocks further, you know, that actually

06:28:53 happens.

06:28:54 In droves.

06:28:54 You can see it.

06:28:55 So a little bit of behavior modification does help to raise

06:29:00 revenues, and if individuals are committed to doing that,

06:29:04 they are going to spend the dollars.

06:29:06 The issue is, if it's not a significant dollar for one

06:29:10 family, but it's a pretty significant budget item for the

06:29:13 City of Tampa.

06:29:15 So I think it would be wise to reconsider that issue and

06:29:18 just do it in tweak, if necessary.

06:29:20 Any improvement would be helpful at this point, given that

06:29:23 there is a debt associated with our parking facilities.

06:29:30 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Cohen?

06:29:31 >>HARRY COHEN: Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.

06:29:33 I wasn't sure if we were going to ask about these now or at

06:29:37 the end of the presentation.

06:29:38 But since we --

06:29:40 >> That's okay.

06:29:40 >>HARRY COHEN: I wanted to just make a couple of comments.

06:29:44 First of all, thank you so much for everything that the

06:29:48 committee has done this year.

06:29:50 My appointee, Mr. DeSisto, comes in on a fairly regular

06:29:55 basis and let's me know what's going on, and I know that the

06:29:58 19 meetings that you all have had have been in some cases

06:30:00 gone on many hours, and involved field trips, and a lot of

06:30:04 staff time and a lot of your time.

06:30:06 And all of us really appreciate it because the fact is that

06:30:11 even some of these recommendations are repeat, some are new,

06:30:16 some of the repeats deserve to be looked at again, and some

06:30:19 of the recommendations from last year, particularly the one

06:30:22 related to whether or not we should put solid waste go on

06:30:28 their property tax bill, were things that we did talk about.

06:30:31 And although decided not to do it, we had a large public

06:30:34 discussion about whether or not that was a good idea.

06:30:37 So certainly we are going to be taking up some of these

06:30:39 ideas and talking about in the days and months ahead.

06:30:43 And I wanted to just make a couple of very brief comments on

06:30:46 a few of the things that you recommended.

06:30:52 Related to aligning the city's investment policy with the

06:30:55 state's investment policy, I think the real issue there gets

06:31:01 to a philosophical one of how aggressive we are being

06:31:09 comfortable in the best return we get.

06:31:11 As Councilman Miranda pointed out, generally you increase

06:31:15 your risk when you increase your return.

06:31:18 A few years ago, in the State of Florida, the state board of

06:31:22 administration had a bit of a crisis on its hands when some

06:31:29 of the securities purchased under the state's investment

06:31:31 policy started to have some problems, and that affected

06:31:37 certain counties and certain local government investments as

06:31:39 well, and there was a lot of concern about that.

06:31:41 At the time, what I remember is that when comparing the

06:31:44 state's policy to Hillsborough County's policy, the county

06:31:50 had a policy that might really be more appropriate for us to

06:31:55 look at.

06:31:59 If I am not mistaken, our bond ratings are also tied to our

06:32:04 investment policies.

06:32:05 So we need to make absolutely sure that if we tweak our

06:32:11 investment policy, we don't jeopardize our bond rating.

06:32:14 Hillsborough County has a AAA bond rating on their $3

06:32:19 billion reserve. So we ought to look to their policy as

06:32:22 something that we mate want to emulate, that might get the

06:32:25 same result that you are looking for in terms of more

06:32:28 flexibility, without adding a significant amount of risk.

06:32:32 And then another thing that is listed here has to do with

06:32:38 better mechanism to collect foreclosure revenues.

06:32:42 I'm sure everyone is aware we have been talking about that

06:32:45 at some length lately, and Councilman Miranda made a

06:32:48 suggestion that we are going to be continuing to look at to

06:32:51 find out whether or not we can actually use property tax

06:32:55 bills as a mechanism for collecting some of those revenues.

06:33:00 And then finally, on the avenues of better and better

06:33:04 marketing our resources, I couldn't agree with you more, and

06:33:07 I have to say, going back to the discussion that we had

06:33:11 earlier regarding the city pools, we have really struggled

06:33:15 to get good attendance numbers on how many people are

06:33:18 actually using the pools and whether or not they are a good,

06:33:24 justifiable investment for our resources.

06:33:26 And I know that some of us believe that if we had some

06:33:30 accurate numbers to look at, either they would show that

06:33:33 they are being used a lot more than we were told they were,

06:33:36 or it would show that we are not doing a good enough job of

06:33:41 letting people know what kind of facilities are available

06:33:45 out there, because we have just come off of a summer where

06:33:49 it been, you know, just unmercifully hot for the last three

06:33:53 months, and these pools offer a great, great opportunity to

06:33:59 get out of the heat.

06:34:00 So if they are not being used to capacity, there's no

06:34:03 question that we need to do a better job of advertising to

06:34:07 the public what we have out there.

06:34:08 So those are just a few comments for me about some of the

06:34:12 recommendations but I guarantee we are going to look at them

06:34:17 all.

06:34:17 And your five cents of the twelve cents tax option, I'm

06:34:21 sure, will be a very interesting conversation for us to have

06:34:25 in the wake of this discussion.

06:34:27 >> Right.

06:34:29 I think back to the point of the way people spend their

06:34:34 money changes behavior.

06:34:35 And I do realize that we do need a comprehensive

06:34:39 transportation system, in Hillsborough County, as well as in

06:34:42 the City of Tampa.

06:34:44 How people spend their fuel dollars matters.

06:34:48 And if we are looking to enhance and attract individuals who

06:34:52 like using public transportation and we want to invest in a

06:34:58 comprehensive transportation program, then using something

06:35:02 that people don't want to spend on, you know, might be a

06:35:05 great way of actually getting that done.

06:35:07 So that's something we wanted you to think about.

06:35:10 In relation to your comments about resources with the Parks

06:35:12 Department, and it's not just pools either.

06:35:17 I walk into so many different community centers and found of

06:35:21 that they offered, oh, this class and that class and this

06:35:23 class and that class, and it's marvelous, I'm telling you,

06:35:29 but there's no other way of finding outsides walking in the

06:35:32 door.

06:35:33 We live in a mobile world.

06:35:34 And those individuals who have the most benefit obviously

06:35:38 from this probably have a cell phone where they can figure

06:35:41 out how to get there.

06:35:42 So when everybody is checking in, being somewhere, it would

06:35:47 be great if we could do that for our citizens as well.

06:35:50 So the innovation, back to the committee recommendation on

06:35:54 focusing on innovation -- there we go -- this really taps

06:36:01 into that particular topic.

06:36:03 You know, there's a host of people in the community that are

06:36:07 partnering with the city to improve our neighborhoods, as

06:36:10 well as bring resources to the city to help innovate.

06:36:17 Green Artery is one.

06:36:19 Having the city's university program oversubscribed for the

06:36:25 first class, the community is committed to helping get

06:36:29 things better.

06:36:30 So our goal here with this particular focus is to take a

06:36:34 look at the city's Web site, and make sure that it is user

06:36:38 friendly.

06:36:39 Individuals who work on programs, and programming, are not

06:36:43 individuals who need to be doing marketing ideas or being

06:36:46 able to tell us -- those are two different animals.

06:36:51 So using a different skill set of individuals in getting

06:36:55 that message out to our consumers whether it be how I do pay

06:37:01 this or as fast as I should pay or what classes are being

06:37:06 offered at my local community service?

06:37:10 We need to get that information out to the public.

06:37:12 And while the site looks much nicer than it did several

06:37:15 years ago, it still seems to be more consumer oriented.

06:37:20 The most recent event at the convention center is it was a

06:37:23 blockbuster event, a perfect opportunity for Tampa to shine

06:37:26 not only for bringing on economic development, but also

06:37:29 bringing revenues to the city overall.

06:37:32 Having many more, and having the people in this city know

06:37:38 what's going on, in the convention center, obviously works.

06:37:43 But I think what we had in that particular event with the

06:37:47 organizer also doing advertising, I think we can also do a

06:37:50 better job of really wracking -- bragging about what going

06:37:53 on there so that our residents and our tourists.

06:38:01 Parks and rec, we already talked that.

06:38:04 The city services, code enforcement, All innovate on better

06:38:09 ways to deliver those services, and not necessarily for a

06:38:14 fortune.

06:38:15 When we do that, that brings in revenues to the city.

06:38:17 Almost every single one.

06:38:19 It about collecting money, to be able to offer better

06:38:23 services.

06:38:23 So investing in that area of our overall budget will be

06:38:27 important long-term.

06:38:31 And with that, it's important to recognize that when you

06:38:35 have basically been in a period the last five years because

06:38:41 of our recession, when we ask our employees within the city

06:38:44 to continually find ways to cut expenses, it's hard for them

06:38:50 to turn around and start thinking about ways to spend money.

06:38:55 You know, it turns off different parts.

06:38:58 You have turned on a part of the brain.

06:39:01 It's hard to turn off.

06:39:02 We really do need a long-term strategic plan on various

06:39:06 different areas mentioned in this particular slide that help

06:39:09 our city employees focus on our infrastructure needs.

06:39:15 We are in some of the lowers real estate environments in

06:39:24 history, and I do don't know if any of you refinanced your

06:39:28 house know that interest rates are still low, if you still

06:39:30 have a mortgage.

06:39:33 Lowering your interest rate is a wise idea, and it's

06:39:37 fiscally responsible.

06:39:38 So we have done that.

06:39:40 The budget department has actually looked at where we had an

06:39:42 opportunity to refinance, and they have gone through our

06:39:45 overall budget so far and looked at the best ways to

06:39:51 actually lower the existing debt that we have.

06:39:53 But as you can see from the fact that we have doubled the

06:39:56 amount of dollars, we have allocated towards investing in

06:40:02 our neighborhoods, from 2009 with 7.5 million, in 2014 we

06:40:09 are estimating 15 million, whereof we are doubling our focus

06:40:14 on investing in our neighborhoods, without doubling our

06:40:17 revenue, we have to look at ways to plan for those kinds of

06:40:21 expenses long-term.

06:40:23 And I would much rather do it at 37% to 4% than what we

06:40:28 anticipated increasing market and having to dip into our

06:40:33 general fund to the point of hitting our reserve five years

06:40:37 down the road when interest rates go up.

06:40:39 So encouraging your staff to really think about not just

06:40:46 what do we have to spend, but to have the resources to work

06:40:50 more efficiently, we need to know what we are going to need

06:40:52 to spend, not just what we have to spend.

06:40:55 Our capital improvement dollars have been strong.

06:40:58 We have done a wise job -- a good job with.

06:41:02 That we are looking at spending $15.5 million next year, and

06:41:06 strong neighborhoods.

06:41:08 It's going to be very important that we look for

06:41:11 opportunities to use capital improvement ways of doing that

06:41:14 instead of continually hitting our general fund.

06:41:17 And if we can lock in lower interest rates.

06:41:21 Yes, you still have interest payments that have to be made.

06:41:24 But being able to actually get some of that done in a

06:41:29 growing economy rather than a robust economy is much easier.

06:41:35 If you remember several years ago in the housing boom some

06:41:38 of the reasons we couldn't do some of these projects is

06:41:40 because we couldn't get the concrete.

06:41:42 We couldn't compete for the material.

06:41:45 We can find materials.

06:41:48 And we can borrow the money at lower rates than we have been

06:41:51 able to historically.

06:41:54 Pretty comfortable in saying that I think it's really

06:41:58 critical over the next year to two years that the staff, and

06:42:02 you work with the staff to assist them in thinking long-term

06:42:07 on what that possible budget could look like.

06:42:10 Capital improvement dollars are a great way of actually

06:42:15 spreading out the cost, doing something.

06:42:17 We are going to have to spend the money doing anyway.

06:42:20 Our stormwater infrastructure system is several years old.

06:42:24 We are a million dollars this year over what we planned on

06:42:27 spending in stormwater, based on our regular budget.

06:42:31 So I think it's going to be very important going forward

06:42:33 that we look long-term on how to come up with those projects

06:42:39 that will qualify for capital improvement funds rather than

06:42:44 raise property tax assessment to achieve those goals.

06:42:49 Stormwater is a very good example of that.

06:42:56 And I thank everyone for your time and for all the staff

06:42:58 time for the work that was done this year.

06:43:03 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: We really appreciate it.

06:43:04 And I would like to ask on behalf of council the members of

06:43:06 your committee to come up and introduce themselves.

06:43:09 The public knows them by name but I don't think they see

06:43:12 them often.

06:43:13 And they have done an outstanding job and they met for a

06:43:16 year.

06:43:17 And this job never ends.

06:43:18 It starts and it doesn't end.

06:43:19 >> Yes, this isn't my real job.

06:43:22 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I know.

06:43:24 I thought the way you were going it was your real job.

06:43:26 We are very appreciative of it.

06:43:29 Give us your name.

06:43:33 We really appreciate it, the members of this committee.

06:43:37 Please come forward.

06:43:40 >> Good evening.

06:43:41 My name is George Greenlee.

06:43:43 I'm the chairman.

06:43:44 I'm Councilman Reddick's appointee.

06:43:48 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.

06:43:48 >> My name is Willard Stokes.

06:43:52 And I'm Councilwoman Capin's appointee.

06:43:59 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.

06:43:59 >> Mark Anderson, Councilman Mulhern's representative.

06:44:08 >> Steven Liverpool, Chairman Miranda's appointee and the

06:44:14 rookie member.

06:44:15 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: You're working with an old veteran.

06:44:19 Thank you all very much.

06:44:20 Again, we really appreciate it.

06:44:21 >> And Mr. DeSisto was unable to join us this evening

06:44:25 butting he was a very valuable resource.

06:44:28 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: We understand.

06:44:29 We appreciate it.

06:44:29 >>MARY MULHERN: I just wanted to thank the committee, this

06:44:33 group.

06:44:35 It's really making me feel like I got a lot of work to catch

06:44:40 up with you guys.

06:44:41 It really, really fantastic.

06:44:43 And I want to thank staff so much, too, because when we

06:44:46 first did this about six years ago, it was new, and we had

06:44:57 great recommendations.

06:44:58 But it wasn't out of a real working process between the

06:45:06 advisory committee and the staff.

06:45:08 And now it's just incredible how you are working together.

06:45:11 And I'm just really impressed with that, and just want to

06:45:15 thank everybody for your hard work on this.

06:45:20 And hopefully we will follow through with some of these

06:45:23 great suggestions.

06:45:26 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you. We go now to public comments

06:45:28 on this opening of the operating budget.

06:45:30 This is for the budget of 2013-2014.

06:45:35 We go now to the public section for this comment on the

06:45:37 operating budget.

06:45:38 >> Good evening.

06:45:41 Spencer Kass, 1001 North Howard Avenue representing the

06:45:45 Virginia park neighborhood association.

06:45:47 As council is aware, we had sent in a few other

06:45:50 neighborhoods had sent in e-mails requesting two pieces of

06:45:54 information, and one change in policy.

06:45:56 The two pieces of information we requested is we wanted a

06:45:59 neighborhood by neighborhood breakdown on how much money the

06:46:01 City of Tampa is collecting in property taxes from each of

06:46:05 our neighborhoods.

06:46:08 We requested that from council members who tried to help,

06:46:12 but ultimately the City of Tampa decided it wasn't going to

06:46:14 provide us with that information.

06:46:16 To that end, working with the property appraiser's office, I

06:46:23 will put it here on the Elmo.

06:46:25 And I will just put the first page up there so the public

06:46:28 can see it.

06:46:29 And I emailed it to every neighborhood association and I

06:46:32 have copies tonight for council.

06:46:34 And this is important because the first thing we need to

06:46:36 know is what are you taking from us?

06:46:38 The second piece of information we requested -- and it's my

06:46:40 hope that tonight we'll discuss with city staff about the

06:46:45 association -- is how much money is being spent in each

06:46:48 neighborhood association on capital improvement projects.

06:46:51 They break it down for you by districts.

06:46:54 That's great if you are a political figure, but for us in

06:46:57 individual neighborhood that doesn't help us.

06:46:59 There's no reason that we should ask this, a budget book, to

06:47:02 try to figure out what you are spending in our neighborhood

06:47:06 not to mention the fact I am not really interested in what

06:47:09 you are spending over five years, I am interested in what

06:47:11 you are spending every year.

06:47:12 This is what you collect every year.

06:47:13 I want to know what you are spending every year.

06:47:16 And that way we can have a rational discussion as to whether

06:47:20 we are truly seeing reinvestment in our neighborhood.

06:47:22 There are many neighborhoods in this city that have basic

06:47:25 fundamental needs that aren't being met.

06:47:27 And every year there's no money available for that.

06:47:32 And I think that's wrong.

06:47:33 The third part, which is a policy part that I want to

06:47:36 discuss for a minute -- is establishing a minimum

06:47:39 reinvestment amount.

06:47:41 You take from every neighborhood.

06:47:43 There should be some basic amount that every neighborhood

06:47:45 knows is available to them every year for capital

06:47:47 improvement projects.

06:47:50 With you are a rich neighborhood or poor neighborhood,

06:47:52 everybody has a need.

06:47:53 Everybody has things they want.

06:47:55 In my neighborhood we want to have -- in other neighborhoods

06:47:59 they want transportation. In other neighborhoods they want

06:48:02 streetlights.

06:48:03 Some want swimming pools.

06:48:05 Other wants their streets.

06:48:07 For years, we hear the same thing, there's no money.

06:48:13 So we want to establish a minimum 10% reinvestment.

06:48:16 And we can get to that discussion at a separate time.

06:48:18 But all I am asking tonight is that you request staff tell

06:48:22 us in every neighborhood for the upcoming budget year how

06:48:25 much money is being spent by neighborhood association.

06:48:28 All they have to do is overlay two maps.

06:48:31 It's very simple information for them to get and then we can

06:48:33 take our information and discuss it further.

06:48:35 Thank you very much, council.

06:48:38 >>: Thank you.

06:48:39 Next, please.

06:48:39 >> I'm Cary Kopiak, and I live at 4217 west Culbreath Avenue

06:48:48 in Beach Park.

06:48:53 My comment is the budget.

06:48:58 I was wondering how you all make decisions about spending

06:49:03 money with regard to investing in American -- the buy

06:49:11 American act, because the last time I was here I wasn't able

06:49:14 to speak again.

06:49:19 But I noticed there was a half million dollars spent at the

06:49:22 convention center on tables and chairs.

06:49:24 And it was given to a company that exclusively buys from

06:49:30 China.

06:49:30 And I got that directly from the company.

06:49:33 And most of the chairs that were purchased are over $100

06:49:38 apiece.

06:49:39 I just find it hard to believe that there's no American

06:49:42 company that could have provided that.

06:49:47 But I am not a business owner.

06:49:49 I don't know how that works.

06:49:51 But that seems pretty black and white.

06:49:59 The other thing is regarding the programs in the city with

06:50:04 energy efficiency, we have had a green officer for quite

06:50:07 some time now and I haven't seen much done in the way of

06:50:12 green projects.

06:50:14 I still look out at all these empty roofs on the parking

06:50:17 garages, and we still have the heat effects downtown with

06:50:25 all the asphalt.

06:50:26 It just seems there could be more innovation as far as green

06:50:30 roofs, you know, planting them, and that might help with the

06:50:36 homelessness, too.

06:50:37 I mean, there were gardens every place that you have a

06:50:40 vacant lot, people would not have the food insecurity that

06:50:44 they have now.

06:50:45 And I know it's hard to get something started.

06:50:48 I tried to get a garden at my daughter's school in South

06:50:51 Tampa now for a couple years.

06:50:53 For some reason, they don't want to do it.

06:50:55 But I know that it works in some cities, and it just takes

06:51:01 people to be committed to it.

06:51:08 I think it could work here, too

06:51:11 That's it.

06:51:12 >> Thank you very much.

06:51:13 We appreciate it very much.

06:51:14 >> Kelly Bailey with the VM Ybor neighborhood association,

06:51:23 2100 north ninth street.

06:51:25 I don't know if you need a copy of the letter that I sent to

06:51:28 all of you.

06:51:28 >> The one received and filed, yes.

06:51:31 >> I'm coming to you again on behalf of VM Ybor association

06:51:46 for the necessary repairs to the Kaden pool.

06:51:49 It is a shame that money has been allocated for repairs to

06:51:52 other pools within the City of Tampa, but there's a line

06:51:55 item in the budget that the Cuscaden pool has been dropped.

06:51:59 This pool provided a safe environment for the children in

06:52:01 our neighborhood and surrounding areas for a total of five

06:52:05 seasons.

06:52:06 The mayor himself had commented on how parks helped to

06:52:10 strengthen community while providing a positive experience

06:52:12 for our children, for dropping the line item from the 2014

06:52:16 budget just doesn't make sense.

06:52:18 The VM Ybor neighborhood association is asking that you do

06:52:21 not approve the budget for 2014 until line item is added for

06:52:26 the next repairs for Cuscaden pool, or at the very least

06:52:30 what was brought up during the question-and-answer session,

06:52:34 with the financial person, is that you could possibly do a

06:52:38 midyear modification to include funds for the pool.

06:52:41 So I'm asking you to do that.

06:52:43 On a personal note, this is not through the neighborhood

06:52:46 association, I am asking that fund be allocated for finally

06:52:50 fire, police and code enforcement staff for VM Ybor.

06:52:53 This is in direct response to the problems our neighborhood

06:52:56 is experiencing since the opening of Trinity Cafe, including

06:53:02 that one of the four oldest structures within the City of

06:53:04 Tampa that was in our neighborhood, which I passed a long

06:53:08 pictures to code enforcement, there were homeless people

06:53:12 living in the back of that property and the exterior.

06:53:17 We have loitering around commercial businesses, and in our

06:53:24 pubs as well as other unsavory activities, including

06:53:30 sleeping under all the overpasses in our neighborhood which

06:53:32 we did not have any of these issues prior to trinity coming.

06:53:36 We have had made so many grade strides in VM Ybor to improve

06:53:40 the quality of life for our residents and unfortunately the

06:53:43 clientele coming into our area for this so-called restaurant

06:53:46 are making many of those efforts all for naught.

06:53:49 Thank you.

06:53:51 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.

06:53:51 Next, please.

06:53:52 >> Good evening, council.

06:54:00 Thank you for allowing me to speak to you today.

06:54:04 My name is Mary Alvarez, and I live at 4603 Wes is that

06:54:10 right Boulevard, Tampa 33603, I am the treasure of Ybor City

06:54:16 society.

06:54:16 We are here to ask you to restore an allotment in the amount

06:54:20 of $25,000 that was taken away from us during 2008-2009 and

06:54:26 2010 because of the recession.

06:54:28 Prior to that time, we were allotted $100,000, and then down

06:54:33 to 51,200.

06:54:36 I believe that the recession is almost over, and the City of

06:54:39 Tampa can restore these funds.

06:54:42 The Ybor museum society is doing more than ever with the

06:54:48 fund we are given and we continue to raise funds to meet our

06:54:51 expenses.

06:54:52 If you know we have been awarded which has been moved to the

06:54:59 current location on is 19th street it will be renovated

06:55:02 and restored to the current condition that will house the

06:55:05 baseball museum at the Al Lopez house.

06:55:07 This takes money and staff time.

06:55:11 As a small organization, we need these funds to sustain our

06:55:14 growth and dedication to the many visitors who come to visit

06:55:19 the museum and Ybor City.

06:55:22 Many of the charities that the Tampa supports are

06:55:25 self-sustaining.

06:55:26 We need help.

06:55:27 We would appreciate your consideration and support.

06:55:32 And I'll tell but the projects that we have been working on.

06:55:35 Thank you.

06:55:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much, Mrs. Alvarez.

06:55:39 >> Chantal Hevia, 2703 Saint Conrad, Tampa, Florida,

06:55:44 president of the Ybor City Museum Society.

06:55:47 First I want to thank you for the funding that you have been

06:55:49 giving us over the years.

06:55:51 It's really made a tremendous difference to the cultural

06:55:53 resources in the community.

06:55:57 Some of the ways that we use the funding in the past, for

06:55:59 example, in the last six years, we have been involved in a

06:56:04 very fast-paced expansion to create new exhibits and

06:56:08 programming and bring nuances to Ybor City.

06:56:12 In that time frame, more than 8,000 schoolchildren have

06:56:17 visited the museum.

06:56:20 The society has created innumerable community collaborations

06:56:23 and developed cultural resources that benefit the community

06:56:29 to support economic development and tourist development and

06:56:33 preserve the history and culture -- excuse me, cultural

06:56:37 heritage of Ybor City, Tampa's national historic landmark

06:56:42 district, only one of three in Florida.

06:56:45 Some of our projects upcoming for which we would love your

06:56:48 help -- and by the way, we have more than tripled our

06:56:52 programming in the last six years, at it this point about

06:56:56 half the funding that you so kindly have given us.

06:57:02 We are in progress of substantial projects that include, of

06:57:06 course, the baseball museum.

06:57:09 We are creating a new cultural exhibit with about the size

06:57:15 of Ybor City and the mutual aid society.

06:57:17 That's a permanent exhibit that's a capital investment.

06:57:21 We are creating a special exhibit called the Jewish league

06:57:24 of Ybor City.

06:57:26 We are bringing two buildings, architectural tours to Ybor

06:57:31 City in the next year.

06:57:36 With that in mind, we are a very small group, and relative

06:57:40 to all the big numbers, we are asking for 25,000 additional.

06:57:45 We hope you can help us it with so that we can continue our

06:57:47 work.

06:57:50 We are really in the biggest year we ever had and we are

06:57:53 hoping that you can help.

06:57:54 Thank you very much.

06:57:56 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you.

06:57:56 And for those who don't know, with mutual aid was, it was

06:58:00 the start of the HMOs.

06:58:04 Way back in the 1900s.

06:58:07 Thank you both very much.

06:58:08 Ms. Mulhern.

06:58:09 >>MARY MULHERN: (off microphone) what are the five?

06:58:15 >> It's something that's very unique to this area, really

06:58:19 the United States.

06:58:20 They were the Cubans, the Spaniards, the Sicilians, the

06:58:23 Romanian Jews, and the Germans, and those all lived

06:58:27 together.

06:58:27 The interesting story that we tell is those all lived

06:58:30 together in this little community and helped Tampa become a

06:58:33 diverse city.

06:58:36 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: And out of that came us.

06:58:38 [ Laughter ]

06:58:40 Thank you very much.

06:58:45 Next, please.

06:58:56 >> Joseph Caetano, Grand Hampton, Tampa, Florida.

06:59:02 It's on the other side of town.

06:59:03 In 2004, Tampa Fire Rescue applied for a federal grant to

06:59:08 leave some money -- to get money to buy audio visual

06:59:11 equipment to have training at each fire station.

06:59:15 And this has never been implemented.

06:59:17 It was a $500 that you grant.

06:59:21 The city had to put up $100 that you and we got 404,000

06:59:26 grant money from the federal government.

06:59:28 And it had never been used for its intended purpose.

06:59:31 The main purpose was to use the equipment for continuing

06:59:34 education.

06:59:35 The various fire stations have to go to 34th street for

06:59:39 their continuing education at a great cost to the

06:59:42 department, rather than staying at the station, and

06:59:47 broadcast the education over the system that was purchased

06:59:50 for its intended purpose.

06:59:52 In 2004 they used 2,741 gallons of gas at a cost of about

07:00:00 1.70 at that time, putting some 13,704 miles on those

07:00:06 trucks, which is not needed.

07:00:08 It's wear and tear.

07:00:09 And the firemen have been saying that they would rather stay

07:00:13 at the fire station, in the event there is a call, they

07:00:17 don't have to rely on another station.

07:00:21 If 20 is out, and 21 is busy, that means they got to come

07:00:26 from station 13, which is Busch, and that's a long response

07:00:30 time.

07:00:30 I know recently there was a fire next door to my house.

07:00:34 21 minutes.

07:00:36 Another fire, 17 minutes.

07:00:38 It's not necessary.

07:00:41 And this stuff was purchased for the specific reason to have

07:00:45 the education take place at each fire station, and it's not

07:00:50 being done.

07:00:51 So to me that's fraud.

07:00:55 You got it with an intended purpose and you are not using

07:00:58 it.

07:00:59 I also want to bring up what Mrs. Montelione talked about,

07:01:02 the recreation facility.

07:01:04 There's some 1500 students that go to that recreation

07:01:08 facility down by freedom high school.

07:01:10 I was there this week and last week.

07:01:14 Not this week.

07:01:14 Last week I was there twice.

07:01:16 The place is inundated with parents waiting for their kids.

07:01:22 There's a two-year wait for a student to get on that program

07:01:26 there.

07:01:27 I talked to one lady.

07:01:28 She was pregnant.

07:01:30 She already put her little girl's name on that wasn't even

07:01:33 born yet.

07:01:35 So that's not right.

07:01:37 Considering the amount of revenue that comes out of New

07:01:40 Tampa, which is about 13% of the total revenue that is

07:01:44 collected from ad valorem tax, I think they deserve that

07:01:47 expansion that's already drawn and ready to go.

07:01:52 And I think it should be built.

07:01:54 Thank you.

07:01:55 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you, Mr. Caetano.

07:01:57 Next, please.

07:01:59 >> My name is Kim Hubbard and I reside at 1001 east 24th

07:02:07 Avenue.

07:02:08 I am here today as a VM Ybor resident as an architect and as

07:02:12 an advocate for historic preservation, specifically as it

07:02:15 pertains to be Cuscaden pool.

07:02:18 As you know, the city spent $2.6 million in federal and

07:02:21 local fund.

07:02:22 Back in 2005.

07:02:23 And within a few months of that completion, the pool had

07:02:27 major leaks, water infiltration problems.

07:02:30 This problem was completely ignored until the pool had to be

07:02:35 closed in 2010.

07:02:36 This is now the fourth summer without a pool for our

07:02:39 community.

07:02:39 Business facilities use our after-school programs.

07:02:42 As you know it's one of three pools currently closed, two

07:02:45 including Cuscaden central Tampa and serve as very high

07:02:50 population of youth that would serve from parks and rec

07:02:53 program, not just seasonal aquatics program but the

07:02:56 year-round after-school and youth programs that were once

07:02:58 held at Cuscaden park.

07:03:01 It's very important to note that Cuscaden repairs were

07:03:05 included as a line item, a possible line item in last year's

07:03:09 budget report under aquatics facilities.

07:03:12 It is not included in the current budget as presented today.

07:03:17 For renovations and repairs to several other parks and

07:03:21 recreation facilities were included and those were not

07:03:23 previously listed in last year's budget report.

07:03:29 The city staff and the mayor have made it a high risk of

07:03:33 repairing a historic above-ground pool.

07:03:36 As a reason to not quickly address these repairs.

07:03:39 I think it's important to note that those were not concerns

07:03:42 when the city decided to fund repairs to Roy Jenkins.

07:03:45 Also an above-ground historic pool but located on Davis

07:03:49 Island.

07:03:50 The administration has also been quoted as expressing

07:03:53 concerns about low usage.

07:03:56 Cuscaden field are rented most evenings, used for ball field

07:04:00 during the summer as well, a dream center and privately

07:04:03 funded middle school Academy Prep are located just AP

07:04:07 stone's throw away from that facility.

07:04:09 Ironically in the last three years our community was asked

07:04:11 to build our own playground, privately funded playground,

07:04:15 not once but twice.

07:04:18 I am confident saying that there is plenty of current use

07:04:21 and community support for this facility.

07:04:23 The association has also applied for CDDB funds, and

07:04:29 residents have local, state and community grant

07:04:32 opportunities, and offered services.

07:04:36 All have gone unanswered.

07:04:37 Finally, as a taxpayer, I can never understand why it's

07:04:41 acceptable to let a historically significant Dante pool fall

07:04:45 into disrepair and immediately upon completion of a major

07:04:48 renovation and then claim tough business decisions as a

07:04:51 reason to leave it unfunded and closed.

07:04:54 It's important to our local youth, it's important to

07:04:57 stakeholders and residents, but is important to long-term

07:05:00 stabilization of Tampa's urban and historic neighborhood.

07:05:03 I would like you to consider funding.

07:05:05 Thank you.

07:05:05 >> Thank you very much, ma'am.

07:05:07 Next, please.

07:05:08 >> My name is Callus Dockeau, 917 East 12th Avenue, and just

07:05:16 like my colleagues before me regarding the Cuscaden pool, I

07:05:22 would like to see it reestablished in any future agenda.

07:05:29 My basically fellows basically addressed Cuscaden pool from

07:05:35 a social perspective bum I would like to talk about it from

07:05:39 a historical perspective. In 2006 I came to Ybor City for

07:05:42 the first time in my whole entire life, and actually fell in

07:05:47 love with this place.

07:05:48 Ever since then, I could not wait to come back down here,

07:05:52 and in 2012, my wife and I had bought a piece of property,

07:05:56 and now reside at the address which I previously mentioned.

07:06:00 There's one thing that's very dear to my heart.

07:06:03 A lot of these old structures, a lot of these old buildings,

07:06:08 something than is near and dear to a lot of members here.

07:06:12 I can tell you the amount of pride, a lot of the local

07:06:16 resident have to say about their city, that's Ybor City, and

07:06:21 Councilman, you mentioned it before about how Ybor City was

07:06:26 they put Tampa on the map.

07:06:29 And even a lot of the members of the Ybor City museum

07:06:32 mentioned the same thing.

07:06:34 But what saddens me is when the structure goes offline --

07:06:39 and I'm talking about when it's no longer on the radar, I

07:06:44 can tell you, from somebody who worked for the government,

07:06:49 once something is no longer in the visible horizon, it goes

07:06:53 away.

07:06:54 Basically in the mind of people who do not know anything

07:06:57 about it.

07:06:58 That brings on neglect, disrepair, and later on, that

07:07:08 subject might be coming up again.

07:07:09 And what I am afraid of is no longer will the discussion be

07:07:13 about restoring the pool, it's going to be a wrecking ball

07:07:16 coming over and to go ahead and make that happen.

07:07:21 So it's easy to dismiss a landmark as another line item

07:07:27 number.

07:07:28 But for many of us who appreciate the historical value of a

07:07:32 structure such as that, we ask you take a look at that.

07:07:36 Because I also restore old cars and old radios.

07:07:39 It's easy to go ahead and find something that's not that

07:07:42 restorable.

07:07:43 You can go ahead, throw it away, put it in the junkyard.

07:07:47 For something as unique as Cuscaden park pool, once that's

07:07:53 gone, you aren't going to be able to call that back.

07:07:55 And that's part of our culture that are I think should be

07:07:58 preserved.

07:08:00 Thanks very much.

07:08:01 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.

07:08:01 Appreciate it.

07:08:02 Next, please.

07:08:03 >> I'm Vivian brown.

07:08:07 Secretary of the VM Ybor neighborhood association.

07:08:09 I reside at 1305 east 18th Avenue.

07:08:12 And I look at the pool every day and it's on my street, the

07:08:16 end of my street.

07:08:17 I actually use the pool when it first opened in 2005.

07:08:21 I wags part of the playground build.

07:08:24 We have been getting people into the neighborhood with

07:08:27 families, with kids.

07:08:29 I brought people to that pee pool when it was open.

07:08:32 I am also very disappointed that it's disappeared from the

07:08:35 budget line item.

07:08:38 Mr. Reddick, I remember you coming into our meeting in

07:08:41 November 2012, and you talked to us about making it a

07:08:46 priority, and we hope that you continue to make it a

07:08:51 priority.

07:08:54 I just want to second everything that Kim headland said.

07:08:58 I think she said everything more eloquently than I can right

07:09:01 now by please put it back in the budget.

07:09:04 At least for the future line item.

07:09:08 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: So you live between Columbus drive and --

07:09:11 >> I live on 18th Avenue, so I look at the republic

07:09:16 de Cuba, and it's the pool right there.

07:09:19 And we have seen more and more people come into that park.

07:09:21 We have more and more traffic all the time coming into that

07:09:24 park.

07:09:25 And like you said, the dream center, the dream center is

07:09:28 there now.

07:09:29 There's lots of stuff going on.

07:09:33 There's a lot more kid activity even in the last few years

07:09:36 in the neighborhood.

07:09:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I wish you could remember the pool in

07:09:41 Cuscaden park like I do.

07:09:44 It's all tore down.

07:09:45 The park that used to be thereby historical is gone.

07:09:49 And there's only two major leaguers.

07:09:52 But one major leaguer was in the Hall of Fame of Tampa.

07:09:55 The first was Al Lopez.

07:09:56 He played at that park.

07:09:58 The next one is going to be a Hall of Famer is Tony la

07:10:01 Russo, and he lived on 12th and Columbus, top of that

07:10:05 building is a garage across from the fire station upstairs.

07:10:09 So I am just --

07:10:11 >> I don't know if you have been around there lately but

07:10:13 there's lot of activity going on there.

07:10:15 And Tim was actually responsible for --

07:10:22 >> I know exactly what you are talking about. Mr. Reddick,

07:10:26 you want the floor?

07:10:27 >>FRANK REDDICK: Let me just respond.

07:10:31 Mr. Cohen and I have been working diligently behind the

07:10:34 scenes trying to get funding for this pool.

07:10:39 And so we are not sitting idly by and not doing anything.

07:10:52 I want to make sure that's clear.

07:10:53 >> I appreciate that H.I guess I'm just confused why it

07:10:57 didn't appear so it doesn't disappear forever completely.

07:11:01 >>FRANK REDDICK: Well, we are going to do the same thing,

07:11:06 disappear.

07:11:07 [ Laughter ] and what I am going to do, under new business,

07:11:10 ask staff to give us a cost analysis for the repair for the

07:11:13 pool.

07:11:18 So hopefully they can give us a cost analysis and we can

07:11:21 determine how we can have those funds allocated to have the

07:11:25 pal done.

07:11:26 So that will be done under new business.

07:11:28 And Mr. Chair, can I ask another question while I am here?

07:11:35 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Certainly.

07:11:35 >>FRANK REDDICK: Ms. Little, you heard from the Ybor City

07:11:40 museum people.

07:11:42 Where is the feasibility or possibility between now and when

07:11:45 we have the final adoption of the budget that funding can be

07:11:48 restored?

07:11:49 >>SONYA LITTLE: We would have to go back to that.

07:11:54 >>FRANK REDDICK: Just do it two days before the final

07:11:58 adoption.

07:12:01 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have Mr. Reddick, Mr. Montelione, Mr.

07:12:05 Cohen, Ms. Mulhern, then Mr. Suarez if he wants the floor.

07:12:09 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Thank you, Mr. Chair.

07:12:11 As you talk about the private funding that you are pursuing

07:12:15 for the Cuscaden pool, there's a lot of parks needs and they

07:12:23 are all over the city.

07:12:24 As we mentioned before we have sidewalk needs all over the

07:12:27 city.

07:12:27 We have stormwater needs all over the city.

07:12:30 And, you know, part of the beauty of a park, and looking for

07:12:37 private investors, private funders, donations, to the

07:12:42 friends of the park is an easier thing than it is getting

07:12:46 people to partner with you to fix stormwater issues.

07:12:50 And in some cases, he's talked about it, been out there to

07:12:56 see it several times.

07:12:57 We have parks that have issues.

07:13:01 And Mr. Rogero is shaking his head because he's seen it too.

07:13:05 We have completes that are -- parks that are completely

07:13:08 underwater.

07:13:08 The park at Forest Hills, the baseball diamond is unusable

07:13:13 certain times during the summer.

07:13:19 There are wetland plants growing in the outfield.

07:13:23 That's a problem.

07:13:25 So one of the suggestions of the citizens advisory committee

07:13:33 about presentation is a strategic plan.

07:13:37 I mean, maybe there is one.

07:13:40 And we just don't know what that is.

07:13:46 Recently, Mike Merrill over at the county asked everyone to

07:13:51 write a business plan.

07:13:52 Mr. Snelling had taken on the idea and had one written for

07:13:57 his own department, because it really does help to have a

07:14:02 clear idea of where you are at and where you are going.

07:14:10 And although we may not, you know, be sitting here

07:14:13 generation after generation -- and I speak for some of us,

07:14:16 maybe not all of us -- but -- [ Laughter ] -- it's something

07:14:27 that we need to do, because Tampa functionality of one of

07:14:32 the parks, a man who was a very important person and

07:14:39 community activist and champion of the area, we named a park

07:14:43 after him.

07:14:43 But the park is underwater most of the time.

07:14:51 Fleece there's playground equipment in the area where the

07:14:55 beverage where you sit at, the picnic table is literally

07:14:58 underwater for months at a time.

07:15:04 And it wasn't until I took Mr. Bayor out there that he got

07:15:07 the fences fixed because could you look at this park and not

07:15:10 figure out how to get in the park because it was fenced

07:15:13 almost all the way around except for a tiny little gate in

07:15:17 the back corner under big trees.

07:15:20 So there are a lot of needs.

07:15:22 And I think that strategic plans would certainly help to

07:15:27 identify some of the needs and start planning a course of

07:15:32 action.

07:15:33 And to rely on, you know, City Council members to go out and

07:15:38 solicit donations to save some of our treasurers like

07:15:42 Cuscaden pool, but, you know, what I'm doing in East Tampa,

07:15:46 with the help of the rotary, installing a dog park in New

07:15:50 Tampa out of donations, it's a good thing that we have

07:15:58 people that are that interested in our city who want to be

07:16:01 involved, but I think we need to have a road map and plan so

07:16:04 we know when we are out asking people to participate

07:16:07 financially and monetarily in our city, that they know that

07:16:11 we are spending their dollars wisely and we have a plan for

07:16:14 their money.

07:16:15 And one other thing I want to get to is, Chief Forward, if

07:16:20 you don't mind, because there was a rather serious

07:16:23 allegation made a moment ago, and if you would please

07:16:27 address the fire station training program?

07:16:32 >> Chief Forward: Sure.

07:16:33 Chief Forward, Tampa fire chief, City of Tampa emergency

07:16:36 manager.

07:16:37 Councilwoman Montelione, with respect to the issues that

07:16:43 Mr. Caetano was addressing concerning the video

07:16:47 teleconferencing package, I am very familiar with that

07:16:50 package.

07:16:51 We actually, I think, did a report in 2004, we did receive

07:16:55 the package.

07:16:56 We have since recognized that the package initially, the way

07:17:02 we purchased it, had some concerns.

07:17:04 We have worked with T&I.

07:17:06 We worked with the city's communications department as well.

07:17:11 And since 2012, and have a direct result of funding sources

07:17:19 that help to enhance the communications package, we have

07:17:24 been able to use that.

07:17:26 In fact, we will have a video teleconferencing program,

07:17:31 training session.

07:17:32 I think it's on the 21st of this month.

07:17:36 We have been ongoing using that video teleconferencing

07:17:39 package on a regular basis.

07:17:41 Understand when it comes to firefighter training, a lot of

07:17:44 the training we do is hands-on training, because it deals

07:17:48 with fire rescue, emergency response, and actual hands-on

07:17:53 work at the training academy.

07:17:56 We have a program in place where we also support any unit

07:18:01 when we move them out of their respective response area, we

07:18:05 have other units to back up and support those areas.

07:18:08 The incident that Mr. Caetano referred to where there was a

07:18:13 delay in a response could have been -- and I'm not sure

07:18:17 exactly what those issues were -- but obviously because we

07:18:22 have capabilities, that's an exorbitant time thatch we

07:18:26 consider most of our time is 8 and a half minutes and

07:18:30 definitely within a ten minute response time.

07:18:32 So not knowing exactly what alarm he's speaking of I can't

07:18:37 speak to those, but I can assure you that training

07:18:39 requirement for Tampa Fire Rescue and our professionals out

07:18:42 in the field that dictate and want, that they have to have a

07:18:45 hands-on training that does not allow us to take those

07:18:48 packages to the agents that are do go to our police training

07:18:51 academy at 113 south 34th street.

07:18:55 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Thank you.

07:18:56 I just wanted to give you the opportunity to respond because

07:18:58 I'm sure you were thinking that you really wanted to.

07:19:02 And if you could maybe get back to us on the response times.

07:19:09 I know when I was visiting station 21 and 22, a call came in

07:19:14 for a structure fire, and they both responded and they were

07:19:21 very sick about it.

07:19:23 >> And obviously I would like to speak with Mr. Caetano, and

07:19:27 if I could get the specific dates on those.

07:19:29 Other than going through all of my runs.

07:19:32 And as you know, Tampa fire rescue runs over 80,000 alarms.

07:19:35 It goes to specific runs that takes some time to get that.

07:19:42 And the video teleconferencing, it is working, and if I can,

07:19:48 my assistant chief, administrative chief, we have a video

07:19:55 teleconferencing --

07:20:00 >> It just -- I guess there was a delay.

07:20:02 I mean, if we purchased it in 2004, and it's eight years

07:20:07 ago, and --

07:20:10 >> We are currently using it.

07:20:12 But we have been using it in functional capacities.

07:20:17 The issue was not of that we weren't using it.

07:20:19 It was that some of the methods that we had expected to use

07:20:24 that were somewhat impeded by the technology and the

07:20:28 infrastructure that we had here in the City of Tampa then

07:20:31 that didn't allow that total functionality.

07:20:33 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Thank you.

07:20:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Cohen?

07:20:39 >>HARRY COHEN: Thank you.

07:20:40 I just would like to speak about Cuscaden pool for just a

07:20:44 moment.

07:20:44 Since Mr. Reddick is going to make a motion at the end of

07:20:48 the meeting, I wanted to make a suggestion regarding some of

07:20:53 the things we might want to learn about when we talk about

07:20:56 Cuscaden pool coming up.

07:20:59 I have been there twice this year.

07:21:01 And it is, for anyone that has not been there, it is one of

07:21:04 just the most spectacular things ever.

07:21:08 And it was built out of red brick. It was built during the

07:21:10 works progress administration. It's an art deco style, and

07:21:14 it looks like it belongs at a resort as opposed to in the

07:21:20 middle of a bustling city.

07:21:22 It is all that much more tragic that we spent millions of

07:21:28 dollars renovating it just a few years ago, only to have it

07:21:31 closed four seasons after it opened.

07:21:35 And up until now, none of us that have asked questions about

07:21:38 it have ever been able to learn exactly what happened that

07:21:42 caused the pool to leak and have to be closed so soon after

07:21:47 it was renovated.

07:21:49 So I would suggest that as part of the discussion, we ask

07:21:52 why it had to be closed originally, and what was done to try

07:21:56 to recoup the money that was spent on it since it wasn't

07:22:00 really that long ago.

07:22:01 That's number one.

07:22:04 Number two, if you go there today, you can see that four

07:22:10 summers of sitting empty is the biggest danger to this pool

07:22:13 ever being able to be fixed, because the longer that we

07:22:17 wait, the more expensive and the more difficult it's going

07:22:20 to be to ultimately repair it.

07:22:23 And one of my concerns is that if we don't do something

07:22:26 soon, we are going to get beyond the pointed of being able

07:22:29 to repair it at all.

07:22:31 And given the money that's been expended there and given the

07:22:35 uses that it could be put to, I think that would really be

07:22:38 tragic.

07:22:39 So not only am I going to support his motion, but I would

07:22:43 hope that it can be expanded to find out whether or not

07:22:47 there's an opportunity for the city to recover any of the

07:22:50 money that's already been spent.

07:22:55 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you, Mr. Cohen.

07:22:56 Ms. Mulhern?

07:22:57 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you H.I want to thank all the people

07:23:00 who came out tonight to talk about their concerns,

07:23:02 especially the Ybor people who came to talk about the pool

07:23:06 and other issues.

07:23:07 And you are so eloquent about our history in the city and

07:23:12 how important it is to preserve it.

07:23:15 And really as one gentleman said, if you don't preserve

07:23:20 those physical structures that are built, and they are gone,

07:23:24 you lose whatever you have in history.

07:23:27 So I'm very supportive of funding, and especially as Mr.

07:23:33 Cohen said, we spent so much money on restoring that pool in

07:23:36 the first place to just, you know, leave it I think is

07:23:41 really fiscally irresponsible.

07:23:43 We need to get it fixed.

07:23:45 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Chairman Suarez?

07:23:47 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Thank you, chair.

07:23:48 I won't reiterate what my colleagues have already said.

07:23:52 I think that sometimes -- and unfortunately in Florida what

07:23:57 has happened is we tend to get rid of those things that were

07:24:00 of historical significance over the course of the last 70

07:24:06 years.

07:24:06 We had a wonderful county courthouse that was torn down in

07:24:12 the 1950s before I was born, that when you look at the

07:24:15 photographs of it and see what type of architecture was, it

07:24:18 was a replica of the university of Tampa.

07:24:22 And it gave a character to our city that was unique

07:24:25 throughout the State of Florida.

07:24:29 In the infinite wisdom of people who owned it -- and I

07:24:33 assume it was the county commission that tore it down, not

07:24:36 some other reason -- but we lose an integral part of our

07:24:40 city.

07:24:41 Cuscaden pool is very much a part of the historical fabric

07:24:46 of the City of Tampa.

07:24:47 Mr. Miranda, the reason why he was asking where one of the

07:24:50 other speakers lived, is that he knows that neighborhood

07:24:53 inside and out.

07:24:55 He has been probably along those streets more than most of

07:24:58 us have been alive.

07:25:00 But I will say -- [ Laughter ] that was a compliment, by the

07:25:03 way.

07:25:06 >>LISA MONTELIONE: At least I'm not the only one taking pot

07:25:09 shots.

07:25:09 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: You mean I'm still alive?

07:25:11 >>MIKE SUAREZ: You are still alive, so far.

07:25:12 But when we see that people like Mr. Miranda, my father, and

07:25:15 a lot of other people that are of his generation, to know

07:25:19 that that historic piece is still around, even though the

07:25:24 ball field are gone, some of the other things, we need to

07:25:29 try to preserve that and find the money for it.

07:25:32 Now, the hard part is finding the money for it.

07:25:34 I applaud Councilman Reddick and Councilman Cohen for trying

07:25:38 to find other alternative means of financing.

07:25:41 But I do think that we need to play a role in this.

07:25:45 When we look at CIP dollars, and CIP dollars get more

07:25:48 complicated than they need to be, but we need to probably

07:25:51 look at how we are going to put that back in the budget,

07:25:54 whether it's a budgeted amount for the next two fiscal years

07:26:02 or some point down the line, I think we need to find out

07:26:05 where those dollars are going to come from. Secondly, about

07:26:07 the budget process, some of the things that we have already

07:26:10 talked about, first of all, I would like to thank our city

07:26:13 administration, Ms. Little, in particular, and all the

07:26:16 people who work in her department for, as always, bringing

07:26:20 not only a budget that's balanced, which of course is

07:26:24 required, but secondly, an explanation as to how things

07:26:28 actually work.

07:26:29 One of the problems that we have as councilmen and

07:26:32 councilwomen is it's very difficult to explain the way

07:26:35 government works most of the time.

07:26:37 And when it comes to public budgeting, it's one of the most

07:26:40 difficult parts of our job, because there are dollars flying

07:26:45 in and out of our covers all the time, and -- coffers all

07:26:52 the time and we aren't always sure where are the money is

07:26:55 going, but having a budget department it makes president

07:26:58 much easier for us as elected officials to know how to

07:27:00 explain it to the public.

07:27:01 So I applaud your efforts, as always.

07:27:04 We didn't get to hear from Dennis.

07:27:06 He has a different role now.

07:27:08 But we hopefully he still knows where everything has been,

07:27:12 too.

07:27:14 And having said all of that, I think that we need to, once

07:27:17 Mr. Reddick entertains his motion, we have to think those

07:27:25 areas in which we may be able to take certain dollars,

07:27:28 especially in our discretionary dollars, to see where we

07:27:32 might be able to help out in terms of the -- and again these

07:27:36 are political decisions.

07:27:38 And when we make political decisions there are going to be

07:27:41 people that heir not going to be happy with what the

07:27:43 decision is.

07:27:44 And I think we all know that, and we all understand that.

07:27:48 But there are some things that are part of the city that is

07:27:51 owned by the city, not in a particular district, not in a

07:27:54 particular neighborhood, not in a particular area of the

07:27:57 city that is unique, that we should not try to preserve.

07:28:03 I thank you, chair, for the time, and thank you, Mr.

07:28:06 Reddick, for bringing this up.

07:28:08 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: In closing this part, all of you, city

07:28:11 employees, also the department heads, and Tampa good

07:28:15 citizens that came out and spoke today.

07:28:17 Are we perfect?

07:28:18 No.

07:28:19 Are we better than most cities?

07:28:21 100% better than most cities.

07:28:23 When you look at cities that heir going under, and in

07:28:25 today's St. Pete, cities like sack remit oh, like Detroit,

07:28:29 cities in trouble -- I just came from south Florida this

07:28:32 weekend, and the cities, they had 50 openings in the fire

07:28:37 department and can't higher because they don't have the

07:28:39 money.

07:28:39 So we are not at risk.

07:28:41 We are doing the best we can.

07:28:43 Money has been spread around.

07:28:44 Maybe not correctly, but without intentions I say not

07:28:50 correctly.

07:28:51 I can say this administration and the past administrations I

07:28:53 have worked with have always had the love of the city first.

07:28:58 And I can tell you if you think things are bad now, at one

07:29:02 time I can tell you that there was about 10 or 12 of these

07:29:06 rec centers that were closed because of the condition that

07:29:10 they were in. And Mayor Greco changed that.

07:29:12 And if you look around, I am going to name two.

07:29:15 There's more than two but I will just say two.

07:29:17 I don't want to hold up the rest of this meeting on all my

07:29:20 speech.

07:29:20 But one is Fred Barksdale center in West Tampa and the other

07:29:24 Al Lopez park, brand new.

07:29:26 And there's others in East Tampa, others in Palmetto Beach,

07:29:30 others in South Tampa, that all were done because he saw the

07:29:33 need.

07:29:34 And like those needs, there's other needs.

07:29:36 Certainly Cuscaden is one of them.

07:29:38 Cuscaden is one of only two pools.

07:29:41 It's above ground, built in the mid 30s.

07:29:47 Jenkins and Cuscaden.

07:29:49 It so happens I learned how to swim in Cuscaden.

07:29:53 It so happened I learned to play ball with some of the twice

07:29:56 that are in the Hall of Fame.

07:29:57 And I'm not.

07:29:59 [ Laughter ] and I get to come here.

07:30:03 And I really like this hall.

07:30:04 But what I am saying is, these things are just happening, of

07:30:09 the lifestyle, like I said earlier.

07:30:11 Those good people that were mentioned, the groups that were

07:30:15 here, and HMOs, and one more thing.

07:30:19 I am going to be fair with everybody.

07:30:22 The lottery.

07:30:22 It was called LOLITA.

07:30:25 But these things are historical about the City of Tampa.

07:30:28 And there's so many things like Cuscaden park.

07:30:31 And weep may not think we were doing it aboveboard to this

07:30:35 council here and we sit together and work for the betterment

07:30:38 of society and I can tell you that we try sometimes, and we

07:30:41 don't do it publicly, but I can tell you that things are

07:30:44 done on one-on-one basis.

07:30:47 And like I said earlier, no mayor that hi ever worked with

07:30:50 has ever done anything intentionally, knowingly, willfully,

07:30:54 to hurt someone.

07:30:55 They have a budget.

07:30:56 And they have to do the best they can with it.

07:30:59 When you look at what we have done, with a minus -- we have

07:31:04 a minus -- we go borrowing money from ourselves in essence.

07:31:08 But thank God we do that because we are boring it at no

07:31:12 interest rate.

07:31:12 We have something going on in this city that is catching on.

07:31:16 And I want to forecast something.

07:31:18 In the next 25 years, I will around -- I don't know about

07:31:22 Suarez -- but I can tell you this are going to have

07:31:25 about 400 that you plus people move into Hillsborough

07:31:29 County, and most of them are coming to urban centers, and

07:31:33 the name you need in the city is continue working on

07:31:37 infrastructure, to continue laying new papers pipes, to

07:31:40 continually restructure, and you are going to have to go to

07:31:43 indirect water sooner or later, so you better start planning

07:31:46 for that indirect water use because it's coming.

07:31:49 It has to come.

07:31:50 And I want to thank again each and every one of you for

07:31:53 taking your time, leaving your family behind, come here tore

07:31:57 speak on what you feel in your heart that the best for your

07:32:00 area, and no one can say anything better than what you good

07:32:03 people did today.

07:32:04 Thank you very much for coming.

07:32:05 And chief, you haven't spoke anything.

07:32:09 Thank you, Chief Castor.

07:32:11 And don't point that finger at me.

07:32:13 You get me nervous.

07:32:14 All right.

07:32:14 We heard from the public.

07:32:16 Council has made certain comments.

07:32:18 I need a motion to close the hearing.

07:32:21 I have a motion by Mr. Cohen.

07:32:22 Second by Mrs. Mulhern on a very close vote with Mr. Suarez.

07:32:32 The hearing is closed on this session Mr. Cohen will now

07:32:35 read the ordinance for first reading.

07:32:38 All in favor of the motion to close, please signify by

07:32:41 saying aye.

07:32:42 Opposed nay.

07:32:42 The ayes have it unanimously.

07:32:44 Mr. Cohen.

07:32:44 >>HARRY COHEN: Move an ordinance for first reading, an

07:32:48 ordinance adopting the budget for the fiscal year beginning

07:32:50 October 1, 2013 and ending September 30, 2014, as presented

07:32:55 by the mayor, providing for the levy as provided by law of a

07:32:59 tax on all taxable property in the City of Tampa and fixing

07:33:02 the millage within said city, making appropriations in

07:33:06 accordance with the provisions of said budget, authorizing

07:33:08 and directing the mayor and city clerk, as the proper

07:33:11 authorities of the City of Tampa, to certify to the property

07:33:15 appraiser of Hillsborough County Florida the millage to be

07:33:18 levied for all purposes to the fiscal year 2014 in the City

07:33:21 of Tampa providing an effective date.

07:33:23 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Second.

07:33:26 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion by Mr. Cohen, a second by

07:33:28 Mr. Suarez.

07:33:29 Further discussion by council members? All in favor of the

07:33:31 motion?

07:33:32 Opposed?

07:33:33 Motion passes unanimously.

07:33:35 Thank you all very much.

07:33:35 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin being absent.

07:33:39 Second reading and adoption will be held on Wednesday,

07:33:42 September 25th, 2013 at 5:01 p.m.

07:33:47 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.

07:33:47 Now we need a vote to adopt the tentative millage rate.

07:33:52 >> (off microphone).

07:34:06 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion to accept the millage

07:34:08 rate by Mr. Reddick.

07:34:09 Seconded by Mr. Cohen.

07:34:11 Further discussion by council members?

07:34:12 All in favor of the motion?

07:34:15 Opposed?

07:34:15 The ayes have it unanimously.

07:34:17 Thank you very much.

07:34:18 Now I need to open the public hearing for capital

07:34:21 improvement budget.

07:34:23 Motion by Mr. Cohen to open that.

07:34:25 Seconded by Mr. Suarez.

07:34:27 Any comments or questions by council members regarding the

07:34:30 capital improvement budget?

07:34:36 I see none at this time.

07:34:37 We go to the comments or questions from the public.

07:34:40 Anyone from the public to come up and speak about the

07:34:42 capital improvement project?

07:34:44 Motion I see no one.

07:34:46 Motion by Mr. Reddick, seconded by Mr. Cohen.

07:34:50 All in favor?

07:34:50 The hearing is now closed on the capital improvement budget.

07:34:56 I need a motion to receive and file all document that were

07:34:59 given today.

07:35:01 I have a motion by Mr. Cohen, seconded by Mr. Suarez to

07:35:04 receive and file all the document.

07:35:05 All in favor?

07:35:07 Opposed?

07:35:07 The ayes have it unanimously.

07:35:08 We go to new business.

07:35:10 Well, Mr. Reddick wanted the floor first. I give it to Mr.

07:35:14 Reddick.

07:35:14 >>FRANK REDDICK: Chair, I am going to make a motion

07:35:18 requesting someone from the administration, the department

07:35:21 of recreation, or the head of administration to come to

07:35:27 council October 3rd, 10 a.m., and give us an update on

07:35:32 what are the reasons for closing Cuscaden park.

07:35:37 Two, want to know what emphasis was made to recover any of

07:35:41 the funds on the repairs previously.

07:35:45 Then, 3, also provide if they can repair the park currently.

07:35:53 >>HARRY COHEN: Second.

07:35:57 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Second by Mr. Cohen.

07:35:58 All in favor of that motion?

07:36:00 Opposed?

07:36:00 The ayes have it unanimously Mr. Suarez?

07:36:03 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Yes, sir.

07:36:04 I have three things here.

07:36:05 First, I need to restate two different motions.

07:36:08 I made a motion back on August 1st.

07:36:12 And I would like to restate that motion adding a

07:36:14 presentation date.

07:36:16 The motion, to request a commendation to fleet maintenance

07:36:22 recognition of earning the blue seal of excellence as

07:36:25 prescribed by the National Institute for Automotive Service

07:36:28 Excellence, and in recognition of this being the

07:36:30 department's third consecutive year of achieving this

07:36:35 status.

07:36:36 I would like to have that presented on October 3rd.

07:36:38 >> Motion on changing of dates by Mr. Suarez on this certain

07:36:43 item, seconded by Mrs. Montelione.

07:36:45 Further discussion by council members? All in favor of the

07:36:46 motion? Opposed?

07:36:47 The ayes have it unanimously.

07:36:49 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Thank you, chair H.I have another

07:36:52 commendation.

07:36:53 I request to have a commendation prepared for the Tampa

07:36:56 water department in recognition of being one of 12 water

07:36:59 utilities in the U.S. to receive recognition by the

07:37:02 partnership for safe water and the American water works

07:37:05 association for exceeding federal drinking water standard to

07:37:09 be presented on October 3rd.

07:37:11 >> Motion by Mr. Suarez.

07:37:13 Seconded by Mr. Cohen on a close vote with Mrs. Montelione.

07:37:17 All in favor?

07:37:18 The ayes have it unanimously.

07:37:20 >>MIKE SUAREZ: I would like to prepare a commendation.

07:37:24 Our City of Tampa transportation division received a

07:37:28 prestigious award from the American public works association

07:37:31 for maintenance of traffic during the 2012 Republican

07:37:34 national convention.

07:37:37 Obviously we all know that was tough and that's to be

07:37:41 presented October 17th.

07:37:42 >> Motion by Mr. Suarez.

07:37:44 Seconded by Mrs. Montelione.

07:37:46 All in favor?

07:37:47 Opposed?

07:37:47 The ayes have it unanimously.

07:37:51 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Ms. Mulhern?

07:37:51 Thank you very much.

07:37:52 Mr. Cohen?

07:37:53 >>HARRY COHEN: No, thank you.

07:37:55 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.

07:37:58 Mrs. Montelione.

07:38:02 [ Laughter ]

07:38:04 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Mr. Reddick knows that look, doesn't?

07:38:06 He we all heard information that we all wanted more

07:38:09 information on or things that we wanted to see come to

07:38:14 fruition or a few times Ms. Little said she would have to

07:38:19 get back to us on those items, and yet the only meetings we

07:38:23 have between this past hearing for -- the first hearing of

07:38:28 the budget and the second one -- yay! -- is only two weeks

07:38:33 because we are having the second reading on the 25th.

07:38:36 So I understand from the clerk that the 12th is going to be

07:38:38 a very full agenda.

07:38:40 Is that correct?

07:38:45 66 items?

07:38:49 The last one was 119.

07:38:51 66 is good.

07:38:54 All right.

07:38:54 So if I would ask for a report back from Ms. Little on the

07:39:00 12th to follow up on the items that we had requested where

07:39:06 she responded she'll have to get back to us on that, then we

07:39:11 can maybe ferret out some more information before we take

07:39:15 the final vote on the budget, and maybe we could find a few

07:39:19 pennies that we can squeeze or few dollars that we can save,

07:39:24 and following up on the recommendations of the citizens

07:39:26 advisory committee.

07:39:29 For instance, the extension of parking boundaries, and times

07:39:34 of collections might be able to give us a few more dollars

07:39:37 in our coffers and support some of the projects than we

07:39:40 talked about.

07:39:40 >>HARRY COHEN: I'm wondering, because it may take a little

07:39:47 time, we do have a CRA meeting on the morning of the

07:39:49 19th and I'm wondering if after that's over, we convene

07:39:54 as council.

07:39:58 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I was considering that as well but 66

07:40:01 items seems like a light day.

07:40:02 If we could have that report then at a special called

07:40:05 meeting on the 19th of September, immediately following

07:40:09 our Community Redevelopment Agency session, I would ask your

07:40:15 support on that.

07:40:16 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion by Mrs. Montelione on the

07:40:20 called meeting.

07:40:20 I have a second by Mr. Cohen on the motion and the called

07:40:23 meeting.

07:40:23 All in favor of that?

07:40:25 Opposed?

07:40:26 The ayes have it unanimously.

07:40:27 Yes, sir.

07:40:27 >>MARTIN SHELBY: For the purposes of the record we'll set

07:40:30 it at 9:00 with the following it will immediately be

07:40:34 followed but a noticed meeting sometime after 9:00.

07:40:37 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Right.

07:40:37 Anything else?

07:40:38 >>LISA MONTELIONE: That is all.

07:40:40 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you all very much.

07:40:41 In closing, thank you each for who you are and what you do

07:40:43 for the city.

07:40:44 In essence, that's what makes us what we are.

07:40:47 City of Tampa is no better or no good other than the hard

07:40:52 work that you put into it.

07:40:54 Thank you very much for attending today.

07:40:55 Anything else before this council meeting?

07:40:57 We stand adjourned.



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