Tampa City Council
Thursday, April 3, 2014
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09:06:33 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Good morning, Council.
09:06:34 Shirley Foxx-Knowles, City Clerk.
09:06:36 I would like to call the meeting to order.
09:06:39 And while we are waiting for the other members, perhaps we
09:06:43 can go ahead on with the invocation and pledge.
09:06:47 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Here.
09:06:53 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Present.
09:06:53 >>FRANK REDDICK: Here.
09:06:55 >>MARY MULHERN: Here.
09:06:56 >>HARRY COHEN: Here.
09:06:59 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Here.
09:06:59 >>FRANK REDDICK: Madam clerk, I got the information of the
09:07:09 person doing the invocation.
09:07:14 It's our pleasure to have with us David Tolliver, an active
09:07:20 member of the Tampa Bay community and a writer/promoter, and
09:07:21 he will lead us in prayer -- invocation and pledge of
09:07:30 >> Thank you all for having me here.
09:07:43 We journey to the new world in search of better days.
09:07:45 And if you were to somehow come I'm sure you would change
09:07:48 your way.
09:07:50 So I have a proposition for you.
09:07:52 I see that owe a lot to the state.
09:08:01 We could use more men like you to try to help us again
09:08:06 trained but you will not be my slaves.
09:08:09 You see, you will by chance work off the debt until the sum
09:08:13 is paid.
09:08:16 The wicked gains they never began with slaves.
09:08:20 They began with the need for free labor, a promise of
09:08:25 something greater than to make you leave the world behind,
09:08:33 that what it takes is your labor for someone else's powers
09:08:37 to provide when you see.
09:08:39 Oftentimes the poor were never properly equipped with those.
09:08:44 And less than high class privilege until the systematic
09:08:50 level were shifted to a very new modern day command to keep
09:08:55 consumers impoverished and ignorance becomes best friends to
09:08:59 governmental dominance, organizations by Equifax or the IRS,
09:09:04 overcrowded corporations, underpaying the plantations, cost
09:09:11 of living always rising, past the price of extinction, but
09:09:16 because we now pay you a minimum wage we will not call you
09:09:19 slaves, you will simply work 40 hours plus until you are in
09:09:22 your grave and in debt, keep you in balls and chain, for the
09:09:27 wicked will for the gains.
09:09:32 Do not led 40 acres and a mule fool you, but 70 times 7 to
09:09:41 forgive, but why give the benefit of the doubt when we gave
09:09:44 them 409 plus years of their forgiveness of 1492.
09:09:50 Trail of tears from railways, railroad workers,
09:09:56 reservations, help you gamble with your lives, in the memory
09:10:01 of the 6-million plus made the dictator look like the very
09:10:04 people he despised, northern, eastern, south, African,
09:10:10 Apartheid, genocide is genocide and that began long ago with
09:10:15 the enslavement.
09:10:17 I'm not trying to say it's a color war.
09:10:19 All I'm trying to say is what is black and white and red all
09:10:24 Sometimes signatures sign away your lives because indenture
09:10:29 is defined takes contract that keeps you on the climb while
09:10:32 digging the very graves beneath you as you rise, and
09:10:37 definitions will prove alternative intentions to the
09:10:39 original provision of slave masters terms and conditions of
09:10:43 contracted living eye.
09:10:48 And so I am indentured barking louder than my bite.
09:10:53 I do not want to say that I am free, just so that I may say
09:10:57 I am free.
09:11:05 If I am enslaved in my own mind.
09:11:07 [ Pledge of Allegiance ]
09:11:25 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: City clerk for the City of Tampa.
09:11:43 We will now conduct the elections for chairman and chairman
09:11:47 pro tem of Tampa City Council.
09:11:50 Here are the election guidelines.
09:11:52 The election of the chairman will be held first.
09:11:56 Nominations do not require a second.
09:12:02 Please wait to be recognized.
09:12:04 I will open the nominations and close them after all
09:12:07 nominations have been made.
09:12:08 Votes will be counted by raising the hand.
09:12:11 The vote will be taken in the order of the nominations
09:12:14 beginning with the first named nominated.
09:12:17 The vote will cease as soon as there is a majority which
09:12:21 requires four votes.
09:12:23 Having said that nominations are now in order for chairman.
09:12:29 Mr. Cohen.
09:12:29 >>HARRY COHEN: I nominate Charlie Miranda.
09:12:34 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Is there another nomination?
09:12:40 >>MARY MULHERN: I nominate Councilman Cohen folks.
09:12:43 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Mr. Cohen has been nominated.
09:12:45 >>HARRY COHEN: Cohen I nominated Charlie Miranda so I would
09:12:51 like to decline.
09:12:52 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Is there another nomination?
09:12:57 >>FRANK REDDICK: Move nominations be closed.
09:13:01 >> You are voting for Mr. Miranda.
09:13:10 Raise your hand.
09:13:13 Thank you.
09:13:14 Mr. Miranda, would you like to say a few words?
09:13:18 >>MARY MULHERN: Just a few?
09:13:20 It's a pleasure to have the opportunity first of all to
09:13:23 serve all the citizens of the City of Tampa for the period
09:13:27 of time and it's a distinct honor to be chairman once again.
09:13:30 I appreciate the confidence of the council, and I appreciate
09:13:34 working with each of the six other members.
09:13:37 Sometimes we differ, but not because we try to stray for
09:13:42 ourselves but to make this country what it is.
09:13:48 You can have differences, but in the end you all unite for
09:13:52 all the citizens.
09:13:54 Thank you very much for the opportunity.
09:13:55 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Congratulations.
09:13:57 Nominations are now in order for chairman pro tem.
09:14:01 Is there a nomination?
09:14:05 >>MARY MULHERN: I nominate Councilwoman Capin.
09:14:08 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Ms. Capin has been nominated.
09:14:15 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I nominate council member Harry Cohen.
09:14:19 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I am going to decline.
09:14:20 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Ms. Capin has declined.
09:14:25 >>MARY MULHERN: Nothing new.
09:14:33 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Is there another nomination?
09:14:35 All in favor of Harry Cohen, would you please raise your
09:14:39 Very good.
09:14:42 Would the chairman pro tem like to being say a few words?
09:14:45 >>HARRY COHEN: Thank you very much.
09:14:46 I appreciate it and I look forward to serving this council,
09:14:50 this wonderful group of individuals for another year.
09:14:53 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Thank you.
09:14:55 Congratulations to the chairman and chairman pro tem.
09:15:08 We will now move on to the election of chairman and vice
09:15:11 chairman of the Community Redevelopment Agency.
09:15:14 The election guidelines are the same.
09:15:17 The election of the chairman will be held first.
09:15:20 Nominations do not require a second.
09:15:22 Please wait to be recognized before nominating a candidate.
09:15:26 I will open the nomination and close them after all
09:15:29 nominations have been made.
09:15:32 Votes will be counted by raising the hand.
09:15:34 The vote will be taken in the order of the nomination
09:15:37 beginning with the first name nominated.
09:15:40 The vote will cease as soon as there is a majority which
09:15:43 requires four votes.
09:15:44 Having said that, nominations are now in order for chairman.
09:15:48 Mr. Miranda.
09:15:49 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I nominate Mr. Frank Reddick.
09:15:55 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Mr. Frank Reddick has been
09:15:57 Is there another nomination?
09:16:01 All in favor of Mr. Frank Reddick, please raise your hand.
09:16:09 Would the chairman of the CRA like to say some words?
09:16:14 >>FRANK REDDICK: Just thank you for giving me another year
09:16:17 to serve as chair of the Community Redevelopment Agency.
09:16:21 I look forward to working with the other six members of
09:16:25 Thank you.
09:16:25 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Thank you.
09:16:28 And congratulations.
09:16:29 Nominations are now in order for vice chairman.
09:16:33 Yes, Ms. Mulhern.
09:16:34 >>MARY MULHERN: I nominate Councilwoman Capin.
09:16:38 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Ms. Capin has been nominated.
09:16:42 Is there another nomination?
09:16:45 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I nominate council member Suarez.
09:16:47 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Mr. Suarez has been nominated.
09:16:51 Is there another nomination?
09:16:53 We are going to close nominations on Ms. Capin and Mr.
09:16:59 All in favor of Ms. Capin, please raise your hand.
09:17:22 Mrs. Capin has been elected as vice chair of the CRA.
09:17:26 [ Laughter ]
09:17:27 Would you like to say a few words?
09:17:33 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Thank you to my colleagues for this
09:17:36 endorsement of my capabilities in this capacity.
09:17:42 Thank you.
09:17:42 >>SHIRLEY FOXX-KNOWLES: Thank you very much.
09:17:45 Congratulations to everyone.
09:17:46 And I would like to turn the meeting back over to the chair.
09:17:50 Mr. Miranda.
09:17:52 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
09:17:54 We go to the ceremonial activities.
09:17:58 And the first one, Mr. Suarez, do you have the first one for
09:18:01 Charles buddy Evans?
09:18:03 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Thank you, chair.
09:18:25 Thank you, colleagues.
09:18:26 It's my pleasure to introduce and honor Mr. Charles buddy
09:18:30 Come on up, Charlie.
09:18:32 And I can call you buddy.
09:18:39 And you call me sir?
09:18:41 I don't know why.
09:18:41 You can call me Mike.
09:18:44 Charles Buddy Evans has served on the City of Tampa for 44
09:18:48 Buddy began his career as a bridge operator 1, department of
09:18:52 public works transportation division on November it 9th,
09:18:56 In 1972 went to work for building maintenance and
09:18:59 maintenance repair 1, and returned to transportation in
09:19:02 19737 as a bridge operator 2.
09:19:04 I'm not really sure what happened.
09:19:07 How did you get to be a 2?
09:19:10 I wasn't sure if you were building bridges and all of a
09:19:13 sudden they thought you were even smarter as a bridge
09:19:17 Building maintenance division rehired buddy in 1981 as a
09:19:23 maintenance repair 2 and returned as an electrical 1.
09:19:28 In 2004 his technical skill sets were recognized and he was
09:19:33 promoted to operations supervisor.
09:19:35 His wide range of experience served him well as I played
09:19:39 major roles in ensuring the maintenance of the five bridges
09:19:43 within the City of Tampa limits and the 36 bridges and three
09:19:47 pedestrian bridges.
09:19:48 He's held in high regard by his colleagues as well as
09:19:51 navigational community.
09:19:55 I have to go over the old swing bridge over on Columbus
09:19:59 drive every single day, and that thing, if that doesn't
09:20:02 work, nobody gets anywhere for a long time.
09:20:04 And I appreciate the work that you have done.
09:20:08 I want to present this commendation from City Council for
09:20:12 your years of service to the city.
09:20:14 Appreciate it, Buddy.
09:20:17 [ Applause ]
09:20:23 >> I would like to thank all the people that believed in me.
09:20:26 That would be gene, Mike KERR and people over the years that
09:20:32 worked with me, and I'm appreciative of that and very
09:20:35 thankful and the grateful for that.
09:20:37 And they were there for me all the way.
09:20:40 I thank all of the city people over the years.
09:20:45 Thank you very much.
09:20:48 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
09:20:49 [ Applause ]
09:20:50 You must be well liked.
09:20:58 You got more people here than we got votes.
09:21:10 Item number 6 will be the keep Tampa Bay beautiful and
09:21:14 there's a presentation.
09:21:20 >> Good morning.
09:21:34 My name is pat DePlasco, a development and community
09:21:37 relations director for your local keep America beautiful
09:21:40 affiliate, keep Tampa Bay beautiful.
09:21:42 On behalf of the staff and Board of Directors, we truly
09:21:46 appreciate this opportunity to stand before you today and
09:21:49 share in the excitement of our 2013 awards and
09:22:00 Keep Tampa Bay beautiful was honored to be recognized as the
09:22:02 best of the best by keep America beautiful as the number one
09:22:06 affiliate in the United States for populations of 200,000
09:22:11 and above.
09:22:12 It's the highest achievement awarded by keep America
09:22:19 That puts us in the same category as Los Angeles,
09:22:21 California, New York City, Indianapolis, Indiana,
09:22:25 Austin-Dallas, Texas, West Palm Beach and Miami, Florida.
09:22:32 The great American clean-up activation award identifies
09:22:36 affiliates that have created outstanding volunteer projects
09:22:39 and act Tufts that focus on improving the community
09:22:44 Keep Tampa Bay beautiful has exhibited continual progress in
09:22:46 our great American clean-up campaign with a 66% increase in
09:22:50 community improvement projects and the 33% increase in
09:22:54 volunteer participation in 2013.
09:23:00 The programs award honors the affiliates that created new
09:23:03 and groundbreaking programs as partnerships to serve as the
09:23:07 mission of keep America beautiful.
09:23:09 Our new Florida learning garden, a project of keep Tampa Bay
09:23:12 beautiful, in partnership with the Florida State fair
09:23:14 authority, is a permanent one-acre interactive educational
09:23:20 From right plant right place to conservation, the garden
09:23:27 educates on sustainable practices utilized in their he oh
09:23:32 own homes and gardens, and beautification projects right
09:23:35 here in the city and the county.
09:23:37 And we harvest -- produce is donated back to the community
09:23:42 in need.
09:23:47 And this is second place award.
09:23:51 Keep Tampa Bay beautiful, our first cigarette litter
09:23:56 prevention program.
09:23:57 We received second place and cash award for providing
09:24:01 receptacles at the park and information on cigarette litter
09:24:04 issues, pocket ashtrays and other educational tools.
09:24:07 Beyond the workout for more receptacles placed this year and
09:24:12 even a first place award in this category next year.
09:24:15 In order to keep America beautiful to maintain their status
09:24:18 of credibility, they hold their a affiliates to a high
09:24:22 standard of mission objectives, so an extensive record
09:24:25 keeping program, program implementation and training.
09:24:29 Keep Tampa Bay beautiful receives the president's circle
09:24:32 award for exemplary performance in obtaining the good
09:24:36 standing criteria.
09:24:38 Keep Tampa Bay beautiful was recognized as the nation's top
09:24:42 affiliate in three separate areas.
09:24:44 This is truly an outstanding achievement for keep Tampa Bay
09:24:48 beautiful 20,000 local volunteers, our Board of Trustees,
09:24:52 and our community partners.
09:24:53 Our efforts would not be at all possible without the support
09:24:57 of our local government.
09:24:59 A heartfelt thank you is extended to you, our City Council,
09:25:03 for your continued support since 1969.
09:25:09 Thank you.
09:25:11 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Now the fun part.
09:25:13 Ms. Mulhern.
09:25:13 >>MARY MULHERN: I just want to get the phone number for you
09:25:17 for all of us council members to put on our phones for
09:25:21 cleaning up illegal dump sites and trash.
09:25:24 Thank you for all that work.
09:25:29 I don't know if you have any motivation since you are
09:25:32 already in first place.
09:25:33 [ Laughter ]
09:25:36 >> Our phone number is 221-8733.
09:25:42 >>MARY MULHERN: 221-8733.
09:25:49 And thank you for the great work you are doing.
09:25:50 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I hesitate to add to the work that you
09:25:56 are already doing, but again in that category where they are
09:26:00 already number one, have there been any consideration or
09:26:03 thought given to not only just cleaning up the areas of dump
09:26:08 sites but planting in those dump sites?
09:26:11 Because sometimes, hopefully, if a place is beautified by
09:26:18 flowers and bushes and trees and maybe a little garden,
09:26:23 that's self-sustaining, waterwise and all of that so there's
09:26:27 not a lot of maintenance, it would prevent dumping from
09:26:30 happening in that site on a repeated basis.
09:26:34 Come to the microphone.
09:26:35 >> This is exactly what we like to do.
09:26:41 And we are working.
09:26:42 We do partner very well with the City of Tampa Parks
09:26:47 And we have also partnered with solid waste.
09:26:49 What's holding us back from doing even more in programming
09:26:53 is we are a nonprofit organization.
09:26:56 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Money.
09:26:56 >> Yes.
09:26:57 I hate to say it that way but it's true.
09:27:00 But we do do the best we can with the resources that we
09:27:03 And, yes, our mission is to not only clean up the area but
09:27:10 to beautify it as well.
09:27:11 We partnered with a number of different organizations to
09:27:14 help restore part of the East Tampa area.
09:27:20 While we went in, in revitalizing the community by
09:27:26 revitalizing homes there, our volunteers improved the curb
09:27:32 So it was a really neat program.
09:27:34 And we don't just want to go there, do a project and leave.
09:27:39 So we encourage our participants or recipients, I should is
09:27:44 say, in the community to get involved with us by adopting
09:27:46 the area, so we have that constant contact.
09:27:51 But yes, to get more people involved would be greatly
09:27:57 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I'll be calling you.
09:27:59 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Obviously, you see what this organization
09:28:16 does for our community.
09:28:17 As you know, every year, great American clean-up is doing
09:28:21 earth day, and as a former worker at the EPA -- believe it
09:28:28 or not I worked at the EPA many years ago -- it's good to
09:28:32 see that we have these nonprofit organizations doing so well
09:28:34 to try to make sure that our community is kept beautiful.
09:28:38 So with that I would like to present our commendation to
09:28:41 keep Tampa Bay beautiful for the great American clean-up day
09:28:45 which is this year, April 12, 2014.
09:28:47 We recognize their dedication and services to the City of
09:28:52 Keep Tampa Bay beautiful is an affiliate of keep America
09:28:56 beautiful and recognized as the number one affiliate in the
09:28:59 U.S. for populations of 200,000 and above.
09:29:01 Keep Tampa Bay beautiful has been successful in educating
09:29:04 and engaging Tampa residents about litter control,
09:29:07 conservation, beautification and waste reduction.
09:29:11 Additionally they have recruited and organized over --
09:29:14 organized over 20,000 local volunteers to provide volunteer
09:29:17 opportunities and develop responsibility and environmental
09:29:21 Keep Tampa Bay beautiful is committed to making a difference
09:29:23 in the Tampa Bay community.
09:29:25 Therefore, by our power as Tampa City Council, proud to
09:29:30 present this commendation to keep Tampa Bay beautiful for
09:29:32 their ongoing effort to improve our beautiful City of Tampa.
09:29:38 [ Applause ]
09:29:59 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: If I had known this, I would have put on
09:30:03 >>MARY MULHERN: Move approval of the minutes.
09:31:01 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Moved by Mrs. Mulhern, seconded by Mrs.
09:31:04 Further discussion by council members?
09:31:07 The minutes of March 20th, 2014.
09:31:10 Am I correct?
09:31:11 All in favor of that motion please indicate by saying aye.
09:31:14 The ayes have it unanimously.
09:31:16 We go to the agenda and the addendum.
09:31:21 As you know the addendum had an item requested by chief of
09:31:24 staff Dennis Rogero to be put on the agenda items.
09:31:29 So when we approve the addendum we plan to put that on the
09:31:35 Motion by Mrs. Montelione.
09:31:37 Seconded by Mr. Suarez for the agenda and the addendum.
09:31:40 All in favor of the motion?
09:31:43 The ayes have it unanimously.
09:31:45 We go to public comments.
09:31:46 Anyone in the audience care to speak for three minutes on
09:31:48 any item on the agenda first or any item off the agenda?
09:31:52 >> Pete Johnson, 510 Harrison street.
09:32:14 Sorry, Charlie, you don't get a copy.
09:32:16 Your wife in the back office already has your copy.
09:32:25 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: My wife? First of all, I never knew I
09:32:30 was married again.
09:32:31 Second of all she's not my wife.
09:32:33 Neither one of us would marry each other.
09:32:37 [ Laughter ]
09:32:39 >> Okay. I'm here to speak on code enforcement as always.
09:32:44 I have included in the package that I gave you -- it's not
09:32:47 in order because I wasn't feeling too good this morning --
09:32:50 but is the list of civil citation cases at the last code
09:32:56 24 out of 116 people showed up.
09:33:02 Less than 25%.
09:33:05 That means we now have about 80 new cases that have to be
09:33:09 reopened for reinspection.
09:33:16 I strongly suggest that perhaps this process is not working.
09:33:23 That's all I can say about that.
09:33:25 The second thing is, if anyone tells me again due process of
09:33:32 law is the reason we can't do stuff, I will totally object,
09:33:39 because the city itself does not follow due process of law
09:33:44 with state statutes and city ordinances.
09:33:49 I am fed up with this excuse.
09:33:54 The another issue is the property at 2914 tenth street.
09:34:03 I have been fighting this since 2010.
09:34:06 This property has seven electrical meters approved by the
09:34:12 City of Tampa in a residential property.
09:34:16 It took me two years to get them removed.
09:34:20 It took me over two years to get the case to a hearing and a
09:34:25 formal decision.
09:34:27 The formal decision and the hearing was never enforced by
09:34:32 the code enforcement department.
09:34:35 We are back at it again.
09:34:38 After talking with Thom Snelling and Gloria last night, they
09:34:42 say it is a code problem.
09:34:45 After talking to Sal, Jerry Williams and the officers, they
09:34:52 say it's a zoning problem.
09:34:55 We pay these people good money.
09:34:58 Why can't we get a decision?
09:35:01 Why can't we enforce our own codes that are made by our
09:35:08 legal department?
09:35:11 I'm sorry.
09:35:12 I'm exasperated.
09:35:14 I am upset and extremely disappointed.
09:35:18 You seem were elected to make these ordinances.
09:35:22 (Bell sounds)
09:35:23 You people are responsible to have them enforced.
09:35:28 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
09:35:30 Next, please.
09:35:31 >> Frank Williams located 1112 east Scott street.
09:35:42 First I want to commend you for such a historical speech and
09:35:52 I thank God for you.
09:35:53 I'm here, and I come here often and you all don't pay me no
09:35:57 attention but I am going to keep coming until you all try to
09:36:01 do the right thing toward me and my church.
09:36:04 You all know that I am located at 1121 east Scott street.
09:36:13 You all let the city put an illegal fence around my church.
09:36:16 You all destroyed my right-of-way.
09:36:18 You all do everything because of the color of my skin.
09:36:23 But I am going to let you all know something.
09:36:26 You all ain't got nothing to do with how I came into this
09:36:30 God blessed me and I thank him for the color of my zin.
09:36:34 I'm not going to berate myself for who I am.
09:36:40 I'm a pastor.
09:36:41 I stand up for the righteousness of all people, old people,
09:36:47 children and all.
09:36:53 If it they come to pastor Williams I am going to stand up
09:36:57 for them the best I can.
09:36:58 Because of the mistreatment here in the United States of
09:37:00 America, it's not right.
09:37:05 And if we don't stand up for ourselves, who is going to
09:37:09 stand up for us?
09:37:10 So I'm a bold figure here.
09:37:14 I do not compromise with the devil.
09:37:17 I believe in God.
09:37:25 Jesus Christ, whether you like it or not.
09:37:27 I don't tell you you can't be an atheist.
09:37:31 And you can't tell me I can't be a Christian.
09:37:35 That's my business.
09:37:36 People got to understand, we are in this thing together.
09:37:39 And if I was to bring up the history, white folks history, I
09:37:47 guarantee you wouldn't want to hear.
09:37:49 And I got history.
09:37:53 I got history from the beginning of time.
09:37:57 And God knows it ain't nothing but the truth.
09:38:05 People, let me tell you all something.
09:38:06 (Bell sounds)
09:38:07 When you go around to school, man killing innocent children
09:38:18 in school, something wrong, and yet you all got the right to
09:38:25 come to my church?
09:38:27 The other day I read in the paper a white man -- I'm going
09:38:30 to call it like it is -- with a pit bull in public, and you
09:38:34 all got a rate to be destroy my church?
09:38:39 Good God almighty, you all got to wake up and wake up fast.
09:38:43 I keep coming to you.
09:38:43 (Bell sounds)
09:38:45 God is coming with judgment.
09:38:48 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Next, please.
09:38:50 Next, please.
09:38:51 >> I'm Ed Tillou, Sulphur Springs.
09:39:03 Start out with what I left off with last time.
09:39:08 Because I have a masters in public health, and I had
09:39:11 epidemiology beaten into me, actually lost a family home.
09:39:19 But the thing is that it's nicotine, and nicotine is a drug.
09:39:25 Nicotine is bad for people, and it is addictive.
09:39:29 So there's no reason that nicotine and me dismal pot be
09:39:39 I don't know why nobody has come up with that.
09:39:43 As I say, wine in the grocery stores, I think that's great,
09:39:48 but worst things need to go elsewhere.
09:39:53 The noise continues to be a problem.
09:39:55 And I don't see this man -- he wasn't a vigilante, but it
09:40:01 was temporary insanity.
09:40:02 And the noise around here, the $150, they are going like
09:40:06 There is no decline in the noise.
09:40:09 90% of which is cars with mufflers.
09:40:11 Even the stereos are loud.
09:40:13 They are driving up and down -- there was never a law
09:40:18 So you have got to get on that.
09:40:23 One problem with the high-end cars.
09:40:25 So maybe they need to increase the volt.
09:40:30 Hybrids are actually 90% of it.
09:40:32 But you can have, for instance, even Lincolns, not that I
09:40:36 think city employees should be driving around in Lincolns.
09:40:39 But finally, these people started analyzing a hybrid.
09:40:44 So I kind of thought sending this stuff about climate change
09:40:48 and the possibilities of extinction.
09:40:53 Every one of you should have something like the volt which
09:40:55 is a hybrid electric vehicle.
09:40:58 Totally electric vehicles are nice.
09:41:01 But, you know, what are they, 15, 25% of the market?
09:41:05 The thing is, you can use solid, if you put those panels
09:41:09 over the parking garages, but the thing is the volt is the
09:41:13 same way.
09:41:14 You can plug in the volt.
09:41:16 That's the benefit of it.
09:41:18 So, anyway, Tampa is close to the water.
09:41:23 And this is the possibility of not doing things like buying
09:41:27 volts and hybrids.
09:41:30 So, anyway, I wanted to talk further about the ferry.
09:41:39 Three people trapped in their cars driving up from Gibsonton
09:41:44 and Apollo Beach, and this is something good to bring those
09:41:48 people to MacDill, whereas there is tremendous need for
09:41:53 a technology corridor because it's going to be -- we have
09:42:00 got to start thinking technology corridor along the north
09:42:03 end of MacDill.
09:42:05 (Bell sounds)
09:42:07 You know, start looking towards that.
09:42:09 So I'll talk further about that next time.
09:42:14 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Next, please.
09:42:19 >> Kimberly overman, on the northeast corner of Seminole
09:42:33 I had the pleasure of serving on the budget finance council,
09:42:36 and also on the land use committee for the Seminole Heights
09:42:40 neighborhood association, which I thought I would let now.
09:42:47 Recently there have been individuals from our community
09:42:50 throughout the entire Heights region that have come to help
09:42:55 explain our concerns regarding the traffic that will be
09:42:59 developed in our community as we have several city, state,
09:43:04 county and federal roads that come through our community and
09:43:09 actually represent an opportunity for growth in our
09:43:11 communities which we are looking forward to seeing.
09:43:14 We anticipate the WalMart will actually bring further
09:43:17 development along Hillsborough Avenue, between 275 and
09:43:21 50th street, which FDOT is currently reviewing, given
09:43:25 the recent fatality on Hillsborough Avenue near 22nd street.
09:43:30 Given the WalMart entrance will be in the middle of a
09:43:34 four-block intersection between two lights, without a
09:43:39 crosswalk, the neighborhood is severely concerned about the
09:43:42 safety of the individuals that will choose not to walk two
09:43:45 blocks to the crosswalk and two blocks back to the beginning
09:43:50 of the building.
09:43:52 When I watch people Jay walk from the backside of City Hall
09:43:56 to the parking lot, without going to the crosswalk, we are
09:44:01 not talking about educating our children, we are talking
09:44:03 about educating our public.
09:44:05 And we also know given to take the easiest route, expecting
09:44:13 people are actually going to go to the crosswalks in front
09:44:16 of that building is going to be a mistake.
09:44:19 We are reaching out to FDOT, and we are reaching out to the
09:44:22 city planning department to have looking for an opportunity
09:44:29 to find solutions for public safety.
09:44:32 With that in mind, many of the intersections along
09:44:35 Hillsborough actually have red light cameras.
09:44:38 Without those cameras, we will see a great deal of danger in
09:44:44 our neighborhood.
09:44:45 And also wide streets.
09:44:46 We understand it's a major thoroughfare to the 275
09:44:52 interstate, and we recognize that it's a major highway.
09:44:56 But we also want you to recognize it's our neighborhood
09:45:00 street, too.
09:45:00 So our residents would like some assistance in helping what
09:45:03 we see as impending problem that could possibly cause some
09:45:08 harm to our residents.
09:45:09 Thank you.
09:45:09 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Mrs. Overman, as vice chair of the MPO I
09:45:15 have been invited to participate in a conversation on
09:45:17 Hillsborough Avenue with the department, the Florida
09:45:19 Department of Transportation, and that will be taking place
09:45:22 next week so I plan on bringing not only the area around the
09:45:28 high school that we recently had a tragedy, but also the
09:45:34 areas all along Hillsborough, because I think what happens,
09:45:38 and what I have been advocating, I have been making lots of
09:45:42 phone calls and having lots of meetings surrounding this, is
09:45:45 we address development one opportunity at a time.
09:45:48 So every time a rezoning or every time a special use or
09:45:53 redevelopment or new development happens, we analyze that in
09:45:57 the context of just that particular property.
09:46:02 What happens in various areas of our city, not just on
09:46:04 Hillsborough but in many other places, is that small
09:46:08 developments -- and oh some don't even need to come to
09:46:11 council, some don't need review, it's just replacement of
09:46:14 one tenant in a building with another, that may be possible
09:46:20 and popular.
09:46:22 So when you have various convergence of all of these things
09:46:25 happening, there is no real review.
09:46:29 So neighborhoods have the impact of all these little
09:46:34 And the benefit of having their neighborhood uplifted, but
09:46:38 traffic is never addressed.
09:46:39 So I'm trying to find solutions to how we can have periodic
09:46:45 reviews of areas that are undergoing intense development
09:46:49 outside of our regular rezoning, or our regular application
09:46:53 process when development happens.
09:46:55 So I'll keep you updated as we go along.
09:46:58 >> Thank you.
09:46:59 We have to plan on attending that workshop.
09:47:02 Thank you very much.
09:47:02 I appreciate it.
09:47:04 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
09:47:04 Next, please.
09:47:05 >> Good morning.
09:47:15 Honorable councilwomen and men, chair Miranda, I'm Carolyn,
09:47:24 west LaSalle street, Tampa, Florida 33607 and president of
09:47:27 the Hillsborough County NAACP, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
09:47:33 Boulevard, 33603.
09:47:39 Whether my timing is appropriate or not because it's before
09:47:41 an item on the agenda I want to speak to item number 8.
09:47:47 I want to first of all thank the council, because for
09:47:52 years -- and I know certainly this year the council has been
09:47:55 dealing with the issues of Jackson house, and the
09:48:03 Hillsborough County branch of NAACP has not been involved.
09:48:06 However, because of all the media attention, we have had a
09:48:12 plethora of phone calls flooding our office, asking us to
09:48:15 please get involved.
09:48:17 Individuals who preferred not to be identified.
09:48:21 We have a housing committee set in.
09:48:24 And I personally have been involved, not as -- with
09:48:29 individuals in the community, and my president has asked me
09:48:34 to sit in.
09:48:34 We voted in February at our Executive Committee meeting to
09:48:43 take on a project to preserve Tampa's history and we decided
09:48:45 to call it a campaign for the historical preservation of the
09:48:48 Jackson house.
09:48:49 We didn't want to do anything until we had all of the
09:48:52 information we needed to move forward and we contacted our
09:48:56 national office to get permission as a board to do this, and
09:49:00 certainly it was extended to us.
09:49:02 We basically had the public records request, we had a
09:49:08 meeting yesterday, and we will have a meeting tonight and
09:49:11 move forward.
09:49:11 And because of your meeting today, we want you to know that
09:49:14 we are involved on it.
09:49:16 We are asking you to give us some time.
09:49:24 $2 million.
09:49:25 We are projecting $3 million to hold onto the historic site
09:49:29 that is actually identified both locally, state and
09:49:32 nationally with the Jackson house.
09:49:34 Our premise is based on Tampa's comprehensive plan that was
09:49:38 passed by the City Council January 29th, 1998.
09:49:43 We have looked at that plan in addition to the architectural
09:49:48 We know exactly what has been done.
09:49:49 We appreciate what you have done.
09:49:51 And we are asking you now to give us the opportunity to move
09:49:55 forward with this.
09:49:58 People of all colors, all nationalities, all ethnicity have
09:50:05 called us and it doesn't pass one day that I go to the
09:50:08 office and I have another pad where someone said we heard
09:50:12 what you guys are doing, we want to come on board.
09:50:14 We are soliciting your support in doing so.
09:50:16 And you can reach us at any time that's necessary.
09:50:21 Thank you very much.
09:50:22 Bell bowl.
09:50:24 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Thank you for coming forward and speaking
09:50:28 eloquently on the Jackson house, and that you received calls
09:50:31 from all people.
09:50:34 And as I said before, when they brought it up, that, yes, it
09:50:39 was in the African-American community, but it is the history
09:50:43 of all of Tampa citizens, and it needs to be looked at very
09:50:49 seriously and kept standing with whatever we have to do it
09:50:57 with, and I appreciate very much you coming forward.
09:51:04 It is part of Tampa's history, primarily African-American
09:51:09 but definitely belongs to all the citizens of Tampa.
09:51:11 So thank you for that.
09:51:12 >> Thank you so very much.
09:51:15 We appreciate your support.
09:51:17 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Reddick and Ms. Mulhern.
09:51:19 >>FRANK REDDICK: How are you doing?
09:51:22 Let me say, I have been working closely with the city
09:51:27 attorney Julia Mandell about the Jackson house and we just
09:51:32 had a meeting the other day pertaining to this.
09:51:35 Let me suggest to you that you meet with Ms. Mandell, our
09:51:42 city attorney.
09:51:43 Show your hand.
09:51:44 Raise your hand.
09:51:45 And because she's working on some positive things.
09:51:50 And I think she is probably willing to meet with you to
09:51:58 share what they are trying to do, and also with the time
09:52:01 factor that you are speaking of.
09:52:03 So I would suggest that before you leave that you goat a
09:52:07 chance to speak with Mrs. Mandell and coordinate a meeting,
09:52:12 because the conversation we have had -- and we have had
09:52:14 several -- things seem to be positive.
09:52:18 >> And I certainly will.
09:52:20 Thank you so much.
09:52:23 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Ms. Mulhern.
09:52:24 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you for all the work you are doing.
09:52:26 And we are all behind you on this.
09:52:28 And I just want to let everyone know on council and also the
09:52:32 people who are trying to restore the Jackson house and other
09:52:37 historic landmarks in Tampa.
09:52:41 You I had visitors here from my hometown from the Detroit
09:52:45 area, family over the weekend.
09:52:47 We went to Ybor.
09:52:49 And we just walked 7th Avenue.
09:52:51 And they couldn't stop talking about how fantastic it was
09:52:55 that we had preserved this history of Tampa.
09:53:00 And I kept hearing the city needs to take care of these
09:53:05 things, the city needs to do this.
09:53:06 So I think we have public support and expectation that city
09:53:14 government really contributes and helps to protect our
09:53:20 historic landmark.
09:53:21 So I just want to encourage the administration, the mayor,
09:53:28 legal department, historic preservation to see what we can
09:53:31 do to contribute to this, because it's really what makes
09:53:35 this a great city to visit.
09:53:37 >> Thank you so very much.
09:53:42 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mrs. Montelione.
09:53:42 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I would like to add to what previous
09:53:45 council members have said.
09:53:47 And the last time that this came up and Linda Saul-Sena was
09:53:51 here, I had mentioned the creation of some kind of rapid
09:53:54 response team, because it's commendable that you have been
09:53:59 hearing and you acknowledged from many members of the
09:54:04 community across diverse backgrounds.
09:54:07 And I think that every time a property comes up and it is in
09:54:13 crisis, we have to reinvent the wheel all over again.
09:54:16 So I would hope that in your plans, as you are forming this
09:54:21 committee, that it continue beyond the Jackson house, and
09:54:25 that we keep these individuals who are engaged now so that
09:54:30 the next time we are faced with this type of situation that
09:54:36 we have people who are ready and able and have a blueprint
09:54:40 and have steps in place and have a plan that can be
09:54:44 duplicated as a template.
09:54:48 And the city play a very big role in that, our historic
09:54:54 preservation department could be maybe the keeper or the
09:54:59 coordinator so that we could move this forward.
09:55:01 And I appreciate the work that you have done because I'm
09:55:04 sure in your capable hands we will see some forward
09:55:09 >> Thank you so much.
09:55:14 We really appreciate it.
09:55:17 We don't want to see this happen again in our community.
09:55:19 We want to stay together.
09:55:21 Thank you.
09:55:22 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Okay.
09:55:22 Any requests from the public for -- are you going to speak,
09:55:32 >> My name is max swirl.
09:55:40 I live in St. Petersburg but as a business owner I lease
09:55:43 space two blocks from here and I drive in Tampa often.
09:55:46 I wanted to speak to you today about issues with what the
09:55:48 mayor and city staff have told you and not told you about
09:55:51 the city's red light camera program.
09:55:54 First, the crash statistics you were presented leave out
09:55:57 hundreds of rear end crashes, the crash drop rate wit is
09:56:03 only about 6%.
09:56:05 Second, Chief Castor's claim that the program will never
09:56:08 cost the city money to run is false.
09:56:11 In the contract the cost neutrality clause only covers ATS's
09:56:16 That's the vendor cost.
09:56:18 Not the administrative cost for police review, city clerk
09:56:21 resources or the hearing officers.
09:56:24 Which most likely will run over $200,000 per year given the
09:56:28 size of the programs.
09:56:31 Third, based upon the contract and the ticketing rate in
09:56:35 January and February as a result of be lengthening lights
09:56:39 the city will lose money on this program this year.
09:56:43 Let me repeat that.
09:56:44 The city will lose money on the red light camera program
09:56:47 this year.
09:56:49 So the mayor's promise of spending 25% of the profits on
09:56:54 spending zero dollars on traffic safety.
09:56:59 Fourth, if your city staff had done their due diligence they
09:57:03 would have looked into other ATS contracts in Florida and
09:57:05 they would have noticed this that communities like Collier
09:57:07 County were getting the same service from the same vendor as
09:57:11 Tampa for only $1500 per camera per month.
09:57:17 That's less than half of what Tampa is paying F.tampa had
09:57:19 that rate there would be profit on this program to spend on
09:57:22 other things this year.
09:57:24 If you insist on continuing with the red light camera
09:57:27 program, please be responsible stewards of taxpayer dollars.
09:57:31 Let this contract expire, negotiate a better rate.
09:57:34 Why leave hundreds of thousands of dollars on the table when
09:57:37 you don't have to?
09:57:38 Thank you.
09:57:39 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
09:57:43 Anyone in the public care for any reconsideration of public
09:57:47 matters that this council passed the prior meeting?
09:57:51 I see in one.
09:57:52 We go to 9:00 staff reports.
09:57:54 We go to item 7, 8, and then we will bring the red light
09:58:01 cameras up.
09:58:02 Item number 7.
09:58:03 The legal department is here.
09:58:05 And discuss the civil citation.
09:58:08 Regarding court proceedings.
09:58:10 >> Mike should be mitt, assistant city attorney, city
09:58:15 attorney's office.
09:58:29 It appears that there were two questions City Council wanted
09:58:32 to address.
09:58:33 One pertaining to liens of the civil citation process, what
09:58:38 could be done after leans, after violators and civil
09:58:43 citation process were found to have violated and the fines
09:58:48 remain out there that the city pursue.
09:58:52 The second issue from my understanding is reducing the
09:58:55 number of failure to appears or no shows at the civil
09:58:59 citation court.
09:59:08 With regards to the first question as I understand it, to
09:59:10 answer it, provide a little bit of background information
09:59:12 about how the civil court process works with the citation.
09:59:17 Presently, through an administrative order, civil citations
09:59:23 are heard in the county court provision courtroom 31 managed
09:59:33 by judge Richard Weis.
09:59:38 The way cases are brought to civil citation at City Council
09:59:43 is based on Jake Slater providing a little bit of
09:59:45 information to you in the preceding month.
09:59:50 Approximately 85% of civil citations are issued by code
09:59:53 enforcement meaning that a notice is given to them.
09:59:58 The property owner is given a period of time to fix the
10:00:01 violation, and according to neighborhood enhancement,
10:00:06 approximately 85% of property owners actually remedy the
10:00:11 violation which they have been noticed for.
10:00:13 That means only 15% actually get cited.
10:00:18 Of those 15%, and what happens is a civil citation is issued
10:00:24 to them, they are given 30 days to pay it.
10:00:26 If the violator does not pay within 30 days they are then
10:00:30 set for court and division chief.
10:00:36 Earlier today, Mr. Johnson spoke to you a little bit about
10:00:42 some statistics.
10:00:46 He stated a concern that we are having issues with no-shows,
10:00:51 and that would mean that the system isn't working,
10:00:55 paraphrasing what he said.
10:00:58 But to fully understand that, you would have to understand
10:01:02 that first off we have this 85% compliance from when we T
10:01:06 notice is given.
10:01:06 Second off, we do have a percentage of people paying within
10:01:09 that 30 days.
10:01:11 Finally, we go to court and now we are getting additional
10:01:14 people responding to court.
10:01:17 Basically, what it comes down to is there might be
10:01:21 approximately 10% all from the inception of the notices
10:01:27 being issued to the very end of the procedure where people
10:01:31 don't show.
10:01:31 Approximately 10% of the people fail to appear, which means
10:01:38 Which means judge Weis looks at judges' role to ensure due
10:01:47 process is done.
10:01:48 He will then ensure that notice was properly provided to the
10:01:51 person, and then make a finding that the person is in fact
10:01:56 in violation if notice was served.
10:02:01 This is in fact what happens after somebody fails to appear.
10:02:13 There will be a nonprevailing party fee assessed of $40 and
10:02:17 filing fee of 10, state assessment of 3, $75 civil penalty
10:02:22 for a total of $130.
10:02:28 Just like all civil citation it is person is given 60 days
10:02:32 to pay whether they showed up or not.
10:02:34 If they don't show up, this gets issued, the $130, given 60
10:02:40 days to pay by the clerk.
10:02:43 What's important is the clerk has again sent notice telling
10:02:50 them that you have failed to pay and you owe this money.
10:02:54 That letter gets sent out by the clerk of the court to all
10:02:57 of these people, this 10% that approximately aren't showing.
10:03:02 The clerk of the court gives them 60 days to pay. If they
10:03:05 fail to pay, what happens is a the matter is turned over to
10:03:09 the collections unit.
10:03:10 The collections unit now does an additional check including
10:03:14 a data search of the person's address.
10:03:16 They find on a certain amount of occasions that the person
10:03:20 may have moved.
10:03:21 They will send it to the last known address according to
10:03:25 The collections unit will tell them that you owe this $130,
10:03:30 and again they give them something called a final notice.
10:03:35 They say in this final notice that basically you have to pay
10:03:38 this $130 immediately, or the matter is being turned over to
10:03:43 a collection agency in which 40% addition will be assessed.
10:03:46 So what's important to understand is we do have a collection
10:03:51 agency built into this process through the clerk's office.
10:03:55 And the clerk's office says, and this is pure approximation
10:04:03 based on the conversations I have had with the collections
10:04:05 unit, about 25% of people pay when they get that final
10:04:09 letter telling them that this is the last chance to pay
10:04:12 before it's turned over to a collection agency.
10:04:16 Then the remaining that don't pay go to this collections
10:04:18 agency who try to recover these costs and get the 40% back.
10:04:26 Anything that collection agency recovers, the money first
10:04:28 goes to the clerk.
10:04:29 So if for some reason the person doesn't pay the full amount
10:04:33 plus the $40% the amount first goes to the clerk and then
10:04:36 the collection agency gets whatever amount is left over,
10:04:45 So I emphasize all that to explain that the system -- it's
10:04:53 more complicated than Mr. Johnson might want to appear.
10:04:56 And the fact is, we do notice these people.
10:05:03 We try, and there's a reason for why we may not get
10:05:09 I'll tell you that I appear in criminal court and this
10:05:13 morning I would say I had out of four cases I had one person
10:05:18 show up.
10:05:20 Three people decided not to appear, habeas are issued and
10:05:24 they are going to jail because of it.
10:05:26 That's clearly a much more severe sanction than a property
10:05:30 owner who has a civil citation facing them.
10:05:36 Why is it that people aren't appearing when they face jail
10:05:39 if they don't appear?
10:05:40 I can't answer that.
10:05:41 But I can tell you that even facing a very severe sanction
10:05:46 such as jail, people still don't necessarily appear at the
10:05:50 So it's not an easy thing to answer.
10:05:52 But I will say we have an very high percentage of our cases
10:05:57 from the very beginning of noticing the violator till the
10:06:01 very end responding to the notices or paying.
10:06:07 And when you add those combined, and you only get about 10%
10:06:10 throughout this entire process who aren't showing, and yet
10:06:14 we are still taking all these additional steps to recover
10:06:18 through the clerk and through collections court, I would
10:06:21 think you would need to factor all of that into
10:06:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have Mrs. Mulhern, Mr. Cohen, and Mr.
10:06:41 >>MARY MULHERN: Of this might be more for the code
10:06:45 enforcement department, but tell me what you can about this
10:06:53 Of the citations that you are seeing, how many, or what
10:06:58 percentage of them are abandoned, or I would say foreclosed
10:07:04 property, or even preforeclosure?
10:07:07 Do you know that?
10:07:09 >> I don't know the actual percentage.
10:07:11 However, I can give you my experience in being there for,
10:07:20 over the last eight months to a year and watching this
10:07:24 A significant number.
10:07:25 Basically, the 85%, if it winds up being that there is a
10:07:30 property owner there and somebody who can work to remedy the
10:07:34 problem, the civil citation problem, which typically is your
10:07:38 high grass or abandoned vehicle type cases, the situation is
10:07:42 remedied within 30 days.
10:07:44 We are now talking about the more difficult 15% of the
10:07:47 people who have not responded.
10:07:49 Of those people, the ones who do show up often will state, I
10:07:57 am in the process of foreclosure.
10:08:02 I found out about this late in the game, even though it was
10:08:05 posted or on the property, I don't drive by the property.
10:08:08 I pretty much walked away from this property.
10:08:10 I thought the bank was taken care of it and I have just
10:08:13 given up on this property.
10:08:14 I already owe a ton of money on it.
10:08:16 And what am I supposed to do now?
10:08:19 And then explain to this person that even though you are in
10:08:23 the process of foreclosure, you are still responsible for
10:08:26 that property in title until title is actually transferred
10:08:30 to the bank.
10:08:31 And we know that's a long process.
10:08:33 And a lot of the people who do show up give that exact same
10:08:39 They then say, well, what should I do?
10:08:43 And essentially the court gives them a chance to find out,
10:08:47 in compliance now, has have the person take care of the
10:08:50 problem now.
10:08:51 If they have the court case, take that into consideration in
10:08:56 assessing the fine.
10:08:57 If they have not taken it, one of their options might be
10:08:59 they might want to continue the case in order for them to go
10:09:03 take care of whatever the situation was now that they know
10:09:06 they are still responsible for the property.
10:09:08 So it's extremely high percentage of people who we are
10:09:12 dealing with, who are dealing with foreclosed issues.
10:09:17 And I would suspect that the 10% who aren't showing up are
10:09:21 people like that who have walked away from the property.
10:09:23 >>MARY MULHERN: But my question, I guess -- so it only
10:09:28 becomes the responsibility of the bank once the property is
10:09:35 So a lot of people are still in their homes.
10:09:41 So do we actually -- looks like maybe Ernie wants to answer
10:09:45 Are we issuing citations to vacant property?
10:09:52 >> Are we issuing citations?
10:09:57 >> So that would be my question.
10:09:58 Because it seems that properties that are owned by the bank,
10:10:00 the bank can afford to maintain them and to pay the fees.
10:10:07 You know, I'm wondering, do you see those come up?
10:10:09 Do you see the banks being cited on a foreclosed property?
10:10:12 And, if so, are they paying?
10:10:15 Are they showing up?
10:10:16 >> I can't tell you how many banks pay because they may pay
10:10:24 before they get to court and I don't know that.
10:10:26 However, there are banks listed as violators, and every
10:10:33 docket that we hold which is once a month, and the bank
10:10:39 usually, I will say, and are found in violations.
10:10:44 There are sometimes when the bank sends a representative,
10:10:47 pretty manager, when they find out about it and they take
10:10:52 care of it.
10:10:52 I think in more discussing it with a property manager, a lot
10:10:56 of times what I found out is the bank is still figuring -- I
10:11:02 mean, they have a lot going on there.
10:11:04 They are not a rapid response.
10:11:06 So if they find out that they need to do something in a
10:11:08 quick period of time, banks don't really seem to be set up
10:11:13 in this system, that they can do something quickly.
10:11:16 We had a cool situation once where we were dealing with the
10:11:20 And what the bank did was they had hired the property
10:11:23 manager to take care of it.
10:11:24 The property manager had to submit the plan to get the pool
10:11:30 cleaned and brought up to code, and what eventually happened
10:11:35 is they couldn't get the approval from the bank quick
10:11:39 And eventually, the bank actually just withdrew its notice,
10:11:44 and what happens in that issue will also happen a lot,
10:11:47 because the bank will file a lis pendens and go in and
10:11:51 evaluate the whole property.
10:11:53 And I have seen banks then withdraw the lis pendens, and say
10:12:01 what do you mean?
10:12:02 Not only do I own the property, and now you are telling me
10:12:05 the bank is not even proceeding forward?
10:12:07 So now can't even deal with the bank in that situation.
10:12:21 >>MARY MULHERN: So are the banks getting extensions when
10:12:23 they tell you it's not -- I mean, don't they have to pay?
10:12:29 That's the whole points of a civil citation, was if you
10:12:32 weren't maintaining it by a certain date you have to pay.
10:12:35 >>JULIA MANDELL: City attorney.
10:12:44 I think you are highlighting one of the problems who owns
10:12:48 the property from the property owner who walked away from
10:12:50 the property to a bank.
10:12:52 And you have a legal process that has to occur prior to the
10:12:57 bank actually taking title back to the property.
10:12:59 Just because somebody starts paying doesn't mean they --
10:13:02 stops paying doesn't mean they don't still own the property.
10:13:05 And this kind of shell game is occurring which the bank will
10:13:08 go ahead, start a proceeding, realize the property isn't
10:13:11 worth it and pull back.
10:13:12 And so we can do anything legally in our power, and we are
10:13:25 getting a very high compliance rate, but we still have that
10:13:28 10%, maybe a little bit less when you consider the 25%
10:13:31 that's paying in the collections.
10:13:33 But to capture every property with the shell game going on?
10:13:40 Probably not.
10:13:41 But the final line is this is a to the most extent working,
10:13:47 and we are reevaluating how these pools are working.
10:13:52 But there's one thing that the City of Tampa has no control
10:13:54 over and that's the judicial system as it relates to the
10:13:57 foreclosure process.
10:13:59 And even as we put things in place, we are still like
10:14:02 everybody else having to go back and forth trying to figure
10:14:04 out who is the responsible party.
10:14:14 So I have had some opportunities to deal with this on the
10:14:16 Code Enforcement Board or special magistrate side, and this
10:14:20 is a tremendous undertaking, and it really comes together in
10:14:23 a way that I think is doing a lot of good but at the same
10:14:27 time there are things that no matter what we do, we simply
10:14:30 don't have control over.
10:14:31 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay.
10:14:33 I guess I just want to make sure, you know, that's somewhat
10:14:38 reassuring, but on the other hand for the percentage of
10:14:40 times that the bank does show up, I just hope we are
10:14:46 collecting and not give them another chance.
10:14:52 I mean, we are talking about the difference between people
10:14:55 who are, you know, on the fence about having to leave
10:15:00 because they can't afford to pay for their underwater
10:15:03 houses, much less, you know, do the upkeep, and the banks,
10:15:09 which are, you know, not profiting necessarily but
10:15:14 eventually probably, and they should be want to hold them
10:15:19 responsible as much as we can.
10:15:20 But it sounds like, yeah, you are doing what you can.
10:15:23 But I would like to really hear that when they do, at least,
10:15:26 show up, they are not getting any kind of -- getting away
10:15:33 with that and they are paying their fines.
10:15:37 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Reddick, Mr. Cohen, Mrs. Montelione
10:15:39 in, that order.
10:15:40 >>FRANK REDDICK: Thank you, Mr. Chair.
10:15:42 Let me start off by asking you a question, and that is be,
10:15:47 is it possible for the city to meet with the judicial court
10:15:53 to explain these concerns that you have pertaining to the
10:15:59 Or have you even attempted to meet with the court to express
10:16:03 your concerns about the banks?
10:16:05 Because it seems like the problem is with the banks.
10:16:07 >> I did speak with Judge Weis regarding the fact that this
10:16:18 agenda item was on here today.
10:16:21 However, we both came to a realization and conclusion that
10:16:28 it's a little difficult to necessarily address particulars
10:16:33 of this agenda item with him, because he has certain ethics
10:16:41 to follow.
10:16:42 He must appear impartial and neutral and detached.
10:16:45 And that's his role.
10:16:47 And so he addresses matters that are in front of him and
10:16:51 cases that are brought in front of him.
10:16:54 And so it may not be appropriate for us to get into details
10:17:01 of what we would get opinions or advice from him.
10:17:06 >>FRANK REDDICK: Well, we have a court administrator,
10:17:14 >> Correct.
10:17:16 >>FRANK REDDICK: Have you attempted to meet with the court
10:17:18 administrator and relate it back to the judge?
10:17:24 >> If I understand, I have met with the collections -- the
10:17:30 director of the collections unit.
10:17:31 I think I can set up additional meetings with the director
10:17:38 of collections unit and try to establish that there is
10:17:42 additional things that we can do to help collect these
10:17:48 things, these fines that are outstanding.
10:17:51 But as I have been learning, every month there is a
10:17:57 spreadsheet prepared.
10:18:00 When they collect money for the court system -- because they
10:18:03 use the collections unit not only for felony, for
10:18:05 misdemeanors, for civil, all traffic infractions and for
10:18:09 traffic issues.
10:18:10 And this is a process that the clerk uses to try to collect
10:18:13 their money.
10:18:15 We are also included in that.
10:18:17 So we don't need to go and hire an outside collections unit
10:18:21 for that reason.
10:18:22 But a monthly report is generated on what gets collected
10:18:30 through the collections process, and that report, I am going
10:18:36 to review and look over and see if there is anything we can
10:18:40 do to increase collections in this area.
10:18:43 >>FRANK REDDICK: All right.
10:18:47 Let me just finalize this by saying, when I look at the
10:18:52 report from 10-13 and 11-13, I see where 40% paid.
10:19:01 I see where 108 citations issue and only -- and had 64
10:19:09 no-shows in October 2013.
10:19:12 Now, in November 2013, you had 99 citations and 63 no-shows.
10:19:19 And from my understanding, the majority of these no-shows, I
10:19:24 think you admitted that the banks don't show up.
10:19:28 Is it possible these foreclosed projects are, is it possible
10:19:36 that the courts will place a lien on those properties?
10:19:41 >> And I guess I really didn't get into that as much.
10:19:50 It is possible that a lien could be placed on the property.
10:19:55 The question then becomes what type of lien and what
10:19:58 priority will it be given?
10:19:59 And that's something that other cities have been looking
10:20:04 A lot of cities, from what quick review I was able to look
10:20:10 at, a lot of cities are considering whether they should use
10:20:14 a collection or whether they should try to make a special
10:20:21 assessment through a non-ad valorem assessment.
10:20:26 And what we have seen is that we are already using this
10:20:31 collections process.
10:20:34 And it is possible that we could consider looking at this as
10:20:39 a special assessment.
10:20:40 However, there's a lot of legal issues that would need to go
10:20:45 into that analysis that I would need to get back with you
10:20:49 >>FRANK REDDICK: All right.
10:20:51 And I hope the legal department will look at pursuing that
10:20:58 avenue, because it seems to me that this should need to be
10:21:04 And you have the moms and pops showing up, tough senior
10:21:09 citizens showing up, they are afraid to death they are going
10:21:11 to lose their properties and they are going down paying it.
10:21:14 But it's these banks that are not doing it.
10:21:17 So it seems to me we should be able to utilize every Avenue
10:21:24 we might have, and if you have got to go through the process
10:21:30 with the ad valorem assessment, those options should be made
10:21:36 Because, I mean, this has to be tightened up.
10:21:42 There are too many people not showing up, and it's mostly
10:21:44 the banks.
10:21:48 And they can make excuse about the property manager, and
10:21:52 they tell them to do this or tell them to do that.
10:21:55 But these excuses are going on too much.
10:21:58 I hope that some consideration be given towards assessing on
10:22:07 these banks and find a way to tighten up the ship against
10:22:12 these banks.
10:22:13 And I am going to ask that you report back to us on what
10:22:18 have you determined based on your evaluation or how we can
10:22:23 tighten the ship, against the banks.
10:22:29 So what you feel comfortable for return date that is
10:22:35 acceptable to me.
10:22:36 >>HARRY COHEN: (off microphone).
10:22:57 >> I have Mr. Cohen and Mrs. Montelione.
10:22:59 >>HARRY COHEN: I wanted to say to Mr. Schmitt you have done
10:23:03 an excellent job.
10:23:04 I know from my own experience of explaining how the process
10:23:07 works, and I would like to just add a little bit from just
10:23:10 my own knowledge and experience, working in the court system
10:23:14 a little bit of background that might shed a little bit of
10:23:18 light on a few of these issues.
10:23:21 First of all, just to clarify on the 40% issue, the
10:23:27 collection agency does not get their 40% until everyone else
10:23:31 has been paid.
10:23:32 So that includes not just the city but also the court costs
10:23:36 and the clerk and all the different assessments that come
10:23:38 out of the money.
10:23:41 In some areas of collection, the rates are lower than the
10:23:48 In felony cases, for example, there are like under 10%
10:23:52 because a lot of the people are incarcerated, a lot of the
10:23:55 people have very, very large fines.
10:23:57 Where the courts and collections officials are very
10:24:02 effective at collecting is in traffic, because they have
10:24:10 they are able to suspend people's driver's licenses when
10:24:12 they don't pay so as a result those people when they get
10:24:14 that notice they go in and try to do something about it
10:24:18 It would be up to the legislature to do something like that.
10:24:22 The problem is there's no nexus between the driver's license
10:24:27 and the problem on the property.
10:24:29 So the next best thing, as Mr. Reddick was asking for, would
10:24:34 be to see if we could attach something to the property so
10:24:38 that during the period before the banks actually take
10:24:42 possession, we could be collect however much money is spent
10:24:47 to do the maintenance in lieu of the people who have either
10:24:51 abandoned or stopped working on the properties.
10:24:54 And my understanding on May 1st we were going to talk
10:24:58 about whether or not the city's hard costs could be made
10:25:01 into a lien that could be actually attached to the property
10:25:05 so that it would get cleared as soon as the property changed
10:25:10 hands, as soon as the banks officially purchased it.
10:25:15 So if we need to add some things to that, that's already
10:25:19 coming back, I think that would be helpful.
10:25:23 But I think that we are already moving in that direction.
10:25:27 In terms of the question that Councilman Reddick asked about
10:25:30 the judiciary, their point of view -- and I don't want to
10:25:34 speak for them, but if I could summarize what I think the
10:25:39 court administrator would say is that they are completely
10:25:44 inundated by just the shear number of foreclosures that have
10:25:47 flooded into their system and they don't have the judicial
10:25:50 resources to even deal with that, so their attention is then
10:25:53 to set up these special, you know, foreclosure dockets where
10:25:58 they bring in senior judges and try to move through as many
10:26:02 cases as they can.
10:26:03 But for the last couple of years, they have had a huge
10:26:06 backlog, and they have been fighting for funding to try to
10:26:09 deal with it, and every year they go up to the legislature
10:26:12 and try to get a little extra money to try to see if they
10:26:15 can get a handle on these cases.
10:26:18 So that would just be sort of my sense of what the status
10:26:26 quo is.
10:26:28 But the real question that this gets back to is what could
10:26:32 we do that would be the equivalent of suspending a driver's
10:26:36 license for a traffic infraction to a property?
10:26:41 Because unless -- you know, the problem with the collection
10:26:44 agency is that their only real stick is to ruin the person's
10:26:51 credit rating.
10:26:52 And for most of the people that would be in this situation,
10:26:57 they are far beyond that point so that threat is not going
10:27:00 to cause them to necessarily run in and pay the bill.
10:27:03 So that's just a couple of comments on the topic.
10:27:09 And again, I don't know who is coming back on May 1st,
10:27:13 but at this point only our staff report scheduled for that
10:27:21 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Ms. Montelione?
10:27:22 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Thank you, sir.
10:27:23 Yes, I hope that when we hear that item on the first part of
10:27:29 the presentation, the research you mentioned, other cities
10:27:32 are using the hard costs, and if I recall it we have been
10:27:40 looking for a remedy for a long time.
10:27:44 It's been several months.
10:27:45 And I'm curious to know if any of the cities that are
10:27:50 already assessing hard cost liens on the property are
10:27:53 located within the State of Florida.
10:27:55 Because for us, as you well know and everybody in the legal
10:27:58 department up here knows, in the State of Florida, our land
10:28:03 use rights and property rights are highly protected in the
10:28:09 State of Florida.
10:28:09 So maybe looking at what other states are doing may not
10:28:14 necessarily translate here because our state law is so
10:28:17 different in this regard.
10:28:19 So I would be curious and hope that part of the presentation
10:28:23 on May 1st would tell us if any other cities or counties
10:28:27 in the State of Florida are utilizing hard cost liens.
10:28:31 Now, the concern that I have -- well, there's a few -- when
10:28:36 we talk about failure of notice to appear and warrants for
10:28:42 arrest being issued by the court, it relates to something
10:28:47 else you said where people who are going through the
10:28:51 foreclosure of their property and receive a lis pendens
10:28:54 don't realize that they are still responsible for that
10:28:58 They are under the impression that the bank, once they get
10:29:00 that notice of foreclosure, that the bank is going to
10:29:03 protect that asset because it's of no use to the bank, as
10:29:08 you said, they are sometimes withdrawing lis pendens.
10:29:13 If that property deteriorates beyond what the value is.
10:29:16 So it seems like we are caught in a catch-22, and the people
10:29:20 who are really suffering are those who are in the
10:29:26 If they had a job and they were making money and they had
10:29:29 the means, they wouldn't be in foreclosure in the first
10:29:32 So now we are adding insult to injury by saying, even though
10:29:36 you can't afford this property and you have to move your
10:29:38 family out of that house, you are still responsible for the
10:29:42 And if you don't keep up, the upkeep of that property, and
10:29:46 you don't show up to court, we are going to send you to
10:29:50 So go ahead.
10:29:52 >> And I'm sorry, I didn't explain that appropriately.
10:29:56 >> Good.
10:29:58 Because I hope that's not happening.
10:29:59 >> No, that's not happening.
10:30:00 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I'm very relieved.
10:30:04 >> And that's my mistake when I use that analogy.
10:30:07 I was actually talking about cases that refer to county
10:30:09 criminal court.
10:30:10 This is county civil court.
10:30:11 We do not issue habeases and I don't know of any authority
10:30:18 that would allow us to.
10:30:20 >> Good.
10:30:21 I feel much better and I'm sure the general public feels
10:30:23 much better now that you clarified that.
10:30:25 And I want to talk a little bit since that's been addressed,
10:30:29 and I can breathe easier now.
10:30:32 The issue of, again, suspending a driver's license, how does
10:30:37 that affect what seems to be, as Mr. Reddick pointed out,
10:30:42 that most of the cases are banks?
10:30:44 You can't suspend the driver's license of a bank.
10:30:47 So is that not -- do you want to address that?
10:30:55 >> That's how traffic collections are enforced.
10:31:01 In other words, they have a stick.
10:31:04 Collection rates go way up because they are able to do that.
10:31:06 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I understand that.
10:31:08 But if most of our cases are, again, banks, that in and of
10:31:12 itself isn't going to help.
10:31:13 >>HARRY COHEN: The nexus between the land and the driver's
10:31:19 That's what allows be us.
10:31:22 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I get that.
10:31:22 >> We cannot currently suspend the driver's licenses.
10:31:29 And I guess the state is not going to suspend the driver's
10:31:32 license because of the outstanding cases.
10:31:37 So that means likewise we can't do anything additional to
10:31:42 But just to clarify.
10:31:44 I don't think the majority, if there was an impression that
10:31:47 the majority of our cases are brought against banks, that's
10:31:50 really not true.
10:31:53 When you are looking at the ones that come to the court for
10:31:56 the violations, I can't tell you the percentage that is
10:31:59 against banks versus the homeowners.
10:32:03 >> Maybe on May 1st we can get that number.
10:32:06 >> We can try to get that number on May 1st, sure, and
10:32:10 look into the percentages of the cases brought for violation
10:32:13 hearings are against banks versus the property owners.
10:32:22 And sometimes we bring both.
10:32:24 Sometimes citations might get issued to both for the same
10:32:28 piece of property as the bank and the property owner.
10:32:32 There are requirements under our code of foreclosure
10:32:36 registry so they are if they are in violation of foreclosure
10:32:40 registry violations they might be brought against the bank
10:32:42 for that reason.
10:32:43 >> So I have a suggestion and maybe we need to approach this
10:32:47 from a different angle.
10:32:50 If what I heard you say before was that the property
10:32:54 management companies who are hired by the banks to maintain
10:32:58 the properties after they have already taken be deed, so
10:33:02 this would be after the foreclosure process has been
10:33:05 completed, that the property management companies are having
10:33:10 difficulty getting approval from the banks to go ahead and
10:33:13 spend the extra money to keep this property well kept and
10:33:20 out of violation.
10:33:22 Or to correct violations that it already has.
10:33:25 So perhaps from a different angle, we need to work the W the
10:33:29 property management companies to help them be successful.
10:33:33 It does us no good to sit back and say, well, property
10:33:39 management company, you figure out your relationship with
10:33:42 the bank, and you try and get this corrected, because who
10:33:46 suffers are the people in the neighborhood while this
10:33:49 property is going -- is deteriorating further.
10:33:55 So us spending time for you to in court, the court spending
10:34:00 time for the judge and all the fees and the costs associated
10:34:05 with that, I think -- let me put it another way.
10:34:10 It would be more economical for us to find a way to work
10:34:12 with the property management company, and address the
10:34:15 problem before we have to expend attorney time for the city
10:34:20 attorney's office and court costs from the clerk's office.
10:34:25 So perhaps there is some strategies that are out there.
10:34:30 Perhaps maybe the association of realtors, the greater
10:34:33 association of realtors can help us out with maybe, you
10:34:35 know, some ideas on getting the property management
10:34:43 companies the help they need to be successful.
10:34:46 And although it seems like, you know, why should we help
10:34:50 them, because they are making money off of contracts with
10:34:53 the banks, to me, it would be an outside-the-box, more
10:35:01 practical and economical way to approach the problem than to
10:35:05 be hands off and spend the money in other places.
10:35:12 So it's just something I want to throw out there.
10:35:16 And everything else has been addressed.
10:35:18 I don't know if you want to add that to the motion for May
10:35:21 1st, the couple of things that I mentioned, oh are
10:35:24 satisfied with just taking the motion.
10:35:31 I was talking about having the number of foreclosed
10:35:33 properties being brought before the court or civil citation
10:35:39 versus the number of individuals.
10:35:40 >>FRANK REDDICK: Oh, yes, that is fine.
10:35:43 And at the may 1st date it's going to be discussed, and
10:35:51 I move that motion.
10:35:52 >> And I'll second.
10:35:55 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion on the floor but before I
10:35:56 take a motion on the floor with a second by Mrs. Montelione,
10:35:59 motion made by Mr. Reddick, Mrs. Mulhern.
10:36:06 >>MARY MULHERN: Let me ask my questions first and then
10:36:09 maybe asking for just a small amendment to that.
10:36:15 I guess it was last year, I thought this was longer ago than
10:36:18 that, but last year, I met with legal and with code
10:36:28 I can't believe it was last year, but with the previous city
10:36:32 attorney, Mr. Shimberg, before Mrs. Mandell took over; to
10:36:39 ask -- and I am going to send a copy of this to council, to
10:36:45 ask if anybody the city could adopt an ordinance of some
10:36:51 other cities around the country -- and I don't know but I
10:36:54 will find out before May 1st whether there are cities in
10:36:57 Florida doing this -- but this was back in -- actually, this
10:37:02 was back in 2012.
10:37:03 I must have put the wrong date on it.
10:37:05 But springfield, Massachusetts passed an ordinance which was
10:37:11 upheld in federal court, which I thought, you know, may mean
10:37:14 that we should be able to do something here in Florida that
10:37:18 requires owners of foreclosed properties to maintain them
10:37:22 and to post a $10,000 cash bond with the city to cover the
10:37:27 cost of maintenance should the owners fail to maintain.
10:37:30 Now this is interesting since it was a couple years ago.
10:37:34 We are going to find out.
10:37:35 I'll find out between now and May 1st whether there are
10:37:38 cities in Florida, whether they are continuing with this and
10:37:41 whether it's working.
10:37:44 And I think as Councilman Cohen said, we need a stick, and
10:37:48 posting a bond would certainly be a stick.
10:37:50 So I am going to look into that, and would ask that legal
10:37:55 also look into it and I'll share with you anything I find
10:37:59 before that workshop.
10:38:04 There were a couple other things I was going to say.
10:38:17 The other thought I had -- and I don't know if this is the
10:38:20 same thing as placing a lien or just a difference in
10:38:23 wording, but I think you mentioned assessment, which would
10:38:27 be, I think, another option.
10:38:30 And it seems that -- I don't know, this isn't really a
10:38:34 stick, but it would be a way to make sure that at least once
10:38:39 a year if at the time that properties have assessments for
10:38:43 the property tax bills yearly, that whatever costs we have
10:38:47 incurred that haven't been paid be added to their property
10:38:50 tax bills.
10:38:50 >> I think that's what we are talking about.
10:38:53 >> That's the same thing.
10:38:56 And, okay, so I want to add -- I want to add to Councilman
10:39:04 Reddick's motion and also I want to make a separate motion
10:39:07 for council -- that in addition to reporting to us the
10:39:11 number of foreclosures, I think we want to know the number
10:39:16 of foreclosures we have in the city, the number of
10:39:21 foreclosed properties that have citations, and also the
10:39:28 percentage of payments on those citations.
10:39:33 So if you could give us your best --
10:39:38 >> Wasn't there also a question of what percentage the bank
10:39:41 owned versus individuals?
10:39:43 >>MARY MULHERN: And that, too.
10:39:44 So that's four things that we want to hear about, the
10:39:46 foreclosed properties.
10:39:49 And then I think what we need to do is we need to be
10:39:58 lobbying the state as Mr. Cohen pointed out, to get the
10:40:04 foreclosure courts to be staffed and funded.
10:40:09 And I think that every city and county in the country needs
10:40:14 to have this done.
10:40:15 So I think if council could maybe draft a letter to our
10:40:21 representatives in Tallahassee, and the governor, asking
10:40:26 that we fund the courts, the foreclosure courts.
10:40:30 >>HARRY COHEN: May I make a suggestion?
10:40:33 If we could hold off on.
10:40:35 That let's get some information on what actually is going on
10:40:38 in this legislative session, vis-a-vis the courts and their
10:40:42 And I can find that out for you very quickly.
10:40:45 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay.
10:40:46 As long as they are not done with their session before we
10:40:48 send them a letter.
10:40:50 That's it for me.
10:40:52 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I go back to the motion.
10:40:53 Ms. Capin?
10:40:56 >>YVONNE CAPIN: You know, when we ask about how many
10:40:58 foreclosures, there's a difference between a foreclosure and
10:41:01 being foreclosed on.
10:41:05 The person that lived in the house still owns the house
10:41:09 until it is foreclosed.
10:41:12 And it seems like that term has been used intermittently.
10:41:20 And the other thing that Mr. Slater told us was that there
10:41:23 was 7,000 foreclosures in the city.
10:41:25 Now that means if there's 7,000 foreclosures, those are
10:41:29 properties that have been foreclosed on.
10:41:32 And that's when the ownership changes hands.
10:41:35 Is at that point a foreclosure.
10:41:38 Is that right?
10:41:38 >>ERNEST MUELLER: First I want to get some clarification on
10:41:45 As you have identified.
10:41:47 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I need your name north record.
10:41:48 >> Ernest Mueller, assistant city attorney.
10:41:53 When a property goes into foreclosure, that means they file
10:41:58 a lis pendens, and putting everyone on notice that this
10:42:02 property is now in foreclosure, and any liens you put on
10:42:05 there at that time are at risk of being foreclosed out.
10:42:09 And then as you have identified at the end of it all when
10:42:12 there's a judgment of foreclosure, and then they have a
10:42:15 sale, and there is a certificate of title issue by the
10:42:18 clerk, that's the end of the foreclosure, so when you are
10:42:22 asking -- you are asking for some data on properties under
10:42:28 violation, we needed to know where you meant as far as you
10:42:31 said by foreclosure of properties that have been foreclosed
10:42:34 that the lis pendens has been filed and are in the process
10:42:37 of foreclosure?
10:42:38 Or when the properties have actually transferred to the bank
10:42:42 and have been foreclosed on?
10:42:46 >>MARY MULHERN: I think maybe you should give us close.
10:42:48 The question for us, that may make a difference.
10:42:51 I don't know if that makes a difference in whether you are
10:42:56 giving a citation or not.
10:42:57 I guess you just give the citation based on the state of the
10:43:04 But I think maybe give us both because that might help us
10:43:07 understand, you know, if we are not collecting, that's why
10:43:12 we need to know, you know, maybe when you give us the
10:43:15 statistics on who had the violation, whether they are in
10:43:19 foreclosure or pending.
10:43:21 >> We will do the best we can to pull that data, but
10:43:27 remember a lot of that is controlled by the clerk's office
10:43:29 with regard to finding out who filed a lis pendens.
10:43:34 >>MARY MULHERN: Get us what you have access to because I
10:43:38 understand that this is the problem.
10:43:39 There's in a funding for the clerk to do the compilation of
10:43:44 what's in foreclosure and it's hard to get the statistics,
10:43:47 hard to get to the data because it's not necessarily even
10:43:50 So I understand that.
10:43:52 Just do the best you can and give us both.
10:43:54 >>ERNEST MUELLER: And to answer your question, Mrs. Capin,
10:43:58 I believe that what Mr. Slater was talking about was
10:44:02 properties that were in foreclosure at the time, not already
10:44:05 foreclosed upon.
10:44:07 >>YVONNE CAPIN: And I want to know what properties are in
10:44:09 foreclosure, go to the property appraiser's Web site, and
10:44:15 every property that has a little hammer on it, a judge
10:44:18 hammer, is in foreclosure, and that's how you can tell.
10:44:24 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I'm in trouble.
10:44:24 >> Yes, it looks like that when you hold it up and everybody
10:44:28 can see.
10:44:30 That's been my experience in the past.
10:44:34 When it's in the process of being foreclosed, the property
10:44:36 appraiser went on the tax rolls, and go to the neighborhood
10:44:42 and has a little judge hammer on it and that's when the
10:44:44 property is in foreclosure.
10:44:46 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Let me say this before I take the vote on
10:44:48 Mr. Reddick's motion with Mrs. Montelione seconding it.
10:44:52 This is not a simple problem.
10:44:54 It seems so easy.
10:44:55 You go in, do what you have got to do, you don't pay,
10:44:58 somebody else collects.
10:44:59 Half the time these people, they have already lost their
10:45:04 credit not only with the bank but with everything else,
10:45:06 their credit cards have been maxed out, they have lost the
10:45:09 use of a credit card.
10:45:11 It's a tough act that's very hard to stop and go back up the
10:45:16 But I know of cases where even the banks, after three or
10:45:21 four years of the people lived in the house without making a
10:45:24 payment, guess what.
10:45:27 They pay you 2 or $3,000 for you to move out because they
10:45:31 want to get rid of the problem.
10:45:37 I'm not talking for the banks but they are also backlogged.
10:45:40 So it's not a situation that's easy to solve.
10:45:42 And maybe what we ought to do is every time you go to court,
10:45:46 you go to court, what, once a month you said?
10:45:49 Schmitt: Yes, council.
10:45:54 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Yes, your Honor, thank you very much.
10:45:56 [ Laughter ]
10:45:56 I was going to say maybe so we understand better, once a
10:46:00 month where you sit down and understand what's really going
10:46:03 on, and we have got 12 months.
10:46:05 We can take five months of those months and not go with you,
10:46:08 but one a month and I'll volunteer to go anytime you want
10:46:12 after May 1st.
10:46:13 And I would be more than willing to do.
10:46:15 That I'm sure my colleagues would do that, too, and just sit
10:46:18 there and be quiet.
10:46:19 If you speak you are going to be out of order.
10:46:22 The judge is not as easy as we are.
10:46:25 But I have a motion by Mr. Reddick.
10:46:27 >> And you need to formally restate all the conversation.
10:46:35 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: That's what I want to clear up.
10:46:36 >>LISA MONTELIONE: And correct me if I am wrong.
10:46:44 We would like to include on the May 1st agenda item
10:46:47 regarding the subject of hard cost liens placed on property
10:46:53 the number of foreclosed property, the number of properties
10:46:56 that are in foreclosure, the percentage of payments
10:47:01 received, the percentage owned by individuals versus the
10:47:06 percentage owned by banks, and one that I stated earlier,
10:47:14 which is which cities in the State of Florida are already
10:47:16 using the hard cost lien process?
10:47:20 Did I get everything?
10:47:22 >>FRANK REDDICK: And that includes everything you wanted,
10:47:25 Mrs. Mulhern?
10:47:26 >>MARY MULHERN: I think so.
10:47:27 And also to include finding out if -- or looking into the
10:47:32 possibility of the bond.
10:47:35 >> I thought that was going to be a separate motion.
10:47:39 >>SAL TERRITO: Legal department.
10:47:41 Let me make one interpretation again.
10:47:44 There are properties in foreclosure that we haven't placed
10:47:47 any liens on.
10:47:48 Do you want that list as well? There may be 10,000 out
10:47:50 there and we have liens on 27,000.
10:47:52 I assume you want information on what we are going after.
10:47:54 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Only as it pertains to code enforcement
10:48:00 Not the total number of properties.
10:48:06 Not the total number of properties, lis pendenses filed in
10:48:11 the City of Tampa.
10:48:12 Just the ones that are subject to code violations.
10:48:14 >>SAL TERRITO: Thank you.
10:48:16 >>MARY MULHERN: I was going to say probably if you are
10:48:19 doing the research find out how many code violations or
10:48:22 liens you are going to find out the total number, too.
10:48:24 >>SAL TERRITO: I'm sure when we file a lien on a piece of
10:48:27 property, we know which ones are in foreclosure, not
10:48:30 because -- we have seen that.
10:48:31 There may be others out there we haven't filed any documents
10:48:34 so we have to go through a second step of research to find
10:48:38 those which are not involved.
10:48:39 >>MARY MULHERN: Mr. Territo, you can help Ms. Mandell.
10:48:44 [ Laughter ]
10:48:47 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Motion by Mr. Reddick, seconded by Mrs.
10:48:49 Montelione, although read by Mrs. Monday Montelione so the
10:48:53 clerk can clear it up.
10:48:54 Further discussion by council members?
10:48:56 All in favor?
10:48:58 The ayes have it unanimously.
10:48:59 Mr. Cohen?
10:49:00 >>HARRY COHEN: Just to be address what Mrs. Mulhern asked
10:49:02 about what was pending in the legislature.
10:49:05 I will report back under new business at the next City
10:49:08 Council evening session on the 10th if there are any
10:49:12 bills pending and what the status is if we want to send a
10:49:14 letter in support.
10:49:16 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
10:49:16 We go to item number 8.
10:49:17 >>JULIA MANDELL: City attorney.
10:49:25 You had requested the legal department give you a report on
10:49:27 the status of the Jackson house.
10:49:29 There's a couple of different questions that you asked as
10:49:31 part of that motion.
10:49:32 But I am just going to give the general overview and hope
10:49:35 that I hit all of the high points.
10:49:37 As I think probably council and many folks are aware, the
10:49:42 city had issued an order to repair the Jackson house
10:49:46 property to the property owner.
10:49:52 Late last year, the order was based upon an engineering
10:49:56 report which was submitted to the city as to the best method
10:49:59 and manner upon which to stabilize the house.
10:50:02 This order to repair -- and I want to make this very clear
10:50:05 for the record -- was not to bring it up to historic
10:50:09 preservation standards, it wasn't to even deal with code
10:50:12 enforcement issues that are pending out there, it was simply
10:50:15 to put the Jackson house in a position where it was being
10:50:18 stabilized so we didn't have any risk to the public's
10:50:21 health, safety and welfare. And again that order was based
10:50:24 upon an engineering report that was submitted to the city
10:50:30 from an engineering firm on behalf of Mr. Robinson, the
10:50:34 property owner.
10:50:36 At this time that order to repair has not been complied
10:50:39 with, meaning the property owner is given 60 days to move
10:50:45 forward to repair the property to bring it into a stabilized
10:50:48 condition, and that time expired, I believe it was, March
10:50:51 So we are sitting in a position right now legally where
10:50:55 there is an order of repair, it has not been complied with.
10:50:59 No additional -- at this time as I stand here today, no
10:51:03 additional action has been taken by the city formally.
10:51:06 We have not issued any orders to demolish.
10:51:08 We haven't moved forward to go onto the property to seek to
10:51:12 demolish it.
10:51:13 And I want to explain a little bit why.
10:51:15 Whenever you have a situation where there is a property and
10:51:19 the property owner knows as well that there is some serious
10:51:23 structural concern, we always look to property owners to see
10:51:26 the best way we can move forward short of issuing an order
10:51:29 to demolish.
10:51:30 It's always a last resort.
10:51:32 In addition, any opportunity that the City of Tampa may take
10:51:35 to enter onto a private property in order to demolish a
10:51:39 structure requires due process, it requires an opportunity
10:51:42 for a hearing, so we never take these situations lightly.
10:51:46 So we are doing that which we do with all property owners.
10:51:49 We are seeking to work with our property owner, and that's
10:51:53 where we have had many conversations and discussion was Mr.
10:51:56 Robinson as well as his attorney as to what the next steps
10:52:00 are moving forward.
10:52:01 Those conversations are ongoing right now as it would be in
10:52:05 any other situation.
10:52:07 So at this point there is no order to demolish out there.
10:52:10 There is nothing in which the city is formally proceeding
10:52:16 forward as of this time.
10:52:17 I do want to make it clear there is concern.
10:52:22 The reports that have been given to us over the last several
10:52:27 years from people on behalf of the property owner show us
10:52:32 It's something that's a factual statement.
10:52:34 It is not just an opinion.
10:52:35 It really has been shown over the years to be deteriorating.
10:52:40 We also have a recognition of the Jackson house and we want
10:52:44 to make sure everything possible that can be done is done in
10:52:47 order to deal with the situation in light of the public
10:52:50 safety issues that we have a -- the legal department has a
10:52:55 tremendous amount of concerns about.
10:52:56 So right now as we sit, we sit in a situation having ongoing
10:53:01 It is an ongoing process.
10:53:04 I would caution everybody not to talk in too specific
10:53:13 provision on the Jackson house because it is in the process
10:53:15 of being a legal process so we want to be somewhat cognizant
10:53:19 of that, allow the process to go forward consistent with
10:53:22 the code and a manner consistent with due process.
10:53:24 You had also asked a couple of questions, or a question
10:53:29 related to the ongoing code fines which are on the property.
10:53:33 And yes, there was a determination that this property is out
10:53:36 of compliance, as there are fines that are rung.
10:53:40 At this point, there's not anything that can be done with
10:53:43 those fines until there is a determination of compliance.
10:53:46 So as this process moves forward, as you look at these
10:53:50 issues, the issue of coming into compliance is another issue
10:53:53 out there on the table, which is separate and apart from
10:53:57 putting this property and putting the structure and putting
10:53:59 the Jackson house in a position of just being stabilized.
10:54:03 And again, I want everybody to understand it's the
10:54:05 stabilization that's the critical point right now, not any
10:54:09 other issue as it relates to either the ongoing code
10:54:13 enforcement be violations and coming into compliance with
10:54:17 those violations is a separate discussion, as well as any
10:54:23 That's a separate discussion.
10:54:24 The stabilization is the issue that we have been dealing
10:54:26 with our order of repair, and had ongoing conversations with
10:54:30 the property owner and the property owner's attorney, Rick
10:54:34 I'm available for any questions.
10:54:36 But I caution that we are ongoing in process, so I want to
10:54:40 be cognizant of not putting anybody in a position where that
10:54:44 process is being thwarted.
10:54:46 >> Mr. Reddick and Mr. Suarez.
10:54:48 >>FRANK REDDICK: Thank you, Mrs. Mandell, for providing the
10:54:52 overview as an update of what's going on between the city
10:55:01 and Mr. Robinson, the owner of the Jackson house.
10:55:03 And I placed this on the agenda because I just wanted to let
10:55:07 the public understand the city's position where we are at
10:55:11 with this issue, because it's been a hot issue in the
10:55:17 But I want to also ask you, I know you are going to have
10:55:20 some ongoing discussion with Mr. Gilmore, attorney for Mr.
10:55:24 Robinson, as well as Mr. Robinson himself.
10:55:29 Would you be willing to come back to us in a month and give
10:55:33 us an update on what discussion you have had with family,
10:55:40 and give us an update, keep us abreast of what's going on?
10:55:47 >>JULIA MANDELL: I think that would be fine if you want me
10:55:48 to come back in a month and I will report which I can on the
10:55:52 record, and have no problem with that.
10:55:55 >>FRANK REDDICK: Mr. Chair, I would like to move that Mrs.
10:55:59 Mandell from the legal department report back May 15th
10:56:03 at 9:00 a.m. under staff report and provide us an update on
10:56:09 this ongoing discussion with the Jackson house.
10:56:12 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Second.
10:56:12 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion by Mr. Reddick.
10:56:14 And second by Mrs. Capin.
10:56:18 Any discussion?
10:56:20 Mrs. Mulhern?
10:56:23 >>MARY MULHERN: This isn't to add to the motion.
10:56:25 This is just an appeal to ask everyone out there who hears
10:56:29 this that if we could find and maybe these are available,
10:56:35 and some of you will know about this, but some photographs
10:56:39 from the ERA of when the musicians were staying at the
10:56:44 Jackson house.
10:56:45 I don't know if we have pictures of the house with them
10:56:47 So I think I can think of some donors, benefactors, and if
10:56:58 we have the history documented, it would help.
10:57:01 So I guess e-mail or send us pictures if anyone has any.
10:57:04 >> And Jackson has a big suitcase.
10:57:11 >>MARY MULHERN: All right.
10:57:12 I'll meet with him and scan them.
10:57:14 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion by Mr. Reddick.
10:57:16 Seconded by Mrs. Capin.
10:57:17 Further discussion on that motion?
10:57:18 All in favor of the motion please indicate by saying aye.
10:57:22 The ayes have it unanimously.
10:57:24 Mr. Suarez?
10:57:26 >>JULIA MANDELL: I can't see you behind all these cameras.
10:57:29 Quick question.
10:57:30 You said that this is a termination of noncompliance in
10:57:34 terms of the Jackson house itself.
10:57:37 Those fines, do they accrue?
10:57:41 And if they do, is there a way that if a plan is put
10:57:49 together with Mr. Robinson, NAACP to be able to put money in
10:57:54 to refurbish the house, is there any way of reducing those
10:57:58 fines? Do we have that power as a city?
10:58:03 >>JULIA MANDELL: As it relate to the code enforcement and
10:58:05 the fines, they were determined by consideration of the
10:58:09 special magistrate, or code, I'm not sure which one, there
10:58:13 was a violation.
10:58:13 The pro process is for any property owner that those fines
10:58:16 will accrue until such time as the property comes into
10:58:20 compliance, and after the property comes into compliance,
10:58:23 there are opportunities through the legal department to
10:58:27 reduce those fines down as far as we need them to go in
10:58:33 order to make things happen.
10:58:34 And this isn't a Jackson house issue.
10:58:38 This is our general process with any code enforcement
10:58:41 violation, and a fine that accrues, compliance occurs, and
10:58:45 how we deal we deal with these fines once a compliance has
10:58:53 >>MIKE SUAREZ: You mentioned in the report it is in total
10:58:56 disrepair and that it may hurt someone because of the way
10:59:03 that it is currently.
10:59:06 That number, whatever that amount is, once she shore it up,
10:59:10 so to speak, then they can come to you and say, listen, we
10:59:14 have shored it up to be a little bit of a different
10:59:16 standard, we are raising money in order to refurbish it.
10:59:20 Because we aren't talking about the refurbishment part.
10:59:23 We are talking about it getting out of the noncompliance
10:59:26 portion of it.
10:59:28 And that's when they can have that discussion with you, Mr.
10:59:31 Gilmore and Mr. Robinson approach you saying we would like
10:59:35 to find out what we can do in terms of reducing or negating
10:59:38 some of these fines.
10:59:39 And do they have to go back to the special magistrate?
10:59:43 >> No, that's wholly within the legal department's ability
10:59:45 and authority.
10:59:46 And unless I'm wrong -- and Ernie mule Kerr come up and
10:59:50 explain if I am wrong -- but that's my understanding is that
10:59:53 that's something that is within the executive order, the
10:59:58 purview of the legal department.
10:59:59 And again, it's part of our regular process.
11:00:02 This is something that happens on -- we deal with regularly.
11:00:05 >>MIKE SUAREZ: So what you are saying is if there's a
11:00:09 determination, a negotiation with the -- I'll wait until
11:00:17 after -- there's a determination, the mayor can sign an
11:00:24 executive order specifically?
11:00:25 >> No, no, part of our general process.
11:00:28 >>MIKE SUAREZ: You could than confused me there for a
11:00:31 >> Sorry.
11:00:31 This is part of our general process.
11:00:33 And just so I'm clear, and I started so everybody
11:00:36 There is a difference between the need to shore the property
11:00:39 up, so it doesn't cause a public safety problem and
11:00:42 compliance with any other code enforcement be violations
11:00:46 which have been determined by the special magistrate.
11:00:48 I don't have the details on which, which is part of the
11:00:54 other thing.
11:00:54 >> Perfectly clear.
11:00:55 That's why I wanted to make sure we made a delineation
11:00:58 between the two.
11:00:59 So thank you.
11:01:04 >>YVONNE CAPIN: So what we here in the city are looking for
11:01:06 is stabilizing the structure.
11:01:11 We are looking for stabilizing the structure.
11:01:15 >> That is the most immediate and critical need.
11:01:20 And that is the crux of what is happening right now.
11:01:23 >>JULIA MANDELL: That's the first item on the -- the first
11:01:28 issue that needs to be resolved, making sure that there's no
11:01:32 further deterioration.
11:01:33 >> Stabilizing.
11:01:36 I just wanted to be clear that is exactly where we are at.
11:01:40 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I think 8 is settled. We are going to
11:01:42 have a monthly report coming up next month.
11:01:44 The motion made earlier by Mr. Reddick, seconded by Mrs.
11:01:48 Montelione, passed by this council unanimously.
11:01:50 We go now to items that were removed from the consent agenda
11:01:53 if any.
11:01:54 And there is one.
11:01:55 And that is the red light camera issue.
11:01:57 >> Dennis Rogero, mayor's chief of staff.
11:02:05 Thank you for having me today.
11:02:06 I want to thank you all for your time since you have
11:02:10 discussed this item with us, a representative of the
11:02:12 administration since the last vote.
11:02:15 Thank you for your willingness to dialogue.
11:02:17 And I appreciate it.
11:02:19 It's been very constructive.
11:02:20 As you probably read the mayor is willing to committee 25%
11:02:24 of the red light camera revenue for the increase in project
11:02:28 funding associated with projects in the vicinity of those
11:02:34 camera intersections.
11:02:38 And I have Mrs. Duncan if you have particular answers, or I
11:02:42 can answer a particular question in if you have them.
11:02:47 >>YVONNE CAPIN: The 25% of the annual net revenue to the
11:02:53 city or gross revenue?
11:02:56 >> Net revenue to the city, ma'am.
11:02:59 >> Net revenue.
11:03:00 But when it's net revenue that 25% is before expenses?
11:03:06 >> No, after.
11:03:09 >> Net from the state and net from the city?
11:03:13 >> Yes.
11:03:13 >> Do we have any idea what that number would be?
11:03:16 >> In the last year FY 13 approximately 1.6, 1.7 million, so
11:03:21 25% is 400,000.
11:03:23 >> So that was the net-net, 1.6, after expenses.
11:03:28 That clears up what I wanted to know.
11:03:30 So that would be around $400,000.
11:03:39 Thank you, Mrs. Little.
11:03:42 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have in order Mrs. Mulhern, Mrs.
11:03:44 Montelione, Mr. Reddick.
11:03:45 >>MARY MULHERN: First of all, thank you so much for meeting
11:03:50 with all of us, and thanks to the mayor for working out an
11:03:56 agreement, and actually meeting the requests that we made as
11:04:01 a council.
11:04:02 I really appreciate it.
11:04:07 I want to make sure, you know, the devil is in the details.
11:04:11 And you may have said this because I was walking in when you
11:04:14 first started speaking.
11:04:16 I would like us to have the percentage, the 25%, every year
11:04:27 be a line item in the proposed budget, with the amount based
11:04:34 on what our revenue has been for the current fiscal year.
11:04:41 Secondly, we need to be assured that this is going to be an
11:04:47 increase in spending.
11:04:48 And I think we talked about this, and you agreed to it.
11:04:51 But we need to know that the total budget for intersection
11:04:55 improvement, for the city every year, is not going to be
11:05:00 reduced, so that other funds, we may have had CRA funds, or
11:05:05 other sources of income won't go down.
11:05:13 It has to be a net increase based on that.
11:05:19 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I apologize for interrupting.
11:05:20 We are not going to be the lottery in the education system.
11:05:24 That's what she's talking about.
11:05:26 Let me get right to the chase.
11:05:28 >>MARY MULHERN: No shell games, right?
11:05:31 >>SONYA LITTLE: Sonya Little, revenue and finance.
11:05:33 And we were very sensitive ton that he when we came up with
11:05:37 the proposal in trying to determine how we a sure council
11:05:40 members that there is no substitution of revenues.
11:05:44 And one of the things that we talked to each one of you
11:05:46 about is that we have particular revenues, for example, the
11:05:50 local option gas tax that is a restricted revenue that has
11:05:55 to be used for transportation purposes.
11:05:57 So you will be able to see what's coming in.
11:06:01 In addition to that, we have a five year plan that is this
11:06:09 year's current budget where we can prepare over the next
11:06:12 five years and actually see what we anticipated those
11:06:14 revenues to be.
11:06:16 The only thing that I caution is that you keep in mind the
11:06:19 five year capital plan is just for budgeting purposes.
11:06:23 So we'll have been to be show you actual figures as they
11:06:26 come in.
11:06:27 And it is our intention as we move forward with a budgeting
11:06:32 process which both you and all of our city departments have
11:06:35 already begun to engage in for the fiscal year 2015 in
11:06:41 partnership with citizens advisory committee as well, that
11:06:46 we do have it as a particular line item in our budget books,
11:06:50 but in addition to it being in our budget book as we gear up
11:06:54 for the workshop in our 101 discussion, that we also clearly
11:06:59 delineated, have it as a topic of discussion.
11:07:02 That's a separate item.
11:07:03 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay, that's great.
11:07:06 Then I would like to ask someone from TPD.
11:07:13 Is someone here?
11:07:14 >> John Bennett, assistant chief, Tampa Police Department.
11:07:25 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you, chief.
11:07:27 We horde from a citizen this morning questioning our crash
11:07:31 statistics, and whether they included rear-end collisions at
11:07:38 red light camera destinations.
11:07:42 But I can't imagine how they wouldn't.
11:07:44 But if we can hear from you on that.
11:07:46 >> Sure.
11:07:46 The research that was done was within 25 feet of the
11:07:49 intersection so it would be all crashes in that space.
11:07:51 >>MARY MULHERN: Within 25 feet.
11:07:55 And then that made me wonder.
11:07:57 This is unrelated, but I'm wondering, since we have that
11:08:01 data, do you have an officer looking at the cameras in
11:08:13 >> No.
11:08:14 >>MARY MULHERN: I just wondered if there were rear-end
11:08:16 collisions, then it would seem that it would be the fault of
11:08:19 the person following, going too fast, if they hit someone
11:08:23 who stopped at a red light.
11:08:25 Are you able to use the cameras to follow up on that?
11:08:31 >> They can use the cameras to look at a crash investigation
11:08:35 subsequent to that report.
11:08:38 Typically the rear end crashes are very minimal in nature as
11:08:41 far as injuries go, where the angle crashes are the most
11:08:45 severe, hence the red light initiative.
11:08:47 But they can use those crashes to help investigate a case if
11:08:51 they need to.
11:08:52 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you.
11:08:57 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Thank you.
11:08:59 Mr. Rogero, the revenue generated from red light cameras has
11:09:09 the decrease built in.
11:09:12 So if it's performing the public safety service that we hope
11:09:16 that it has, and those what we have seen, is behaviors
11:09:21 change, so revenue from that particular camera, that
11:09:25 intersection, decreases over time.
11:09:29 I've got two concerns based on that.
11:09:32 One is that if we are looking at spending the 25% in the
11:09:43 intersections or areas surrounding the intersection where
11:09:47 those cameras are, one would say the intersection is
11:09:53 becoming safer.
11:09:55 So I'm not sure -- maybe Ms. Duncan can address this -- I'm
11:10:01 not sure what other types of projects could be implemented
11:10:07 in an intersection which has become safer because of the
11:10:15 We could always use enhancements to crosswalks.
11:10:17 We could always -- handicapped access.
11:10:22 But it concerns me that we are limiting to just the area
11:10:26 around that intersection when we have other areas, other
11:10:30 intersections where maybe someone can say, what distance
11:10:36 from the intersection is being considered?
11:10:37 Because we have talked before about pedestrian crossings,
11:10:41 and people not cross at the crosswalk at an intersection.
11:10:46 So I'm just a little concerned that we are going to have a
11:10:50 pot of money, and we are going to be spending it only where
11:10:54 the cameras are located rather than on intersections all
11:10:58 over the city that need enhancement.
11:11:00 >> I believe I understand the question.
11:11:05 I'm going to have to refer to Mrs. Duncan or Chief Bennett.
11:11:08 >> Jean Duncan, transportation division.
11:11:14 If you don't mind, I would like to provide a handout to you
11:11:17 with a map attached.
11:11:19 It might give a little more insight to your question and see
11:11:22 if I can help answer that.
11:11:23 >> Okay.
11:11:30 Dennis is helping me here, handing out information that we
11:11:50 put together that gives information on the program that we
11:11:54 have ongoing for the intersections where cameras are
11:12:03 And if I could just have you take a look first at the map
11:12:06 that's attached.
11:12:09 That might be the best place to start.
11:12:17 Dennis, if you could help me out and put this on the Elmo as
11:12:22 >> Hard to get good help.
11:12:41 >> The map is a little larger than the Elmo, but this map is
11:12:56 showing dots in yellow and red.
11:12:58 All those dots are where red light cameras are located at
11:13:03 those intersections.
11:13:05 And just for your information, the table at the top of this
11:13:09 map indicates whether those are state or county roads or
11:13:13 city roads of which there are none.
11:13:15 They are all mainly state and a couple of county
11:13:19 intersections which make sense, if you figure the higher
11:13:22 functioning roadways in our city are those that are all
11:13:26 managed and maintained by the D.O.T. and by the county.
11:13:35 Below on the map, the ones in the orange color, at those
11:13:39 intersections, for a number of years -- and in the future --
11:13:46 through a normal program of safety in terms of corridors,
11:13:49 pedestrians, intersections, all varieties, we already have a
11:13:54 number of projects underway at those intersections.
11:13:58 And if I could refer you to the other sheet in your packet
11:14:00 there, spreadsheet with line items and numbers -- and that
11:14:11 one as well, Dennis -- this next spreadsheet is a summary of
11:14:16 the projects that are occurring at those intersections, the
11:14:21 yellow colored ones, that we have underway.
11:14:25 And there are all assortments of projects.
11:14:29 There's bicycle lanes.
11:14:30 There's signal timing: There is corridor improvements.
11:14:34 Intersection improvements.
11:14:36 There's all varieties of things that we are doing at that
11:14:40 intersection and within the general influence of the
11:14:43 intersection as well to improve safety at those
11:14:50 The cameras are another layer of safety in terms of
11:14:53 addressing the driver behavior and the enforcement education
11:14:58 side of the picture.
11:14:59 So on the engineering side here, we have got a large city
11:15:03 resources already underway, already line item, and committed
11:15:11 to a variety of projects at those intersections to make them
11:15:14 safer, and we'll continue to do that in the future.
11:15:17 This is an ongoing process, to continually making upgrades
11:15:21 and changing, implementing new criteria and adding new
11:15:25 design approaches, to continually make these intersections
11:15:30 And if I could just refer you quickly to the Rye right side
11:15:34 of the spreadsheet.
11:15:36 As an example, if you could look in the current funding
11:15:39 column, at the bottom of that column, you can see just in
11:15:48 FY-14, for those intersections, we are committed over $8
11:15:55 million of improvements in a variety of forms.
11:16:03 I hope that answer as at least some of your questions.
11:16:06 And if I could add more to that I would be glad to do that.
11:16:12 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Well in, some ways it does and in some
11:16:14 ways it doesn't.
11:16:16 Because one of the things, if you can define for me, when we
11:16:18 say that the 400,000 approximately that was mentioned,
11:16:26 what's the distance from the intersection considered for
11:16:32 So if we are tying the money to the red light camera
11:16:35 intersection, what proximity are we talking about?
11:16:39 Because some of the projects on here just say intersection
11:16:43 Some say intersection and roadway improvements.
11:16:47 One I don't understand, CCTV pole installation.
11:16:51 I'm not sure how that's tied to safety.
11:16:53 And you mentioned bicycle lanes.
11:17:00 Those continue far beyond the intersection itself.
11:17:06 So I guess I am having trouble wrapping my mind around what
11:17:09 is it we are exactly talking about?
11:17:13 And how far from that intersection?
11:17:15 Because again my concern is that we have safety concerns all
11:17:18 over the city, some of them at intersections, some of them
11:17:24 in mid-block where pedestrians are crossing.
11:17:28 So I for one would like to see the money spent where it's
11:17:33 needed anywhere it's located within the city rather than
11:17:39 specifically tied to a particular intersection where a
11:17:42 camera is located.
11:17:43 >> Well, from the transportation side, that is welcome news,
11:17:49 because you make a good point that oftentimes there is an
11:17:52 upstream/downstream situation that could factor into what
11:17:57 might occur at the intersection that's further down the
11:18:01 For this particular list, though, I just want you to know
11:18:04 that all of these projects have a direct connection to those
11:18:10 intersections that are highlighted on your map.
11:18:12 If we went further with this exercise and said, well, what's
11:18:18 beyond those intersections further down the road, we could
11:18:21 come up with even more projects.
11:18:23 But we wanted to keep it very simple.
11:18:26 Be so in terms of the dollars, that's a discussion separate
11:18:32 from transportation in terms of decisions.
11:18:35 But I would say that the more flexibility we have with using
11:18:39 those additional moneys, the easier we can put those more
11:18:42 quickly on the needs that we have on any of our roadways
11:18:46 that are needing a safety enhancement.
11:18:49 >> So simply stated, my preference would be to have this
11:18:52 money utilized where it is a priority for us to approve the
11:18:59 safety of pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers, whether they
11:19:06 be cars, motorcycles or trucks, on our roadways rather than
11:19:12 tied specifically to a red light camera intersection.
11:19:15 >> I personally feel that would give us the most effective
11:19:18 be -- the most efficient flexibility with those funds.
11:19:23 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Because we all know be if something
11:19:26 happens that's not at anti-an intersection we are all going
11:19:31 to be saying what is transportation doing to improve the
11:19:33 safety of our citizens.
11:19:34 That's all I have.
11:19:35 Thank you.
11:19:36 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
11:19:36 Mr. Reddick and then I'll make a comment on what I said that
11:19:40 came close to that but never said that.
11:19:42 Mr. Reddick.
11:19:42 >>FRANK REDDICK: Thank you, Mr. Chair.
11:19:45 And I echo your comments.
11:19:48 Let me say this.
11:19:55 Restate your proposal that you presented to us.
11:19:57 Because the more I hear, you are going to lose my support,
11:20:04 because I want you to state what you came here to state to
11:20:08 us today, because what you are saying is -- what you first
11:20:16 stated, the more we talk, the more I hear about flexibility,
11:20:20 we are going to be back in the same position as we were a
11:20:23 week ago.
11:20:24 >> Yes, sir.
11:20:25 We are making the commitment to allocate 25% of the net red
11:20:30 light camera revenue or increasing the amount of money for
11:20:34 projects associated with these red light camera
11:20:38 25% and it's an increase.
11:20:40 >>FRANK REDDICK: Thank you.
11:20:42 And this would be -- when will this go into effect?
11:20:45 >> I'm sorry, say again?
11:20:47 >> When will this become effective?
11:20:48 >> We have two avenues we can approach this.
11:20:50 In the current fiscal year of course we have things
11:20:55 appropriated either adopted last year or the budget
11:20:58 amendment that council has approved.
11:21:00 As Ms. Little stated, we have introduced discussions about
11:21:04 fiscal year '15 budget.
11:21:06 So we can do an amendment to the current year budget.
11:21:09 And that would necessitate moving $400,000 coming before
11:21:13 council with a resolution, or we can plan for it as part of
11:21:17 our fiscal year 2015 budget preparation.
11:21:19 >>FRANK REDDICK: Okay.
11:21:23 Let me ask one other question.
11:21:27 This chart that indicates the funding sources?
11:21:34 >> Yes, sir.
11:21:35 >>FRANK REDDICK: One discussion that I had when I met with
11:21:38 you and others is that I wanted to see the revenues from
11:21:44 those cameras be listed as one of the funding sources as
11:21:48 part of the project.
11:21:51 Are you willing to commit to that?
11:21:53 >> Yes, sir, but I'll expound on that.
11:22:02 >>SONYA LITTLE: That was our commitment.
11:22:04 When we come back again for 15 budget discussions there will
11:22:09 be another line item for funding sources that are reflective
11:22:12 of the 25%, but again want to caution that the revenues that
11:22:16 you see related to local option gas tax, transportation and
11:22:20 any grant funding, if you see fluctuations there it's
11:22:25 because we are looking at budget figures.
11:22:28 So as time moves on, those figures will change.
11:22:31 We don't want to give the impression that we are shuffling
11:22:33 funds around.
11:22:35 We want to make certain we are clear on budget versus
11:22:38 >>FRANK REDDICK: As long as you identify sources from the
11:22:43 red light camera, that's all I'm asking.
11:22:45 >>SONYA LITTLE: Yes, sir.
11:22:47 >>FRANK REDDICK: As one of the funding sources from the
11:22:50 transportation projects.
11:22:52 And finally, if we are on board that I feel comfortable
11:23:06 moving forward, but if we are going to make adjustments, we
11:23:13 are going to become flexible in other areas, that he would
11:23:20 originally came here to discuss today, then I will not be
11:23:23 supporting this.
11:23:23 >> Understood.
11:23:25 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Let me say this.
11:23:27 And I haven't spoken yet.
11:23:28 But it's funny -- fun toy me anyway, that's why I was
11:23:32 smiling -- 25% is what you are giving and you only need 25%
11:23:36 of four to pass this thing.
11:23:38 That equals the same thing.
11:23:39 >> That had not occurred to me.
11:23:40 >> Well, it occurred do me when I was listening.
11:23:43 But as we look at this it's a federal citation, and I am
11:23:48 going to make a statement.
11:23:49 Able I don't want to belabor this thing.
11:23:51 It's been going on forever.
11:23:53 And I understand it.
11:23:54 But when you look at revenues, the camera folks collect 3750
11:24:01 a camera times 51, or roughly 332,000 a month, or roughly
11:24:08 3.984 million a year when you have the locations in
11:24:16 Like you do now.
11:24:21 The cameras collect 191,200.
11:24:24 I had the state up here and my mouth was speaking on the
11:24:26 other one.
11:24:27 So the cameras get roughly 2.295 million.
11:24:31 The state is based on the tickets that are issued.
11:24:35 They get 83 bucks.
11:24:38 So the more you issue, the more they get.
11:24:40 The city is the same way but the city has all the expense.
11:24:45 What a wonderful contract the state drew up.
11:24:48 The state gets 332,000, those fine legislators, and get
11:24:53 $3.9 million if it's roughly 4,000 tickets.
11:24:57 If it's 5,000 tickets, they get 415,000 a month, or roughly
11:25:03 4.9 million a year.
11:25:05 And there are variations between 4 and 6 and 9,000 tickets.
11:25:11 4, 6 and 5 just to talk mathematics.
11:25:14 When you look at 83 times 6,000 they get 498,000 a month or
11:25:19 roughly 5.9 million a year.
11:25:23 The city gets 1.6.
11:25:27 And we bear the costs.
11:25:30 And since this discussion, and I want to thank you and Mrs.
11:25:33 Duncan and Mrs. Little for sitting down with me not once but
11:25:38 twice, and I thank you very much.
11:25:39 When I wrestle with this in my mind, then I tell Mace, okay,
11:25:44 Charlie, let's say that there was only 50 cameras, but 25
11:25:49 operational and 25 were not, they were just dummies.
11:25:55 You know what I think?
11:25:58 I think the results would be the same.
11:26:02 Or thereabouts.
11:26:05 About within a percent or two difference.
11:26:07 The violation would decrease in equal sums.
11:26:10 And let me tell you why.
11:26:11 Because of the good folks here in the media took it up, from
11:26:17 print to radio to TV and the public is now aware of that
11:26:23 And I go back some 14, 15 years when we had a water
11:26:28 Nobody would have known it.
11:26:30 If it was just us talking about it but the media came
11:26:33 through, and we dropped about 38 to 40% of water
11:26:37 And we were able to go through the drought without anyone
11:26:40 not having water at their home or hospital or things like
11:26:44 And then I asked myself, is it really fair?
11:26:48 I don't know the answer to this one either.
11:26:50 If a police officer gives you a ticket at a traffic light,
11:26:54 guess what?
11:26:55 It's no longer a civil citation.
11:26:59 It's a moving violation, I would assume.
11:27:01 And then what?
11:27:03 It is a moving violation, and a civil citation because they
11:27:08 could not identify the driver in the car.
11:27:10 Only the car.
11:27:13 So I wrestle with that.
11:27:14 And the last thing is this.
11:27:18 We have a two-year operation if we pass this resolution
11:27:23 today which I assume it will pass.
11:27:25 Does any parties have the right to cancel with due cause
11:27:30 within the two years?
11:27:31 >> We have a representative from the purchasing department
11:27:38 to answer that.
11:27:38 >> Kevin fry, purchasing department.
11:27:47 In our contract if we renew it for two years, there are
11:27:49 three options.
11:27:50 We have an option to -- if we cancel the contract, we owe
11:27:56 them amortized costs towards those cameras to pull them out.
11:28:01 If it's a state legislation that does it, there's in a cost.
11:28:04 But at the same time the whole contract is revenue neutral,
11:28:07 so at any time, if the intersection does not meet the
11:28:10 standards of making money, we can ask them to pull the
11:28:12 cameras out and move it somewhere else.
11:28:14 >> Don't say making money because it's about saving lives.
11:28:18 >> Well, revenue generating.
11:28:21 I apologize.
11:28:23 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I understand.
11:28:23 So then it goes back to the legislature.
11:28:25 The legislature says they don't want it.
11:28:27 You get the cameras back, nobody pays.
11:28:29 >> Right.
11:28:30 >> But if we say, hey, we are losing money, we pay?
11:28:33 >> The amortized cost of the camera.
11:28:36 >> Which is the total amount just about.
11:28:37 >> Depending on when the cameras --
11:28:41 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I understand.
11:28:41 I just wanted to T public to understand the dilemma we were
11:28:45 And I have tried to state for the four that were here and
11:28:48 the other three, all seven of us were in a dilemma.
11:28:52 It's very hard to understand these things when you have to
11:28:55 start thinking about the whereases, what happens, who does
11:28:58 this and when.
11:28:58 And we didn't negotiate the contract.
11:29:02 And this is the legislature said, or did we negotiate the
11:29:07 price of the cameras?
11:29:08 >> When we awarded this contract back in 2011, the state
11:29:14 came through with their monthly charge -- the charge of how
11:29:18 much it was, and that adjusted our numbers.
11:29:20 So it just happened at the same time.
11:29:24 It actually lowered.
11:29:25 Actually set a limit on the citation costs.
11:29:29 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: So then the total cost if anyone filed a
11:29:33 lawsuit, we have got two partners that are doing very well.
11:29:36 That's the cameras and the state.
11:29:38 The other partner, us, are not doing so well, because we
11:29:42 bear all the costs.
11:29:44 Even the stamps when you send that notice out or whatever
11:29:49 you do, it's all our hard costs.
11:29:51 That's what I think.
11:29:52 >> It's our cost to the -- the civil penalty guys if they
11:30:00 don't respond within the 30 days period.
11:30:02 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Everything that we have our costs, they
11:30:05 get a check every month, whether you issue a ticket or not.
11:30:09 Am I correct?
11:30:10 >> We only pay for citations that were adjusted.
11:30:15 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Maybe I misphrased that.
11:30:18 The camera operation that we have for $3,750, they are going
11:30:23 to get a check for $191,250 based on 51 cameras at 3750 a
11:30:31 Do that math real quick.
11:30:33 I think you will come out to about 91,250.
11:30:38 >> Right.
11:30:39 Our department verifies when we cut a purchase order, those
11:30:43 revenues exceeding the cost to us at the time.
11:30:46 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: We are not questioning the procedures.
11:30:47 We know you do a good job.
11:30:49 But they are entitled to their money every month, whether we
11:30:53 have 4,000 or 3,000 or 2,000 tickets.
11:31:03 They don't get paid by the amount the ticket issued.
11:31:05 They get paid a flat fee per camera.
11:31:08 >> We do not pay more out than what we would get in-house.
11:31:11 So it's cost neutral.
11:31:15 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: All right.
11:31:16 What happens if it becomes cost negative?
11:31:19 >> We can ask them to move the cameras out to a different
11:31:22 location or remove them altogether, and they are responsible
11:31:25 for any deficit on the other side.
11:31:27 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: But if you move them all together then
11:31:29 you have to pay the depreciated cost or have they
11:31:34 >> I don't believe that's accurate.
11:31:41 I have to refer to the revenue and finance department for
11:31:43 All I know is as Mr. Fry stated from a city perspective --
11:31:47 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Believe me, I am not going to give you a
11:31:49 hard time at all.
11:31:50 I'm just trying to get the public to understand why these
11:31:53 things are so complicated.
11:31:54 They are not that simple.
11:31:57 Go back, the ticket payer, there's a lot more to it.
11:32:00 And I just want the public to understand.
11:32:02 I want to thank the media for being the cause for the
11:32:05 traffic tickets going down.
11:32:07 Because it's just my belief.
11:32:09 I may be dead wrong.
11:32:11 But I believe that all the media, media attention that this
11:32:14 has gotten is the cause -- and I'm happy to see that.
11:32:19 I hope there was none given.
11:32:21 But it's not going to be because all of us when we drive a
11:32:26 car, the tickets are a great thing but it's like we are in a
11:32:30 If you hit somebody they ain't coming back.
11:32:33 Okay, I'm sorry.
11:32:34 I got Mrs. Capin, Mrs. Mulhern, and Mrs. Montelione.
11:32:41 Oh, I'm sorry.
11:32:44 Mr. Cohen?
11:32:44 >>HARRY COHEN: Well, I want to follow up on council
11:32:47 Miranda's point about the media.
11:32:50 Because I would assume that if we remove the red light
11:32:55 cameras and the media reports that, that the message that
11:32:59 would go out to people that has caused the deterrence would
11:33:02 be negated by the flood of stories about how we removed the
11:33:07 So just following that to its logical end, I think that it
11:33:13 may affect the program.
11:33:15 I agree with Councilman Miranda about one very important
11:33:17 point that he made.
11:33:19 If you run red lights habitually and get caught by these
11:33:23 cameras over and over and over again, it doesn't go on your
11:33:28 driver's license, points are not assess PD, and habitual red
11:33:31 light runners could conceivably continue to do it and pay
11:33:34 the fines without any consequence.
11:33:36 And that is in my opinion a great weakness of the way that
11:33:41 this program is set up by the state.
11:33:43 By the state.
11:33:48 With to Councilwoman's Capin's points from other meetings we
11:33:51 had, how much the citation is and how it's split is also
11:33:54 something that is a concern, but again, mandated by the
11:33:58 state, not something under our control.
11:34:01 I just think at the end of the day, regardless, I have
11:34:05 always thought that while I admire my colleagues for wanting
11:34:09 to make what would appear to me to be some minor
11:34:18 improvements in the amount of money that we spend on traffic
11:34:21 safety and infrastructure improvements, while I certainly
11:34:24 applaud that, to me this comes back to the fundamental issue
11:34:28 of what has the track record of the cameras been for the two
11:34:33 And I don't think there was any question among us when we
11:34:37 talked about it last time, and I don't hear any today, that
11:34:42 there is empirical data that shows that these cameras have
11:34:46 saved lives by their very existence.
11:34:48 I watched part of Hillsborough County's discussion yesterday
11:34:52 about red light cameras, and their decision to continue with
11:34:57 their program, and it was the same thing.
11:35:01 It was the same story.
11:35:03 And the considerations here about what's going to happen if
11:35:07 the revenue dwindled just underscores the point that these
11:35:12 cameras have changed behavior, and therefore less people are
11:35:17 getting ticketed and less money is coming in as a result.
11:35:19 So at the end of the day, this is not a perfect program.
11:35:24 If we have the opportunity to negotiate this contract,
11:35:28 perhaps we would have done it differently.
11:35:30 Certainly, if we had the opportunity to set up the state
11:35:33 statute, I think we would have perhaps done it differently.
11:35:38 But we are where we are with it.
11:35:40 And I just think at the end of the day that it is the right
11:35:44 thing to do to support it, because of the safety concerns
11:35:48 that have been established.
11:35:50 There was some discussion from the public about rear end
11:35:53 crashes today.
11:35:54 And assistant Chief Bennett made the excellent point to
11:35:58 Councilwoman Mulhern's question that when people run red
11:36:03 lights and have head-on collisions and T-bone accidents,
11:36:07 they are likely to be gravely injured or killed.
11:36:10 When people generally have rear-end collisions, the damage
11:36:15 and the injury is likely to be less.
11:36:18 It's also likely to be the fault of the person traveling
11:36:21 behind them who is going too fast.
11:36:24 So for those reasons, I still ERR on the side of favoring
11:36:29 this program.
11:36:29 Recognizing it's not perfect, going back to what Councilman
11:36:33 Miranda said, it's a complex issue.
11:36:35 I do think -- I'm not sure it was clear, but I think the
11:36:41 answer you gave to his question regarding whether we would
11:36:44 continue to pay, even if the cameras were not generating
11:36:48 enough money for the payment, was no.
11:36:50 But if you could just clarify that, I think that would be
11:36:53 helpful because it maybe wasn't quite as definitive as I
11:36:56 believe the answer probably is.
11:36:58 >> Yes, sir.
11:37:01 Ultimately, we have seen a trend in revenues going down.
11:37:03 In a perfect world the behavior becomes modified and we
11:37:07 don't see any revenue at all.
11:37:09 If and when that happens, and it gets to the point where it
11:37:12 could conceivably be cost negative for the city, of course
11:37:16 we cross that bridge when we got there.
11:37:18 But we would consider keeping them in place even if they
11:37:21 cost money depending upon if they were still modifying
11:37:25 behavior are if we were still seeing positive safety
11:37:29 ramifications associated with it over reduction in
11:37:35 accidents, et cetera.
11:37:37 We would take all factors into account and we could enter a
11:37:40 scenario where it's costing the city money.
11:37:42 But we may decide it's still a very valuable tool to keep it
11:37:45 in place.
11:37:48 I suspect we would not, as soon as it became that cost
11:37:52 negative -- and I can't tell you one way or the other
11:37:55 definitively right now.
11:38:00 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Suarez?
11:38:02 First round.
11:38:02 >>MIKE SUAREZ: You made a comment about something that
11:38:06 Councilman Cohen said.
11:38:07 And one of the things that we have to be aware of is that
11:38:10 not only is it in the contract, that it is revenue neutral,
11:38:15 or I should say cost neutral, excuse me, but it's also in
11:38:18 our resolution, the original resolution that we passed in
11:38:22 2011 to allow the red light cameras, said that it has to be
11:38:27 This continuation of the contract is also continuing the
11:38:29 original resolution.
11:38:30 So anything that comes before us afterwards, any other
11:38:34 contractual changes, such as the hypothetical that Mr.
11:38:39 Rogero mentioned would have to come back to us to approve
11:38:43 the expenditure to continue the red light camera program,
11:38:46 with our costs being foremost instead of it being a shared
11:38:51 cost as it is now.
11:38:52 Councilman Miranda made a comment concerning what the
11:38:56 cameras themselves mean.
11:38:58 And I think that there's three arguments always made against
11:39:01 One is that it's unfair.
11:39:03 We should not have cameras looking out for people who are
11:39:05 running red lights.
11:39:07 To that argument, I think it is unfair for anyone to think
11:39:12 that they are not going to be cited for breaking the law.
11:39:16 That idea that because we are using a tool that's new and
11:39:19 different as opposed to having a police officer on a
11:39:23 motorcycle at the intersection, the point is you are still
11:39:27 breaking the law.
11:39:28 There is no one out there that is going to say, I think I
11:39:31 should be breaking the law, and I don't want a camera there,
11:39:33 because if the police chief told us that it would take
11:39:37 eleven people, eleven police officers to do sort of the same
11:39:41 job that we are doing now with some of the cameras.
11:39:43 It reduces our costs in the long run.
11:39:46 So the net differential, I think, is positive for us.
11:39:50 Secondly, that we should not be in business with a company
11:39:55 that gets a portion of their proceeds from the issuance of
11:40:00 red light citations.
11:40:03 To that, we use lots of tools.
11:40:05 Each and every day.
11:40:06 We purchase equipment each and every day that helps us do
11:40:10 the job of the city, which is foremost, and most important,
11:40:14 is public safety.
11:40:15 If we do not buy vehicles, we do not buy weapons and other
11:40:20 things to help protect the citizens of this city, then we
11:40:23 are not doing our job.
11:40:25 This is a tool, because we still have a police officer
11:40:29 Looks at the tape, makes a determination as to whether or
11:40:31 not they ran the red light, and then Tampa citation is
11:40:34 issued after the fact.
11:40:36 The idea that this is not a tool, I think, is a silly
11:40:39 argument, that a lot of people like to point to be, and they
11:40:44 may not like the tool, but nonetheless it is still just a
11:40:47 We control the program.
11:40:49 We do not issue tickets just because a picture has been
11:40:55 taken of a license plate.
11:40:57 And the third argument which is this is overreach by the
11:41:02 city or by other entities out there, and again also that
11:41:08 it's a revenue generator only, we have seen based on our
11:41:12 studies that revenue has gone down by virtue of the changed
11:41:16 To me -- and I think Mr. Rogero pointed this out -- we may
11:41:20 be at a point where we have zero red light tickets.
11:41:23 I doubt that will ever happen.
11:41:24 I mean, I think we can modify behavior a little bit but we
11:41:28 can't do it all.
11:41:29 And for me, I think this is not a revenue generator for us.
11:41:33 I mean, we will next year, I think, based on the numbers
11:41:37 that were presented to us in the last discussion about this,
11:41:39 will probably be south of $1.6 million.
11:41:42 So the reductions will continue to happen to us primarily
11:41:47 because of the way the red light cameras work.
11:41:50 And that's my own personal opinion about the way these
11:41:52 things operate.
11:41:53 I supported them before for public safety reasons.
11:41:56 I do it for the same reason now.
11:41:58 And I think that we are going to have it pass and continue
11:42:03 the program.
11:42:04 I do believe that as my colleagues have mentioned we have to
11:42:06 keep vigilant in terms of the way that the program works.
11:42:13 The costs, neutrality portion of it is extremely important
11:42:15 to me, because once we cross that threshold, I think that
11:42:19 the administration owes the citizens and the council an
11:42:23 explanation as to what the next steps are going to be.
11:42:26 The now, that may not happen next year.
11:42:30 It may not happen in two years.
11:42:31 It may not happen in ten years.
11:42:33 But still whatever administration is here should continue to
11:42:35 do that and keep the line of communication open with the
11:42:38 council so that we can continue to have a good, robust
11:42:41 public safety program in place.
11:42:43 Thank you, chair.
11:42:45 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you.
11:42:45 Second round.
11:42:46 Mrs. Capin, Mulhern and Montelione.
11:42:51 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I'm going to start off with that, two years
11:42:54 ago I did not vote for the cameras, and I wasn't running for
11:42:57 office then, so I want to make that clear.
11:43:01 And secondly --
11:43:05 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I'm not going to say anything.
11:43:07 But I understand that.
11:43:08 [ Laughter ]
11:43:09 It's like a commercial break.
11:43:19 >>YVONNE CAPIN: We need a little break here.
11:43:20 You know, bun of the things that I brought up, and it came
11:43:24 to my attention when it was brought forth, our police chief
11:43:31 went to great lengths to distance law enforcement from these
11:43:36 And in my estimation was that she perceived, the chief
11:43:43 perceived that these extraordinary income, because this is
11:43:47 not your everyday income -- should be distanced from law
11:43:54 enforcement for fear of the perception that law enforcement
11:43:59 would be running, then I thought, well, why doesn't the
11:44:03 administration see the same thing?
11:44:08 And say not only are we saving lives, but look what we are
11:44:11 spending this money.
11:44:13 To the public.
11:44:15 That to me just did not register, that the police chief saw
11:44:22 it, the administration did not, but now we are moving
11:44:27 On the cost negative part -- and is it clear that if it is
11:44:35 cost negative we can remove the camera at no cost to us?
11:44:39 Or do we have to move it?
11:44:42 >> We have the option.
11:44:44 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Of moving it?
11:44:45 And if it's cost negative, then we have the option -- I
11:44:49 wanted to be clear because Councilman Cohen brought it up
11:44:52 that that is exactly what happens.
11:44:56 If it's decided to take the camera away from the
11:44:59 intersection or just stop it, then there is no cost to us?
11:45:04 >> And Mr. Fry will correct me if I am wrong but we have the
11:45:07 If we decide another intersection we would like to modify
11:45:10 some behavior, we can move the camera to that intersection,
11:45:13 or we can simply remove the camera from the city.
11:45:20 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Now, I understand that I asked what the
11:45:22 projections for next year were and it's 1.8 million.
11:45:26 It's not projected to go down.
11:45:27 >> It's not projected to go down at this time but we are
11:45:30 still working on --
11:45:31 >>Are which I understand is a budget number but yet we are
11:45:34 looking at a budget number that is looking up instead of
11:45:39 So I wanted to clarify that.
11:45:42 >> And we have added cameras since fiscal year 2013 so we
11:45:48 have a greater --
11:45:53 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Okay, that would make sense.
11:45:55 Then to Chairman Miranda's comment.
11:46:03 I come from a jewelry retail background for almost 25 years.
11:46:09 And when he mentioned the fake cameras, you know, our
11:46:14 stores, we had real and fake cameras.
11:46:17 We were never robbed.
11:46:22 That's just interesting that he would bring that up.
11:46:28 Now, the last thing, looking over notes on my paper here.
11:46:35 We brought up that.
11:46:36 Oh, okay.
11:46:40 I wanted to point this out because we are looking at about
11:46:45 And it's not -- it hasn't been specified where it's going to
11:46:48 be spent, and that's not -- but I wanted to look at.
11:46:54 This when we look at Hillsborough Avenue here on this map,
11:46:59 the orange ones are what is being specifically worked on
11:47:04 Is that correct, Ms. Duncan?
11:47:09 >> Jean Duncan: Yes, ma'am.
11:47:11 Those orange locations, if you go to the spreadsheet you can
11:47:14 look to see specifically the project that's planned along
11:47:18 Hillsborough at this location.
11:47:21 >>YVONNE CAPIN: And the red?
11:47:22 >> The red, the city does not currently have a project at
11:47:26 those locations at this time.
11:47:28 >>YVONNE CAPIN: But why are they marked?
11:47:30 >> Because all of those dots are where the cameras are
11:47:36 >>YVONNE CAPIN: So we have cameras but we don't have active
11:47:38 or even planned for that.
11:47:41 And when I look on here, we have 22nd and Hillsborough and
11:47:47 15th and Hillsborough.
11:47:48 And this is just coming from the dais here that maybe those
11:47:54 $400 that you should look at Hillsborough, put that money
11:48:00 into a very dangerous street to cross and navigate.
11:48:07 But, of course, that is just from seeing what I am looking
11:48:12 at on this map, that they can be injurious that we actually
11:48:23 have four red light cameras along this corridor of
11:48:28 Hillsborough Avenue, that maybe that should be the first
11:48:33 installment in working with D.O.T. about that, as we have
11:48:43 had two deaths on that street, and I think when you look at
11:48:46 the map of the whole city you can see that is the area that
11:48:50 is apparently the most dangerous in our city, according to
11:48:59 the red light.
11:49:01 That's all I have to say.
11:49:03 And I do believe that was it.
11:49:10 And, by the way, I want to say thank you to you all meeting
11:49:16 with us and taking your very valuable time to come to
11:49:21 explain to us what was being proposed.
11:49:26 Very much appreciated.
11:49:27 Thank you.
11:49:29 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have got Mrs. Mulhern and Mrs.
11:49:31 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you.
11:49:32 I just want to -- I think we are all on the same page here
11:49:36 but I just want to make sure.
11:49:37 And this is probably the first question is for Ms. Duncan.
11:49:45 Is the location, that you have agreed to spend the 25% on,
11:49:51 intersection improvements, and based on your map -- and this
11:49:56 speaks to what Councilman Reddick and what Councilwoman
11:49:59 Capin was saying -- since we are already going to have the
11:50:06 red light camera in that intersection, we are talking about
11:50:09 not specifically, exactly in that intersection, but I think
11:50:14 you used the words "in the vicinity," right?
11:50:19 So, for instance, the pedestrian deaths that we had
11:50:22 recently, tragedies, were people walking not at a signal but
11:50:28 crossing where there wasn't a signal.
11:50:31 So some of this money, in your program, is going to be spent
11:50:37 not exactly at -- I mean, I would hope it wouldn't be
11:50:42 exactly but it would be in the neighborhood of or the
11:50:46 vicinity of.
11:50:47 Is that correct?
11:50:49 >> Well, again, from a transportation perspective, I used
11:50:57 the word flexibility.
11:50:59 I didn't mean that to be a negative but as much opportunity
11:51:02 that we have to apply the funds where be the need is, and
11:51:05 again it could be upstreams, downstream.
11:51:09 Then that allows us to put, for example, a crossing between
11:51:14 26th street and 30th on Hillsborough.
11:51:17 If the language is very tight, to say-at the intersection"
11:51:23 we couldn't spend these moneys in such a location.
11:51:25 So the wording comfortable with everyone, we still want like
11:51:32 it directed the way you want, if there's enough opportunity
11:51:34 to be a reply it in the best manner where the need is,
11:51:37 that's great.
11:51:38 >>MARY MULHERN: I want you to be able to use it.
11:51:41 Obviously, the solution with the red light cameras is
11:51:45 reducing crashes in the intersection.
11:51:47 So I would like to see it be, you know, adjacent, on the
11:51:53 same -- one of those streets where the intersection is
11:51:57 adjacent to it.
11:51:59 So I think that Councilman Reddick had a question about it,
11:52:04 and we'll hear from him about that.
11:52:06 But the other thing that concerns me as we go forward -- and
11:52:13 I'll be here for this year's budget so I will be looking at
11:52:15 it and I know everybody will be.
11:52:19 We will all be here this year.
11:52:20 Many of us back -- probably not me.
11:52:33 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Have you asked God about me?
11:52:36 >>MARY MULHERN: No. Not lately. I haven't been praying
11:52:37 for you lately.
11:52:38 You have been doing okay.
11:52:39 [ Laughter ]
11:52:40 But my concern is about how the overall budget, that other
11:52:47 funds aren't being reduced, oh are not just being reduced
11:52:50 but that we are not going after possible funding because now
11:52:57 we have $400,000 from the red light camera program.
11:53:01 I want to make sure that doesn't happen.
11:53:03 So I glanced through here, and Mrs. Little mentioned the
11:53:10 local option gas tax.
11:53:12 That is going to be a variable.
11:53:14 We can't control that.
11:53:15 So it might be more.
11:53:16 It might be less next year.
11:53:18 But then only of 55 million you have cited here only about 7
11:53:24 million of these intersection improvements comes from that,
11:53:28 maybe a little more.
11:53:32 So I am going to expect you to be able to make that up from
11:53:35 somewhere else, and there are other sources, and, you know,
11:53:39 whether it's applying for more money from FDOT, be we have
11:53:42 got, you know, we have got the CRA, we have got SWFWMD,
11:53:51 grants, utility tax.
11:53:52 There's other things you can make that up with.
11:53:53 So I am going to expect an increase from this year's budget
11:53:58 to next year's budget, and I think -- I assume that whoever
11:54:02 is here in the next term of council will hold you to that,
11:54:08 >> Yes, and that will be part of our itemization of the
11:54:11 revenue sources.
11:54:13 As Mr. Miranda said we are not going to turn this into the
11:54:15 Florida Lottery with some sort of shell game.
11:54:21 Many of the other revenues associated with these projects
11:54:23 are going to fluctuate.
11:54:25 Worst case scenario, the local option gas tax simply does
11:54:28 not come in for whatever reason.
11:54:30 We would have to explain to you all what happened with those
11:54:33 other revenue source
11:54:34 >>MARY MULHERN: Right.
11:54:36 But I think I am going to expect you to find it somewhere
11:54:38 else if that happens.
11:54:39 >> Understood.
11:54:40 >>MARY MULHERN: And this is the other question.
11:54:43 Does the state law say that we had to -- the City of Tampa
11:54:52 and municipalities had to pay for the cameras completely
11:54:55 >> It's my understand that the state gets that set amount
11:54:59 regardless of the city --
11:55:01 >> What is the percentage?
11:55:02 >> It's just a little over half of what we get on each
11:55:05 >>MARY MULHERN: Is there any reason why we couldn't somehow
11:55:12 do a pass-through?
11:55:14 That's basically what it is.
11:55:16 They are getting the revenue.
11:55:19 We are holding the costs.
11:55:22 Pursue that?
11:55:23 I don't know if state law precludes that, but apply to FDLE
11:55:29 or the FDOT or one of those, to defray the cost of the
11:55:35 cameras and maybe go to the legislature if we can't do that.
11:55:38 >> And I would have to defer to the city attorney.
11:55:41 >>MARY MULHERN: We have all the other cities and counties
11:55:43 with us questioning that.
11:55:44 >>JULIA MANDELL: City attorney.
11:55:48 I heard part of your question.
11:55:49 I didn't hear the second part of your question as related to
11:55:52 the state law.
11:55:55 The state laws delineate how it's happened, the money that
11:55:58 goes to the state.
11:55:58 I think there's even a couple of fund at the state level the
11:56:02 money goes to and it's earmarked.
11:56:03 So in order to have any changes it would need to change the
11:56:06 state law, which is obviously a very hot topic up in
11:56:10 Tallahassee right now and there are several bills floating
11:56:12 around as relates to red light cameras.
11:56:14 >> Are there people asking -- I mean, I would like to see us
11:56:18 join that.
11:56:19 >>JULIA MANDELL: They are either trying to eliminate the
11:56:24 program or to have more of the money go to the state as
11:56:27 opposed to less.
11:56:27 So, you know, at this point, I think the legislature is not
11:56:32 necessarily going to be inclined to giving us more of the
11:56:35 money back, and in fact the most recent state law would move
11:56:42 it out of the state court system into our own local system,
11:56:45 so --
11:56:48 >> And pay for that?
11:56:50 >>JULIA MANDELL: Yes.
11:56:51 >>MARY MULHERN: Well, no surprise.
11:56:53 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have Mrs. Montelione but I also have a
11:56:55 council member on the prevailing side earlier who wants to
11:56:57 move the resolution.
11:56:58 Do you want the floor?
11:57:06 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I am going to keep to myself on that one.
11:57:09 >>LISA MONTELIONE: What I want to say is I think Mrs.
11:57:15 Mulhern made part of my argument, was that if we tie this
11:57:19 money directly to an intersection, we are not going to
11:57:22 receive the benefit across that roadway of spending
11:57:28 additional dollars to improve that roadway, and to improve
11:57:32 the safety of that roadway.
11:57:34 And I will not support something that's tied immediately to
11:57:40 that intersection.
11:57:44 We talk about priority lists in every transportation board
11:57:48 and committee that I sit on, and there are many.
11:57:54 Ms. Mulhern used to sit on the MPO.
11:57:56 She's familiar with prioritization lists of transportation
11:58:00 Mr. Suarez, Mr. Cohen sit with me on the MPO currently.
11:58:05 We base our decisions on transportation improvements on
11:58:09 priority, not on a specific location, because we happen to
11:58:14 think anecdotally that that's the place where we need to
11:58:19 spend the money.
11:58:20 And in the progression of time, if the cameras are doing
11:58:24 their jobs, year one will have a pot of money.
11:58:28 Year two, that pot of money will be a little bit less.
11:58:31 And year three that money will be even less than year two,
11:58:34 because over time it's a progression downward of the revenue
11:58:39 that's generated from that camera at that intersection to
11:58:43 provide the money.
11:58:44 So it's not lost on me that most of the cameras, seven of
11:58:50 them are located on Hillsborough Avenue.
11:58:52 The next two streets that come close are Dale Mabry, whether
11:58:55 it's north or south, and Kennedy Boulevard.
11:59:00 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: West.
11:59:01 >>LISA MONTELIONE: So those are four pieces.
11:59:04 And if we are looking to improvements in the roadway, in
11:59:06 this case Hillsborough Avenue, we have to look at the
11:59:09 functionality of that roadway and the development along that
11:59:12 It's not an intersection problem.
11:59:16 And I really will not feel that tying this money to an unit
11:59:29 section is appropriate.
11:59:30 And I think Mrs. Mulhern said it best.
11:59:33 You know, what's the definition of vicinity?
11:59:36 What's the definition of proximity?
11:59:38 And how are we just going to play a word game of, well, yes,
11:59:45 this red light camera is located here, the safety project
11:59:49 and the money is being spent on an improvement that a
11:59:54 quarter of a mile down the road.
11:59:56 Can you associate that with the red light camera?
11:59:59 But that's my concern.
12:00:03 We should spend money based on priorities.
12:00:07 We should spend money based on where need is.
12:00:10 We should not spend money on a particular location because
12:00:17 that's where that camera happens to be located.
12:00:21 So those are my concerns.
12:00:23 And I hope my constituents get the irony in what I am about
12:00:27 to say.
12:00:27 But if that's the case, I want more cameras on Busch
12:00:31 I want more cameras on 30th street.
12:00:34 I want more cameras on Bruce B. Downs.
12:00:36 Because there are accidents that happen.
12:00:39 I witness people being run over on bicycles on Busch
12:00:43 Boulevard almost on a monthly basis.
12:00:48 Some of them die.
12:00:49 Some of them don't.
12:00:51 But are they at intersections? Maybe.
12:00:54 Maybe not.
12:00:55 Are there red light cameras there?
12:00:57 Maybe, maybe not.
12:00:59 But people die on Busch Boulevard by being hit by cars that
12:01:03 are speeding down Busch Boulevard.
12:01:07 And if we are only going to increase spending based on where
12:01:12 these cameras are, I want more cameras.
12:01:16 Thank you.
12:01:21 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
12:01:21 Mr. Reddick.
12:01:22 >>FRANK REDDICK: Thank you, Mr. Chair.
12:01:26 The chief of staff, call for a vote, move the resolution,
12:01:32 will you state your reason for bringing this?
12:01:35 >> I'm sorry, could you restate your question?
12:01:38 >>FRANK REDDICK: Why are you here today?
12:01:39 >> To bring you the mayor's commitment of identifying 25% of
12:01:42 the net revenue for the red light camera revenue, from the
12:01:46 red light camera revenue, for those intersections, projects
12:01:49 within those intersections or associated with those
12:01:52 intersections for projects versus operating or any other use
12:01:57 to tie that 25% directly to those projects.
12:01:59 >>FRANK REDDICK: I move staff recommendation.
12:02:01 >> Second.
12:02:03 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Motion by Mr. Reddick, second by Mr.
12:02:06 Let me say this.
12:02:08 You have money that's going to the general welfare of the
12:02:11 citizens for the intersection and street improvements and
12:02:14 transportation improvements.
12:02:16 We are not talking about a lot of money.
12:02:19 Even though $400 that you is a lot of money but when you
12:02:22 compare to the general revenue it's 25% of something.
12:02:25 So the other 75 isn't going anywhere. So what you are
12:02:31 looking at here is a compromise.
12:02:33 You are not looking at us versus you, you versus us.
12:02:37 I have nothing but admiration for you, for the staff, for
12:02:40 the mayor, for everybody for doing the job that you have
12:02:43 I state that on the record.
12:02:44 So I have a motion on the floor by Mr. Reddick.
12:02:46 I have a second by Mr. Cohen, I believe further discussion
12:02:49 by council members to move the resolution.
12:02:56 All in favor of the motion indicate by saying aye.
12:02:59 Opposed nay.
12:03:00 Motion passes 6 to 1.
12:03:02 Thank you all very much.
12:03:06 That means the resolution is passed.
12:03:08 It's for two years at whatever the variables are, they are
12:03:13 It's now 12:00.
12:03:15 What's the pleasure of council?
12:03:21 We stand in recess till 1:30.
12:03:24 (City Council in recess until 1:30 p.m.)
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01:31:53 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: City Council scheduled to session.
01:32:44 Roll call.
01:32:45 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Here.
01:32:49 >>FRANK REDDICK: Here.
01:32:50 >>HARRY COHEN: Here.
01:32:51 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Here.
01:32:53 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Here.
01:32:54 We go to Public Safety Committee chair Mr. Frank Reddick.
01:32:57 >>FRANK REDDICK: Mr. Chair, I move items 9 through 11.
01:33:02 >> Second.
01:33:02 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion by Mr. Reddick on 9
01:33:04 through 11.
01:33:05 Second by Mr. Suarez.
01:33:06 Discussion by council members?
01:33:07 All in favor of the motion?
01:33:09 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:33:20 Parks, Recreation, Culture Committee, vice chair Lisa
01:33:24 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I move items 12 through 23.
01:33:28 >> Second.
01:33:30 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Motion by Mrs. Montelione, second by Mr.
01:33:33 Further discussion by council members?
01:33:34 All in favor of the motion?
01:33:36 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:33:38 Public Works Committee chair, Mr. Mike Suarez.
01:33:41 >>MIKE SUAREZ: I move items 24 through 30.
01:33:44 >> Second.
01:33:45 >> Motion by Mr. Suarez.
01:33:46 I have a second by Mr. Cohen.
01:33:47 All in discussion by council members?
01:33:50 All in favor?
01:33:51 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:33:53 Finance Committee chair, Mr. Harry Cohen.
01:33:55 >>HARRY COHEN: I move items 31 through 33.
01:33:58 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Second.
01:34:01 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion by Mr. Cohen, a second by
01:34:03 Mr. Suarez.
01:34:03 Further discussion by council members?
01:34:05 All in favor?
01:34:07 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:34:09 Building, zoning, and preservation committee chair, Mrs.
01:34:12 Lisa Montelione.
01:34:13 >>LISA MONTELIONE: I move items 34 through 37 and it 39
01:34:16 through 46.
01:34:22 Item 38 is to be continued until April 17th at
01:34:26 10:30 a.m.
01:34:27 >> Second by Mr. Cohen.
01:34:28 Further discussion by council members?
01:34:30 All in favor of the motion please indicate by saying aye.
01:34:32 Opposed nay.
01:34:33 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:34:35 Transportation committee, vice chair Mr. Frank Reddick.
01:34:37 >>FRANK REDDICK: Move item 47 through 51.
01:34:41 >> Second.
01:34:42 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a second by Mr. Cohen.
01:34:44 Further discussion by council members?
01:34:45 All in favor of the motion?
01:34:47 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:34:49 Need a motion to set public hearings.
01:34:56 I have a motion by Mr. Reddick, second by Mr. Cohen.
01:34:59 Further discussion by council members? All in favor?
01:35:02 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:35:03 Need a motion to open public hearing 54 through 62.
01:35:09 Motion by Mr. Suarez.
01:35:11 Second by Mr. Cohen.
01:35:13 Discussion by council members?
01:35:15 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:35:16 Let me say this.
01:35:17 These are quasi-judicial hearings.
01:35:20 Anyone who wishes to speak on items 54 through 62 shall be
01:35:23 sworn in.
01:35:24 Please come forward, raise your hand.
01:35:28 The clerk will swear you in.
01:35:29 (Oath administered by Clerk)
01:35:44 He we go to item 54.
01:35:48 These are second readings.
01:35:49 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Land Development Coordination.
01:35:51 Item number 54 is the second reading for alcohol, the site
01:35:56 plan has been certified.
01:35:58 Item 55 -- 55 will need to be continued to April 17th.
01:36:05 It could not be served certified.
01:36:08 And item 56 has been certified.
01:36:09 Of those second readings.
01:36:15 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Is petitioner here on 54?
01:36:16 Anyone in the audience care to speak?
01:36:18 This is a public hearing.
01:36:19 Anyone care to speak on item 54?
01:36:21 >> Farooq Mohammed, and I am the petitioner for number 54.
01:36:43 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: One more time.
01:36:43 None in the audience top speak on item 54?
01:36:48 Motion to close by Mr. Reddick, seconded by Mr. Cohen.
01:36:51 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:36:53 Thank you very much.
01:36:55 Mr. Suarez, would you kindly read 54, please?
01:36:58 >> I present AP orthopedics for second reading and adoption,
01:37:02 an ordinance approving a special using permit S-2 for
01:37:04 alcohol you can beverage sales small venue, package sales,
01:37:08 offpremises consumption only making all the sale of
01:37:11 beverages regardless of alcoholic content, beer wine and
01:37:14 liquor, at or from that certain lot, plot or tract of land
01:37:17 located at 10910 north 30th street unit 101 Tampa,
01:37:23 Florida as more particularly described, that all ordinances
01:37:27 or parts of ordinances in conflict are repealed, providing
01:37:29 an effective date.
01:37:32 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Motion by Mr. Suarez.
01:37:33 Second by Mrs. Mulhern.
01:37:34 This is roll call vote.
01:37:36 Vote and record.
01:37:45 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried with Capin being absent.
01:37:51 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Item 55.
01:37:52 The one being asked for us to change it to April 17th.
01:37:57 Is petitioner here?
01:38:04 I just want to make sure that they know it's changed.
01:38:08 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Land development.
01:38:09 The applicant is not here.
01:38:10 I called them yesterday, let them know that no plans have
01:38:13 been provided so I could not certify for first reading.
01:38:17 So they do know about the April 17th.
01:38:20 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Okay.
01:38:20 Let me say this.
01:38:22 Anyone in the audience care to speak only on the continuance
01:38:26 to April 17th?
01:38:27 Please come forward on item 55.
01:38:29 I see no one.
01:38:30 >> Move to continue to April 17th at 9:30 a.m.
01:38:34 >> You have a motion by Mr. Cohen.
01:38:35 I have a second by Mrs. Mulhern.
01:38:37 Further discussion by council members?
01:38:39 All in favor of the motion please indicate by saying aye.
01:38:41 Opposed nay.
01:38:42 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:38:44 Item 56.
01:38:45 >> Jim Porter with Adams and Reeves.
01:38:54 I'm here for the applicant if you have any questions.
01:38:56 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Anyone in the audience care to speak on
01:38:58 item 56?
01:39:00 I see no one.
01:39:01 Need a motion to close.
01:39:03 I have a motion by Mr. Cohen.
01:39:04 Second by Mrs. Capin.
01:39:06 Further discussion by council members?
01:39:07 All in favor?
01:39:09 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:39:11 Mrs. Capin, would you kindly take number 56?
01:39:20 This is second reading.
01:39:21 >> An ordinance being presented for second reading and
01:39:24 adoption, an ordinance approving a special use permit S-2
01:39:26 approving a drive-in window in CG commercial general zoning
01:39:30 district in the general us have interest of 5671 west
01:39:33 Hillsborough Avenue in the city of Tampa, Florida and more
01:39:37 particularly described in section 1 hereof providing an
01:39:39 effective date.
01:39:41 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a motion by Mrs. Capin, a second
01:39:43 by Mr. Suarez on a close vote with Mrs. Mulhern.
01:39:45 This is a roll call vote.
01:39:47 Vote and record.
01:39:47 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried unanimously.
01:39:59 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: We go to item number 57.
01:40:07 Lynch Land Development Coordination.
01:40:09 This item is a vacating for an alleyway located in South
01:40:15 Tampa Virginia park and I have a map showing the location.
01:40:21 The property owner's property is in red and the alley to be
01:40:25 vacated is in yellow and lies south of Bay to Bay, north of
01:40:29 Santiago, east of Dale Mabry, and west of Sterling Avenue.
01:40:34 It's an unimproved alley.
01:40:36 And I have some pictures.
01:40:39 Currently, there's a structure on this.
01:40:42 And this is the alleyway looking west from Sterling.
01:40:45 And this is the alleyway looking north from Santiago street.
01:40:49 Staff has no objections and there's no reservation of
01:40:54 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Is petitioner here?
01:40:55 >> I'm attorney for the petitioner.
01:41:05 I thank staff for all their help and here to answer any
01:41:10 questions you might have.
01:41:11 >> Any questions by council members at this time?
01:41:13 Anyone in the audience care to speak on item 57?
01:41:19 Motion to close by Mr. Reddick.
01:41:21 Seconded by Mr. Cohen.
01:41:23 All in favor of the motion to close please indicate by
01:41:25 saying aye.
01:41:26 Opposed nay.
01:41:27 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:41:29 This is first reading.
01:41:35 Mr. Reddick, would you read the ordinance?
01:41:37 >>FRANK REDDICK: Yes.
01:41:41 Move an ordinance being presented for first reading
01:41:43 consideration, an ordinance vacating, closing,
01:41:44 discontinuing, abandoning an alleyway lying east of Dale
01:41:51 Mabry Highway, west of Sterling Avenue, south of Bay to Bay
01:41:54 Boulevard and north of Santiago street in the map of
01:41:57 Virginia park, a subdivision in the City of Tampa,
01:42:00 Hillsborough County, Florida the Psalm being more fully
01:42:03 described in section 1 hereof providing an effective date.
01:42:04 >> Second.
01:42:07 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I have a second by Mrs. Mulhern.
01:42:09 Further discussion by council members?
01:42:11 All in favor of the motion please indicate by saying aye.
01:42:13 Opposed nay.
01:42:14 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:42:16 >>THE CLERK: Second reading and adoption will be held on
01:42:18 April 17, 2014 at 9:30 a.m.
01:42:26 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: We go to item number 58.
01:42:31 This is also first reading.
01:42:32 >>BARBARA LYNCH: Land Development Coordination.
01:42:35 This item is a vacating by the university of Tampa to vacate
01:42:42 transportation easement over previously vacated
01:42:45 North "A" was originally vacated in 2010.
01:42:48 Then there was another vacating that followed that to vacate
01:42:53 to build a connector between two buildings over North "A"
01:42:56 Street and now we are here to vacate a small portion of the
01:43:00 transportation easement for some footers for that connector.
01:43:08 This is east of Boulevard and north of Kennedy.
01:43:10 And of course here is your key property.
01:43:12 This is the North "A" Street that was vacated and here is
01:43:15 the area on the north side where they are vacating small
01:43:21 The brick street has been replaced to do utility location.
01:43:28 Here is a picture from Boulevard.
01:43:29 You can see they are under construction.
01:43:32 They had to move the sewer line and the gas line for the
01:43:34 connector that's coming.
01:43:36 And then here is the last diagram just showing the footers
01:43:39 that have to be constructed.
01:43:41 I guess it wouldn't fit in with the area being vacated so
01:43:47 now come to clean up this so they can put the footers in for
01:43:50 that connector.
01:43:51 If you have any questions, I'm here and Austin Goff is here
01:43:56 from Landmark Engineering on behalf of the petitioner.
01:44:00 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Petitioner?
01:44:11 >> Austin Goff. I have been sworn.
01:44:17 Is there any question?
01:44:19 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Any questions?
01:44:23 Mrs. Mulhern?
01:44:25 >>MARY MULHERN: Just quickly, the vacation for the portion
01:44:34 that was already granted, when was that?
01:44:36 >> That was in 2012.
01:44:38 Yes, 2012.
01:44:38 >> I'm just curious.
01:44:45 Is that a dorm, building parking lot?
01:44:48 And then what's the building that is getting --
01:44:52 >> There's a parking garage.
01:44:53 And it has on the lower floors office space.
01:44:59 >> And then it's connected, so what's the other building?
01:45:04 It is connecting to an existing parking garage.
01:45:06 >> Parking garage?
01:45:08 The parking garage?
01:45:09 >> Correct.
01:45:10 >> Why?
01:45:12 I'm just curious why you need a walkway from one parking
01:45:16 garage to another.
01:45:17 >> You can actually drive on it and you can park on it as
01:45:22 >> Okay.
01:45:29 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Anyone in the audience care to speak on
01:45:31 this item number 58?
01:45:33 I see no one.
01:45:36 I have a motion to close by Mrs. Capin.
01:45:38 Seconded by Mr. Reddick.
01:45:41 All in favor of the motion please indicate by saying aye.
01:45:43 Opposed nay.
01:45:44 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:45:45 Mrs. Mulhern, would you kindly take number 58, please?
01:45:48 >> Mr. Chairman, I move an ordinance being presented for
01:45:52 first reading consideration, an ordinance releasing a
01:45:54 portion of a permanent public transportation easement
01:45:57 reserved by the City of Tampa zoning ordinance number
01:46:00 2010-11 and located within the vacated right-of-way known as
01:46:04 North "A" Street, the same being more fully described in
01:46:07 section 1 hereof amending section 2 .F of ordinance number
01:46:12 2010-11, as amended by ordinance number 2013-11 to reflect
01:46:19 said partial release, providing an effective date.
01:46:22 >> Second.
01:46:24 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Motion by Mrs. Mulhern.
01:46:25 Second by Mr. Suarez on first reading.
01:46:27 All in favor of the motion?
01:46:30 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:46:32 >>THE CLERK: Second reading and adoption will occur on
01:46:34 April 17th, 2014 at 9:30 a.m.
01:46:39 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: 59.
01:46:40 Anyone in the audience care to speak on the continuation
01:46:44 from this hearing today to May 15th, 2014 at 10:30 in
01:46:49 the morning?
01:46:56 I don't see anyone.
01:46:57 I need a motion from council to allow this.
01:47:00 Motion by Mr. Suarez, seconded by Mr. Reddick on a close
01:47:00 vote with Ms. Montleione for 59 to be brought back to May
01:47:06 15th, 2014 at 10:30 in the morning.
01:47:09 All in favor of the motion please indicate by saying aye.
01:47:12 Opposed nay.
01:47:13 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:47:15 Item 60 is a continued hearing from March 6th, 2014.
01:47:22 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Mr. Chairman, I just passed out a letter
01:47:26 that City Council had received.
01:47:28 I gave everybody on City Council a copy.
01:47:30 I'm providing it to the clerk and I would also ask the
01:47:33 council to receive and file all public documents that have
01:47:35 been made available, please.
01:47:36 >> So moved.
01:47:38 >> Second.
01:47:39 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Motion by Mrs. Montelione.
01:47:40 Second by Mr. Suarez.
01:47:41 Further discussion by council members?
01:47:42 All in favor of the motion indicate by saying aye.
01:47:45 Opposed nay.
01:47:45 The ayes have it unanimously.
01:47:46 >>REBECCA KERT: Legal department.
01:48:20 We are still waiting for the staff person.
01:48:22 I would ask if we could do 61 or 62 first.
01:48:26 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: All right.
01:48:26 We'll hold 60.
01:48:29 And we'll go to 61.
01:48:37 This is rescheduled from December 5th, a review
01:48:43 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Land Development Coordination.
01:48:48 It appears that what's before you today was an S-1
01:48:52 approval -- or S-1 denial on special use 1, as you know, you
01:48:59 must meet all criteria relate ohed to that special use to
01:49:03 obtain administrative approval for that use by Land
01:49:06 Development Coordination.
01:49:07 In relation to this use which was an extended family
01:49:10 residence, one of the requirements is that that use not
01:49:15 exceed 600 square feet.
01:49:19 The request was for 618.56 feet.
01:49:23 Therefore the request was denied and is before you today on
01:49:27 that denial for the area of the use.
01:49:31 Thank you.
01:49:31 >>> Good afternoon.
01:49:40 I'm here on behalf of the owner.
01:49:43 She was here this morning and was supposed to come back at
01:49:47 I haven't seen her.
01:49:50 She should be come momentarily.
01:49:53 The petition was made, the petition for use was denied.
01:50:04 Based on the fact that the property is actually slightly
01:50:10 larger than what the code calls for.
01:50:16 We did have, or she did have another survey done, and it
01:50:20 appears that the number is actually less than the 600.
01:50:27 But even if it's 620, basically we are appealing to your
01:50:37 kindness really.
01:50:38 This lady bought this house, first property she ever bought.
01:50:45 Part of the decision making in her mind when she bought this
01:50:48 property is that she has a sister who is not employed, has a
01:50:53 daughter, and so there is a family situation that came into
01:50:58 play when this purchase was made.
01:51:04 Unbeknownst to Ms. Proenza this house was sold as a duplex
01:51:14 so she didn't have a reason to think that was inappropriate
01:51:17 to use this second building as a residence.
01:51:23 And then but purchased this property, to find out that in
01:51:27 fact there is an usual you.
01:51:33 There are also some other issues that are not before you
01:51:38 today, but we are also trying to address those issues as we
01:51:40 go, so she's trying to make due with what she has.
01:51:48 And if the extended family is not allowed then the sister
01:51:54 will have to move out.
01:51:55 It will create a hardship on the family.
01:52:01 So we ask for leniency on the part of council to allow her
01:52:09 the use of this property as extended family.
01:52:12 And as I mentioned, there another with slightly less than
01:52:24 600 square feet for this particular building.
01:52:29 I'm not sure which one is the proper one, but it's not in my
01:52:37 mind, even though it's more than 601, it's not a highly
01:52:43 substantial number from which council may have heartburn
01:52:54 deviating from.
01:53:01 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Any questions by council at this time?
01:53:03 >>FRANK REDDICK: Do you have any statistics on the
01:53:12 >> I do.
01:53:13 >> This is the side view of the property.
01:53:47 And this is the main building of the property.
01:53:49 The building that is at issue is the little house behind it.
01:53:57 So to the back of this particular property.
01:54:00 And I'll show you the survey so that you can see.
01:54:07 >> Turn it the other way.
01:54:24 Keep going.
01:54:26 >> The building we are talking about is this building, this
01:54:48 structure right here.
01:54:50 So council is not hearing this matter today but it's
01:54:59 actually built close to the property line.
01:55:01 And we are going to be dealing with that issue separately.
01:55:06 But basically, we are asking for the continued use of this
01:55:15 second right here.
01:55:27 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Thank you.
01:55:28 That backs up the 600 and some feet you're talking about?
01:55:31 >> Yes, ma'am.
01:55:33 >>YVONNE CAPIN: When was this purchased?
01:55:34 >> This was purchased in 2012.
01:55:46 >>YVONNE CAPIN: And where did Ms. Proenza live before, do
01:55:51 you know?
01:55:52 Out of Tampa?
01:55:53 I'm just curious.
01:55:55 Out of Tampa?
01:56:10 >> She's been living in Tampa.
01:56:12 She's from a different location and has been here about 13
01:56:14 >> Okay.
01:56:15 That has nothing to do it with.
01:56:16 I just wanted to know and that structure was there when she
01:56:28 bought it?
01:56:29 >> Yes.
01:56:29 >> What was it used for when she bought it?
01:56:32 How was the use of that structure?
01:56:34 >> There was a bathroom.
01:56:50 There was a kitchen in there.
01:56:52 So it was built to be used as a residence.
01:56:57 But she bought it -- we can ask her if she knows what it was
01:57:06 used for before she bought it.
01:57:08 But when she bought it --
01:57:09 >> You said she bought it as a duplex.
01:57:11 >> That's what she was told that it was.
01:57:13 >> That's what she was told?
01:57:17 That's an apartment, a separate building.
01:57:28 Abbye, is a duplex attached?
01:57:31 So that wouldn't be a duplex.
01:57:35 Not by definition.
01:57:36 >> That's the information she was given when she bought it.
01:57:41 >> And how many square feet is the main house?
01:57:43 >> The main house is less than a thousand.
01:58:00 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Okay.
01:58:02 I'll listen to the rest.
01:58:03 Thank you.
01:58:04 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Ms. Mulhern?
01:58:05 >>MARY MULHERN: Ms. Feeley, I would like to hear from you
01:58:15 on the history of this structure.
01:58:24 We have an e-mail from a neighbor.
01:58:28 I don't know if they are representing the neighborhood.
01:58:30 But a number of people signed it that says back in 2007
01:58:36 there was a 16 by 24 shed approved by the building
01:58:45 By the previous owner.
01:58:46 It was approved as a shed, not an apartment.
01:58:48 The previous owner tried to create an extended family
01:58:51 residence with that structure, but withdrew his application
01:58:55 because he was unable to meet the requirement.
01:59:04 So is that correct?
01:59:10 Can you tell us -- I don't know if you know this or not, but
01:59:15 I know there were complaints.
01:59:20 The 16 by 24 shed was approved, did that original approval
01:59:25 in 2007 go into the setbacks?
01:59:28 Or was it within --
01:59:32 >> I'm covering for Ms. Moreda who unfortunately has been
01:59:36 detained but let me read for you what I see in the file and
01:59:39 maybe that will help explain part of it.
01:59:41 It does say that part of the -- that the accessory structure
01:59:44 that's shown there was constructed in 2007 with city
01:59:47 permits, and the drawing for those permits did show setback
01:59:53 However, the structure was not built to those required
01:59:57 setbacks, and the current survey showed the number of
02:00:01 improvements on the property that were constructed without
02:00:08 permits and encroached onto property to the east.
02:00:10 All violations have been brought into compliance before code
02:00:13 enforcement action and are currently closed.
02:00:15 So it appears that any structural issues related to that
02:00:19 have been rectified through the proper channels.
02:00:23 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay.
02:00:28 But it still doesn't meet the setbacks and that's basically
02:00:31 what they are asking for?
02:00:32 >> It does not meet the area which is a maximum of 600
02:00:35 square feet, and it's 618.54 and it does have setbacks
02:00:44 The accessory -- the east side needs a reduction from 3-foot
02:00:49 to 2 feet 3 inches.
02:00:51 >>MARY MULHERN: Well, can you tell me if any of the
02:00:57 setbacks violations are new after the original -- the
02:01:09 setbacks in the first place.
02:01:10 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Well, from what I --
02:01:14 >>MARY MULHERN: The permits more than what were allowed.
02:01:18 >> More than they should have, yes.
02:01:19 It was a 3-foot side and there is 2-foot 3 inches.
02:01:24 >>MARY MULHERN: Has that changed any with the new
02:01:26 >> There was not been any additional construction.
02:01:30 That accessory structure was constructed in 2007 per those
02:01:35 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay.
02:01:45 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mrs. Montelione?
02:01:47 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Thank you.
02:01:51 What was stated by this petitioner's representative and what
02:01:54 we have on file in the staff report, it says in the staff
02:01:56 report, or actually in this letter in our backup dated
02:02:04 September 3, 2013, it was from Gloria Moreda and it says the
02:02:12 proposed development depicts an approximately 742.04 square
02:02:18 foot extended family residential addition.
02:02:20 The proposed addition exceeds the maximum 600 square foot
02:02:23 And you said, sir, that this was perhaps under the 600
02:02:28 square foot, and in looking at the survey, and just from
02:02:30 what the survey shows, it's well over the 600 square foot
02:02:39 >> This section right here, if I do the math, and these are
02:02:45 exterior numbers.
02:02:46 If I do the math I come to 620.
02:02:49 But if I go to the table that was prepared by the
02:02:52 surveyor --
02:02:57 >> It's upside down, sir.
02:02:59 Thank you.
02:03:07 If I do the math I come to the --
02:03:21 >> Oh, that's the base area.
02:03:24 Is there something on that?
02:03:27 Because the base area that's 540, what his own drawing
02:03:38 states, I can only conclude --
02:03:41 >> There is no porch.
02:03:42 >> The numbers should match.
02:03:46 >> The number that was used --
02:03:55 >> I would tend to go with what's on the drawing rather than
02:03:58 what is on that table.
02:04:00 Because perhaps there's a typographical error that wasn't
02:04:06 caught when the survey was printed and verified and sealed
02:04:10 as the measurements of the building itself.
02:04:16 If there's a discrepancy between the two, I would probably
02:04:19 state that the survey itself is right and the numbers on
02:04:22 this table are incorrect.
02:04:26 That was one thing.
02:04:27 The other thing was again referencing the same thing that
02:04:30 Mrs. Mulhern referenced was that it states that there are
02:04:36 three families, it seems apparent to the neighbors that
02:04:43 there are three families living here, not just two people,
02:04:52 Mrs. Herrera and her sister.
02:04:54 >> She has at the house the sister, the daughter of the
02:04:56 sister, and her mom usually came to live with her sister.
02:05:04 So the sister now living with the mother in the residential,
02:05:10 and the extended family in the --
02:05:15 >> Did they know they were in violation when the mother
02:05:17 moved in?
02:05:18 >> That happened recently, yes.
02:05:21 >> So although they are in violation, they are allowing
02:05:24 other family members to move in?
02:05:35 I have got other questions, but I know Mr. Cohen --
02:05:39 >>HARRY COHEN: I just want to follow up on one of yours
02:05:42 How many people live in the two houses together?
02:05:44 On the property?
02:05:52 >> Six people total.
02:05:53 >> Six people.
02:05:54 And how many cars are there?
02:05:55 >> Three cars.
02:06:09 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Let me just say this.
02:06:11 As innocent as this sounds, this is what we have been
02:06:15 talking about, code enforcement, how difficult it's going to
02:06:18 be to solve these problems.
02:06:22 Not only do you have this, but if you have two families
02:06:25 there, what's the underlying land use?
02:06:29 Is it residential?
02:06:31 Or not?
02:06:34 Do you have a meter in the back, separate meter or not?
02:06:37 Do you have a separate water meter or not?
02:06:42 Or do you have extension from the main house to the back?
02:06:49 I've said for months and for years, really, we have a
02:06:52 problem in this city.
02:06:57 You go after the low fruit.
02:06:59 And this is not one of them.
02:07:02 You have inspections on rented properties, but not
02:07:06 residential properties.
02:07:10 However, I don't know if this is residential, commercial, or
02:07:14 single-family or multifamily.
02:07:16 I can't tell you.
02:07:17 But I didn't do the buying.
02:07:21 But you said on the record she was told that it was a
02:07:25 And whoever sold her the house is who she should go after
02:07:30 because she was misled.
02:07:32 And there's hundreds if not thousands of cases of this in
02:07:36 the city, mostly in district 4, 5 -- excuse me, in 5, 6 and
02:07:43 7 and some in 4.
02:07:47 This is really a test case for this city, what's going to
02:07:51 happen here.
02:07:52 Because they are going to use it on how we act today on
02:07:58 future ones if they come in.
02:08:01 I'm talking.
02:08:02 I didn't say one word when you were speaking, sir.
02:08:04 So what I'm saying is, although it's simple, and
02:08:09 sympathetic, I understand that, it is a test case for what
02:08:12 this city does in the future and how it handles these types
02:08:15 of things when they come before us.
02:08:17 That's all I am going to say.
02:08:19 I am not trying to sway anybody's vote or anything else.
02:08:21 Mr. Suarez.
02:08:22 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Sir, a quick question.
02:08:24 The outlying building is not separately set up with electric
02:08:29 and water or anything?
02:08:31 >> I don't believe so.
02:08:32 I'll ask her.
02:08:33 >> You should know.
02:08:35 You're a lawyer.
02:08:36 Now the answer.
02:08:39 So find out from your client.
02:08:40 That would be great.
02:08:43 >> There's only one service, one electric and water.
02:08:54 So the sister doesn't pay the rent.
02:09:02 She can testify to.
02:09:03 That but it's not rental.
02:09:05 It's family.
02:09:07 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Ms. Feeley, a quick question for you.
02:09:12 When we are doing these type of cases, when we are talking
02:09:15 about hardships, we are not talking about specifically the
02:09:18 hardship on a family.
02:09:20 We are talking about a hardship in terms of the conditions
02:09:22 itself, correct?
02:09:25 Am I right about that?
02:09:26 Or am I parsing it too much?
02:09:31 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Land development.
02:09:32 I don't know that the scope of review is a hardship review
02:09:35 at all.
02:09:37 There is a set of criteria that say within this district
02:09:41 this use may be considered if you meet X, Y and Z.
02:09:45 And if you do meet X, Y and Z then you may be
02:09:49 administratively approved to have that use through our
02:09:53 If you do not meet X, Y and Z, we deny, and you may then
02:09:59 appeal to council for relief of those conditions, being the
02:10:06 size which they are here for today and the setbacks.
02:10:10 >>MIKE SUAREZ: The reason I ask is it is the petitioner's
02:10:14 application for review, they mention hardship.
02:10:16 And I want to mach sure we have the definition correct as to
02:10:19 what he means versus what we mean when we look at a review.
02:10:22 That's the only reason I asked the question.
02:10:24 It is not a hardship review as you mentioned.
02:10:28 Doesn't meet the criteria any kind of hardship review.
02:10:32 So when I was reading the applicant's review I wanted to
02:10:34 make sure that we understood that he is not asking for any
02:10:37 kind of relief from a hardship that is not self-created.
02:10:41 I think he's mixing up and may have mixed up what the
02:10:44 hardship review is versus what we are looking at here.
02:10:47 That's what I wanted to get at.
02:10:49 >> I concur.
02:10:51 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Terrific.
02:10:52 That's all I have right now.
02:10:55 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Ms. Mulhern.
02:10:56 >>: Ms. Feeley, I thought I saw this.
02:11:02 I'm looking at the letter from Gloria Moreda to the
02:11:11 And it lists all the criteria for extended family residence,
02:11:18 and I thought I saw in here, couldn't it be two residents?
02:11:29 Isn't that right?
02:11:30 Yes, under F.
02:11:32 There's a couple things under F.
02:11:34 It says the intention is to meet a temporary need, which I
02:11:39 have never heard that before.
02:11:41 >> At no time may the occupants of an extended family
02:11:44 residence exceed 2.
02:11:46 So in that separate structure they should not exceed two.
02:11:51 But our definition of family but code is no more than four
02:11:55 unrelated parties.
02:11:56 So when you were asking about what's going on in the main
02:11:58 house and what's going on here, you know, per our definition
02:12:02 of family in the code, you can have four unrelated people
02:12:06 living in a home, and that constitutes a family unit.
02:12:10 So in the extended family residence structure, you may not
02:12:15 have more than two occupants.
02:12:17 >> I thought you told us there were three.
02:12:29 And then what about the temporary?
02:12:30 How do you say a temporary need house -- I never heard that
02:12:34 before where it was supposed to be temporary when you had
02:12:37 extended family residence.
02:12:38 >>ABBYE FEELEY: I see it also.
02:12:42 I don't know how that is evaluated as far as -- we used to
02:12:52 do annual inspections of the single-family residence and
02:12:55 perhaps they look at it then.
02:12:57 Mrs. Coyle is here.
02:12:58 Perhaps she would like to opine on it.
02:13:02 >> And we don't do those inspections anymore?
02:13:04 >> I don't believe so.
02:13:05 >> All right.
02:13:09 Well, this letter was sent in September this past year
02:13:15 telling the applicant all these things.
02:13:20 So to my eyes, it's not just the square footage but --
02:13:30 >> Five yard setback from the three foot to the 2-foot 3
02:13:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Any others?
02:13:39 Mrs. Capin?
02:13:41 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Okay.
02:13:41 She bought it as a duplex.
02:13:45 We have discussed this before.
02:13:47 She did not build this.
02:13:49 >> Correct.
02:13:52 >>YVONNE CAPIN: It is okay to live there if it's 600 square
02:13:55 feet, not 618 square feet two. People may live there.
02:13:59 And I do believe when they talk about temporary need, it's
02:14:02 like when you are out of a job and you don't have a place to
02:14:05 live, you can take your family in.
02:14:13 She did not build this.
02:14:16 >> Correct.
02:14:17 She did not build it.
02:14:18 >> I'm assuming that staff concurs that she did not build
02:14:28 This was there.
02:14:29 And it is approved for a residence for two people.
02:14:32 If it's 600 square feet.
02:14:35 And did I hear you right, code violations that were there is
02:14:42 Tell me.
02:14:45 >>ABBYE FEELEY: What I read in the file that any violations
02:14:50 in relation to the permit --
02:14:53 >> To the permit.
02:14:54 The permit.
02:14:55 >> Have been resolved.
02:14:57 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Have been resolved.
02:14:58 >> That was in 2007 they put in for the permit to cop
02:15:01 instruct that other structure you see there, the one we are
02:15:04 talking about a little over 600 square feet.
02:15:06 It was not built.
02:15:08 The drawings that they showed for the construction of that
02:15:12 met the setback but was not constructed to those setbacks.
02:15:15 But it's saying that anything related to that has been
02:15:19 >> Has been resolved.
02:15:23 Not anything relating to occupying it.
02:15:26 The structure itself.
02:15:29 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Okay.
02:15:30 And then there's a setback issue there, right?
02:15:39 We are only looking at the square footage of the structure,
02:15:41 not that setback.
02:15:46 We are looking at that --
02:15:49 >> 2.3.
02:15:52 >> Now regardless of extended family residence issue,
02:15:57 accessory structures are required to be at a 3-foot rear,
02:16:00 3-foot rear set back what which is shown on the construction
02:16:05 permit it.
02:16:06 It was constructed as 2.3 feet.
02:16:13 And it's just this little piece here.
02:16:16 It appears that it kind of jogs at an angle back so up here
02:16:21 it's actually 3.3.
02:16:25 >> If we add that to the 2. we get --
02:16:29 >> I guess if you averaged, yes.
02:16:35 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Okay, thank you.
02:16:36 That helps me.
02:16:38 That helps me.
02:16:39 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Mrs. Feeley, don't sit down unless you
02:16:44 like the exercise.
02:16:47 Are the setbacks different -- I'm not sure if this question
02:16:50 has been asked and answered or maybe asked in a different
02:16:54 Are the setbacks different for an accessory structure when
02:16:58 the intention is a shed?
02:17:01 >> No.
02:17:02 Any accessory structure --
02:17:05 >> Being built as an extended family residence, the setbacks
02:17:09 would still the same?
02:17:10 >> The structure is still treated as an accessory structure
02:17:13 regardless of the occupancy within that structure.
02:17:18 So if it's a storage shed and accessory structure the rear
02:17:23 is still 3 and 3.
02:17:26 If it's accessory structure, still 3 and 3.
02:17:29 The only time the setbacks are different is when you exceed
02:17:31 the 15 percent allowable for accessory structure, and then
02:17:35 you are considered a primary structure and you have to meet
02:17:39 primary structure.
02:17:40 >> Does this exceed the 15%?
02:17:42 At 17.42 --
02:17:45 >> They are only at 618 something.
02:17:48 I just sat down at that other building.
02:17:53 So the letter says 742.04.
02:17:56 >> Right.
02:18:00 She has it marked at 618.56.
02:18:04 So there was an error there.
02:18:05 >> The 618.56.
02:18:08 >> We have got so many different numbers here.
02:18:09 >> Yes.
02:18:11 And I honestly did the calculations on the front and I was
02:18:16 at 599 or somewhere right in that 6 range.
02:18:20 So the 618 sounds about right.
02:18:22 I don't have my scale and stuff with me to square it off for
02:18:26 you to the exact measurements.
02:18:27 >> I guess that 599 concerns me, because -- I understand
02:18:39 that I understand that.
02:18:41 I am going to defer obviously to Mrs. Moreda's calculation
02:18:44 of the 618 which is what's in her file.
02:18:47 There's no indication that the 742.04 is incorrect.
02:18:51 So it appears there's 618 is what she had placed in her file
02:18:56 and that is what is before you today.
02:18:58 So I apologize for any confusion in relation to that matter.
02:19:05 >>LISA MONTELIONE: So then the other question I have is the
02:19:19 confusion I have as well, because we had conflicting
02:19:22 testimony and some questioning about it, is you have
02:19:27 referred to permits in the 2007.
02:19:30 And I am going by the letter and the information we received
02:19:37 about building services, tags, and that was from October of
02:19:47 So there's been work on one or the other structure since the
02:19:53 applicant bought the house, although that structure we are
02:19:57 talking about now, the extended family residence, accessory
02:20:00 structure, was constructed originally in 2007.
02:20:06 I'm curious -- and so you can answer-when your client
02:20:13 purchased the house, did she know the person she was buying
02:20:16 it from?
02:20:17 >> I do not believe that she did.
02:20:33 She did not know them.
02:20:34 She just found it by the sign and purchased the house.
02:20:38 But if I may, just to clarify with regard to the mother, the
02:20:44 mother is a resident of Cuba.
02:20:45 She's here visiting, has tickets to leave on April 15th.
02:20:48 So she's not a permanent resident here of the house.
02:20:52 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Got it.
02:20:55 Thank you for clarifying that.
02:20:57 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Cohen?
02:20:58 >>HARRY COHEN: When Mr. Miranda says it's a test case he
02:21:01 really is knotted kidding, because one of the issues that we
02:21:04 have got to decide here is, look, if it's 599, forget about
02:21:10 But if it's 618, you know, at what number are we going to
02:21:13 draw the line over 600?
02:21:15 Where are we going to go?
02:21:16 If it's a setback is 3 feet, it's 2.3, it's going to be 1.9
02:21:21 is enough?
02:21:22 I don't know what the answer is.
02:21:24 But I know that, you know, these cases, this one isn't among
02:21:32 the most narrow and technical of any of the ones that we
02:21:37 have seen like this dealing with very, very small waivers as
02:21:45 I see it.
02:21:47 The only waiver that seems to me that even exists at this
02:21:50 point, if we accept your explanation on the mother going
02:21:55 back to Cuba and we just assume that the 599 number is
02:22:01 correct for a second, the only thing we have left is the
02:22:04 And you are telling us there's been no construction of this
02:22:17 building since she purchased it in 2007.
02:22:18 >> Correct.
02:22:26 Nothing with regard to this structure since she bought it.
02:22:28 >>MIKE SUAREZ: One last thing to piggyback on what Mr.
02:22:36 Cohen said.
02:22:38 The setback itself means that you can't allow an extended
02:22:40 family member to use that accessory building.
02:22:44 The setback is the reason why we can't allow that.
02:22:48 So we get a staff report that says an extended family
02:22:56 residence may be designed to be located with a separate
02:22:59 entrance or conforming accessory structure.
02:23:02 However it may not be located in a nonconform accessory
02:23:05 structure, a structure Macon form as a result of a variance.
02:23:09 So shall not be separately metered or -- so my point is that
02:23:18 the 618 is the other part of it.
02:23:21 And so --
02:23:29 >>HARRY COHEN: So the shed would still be able to continue
02:23:32 to be there, and the 2.3?
02:23:34 Or that doesn't have to be set back either?
02:23:38 At what point does the shed get too close to where it's not
02:23:43 So if you give up the shed on the property loon what's the
02:23:47 setback for the shed to the property line?
02:23:49 >> What shed?
02:23:51 >> He means the building.
02:23:53 >>HARRY COHEN: The building.
02:23:54 >> The accessory structure is required to be at 3-foot and
02:23:58 3-foot rear and 3-foot side.
02:24:00 They pull the permit.
02:24:01 The permit showed it was there.
02:24:02 When it was constructed it was constructed at 2.3.
02:24:06 >>HARRY COHEN: I believe Councilman Suarez's point was
02:24:10 because it violates the setback it cannot be used as a
02:24:13 residence for an extended family member.
02:24:15 >> Because it is a nonconforming accessory structure, as Mr.
02:24:20 Suarez stated, because it does not meet that 3-foot, it may
02:24:23 not be utilized as an extended family residence.
02:24:27 Now, they could go to the VRB.
02:24:29 They could get a variance.
02:24:31 3-foot to 2 point 3 and then they could come to you for the
02:24:35 18 feet.
02:24:36 >> So my question to you is, if it were a shed, if it were a
02:24:42 shed, what would the setbacks be?
02:24:44 It would also be three feet?
02:24:46 >> Yes.
02:24:47 >>HARRY COHEN: So if it's nonconform for any use -- that
02:24:51 was my point.
02:24:54 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Yes.
02:24:55 >>MIKE SUAREZ: I mean, that's exactly right.
02:24:59 The reason why it's stated in there is that you can't have
02:25:02 extended family members in a nonconforming building,
02:25:07 regardless, right.
02:25:08 So whether it's a shed or not a shed or anything else, and
02:25:11 what you said about this being a real difficult case,
02:25:16 because we are parsing small bits of it each and every time,
02:25:21 and the more bits we keep parsing, the less sure we are
02:25:26 about what we are going to do next on the next type of case.
02:25:30 And so with this kind of situation, it is one of those in
02:25:34 between and in betwixt and we can't really, you know, make
02:25:38 that determination.
02:25:39 But I think that because of its for extended family use, and
02:25:44 what I look at is, is this a place that's supposed to have
02:25:48 people living there, personally.
02:25:51 That's how I look at it.
02:25:52 This is not necessarily something that's listed in here
02:25:55 because we didn't see any photographs other than the one of
02:25:57 the main building, about what that place looks like.
02:26:02 In addition, you know, when you buy a property, what's going
02:26:06 to be the intended use of it?
02:26:08 And the intended use is to always have someone living there,
02:26:11 then where some of these violations that were there
02:26:17 previously, was it because the previous owner was hiding the
02:26:20 fact they were going to use it for something other than what
02:26:24 was the intended use meaning it was going to be a shed?
02:26:27 And that has nothing to do with this particular case but
02:26:30 that's what happens.
02:26:31 A continuation of one mistake after another until it gets to
02:26:35 our desk.
02:26:36 So you mentioned about the VRB.
02:26:39 So if we decide not to approve this particular case in favor
02:26:47 of the applicant, they could ask the VRB for the variance,
02:26:53 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Let me take it -- you are dealing with two
02:26:58 different issues buff this afternoon.
02:27:02 One is, there is a noncompliant structure on this property.
02:27:06 Regardless of whether they want to put a lawnmower in it or
02:27:12 their extended family, okay?
02:27:16 The city's code says, within residential zoning district,
02:27:19 you may consider an extended family residence may be
02:27:23 considered as an allowable use if you meet these criteria.
02:27:30 If you cannot meet those criteria on their face to the
02:27:33 letter of the law, you may not receive administrative
02:27:36 approval for that use of the property.
02:27:39 But you may come before City Council and ask, when still
02:27:46 want to do this use.
02:27:47 Your conditions are X, our conditions are Y, and do you
02:27:52 still feel that it is, you know, considered as a use, and we
02:27:59 could have that use, even though we are 18 square feet over,
02:28:02 what your condition is, the city's condition is for the
02:28:07 provision of that use?
02:28:10 So noncompliant structure is going to be noncompliant if you
02:28:17 do not grant this appeal today, it is still noncompliant.
02:28:20 The only other way to deal with the noncompliant structure
02:28:23 would be to go to the Variance Review Board and get aside
02:28:26 yard reduction or request a side yard reduction from the 3
02:28:35 or 2.3 feet, or possibly apply for a design exception to do
02:28:40 Since the application has come before land development
02:28:44 requesting this use, and it did not meet those conditions,
02:28:48 it was denied the right to have that conditional use.
02:28:52 By coming before you, they may ask for both of those items
02:28:56 today, and you have the authority to grant both of those
02:28:59 items because the extended family residence required that
02:29:03 you are in a conforming accessory structure, and because
02:29:07 this is not conforming, you would be taking those two
02:29:12 One by granting that five yard setback from the 3 to 2.3 you
02:29:16 are now making it conforming, allowing for the use to occupy
02:29:20 that structure, and the second is to allow for that
02:29:23 structure to be larger than what the conditional use decides
02:29:28 that it is limited to at the 600 square feet.
02:29:31 >> Thank you for that practicum.
02:29:35 It's always good to have that.
02:29:37 And essentially, you know, it could have gone either way in
02:29:41 either direction in terms of where the entry point, and when
02:29:47 you mention review of the city, wait a minute, what are we
02:29:52 doing here?
02:29:52 >> No, only handles the structure.
02:29:54 >> Got it.
02:29:55 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Any other council members?
02:29:56 Mrs. Capin.
02:30:00 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I remember one of these in Seminole Heights.
02:30:04 I do remember it.
02:30:05 And I do remember exactly what we did there.
02:30:09 And it was someone that did -- that was different from her
02:30:15 in that she bought it like this.
02:30:16 The other one made it into this.
02:30:20 This I'm just reminding everyone.
02:30:27 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Anything else, sir?
02:30:28 >> We ask for your consideration.
02:30:32 We understand that the council wants to keep obviously to
02:30:37 the letter of the law.
02:30:39 But the council also has discretion.
02:30:42 We are talking about 20 square feet.
02:30:46 So it's her family.
02:30:47 It's not rent.
02:30:51 She bought this property.
02:30:52 She each started the zoning petition on her own and then
02:30:57 came to me after she had already started the process.
02:31:04 And she started it because she got a notice of code
02:31:08 Not because she knew that there was something that she had
02:31:11 to do to get that done.
02:31:13 So basically worry asking for relief today and hopefully you
02:31:21 will find it.
02:31:24 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Any other comments by City Council
02:31:25 members before we close?
02:31:26 Mrs. Montelione.
02:31:27 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Mrs. Feeley, I don't know if you have
02:31:31 the answer to this or not, but I am going to give it a shot.
02:31:34 One of the criteria as given in our general standards is
02:31:39 that the use is compatible with contiguous and surrounding
02:31:45 property for the uses of public necessity.
02:31:48 It's section 27 .129, letter A, number 3.
02:31:55 So in determining whether it's compatible, in the area where
02:32:05 this is located, the street and the neighborhood where this
02:32:08 is located, all I have is from the neighbor that it's not
02:32:14 compatible because it's a quiet single-family neighborhood.
02:32:17 Could you expound upon the location of where this property
02:32:25 is located for us, please?
02:32:26 >> There are some photos in the file.
02:32:42 I did not take these myself.
02:32:44 I take all my own photos.
02:32:47 There are some photos in the file.
02:32:51 And they do look -- you know, it is predominantly looks
02:32:58 like -- I can't tell you what's in the rear of the shed.
02:33:04 I can't tell you what is in the rear of all these
02:33:08 I think one of the things is that one of the side things
02:33:15 related to the size limitation is so it the not a primary
02:33:21 dwelling, that it's compatible with accessory structure
02:33:24 standards, and pleas keep in mind that any residential
02:33:27 single-family lot is entitled to have an accessory structure
02:33:32 at 3-foot and 3-foot and it may be 15% of the lot area.
02:33:36 So in an RS-50 that's 600.
02:33:39 In an RS 06 that's 750.
02:33:42 And it goes up from there.
02:33:43 So I don't nobody in relationship to the compatibility.
02:33:48 That wasn't one of Ms. Moreda's findings in relation to
02:33:55 How you would like me to further speak to that I can pull it
02:33:58 up on Google earth and take a look.
02:34:00 If you are looking --
02:34:04 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Well, Mr. Suarez and Mr. Cohen and I
02:34:07 think others said it too, this is a difficult decision for
02:34:12 us because it is such a gray area.
02:34:14 And it could go one way or the other.
02:34:16 And the more information we have to feel good about this
02:34:19 decision that we are about to make, I think the better.
02:34:22 And so if you could do that and show us in this immediate
02:34:28 neighborhood what it looks like with the closest proximity
02:34:36 of the other houses, the main thoroughfare, and if all I
02:34:43 have to go on is what the neighbors say in the letter.
02:34:47 I am just trying to find enough information so that we can
02:34:52 feel we are making the right decision for not only the
02:34:55 applicant but the neighborhood at large.
02:34:57 >> I can definitely provide that for you on Google earth and
02:35:04 we can see what it looks like.
02:35:07 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Are you approaching the mike, Mrs. Kert?
02:35:15 Identify yourself for the record.
02:35:16 >>REBECCA KERT: Assistant city attorney.
02:35:20 General standards is what you are supposed to be applying
02:35:22 when you are looking at granting the waivers.
02:35:23 That is also the criteria. But also the applicant has the
02:35:28 initial burden to demonstrate that they meet the criteria.
02:35:31 And if they meet it, then you are mandated to grant it.
02:35:34 And if they do not, then you are mandated to deny it if they
02:35:39 don't meet the criteria or if there's an adverse effect.
02:35:42 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Well, one of the criteria is
02:35:45 >>REBECCA KERT: And I agree.
02:35:47 I am just providing you that the applicant has the initial
02:35:51 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Got it.
02:35:53 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Anyone else?
02:35:54 Anyone in the public be care to speak on this item 61, I
02:36:05 I'm just asking the public if anyone wants to speak so we
02:36:07 can speed her up.
02:36:09 I see no one on the public side.
02:36:11 So we are waiting for Abbye.
02:36:38 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Land development.
02:36:39 Councilwoman Montelione, it going to be very difficult.
02:36:42 There's a lot of tree coverage for me to be able to show
02:36:45 I'm happy to provide you withan my iPad to take a look
02:36:48 at the location and see what it is you would like to look at
02:36:51 in relationship to the compatibility.
02:37:10 On the property next door there is some sort of something
02:37:24 back there.
02:37:25 I mean, you have got -- actually --
02:37:32 >>LISA MONTELIONE: If you zoom in.
02:37:34 >> To the east it's vacant.
02:37:36 On this block face there's only three houses.
02:37:39 To the north, we have got a couple as well.
02:37:50 >> When I said zoom out, you didn't mean that far.
02:37:59 >> Yes, I know.
02:38:13 It definitely did not look like something like Hyde Park
02:38:20 where you have a lot of accessory structures, everybody has
02:38:22 one in the back and they are one story or two stories, but
02:38:26 it also doesn't look like it would be predominantly out of
02:38:30 character with that area.
02:38:34 Let's try to drop down and see.
02:38:36 >> Maybe we are making a little extra money mounting a
02:38:58 Google camera to our solid waste vehicles.
02:39:23 >>ABBYE FEELEY: That should be the property right there.
02:39:24 >>LISA MONTELIONE: The yellow one.
02:39:30 >>ABBYE FEELEY: Yes.
02:39:31 And it's all vacant.
02:39:34 There's a lot of trees and coverage.
02:39:44 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Okay.
02:39:45 The public, there was no one.
02:39:47 Any further comments?
02:39:48 Any closing statements you would Luke to make?
02:39:56 >> Again, we understand that she's going over the square
02:40:03 footage slightly, by 20 square feet.
02:40:06 We have 600.
02:40:10 Two people in the family residence.
02:40:14 And the sister and two-year-old niece.
02:40:18 There's no rent paid to Mrs. Proenza.
02:40:23 The mother is only visiting but she's leaving in the middle
02:40:26 of the month.
02:40:28 And we do not believe that the property is out of character
02:40:33 with the rest of the neighborhood.
02:40:38 The owner has told me there's only three people living in
02:40:41 the main house.
02:40:42 And we ask that council grant this petition.
02:40:51 We also have other, Luke I mentioned, other issues that we
02:40:56 are trying to resolve which are not before council today.
02:40:59 Thank you.
02:40:59 >>HARRY COHEN: Move to close.
02:41:02 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Motion to close by Mr. Cohen.
02:41:03 Seconded by Ms. Mulhern.
02:41:06 All in favor of the motion?
02:41:08 The ayes have it unanimously.
02:41:10 Pleasure of council?
02:41:17 What was that?
02:41:24 For or against in the neighborhood?
02:41:25 What's the pleasure?
02:41:26 Anyone has a recommendation?
02:41:32 >>YVONNE CAPIN: I move to approve.
02:41:33 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Second.
02:41:36 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: We have a motion for approval.
02:41:37 And do you have to state why?
02:41:40 Seconded by Mrs. Montelione.
02:41:42 All in favor of the motion by Mrs. Capin and Mrs.
02:41:44 Montelione, signify by saying aye.
02:41:46 Opposed nay.
02:41:52 Did you get it?
02:41:54 Or call for a voice vote?
02:41:57 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Why don't we do a voice vote?
02:42:01 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Voice vote.
02:42:02 >>MIKE SUAREZ: No.
02:42:14 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Yes.
02:42:17 >>FRANK REDDICK: Yes.
02:42:20 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: No.
02:42:22 >>MARY MULHERN: Yes.
02:42:26 >>HARRY COHEN: Yes.
02:42:29 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Yes.
02:42:31 >>THE CLERK: Motion carried (off microphone) with Suarez
02:42:36 and Miranda voting no.
02:42:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
02:42:43 Ready or not?
02:42:44 >> It is.
02:42:45 If we could do 62 before we go back.
02:42:48 This will be fairly short.
02:42:50 62 is the first public hearing to consider an amendment to a
02:42:53 development agreement.
02:42:56 The agreement is with the Hillsborough River realty
02:42:58 corporation for 6.64 acres located in the vicinity of
02:43:02 Kennedy Boulevard, Parker Street, Plant Avenue, Hyde Park
02:43:05 Avenue and Grand Central Avenue.
02:43:08 There will be two public hearings.
02:43:09 No action is taken today except to hold the public hearing.
02:43:13 No new entitlements are being granted.
02:43:15 The only thing that the second amendment is doing is
02:43:17 extending out the buildout date to 2019 which was already
02:43:23 approved in the DRI for the area and the applicant is
02:43:28 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Applicant?
02:43:35 >>DAVID MECHANIK: 3020th 5 South Boulevard.
02:43:36 I have been sworn.
02:43:37 Here on behalf of the applicant and on behalf to answer any
02:43:42 Thank you.
02:43:43 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Any questions for the applicant at this
02:43:45 I see none.
02:43:46 Anyone in the audience care to comment on item number 62?
02:43:51 I have a motion to close by Mr. Reddick.
02:43:53 Second by Mrs. Montelione on 62.
02:43:55 All in favor of the motion?
02:43:58 The ayes have it unanimously.
02:43:59 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Mr. Chairman, I understand -- madam clerk?
02:44:08 >>THE CLERK: Second public hearing will be held April
02:44:10 17th, 2014 at 10:30.
02:44:15 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: No further action is needed.
02:44:17 Thank you very much.
02:44:19 We go to 61.
02:44:21 That's one year before Social Security.
02:44:25 That's two years before Social Security.
02:44:33 Item number 60.
02:44:38 >>CATHERINE COYLE: Planning and development.
02:44:49 The item before you is alternative design exception 2, case
02:44:56 E 2014-8, DE 2-14-510th 5.
02:45:06 40 Adalia.
02:45:09 >> I was thinking the same thing myself.
02:45:13 >> To increase the height of the fence in the front yard.
02:45:19 What's before you is the explanation of what was requested
02:45:22 and the code provisions and what was approved and denied.
02:45:27 The shorter column and the metal fence.
02:45:29 The height of the shorter columns, the metal fence, were 50
02:45:33 inches which is 4-foot 2 in height and the cap measured 7
02:45:38 inches for a total of 57 inches which is 4 feet 9.
02:45:41 The request represents be a 4.1 percent increase in height,
02:45:45 and that is the item right here.
02:45:49 49 and 4 .2.
02:45:53 You will notice also in the summary, section 27, talks about
02:46:01 what is allowed in the front yard.
02:46:04 We are in a single-family district.
02:46:05 You are allowed to have a solid fence that measures 3 feet
02:46:08 in height, or transparent materials allowed at 4 feet in
02:46:16 You can see the two inches here and the 9 inches actually
02:46:21 Through the administrator's approval Ms. Moreda did approve
02:46:24 those increases based on the criteria for the exception.
02:46:31 However, the taller columns measured approximately 60.1
02:46:36 inches according to the drawing.
02:46:37 They were 5 feet tall approximately with an additional 9
02:46:40 inches for decorative cap for a total of 69.1 inches, 5-foot
02:46:45 9, approximately.
02:46:49 Additionally, the columns have white fixtures on them which
02:46:52 are another 24 inches of N height for a total of 7-foot 9
02:46:56 and that is 5 feet 9 here and then the light fixture on top
02:47:00 which reaches 7 feet 9 inches.
02:47:04 the variance exceeds the 5-foot height by 55% and was
02:47:09 therefore denied based on the criteria.
02:47:12 And the metal gate is 5 feet 6 at its peak, exceeds the 4
02:47:20 feet allowed in height by and denied the approve height in
02:47:26 the design exception, as alternative it's 4-foot 2 with the
02:47:30 additional 7 inches allowed for the decorative cap.
02:47:33 Again, the allowable height per code, the basic standard is
02:47:37 a 3-foot height.
02:47:38 Maximum on the front yard for a solid fence, solid material,
02:47:43 and 4 feet for transparent materials.
02:47:45 Section 27-60, C-2, design exception 2, describes the
02:47:50 application from minor changes to building setback and
02:47:54 height limitations in the zoning code.
02:47:57 Mrs. Moreda also considered 27-60 E5 which states that the
02:48:03 zoning administrator has to apply the following criteria in
02:48:06 considering exceptions.
02:48:06 That the exception neither interferes with the rights of
02:48:11 others as provided in the chapter, nor is injurious to the
02:48:13 public health, safety or general welfare, and that the
02:48:15 exception provides reasonable allowance and use under the
02:48:19 specific circumstances of each application, and the
02:48:24 exception to use the general intent of this chapter and the
02:48:28 Tampa comprehensive plan, and that the exception is the
02:48:31 minimum possible exception under specific circumstances.
02:48:35 That the approval of the exception of standards includes
02:48:38 conditions of approval as necessary to ensure that the
02:48:41 adjustment granted does not constitute a grant of special
02:48:45 privileges inconsistent with the limitations upon other
02:48:48 properties in the vicinity and within the same zoning
02:48:50 district, and the exception is consistent with any
02:48:53 applicable specific plans in place for the subject property.
02:48:59 Specifically she granted the 4 feet 2 which is a two-inch
02:49:03 difference, and when we do allow decorative features up to
02:49:08 one foot in height at an 8-foot interval.
02:49:12 So the extra 7 inches.
02:49:13 So that cap fits within that area.
02:49:16 And the two-inch exception complied with those standards.
02:49:20 However, the exception up to 5-foot 9 and 7-foot 9 did not.
02:49:29 It did exceed the requirements in the criteria.
02:49:32 She also notes that the property was subject of a variance
02:49:33 review board decision VRB 0924 which denied a 6-foot fence
02:49:39 in the front yard and that the existing fence is constructed
02:49:42 without permit, in fact city permit number 337766 showed the
02:49:50 issuance for a permit for fence on the property that met the
02:49:53 requirement of code, except for the requested 4-foot 2-inch
02:49:57 With the exception of that 4-foot 2-inch height she does not
02:50:01 consider the existing fence to be a minor deviation of code
02:50:07 And with that, I will be available for any questions.
02:50:11 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mrs. Mulhern?
02:50:14 >>MARY MULHERN: Put that back up for a second?
02:50:17 You should just leave that up.
02:50:18 >>CATHERINE COYLE: Okay.
02:50:20 >>MARY MULHERN: So, all right, I'm looking at your markings
02:50:28 So the 4-foot 9-inch, that's just the masonry part?
02:50:34 >> The 4-foot 9 is for the column and that does include the
02:50:38 decorative cap at the top.
02:50:39 >> So the height of the column is 4-foot 9?
02:50:42 >> The height of the column finished grade to the top is
02:50:47 4-foot 9.
02:50:48 >> And what was approved?
02:50:51 You just said that something else was approved.
02:50:55 >> She approved the 4 feet 2, so that is an alternative,
02:51:01 exception that granted a 2-inch change, because 4 feet is
02:51:05 what is allowed.
02:51:06 She granted a 2-inch deviation to it to 4 feet 2.
02:51:11 The column itself is 4 feet 9, but that 7-inch difference is
02:51:15 the decorative column.
02:51:17 We do by code allow decorative features at an 8-foot
02:51:21 interval, which on a typical fence is basically at every
02:51:25 You can have some type of decorative feature.
02:51:27 So she did grant that deck rehabilitative cap.
02:51:30 Those are the two, the basic 4-foot 2 which is a two-inch
02:51:36 change and then 4 feet 9 to include that extra 7 inches for
02:51:39 the decorative cap.
02:51:40 She denied what she found to be excessive which was this
02:51:44 higher column, which is 5 feet 9, also including that cap,
02:51:48 and then 7 feet 9 which goes to the top of that light
02:51:52 fixture which far exceeds what the code does allow.
02:51:56 >>MARY MULHERN: Do you have a photograph, maybe even this
02:51:59 one, if you could just move it over a little.
02:52:03 I want to see what's on the side.
02:52:05 Actually the other way.
02:52:07 >> Well, here is the gate here.
02:52:14 And the fence comes down and this is the property next to
02:52:26 This is the property on the other side.
02:52:30 >> So the wrought iron fence is the neighbors?
02:52:44 And those gray --
02:52:51 >> How tall are those columns.
02:52:58 >> It's taller than 4-foot 9.
02:53:02 Keep in mind -- very minimum ability to grant deviation.
02:53:11 And as she noted in the record here, summary, this did go
02:53:15 before the Variance Review Board and it was denied the
02:53:18 >> And can we see the neighbor on the other side?
02:53:21 Do you have a photo of that?
02:53:22 >> That is the neighbor's driveway.
02:53:31 >> Yes.
02:53:32 Do you want me to leave these up there?
02:53:48 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mrs. Capin?
02:53:59 >>YVONNE CAPIN: We need to really look at.
02:54:01 This we need to really look at these 3-foot fences and that
02:54:05 whole nine yards, because I'm looking at this, and I can
02:54:09 hardly believe that this is coming to us.
02:54:13 I'm looking at it.
02:54:15 I lived in an area that got ranch homes, and there was a
02:54:23 house that was 11,000 square feet.
02:54:26 They made them put a 3-foot fence in front of it.
02:54:29 It looked ridiculous.
02:54:34 Proportion to this house, I mean, no consideration to -- I'm
02:54:43 And counting the lamps?
02:54:47 It's just unbelievable.
02:54:53 To me.
02:54:54 And then you go next door and there is another fence that is
02:54:56 even higher.
02:54:59 >>CATHERINE COYLE: If I could, council, clarify.
02:55:04 >> I understand your hands are tied as far as being able to
02:55:09 give any more leeway to it without coming here.
02:55:11 Is that what I am understanding?
02:55:16 The Variance Review Board denied it.
02:55:18 >> The Variance Review Board denied VRB 29.
02:55:24 They did not approve the five fat fence in the front yard.
02:55:28 The 4-foot 2 that Mrs. Moreda gave the 2-inch change there
02:55:32 and again she did grant the 5 feet 2.
02:55:42 But not the 7 feet 9 or the 5 feet 9.
02:55:47 Because that far exceeded the allowable change.
02:55:53 And just for your own knowledge, the only way really to get
02:55:56 beyond these heights outside of an administrative design
02:55:59 exception, because we do have very limited ability, is
02:56:02 through the Variance Review Board, or a code amendment to
02:56:06 actually rue look at the underlying requirements.
02:56:09 But that's a legislative thing.
02:56:10 >> We need a code amendment.
02:56:13 We definitely need a code amendment on this.
02:56:15 >>HARRY COHEN: I'm going to wait for the petitioner.
02:56:22 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Anyone else?
02:56:25 >> My name is Matt, and I'm the counsel for the owners of
02:56:30 the property, Dr. Zakhary.
02:56:39 And his wife.
02:56:40 I have another photograph that doesn't have the markups but
02:56:43 shows a little bit of what is zoomed out that you can see
02:56:48 from the street how the fence sits in relation to the
02:56:52 You can also tell this is the property to the north.
02:56:56 There's a lot of foliage and trees and things on that side.
02:57:01 And then again as was noted earlier, this is a photograph of
02:57:06 actually looking south down Adelia, the southern part of my
02:57:12 client's property is the yellow.
02:57:14 And the neighbor to the south is that gray with the white
02:57:22 Just one more photograph for background.
02:57:24 If you come up the block a little bit, 26 Adalia, you have
02:57:31 got a considerable front fence with columns there.
02:57:40 In the interest of time, I prepared some remarks, so I
02:57:45 apologize for reading as opposed to just speaking
02:57:47 contemporaneously but I would like to hit all the points on
02:57:51 behalf of my client.
02:57:53 The council should deny or reverse the denial for three main
02:57:57 The first is procedural.
02:57:59 Second is legal.
02:58:00 And the third is substantive.
02:58:02 While the procedure issues should be dispositive I will
02:58:06 present legal and substantive information to the record.
02:58:09 Procedurally, the administrator's denial of design
02:58:12 exceptions should be reversed simply because the
02:58:13 administrator did not render her decision in a timely
02:58:17 The alternative design exception applications are governed
02:58:20 by the code section 27-50.
02:58:23 Specifically, subsection E-4 provides that the zoning
02:58:26 administrator shall grant or deny the request within 15
02:58:30 working days of the application, and the affidavit of the
02:58:33 notice requirements.
02:58:34 Now initially in this case there was an issue with the
02:58:37 posting of this on the notice sign.
02:58:39 But when it came to our attention that there was an issue
02:58:43 that they were posted inappropriately we immediately took
02:58:45 action and remedied the posting.
02:58:48 At that time, I made an inquiry with the city as to the new
02:58:51 deadline for the response, and I was informed that the
02:58:54 response deadline was December 10th.
02:58:56 That date passed.
02:58:58 The administrator's denial letter is dated December
02:59:01 It was e-mailed to me on December 23rd.
02:59:04 And the hard copy was postmarked December 26th.
02:59:07 The case law is clear even at the level of the United States
02:59:11 Supreme Court that the plain meaning of the statute is the
02:59:14 foundation of statutory construction.
02:59:16 Now the federal case of voyeur dorm LC versus city of Tampa,
02:59:20 Florida cited the United States Supreme Court and stated
02:59:23 that in any case of statutory construction our analysis
02:59:26 begins with the language of the statute.
02:59:28 And where the statutory language provides a clearance, it
02:59:32 end there as well.
02:59:33 In this case, the clear language of the code requires an
02:59:36 administrator decision within 15 working days.
02:59:40 That did not occur, and the analysis should end there and
02:59:43 the denial should be reversed.
02:59:46 Legally speaking, the administrator's decision should be
02:59:48 reversed to the extent that the application was denied.
02:59:51 Section 27-60-E-5 of the code is very clear and that there
02:59:56 are six enumerated criteria that the administrator shall
02:59:59 apply in review of an application.
03:00:02 Each of those six criteria were detailed in the application.
03:00:07 The administrator's decision, however, granted and denied
03:00:10 relief based on percentages of height differential between
03:00:14 what was set forth in the code versus what was sought in the
03:00:19 With all due respect to the administrator, if the analysis
03:00:22 for design exception was supposed to be a mathematical
03:00:25 formula of differential between what's requested in an
03:00:28 application and what's set forth in the code, that's what
03:00:31 the code says.
03:00:32 It would set forth a mathematical formula, not the specific
03:00:37 criteria. Now, the administrator's December 20th
03:00:40 decision does state that she considers the criteria. The
03:00:44 extent of that analysis, however, was simply mentioning that
03:00:47 she considered them.
03:00:48 There was in analysis whatsoever as to how any of the
03:00:53 criteria was considered, or what specific facts weighed in
03:00:56 favor of or against her decision.
03:01:00 In examining exceptions such as the one in this case, and as
03:01:03 was mentioned earlier, the petition verse the initial burden
03:01:06 of showing that the application meets the statutory criteria
03:01:08 for granting the exception.
03:01:11 The application in this case addresses each and every one of
03:01:13 the six criteria set forth in the code.
03:01:16 Now, once the petitioners have met that burden, the burden
03:01:20 shifts to the other side to demonstrate by competent,
03:01:23 substantial evidence that the exception does not meet those
03:01:26 standards, and is adverse to the public interest.
03:01:31 Further, the failure of an agency reviewing a decision to
03:01:34 make specific findings of fact constitutes departure from
03:01:37 the essential requirements of law.
03:01:39 In this case the administrator does not address how these
03:01:43 exceptions failed to mite meet any of the six criteria and
03:01:47 did not include that the exception was adverse to the public
03:01:49 The administrator simply did not use the correct legal
03:01:52 standard in making her decision as to whether or not she
03:01:55 would grant the exception.
03:01:57 Now, it's been said here by the administrator in her
03:02:01 December 20 does mention that the property was subject to a
03:02:04 variance request five years ago.
03:02:06 Now, that fact could be relevant to the consideration of a
03:02:11 design exception application.
03:02:12 In fact, there is a significant difference between a
03:02:15 variance and a zin exception.
03:02:18 That difference is well summarized in the case of Resner
03:02:22 versus City of Tampa which was in the Court of Appeals over
03:02:25 in Lakeland.
03:02:26 A variance involves relieve granted from the literal portion
03:02:30 of a zoning ordinance when strict enforcement would inflict
03:02:33 practical difficulty where unnecessary hardships on the
03:02:36 property owner.
03:02:37 That's not what was sought in this instance application.
03:02:42 An exception, however, is a departure from the general
03:02:45 provisions of the zoning ordinance granted under express
03:02:48 provision of the enactment itself N.this case the code has
03:02:53 an express provision to the application for a design
03:02:57 The Resner case went on to say a variance is entirely
03:03:03 different from exception although the terms are sometimes in
03:03:06 error used synonymously.
03:03:07 In the absence of a specific provision of law requiring it,
03:03:10 one need not know unusual hardship to secure an exception.
03:03:15 So the fact that a variance request was made five years ago,
03:03:19 and my client five years ago could not establish a hardship,
03:03:23 has nothing to do with the instant application coming before
03:03:26 the council this afternoon.
03:03:28 So legally, the administrator's decision to part from the
03:03:32 essential requirements of law and the denial should be
03:03:34 reversed and that council should grant all the relief sought
03:03:37 in the application.
03:03:39 Substantively, in addition to the procedural and the legal
03:03:42 reasons for reversing the administrator's denial, the
03:03:45 exception should have been granted based on the substance.
03:03:48 Now, we have submitted many document with the initial
03:03:52 And I simply don't have time to go through them all now but
03:03:55 I would like to hit a couple key points.
03:03:57 The first criteria for the exception is that it does not
03:04:00 interfere with the rights of others and is not injurious to
03:04:03 the public health, safety or general welfare.
03:04:05 The exception that was requested in this case certainly does
03:04:08 not interfere with the rights of others and actually
03:04:10 promotes the health, safety and welfare.
03:04:13 While a neighbor -- I think the e-mail circulated earlier --
03:04:19 has objected to the exception saying it is dangerous for
03:04:21 pedestrians, there is no substantial, competent evidence to
03:04:24 support that position.
03:04:27 On a similar case came up in the city of Apopka versus
03:04:30 Orange County N.that case the fourth district court of
03:04:32 appeals reversed an order when a board of commissioners when
03:04:37 considering a special exception made a blanket inclusion
03:04:40 that an exception would adversely affect the public interest
03:04:43 based on a lay person's opinion.
03:04:46 In contrast, doctor and Mrs. Zakhary submitted a written
03:04:53 opinion of a professional engineer who expressed an expert
03:04:56 opinion that the time delay mechanism on than the gate --
03:05:00 because that gate is automatic, opens and closes based on
03:05:04 remote droll -- actually slows cars down as they are going
03:05:08 in and out of the driveway, and gives pedestrians more
03:05:11 notice of on coming vehicles.
03:05:12 So the fact that the fence has been constructed as it has
03:05:18 actually promotes the public safety.
03:05:22 Now, just as an aside, there was conversation earlier about
03:05:25 those lamps on the top of the two taller columns.
03:05:29 Just for council's edification, once we received the denial,
03:05:34 those lamps were removed as a sign of good faith in
03:05:39 deference to the city, my clients removed those.
03:05:41 However, we are seeking through the appeal today permission
03:05:45 to reinstall those lamps which provide additional light.
03:05:50 Now, those lamps were removed, so they provide additional
03:05:55 light to the area.
03:05:56 Now, it's common knowledge that lights deter crime.
03:06:01 Additionally through the application process, we provided
03:06:03 evidence of a series of police calls to the residents that
03:06:07 were made prior to the completion of the fence.
03:06:09 There were several intrusion calls including one call where
03:06:12 it appeared that the intruders entered the property while
03:06:15 Dr. and Mrs. Zakhary were out of town and there have been no
03:06:20 sense incidents since Tampa fence was completed.
03:06:23 The design exception would also give Dr. Zakhary peace of
03:06:27 He's an OB-GYN.
03:06:30 He delivers to Tampa General Hospital and other hospitals
03:06:34 and security would give him the peace of mind of knowing
03:06:37 that his wife and two children are safe while he's at the
03:06:41 hospital during overnight and early morning hours.
03:06:44 Two other criteria set forth in the code are the exception
03:06:46 provides a reasonable allowance of use understood the
03:06:49 specified circumstances, and that the exception is
03:06:52 consistent with any applicable specific plan in place for
03:06:55 the subject property.
03:06:56 I believe that council person Capin -- that Councilwoman
03:07:11 Capin's point is well taken with regard to these two
03:07:14 considerations that are set forth in the code.
03:07:17 Now, as you can tell, the house is actually elevated.
03:07:21 The land itself flows upward from the street towards the
03:07:24 rear of the property.
03:07:25 There's a grade that's just natural to the property.
03:07:30 Also, this is a two-story house.
03:07:32 However, the first story is constructed off the ground by
03:07:35 five or six feet.
03:07:36 So the building is very tall.
03:07:41 To maintain a proper aesthetic, and the reasonable use
03:07:45 associated with this specific property, a higher fence is
03:07:48 A shorter gate without the lights would appear
03:07:51 disproportionately small as it sits in front of the house.
03:07:54 Now, while I don't have any specific cases to cite to come
03:07:58 up on that point I understand from my conversations with
03:08:00 staff that architects in the past have used aesthetic
03:08:03 considerations in applying for and obtaining these design
03:08:07 So that's something that should be taken into account.
03:08:12 The final criteria that I would like to address involves
03:08:15 whether or not the exception would constitute a grant of
03:08:18 special privileges inconsistent with the limitations on
03:08:22 other properties.
03:08:23 Through the application process, we illustrated several
03:08:26 other properties that are on the same street that have
03:08:29 taller, less transparent fences.
03:08:31 And I have illustrated some of them here.
03:08:34 Additionally, the city approved a much bigger opaque wall on
03:08:39 the circle so granting the application sought by Dr. and
03:08:43 Mrs. Zakhary would not grant them any special privileges.
03:08:46 In fact, denial would deny them equal treatment as to other
03:08:54 issues that have been afforded to other property owners in
03:08:56 the neighborhood.
03:08:57 Society in conclusion, I'm asking this council to reverse
03:08:59 the administrator's decision and grant all the relief sought
03:09:02 in the design application on number 2.
03:09:07 Procedurally the decision was rendered untimely and should
03:09:09 be reversed.
03:09:10 Legally the administrator's decision did not apply the
03:09:12 enumerated criteria for the decision, and to the extent that
03:09:16 there was any consideration of those criteria, the decision
03:09:21 departed from the requirements of law by failing to outline
03:09:23 specific facts that apply to each of those denials.
03:09:27 Substantively the application meets and exceeds the
03:09:31 requirements of the code.
03:09:32 It provides additional safety for the neighbors,
03:09:34 pedestrians, and the Zakhary family.
03:09:36 The higher fence and the lights provide a more proportionate
03:09:40 aesthetic and several of the neighbors through the
03:09:42 application process that expressed their support.
03:09:47 Granting the exception would not be granting special
03:09:50 In fact, the denial would deny privileges granted to the
03:09:54 So we respectfully request that the council reverse the
03:09:56 decision of the zoning administrator and approve the
03:09:59 alternative design exception to the application in its
03:10:03 Thank you very much for your time and consideration.
03:10:05 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you.
03:10:05 Mrs. Mulhern?
03:10:07 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you.
03:10:13 Let me make clear on the timetable here.
03:10:21 Initially, there was a variance request.
03:10:25 >> From 2009, which I had nothing to do with, for the
03:10:30 >> Was it the same owner?
03:10:32 >> Yes 9 and was that before the fence was built?
03:10:36 >> Yes.
03:10:37 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay.
03:10:39 So that was denied, so they built a smaller fence.
03:10:43 But it still didn't meet the code?
03:10:46 >> Right.
03:10:46 My understanding is that permit is actually still open.
03:10:50 There's been a permit pulled.
03:10:51 And what has been built does not meet that permit.
03:10:55 >>MARY MULHERN: So you are asking us to consider that the
03:11:05 petitioner wasn't granted due process, but you are actually
03:11:09 coming here asking for forgiveness that they built something
03:11:13 that didn't -- didn't have, and obviously they knew they
03:11:17 needed the approval because they have been through the
03:11:19 variance board.
03:11:21 >> Yes.
03:11:23 >>MARY MULHERN: Okay.
03:11:25 I don't have -- we have the e-mail from the neighbors
03:11:33 questioning, you know, saying that it would obstruct their
03:11:37 view, in effect and affect safety, but you mentioned an
03:11:45 urban designer, transportation designer, somebody looked at
03:11:48 the gate and gave you -- I mean, if you are already talking
03:11:53 about, you know, whether this decision was legal or not, I
03:12:01 need to see from substantial, competent evidence their
03:12:10 You are saying that their complaints aren't founded but you
03:12:13 were talking about the gates, not about the posts adjacent
03:12:16 to the neighbors.
03:12:19 I just don't have anything.
03:12:21 I have your letter and that's it.
03:12:22 I don't have any backup.
03:12:24 >> Are you referring to the November 20th e-mail from
03:12:30 M.R. Coley?
03:12:33 It was made part of the initial application.
03:12:35 I have got a copy.
03:12:36 We have several copies.
03:12:38 >>MARY MULHERN: Maybe we could have a copy of it.
03:12:40 But they opine on whether the posts that are adjacent to the
03:12:47 neighbors created a sight barrier?
03:12:50 Because that was the complaint.
03:12:51 It didn't have to do with the gate.
03:13:04 And then the other question I have was with regard to this
03:13:09 being compatible.
03:13:10 And us being consistent in our design exceptions.
03:13:15 We see that house next door has what lad Luke the posts were
03:13:21 taller, but we don't know if be those were legally approved
03:13:27 through the design exception process or variance or anything
03:13:31 like that.
03:13:32 And just seeing -- I don't see -- I mean, you cited some
03:13:40 other properties, but we don't have pictures of those or
03:13:43 So I think we need to see those.
03:13:48 If you showed them, I missed it.
03:13:50 >> I have got photocopies of 26 Adalia.
03:13:56 This property is 40 that we are talking about now.
03:13:59 This is 26.
03:14:00 >>MARY MULHERN: Are you saying the posts are taller or it's
03:14:25 opaque because the greenery?
03:14:27 >> Well, both.
03:14:32 The posts are tall.
03:14:33 26, the posts are -- I'm not sure exactly how tall they are,
03:14:37 but they look to be as tall as an average size person, or
03:14:43 >>MARY MULHERN: We can't tell that.
03:14:48 >> And the other one that I passed around, this is again the
03:14:58 neighbor to the south, which the posts there are taller.
03:15:02 >> Right.
03:15:06 But that may not have been approved.
03:15:08 We don't know if that's conforming or not.
03:15:10 >> I don't know the history of the property itself.
03:15:12 >>MARY MULHERN: Thank you.
03:15:19 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Cohen?
03:15:21 >>HARRY COHEN: I want to go back to Councilwoman Mulhern's
03:15:26 original question.
03:15:27 So there was a variance requested five years ago.
03:15:30 It was denied.
03:15:31 And then after that, this fence was built in contravention
03:15:38 of the city's code, correct?
03:15:41 >> Correct.
03:15:42 >> Why would that have been done?
03:15:47 I mean, clearly your client was on notice that the property
03:15:51 in question has been the subject of a variance request that
03:15:56 had been denied.
03:15:57 So it's not like they didn't know that the fence didn't
03:16:04 comply with the zoning.
03:16:07 >> I'm not going to disagree with you.
03:16:09 >>HARRY COHEN: Okay.
03:16:16 This property has been the subject of any other litigation
03:16:19 regarding fences or property, anything regarding the
03:16:24 building of the house?
03:16:27 >> There has been extensive litigation with regard to this
03:16:31 The property owner to the north at one point generated a
03:16:36 survey that differed from the survey that was initially
03:16:42 provided to my clients when they bought the property and
03:16:44 started building it.
03:16:47 That property, that survey, moved the property line on the
03:16:51 north side of my client's property about two and a half feet
03:16:54 to the south at the water.
03:16:58 The surveyors agreed to the point at the street, as you go
03:17:05 from east to west.
03:17:07 That put my client in violation of a side setback of the
03:17:12 northwest corner of their structure.
03:17:16 There is to this day pending litigation against two
03:17:20 surveying companies with regard to that.
03:17:26 >>HARRY COHEN: I just wonder given that there's this
03:17:31 extensive litigation going on regarding the side setback, it
03:17:34 would seem that that would make your clients even more
03:17:37 sensitive to the rules when dealing with the front of the
03:17:40 house rather than less, because they know that's not
03:17:45 following the rules can end up in court.
03:17:52 >> Well, true.
03:17:54 But there are these issues.
03:17:56 I mean, they appreciate the possibility of having to go to
03:18:00 But the way the design application works is based on
03:18:09 administrative decision which is different than a variance.
03:18:12 So --
03:18:15 >>MIKE COHEN: But don't most people ask for it before they
03:18:17 build the structure in question?
03:18:20 >> Unfortunately, Dr. Zakhary acting as the builder himself,
03:18:26 so had he hired a general contractor overseeing
03:18:29 construction, probably would have done things differently.
03:18:32 But that's not the situation that we have here.
03:18:36 Also again, if you go up to the property and actually, you
03:18:40 know, measure the elevation from the house, if you are
03:18:45 starting from a higher basis point, so again going to
03:18:49 aesthetics, the differential, it wouldn't constitute that
03:18:55 great of a deviation.
03:18:57 If that makes sense.
03:19:00 I may not explain that properly.
03:19:01 >> That's all I have for now.
03:19:05 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Thank you, Mr. Chair.
03:19:11 Talk to me a little bit about -- I want to further expound
03:19:16 upon what other council members have brought up.
03:19:18 The variance was denied five years ago, when was the permit
03:19:21 applied for?
03:19:22 >> The permit?
03:19:25 I don't have that part of the file with me.
03:19:28 I'm sorry.
03:19:28 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Mrs. Coyle?
03:19:36 >>CATHERINE COYLE: I'm looking for it here.
03:19:44 >>LISA MONTELIONE: We already established it wasn't at the
03:20:14 same time as the house was constructed so it wasn't part of
03:20:17 the overall permit to build the house.
03:20:20 >> I have the residential.
03:20:25 >>LISA MONTELIONE: What's that dated?
03:20:28 >> 7-23-09.
03:20:31 The comment sheet.
03:20:34 >>LISA MONTELIONE: 7-23-09.
03:20:36 And when was the variance was denied on what date?
03:20:38 Do you have that?
03:20:39 >> Well, VRB 09-4 and then on appeal to City Council --
03:20:51 let's see, I have it in here.
03:20:53 It's slightly out of order.
03:21:02 >>LISA MONTELIONE: That's okay.
03:21:03 Take your time.
03:21:04 This is important.
03:21:07 Whenever there's a court reporter it's important.
03:21:21 >>CATHERINE COYLE: The comment was in the screen on March
03:21:24 11, 2009 for the VRB denial.
03:21:28 The date of denial obviously, it has to be updated so it's
03:21:31 sometime before March 11, 2009.
03:21:34 >>LISA MONTELIONE: And then you say they appealed to City
03:21:36 Council that decision of the VRB?
03:21:40 >>CATHERINE COYLE: Yes.
03:21:40 That was on 5-21-09 as an agenda, and council upheld the
03:21:47 decision in the VRB.
03:21:48 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Okay.
03:21:49 So it was essentially denied twice, once by the VRB and then
03:21:56 again by the current City Council.
03:22:00 It wasn't this City Council.
03:22:01 Some members were there.
03:22:05 With the exception of Mrs. Capin.
03:22:11 And the comments were on July 23rd, which I guess is a
03:22:16 little confusing to me, because why would they apply for a
03:22:20 permit when they already had two denials?
03:22:24 I would suggest it was just to build in conformance since
03:22:29 they had already been denied twice.
03:22:33 >>CATHY COYLE: That's my understanding from the summary and
03:22:36 the building code and showed that specific item -- this
03:22:42 building plan shows it was --
03:22:47 >> So somewhere between the plan being approved in
03:22:49 conformance and the contractor building the fence, the wall
03:22:54 and the gate, somebody made a decision to change the design
03:23:00 that was permitted.
03:23:03 And in my experience, having a little bit of experience in
03:23:07 this area, you get an inspection.
03:23:10 And inspectors come.
03:23:11 And they measure to see if it meets the plans, and you are
03:23:17 required to have the set of plans on-site, the field plans
03:23:23 approved by the city are supposed to be on the site.
03:23:26 So how on earth did this end up being constructed and
03:23:35 finaled out by our inspectors if it didn't meet what the
03:23:42 permit allowed?
03:23:44 >> I'm not sure --
03:23:47 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Is that still open?
03:23:49 So if the permit is still open, is it open because our
03:23:52 inspectors failed it because it didn't meet the
03:23:58 >>CATHERINE COYLE: I have to look.
03:23:59 >> That's why you don't final out a permit.
03:24:04 You just move on, so to speak, and leave it open.
03:24:09 >> I would make that assumption as well.
03:24:10 >> I guess since we have a court reporter in here that would
03:24:13 be advisable.
03:24:14 Thank you, Ms. Coyle.
03:24:16 So I guess that's my dilemma.
03:24:22 I agree with Mrs. Capin.
03:24:25 Every time we talk about a change to our code of ordinances,
03:24:29 regarding these types of issues, I try to impress upon
03:24:33 everyone, we don't want to lock ourselves into a particular
03:24:37 material, or a particular design aesthetic, because all
03:24:42 things are relative.
03:24:44 And I talk about that all the time.
03:24:48 And sometimes people want to lock us in.
03:24:51 And I try to use a term that was used earlier today.
03:24:55 Be flexible.
03:24:57 Because you want to have something that is in proportion to
03:25:03 the home, and you want something that would reflect the
03:25:11 So with that, I would have had no problem saying that this
03:25:18 makes sense, that it's architecturally pleasing, it's
03:25:25 aesthetically pleasing, it seems to agree with some of the
03:25:29 other properties in the neighborhood, and it's consistent
03:25:36 with the styles of homes that are located in the general
03:25:42 However, I have a sore point when it comes to contractors
03:25:53 who bypass the rules.
03:25:56 And I have a problem with anyone who is coming here knowing
03:26:04 full well they are flagrantly not adhering to what has been
03:26:15 imposed, and in this case, three times.
03:26:21 The original VRB in 2009, the appeal two months later in
03:26:26 2009, and then the failure of our inspector oh to certify
03:26:32 the final comment, that's three times that the rules were
03:26:39 understood -- there's no doubt that the rules weren't
03:26:43 They were understood, and they were ignored.
03:26:46 That's where I have a problem.
03:26:49 And if it weren't for that, I would say bless it.
03:26:54 It's beautiful.
03:26:55 But we have rules.
03:26:58 And if people don't understand the rules, that's one thing.
03:27:00 But after three times, it was very clear that they did this
03:27:06 knowing full well it was not in compliance.
03:27:10 And any contractor work their fault, and whoever built this
03:27:14 is pretty darned good at what they do because it looks
03:27:17 great, knew what they were doing.
03:27:25 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: All right.
03:27:25 >> Looking back at what the standard is for your
03:27:36 consideration --what happened five years ago through a
03:27:40 variance was a completely different ball of wax.
03:27:43 It was a hardship requirement at that point.
03:27:46 And I certainly --
03:27:48 >>LISA MONTELIONE: It was still denied and they had an
03:27:50 opportunity to come and ask for a deviation.
03:27:53 >> The design exception should have been applied for before
03:27:57 it was built.
03:27:59 >>LISA MONTELIONE: And the contractors and the architects
03:28:02 who built this knew that they could have done that and did
03:28:08 Because these folks are professionals, obviously.
03:28:18 The owner acted as the contractor, but the owner would not
03:28:21 be able to build that --
03:28:32 >> He's not here.
03:28:32 >> All respect to the doctor, I would imagine that there
03:28:37 were architects and general contractors who are licensed
03:28:40 because you can as an owner pull the permit but you have to
03:28:45 have a licensed general contractor or licensed building
03:28:50 contractor actually perform the work.
03:28:53 The only thing the owner is doing the pulling the permit.
03:28:55 >> Dr. Zakhary did not build this wall and fence himself.
03:28:59 >> Yeah, I didn't think so.
03:29:03 Ms. Coyle, do we have --
03:29:17 >>CATHERINE COYLE: I'm so sorry.
03:29:36 I was unable to log in because the application on the
03:29:40 computers here.
03:29:41 But Mr. Cotton was able to e-mail me.
03:29:43 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Please speak into the mike.
03:29:45 >> Mr. Cotton was able to e-mail me a couple screen shots.
03:29:48 >> And speaking of Mr. Cotton, he did refer to a letter of
03:29:55 support, but I don't see that in our backup material.
03:30:20 >>CATHERINE COYLE: The permit application date was July 7,
03:30:22 2009 to construct a concrete wrought iron fence.
03:30:25 75 feet in length.
03:30:26 >> Repeat that?
03:30:28 >> Permit 33766 application date was 7-7-09.
03:30:36 The permit is still showing active.
03:30:39 It was just to construct concrete and wrought iron fence 75
03:30:43 feet in length.
03:30:44 It had electrical wiring through an entry gate.
03:30:47 It still shows active since 2009.
03:30:51 The permit application that I did in the file shows it was 4
03:30:55 feet in height.
03:30:56 What was handwritten on the application itself.
03:31:01 It was noted on July 23rd, 09, which was the comment
03:31:07 sheet that it was approved, meeting the standards of the
03:31:12 So that was the point behind Mrs. Moreda's summary was that
03:31:17 the permit was issued, meeting the code, and then there
03:31:25 was --
03:31:28 >> Okay, this is a procedural thing for us.
03:31:30 I know in the county, if you have a permit, you have a
03:31:35 certain amount of time to final that permit out or the
03:31:38 permit expires, and then you have to reapply to open that
03:31:42 permit again.
03:31:47 So if this permit was issued in July of 2009, what is our --
03:31:52 do either of you know, Mrs. Kert or Ms. Coyle?
03:32:00 Somebody in construction services would know.
03:32:03 The permit -- how long do you have to final the permit
03:32:08 before it expires?
03:32:12 >>CATHERINE COYLE: I'm not sure how long it is.
03:32:18 Adding fences to it as well, I'm not sure what it is.
03:32:25 I can't really say how long the building code allows.
03:32:27 >> In the county it's three years.
03:32:29 So ours is probably not more than that.
03:32:31 >> There was a complaint investigation about the fence
03:32:37 exceeding height as well.
03:32:40 That could be why it's still pending.
03:32:42 So it's still shown as active because the plan itself shows
03:32:45 that it meets code but it physically doesn't.
03:32:47 >>LISA MONTELIONE: Okay.
03:32:56 I think the point that I was attempting to make was made.
03:32:59 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Cohen?
03:33:00 >>HARRY COHEN: I was going to say to Councilwoman
03:33:05 Montelione's point, if the permit was for a fence four feet
03:33:08 in height and the fence is not four feet in height, then
03:33:11 that's clearly, under our criteria, understood 5-F, criteria
03:33:18 for granting exception, the exception is consistent with any
03:33:21 applicable specific plans in place for the subject property.
03:33:27 So clearly, it -- it does not meet that, correct?
03:33:32 >> I would disagree.
03:33:35 I would disagree if you look at the property as a whole.
03:33:41 I don't think that narrow reading of 5-F goes to the fence.
03:33:46 It goes to the property.
03:33:47 And as we see from the property as you go across the street
03:33:53 from it, the property, the plan, the specify plan for the
03:33:58 property is a two-story house.
03:34:01 And the fence --
03:34:02 >>HARRY COHEN: I read it as saying that the exception is
03:34:05 consistent with city zoning rules.
03:34:14 It's consistent code.
03:34:17 In other words, the permit -- you apply for the permit
03:34:21 saying one thing and then build something else.
03:34:23 How can the permit possibly apply to it under that
03:34:26 >> Well, that's why we are asking for the exception.
03:34:34 I agree, but that's --
03:34:37 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Mr. Suarez?
03:34:38 >>MIKE SUAREZ: Thank you.
03:34:39 And pronounce your name for me.
03:34:41 >> Matt Prebasin.
03:34:52 >> Like a pharmaceutical -- you don't often get a name with
03:34:56 so few vowels.
03:34:57 Thank you for sounding it out for me.
03:35:01 It sound like we are giving a little game of matzi over
03:35:06 here, where is the ball?
03:35:08 You have an open permit and what Mr. Cohen was specifically
03:35:10 talking about right now, 27-65-F, the exception is
03:35:15 consistent with any applicable specific plans in place for
03:35:18 the subject property.
03:35:20 The subject property had a permit for a 4-foot wall and you
03:35:27 all did not follow.
03:35:28 You can't blame anybody because he acted as the general
03:35:35 And he may be a doctor and may have specific knowledge on
03:35:38 different things, but he is acting as a general contractor,
03:35:43 so I am going to hold him to a higher standard, not because
03:35:44 he's a doctor but because he held himself out as a
03:35:47 And I know unfortunately for you -- when were you engaged on
03:35:50 this particular case?
03:35:51 >> On this aspect of the case?
03:35:53 >> Well, yeah.
03:35:55 >> End of last year.
03:35:56 >> so I am not going to hold you to too much.
03:35:59 And don't take it personally.
03:36:00 But if I were the attorney -- and I'm not an attorney at
03:36:03 all -- but if I were, I would tell them, you know, if you
03:36:06 have got a lot of litigation on your property, isn't it tomb
03:36:09 we started clearing out some of these pieces and doing
03:36:12 things that we were supposed to do to begin with?
03:36:15 I mean, you know, you are asking for something now that is
03:36:20 to me flies in the face of what the ordinance is saying and
03:36:24 what the permit is set up for, and he knew he had this
03:36:27 permit, he didn't build it to the specifications of the
03:36:30 permit, and now he's coming back and saying, please, look at
03:36:33 my house, it's that much taller, I bought this beautiful
03:36:36 piece of land that has this beautiful fence when you already
03:36:39 knew it's going to be 4-foot but now coming back and saying
03:36:42 we don't want it four foot, we want it the way we built it
03:36:46 even though you weren't supposed to build the fence to that
03:36:48 That's the problem here.
03:36:49 It is not a matter of any other specifics.
03:36:52 And you made a very God case.
03:36:53 And don't get me wrong.
03:36:56 You put forth a lot of different legal processes that we
03:37:02 might want to think about at some point.
03:37:04 But it didn't get through to the heart of the order which
03:37:07 this permit is still open.
03:37:08 This permit has not been signed off by the city.
03:37:11 This permit was a 4-foot fence and 75-foot in length, and
03:37:16 that this client of yours did not follow that permit.
03:37:20 Now he wants an exception for his own use, because he did
03:37:24 not follow the law.
03:37:25 But now he's saying follow the law because you all didn't
03:37:28 send me something, I guess it was, six days after the fact?
03:37:31 I can't remember the date that you have but I think it was
03:37:34 about six days time frame.
03:37:35 And for me, I find it distasteful that unfortunately for
03:37:39 you, being a good attorney that you are, to come here and
03:37:45 present a case that flies in the face of our own ordinances.
03:37:48 And to me, I don't know what anyone else thinks, but I'll
03:37:51 tell you what, this is where the real nexus of the problem
03:37:55 It is not about the exception, the design exception at all.
03:37:59 This problem could have been solved immediately back in
03:38:03 2009, and it was not solved, and it's not none's fault but
03:38:07 the fault of the petitioner.
03:38:10 I don't see any other way out of.
03:38:12 That but that's my own opinion about it.
03:38:13 And I apologize that I seem a little bit impassioned about
03:38:17 this, but there are very few times that when we have a case
03:38:21 like this, that it is so cut and dry in my own mind about
03:38:25 what is going on here.
03:38:27 And I would suggest -- and here I am a nonpracticing
03:38:32 attorney-attorney tell you to go out there and talk to your
03:38:36 client and maybe solve some of these problems.
03:38:38 Because if he's got enough money to pay for you -- and I'm
03:38:41 sure that you are a very well paid lower lawyer, I hope you
03:38:45 are, you should charge by the letter because you definitely
03:38:47 make a lot of money, and, you know, I don't know, did you
03:38:53 hire the court reporter here?
03:38:55 >> Yes.
03:38:55 >> Hiring the court reporter and all the other stuff when
03:38:58 the concern is about the lights, he can hire a security
03:39:01 guard 24-7 for the last five years and he probably would
03:39:04 have came out better anyway.
03:39:06 That's my own personal opinion about it.
03:39:08 Again, I think the problem lies directly with the applicant.
03:39:12 So there's no way that we can, I think, in good conscience,
03:39:16 by following our own code, allow this to go on based on your
03:39:20 reading of the law.
03:39:22 But thank you anyway.
03:39:23 I appreciate it.
03:39:24 Thank you, chair.
03:39:25 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
03:39:25 Any other council comments?
03:39:29 Ms. Capin?
03:39:34 >>YVONNE CAPIN: Yes, Mr. Chairman.
03:39:38 You know, you had me until the permit.
03:39:42 And I was reading here where the application to the
03:39:53 exception was applied and how the notice was posted and
03:39:58 mailed, and the notification was submitted on November 12th,
03:40:06 '13, but it was signed in May 21 of '13.
03:40:14 So several months before they applied.
03:40:21 So it goes to be the -- you know, your argument that Ms.
03:40:26 Moreda did not answer in a timely fashion or according to
03:40:34 the rules, and the letter dated December 20th issued a
03:40:39 decision of the zoning administrator, and Ms. Moreda granted
03:40:44 the application in part and denied the application in part.
03:40:54 I don't know if that opens any doors or not.
03:40:57 We'll find out.
03:40:58 Right now it hasn't opened -- an open permit that has not
03:41:04 been complied.
03:41:04 And like I said, you had me up until the permit.
03:41:11 You knew that you had a 4-foot fence and you still built the
03:41:16 That would not meet the permit that was applied for.
03:41:21 And I'm looking at this.
03:41:30 It looks really nice with the house.
03:41:34 It looks really nice.
03:41:37 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Let me go to the public and I'll get back
03:41:39 to the council.
03:41:40 Those all I want to do.
03:41:41 Because the fence ain't going to leave.
03:41:43 The house ain't going to change.
03:41:44 If fence ain't going to change.
03:41:45 Everything that is put in the record is not going to change.
03:41:48 It's already been put on the record.
03:41:51 And I think we understand what happened.
03:41:55 I believe we do.
03:41:57 But we have an obligation to make sure that everything is
03:42:02 I have to ask the public if they care to speak and then I
03:42:04 will ask you to close, and then I will ask council before
03:42:07 you close and any other comments, to speak on both sides
03:42:10 what they say and what we say.
03:42:11 Anyone in the public care to speak on this item?
03:42:14 Item number 60, please come forward.
03:42:16 Then I'll ask any comments from our legal department.
03:42:18 >>> My name is Joe Heffner, 83 Adalia Avenue.
03:42:45 I have been living on that street for 36 years.
03:42:47 I have also been practicing as a licensed architect in Tampa
03:42:51 for over 40 years.
03:42:52 I deal with the zoning codes every day in my work with
03:42:56 residential properties and stuff.
03:42:57 I'm familiar with the processes.
03:43:00 Some of the information we talked about is way offline.
03:43:03 I'll be glad to clear it up at the end of my statement.
03:43:08 I started living on Adalia 36 years ago and the beauty of
03:43:11 the street lake most streets on Davis Island.
03:43:13 It's a well maintained neighborhood, nicely landscaped front
03:43:16 yard, visible to anyone driving down the street.
03:43:19 It's not a gated community.
03:43:21 And the sidewalk is detrimental to the character of the
03:43:27 neighborhood and will negatively impact property values of
03:43:30 surrounding properties.
03:43:35 The variance contained the list of hardships criteria that
03:43:38 must be met. In this case there are no hardships when the
03:43:41 first time in 2009 when there were none today that are not
03:43:44 self-created by the homeowner.
03:43:48 Requests like this affect only one property.
03:43:51 Based on the history of this case, there are two issues for
03:43:53 you to decide that will affect residential property
03:43:55 throughout the city.
03:43:57 The first issue is the definition, execution of the zoning
03:44:00 code, section 27-290.1.
03:44:04 As stated in the letter from Gloria Moreda dated 12-20,
03:44:09 fences and walls may be located within required front yards
03:44:11 provided that the height does not exceed 3 feet for fences
03:44:16 built of opaque materials or four feet for fences built of
03:44:19 transparent materials, which would obstruct light, air and
03:44:24 That is the definition.
03:44:28 This shows what was intended -- the top one shows better --
03:44:35 of what is intended for transparent fence at 4-foot high.
03:44:39 Typically, it's a picket fence people can see through.
03:44:43 It doesn't obstruct air.
03:44:46 The second photo I have here it is of the referenced
03:44:57 property at 40 Adalia and it shows opaque structure to a
03:45:00 height greater than 24 inches which by definition will limit
03:45:03 the maximum height to 36 inches for the whole fence, and a
03:45:09 maximum height of 48 inches.
03:45:11 As a 3-foot line it indicates there is no part of this wall
03:45:16 that is in compliance with the zoning laws.
03:45:20 The front facing fence, it goes back to two side property
03:45:23 lines to the 25-foot setback line so it's a whole
03:45:27 combination of the U shaped structure.
03:45:29 The zoning code does not say that someone can build an
03:45:32 opaque wall to 130 inches and then place an 18-inch
03:45:36 transparent fence on top.
03:45:37 If you or I tried this we would be told the variance is
03:45:40 required first.
03:45:41 The staff interpretation of this wall is transparent and
03:45:44 allowed to be 48 inches in height plus two more inches is
03:45:48 incorrect and not available to all homeowners.
03:45:51 The 4.1 percent increase noted in the letter is a difference
03:45:56 between 48 and 50 inches.
03:45:57 The two measurements between 36 and 50 inches is a 39%
03:46:02 height increase.
03:46:05 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I am going to give you another 20 second.
03:46:06 We have already gone behind the three minutes and --
03:46:10 >> I appreciate that.
03:46:11 I have been waiting five hours.
03:46:12 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I understand that and I apologize but
03:46:14 that's what I have got to do.
03:46:15 >> Okay.
03:46:15 I'm almost done.
03:46:16 The second issue is the existing wall approved, the zoning
03:46:26 of the codes are enforced or set aside after repeated by the
03:46:31 petitioner who seems to believe the laws do not apply to
03:46:36 You ask to answer the old question is it easier to be
03:46:40 forgiven after building what you want than to get a building
03:46:41 permit before building it?
03:46:44 I hope you decide to stand behind the city zoning laws, the
03:46:48 VRB, code enforcement magistrate, and the 2009 City Council
03:46:51 by requiring this wall to be lowered to the maximum height
03:46:55 of four feet.
03:46:57 Thank you.
03:46:57 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Next, please.
03:46:58 >> I do have a petition.
03:47:01 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
03:47:03 We'll receive and file all of them in a second.
03:47:05 >>> John Giammarco, the neighbor that lives directly to the
03:47:21 right of this property.
03:47:25 Just for the record, I want to go through this quickly.
03:47:28 I have emailed every document.
03:47:30 Here is the document that shows the dates.
03:47:32 This was the first ER request in 2009.
03:47:39 Here is the date of the City Council in 2009, May 21st.
03:47:45 Here is a letter from the city, May 27th rejecting his
03:47:54 He's already talked about he installed the permit.
03:47:56 This was the fence that was built to code.
03:47:59 In 2009.
03:48:00 And existed on our street until 2013.
03:48:04 No gate.
03:48:05 No fences.
03:48:06 Wires sticking out of the fence.
03:48:10 Unknown if it was ever going to be finished.
03:48:13 As we know the permit is still pending.
03:48:16 You have seen this before.
03:48:19 I live to the right of the property.
03:48:20 I would like to show you another picture of what it looks
03:48:26 And this is really my main concern.
03:48:31 With the 6-foot columns in the front, and now a fence that
03:48:35 hasn't really been mentioned here today, a fence has been
03:48:38 installed on the side perpendicular to the sidewalk above
03:48:42 the 3-foot fence that is the requirement from the sidewalk
03:48:46 with a 25-foot setback.
03:48:48 Now, I would imagine that that 3-foot concrete fence right
03:48:52 here is for visibility when drivers are pulling out of the
03:48:56 So in addition to the visibility these blocked, as we are
03:49:00 pulling out of our driveway, I have a 17-year-old daughter,
03:49:02 I have a son that's going to get huhs his permit, he's 15,
03:49:06 we have four drivers, and we have to look through two
03:49:08 fences, one on the side which also was required at the shall
03:49:12 last alternative design to be removed.
03:49:14 That's also part of this petition, to remove this fence and
03:49:17 bring it back to the code of three feet.
03:49:20 I think this is goes to the interest of the welfare of the
03:49:24 people that use our street, Adalia is a gateway onto Davis
03:49:29 There's joggers, bikers, people with strollers, elderly
03:49:32 people at the apartments, at the corner that walk by all the
03:49:35 time, not to mention that we are using.
03:49:40 This I think this is injurious to the people that use our
03:49:47 I think the decision that was rendered was very generous.
03:49:52 They have asked them, they told him he could keep the
03:49:55 They are asking him to tear down -- not tear down, to lower
03:49:59 the center columns from 6 fate to five feet.
03:50:02 This entails removing one cinderblock and reinstalling the
03:50:06 This is not tearing down a house.
03:50:08 They have approved most of what he has to do.
03:50:11 He has very little to do except to change the fences.
03:50:14 If he removes the side fences there will be plenty of
03:50:17 visibility and protection.
03:50:18 (Bell sounds)
03:50:21 I would just lake to make a few comments that were made.
03:50:26 The reason that the extension was granted into December is
03:50:29 because the sign was not posted properly in the yard.
03:50:33 It wasn't even posted.
03:50:35 Because when he finally posted it, they extended his
03:50:37 deadline for two weeks to allow the people to see the sign
03:50:42 and complain.
03:50:43 There is a lamp post right at the property for lighting.
03:50:48 Our street is very well lit there by the TECO.
03:50:51 It's not a problem.
03:50:51 The pedestrian gate he has on the side even today he's
03:50:55 concerned about his safety.
03:50:56 If you were to go by right now it's probably open.
03:50:59 Not unlocked. Open. It's never been used.
03:51:01 There is not a safety issue here.
03:51:03 This is strictly for personal use.
03:51:05 I have lived on this block for 15 or 16 years.
03:51:08 The two properties cited in my opinion were probably sited
03:51:12 with the 6-foot fences were probably built long before I was
03:51:16 here, and probably were part of old code.
03:51:20 Maybe they were grandfathered in.
03:51:21 I think that the new code is for the safety of pedestrians.
03:51:26 I'm against approving this.
03:51:29 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: I appreciate it very much.
03:51:33 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Did you want those documents to be part of
03:51:34 the record?
03:51:35 >> These are mostly city documents.
03:51:38 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: We can make copies of them.
03:51:42 >> You can?
03:51:43 Then I'll make them part of the record.
03:51:45 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: We will give you back the originals and
03:51:46 give you back that.
03:51:48 Mrs. Mulhern?
03:51:49 >>MARY MULHERN: Mr. Giammarco, when you showed the five
03:51:57 food fence how tall is the wrought iron at the top of it?
03:52:00 >> The wrought iron fence?
03:52:02 Six feet.
03:52:03 So the concrete is three feet.
03:52:05 And then this new fence is six feet.
03:52:08 I don't find it aesthetically -- I don't find any of it
03:52:12 aesthetically disturbing to me.
03:52:14 That's really not the issue.
03:52:15 >>MARY MULHERN: And then I guess, Mrs. Coyle, that wasn't
03:52:22 approved either, was it?
03:52:25 6-foot side fence?
03:52:26 >> It was not approved.
03:52:27 There was one line that was told that it had to be removed.
03:52:32 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Next, please.
03:52:36 >> Good afternoon.
03:52:39 My name is Linda Hannah.
03:52:41 I have been sworn.
03:52:42 I live at 83 Adalia Avenue.
03:52:44 I have been there for about 31 years.
03:52:46 I have lived on Adalia for 33 years.
03:52:49 And on Davis Island off and on for even longer than that
03:52:53 since I was a small child.
03:52:57 One of the things that has been discussed here about it
03:52:59 being injurious, it's injurious because the look of Davis
03:53:04 Island and the reason that marathon every year runs down
03:53:09 Adalia is that those streets are beautiful and open.
03:53:13 There are only two or three of them that have any kind of
03:53:16 fencing at all that's on the sidewalk line, and if we start
03:53:20 that, we will be a street that has completely different look
03:53:25 and foal as people continue to tear down and build new
03:53:28 houses, and believe me, having been there 33 years, that's
03:53:32 one of the streets that had the most tear downs and
03:53:37 Than I agreed with the other remarks that have been made by
03:53:39 the speakers.
03:53:41 And you have made it easy for me.
03:53:44 You have been to my mind very diligent and perceptive
03:53:48 because the danger that struck me as I have watched this go
03:53:52 on is that the zoning code is going to lose its meaning, and
03:53:58 its authority and its power.
03:54:00 If a property owner can build a structure which violates the
03:54:03 zoning code when it's being built, and eventually just wear
03:54:07 down the city and the neighborhood and get approval for that
03:54:12 structure that was built when it was built was in violation
03:54:15 of the code.
03:54:17 Let me give you a little history because it's even worse
03:54:19 than has come out in what we have been talking about.
03:54:23 You already know that in 2009, the petitioner applied for a
03:54:27 variance to increase the height of the fence to I think six
03:54:32 The variance was denied.
03:54:34 He appealed that variance to this council.
03:54:38 I think some of you were on the council then.
03:54:40 And denied the variance.
03:54:45 Remarkably then in the spring of 2013 he disregarded both
03:54:48 those denials and now he's disregarding the five different
03:54:52 times that the city has acted on this, and he completed the
03:54:58 construction of his six foot front and side yard fences, and
03:55:03 the tallest portion of them is almost 8 feet by the gate.
03:55:07 Then in his further interaction with the city, Tampa code
03:55:11 enforcement cited him, and he in his fourth interaction
03:55:16 appeared before the magistrate for the Code Enforcement
03:55:19 Board and the fence was again determined to be a violation
03:55:24 of the zoning code, and fines were imposed on him for that
03:55:31 Fifth but not finally, he went back to the city requesting
03:55:34 an administrative variance which resulted in this
03:55:36 determination that you are considering today.
03:55:39 So this is his sixth bite at the apple.
03:55:42 (Bell sounds)
03:55:44 The staff determination being refused today was extremely
03:55:49 As you have already heard it may have actually given him a
03:55:52 little more than the zoning code would actually give him.
03:55:57 But if you grant this petitioner permission to increase the
03:56:02 height of this wall that he constructed after multiple
03:56:06 denials, and now he's back after the city told him five
03:56:11 times that the fence height is a zoning violation, then it
03:56:15 pretty much renders meaning HRS the zoning code and the
03:56:19 authority of the Variance Review Board and the --
03:56:22 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Okay, I'm sorry, I have to stop.
03:56:24 >> And I ask that you deny it.
03:56:26 Thank you very much.
03:56:27 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you for understanding.
03:56:28 All right.
03:56:29 I am going to bring the petitioner back up.
03:56:31 I gave each one that spoke an additional 30 seconds.
03:56:34 So in all fairness, by rule you have five minutes.
03:56:37 I am going to allow you six and a half minutes for anything
03:56:40 they said or anything this council said earlier to discuss.
03:56:44 Six and a half minutes.
03:56:45 >> I appreciate.
03:56:46 That and I hope not to come anywhere close to that.
03:56:50 First of all, with regard to Mr. Hacker's comments I
03:56:54 mentioned the hardship for variance.
03:56:56 Again this is not a variance standard.
03:56:59 This is a design exception.
03:57:00 And again, with regard to what council has said with regard
03:57:03 to the timing of this, I appreciate that.
03:57:06 However, I think it's important to look at the substance of
03:57:09 the code with regard to a design exception and make a
03:57:13 determination based on those six criteria.
03:57:18 With regard to setting a precedent, and what this does with
03:57:22 regard to rendering the code meaningless in the future, I
03:57:25 disagree with that.
03:57:27 To the extent that there are contractors who are going to
03:57:31 attempt what has happened here, you know, with the owner who
03:57:34 is trying to act as a contractor himself, I think that's
03:57:37 very risky because if, for example, something is built, a
03:57:42 design exception or a variance that's sought after the fact
03:57:45 and is denied, the potential exists for the council to
03:57:49 require that contractor to tear down what was built at
03:57:53 tremendous expense, and a private home owner is probably not
03:57:56 going to pay a contractor to tear down and rebuild something
03:57:59 that was built inappropriately.
03:58:02 With regard to Mr. Giammarco's comments, I like Mr.
03:58:08 Giammarco, and I have met him several times and have spoken.
03:58:15 However, his regard to be those visibilities is not well
03:58:20 Here is the property line between Mr. Giammarco property my
03:58:32 client's property, and there is heavy vegetation on Mr.
03:58:35 Giamarrco's side that is heavy, and tall, and that
03:58:41 extends --
03:58:42 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Let me stop you one second.
03:58:43 Stop the clock.
03:58:44 Are you by referencing the trees say that that's against the
03:58:48 >> No.
03:58:49 What I am referencing is his concern that he voiced was
03:58:53 there was a visibility issue with regard to people pulling
03:58:55 in and out of his driveway.
03:58:57 My point is if that was truly his concern, there would not
03:59:01 be this dense foliage to the street.
03:59:04 So it's not a legality argument as far as the merits of that
03:59:13 So with regard to the three points that I wanted to make.
03:59:17 It's not a variance.
03:59:19 With regard to Mr. Giammarco's concern, I believe it's not
03:59:23 well taken, and thirdly, I don't believe it's going to set a
03:59:27 bad precedent for contractors in the future.
03:59:29 Thank you very much.
03:59:31 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
03:59:31 >>MARTIN SHELBY: Just a remainder for City Council, in
03:59:36 reviewing this zoning administrator determination,
03:59:40 understood your code 27-61, City Council shall apply a
03:59:43 de novo standard of review and shall not be limited to you
03:59:47 to that information documentation or evidence upon which the
03:59:50 zoning administrator bases their decision.
03:59:53 >>CHARLIE MIRANDA: Thank you very much.
03:59:54 Mrs. Mulhern.
03:59:55 We have to close the hearing.
04:00:03 Motion to close.
04:00:03 Motion by Mrs. Mulhern, seconded by Mrs. Montelione.
04:00:12 Motion carries unanimously.
04:00:12 >>MARY MULHERN: I move to uphold the decision of the zoning