July 19, 2022, City Council Meeting Brief

July 19, 2022, City Council Meeting Brief

July 20, 2022 –

Consent Agenda

  1. City Council approval of a Mutual Aid Agreement between the Green Cove Springs Police Department and the Clay County School Board. 

Pulled by Vice Mayor Connie Butler to ask if the City approving the agreement after the start date will change the agreement. Police Chief John Guzman said no.

Approved 4-0 by City Council, with Mayor Matt Johnson absent.

  1. City Council approval of scrivener’s error. 

Approved 4-0 by City Council, with Mayor Matt Johnson absent.

  1. City Council approval of Resolution No. R-10-2022, a Resolution canceling and rescheduling the regularly scheduled meetings of the Green Cove Springs City Council for December 2022. 

Approved 4-0 by City Council, with Mayor Matt Johnson absent.

  1. City Council approval of Minutes from 6/7/2022 Special Session and 6/7/2022 Regular Session. 

Approved 4-0 by City Council, with Mayor Matt Johnson absent.

Council Business

  1. Establish Tentative Millage Rate for Fiscal Year 2022/2023.  

City Administration included 3.8000 millage rate in the proposed budget, which is the same rate as FY 2021/2022. The Council can agree to the Administration proposed millage rate or establish its own proposed rate. The established rate requires a two-thirds vote by the City Council.

City Manager Steve Kennedy read comments that Mayor Johnson sent ahead of the meeting into the record, in which Johnson wants to increase the millage rate by up to one full mill. Council Member Ed Gaw commented that the Administration’s proposed rate of 3.8 does not include a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for City employees, and if potentially freezing City wages would be beneficial for retaining staff amid the increase of costs in the current economy. He agrees with Mayor Johnson in raising the millage rate to keep the City competitive in the job market. Gaw also points out that raising the millage rate will be necessary with the current litigation with Pegasus Technologies, Inc. as there is not funding in the proposed budget for legal expenses.

 Council Member Steven Kelley said that he would like to keep the millage rate at 3.8, as he is concerned that raising the millage rate will be an additional increased cost to taxpayers on top of increased costs for other necessities in the current economy. Council Member Thomas Smith agrees with Kelley’s comments but also wants to strike a balance between funding the City and not adding financial burden to taxpayers with the millage rate.

Vice Mayor Connie Butler said that she would like to increase the proposed millage rate to properly compensate staff. Butler also comments on Finance Director Marlena Guthrie’s presentation on the proposed millage rate and points out that this millage rate would be proposed and could be changed during budget workshops and public hearings. If the Council increases the proposed millage rate but sets a lower millage rate by the time the budget reaches public hearings, City staff would not be required to send out a second millage rate trim notice at the expense of the City. She also comments that starting at a higher millage rate will make it easier to find a compromise in the  millage rate during the rest of the budget process.

City Manager Kennedy also comments that starting with a higher millage will make it easier to decide on a millage rate during budget workshops and public hearings without cutting more of the proposed budget.

Council Member Gaw makes a motion to increase the proposed millage rate to 4.5 mills, seconded by Council Member Smith.

Approved 3-1 by City Council, with Council Member Kelley opposed. Budget Public Hearing Dates of September 6 and September 20 approved 4-0 by City Council.

  1. Consider adoption of Resolution No. R-07-2022, a Resolution estimating the cost of Stormwater Management Services provided by the City, determining certain tax parcels will be benefited thereby and related issues, including setting a Public Hearing for Final Proposed Stormwater Assessments.  

This resolution adoption is part of the process for assessing and collecting non-ad valorem stormwater assessments for the next fiscal year. Staff recommends setting the Public Hearing for Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022, at 7 p.m.

Approved 4-0 by City Council

  1. Consider adoption of Resolution No. R-08-2022, a Resolution relating to collection of Solid Waste and Recyclable Material within the Magnolia West Subdivision, including setting a Public Hearing for Final Proposed Solid Waste Service Assessments.  

This resolution adoption is part of the process for assessing and collecting non-ad valorem solid waste assessments on all non-exempt residential property within the Magnolia West subdivision. Staff recommends setting the Public Hearing for Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022, at 7 p.m.

Approved 4-0 by City Council

  1. Consider adoption of Resolution No. R-09-2022, a Resolution relating to the provision of Property Abatement Services provided by the City, determining certain tax parcels will be or have benefited thereby and related issues, including setting a Public Hearing for Final Proposed Property Abatement Service Assessments.  

The City expends funds from time to time to Abate Nuisance or Code Violations and may use the Special Magistrate to impose liens on real property for such costs. Florida law and City ordinances allow an alternative method of collection by use of non ad-valorem special assessments to be collected by the Clay County Tax Collector on the annual ad-valorem tax statements in November of each year. This is the first time the City has used this method of collection for code violations. This alternative will not be used for homestead property.

Approved 4-0 by City Council

  1. Approve Engagement Letter between City and Lewis Longman & Walker, P. A. (“LLW”) for representation of the City in two suits filed against the City by Pegasus Technologies, Inc. (“Pegasus”).  

Pegasus is challenging the City in Circuit Court over the zoning and comprehensive plan amendments that the City allowed on June 7 for the development of 278 apartment units on land located east of US 17 and CR 209 as part of Ordinance O-11-2022. The City plans to use Lewis Longman & Walker to represent them in these lawsuits.

Approved 4-0 by City Council

  1. Discussion of Development Fees regarding the Site Development Plan for Prelude, 310 Orange Ave – the 300 Block bounded by Orange Avenue, Cove St, Magnolia Ave, and Bay St.  

City Staff is recommending the following incentives and reduction in the total development fees for the development site plan for the property on 310 Orange Avenue—the 300 block bounded by Orange Avenue, Cove Street, Magnolia Avenue, and Bay Street:

  • $100,000 in Commercial Development incentives
  • Waiving got Parking Mitigation Fees
  • Dollar for Dollar Credit for the repaving of Magnolia Avenue street repaving
  • $75,000 reduction of Cost in Aid of Construction (CIAC) fees

 Staff recommendation approved 4-0 by City Council

  1. City Manager & City Attorney Reports / Correspondence

  1. City Council Reports / Correspondence
More: Home Page News