November 17th edition of:

Community Update
A Report on the Activities of Alachua County Government

 

This Issues Features:

Settlement Approved for City of Alachua Cases
Free Contractor Training to Assist with Compliance for New Irrigation Code
Free Parking for Alachua County Public Meetings
Envision Alachua Sector Plan/Comprehensive Plan Amendment Public Hearing
Lunch and Learn Energy Policy and Carbon Footprint Information Session
Economic Development Advisory Committee Openings
November Extension Program
New Commission Chair and Vice Chair Elected
Trashformations 17th Annual Recycled Art Competition
Communications Office Wins Several Awards
Commission Highlights

Settlement Approved for City of Alachua Cases

At the Tuesday, November 10, 2015, County Commission Public Hearing, the Board approved the settlement of the following cases:

  1. Alachua County and the National Speleological Society v. the City of Alachua and Wal-Mart Stores East, LP (Case No. 2015-AP-16) and; 
  2. Alachua County v. the City of Alachua, Wal-Mart Stores East, LP, Alachua Holdings, LTD, First Street Group, LC, and Christopher Allan Koranic (Case No. 2015-CA-1978).

These cases were filed May 27, 2015, in response to the City of Alachua’s adoption of an Ordinance and Order amending the City’s official zoning atlas from Planned Unit Development and Agriculture to Commercial Intensive, Community Commercial and Government Facilities on approximately 154.5 acres located within the City of Alachua. 

View the settlement documents.

The Board authorized the Chair to execute the settlement documents and directed the County Attorney to move to voluntary dismiss the cases.

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Free Contractor Training to Assist with Compliance for New Irrigation Code

At the Regular Alachua County Commission Meeting on September 22, 2015, the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners adopted new Landscape Irrigation Design and Maintenance Standards. To help contractors understand and comply with the new standards, Alachua County is co-hosting (with the St. Johns River Water Management District and the Florida Nursery, Growers, and Landscape Association) two Florida Water Star AP courses. The classes will be held on December 8, 2015, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Alachua County Health Department (224 SE 24th St, Gainesville), and February 2, 2016, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Southeast Ecological Science Center (7920 NW 71st St, Gainesville). Testing is available on December 9, 16, and February 3. The testing times and locations will be offered during registration. The class is free, but the exam fee is $25 per exam. Space is limited, so early registration is recommended.

Irrigation professionals installing and/or maintaining irrigation systems within Alachua County must register their business with the County by December 1, 2015. All new irrigation systems or significant modifications to existing systems completed after April 1, 2016, within unincorporated Alachua County must adhere to the new efficiency standards.

Find out more about the code, including registration information.

Irrigation plans must be submitted, and an inspection will be required for irrigation systems which fall under the jurisdiction of the code. Irrigation professionals who achieve Florida Water Star AP for Landscapes and Irrigation, or who have the State’s voluntary irrigation license, may self-inspect their own systems.

The goal of this code is to improve water quality by reducing fertilizer runoff and leaching, while also reducing water use.

“The design standards adopt irrigation best management practices into local code,” said Alachua County Environmental Protection Department Water Conservation Coordinator Stacie Greco. She continued, “Since almost 60% of residential water use occurs in our landscapes, this is an important step for reducing water use. The water savings will not only help save our springs and groundwater supplies, but will also save homeowners money on their utility bills.”

To register for the Florida Water Star AP course, contact Merry Mott at 800-375-3642 or mmott@fngla.org.

For more information, visit the Alachua County Environmental Protection’s Water Resources website or contact Stacie Greco at 352-264-6829 or Sgreco@alachuacounty.us.

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Free Parking for Alachua County Public Meetings

Citizens attending Alachua County public meetings downtown no longer have to pay for parking.  In partnership with the City of Gainesville, citizens parking in the SW Parking Garage (220 SE 2nd Ave, Gainesville) will be issued a parking validation on noticed Commission meeting days. 

To obtain parking validation, bring the parking stub to the Alachua County Manager’s Office, located on the 2nd floor of the County Administration Building, on noticed Commission meeting days.

For more information, contact the Alachua County Manager’s Office at 352-374-5204.

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Envision Alachua Sector Plan/Comprehensive Plan Amendment Public Hearing

On June 25, 2015, Alachua County received a revised Envision Alachua Sector Plan/Comprehensive Plan Amendment application requesting to amend policies and maps of the Alachua County Comprehensive Plan for 52,745 acres in eastern Alachua County owned by Plum Creek.

The first public hearing is scheduled with the Local Planning Agency/Planning Commission on Wednesday, November 18, 2015, at 6 p.m. in the Jack Durrance Auditorium on the second floor of the County Administration Building (12 S.E. 1st Street, Gainesville).  The first County Commission public hearing is expected to take place as early as January, 2016.

Staff has completed their review of the revised application, considered environmental impacts, public infrastructure, provision of public services, suitability of the location and compatibility with the surrounding uses.  

The application and staff reports are available online.

Comments and questions can be sent to planning@alachuacounty.us or mailed to:

Alachua County Growth Management Department
10 S.W. 2nd Avenue, 3rd Floor
Gainesville, FL 32601

For more information, contact the Alachua County Growth Management Department at 352-374-5249.

 

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Lunch and Learn Energy Policy and Carbon Footprint Information Session

The Alachua County Office of Sustainability invites citizens to a “Lunch and Learn” energy policy and carbon footprint information session on Friday, November 20, 2015, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m., in the Grace Knight Conference Room, on the second floor of the Alachua County Administration Building (12 S.E. 1st Street, downtown Gainesville). The information session is free, and is the second of a monthly series of workshops and information sessions offered by the Alachua County Office of Sustainability, for the Water Energy and Waste Opportunities for Conservation (WEWOC) program.

The event, led by Gainesville Loves Mountains, provides information on Florida’s energy efficiency policy, coal dependency, and reducing the community’s carbon footprint.

The Office of Sustainability offers programs in conjunction with goals established by the Energy Conservation Strategies Commission, formed in 2008, which recommended several initiatives to reduce energy consumption across the County. These initiatives are sought through a number of overlapping County programs and policies, many of which include partnerships with the School and Library Districts, the University of Florida, Santa Fe College, and local non-profits and small businesses.

Gainesville Loves Mountains is a group of concerned volunteers with diverse perspectives on energy solutions for Gainesville’s future, and is committed to minimizing the impacts of coal consumption and extraction on Appalachia. They work in partnership with communities to end mountaintop removal coal mining and create a prosperous economy and sustainable future for the region and its people. In addition to monitoring the companies that supply Alachua County’s coal and advocating for alternative sources of energy, Gainesville Loves Mountains guides the implementation of local policies and programs to support energy savings and economic growth.

For more information, contact Alachua County Program Development Specialist Rachel Wayne at 352-264-6986 or rwayne@alachuacounty.us.

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Economic Development Advisory Committee Openings

The Alachua County Board of County Commissioners is seeking applications for its Economic Development Advisory Committee (EDAC). EDAC currently meets on the second Thursday of each month, at 2:30 p.m., at the Santa Fe Downtown Campus Center for Innovation and Economic Development (530 West University Avenue, Gainesville). Terms are for four years unless a person is appointed to fill a partial term.

This 14-member Board (9 voting and 5 ex-officio) is responsible for developing and providing policy recommendations to the Board related to the promotion of sustainable economic development activities within Alachua County.

Current vacancies include two Alachua County resident positions, one position for someone actively engaged with economic development organizations, and an alternate member positon (Alachua County resident).

Interested residents may apply online (scroll down the page to Economic Development Advisory Committee).

Find out more information about Alachua County Advisory Boards.

For more information, contact Alachua County Economic Development Coordinator Edgar Campa-Palafox at 352-374-5204 or epalafox@alachuacouty.us.

 

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November Extension Program

Livestock Program

Florida Fall Cattlemen’s Conference & Allied Trade Show – November 19, 2015, at 8 a.m., at the Southeastern Livestock Pavilion (2232 NE Jacksonville Road, Ocala)

Some topics include: hay vs. round bale silage, fetal programming, bull selection, and basic herd health.

There is a $25.00 registration fee. Participants must pre-register by Friday, November 6. Registration is available on-line with an additional fee.

For more information about this program, contact Dr. Cindy Sanders, Livestock Agent, at 352-955-2402. Visit the Extension Office Calendar for additional programs offered by the Extension Office.

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New Commission Chair and Vice Chair Elected

During the November 10, 2015 County Commission Regular Meeting, the County Commission held their annual vote for a new Chair and Vice Chair.

The current Chair Charles “Chuck” Chestnut IV, and Vice Chair Robert “Hutch” Hutchinson stepped down and Robert “Hutch” Hutchinson was voted in as Chair, with Ken Cornell elected as Vice Chair.

The outgoing chair, as well as the elected replacements, made brief remarks. The incoming Chair and Vice Chair spoke about their priorities in the elected roles.

View the meeting (scroll to item 4 to view the election and remarks).

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Trashformations 17th Annual Recycled Art Competition

The Alachua County Board of County Commissioners, the Office of Waste Alternatives, and the Florida Museum of Natural History are hosting the 17th annual Trashformations Recycled Art Show and Competition. The competition begins at 6 p.m. on November 20, 2015, at the Florida Museum of Natural History (in the University of Florida Cultural Plaza, SW 34th Street and Hull Road, Gainesville). The Trashformations exhibit is free and open to the public. There will be a special awards ceremony and reception for all participating students, their families, and teachers after the judging is complete.

Trashformations is a judged student art show and competition which helps expand recycling awareness and involvement. All artwork entered in the contest must be comprised of 70% or more recycled/recyclable/reused materials. Cash prizes will be awarded for winning entries in middle school, high school, and college level categories.

Visit the Trashformations website.

For more information, contact the Alachua County Office of Waste Alternatives at 352-374-5245.

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Communications Office Wins Several Awards

The Alachua County Communications Office recently won several design awards from the National Association of County Information Officers.

The awards include the Best in Class Award in the Graphic Design Category for the “Snake Mimicry?” sign created for the County Environmental Protection Department (EPD). They also won the Excellence Award in the Brochures category for the “Saving My Alachua” calendar, also created for EPD.

The Communications Office also won several Meritorious awards for the County’s Annual Report, the Community Update Newsletter, and the County’s Facebook page.

View the items that won awards (PDF).

 

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Commission Highlights

Veterans Day
The Board proclaimed November 11th, 2015, as “Veterans Day” in Alachua County, FL.
Attachment: 
Veterans Day 2015.pdf

Hunger Awareness Month
The Board proclaimed November 2015 as “Hunger Awareness Month” in Alachua County, FL.
Attachment: 
Hunger Awareness Month 2015.pdf

World Pancreatic Cancer Day
The Board proclaimed November 13th, 2015, as “World Pancreatic Cancer Day” in Alachua County, FL.
Attachment: 
World Pancreatic Cancer Day 2015.pdf

National Family Caregivers Month
The Board proclaimed November 2015, as “National Family Caregivers Month” in Alachua County, FL.
Attachment: 
National Family Caregivers Month 2015.pdf

Children’s Grief Awareness Day
The Board proclaimed November 19th, 2015, as “Children’s Grief Awareness Day” in Alachua County, FL.
Attachment: 
Children’s Grief Awareness Day 2015.pdf

Operation Safe Schools
The Board heard a presentation by the Sheriff’s office on the statewide initiative “Operation Safe Schools”.

Mental Health Funding Pool
The Board approved providing $50,000 from its recently approved discretionary mental health funding pool (contained within the Court Services FY 16 budget) in support of training and apprenticeships for mental health Peer Specialists. Peer Specialists have attended classes, passed a test, and worked under supervision for 500 hours, thus becoming a Certified Peer Specialist. These are in demand in a number of mental health agencies, but also in broader areas of general medical services, housing, homeless services, law enforcement, and academia. For the County, this support provides two benefits: reducing the need and cost of more traditional and expensive mental health treatment, and providing employment training and opportunities for people who have experienced mental illness whose job prospects are often limited. 

City of Alachua Legal Actions
The Board approved the settlement of the City of Alachua legal actions styled 2015-AP-16 and 2015-CA-1978.Attachment: City of Alachua.pdf

County Manager’s and County Attorney’s Performance Reviews
The Board conducted the County Manager’s and the County Attorney’s performance reviews and discussed their contracts.
Attachment: 
CM_Eval.pdf
Attachment: 
CA_Eval.pdf
Attachment: 
ExecutiveServiceComp.pdf
Attachment: 
Vehicle Allowance 110215.pdf
Attachment: 
CA_Eval1.pdf
Attachment: 
CM_Eval1.pdf
Attachment: 
Contract Amendments.pdf
Attachment: 
Vacation Leave.pdf

Quarterly and Annual Hiring Activity Reports
The Board accepted the Quarterly and Annual Hiring Activity Reports for FY 2015.
Attachment: 
BOCC Quarterly Report FY15 QTR4 PKG 102015.pdf
Attachment: 
BOCC ANNUAL REPORT FY15 PKG .pdf
Attachment: 
FY15 4thQtr & Annual HiringReport.pdf
Attachment: 
Alachua County Workforce Demographics Report 9 30 15.pdf
Attachment: 
FY15 4thQtr Targeted Positions Filled Advertising Efforts 10.14.15.pdf
Attachment: 
Sample Recruitment Websites in FY15.pdf
Attachment: 
FY15 Targeted Advertising & Outreach Efforts.pdf

Surplus Van Donation
The Board approved the donation of a surplus van to the North Central Florida Coalition for the Homeless and Hungry for a Transportation Program.  No operational dollars were included.
Attachment: 
NCFCHH van request 2.pdf
Attachment: 
Resolution to Donanate Van to the North Central FL Coaltion for the Homeless.pdf

Qualified Target Industry Program
The Board approved the Resolution supporting USR Systems participation in the Qualified Target Industry Program and authorized the Chair’s signature.
Amount: $84,000.00
Attachment:
Nov 10 BoCC USR Systems QTI

Qualified Target Industry Program
The Board approved the Resolution to amend the RES Polyflow LLC Qualified Target Industry Program Agreement and authorized the Chair’s signature.
Amount: $23,200.00
Attachment:
Nov 10 BoCC RES Polyflow QTI

Community Redevelopment Agency
In response to the City of Newberry’s request for Delegation of Powers to Establish a Community Redevelopment Agency, the Board  authorized the Chair to sign the letter requesting more information from the City of Newberry and directed staff to work with the City of Newberry to focus on areas blighted with slums. 
Attachment:
Newberry CRA.pdf

Fire Rescue Services
Concerning the update on the development of a transition plan for Fire Rescue Services in the SW 20th Avenue area and Forest Park, the Board:

Heard the presentation and directed staff to negotiate an amendment to the Fire Services Annexation Agreement or a new Interlocal agreement with the City of Gainesville based on the transition plan.

Authorized staff to expend funds to identify new locations.

 Directed the County Manager to review the site plan and the design and bring back recommendations with regards to the cost.

Attachment: Fire Rescue Services 20th Avenue Forest Park.pdf

FY16 budget
The Board conducted a public hearing, adopted resolutions, and approved budget amendments to amend FY16 budget for carry forward, re-appropriations, and other fund balance adjustments.

Eminent Domain
The Board approved the resolution authorizing Celebration Pointe CDD No. 1 the right to exercise the power of eminent domain on a specific district road (SW 43rd Street/SW 32nd Road) outside of the CDD boundary.
Attachment: 
Resolution_CP_CDD_Eminent_Domain.pdf
Attachment: 
PowerPoint_CP_CDD_Eminent_domain.pdf
Attachment: 
Staff_Report_CP_CDD_Eminent_Domain.pdf
Attachment: 
PowerPoint_CP_CDD_Eminent_domain.pptx
Attachment: 
SW 43rd_SW 32nd_LegalDescription.pdf
Attachment: 
Supplemental Engineer Report No 2_Final.pdf
Attachment: 
SW 43rd_SW 32nd Road Alignment.pdf
Attachment: 
CP_CDD_SpecialPowersRequest_Final.pdf

Multerra Traditional Neighborhood Development
The Board approved the Preliminary Development Plan and Section Line Waiver for Multerra Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND), Resolution DR-15-40, and Issuance of a Preliminary Certificate of Level of Service Compliance (CLSC).
Attachment: 
DR_15_40_Multerra TND.pdf
Attachment: 
Multerra_ppt.pdf
Attachment: 
PDP100_MasterPlan.pdf
Attachment: 
PDP110_TNDNotes.pdf
Attachment: 
PDP400_TransNetwork.pdf
Attachment: 
PDP200_OpenSpace.pdf
Attachment: 
MulterraTND_SR.pdf

Park Avenue at Santa Fe Traditional Neighborhood Development
The Board approved with conditions the Revised Preliminary Development Plan for Park Avenue at Santa Fe Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND), project number 2012020101 and approval of Resolution DR-15-41.
Attachment: 
Park Ave Master Plan.pdf
Attachment: 
Park Ave TND RevPrel_SR.pdf
Attachment: 
DR_15_41 ParkAve TND.pdf

 

 

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Community Update is produced by the County Manager's Communications Office.