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Village Council Meeting Minutes - July 7, 2015

MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

The Miami Shores Village Council held their regularly scheduled Council Meeting in the Chambers of Village Hall. The meeting was called to order at 6:30 PM with the following individuals present:

PRESENT:                        Alice Burch

                                           Steven Zelkowitz

                                           Herta Holly

                                           Ivonne Ledesma

                                           Jesse Walters

ALSO PRESENT:             Tom Benton, Village Manager

                                           Barbara Estep, Village Clerk

                                           Richard Sarafan, Village Attorney

Father Torres, Barry University Chaplain gave the Invocation.

PRESENTATION

 

Presentation by Robert Levy regarding the 2015 Legislative Session. Mr. Levy was unable to attend this evening’s meeting due to a scheduling conflict.

PUBLIC INPUT:   Public Comment on items appearing on this evening’s agenda.

 

Residents Steve Mumby, Dennis Leyva, Elizabeth Cowan, Giselle Kovac and Brad Liff all spoke in support of having public comment heard at each agenda item rather than at the beginning of the meeting. In addition, Mr. Liff spoke about the sewer and water main project financing.

 

CONSIDERATIONS

 

1)           VILLAGE CLERK                                                                    Barbara A. Estep, MMC

  1. APPROVAL OF THE JUNE 16, 2015 COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES.

Councilman Walters moved to approve the June 16, 2015 Council Meeting Minutes. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion. Attorney Richard Sarafan requested that an amendment be considered with respect to his comments relating to abstaining from voting. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to approve the Minutes with the suggested amendment. Councilman Walters accepted the amendment and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. A RESOLUTION OF THE MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE COUNCIL AGREEING TO PARTICIPATION IN A POOLED COMMERCIAL PAPER LOAN PROGRAM OF THE FLORIDA LOCAL GOVERNMENT FINANCE COMMISSION; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION AND DELIVERY OF A LOAN AGREEMENT WITH THE FLORIDA LOCAL GOVERNMENT FINANCE COMMISSION AND JP MORGAN CHASE BANK, N.A.; AUTHORIZING THE BORROWING OF NOT EXCEEDING $5,000,000 PURSUANT TO THE TERMS OF THE LOAN AGREEMENT IN ORDER TO FINANCE VARIOUS CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS WITHIN THE VILLAGE; AUTHORIZING THE EXECUTION OF A LOAN NOTE OR LOAN NOTES TO EVIDENCE SUCH BORROWING AND AGREEING TO SECURE SUCH BORROWING WITH A COVENANT TO BUDGET AND APPROPRIATE LEGALLY AVAILABLE NON-AD VALOREM REVENUES OF THE VILLAGE, ALL AS PROVIDED IN THE LOAN AGREEMENT; AUTHORIZING THE EXECUTION AND DELIVERY OF SUCH OTHER DOCUMENTS AS MAY BE NECESSARY TO EFFECT SUCH BORROWING; AND PROVIDING AN EFFECTIVE DATE.

Ms. Estep read the Resolution title into the record. Mr. Sarafan offered a brief statement regarding the loan, indicating that this loan would be a short-term bridge loan. Mr. Scott Richert of JP Morgan Chase was present and indicated that the commercial paper loan was most often used for infrastructure improvement financing. He provided additional information to the Council and responded to questions posed relating to the type, duration, and amount of interest to accrue. Mr. Richert explained the mechanics of the loan, stating that two draws are anticipated and unlike conventional loans, finance charges are determined at the time of the draw. Mr. Richert stated that the loan affords the Village the ability to borrow funding with no long term commitment requirement or pre- payment penalties. Additional discussion ensued followed by Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moving to approve the resolution as presented. Councilman Walters seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

2)           VILLAGE MANAGER                                                              Tom Benton

  1. REQUEST APPROVAL TO INCLUDE THE NE 2ND AVENUE WATER & SEWER ASSESSMENTS ON THE TRIM NOTICE.

Mr. Benton provided the Council with information regarding the individual assessment projections for properties within the downtown business district. Mr. Benton reviewed the assessment process and introduced Ms. Vita Paltridge from the firm of Burton & Associates who explained the formula used to develop the individual assessment figures. Ms. Paltridge indicated that based on past experience, the figures represent a “worst case scenario” and more than likely the actual assessments will be lower. Councilman Walters moved to approve the request as presented. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. REQUEST APPROVAL TO RENEW TURF AND LANDSCAPE MAINTENANCE JOINT PARTICIPATION AGREEMENT WITH THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION FOR CONTINUATION OF RIGHT-OF-WAY/MEDIAN MAINTENANCE OF STATE ROADWAYS.

Mr. Benton offered information regarding the DOT contract renewal which provides for the Village to maintain the medians and right-of-ways along N.E. 6th Avenue, 103rd Street and Biscayne Boulevard. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved approval of the renewal contract. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING LOBBYIST SERVICES.

Mr. Benton called attention to Mr. Levy’s e-mail in which he offered to discontinue providing lobbying services to the Village. Mr. Benton outlined available alternatives and individual Council Members commented both on Mr. Levy and lobbying services in general. Subsequently, Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to table the item. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was 4 to 1 in favor of the motion with Councilwoman Ledesma dissenting.

  1. DISCUSSION AND CLARIFICATION REGARDING THE BUDGET WORKSHOP MEETINGS SCHEDULED FOR JULY 9TH AND JULY 14TH.

In an effort to clarify the format to be followed for the budget workshops, Mr. Benton outlined a suggested format which met with the Council’s approval. Councilwoman Ledesma asked that coffee and snacks be provided.

3)           VILLAGE COUNCIL                                                                              

Item 3B was discussed prior to Item 3A.

B)   DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING ALLOWING FOR PUBLIC COMMENT AT THE TIME AN AGENDA ITEM IS TO BE CONSIDERED RATHER THAN AT THE BEGINNING OF THE MEETING.                                           Steve Zelkowitz

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz outlined his request for a change in the agenda format to allow for public comment at the time an agenda item is heard rather than at the beginning of the Council Meeting and individual Council Members expressed their thoughts on the idea. The consensus of the Council was to follow the following format in the future: 1) Agenda item is read and Staff reports on the item; 2) Public Comment is heard; 3) Council Discussion; and 4) Action taken.

A) DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION ON AN APPOINTMENT TO THE CHARTER SCHOOL BOARD VACANCY.                                                                     Alice Burch

Mayor Burch advised the Council that one of the newly appointed Charter School Board members is unable to serve. Mayor Burch spoke of the alternatives available to the Council regarding naming a replacement to the Board. Council Members discussed their preferences and subsequently directed Ms. Estep to notify the applicants that had previously applied to the Board to determine whether they are still interested in serving. Those individuals will be considered for appointment at the July 21, 2015 Council Meeting.

  1. DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING APPOINTMENT OF A LIAISON

TO THE DOCTORS CHARTER SCHOOL BOARD.                           Steve Zelkowitz

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz introduced the item, indicating that the issue of having a Council liaison to the Charter School Board had recently been raised and his belief that it is a good suggestion. Councilwoman Holly stated that she has attended many of the School Board meetings; sitting and observing. She further stated that the Ordinance calls for the School Board to make regular reports to the Council. She suggested that we enforce the Ordinance.

Mayor Burch indicated that she is working with the County School Board and a Chamber of Commerce committee developing an “education compact”. She provided brief comments regarding the project. Mayor Burch then moved to postpone the discussion and appointment until the July 21st meeting. The motion died for lack of a second. Mayor Burch emphasized the need for parameters to be set and discussed issues related to a past Council liaison to the Charter School Board. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz expressed his ideas on the liaison’s role which is to attend, listen and report back to the Council anything of interest that transpired. It is not a delegation of authority and the liaison should not represent to the Board that anything they may say during public comment is the will of the Council. The liaison is not to be considered a Board member. Due to Councilwoman Ledesma’s current situation, Vice Mayor Zelkowitz volunteered to act as the Council’s Liaison until September at which time Councilwoman Ledesma indicated she would be able to assume the role. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz made a motion to that effect which Councilman Walters seconded. The vote was 4 to 1 in favor of the motion with Mayor Burch dissenting.

  1. DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING ISSUANCE OF AN RFQ/RFP

FOR AN URBAN PLANNING/ARCHITECTURAL/DESIGN FIRM TO DEVELOP DESIGN CRITERIA FOR THE B-1 ZONING DISTRICT.                           Steve Zelkowitz

Mr. Zelkowitz advised the Council on the purpose of the agenda item and suggested that the Village issue an RFP or RFQ for architectural designers or urban planners to develop design criteria looking towards a traditional neighborhood downtown plan and design enhancements for the B-1 District. He further indicated that the design firm could focus on items such as parking and pedestrian and bicycle traffic. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz confirmed that the Village cannot mandate that a property owner make improvements to coincide with the developed design criteria but if a building owner should want to renovate, the standards would be applied. Council Members expressed their support of the idea to seek professional guidance in designing a plan for downtown. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to direct staff to develop an RFP or RFQ. Councilwoman Ledesma seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. REQUEST FOR A STATUS UPDATE ON THE WATER AND SEWER MAIN PROJECT.

                                                                                                                                  Steve Zelkowitz

Mr. Benton indicated that the project continues through the County’s permitting process with varied results. Mr. Benton stated that the water main portion of the project will begin in August and that there are no issues with the lift station portion of the sewer line project. Permitting questions involving the low pressure force main have arose but Mr. Benton is working with top level Department Directors at the County’s Water & Sewer Department to resolve. Council Members expressed their frustrations with the delays and it was suggested that the County representative be invited to the July 21st Council Meeting to address the Council and their concerns.

4)           ANNOUNCEMENTS

The Village Clerk read the announcements.

 

5)             PUBLIC COMMENTS

Charles Humphries           Mr. Humphries spoke of traffic issues surrounding the Starbuck’s center specifically parking issues and the adjacent alleyways.

Dick Lorenzo                    Mr. Lorenzo spoke of the Charrette process which was done years ago.

Elizabeth CowenMs. Cowen asked about the RFP/RFQ process.

William Wells                   Mr. Wells spoke in support of Robert Levy.

Dennis Leyva                     Mr. Leyva talked about the sewer project done on Miami Beach.

Giselle Kovac                    Ms. Kovac spoke of the Miami Theater Center’s sign issues.

Brad Liff                            Mr. Liff raised the issue of the commercial paper loan.

John MacDaniel                Mr. MacDaniel spoke of the need to slow traffic on N.E. 2nd Avenue.

 

6)             COUNCIL COMMENTS

Jesse Walters                     Councilman Walters advised he is looking for an update on the alcoholic beverage ordinance and the fact that the Code’s parking requirements need to be addressed.

Ivonne Ledesma                Councilwoman Ledesma spoke of the upcoming budget workshops.

Herta Holly                        Councilwoman Holly urged residents to continue sharing their opinions and her belief that great conversations occurred during the course of the meeting.

Steven Zelkowitz              Vice Mayor Zelkowitz thanked the residents for attending the meeting and spoke of the increase in property values reported by the County. He briefly spoke of the Competitive Negotiations Action and the provisions to engage an architectural firm or urban planner.

Alice Burch                       Mayor Burch addressed the Charrette issue and spoke of Barry University’s 75th Anniversary celebration to be held in the fall.

7)             ADJOURNMENT

The Tuesday, July 7, 2015 Council Meeting was adjourned at 8:40 PM.

                                                                                                                                 ______________________

                                                                                                                                  Alice Burch, Mayor

_____________________________

Barbara A. Estep, MMC

Village Clerk