Village Council Meeting Minutes - June 3, 2014

MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

The Miami Shores Village Council held their regularly scheduled Council Meeting on Tuesday, June 3, 2014 in the Council Chambers of Village Hall. The meeting was called to order at 7:30 PM with the following individuals present:

PRESENT:                        Herta Holly

                                           Jesse Walters

                                           Hunt Davis

                                           Ivonne Ledesma

                                           Jim McCoy

ALSO PRESENT:             Tom Benton, Village Manager

                                           Barbara Estep, Village Clerk

                                           Richard Sarafan, Village Attorney

PRESENTATION

 

Village of Pinecrest Councilman, James E. McDonald, spoke to the Council regarding his opposition to a destination casino in Miami.

CONSIDERATIONS

 

  1. VILLAGE COUNCIL                                                                Ivonne Ledesma
  1. A RESOLUTION OF THE MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE COUNCIL, RECOGNIZING THAT AN OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF THE MIAMI-DADE COUNTY ELECTORATE VOTED TO SUPPORT THE INITIATIVES PRESENTED BY PETS’ TRUST; URGING THE MIAMI-DADE COUNTY COMMISSION TO IMPLEMENT THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE IN THIS CURRENT BUDGET SESSION BY ESTABLISHING THE FUNDING MECHANISMS FOR SAID INITIATIVES; AND ENCOURAGING OTHER MIAMI-DADE COUNTY MUNICIPALITIES TO JOIN MIAMI SHORES IN THEIR SUPPORT FOR THE PETS’ TRUST; PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.

Ms. Estep read the caption of the resolution into the record. Councilwoman Ledesma indicated that individuals representing the issue were present to speak on the matter. Ms. Irene Sacada and Mr. Michael Rosenberg spoke on behalf of the Pets’ Trust which advocates for a spay/neuter program to help with pet overpopulation. Mr. Rosenberg offered information regarding the straw ballot voted on by County residents back in the fall of 2012 and the fact that the County Commission has not raised the tax rate or funded the Trust which was called for in the referendum.  

Councilwoman Ledesma summarized the purpose for the resolutions and spoke briefly about the resident complaints regarding cat colonies and stray animals in the Village. Individual Council Members asked questions and offered their opinions on the problems of stray animals and the large number of animals in the Village and County. Council Members specifically spoke of the complaints they receive on a regular basis and a major problem stemming from a few residents that feed stray/feral cats.   Following a lengthy discussion, Councilwoman Ledesma moved to approve the resolution as presented. Vice Mayor Walters seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

 

  1. VILLAGE CLERK                                                                     Barbara A. Estep

Ms. Estep advised the Council that the Administration wished to add an emergency item to the agenda with respect to the purchase of a 15 passenger van for the Recreation Department. Councilman Davis moved to add the item to the agenda as requested. Councilman McCoy seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

Mr. Benton provided information to the Council regarding the proposed purchase, indicating that a van was budgeted in the capital budget but due to circumstances and the unavailability of vans through either Ford or Chevrolet, the Village was working with a local dealer to obtain a van from out of the area. The van is needed to transport children in the summer camp programs as well as the afterschool program. Councilwoman Ledesma asked about the possibility of obtaining a “green” vehicle for the programs.   Councilman McCoy moved to approve the purchase of the new van. Councilman Davis seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. APPROVAL OF THE MAY 20, 2014 COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES.

Councilman Davis pointed out a typo on the second page of the minutes and then moved approval of the May 20, 2014 Council Meeting Minutes as corrected. Councilman McCoy seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. AN ORDINANCE OF MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE, FLORIDA, AMENDING CHAPTER 14, SECTION 14-33 OF THE CODE OF ORDINANCES OF MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE, INCREASING RATES FOR LOCAL BUSINESS TAX RECEIPTS AS CONTAINED WITHIN THE SCHEDULE OF LOCAL BUSINESS TAXES, PROVIDING FOR CONFLICTS, PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY, AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.             

Ms. Estep read the caption of the ordinance into the record, stating that the ordinance was before the Council on its second and final reading and had been properly noticed per the Statutes. Mayor Holly opened the floor for the public hearing but with no one coming forward, the Mayor closed the public hearing. Councilman McCoy moved to adopt the ordinance as presented. Councilman Davis seconded the motion and the vote was 4 to 1, with Vice Mayor Walters dissenting.

3)           VILLAGE MANAGER                                                                            Tom Benton

  1. DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING A REQUEST FROM

THE GREATER MIAMI SHORES CHAMBER OF COMMERCE TO WAIVE THE FEES ASSOCIATED WITH PROVIDING SERVICES FOR THE CHAMBER’S GREEN DAY EVENT SCHEDULED FOR OCTOBER 18, 2014.

Mr. Benton introduced the Chamber President, Lance Harke, who was present and spoke on behalf of the Chamber with respect to the request before the Council. Mr. Harke offered highlights and a recap of the 2013 Green Day event and indicated their intent to provide additional activities for children and an expansion of the event by one hour. Council Members voiced their support for the event, but Councilman Davis, Councilman McCoy and Mayor Holly spoke of their concerns regarding the Chamber’s request to waive the cost for Village services with the emphasis being on fiscal responsibility and providing assistance to the Chamber when the Village does not provide similar assistance to other organizations that conduct festivals within the community. Mr. Harke spoke of the importance of the event for the downtown businesses and the community at large, as the Chamber is an organization of individuals and friends, not focused on businesses. Mr. Harke stated that the request is for a small investment by the Village for a big outcome. A lengthy discussion ensued, following which Councilwoman Ledesma moved to have the Village waive the service fees associated with the event. Councilman McCoy seconded the motion. Vice Mayor Walters, who did not take part in the discussion, disclosed his voting conflict as he is employed by the Chamber of Commerce. The resulting vote was 2 to 2 and therefore the motion did not pass.  Mayor Holly and Councilman Davis voted against the motion. 

  1. REQUEST APPROVAL TO EXECUTE RECYCLING AGREEMENT

ADDENDUM TO PROVIDE RECYCLING SERVICES TO BISCAYNE PARK FOR A 120 DAY PERIOD.

Mr. Benton provided information regarding extending the recycling services to Biscayne Park. Councilman McCoy moved approval of the request to execute an agreement addendum. Councilman Davis seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING ENGAGING AN

AGENCY TO CONDUCT A RESIDENT SATISFACTION SURVEY.

Mr. Benton summarized the Council’s directive issued at a previous meeting and spoke of the research conducted with respect to agencies that conduct resident surveys. Mr. Benton stated his recommendation of FIU as the agency to conduct a survey and provided the Council with his reasoning. Mr. Benton indicated that Ms. Maria Ilcheva was present to respond to any questions the Council may have regarding a resident survey. Councilman Davis expressed concerns regarding conducting a general survey and spoke about taking a more targeted approach. He would like to see specific questions which would move towards a new community center rather than conducting a fishing expedition. Councilman Davis then moved to table the item. Councilman McCoy seconded the motion. Councilwoman Ledesma reiterated her thoughts on the importance of getting input and receiving feedback from the residents and that a survey is a good way to measure how the Village is doing. The question was called with a resultant vote of three to two in favor of the motion to table. Vice Mayor Walters and Councilwoman Ledesma voted against the motion.

4)           ANNOUNCEMENTS

Ms. Estep read the announcements.

 

5)             PUBLIC COMMENTS

Susan Ackley       Ms. Ackley spoke of the Green Day event and the recent Theater event.

Kathy Sanchez     Ms. Sanchez spoke of the downtown businesses.

6)             COUNCIL COMMENTS

Ivonne Ledesma                Councilwoman Ledesma spoke of the upcoming Board appointments and thanked Mayor Holly, Councilman Davis and Councilman McCoy for their thoughtful questions and commentary on the issues.

Jesse Walters                     Vice Mayor Walters spoke of his dismay with the Council and recapped the Council’s actions of the evening, stating his opinion that it was the worst meeting he had been present for in his three years on Council.

Hunt Davis                        Councilman Davis spoke of the difficult meeting but stressed the fact that sometimes meetings will be difficult. He spoke of bringing an item before the Council with respect to a community center.

Jim McCoy                        Councilman McCoy talked of not personalizing the differences of opinion and that council members are not always going to agree on issues. He thanked the people in attendance for their patience and wished everyone a safe and happy summer, reminding everyone that school would be in recess by the end of the week.

Herta Holly                        Mayor Holly spoke of the July 4th fireworks being sponsored by residents Robert Bourne and John Challenor.

7)             ADJOURNMENT

The June 3, 2014 Council Meeting was adjourned at 9:06 PM.

                                                                                                                   _________________________

                                                                                                                   Herta Holly, Mayor

_______________________

Barbara A. Estep, MMC

Village Clerk