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Village Council Meeting Minutes - May 5, 2015

MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

The Miami Shores Village Council held their regularly scheduled Council Meeting on Tuesday, May 5, 2015 in the Council Chambers of Village Hall. The meeting was called to order at 7:30 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

PUBLIC INPUT:

Elizabeth Cowan provided the Council with information relating to the fence height issue and submitted signed petitions urging the Council to allow for the extra height to the Clerk.

Miriam Rojas spoke in favor of a 6 foot fence height to allow for additional privacy and security for yards and property.

Nicholas Dorn offered information relating to the Charter School’s request to amend their charter.

Adriana Diaz Bergnes spoke in favor of increasing the allowable fence height to 6’ for added security and privacy.      

CONSIDERATIONS

             

1)           VILLAGE CLERK                                                                                   Barbara A. Estep

  1. APPROVAL OF THE APRIL 21, 2015 COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES.

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved approval of the April 21, 2015 Council Meeting Minutes as submitted. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

B)   APPOINTMENT OF ONE COUNCIL MEMBER TO THE GENERAL EMPLOYEE PENSION

             BOARD.

Councilwoman Holly moved to appoint Mayor Burch to the General Employee Pension Board. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

C) APPOINTMENT OF TWO COUNCIL MEMBERS TO THE POLICE RETIREMENT PENSION BOARD.

Councilman Walters moved to appoint Councilwoman Ledesma and Councilwoman Holly to the Police Retirement Pension Board. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

D) APPOINTMENT OF A COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVE TO THE MIAMI-DADE LEAGUE OF CITIES.

Councilman Walters raised the subject of multiple Council members possibly wanting to attend the monthly meeting and the fact that the Village does not currently have a policy to reimburse those Council members not designated as the Village’s representative to the Board. Councilwoman Ledesma also spoke on the issue, indicating that it would lend legitimacy to their attendance.   Setting the issue aside momentarily, Councilman Walters moved to appoint Councilwoman Holly as the Village’s representative at the Dade League of Cities. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

Councilman Walters then moved for the Village to fund the attendance of any Council member who would like to attend up to two (2) Dade League meetings between now and the end of the fiscal year, September 30th.   Vice Mayor Zelkowitz seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

E) APPOINTMENT OF A COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVE TO THE FLORIDA LEAGUE OF CITIES.

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to appoint Councilman Walters as the Village’s representative to the Florida League of Cities. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

F) APPOINTMENT OF A COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVE TO THE GREEN CORRIDOR DISTRICT BOARD OF DIRECTORS.

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz volunteered to serve on the Board and subsequently, Councilman Walters moved to appoint Vice Mayor Zelkowitz as the Village’s representative to the Green Corridor District Board of Directors. Councilwoman Ledesma seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

G)   A RESOLUTION OF THE MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE COUNCIL AUTHORIZING THE CURRENT MAYOR TO BE SUBSTITUTED FOR THE PRIOR MAYOR, AS SIGNATORY FOR APPLICABLE VILLAGE BANK ACCOUNTS, AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.

Ms. Estep read the caption of the Resolution into the record. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved approval of the Resolution as presented. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

2)         PLANNING DEPARTMENT                                                                  David Dacquisto

             A)   DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING THE PLANNING & ZONING

           BOARD’S RECOMMENDATIONS REGARDING FENCE HEIGHTS AND MATERIALS.

Mr. Sarafan provided clarification regarding the Council’s possible actions with respect to the Planning & Zoning Board’s report. Councilman Walters then moved to approve allowing 6’ fences in backyards. Mr. Sarafan offered a suggestion on phrasing of a motion and subsequently Councilman Walters rephrased his motion, moving to ask staff to prepare an ordinance that will allow 6’ fences in the side and rear yards. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz seconded the motion for discussion purposes.   Councilwoman Holly expressed her opposition to the higher fence height due to the isolating effect that could result. Mr. Benton began to ask clarifying questions regarding the Council’s thoughts on the proposed amendments, i.e. decorative scrolling, PVC material, gate coverings. Council Members indicated that such fence accessories should be included in the ordinance. Following additional discussion, Vice Mayor Zelkowitz offered an amendment to the original motion to accept the recommended text offered by the Planning & Zoning Board regard light fixtures, post caps and finials. Councilman Walters accepted Vice Mayor Zelkowitz’s amendment to his motion. Further discussion ensued regarding fencing materials to be allowed, consideration of corner lots, and the process of amending the zoning code. At the conclusion of the discussion, Mayor Burch called for a vote which was unanimous in favor of the motion.

3)           DOCTORS CHARTER SCHOOL                                            Nick Dorn, Executive Dir.

             A)   DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING AN AMENDMENT TO THE

              SCHOOL’S CHARTER TO ALLOW FOR AN INCREASE IN STUDENT POPULATION.

Doctors Charter School Executive Director, Nick Dorn, presented information regarding a proposed Charter amendment to allow a maximum of 690 students. The request to increase the capacity is due to the School’s status as a “high performing school” and approval by the Village Council is required prior to consideration by the Miami-Dade County School Board. Mr. Dorn confirmed that the proposed Charter amendment will not jeopardize other portions of the School’s Charter that are unique to the Doctors Charter School Charter. Councilwoman Holly moved to approve the School’s Charter amendment as proposed. Councilwoman Ledesma seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

4)           VILLAGE COUNCIL                                                                              

A) DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING CHANGING THE START TIME OF VILLAGE COUNCIL MEETINGS.                                                     Jesse Walters

Councilman Walters spoke of his reasoning for wanting to change the start time of Council Meetings and moved to change the meeting time to 6:00 PM effective with the May 19th meeting. Councilwoman Ledesma seconded the motion for discussion purposes. Councilwoman Ledesma expressed concern with the proposed 6:00 PM start time, indicating that it may be too early but suggested that 6:30 or 7:00 PM may be better. Councilwoman Holly voiced her opinion that the current 7:30 is okay as many residents who do not work in the Village could not get here earlier. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz indicated that 7:30 is a bit late and stated his preference of a 6:30 or 7:00 PM start time.   Councilman Walters then amended his original motion to have Council Meetings begin at 6:30 PM. Councilwoman Ledesma seconded the motion. The vote was 4 to 1 in favor of the motion, with Councilwoman Holly voting in opposition.

  1. DISCUSSION REGARDING THE SALE OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES IN THE B-1 ZONING DISTRICT.                                                          Steven Zelkowitz

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz stated his purpose for the agenda item, indicating that he believes that the Village should be prepared for when the water and sewer projects are completed. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz spoke of the Coral Gables alcoholic beverage code provision which prohibits stand-alone bars but allows for alcohol sales in restaurants that meet certain criteria. Councilmembers expressed their supportive views on the issue and following a brief discussion, Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to request that Staff bring forward an ordinance based loosely on the Coral Gables Code chapter. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. DISCUSSION REGARDING REVITALIZATION OF DOWNTOWN MIAMI SHORES (N.E. 2ND AVENUE).                                                                              Steven Zelkowitz

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz offered information regarding the “pattern book” which was developed for the City of Miramar and suggested that developing design criteria for the downtown area would be beneficial. General discussion amongst the Council centered on the need to have professional assistance in developing the criteria, parking issues, and permitting by the County agencies, specifically Water & Sewer. Following the discussion, Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to have Staff schedule a workshop to further discuss downtown development criteria. Councilwoman Ledesma seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

5)         ANNOUNCEMENTS

Ms. Estep read the announcements.

6)         PUBLIC COMMENTS

Christina Abrams              Ms. Abrams spoke of loose dogs that are attacking cats throughout the Village.

Dennis Leyva                     Mr. Leyva spoke to the issue of valet parking and parking in general.

William Wells                   Mr. Wells commended the Council for taking steps to revitalize N.E. 2nd Avenue.

Javier Peresrego                Mr. Peresrego spoke of the fence issue and the fact that he has a corner lot.

Patrick Huber                                  Mr. Huber spoke of the possibility of having a crosswalk across Biscayne Boulevard.

Damon Stimon                                Mr. Stimon spoke of the problems encountered in his neighborhood due to the Church activities at the corner of N.E. 103rd Street and N.E. 2nd Avenue.

7)         COUNCIL COMMENTS

Steve Zelkowitz                Vice Mayor Zelkowitz thanked the residents for their attendance and participation.                                          He stated that the Council is here to be the voice of the residents.

Ivonne Ledesma                               Councilwoman Ledesma thanked those that attended the meeting and her best friend for driving her to the meeting and her health issues surrounding her pregnancy.

Jesse Walters                                   Councilman Walters congratulated the election results and indicated that the Council is energized by the new members.

Herta Holly                        No Comment

Alice Burch                                      Mayor Burch thanked the residents attending the meeting and spoke of the upcoming Board appointments.

8)         ADJOURNMENT

The Tuesday, May 5, 2015 Council Meeting was adjourned at 9:06 PM.

                                                                                                                   ______________________

                                                                                                                   Alice Burch, Mayor

___________________________

Barbara A. Estep, MMC

Village Clerk