BRADENTON -- At Tuesday's work session, commissioners discussed the new Southwest County Improvement District, the anticipated expansion of the Manatee County Tax Collector's base, what to do with Surplus Property, Employee's health care benefits, and who will be hauling the county's trash for the next seven years.
MORNING WORK SESSION
1. Tax Collector Issues -- Ken Burton, Tax Collector spoke of having to find more space because the four offices assisting customers are sometimes exceeding preferred wait times and that by 2017, an additional 30,000 people will be living in the county.
Burton said, "This is the making of a perfect storm." He wants the BOCC to consider purchasing the now seven-year vacant ABC building, catty-corner from the DeSoto office. Burton said it is appropriate size and location for the job.
Burton also wants the commission to consider implementing a non-citizen drivers license to pay for the expansion and provide assistance for residents that are not yet citizens.
2. Southwest County Improvement District -- John Osborne and Cheri Coryea gave a presentation on Neighborhood Reinvestment and Corridor Redevelopment for the Southwest County Tax Increment Finance District Improvement Plan (SWTIF). They gave the most comprehensive evaluation of just how the county's Southwest neighborhoods from Cortez to Samoset, including the two CRA's (14th Street West CRA and South County CRA) that were merged into the SWTIF.
They reviewed programs in process, ones to be implemented and suggested the independent neighborhoods play the major role in deciding what will best suit their area. (Story to follow).
3. Surplus Property (Real Property) Ordinance -- Commissioners and staff discussed amending a County Surplus Land Ordinance. The Ordinance will enact to carry out the purpose, intent and exercise the authority to resolve the fate of surplus lands the county owns.
The properties will be made available to the public through a bid process, for sale or lease.
Once the property has been designated surplus, the potential sale of the parcel will be provided through two of four means: County Website; sign on the parcel; posted notice in the courthouse; and mailed notice to adjacent property owners.
AFTERNOON WORK SESSION
1. Employee Health Benefits - Employee Full Time vs Part Time Status -- Kim Stroud, Health Benefits Manager, discussed the distinction of what identifies a full-time employee opposed to a part-time employee, relating to providing health care benefits for those employed by the county.
She discussed the parameters defining the hours and amounts and how they were tracked. Stroud also mention the penalties for not complying with the new laws.
2. Solid Waste Franchise Agreements - Unincorporated Manatee County, Collection Service Areas 1 and 2 -- Last week the BOCC asked to have a work session on whether the county should renew its contract with the current two waste haulers, or put out a RFP (request for proposals).
Mitch Kessler, President, Kessler Consulting Inc., evaluated, negotiated and supplied the necessary information needed so that BOCC members could make a well-informed decision.
Mike Gore, Manatee County Utilities Director, and staff endorsed the conclusion Kessler suggested, which was to renew the current contract for seven years.
Commissioners were given five minute presentations by three of the alternative companies that wanted the contract to go to a bid in a RFP.
The new seven-year, $15 million contract from the present haulers will be evaluated further by the commission with a decision made later to either go with it or put it out for a bid. The renewed contract presented no changes from the previous. (Story to follow).
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