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HomeUncategorizedBrooksville City Council meeting highlights May 6, 2019

Brooksville City Council meeting highlights May 6, 2019

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May 6, 2019 7:00 pm




Pastor Daniel Norris, Grace Word Outreach


(Limited to City Council and City Manager)


1. Small Business Week – May 5 – 11, 2019

Accepted by: Pat Crowley, Hernando County Chamber of Commerce



[NOTE: Input can be on any subject, whether or not on the agenda. However, input regarding ordinances, resolutions, or for quasi-judicial hearings will be accepted now and at the time those issues are presented at the meeting.]

Ivy Cordell, business owner in the city- runs the Save our Quarry facebook page.  Some feel their posts are negative. She explained that she moved to Brooksville in 2005 and has watched the city decline “in our streets, in our sidewalks, in our buildings.”   She mentioned the homeless situation. She stated, “We are speaking up because we love our city not because we’re being negative.” Gave a big shout out to councilman Battista for the research he presented at the last council meeting on April 15.  (The Hernando Sun did not include this in the highlights report due to time constraints.)

Donna Morrin- Questions in regard to Brooksville Main Street program and what their actual motive is.  She asked if the council would entertain a full time code enforcement officer. She would like someone proactive. She had questions about how much time the code enforcement officer spent on code enforcement duties.

Cindy Gandy- Thanked all the small businesses.  Blueberry Festival was fantastic as well as Dining under the Stars.  However she said the homeless has been harassing downtown businesses.  One guy had a machete. “What can we do as citizens to get control of this,” she asked. She remarked that she’s not against homeless people, but there are four or five individuals downtown that are getting scary.  “I was born and raised here and we’ve never had that problem. I can see it getting worse.” She also spoke about the quarry. She’d like to see the no dogs allowed sign taken down and a 6 foot leash law go into effect in the quarry.  She said, “The homeless people are more dangerous than a dog on a leash… especially when they are carrying a machete around.”

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Mark Kutney, City Manager, relative to Ms. Gandy’s concerns stated that they had a meeting with the Sheriff’s Office.  “As far as I know, they are looking at ways they can help. I don’t know if they’ve actually alleviated it yet.” Rory Steele, owner of Little Lady Cafe was present and commented on the Sheriff’s Office assistance in the affirmative (she commented from the audience, which was not audible in the video).


1. Minutes –

a. March 18, 2019 – Regular Meeting

b. April 1, 2019 – Regular Meeting

Passed in consent agenda vote.

2. Sunrise Consulting Renewal

Consideration of annual engagement letter and standard contract addendum. Pulled for discussion.

3. Budget Amendments

a. Increase 001-013-521-55620 Building and Improvements by $14,000 for the reroof project of district one sheriff’s lease facility. It would also decrease General Fund reserves by $14,000.

b. Increase 001-009-510-55620 Building and Improvements by $10,000 for City Hall security improvements. It would also decrease General Fund reserves by $10,000.

c. Increase 108-019-541-55620 Building and Improvements by $1,470 for DPW warehouse rollup door project. This is Streets part of the total cost of $9,800. This budget amendment will decrease Fund 108 reserves by $1,470.

d. Increase asset line item 401-000-162-19025 Building and improvements Water by $2,940. This is the Water Department part of the total cost of $9,800 for the DPW roll-up doors project. It will decrease fund 401 Water reserves by $2,900. The Wastewater part of the total cost of the DPW roll-up doors project of $9,800 will increase asset line 401-000-162-19025 Buildings and Improvements by $1,960 and decrease Fund 401 Wastewater reserves by $1,960.

e. Increase 403-000-162-19025 Building and Improvements by $3,430. This is the Sanitation part of the total cost of $9,800 for the DPW roll- up door project. This would also decrease Fund 403 Sanitation reserves by $3,430.

d. For CIP project number 4 no budget amendment is needed because funds are already budgeted in FY 2019 Fund 108 Streets budget. It is list under line item 108-019-541-55620 Building and improvements for $18,000.

e. Increase expenses for all of the Personal services Account related to the Directors’ raises by $25,180 and decrease Merit Pay Directors account number 001-011-581-51103 by $25,180. Also to increase transfers out line items as follows: Account number 001-011-581-56108 by $529, account number 001-011-581- 56401 by $1,293, account number 001-011-581-56403 by $647 and account number 001-011-581-56143 by $5,595. Also accomplish the offset which will increase transfers in line items as follows. Account number 108- 000-381-49108 By $529, account number 401-000-384-49401 by $1,293, account number 403-000-381-49403 by $647 and account number 143-000-381-49143 by $5,595.

f. Increase the following expense line items. Executive Salaries account number 001-011-512-

51101 by $4,100, FICA Taxes account number 001-011-512-52100 by $314, Retirement Contributions account number 001-011-512-52200 by $986, Life Insurance account number by $26 and Long Term Disability account number 001-011-512-52303 by $9. Finally, decrease Merit Pay Directors account number 001-011-581-51103 by $5,435.

Passed in consent agenda vote.


2. Sunrise Consulting Renewal

Consideration of annual engagement letter and standard contract addendum.

Increase requested from $2100 per month to $2250 per month. Erhard remarked, “Shawn’s done a great job, but I still feel we are our greatest lobbyists for the city of Brooksville.” They also discussed adding an extra month in case the legislative session runs long, bringing the total amount to $29,250. The motion to approve the expenditure of $29,250 was approved 4-1 with Erhard voting against it.  The contract period is June 1, 2019 through June 30, 2020.


1. Second and Final Reading – Ordinance No. 902

Citation Ordinance

Consideration of ordinance to establish citation process for enforcement of City codes.

Recommendation: Approval of Second and Final Reading upon roll call

From the agenda packet: “This ordinance will allow anyone who is either designated by the city manager as a code enforcement officer, or is a law enforcement officer, to issue citations for code violations, and any contesting of such citations will be in county court or before a

hearing officer, special master, special magistrate, or similar official.”

Motion to adopt by Vice Mayor Bernardini and second by Council member Erhard. The ordinance passed 5-0.

2. Second and Final Reading – Ordinance No. 905- Recreational Burning

Consideration of ordinance to define and regulate recreational burning in City limits.

Recommendation: Approval of Second and Final Reading upon roll call

Council member Erhard made a motion to approve the ordinance and Vice Mayor Bernardini seconded the motion.  The ordinance passed 5-0.

3. Second and Final Reading – Ordinance No. 906 – Revision to Peddler’s Ordinance

Consideration of revisions to Peddlers and Solicitors Ordinance.

Recommendation: Approval of Second and Final Reading upon roll call

From agenda packet: “Since the City of Brooksville no longer has a police department and the Peddlers and Solicitors Ordinance references the Police Department as the agency within the City to grant a permit, an ordinance amendment has been prepared to remedy this issue. What had previously been handled by the Police Department, is handled in this amendment by the City Manager, or designee.”

Council member Erhard made a motion to approve the ordinance and Vice Mayor Bernardini seconded the motion.  The ordinance passed 5-0.


1. Award of Bid – Emergency Generators for Lift Stations

Approval to award bid to Shine and Company in the amount of $173,000 and authorize

Mayor’s execution of Contract and that staff be authorized to work with FEMA to modify the funding and time extension of the project.

Presentation: Director of Public Works, Jon Dowler

Recommendation: Approval

Purchase and installation of generators for Parrott Middle School, Moton Elementary and Pasco Hernando State College was originally estimated at $115,865 prior to Hermine and Irma. Received four bids that were higher than the estimate, the lowest at $173,000.

The modification of funding would be an increase from $115,865 to $180,865 with a federal share of 75% and City share of 25%.  The City requested a time extension for completion of the project by February 28, 2020. FEMA will reimburse the city for expenditures.  If FEMA does not agree to the cost increase, then the city would need to pay an additional $86,000.

Motion to approve acceptance of proposal from Shine and Company and approve an additional $13,765 being moved from reserves into a capital improvement fund.  Motion passed 5-0.

2. Update on CCNA Process– Continuing Professional Engineering Services

Mr. Kutney stated that the committee heard eight proposals on May 3, 2019 from the original 18 received.  They selected 4 firms to recommend to council for contract negotiation, but there are two others that the committee felt they could recommend should the council decide to increase the number of contracts to 6.  Applied Sciences is one of the two additional firms whose expertise is in stormwater management. The four firms that each received 5 votes are

Cardno, Coastal Engineering, CPWG and DRMP.  The two firms that each received 4 votes are: Applied Sciences and ProCivil 360.  A ratification for these six firms will come to council on May 20 and at a later date, most likely in June, council would be asked to negotiate contracts with each of the six firms.


Ivy Cordell- agrees with Donna Morrin about needing a full time code enforcement officer.


Mark Kutney- response to code enforcement issue.  He explained that there are three ways to do code enforcement.  The first way is to take phone calls, complaint only. Not a proactive, aggressive code enforcement.   The second type of code enforcement would have code officers go out and patrol areas looking for violations. The third option is to look at areas and problems you’d like to correct which would require more code enforcement officers.  




Jan. 28 meeting- council asked for staff to come up with a framework for asset management, stormwater utilities project.

“We are recommending a multi-faceted or asset type approach to this particular project. The first thing we’d like to do once we get one of these engineering firms on board is to… under the CCNA process, have them prepare a solicitation for us to go out for a multi-disciplinary team (engineering, finance and legal) for… a stormwater utility program or assessment which is what we determined… is what we need to do.”

There are four types of programs, a core drilling program (allocating $15,000) to evaluate conditions of streets. Second component – starting with capital improvements program in 2020- identify five streets per year and budget $500,000 to do these streets ($100,000 per street).  He said in the CIP council would identify 30 streets to fix. Another program would be resurfacing or milling only. There are a number of streets where they won’t need to get into full construction. They are recommending $100,000 go towards this. The fourth program would be the assessment program where the city will gauge how much interest there is from residents for an assessment funding the repair of their street.  The city would need to get a loan in order to undertake the program. “Based upon the four programs I gave you, we’re looking at an expenditure of $615,000.” He said that they did not find funding sources or how they would prioritize the road projects.

1. Ron Snowberger, Fire Chief

Proposal for 911 Memorial at Fire Station (no attachments)

In Jan. 2012 the city council accepted an artifact from the New York Port Authority- a beam from the World Trade Center.  UPS agreed to ship it here free of charge. Since that time, it’s been sitting in the exterior bays of the fire station. The city clerk found all the records and the purpose of it was to build a 911 Memorial on fire station property.  Snowberger formed a committee with the Sheriff’s Office, Brooksville Fire Department and Hernando County Fire Department. “The committee became very passionate about it. It took off faster than I even thought it would,” said Snowberger.  He explained that there is a great location to put it. He said any type of memorial will need a flagpole, backdrop and lighting. He stated that they already have all that on site. Some committee members reached out to Flagstone Pavers and they are willing to donate pavers and installation for the memorial.  One of the firefighters is a welder and an artist. He has welded hands that would hold the beam so it looks like it’s coming up out of the ground toward the flagpole. There’s also been offers to donate the plaques. “Basically what we’d like to do is have a goal set for Sept. 11 of this year to get that project completed.”

Council member Erhard said, “Chief you’re doing an awesome job. I don’t regret my decision in keeping the fire department. Seeing you guys bond and do tremendous things in the fire department under your leadership is awesome… I love the idea.”

The rest of the council echoed Erhard’s comments in support of the project.

2. Richard Radacky, Public Works Director

Status of Southern Hills Booster Station Pumps (no attachments)


Bill Geiger, Community Development Director- Code enforcement officer also has duties in reviewing permitting plans.  Seventy percent of his time is spent on code enforcement and 30% of his time on plan review.

Proactive vs. reactive- we are reactive to all of the calls coming in.  Code enforcement officer will map out a route with the alleged violations and will proactively enforce code along the routes that he travels throughout the course of the day. “We’re doing what we can with the resources that we have.”

Full time code enforcement officer would be roughly $36,000 plus benefits.

Geiger commented that most citizens comply with fixing the issue when the enforcement officer explains what the problem is.  He says that the ones who don’t fix the issue would go through the citation process, “but it doesn’t make money.”


Robert Battista said he felt the meeting was productive and thanked the public for attending. 

Pat Brayton had no comments to share.

Betty Erhard agreed with Battista that it was a good meeting and likes it when they can move forward. She thanked Pastor Norris for the invocation. She thanked the Hernando County Chamber of Commerce and restated that “small businesses are the backbone of the community.” 

Erhard asked about the Quarry monuments, since she said social media discussed them being on the ground and then moved. City Manager Mark Kutney explained that was due to the recommendation by the risk management company.

Regarding golf carts on the road, Kutney stated he spoke with the Sheriff’s Department. The City will have to follow the procedure under F.S. 316 for the study. Different residents have different opinions on where they should be used. Kutney said one resident may appear before the council with a petition to allow them. 

Erhard asked Kutney to discuss the delay in opening the Focus Fit fitness center. He said it was due to building code issues from the blueprints they were working from. He said PCDS helped with the situation and Focus Fit is now using a new set of blueprints. Kutney said they seem to be working together with the City now. 

Erhard thanked the public for attending and supporting Brooksville. 

Vice Mayor Joe Bernardini asked for clarification on the Quarry monuments, wondering why they were all removed and not repaired. Kutney stated that it was PRM’s (the risk management company) recommendation. The broken monuments could be “glued,” but it would not be a permanent solution. 

Bernardini stated he would like the opportunity to ask citizens comments if he needs more information and to amend the agenda to read “Response by City Manager and Staff/Council” and made a motion to that effect. Erhard seconded Bernardini’s motion.

Brayton said he agreed but felt it should be a policy change and not require a motion. Mayor Bill Kemerer said the purpose was to avoid a “back and forth” exchange. Battista suggested allowing the City Manager to respond first, and then the council members could speak. 

Bernardini’s motion passed with a 4-1 vote. Kemerer had the dissenting vote. 

Bernardini discussed the Junior Service League’s concern with the playground equipment at Tom Varn Park. They would like to help raise money to update it. Leather and Associates, the original designer and supplier, provided a current estimate to update the park with a strong plastic rather than wood. 

The base amount is $333,000 and does not include the ground covering or anything beyond rebuilding the current structure which does not meet newer standards. Adding the ground covering to reduce impact and other features brings the cost to approximately $570,000 if the company supplied them.

Bernardini said the figures are high but wants to expedite a plan so the Junior Service League or anyone else who wants to participate could have an attainable goal. The playground could be rebuilt in stages or as something else the City would prefer. 

Bernardini made a motion requesting staff to explore options for repairing or rebuilding the playground at Tom Varn Park. Battista seconded the motion. The motion passed with a 5-0 vote. 

Bernardini expressed concern over cars parking on the wrong side of the road in the downtown area. He would like the Sheriff’s Department to check the area. Brayton stated there has been parking on both sides of the narrow streets, blocking the road. He thinks the no parking signs should be replaced. 

Bernardini thanked the public for attending. 

Mayor Bill Kemerer requested attendance at the 2019 Fallen Deputies’ Remembrance ceremony on 05/13/19. 

Nominations for the Great Brooksvillian will be accepted until 06/07/19. 

Kemerer thanked the public for attending. 

He mentioned the 12th Biennial Hernando County Community Summit (no date provided). 

Kemerer said the pension board was not given an answer about purchasing individual annuities. Kutney said that was something covered in the engagement letter with Peter Strong. 

Kemerer stated he would like the council to consider changing the minutes format to an action format. This would save paper, but it would also save the City Clerk’s time, who spends approximately one-half hour per page of minutes provided. Each meeting yields 8-9 pages, which is multiplied by the 40+ meetings per year. 
The public has access to the video recordings, which will have a closed captioning function this year.

Kemerer said the council members will have to slow down their speech and refrain from talking over one another so the closed captioning service can capture what is said. Kutney will bring 3-5 samples of action minutes. 

Battista moved to close the meeting, seconded by Erhard. The motion passed with a 5-0 vote. 



1. Letter of Support and access to Historic Hernando Preservation Society and Gulf Archaeology Research Institute

2. Email invitation from Hernando Progress to attend May 16, 2019 HC Community Summit.

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