MINUTES OF MEETING
AMENITY AUTHORITY COMMITTEE
A Meeting of the Amenity Authority Committee was held on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. at the Savannah Regional Recreation Center, 1545 Buena Vista Boulevard, The Villages, Florida, 32162.
Committee members present and constituting a quorum:
Ann Forrester, Chairman
John Wilcox, Vice Chairman
Carl Bell, Committee Member
Don Deakin Committee Member
Lowell Barker, Committee Member
Richard Baier, District Manager
Kenny Blocker, Deputy District Manager
Carrie Duckett, Assistant District Manager
Lewis Stone, District Counsel
John Rohan, Director of Recreation & Parks
Barbara Kays, Budget Director
Blair Bean, District Property Management Director
Mark LaRock, Purchasing Director
Mitch Leininger, Director of Executive Golf Maintenance
Brittany Wilson, Director of Technology & Board Support Services
Candice Harris, Deputy District Clerk
FIRST ORDER OF BUSINESS: Call to Order
- Roll Call
Chairman Forrester called the meeting to order at 9:03 a.m. and stated for the record that five (5) Committee Members were present. IV Chandler was absent.
- Pledge of Allegiance
The Chairman led the Pledge of Allegiance.
- Observation of a Moment of Silence
The Committee and all those in attendance observed a moment of silence for those who are serving or who have served our Country and community.
- Welcome Meeting Attendees
Chairman Forrester welcomed the residents in attendance.
- Audience Comments
There were no audience comments.
Chairman Forrester requested that the Committee address the Fifth Order of Business at this time. The Committee concurred.
FIFTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: First Amendment to Agreement between the Village Center Community Development District and The Villages of Lake-Sumter, Inc. for Utilization of Amenity Privileges
Richard Baier, District Manager, advised that on September 9, 2015 the Committee recommended approval to the Village Center Community Development District (VCCDD) Board for The Villages of Lake-Sumter, Inc. (VLS) to bring an additional 300 amenity unites into the Village Center District service territory (north of CR 466) to be utilized within age-restricted independent living or assisted living facilities (ILF/ALF) units, and on October 14, 2015 the VCCDD Board approved the recommended agreement with VLS. There are currently 14 amenity rights being utilized within the Village Center Service district which results in an unused balance of 286 amenity rights. Mr. Baier advised that the Developer is requesting that the Committee recommend approval of the First Amendment to the Agreement with VLS to utilize those 286 unused amenity rights for age-restricted units and to construct additional amenity improvements, at no cost to residents of The Villages. The Developer will develop the site where the Hacienda Hills Country Club previously existed, and if the First Amendment to the Agreement is approved, VLS will construct, at a minimum, a resort-style pool, sport and activity courts, walking paths and open spaces, all of which will be accessible to residents and guests of The Villages. These additional amenities would be perpetually maintained by VLS and will not be the financial responsibility of the VCCDD Recreation Amenities Division (RAD) Fund. As provided for in the First Amendment to the Agreement, VLS would retain the amenity fee revenue for the 286 units, with the exception of certain defined contributions for services provided by Community Watch and The Villages Public Safety Department (VPSD). Additionally, at no cost to the District, VLS will reconstruct the Hacienda Postal Facility, which will remain a District facility. Mr. Baier reiterated to the Board and audience members in attendance that the aesthetics of the buildings to be constructed, inclusive of the restaurant within the private buildings, the density of the buildings to be constructed, fire service fees or traffic does not fall under the purview of this Committee or the VCCDD and District Staff will not address these specific items. Further, should the Committee chose not to recommend approval of the 286 amenity privileges for this specific property, the District has no purview as to what would be constructed at this location, inclusive of a proposed multi-level parking garage or other big box retailer, and the additional 286 amenity services would be constructed at another location north of CR 466.
Chairman Forrester advised that prior to proceeding with Committee discussion and receiving public comment, a motion and a second would be required. Carl Bell made a motion to recommend the First Amendment to the Agreement with VLS for utilization of amenity privileges, which was seconded by Vice Chairman Wilcox. Subsequent to the vote being taken, the following Committee discussion and public comment was received.
Vice Chairman Wilcox stated that when the Committee approved the 300 amenity services in 2015 it was based on utilization of residents residing in ILFs and ALFs and does not believe residents residing in an apartment complex meet the definition of an ILF. The thought process of the Committee at that time was that those residents residing in an ILF would require additional assistance and their perceived reduced utilization would not strain the amenity system north of CR 466. Mr. Baier stated that independent living is considered as individuals who have the ability to live independently, on their own. Lewis Stone, District Counsel, concurred with Mr. Baier’s statement.
The Committee received public comments beginning at 9:47 a.m. and the public comment period ended at 11:09 a.m. The comments received included requests that the Committee not recommend approval of the First Amendment to the Agreement with VLS based on concerns pertaining to aesthetics of the proposed apartment complex, the change to the view from the homes abutting the former Hacienda Hills Country Club property and existing golf course, the size of the buildings to be constructed and increased traffic. One audience comment was received suggesting that the residents attempt to work cohesively with the Developer to address those items that do not fall under the purview of the District with the appropriate parties.
Mr. Bell stated that the Developer had previously inquired if the Committee was interested in purchasing the Hacienda Country Club property to construct a recreation center and amenities and inquired if that option was still available.
Chairman Forrester clarified that the Committee had requested additional information from the Developer, prior to considering the purchase of the property; however, following that meeting the Developer advised the property was not for sale. Mr. Baier stated that he was informed by the Developer that the Hacienda Hills Country Club property was not being offered to the District for purchase.
Lowell Barker stated that he believes the Developer should pay the amenity fees to the District, as the residents of the apartments will be utilizing the VCCDD’s amenities. Mr. Baier clarified that the District does not have the ability to operate or maintain the amenities that would be located on Developer privately-owned property.
Don Deakin requested clarification if each individual apartment unit would pay an amenity fee, or if because all units fall under one rooftop, that only one amenity fee would be paid. Mr. Baier clarified that the First Amendment to the Agreement provides that an amenity fee would be paid for 286 apartment units on a monthly basis. This also includes the portion for the Community Watch and VPSD services.
Mr. Deakin stated that he believes the agreement that this Committee recommended for approval on September 9, 2015 was misleading as it pertains to what is an ILF and that the Committee had not been made aware that there was not a certified definition within Florida Statutes. Additionally, the original agreement provided that the 286 amenity services would be paid to the Recreation Amenities Division (RAD) Fund, which is now not the case and results is a loss of revenue to the RAD Fund. Mr. Deakin stated that because the amenities within the apartment complex would not fall under the District’s control and that because the RAD Fund would not be receiving the amenity fee revenue, this Committee should not recommend approval of the First Amendment to the Agreement to the VCCDD Board. Mr. Deakin addressed his concerns pertaining to unknown information as it pertains each of amenities proposed to be constructed as part of the apartment complex. Additionally, the Committee should also be made aware of the Developer will continue to provide funding for maintenance of the portion of the postal facility that will be utilized by the residents of the apartment complex.
Mr. Deakin inquired if the apartment complex would be included within the boundaries of the VCCDD. Mr. Baier advised that Staff anticipates requesting that the District 1 Board consider amending its boundaries to include the seven (7) acres. In response to Mr. Deakin’s inquiries pertaining to voting for District Board Supervisors, Mr. Baier clarified that registered voters within the District have the ability to cast a vote for their District Board Supervisor. As it pertains to voting in the Amenity Authority Committee (AAC) Landowner Election, the Landowner, the Developer, would have the ability to cast one vote per parcel (acre) or property. Mr. Deakin stated that due to the many unknown issues, requested that the Committee unify and not provide a recommendation of approval of the First Amendment to the Agreement.
Vice Chairman Wilcox stated that he is concerned that the definition of an ILF can encompass residents of an apartment complex, and does not believe that was the intent in the initial agreement that this Committee recommended approval of in 2015. Mr. Stone stated that the presentation made to this Committee in 2015 was that the amenity services would be utilized for individuals who needed assistance and resided in an ILF or ALF. In the First Amendment to the 2015 Agreement the Developer is seeking to allow the 286 amenity units to be utilized for 55+ age-restricted units. Approval of this agreement would eliminate the ILF/ALF requirement.
Chairman Forrester advised that the current condition of the Hacienda Postal Facility will require that the RAD Fund reconstruct the building, at an estimated cost of approximately $700,000. Additionally, this Committee has attempted to identify property in an attempt to increase the amenities to the residents located in the vicinity of Morse Boulevard and Rio Grande, which was not possible. The proposed amenities to be constructed as part of the apartment complex, is the only opportunity to increase the amenities in this specific area north of CR 466.
Vice Chairman Wilcox stated that he does not agree with the Developer maintaining the amenity fee revenue for the 286 units, and suggested that the Committee consider tabling this item and request that Staff enter into negotiations with the Developer to include within the First Amendment to the Agreement a specific period of time when the RAD Fund would begin receiving the amenity fee revenue and assume operation and maintenance of the amenities. Mr. Baier stated that following the initial review of this agreement, the Committee Members provided comments, which included the reconstruction of the postal facility at the Developer’s cost and the payment for the services related to Community Watch and VPSD, and those comments have been included in the First Amendment presented today. The Developer has advised District Staff that additional negotiation with the AAC would not occur. The Developer’s Representative was also very clear on that point during the individual meetings held with the AAC Members.
Mr. Deakin stated that the Developer’s Representative did state during those discussions, that if the AAC did not recommend approval of the amenity privileges, the construction of the apartment complex would not occur and instead a parking garage or something else would be constructed at this location.
Following additional discussion and clarification provided by Staff, the Committee took the subsequent action:
On MOTION by Carl Bell, seconded by John Wilcox, that as a result of the Roll Call Vote, which identified that four (4) Committee Members, Chairman Forrester, Vice Chairman Wilcox, Carl Bell and Lowell Barker, voted “Aye” and Don Deakin voted “Nay”, the Committee recommended approval of the First Amendment to the Agreement with The Villages of Lake-Sumter, Inc. for Utilization of Amenity Privileges to the Village Center Community Development District Board.
Chairman Forrester recessed the meeting at 12:22 p.m. and reconvened the meeting at 12:32 p.m.
SECOND ORDER OF BUSINESS: Approval of the Minutes
On MOTION by Carl Bell, seconded by John Wilcox, with all in favor, the Committee approved the Minutes from the meeting held on July 9, 2020.
THIRD ORDER OF BUSINESS: Approval of the Fiscal Year 2020/2021 Meeting Schedule
Chairman Forrester advised that the Fiscal Year 2020/2021 Meeting Schedule presented maintains the Committee’s current meeting date and time, but does notate that the November AAC Meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 10, 2020 because Veteran’s Day is observed on Wednesday, November 11, 2020.
On MOTION by Don Deakin, seconded by Lowell Barker, with all in favor, the Committee approved the Fiscal Year 2020/2021 Meeting Schedule and authorized Staff to publish.
FOURTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: Annual Renewal of Agreements 2020/2021
Mark LaRock, Purchasing Director, advised that Staff is requesting that the Committee recommend approval of the following annual renewal agreements to the Village Center Community Development District Board: BrightView Landscape Services, Inc. (#17P-029), BrightView Landscape Services, Inc. (#15P-003), BrightView Landscape Services, Inc. (#14P-002), Facility Resources, Inc. (#14P-004), Hardscapes of Central Florida, LLC (#16B-043), Kelly Ratliff Pressure Cleaning, Inc. (#17P-004), The Shepherd’s Landscaping, LLC (#14P-001), The Shepherd’s Landscaping, LLC (#15P 002) and SSS Down to Earth OPCO II, LLC (#14P-03). All renewal agreements reflect no increase to the current fiscal year contract amount.
On MOTION by Carl Bell, seconded by Don Deakin, with all in favor, the Committee recommended approval of the following annual renewal agreements to the Village Center Community Development District Board: BrightView Landscape Services, Inc. (#17P-029), BrightView Landscape Services, Inc. (#15P-003), BrightView Landscape Services, Inc. (#14P-002), Facility Resources, Inc. (#14P-004), Hardscapes of Central Florida, LLC (#16B-043), Kelly Ratliff Pressure Cleaning, Inc. (#17P-004), The Shepherd’s Landscaping, LLC (#14P-001), The Shepherd’s Landscaping, LLC (#15P-002) and SSS Down to Earth OPCO II, LLC (#14P-03).
The Fifth Order of Business was previously addressed.
SIXTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: Old Business Status Update
Mr. Baier provided the following update for the items included on the Old Business Status
- The Project Consideration List has been provided as requested by the Committee.
- First Responder’s Recreation Center timeline: A status update of the design process will be presented to the Committee at the September 9, 2020.
- Provide cost estimate to install two exterior lights at Polo Ridge gate house: Two (2) reflectors have been added to the median and eight (8) reflectors at the turning points. Sumter County has completed the restriping at the gate entrance and the District has increased the wattage of the interior lighting in the gate house. Staff is hesitant to install exterior can lights at this specific facility because it is not the current standard at all gate houses. Staff is recommending that each of the Committee Member’s review the location and provide feedback.
Vice Chairman Wilcox advised that he does not believe the current enhancements have improved the visibility enough, and Mr. Baier has agreed to review the location with him during the evening hours. Vice Chairman Wilcox stated the Calumet Grove gate house is unmanned, but the lighting there is much better at this location, and consideration could be given to installing the same type of lighting at the Polo Ridge gate house. Mr. Baier advised that a visual review of the two (2) locations will include utilization of a light meter to determine the foot candles.
- Review of Holiday Decoration Guidelines to include feathered flags: Mr. Baier advised that Staff will bring the Holiday Decoration Guidelines to the Committee in the fall. Mr. Bell stated that he would like to see the District install something permanent in the ground which would allow the feathered flags to be erected as holiday decorations. Mr. Baier stated that the flags have become very popular, but the District needs to ensure that the location and manner in which they are installed does not hinder traffic line-of-sight.
SEVENTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: Financial Statements
The VCCDD Financial Statements as of June 30, 2020 have been provided to the Committee as information.
EIGHTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: RAD Fund: Capital Projects Plan
The Fiscal Year 2019/2020 RAD Fund Capital Projects Plan has been provided as information.
NINTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: District Manager Reports
A. District 3 Requests to Transfer Woodridge Multi-Modal Path to RAD Fund
Mr. Baier advised that the District 3 Board has requested that the Committee consider accepting operation and maintenance responsibility for the portion of the Woodridge multi-modal path that runs along CR 101. Blair Bean, District Property Management (DPM) Director, advised that following the acquisition of the Saddlebrook Golf Course, the VCCDD accepted ownership and maintenance of the multi-modal path that runs from the Laurel Manor tunnel to the Saddlebrook Recreation Center. The District 3 Board believes the portion of the multi-modal path that runs along CR 101 to the tunnel should be considered as similar to the Saddlebrook multi-modal path; however, in this case the path is not located on property owned by the VCCDD. Mr. Bean advised that the anticipated costs to complete annual maintenance and plan for the future capital expenditures for replacement of that portion of path would be $34,429. Mr. Bair advised that the Woodridge multi-modal path is platted to District 3.
Following discussion, there was not concurrence among the Committee to proceed with further consideration of the District 3 Board request to accept operation and maintenance of the Woodridge multi-modal path.
B. Investment Advisory Committee
Mr. Baier advised that as Vice Chairman Wilcox has stated for the record that he will not seek re-election in the November 2020 Landowner Election, future consideration will need to be given by the Committee to appoint a new Investment Advisory Committee (IAC) Representative. The next IAC meeting will be held in November.
C. Old Business Tracking System
Mr. Baier advised that Staff has revised the Old Business Status Update which will provide a more effective tracking system for Staff to provide timely updates. Staff will begin including the revised Old Business Status Update for the September meetings.
D. Golf Guest Play Card
Mitch Leininger, Director of Executive Golf, advised that the District has established an Executive Golf Guest Play Card which provides guests the ability to play four (4) founds of golf on any Executive Golf Course north of SR 44, which includes greens and trails fees. The cost of Golf Guest Play Card is $44.
E. Balanced Score Card
Mr. Baier advised the Board that Staff will be presenting the Balanced Score Card in the fall, which provides an overview of the District’s accomplishments, highlighting Staff’s achievements and accomplishments throughout customer service, communication, transparency, technology and effective government. The District’s current Balanced Score Card can be found on the www.districtgov.org homepage.
F. Covanta Virtual Tour
Mr. Baier advised that Staff has provided a link where Supervisors and residents can view a virtual tour of the Lake Okahumpka Covanta Plant, which will assist in providing a general understanding of the energy-to-waste process that will be utilized for solid waste sanitation in Districts 1 through 11 beginning October 1, 2020.
G. Sumter County Household Electronics & Hazardous Waste Mobile Collection – Amnesty Day
Mr. Baier advised that Sumter County will host a Hazardous Collection Day at Lake Okahumpka Park on November 7, 2020 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Mr. Baier advised that while the District has not provided a weekly COVID-19 Action Plan, Staff continues to provide updated information in the Parks and Recreation News and in the District Weekly Bulletin. Mr. Baier advised of the following:
- The Fitness Centers remain closed through August.
- The District Office remains open by appointment only.
- Plexiglas barriers have been installed in the District office front lobby, Customer Service and Finance areas. Plexiglas will also be installed at the Recreation Centers’ general information desks to provide a safe guard for our employees and the residents.
- The Villages Public Safety Department has discontinued the fire alarm battery replacement program.
TENTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: District Counsel Reports
There were no District Counsel Reports.
ELEVENTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: Committee Member Comments
A. Committee Member Deakin: Unauthorized Dog Park at First Responder Recreation Center
Mr. Deakin advised that there have been concerns about residents utilizing the First Responder Recreation Center property as an unauthorized dog park. Prior to the VCCDD purchasing the property, the church had installed signage which instructed residents that dogs were not allowed on the property. The District subsequently removed the signage once the property was purchased. Mr. Deakin advised that he requested that Staff re-install the signage, but was advised that the Committee would have to provide direction to proceed.
Chairman Forrester inquired how the District would proceed with enforcement of the signage. Mr. Baier advised that if signage was installed and individuals were found violating the signage, the District would have to contact the Marion County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) for enforcement. Consideration should be given that MCSO has a large service area, and enforcement of this signage may not be a priority for response. Community Watch, DPM or District Staff would not have the ability to provide enforcement.
A resident advised that her property abuts this property, and residents are utilizing the property at all hours and golf carts parked in the area have also damaged to the fencing along the multi-modal path. Additionally, there was an issue with a dog that was off-leash attacking a dog on-leash, which resulted in an injury to the individual walking the dog, which could be a liability concern.
Mr. Baier inquired if Marion County Animal Control had been previously contacted about these concerns. The resident advised that Marion County Animal Control had not been previously contacted. Mr. Baier advised that if residents feel unsafe, they should contact the MCSO. If there are dogs off leash, Marion County Animal Control should be contacted. The District can post signage to put individuals on notice, but enforcement would have to be completed by contacting a Marion County agency.
Following discussion, the Committee requested that Staff provide educational verbiage for signage to be installed at the two (2) entrance points of the portion of property in question. At Chairman Forrester’s request, this item will be included in the District’s Weekly Bulletin.
Mr. Deakin stated that over the last couple months he has found that the information included on the After Agenda has been vague and requested that more detail be provided. Additionally, the Minutes are not addressing all discussion that occurs during the meeting and should reflect a greater amount of information. Mr. Deakin stated that when the electronic agenda package is provided, many items include a “To be provided” notation, and stated that all information should be provided to the Committee in advance of the meeting. Mr. Baier advised that Staff will attempt to provide more detailed information on the After Agenda; however, as it pertains to the information included in the Minutes, the District Clerk’s Office provides detailed summary Minutes for actionable items addressed during the meetings. If additional information is needed the recording from the meetings can be secured from the District Clerk’s Office.
Mr. Deakin inquired if the emails he forwards to Staff that include his monthly Q&A Reports and monthly update are provided to this Committee. Jennifer McQueary, District Clerk, advised that as directed by Mr. Deakin, that information is forward to the District 4 Board. Concurrence of the Committee was that it was not necessary for Staff to forward Mr. Deakin’s monthly emails with the monthly updates included.
FOURTEENTH ORDER OF BUSINESS: Adjourn
The meeting was adjourned at 1:39 p.m.
On MOTION by Carl Bell, seconded by Lowell Barker, the Committee adjourned the meeting.
Richard J. Baier Ann Forrester
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