April 8, 2008

3:00 p.m.


City Council Conference Room A

Suite 425, City Hall

117 W. Duval Street



Attendance: Council President Davis, Council Members Corrigan, Redman, W. Jones, Fussell, Johnson, Yarborough, Bishop, Clark, Shad, Holt, M. Jones and Joost


Also: Peggy Sidman, Dylan Reingold, Shannon Eller, Cindy Laquidara and Tracey Arpen – Office of General Counsel; Kirk Sherman and Janice Billy – Council Auditor’s Office; Dana Farris and Carol Owens – Legislative Services Division; Cheryl Brown – Council Secretary; Lisa Rinaman and Sherry Hall – Mayor’s Office; Lin White and Bob Williams – Dept. of Public Works; Brad Thoburn – Planning and Development Department; Paul Crawford and Joe Whitaker – JEDC; John Crofts - Planning Department;  Dianne Smith, Celeste Hicks, Suzie Loving, Sarah Balme, Suzanne Warren, Sandra Lane, Meghan Friel, Alison Miller– ECAs; Rachel Welsh – Staff Services; Kevin Meerschaert – WJCT; Beth Kormanik – Florida Times-Union; Mike Miller – JTA; Michael Stewart – JAA; Shannon Hewett and Paul Harden - consultants


The meeting was called to order at 3:00 p.m. by Council President Davis.


Council Member Clark gave the TEU Committee report. 


Council Member Shad gave the Finance Committee, noting that the courthouse construction third substitute (2007-401) will have a public hearing tonight.


Council Member W. Jones gave the Rules Committee report.


Assistant Council Auditor Janice Billy gave the PHS and RCD Committee reports, noting that all items from both agendas had been previously covered.


Council Member Corrigan gave the LUZ Committee report.  Council Member Holt stated that a large number of citizens may be attending to address the controversial light industrial rezoning proposal on Alta Drive.  He recommended that the Floor Leader suggest that the group select 1 or 2 spokespersons and that the remainder of the group simply stand to indicate their agreement with those spokespersons.


President Davis indicated that he will bring up the Craig Airport ordinance (2008-249) at the beginning of the meeting just after the consent agenda and move withdrawal.  He also stated that the Whitehouse Field AICUZ bill (2008-258) will probably draw a big crowd.  He will have Navy and neighborhood spokespersons speak to the repeal of the prior ordinance and perhaps forestall a lengthy comment period at the meeting tonight that would be better held at the LUZ Committee.  In response to a question from Council Member Yarborough, Cindy Laquidara confirmed that 2008-249 can be withdrawn before the public hearing advertised for tonight is held.


Council Member Bishop requested the President’s approval of an addendum and requested that 2008-204 appropriating funds for a study of the effects of large water withdrawals from the St. Johns River be discharged from the Finance Committee and acted upon tonight, to which the President agreed.  The bill received unanimous approvals in 2 committees and was approved 3-1 in Finance but failed to be reported out due to the lack of a 4th positive vote.  Placement on the addendum was approved.


Council Member Corrigan requested that 2008-202 (employee secondary employment) be withdrawn.  Deputy General Counsel Tracey Arpen stated that there would be a floor amendment proposed to 2008-206 (special election to fill vacant council seat) to deal with the possibility of additional candidates should a lawsuit be filed to overturn the current judge’s ruling limiting eligibility for the election to the two other candidates who originally ran against Mr. Jabour.  The group briefly discussed the necessity or wisdom of the Council taking a stand one way or the other about whether to open up the election to other candidates and whether to act now or to wait until a legal challenge is filed by a third party to open up the qualifying process.  Mr. Arpen explained that part of the difficulty lies in determining whether the election to fill the vacant Jabour seat is a new election or is to be considered a second runoff of the original contest.  Chief Deputy General Counsel Cindy Laquidara cautioned the council against knowingly violating an existing judicial order.  The bill will be pulled and re-referred to committee.


Lisa Rinaman of the Mayor’s Office requested an additional addendum bill regarding the City’s bonding policies, which was approved.  Council Member Johnson requested addendum introduction of a resolution declaring May as Mental Health Month, which was approved.  Council Member Fussell requested that 2007-401 (courthouse construction) be additionally referred to the Rules Committee, which was approved.  Council Member Mia Jones requested addendum introduction of a 102nd birthday resolution, which was approved.  Assistant General Counsel Dylan Reingold requested addendum introduction of an ordinance making changes to the Comprehensive Plan recommended by the Florida Department of Community Affairs, which was approved.


Tracey Arpen asked for inclusion on the addendum of a Council Communication requesting scheduling of a shade meeting regarding legal strategy regarding challenges to water withdrawals from the St. Johns River, which was approved.  Council Member Fussell requested an additional shade meeting regarding 2007-1273 (legal challenge to HB 1 property tax reform).




There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 3:25 p.m.






Jeff Clements, Chief

Council Research Division