LauderBriefs: Updates from the November 19 City Commission Meetings
In case you missed it, following are highlights from the Fort Lauderdale City Commission meetings on Tuesday, November 19, 2019. To view video of the Commission meetings, visit bit.ly/2mgrQNl.
Stormwater Rate Study
The City Commission received an overview of a stormwater rate study conducted by Stantec Consulting Services. The goal of the study was to ensure the Stormwater Utility has the resources needed to invest in and maintain the stormwater system that protects the City. Stantec presented an alternative rate structure that would generate sufficient revenue to support issuing $200 million in bonds for critical stormwater infrastructure improvements in key areas of the City vulnerable to flooding. To equitably recover costs in proportion to the benefit that each property receives from the stormwater system, the proposed Stormwater Utility fee methodology considers total square footage, trips generated by various property types, and the benefit that free, passable roads bring to each property. The consultant also recommended changing the method of collection by moving the stormwater utility fees from the utility bill to a Non-Ad Valorem Assessment. Stantec will present their recommendations to the Council of Civic Associations and the Infrastructure Task Force before returning to the City Commission with an update in early 2020. For details, visit bit.ly/37m73uX.
LauderTrail Strategic Initiative Update
The City Commission received an update from the LauderTrail Working Group, which is developing an urban shared-use trail connecting various local and regional destinations. The group proposed a core route that would feature 6.5 miles of new facilities connecting 17 neighborhoods, 26 parks, 11 schools, and much more. Recommendations also included partnering with the Mockingbird Trail and seeking priority funding. The City Commission encouraged collaboration with other trail groups and asked staff to explore funding options. For details, visit bit.ly/3375AW5. To learn more about the LauderTrail project, visit fortlauderdale.gov/laudertrail.
Parking Fund Overview
Staff from the City’s Transportation and Mobility Department provided the City Commission with an update on the parking fund. The presentation included recommendations on future rate structures for hourly parking and citation fees, which would be used to support parking operations, maintenance, capital improvements and for the continued funding of the school crossing guard program. Under the proposal, parking rates would be standardized by geographical area and City residents would be eligible for a discounted hourly parking rate via a mobile app. Consensus was reached to establish a $75 per year residential beach parking permit that would allow parking at numerous locations on the barrier island including the new Las Olas Garage. Staff will review input received from the City Commission and provide an updated proposal. For details, visit bit.ly/2Xsxx9o.
CRA BOARD MEETING
The City Commission, acting as the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) Board of Commissioners, approved the transfer of unspent fund balances in the operating budgets of the Central Beach CRA and the Northwest Progresso Flagler Heights CRA to the following projects:
- $1,075,268 for the Las Olas Boulevard Corridor Improvements Project
$100,000 to replace deteriorating sidewalks and drainage in the Almond Avenue area
$106,000 for a new fishing/viewing dock in Sweeting Park
$1,011,655 deposited in an escrow account to reduce indebtedness to which increment revenues are pledged
For details, visit bit.ly/2KHX4Gs.
$250,000 in Florida Department of Economic Opportunity Funds Awarded to United Way
The City Commission awarded $250,000 in State of Florida Department of Economic Opportunity funds to the United Way for rapid rehousing services. The funds will be used to provide financial assistance and services to individuals and families experiencing homelessness to be quickly re-housed and stabilized. The project provides a variety of assistance, such as short-term and medium-term rental assistance, including utility deposit assistance, and appropriate support services with case management to help homeless individuals and families achieve self-sufficiency. For details, visit bit.ly/2rbXFsU.
$7.7 Million in FAA Funding Approved for Taxiway Relocation Project at FXE
The City Commission approved a $7.7 million contract with General Asphalt Company, Inc. for the relocation of the eastern portion of Taxiway Foxtrot at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport (FXE). The project, which is being funded through a grant from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), includes the demolition of 3,200 linear feet of taxiway and the construction of a new asphalt paved taxiway, as well as the addition of new pavement striping, taxiway edge-lights, and guidance signs. For details, visit bit.ly/2qkhHBM.
City Commission Approves $217,440 Contract for Sweeting Park Dock Replacement
The City Commission approved a $217,440 contract with Sun Eagle General Contractors Corporation for the construction of a new fishing/viewing dock over the North Fork of the New River at Sweeting Park, located at 433 NW 23rd Avenue. The ramp and decking for the new dock will be constructed with environmentally-friendly recycled plastic lumber, which requires less maintenance than wood or plastic composites, and is resistant to rotting, splintering, moisture and inclement weather. For details, visit bit.ly/2KCs2js.
City Commission Approves Contract for Isle of Palms Seawall Replacement
The City Commission approved a $1.9 million contract with Poseidon Dredge & Marine, Inc. for an infrastructure improvement project that will replace the Isle of Palms Seawall. Approximately 900 linear feet of deteriorated coral rock seawall will be replaced as recommended in the City’s Seawall Master Plan. The new seawall will be constructed with sheet-pile along the west side of Isle of Palms Drive in the Las Olas Isles neighborhood, located just south of Las Olas Boulevard. Additional improvements will include new stormwater infrastructure, pavement, and landscaping restoration. For details, visit bit.ly/35llvl8.
Fort Lauderdale Welcomes the NBCSL 2019 Conference Host Night Out
The City Commission approved an event agreement for the National Black Caucus of State Legislators 2019 Conference Host Night Out. The event is part of the 2019 National Black Caucus of State Legislators, a conference that will bring more than 500 African American legislators, along with advocates, policy experts, corporate executives and community leaders to Fort Lauderdale to examine many of the nation’s most pressing issues affecting African Americans and other marginalized communities. The Host Night Out event will take place on Thursday, December 5 from 7 to 10 p.m. at Esplanade Park. In addition to approving the event agreement, the City Commission also approved the group’s request for an exemption to the City’s noise ordinance to allow music until 10 p.m. For details, visit bit.ly/37lpcsQ.
City Commission Designates Green Reuse Area at 1801 SW 1st Avenue
The City Commission designated a 2.31-acre property at 1801 SW 1st Avenue, owned by the Housing Authority of the City of Fort Lauderdale, as a Green Reuse Area in accordance with Florida’s Brownfields Redevelopment Act. This designation will assist with environmental restoration, rehabilitation, job creation and economic development as part of a project to revitalize the site. The proposed project includes a 113-unit affordable housing development with an array of community amenities including a community/recreation room, a business center with computers and high-speed internet access, a fitness center, on-site laundry facilities, and lush landscaping. The development will also feature a National Green Building Standard certification. For details, visit bit.ly/2rVnEW0.
Colee Hammock Designated as a Permanent Residential Parking Permit District
Following a public hearing, the City Commission designated the Colee Hammock neighborhood as a permanent Residential Parking Permit District (RPPD) based on the success of the pilot RPPD program, which reduced vehicular congestion on residential streets. Permits will be available to residents for $30 at the City’s Transportation and Mobility Department, located at 290 NE 3rd Avenue beginning Monday, December 16th. For details, visit bit.ly/37kqJ2b. To learn more about the RPPD program, visit fortlauderdale.gov/rpp.
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