Baños is the Editor of Gables Insider
On Tuesday, October 10, 2023, the Coral Gables City Commission will hold its next City Commission meeting. Here is a rundown of the agenda for this upcoming meeting. Click here to see the full agenda.
Non-credited quotes in this article are excerpts from the memos presented to the Commission explaining the items.
Gables Insider comments on specific items can be found in blue.
- D.-1. 23-6404 A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing Saint Theresa Catholic School to sell alcoholic beverages as part of the Annual Parish School Fair on the school ’s grounds at 2701 Indian Mound Trail on Friday, December 1, 2023, from 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.; on Saturday, December 2, 2023, from 12:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.; and on Sunday, December 3, 2023 from 12:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., subject to Florida Department of Professional Regulation Requirements.
- D.-2. 23-6419 A Resolution of the City Commission granting permission to the Coral Gables Firefighter’s Benevolent Association to sell Christmas trees, install a temporary chain link fence, and display an inflatable Santa Claus on the Coral Gables Baptist Church property, located at 5501 Granada Boulevard, starting on or about November 18, 2023 through December 24, 2023.
- D.-3. 22-4948 A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing the execution of an agreement for sewer connection for property located outside the City’s sewer district at 3991 SW 14th Street, Miami, Florida into the City of Coral Gables wastewater collection / transmission system, subject to the requirements of the Public Works Department, as provided under Chapters 62 and 78 of the City Code, Ordinance Nos. 2007-29 and 2009-39 and Resolution No. 2008-07; and provided that the executed agreement be made part of this resolution.
- D.-4. 23-6354 A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing Make-A-Wish Southern Florida to sell alcoholic beverages at the parking lot located on 1559 Sunset Drive and on San Ignacio Avenue from Red Road to Yumuri Street on Saturday March 9th, 2024 beginning at 11:30 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. during the “Wings for Wishes” event, to benefit the Make-A-Wish Southern Florida, subject to Florida Department of Professional Regulation Requirements; and authorizing the waiver of special event fees, parking fees, and barricade fees for the event.
- D.-5. 23-6423 A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing the suspension of vehicular traffic on the100 Block of Giralda Avenue for an additional two-year period.
- D.-6. 23-6425 A Resolution of the City Commission confirming the appointments of Joseph Fadel (Nominated by the Board As A Whole) and Gabriela M McGrath Moreira (Nominated by the Board As A Whole as the High School Representative) to serve as members of the Sustainability Advisory Board, for the remainder of a two (2) year term which began on June 1, 2023 and continues through May 31, 2025.
- D.-7. 23-6488 A Resolution of the City Commission confirming the appointment of Richard Bennett (Nominated by City Manager Iglesias) to serve as a member of the Pinewood Cemetery Advisory Board, for remainder of the current term, which began on June 1, 2023 and continues through May 31, 2025.
- D.-8. 23-6493 A Resolution of the City Commission appointing Antonio Gonzalez (Nominated by Commissioner Castro) to serve as a member of the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, for a two (2) year term which began on June 1, 2023 and continues through May 31, 2025.
Ordinances On Second Reading
E.-1. 23-6397 An Ordinance of the City Commission of the City of Coral Gables, Florida approving the Purchase and Sale Agreement between the City the City of Coral Gables, a municipal corporation existing under the laws of the State of Florida and C/LeJeune, LLC, a Florida Limited Liability Company, for the Transfer of Development Rights, as defined in Article 16 and Sections 8-114 and 14-204 of the Zoning Code, from the Coral Gables Museum Property, located at 285 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables, Florida 33134 directing that all proceeds from the Transfer of the Development Rights be placed in the City ’s Historic Building Fund; and providing for a repealer provision, severability clause and providing for an effective date. Lobbyist: Jose M. Jimenez
The proposed ordinance would allow for the transfer of TDR (permitting higher intensity development) from the Coral Gables Museum property to the receiving property development known as Regency Tower, in the Craft Section. See attached article on the Development here. This ordinance was approved at first reading during the meeting of September 26, 2023, and not significant changes are apparent.
“The City was approached by the C/LeJeune, LLC, a Florida limited liability company, who expressed an interest in purchasing Transfer of Development Rights from the City, as defined in Article 16 and sections 8-114 and 14-204 of the Zoning Code.
Development Rights to be Transferred: 40,000 square feet.
Purchase Price: $40.00 per square foot. $1,600,000.00).
10% of Total Purchase Price. ($160,000.00)
Closing within 30 days of the effective date, subject to other provisions in the Agreement.
Purchaser has requested, and City has agreed, to allow Purchaser to purchase additional square feet of Transferable Development Rights up to a total of up to 61,789 square feet (inclusive of the minimum 40,000 square feet) upon the same terms and conditions, provided that Purchaser provides notice in writing to the City Manager within ten days after approval of this Ordinance of the total number of TDRs it intends to purchase.”
Ordinances On First Reading
E.-2. 23-6276 An Ordinance of the City Commission providing for text amendments to the City of Coral Gables Official Zoning Code by amending Article 3, “Uses,” Section 3-315, “Restaurant, open air dining at ground level and other location,” to provide a minimum clear distance for pedestrian traffic within any arcade or loggia that has outdoor seating, providing for repealer provision, severability clause, codification, and providing for an effective date. (09 21 23 PZB recommended approval, Vote 6-1)(Sponsored by Vice Mayor Anderson
“At the request of a member of the City Commission, Staff has prepared a Zoning Code text amendment to the provisions for outdoor seating to provide a minimum 4-foot clearance within any arcade or loggia and next to a public sidewalk. The purpose of the clearance is to allow for sufficient pedestrian movement when the arcade includes outdoor seating.”
E.-3. 23-6473 An Ordinance of the City Commission providing for text amendments to the City of Coral Gables Official Zoning Code pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-212, “Zoning Code Text and Map Amendments,” to create carbon concrete requirements, a review procedure, and an appeal process that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, providing for repealer provision, severability clause, codification, and providing for an effective date. (Sponsored by Vice Mayor Anderson)
“As requested by a member of the City Commission, Staff prepared a Zoning Code text amendment that provide provisions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The supply concrete will require in-situ carbon dioxide mineralization, which is when post-industrial carbon dioxide (CO2) is injected into the concrete during mixing and chemically converted into a mineral.”
E.-4. 23-5973 An Ordinance of the City Commission providing for text amendments to the City of Coral Gables Official Zoning Code pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-212, “Zoning Code Text and Map Amendments,” to create an open space incentive program within the Central Business District (CBD) to incentivize additional open space by allowing a maximum building height of one hundred and thirty-seven feet and six inches, providing for repealer provision, severability clause, codification, and providing for an effective date. (07 12 23 PZB made no recommendation, Vote 3-2)(Sponsored by Commissioner Menendez)
“As requested by a Commissioner, Staff prepared a Zoning Code text amendment to propose an open space incentive program within the Central Business District (CBD) by allowing additional building height for MX2 zoned properties to a maximum of 137.5’.”
After considering recent feedback gathered from both the Planning & Zoning Board (where the item originally failed 3-2 in its meeting of July 12, 2023) and interested community members, the proposed text amendments provide unreviewed solutions to the concerns expressed. However, there is no feedback from the Planning and Zoning Board yet until its meeting in the evening of October 10, 2023. Below summarizes the proposed text amendments:
- Incentivize additional open space at the ground level with 5% increments for a maximum height of 137.5’
- Limited to MX2 zoning within the Central Business District (CBD)
- Prohibited within 100’ of Single-Family Residential (SFR) zoning
- Limited to share a property line with only MX2 or MX3 zoning
- Prohibited within the Miracle Mile Zain/Friedman Downtown Overlay District, Giralda Plaza Overlay District, and other overlay districts within the CBD
E.-5. 23-6424 An Ordinance of the City Commission amending City Code Chapter 2 “Administration,” Article II “City Commission,” Section 2-29 “Compensation of Mayor, Commissioners, Travel Allowance, Office Expense, Car Allowance,” to adjust the compensation and expense allowance of Mayor and Vice Mayor and to eliminate the car allowance for Mayor and Vice Mayor and providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and an effective date. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago) (Co-Sponsored by Vice Mayor Anderson)
“The proposed Ordinance adjusts the salary of the Mayor and Vice Mayor to the 2022- 2023 compensation plus an increase tied to annual increase in the CPI-W, as provided in Section 2-29 of the City Code; reduces the expense allowance for the Mayor to $500 per month and for the Vice Mayor to $400 per month; and eliminates the car allowance for the Mayor and Vice Mayor.”
An almost identical item was voted down during the meeting of September 26, 2023 in a 3-2 vote.
City Commission Items
F.-1. 23-6368 Discussion regarding businesses on Giralda Avenue. (Sponsored by Commissioner Castro)
F.-2. 23-6384 Update on the number of petitions received regarding annexation. (Sponsored by Commissioner Fernandez)
F-3. 23-6487 Discussion regarding signs in parking garages for Freebee. (Sponsored by Vice Mayor Anderson)
F.-4. 23-6356 A Resolution of the City Commission establishing a protocol for honoring members and former members of the City Commission who have passed. (Sponsored by Commissioner Fernandez)
“The City Commission directs that when a past or present City elected official has passed away, a portrait of that person will be displayed for a one-week period outside of the City Commission offices and a condolence book will be made available for the public to sign.”
F.-5. 23-6373 A Resolution of the City Commission repealing Resolution No. 2023-203 to allow public comment on all Commission discussion items. (Sponsored by Commissioner Castro)
“While acknowledging the Mayor’s authority to preside over Commission meetings, the City Commission, pursuant to Resolution No. 2023-203, set forth a procedure for requesting that public comment be allowed on specific “discussion items” in advance of the Commission meeting. The proposed resolution would repeal Resolution No. 2023-203 and clarify that public comment is allowed on all discussion items.”
F.-6. 23-6379 A Resolution of the City Commission directing the City Attorney to prepare proposed legislation prohibiting City Commissioners from engaging in business transactions with City employees and with other members of the City Commission. (Sponsored by Commissioner Castro)
F.-7. 23-6468 A Resolution of the City Commission directing City Staff to create an income-based sewer assessment grant program, contingent on the receipt of state or federal funding, to provide financial assistance to qualified individuals to pay the special assessment associated with a septic-to-sewer conversion. (Sponsored by Vice Mayor Anderson)
“This resolution directs City staff to create an income-based sewer assessment grant program, contingent on securing state or federal funding, to provide financial assistance to qualified individuals to pay their septic-to-sewer special assessments. It authorizes staff to establish appropriate eligibility criteria, an application process, grant administration process, compliance checks and to perform all other administrative functions related to the grant program. It further authorizes staff to consider all relevant considerations to establish and carry out the grant program.”
F.-8. 23-6474 A Resolution of the City Commission directing City Staff to develop a cost based pilot program to divert green yard waste to more sustainable uses. (Sponsored by Vice Mayor Anderson).
“This resolution directs City staff to develop a pilot program and to identify a company or
companies to partner with a suitable site to divert green waste to more sustainable uses,
including but not limited to converting the waste into mulch, compost, or biochar.”
“It further directs staff to identify a company or companies interested in partnering with the City
on the pilot program, to evaluate the costs and benefits of the program to the City’s solid waste
operations, and to provide the City Commission with regular updates on the program.”
F.-9. 23-6492 A Resolution of the City Commission declaring that Coral Gables is a Green Light for Veterans City and directing the City Manager to illuminate City Hall with visible green lighting in observance of Operation Green Light for Veterans and encouraging all residents and business owners to participate in Operation Green Light for Veterans. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago)
City Manager Items
H.-1. 23-6467 A Resolution of the City Commission declaring Principles of Inclusion for all individuals with disabilities, and urging action by national, state and local governments, businesses and residential communities consistent with these principles.
H.-2. 23-6489 A Resolution of the City Commission waiving the competitive process of the Procurement Code, and authorizing the City Manager and City Attorney to negotiate a 90-day license agreement, with a 90-day extension option, to engage a licensee for the operation of the cafe space at the Coral Gables Golf and Country Club.
“The proposed Resolution waives the competitive process of the Procurement Code and authorizes the City Manager, and the City Attorney to negotiate and execute a 90-day License Agreement (with additional extensions up to 90 days at the City Manager’s discretion), for operation of the café space at the Country Club so that the City Manager may explore longer-term options.”