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On Wednesday, September 28, 2022, 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.
E-1: A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing the Rotary Club of Coral Gables to sell alcoholic beverages at Fred B. Hartnett Ponce Circle Park on Sunday, October 30th, 2022, from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. during the “Rotary Club of Coral Gables Chili Cook Off” event to benefit the Rotary Club of Coral Gables, subject to Florida Department of Professional Regulation Requirements.
“This request is for the Rotary Club of Coral Gables to serve alcoholic beverages during the Rotary Club of Coral Gables Chili Cook Off event and is in compliance with the laws of the State of Florida. The event is a Chili Cook Off in which there will be several categories where competitors will participate, competing in a taste contest. There will be no charge for general admission, but tickets will be sold to individuals in order to taste the chili. There will be several types of vendors including a beer vendor, food vendor, and dessert vendor. In addition to those vendors, the Rotary Foundation of Coral Gables will be preparing food for sale and the sale of soft drinks. The entertainment provided will be a mix of live and recorded music with bounce houses for children. This request has been reviewed by the City’s Special Events Committee.”
E-2: A Resolution of the City Commission accepting the recommendation of the Chief Procurement Officer to award the Legislative Consulting Services contract RFP 2022-014 to The Southern Group of Florida, Inc., the highest ranked responsive-responsible proposer, pursuant to Section 2-763 of the Procurement Code entitled “Contract Award”.
“The purpose of this RFP is to award a qualified, experienced, and licensed firm specializing in the area of State and Local Legislative Consulting Services. On June 29, 2022, the Procurement Division of Finance formally advertised, issued, and distributed Legislative Consulting Services, Request for Proposals (RFP) 2022-014. Twenty-Five (25) prospective proposers downloaded the RFP package from Public Purchase, the City’s web-based e-Procurement service. On August 1, 2022, seven (7) firms submitted proposals in response to the RFP: Akerman, LLP; Capital City Consulting; Continental Strategy; Converge Public Strategies; Pittman Law Group, P.L., Sun City Strategies, LLC and The Southern Group of Florida, Inc. On September 14, 2022, the Evaluation Committee convened to evaluate the five (5) responsive and responsible proposals and ranked the firms in the following order of preference: The Southern Group of Florida, Inc (top-ranked), Capital City Consulting (second ranked), Akerman, LLP (third ranked), Pittman Law Group, P.L. (fourth ranked), and Sun City Strategies, LLC (fifth ranked). The Evaluation Committee determined that The Southern Group of Florida, Inc., was the highest ranked responsive-responsible proposer. The Chief Procurement Officer recommends accepting the Evaluation Committee’s recommendation to award and negotiate an agreement with The Southern Group of Florida, Inc., for RFP 2022-014 Legislative Consulting Services for an initial period of three (3) years with the option to renew for two (2) additional one (1) year periods.”
E-3: A Resolution of the City Commission pursuant to Section 2-501(D) of the City Code, waiving the competitive process of the Procurement Code to authorize the City Manager or his or her designee to execute an agreement with Downtown Works to provide retail consulting service in an amount not to exceed $15,000.00 annually.
“Downtown Works, a consultant with special skills, abilities, and expertise, has assisted the City in developing the City’s retail strategy and has served as the City’s retail consultant regarding new and existing businesses. Ongoing retail consulting services benefit the City, business owners, property owners, and residents and given that Downtown Works is intimately familiar with the City’s retail strategy and its implementation, the City wishes to continue engaging Downtown Works for ongoing retail consulting services for an amount not to exceed $15,000 annually for a one-year period with the option to renew for an additional two (2), one-year periods, at the City’s sole discretion. The proposed resolution makes a finding by the City Commission that it is in the best interests of the City to waive the competitive process of the Procurement Code, pursuant to Section 2-501(d), to engage the ongoing retail consulting services of Downtown Works.”
Ordinances On Second Reading
F-1: An Ordinance of the City Commission creating Chapter 14 “Businesses”, Article VII “Mobile Food trucks”, providing for severability clause, repealer provision, codification, and providing for an effective date. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).
“Section 509.102, Florida Statutes preempts the regulation of mobile food dispensing vehicles (synonymous with, and hereinafter referred to as “mobile food trucks”) involving licenses, registrations, permits, and fees to the state. The law further states that a municipality, county, or other local governmental entity may not prohibit mobile food trucks from operating within the entirety of the entity’s jurisdiction. The City currently allows mobile food trucks to conduct business within the City in connection with special events. The City Commission wishes to amend the City Code to further allow mobile food trucks to operate within the City under certain circumstances and within specific zoning districts in accordance with section 509.102, Florida Statutes. On second reading, this ordinance was revised to prohibit the emanation of amplified sound when a mobile food truck is parked, and to shorten the hours of operation in a residential district to 8am-7pm.”
F-2: An Ordinance of the City Commission amending Chapter 34 “Nuisances”, Article XI “Nuisance Abatement” Sections 34-305 “Definitions” and 34-307 “Procedures” of the Code of Ordinances, by adding storage of hazardous materials to the definition of “Public Nuisance” and creating an expedited nuisance abatement process, providing for severability clause, repealer provision, codification, and providing for an effective date.
“The City’s nuisance abatement procedures protect the general public from properties that repeatedly violate the law or otherwise adversely affect the health and welfare of the community or the free use and enjoyment of another’s property. It is well known that public nuisances can exist anywhere in the city, on properties of every character and use, including residential, commercial, home office etc. Some public nuisances can pose an immediate harm to persons or property and warrant an expedited resolution. This ordinance expands the definition of “public nuisance” to include properties that on more than one occasion or for more than 24 hours, in a manner that is detrimental or dangerous to persons or property within the city, stores or disposes of any corrosive, combustible, hazardous, or flammable materials or liquids. This ordinance also creates an expedited nuisance abatement process for nuisances that pose an immediate threat of harm to persons or property. The expedited process includes notice and a hearing. The have been no changes between first and second reading.”
F-3: An Ordinance of the City Commission amending Article VII, under Chapter 14 of the City of Coral Gables Code to add additional requirements to Hotels /Motels, providing for repealer provision, severability clause, codification, enforceability, providing for an effective date. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).
“It being well established that hotels/motels that allow for the hourly rental of rooms, are frequented by individuals engaged in prostitution and/or human trafficking, as well as other illegal activity. Human trafficking has become an epidemic of significant consequences to our community such that the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office established a Human Trafficking Unit in 2012 to more effectively combat the issue. Victims of human sex trafficking are often exposed to serious health risks, including sexually transmitted diseases, drug and alcohol addiction, broken bones and burns, memory loss, miscarriages or forced abortions, as well as PTSD, anxiety, fear and psychological trauma. Individuals engaged in prostitution are exposed to similar physical and psychological effects. Acknowledging the importance of this issue, in 2016, the City Commission created Article VII, Rental Periods for Hotels/Motels, of the City Code, to prohibit hourly rentals. Also acknowledging the gravity of the issue, in 2022, the Florida Legislature passed Senate Bill 898, now codified in section 509.098, F.S. which prohibits a hotel/motel operator from offering an hourly rate for an accommodation. To further protect potential victims and strengthen the impact of these laws, this Ordinance adds sections 14-142 and 14-143 to Article VII, to require certain attestations and signage. The ordinance passed on First Reading at the September 13th. here have been no changes between first and second reading.”
City Commission Items
G-1: A Resolution of the City Commission urging the United States Congress to enact the Clean Competition Act, S. 4355. (Sponsored by Commissioner Anderson).
“On June 7, 2022, the Clean Competition Act (S. 4355) was introduced by U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and others to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to create a carbon border adjustment based on carbon intensity. The Clean Competition Act would impose a carbon border adjustment on energy intensive imports, while incentivizing decarbonization of domestic manufacturing. Starting in 2024, the adjustment would apply to energy intensive industries such as fossil fuels, refined petroleum products, iron and steel, aluminum, glass, and ethanol, and would later be expanded to include additional goods and products. American manufacturers are on average less carbon intensive than most of their foreign competitors, for example, the U.S. economy is almost 50 percent less carbon intensive than its trading partners, whereas the Chinese economy is more than three times as carbon intensive as the U.S., and India is almost four times as carbon intensive. A foundational premise of the Clean Competition Act, is that U.S. climate policy should reward more efficient U.S. manufacturers and penalize high carbon polluting imports as nearly every U.S. sector enjoys a carbon advantage over most key trading partners. In addition to being sound economic policy designed to give American companies a leg up in the global marketplace, a carbon border adjustment would help address climate change and lower carbon emissions worldwide. According to conservative estimates, the world’s climate scientists state that to achieve climate stabilization and avoid cataclysmic climate change, emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs) must be brought to 80-95% below 1990 levels by 2050. For imports manufactured in opaque economies, the levy would be calculated based on the ratio of the country of origin’s economy-wide carbon intensity to the U.S. economy-wide carbon intensity. For imports manufactured in transparent economies with reliable, verifiable data, the levy would be calculated based on the extent to which the country of origin’s relevant industry-specific average carbon intensity exceeds the comparable U.S. industry-specific average carbon intensity; foreign manufacturers in such economies could use their own carbon intensities. Importers would only pay the levy based on the fraction of emissions that exceeds the comparable U.S. carbon intensity baseline. During the period from 2025 through 2028, the applicable U.S. carbon intensity baselines would be reduced by 2.5 percentage points each year from the initial average. Starting in 2029, the baselines would decrease by 5 percentage points per year. The levy would begin at $55/ton and increase at 5 percent above inflation per year. Covered imports from least developed countries would be exempt from any charges.Covered domestic manufacturers include any facilities producing the same energy intensive primary goods covered under the initial phase of the border adjustment that are also required to report GHG emissions under EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (GHGRP). Such facilities would be required to report GHGRP data to Treasury, as well as their annual electricity consumption and annual production of any covered primary goods by weight. Treasury would then calculate the average carbon intensity (covering scope one and two emissions) for each energy intensive industry covered under the initial phase of the border adjustment. Starting in 2024, covered facilities whose carbon intensity is calculated to be at or below the applicable industry carbon intensity baseline would pay nothing; covered facilities whose carbon intensity is above the applicable industry carbon intensity baseline would pay the levy only on the fraction of emissions that exceeds the industry average carbon intensity. As for imports, each industry baseline would start at the industry average and then decline first by 2.5 percentage points a year for four years and then by five percentage points per year. Similarly, the European Union (“EU”) adopted a Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (“CBAM”) which targets imports of carbon-intensive products, in full compliance with international trade rules, to prevent offsetting the EU’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction efforts through imports of products manufactured in non-EU countries, where climate change policies are less ambitious than in the European Union. The EU’s CBAM will require reporting to begin in 2023 with full implementation in 2027. The City Commission has taken legislative action related to climate change and the U.S. economy in the past. For example, on February 23, 2021, the City Commission passed Resolution 2021-30, urging Congress to pass the Carbon Dividend Act, which included a recommendation for a border adjustment to help discourage businesses from outsourcing resources and jobs to countries that emit more carbon dioxide. The City Commission also passed Ordinance 2016-30, establishing the City’s “Buy American” procurement preference. The City Commission now seeks to build upon its climate advocacy, commitment to reducing carbon emissions, and support of the U.S. economy by urging Congress to support the Clean Competition Act.”
City Manager Items
I-1: Innovation and Technology demonstration of new homegrown Smart City Digital Twin platform and Horizontal Integration Dashboards.
I-2: Presentation of potential pickleball options in City parks and facilities.
I-3: A Resolution of the City Commission accepting the recommendation of the Chief Procurement Officer to award the Body Worn Cameras to Axon Enterprise, Inc ., the responsive and responsible proposer, pursuant to Section 2-763 of the Procurement Code entitled “Contract Award” and Request for Proposal (RFP) 2021-050.
“The purpose of this RFP is to award a qualified and experienced professional firm (“Proposer”) for the purchase, immediate implementation, and support of wearable body cameras for the Coral Gables Police Department. On February 22, 2022, the Procurement Division of Finance formally advertised, issued and distributed RFP 2021-050. Twenty-eight (28) prospective proposers downloaded the RFP package from Public Purchase, the City’s web-based e-Procurement service. On April 4, 2022, three (3) proposers submitted proposals in response to the RFP: Axon Enterprise, Inc., Motorola Solutions, Inc., and Utility Associates, Inc. On May 18, 2022, the Evaluation Committee convened to evaluate the one (1) responsive and responsible proposals and determined that Axon Enterprise, Inc., was a responsive-responsible proposer. The Chief Procurement Officer recommends accepting the Evaluation Committee’s recommendation to award and negotiate an agreement with Axon Enterprise, Inc., for RFP 2021-050 Body Worn Cameras for an initial period of five (5) years with the option to renew for two (2) additional five (5) year periods. Partial funding for this project will come through the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) under the funding opportunity entitled 2021 BJA FY21 Body Worn Cameras Policy & Implementation Program to support law enforcement agencies.”
I-4: A Resolution of the City Commission accepting the recommendation of the Chief Procurement Officer to award the Fiber Optic Backbone Expansion Project to Unitec, Inc., the lowest responsive and responsible bidder, pursuant to Section 2-763 of the Procurement Code entitled “Contract Award” and Invitation for Bids (IFB) 2022-015.
“The purpose of this IFB is to contract with a qualified and experienced bidder for the for the installation of underground fiber optics corridors in the City’s smart district area. On July 1, 2022, the Procurement Division of Finance formally advertised, issued and distributed IFB 2022-015 Fiber Optic Backbone Expansion Project. On July 8, 2022, a non-mandatory pre-bid conference was held with nine (9) prospective bidders in attendance of the forty-six (46) prospective bidders who downloaded the IFB package from Public Purchase, the City’s web-based e-Procurement service. On August 19, 2022, five (5) firms submitted bids in response to the IFB: AGC Electric, Inc., Bore Tech Utilities & Maintenance, Inc., draftPros, LLC. dba draftPros, Florida Sol System, Inc. and Unitec, Inc. The responses were reviewed by the Procurement Division in order to determine responsiveness to the requirements of the IFB and to identify the lowest responsive responsible bidder. The procurement Division finalized its due diligence process and confirmed that Unitec, Inc., is both responsive to the requirements of the IFB and responsible bidder. The Information Technology Department concurs with the Chief Procurement Officer’s recommendation to award the Fiber Optic Backbone Expansion Project to Unitec, Inc., in the estimated amount of $662,500.00 not to exceed the available budget.”