City Commission Recap (6/28/2022)

Ariel Fernandez

Founder & Editor
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Below is a copy of the Commission Digest for this Commission meeting with the brief explanations of discussion taken and/or final votes cast by the Commission on June 28th.

Discussion/explanation can be found in blue. If opening on a smartphone, turn your phone horizontally to avoid having to scroll right to see how all members of the Commission voted on each item.

Non-credited quotes in this article are excerpts from the memos presented to the Commission explaining the items.

Watch Meeting

To watch the recording of the meeting you can visit the City’s YouTube Channel by clicking here.

Mayor’s Comments

C-1: Presentation by the Girl Scouts regarding Camp Mahachee Entrance Restoration. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

Click here to see presentation.

C-2: Introduction of the 2022 PAGE Interns. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

C-3: A presentation on the Mayor’s Strategic Priorities Plan and his accomplishments since April 30,2021.

Click here to see the Mayor’s update on his Strategic Priorities Plan.

C-4: Discussion regarding property value increases. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

C-5: A Resolution of the City Commission designating the 300 block of Aragon Avenue as “Nino Pernetti Way” in honor of Caffe Abbracci owner Nino Pernetti. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

C-6: Moving the July 12th Commission Meeting

Commission voted to move the July Commission meeting to July 25th at 9:00AM, followed by the Budget Meeting at 5:00PM that same day.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

Consent Agenda

E-1: A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing entering into a Third Amendment to Lease with Patio & Things, Inc. with regard to the City-owned retail premises at 240 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables, Florida 33134 granting an extension of lease terms for a period of one (1) year (09/01/22-08/31/23). Lobbyist: N/A.

“Pursuant to Resolution 2005-102, on May 23, 2005, Patio & Things, Inc, (the “Tenant”) entered into a retail Lease (the “Lease”) with the City of Coral Gables (the “Landlord”) whereby the Landlord agreed to lease to the Tenant the City-owned premises at 240 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables, Florida 33134 (the “Premises”). The original ten (10)-year Lease term began September 15, 2005. In 2012, Landlord and Tenant adjusted the Lease Commencement Date to September 1, 2006 and agreed that the ten (10)-year term would expire August 31, 2015. In 2015, the Tenant exercised its renewal option term that began September 1, 2015 and expired on August 31, 2020. On July 14, 2020, pursuant to Resolution No. 2020-152, Landlord and Tenant entered into a First Amendment to Lease extending the Lease term for one (1) year until August 31, 2021. On September 9, 2021, pursuant to Resolution No. 2021-211, Landlord and Tenant entered into a Second Amendment to Lease extending the Lease term for one (1) year until August 31, 2022. Extension Term: A one (1) year Lease extension term that will begin on September 1, 2022 and expire on August 31, 2023. Both Landlord and Tenant shall have the right to terminate the lease extension during the extension term by delivering a written notice to the other party of its election to terminate no less than ninety (90) days in advance of the early termination date. Base Rent for the Premises: Base Rent will be at a rate of $30.00 per rentable square feet (2,987) in the amount of $89,610.00 per year, charged in monthly installments with all applicable taxes, fees, and common area expenses.”

E-2: A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing a Third Amendment to Amended and Restated Lease between the City of Coral Gables and the Coral Gables Cinematheque, Inc. allowing Coral Gables Cinematheque, Inc. to exercise its second five (5) year renewal option of the Lease Agreement for the City-owned property located at 260 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables, Florida, and commonly referred to as the Coral Gables Art Cinema extending the Lease term through September 30, 2030, consistent with the terms and conditions in the Lease. Lobbyist: N/A.

“On September 28, 2010, pursuant to Ordinance No. 2010-24, the City of Coral Gables (the “Landlord”) and the Coral Gables Cinematheque, Inc. (the “Tenant”) entered in to an Amended and Restated Agreement as amended by an Amendment dated November 4, 2015 (collectively the “Lease”), regarding the real property at 260 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables, Florida, 33134 (the “Premises’). The initial term of the Lease was October 1, 2010, through September 30, 2020. Pursuant to the Lease, Tenant had the option to renew for two (2) successive periods of five (5) years each, upon the same terms and conditions set forth in the Lease. Pursuant to Resolution 2016-60, the City Commission approved for the Tenant to exercise its first option for a five (5) year renewal early, thus extending the Lease term until September 30, 2025. Tenant has submitted a request to the Landlord, as required by the Lease, to exercise its second option for a five (5) year renewal early, in order to apply for continued grant funding which requires Tenant to have a Lease in place for more than five (5) years. Tenant and Landlord are therefore seeking authorization from the City Commission to extend the Lease term through September 30, 2030, consistent with the terms and conditions in the Lease.”

E-3: A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing Shadow Market, LLC located at 4704 S LeJeune Road to add the sale of alcoholic beverages for consumption on premises as an accessory use to the retail of high-end meats, as permitted by state law, provided that total receipts from the sale of alcoholic beverages not exceed 25 percent of the total annual gross receipts, and permanent bars or counters not exceed 45 square feet in surface area, subject to a valid certificate of use and local business tax; and providing for an effective date.

“Shadow Market, LLC located at 4704 S LeJeune Road has requested the ability to sell beer and wine for
consumption on premise (2COP) as incidental to the primary function of the business, which is retail of high-end meats, select beer and wine, and grilling accompaniments, such as seasonings, grillware, etc. The purpose of selling beer and wine for consumption on premise is for tasting and pairing to compliment the wagyu sales. Per Section 6-4(a)(4) of the City Code, a non-restaurant facility must receive approval from the City Commission after administrative review from the City Manager and meet the requirements set forth in the City Code: (1) That the non-restaurant facility shall have a valid certificate of use and occupational license. (2) The sale of alcoholic beverages and intoxicating liquors shall be only incidental to the primary function of the facility. (3) Permanent bars or counters with a surface area not exceeding 45 square feet shall be permitted. (4) Total receipts from the sale of alcoholic beverages and intoxicating liquors shall not exceed 25 percent of the total annual gross receipts of any non-restaurant facility. It shall be the responsibility of the non-restaurant facility to maintain records open for inspection by the city to demonstrate compliance with this requirement. (5) Non-restaurant facilities holding a state retail beverage or retail liquor store license shall always be subject to inspection by the city manager or his or her designee for the purpose of determining that such non-restaurant facilities are in compliance with the existing requirements. Staff has reviewed the application and it complies with the requirements of the code. In order to obtain license from the state to be able to sell beer and wine for consumption on premise (2COP), the Applicant is requesting approval from the City Commission.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

E-4: A Resolution of the City Commission appointing Isabella Gonzalez (Nominated by Commissioner Fors, Jr.) and Hely Santeliz (Nominated by City Manager Iglesias) to serve as members of the Parks and Recreation Youth Advisory Board, for remainder of a two (2) year term which began on June 1, 2021 and continues through May 31, 2023.

E-5: A Resolution of the City Commission approving a Memorandum of Understanding between the City of Coral Gables and Bike Walk Coral Gables to jointly organize and participate in cycle day tours, enhancing the City’s Community Recreation opportunities.

“The City has partnered with Bike Walk Coral Gables, Inc. in multiple events, including successful Cycle Day events like the Bike and BBQ tour hosted earlier this year. The City of Coral Gables wishes to formalize a memorandum of understanding with Bike Walk Coral Gables, Inc to continue to provide Cycle Day opportunities for residents of Coral Gables over the next three years. The agreement will be approved in substantially the attached form.”

E-6: A Resolution of the City Commission amending the fiscal year 2021-2022 Amended Annual Budget to recognize as revenue a transfer of $ 150,000.00 from the City Clerk Revenue Fund, and to appropriate such funds for the replacement of the City ’s current mobile app with a state-of-the-art digital experience 311 citizen app and providing an effective date.

Vote for Items E-1, E-2 and E-4 to E-6.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

Ordinances On Second Reading

F-1: An Ordinance of the City Commission amending Chapter 105 “Buildings and Building Regulations,” Article II “Building Standards,” Division 1 “Generally,” of the City Code to create Section 105-32 “Additional Rules and Regulations for Construction Sites,” providing for severability, repealer, codification, and an effective date.

“The City Code contains certain regulations for construction staging where the construction will affect the public rights-of-way and the Development Services Department has published certain rules and regulations for construction even where it does not affect the public rights-of-way, but not all such rules and regulations have been codified in the City Code. The proposed ordinance would codify the following rules and regulations for construction sites such that failure to abide by such rules and regulations will constitute a code enforcement violation: (1) All construction sites are to be kept in a clean and sanitary manner free from all trash and debris. (2) Construction dumpsters shall not be allowed to overflow. (3) At no time shall portable toilets be placed on the public rights-of-way. All portable toilets must be placed facing toward the inside of the property and must be maintained in an odor-free condition. (4) Public rights-of-ways, including sidewalks and swales, are to be kept free from all construction materials and debris at all times. The proposed ordinance was approved on first reading on May 31, 2022. There have been no changes since first reading.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

F-2: An Ordinance of the City Commission amending Chapter 62 “Streets, Sidewalks and Other Public Places”, Article IV “Maintenance of Sidewalks and Swale Areas”, Section 62-151 “Alleys, swale areas and rights-of-way to be kept clean and mowed” of the Code of Ordinances, to revise the maintenance responsibilities of property owners, providing for severability clause, repealer provision, codification, and providing for an effective date. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

“Recently the City has placed a renewed emphasis on improving the appearance of its commercial areas through targeted code enforcement efforts, downtown clean-up events, community education and engagement, and business incentive programs. Since August 24, 2021, the City Commission has discussed the City’s downtown cleanup efforts at City Commission Meetings on at least ten separate occasions. City staff and elected officials also participated in downtown walk-throughs and a trolley tour to assess the condition of the commercial areas of the City and to brainstorm solutions to elevate the City’s appearance. The City has sponsored four downtown clean-up events through Keep Coral Gables Beautiful, collecting over 806 pounds of litter with the help of 154 volunteers, and has also supported privately-sponsored clean-up events throughout the City. As an incentive to engage the business community in the effort to see a more beautiful downtown, the City announced the Commercial Beautification Awards on April 26, 2022, to highlight businesses that have gone above and beyond in the beautification and maintenance of their storefronts and surrounding areas. The City Code contains several sections related to property maintenance including Section 105-2, which requires that exterior building façades be clean and well maintained, including awnings, signs, windows, doors and sidewalk overhangs; Section 58-48, which requires abutting property owners to maintain sidewalks in the City as a smooth continuous surface, free from cracks and defects; Section 62-152, which requires abutting property owners or occupants to maintain unpaved areas adjacent to sidewalks in good condition, free from holes and hidden dangers; and Section 62-151, which requires owners and occupants of improved and unimproved property to maintain their property in a clean, litter-free and mowed condition, including sidewalks, grass strips, alleys, curbs, swale areas, or rights-of-way. Acknowledging that many property owners may not be aware of their maintenance responsibilities pursuant to the City Code, the City has been engaged in an ongoing education campaign to educate and inform the business community via individual meetings, the distribution of flyers, individual mailings, announcements via the City’s E-newsletter, a dedicated webpage, social media postings, and through partnership with the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce and Coral Gables Business Improvement District. In furtherance of the City’s goal to improve the appearance of the City, particularly its commercial areas, and consistent with the City’s outreach efforts thus far, the City Commission wishes to amend Coral Gables City Code Section 62-151, to provide greater clarity as to a property owner’s maintenance responsibilities and to expressly require a deep cleaning of properties and their surrounding areas every six months, or more frequently as circumstances may necessitate.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

F-3: An Ordinance of the City Commission amending Section 2-79 of Chapter 2, Article III of the City Code, titled “Order of Business” to clarify definitions of support information, adopt an order of presentation for quasi-judicial hearings and clarify procedures for submission of evidence in quasi-judicial hearings, providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, codification, and providing for an effective date.

“The City of Coral Gables has various Code provisions which govern submission deadlines for certain agenda items. However, often times City staff or applicants wish to present demonstrative or visual aids (including PowerPoint presentations etc.) during City Commission meetings which repackage or duplicate information timely submitted. This ordinance specifically allows for such presentation and adopts procedures for quasi-judicial hearings heard by the City Commission. Those procedures include details regarding orders of presentation and deadlines for submission of evidence. This item passed on first reading in May of 2022 and there have been no changes since first reading.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

F-4: An Ordinance of the City Commission approving the vacation of a public alleyway pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-211, “Abandonment and Vacations” and City Code Chapter 62, Article 8, “Vacation, Abandonment and Closure of Streets, Easements and Alleys by Private Owners and the City; Application Process,” providing for the vacation of the east-west public alleyway lying between lots 1-12 and lots 35-46, Block 10, Coral Gables Crafts Section, according to the plat thereof recorded in Plat Book 10, Page 40 of the Public Records of Miami-Dade County, Florida; providing for substitute perpetual access and utility easement, setting forth terms and conditions; providing for an effective date. (LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE) Alley Vacation. Lobbyist: Lily Alvarez. Lobbyist: Armando Codina. Lobbyist: Jose M. Jimenez.

Agenda Items F-4, F-5, F-6, F-15 and F-16 are related.

“Ordinance on Second Reading. Alley Vacation, Zoning Code Text Amendment, and PAD. 1. An Ordinance of the City Commission of Coral Gables approving the vacation of a public alleyway pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-211, “Abandonment and Vacations” and City Code Chapter 62, Article 8, “Vacation, Abandonment and Closure of Streets, Easements and Alleys by Private Owners and the City; Application Process,” providing for the vacation of the east-west public alleyway lying between lots 1-12 and lots 35-46, Block 10, Coral Gables Crafts Section, according to the plat thereof recorded in Plat Book 10, Page 40 of the Public Records of Miami-Dade County, Florida; providing for substitute perpetual access and utility easement, setting forth terms and conditions; providing for an effective date. (LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE). 2. An Ordinance of the City Commission of Coral Gables, Florida providing for a Text Amendment to the City of Coral Gables Official Zoning Code by amending Appendix A, “Site Specific Zoning Regulations,” Section A-36, “Crafts Section,” by removing the number of stories and height limitations for the property legally described as Lots 1-12 and lots 35-46, Block 10, Coral Gables Crafts Section, Coral Gables, Florida; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, codification, and providing for an effective date. (LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE). 3. An Ordinance of the City Commission of Coral Gables, Florida granting approval of a Planned Area Development (PAD) pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-206, “General Procedures for Planned Area Development” for a mixed-use project referred to as “Regency Tower” on property legally described as Lots 1-12 and lots 35-46 including the public alleyway lying in between, Block 10, and lots 1-4, Block 15, Coral Gables Crafts Section (290, 272, 250, 244 Valencia Avenue, 247, 297 Almeria Avenue, and 2701 Salzedo Street) Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. (LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE). Resolution. TDR’s Receiving Site, Conditional Use Review. 4. A Resolution of the City Commission of Coral Gables, Florida approving receipt of Transfer of Development Rights (TDRs) pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-204.6,
“Review and approval of use of TDRs on receiver sites,” for the receipt and use of TDRs for the Mixed-Use project referred to as “Regency Tower”, on property legally described as Lots 1-12 and lots 35-46 including the public alleyway lying in between, Block 10, and lots 1-4, Block 15, Coral Gables Crafts Section (290, 272, 250, 244 Valencia Avenue, 247, 297 Almeria Avenue, and 2701 Salzedo Street) Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. (LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE). 5. Resolution of the City Commission of Coral Gables, Florida granting approval for Conditional Use Mixed-Use Site Plan pursuant to Zoning Code Section 2-200 “Mixed Use Districts” for a mixed-use project referred to as “Regency Towers” on property legally described as Lots 1-12 and lots 35-46 including the public alleyway lying in between, Block 10, and lots 1-4, Block 15, Coral Gables Crafts Section (290, 272, 250, 244 Valencia Avenue, 247, 297 Almeria Avenue, and 2701 Salzedo Street) Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. (LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE).”

The one change discussed was the County’s denial of moving their utilities under another property owned by the developer. The City Manager agreed to continue to work with the developer and the County to address the issue.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

F-5: An Ordinance of the City Commission providing for a Text Amendment to the City of Coral Gables Official Zoning Code by amending Appendix A, “Site Specific Zoning Regulations,” Section A-36, “Crafts Section,” by removing the number of stories and height limitations for the property legally described as Lots 1-12 and lots 35-46, Block 10, Coral Gables Crafts Section, Coral Gables, Florida; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, codification, and providing for an effective date. ( LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE) Text Amendment. Lobbyist: Lily Alvarez. Lobbyist: Armando Codina. Lobbyist: Jose M. Jimenez.

Agenda Items F-4, F-5, F-6, F-15 and F-16 are related.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

F-6: An Ordinance of the City Commission granting approval of a Planned Area Development (PAD) pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-206, “General Procedures for Planned Area Development” for a mixed-use project referred to as “Regency Tower” on property legally described as Lots 1-12 and lots 35-46 including the public alleyway lying in between, Block 10, and lots 1-4, Block 15, Coral Gables Crafts Section (290, 272, 250, 244 Valencia Avenue, 247, 297 Almeria Avenue, and 2701 Salzedo Street) Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. ( LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE) PAD Lobbyist: Lily Alvarez. Lobbyist: Armando Codina. Lobbyist: Jose M. Jimenez.

Agenda Items F-4, F-5, F-6, F-15 and F-16 are related.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

Ordinances On First Reading

F-7: An Ordinance of the City Commission amending the City of Coral Gables Zoning Code, Article 8 “Historic Preservation” and Article 14 “Process” to address inconsistencies in the Zoning Code and revise the Historic Designation process; providing for severability clause, codification, and providing for an effective date.

“The protection and preservation of historic properties is of the upmost importance to the City of Coral Gables and its residents and accordingly staff is proposing to make amendments to the City’s Historic Preservation processes to address inconsistencies in the City’s Zoning Code. The proposed amendments were presented to the City’s Historic Preservation Board on April 20, 2022 and the Planning and Zoning Board on May 11, 2022. Both Boards unanimously recommended approval of the proposed amendments.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

F-8: An Ordinance of the City Commission providing for a text amendment to the City of Coral Gables Official Zoning Code by amending Article 10, “Parking and Access,” Section 10-110, “Amount of Required Parking” to modify requirements for electric vehicle charging, providing for severability clause, repealer provision, codification, and providing for an effective date.

“In January of 2018, the City Commission adopted text amendments to the Zoning Code to require electric vehicle charging stations and infrastructure. In fall of 2018, Tesla and other electric vehicle manufacturers approached the City to consider amending the Zoning Code to specify the appropriate electrical infrastructure. The City Commission increased requirements for electric vehicle charging stations and clarified required infrastructure with Ordinance No. 2019-19. The City Commission wishes to increase the requirements for electric vehicle charging as the demand for EV vehicles has rapidly increased and the infrastructure required for their use is crucial to their successful operation. The Planning and Zoning Board on May 11, 2022 voted (5-0) to approve a version of the text amendment which is provided as Attachment D in strikethrough/underline format. The proposed text amendment drafted is provided in strikethrough/underline format with the red text representing new changes since the Planning and Zoning Board.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

F-9: An Ordinance of the City Commission requesting Conditional Use Review for a previously approved but expired Building Site Determination pursuant to Zoning Code Section 14-206.6, “Building Site Determination” to separate into two (2) single-family building sites on the property zoned Single-Family Residential (SFR) District, legally described as Lots 13-18 Block 236, Coral Gables Riviera Section Part 11 (601 Sunset Drive), Coral Gables, Florida; one (1) building site consisting of Lots 13, 14 and 15 (east parcel), and the other (1) building site consisting of Lot 16, 17 and 18 (west parcel); including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, providing for a severability clause, and providing for an effective date.

“On March 12, 2019, by Ordinance No. 2019-16 the City Commission approved a Conditional Use Building Site Determination for the subject property which expired on September 12, 2020. The current Applicant, Andres Mejia is proposing a different design than what was previously approved. The subject site consists of six (6) individually platted lots (lots 13 thru 18) with a street frontage of approximately 200 feet along Sunset Drive, totaling approximately 31,00 square feet (0.71 acres). The request is to separate the existing 0.71 acre (31,000 square feet) building site located at 601 Sunset Drive into two building sites; one (1) building site consisting of Lots 13, 14 and 15 (east parcel), and the other (1) building site consisting of Lot 16, 17 and 18 (west parcel). The draft Ordinance for the Conditional Use review for a Building Site Determination is provided as Exhibit A. The Planning and Zoning Board’s recommendation for approval includes Staffs recommended conditions which have been provided in the draft Ordinance and are as follows: (1) The total square footage of the residence allowed on the separated building sites shall be equal to or less than the total square footage that could be constructed on the property if developed as a single building site. (2) The new single-family residences constructed on the separated buildings sites shall meet all applicable requirements of the Zoning Code, and no variances shall be required or requested. (3) The plans depicting the site plans and elevations of the residences on the separated building sites and submitted as part of the conditional use application shall be made part of the approval with any instructions or exceptions provided by the City Commission. Any changes to the plans are subject to Section 14-203 .10 of the Zoning Code. (4) A bond shall be required, as determined by the building official, to ensure the timely removal of any non-conformities as a result of the building site separation approval. (5) Within 30 days of approval of the Conditional Use Review for a Building Site Determination, the property owner, its successors or assigns shall submit a restrictive covenant for City Attorney review and approval that includes all conditions of approval as approved by the City Commission. Failure to submit the covenant within the specified time frame shall render the approval void unless said time frame for submittal of the covenant is extended by the City Attorney after good cause as to why the time frame should be extended.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

F-10: An Ordinance of the City Commission making zoning district boundary changes pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process”, Section 14-212, “Zoning Code Text and Map Amendments,” for the property located at Lots 1 thru 4, Block 34 of Coral Gables Section K, Coral Gables, Florida from Special Use (S) District to Mixed-Use 1 (MX1) District, and Lots 42 thru 48 including 20-foot alley laying between Block 34 of Coral Gables Section K, Coral Gables, Florida from Special Use (S) District to Mixed-Use 2 (MX2) District; to restore prior zoning districts; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date.

“As requested by the City Manager, the City is proposing to restore the zoning of the Coral Gables Museum to Mixed-Use 1 (Museum plaza and structure built in 2011) and Mixed-Use 2 (historic old fire station) districts. During the Zoning Code Update, City-owned properties like the recent neighborhood parks, Public Safety building, and the Museum were rezoned to Special Use (S) district to reflect the civic uses of the properties. This zone change of the Coral Gables Museum resulted in the inadvertent elimination of transfer of development rights (TDRs) from the historic property to other applicable properties as specified in the Zoning Code and as determined by the City Commission. The proposed change of zoning request restores that ability to have available TDRs. No exterior building additions or modifications are requested to the Coral Gables Museum as a result of this request. A similar request was granted in 2011 after the comprehensive rewrite of the City’s Comprehensive Plan in 2010, when the property’s land use and zoning was reverted from Public Building and Grounds land use designation to the current Commercial Low- and Mid-Rise Intensity. The draft Ordinance of the Zoning Code map amendments is provided as Exhibit A.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

F-11: An Ordinance of the City Commission amending Ordinance No. 2017-04 which approved a Planned Area Development for the property legally described as Lots 24-38, Block 7, Biltmore Section and located at 501-525 Valencia Avenue, to allow for the completion of certain off site improvements and drainage improvements to be completed prior to the issuance of the final Certificate of Occupancy, instead of prior to the issuance of the Temporary Certificate of Occupancy, pursuant to the terms and conditions set forth in the Agreemenet for Issuance of Temporary Certificate of Occupancy Prior to Full Completion of Certain Off Site Improvements and Drainage Improvements, providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date.

“515 Valencia SPE, LLC (“515 Valencia”) owns the real property located at 515 Valencia Avenue, Coral Gables, Florida, (the “Property”). Pursuant to Ordinance No. 2017-04, the City Commission approved a multifamily residential project at the Property. One of the conditions of approval requires construction of the project in substantial conformance with a November 2016 traffic study (the “Traffic Study”). While the Traffic Study concluded that the Project’s traffic impacts were de minimis, Section 4.8 of the Traffic Study lists several off site improvements which 515 Valencia’s predecessor in interest had proffered and which were accepted by the City, (the “Off Site Improvements”). Several, but not all of the Off Site Improvements have been completed, The City has also identified certain improvements which may be required to repair and improve certain impacted drainage lines which serve the Property, (the “Drainage Improvements”), Ordinance No. 2017-04 further provides: 4. Prior to the issuance of a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (CO) for the project, the Applicant, property owner, its successors or assigns shall complete the following: a. Right of way and public realm improvements. Installation of all right-of-way improvements and all landscaping, public realm and streetscape improvements identified on the Applicant’s approved plans, subject to review and approval by the Directors of Public Works, Public Service and Planning and Zoning. Any changes to and departures from the right-of-way and public realm improvements identified on the Applicant’s approved plans and associated detail plans and specifications via the permitting process shall be subject to review an approval by Directors of Public Works, Landscape Services, Planning and Parking; and 515 Valencia has requested that the City Commission amend Ordinance No. 2017-04 to allow for the
Off-Site Improvements and the Drainage Improvements to be completed prior to the issuance of the final Certificate of Occupancy, instead of prior to the issuance of the Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (“TCO”), subject to the terms and conditions set forth in the Agreement for Issuance of Temporary Certificate of Occupancy Prior to Full Completion of Certain Off Site Improvements and Drainage Improvements (“Agreement for Issuance of TCO”), attached as Exhibit A. 515 Valencia further requested that the City issue the TCO by June 9, 2022 to allow closings of individual units to occur and 515 Valencia deposited $892,509 (the “Bond Amount”) in cash with the City and agreed to hold harmless and indemnify the City in connection with the Off Site Improvements and the Drainage Improvements. The City issued the TCO, subject to the terms and conditions set forth in the Agreement for Issuance of TCO, which requires, among other things, Commission approval of this ordinance amending Ordinance No. 2017-04. The proposed Ordinance approves the Agreement for Issuance of TCO and amends Ordinance 2017-04 to allow for completion of the Off Site Improvements and Drainage Improvements prior to the issuance of the final Certificate of Occupancy, instead of prior to the issuance of TCO.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded
Recused Himself

F-12: An Ordinance of the City Commission amending the Future Land Use Map and Mixed-Use Overlay District Map of the City of Coral Gables Comprehensive Plan pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-213, “Comprehensive Plan Text and Map Amendments,” and Small Scale amendment procedures (ss. 163.3187, Florida Statutes), from “Commercial Mid-Rise Intensity” to “Commercial High-Rise Intensity” for Lots 3 through 5 and Lots 18 through 20, and from “Multi-Family Medium Density” to “Commercial Mid-Rise Intensity” for Lot 6, Block 36, Douglas Section, and extending the “North Ponce de Leon Boulevard Mixed-Use Overlay District” to include Lots 6 and 17 of said Block 36 (1505 Ponce de Leon Boulevard, 126 and 122 Menores Avenue), Coral Gables, Florida; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. Lobbyist: Mario Garcia-Serra. Lobbyist: Lauren Kahn. Lobbyist: Leslie E. Pantin. Lobbyist: Leonard Roberts.

Agenda Items F-12, F-13, F-14 and F-17 are related.

Click here to see staff’s presentation.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned
Recused Himself

F-13: An Ordinance of the City Commission making zoning district boundary changes pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-212, “Zoning Code Text and Map Amendments,” for Lots 3 through 5 and Lots 18 through 20, from Mixed-Use 2 (MX2) District to Mixed-Use 3 (MX3) District, and for Lot 6, Block 36, Douglas Section, from Multi-Family 2 (MF2) District to Mixed-Use 2 (MX2) District; and extending the “North Ponce de Leon Boulevard Mixed-Use Overlay District” to include Lots 6 and 17 of said Block 36 (1505 Ponce de Leon Boulevard, 126 and 122 Menores Avenue); providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. ( LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE). Lobbyist: Mario Garcia-Serra. Lobbyist: Lauren Kahn. Lobbyist: Leslie E. Pantin. Lobbyist: Leonard Roberts.

Agenda Items F-12, F-13, F-14 and F-17 are related.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded
Recused Himself

F-14: An Ordinance of the City Commission granting approval of a Planned Area Development (PAD) pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-206, “General Procedures for Planned Area Development” for a proposed mixed -use project referred to as “1505 Ponce” on the property legally described as Lots 1 through 6 and Lots 17 through 22, Block 36, “Douglas Section” (1505 Ponce de Leon Boulevard, 126 and 122 Menores Avenue), Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. Lobbyist: Mario Garcia-Serra. Lobbyist: Lauren Kahn. Lobbyist: Leslie E. Pantin. Lobbyist: Leonard Roberts.

Agenda Items F-12, F-13, F-14 and F-17 are related.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned
Recused Himself

Resolutions

F-15: A Resolution of the City Commission granting approval for Conditional Use Mixed -Use Site Plan pursuant to Zoning Code Section 2-200 “Mixed Use Districts” for a mixed-use project referred to as “Regency Towers” on property legally described as Lots 1-12 and lots 35-46 including the public alleyway lying in between, Block 10, and lots 1-4, Block 15, Coral Gables Crafts Section (290, 272, 250, 244 Valencia Avenue, 247, 297 Almeria Avenue, and 2701 Salzedo Street) Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. (LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE) Conditional Use Site Plan Lobbyist: Lily Alvarez. Lobbyist: Armando Codina. Lobbyist: Jose M. Jimenez.

Agenda Items F-4, F-5, F-6, F-15 and F-16 are related.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

F-16: A Resolution of the City Commission approving receipt of Transfer of Development Rights (TDRs) pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process,” Section 14-204.6, “Review and approval of use of TDRs on receiver sites,” for the receipt and use of TDRs for the Mixed-Use project referred to as “Regency Tower”, on property legally described as Lots 1-12 and lots 35-46 including the public alleyway lying in between, Block 10, and lots 1-4, Block 15, Coral Gables Crafts Section (290, 272, 250, 244 Valencia Avenue, 247, 297 Almeria Avenue, and 2701 Salzedo Street) Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. (LEGAL DESCRIPTION ON FILE). Lobbyist: Lily Alvarez. Lobbyist: Armando Codina. Lobbyist: Jose M. Jimenez.

Agenda Items F-4, F-5, F-6, F-15 and F-16 are related.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

F-17: A Resolution of the City Commission approving Mixed-Use Site Plan and Conditional Use review pursuant to Zoning Code Article 14, “Process” Section 14-203, “Conditional Uses,” for a proposed Mixed-Use project referred to as “1505 Ponce” on the property legally described as Lots 1 through 6 and Lots 17 through 22, Block 36, “Douglas Section” (1505 Ponce de Leon Boulevard, 126 and 122 Menores Avenue), Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date. (This Resolution is not for consideration at this time and will be included with the above ordinance on Second Reading if approved on First Reading.). Lobbyist: Mario Garcia-Serra. Lobbyist: Lauren Kahn. Lobbyist: Leslie E. Pantin. Lobbyist: Leonard Roberts.

No action needed. This item was on the agenda as an informative action for the Commission and will be considered on second reading of related items.

F-18: A Resolution of the City Commission approving the transfer/sending of Transfer of Development Rights (TDRs) to create a city park pursuant to Zoning Code Section 14-204.4(C) “Transfer/sending of TDRs to create a city park,” on the property legally described as Lots 25 thru 28, Block 8 of Coral Gables Section K (301 Majorca Avenue), Coral Gables, Florida; including required conditions; providing for a repealer provision, severability clause, and providing for an effective date.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded
Recused Himself

City Commission Items

G-1: Presentation by staff of a comprehensive plan and analysis on metal roofs in order for Commission to make a decision regarding same. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

The Mayor and Commissioner Anderson explained that the Code currently allows a copper roof install with the same concerns of a metal roof. Anderson explained she doesn’t see how we allow copper roofs without allowing metal roofs. The City Manager, who has been against metal roofs, said he didn’t know of any changes from tile to copper. Menendez explained he would be willing to consider a way forward if it allows for protection of historic districts. The Mayor will work with staff to prepare potential legislation for consideration of the Commission at the August meeting. Development Services Director Suramy Cabrera suggested only allowing it in the South of the City. The Commission expressed they had no appetite to divide the City and chose one over the other.

G-2: Update regarding the replanting of all trees and shrubs on Ponce de Leon Boulevard. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

Click here to see staff’s presentation.

The Mayor will meet on Thursday with folks at Merrick Park to address conditions of landscaping, signs and beautification. The issue will be brought back at the July meeting.

G-3: Update on the implementation of the quarterly reports on the condition of city buildings. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

Click here to see staff’s presentation.

G-4: Discussion regarding the signage and safety measures required for scooters. (Sponsored by Commissioner Anderson).

Click here to see staff’s presentation.

Commissioner Anderson showed images she had taken of scooters blocking sidewalks throughout the City. Menendez agreed he was concerned as did Mayor Lago.

G-5: Report from Police regarding school safety activities and preparations. (Sponsored by Commissioner Fors).

Click here to see staff’s presentation.

G-6: Discussion regarding bike lanes, specifically in the areas of Salzedo Street in the residential infill district (North Ponce) and from the Mobility Hub to Cardena Street. (Sponsored by Commissioner Anderson).

Anderson asked the Commission if there was an appetite for her to work on finding a long-term solution on connectivity for bicycles to the Mobility Hub. The Commission voiced their support for her to continue working on this. Anderson asked for consideration of a corridor on Salzedo before another building is approved in the area. The Manager stated he could get consultants to provide some possible costs and bring this to the Commission in August.

G-7: Update and discussion regarding scope and time-line for Dover Kohl’s plan for Biltmore Way streetscape. (Sponsored by Commissioner Anderson).

Staff held a field visit with Dover Kohl. Traffic data will be collected in the fall after schools begin and meetings with residents will begin in September, in order to avoid summer meetings where residents cannot attend.

G-8: Update on are the steps we need to take to move forward to hire a planner to establish the City’s Septic to Sewer plan. (Sponsored by Commissioner Anderson).

Staff will be working on the matching grant contract and bring this back to the Commission before the September 22nd deadline. Anderson asked for an update at the August Commission meeting.

G-9: Discussion regarding the Business Improvement District’s (B.I.D.) petition language and petitioning procedure. (Sponsored by Commissioner Anderson). (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

Created by the City of Coral Gables, the Business Improvement District is described as: “incorporated in July 1997 and encompasses 19 blocks of Downtown Coral Gables including Miracle Mile. As an advocate for downtown issues, property owners, and businesses, the BID empowers district members through a single-unified voice, speaking collectively to governmental and civic organizations and the general public in order to bring prosperity to the District. Its mission is to promote commercial vitality for Miracle Mile and Downtown Coral Gables through marketing and advertising, and to act as a strategic catalyst for the overall improvement of the area.”

Every five years, the BID is required to go through a renewal process. In April of this year, the Commission started this process by voting for its renewal. Following the vote, the BID which has its own independent staff, was to mail petitions properties within its boundaries must return demonstrating a majority want to renew the BID.

However, over the last few weeks, business owners in the area have questioned the process, as not all property owners received the petition. The petition also only provides the property one option, to support the renewal. Gables Insider has received a copy of the initial ballot from when the BID was created and that ballot provided an option to approve and one to deny. Others are also concerned about the disproportionate involvement of developers in the organization.

Commissioner Anderson explained she believed every member who receives a bill should have the right to a vote. She proposes the condominium associations receive the bill and not the individual condominium owners. The Mayor expressed his concern about the amount of money.

Estrella Sibila, a business owner who was not sent a petition, spoke. She explained that 175 condo owners did not receive a petition or have the opportunity to vote. She explained that 51% of business owners did not receive a notice. She explained that the petition only had the option to approve and no option to vote against. The initial ballots gave an options, but the current one for this year has no option but to approve. She explained that one parcel that received a petition is not within the map of the BID. $5 million in property taxes are being assessed, yet she explains that many are unaware they can actually vote against this.

Jackson Rip Holmes, who also owns property in the BID, explained that he believed the election should be thrown out and a new election be done with proper notice to all tax payers in the BID. He also asked that the election not be handled by the BID, who’s employees’ jobs rely on the result of the election.

BID Executive Director Aura Reinhardt explained she was willing to work with the City on whatever path forward the City Commission recommended.

The Mayor stated he was perplexed at the fact that 51% of the members are not given the right to vote. Acting City Attorney Cristina Suarez was unable to answer how other City’s BID elections are being done. The Mayor asked her what she would recommend. She recommended the process could continue and wait until the July meeting to decide how to proceed. She explained that it will come back for public hearing twice.

The Mayor explained he believes in doing things right and once. Commissioner Jorge L. Fors, Jr. asked Sibila if they are being assessed based on ground floor, shouldn’t the condominium association be allowed to take a vote since the assessment is not based on individual unit square footage. Sibila explained that the association cannot be foreclosed on. Fors countered the City could foreclose on the association, to which she asked “is that what the City wants to do?”

Anderson explained she was concerned about the process. She explained she believed this was fundamentally flawed. In comparison to the 1997 ballot to form it, that ballot includes the budget and gives an option to vote against. “You don’t know what you are voting on here.”

Menendez compared it to elections where condo owners can vote the same way for their elected officials, the association does not vote for them. “The state law is silent, the responsibility is on us to do what is right.”

Menendez made a motion to scrap the election and instruct the BID to meet with the City Attorney to work on a proper path forward to correct the process. It will be brought back at the August meeting.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

G-10: Update from Public Works regarding the status of the Country Club pool. (Sponsored by Commissioner Menendez).

Staff informed that they were working to get it re-opened as soon as possible.

G-11: Keep Coral Gables Beautiful Update. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

G-12: A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing Neighborhood Safety Aides to continue assisting with code enforcement matters. (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

“The Neighborhood Safety Aide (“NSA”) Program was established by the Coral Gables Police Department (“CGPD”) in 2016 to further promote safety in residential neighborhoods and commercial districts and to foster a positive working relationship between the community and the Police Department. The NSAs provide increased visibility, promote safety, and serve as additional “eyes and ears” in the community and
are equipped with radios to communicate with CGPD. CGPD Standard Operating Procedure #127 for Neighborhood Team Policing Unit provides that the responsibilities and duties of the NSAs include, among other things: Understanding community problems and effectively engaging to solve them. Assisting in accomplishing other needs of the CGPD. While the City Commission wants to continue to encourage the positive relationships that the NSAs have developed with residents and businesses and thus, does not want them to issue citations for code enforcement violations, the NSAs are often the first observers of code enforcement violations and their assistance has been valuable to Code Enforcement. The City Commission recognizes the value of, and wishes to further prioritize that the NSAs assist with code enforcement matters by reporting violations for appropriate enforcement by Code Enforcement and/or Police. The proposed resolution formally directs the City Manager to continue to authorize the NSAs to assist with code enforcement matters by reporting violations they may observe, in a manner directed by the City Manager and for appropriate enforcement by Code Enforcement and/or Police. This item was deferred at the May 10, 2022 and May 31, 2022 Commission meetings.”

The Manager explained that staff would be working on an order on what NSAs would be required to and able to do. The order should be ready in the next few weeks.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded
AbsentAbsent

G-13: A Resolution of the City Commission approving a peafowl mitigation policy and directing City staff to transmit said policy to the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners for approval pursuant to the Code of Miami-Dade County, Chapter 5 “Animals and Fowl”, Section 5-16 “Taking of peafowl prohibited; municipal opt out.” (Sponsored by Mayor Lago).

The Mayor asked that the City send a letter to neighboring municipalities requesting they support our efforts. Coral Gables would send this to the Miami-Dade County Commission for them to take action. Peafowl have no natural predator and they lay 10-15 eggs according to the Mayor, exacerbating the problem.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded
AbsentAbsent

Boards/Committees Items

H-1: A Resolution of the City Commission approving concept proposals from artists Janine Antoni and George Sánchez-Calderón for a temporary public art exhibition extending through winter, 2023, and to submit an event application to Art Basel. (unanimously recommended by Development Board approval/denial vote: 5 to 0).

“The Cultural Development Board historically has recommended City participation in Miami’s Art Week and, more specifically, an affiliation with Art Basel. Since 2016, the City has received recognition support from Art Basel for an annual temporary exhibition. The recognition of Art Basel encourages the City to maintain quality programming that invites residents and visitors to experience all the arts within the City Beautiful. City staff worked closely with the Arts Advisory Panel and compiled a list of artists who fit the City’s artist criteria along with the profile of artists affiliated with Art Basel and their represented galleries. After thoughtful consideration, the Arts Advisory Panel ardently recommended artist Janine Antoni, who responded with her availability to present a proposal and complete installation within the pre-determined timeline. As an alternate, the Panel recommended artist George Sánchez-Calderón. The Panel further recommended creation of site-specific new work that could be further considered for permanent acquisition. The Cultural Development Board was presented with the recommendation of the Arts Advisory Panel and voted unanimously to request proposals from both artists. Continuing the established relationship with Art Basel, the City proposes to submit an Art Basel VIP event application to celebrate the exhibition. Funding for the proposal phase is being requested through the Art Fund. Funding for the exhibition and related expenses will be brought to the City Commission as a separate resolution. The Arts Advisory Panel voted unanimously (5-0) to recommend support of a public exhibition by Janine Antoni, with George Sánchez-Calderón as an alternate at their meeting on June 16, 2022. The Cultural Development Board voted unanimously (6-0) to recommend proposals from Janine Antoni and George Sánchez-Calderón at their meeting on June 21, 2022.”

The Commission was concerned about the cost of proposing two artists. Staff informed the Commission the cost would be $2,000 per artist. Vice Mayor Mena asked if it was possible to keep the second proposal, if not selected, in order to use it for a future development project. The Mayor also asked that maintenance be a priority to ensure the artwork does not fade and deteriorate. Commissioner Anderson added that material is important to ensure what has happened with the Segovia Flower Sculptures does not happen again. She also wants less of a maintenance cost.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

H-2: A Resolution of the City Commission approving Fiscal Year 2022-2023 Cultural Grant recipients and setting in place a funding mechanism contingent on the City ’s approved budget. (Unanimously recommended by the Cultural Development Board approval /denial vote: 7 to 0).

“One of the responsibilities of the City’s Cultural Development Board is to recommend to the City Commission the annual allocation of cultural grant funding. On May 24, 2022, the Cultural Development Board reviewed and scored 35 applications for the allocation of City of Coral Gables Cultural Grants funding. One (1) application was required by the Coral Gables Museum, funded separately. Proposed funding of 34 applicants and their scores (including the Coral Gables Museum) are shown on Exhibit A attached to the proposed Resolution. Last year the allocated funding was $191,228, with gradual increases frozen since 2020 due to the pandemic. The Cultural Development Board has respectfully made a motion recommending an increase of 5%, which has been submitted for funding consideration, but has not been approved at this time. The requested increase would be $9,561, bringing the Cultural Grants budget to $200,789. The FY23 Budget Estimate is maintaining the $191,228 amount. Staff is respectfully requesting that the increase be approved.”

Click here to see staff’s presentation.

Vice Mayor Mena brought up that he wanted to ensure all events were taking place in the City as a benefit for residents, even if they were held by outside performances, so long as we are providing a benefit to our residents. The Mayor added that the consulates that have held events have been located in the City, based here in the City.

Staff explained that six of the organizations are Coral Gables based. No Coral Gables based entities were turned down. Commissioner Menendez asked if there may be others in Coral Gables that did not apply.

Mena asked about the Coral Gables Branch Library. Staff said it would be programs at the library. Mena wanted to know why the County would get a grant from the City.

Commissioner Menendez made a motion to allow for schools to be treated equally and be eligible for funding.

The issue was deferred to return to the Commission next meeting with direction to Commissioner Menendez to allow for schools and all entities to be treated equally.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded

City Manager Items

I-1: End of Session Report from the City’s Lobbying Team.

Click here to see staff’s presentation.

I-2: Demonstration of New City Website, Beta Launch.

The City would like for residents to provide input on the beta version of the site. You can see it by visiting http://beta.coralgables.com.

I-3: Innovation and Technology demonstration of new homegrown Smart City Digital Twin platform and Horizontal Integration Dashboards.

I-4: A Resolution of the City Commission amending Ordinance No. 2015-17, as amended, to revise various Fire Prevention permit fees and Solid Waste Collection Special Pick -Up fees; providing for severability, and an effective date.

“Fire Prevention Permit Fees: The City’s Fire Prevention permit fees are due to be reviewed. The Fire Department has initiated conducted a fee study that recommends various fee changes to certain permits, which are reflected in Exhibit B. The changes will allow greater transparency and ease in fee calculation while recovering the cost of permit review and inspection, consistent with the requirements of the Florida Statues. Proposed fee schedule will be in accordance with the fee structure of the Development Services Department. The new fee changes will take effect October 1, 2022, via the attached Resolution (Exhibit B). Special Pick-Up Fees: Trash is primarily disposed of at the WM Resource Recovery facility. The cost of disposal at this facility has increased over 40% from FY 2013 to FY 2022, and when considering the projected rates for FY 2023 the increase will be approximately 48% (since FY13). This fee adjustment increases the per cubic yard rate, for trash collected in excess of the allowable amount and special pick-ups, from $10.00 to $15.00. The new fee changes will take effect October 1, 2022, via the attached Resolution (Exhibit B).”

I-5: A Resolution of the City Commission authorizing the City Manager to enter into a cooperative agreement with the School Board of Miami-Dade County, Florida, for Project Victory, a program that assists young adults with disabilities by providing work skills and employment training within the City of Coral Gables.

“Project Victory is a program developed by Miami-Dade County Public Schools (“MDCPS”) to prepare students with disabilities for financial, personal/social and/or independent functioning through the acquisition of employability skills essential for success in the workplace. Project Victory is designed for up to 12 students per semester that are enrolled in a Miami-Dade County public school and are referred to Project Victory by their teachers, program specialists and other school support staff. The City wishes to host Project Victory at City Hall, the 427 Building and the Public Safety Building to allow students to benefit from on-the-job training and real-life experiences. MDCPS will provide an on-site-teacher and paraprofessional job coach that provide instruction, support and direct supervision to students according to a training plan developed for each student in conjunction with a City representative. While working at the City, the City will offer the students employability skills based on the student’s capabilities and experience.”

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

I-6: A Resolution of the City Commission supporting the rights, freedoms, equal treatment and inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (referred to in this Resolution as “LGBTQ+”) individuals in our community, encouraging cities and states around the country to take action to ensure equality and inclusiveness in their own cities and supporting efforts to ensure that the City remains a beacon of hope for the equal treatment and inclusion of all individuals, including LGBTQ+ individuals.

“LGBTQ+ individuals have made and continue to make, vital contributions to our community and the world in every aspect, including the fields of education, health, law, business, science, research, economic development, architecture, sports, government, music, film, politics, technology, literature and civil rights. The movement toward LGBTQ+ equality and inclusion has seen great strides forward in recent years, including the United States Supreme Court holdings that the freedom to marry is guaranteed to same-sex couples and the ruling that the 1964 Civil Rights Act protects gay, lesbian, and transgender employees from discrimination based on sex, landmark victories for the LGBTQ+ community. LGBTQ+ individuals have fought for equal treatment, inclusion, dignity and respect and remain determined to pursue full equality, respect and inclusion for individuals regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. The City supports the rights, freedoms and equal treatment of LGBTQ+ individuals and supports efforts to ensure the equal treatment and inclusion of all individuals, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity in all areas, including employment, housing, and public accommodations.”

Mayor Lago explained that “everyone is welcome in this City.” Commissioner Anderson agreed with the Mayor’s comments.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
SecondedMotioned

Pocket Items

Commissioner Menendez appointed Parks and Recreation Youth Advisory Board Angelica Santelice.

Mayor
Vince Lago
Vice Mayor
Michael Mena
Commissioner
Jorge L. Fors, Jr.
Commissioner
Rhonda Anderson
Commissioner
Kirk R. Menendez
MotionedSeconded
AbsentAbsent

Commissioner Menendez informed residents that on Saturday, July 2nd he will be hosting Airplane! at Coral Gables Art Cinema.

July 4th: The Mayor wants to be sure everyone is welcomed to the July 4th celebration at the Biltmore Hotel.

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25 thoughts on “City Commission Recap (6/28/2022)

  1. I’m not angry or upset that I feel like you’re obsessed with me either. I don’t know that saying-must be before my time. You get my point though.

  2. Obsessed? Just trying to understand why someone who likes to make public comments, requests, etc. would be so intent in not using her last name. By the way, I still remember elementary teachers telling their students that “dogs get mad, people get angry.” Upset, angry?

  3. Wow that was your best comeback? This convo is like talking to cardboard. Busy today. Signing off.

  4. Here we go again, why do people choose to hide behind made up names if what they are saying is the truth? Maybe because it is not, or perhaps because they are so important that they expect the readers to know who they are. For example, when anyone mentions “Elvis” most people would know they mean Elvis Presley. Some are obviously somewhat confused because there are many people who share their names, some are famous and others infamous! Some, I guess, are not proud of their name or last name and that’s why they do not use one or the other! I think these comments would be more helpful if everyone used their names.
    Now, as to the topic, why should those that have spent their hard earned money to live in our City and have the beautiful ambience that they upkeep have to put up with the ones who not only want to enjoy it, but destroy it!
    Perhaps the answer is clear, everyone could also have it if they put up the effort that it’s required. Or, as guests would make sure to leave it as nice as it was when they came!

  5. Dear Sylvia permit me to ask you. Do you have a driveway which extends all the way to the street? If you do, you know that you have Coral Gables under your liability insurance correct? I don’t know how much you paid for your driveway, but depending on your lot size, and type of pavers, the cost can exceed $40,000.00. In addition, you have a state of the are sprinkler system that maintains that abutting property you speak of in pristine condition. So how about I suggest to you, hey Sylvia, a bunch of us have decided, because your street is so nice, the we are going to rip up your driveway pavers and kill your sprinkler system, so that the masses who live miles away can come and ride through your pretty street that costs you upwards of $30,000 conservatively in property taxes that you give to the City. But there’s more! After we come and do all of this, you’re left with the repairs. Now THAT doesn’t seem very Christian of you does it?

  6. This conversation is not really about bike paths. It is about a handful of city residents that feel they control public property abutting their homes over the needs of all residents – that is not the case. Also, the “Christians” commenting about people values or telling neighbors that they should leave the city, should re-read Jesus writings. He called you to love your neighbors as he loves you. Pretty simple.

  7. My fan club has arrived! See Ariel, you need to do more bike articles. More clicks.

    Let me be the first to let the fan club know, I’m not moving. Look at it this way, if I left, you would have no one to be obsessed with.

  8. Dear resident with selfish agenda… do you live in an area that would be directly impacted? By the sound of it I’m guessing you’re not.

  9. Dear Jessica. I too am a resident of Coral Gables, I assure you, much longer than you. I grew up in this City and never have I seen my neighbors have to fight like hell to keep your invasive “values” and use this word loosely when it comes to you, out of our suburbs. We were doing just fine without you and thank goodness you were fired from the City. I am shocked that you and this makeshift group of BWCG are still pushing this agenda after the unethical methods you took to try to pull the wool over residents heads with HISTORICAL Alhambra Circle and prior to that, Riviera. Who do you people think you are thinking it’s ok to cut down trees and destroy residents homes not to mention their lives!!! Is this creating a friendly community? WE did not purchase our homes to cater to your recreational needs. We have the right to quiet enjoyment, nor are we going to pay thousands of dollars out of pocket because you want to ride through probably one of the most beautiful streets in all of Coral Gables. Thank GOD you are a mere resident that will face a tsunami of Coral Gables home owners should you try to attempt this foolish notion of turning this incredible stretch of street into a state park. There is a perfectly good bike path running parallel to Alhambra Circle on Red Road, used DAILY by commuters that have been using it for years. But you probably don’t know that since you’re only a weekend warrior and jump in your gas operated vehicle every morning to go to work. And as to “Mr Nick Jones”, you should be thanking the rich older folks of Coral Gables that are indeed driving EV‘s and its us old farts, that are the ones really reducing the carbon footprint.

  10. I think what everyone fails to remember is that the right of way is for public use. Contrary to what homeowners may believe this is not the residents property. Stop misinforming the general public. The City doesn’t have to ask the residents what to do in the public right of way but they do as a courtesy. Therefore, we should be thinking of the greater public interest and not in our selfish and entitled wants. If you don’t want outsiders to drive our neighborhoods, then why wouldn’t this erroneous argument also apply to cars and remove the streets. By the way I am a City of Coral Gables resident.

  11. Every time I comment on anything I use my name, my full name that is! Once again I do not understand why anyone chooses not to do that! What are they afraid of? Isn’t this the “land of the free and the home of the brave”? Whether employees, ex employees, fired or not, why are they so afraid? As to my suggestion of going someplace else, why would anyone live anywhere that is so horrible? Why would anyone bring up a family in a place so detestable? Why people that are not tied down, properties, extended families, long connections to a place, etc. choose to stay and continue to “suffer”?

  12. Maria C Cruz, I am an ex city employee who is a Coral Gables resident. As the Mayor’s advisor, it’s inappropriate that you suggest voters move out of the city when their values differ from your own.

  13. I’m curious Tracy, since we are on the subject of vehicles. Do you commute to work in a car, or do you scooter and bike your way through life? If you have a car, is it EV? Just wondering…

  14. Let’s put the bikes paths going through Tracy’s house. I hope you approve of us ripping up your driveway and landscaping. It will only cost YOU a few thousand dollars to repair for the enjoyment of everyone! Please share your address for the commission to slate your as pre approved street for bikes!

  15. Yes to bike paths for safety, the environment, public health, and community friendliness.

    Many Gables residents love the peacocks and disapprove any form of outsourced “mitigation” that harms them. A creative solution, including relocation, sterilization, and sanctuary is possible and necessary. Less traffic and less speeding on our streets will help.

  16. Very interesting to see ex City employees commenting under fake names. Are they afraid they could be fired again? Or they do not remember that they already tried and couldn’t make it happen? Perhaps it may be a good idea to move to cities like NY, Baltimore, Amsterdam, etc and leave those that moved to the City Beautiful alone.
    Oh, I forgot their families may not like that!
    Nick, it’s time to come out of the shadows and use your real name!

  17. I love your sarcasm Mr Jones but your comment makes complete sense and I couldn’t agree with it more. I don’t need to get to my home and encounter a cycling bonanza. Why should I disrupt my entire life for your recreational purposes? Who are you to come and destroy my lawns, uproot my sprinkler system and dig up my driveway pavers? Are you going to compensate me for my damages? I purchased my home to enjoy quiet enjoyment. NOT to cater to your recreational needs. By the sound of it, you really don’t seem like a seasoned cyclist. No seasoned cyclist uses bike paths here. They aren’t safe. You’re more than welcomed to ride through my neck of the woods. We pay lots of money in landscaping which is why people like coming through here. But will you get your little bike path? I find it highly unlikely.

  18. Lucy Z is right. Us rich older people in the Gables have a right to a huge green lawn without a sidewalk or bike lane as only poor people use those and they are obviously from somewhere else and we don’t want them here. Besides, we can get electric cars and so the cost of gas is no object. As for bwcg, who wants to listen to a group of volunteer residents that want to make the city safe – they are probably commies. Let’s make the gables great again!

  19. Glad to see that Dover Kohl architects is involved in a plan for the Biltmore Way streetscape. Anything they propose, anything, will be better than the abandoned wasteland we call Biltmore Way. And they seem to be involved in reconfiguring some of our main plazas also, like De Soto Plaza, which is long overdue. Very welcome changes in a city that’s living off past glory. Now, if they could only get it done in, say, less than 10 years…

  20. Concurrence for bike paths is, and will always be, required from property owners. Individuals have the right to quiet enjoyment and purchased their homes based on this premise. Our suburbs are not a thoroughfare for cyclists. No homeowner that would be directly impacted would appreciate having some makeshift organization like BWCG govern them into digging up their driveways and and leveling their landscaping for the recreational purposes from individuals who live miles away. Few if any are the ones that commute to work on a bicycle. And those that do, have been commuting on bikes for years and do not need ”an infrastructure.” And if the excuse is for children, there are a ton of back streets to ride a bicycle. Allowing a child to ride on a collector street, even with the most protected path is suicide. Everyone wants to ride through Coral Gables because the residents, in these areas, spend small fortunes on their homes and in landscaping. If these particular streets looked like “any street Miami,” nobody would come through here. Most that want to butcher our streets do not live in the Gables, or live in areas where nobody would consider cycling to. Frankly I’m tired of BWCG and their underhanded methods of pushing through their agenda. Stay away from our suburbs.

  21. The lobbyists are making a fortune at City Hall with more and more overdevelopment. It’s a gold mine for them and the shaft for us.

  22. You forgot to mention Bike Walk Coral Gables’ concerns related to precedents in the public comment section. Here’s what they basically said:

    Bike Walk Coral Gables envisions a community that values the safety of all people using the public right of way. Cycling and walking are healthy and sustainable forms of transportation and recreation. Bike Walk Coral Gables also advocates for the accessibility of streets and trails for bicycle riders and pedestrians so they may enjoy our City’s beauty and lush canopy.
    We assert that the City is responsible for ensuring that all users of the City roadways and rights-of way are provided infrastructure that allows them to walk, ride or drive safely. We continue to support the installation of facilities on City rights-of-way that provides safe passage for all users of those rights-of way.
    1. BWCG supports the installation of infrastructure on South Alhambra Circle that would create safe passage on City rights-of-way for people who use bicycles and various forms of micromobility.
    2. BWCG objects to the concurrence of adjacent property owners as a prerequisite for the installation of bicycle infrastructure on City rights-of-way as it is inconsistent with the existing policies and past practice.
    3. In recognition of the importance of providing safe bicycle infrastructure, the City has never required concurrency for installation of any of the existing bicycle lanes, including Galiano Street in 2022, Sevilla Avenue in 2014, Segovia Street in 2012 or Alhambra Circle over 20 years ago.
    4. BWCG recommends that the City adopt a policy for the installation of bicycle infrastructure on City rights-of-way that is consistent with the City policy for other public works projects.
    5. Installing bicycle infrastructure is aligned with existing policy and regulation:
    a. Ordinance 2010-09, passed unanimously, which is the Coral Gables Comprehensive Plan, that among other things says, “The City shall require private and public development projects to adhere to the City’s Citywide Bicycle Lane Master Plan, the
    City shall promote [not deter] the safe movement of bicycle and pedestrian traffic”
    b. Resolution 2017-151, which is the Active Design policy, passed unanimously, to
    encourage design and policy strategies for healthier communities.
    c. Resolution 2018-80, adopted unanimously, which is the Sustainable Complete Streets resolution, which states among other things, “The City of Coral Gables strives to develop a safe, reliable, efficient, integrated, connected, and livable multimodal transportation system that best enables access, mobility, economic development, aesthetics, health, and well-being for people of all ages and abilities, and supports
    enhancement and sustainability of the environment.
    d. Resolution 2018-142, adopted unanimously, which is the Age Friendly Resolution,
    encouraging among other things, safe and affordable modes of private and public transportation, “Complete Streets” types of initiatives and hospitable built environments;
    e. Ordinance 2020-25, passed unanimously, which is the 2020 Strategic Plan that identifies a number of adopted objectives, amongst which is improve mobility and transportation safety. Further, it states the City will increase utilization rate on non- privately owned vehicle modes of transportation by 6% by 2022 and decrease vehicle trips within the city annually by 4.75% by 2022.
    6. BWCG recommends that the City adopt a resolution for the installation of bicycle infrastructure that is consistent with the procedure for other public works improvements and does not require the concurrence of adjacent property owners.

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