Walton County Board of County Commissioners (BCC) Oct. 27 regular meeting [PREMIUM]

Commissioners present for the meeting were Tony Anderson, Bill Chapman, Danny Glidewell, and Trey Nick. Melanie Nipper was not in attendance.

A yes vote was to approve the motion.

Request by William Imfeld, Walton County Economic Development Alliance (EDA) director, on behalf of the EDA, for endorsement of the EDA’s application to Triumph Gulf Coast for 50/50 funding of planned water and sewer infrastructure from U.S. 331 to interior parcels of the Woodlawn Industrial Park south of DeFuniak Springs, with the EDA portion of the cost to come from the organization’s funds and no county funds to be required.

A motion by Anderson to endorse the request carried 4-0: Anderson-yes; Chapman-yes; Glidewell-yes; Nick-yes.

Request by Walton County Deputy Administrator Stan Sunday for approval of $140,561 in CARES Act funding for the city of DeFuniak Springs for COVID-19-related expenses, including audio-video set up for teleconferencing and telecasting meetings, fiber connection for city facilities with hosted voice over Internet protocol, networking and security upgrades, computer hardware, and website upgrades.

A motion for approval by Anderson carried 4-0.

Request by Sunday for direction on request by Lina Bright to purchase of 10 acres of county-owned property within the former Coyote Landfill in the Freeport area. The BCC had worked with the state to close the landfill site and had obtained the 10 acres through a tax deed. Bright had previously purchased the 25 acres adjacent to the 10 acres in question.

There was a motion by Anderson to have staff move forward with advertising and taking bids on the 10 acres in order to follow the county process to surplus the property.

The motion was approved 4-0,

Presentation of update/minutes on the Oct. 6 and 7 Beach Activities Ordinance workshops, along with a summary of recommendations and options for possible revisions to the ordinance. Sunday suggested that the BCC look at the materials and provide feedback on them to staff. He also suggested putting off action on any revisions until after the new commissioners are seated in on Nov, 16.

There was a motion to table action, as recommended, until after the seating of the new board members. The motion was approved 4-0.

Sunday and Sidney Noyes, county attorney, suggested that the BCC hold a Dec. 8 meeting to get direction from the commissioners on Beach Activities Ordinance revisions to be drafted. 

There was a motion to hold the meeting at 2 p.m. on Dec. 8.

The motion was approved 4-0.

Request by Sunday for direction on holding an organizational meeting for the new BCC.

After discussion, there was a motion by Glidewell to hold the organizational meeting at 10 a.m. on Nov. 16, following the 9 a.m. swearing in of the newly-elected commissioners.

The motion was approved 3-1: Chapman-yes; Glidewell-yes; Nick-yes; Anderson-no.

Request on behalf of Walton County Public Works for approval to advertise an invitation to bid (ITB) for construction of a westbound deceleration lane on U.S. 98 at Old Ferry Road in the Peach Creek community, using South Walton Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District funds left over from the Rene Arnette Lane project for construction cost of the deceleration lane.

A motion for approval by Chapman (who temporarily relinquished the chairman’s gavel) carried 4-0.

Request by Sunday to advertise a request for proposals for artificial reef construction and deployment services for the Inlet Beach Nearshore Artificial Reef permitted area, located approximately three-quarters mile offshore from the Inlet Beach Regional Beach Access, with $60,000 of the $90,000 project cost to be provided from Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) grant funds and the remaining $30,000 to be provided by the Walton County Tourist Development Council (TDC).

A motion for approval by Anderson carried 4-0.

Request by Jay Tusa, TDC executive director, to advertise an ITB to replace the Cessna Landing Park fishing pier, using contingency funding remaining in the 2019-20 fiscal year TDC budget.

A motion for approval by Anderson carried 4-0.

Request by Tusa to select an architectural/engineering firm from those on continuing services to the county for design and permitting services to pave and improve the county property on CR-283 in Grayton Beach, with improvements to include a restroom and stormwater facilities, for use of the property as a parking lot, with cost to be funded through the TDC budget.

A motion for approval by Anderson carried 4-0.

Request by Tusa to approve purchase by the TDC of four custom tram vehicles to be used in the Grayton Shuttle Program at a cost not to exceed $400,000.

A motion for approval carried 4-0.

Request by Nick for $7,782 in funding for repairs to the Choctaw Beach Community Center in order for use of the facility as a voting center and by citizens to continue, with repairs to include ADA requirements.

With Anderson offering to provide the funding from District 5 recreational plat fees, there was a motion to approve the expenditure.

The motion was approved 4-0.

Citizen request by Ralph Laird and Steve Young for the county to take over maintenance of roads within the Wildwood Estates subdivision.

There was a motion by Glidewell to direct Walton County Public Works to evaluate the request and bring back a recommendation to the BCC.

The motion was approved 4-0.

Request by residents of the Peach Creek subdivision for a meeting with county staff and an updated study on traffic in the subdivision 

There was direction by the BCC to have staff work with subdivision residents and update the traffic study.

Request by Kristen Shell, county planning manager, to appoint two citizens to fill vacant affected property owner seats on the Walton County Scenic Corridor Design Review Board, including Chad Williams and Jonathan Hampel.

A motion for approval by Glidewell carried 4-0.