The August 10 meeting of the LaBelle City Commission was called to order by Mayor Dave Lyons. The opening prayer was given by David Mullins of Carlson Memorial.
The first order of business was the swearing in of three commissioners. Julie Craichy Wilkins was sworn in as Tax Collector Commissioner by Pastor Bill Maddox of the First Christian Church of LaBelle. Daniel Akin was sworn in by the Honorable James D Sloan of the 20th Judicial Circuit as the Tax Assessor Commissioner. Dave Lyons was also sworn in by the Honorable James D Sloan as Mayor Commissioner.
Next on the agenda was the approval of the July vouchers and paid bills and the minutes from the June 8 L.P.A. and Commission meeting and the July 13 Budge Workshop/Special Meeting. All were approved with a vote of 5-0.
Public Hearings, Resolutions, Ordinances and Citizens Concerns
• Petra Tovar approached the board seeking premission to remove an oak tree from his property in order to build his home. Commissioner Wilkins wondered if the tree could be saved by giving Tovar a variance but it was determined a variance would not work because of the location of the tree. The request was approved with a vote of 5-0.
• Pastor Jorge Rodriguez addressed the commission seeking their approval on painting a mural on the west side of Live Ministries Church, the church also plans to illuminate the wall so the mural can be seen at night. The mural was approved with vote of 5-0.
• Sheryl Blasi with Mobilite, LLC approaced the commission seeking to place a 45 foot cell pole at the corner of Hall Street and Hickpochee to help with the anticipated 5G network targeted for release in 2020.
“Mobilitie is a global provider of complete wireless solutions. We design, build and operate networks and infrastructure to deliver optimal coverage in the most demanding and challenging of environments. From high-rise office buildings and hospitality venues to the largest sports and entertainment venues and more, we engineer robust wireless solutions that not only deliver the coverage needed today but also anticipate the needs of tomorrow. Our complete wireless infrastructure solutions include funding, designing, building, operating and maintaining neutral host outdoor and indoor DAS networks, Small Cells, Wi-Fi networks and communication towers,” Blasi said.
Mobilitie funds, deploys and manages wireless infrastructure solutions to meet the needs of the City and its citizens by enabling connectivity.
Her request was approved 5-0.
• Kelly Boone and members of the LaBelle Downtown Revitalization Corporation presented the commission with a check for $1,000 to help with the cost of the fire works at the July 4th Celebration.
• Linda Corbitt, spoke on behalf of the Arts of the Inland (AoI) about the Barron Park House Gallery, in the last five and half months 956 prople have signed the guest book at the gallery. This count did not include the people who toured the gallery but didn’t sign the guest book. AoI would like to build a handicapped ramp into the building and have received at bid of $5,000 to build it. AoI current has $2,000 of the $5,000 and Corbitt was seeking the commission’s premission to sell beer and wine at events four times a year to help with the cost. Currently one event they have to make money for the gallery is the Food Truck Invasion which pays $200 for each event they have but the gallery has to pay out $150 for two port-a-potties each time.
After some discussion on this, the commission decided that since this is a city owned building, a motion was made for the city to pay up to $3,000 on the project. The motion was approved 5-0.
• At the last city commission meeting, the City Attorney announced her retirement. The city put out a Request for Qualificaitons, by the end of the deadline they had two responces for the position. The next step for the commission is to do oral interviews with the two candidates. This meeting must be advertised and will take place two weeks after the advertisement runs.
• The City of LaBelle had put out an Invitation to Bid for repaving/overlaying asphalt on various roadways within the City of LaBelle. Community Asphalt won the the bid with $102.50 per ton. This bid is subject to the Department of Transportation approval. The company handled the 2013 project for the city. The commisioners voted 5-0 to award the contract to Community Asphalt with DOT approval.