LAKE WORTH COMMUNITY REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY
1121 Lucurne Ave.
Tuesday, August 12, 2019 | 6:00 P.M.
I. ROLL CALL:
The Recording Secretary called the meeting to order at 6:13p.m. on the above date at HATCH 1121, Lake Worth Beach, Florida.
Present were CRA Members Brendan Lynch, Brent Whitfield, Mark Rickards, Leah Foertsch & Tom Copeland. Also present was CRA Director, Joan Oliva.
II. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:
III. AGENDA – ADDITIONS/DELETIONS/REORDERING:
IV. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION ON NON-AGENDAED ITEMS (3-minute limit):
V. ACTION AGENDA:
a. Commercial Façade Grant Application-523 North Dixie Highway
The Commercial Grant Programs offered by the CRA were designed to leverage public funds with private investment, leading to new commercial projects and job creation throughout the CRA District. Recently, the properties at 523 & 527 North Dixie Highway were acquired by PALMSICLE PROPERTIES LLC. These two parcels have had various owners and uses over the past twenty years. Mr. Mark Roberto, President of PALMSICLE PROPERTIES LLC., has assembled these two lots and a third vacant adjacent lot, which will be redeveloped at a later date. Over the past year, Mr. Roberto and his business partner have been making interior and exterior improvements to the property at 527 N. Dixie (the Howling Owl bar).
In June of this year, Mr. Roberto submitted a CRA Commercial Façade Grant application to assist with the cost to renovate the 89-year old structure and surrounding courtyard area at 523 North Dixie Highway. The total cost of these renovations is expected to exceed $75,000. Improvements include new landscaping, paver repair, new second story wood deck, new windows, doors, fence and other various repairs to the building.
Once complete, the project at 523 North Dixie Highway will contain Mr. Roberto’s real estate office and the property at 527 N. Dixie will contain a new night-time entertainment establishment. Building permits for the project at 523 N. Dixie have been submitted and construction is expected to take place over the next three months.
The CRA’s Commercial Façade Grant offers up to $25,000 per parcel or project. The CRA and applicant agree that this project is eligible for the maximum grant amount. Therefore, the applicant has requested CRA grant funding assistance in the amount of $25,000. CRA grant funds are only to be used to cover exterior improvement and construction costs which can be viewed from the street.
If awarded, the funds would be reimbursed to the applicant after the project has been completed and building permits have been approved/closed out. In addition, a lien would ensure that the applicant would not be able to sell or transfer the property within two years of receiving the funds or they risk having to repay the grant.
Creating programs and using financial incentives to facilitate new investment in the CRA district and creating new jobs are primary objectives of the Redevelopment Plan. Staff supports the use of the Commercial Façade Grant funds to assist with the renovation work at 523 North Dixie Highway. A representative of the project will be present to answer any questions at the CRA Board meeting.
Staff recommended the Board review and award funding in the amount of $25,000 as part of the CRA’s Commercial Façade Grant. Staff also requests that the applicant place a visible CRA logo along the fence Dixie Highway for an indeterminate amount of time indicating the project be supported by the CRA.
The applicant would enter into a grant agreement and funds will be reimbursed only after completion of the project.
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Copeland to accept staff’s recommendation to award funding in the amount of $25,000 as part of the CRA’s Commercial Façade Grant seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.
Vote: All Ayes
b. New CRA Logo Review & Selection
The Lake Worth CRA logo was created over a dozen years ago and served the Agency well. Because of the City’s name change and in an effort to rebrand ourselves as a significant change agent here in the City and regionally, Staff contracted with the O’Donnell Agency, who assisted us with the way-finding signage program and the branding of HATCH 1121. After meeting with Staff and discussing the many aspects of redevelopment, the Agency came up with many designs. Staff narrowed the selections down to four possibilities for the Board to decide.
Staff requested that the Board determine its choice for the new Lake Worth Beach CRA logo. Once chosen, the new logo will slowly be integrated into marketing materials, stationary and on-line.
Commissioner Herman Robinson- Stated that option 1 looked too much like a building. Option 2 had an art deco approach but needs the CRA to be written out. Simpler is better.
Paul Snitkin- Likes option 1 & 3. Agreed with Commissioner Copeland that Lake Worth Beach needs to be incorporated into the image.
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to add variations to option #1 to be presented at the next Board meeting seconded by Mr. Copeland.
Vote: All Ayes.
c. Approval of Development Agreement & Purchase & Sale Agreement for Properties along Lake & Lucerne Avenues
The Lake Worth Beach CRA started acquiring properties on Lake and Lucerne Avenues in 2011, during the time the NSP-2 grant was underway and the CRA needed to purchase foreclosed properties for use in the program. While many of the purchased properties were used for the Urban Arts Lofts, some lots were too small in size to redevelop into anything but single family homes at the time. For this reason, years later, the CRA used some of their line-of-credit funds to purchase adjacent properties to create some smaller assemblages.
Six NSP-2 lots and five LOC –purchased lots were advertised for development in RFP #01-1819 which is included in your packet in February of this year. Two proposals were received and evaluated by a CRA-led Selection Committee that included CRA Board member, Brent Whitfield as well as City Staff. The selection team ranked NBT Properties in first place. A copy of their proposal is included.
CRA Staff requested that more definitive designs be submitted for the Boards review at the next meeting. These items were included in the Board packet. A purchase and sale and the associated development agreement, is attached for the Boards review. Before full site plans are submitted to the City, NBT will have to receive full design review approval from the Board. We expect full drawings to be complete by late October 2019 and plans submitted to the City by December 2019.
Staff requested that the Board review the attached documents and approve the purchase and sale for execution by NBT and the Lake Worth Beach CRA.
Chair recused himself from the vote.
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to approve the purchase and sale and development agreements seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.
Vote: All Ayes
d. FY 19/20 Budget Adoption & Resolution
Attached is a final copy of the Lake Worth Beach CRA proposed 2019/2020 operating, debt service and capital budget. At the July 16th regular meeting, no substantial changes were suggested by the Board. Staff suggested the Agency make an extra debt payment in 2020, however, because of the purchase of 1213 Lake Avenue, this is no longer an option. Still, changes can be made at the August meeting before the necessary Resolution is approved.
A copy of the Memo and back-up materials from the July 16th meeting is included.
Staff recommended the Board pass Resolution Number 20-01, adopting the FY 2019/2020 CRA budget.
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to pass Resolution #20-01, adopting the FY 19/20 CRA budget seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.
Vote: All Ayes
e. Purchase of 1213 Lake Avenue
For the last ten years, the CRA purchased many properties, first with NSP-2 and then with line-of-credit funds. Over the past two and a half years, the CRA purchased twenty-three additional properties for a current count of twenty-nine (two properties, 1000 Lake and 1013 Lucerne were sold in 2018). Staff is moving forward planning the disposition of some of the assemblages. This is an overall update of status:
• Lake and Lucerne – development agreement forthcoming
• Dixie Highway – RFP advertised and accepting proposals until September 4
• Downtown “L” and “M” Streets – Staff will seek a certificate of appropriateness from HRPB on September 18 so an RFP can be advertised
• Downtown 1st and “K” Street – Closed on final property (three of three), 710, on July 29th
In addition to the properties the CRA was able to assemble, there remain a few properties that continue to be underutilized, blighted and somewhat forgotten. This was true of 1000 Lake Avenue and it is also true of 1213 Lake. Similar to 1000 Lake Avenue, 1213 Lake sits idle and boarded. It has been in that condition for over a decade. For almost as long, the CRA has shown interest in the property and made offers on the building. Until now, the owner has not been willing to sell the property for, what we considered a reasonable cost. Staff considers this parcel an important piece in the CRA’s continued investment in the West Village area. Staff requests the Board move money from the following line items to pay for the acquisition of 1213; economic development, commercial grants, property management and fund balance. Because fund balance will be impacted with this purchase, Staff no longer recommends the Board make an extra debt payment next fiscal year.
Staff requested the Board authorize the purchase 1213 Lake Avenue and draw funds from various needed line items. Staff also requests the Board authorize the Chair, Vice Chair and/or Director to sign all necessary documents relating to the sale.
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to authorize the purchase 1213 Lake Avenue and draw funds from various needed line items. The Board also authorizes the Chair, Vice Chair and/or Director to sign all necessary documents relating to the sale seconded by Mr. Copeland.
Vote: All Ayes
f. Wayfinding Permitting Assistance- Consultant Selection
In 2016, City and CRA Commissioners reached consensus to allow the fabrication and installation of new way-finding signage throughout the City with a design that incorporates water, sun, vibrant colors and an art deco style typeface. The purpose of a good way-finding signage program is not only to provide attractive welcome signs, but also to guide individuals from Point A to Point B in the quickest, safest and most efficient way possible.
In November 2017, the CRA and City advertised IFB#18-108 [2017-Wayfinding Signage Project] to provide professional signage companies the opportunity to fabricate and install new signage throughout Lake Worth. The scope of this bid includes up to 150 new signs of varying shapes and sizes that will be placed along major thoroughfares and in neighborhoods within the City. Thirty-three of the 150 signs were installed in various areas of the City earlier this year.
The CRA has now reached a critical phase of the way-finding project that requires external professional assistance. Many of the remaining signs to be installed are to be placed within FDOT and/or county right of way. Permitting and technical assistance is needed to navigate the various installation requirements to remain in compliance with our partners at the county and FDOT. In hopes of soliciting professional services, CRA Staff reached out to three planning/engineering firms in which we have worked closely with in the past. Two of the three firms, which are both familiar with the task at hand, provided competitive proposals included in the Board packet.
Staff conducted multiple conversations with both firms to ensure their understanding of the project. We believe that although permitting through the State can be unpredictable, the project can move forward expeditiously with this additional assistance.
Staff recommended that the Board allow Staff to enter into an agreement with Kimley-Horn and Associates to provide way-finding consultation services. Of the two proposals received, KHA appears to be able to provide assistance for more signs at a lesser price than the proposal received from WGI. If approved, Staff would begin working with the consultant and sign fabricator as soon as possible.
Commissioner Rickards recused himself.
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to allow Staff to enter into an agreement with Kimley-Horn and Associates to provide way-finding consultation services seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.
Commissioner Rickards recused himself.
Vote: All Ayes
g. Executive Directors Annual Review & Contract
The Executive Directors contract was executed September 13, 2016 and is in effect until August 31, 2020. At the July 16, 2019 CRA meeting, the Board decided not to use an evaluation sheet, but to instead, discuss the annual evaluation at the next regular meeting. As discussed, information from other local CRA’s is included. As stated in the Executive Directors contract, the Board “shall engage in an annual performance evaluation and salary and benefits review on or about August 1 of every year”. At this time, the Board has the opportunity to evaluate my performance and recommend a salary adjustment. Attached is a copy of the Consumer Price Index for the Miami, Fort Lauderdale MSA.
Over the past 12 months, as in previous years, CRA Staff was able to carry out Board priorities, taking on an array of programs and projects, including significant property assemblage, furthering investment opportunities and increasing values. In the past seven years, taxable values in the District increased 77%.
Recent accomplishments include:
• Coordinated a $5.5M line of credit for property acquisition. In addition, the CRA purchased properties with the assistance of the City to create larger assemblages for significant redevelopment projects including those on South “L” and “M” Streets and South “K” and 1st St. South.
• With revised grant programs, have assisted many new businesses/developments including, THE ONE, Dunkin Donuts, The Rock Irish Pub, The MID and Gulfstream Pool. Several smaller grants were awarded to incentivize smaller projects such as new business signage.
• Demolished ten properties with another four scheduled for completion this year.
• Purchase of nineteen additional properties for future redevelopment Development of an agreement with the MID for a 230 unit, mixed-use, market rate project at 1601 North Dixie. Currently coordinating demolition of existing blighted properties.
• Attraction of a new Dunkin Donuts and planned mixed-use project near 6th Ave. South and Dixie, working with a developer who has assembled over 2.5 acres just south of 6th Ave. South
• Produce Request for Proposals (RFP’s) for Lake and Lucerne, Dixie Highway and Downtown assemblages. Currently producing a development agreement for the west Lake and Lucerne properties.
• Continued coordination with brokers, Anderson and Carr, on possible new property purchases and property management of purchased properties and buildings.
• Events and improvements at the new HATCH 1121 space
• Completion of new City-wide thoroughfare design guidelines
• Rebranding of, now what is called HATCH 1121, and soon, Lake Worth Beach CRA
• Working closely with the City on the development of a downtown Parking Plan
• New Trash receptacles and benches in the Downtown and West Village area
• Implementation of a Cultural Master Plan in partnership with the City and Cultural Council of Palm Beach County. Planning 2nd annual FOCUS event.
• Continuation of Neighborhood Stabilization Program and the development of land banked and affordable housing with our consortium partners
• Continually apply for grant funding to supplement CRA-driven projects
• Manage Lake Worth Cultural Renaissance Foundation
• Marketing efforts including – banners, window clings, wraps, planters, newsletters, social media sites and grand openings
Day to day operations and Agency duties take up a considerable amount of time, however, over the past eleven years, my Staff and I were able to accomplish a great deal with limited resources. We all look forward to another productive year.
Staff recommended the Board complete an evaluation, provide feedback to the Executive Director and recommend compensation.
Action: Motion was made by Mr. Whitfield to include the contract increase of 3% seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.
Amended: Motion was amended by Mr. Whitfield to include the contract compensations increase of 4% seconded by Mrs. Foertsch.
Vote: All ayes
VI. EXECUTIVE DIRECTORS’ REPORT:
Staff shared the new Annual Report with the Board.
VII. BOARD MEMBERS’ COMMENTS:
Tom Copeland- No Comment.
Brent Whitfield- I went to the ROCK Irish Bar it was terrific. I’m gad we were able to show support. I also ate at El Carbonero, the tacos were good.
Leah Foertsch- Joan you do a great job. I am glad that we are gathering properties for purchase.
Mark Rickards- My wife and I attended yoga at the Yoga Collective. The Collective is going to be moving. If anyone is looking for a yoga tenant they are looking to separate from the spa.
Brendan Lynch- The review process is somewhat flawed. This was a very productive meeting. I thank Norman for joining us.
Meeting adjourned at 7:55 p.m.
Brendan Lynch, Chair, CRA Board
Emilia Theodossakos, Recording Secretary