October 24, 2007
Present: Chairman Jerry Burden and members Diane Collar, Michele Tucker, Chrys Holley, and Cindy Cotton. Also present were Janice Boone (Housing Program Manager), Melissa Welch (West Florida Regional Planning Council), Kevin Wagner (West Florida Regional Planning Council), Tony Gomillion (Public Services Director), Hunter Walker (County Administrator), and Beckie Faulkenberry (Director of Planning & Zoning). A list of other attendees is in the file. Danny Holt arrived late.
Collar moved approval of the minutes from the August 22, 2007 meeting; Cotton seconded, and the motion carried unanimously. (5-0))
HHRP Report (Hurricane Housing Recovery Program)-Informational
Wagner updated the committee on the HHRP Report.
HHRP Program Interest Income Allocation
Boone said there was an addition on the summary report for HHRP to show the interest received based on the Trust Fund Balances from the period of July 1, 2005 through September 30, 2007. She said there is a recommendation from staff to allocate these funds in the amount of $644,042.18 to the Home Purchase Assistance Strategy and to reduce the maximum award stated in the Strategy from $50,000.00 to $25,000.00 per family. Cotton asked for details and clarification on Home Purchase Assistance.
Cotton moved approval to transfer $644,042.18 (interest accrued from the Trust Fund Balances) to the Home Purchase Assistance Strategy and to reduce the maximum reward from $50,000.00 to $25,000.00; Holley seconded, and the motion carried unanimously. (6-0)
HHRP: CEII Request for Administration Grant
Boone said county officials met with CEII (Community Enterprise Investments, Inc.) on October 16, 2007 and reviewed the full contract that would have allowed for a maximum of 10 units. She said staff supports funding ½ a year in an administrative grant in the amount of $35,000.00. Boone said this grant will be paid from the HHRP Program Administration Funds and will not come from strategydollars currently allocated.
Cotton objected to the request. She said she will not support any further funding of CEII. Cotton said she felt the homes constructed by CEII are over priced. Cotton said CEII’s homes are not competitive in the open market; she said CEII is at least $25.00 per square foot over priced as compared to other builders. She said this committee has to be good stewards of taxpayer’s money.
Burden said he is trying to determine how the costs are benefiting citizens of Santa Rosa County. Sherry Duffey with CEII said a portion of these administrative costs are for salaries. There was continued discussion on the price of homes and reasoning for the prices of homes constructed by CEII. Duffey said CEII can build homes much cheaper in Escambia County than in Santa Rosa County due to costs associated with land, impact fees, etc. Burden said administrative costs for CEII are approximately $70,000.00 and only $1,700.00 went toward training. He asked where the additional $35,000.00 will go if the grant is approved. Duffey said CEII had to hire a helper for staff to help with home ownership and outreach.
Holt moved approval of the request; Collar seconded, and the motion failed by majority vote with Holt and Collar in favor of the motion. Cotton, Burden, and Holley opposed. Tucker abstained. (3-2-1)
SHIP Program Reports
Melissa Welch updated the committee on the SHIP Strategy/Funding Report.
Boone asked the committee about their wishes for next month’s meeting. She said Thanksgiving is next month and most strategies are funded to carry over to the New Year.
Holt asked to postpone both meetings scheduled for November and December. Boone said she felt strategies will be well funded and a meeting can be called if necessary.
Holley moved approval to cancel meetings in November and December; Collar seconded, and the motion carried unanimously. (6-0)
Boone said there is consideration for appointment of Kelly Green with Baywind Builders, Inc. for the vacant position with the SHIP Committee. She said Blackie Black’s position is available and needs to be filled. Boone said each committee member has a small autobiography in their backup material from Kelly Green (Attachment in the file).
Cotton moved approval of the appointment of Kelly Green with Baywind Builders, Inc. to the SHIP Housing Committee; Collar seconded, and the motion carried unanimously. (6-0)
There being no further business to come before the committee at this time, the meeting adjourned.