Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

Real news for working families.

Lake City News

Lake City Projects and Activities Report
December 2010 • Administration, Community Development, Fire, Police, Public Works, Recreation, Utilities

December 2010

This report provides an overview of on-going key Lake City projects and activities. It includes descriptions, status, action milestones, and other information.  It serves as a public information resource, allows for efficient Staff management, administration and monitoring of important City issues. I urge you to take a look at it and see what Lake City is up to.      Grayson Cason


1)   KICKLIGHTER Waste Water treatment Plant (WWTP) Project

Description:   This Project consists of construction of a new 1.5 Million Gallon per Day (MGD) advanced treatment facility. The high quality effluent produced by this facility would be sent to the reclaim water treatment and distribution facility located at the existing Sisters Welcome Road Irrigation site for irrigation of local crop sites and public areas including residential subdivisions.  The primary funding source will be an “approved” City-issued Utility Bond for the projected cost of $18 million.  Other funding sources may include City impact fees, state and federal grants.    Responsibility: City Manager, Utilities Director and City Engineer

Status:   The contract for engineering services with Hatch Mott McDonald Inc. to prepare the final plant design was approved by the City Council on August 16, 2010.  A major issue in the design process was identifying the “footprint” location for the plant with the objective of favorable placement absent the presence of “sinkhole” subsidence.  Universal Engineering Sciences, Inc. completed the interim subsurface exploration (soil borings/testing) on October 14, 2010 with some good news.  Based upon review of the test results by  Hatch Mott and the City Engineer, the optimum site has been identified to build the City’s new WWTP.  With this report, planning activity is proceeding as proposed and on schedule and the final design process is in full swing for completion by late March of 2011.


2)   Sisters Welcome Water Reuse Project

Description: The Reclaimed Water System upgrades to the St. Margaret Road WWTP include a disk filter, 1.0 MG Storage Tank w/chlorine contact tank, a high service pump station and ancillary piping and valves. These facilities are required components of the WWTP to improve protection of the Ichetucknee Springs by reducing nitrogen loads to the ground at the Sisters Welcome Road Spray Field.

The upgrades will enable the reclaimed water to be used for irrigation in public areas including subdivisions, parks, etc. Additionally, the use of reclaimed water rather than ozone treated potable water for yard irrigation will reduce the production requirements of the City's Price Creek WTP, conserving groundwater and extending the useful life of the plant.

These facilities are funded in part with a $3.0 Million Grant from the SRWMD.  Future phased expansions of the regional reclaimed water piping grid should make reclaimed water available throughout most of the County. Jones Edmunds is the engineering firm of record for the project.  Responsibility: City Manager, Utilities Director and City Engineer

Status:   Work continues satisfactorily.   The customized filter system was received on October 18, 2010.  Installation of the filter is on going and on schedule for completion by the end of December 2010. 


3)  Airport terminal project

Description:    Construction of a new, 6,000 SF Multi-Use Airport Terminal Building and adjacent asphalt vehicle parking areas, a 1,100 foot access road, a 14,860 square yard aircraft parking apron expansion, storm water retention pond, and associated water and sewer utility installations. 

Funding sources for this project will be from FDOT aviation project funds, the FAA Airport Improvement Program, and the City Airport Construction Account. 

The projected cost of the project is $2,500,000 and Passero Associates, LLC is the design Architect. Responsibility: Executive Director of Administrative Services and Airport General Manager

Status:  The Airport Terminal Building construction has continued smoothly and on schedule through the second month of the project. The excavation of a four acre retention basin and a six thousand square foot building pad are complete.  The building plans include fifty two concrete pads which will support the vertical steel columns in the building structure.

Terminal foundation December 1, 2010


4)   CDBG housing rehabilitation Projects

A.  Description:  DCA Contract No. O8DB-T3-03-22-02-NE1
A Disaster Grant for replacement and rehabilitation of homes damaged or destroyed during the March 2007 tornado.  Requirements are to be included Damage Assessment list determined after the event and be the owner and occupant.  Responsibility:  Growth Management Director

Status:  Five homes have been demolished with replacement homes completed. There are three replacement homes currently in progress.  Four homes that were rehab projects are complete.    Overall, this project is approximately 95 % complete.  The final unit has been awarded and is ready to commence.  Addition of this unit may require a DCA contract extension due to the original contractor requesting to withdraw his bid and re-awarding to the next low bid.

B.  Description:    DCA Contract No. O8DB-T3-03-22-02-NE1
A Disaster Grant for replacement and rehabilitation of homes damaged or destroyed during the March 2007 tornado.  Requirements are to be included Damage Assessment list determined after the event and be the owner and occupant.  Responsibility:  Growth Management Director

Status:   The City requested DCA approval of a six month extension (from December 2010 to June 2011) on this project to allow the City to complete additional units and all indications are the extension will be granted.   The City has completed nine (9) houses as of this report.  The City will have additional grant funds of approximately $200,000 and proposes to address rehabilitation of other dwelling units on the approved list.  There are five (5) applicants on the list.  



Description:  Beginning in late September 2009, the City demonstrated its interest and publicly committed to participation in a redevelopment relationship with the Blanche Hotel ownership.  The CRA has continued discussions with the owners regarding discretionary planning decisions on this initiative. Responsibility: City Manager and CRA Administrator

Status:  The City continues to assess a variety of possibilities for redevelopment of the Blanche.  The process continues with recent discussions with a viable investment prospect and exploration of a public/private relationship with Shands Hospital and Gateway College.  At this time, the plans for a cost/risk assessment are being discussed with the prospect.



Description:  With the diminishing quality of groundwater in the Woodborough Subdivision, several residents have requested that the city provide water service.

Woodborough is a residential subdivision located approximately 2.5 miles Northwest of Highway 90 off of Lake Jeffery road. The City currently has available a 12” water main on Lake Jeffery Rd across from the subdivision.    Henry Sheldon is the engineer of record for the project.  Construction cost will be paid by a “per lot” assessment with estimated cost per parcel as high as $7,000.00.  Responsibility: City Manager, Utilities Director, Water Distribution/Wastewater Collection Director and City Engineer.

Status:   A change has been made in the initial approach in providing water to the residents of Woodborough.  The first phase consists of an 8” main along Scenic Lake Drive. The method of installation will be directional drill. A slight change in the resident’s part of the project contributions has been calculated ($4,500.00). The first phase has been designed and staff is currently working on the completion of plan and profile drawings that will be used in obtaining an FDEP construction permit.
No change since last report.



Description:  The former Lake City Water Works Plant located at 298 SE Clements Place has been out of service for well over 20-years.  The building structure was most recently used by the Seniors Citizens Association who vacated the facility following construction of the new Lifestyle Enrichment Center.

Due to vandalism and prolonged exposure to the elements, the building structures have deteriorated beyond repair.    The only disposition is to demolish all structures.   Responsibility: City Manager and Executive Director of Utilities

Status:  On November 1, 2010 the Council authorized Staff to publish a request for proposals (RFP) for complete demolition of all structures located on the site.  The RFP shall also include the site clearing of all heavy over-growth of brush as well as the back-filling of the low-lift cistern and clear-well storage areas.    The asbestos assessment was completed on December 1, 2010.   Proposals will be taken during the next 30 days and a contract for demolition should be awarded during January 2011.



Description:    CIP funding approved by the City Council for FY11 totals $9,030,449.00.   This amount equates to 22.20% of the City’s annual budget and represents a 164% increase over the FY10 CIP Budget of $3,422,486.00.  Responsibility: City Manager and all Department Directors.

Status:    The CIP Schedule follows and will be updated on a monthly basis:










FISCAL YEAR 2010 - 2011




General Fund








Police Vehicles (8)


$       244,727


Police Upgrades & Equipment


$         17,500


Growth Management Equipment


$           1,500


Public Works - Street, Sidewalk & Drainage Improvements


$       193,000


Public Works - Equipment


$       257,667


Public Works Facilities Equipment


$           4,000


Recreation Equipment


$           3,475


Purchasing Equipment


$           3,167


Fleet Building Improvements & Equipment


$         19,967




$       745,003







Airport Fund








New Airport Terminal


$    2,702,875


Airport Improvements


$         15,000


Airport Equipment


$       140,000




$     2,857,875









Water - Sewer Fund




New Wastewater Plant


$    1,860,000


Utility Maintenance - Upgrades


$       115,000


Utility Maintenance - Equipment


$           5,600


Sewer Collections - Upgrades


$       526,873


Sewer Collections - Equipment


$         26,200


Sewer Collections - Sanitary Sewer Cleaner Vehicle


$       210,000


Sewer Collections - Backhoe


$         78,000




$      2,821,673






Wastewater Equipment


$         17,250


Wastewater Upgrades


$         64,841


Wastewater Improvements


$         10,000




$          92,091






Water Distribution Easements


$           5,000


Water Distribution Water Mains/Extensions


$    1,192,740


Water Distribution Upgrades & Replacement Program


$       195,000


Water Distribution Equipment


$       144,600




$     1,537,340






Water Treatment Plant Equipment


$           6,000




$         6,000








$      4,457,104






Fire Equipment


$         14,270


Fire Engine


$         50,000




$         64,270






CRA Property Acquisition


$       150,000


CRA Re-Development Grant & Façade Grant


$       250,000


CRA Street Upgrades & Demolition//Code Enforcement


$       150,000




$       550,000






Justice Grant Equipment


$         56,197




$       56,197






Natural Gas Extensions & Upgrades


$       199,700


Natural Gas Cathodic Protection


$         50,000


Natural Gas Equipment


$         50,300




$       300,000












$   9,030,449




Description:  The CRA of the City of Lake City has retained the IBI Group, Inc. to prepare a Master Plan Update for the Community Redevelopment Area.   The primary goal is to update the Master Plan to address all aspects of development within the City’s CRA District, including architectural standards, densities and intensity, signage, parking, public uses, open space, historic preservation, gateway enhancement, etc.  Responsibility:   City Manager and CRA Administrator

Status:  The IBI Group, Inc. was chosen by the CRA as the top ranked firm to prepare the Plan Update.  The City Staff has completed negotiations with IBI representatives for a not-to-exceed fee of $94,100 and the contract was submitted to the CRA and approved on April 5, 2010, September 7, 2010.

The IBI Group Agreement for Professional Services was approved by the CRA Board during September 2010.  This will extend their original contract date an extra two months to complete a Finding of Necessity supporting expansion of the CRA boundaries and to include any expansion into the Plan Update.

Once all the statistics have been analyzed a recommendation will be submitted to the CRA and City Council for approval of the expansion of the boundaries.  Once this is complete IBI Group, Inc. will then continue drafting the CRA Master Plan Update.  


Description:   The City retained WHH Engineering to provide professional services associated with a review of the existing user rates and charges for natural gas services.  The deliverable is a rate study report entitled Updated Natural Gas System Rate Study 2009. Responsibility: City Manager, Utilities Director and Executive Director of Administrative Services

Status:  The updated Gas System Rate study was completed by WHH Enterprises during June 2010 and was approved by the City Council on August 16, 2010.   The implementation ordinance will be submitted for Council consideration and first reading on January 3, 2011.  Public notice requirements for Gas Rate adjustments are being publicized during December 2010. 



Description:  Centralizing emergency dispatch for City Fire, City PD, County Fire, County EMS and County Sheriff’s Department into a single unit with CAD, radio and phone interoperability. This will enhance the 911 process. Teams have been established within each included organization to work with technology, building construction and site redundancy to accomplish the project goal.   Responsibility: Fire Chief, Police Chief and IT Director

Status:     The project continues to move forward.  A letter was sent from the City to Columbia County on December 1, 2010 recommending the formation of a Joint City/County work group to review and examine areas that can be enhanced. The work group should address the following:

·         Governance of the CCC (Combined Communications Center)
·         Goals and objectives of the CCC
·         Establishing performance metrics to measure the efficiency and effectiveness of the CCC
·         Management of the 9-1-1 system and 9-1-1 surcharge revenue
·         The development of a CCC Technology Master Plan
·         CCC operations
·         Processes to be employed to enhance CCC operations and problem resolution
·         Roles and responsibilities of all CCC stakeholders
·         Cost breakdown of the CCC including recurring costs



Description:   The Lake City Police Department has applied through the Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation (CFA) for full compliance.  In 1993, Florida Statute 943.125 directed that the Florida Sheriffs Association and the Florida Police Chiefs Association create a voluntary law enforcement accreditation program.

 Representatives from these associations developed a process for accreditation which required compliance with more than 250 professional standards designed specifically for Florida law enforcement agencies.   Responsibility:   Police Chief

Status:    The Accreditation “Kick-Off” was held on February 17, 2010 and the process is fully underway.   The LCPD has up to two years to attain accreditation.    



Description:  The City’s old Personnel Policy Manual was dated 1995 and supplemented by over 30 administrative directives.  The purpose of the manual is to provide “current” information regarding working conditions, employee benefits, and other policies affecting City employment and to establish uniform guidelines concerning all City personnel activities.

Status:   The Manual was updated by the Staff and approved by the City Council on November 15, 2010.   The Manual has been distributed and orientation for City employees was completed on December 1 and 2, 2010.  This will be the final report on this Activity.



Description:    The City has a general purpose vehicle fleet of just over 100 vehicles which serve the needs of all Departments with exception of public safety.    The average age of these vehicles is 10.5 years with many vehicles in excess of 15 years old.  The City evaluated the feasibility of a structured Fleet Leasing and Management Program designed to enhance annual operating and maintenance costs and to improve the image of the City’s overall fleet.

Enterprise Fleet Services, Inc. was selected during April 2010 to provide this service.

Responsibility:  City Manager and Executive Director of Administrative Services.

Status:  The City Council has accepted the Master Lease Services Agreement subject to final review by the Staff and approval by the City Attorney.  The City’s first 30 vehicles are on order and will be delivered during December 2010.    

This work by the Columbia County Observer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.

Comments  (to add a comment go here)

New Meeting Calendar New

Make a comment • click here •
All comments are displayed at the end of the article and are moderated.