Council Member Keller was at the Supervisor of Elections canvassing the votes. Council Member Mead was out of town.
The vote to approve the agenda as presented carried unanimously.
Pastor Jonathan Sansom and Council Member Amy Jamieson, representing the Blessing of the Emerald Coast, presented a check for $400.00 to the Fort Walton Beach Police Department, with Police Chief Ed Ryan accepting the check.
The vote on the motion to approve the Consent Agenda carried unanimously.
Recommendation for City Council to accept the proposed settlement agreement between the City of Fort Walton Beach and the Bennison/Middleton parties.
1.1. A prior employee with the City of Fort Walton Beach was involved in an accident involving the Bennison/Middleton parties.
2.1. The City of Fort Walton Beach, through its insurer, Preferred Governmental Insurance Trust, is recommending settlement of the Bennison/Middleton claim against the City of Fort Walton Beach prior to any lawsuit being filed.
2.2. Auto Liability/Physical Damage – protects the City against claims resulting from personal injury or physical damage to other autos and damage to city-owned vehicles. The auto liability coverage has a $25,000 per occurrence deductible. The City’s exposure for this incident is $25,000.
3. FINANCIAL INFORMATION:
3.1. The out-of-pocket expenses for the City for this settlement agreement is the $25,000 deductible per the City’s auto liability insurance coverage. Sufficient funding for this settlement is available in General Fund Balance.
4. LEGAL REVIEW
4.1. After review of the facts and discussions with the attorneys assigned the case by Preferred Governmental Insurance Trust, the City Attorney believes it is in the City’s best interest to attempt to resolve this matter pre-suit as outlined in the settlement agreements.
5.1. Staff respectfully recommends City Council accept the settlement agreements and to utilize General Fund Balance for the $25,000 deductible the City is responsible for.
Recommends City Council adoption of Resolution 2017-4 to amend the FY 2016-17 budget for the General, CRA, Utilities and Perpetual Care Funds.
1.1. Resolution 2016-17, adopting the budget for FY 2016-17, was adopted by City Council on September 21, 2016. The resolution provides for amendments to the budget by resolution with identification of expenditures and a corresponding revenue source.
2.1. Due to the timing of the budget adoption, certain carryover amounts may change as a result of revenues received or expenses incurred after budget adoption. Therefore, these carryovers are adopted via a budget amendment after the final accounts payable run has posted for the prior fiscal year.
2.2. In addition, certain expenditures are made after the end of the fiscal year, as a result of department residuals.
2.3. The budget amendment includes the following items:
2.3.1. GENERAL FUND - A budget amendment in the amount of $32,695 is proposed for trimming and removals as needed for City wide tree maintenance, $70,722 is proposed for Facilities Master Plan, and $39,625 is proposed for Tennis Court resurfacing and repairs from unrestricted fund balance for purchases previously approved by City Council.
2.3.2. CRA FUND - A budget amendment in the amount of $29,179 is proposed for the CRA Façade Grant at 131 Hospital Drive NE as previously approved by City Council and $38,695 for CRA grant lien payoff for 111 Ferry Road SE. A budget amendment in the amount of $75,000 is proposed for the Downtown Master Plan, as approved by City Council on January 10, 2017.
2.3.3. UTILITIES FUND – A budget amendment in the amount of $235,683 is proposed to cover current year projects. These projects are able to be funded because the Utility came in under budget for expenses in the prior year.
2.3.4. BEAL MEMORIAL CEMETERY FUND – A budget amendment in the amount of ($22,350) is proposed to correct an error in the adopted budget for the Fund, thereby reducing the overall expense of the Fund.
3. FINANCIAL INFORMATION:
3.1. The total amount of the budget amendment is $499,519.
4.1. Staff respectfully recommends City Council adoption of Resolution 2017-4 amending the FY 2016-17 budget.
WHEREAS, Resolution 2016-17, adopted on September 21, 2016 authorizes amendments to the FY 2016-17 budget by resolution.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF FORT WALTON BEACH, FLORIDA THAT:
Section 1. There is appropriated $143,042 from unrestricted fund balance, increasing the General Fund budget to $20,469,858.
Section 2. There is appropriated $143,144 from restricted fund balance, increasing the CRA Fund to $2,128,350.
Section 3. There is appropriated $235,683 from unrestricted net assets, increasing the Utilities Fund to $10,941,806.
Section 4. There is appropriated ($22,350) from restricted fund balance, decreasing the Beal Memorial Cemetery Perpetual Care Fund to $62,468.
Section 5. This Resolution shall take effect immediately upon approval by City Council and signature of the Mayor.
Adopted by the City Council on this 14th day of March, 2017.
The Mayor read Resolution 2017-4 by title.
The City Manager informed the resolution provides for amendments as carryover amounts to the budget for projects and/or expenditures previously approved by Council.
The vote on the motion to adopt Resolution 2017-4 carried unanimously.
Recommends City Council adoption of Resolution 2017-5 to urge all members of the Florida Legislature to oppose HB 17 and SB 1158 which preempts local business regulations and prohibits local government from imposing or adopting any new regulations on businesses unless expressly authorized by the Legislature.
1.1. The 2017 Legislative Session began on March 7, 2017 and lasts for 60 days. Prior to the start of the Session, numerous bills were filed in both the House of Representatives and Senate that would preempt the Home Rule Authority of local governments.
1.2. In the first week of Session, Home Rule Authority has been attacked through bills related to terminating Community Redevelopment Agencies (CRAs), allowing wireless communications companies to install equipment and infrastructure within public rights-of-way with no local government regulatory authority, and a total preemption of local government authority to regulate businesses.
2.1. HB 17, filed by Representative Fine and co-sponsored by Representative Renner, was filed on January 31, 2017 and was referred to only two (2) committees: the Careers and Competition Subcommittee and the Commerce Committee.
2.1.1. The title of HB 17 is Local Regulation Preemption.
2.1.2. The bill summary states, “Prohibits certain local governments from imposing or adopting certain regulations on businesses, professions, & occupations after certain date; preempts to state regulations concerning businesses, professions, & occupations; provides exceptions to preemption”.
2.1.3. The bill does not allow the adoption of any new regulations for businesses after January 1, 2017 and would require all current regulations to expire on January 1, 2020 unless the regulation is expressly authorized by the State.
2.1.4. HB 17 was passed favorably out of the Careers and Competition Subcommittee by a 9-6 vote on February 22, 2017.
2.1.5. The effective date of HB 17 would be July 1, 2017.
2.2. The City has worked diligently to become “business friendly” by amending the entire Land Development Code in 2012, streamlining the permit and development order process, creating a Pre-Application Conference to notify developers of the requirements up front in the development review process, creating a Residential Walkthrough Program to assist builders with obtaining building permits in a timely manner, and other programs, such as reducing impact fees.
2.2.1. If this bill is adopted by the Legislature and the Governor, all of the positive progress the City has made in the last five plus years will be nullified.
2.3. A Senate companion bill, SB 1158, was filed by Senator Passidomo on February 23, 2017 and was referred to four (4) committees: Commerce and Tourism, Community Affairs, Appropriations, and Rules.
2.3.1. The title of SB 1158 is Regulation of Commerce, Trade, and Labor.
2.3.2. The bill summary states, “Regulation of Commerce, Trade, and Labor; Reserving to the state the exclusive right to regulate matters of commerce, trade, and labor under certain circumstances; prohibiting counties, municipalities, and special districts from engaging in specified actions that regulate commerce, trade, or labor, unless otherwise expressly authorized to do so by special or general law; providing that an ordinance, rule, or regulation that violates a specified provision is null and void, etc.”.
2.4. Resolution 2017-5 expresses City Council’s opposition to HB 17 and SB 1158 and requests members of the Florida Legislature to oppose these bills. If adopted, the Resolution will be forwarded to the Okaloosa County League of Cities, the Northwest Florida League of Cities, the Florida League of Cities, the local legislative delegation, and the bill sponsors.
3.1. There is no immediate financial impact from the adoption of Resolution 2017-5. However, the City’s Home Rule Authority is at stake.
4.1. Staff respectfully recommends City Council adoption of Resolution 2017-5 urging the Florida Legislature to oppose HB 17 and SB 1158, which preempts local government business regulations and prohibits the adoption of new business regulations unless expressly authorized by the State, which is a major threat to Home Rule Authority.
WHEREAS, Cities are voluntarily created and chartered by their citizens as the embodiment of local self-determination; and
WHEREAS, In 1968, Florida voters amended the state constitution to confer broad “Home Rule” powers to municipal government, under Article VIII, Section 2(b); and
WHEREAS, municipalities have the power to act for any valid municipal purpose except as prohibited by law; and
WHEREAS, a municipality’s ability to timely act on local problems and opportunities will be limited by HB 17 and SB 1158 to a state Legislature that holds session only once a year, and whose ability to address local problems will be contingent on the relative effectiveness of its representative in the state Legislature; and
WHEREAS, HB 17 and SB 1158 contradicts the will of the people of Florida, who expressed an unequivocal desire for broad Home Rule powers in their state constitution; and
WHEREAS, HB 17 and SB 1158 undercut the intent of municipal citizens, who voted to incorporate their communities and exercise the broad Home Rule powers granted by the Florida Constitution to govern themselves and, thereby, effectively address the unique concerns of their communities; and
WHEREAS, HB 17 and SB 1158 could impair municipal charter provisions specifically adopted and approved by local voters to define their preferred form of self-government and safeguard issues of perennial importance to their communities; and
WHEREAS, state legislators may find themselves spending increasing amounts of time arbitrating over local problems and legislating on local issues, and less time attending to pressing statewide needs; and
WHEREAS, the City Council believes the opposition of HB 17 and SB 1158 would be in the best interests of the residents and businesses of the City of Fort Walton Beach and the State of Florida.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF FORT WALTON BEACH, FLORIDA, THAT:
Section 1. The foregoing “WHEREAS” clauses are hereby ratified and confirmed as being true and correct and are incorporated herein by this reference.
Section 2. The City Council of the City of Fort Walton Beach urges all members of the Florida Legislature to oppose the adoption of HB 17 and SB 1158.
Section 3. All Resolutions or parts of Resolutions in conflict herewith, be and the same are repealed to the extent of such conflict.
Section 4. If any section, sentence, clause or phrase of this Resolution is held to be invalid or unconstitutional by any court of contempt jurisdiction, then said holding shall in no way affect the validity of the remaining portions of this Resolution.
Section 5. Transmittal of Resolution
Upon City Council approval of this Resolution, the adopted Resolution will be forwarded to the Okaloosa County League of Cities, Northwest Florida League of Cities, the Florida League of Cities, the Okaloosa County Legislative Delegation, the bill sponsors, and any other interested parties.
Section 6. Effective Date
This Resolution shall become effective upon adoption by City Council and signature of the Mayor.
The Mayor read Resolution 2017-5 by title.
The City Manager advised that during the first week of the 2017 Legislative Session, Home Rule Authority has been attacked through bills related to terminating Community Redevelopment Agencies (CRAs), allowing wireless communications companies to install equipment and infrastructure within public rights-of-way with no local government regulatory authority, and a total preemption of local government authority to regulate businesses.
He discusse two bills the City is concerned about. HB 17 is the local regulation preemption and SB 1158 is regulation of commerce, trade and labor. The City Manager noted the City has worked diligently to become 'business friendly' and he has spent time in Tallahssee testifying against these two proposed bills.
Resolution 2017-5 expresses City Council’s opposition to HB 17 and SB 1158 and requests members of the Florida Legislature to oppose these bills. If adopted, the Resolution will be forwarded to the Okaloosa County League of Cities, the Northwest Florida League of Cities, the Florida League of Cities, the local legislative delegation, and the bill sponsors.
The vote on the motion to adopt Resolution 2017-5 carried unanimously.
Recommends adoption of Ordinance 1971 to amend Chapter 2 and Chapter 5 of the Land Development Code (LDC) to include boatyard as a permitted use with supplemental standards in the MX-2 and CTP zoning districts.
1.1. On March 23, 2012, City Council approved Ordinance 1861 to adopt a new Land Development Code for the City of Fort Walton Beach.
1.1.1. The 2012 Land Development Code (LDC) went into effect on May 1, 2012.
1.2. On February 13, 2017, the Engineering and Utility Services Department received an application for a Land Development Code Text Amendment to allow Boatyards as an allowable use with supplemental standards in certain zoning districts.
1.3. Staff reviewed and evaluated the requested LDC changes to ensure consistency with the Code of Ordinances and Comprehensive Plan.
2.1. Land Development Code (LDC) Section 2.3.02 Table of Permissible Uses was revised to include Boatyard as a permitted “S” use in MX-2 and CTP Zoning Districts. The letter “S” indicates the use is permitted in the specified zoning district subject to Supplemental Standards, which are located in Chapter 5 of the Land Development Code.
2.1.1. The mixed-use high intensity (MX-2) zoning district is established to provide for a wide variety of land uses, including multi-family structures, commercial and office uses, artisan studios, and cottage industries. Accessory uses for residential developments include onsite amenities, such as recreation facilities, carports, garages, storage buildings, parking lots, transit stops, and community buildings. Accessory uses for nonresidential developments include such onsite amenities as parking lots, parking structures, storage buildings, or transit stops. Open space in the form of plazas and courtyards may be provided. Waterfront locations may include accessory uses such as docks, boardwalks, or facilities for direct water access to support water-dependent uses. Uses within the MX-2 zoning district may be mixed within one (1) parcel or lot and may be mixed within one (1) building. The intensity and density of a boatyard is consistent with types of land uses permitted within the MX-2 Zoning District.
2.1.2. The commerce and technology park (CTP) zoning district is established to provide locations for a wide range of industrial and high-tech industrial activities that may be carried out primarily within a building or an enclosed outside space. Included in this zoning district are assembly, fabrication, processing, repair, warehousing or storage, distribution, intense industrial activities that may be associated with nuisance or pollution, and ancillary uses directly associated with the industrial activities such as office operations. Onsite administrative and operations offices for industrial activities are permissible. Permissible uses may be mixed on a development site or within a single building. Accessory uses and structures include parking lots or structures, plazas, courtyards, fences, hedges, walls, dumpsters, storage buildings, transit stops, and may include employee support facilities such as fitness centers, day care centers, or cafeterias. Residential uses are prohibited, except that one (1) onsite caretaker dwelling may be permissible. Freestanding commercial and office uses are prohibited. The intensity and density of a boatyard is consistent with types of land uses permitted within the Zoning District.
2.2. Land Development Code (LDC) Section 5.04.00 Supplemental Standards for Specific Uses was revised to include supplemental standards for boatyards, including the following requirements:
2.2.1. Language includes specific provisions to define the allowable work and services within a boatyard to include various service, repair and maintenance as a primary use with specific subordinate or accessory uses such as fuel sales, boat sales and storage.
2.2.2. Language includes requirements to address any flammable or hazardous materials onsite.
2.2.3. Language includes specific buffering requirements between adjacent uses such as visible screening from adjacent properties and the proximity of uses on site relative to adjacent properties. Limitations on the allowable hours for the emission of noise were also included.
2.2.4. Further, language was included to address the minimum distance between similar boatyard uses.
3.1. There is no direct financial impact to the City.
4.1. Staff respectfully recommends that the Local Planning Agency make a recommendation to City Council to approve Ordinance No. 1971, which requests an amendment to Chapter 2 and Chapter 5 of the City’s Land Development Code to allow Boatyards as a permitted use in the MX-2 and CTP zoning districts with supplemental standards.
Section 1. Authority and Intent
The authority for enactment of this ordinance is contained in Chapter 166.021, 163.3202, and other provisions of the Florida Statutes and Section 2 of the City Charter.
Section 2. Amendment of Section 2.03.00 – Land Uses Permissible in Each Zoning District
Table 2.03.02 – Table of Permissible Uses is hereby amended as follows:
Principle Land Uses:
Duplex or triplex structure
Manufactured homes in parks
Adult-Oriented Uses, including book stores, movie stores, theaters, entertainment, and retail stores
Alcohol package store, no consumption on premises
Animal hospital or veterinary clinic
Arenas, band shell, amphitheater, outdoor performance area
Asphalt or concrete plant
Bait and tackle
Barber, beauty salon, nail salons, aesthetician, skin care salon and similar
Bed and breakfast lodging
Building materials, building supply, enclosed lumber yard
Building materials, outdoor storage, onsite lumber processing
Business support services, such as copying, mailing, printing, private mail service
Car wash or detailing facility
Community center, club, or lodge
Cultural facility, such as library, museum, or gallery
Day-care (child), nursery school, kindergarten, or pre-kindergarten
Day care, adult
Distribution centers, may include warehousing, dispatch offices, vehicle yards
Drug stores and pharmacies
Dry storage for watercraft
Essential public services
Farmer's market, outdoor sales, roadside vendors
Financial institutions, banks, credit unions, brokerages, no drive-up window
Financial institutions, banks, credit unions, brokerages, with drive-up window
Financial Institutions, Nonchartered, such as payday loan establishments and check-cashing facilities
Food stores, specialty, such as bakeries, candy, ethnic groceries, catering services
Fortune tellers and psychics
Freight and moving companies
Fuel/gasoline station, may include convenience store, restaurant, automotive supplies, but not repair
Funeral homes, mortuaries, crematoria
Garden, community or neighborhood
Grocery store, supermarket
Group home, congregate living facility and similar uses
Health clubs, exercise clubs, spas, gyms
Hotels, motels, inns and similar lodging facilities
Ice vending machine
Industrial uses, heavy industry with nuisance factors, such as odor, noise, vibration, electronic interference
Junk or salvage yards, recycling facilities
Kennel with outdoor runs
Kennel, no outdoor runs
Landscaping materials, plants, stone, mulch, gravel, supplies, greenhouse, nursery yards
Laundry facility, self-service
Lounge, bar, or nightclub
Manufacturing, and intense industrial activities, includes production, fabrication, assembly, may include outdoor storage, includes bottling plant, dry cleaning plant, gas and fuel storage and wholesaling
Manufacturing, light assembly, fully enclosed building
Marinas, including fuel, supplies, docking, boat ramps
Medical and dental clinics, outpatient facilities
Medical facility for recovery or rehabilitation services, includes substance abuse center, physical or mental rehabilitation, overnight stays
Nursing home or convalescent facility, overnight stay
Offices, general, includes offices for trades or construction businesses
Parking lot or parking garage, commercial
Personal services, such as jewelry repair, shoe repair, tailoring, dry cleaning pick-up center
Professional offices, accounting, government operations, legal services, bookkeeping, realtors, brokers, insurance, etc.
Public service facilities such as fire stations, emergency services, or public works, includes vehicle storage and maintenance
Recreation, indoor, such as pool, bowling, game rooms, video arcades
Recreation, indoor, intense, such as skating rinks, indoor shooting range, indoor kart tracks, and similar
Recreation, outdoor, active, such as sports fields, courts, playgrounds
Recreation, outdoor, intense, such as go-karts, miniature golf, lighted courts and fields, water slides, boat ramps, and similar amusements
Recreation, outdoor, passive, such as picnic areas, trails, open spaces, includes botanical gardens
Repair shops, small equipment, small appliances
Restaurants, indoor, enclosed outdoor seating, without drive-up windows
Restaurants, drive-up and fast food
Retail shops, freestanding or within centers, includes department stores or specialty shops, such as art, antiques, furniture, florist, appliances, jewelry, books, electronic media, office supplies, automotive supplies, etc.
Retail, large-scale discount establishments, big-box stores
RV, motor homes, travel trailers, or manufactured home sales lot
Schools, academic, charter, public or private
Schools, business, commercial, trade, vocational
Self-storage, mini-storage facilities
Stone, granite, monument sales
Studios for personal instruction, such as music, dancing, art, or photography
Tattoo parlors and body-piercing studios
Terminals, bus, transit, includes truck stop
Theaters, movie or performing arts
Towers, radio, TV, telecommunication
Trades, maintenance services, and heavy repair services, including outdoor storage, equipment yards, machine shops, welding shops, towing services
Utility facilities, such as water towers, treatment plants, public wells
Vehicle repair, body shop
Vehicle sales and rentals, including automobiles, trucks, and motorcycles
Vehicles, watercraft rentals
Vehicles, construction, heavy equipment, sales and rental
Vehicles, storage yards
Warehousing, not including self-service storage
Section 3. Amendment of Section 5.04.00 – Supplemental Standards for Specific Uses
Section 5.04.00 – Supplemental Standards for Specific Uses is hereby amended as follows:
5.04.30 - Boatyards.
A. A boatyard may include the following facilities and uses:
The servicing, repairing, and maintaining of marine boats and vessels including, but not limited to: hauling vessels out of the water; lifting and blocking of vessels using marine travel lifts and various other equipment; bottom maintenance, including pressure washing, wet farrow blasting, sanding, stripping, and painting; performing mechanical repairs, replacement and maintenance to all marine gas and diesel engine types, marine transmissions, drive gears, and gear case; repairing or replacing running gear and under water parts including drive shafts, propellers, struts, cutlass bearings, thru-hull fittings and valves, transducers, trim tabs and actuators, rudders, stabilizers, bow thrusters, stern thrusters, keel coolers, keel guards, and water scoops; performing minor and major fiberglass repairs, including sanding, filling, structure fabrication, painting, gelcoat application, buffing, waxing, and polishing; performing sailboat rigging repair or replacement, including mast stepping, rig tuning, and keel repair or replacement; repairing or replacing all ship systems, including electronic equipment, windlasses, deck hardware electrical power systems, steering systems, controls systems, navigation systems, grab rails, hatches, ports, decking, canvass repair or fabrication, upholstery fabrication or repair, T-top and tower repair or fabrication, and miscellaneous welding and fabrication; performing plumbing and tank repairs, upgrades and replacement; detailing vessel interiors and exteriors; and vessel loading/unloading onto transport vehicles. These facilities may also incidentally engage in new and used boat sales; storing and selling of vessels; diesel fuel or gasoline fuel storage and sales; outboard, inboard, diesel engine storage and sales; marina wet slip rental and storage; and engine and boat parts and equipment storage and retail sales as an accessory use.
B. Boatyard operations, including the collection, storage, or handling of hazardous materials shall comply with the standards for industrial activities set forth in Section 4.03.02 of this Land Development Code and all City, State and Federal standards.
C. Where fuel or other hazardous substances will be stored, handled, or sold, the boatyard shall provide facilities and procedures for the prevention, containment, recovery, and mitigation of spilled fuel or other hazardous substances. Facilities and procedures shall be designed to prevent such substances from entering the water or soil, and shall include adequate means for prompt and effective cleanup of spills.
D. All stormwater and waste discharge shall comply with all City, State, and Federal standards.
E. Exterior lighting shall be directed and shielded to avoid illumination of adjacent properties in accordance with the standards in Section 4.09.01 of the LDC.
F. Buildings and Structures:
1. All buildings and structures shall include a finished facade in accordance with Section 4.00.04 of the LDC.
2. Any buildings used for work on boats and vessels shall be enclosed in a roofed building or structure which is enclosed on at least three sides with the open side facing away from any adjacent properties with a residential or transient lodging use.
G. Standards for buffering. There shall be a buffer which is acceptable to the city between it and any residential, multifamily, or transient lodging use.
1. The city shall require a solid wall, fence or landscape buffer. A wall or fence shall be a minimum of six (6) feet in height and meet the standards of Section 5.01.08 of the LDC.
2. The wall or fence shall be solid and the finished side of such wall or fence shall face outward.
3. Where a landscaped buffer is provided, the plants shall include evergreen trees and shrubs. The trees and shrubs shall be planted in double staggered rows to form a continuous screen at least six (6) feet in height.
4. The landscaping shall be maintained to ensure continuation of the vegetative screen. Dead or damaged plant materials shall be replaced as soon as possible based on the growing season.
5. Where the landscaped buffer is not adequately maintained, the City may require replacement of the landscaped buffer with a solid wall or fence.
6. There shall be no outside work performed within twenty-five (25) feet of a property line.
7. Audio amplification systems, including, but not limited to, telephone loudspeakers or paging systems, shall be located to ensure that the sound cannot be heard on adjacent properties.
H. Outdoor boatyard operations.
1. All outdoor boatyard operations shall be buffered in accordance with requirements listed in Section 5.04.30 G. Additional buffering may be required based on adjacent property uses in order to ensure compatibility between adjacent uses.
I. The emission of noise which is a nuisance to adjacent properties shall be limited to the hours of 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM Monday through Saturday.
J. No boatyard shall be located within 5000 feet of another boatyard.
K. There shall be at least one parking space for each 400 sq. ft. of office space, one parking space per employee on the longest shift, and one parking space per service bay.
Section 3. Findings
The City Council of the City of Fort Walton Beach, Florida, finds that the Local Planning Agency reviewed and recommended approval of the ordinance on March 2, 2017.
The City Council of the City of Fort Walton Beach, Florida, finds that the proposed ordinance is consistent with the goals, objectives, and policies of the City’s Comprehensive Plan.
The City Council of the City of Fort Walton Beach, Florida, finds that all notice requirements for enactment of the ordinance have been met in accordance with the Florida Statutes and the City’s Land Development Code.
Section 4. Effective Date
This Ordinance shall take effect immediately upon approval on second reading by City Council and signature of the Mayor.
The City Attorney read ordinance 1971 by title on first reading.
Tim Bolduc, Engineering/Utilities Services Director, advised that the Engineering and Utility Services Department received an application for a Land Development Code Text Amendment to allow Boatyards as an allowable use with supplemental standards in certain zoning districts. Staff reviewed and evaluated the requested LDC changes to ensure consistency with the Code of Ordinances and Comprehensive Plan and discussed these with the applicant. Mr. Bolduc stated that if the ordinance is adopted, it will drastically change a legal nonconformity in the City and improve the appearance of the property.
Attorney John Dowd, representing the applicant, was available to answer any questions the Council might have.
The vote on the motion to adopt Ordinance 1971 on first reading carried unanimously.
Recommends adoption of Ordinance 1972 to amend Chapter 2 and Chapter 5 of the Land Development Code (LDC) to include medical marijuana dispensary as a permitted use with supplemental standards in the CG, MX-1 and MX-2 zoning districts.
1.1. During the 2014 Legislative Session, the Florida Legislature created Section 381.986 of the Florida Statutes authorizing the use of low-THC cannabis for patients with specified illnesses. This became known as the Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act of 2014.
1.1.1. The Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act charged the Florida Department of Health (DOH) with overseeing the regulatory infrastructure for medical cannabis in Florida and resulted in the establishment of the Office of Compassionate Use (OCU) on July 1, 2014.
1.1.2. The OCU is responsible for writing and implementing the Department’s rules for medical cannabis, overseeing the statewide Compassionate Use Registry, and licensing of the Florida businesses to cultivate, process, and dispense medical cannabis to qualified patients.
1.2. Originally, there were five (5) licenses available for companies to cultivate, process, and dispense medical cannabis. The applications for the licenses were received on July 8, 2015, and the five (5) licensees were announced on November 23, 2015.
1.2.1. The State received fourteen (14) challenges to the licensing process.
1.2.2. On April 6, 2016, a sixth license was approved.
1.2.3. Since then, a seventh license has been approved by DOH.
1.3. During the 2016 Legislative Session, Governor Scott signed HB 307, which made several significant changes to the Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act. The changes included the following:
1.3.1. Dispensing organizations are now permitted to cultivate, process, and dispense cannabis with significant levels of the psychoactive ingredient, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Medical cannabis is now defined as cannabis with THC levels above 0.8 percent. Cannabis with THC levels below 0.8 percent is now called low-THC cannabis.
1.3.2. Patients diagnosed with a terminal condition are eligible to receive medical cannabis.
1.4. Patients diagnosed with cancer or a condition that causes chronic seizures or muscle spasms are eligible for low-THC cannabis, but can receive medical cannabis if two (2) physicians have determined the patient’s condition is terminal.
1.5. On the November 8, 2016 General Election Ballot, Amendment 2, which was a voter-initiated constitutional amendment, posed the question of whether to legalize medical marijuana possession and use.
1.5.1. Statewide, Amendment 2 received over 71% support, which was well above the required 60% approval rate for adoption.
1.5.2. In Okaloosa County, 71.65% of the voters approved Amendment 2.
1.5.3. In 2014, a similar ballot question only received a 57.62% approval rate.
1.6. Amendment 2 establishes a caregiver-patient system for medical marijuana distribution, Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers (MMTC), and defines Debilitating Medical Conditions.
1.6.1. Caregivers must be 21 years of age, agree to assist with a patient’s medical marijuana use, and receive a caregiver identification card by the Florida Department of Health. The Amendment does not cap how many caregivers a patient may have or how many patients a caregiver may have.
1.6.2. MMTCs have the authority to acquire, cultivate, process, transport, and sell all marijuana products. The Amendment does not regulate the number of MMTCs allowed to operate.
1.6.3. The Amendment does not cap or limit the amount of medical marijuana a patient may possess or purchase. And, there is no age limit on possession or use of medical marijuana. Minors may use it with parental consent.
1.6.4. Debilitating Medical Conditions include cancer, epilepsy, glaucoma, HIV / AIDS, PTSD, ALS, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis.
1.6.5. The Amendment also allows for “other debilitating medical conditions of the same class as or comparable to those enumerated and for which a physician believes that the medical use of marijuana would likely outweigh the potential health risks for a patient”. The word “comparable” is not defined in the Amendment.
1.7. State Regulation: Amendment 2 requires the DOH to conduct rulemaking within six (6) months of passage, which is around May 9, 2017. The State’s Legislative Session begins on March 7, 2017 and ends on May 5, 2017.
1.8. Physicians: Florida physicians may give a written medical marijuana certification to a patient with a qualifying medical condition. Amendment 2 requires the physician to conduct a physical examination of the patient along with a full assessment of the patient’s medical history prior to giving the certification. There is no cap on the amount of marijuana a physician may recommend or how many certifications a physician may give a patient at one time. There are currently 340 physicians registered with the DOH along with 1,495 patients.
1.9. Public Health & Safety: Amendment 2 does not allow smoking of marijuana in public. However, the word “public” is not defined. The Amendment is also silent as to other forms of consumption beyond smoking.
1.10. Employer Issues: Amendment 2 does not require any employer to allow onsite medical marijuana use. However, the language is silent about off-premise use where an employee arrives to work under the influence of marijuana.
1.11. Financial Impact to State and Local Governments: Amendment 2 indicates there will be additional regulatory costs and enforcement activities associated with the production, sale, use, and possession of medical marijuana. There is no sales or use tax included in the Amendment to offset costs to the state or local governments. And, there is no funding allocated through the Amendment for medical marijuana regulation.
1.12. Federal Law: Even with the adoption of Amendment 2, marijuana remains illegal under federal law. This means that universities cannot conduct research on marijuana and banks cannot take money from marijuana proceeds.
1.13. Local Government Authority: The Amendment is silent as to local government regulation of medical marijuana. It does not give an “opt-out” to local governments who do not wish to have medical marijuana sales within their jurisdiction.
1.13.1. Dispensaries are currently open in Tallahassee, Clearwater, and Tampa with others in the process of opening in Pensacola and other jurisdictions throughout the State.
1.14. There are more than 60 cities statewide that have adopted moratoriums to either ban or restrict dispensaries.
1.15. On January 10, 2017, Staff presented information to City Council on the adoption of Amendment No. 2 to Florida’s Constitution broadening the use of medical marijuana. The amendment was adopted by voters on November 8, 2016 and went into effect on January 3, 2017.
1.16. On January 10, 2017, based on Staff’s recommendation, City Council authorized Staff to develop an ordinance to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries within the City of Fort Walton Beach.
1.17. Staff has been coordinating with the Florida League of Cities (FLC) and the Florida City & County Management Association (FCCMA) to stay current on the status of Amendment 2, which expands the legalization of medical cannabis and was adopted by the voters in the State of Florida on November 8, 2016.
1.18. The City has the opportunity to be at the forefront of the rulemaking at the State level in the 2017 Legislative Session, and has the opportunity to be proactive with rulemaking at the local level.
1.18.1. Because Amendment 2 is a high priority topic in the 2017 Legislative Session, Staff does not recommend adopting a moratorium for dispensaries.
1.18.2. There are current rules in place based on the Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act, and there are model ordinances, both on a city and county level, that the City can use in drafting its own ordinance.
1.18.3. Two (2) bills have already been introduced in the Florida Senate addressing Amendment 2.
1.19. There are many options being used to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries, of which the City can customize an ordinance. Some of the options include the following:
1.19.1. Regulation of dispensaries through zoning and land use.
1.19.2. Regulating the number of dispensaries in an area based on population.
1.19.3. Regulating the number of dispensaries in an area based on distance requirements.
1.19.4. Creating an evaluation ranking system for dispensary applications.
1.19.5. Creating a permit process for dispensaries.
1.19.6. Implementing security and other Land Development Code requirements.
1.20. Local governments are limited in the level of regulation for medical marijuana and can only adopt regulations related to dispensaries. The growing, cultivation, and processing of medical marijuana is currently regulated through Florida Statutes. And, issues such as security and hours of operation are also regulated at the State level.
2.1. Land Development Code (LDC) Section 2.3.02 Table of Permissible Uses was revised to include Medical Marijuana Dispensary as a permitted use in CG, MX-1, and MX-2 Zoning Districts.
2.1.1. The commercial (CG) zoning district is established to provide for offices, a wide range of retail uses, large scale discount centers, personal service uses, day care, light repair (such as small appliances, small equipment, jewelry, shoes, computers and small electronic equipment, etc.), entertainment and hospitality uses, lodging facilities, medical facilities and uses, commercial or trade schools, civic or cultural uses, vehicle sales and rentals, vehicle repair, commercial parking in lots or structures, parks and recreation, and similar activities. Uses may be limited by location due to impacts and compatibility issues. Accessory uses and structures include parking lots and structures, plazas, courtyards, transit stops, and may include employee support facilities such as fitness centers, day care centers, or cafeterias. Prohibited uses include manufacturing, distribution centers, or similar industrial activities. Residential uses are prohibited, except that one (1) onsite caretaker dwelling may be permissible. The intensity and density of a Medical Marijuana Dispensary is consistent with types of land uses permitted within the CG Zoning District.
2.1.2. The mixed-use medium intensity (MX-1) zoning district is established to provide for a wide variety of land uses, including single-family housing, multifamily structures, commercial and office uses, artisan studios, and cottage industries. Accessory uses for residential developments include onsite amenities, such as recreation facilities, carports, garages, storage buildings, parking lots, transit stops, and community buildings. Accessory uses for nonresidential developments include such onsite amenities as parking lots, parking structures, storage buildings, or transit stops. Open space in the form of plazas and courtyards may be provided. Waterfront locations may include accessory uses such as docks, boardwalks, or facilities for direct water access to support water-dependent uses. Uses within the MX-1 zoning district may be mixed within one (1) parcel or lot and may be mixed within one (1) building. The intensity and density of a Medical Marijuana Dispensary is consistent with types of land uses permitted within the MX-1 Zoning District.
2.1.3. The mixed-use high intensity (MX-2) zoning district is established to provide for a wide variety of land uses, including multifamily structures, commercial and office uses, artisan studios, and cottage industries. Accessory uses for residential developments include onsite amenities, such as recreation facilities, carports, garages, storage buildings, parking lots, transit stops, and community buildings. Accessory uses for nonresidential developments include such onsite amenities as parking lots, parking structures, storage buildings, or transit stops. Open space in the form of plazas and courtyards may be provided. Waterfront locations may include accessory uses such as docks, boardwalks, or facilities for direct water access to support water-dependent uses. Uses within the MX-2 zoning district may be mixed within one (1) parcel or lot and may be mixed within one (1) building. The intensity and density of a Medical Marijuana Dispensary is consistent with types of land uses permitted within the MX-2 Zoning District.
2.2. Land Development Code (LDC) Section 5.04.00 Supplemental Standards for Specific Uses was revised to include supplemental standards for medical marijuana dispensary, including the following:
2.2.1. Specific provisions to allow for a retail establishment, licensed by the Florida Department of Health, as a medical marijuana dispensing organization that sells and dispenses medical marijuana, but does not engage in any other activity related to preparation, wholesale storage, distribution, transfer, cultivation, or processing of any form of marijuana or marijuana product, and does not allow on-site consumption of marijuana.
3.1. There is no immediate cost associated with developing an ordinance related to medical marijuana.
3.2. Some projections show that the State of Florida will log more than $1 billion in medical marijuana sales by 2019 and surpass Colorado within four (4) years.
4.1. Staff respectfully recommends that the Local Planning Agency make a recommendation to City Council to approve Ordinance No. 1972, which requests an amendment to Chapter 2 and Chapter 5 of the City’s Land Development Code to include Medical Marijuana Dispensary as a permitted use with supplemental standards in the CG, MX-1, and MX-2 zoning districts.
Adult-Oriented Uses, including book stores, movie stores, theaters, entertainment,and retail stores