CLEARWATER – The Clearwater City Council on Aug. 20 approved a $750,000 cooperative funding agreement with the Southwest Florida Water Management District and awarded a $199,876 contract to URS Corporation for doing the work. Both measures pertain to a project to bring reclaimed water to homes that want it but do not currently have it, and the city and SFWMD have agreed to split the $1.5 million cost of the project.
“The goal of this and all other reclaimed water projects is to reduce the amount of potable water and groundwater being used for irrigation and other nonpotable uses,” a staff memo to the council explained. “In addition, expansion of the Reclaimed Water Distribution System in accordance with (the) Reclaimed Water Master Plan brings the city of Clearwater closer to achieving zero-discharge of effluent to Tampa Bay and adjacent surface waters.”
Users of the reclaimed water from the project will be 11 residences along Jasmine Way, 24 on Parkwood Street, four on Carlos Avenue, 17 along Druid Road and four on Drew Street. Ninety-four residences, including all of the Forest Wood Estates subdivision and two adjacent properties, will benefit from the project. And there will be nine lawn meters in the Imperial Cove Condominiums, located at 19209 U.S. 19 N.
City standardizes right-of-way beautification rules
CLEARWATER – A few decades ago, when new housing developments were springing up faster than weeds in a garden, many of the developers wanted to put up their own fancy signs on city right-of-ways to lure in prospective buyers.
Eventually, the city had a hodgepodge of 18 right-of-way beautification agreements with developers regarding such signs. Those agreements required the developers to do such things as maintain the signs and the grass around them, and to maintain insurance that would indemnify the city against lawsuits brought by plaintiffs alleging that they were injured because the sign blocked their view of oncoming cars, or similar accusations. But only two of the 18 subdivisions actually bought the requisite insurance.
As the subdivisions filled up, developers were replaced by homeowners’ associations that were supposed to keep up the terms of their agreements with the city. But the two associations that have insurance say that they can no longer afford it because the premiums are doubling from $150 to $300 a year.
The new agreement that was adopted eliminates the insurance requirement from the eight agreements that still exist. The city, which is self-insured, will deal with any lawsuits that may arise.
New parking ticket processing contract awarded
CLEARWATER – With the city’s parking ticket processing contract with Citation Management, a division of Professional Asset Management LLC due to expire on Sept. 30, city officials invited bids from companies interested in the job. A selection committee of city staffers recommended that Data Ticket Inc., based in Newport Beach, California, be hired for the job, and on Aug. 20, the Clearwater City Council ratified that recommendation.
Data Ticket will receive a one-year contract, with two renewal options that will expire on September 30, 2017. The company will get a $1.29 fee for each of the approximately 32,000 citations that are processed annually, and a 23 percent collection fee will be added for all citations that are not paid within 31 days.
“The estimated annual cost to the city under the proposed contract is $41,170,” a staff memo to the council explains. “Staff anticipates approximately $18,500 in additional start-up costs during the first year of the contract.”