Flagler County Administrator Heidi Petito will be paid $179,000, or $14,000 more than her predecessor, a raise Commissioner Andy Dance said had not been discussed by the commission. He was interested in setting up goals and incentives and a stronger evaluation process for the administrator. His four colleagues were not interested.
Flagler County Commission
Flagler County officials have required of the new owners of the old Country Hearth Inn on Old Dixie Highway to pay a $250,000 cash bond and reassure the county that the renovation project of a property that has long vexed officials and residents is still on track, after missing a key August deadline.
The Flagler County Commission today voted 3-1 to reject adoption of a controversial land-use amendment that would have allowed marinas in such areas as Scenic A1A, in essence further clearing the way for a controversial 240-boat storage facility next to Hammock Hardware. The vote was the latest victory for the Hammock Community Association, which has been opposing the already litigated facility.
Commissioner Andy Dance wasn’t opposed to Heidi Petito’s appointment, which was not a surprise, but to the haphazard manner in which Commissioner Greg Hansen brought it up, at the end of the meeting, when the matter was not on the agenda. It was yet another reflection of a commission inclined to bypass process for improvisation.
With $25 million still sitting idle, awaiting a go-ahead to rebuild 2.6 miles of dunes in Flagler Beach, Flagler County government is down to securing signatures for easements from just two hold-outs after two years of efforts. The county is hoping it will keep its 104-year streak going of never having to invoke eminent domain proceedings against a county property owner.
Pandering to home builders, the Flagler County Commission is rashly scuttling the school district’s plan to double impact fees on new construction for the first time since 2005, even though the county is doubling its own impact fees. It’s an unjustified and hypocritical assault on district planning and future student needs.
The Flagler County Commission is preparing to approve an amendment to a land-use ordinance that would allow marinas in the Scenic A1A district, opening the way for a 240-boat storage facility that court decisions and the Hammock Community Association have blocked for over two years.
The process is formal and obviously important as a reflection of fairness in elections and representation. But at the local level, it is far less consequential than at the state and federal level, especially in counties like Flagler, where school board and county commissioners serve at-large–meaning they are elected by voters across the county, not just by voters in their districts.
In an unexpected turn, what the Flagler County school district thought was a mere formality before the County Commission turned into a 90-minute grilling by commissioners and a parade of doubt by builders who consider the district’s request to double impact fees ill-thought and ill-timed.
Preserve Flagler Beach, the grass-roots group opposing The Gardens development on John Anderson highway, had sued the county commission and the developer, charging that the commission’s Nov. 16 decision clearing the way for the development was illegal. Circuit Judge Terence Perkins disagreed.