September 17 , 2007 edition of:

Community Update
A Report on the Activities of Alachua County Government


This Issues Features:

ACEPD recieves state funding
Reid appointed to ICMA committee
Assistant Couty Manager Mark Hill Resigns
Classes for a $mart Financial $tart
National Flood Insurance Workshops
County Event and Meeting Reminder
County Update TV on Channel 12
What’s on Alachua County Talks?
Commission Meeting Highlights
Let’s All Get Involved - Alachua County Advisory Boards


ACEPD recieves state funding

The Alachua County Environmental Protection Department (ACEPD) will recieve $36,000 of management funding for control of invasive exotic plants on Alachua County Forever Lands. Funding is from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau of invasive Plant Management, which funds individual invasive plant removal projects on public conservation lands throughout the state. Monies will be used for the first phase of invasive plant control on the Sweetwater Preserve. Control will focus on Coral Ardisia, a common landscape plant that invades natural areas crowding out native vegetation, thus, reducing biological diversity and interfering with plant reproduction in the forest. Funds are for the current fiscal year.

The Sweetwater Preserve was acquired by Alachua County in March of 2006 with dollars from the Alachua County Forever Bond and a Florida Communities Trust grant. The purpose of the aquisition was to preserve and enhance the unique natural and cultural resources found on the property and to provide an enjoyable, educational, and passive recreational experience. The Alachua County Forever Program was approved by Alachua County voters in November of 2000, to acquire, improve and manage environmentally significant lands in Alachua County in order to protect water resources, wildlife habitats and natural areas suitable for resource-based recreation.

For more information call Alachua County Land Conservation Manager Ramesh Buch at 352-264-6800.

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Reid appointed to ICMA committee

Alachua County Manager Randall H. Reid will join more than 30 International City/County Management Association (ICMA) members, with a demonstrated commitment to sustainability issues in their home communities, in a leadership advisory committee that will provide direction and guidance to ICMA to develop education, knowledge resources, tools, and techniques that support local leaders.

In speaking of the appointment Reid said, “The members of this team represent an immense pool of knowledge and demonstrated commitment to sustainability issues in their respective jurisdictions. I look forward to sharing our experiences in Alachua County and learning from their stories.”

Michael Willis, ICMA 2006 president and Bill Buchanan, ICMA’s current president, have both made sustainability a top priority for the organization. Building on a solid history in sustainability work, such as serving as the institutional home of the Smart Growth Network, ICMA launched a Sustainability Forum for members on Earth Day 2007. Dozens of members have joined hosts Michael Willis and Jim Keene, ICMA director of Strategic Initiatives, with thought-provoking ideas, examples from their jurisdictions, and insights into the local government manager’s role in sustainability.

The leadership committee members will help define the leadership skills required to launch successful community initiatives and identify ways that ICMA can support local governments. For more information, email Dan Emerine at

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Assistant Couty Manager Mark Hill Resigns

On August 31, 2007 Alachua County Assistant County Manager Mark Hill tendered his resignation to the County. Mr. Hill has accepted the position Executive Vice President with the Gold Coast Builders Association in South Florida. His resignation will be effective October 12, 2007.

In his seven years with Alachua County Mr. Hill work on many important projects. In speaking of Mr. Hill County Manager Randall H. Reid said, “Mark’s specialty was working on projects that required intergovernmental cooperation such as the Annexation Transition Agreement and the Countywide Visioning project. His work on the fairgrounds relocation has been exemplary. This is a great loss to Alachua County. He will be missed.”

In his resignation letter to Mr. Reid, Mr. Hill said, “I would like to thank you for giving me the opportunity to serve Alachua County over the last seven years and I wish the very best for both the County and its residents.”

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Classes for a $mart Financial $tart

Beginning October 1, the Alachua County Extension Office will hold a series of classes entitled $mart Financial $tart, which will present strategies for successful financial planning to newlyweds (though all are welcome). All sessions will be held 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. at the Alachua Extension Office, 2800 NE 39th Ave., Gainesville.

The four-part series will be free of charge and free materials will be distributed to those attending. Please call (352) 955-2402 to register. The schedule is as follows:

October 1 - Getting Financially Organized

October 8 - Making Credit Work for You

October 15 - Decision Making in the Insurance Maze: What’s available? How much do you need?

October 22 - Getting a Head Start on Your Financial Future

For more information, please call the Alachua County Extension Office at (352) 955-2402.

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National Flood Insurance Workshops

On October 12, 2007, The Florida Floodplain Managers Association will conduct two National Flood Insurance Program Workshops. The workshops will be held at the Alachua County Health Department located at 224 SE 24th Street, Gainesville, FL 32641.

The Real Estate and Insurance Agents Workshop begins at 8:30 a.m. and concludes at 1:00 p.m. The Lenders Workshop begins at 1:30 p.m. and concludes at 4:30 p.m.

Workshop for Real Estate and Insurance Agents:

Are you uncertain of the rules and regulations for flood insurance? Are you unsure of exactly how to write a policy? Do you know where to go for all the information needed? Whether you are an NFIP novice or an expert, this workshop will provide you with a thorough understanding of how interact effectively with the National Flood Insurance Program. All agency and company personnel are urged to attend.

Workshop for Lenders:

The purchase of flood insurance was voluntary until 1973. That year, the Flood Disaster Protection Act made flood insurance coverage mandatory properties. Do you know how to give knowledgeable advice to your borrowers about how much flood insurance is required? Can you effectively resolve flood zone disputes for your borrowers? Can you identify those flood insurance compliance areas that federal regulators will review during an audit? Get the answers you need to answer “yes” to all of the questions above.

Each workshop offers four continuing education credits (CEC).

To print the Lenders Workshop application click here:

To print the Real Estate and Insurance Agents Workshop application click here:


The cost is $50.00 per person, per workshop. Please make your check payable to:

Florida Floodplain Managers Association

And send it and your registration form to:



c/o M.Krishnamurthy,

7742 Glynde Hill Drive,

Orlando, FL 32835.


For a confirmed seat, the check and the registration form should reach the above address one week prior to the scheduled date.

For more information, please contact Lynne Magel at 813 779-9642 or

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County Event and Meeting Reminder

Special Meeting on School Concurrency

Public Hearing - Final County Budget Hearing

$mart Financial $tart

2 National Flood Insurance Workshops

Garden Tours of Local Florida Friendly Landscapes

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County Update TV on Channel 12

This month’s County Update includes features on historic Haile Homestead at Kanapaha Plantation, an Alachua County Fire Rescue retirement celebration, SW 62nd Blvd. connector study, artwork hanging in the Alachua County Administration building art space, some of which was created by students of Sidney Lanier School, and more.

You can also view archived episodes of County Update at the County’s Video On Demand webpage here:

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What’s on Alachua County Talks?

On the latest editions of Alachua County Talks, Ron Chandler, President of Applied Environmental Science Specialists In Urban Water Resource Conservation discusses current water issues in Alachua County. And Alachua County Environmental Protection Department (ACEPD) Director Chris Bird gives a detailed overview of the functions that ACEPD performs in our community.

Alachua County Talks is shown on Community 12, Your Local Government Channel, so tune in. To view show times click here:

You can also view archived episodes of Alachua County Talks at the County’s Video On Demand webpage here:

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Commission Meeting Highlights

Presentations, Proclamations and Recognitions

County Manager

Community Planning Group

Public Hearings

Community Outreach

  1. Direct staff to work with the developer and residents and return to the board with design options that would enhance the SW 75th St SW 75th Terrace Intersection route as a bypass instead of a downtown Main Street.
  2. Perform the speed analysis

County Manager’s Report

  1. Not accept the recommendation from the City of Hawthorne.
  2. Set up a temporary station at Orange Heights to provide service to the area unincorporated area.
  3. Send an open letter to the citizens of Hawthorne to explaining the County’s Decision from the Chair.
  4. Provide a DVD of this discussion to the City of Hawthorne.

Click here to view the letter from the Hawthorne City Manager Chad Shryock

Click here to view the letter from Alachua County Chair Paula DeLaney


Advisory Board Appointments

Environmental Protection Advisory Committee

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Let’s All Get Involved - Alachua County Advisory Boards

The Alachua County Commission is committed to citizen involvement on its 33 advisory boards and is soliciting applications for the following vacancies:

Get Involved - Click here for an application:

Applications are also available at the County Manager’s Office on the Second Floor of the County Administration Building, 12 SE 1st St., Gainesville. For more information, call (352) 264-6904.

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Thank you for your continued interest in County Government!

Community Update is produced by the County Manager's Communications Office.