Board meeting

The Alachua County Board of County Commissioners will receive a county vaccination and COVID-19 cases update, review a budget for the Cuscowilla park facility and address the Rural Commercial Agriculture land use within the context of the Comprehensive Plan and Unified Land Development Code (ULDC) during a regular hybrid meeting today.

County Health Department Administrator Paul Myers will deliver the status of the vaccination effort in Alachua County.

The operating budget for the former Camp McConnell property renamed Cuscowilla will be reviewed. Currently, staffing and upkeep of the park will cost $702,389 annually according to the budget.

In January 2020, the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners voted to keep the property that is the 212 acres and part of the Wild Spaces Public Places initiative.

For over half a century, the property was utilized as a summer camp destination, teaching thousands of youth how to reconnect with nature and connect with others to form lifelong friendships. The property was sold at public auction to Alachua County on June 22, 2017 for $1,027,000, plus 10 percent buyer’s premium.

The town of Micanopy holds a long Native American history. While the Indian trading post and white settlement was named Tuscawilla, Cuscowilla was the name given to the Capital Village of the local Seminole people. Cuscowilla was the dwelling of Chief Micanopy, and what was left of the Seminole tribe, before being captured, thereby ending the Second Seminole War. The Board of County Commissioners found it fitting to name the property Cuscowilla to honor this heritage.

The property was purchased by Alachua County in 2017 at public auction using the Wild Spaces Public Places surtax. The same funding source is being used to improve the property.

The BOCC will also confirm Michael Arizmendi as new court services director, with a start date of March 29. Arizmendi's compensation will be $115,000 with an increase to $119,000 after a successful 6-month evaluation.

The staff will present and provide direction as to what, if any, measures should be taken to address the rural commercial agriculture land use within the context of the comprehensive plan and/or the ULDC.

The meeting starts at 11:30 a.m. To attend virtually: The public may attend virtually through Cox Channel 12, Facebook, and the County's Video on Demand website. For meeting audio only, call 301-715-8592, and when prompted, use code 670 965 3024.

Those attending in-person: The public who attend in-person must wear a facial covering at all times. Public seating will be made available up to the capacity that permits adequate social distancing.

Public comment: The public may submit comments, written or photographic documents to the board through email (bocc@alachuacounty.us) before the meeting or by participating when prompted by the board chair. Virtual participation is available through the public comment message line. When prompted during the meeting, please call 929-205-6099 (enter meeting code 273 174 8038). Callers will be put in a queue, and prompted when it is their turn to speak.

Click here to see the full agenda.

Mainstreet Daily News Reporter

Suzette Cook is a Mainstreet Daily News reporter who has been a community journalist for more than 30 years.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.