On the morning of Monday October 20, we held hosted the second public workshop on our Vehicle for Hire ordinance. Staff has spent months researching other cities and meeting with industry to representatives to identify how the City can update our ordinance to allow for new transportation network providers like Uber and Lyft who have entered the marketplace.
Since our last workshops, OPD held another industry forum and was present at Monday’s workshop to report their findings and next steps.
Ebola Preparedness Update
At Monday’s meeting, Orlando Fire Department Deputy Chief Rich Wales gave a brief update on how the Orlando Fire Department is preparing for Ebola. After that, we heard from Phil Brown, Executive Director at GOAA, who provided a similar update in regards to their preparations.
We have embarked on what might be the most defining years in Downtown Orlando’s history. Just last week we broke ground on the new soccer stadium and next month we will open a world-class performing arts center and a reconstructed football stadium.
Many thanks to all of the commissioners for their support in making these projects possible.
It’s because of them and our collaboration with our Central Florida community that our Downtown is no longer simply a weekday employment hub, but is now alive with a growing residential population, lively dining and nightlife options, an emerging arts scene and world-class venues for sports and entertainment.
A couple weeks ago, I joined with Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs and local community leaders to visit the City of Houston and meet with leaders there to better understand how Houston has reduced chronic homelessness by more than 40-percent in just three years.
After seeing the successful model employed by Houston, there is great reason for optimism that we can also help those who are chronically homeless in our community.
Commissioners, I want to thank you for your support in this effort as we continue to work towards solving the issue of homelessness in Orlando.
The month of October is National Bullying Prevention Month. Did you know approximately one in every four students experiences bullying and nearly all students will witness bullying during their years in school?
Research shows that bullying can lead to depression, substance abuse, poor health, delinquency and poor academic performance. On Thursday, October 23, we launched a new community-wide anti bullying campaign.
Fall Fiesta in the Park
It is starting to feel more like fall and the forty-fourth annual Fall Fiesta in the Park is Saturday and Sunday, November 1-2, at Lake Eola Park. More than 300 artists and crafters will line the streets around Lake Eola. The community is invited to this free event which features great food, live music and children’s play area.
Agenda Items of Note:
B # 11 & 12 – SED Agreements
On Monday’s agenda was a developers agreement for the Sports and Entertainment District Project and the associated lease for the Orlando Police Headquarters until the new one is built.
This project is a direct result from this City Council’s public investment in revitalizing Downtown Orlando and Parramore, creating a catalyst for similar private investments.
This project and the redevelopment of this site, continues to build on our efforts to transform Downtown Orlando and continue providing more entertainment and social options for a broad demographic, from families to travelers to people my age. This will draw additional people Downtown to benefit the businesses who have invested in our Downtown.
EDV – Funding Agreements
Also on Monday’s agenda were the annual funding agreements with the City’s partner economic development organizations. These organizations leverage their expertise to promote economic growth in the City of Orlando.
Through these funding agreements, our partner agencies are able to provide technical assistance and educational programming to local entrepreneurs, attract new business investment and promote the City of Orlando to a global audience. Through this capital investment in our community, we are creating jobs for our residents and opportunities for small, local business owners and entrepreneurs to succeed.
CRA #4 – Book That Doc
On Monday’s agenda was a request to approve a High Wage High Value job incentive for BookThatDoc.com. This company is currently located in Seminole County and has been seeking a new location to accommodate their future growth.
They plan to relocate 12 employees to Downtown Orlando’s Church Street Exchange Building on a temporary basis, with future plans to move to permanent space when a building is available at Creative Village. They will add 38 new jobs over the next three years for a total of 50 new jobs to Downtown Orlando, with a salary 115% above the average annual wage.
BookThatDoc.com provides innovative technology and follows in the footsteps of other tech companies that have moved into the Church Street Exchange Building, helping to fuel Downtown Orlando’s fast-growing tech industry.