October 7, 2013
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Due to recent state legislation, the City has moved public
appearances before our City Council meetings and they will now be
held at Agenda Review. This will allow the public an opportunity to
comment about items on the City Council agenda before the meeting.
Public appearances will continue to be held after the regular City
State of Downtown Address
The Downtown Orlando Partnership will be hosting my annual State of
the Downtown Address on Thursday, October 10, at the Amway Center
from 11:15 a.m. - 1 p.m. This luncheon serves as a fundraiser for
the Downtown Orlando Partnership. If you are interested in
purchasing tickets, visit DOP's website:
If you are unable to attend the luncheon, I encourage you to visit
CityofOrlando.net where we will be streaming my address live and
learn about the State of our Downtown.
Items of Note
Community Service Organizations and Arts & Cultural Grants
Today on the consent agenda, the City Council voted to approve
funding for 27 nonprofit organizations that provide support to
Orlando citizens through health and human services.
In addition, the City Council will vote to approve funding to
support arts and cultural opportunities, homeless services, and to
prevent cruelty, abandonment and the neglect of animals in the City
Through these organizations, the City has been able to reach more
than 45,000 City residents and provide more than 250,000 units of
service, which include things like a meal, night of shelter or an
hour or counseling or supportive service.
Agile Thought, Inc. QTI Tax Refund Resolution
Today, the Orlando City Council voted on a Qualified Target Industry
(QTI) proposal that will help attract even more high wage, high
quality jobs to the City of Orlando.
Agile Thought, Inc., a software company headquartered in Tampa, is
considering expanding its workforce in Orlando and two other cities,
Chicago or Atlanta.
By approving this resolution, the City will be able to extend a
competitive offer to Agile Thought to create 15 new high-wage jobs
in the growing technology industry.
Today, we are approving final plats for the SkyHouse development,
the newest high-rise to add to Downtown’s skyline. SkyHouse expects
to open in approximately one month, and more than 80 of the
building’s 320 units are already pre-leased. This is evidence that
more people are choosing to live near our City’s center.
The property also includes an eight-story parking garage and ground
floor retail space. In addition, the developer has dedicated
property just north of the building for a small public park.
The City has named this new public park in honor of Kevin Tyjeski,
our former Deputy Director of Economic Development who passed away
unexpectedly earlier this year. During his career at the City, Kevin
worked on a number of large development projects that have forever
shaped the character of our City, including plans for SkyHouse. It’s
only fitting that Kevin be honored in this manner.
After School Dinner Program
Monday, Council approved a $450,000 grant to provide meals for
children in after school programs throughout the City of Orlando.
The program will start in 11 locations and provide fresh, nutritious
snacks and dinners every weekday to more than 800 children.
As parents struggle to pay bills and pinch every penny to get by,
this program helps families meet their children’s needs for
nutritional foods so they can grow up to be healthy and successful
2013 HUD Grants
Council approved eight Housing and Urban Development (HUD) grant
awards totaling nearly $6,500,000. These grants will continue to
help fund local community agencies that provide services for those
in need including emergency shelter services to survivors of
domestic abuse, housing opportunities for people with HIV/AIDS and a
new service to prevent homelessness and encourage long term housing
City Buildings Energy Efficiency Improvement
On Monday, the City Council approved several energy efficiency
improvement projects. Through these, the City will make improvements
to 110 City facilities, including City Hall. Construction will be
completed on all the buildings by 2015, saving up to $2.5 million a
year once completed.
Community Venues Amendment
The City Council approved an amendment that provides additional
Tourist Development Tax funding for both the Dr. Phillips Center for
Performing Arts and the Florida Citrus Bowl while adding a new venue
to the package – an MLS-ready soccer stadium. The amendment must now
be approved the Orange County Commission.