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The original item was published from 4/20/2022 10:16:00 AM to 5/4/2022 1:09:02 PM.

News Flash

Council's Corner

Posted on: April 7, 2022

[ARCHIVED] April 2021 Council Updates

2022 council poster

All City Council meetings may be viewed at

April 4th Council Meeting Recap

U.S. Coast Guard Presentation - Lt Steve Browning, US Coast Guard - Lt. Steve Browning of the US Coast Guard discussed:

• Commercial vessel compliance

• Uninspected and inspected passenger vessels

• Bareboat charters

• Illegal charter vessels

Parks & Recreation Annual Report & Work Plan Presentation - Motion passed 7-0, to approve the Parks and Recreation Committee’s Fiscal Year 2022 Annual Report and Workplans.

City Manager Report:

Parks and Recreation Software and Customer Portal - IT Director Matthew Pace and Parks/Recreation Director Lisa Firth provided an overview of the new cloud-based Parks and Recreation Software (RecOnline) and online customer portal.

Tyler Technologies SaaS (Cloud) Migration - Motion passed 7-0, to allow the City Manager to engage in contract acceptance with Tyler Technologies to migrate platforms to a cloud solution with a not to exceed amount of $429,535.


• Thank you, Matthew Pace, for excellent service to the city. Matthew’s last day is Friday, April 8th. Deputy City Manager Webb Warren will serve as Interim IT Director until a new director is hired

• Community Development Director Louis Zunguze is away on vacation until April 20th. Building Official Noelle Bell will serve as Acting Director during his absence

• Code Compliance Director Joey Forgione’s last day of service to the city was April 1st. City Manager Lance Johnson will serve as Interim Code Compliance Director until a new director is hired

• Ms. Sandy Trammell has volunteered to assist in providing training to the city’s standing committees

• Annual Easter Egg Hunt at the Destin Library is scheduled for Wednesday, April 13th, at 10:30 AM

• Annual Easter Egg Hunt at the Morgan Sport’s Center is scheduled for Saturday, April 16th , at 9:00 AM

• Sad note: Ms. Cheryl Wyren, a long-time city employee, recently passed away

• Okaloosa County School District has cancelled school for Tuesday, April 5th due to possible inclement weather conditions

Captain Matthew Abbott of the Sheriff’s Office laid out the plan of action for potential “popup parties.”

Council Comments:

Councilman Destin - Motion passed 7-0, to direct the Land Use Attorney to come up with reasonable percentage to assign to mixed use projects in the non-residential portion of mixed used zoning area and bring back some recommendations for council to consider.

Councilwoman Hebert - TDC Update

• Average daily rate continues to soar ahead of last year while occupancy was slightly lower than last year.

• Tourist development tax revenues year to date were up 18%.

• Organic traffic to the website is up 85%.

• Visit Florida has invited the Destin/Fort Walton Beach TDC to join them for 2 spring media missions in New York and in the United Kingdom.

• Coast Resource Team was recently featured on the Discovery Channel and will soon be featured on PBS Nova.

• Second Annual Virtual Media Event will be on April 28th from all over the destination.

• The Emerald Coast Open, the Lionfish Tournament, is scheduled for May 13th thru May 15th.

Councilman Schmidt - Requests a list of local vendors or businesses TDC is hiring in support of each of their current initiatives. Councilmember Hebert will take for action and request TDC Director Jennifer Adams include this information in her report to council on April 18th. Councilmember Schmidt requests the TDC report to also include TDC’s plans for the Crystal Beach parking lot this year.

April 18th Council Meeting Recap

Destin Elementary Archery Team Places First in The National Archery Competition, Sponsored by The Fish and Wildlife Commission of Florida - Mayor Gary Jarvis awarded a plaque to Destin Elementary and Destin Middle School Archery Teams honoring their accomplishment.

City Manager Report:

Quarterly Investment Report - The Finance Director discussed the quarterly investment report, and the current status of the city investment accounts with Raymond James.

FY23 Budget Calendar - Motion passed 6-0, to approve the Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Calendar and to set Budget and Millage Adoption Public Hearing #1 for September 8, 2022, at 5:30 PM in the City Hall Annex Council Chambers at 4100 Indian Bayou Trail.

Facilities Condition Assessment for Capital Improvement Planning, authorization to execute a contract - Motion passed 6-0, to authorize the mayor to execute the Standard Agreement for Professional Services with Matrix Design Group, Inc. The council would like to add the following to the list of city facilities to be assessed:

• Dalton Threadgill Park

• Public parking lots

• Capt. Royal Melvin Heritage Park


• Coastal cleanup at Joe’s Bayou and Norriego Point Park on Saturday, April 23rd, from 8:00 to 10:00 AM.

• Deadline for completion of Capt. Royal Melvin Heritage Park construction extended from April 11th to May 11th.

• Arbor Day Celebration scheduled for April 29th at 10:00 AM at the Kell-Aire North Park. 

• Blue Star Memorial to be installed at the Destin Library on April 19th at 11:00 AM.

Council Comments:

Councilman Braden inquired as to the status of the abandoned house located on the north side of the Destin Bridge that was to be demolished last year.

• Staff will bring back quotes for demolition of the property for council’s approval, if necessary

• The mayor requests that staff and Land Use Attorney update the code and bring back a much clearer, more proficient, and aggressive abatement process for nuisance and problem properties in the community.

• Councilmember Bagby suggests they develop a matrix similar to the one they created for derelict vessels a few years back. Identify the problem, list all the steps involved in solving it, outline dates and timelines on how they plan to proceed, and then execute the plan.

Councilman Wagner - Motion passed 6-0, to appoint Wagner as the primary council member representative for the Emerald Coast Regional Council (ECRC).

Councilman Bagby - Councilmember Bagby recommends members of the council take advantage of the opportunity to attend the Institute of Elected Municipal Officials (IEMO) Level One training on June 10th – 12th in Jacksonville, FL.

Councilman King - The City Manager and City Attorney to investigate the feasibility and the liability involved in extending the hours of operations at Joe’s Bayou to allow people to launch their boats late at night. Councilmember Bagby recommends installing infrared cameras at Joe’s Bayou to help in investigating any damage done to city properties. Councilmember Wagner recommends setting up a plan to install lighting in all city parks.

Councilman Schmidt - Towing Resolution, asked for this item to be placed on the May 2nd council meeting agenda. Beach Boardwalk Safety Boards, motion passed 6-0, for staff to bring back some pricing to replace some boards on the boardwalk. Councilmember Bagby recommends council’s representative to the TDC asking the TDC to cover the cost to install the safety boards.

Mayor Gary Jarvis - Motion passed 6-0, for staff to look into the idea of instituting a community cleanup program such as a Community Pride Week or Community Pride Month, which is a concentrated sweep through selected neighborhoods each week or month cleaning up litter and removing abandoned properties; and encouraging different entities (i.e., Boys and Girls Club, Boy Scouts, high school students, etc.) to get involved.

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