By Adam Kaufman
May 14, 2019 9:31 a.m.
On Tuesday May 14, the City of Fernandina Beach was served a petition filed on behalf of the Amelia Tree Conservancy and Conserve Amelia Now requesting an administrative hearing on the issue of whether the City’s April 16 amendment of its Future Land Use Map (FLUM) permitting the construction of the Amelia Bluff project on Citrona Drive is in compliance with Florida statutes. The Amelia Bluff development is planned for 30 homes. The property was sold to the developers by the Nassau County School District.
City Attorney Bach said, “The City is working with its insurance carrier to assign defense counsel to defend this lawsuit.” City staff recommended the change to the FLUM because of mapping errors. The project had previously received a series of administrative and staff approvals.
Construction of the Amelia Bluff project will continue to be on hold pending a final determination of the issues raised by the Tree Conservancy and Conserve Amelia Now.
At the April 16 City Commission meeting, the developers of Amelia Bluff, represented by Wirt Beard, offered, as evidence of their commitment to the community, to contribute $10,000 upon the issuance of a building permit for every lot sold to the City’s Fernandina Beach Conservation Trust Fund to a total of $300,000 for the purchase of conservation land within the City. The offer is contingent upon the resolution of all challenges and appeals associated with the project within 150 days of that meeting. The developer had earlier ceded portions of the property it purchased to the City for use as conservation land, committed to contribute an additional $115,000 to the City’s trust fund and has already constructed a new sidewalk on Citrona Drive at the Fernandina Beach High School.
The Petition is to be heard before the State Division of Administrative Hearings. According to Bach a hearing will be scheduled before an Administrative Law Judge 60 days from today.
To read previous article “FBCC votes 3-2 to approve FLUM change final plat for Amelia Bluff” by Suanne Thamm’s click here.
Editor’s Note: Adam Kaufman, has been General Counsel, labor negotiator, and lobbyist for the Rochester City School; he was appointed by Governor Mario Cuomo as Counsel, Associate Director and First Deputy Attorney General to a New York State Special Commission; he served as an Administrative Law Judge, mediator and Regional Director of the New York State Public Employment Relations Board; now retired, for the last 13 years he was a labor arbitrator and mediator. A graduate of the Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, he is a city resident.