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Tensions run high at Thursday's Blueprint meeting

(WCTV)
Published: Sep. 6, 2019 at 12:30 AM EDT
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By: Monica Casey | WCTV Eyewitness News

September 5, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Plans for the Capital Cascades Trail Segment 3 and a controversial project in the Killearn Neighborhood were discussed at Thursday's Blueprint meeting.

For more information on the Capital Cascades Trail and the public comment surrounding that, visit

Before the meeting began, multiple items were pulled from the consent agenda, including the status report on Blueprint Infrastructure Projects and Acceptance of the Report on the Office of Economic Vitality's Support of Local Business Growth and Formation.

Item #3, the status report, was pulled for discussion of the Northeast Gateway project.

Killearn residents have pushed back against the proposed path of the project.

Multiple public speakers discussed the high volume of traffic in the Killearn neighborhood, and constant issues with speeding.

After about an hour of public comment, Commissioner Richardson explained that he had never seen and heard such a large amount of public comment against a project.

Although the group accepted the status report, Mayor Dailey requested that City Staff look into creative traffic calming measures for the Killearn neighborhood.

In addition, the acceptance came with an amendment of expanding the current PD&E traffic study to include the alternate routes proposed by the Killearn HOA for the Northeast Gateway Project.

The conversation turned heated, after Commissioner Jeremy Matlow made a comment calling Blueprint a "sham," after discussion of what voters knew about the proposed projects when voting twenty years prior.

City Commissioner Curtis Richardson took strong issue with Matlow's comments.

"I disagree that what we have done with Blueprint has not moved the community forward," said Richardson. "I was there. I was Vice Chairman of the Sales Tax Committee; I can tell you the amount of time that I spent away from my family in community meetings all over this community. We took as much public input as we thought we could."

County Commissioner Bryan Desloge also said he was "insulted" by Commissioner Matlow's comments.

Report on Relocation Policy

The Blueprint board voted to accept options one and two.

Option 1 was to, "Accept the Report on the Existing Blueprint Relocation Policy and Procedures Manual and Incentive Offer Program," while Option 2 was to "Direct staff to bring back an agenda item to update the Blueprint Relocation Policy and Procedure Manual and Incentive Offer Program consistent with Updates A through D."

Updates A through D included increasing th emoving cost schedule, increasing the maximum relocation housing payment, increasing the maximum business reestablishment expenses, and updating the incentive offer program to match FDOT.