Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 081945
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File Number: 081945 File Type: Ordinance Status: Withdrawn
Version: 0 Reference: Control: Board of County Commissioners
File Name: DISABLED AIRPORT/SEAPORT PARKING Introduced: 6/19/2008
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action:
Agenda Date: 10/7/2008 Agenda Item Number: 7C
Notes: Title: ORDINANCE AMENDING SECTION 30-388.2 OF THE CODE OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY; PROVIDING THAT CONSISTENT WITH STATE LAW PARKING CHARGES MAY BE IMPOSED ON VEHICLES DISPLAYING A DISABLED PARKING PERMIT OR LICENSE TAG AT ANY COUNTY AIRPORT OR SEAPORT UNDER SPECIFIED CIRCUMSTANCES , BUT THAT SUCH CHARGES MAY NOT BE IMPOSED FOR CERTAIN VEHICLES AS DEFINED IN SUCH STATE LAW; PROVIDING SEVERABILITY, INCLUSION IN THE CODE AND AN EFFECTIVE DATE
Indexes: DISABLED
  MIAMI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
  PARKING
  SEAPORT
Sponsors: Sally A. Heyman, Prime Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 10/7/2008 7C Withdrawn
REPORT: First Assistant County Attorney Abigail Price-Williams read the foregoing proposed ordinance into the record. Commissioner Heyman noted this proposed ordinance would amend the Code of Miami-Dade County, Florida to comply with Florida State Statutes. She explained this proposed ordinance addressed a reverse discrimination practice regarding handicapped parking at the airport and seaport. Mr. Alan Rigerman, 17910 NW 84 Avenue, appeared before the County Commission and spoke in opposition to this proposed ordinance. He noted the Home Rule Charter provided that the County did not need to comply with State Statutes. He suggested the County use police enforcement to fix the handicapped parking problem at the airport, rather than eliminate free parking for some of the disabled. Responding to Commissioner Seijas’ inquiry regarding the impact of this proposed ordinance on preferred parking for the handicapped, Mr. Miguel Southwell, Deputy Director, Miami-Dade Aviation Department, clarified all handicapped people could use the preferred handicapped parking spaces. Commissioner Seijas explained the free disabled parking at Miami International Airport (MIA) was abused, and abuse caused innocent people to suffer. Mr. Damien Gregory, 11342 SW 163 Street, appeared before the Commission and spoke in opposition to this proposed ordinance. He expressed concern that disabled individuals would have to pay $12 dollars per day for parking if they did not have specialized equipment. He spoke in opposition to the County charging some disabled people for parking and not charging other disabled people. Mr. Gregory pointed out the County had other mechanisms to address the abuse of handicapped parking at MIA. He noted the County would be counter productive if it reduced the free disabled parking rather than if it addressed the issues highlighted by the Inspector General. Mr. Denny Wood, 13000 SW 92 Avenue B-403, appeared before the Commission and spoke in opposition to this proposed ordinance. He noted the disabled people who did not have specialized equipment needed the preferred parking more than those with specialized equipment. He pointed out the upper level preferred parking spaces at MIA were mostly unused. Mr. Wood spoke in support of the County addressing the disabled parking problems at MIA through police enforcement. He expressed concern that the director of the Office of ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) Coordination would support this proposed ordinance that would take away civil rights and privileges of people with disabilities. Mr. Wood explained the ADA Coordination Director should focus on eliminating physical, attitudinal, and employment barriers for the disabled. He pointed out no MIA passenger was accused of fraud. He stressed MIA was already set up to catch fraudulent use of disabled placards. Mr. Wood noted this proposed ordinance would overload the Special Transportation Service (STS) with expensive trips to MIA. In response to Commissioner Sosa’s question regarding the department that issued the handicapped placards, Ms. Heidi Johnson-Wright, Director, Office of ADA Coordination, explained the State issued the handicapped placards. Commissioner Sosa noted the County should not punish persons declared disabled by the Social Security Administration. She asked County Attorney Cuevas to prepare a resolution under her sponsorship that would urge the United States Congress to differentiate between disabled and temporarily handicapped individuals who were issued handicap parking permits. She noted disabled employees at MIA should complete forms documenting their disability and they could be provided an assigned parking spot in the employee parking. Commissioner Jordan expressed concern that this proposed ordinance would impose parking fees on some disabled persons who could not afford the cost of specialized equipment. Responding to Commissioner Jordan’s inquiry regarding her position on this proposal, Ms. Johnson-Wright noted ADA Coordination supported this proposed ordinance. She noted disabled persons with specialized equipment needed the wider parking spaces. Commissioner Jordan clarified this proposed ordinance did not eliminate the number of handicapped parking spaces. The issue was who would have to pay for parking, she noted. Commissioner Jordan questioned whether the position of ADA Coordination was that disabled persons with a larger vehicle and specialized equipment should not have to pay for parking. She explained this proposed ordinance should have a provision to allow qualified disabled individuals without specialized equipment to continue parking for free. Discussion ensued between Commissioners Heyman and Jordan regarding the intent of this proposed ordinance and the mechanism to accomplish that intent by imposing parking fees on disabled persons without specialized equipment. Following comments by Commissioner Souto regarding the County having compassion on all disabled persons, Mr. Wood noted a doctor had to certify that a person had great difficulty walking 200 feet for that person to receive a handicapped placard. Commissioner Souto suggested the County take more time to examine the issues in this proposed ordinance. Ms. Johnson-Wright pointed out disabled persons with a Florida Toll Exemption Permit could also park for free. Following comments by Commissioner Martinez in opposition to this proposed ordinance, Commissioner Sorenson noted the intent of this proposed ordinance was good, however, it had unintended consequences. She suggested this proposed ordinance be deferred to provide time to address those unintended consequences. Commissioner Heyman noted the Florida State Statutes established who could be exempt from paying for parking. She stressed the intent of this proposed ordinance was to provide access to handicapped parking for disabled persons. Commissioner Heyman withdrew this proposed ordinance.

Airport and Tourism Committee 9/11/2008 2D Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney David Murray read the foregoing proposed ordinance into the record. He noted a scrivener’s error existed in the proposed ordinance and the word “or” in the third to last line on handwritten page 5 of the continuation paragraph from the previous page, Section 30-388.2, should be deleted. Chairman Diaz announced that the foregoing proposed ordinance was open for public participation. Mr. Denny Wood, 1300 SW 92 Avenue, appeared before the Committee. He noted two days ago he discovered the County Commission had considered the proposed ordinance on first reading. Mr. Wood said he felt a huge breakdown in communications had occurred because the Chairperson of the Airport Advisory Committee for the Disabled had not informed him about this proposed ordinance, and the Co-Chairperson of the Commission on Disability Issues (CODI) was unaware of the proposed ordinance. Mr. Wood asked Commissioner Heyman to withdraw the foregoing proposed ordinance or to incorporate a requirement that people who used the disabled placards and were allowed to park free of charge at the Airport, be limited to thirty days. He said Airport employees with disabled placards should be required to park in the employee parking lot which would allow additional parking spaces to be available in the parking garages. Mr. Wood pointed out that more county employees and airline personnel parked in the parking garages than travelers. Ms. Heidi Johnson-Wright, Director, Office of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Coordination, spoke in support of the foregoing proposed ordinance. She noted disabled individuals now had more options for getting to and from the Airport, including Special Transportation Services, fixed routes and wheelchair accessible taxicabs. Commissioner Heyman expressed appreciation to Ms. Johnson-Wright and Mr. Wood for their comments. She noted the foregoing proposed ordinance was adopted on first reading on July 1, 2008. Commissioner Heyman said this legislation was limited to the Airport and Seaport to address revenue loss and to address concerns from CODI representatives; ADA associations and people who felt available parking spaces were insufficient based on the fraudulent use of others. She noted the foregoing proposed ordinance, with the scrivener’s error corrected complied with state law. Commissioner Heyman placed the following comments on the record regarding Miami International Airport’s policy relating to free parking for disabled persons: “The current policy of providing free parking to disabled persons should be changed because the current policy leaves MDAD open for a “reverse discrimination” complaint lawsuit.” She noted Jackson Memorial Hospital, municipalities and Miami-Dade Transit had asked to be included in the proposed ordinance at a later time. Commissioner Sosa noted the difficulty in establishing policy when the system was abused and questioned whether it was legally possible for employees with disabled placards to park in the employees’ parking lot. She pointed out that if employees were allowed to park in the visitors’ parking lot, this would be discriminating against those persons who had the right to park in the parking lots. Assistant County Attorney Tim Abbott advised the Airport could provide an operational directive to accomplish Commissioner Sosa’s suggestion, consistent with ADA guidelines. Commissioner Sosa said she was supportive of the foregoing proposed ordinance, however, she offered an amendment that all employees be required to park in the employee parking lot. She noted she would ask legal staff to prepare a separate item if her proposed amendment was not accepted by Commissioner Heyman. Mr. David Fialkoff, 10649 SW 113 Place, appeared before the Committee in support of the foregoing proposed ordinance. He noted he was a county employee but was speaking as a private citizen. Mr. Fialkoff said his wife was a quadriplegic and he was hopeful that the proposed ordinance would enable his wife and himself to locate a parking space much easier than the last time they traveled. Mr. Chris Mazzella, Inspector General, Miami-Dade County Office of the Inspector General, said disabled parking was not properly regulated within the State. He noted approximately 12 to 15 criminal investigations were underway; however, it was difficult to establish crimes regarding disabled parking because of erroneous information including the wrong doctors and missing applications. Mr. Mazzella emphasized the importance of available parking for disabled people. Chairman Diaz expressed appreciation to Mr. Mazzella and his staff for reviewing misuse of the system. There being no further persons to appear before the Committee, the public hearing was closed. Commissioner Gimenez spoke in support of the foregoing proposed ordinance which he noted would create additional spaces for handicapped individuals. He noted employees would no longer have an incentive to park in the Airport parking lot once it was no longer free. In response to Commissioner Rolle’s inquiry whether the foregoing proposed ordinance could be extended to Miami-Dade Transit and JMH, Assistant County Attorney Abbott advised that separate legislation would be required. Commissioner Heyman noted legal staff had begun preparing legislation for JMH, the municipalities and MDT; and the savings to be realized from this legislation would be used for ADA compliance.

Transit Committee 9/10/2008 1E1 Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Bruce Libhaber read the foregoing ordinance into the record. He noted a scrivener’s error in item 1E1 should be corrected as follows: On handwritten page 5, in the continuation paragraph from the previous page, under Sec. 30-388.2, the underlined word “or” located on the third to last line of the paragraph should be removed. Chairman Rolle opened the public hearing; however, it was closed after no one appeared in response to Chairman Rolle’s call for persons wishing to be heard in connection with this ordinance. Commissioner Heyman spoke regarding the intent of this ordinance to address misuse of parking spaces at Miami International Airport (MIA) and at the Port of Miami involving disabled parking permits. She noted her intent to propose legislation similar to this ordinance which would address this type of misuse in municipalities, at Jackson Memorial Hospital, and with regard to Miami-Dade Transit. She added that this ordinance would bring Miami-Dade County into compliance with the Florida Statutes. Commissioner Sorenson noted she believed the County’s Commission on Disability Issues (CODI) had discussed this matter. She asked Ms. Heidi Johnson Wright, Office of ADA Coordination Director, to speak regarding CODI’s position on the issue. Ms. Johnson-Wright noted the last time this issue was before CODI, a quorum was not present; therefore, CODI’s members did not vote on the issue. She further noted that ADA Coordination supported making the County’s ordinance compliant with State law because this would free parking spaces needed by people who drove modified vehicles. She added that currently, more accessible options, including wheelchair accessible taxis, were available for those wanting transportation to MIA. Ms. Johnson-Wright clarified that CODI supported this ordinance. Hearing no further questions or comments, the Committee proceeded to vote on the foregoing ordinance with the correction to the scrivener’s error. Later in the meeting, Chairman Rolle acknowledged Mr. Denny Woods. Mr. Woods apologized for being late to today’s meeting. He spoke about his experience today when a bus driver did not allow him to board a bus at a red light. Mr. Woods spoke in support of treating experiences like his more seriously, and specifically spoke in support of negative sanctions. He added this was the fourth or fifth time he was left by a bus. Mr. Woods noted he submitted a proposed ordinance to stop these incidents. In response to Mr. Woods’ inquiry as to whether Agenda item 1E1 was addressed earlier in the meeting, Chairman Rolle noted this was correct. Mr. Woods noted he wanted to ask Commissioner Heyman to withdraw the item. He also noted he was aware the item would be considered by the Airport and Tourism Committee (ATC) the following day, September 11, 2008. Upon confirming with Assistant County Attorney Bruce Libhaber that the item was on the ATC’s agenda for the next day as a public hearing, Chairman Rolle asked Mr. Woods to attend the ATC meeting scheduled for 9:30 a.m. the next day.

County Manager 9/9/2008 Scrivener's Errors Transit Committee 9/10/2008
REPORT: On handwritten page 5, in the continuation paragraph from previous page under Sec. 30-388.2., remove the underlined word “or” located on the third to last line of the paragraph.

Board of County Commissioners 7/1/2008 Tentatively scheduled for a public hearing Airport and Tourism Committee 9/11/2008

Board of County Commissioners 7/1/2008 Tentatively scheduled for a public hearing Transit Committee 9/10/2008

Board of County Commissioners 7/1/2008 4C Adopted on first reading 9/10/2008 P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Abigail Price-Williams read the foregoing proposed ordinance into the record. There being no questions or comments, the Board proceeded to vote. The foregoing proposed ordinance was adopted on first reading and scheduled for public hearing before the following two (2) Commission Committees: The Transit Committee on Wednesday, September 10, 2008 at 2:00 p.m; and The Airport and Tourism Committee on Thursday, September 11, 2008 at 9:30 a.m.

County Attorney 6/20/2008 Referred Airport and Tourism Committee 9/11/2008

County Attorney 6/19/2008 Referred Transit Committee 9/10/2008

County Attorney 6/19/2008 Assigned Thomas P. Abbott 6/19/2008

Legislative Text


TITLE
ORDINANCE AMENDING SECTION 30-388.2 OF THE CODE OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY; PROVIDING THAT CONSISTENT WITH STATE LAW PARKING CHARGES MAY BE IMPOSED ON VEHICLES DISPLAYING A DISABLED PARKING PERMIT OR LICENSE TAG AT ANY COUNTY AIRPORT OR SEAPORT UNDER SPECIFIED CIRCUMSTANCES , BUT THAT SUCH CHARGES MAY NOT BE IMPOSED FOR CERTAIN VEHICLES AS DEFINED IN SUCH STATE LAW; PROVIDING SEVERABILITY, INCLUSION IN THE CODE AND AN EFFECTIVE DATE

BODY
BE IT ORDAINED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA:

Section 1. Section 30-388.2 of the Code of Miami-Dade County is hereby amended to read as follows:1
Sec. 30-388.2. Free public parking for the
physically disabled.

Any motor vehicle which is qualified to park in a specially marked parking space designated for the physically disabled pursuant to Article II of this chapter shall be permitted to park in any public parking space in >>Miami-<< Dade County without incurring a fee for parking. For purposes of this section, the term “public parking space” shall mean a parking space provided by >>Miami-<>Miami-<>Notwithstanding anything in the Miami-Dade County Code to the contrary, however, the Aviation Department shall be entitled to charge and collect parking fees for the use of any County airport parking facility, including facilities providing temporary, short-term, or up-close parking sites, and the Seaport Department shall be entitled to charge and collect parking fees for the use of any parking garage, facility, lot, or space, including temporary, short-term, or other up-close parking sites providing timed parking spaces, by vehicles that display a disabled parking permit or license tag issued under Sections 316.1958, 320.084, 320.0842, 320.0843, 320.0845, or 320.0848, as such sections may be amended from time to time, but no parking charges shall be imposed upon any vehicle with specialized equipment, such as ramps, lifts, or foot or hand controls, for utilization by a person who has a disability or whose vehicle is displaying the Florida Toll Exemption permit.<<

Section 2. If any section, subsection, sentence, clause or provision of this ordinance is held invalid, the remainder of this ordinance shall not be affected by such invalidity.
Section 3. It is the intention of the Board of County Commissioners, and it is hereby ordained that the provisions of this ordinance, including any sunset provision, shall become and be made a part of the Code of Miami-Dade County, Florida. The sections of this ordinance may be renumbered or relettered to accomplish such intention, and the word "ordinance" may be changed to "section," "article," or other appropriate word.
Section 4. This ordinance shall become effective ten (10) days after the date of enactment unless vetoed by the Mayor, and if vetoed, shall become effective only upon an override by this Board.
1 Words stricken through and/or [[double bracketed]] shall be deleted. Words underscored and/or >>double arrowed<< constitute the amendment proposed. Remaining provisions are now in effect and remain unchanged.



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