ITID Board Refers Final Issues Of Proposed Municipal Charter To Staff

The Indian Trail Improvement District Board of Supervisors agreed Wednesday, Sept. 15 to turn over to its staff the process to resolve a proposed amendment to the GL Homes agreement and other remaining questions regarding the proposed charter for the possible future municipality, which will be introduced to the Palm Beach County Legislative Delegation on Oct. 28.

ITID President Betty Argue said the district’s Feasibility and Charter Review Committee had met with GL Homes representatives to go through charter provisions, and there is a placeholder that corresponds to their developer agreement, which requires GL Homes to become an activated ITID unit.

Argue said that GL Homes does not wish to have all of its 4,872-acre Indian Trails Grove in the proposed municipality. The Palm Beach County Commission, which currently has control over the GL Homes development, agreed at a meeting in July to allow GL Homes representatives to participate in the ITID feasibility study.

“So, we needed to make some adjustments to the charter in terms of what they are looking for and negotiate on some provisions to provide them the comfort that they are looking for, and also the comfort that we’re looking for to protect our developer agreement,” she said. “At this point they have sent over some modifications, but it requires the attorneys to work on the developer agreement.”

Argue suggested that ITID staff be directed to work with GL Homes and State Rep. Rick Roth (R-District 85) on changes to the charter in regard to the GL Homes issue.

Argue said the issue at hand was whether GL Homes would be able to increase the intensity of use on its land.

“The provision right now says that they cannot increase their density or intensity,” she said. “It will be under the county for the first eight years to 10 years, and they cannot increase their density or intensity without the approval of the [future municipality].”

One of the things Argue said she was concerned about was that the current language did not state whether or not the proposed county portion of GL Homes could increase its density. She said the existing developer agreement also states that upon development, the unit would become activated into what could by then be the future municipality.

She added that although the incorporation plan is now in the hands of Roth and a three-citizen committee, ITID still is an interested party.

“We have an ownership interest because the proposed boundaries include land that Indian Trail owns, and it includes the district, so obviously we’re still going to be engaged as it relates to our interests,” Argue said.

Supervisor Keith Jordano said he would like to receive updates from the citizens committee about the progress of the incorporation bill through the legislature, and Argue said board members are free to talk to the committee members themselves.

Argue also pointed out that the ITID board would not automatically transfer to become a municipal council, and that municipal districts need to be created, which would require a study.

“There’s no way to commission that study,” she said. “Indian Trail does not have that authority to do that, and obviously, we don’t have the time between now and October, and the residents don’t have the money to be doing that. So, that is something that is going to need to be addressed in the proposed charter.”

Argue suggested that the easiest way to hold the first council election would be to have an open election with no districts, and the first council could commission the necessary study.

She added that language needs to be strengthened in the charter to protect agricultural rights and lifestyle. “There’s still some dissatisfaction about that from the residents,” Argue said.

She said that Roth will introduce the bill to the Palm Beach County Legislative Delegation on Oct. 28.

Jordano made a motion to turn the final issues with the proposed charter over to ITID’s legal staff, which carried 5-0.