Message From the City Manager
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced everyone, including the City of Melbourne, to reconsider the ways in which we conduct business and to quickly transition to a variety of electronic or automated practices. Some projects were in the works before the onset of the Coronavirus, but not yet complete. I asked Rebecca Thibert to provide a brief summary of some of the new technology and projects nearing completion that will help us provide service more efficiently moving into the future.
The City of Melbourne has many projects underway or planned that will improve our functionality in a virtual environment. We already knew these improvements would be beneficial to our organization, but the COVID-19 pandemic really showed and expedited the need.
First, we are in the final stages of the Energov project, with many staff members and departments currently completing training. This software will provide the ability for electronic submission and review of construction plans, building permits and business tax receipts. Our Energov team has been working hard over the last year to get to this point and we are approaching the finish line. During COVID-19, we really saw how Energov will be a useful asset in a virtual environment.
Second, we will be implementing video streaming of City Council and board meetings using a service called CP Media through CivicClerk, our agenda management software, in July. Our plan has always been to utilize CivicClerk for video streaming of public meetings, but the COVID-19 pandemic pushed that need to the forefront. When we had an immediate need to stream City Council meetings, we hired a contractor to provide the service. Upon completion of the Council Chamber audio/visual upgrade project, we will begin using CP Media, which will result in a savings to the City versus the current contractor cost. We will also soon have the ability to stream all board meetings, not just City Council, which will be beneficial to our residents and staff.
Our Finance staff is also hard at work on implementing an automated payroll system. This is a much-needed enhancement to our existing payroll and timekeeping process. We will finally do away with the blue sheets! This will save lots of time and improve efficiency for our employees, timekeepers, department heads, and payroll staff.
Lastly, we have all definitely embraced Zoom during the pandemic. From our various department head meetings, pre-construction meetings with developers, virtual training via webinars, and even City Council Members participating in City Council meetings, Zoom has really been the unsung hero of COVID-19. We have been able to continue the majority of our meetings and business practices virtually with little interruption to our citizens. Zoom is definitely here to stay!
Our staff has done an amazing job continuing to do business during the COVID-19 pandemic! We have embraced technology and thought of new ways to get things done, while still displaying the “Service is Our Business” motto. We were already heading in the right direction with these projects, but now we know, more than ever, how much they are needed.
Thank you to everyone for all that you do!
Rebecca Thibert, Assistant to the City Manager
Annual Water Quality Report Now Available Online and at Many Public Locations
There is a link provided in all the utility bills being sent out during the next three months for the City’s annual water quality report, also known as the consumer confidence report (CCR). The report covers the results of water testing during 2019. The report is available online on the Water Quality Report page. If you would like a paper copy of the report, please call 321-608-5080 or e-mail your request to WaterQualityReport@mlbfl.org. Copies are also available at Melbourne City Hall, other city halls in the water distribution area, civic centers and at area libraries.
Cliff Creek Baffle Box Installation CompletedThe Cliff Creek Baffle Box — the largest nutrient-separating baffle box east of the Mississippi River – is now in operation. Construction began in February and was completed on June 1. It is the latest in a series of baffle boxes being installed at points throughout the city in an effort to reduce the amount of pollution going into the Indian River Lagoon. Baffle boxes are underground structures made up of chambers that trap debris, trash, and other pollutants from stormwater that flows off of streets and into stormdrains after heavy rains. “Nutrient-separating” baffle boxes have an added feature that also removes nitrogen and phosphorus — the two most harmful pollutants going into the Indian River Lagoon. Work is underway on four more baffle boxes located at Spring Creek, Cherry Street, Grant Place and Apollo Boulevard near the intersection of General Aviation Drive that will be constructed and operational within two years.
Orlando Melbourne International Launches New Safe Travel Experience
Orlando Melbourne International Airport (MLB) has launched a new program to provide a safe and healthy environment for all passengers, customers, tenants, and employees that includes impactful changes throughout the terminal and a new interactive website. The new program called MLB’s Game Plan: A Safe and Strategic Response to COVID-19 is outlined at FlyMLBsafely.com. Read the full press release on the MLB website.
Melbourne’s Newest Dog Park Opens
The Pieloch Dog Park of Eau Gallie opened to the public on Saturday, May 30. The park is located at 1550 Mosswood Drive, Melbourne, Florida 32935. The new park features the area’s first "doggie" splash pad, which includes 12 randomly operating spraying jets; spraying fire hydrants; agility jumps; mounds; and Fido's Fort, an interactive tunnel system. There are separate sections for large and small dogs. The Pieloch Dog Park of Eau Gallie was created through the efforts of community volunteers and sponsors. Spearheaded by Melbourne Vice Mayor Paul Alfrey and John Casey, the former chairman of the Brevard County Sherriff’s Office Pet Posse committee, a dedicated team of volunteers and city parks staff worked for hundreds of hours over several months to build and install the park’s many amenities. The park is named for its largest donors, Mark and Tetiana Pieloch, local philanthropists and owners of the American Muscle Car Museum. The Space Coast Association of Realtors provided manpower through volunteers and grant funding from the National Association of Realtors. Lowe's Home Improvement and American Recycled Plastic offered discounted materials and supplies. The "doggie" splash pad was built by local volunteer contractors Hydro Plumbing, Kangaroo Electric and D Bell General Contracting.
Play Melbourne Parks Recreation and Golf Launches New YouTube Channel
The City of Melbourne’s Parks, Recreation and Golf Department has launched a new Play Melbourne YouTube channel that features a variety of instructional videos of games, crafts and physical education activities designed for audiences of all ages.
Business Task Force Created to Help Promote Businesses With Directory; Spend Local Campaign
The City of Melbourne, Melbourne Regional Chamber, Melbourne Main Street, Eau Gallie Arts District, and Orlando Melbourne International Airport (MLB) came together in April to develop ways to help promote local businesses as they began to re-open. The “Melbourne: Back in Business” campaign consists of various elements including signage and outdoor advertising, digital media marketing, and social media promotions to help revive Melbourne’s economy by encouraging area consumers to spend local. Tool kits and resources for businesses were also developed as part of the campaign. Find out more at www.SpendLocalMelbourne.com.
Employee Excellence Awards
Employee Excellence Awards recognize employees for taking on extra responsibilities or special projects that go above and beyond their normal duties, for exceptional performance on an on-going basis, and for outstanding customer service, either internal or external.
Building inspection employees Cale Rizer, John Vallery, Lynsey Jones, Mark Lucas, Steve Flowers and Ed Hundt were awarded “Employee Excellence” Awards in recognition of their exceptional performance during the COVID-19 crisis. “We have currently more than a half billion dollars of construction activity on our books, and the inspection staff did not falter in their responsibility to keep the projects moving forward,” said Deputy Building Official Ed Gast. “This job progression is a large part of keeping the economy going.”
Mandy Geiger was also recognized with an Employee Excellence Award for going above and beyond expectations. “Mandy has been extremely helpful in the last few months helping with front administrative activity while we are shorthanded, helping enter and write up permits, helping with the annual CRS re-certification and while her supervisor was out running the Fire Prevention section,” said Code Compliance Director Steve Innes. “Mandy has shown she is willing to pitch in and help not only her section but other sections in the Code Compliance Division. Her help has been invaluable while we are short three positions.”
Congratulations to the following employees on their recent promotions:
- Merlinda Andre to Administrative Assistant I, Police Support Services
- Richard Andre to Code Inspector II, Code Compliance
- John Barney to Communications Officer III, Police Support Services
- Dennis Burke to Streets and Stormwater Superintendent, Streets Management
- Harley Cicirelli-Barzola to Communications Officer III, Police Support Services
- David Eberhart to Driver/Engineer Medic (Solo) , Fire Operations
- Thomas Ethier to Police Officer, Police Operations
- Anthony Evans to Police Officer, Police Operations
- Timothy Fish to Maintenance Repair Worker, Parks Maintenance
- Benjamin Fisher to Police Officer, Police Operations
- Natalie Kingery to Water Production Operator B, Water Production
- Lynsey Jones to Plans Examiner I, Code Compliance
- Shane Jones to Lift Station Electrician, Wastewater Collection
- Keandre Moreno-Pearson to Police Officer, Police Operations
- Amanda Neal to Communications Officer III, Police Support Services
- Bryce Poppell to Police Officer, Police Operations
- Denise Procise to Police Officer, Police Operations
- Chad Quatruopolo to Water Production Operator C, Water Production
- Anastasia Rule, to Communications Officer II, Police Support Services
- Evan Shaner to Water Reclamation Mechanic, Water Reclamation
- Horace Vickers to Police Officer, Police Operations
- Glenn Whiteside to Police Officer, Police Operations
Congratulations to recent winners of the Applause Award! The following employees were recognized for exceeding their normal job duties to provide customer service, perform a service or project, or to facilitate teamwork and/or collaboration:
- Joe Ameigh
- Merlinda Andre
- Kayla Barrett
- Christina Brainard
- Nate Brandel
- Hannah Bult
- Chris Clayton
- Tim Clifford
- Todd Corwin
- Christopher Cote
- Sondra D'Angelo
- Tyler Davenport
- Hetal Desai
- Ray Desmarais
- Tyler Dockswell
- Brent Dooley
- Jerod Durant
- Regina Fielding
- Sharon Fishe
- Mandy Geiger
- Brian Hart
- Jay Hazelett
- Garry Hibbs
- Amy Hicks
- Ed Hundt
- Mona Kinsman
- Brent Kleeberg
- Linda Hudgins
- Chuck Landmesser
- Dan Linehan
- Mark Lucas
- Michael Mateyka
- Ian McDaniel
- Shanequa Nabors
- Bob Perry
- John Precious
- Ellyssa Quave
- Cale Rizer
- Mike Sampieri
- Ryan Schorer
- Marquis Shackelford
- Trevor Shaffer
- Sheridan Shelley
- Jessica Sims
- Brian Smith
- Donna Spann
- Hannah Stauffer
- Lindsay Stevens
- Mike Szczepanski
- John Walker
- Evan Wells
- Leah Wojnar
Brent Dooley (left) receives his award from Chuck Bogle.
John Struckman (left) receives his award from Kevin Burns.
Welcome New Employees!
- John Austen Jr., Recreation
- Lori Bockelman, Financial Services
- Michael Boone, Wastewater Collection
- Jodie Brown, Water Production
- John Cashman, Water Reclamation
- Bailey Costa, Fire Operations
- Christopher Drake, Mallards Landing Golf Course
- Terry Ellis, Fire Operations
- Nicholas Feld, Fire Operations
- Joshua Frary, Engineering
- George Gallucci, Mallards Landing Golf Course
- Emma Graham, Police Operations
- Linsi Greenberg, Police Support Services
- Matthew Hallsworth, Wastewater Collection
- Nicholas Harris, Police Operations
- Robert Hay, Parks Maintenance
- Dillon Helpingstine, Water Reclamation
- Ricky Hensley, Traffic Engineering
- Valerie Hunt, Police Support Services
- Darya James, Police Support Services
- Scott Jones, Police Support Services
- Richard Kelley, Police Operations
- Ppaitun Kelly, Eau Gallie Civic Center
- Brandon Lanza, Fire Operations
- Brian Leary, Parks Maintenance
- Kimberly Lewis, Parks Maintenance
- Amanda Lopez, Police Operations
- Michael McCollom, Water Production
- Brandon Mitchell, Police Operations
- Kimberly Overbey, Lipscomb Community Center
- Richard Parker, Water Reclamation
- Chelsea Picciotti, Police Support Services
- Nickolette Robinson, Utility Billing & Collection
- William Roska, Eau Gallie Civic Center
- Shaun Rycroft, Community Development
- Silas Scott Jr., Joseph N. Davis Community Center
- Christopher Showalter, Facilities Maintenance
- Kaden Stanley, Fire Operations
- Keith Terry, Streets Management
- Adryon Thomas, Water Production
- Christopher Thomas, Police Operations
During the May 26 City Council Meeting, the mayor, council members and city manager congratulated and thanked employees who recently reached service milestones. Pictured from left to right are Council Member Tim Thomas, John De La Rosa (30 years), Council Member Mark LaRusso, Bryan Eriksen (30 years), Mayor Kathy Meehan, Council Member Julie Sanders, Council Member Debbie Thomas, Council Member Yvonne Minus, and Vice Mayor Paul Alfrey.
- Haydn Bladow, Airport Electrical Specialist, retired on May 29 after 24 years of service.
- Emil Castrillo, Police Officer, retired on May 29 after 30 years of service.