Joint Meeting Opens Line Of Communication For First Step Shelter

By on August 15, 2019 in WNDB News

Daytona Beach, FL – Agreements were made on some issues and other issues are shelved to a later date. A joint meeting between the First Step Shelter Board and the Daytona Beach City Commission began with a long conversation about kitchen equipment. City staff’s original recommendation was that First Step Shelter use the Volusia Department of Corrections meal service for the first six months to one year of operation. Most Board members, including Chase Tramont, were adamantly against the idea.

Tramont said that money for kitchen equipment will not come out of the $800,000 already provided for the Shelter by the city of Daytona Beach. Money for the kitchen equipment, $400,000 if needed, is separate money budgeted by the city of Daytona Beach. Tramont said the city made good on the commitment during the joint meeting on Wednesday (August 14).

According to Tramont, the $400,000 would be for brand new, state-of-the-art equipment but that’s not the Board’s plan. He said their plan is to find second-hand equipment so that they can have what’s needed.

Another major point of contention that was discussed is the necessity of a safe zone and where it will be located. Tramont has said since the beginning that he did not think the safe zone should be inside the Shelter or anywhere near it. He said the resolution agreed on is that the city will allow the Board to make the determination on whether there will be a safe zone and if there is, where it will be located. In turn, the city of Daytona Beach reserves the right to veto the decision. Tramont floated the idea of each city in Volusia County having its own safe zone. He said he expects the Board to make a decision on the safe zone issue at their regular meeting scheduled for this coming Monday at City Hall.

The issue of Flagler County contributing funds and becoming a part of the First Step Shelter. Tramont said he was surprised that he was the only Board member to be opposed to the idea. After some discussion, a unanimous decision was made to shelve the idea until at least next year.

The next First Step Shelter Board meeting is scheduled for Monday, August 19 at 4:00 p.m. in City Hall.

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