The Department of Community Affairs (DCA) Secretary Billy Buzzett and other spokespersons for Governor Scott’s administration will be holding a series of public meetings in June and early July to inform citizens about changes in Florida’s growth management programs as a result of legislation passed this year. Tom Beck, who will likely become the Director of the Division of Community Planning, will also be present. Mr. Beck will end up in charge of making future decisions on those limited cases where the state may still step in to veto or change local government land use decisions.
We know that this legislation constitutes a dramatic and destructive roll-back of the state role in Growth Management, and in most cases leaves comprehensive land use plan decisions solely in the hands of counties and cities. However, the Legislature did carve out certain circumstances under which the state can continue to intervene in favor of protecting Florida’s environment and natural resources. Please click here to learn more about this feature of the new growth management law.
We recommend that Audubon leaders and members, and those concerned with Florida’s ecosystems and natural resources attend these meetings. When at the meetings, members of the public should strongly and persistently press DCA officials to define and make commitments regarding the circumstances under which the Division of Community Planning will challenge local government plan decisions that would harm important state natural resources.
Examples of some good questions to ask: “If someone proposes a plan amendment to allow a large marina and residential development impacting the Wekiva River Aquatic Preserve, would this be a project that might result in a challenge by the Division of Community Planning?” and “If Miami-Dade County proposes to change its plan to move the urban development boundary out into the Everglades, could this result in a challenge by the Division of Community Planning? and “How can the public participate in alerting the Division of Community Planning to local plan amendments that threaten important state resources?” Please attend these workshops, be vocal and aggressively ask tough questions!
DCA asks that participants register for these workshops. To register, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, including your name, organization, and the date of the workshop you plan to attend:
|June 21, 2011 1:30 pm||SARASOTA
State College of Florida, Center of Information and Technology
7131 Professional Parkway East, Sarasota FL
|June 22, 2011 1:30 pm||POLK CITY (between Orlando and Lakeland)
Fantasy of Flight, Orlampa Conference Center
1400 Broadway Boulevard, South East, Polk City, FL
|June 27, 2011 1:00 pm||GAINESVILLE
Florida Dep. of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs, Doyle Conner Building
1911 Southwest 34th Street (State Road 121), Gainesville, FL
|June 28, 2011 9:00 am||ST. AUGUSTINE
St. Johns County Convention Center, World Golf Village
500 South Legacy Trail, St. Augustine, FL
|June 30, 2011 1:00 pm||BOCA RATON
6500 Building Auditorium
6500 Congress Avenue, Boca Raton, FL
|July 5, 2011 1:00 pm (CST)||DeFUNIAK SPRINGS
Walton County Courthouse, County Commission Chambers
571 US 90 East, DeFuniak Springs, FL