The Bottom Line: Governor Scott Signs FHBA Priorities Into Law

With the exception of a few bills, the sun has set on the 2018 Legislative Session. Overall, the session was a success, moving several issues forward while thwarting bad ideas which threaten our industry. Below are the major bills that passed this past session, all but one have been acted upon by the Governor. In this case, acted upon means signed into law by the Governor.

State Assumption of 404 Dredge and Fill Permits: This bill allows the State Department of Environmental Regulation to assume 404 dredge and fill permits from the federal Environmental Protection Agency. Assumption of these duties will be pending a memorandum of understanding between the two agencies.

Passed both the House and Senate and approved by the Governor.

Statute of Repose: In response to last year’s changes, it clarifies that punch list and warranty services to not stall the tolling of the statute of repose timeframes.

Passed both the House and the Senate and approved by the Governor.

Condominium Bulk Buyer Sunset Repeal: A provision in this bill removes the sunset date of the bulk buyer provisions. A priority of our high-rise members in South Florida and a long standing priority of the FHBA.

Passed both the House and Senate and approved by the Governor. 

Apprenticeship Programs Counting Towards High School Graduation: This bill allows certain approved apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs to count towards high school graduation credits.

Passed both the House and Senate and is pending gubernatorial approval as HB 577. 

A bill being signed into law does not signal the end of our advocacy efforts on a particular issue. The bill allowing the state to assume 404 dredge and fill permits is an excellent example. Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) must now negotiate a memorandum of understanding with the Army Corps of Engineers. FHBA is an active participant in the coalition monitoring DEP’s activities.

Bottom Line: Even though session ended and the Governor has approved most of our priorities, work remains with regulators to ensure the appropriate intent is carried out. We now begin switching focus to the political equation. Please save the date for statewide candidate interviews: July 10-11 at the Rosin Shingle Creek in Orlando Florida. We will be interviewing candidates for Governor, Attorney General, Chief Financial Officer and Agriculture Commissioner.

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