Category Archives: Florida

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Lessons of Hurricane Irma — State of Florida Focus on Hurricane Preparedness and Infrastructure

In response to the widespread impacts of Hurricane Irma in Florida (all coastlines and virtually every community), Speaker Corcoran of the Florida House of Representatives has created a new Committee on Hurricane Response and Preparedness. Speaker Pro Tempore Jeanette Nunez of Miami will chair the 16-member bipartisan Select Committee whose focus will be to gather … Continue Reading

Hurricanes Harvey & Irma: Controlling Water, Mold, Bacterial Fallout

Six Tips on Managing Water Damage, Mold Growth, and Bacterial Threats As Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Texas, and other impacted areas begin the journey to recovery after Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, property owners are faced with the challenge of addressing water damage, preventing or remediating mold growth, and heading off bacterial threats from potentially contaminated … Continue Reading

New Emergency Rule in Florida Requires Responsible Parties to Quickly Notify Public of Pollution Spills

On Sept. 26, 2016, Governor Scott ordered the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to immediately issue an emergency rule requiring immediate notification of pollution spills to the general public, FDEP, and local governments. FDEP provides a copy of the Governor’s order and related materials on its website. During an investigation of two recent pollution spills … Continue Reading

Public Comment Deadline Nears on Florida’s Imperiled Species Management Plan in Contemplation of April 2016 Vote

The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (Florida FWC) is taking comment until January 20, 2016, on changes proposed by the agency on its approach to endangered and threatened species management in Florida.  Specifically,  the FWC is proposing an Imperiled Species Management Plan (ISMP) that, “[f]or the first time,”  provides published conservation objectives and the … Continue Reading

Navigating Legal Implications of Power Industry Regulations

I participated in a Power Magazine legal issues conference on December 7th in Las Vegas entitled, “Navigating Legal Implications of Power Industry Regulations.”  My presentation focused on the “nuts and bolts” of  preparing a State Plan under section 111(d) of the CAA and on what utilities should be doing with respect to State Plans while … Continue Reading

New Florida Statute Codifies U.S. Supreme Court Ruling in Koontz and Provides Relief Against ‘Extortionate’ Exactions

We wrote here previously about the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the “takings” case of Koontz v. St. Johns River Water Management District in 2013, which was an appeal by a property owner from an adverse ruling of the Florida Supreme Court with respect to permit conditions requiring off-site mitigation work.    The U.S. Supreme … Continue Reading

Testing the Waters

In 2005, Hurricane Wilma destroyed a pair of dilapidated marinas in North Bay Village where Fane Lozman, a former Marine pilot and software developer, kept a two-story floating home.  Kerri L. Barsh successfully represented Mr. Lozman in a landmark admiralty jurisdiction case before the U.S. Supreme Court. The Fane Lozman v. City of Riviera Beach, … Continue Reading

Anti-Fracking Resolution by Miami-Dade County

In the last six weeks we’ve provided analysis of the fracking bans in New York and Denton, Texas. Further on the anti- fracking front,  the Miami-Dade County Commission passed a resolution last week urging the Florida Legislature to adopt Senate Bill 166 (filed by Sen. Soto and Sen. Bullard) or similar legislation that would prohibit … Continue Reading

The Debate Over Florida’s First Commercial Waste-to-Energy Incinerator in 2 Decades

Palm Beach County will soon commence operations of the nation’s first commercial waste-to-energy trash incinerator in 20 years.  The $670 million incinerator, located immediately north of the Solid Waste Authority’s existing facility on Jog Road, will combust approximately 3,000 tons of material per day.  The source of fuel will be tires, wood, automobile remnants, and residential … Continue Reading

Miami-Dade County Moves Forward with Comprehensive Climate Change Planning Initiatives

I have written previously here about Miami-Dade County’s recent climate change initiatives,  which included adoption of requirements in 2014 that all county infrastructure projects consider the potential impact of sea level rise during all project phases and that existing infrastructure be evaluated in the face of sea level rise. Yesterday, the Miami-Dade County Commission moved … Continue Reading

Florida’s Land and Water Legacy Proposed Constitutional Amendment

Florida’s Water and Land Legacy was founded in July 2012 by approximately thirteen environmental groups, including 1000 Friends of Florida, the Sierra Club and Audubon Florida, who with the support primarily of other environmental groups, citizens and civic organizations gathered sufficient signatures from Florida voters to place Amendment 1: the Water and Land Conservation Amendment … Continue Reading

Dutch Solution to Miami’s Rising Seas? Floating Islands

Those following climate change adaptation may be interested in an article that appeared on Sunday, August 24, 2014, in the Miami Herald describing a project for floating villas near Miami.  The specific project is, of course, specific to the location and market.  However, the general observation is that technology to address sea level rise has … Continue Reading

Miami-Dade County Extends Period for Public Comment Regarding Proposed Amendments to the Wellfield Protection Ordinance

As we previously reported, on May 24, 2014, Miami-Dade County opened a period for receipt of public comments regarding its proposal to amend the County’s Potable Water Supply Wellfield Protection Ordinance and associated maps for the Northwest Wellfield and the West Interim Wellfield protection areas. The County has extended the comment period. The new deadline for … Continue Reading

New 2-Year Statutory Extension for Certain Florida Environmental & Development Permits

By the adoption of CS/HB 7023, (Click Here for a copy of the pertinent section of Bill),  the Florida Legislature has again authorized a new 2-year extension of permits issued by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and water management districts and building permits,  including local government-issued development orders or certificates of level of service. The … Continue Reading

Standard of Proof for Civil Penalties in Florida is “Preponderance” not “Clear and Convincing”

On May 22, 2014, the Supreme Court of Florida reversed the Fifth District Court of Appeals in the case of South Florida Water Management District v. RLI Live Oak, LLC, No. SC 12-2336 (Fla. May 22, 2014), an appeal brought by the water management district over the applicable burden of proof when imposing civil penalties. … Continue Reading

Miami-Dade County, Florida, Proposes Comprehensive Changes To Potable Water Supply Ordinance

On May 24, 2014, Miami-Dade County announced its proposal to amend its Potable Water Supply Wellfield Protection Ordinance and associated maps for the Northwest Wellfield and the West Interim Wellfield protection areas. The County’s announcement was preceded by a May 19, 2014, technical workshop on the proposed changes, with presentations by U.S. Geological Survey (U.S.G.S.) and the … Continue Reading

Koontz-Inspired State Legislation Would Expand Supreme Court’s Ruling in Permitting Context

Companion bills (H.B. 1077 and S.B. 1310) have been filed in the Florida Senate and House  that would prohibit local governments from imposing permit conditions or “development exactions” on a project that extend “beyond the direct impact of a proposed development.”  This legislation builds upon the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Koontz v. St. Johns River Water … Continue Reading

Environmental Groups Appeal Federal Court Order Allowing the State of Florida to Adopt Nutrient Standards For Its Waters — March 6, 2014

In a long-running controversy over nutrient standards for Florida waterways, five environmental groups filed a notice of appeal yesterday in the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit challenging the order of U.S. district court Judge Hinkle.  Click here  for a copy of the notice of appeal.  Specifically, the Florida Wildlife Federation, the … Continue Reading

EPA & Florida Reach Agreement on Disputed Nutrient Standards for Florida’s Waterways

On Friday, March 15, 2013, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced an Agreement in Principle with the U.S.  Environmental Protection Agency on the new criteria for Florida’s waters that would limit nitrogen and phosphorus, two nutrients commonly blamed for algae blooms and other water quality problems.  The EPA Agreement in Principle is intended to resolve a lengthy and contentious dispute between EPA and environmental advocacy groups … Continue Reading
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