Politics: Latest Developments in the Race for Governor
The week following Florida’s primary elections saw several major developments in the contest for governor, including a poll showing the race to be a statistical tie, the withdrawal of a candidate, and the designation of an African-American woman as the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor.
Florida Constitution: Florida Supreme Court Removes Three Proposed Amendments From the General Election Ballot
In a series of opinions issued on August 31, 2010, the Supreme Court of Florida removed from the November general election ballot three amendments to the Florida Constitution that had been proposed by the Legislature and allowed two amendments that had been proposed by petition to remain on the ballot.
Four other proposed constitutional amendments also remain on the ballot. Amendment One proposes to repeal the constitutional provision on public campaign financing, Amendment Two proposes a homestead tax credit for deployed military personnel, Amendment Four requires local referenda for adoption or amendment of comprehensive land use plans, and Amendment Eight revises maximum class-size requirements for public schools.
Growth Management: Circuit Court Declares 2009 Growth Management Law Unconstitutional
On August 26, 2010, Chief Judge Charles A. Francis of the Second Judicial Circuit issued a final summary judgment holding the 2009 growth management law (SB 360, compiled as Chapter 2009-96, Laws of Florida) unconstitutional.
The 2009 law loosened growth management requirements in what it referred to as “dense urban land areas.” Among other things, the law waived transportation concurrency requirements and the development-of-regional-impact review process in those areas. The law also required the adoption of comprehensive plan amendments and transportation strategies “to support and fund mobility.” Local governments and environmental groups argued that the law imposed costs on counties and municipalities in violation of the state constitutional prohibition of unfunded mandates.
The circuit court held that the requirement for comprehensive plan amendments rendered SB 360 unconstitutional.
Economy: Florida Resumes Population Growth
According to the Bureau of Economic and Business Research of the University of Florida, the state resumed its pattern of population growth in 2010, a year after sustaining its first population decline since the 1940s.
The bureau announced on September 2, 2010, that Florida’s population grew by 21,285 persons between April 1, 2009 and April 1, 2010. In the previous year, Florida population declined by 56,736 persons. Referring to the 2010 population increase, Stan Smith, director of the research bureau, said that “Even though the state turned it around, it still represents the smallest population increase since the 1940s and does not make up for last year’s loss. Florida’s population growth continues to be very, very slow by historical standards.” He noted that the state’s population grew by more than 125,000 persons every year from 1950 through 2008, and by more than 300,000 a year from the 1970s through 2006.
As of April 1, 2010, Florida’s estimated population was 18,771,768.
Public Policy News Alert is part of our ongoing commitment to providing up-to-the-minute information about pressing concerns or industry issues affecting our clients and our colleagues. If you have any questions about this alert or would like to discuss these topics further, please contact your Foley attorney or any of the following individuals:
G. Donovan Brown
Michael P. Harrell
Robert H. Hosay
Jonathan P. Kilman
Thomas J. Maida
Leonard E. Schulte
Marnie George of The George Group assists Foley on a variety of government and public policy matters as a consultant.