Bad for Communities:
For almost 50 years, Florida’s citizens have relied on their local governments to govern our many communities in a manner that reflects local preferences and necessarily involves the regulation of businesses. The top-down approach doesn’t work when Washington impinges on the freedom and autonomy of the states—it does not work when Tallahassee does the same to local communities.
SB 1158 would inadvertently swell the ranks of Tallahassee bureaucracies, forcing local governments to navigate a network of approvals and appeals to tackle mundane administrative matters and tangling governments, businesses and taxpayers in a technocratic web. Prior to the adoption of Home Rule in 1968, the legislature would often pass over 2,000 special acts in a single session, much of it the result of bureaucratic rulemaking. In practice, this process empowered neither state nor local elected officials, but instead concentrated power in the hands of Tallahassee-based bureaucrats.
Bad for Business:
Accessible and Nimble: Businesses should not be forced to navigate the state legislative process for minor matters that are easily addressed at the local level. This is particularly problematic for small businesses, which may lack the resources to pursue matters before the State Legislature. Local governments are the most accessible venue to resolve business concerns because they are closest to the people and most familiar with their communities. Tallahassee is not equipped to address every problem in every community.
Regulatory Certainty: Florida statutory and case law evolved under a home rule system. SB 1158 represents a complete change in Florida law. Upending that body of law will have far-reaching unintended and unpredictable consequences. Since economic uncertainty discourages investment and innovation, because businesses are conservative by nature, SB 1158 will hurt Florida businesses.
Economic Investment at Risk: The most important thing that a government can do to assure business that its investment is secure is the commitment that its agreements and permits can be relied on. SB 1158 would effectively void any requirements of permits or contracts that are not explicitly authorized under Florida Statutes, opening up permits and agreements to challenges by anyone in the community, including competitors.
Pass a Resolution!
FAC encourages every county to pass a resolutions opposing HB 17 and SB 1158. If your commissioner passes such a resolution please forward it to FAC so that we can share it with the appropriate legislators.
If you would like to view a sample resolution, please click here.
Please send adopted resolutions to Laura Youmans.