2004 Florida Statutes
(1) SHORT TITLE.--This section may be cited as the "Everglades Restoration Investment Act."
(2) DEFINITIONS.--As used in this section, the term:
(a) "Comprehensive plan" means the recommended comprehensive plan contained within the "Final Integrated Feasibility Report and Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement, April 1999" and submitted to Congress on July 1, 1999.
(b) "Corps" means the United States Army Corps of Engineers.
(c) "District" means the South Florida Water Management District.
(d) "Project" means the Central and Southern Florida Project authorized under the heading "CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN FLORIDA" in s. 203 of the Flood Control Act of 1948 (62 Stat. 1176), and any modification to the project authorized by law.
(e) "Project component" means any structural or operational change, resulting from the comprehensive plan, to the project as it existed and was operated as of January 1, 1999.
(f) "Project implementation report" means the project implementation report as described in the "Final Integrated Feasibility Report and Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement, April 1999" and submitted to Congress on July 1, 1999.
(3) FURTHER ANALYSIS; AGREEMENTS FOR PROJECT COMPONENTS AND ALLOCATION OF PROJECT BENEFITS.--
(a) The Legislature intends to establish a full and equal partnership between the state and federal governments for the implementation of the comprehensive plan.
(b) The comprehensive plan shall be used as a guide and framework for a continuing planning process to:
1. Reflect new scientific knowledge, the results of pilot projects, and the results of new and continuing feasibility studies with the Corps; and
2. Ensure that project components will be implemented to achieve the purposes provided in the Federal Water Resource Development Act of 1996 that include restoring, preserving, and protecting the South Florida ecosystem, providing for the protection of water quality in and the reduction of the loss of fresh water from the Everglades, and providing such features as are necessary to meet the other water-related needs of the region, including flood control, the enhancement of water supplies, and other objectives served by the project.
(c) Prior to executing a project cooperation agreement with the Corps for the construction of a project component, the district, in cooperation with the Corps, shall complete a project implementation report to address the project component's economic and environmental benefits, engineering feasibility, and other factors provided in s. 373.1501 sufficient to allow the district to obtain approval under s. 373.026 Each project implementation report shall also identify the increase in water supplies resulting from the project component. The additional water supply shall be allocated or reserved by the district under chapter 373.
(4) SAVE OUR EVERGLADES TRUST FUND; FUNDS AUTHORIZED FOR DEPOSIT.--The following funds may be deposited into the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund created by s. 373.472 to finance implementation of the comprehensive plan:
(a) In fiscal year 2000-2001, funds described in s. 259.101(3).
(b) Funds described in subsection (5).
(c) Federal funds appropriated by Congress for implementation of the comprehensive plan.
(d) Any additional funds appropriated by the Legislature for the purpose of implementing the comprehensive plan.
(e) Gifts designated for implementation of the comprehensive plan from individuals, corporations, or other entities.
(f) Funds made available pursuant to s. 201.15 for debt service for Everglades restoration bonds.
(5) SAVE OUR EVERGLADES TRUST FUND SUPPLEMENTED.--
(a)1. For fiscal year 2000-2001, $50 million of state funds shall be deposited into the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund created by s. 373.472
2. For each year of the 9 consecutive years beginning with fiscal year 2001-2002, $75 million of state funds shall be deposited into the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund created by s. 373.472
3. As an alternative to subparagraph 2., proceeds of bonds issued under s. 215.619 may be deposited into the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund created under s. 373.472 To enhance flexibility, funds to be deposited into the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund may consist of any combination of state funds and Everglades restoration bonds.
(b) For each year of the 2 consecutive years beginning with fiscal year 2000-2001, the department shall deposit $25 million of the funds allocated to the district by the department under s. 259.105(11)(a) into the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund created by s. 373.472
(6) DISTRIBUTIONS FROM SAVE OUR EVERGLADES TRUST FUND.--
(a) Except for funds appropriated for debt service, the department shall distribute funds in the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund to the district in accordance with a legislative appropriation and s. 373.026(8)(b) and (c). Distribution of funds from the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund shall be equally matched by the cumulative contributions from all local sponsors by fiscal year 2009-2010 by providing funding or credits toward project components. The dollar value of in-kind work by local sponsors in furtherance of the comprehensive plan and existing interest in public lands needed for a project component are credits towards the local sponsors' contributions.
(b) The department shall distribute funds in the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund to the district in accordance with a legislative appropriation for debt service for Everglades restoration bonds.
(7) ANNUAL REPORT.--To provide enhanced oversight of and accountability for the financial commitments established under this section and the progress made in the implementation of the comprehensive plan, the following information must be prepared annually:
(a) The district, in cooperation with the department, shall provide the following information as it relates to implementation of the comprehensive plan:
1. An identification of funds, by source and amount, received by the state and by each local sponsor during the fiscal year.
2. An itemization of expenditures, by source and amount, made by the state and by each local sponsor during the fiscal year.
3. A description of the purpose for which the funds were expended.
4. The unencumbered balance of funds remaining in trust funds or other accounts designated for implementation of the comprehensive plan.
5. A schedule of anticipated expenditures for the next fiscal year.
(b) The department shall prepare a detailed report on all funds expended by the state and credited toward the state's share of funding for implementation of the comprehensive plan. The report shall include:
1. A description of all expenditures, by source and amount, from the Conservation and Recreation Lands Trust Fund, the Land Acquisition Trust Fund, the Preservation 2000 Trust Fund, the Florida Forever Trust Fund, the Save Our Everglades Trust Fund, and other named funds or accounts for the acquisition or construction of project components or other features or facilities that benefit the comprehensive plan.
2. A description of the purposes for which the funds were expended.
3. The unencumbered fiscal-year-end balance that remains in each trust fund or account identified in subparagraph 1.
(c) The district, in cooperation with the department, shall provide a detailed report on progress made in the implementation of the comprehensive plan, including the status of all project components initiated after the effective date of this act or the date of the last report prepared under this subsection, whichever is later.
The information required in paragraphs (a), (b), and (c) shall be provided annually in a single report to the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and copies of the report must be made available to the public. The initial report is due by November 30, 2000, and each annual report thereafter is due by January 31.
History.--s. 5, ch. 2000-129; s. 7, ch. 2001-172; s. 4, ch. 2002-261; s. 32, ch. 2002-402; s. 22, ch. 2003-394.