2010 Florida Statutes
Florida Transportation Code; short title.—
Chapters 334-339, 341, 348, and 349 and ss. 332.003-332.007, 351.35, 351.36, 351.37, and 861.011 may be cited as the “Florida Transportation Code.”
s. 168, ch. 29965, 1955; s. 1, ch. 73-59; s. 72, ch. 79-164; s. 6, ch. 84-309.
When used in the Florida Transportation Code, the term:
“Arterial road” means a route providing service which is relatively continuous and of relatively high traffic volume, long average trip length, high operating speed, and high mobility importance. In addition, every United States numbered highway is an arterial road.
“Bridge” means a structure, including supports, erected over a depression or an obstruction, such as water or a highway or railway, and having a track or passageway for carrying traffic as defined in chapter 316 or other moving loads.
“City street system” means all local roads within a municipality, and all collector roads inside that municipality, which are not in the county road system.
“Collector road” means a route providing service which is of relatively moderate average traffic volume, moderately average trip length, and moderately average operating speed. Such a route also collects and distributes traffic between local roads or arterial roads and serves as a linkage between land access and mobility needs.
“Commissioners” means the governing body of a county.
“Consolidated metropolitan statistical area” means two or more metropolitan statistical areas that are socially and economically interrelated as defined by the United States Bureau of the Census.
“Controlled access facility” means a street or highway to which the right of access is highly regulated by the governmental entity having jurisdiction over the facility in order to maximize the operational efficiency and safety of the high-volume through traffic utilizing the facility. Owners or occupants of abutting lands and other persons have a right of access to or from such facility at such points only and in such manner as may be determined by the governmental entity.
“County road system” means all collector roads in the unincorporated areas of a county and all extensions of such collector roads into and through any incorporated areas, all local roads in the unincorporated areas, and all urban minor arterial roads not in the State Highway System.
“Department” means the Department of Transportation.
“Florida Intrastate Highway System” means a system of limited access and controlled access facilities on the State Highway System which have the capacity to provide high-speed and high-volume traffic movements in an efficient and safe manner.
“Functional classification” means the assignment of roads into systems according to the character of service they provide in relation to the total road network. Basic functional categories include arterial roads, collector roads, and local roads which may be subdivided into principal, major, or minor levels. Those levels may be additionally divided into rural and urban categories.
“Governmental entity” means a unit of government, or any officially designated public agency or authority of a unit of government, that has the responsibility for planning, construction, operation, or maintenance or jurisdiction over transportation facilities; the term includes the Federal Government, the state government, a county, an incorporated municipality, a metropolitan planning organization, an expressway or transportation authority, a road and bridge district, a special road and bridge district, and a regional governmental unit.
“Limited access facility” means a street or highway especially designed for through traffic, and over, from, or to which owners or occupants of abutting land or other persons have no right or easement of access, light, air, or view by reason of the fact that their property abuts upon such limited access facility or for any other reason. Such highways or streets may be facilities from which trucks, buses, and other commercial vehicles are excluded; or they may be facilities open to use by all customary forms of street and highway traffic.
“Local governmental entity” means a unit of government with less than statewide jurisdiction, or any officially designated public agency or authority of such a unit of government, that has the responsibility for planning, construction, operation, or maintenance of, or jurisdiction over, a transportation facility; the term includes, but is not limited to, a county, an incorporated municipality, a metropolitan planning organization, an expressway or transportation authority, a road and bridge district, a special road and bridge district, and a regional governmental unit.
“Local road” means a route providing service which is of relatively low average traffic volume, short average trip length or minimal through-traffic movements, and high land access for abutting property.
“Metropolitan area” means a geographic region comprising as a minimum the existing urbanized area and the contiguous area projected to become urbanized within a 20-year forecast period. The boundaries of a metropolitan area may be designated so as to encompass a metropolitan statistical area or a consolidated metropolitan statistical area. If a metropolitan area, or any part thereof, is located within a nonattainment area, the boundaries of the metropolitan area must be designated so as to include the boundaries of the entire nonattainment area, unless otherwise provided by agreement between the applicable metropolitan planning organization and the Governor.
“Metropolitan statistical area” means an area that includes a municipality of 50,000 persons or more, or an urbanized area of at least 50,000 persons as defined by the United States Bureau of the Census, provided that the component county or counties have a total population of at least 100,000.
“Nonattainment area” means an area designated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, pursuant to federal law, as exceeding national primary or secondary ambient air quality standards for the pollutants carbon monoxide or ozone.
“Periodic maintenance” means activities that are large in scope and require a major work effort to restore deteriorated components of the transportation system to a safe and serviceable condition, including, but not limited to, the repair of large bridge structures, major repairs to bridges and bridge systems, and the mineral sealing of lengthy sections of roadway.
“Person” means any person described in s. 1.01 or any unit of government in or outside the state.
“Right of access” means the right of ingress to a highway from abutting land and egress from a highway to abutting land.
“Right-of-way” means land in which the state, the department, a county, or a municipality owns the fee or has an easement devoted to or required for use as a transportation facility.
“Road” means a way open to travel by the public, including, but not limited to, a street, highway, or alley. The term includes associated sidewalks, the roadbed, the right-of-way, and all culverts, drains, sluices, ditches, water storage areas, waterways, embankments, slopes, retaining walls, bridges, tunnels, and viaducts necessary for the maintenance of travel and all ferries used in connection therewith.
“Routine maintenance” means minor repairs and associated tasks necessary to maintain a safe and efficient transportation system. The term includes: pavement patching; shoulder repair; cleaning and repair of drainage ditches, traffic signs, and structures; mowing; bridge inspection and maintenance; pavement striping; litter cleanup; and other similar activities.
“State Highway System” means the following, which shall be facilities to which access is regulated:
The interstate system;
All rural arterial routes and their extensions into and through urban areas;
All urban principal arterial routes; and
The urban minor arterial mileage on the existing State Highway System as of July 1, 1987, plus additional mileage to comply with the 2-percent requirement as described below.
However, not less than 2 percent of the public road mileage of each urbanized area on record as of June 30, 1986, shall be included as minor arterials in the State Highway System. Urbanized areas not meeting the foregoing minimum requirement shall have transferred to the State Highway System additional minor arterials of the highest significance in which case the total minor arterials in the State Highway System from any urbanized area shall not exceed 2.5 percent of that area’s total public urban road mileage.
“State Park Road System” means roads embraced within the boundaries of state parks and state roads leading to state parks, other than roads of the State Highway System, the county road systems, or the city street systems.
“State road” means a street, road, highway, or other way open to travel by the public generally and dedicated to the public use according to law or by prescription and designated by the department, as provided by law, as part of the State Highway System.
“Structure” means a bridge, viaduct, tunnel, causeway, approach, ferry slip, culvert, toll plaza, gate, or other similar facility used in connection with a transportation facility.
“Sufficiency rating” means the objective rating of a road or section of a road for the purpose of determining its capability to serve properly the actual or anticipated volume of traffic using the road.
“Transportation corridor” means any land area designated by the state, a county, or a municipality which is between two geographic points and which area is used or suitable for the movement of people and goods by one or more modes of transportation, including areas necessary for management of access and securing applicable approvals and permits. Transportation corridors shall contain, but are not limited to, the following:
Existing publicly owned rights-of-way;
All property or property interests necessary for future transportation facilities, including rights of access, air, view, and light, whether public or private, for the purpose of securing and utilizing future transportation rights-of-way, including, but not limited to, any lands reasonably necessary now or in the future for securing applicable approvals and permits, borrow pits, drainage ditches, water retention areas, rest areas, replacement access for landowners whose access could be impaired due to the construction of a future facility, and replacement rights-of-way for relocation of rail and utility facilities.
“Transportation facility” means any means for the transportation of people or property from place to place which is constructed, operated, or maintained in whole or in part from public funds. The term includes the property or property rights, both real and personal, which have been or may be established by public bodies for the transportation of people or property from place to place.
“Urban area” means a geographic region comprising as a minimum the area inside the United States Bureau of the Census boundary of an urban place with a population of 5,000 or more persons, expanded to include adjacent developed areas as provided for by Federal Highway Administration regulations.
“Urban minor arterial road” means a route that generally interconnects with and augments an urban principal arterial road and provides service to trips of shorter length and a lower level of travel mobility. The term includes all arterials not classified as “principal” and contain facilities that place more emphasis on land access than the higher system.
“Urban place” means a geographic region composed of one or more contiguous census tracts that have been found by the United States Bureau of the Census to contain a population density of at least 1,000 persons per square mile.
“Urban principal arterial road” means a route that generally serves the major centers of activity of an urban area, the highest traffic volume corridors, and the longest trip purpose and carries a high proportion of the total urban area travel on a minimum of mileage. Such roads are integrated, both internally and between major rural connections.
“Urbanized area” means a geographic region comprising as a minimum the area inside an urban place of 50,000 or more persons, as designated by the United States Bureau of the Census, expanded to include adjacent developed areas as provided for by Federal Highway Administration regulations. Urban areas with a population of fewer than 50,000 persons which are located within the expanded boundary of an urbanized area are not separately recognized.
“511” or “511 services” means three-digit telecommunications dialing to access interactive voice response telephone traveler information services provided in the state as defined by the Federal Communications Commission in FCC Order No. 00-256, July 31, 2000.
“Interactive voice response” means a software application that accepts a combination of voice telephone input and touch-tone keypad selection and provides appropriate responses in the form of voice, fax, callback, e-mail, and other media.
s. 2, ch. 29965, 1955; ss. 1, 2, ch. 57-318; ss. 1, 2, ch. 63-27; s. 1, ch. 67-43; ss. 23, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 105, ch. 71-377; ss. 5, 17, ch. 77-165; s. 1, ch. 79-357; s. 136, ch. 79-400; s. 1, ch. 83-52; s. 9, ch. 84-309; s. 6, ch. 85-180; s. 9, ch. 88-168; s. 1, ch. 88-224; s. 3, ch. 90-136; s. 2, ch. 93-164; s. 52, ch. 94-237; s. 119, ch. 99-13; s. 6, ch. 99-256; s. 76, ch. 99-385; s. 38, ch. 2003-286.
Purpose of transportation code.—
The purpose of the Florida Transportation Code is to establish the responsibilities of the state, the counties, and the municipalities in the planning and development of the transportation systems serving the people of the state and to assure the development of an integrated, balanced statewide transportation system. The prevailing principles to be considered in planning and developing these transportation systems are: preserving the existing transportation infrastructure; enhancing Florida’s economic competitiveness; and improving travel choices to ensure mobility. This code is necessary for the protection of the public safety and general welfare and for the preservation of all transportation facilities in the state. The chapters in the code shall be considered components of the total code, and the provisions therein, unless expressly limited in scope, shall apply to all chapters.
s. 10, ch. 84-309; s. 41, ch. 99-385; s. 11, ch. 2000-266.
Department; powers and duties.—
The department shall have the following general powers and duties:
To assume the responsibility for coordinating the planning of a safe, viable, and balanced state transportation system serving all regions of the state, and to assure the compatibility of all components, including multimodal facilities.
To adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement the provisions of law conferring duties upon it.
To adopt an official seal.
To maintain its headquarters in Tallahassee and its district offices and necessary field offices at such places within the state as it may designate, and to purchase, build, or lease suitable buildings for such uses.
To purchase, lease, or otherwise acquire property and materials, including the purchase of promotional items as part of public information and education campaigns for the promotion of scenic highways, traffic and train safety awareness, alternatives to single-occupant vehicle travel, and commercial motor vehicle safety; to purchase, lease, or otherwise acquire equipment and supplies; and to sell, exchange, or otherwise dispose of any property that is no longer needed by the department.
To acquire, by the exercise of the power of eminent domain as provided by law, all property or property rights, whether public or private, which it may determine are necessary to the performance of its duties and the execution of its powers.
To enter into contracts and agreements.
To sue and be sued as provided by law.
To employ and train staff, and to contract with qualified consultants. For the purposes of chapters 471 and 472, the department shall be considered a firm.
To develop and adopt uniform minimum standards and criteria for the design, construction, maintenance, and operation of public roads pursuant to the provisions of s. 336.045.
The department shall periodically review its construction, design, and maintenance standards to ensure that such standards are cost-effective and consistent with applicable federal regulations and state law.
The department is authorized to adopt rules relating to approval of aggregate and other material sources.
To establish a numbering system for public roads, to functionally classify such roads, and to assign jurisdictional responsibility.
To coordinate the planning of the development of public transportation facilities within the state and the provision of related transportation services as authorized by law.
To designate existing and to plan proposed transportation facilities as part of the State Highway System, and to construct, maintain, and operate such facilities.
To establish, control, and prohibit points of ingress to, and egress from, the State Highway System, the turnpike, and other transportation facilities under the department’s jurisdiction as necessary to ensure the safe, efficient, and effective maintenance and operation of such facilities.
To regulate and prescribe conditions for the transfer of stormwater to the state right-of-way as a result of manmade changes to adjacent properties.
Such regulation shall be through a permitting process designed to ensure the safety and integrity of the Department of Transportation facilities and to prevent an unreasonable burden on lower properties.
The department is specifically authorized to adopt rules which set forth the purpose; necessary definitions; permit exceptions; permit and assurance requirements; permit application procedures; permit forms; general conditions for a drainage permit; provisions for suspension or revocation of a permit; and provisions for department recovery of fines, penalties, and costs incurred due to permittee actions. In order to avoid duplication and overlap with other units of government, the department shall accept a surface water management permit issued by a water management district, the Department of Environmental Protection, a surface water management permit issued by a delegated local government, or a permit issued pursuant to an approved Stormwater Management Plan or Master Drainage Plan; provided issuance is based on requirements equal to or more stringent than those of the department. The department may enter into a permit-delegation agreement with a governmental entity if issuance of a permit is based on requirements that the department finds will ensure the safety and integrity of facilities of the Department of Transportation.
To plan, acquire, lease, construct, maintain, and operate toll facilities; to authorize the issuance and refunding of bonds; and to fix and collect tolls or other charges for travel on any such facilities.
To designate limited access facilities on the State Highway System and turnpike projects; to plan, construct, maintain, and operate service roads in connection with such facilities; and to regulate, reconstruct, or realign any existing public road as a service road.
To establish and maintain bicycle and pedestrian ways.
To encourage and promote the development of multimodal transportation alternatives.
To conduct research studies, and to collect data necessary for the improvement of the state transportation system.
To conduct research and demonstration projects relative to innovative transportation technologies.
To cooperate with and assist local governments in the development of a statewide transportation system and in the development of the individual components of the system.
To cooperate with the transportation department or duly authorized commission or authority of any state in the development and construction of transportation facilities physically connecting facilities of this state with those facilities of any adjoining state.
To identify, obtain, and administer all federal funds available to the department for all transportation purposes.
To do all things necessary to obtain the full benefits of the national Highway Safety Act of 1966, and in so doing, to cooperate with federal and state agencies, public and private agencies, interested organizations, and individuals to effectuate the purposes of that act, and any and all amendments thereto. The Governor shall have the ultimate state responsibility for dealing with the Federal Government in respect to programs and activities initiated pursuant to the national Highway Safety Act of 1966, and any amendments thereto.
To provide for the enhancement of environmental benefits, including air and water quality; to prevent roadside erosion; to conserve the natural roadside growth and scenery; and to provide for the implementation and maintenance of roadside conservation, enhancement, and stabilization programs. No less than 1.5 percent of the amount contracted for construction projects shall be allocated by the department for the purchase of plant materials, with, to the greatest extent practical, a minimum of 50 percent of these funds for large plant materials and the remaining funds for other plant materials. All such plant materials shall be purchased from Florida commercial nursery stock in this state on a uniform competitive bid basis. The department will develop grades and standards for landscaping materials purchased through this process. To accomplish these activities, the department may contract with nonprofit organizations having the primary purpose of developing youth employment opportunities.
To conduct studies and provide coordination to assess the needs associated with landside ingress and egress to port facilities, and to coordinate with local governmental entities to ensure that port facility access routes are properly integrated with other transportation facilities.
To require persons to affirm the truth of statements made in any application for a license, permit, or certification issued by the department or in any contract documents submitted to the department.
To advance funds for projects in the department’s adopted work program to governmental entities prior to commencement of the project or project phase when the advance has been authorized by the department’s comptroller and is made pursuant to a written agreement between the department and a governmental entity.
To take any other action necessary to carry out the powers and duties expressly granted in this code.
To provide oversight of traveler information systems that may include the provision of interactive voice response telephone systems accessible via the 511 number as assigned by the Federal Communications Commission for traveler information services. The department shall ensure that uniform standards and criteria for the collection and dissemination of traveler information are applied using interactive voice response systems.
In order to fulfill the department’s mission to provide a safe and efficient transportation system, the department’s Office of Motor Carrier Compliance may employ sworn law enforcement officers, certified in accordance with chapter 943, to enforce the traffic and criminal laws of this state. Such officers shall have full law enforcement powers granted to other peace officers of this state, including making arrests, carrying firearms, serving court process, and seizing vehicles defined as contraband under s. 319.33, illegal drugs, stolen property, and the proceeds of illegal activities. Officers appointed under this section have the primary responsibility for enforcing laws relating to size and weight of commercial motor vehicles; safety, traffic, tax, and registration of commercial motor vehicles; interdiction of vehicles defined as contraband under s. 319.33, illegal drugs, and stolen property; and violations that threaten the overall security and safety of Florida’s transportation infrastructure and the motoring public. The office is also authorized to appoint part-time or auxiliary law enforcement officers pursuant to chapter 943 and to provide compensation in accordance with law.
To enter into agreement with Space Florida to coordinate and cooperate in the development of spaceport infrastructure and related transportation facilities contained in the Strategic Intermodal System Plan and, where appropriate, encourage the cooperation and integration of airports and spaceports in order to meet transportation-related needs.
s. 11, ch. 84-309; s. 9, ch. 85-180; s. 26, ch. 86-243; s. 2, ch. 88-224; s. 155, ch. 92-152; s. 56, ch. 93-164; s. 15, ch. 96-423; s. 1, ch. 98-105; ss. 69, 232, 233, ch. 98-200; s. 1, ch. 99-250; s. 6, ch. 2000-266; s. 3, ch. 2002-13; s. 8, ch. 2002-20; s. 39, ch. 2003-286; s. 65, ch. 2006-60; s. 27, ch. 2007-259; s. 1, ch. 2009-89; s. 64, ch. 2010-5.
Transportation performance and productivity standards; development; measurement; application.—
The Florida Transportation Commission shall develop and adopt measures for evaluating the performance and productivity of the department. The measures may be both quantitative and qualitative and must, to the maximum extent practical, assess those factors that are within the department’s control. The measures must, at a minimum, assess performance in the following areas:
Finance and administration;
Preservation of the current state system;
Safety of the current state system;
Capacity improvements: highways and all public transportation modes; and
Disadvantaged business enterprise and minority business programs.
The commission shall establish annual performance objectives and standards that can be used to evaluate the department’s performance and productivity.
The commission shall evaluate the department’s performance and productivity quarterly, using the measures adopted under this section.
As soon as is practical after each annual evaluation, the commission shall submit its findings to the Governor and to the legislative transportation and appropriation committees. If the commission finds that the department failed to perform satisfactorily under these measures, the commission must recommend actions to be taken to improve the department’s performance.
s. 118, ch. 90-136; s. 91, ch. 92-152; s. 55, ch. 93-164; ss. 31, 32, ch. 96-323.
Department mission, goals, and objectives.—
The prevailing principles to be considered in planning and developing an integrated, balanced statewide transportation system are: preserving the existing transportation infrastructure; enhancing Florida’s economic competitiveness; and improving travel choices to ensure mobility.
The mission of the Department of Transportation shall be to provide a safe statewide transportation system that ensures the mobility of people and goods, enhances economic prosperity, and preserves the quality of our environment and communities.
The department shall document in the Florida Transportation Plan, in accordance with s. 339.155 and based upon the prevailing principles of preserving the existing transportation infrastructure, enhancing Florida’s economic competitiveness, and improving travel choices to ensure mobility, the goals and objectives that provide statewide policy guidance for accomplishing the department’s mission.
At a minimum, the department’s goals shall address the following prevailing principles.
Preservation.—Protecting the state’s transportation infrastructure investment. Preservation includes:
Ensuring that 80 percent of the pavement on the State Highway System meets department standards;
Ensuring that 90 percent of department-maintained bridges meet department standards; and
Ensuring that the department achieves 100 percent of the acceptable maintenance standard on the state highway system.
Economic competitiveness.—Ensuring that the state has a clear understanding of the economic consequences of transportation investments, and how such investments affect the state’s economic competitiveness. The department must develop a macroeconomic analysis of the linkages between transportation investment and economic performance, as well as a method to quantifiably measure the economic benefits of the district-work-program investments. Such an analysis must analyze:
The state’s and district’s economic performance relative to the competition.
The business environment as viewed from the perspective of companies evaluating the state as a place in which to do business.
The state’s capacity to sustain long-term growth.
Mobility.—Ensuring a cost-effective, statewide, interconnected transportation system.
s. 12, ch. 84-309; ss. 8, 31, ch. 85-180; s. 4, ch. 90-136; s. 96, ch. 92-152; ss. 8, 24, ch. 93-164; s. 48, ch. 94-237; s. 66, ch. 95-257; s. 43, ch. 99-385; s. 12, ch. 2000-266.
Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, the Department of Transportation may not establish a cap on the number of miles in the State Highway System or a maximum number of miles of urban principal arterial roads, as defined in s. 334.03, within a district or county.
s. 10, ch. 89-232.
Legislative intent with respect to department management accountability and monitoring systems.—
The department shall implement the following accountability and monitoring systems to evaluate whether the department’s goals are being accomplished efficiently and cost-effectively, and ensure compliance with all laws, rules, policies, and procedures related to the department’s operations:
The Transportation Commission shall monitor those aspects of the department’s operations as assigned in s. 20.23.
The secretary shall ensure that accountability and monitoring systems are fully integrated, that the systems provide useful information for department managers to assess program performance, and that department managers take corrective actions when necessary.
The central office shall adopt policies, rules, procedures, and standards which are necessary for the department to function properly, including establishing accountability for all aspects of the department’s operations.
The central office shall monitor the districts and central office units that provide transportation programs to assess performance; determine compliance with all applicable laws, rules, and procedures; and provide useful information for department managers to take corrective action when necessary.
All department managers shall be accountable for the implementation and enforcement of all laws, rules, policies, and procedures adopted for their areas of responsibilities.
The inspector general shall provide to the secretary independent evaluations of the department’s accountability and central office monitoring systems to assess whether such systems are effective and properly operating.
Such systems are herein established to quickly identify and resolve problems, to hold responsible parties accountable, and to ensure that all costs to the taxpayer are recovered.
s. 39, ch. 90-136; s. 3, ch. 95-153.
Patents, copyrights, trademarks; notice to Department of State; confidentiality of trade secrets.—
Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, the Department of Transportation is authorized, in its own name, to:
Perform all things necessary to secure letters of patent, copyrights, and trademarks on any legitimately acquired work products, and to enforce its rights therein.
License, lease, assign, or otherwise give written consent to any person, firm, or corporation for the manufacture or use of any product protected by patent, copyright, or trademark, whether on a royalty basis or for such other consideration as the department may deem proper.
Take any action necessary, including legal action, to enforce its rights under any agreement and to protect its property rights from improper or unlawful use or infringement.
Enforce the collection of any payments or other obligations due the department for the manufacture or use of any product by any other party.
Sell any product, except where otherwise provided by public records laws, which the department may create or cause to be created, whether or not the product is protected by a department patent, copyright, or trademark, and to execute all instruments necessary to consummate any such sale.
Do all other acts necessary and proper for the execution of powers and duties herein conferred upon the department.
The department shall notify the Department of State in writing whenever property rights by patent, copyright, or trademark are secured or exploited by the department.
Any proceeds from the sale of products or the right to manufacture or use a product shall be deposited in the State Transportation Trust Fund and may be appropriated to finance activities of the department. The department’s legislative budget request should give special consideration to using such funds for research and development projects.
Any information obtained by the department as a result of research and development projects and revealing a method of process, production, or manufacture which is a trade secret as defined in s. 688.002, is confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1).
As used in this section the term “product” includes any and all inventions, methodologies, techniques, and creations that may be properly protected by patent, copyright, or trademark.
s. 32, ch. 93-164; s. 1, ch. 95-122; s. 160, ch. 96-406.
Department headquarters; acquisition of office space.—
The headquarters and general office of the department shall be located at the state capital.
The department may purchase, build, rent, or lease suitable buildings or rooms for its headquarters, general office, branch offices, or division offices and for maintenance yards and rooms for equipment and supplies in other cities and towns of this state as the business of the department may necessitate or require; and payment for the purchase, construction, rental, or lease of such offices shall be made from any funds provided for the maintenance of the department.
s. 4, ch. 29965, 1955; s. 1, ch. 63-330; s. 13, ch. 84-309.
Statistical studies relating to traffic count and accidents.—
The department shall include in the criteria for the planning, construction, and maintenance of the State Highway System statistical studies of accidents and fatalities as well as traffic count.
s. 1, ch. 69-66; ss. 23, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 14, ch. 84-309.
Center for Urban Transportation Research.—
There is established at the University of South Florida the Florida Center for Urban Transportation Research, to be administered by the Board of Governors of the State University System. The responsibilities of the center include, but are not limited to, conducting and facilitating research on issues related to urban transportation problems in this state and serving as an information exchange and depository for the most current information pertaining to urban transportation and related issues.
The center shall be a continuing resource for the Legislature, the Department of Transportation, local governments, the nation’s metropolitan regions, and the private sector in the area of urban transportation and related research and shall generate support in addition to its state-funded base of support provided by s. 206.606. The center shall promote intercampus transportation and related research activities among Florida’s universities in order to enhance the ability of these universities to attract federal and private sector funding for transportation and related research.
An advisory board shall be created to periodically and objectively review and advise the center concerning its research program. Except for projects mandated by law, state-funded base projects shall not be undertaken without approval of the advisory board. The membership of the board shall consist of nine experts in transportation-related areas, including the secretaries of the Florida Departments of Transportation, Community Affairs, and Environmental Protection, or their designees, and a member of the Florida Transportation Commission. The nomination of the remaining members of the board shall be made to the President of the University of South Florida by the College of Engineering at the University of South Florida, and the appointment of these members must be reviewed and approved by the Florida Transportation Commission and confirmed by the Board of Governors.
The center shall develop a budget pursuant to chapter 216. This budget shall be submitted to the Governor along with the budget of the Board of Governors.
s. 12, ch. 88-215; s. 60, ch. 90-136; s. 153, ch. 92-152; s. 162, ch. 94-356; s. 133, ch. 95-417; s. 44, ch. 2007-217.
Legislative designation of transportation facilities.—
Designation of a transportation facility contained in an act of the Legislature is for honorary or memorial purposes or to distinguish a particular facility, and unless specifically provided for, shall not be construed to require any action by a local government or private party regarding the changing of any street signs, mailing address, or 911 emergency telephone number system listing.
The effect of such designations shall only be construed to require the placement of markers by the department at the termini or intersections specified for each highway segment or bridge designated, and as authority for the department to place other markers as appropriate for the transportation facility being designated.
Erection of markers shall be contingent on the appropriate city or county commission passing a resolution in support of the particular honorary designation. If the bridge or road segment being designated is located in more than one city or county, resolutions supporting the designation must be passed by each affected local government prior to the erection of the markers.
s. 44, ch. 99-385; s. 58, ch. 2003-286.
Department employees’ benefit fund.—
The department is authorized to create and operate an employees’ benefit fund for employees of the department. The proceeds of the vending machines located in premises occupied by the department shall be paid into the fund, to be used for such benefits and purposes as the department may determine.
s. 1, ch. 69-387; ss. 23, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 16, ch. 84-309.
Employees of department who are required to be engineers.—
Each employee performing engineering as defined in chapter 471 shall be registered in accordance with the provisions of chapter 471.
s. 13, ch. 29965, 1955; s. 5, ch. 57-318; s. 5, ch. 67-461; ss. 12, 23, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 2, ch. 72-29; ss. 2, 3, ch. 73-58; s. 2, ch. 78-90; s. 205, ch. 81-259; s. 2, ch. 81-302; s. 17, ch. 84-309; s. 10, ch. 85-180; s. 4, ch. 88-215; s. 486, ch. 95-148; s. 13, ch. 97-100; s. 40, ch. 2003-286.
Consulting services; provision by department to other governmental units.—
The department is authorized to provide consulting services, upon request, to any governmental unit on such terms as may be mutually agreed upon in writing.
s. 16, ch. 29965, 1955; ss. 23, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 18, ch. 84-309.
Certification of project design plans and surveys.—
All design plans and surveys prepared by or for the department shall be signed, sealed, and certified by the professional engineer or surveyor or architect or landscape architect in responsible charge of the project work. Such professional engineer, surveyor, architect, or landscape architect must be duly registered in this state.
s. 20, ch. 84-309; s. 77, ch. 2002-20.
Financial responsibility for construction, material, or design failures; review of contracts; financial assurances.—
The department shall request its legal staff, prior to awarding any contract, to review the contract to determine the responsibilities of the parties for construction, material, or design failures. The department shall, whenever practical, minimize its responsibility for such failures. The department legal staff shall review and comment on all contracts to:
Determine the legal responsibility for construction, material, or design failures.
Advise the department on ways to minimize the responsibility of the department for such failures.
The department may require financial assurances, including, but not limited to, bonds, liability insurance or other form of insurance, or letters of credit, to provide that the responsibilities of the parties to a contract will be met.
s. 22, ch. 84-309.
Guarantee of obligations to the department.—
With the approval of the department’s comptroller, a letter of credit or bond may be accepted by the department to guarantee payment of any obligation due the department or that may become due to the department.
The letter of credit shall be payable solely to the department as beneficiary, and it shall be nonassignable and nontransferable. The letter of credit may be issued by any financially sound bank or savings association existing under the laws of this state or any financially sound bank or savings association organized under the laws of the United States that has its principal place of business in this state or has a branch office which is authorized under the laws of this state or of the United States to receive deposits in this state.
The department’s comptroller must approve the use of the letter of credit or bond, the institution issuing the letter of credit or bond, and the language to be used in the letter of credit or bond. Such approval may be given only when the department’s comptroller determines that acceptance of these items is in the best interest of the state and of the department in the performance of its duties.
The department is authorized to adopt rules relating to the use of prepaid escrow accounts for purchases from the department.
s. 25, ch. 93-164; s. 7, ch. 2000-266.
Unlawful for certain persons to be financially interested in purchases, sales, and certain contracts; penalties.—
It is unlawful for a state officer, or an employee or agent of the department, or for any company, corporation, or firm in which a state officer, or an employee or agent of the department has a financial interest, to bid on, enter into, or be personally interested in:
The purchase or the furnishing of any materials or supplies to be used in the work of the state.
A contract for the construction of any state road, the sale of any property, or the performance of any other work for which the department is responsible.
Any person who is convicted of a violation of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, and shall be removed from his or her office or employment.
s. 24, ch. 84-309; s. 487, ch. 95-148.
Officers or employees of the department; conflicts of interest; exception; penalties.—
Except as provided in subsection (2), no state officer or employee of the department shall directly or indirectly solicit or accept funds from any person who has, maintains, or seeks business relations with the department.
The provisions of this section do not apply to the solicitation of funds for charitable purposes, including, but not limited to, such organizations as the United Fund, Heart Fund, or American Red Cross.
A violation of the terms of this section is a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, and subjects the officer or employee violating its provisions to removal from his or her office or employment.
s. 1, ch. 70-123; s. 235, ch. 71-136; s. 25, ch. 84-309; s. 488, ch. 95-148.
Former s. 337.045.
Authority of department to photograph or microphotograph records and to destroy original records; admissibility of photographs or microphotographs in evidence.—
The department is authorized to photograph, microphotograph, or reproduce on film, whereby each page will be exposed in exact conformity with the original, all its documents, records, maps, data, and information of a permanent character. The department is further authorized to destroy any documents after they have been photographed and filed except the original minutes of the meetings of the former State Road Board and such title deeds, maps, easements, leases, and releases relating to the rights-of-way of state roads and other property owned or leased by the department, which deeds, maps, easements, leases, and releases the department deems should be preserved in original form.
Photographs or microphotographs in the form of film or print of any records made in compliance with the provisions of this section shall have the same force and effect as the originals for the purpose of their admissibility in evidence. Duly certified or authenticated reproductions of such photographs or microphotographs shall be admitted in evidence equally with original photographs or microphotographs.
s. 163, ch. 29965, 1955; ss. 23, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1, ch. 73-305; s. 26, ch. 84-309.
Former s. 339.32.
Compilation, maintenance, and provision of information relating to roads and road building and repair.—
The department shall:
Collect data and information as to all roads in the state and, when practicable, have maps and plats thereof made.
Investigate and collect data and information as to the best methods and materials for road building and repair.
Investigate and gather information as to road building and repair in the different localities in the state.
Compile all such data and information and furnish it to counties upon request.
Keep on file at the department headquarters copies of such data and information as a public record.
s. 23, ch. 29965, 1955; s. 1, ch. 63-174; ss. 23, 35, ch. 69-106; ss. 2, 3, ch. 73-57; s. 29, ch. 84-309.
Governmental transportation entities; property acquired for transportation purposes; limitation on soil or groundwater contamination liability.—
For the purposes of this section, the term “governmental transportation entity” means the department; an authority created pursuant to chapter 343, chapter 348, or chapter 349; airports as defined in s. 332.004(14); a port enumerated in s. 311.09(1); a county; or a municipality.
When a governmental transportation entity acquires property for a transportation facility or in a transportation corridor through the exercise of eminent domain authority, or by purchase or donation, it is not subject to any liability imposed by chapter 376 or chapter 403 for preexisting soil or groundwater contamination due solely to its ownership. This section does not affect the rights or liabilities of any past or future owners of the acquired property nor does it affect the liability of any governmental entity for the results of its actions which create or exacerbate a pollution source. A governmental transportation entity and the Department of Environmental Protection may enter into interagency agreements for the performance, funding, and reimbursement of the investigative and remedial acts necessary for property acquired by the governmental transportation entity.
s. 49, ch. 96-323; s. 12, ch. 97-280.
Public-private transportation facilities.—
The Legislature finds and declares that there is a public need for the rapid construction of safe and efficient transportation facilities for the purpose of traveling within the state, and that it is in the public’s interest to provide for the construction of additional safe, convenient, and economical transportation facilities.
The department may receive or solicit proposals and, with legislative approval as evidenced by approval of the project in the department’s work program, enter into agreements with private entities, or consortia thereof, for the building, operation, ownership, or financing of transportation facilities. The department may advance projects programmed in the adopted 5-year work program or projects increasing transportation capacity and greater than $500 million in the 10-year Strategic Intermodal Plan using funds provided by public-private partnerships or private entities to be reimbursed from department funds for the project as programmed in the adopted work program. The department shall by rule establish an application fee for the submission of unsolicited proposals under this section. The fee must be sufficient to pay the costs of evaluating the proposals. The department may engage the services of private consultants to assist in the evaluation. Before approval, the department must determine that the proposed project:
Is in the public’s best interest;
Would not require state funds to be used unless the project is on the State Highway System;
Would have adequate safeguards in place to ensure that no additional costs or service disruptions would be realized by the traveling public and residents of the state in the event of default or cancellation of the agreement by the department;
Would have adequate safeguards in place to ensure that the department or the private entity has the opportunity to add capacity to the proposed project and other transportation facilities serving similar origins and destinations; and
Would be owned by the department upon completion or termination of the agreement.
The department shall ensure that all reasonable costs to the state, related to transportation facilities that are not part of the State Highway System, are borne by the private entity. The department shall also ensure that all reasonable costs to the state and substantially affected local governments and utilities, related to the private transportation facility, are borne by the private entity for transportation facilities that are owned by private entities. For projects on the State Highway System, the department may use state resources to participate in funding and financing the project as provided for under the department’s enabling legislation. Because the Legislature recognizes that private entities or consortia thereof would perform a governmental or public purpose or function when they enter into agreements with the department to design, build, operate, own, or finance transportation facilities, the transportation facilities, including leasehold interests thereof, are exempt from ad valorem taxes as provided in chapter 196 to the extent property is owned by the state or other government entity, and from intangible taxes as provided in chapter 199 and special assessments of the state, any city, town, county, special district, political subdivision of the state, or any other governmental entity. The private entities or consortia thereof are exempt from tax imposed by chapter 201 on all documents or obligations to pay money which arise out of the agreements to design, build, operate, own, lease, or finance transportation facilities. Any private entities or consortia thereof must pay any applicable corporate taxes as provided in chapters 220 and 221, and unemployment compensation taxes as provided in chapter 443, and sales and use tax as provided in chapter 212 shall be applicable. The private entities or consortia thereof must also register and collect the tax imposed by chapter 212 on all their direct sales and leases that are subject to tax under chapter 212. The agreement between the private entity or consortia thereof and the department establishing a transportation facility under this chapter constitutes documentation sufficient to claim any exemption under this section.
Agreements entered into pursuant to this section may authorize the private entity to impose tolls or fares for the use of the facility. The following provisions shall apply to such agreements:
With the exception of the Florida Turnpike System, the department may lease existing toll facilities through public-private partnerships. The public-private partnership agreement must ensure that the transportation facility is properly operated, maintained, and renewed in accordance with department standards.
The department may develop new toll facilities or increase capacity on existing toll facilities through public-private partnerships. The public-private partnership agreement must ensure that the toll facility is properly operated, maintained, and renewed in accordance with department standards.
Any toll revenues shall be regulated by the department pursuant to s. 338.165(3). The regulations governing the future increase of toll or fare revenues shall be included in the public-private partnership agreement.
The department shall provide the analysis required in subparagraph (6)(e)2. to the Legislative Budget Commission created pursuant to s. 11.90 for review and approval prior to awarding a contract on a lease of an existing toll facility.
The department shall include provisions in the public-private partnership agreement that ensure a negotiated portion of revenues from tolled or fare generating projects are returned to the department over the life of the public-private partnership agreement. In the case of a lease of an existing toll facility, the department shall receive a portion of funds upon closing on the agreements and shall also include provisions in the agreement to receive payment of a portion of excess revenues over the life of the public-private partnership.
The private entity shall provide an investment grade traffic and revenue study prepared by an internationally recognized traffic and revenue expert that is accepted by the national bond rating agencies. The private entity shall also provide a finance plan that identifies the project cost, revenues by source, financing, major assumptions, internal rate of return on private investments, and whether any government funds are assumed to deliver a cost-feasible project, and a total cash flow analysis beginning with implementation of the project and extending for the term of the agreement.
Each private transportation facility constructed pursuant to this section shall comply with all requirements of federal, state, and local laws; state, regional, and local comprehensive plans; department rules, policies, procedures, and standards for transportation facilities; and any other conditions which the department determines to be in the public’s best interest.
The department may exercise any power possessed by it, including eminent domain, with respect to the development and construction of state transportation projects to facilitate the development and construction of transportation projects pursuant to this section. The department may provide services to the private entity. Agreements for maintenance, law enforcement, and other services entered into pursuant to this section shall provide for full reimbursement for services rendered for projects not on the State Highway System.
Except as herein provided, the provisions of this section are not intended to amend existing laws by granting additional powers to, or further restricting, local governmental entities from regulating and entering into cooperative arrangements with the private sector for the planning, construction, and operation of transportation facilities.
The procurement of public-private partnerships by the department shall follow the provisions of this section. Sections 337.025, 337.11, 337.14, 337.141, 337.145, 337.175, 337.18, 337.185, 337.19, 337.221, and 337.251 shall not apply to procurements under this section unless a provision is included in the procurement documents. The department shall ensure that generally accepted business practices for exemptions provided by this subsection are part of the procurement process or are included in the public-private partnership agreement.
The department may request proposals from private entities for public-private transportation projects or, if the department receives an unsolicited proposal, the department shall publish a notice in the Florida Administrative Weekly and a newspaper of general circulation at least once a week for 2 weeks stating that the department has received the proposal and will accept, for 120 days after the initial date of publication, other proposals for the same project purpose. A copy of the notice must be mailed to each local government in the affected area.
Public-private partnerships shall be qualified by the department as part of the procurement process as outlined in the procurement documents, provided such process ensures that the private firm meets at least the minimum department standards for qualification in department rule for professional engineering services and road and bridge contracting prior to submitting a proposal under the procurement.
The department shall ensure that procurement documents include provisions for performance of the private entity and payment of subcontractors, including, but not limited to, surety bonds, letters of credit, parent company guarantees, and lender and equity partner guarantees. The department shall balance the structure of the security package for the public-private partnership that ensures performance and payment of subcontractors with the cost of the security to ensure the most efficient pricing.
After the public notification period has expired, the department shall rank the proposals in order of preference. In ranking the proposals, the department may consider factors that include, but are not limited to, professional qualifications, general business terms, innovative engineering or cost-reduction terms, finance plans, and the need for state funds to deliver the project. If the department is not satisfied with the results of the negotiations, the department may, at its sole discretion, terminate negotiations with the proposer. If these negotiations are unsuccessful, the department may go to the second-ranked and lower-ranked firms, in order, using this same procedure. If only one proposal is received, the department may negotiate in good faith and, if the department is not satisfied with the results of the negotiations, the department may, at its sole discretion, terminate negotiations with the proposer. Notwithstanding this subsection, the department may, at its discretion, reject all proposals at any point in the process up to completion of a contract with the proposer.
The department shall provide an independent analysis of the proposed public-private partnership that demonstrates the cost-effectiveness and overall public benefit at the following times:
Prior to moving forward with the procurement; and
If the procurement moves forward, prior to awarding the contract.
The department may lend funds from the Toll Facilities Revolving Trust Fund, as outlined in s. 338.251, to private entities that construct projects on the State Highway System containing toll facilities that are approved under this section. To be eligible, a private entity must comply with s. 338.251 and must provide an indication from a nationally recognized rating agency that the senior bonds for the project will be investment grade, or must provide credit support such as a letter of credit or other means acceptable to the department, to ensure that the loans will be fully repaid. The state’s liability for the funding of a facility is limited to the amount approved for that specific facility in the department’s 5-year work program adopted pursuant to s. 339.135.
The department may use innovative finance techniques associated with a public-private partnership under this section, including, but not limited to, federal loans as provided in Titles 23 and 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, commercial bank loans, and hedges against inflation from commercial banks or other private sources.
The department may enter into public-private partnership agreements that include extended terms providing annual payments for performance based on the availability of service or the facility being open to traffic or based on the level of traffic using the facility. In addition to other provisions in this section, the following provisions shall apply:
The annual payments under such agreement shall be included in the department’s tentative work program developed under s. 339.135 and the long-range transportation plan for the applicable metropolitan planning organization developed under s. 339.175. The department shall ensure that annual payments on multiyear public-private partnership agreements are prioritized ahead of new capacity projects in the development and updating of the tentative work program.
The annual payments are subject to annual appropriation by the Legislature as provided in the General Appropriations Act in support of the first year of the tentative work program.
The department shall provide a summary of new public-private partnership projects each year as part of the submittal of the Tentative Work Program pursuant to s. 339.135. This summary shall include identification of planned funding from the State Transportation Trust Fund beyond the 5-year Tentative Work Program period that are the public involvement process for project, including discussion of the planned use of future funds to deliver the project.
Prior to entering such agreement where funds are committed from the State Transportation Trust Fund, the project must be prioritized as follows:
The department, in coordination with the local metropolitan planning organization, shall prioritize projects included in the Strategic Intermodal System 10-year and long-range cost-feasible plans.
The department, in coordination with the local metropolitan planning organization or local government where there is no metropolitan planning organization, shall prioritize projects, for facilities not on the Strategic Intermodal System, included in the metropolitan planning organization cost-feasible transportation improvement plan and long-range transportation plan.
Public-private partnership agreements under this section shall be limited to a term not exceeding 50 years. Upon making written findings that an agreement under this section requires a term in excess of 50 years, the secretary of the department may authorize a term of up to 75 years. Agreements under this section shall not have a term in excess of 75 years unless specifically approved by the Legislature. The department shall identify each new project under this section with a term exceeding 75 years in the transmittal letter that accompanies the submittal of the tentative work program to the Governor and the Legislature in accordance with s. 339.135.
The department shall ensure that no more than 15 percent of total federal and state funding in any given year for the State Transportation Trust Fund shall be obligated collectively for all projects under this section.
s. 1, ch. 91-160; s. 67, ch. 93-164; s. 21, ch. 95-257; s. 7, ch. 99-256; s. 52, ch. 2002-20; s. 6, ch. 2004-366; s. 50, ch. 2007-196; s. 19, ch. 2009-111.
Youth work experience program; findings and intent; authority to contract; limitation.—
The Legislature finds and declares that young men and women of the state should be given an opportunity to obtain public service work and training experience that protects and conserves the valuable resources of the state and promotes participation in other community enhancement projects. Notwithstanding the requirements of chapters 287 and 337, the Department of Transportation is authorized to contract with public agencies and nonprofit organizations for the performance of work related to the construction and maintenance of transportation-related facilities by youths enrolled in youth work experience programs. The total amount of contracts entered into by the department under this section in any fiscal year may not exceed the amount specifically appropriated by the Legislature for this program.
Each nonprofit youth organization that provides services under a contract with the department must certify that each young person enrolled in its work experience program is a resident of this state and possesses a valid Florida driver’s license or identification card.
When selecting a nonprofit youth organization to perform work on transportation-related facilities and before awarding a contract under this section, the department must consider the following criteria:
The number of participants receiving life management skills training;
The number of participants receiving high school diplomas or GEDs;
The number of participants receiving scholarships;
The number of participants receiving bonuses;
The number of participants who have secured full-time jobs; and
The other programs or services that support the development of disadvantaged youths.
Each nonprofit youth organization under contract with the department must:
Submit an annual report to the department by January 1 of each year. The report must include, but need not be limited to, the applicable performance of the organization when measured by the criteria in subsection (3) for the organization’s most recently completed fiscal year.
Submit an independent audit of the organization’s financial records to the department each year. The organization’s contract with the department must allow the department the right to inspect the organization’s financial and program records.
Demonstrate participation in a peer assessment or review process, such as the Excellence in Corps Operations of the National Association of Service and Conservation Corps.
s. 13, ch. 97-280; s. 2, ch. 2007-66; s. 27, ch. 2007-196.
511 traveler information system.—
The department is the state’s lead agency for implementing 511 services and is the state’s point of contact for coordinating 511 services with telecommunications service providers. The department shall:
Implement and administer 511 services in the state;
Coordinate with other transportation authorities in the state to provide multimodal traveler information through 511 services and other means;
Develop uniform standards and criteria for the collection and dissemination of traveler information using the 511 number or other interactive voice response systems; and
Enter into joint participation agreements or contracts with highway authorities and public transit districts to share the costs of implementing and administering 511 services in the state. The department may also enter into other agreements or contracts with private firms relating to the 511 services to offset the costs of implementing and administering 511 services in the state.
The department shall adopt rules to administer the coordination of 511 traveler information phone services in the state.
s. 41, ch. 2003-286.