2014 Florida Statutes
Educational facilities benefit districts.
Educational facilities benefit districts.
1013.355 Educational facilities benefit districts.—
(1) It is the intent of the Legislature to encourage and authorize public cooperation among district school boards, affected local general-purpose governments, and benefited private interests in order to implement financing for timely construction and maintenance of school facilities, including facilities identified in individual district facilities work programs or proposed by charter schools. It is the further intent of the Legislature to provide efficient alternative mechanisms and incentives to allow for sharing costs of educational facilities necessary to accommodate new growth and development among public agencies, including district school boards, affected local general-purpose governments, and benefited private development interests.
(2) The Legislature hereby authorizes the creation of educational facilities benefit districts pursuant to interlocal cooperation agreements between a district school board and all local general-purpose governments within whose jurisdiction a district is located. The purpose of educational facilities benefit districts is to assist in financing the construction and maintenance of educational facilities.
(3)(a) An educational facilities benefit district may be created pursuant to this act and chapters 125, 163, 166, and 189. An educational facilities benefit district charter may be created by a county or municipality by entering into an interlocal agreement, as authorized by s. 163.01, with the district school board and any local general-purpose government within whose jurisdiction a portion of the district is located and adoption of an ordinance that includes all provisions contained within s. 189.02. The creating entity shall be the local general-purpose government within whose boundaries a majority of the educational facilities benefit district’s lands are located.
(b) Creation of any educational facilities benefit district shall be conditioned upon the consent of the district school board, all local general-purpose governments within whose jurisdiction any portion of the educational facilities benefit district is located, and all landowners within the district. The membership of the governing board of any educational facilities benefit district shall include representation of the district school board, each cooperating local general-purpose government, and the landowners within the district. In the case of an educational facilities benefit district’s decision to create a charter school, the board of directors of the charter school may constitute the members of the governing board for the educational facilities benefit district.
(4) The educational facilities benefit district shall have, and its governing board may exercise, the following powers:
(a) To finance and construct educational facilities within the district’s boundaries.
(b) To sue and be sued in the name of the district; to adopt and use a seal and authorize the use of a facsimile thereof; to acquire, by purchase, gift, devise, or otherwise, and to dispose of real and personal property or any estate therein; and to make and execute contracts and other instruments necessary or convenient to the exercise of its powers.
(c) To contract for the services of consultants to perform planning, engineering, legal, or other appropriate services of a professional nature. Such contracts shall be subject to the public bidding or competitive negotiations required of local general-purpose governments.
(d) To borrow money and accept gifts; to apply for unused grants or loans of money or other property from the United States, the state, a unit of local government, or any person for any district purposes and enter into agreements required in connection therewith; and to hold, use, and dispose of such moneys or property for any district purposes in accordance with the terms of the gift, grant, loan, or agreement relating thereto.
(e) To adopt resolutions and policies prescribing the powers, duties, and functions of the officers of the district, the conduct of the business of the district, and the maintenance of records and documents of the district.
(f) To maintain an office at such place or places as it may designate within the district or within the boundaries of the local general-purpose government that created the district.
(g) To lease as lessor or lessee to or from any person, firm, corporation, association, or body, public or private, any projects of the type that the district is authorized to undertake and facilities or property of any nature for use of the district to carry out any of the purposes authorized by this act.
(h) To borrow money and issue bonds, certificates, warrants, notes, or other evidence of indebtedness pursuant to this act for periods not longer than 30 years, provided such bonds, certificates, warrants, notes, or other indebtedness shall only be guaranteed by non-ad valorem assessments legally imposed by the district and other available sources of funds provided in this act and shall not pledge the full faith and credit of any local general-purpose government or the district school board.
(i) To cooperate with or contract with other governmental agencies as may be necessary, convenient, incidental, or proper in connection with any of the powers, duties, or purposes authorized by this act and to accept funding from local and state agencies as provided in this act.
(j) To levy, impose, collect, and enforce non-ad valorem assessments, as defined by s. 197.3632(1)(d), pursuant to this act, chapters 125 and 166, and ss. 197.3631, 197.3632, and 197.3635.
(k) To exercise all powers necessary, convenient, incidental, or proper in connection with any of the powers, duties, or purposes authorized by this act.
(5) As an alternative to the creation of an educational facilities benefit district, the Legislature hereby recognizes and encourages the consideration of community development district creation pursuant to chapter 190 as a viable alternative for financing the construction and maintenance of educational facilities as described in this act. Community development districts are granted the authority to determine, order, levy, impose, collect, and enforce non-ad valorem assessments for such purposes pursuant to this act and chapters 170, 190, and 197. This authority is in addition to any authority granted community development districts under chapter 190. Community development districts are therefore deemed eligible for the financial enhancements available to educational facilities benefit districts providing for financing the construction and maintenance of educational facilities pursuant to s. 1013.356. In order to receive such financial enhancements, a community development district must enter into an interlocal agreement with the district school board and affected local general-purpose governments that specifies the obligations of all parties to the agreement. Nothing in this act or in any interlocal agreement entered into pursuant to this act requires any change in the method of election of a board of supervisors of a community development district provided in chapter 190.
History.—s. 18, ch. 2002-296; s. 88, ch. 2014-22.