2019 Florida Statutes
Powers of the mobile home park recreation district; recreation district tax.
Powers of the mobile home park recreation district; recreation district tax.
418.304 Powers of the mobile home park recreation district; recreation district tax.—An ordinance creating or amending the charter of a mobile home park recreation district may grant to the recreation district the following powers:
(1) To sue and be sued and to have a corporate seal.
(2) To contract and be contracted with.
(3) To acquire, purchase, construct, improve, equip, and maintain streets and lights, recreational facilities, and other common areas of all types, including real property and personal property, within the boundaries of the existing platted mobile home park to be acquired by the district; such acquisition may be by purchase, lease, or gift.
(4) To levy and assess a special assessment known as a “recreation district tax” against all improved residential parcels situated within the district for the purpose of providing funds to implement the powers of the district, subject to the following:
(a) The fiscal year of the district shall commence October 1 of each year and end on September 30 of the following year. The trustees shall, on or before April 1 of each year, prepare an annual financial statement of income and disbursements during the prior fiscal year. On or before July 1 of each year, the trustees shall prepare and adopt an itemized budget showing the amount of money necessary for the operation of the district for the next fiscal year and the special assessment to be assessed and collected upon improved residential parcels of the district for the next ensuing year. Each year such a financial statement shall be published once during the month of April in a newspaper of general circulation within the county. A copy of the statement and a copy of the budget shall also be furnished to each owner of an improved residential parcel within 30 days after its preparation, and a copy of each shall be made available for public inspection at the principal office of the district at reasonable hours.
(b) The trustees shall, on or before July 30 of each year, by resolution, fix the amount of the assessment for the next ensuing year. These special assessments may be collected in the manner provided for ad valorem taxes under chapter 197, subject to the conditions of s. 197.363. Prior to the adoption of the resolution fixing the amount of the assessment, the trustees shall hold a public hearing at which time qualified electors of the district may appear and be heard. Notice of the time and place of the public hearing shall be published once in a newspaper of general circulation within the county at least 21 days prior to the public hearing.
(c) For the purpose of determining property subject to the district assessment, the term “improved residential parcel” means a platted lot on which a mobile home may be erected.
(d) The district assessment shall not be an ad valorem tax, but shall be a special assessment assessed equally against all improved residential parcels. Each parcel of property in the district is hereby declared to be uniformly benefited by the services of such district.
(e) The district assessment shall be a valid lien upon each improved residential parcel of land so assessed until it has been paid. The district board of trustees may collect a district assessment in a single annual installment or in monthly installments equal to 1/12 of the district assessment for the fiscal year. However, before the board elects to collect assessments monthly, it must provide notice and an opportunity for public comment to all affected property owners.
1. If the board of trustees elects to collect the district assessment in a single annual installment, the district assessment must be considered part of the county tax and is subject to the same penalties, charges, fees, and remedies provided for the enforcement and collection of county taxes.
2. If the board of trustees elects to collect the district assessment in equal monthly installments, it must provide to all affected property owners notice that includes a clear and conspicuous statement of the change in the property owner’s rights with regard to foreclosure proceedings. If the district assessment is collected in equal monthly installments, the district assessment must not be considered part of the county tax and must not be collected as part of the county tax collection. Each monthly installment must be billed by the district to the owner of each improved residential parcel at the address of the owner shown on the county tax roll. Each installment is due and payable on the first day of each month and is delinquent if not paid within 1 month after its due date. This subparagraph does not prohibit any owner from paying multiple monthly installments in advance of the due dates of such installments. The district may collect a delinquent fee of not more than $10 per month or fraction thereof on any delinquent installment. The district may enforce a lien with respect to any delinquent installment. The lien must be perfected by recording in the public records of the county a claim of lien with respect to any delinquent installment, and the claim of lien has a priority as of the date of the recording. The claim of lien must be recorded no earlier than 30 days after an installment becomes delinquent, and the district may foreclose a lien for which a claim has been recorded. With respect to each such lien that the board records, the board must provide to the property owner, no later than 5 days after the lien is recorded, notice that includes a clear and conspicuous statement of the board’s right to foreclose. The foreclosure proceeding may be brought no sooner than 60 days after recording a claim of lien or 1 year after the first installment became delinquent, whichever is later, and may include all amounts owed to the district for installments of assessments and delinquent fees which accrue subsequent to the earliest installment shown on the claim of lien. The foreclosure proceeding must be brought in the circuit court of the county in which the district is located and in the usual and customary manner for a mortgage foreclosure proceeding. The district may recover reasonable attorney’s fees and costs with respect to the recording of any claim of lien and in any foreclosure proceeding on such claim of lien.
(5) To issue bonds or notes to finance, in whole or in part, the cost of construction, acquisition, or improvement of common real property and personal property of the district. The trustees, in determining such costs, may include all costs and estimated costs of the issuance of the bonds or notes; all engineering, inspection, fiscal, and legal expenses; all costs of preliminary surveys, plans, maps, and specifications; initial reserve funds for debt service; and the costs of the services of persons, firms, corporations, partnerships, or associations employed or consultants, advisers, engineers, or fiscal, financial, or other experts in the planning, preparation, and financing of the district. The trustees are authorized to employ and to enter into agreements or contracts with consultants, engineers, attorneys, certified public accountants, or fiscal, financial, or other experts for the planning, preparation, and financing of the district, or any asset thereof, upon such terms and conditions as the trustees deem desirable and proper. The district may pledge to the punctual payment of bonds, notes, or revenue certificates, and interest thereon, an amount of the revenue from the special assessments, known as “recreation district taxes,” as well as the fees derived from the use of facilities and services of the district, including acquisitions, extensions, and improvements thereof, sufficient to pay the bonds, notes, and revenue certificates and the interest thereon as the same become due, and to create and maintain reasonable reserves therefor.
(6) To operate and maintain recreational facilities or to enter into arrangements with others for such operation and maintenance pursuant to contract, lease, or otherwise.
(7) To establish, charge, and collect reasonable fees for admission to or use of recreational facilities, provided the use of the facilities is extended to residents and nonresident owners within the district, their family members and guests, and other such persons and groups as the board may authorize from time to time; and to apply such fees to the operation, maintenance, improvement, enlargement, or acquisition of recreational facilities or to the payment of bonds, notes, or revenue certificates of the district.
(8) To adopt and enforce rules for the use of the recreational facilities owned or operated by the district.
(9) To employ all personnel, including private security guards, deemed necessary for the operation and maintenance of the facilities of the district.
(10) To adequately insure the facilities, properties, and operations of the district as well as the trustees of the district, jointly and severally, in the performance of their duties.
(11) To buy, sell, rent, or lease real property and personal property and to deliver purchase money notes and mortgages in connection with the acquisition of property.
(12) To adopt rules and regulations not inconsistent with existing deed restrictions and to use district funds in the administration and enforcement of such rules, regulations, and deed restrictions.
(13) To enter into contracts involving the purchase, lease, conveyance, or other manner of acquisition of common real or tangible personal property; however, in any instance when the cost, price, or consideration therefor exceeds $25,000, including all obligations proposed to be assumed in connection with such acquisition, then only if:
(a) The trustees by a two-thirds vote have approved the terms and conditions of such acquisition by written resolution;
(b) Within not less than 30 days nor more than 60 days after the date of the resolution, the trustees certify the resolution to the supervisor of elections for the county for a referendum election; and
(c) The resolution is approved by a majority vote of the qualified electors voting in a referendum called for the purpose of considering the resolution.
History.—s. 36, ch. 83-204; s. 3, ch. 83-337; s. 9, ch. 84-80; s. 215, ch. 85-342; s. 9, ch. 88-147; s. 1, ch. 97-11.