Florida Senate - 2012                                    SB 1554
       By Senator Altman
       24-00312B-12                                          20121554__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to state lands; amending s. 253.42,
    3         F.S.; providing for certain individuals and
    4         corporations to submit requests to the Board of
    5         Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund to
    6         exchange state-owned land for conservation easements
    7         over privately held land; providing criteria for
    8         consideration of such requests; encouraging certain
    9         operations on such lands; providing an effective date.
   11         WHEREAS, the Legislature finds that significant economic
   12  forces compel the state to be innovative in seeking new ways to
   13  expand the protection and conservation of undeveloped lands
   14  while reducing the overall fiscal impact to the state, and
   15         WHEREAS, many of these undeveloped lands are held in
   16  private ownership by individuals or by private or public
   17  corporations and are contiguous to existing state-owned land,
   18  and
   19         WHEREAS, the Legislature recognizes that these entities may
   20  have additional management resources that would assist in the
   21  conservation and protection of natural resources on such lands
   22  and allow the state to increase the amount of land under
   23  protective covenants, and
   24         WHEREAS, it is the intent of the Legislature to encourage
   25  the use of conservation easements over privately held land
   26  through the exchange of state-owned land, to secure the future
   27  of natural resource-based recreation areas, and to ensure the
   28  survival of plant and animal species and the conservation of
   29  finite and renewable natural resources, NOW, THEREFORE,
   31  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   33         Section 1. Subsection (4) is added to section 253.42,
   34  Florida Statutes, to read:
   35         253.42 Board of trustees may exchange lands.—The provisions
   36  of this section apply to all lands owned by, vested in, or
   37  titled in the name of the board whether the lands were acquired
   38  by the state as a purchase, or through gift, donation, or any
   39  other conveyance for which no consideration was paid.
   40         (4)(a) An individual or any private or public corporation
   41  that owns privately held land contiguous to state-owned land may
   42  submit a request directly to the board to exchange state-owned
   43  land for conservation easements placed over the privately held
   44  land.
   45         (b) If the privately held land is surrounded by state-owned
   46  land on at least 30 percent of its perimeter and the exchange
   47  does not create an inholding, the board shall consider such
   48  request within 60 days after receipt of the request.
   49         (c) Special consideration shall be given to a request
   50  submitted pursuant to this subsection which allows the state to
   51  retain a conservation easement in perpetuity. Low-impact
   52  operations, such as grazing, forest management, prescribed
   53  burning, and wildlife management practices, are strongly
   54  encouraged on such lands.
   55         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2012.