Legislative Session 2021

There are a lot of bad bills in this year’s legislative session.

IRNA Encourages you to reach out to our State Senator, Debby Mayfield at mayfield.debbie.web@flsenate.gov and our State House Representative, Erin Grall at Erin.Grall@myfloridahouse.gov.

Some issues IRNA has been active on are as follows:

Joint Letter

The IRNA joined with the Clean Water Coalition of Indian River County, the Pelican Island Audubon Society, the Environmental Learning Center, and the Friends of St. Sebastian River to address the following issues: Fully Fund Florida Forever at $300M, Provide $100M for Septic-to-Sewer Conversion, and Preserve Regional Planning Councils. A copy of the letter is available here.

Blue Green Algae Task Force Recommendations

The IRNA urges our elected officials to support SB1522 and its companion bill HB1225 urging the adoption of the recommendations of the Governor-appointed Blue-Green Algae Task Force. A copy of our letter is available here.

Short Term Rental protections and the removal of home rule

IRNA encourages the legislature to vote against House Bill 219 and Senate Bill 522. If passed, this bill would return us to the horrible situation created in 2011. As an organization representing many residential property owners, we feel that the peaceful enjoyment of private property rights is threatened. See the IRNA’s letter here.

Repealing MCores

SB100 would repeal the proposed MCores toll roads in the west of the state and amend it to require a study by the Florida Department of Transportation prior to planning any new toll roads. The study should include whether there is sufficient need for such a road (feasibility) and require an assessment of the impact of the road on natural lands and Florida’s drinking water (environmental assessment). A copy of the IRNA’s letter is here.

Support Trees

IRNA Supports HB6023/SB596 to restore the right of local governments to protect trees. Urge that these bills be added to the agendas for the House Local Administration & Veterans Affairs Subcommittee and the Senate Community Affairs Committee while opposing SB 916 which would further weaken the power of local governments to regulate pruning, trimming, or removal of a tree on residential property.

Derelict boat removal and no discharge regulations

House Bill 639 is a broad-sweeping 63-page boating bill that would, among other things, create a program empowering FWC to remove derelict vessels. It also would ban the dumping of sewage — untreated or treated — in state waters. The bill is part of FWC’s package for the 2021 legislative session. IRNA supports this bill’s passage.

A few other bills we’re following:

  • SB 750/HB 337 on impact fees will make it virtually impossible for local governments to require that new development pays its own way, meaning that existing residents will shoulder even more of the costs associated with new development through raised taxes, declining services, or both.
  • SB 1876/HB 421 on “property rights” will have a chilling effect on the ability of local governments to properly enforce their comprehensive plans and land development regulations, and protect natural resources by expanding the definition of “government action.”
  • SB 1274 on small-scale amendments will reduce oversight of proposed development projects by increasing five-fold the size of development required to undergo review by the state.

As you can see, there are a lot of bills requiring our attention this legislative session. Please reach out to our State Senator, Debby Mayfield at mayfield.debbie.web@flsenate.gov, and our State House Representative, Erin Grall at Erin.Grall@myfloridahouse.gov.