Florida Legislative Session Review – Part VII: Transportation & Economic Development

Economic Development

SB 1974 creates the Agency for Enterprise Information Technology within the Executive Office of Governor. Passed 39-0 and 119-0.

HB 83 the “Florida Capital Formation Act” – requires Enterprise Florida to facilitate the creation of the Florida Opportunity Fund to increase availability of seed capital and early stage venture equity capital for emerging companies in the state creating new businesses and jobs and creates the Institute for the Commercialization of Public Research to commercialize products of public research. Passed 116-0 and 37-0.

HB 1491 makes some revisions to community development districts. Passed 117-0 and 39-1.

HB 1375 requires certain counties to adopt a plan for ensuring affordable workforce housing and authorizes local government to adopt amendments to the local comprehensive plan to integrate a port master plan with the local comprehensive plan. Passed 119-0 and 39-0.

HB 1283 revises Florida Black Business Investment Board, Inc. provisions. Passed 117-0 and 39-0.

HB 1325 revises the entertainment industry financial incentive program, designed to bring movie and television projects to Florida. Passed 120-0 and 40-0.


HB 275 allows owners of most motor vehicles (including motorcycles, cars, trucks, and RVs) to register their vehicles every two years, if they so choose. Passed 117-0 and 37-3.

SB 1206 clarifies that reasonable compensation for work, including labor and parts, is the same under a warranty as under other circumstances unless motor vehicle manufacturer, distributor, or importer demonstrates that charges are proper. The bill also prohibits a motor vehicle manufacturer, distributor, or importer from imposing a charge on a motor vehicle dealer for warranty work or products. Passed 39-0 and 113-1.

HB 815 revises regulations applying to motor vehicle dealers licensed by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Passed 117-0 and 38-0.

HB 707 requires private security company cars to use green as well as amber lights while engaged in security duties or on public property. Passed 111-0 and 39-0.

HB 7205 makes changes to the regulation of agreements between RV dealers and RV manufaturers. Passed 117-0 and 39-0.

SB 1134 makes several changes, the most important of which is raising the maximum total debt for Florida Turnpike Authority from $4.5 billion to $10 billion, allowing the Turnpike Authority to borrow more money. Additional provisions relate to billboard placement, Department of Transportation contracts, and nonprofit youth organizations that contract with the Department. Passed 39-0 and 119-0.

SB 124 allows for the registration of custom vehicles and ‘street rods’ that may be driven on public roads, but not as everyday vehicles. Passed 38-0 and 115-0.

HB 615 revises the options on motor vehicle registration and renewal application forms to donate $1 to be distributed to the Miami Heart Research Institute and the Children’s Hearing Help Fund. Passed 116-0 and 39-0.

HB 985 is a comprehensive transportation package, including:

  • requiring the Florida Transportation Commission to monitor and review regional transportation authorities;
  • revising provisions for metropolitan planning organizations;
  • revising the Jacksonville Transportation Authority;
  • authorizing the Department of Transportation to conduct a pilot study into the barriers to and benefits of establishing a regional multimodal transportation concurrency district;
  • creating of ‘concurrency backlog authorities’ to identify all transportation backlogs and implement a plan to eliminate them;
  • allowing local governments to refinance bonds more than once per year;
  • makeing some minor changes to options for financing road and port construction;
  • changing the provisions allowing local governments to designate roads where ATVs can travel during the day;
  • clarifying the regulations for the proper display of license plates on motor vehicles;
  • revising the penalties for failing to pay a toll, including no points assessed on a license when the fine is paid within 30 days of the offense;
  • adding a $3 fee onto all traffic violations for deposit into the State Agency Law Enforcement Radio Trust Fund;
  • restricting local governments from making decisions on land used to produce construction materials needed for asphalt, concrete, or road base;
  • allowing the Department of Transportations to study whether the SunPass can effectively be used to pay parking or other non-toll fees;
  • allowing private companies to build new or improve existing roadways in exchange for toll revenues;
  • creating the Enhanced Bridge Program for Sustainable Transportation to improve local bridges and congested roads on which high-cost bridges are located;
  • allowing ports to obtain emergency loans from the state-funded infrastructure bank after in an area for which a state of emergency has been declared;
  • revising the Strategic Intermodal System and the Emerging Strategic Intermodal System;
  • revision the Northwest Florida Transportation Corridor Authority;
  • requiring tolls to be increased based on inflation at least once every five years, and no more than once every year;
  • allowing businesses leasing space in rest areas along the Florida Turnpike to be exempt from sales tax on commercial leases;
  • revising the Orlando-Orange County Expressway Authority;
  • allowing local governments to permit wall murals on expressway walls; and
  • clarifying the law pertaining to selling a motor vehicle on the side of the road without a local government permit;
  • Passed 68-49 and 37-2.

    HB 99 exempts certain nonprofit organizations from permit requirements related to obstructing streets or roads for solicitation purposes. Passed 112-0 and 40-0.

    SB 606 revises provisions of the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority. Passed 37-0 and 115-1.

    SB 506 creates the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority. Passed 40-0 and 117-0.

    HB 431 establishes a tourist-oriented directional sign program in rural areas. Passed 116-0 and 38-0.

    License Plates

    SB 1900 makes changes to the following license plates:

  • Sea Turtle – raises the annual fee from $17.50 to $23;
  • Florida Sheriffs Youth Ranches – raises the annual fee from $20 to $25;
  • Florida NASCAR – creates new license plate with a $25 annual fee;
  • Corrections Foundation – creates new license plate with a $25 annual fee;
  • Trees Are Cool – creates new license plate with a $25 annual fee; and
  • Support Our Troops – creates new license plate with a $25 annual fee;

The bill also:

  • allows the sponsoring organization’s website to appear on the plate;
  • prohibits using annual fee proceeds on lobbying or giving gifts to government officials responsible for distributing the plate;
  • requires the tag agency to give the name, address, and renewal date to the sponsoring organization;
  • discontinues the Girl Scouts license plate; and
  • creates a special, free Gold Star license plate for the family of service members killed while serving in the United States Armed Forces, provided the family member lived in Florida at the time of the death;

Passed 34-0 and 112-5.

SB 136 makes changes to the Live the Dream license plate. Passed 38-0 and 118-0.

SB 1630 makes changes to the United States Marine Corps license plate. Passed 38-0 and 119-0.

Schedule of Review Posts:

Mon May 21: Public Records/Public Meetings
Thu May 24: Education
Tue May 29: Environment, Growth Management, & Natural Resources
Mon Jun 4: Legal System & Public Safety
Mon Jun 18: Veterans/Military Affairs
Tue Jun 19: Elections
Wed Jun 20: Transportation & Economic Development
Fri Jun 22: Health Care
Mon Jun 25: Financial Services & Insurance (excluding property)
Wed Jun 27: Human & Social Services
Fri Jun 29: Gambling & General Government
Mon Jul 2: Property Insurance & Property Taxes
Tue Jul 3: Miscellaneous Bills not included in previous reviews

About Jim Johnson

Editor and publisher of The State of Sunshine.
This entry was posted in Bills, Florida Legislature, Session. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Florida Legislative Session Review – Part VII: Transportation & Economic Development

  1. Tally says:

    HB 985

    I would love to hear more about the most controversial provision:

    “allowing private companies to build new or improve existing roadways in exchange for toll revenues.”

    How does this fit into all the controversies in Polk Co and Southwest Florida concerning developers and government road building?

Comments are closed.