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Old 10-23-2014, 08:36 PM
1,448 posts, read 2,129,733 times
Reputation: 2354


Originally Posted by runswithscissors View Post
pushing for Florida's constitution to be amended to make private property ownership even more prohibitive for normal every day people.
By the way, this is totally erroneous. This bill is not taking away land that is needed by prospective homeowners to live on. Florida is an enormous state, and has plenty of affordable land available. The tracts the government are interested in by and large are undeveloped, or have farming on them that directly destroys a particular local ecosystem. (The government is not buying up in-demand houses and holding them to force the market up, or something insane like that.) These purchases will not in any way affect Floridians' ability to buy a home, just as they never have in the past. Plenty of new housing tracts are going up all the time, even in SFL which is one of the busiest and most in-demand areas of the state. There are still plenty of properties on the fringe of the Everglades that are new beautiful homes going for 100k. [These lands will not in any way make living in the Keys more difficult or expensive either - in fact, as I stated, they will bring more tourism, and thus more jobs, into the area, and the biggest local issue here for residents is lack of income opportunities to support living here.] Nearly all of the rest of the state is not as crowded as to have to be concerned about land that was already undeveloped, being bought and prevented from being developed on in future. We are in no way in a housing shortage in FL, and in the next 100 years likely never will be. The idea that this will lessen opportunities to buy affordable Florida land is ludicrous - we already have plenty of houses for sale, and new properties being built around the clock. The government purchases do not conflict with that.

Here is an article by the Herald Times that explains the issues at stake, for those who would like to know some more details:
"The issues
The tug of war between development and environmental protection is one of Florida’s defining issues, a conflict that is impossible to avoid in a high-growth state where the economy depends on an influx of new residents.
Over the years that growth, often poorly planned, took a toll on some of the state’s iconic natural treasures, from the Everglades to coastal estuaries.
Landowners often resisted new environmental regulations that some viewed as limiting property rights, so the state tried to balance regulation with a less controversial approach to managing development that set aside billions to buy up the most important parcels and preserve them, including thousands of acres in Sarasota and Manatee counties.
On Nov. 4 voters will be asked to enshrine that conservation program in the state constitution and establish a dedicated funding source.
Advocates say a constitutional amendment is needed because state leaders have wavered in their commitment to fund conservation efforts in recent years. Opponents worry about handcuffing future budget writers. Here is an overview of the issues at stake with Amendment 1:

The cost
The amendment would divert 33 percent of tax revenue from real estate transactions into the state’s Land Acquisition Trust Fund. State economists estimate that would amount to $648 million for conservation efforts next year and $19 billion over the 20-year lifespan of the program. Real estate tax money has been used for a variety of purposes, including financing previous conservation programs and paying for affordable housing initiatives. In recent years the money has been steered to more general uses. Some worry that the state could have to cut from other areas of the budget if so much money was put toward conservation, but advocates for the constitutional amendment argue that continued growth in the property tax base will provide enough revenue to go around.

The ecology and economics
Florida’s natural systems have been dramatically altered over the years. Only about 50 percent of the original Everglades remains, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection estimates that 44 percent of coastal wetlands — including mangroves and saltmarshes — in the Tampa Bay area were destroyed in the last century. These changes have affected water quality and plants and animals native to Florida. Water pollution has been a big concern recently as algae blooms choke rivers, springs and coastal lagoons. “Our state is really at a crisis point right now,” said Will Abberger, campaign manager for the group that gathered signatures to put the amendment on the ballot. Purchasing large tracts of land and buffer areas along water bodies will protect wildlife habitat and limit pollution, Abberger said. But it’s also good for the economy, he argued. “Last year more people visited state parks than visited the Magic Kingdom,” he said. “Wildlife viewing alone is a $5 billion industry in the state annually.”

The constitutional question
While some question the need to buy more conservation land, the main argument against the constitutional amendment centers around how it would handcuff lawmakers during the budget process. Amendment critics say conservation spending should not be locked into the constitution but decided by the elected officials chosen to represent their communities in the state capital. Flexibility is important in the budget process, they argue, because priorities and revenues fluctuate. State Rep. Ray Pilon, R-Sarasota, argued during a recent forum that money restricted for land purchases might be needed for other purposes if the economy falters. “If times get tough education will suffer, public safety will suffer,” Pilon said. He noted that the Legislature has increased environmental spending as the economy recovered. But Florida would not be the only state to put a conservation program in its constitution. The League of Women Voters of Florida “2014 Nonpartisan Voter Guide” says that 11 other states have made conservation spending a constitutional requirement.

The history
Florida once had the most aggressive land acquisition program in the nation. In the decade before the Great Recession, Florida bought and preserved more land than the three most-populous states — California, Texas and New York — combined. The Florida Forever conservation program spent $275 million annually on average and acquired 2.4 million acres between 1990, when it was authorized under a different name, and 2008. “It’s the premier program in the United States, if not the world,” Deborah Poppell, the state’s former top land manager, told the Herald-Tribune in 2008. Peak annual Florida Forever funding hit $610 million in 2006 at the height of the real estate boom. Tax revenue was pouring in and state leaders boosted the conservation program’s budget to finance the blockbuster Babcock Ranch acquisition in Charlotte County. Then the recession hit and lawmakers decided in 2009 not to set aside money for the program for the first time in two decades. Only $129 million has been dedicated to Florida Forever since. Meanwhile, 119 projects totaling 2 million acres remain on the program’s priority acquisition list. The total value of these properties is estimated between $5 billion and $10 billion.

The local impact
Florida Forever funding has been used for a variety of conservation efforts in Southwest Florida. The state partnered with Sarasota County to preserve ranchlands near Myakka River State Park. The Babcock Ranch purchase in Charlotte County was one of the program’s most high-profile acquisitions. There also have been efforts to protect coastal areas around Charlotte Harbor and Terra Ceia in Manatee County, projects that continue. A number of ranches in eastern Sarasota County are on the Florida Forever priority protection list but have yet to receive funding for conservation easements, and additional properties in Sarasota and Manatee are likely to be added to the list soon. The ranches include rare habitats, three miles of Myakka River frontage and a range of imperiled species. Some are adjacent to Myakka River State Park. Local conservation advocates hope to continue adding pieces to a large swath of preserved lands in an area that straddles the Myakka River and Peace River known as the Myakka Island. More than 100,000 acres already have been protected in this region, making the total conservation holdings larger than 22 of 58 national parks."

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Old 10-24-2014, 09:10 PM
10,604 posts, read 14,123,958 times
Reputation: 17197

Blueprint for water ‘control’? Pol says EPA made secret maps for new regulatory push

At issue is a proposal that Smith and fellow Republicans, as well as farmers and other groups, say could endanger private property rights by giving the EPA a say over temporary waterways like seasonal streams, under the Clean Water Act. That the agency had highly detailed maps drawn up has raised suspicion about their purpose.

"While the Agency marches forward with a rule that could fundamentally re-define Americans' private property rights, the EPA kept these maps hidden," Smith wrote in his letter. "Serious questions remain regarding the EPA's underlying motivations for creating such highly detailed maps."
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Old 10-24-2014, 09:15 PM
10,604 posts, read 14,123,958 times
Reputation: 17197
Originally Posted by runswithscissors
pushing for Florida's constitution to be amended to make private property ownership even more prohibitive for normal every day people.
Originally Posted by StarfishKey View Post
By the way, this is totally erroneous. This bill is not taking away land that is needed by prospective homeowners to live on. Florida is an enormous state, and has plenty of affordable land available. The tracts the government are interested in by and large are undeveloped, or have farming on them that directly destroys a particular local ecosystem. (The government is not buying up in-demand houses and holding them to force the market up, or something insane like that.)

Sorry but you are seriously lacking some basic understanding of economics.

The more land is taken AWAY from the public, the more expensive the remaining land will be. PLUS ...YOUR taxes will go up to support this growing behemoth government, too. WHO do you think is going to PAY for all the government "activities" on the land they take out of circulation?

I don't know how to make the concept any more elementary.

What do you mean "the government is not buying up in demand houses"???

We are not discussing HOUSES. But now that you mention it, every acre that is NOT available for "houses" is making the remaining acreage more COSTLY. Not to mention all the IMPACT FEES. You know what an IMPACT FEE is, right?

We're discussing buying up every single water right, farms, ranches, control of anything that hints at "environment".....

EVERY ranch and farm that is bought by the government WITH TAXPAYER DOLLARS and held out of the marketplace is "IN DEMAND PROPERTY", for goodness sakes.

Apparently you're completely unaware of what they've already done in California destroying farmers, "shutting OFF THE WATER" for a fabricated smelt problem.

It's HILARIOUS that Floridians are complaining about the cost of fruit and vegs, when they've gone UP 6% THIS YEAR ALONE because of California's INSANE water regulations cutting water off for farmers.

THIS is YOUR future, Florida:

The UC-Davis study conservatively suggested 24,000 to 32,000 Central Valley jobs were destroyed by environmental rulings designed to protect endangered wildlife. It further estimated job losses could approach 80,000 or more if restrictions intensified. Communities are withering for a government-imposed lack of water. It is little exaggeration to say that the farmers of the most valuable farming region in the nation are facing extinction.



Last edited by runswithscissors; 10-24-2014 at 09:32 PM..
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Old 10-24-2014, 09:42 PM
Location: Niceville, FL
7,645 posts, read 16,024,078 times
Reputation: 7628
IMPACE FEE- when a apartment developer wants to build a new 6 story apartment complex in my town, they're the one that has to pay for the new fire truck now required because the old ones, bought when nothing here was over three stories, didn't have ladders that went up high enough for rescue purposes.

Why should I have to pay higher taxes (ie. my fire control was under mandate to buy the new truck, lest everyone in town pay higher homeowners insurance rates because the fire control district would no longer meet highest community standard needs) to subsidize someone's private business like that?
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Old 10-25-2014, 05:04 PM
Location: Port Charlotte
3,926 posts, read 4,740,073 times
Reputation: 3408
Here is what can happen with impact fees and government intervention In one city in the Bay Area in CA, a gentleman wanted to add 800 SF to his 2400 SF home. It took 2 years and impact fees exceeding $200,000 just to get the permit. Then the construction cost was astronomical due to the contractor requirements, etc.

This was reported by people actually involved in the project.
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