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Observations and musings on Jacksonville Politics

Growth Management Legislation Could Boost Hometown Democracy

According to an article in the NY Times:

More than 300,000 residential units sit empty across Florida, 64,588 properties were in foreclosure last month, second only to Nevada, and real estate prices are still plummeting.

Nonetheless, state lawmakers are making it easier for developers to add even more.

Gov. Charlie Crist now has a bill on his desk, which he said Wednesday he “probably will” sign, that would ease government oversight and exempt many areas from a requirement that says builders must pay for road improvements if traffic generated by their projects exceeds the local capacity.

Now that Florida’s citizenry has seen exactly what the Legislature intends to do with Florida’s growth management laws, could the hometown democracy constitutional amendment gain new steam?  The ballot initiative currently has an unofficial 665,499  out of a needed 676,811 signatures in order to be placed on the 2010 ballot.  But if Governor Charlie Crist signs SB 360 into law, I think we can look for a rise in signatures to occur.  So far, SB 360 has gained criticism from local governments, growth management advocates, and environmentalists from far and wide throughout the state – with a normally staid group like the Florida Association of Counties calling on Crist to veto the bill.  With that kind of opposition, could passage of the Florida Hometown Democracy Amendment be far behind?  Only about 12,000 more votes are needed by January 31, 2010 in order to assure that the constitutional amendment makes it on the 2010 ballot.  If you’re interested in Florida Hometown Democracy, click here for more information.

Read the rest of the NY Times article here.

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Filed under: Florida, Florida Legislature, Florida Politics, , , ,

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