Florida Senate - 2014                                    SB 1576
       By Senator Dean
       5-01172-14                                            20141576__
    2                        A bill to be entitled                      
    3         An act relating to springs; amending s. 201.15, F.S.;
    4         specifying distributions to the Ecosystem Management
    5         and Restoration Trust Fund; amending s. 259.035, F.S.;
    6         adding a member to the Acquisition and Restoration
    7         Council to be appointed by the Secretary of
    8         Environmental Protection; expanding duties to include
    9         the ranking of spring protection projects; requiring
   10         the council to develop and recommend rules for the
   11         competitive evaluation, selection, and ranking of
   12         projects eligible for partial or complete funding to
   13         protect the water quality of an Outstanding Florida
   14         Spring; amending s. 373.042, F.S.; requiring the
   15         Department of Environmental Protection or the
   16         governing board of a water management district to
   17         establish the minimum flow and water level for an
   18         Outstanding Florida Spring; specifying minimum flows
   19         and water levels for an Outstanding Florida Spring;
   20         amending s. 373.0421, F.S.; conforming a cross
   21         reference; creating part VIII of chapter 373, F.S.;
   22         entitled “Florida Springs and Aquifer Act”; creating
   23         s. 373.801, F.S.; providing legislative findings and
   24         intent; creating s. 373.802, F.S.; defining terms;
   25         creating s. 373.803, F.S.; requiring the Department of
   26         Environmental Protection to delineate the spring
   27         protection and management zone for each Outstanding
   28         Florida Spring; requiring each water management
   29         district to adopt by rule maps that depict the
   30         delineation of each spring protection and management
   31         zone for each Outstanding Florida Spring within its
   32         jurisdiction; creating s. 373.805, F.S.; requiring the
   33         water management districts to adopt minimum flows and
   34         levels for Outstanding Florida Springs; requiring a
   35         water management district to implement a recovery or
   36         prevention strategy under certain circumstances;
   37         authorizing the water management districts to adopt
   38         rules; creating s. 373.807, F.S.; providing procedures
   39         for improving water quality in Outstanding Florida
   40         Springs; providing a funding mechanism; creating s.
   41         373.809, F.S.; specifying prohibited activities within
   42         a spring protection and management zone of an
   43         Outstanding Florida Spring; requiring local
   44         governments to ensure that their comprehensive plans
   45         and ordinances reflect such prohibitions; creating s.
   46         373.811, F.S.; providing rulemaking authority;
   47         creating s. 373.813, F.S.; providing for variances and
   48         exemptions under certain circumstances; amending s.
   49         381.0065, F.S.; defining the term “responsible
   50         management entity”; requiring the Department of Health
   51         to submit a report to the Governor and the Legislature
   52         on responsible management entities; authorizing the
   53         establishment of responsible management entities;
   54         amending s. 403.067, F.S.; specifying criteria for
   55         development of a basin management action plan for an
   56         Outstanding Florida Spring; conforming provisions to
   57         changes made by the act; conforming cross-references;
   58         repealing s. 381.00651, F.S., relating to periodic
   59         evaluation and assessment of onsite sewage treatment
   60         and disposal systems; requiring the Department of
   61         Agriculture and Consumer Services and the Department
   62         of Environmental Protection to conduct a comprehensive
   63         study on nutrient reduction improvements and the
   64         expansion of the beneficial use of reclaimed water;
   65         requiring the departments to jointly hold a public
   66         meeting to gather input on the design of the
   67         comprehensive study and provide an opportunity for
   68         public comment; requiring the final report to be
   69         submitted to the Governor and the Legislature by a
   70         certain date; providing an effective date.
   72  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   74         Section 1. Paragraph (c) of subsection (1) of section
   75  201.15, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   76         201.15 Distribution of taxes collected.—All taxes collected
   77  under this chapter are subject to the service charge imposed in
   78  s. 215.20(1). Prior to distribution under this section, the
   79  Department of Revenue shall deduct amounts necessary to pay the
   80  costs of the collection and enforcement of the tax levied by
   81  this chapter. Such costs and the service charge may not be
   82  levied against any portion of taxes pledged to debt service on
   83  bonds to the extent that the costs and service charge are
   84  required to pay any amounts relating to the bonds. After
   85  distributions are made pursuant to subsection (1), all of the
   86  costs of the collection and enforcement of the tax levied by
   87  this chapter and the service charge shall be available and
   88  transferred to the extent necessary to pay debt service and any
   89  other amounts payable with respect to bonds authorized before
   90  January 1, 2013, secured by revenues distributed pursuant to
   91  subsection (1). All taxes remaining after deduction of costs and
   92  the service charge shall be distributed as follows:
   93         (1) Sixty-three and thirty-one hundredths percent of the
   94  remaining taxes shall be used for the following purposes:
   95         (c) After the required payments under paragraphs (a) and
   96  (b), the remainder shall be paid into the State Treasury to the
   97  credit of:
   98         1. The State Transportation Trust Fund in the Department of
   99  Transportation in the amount of the lesser of 38.2 percent of
  100  the remainder or $541.75 million in each fiscal year. Out of
  101  such funds, the first $50 million for the 2012-2013 fiscal year;
  102  $65 million for the 2013-2014 fiscal year; and $75 million for
  103  the 2014-2015 fiscal year and all subsequent years, shall be
  104  transferred to the State Economic Enhancement and Development
  105  Trust Fund within the Department of Economic Opportunity. The
  106  remainder shall is to be used for the following specified
  107  purposes, notwithstanding any other law to the contrary:
  108         a. For the purposes of capital funding for the New Starts
  109  Transit Program, authorized by Title 49, U.S.C. s. 5309 and
  110  specified in s. 341.051, 10 percent of these funds;
  111         b. For the purposes of the Small County Outreach Program
  112  specified in s. 339.2818, 5 percent of these funds. Effective
  113  July 1, 2014, the percentage allocated under this sub
  114  subparagraph shall be increased to 10 percent;
  115         c. For the purposes of the Strategic Intermodal System
  116  specified in ss. 339.61, 339.62, 339.63, and 339.64, 75 percent
  117  of these funds after allocating for the New Starts Transit
  118  Program described in sub-subparagraph a. and the Small County
  119  Outreach Program described in sub-subparagraph b.; and
  120         d. For the purposes of the Transportation Regional
  121  Incentive Program specified in s. 339.2819, 25 percent of these
  122  funds after allocating for the New Starts Transit Program
  123  described in sub-subparagraph a. and the Small County Outreach
  124  Program described in sub-subparagraph b. Effective July 1, 2014,
  125  the first $60 million of the funds allocated pursuant to this
  126  sub-subparagraph shall be allocated annually to the Florida Rail
  127  Enterprise for the purposes established in s. 341.303(5).
  128         2. The Grants and Donations Trust Fund in the Department of
  129  Economic Opportunity in the amount of the lesser of 0.23 .23
  130  percent of the remainder or $3.25 million in each fiscal year to
  131  fund technical assistance to local governments.
  132         3. The Ecosystem Management and Restoration Trust Fund in
  133  the amount of:
  134         a. The lesser of 2.12 percent of the remainder or $30
  135  million in each fiscal year, to be used for the preservation and
  136  repair of the state’s beaches as provided in ss. 161.091
  137  161.212; and
  138         b. Thirty-six and nine-tenths percent of the remainder in
  139  each fiscal year to be used for restoration and protection of
  140  Outstanding Florida Springs, as defined in s. 373.802, and for
  141  the acquisition of lands identified on the most current Board of
  142  Trustees Florida Forever Priority List, or by a water management
  143  district, which protect the essential parcels of the named
  144  spring projects that improve water quality or conserve water use
  145  and are located partially or fully within a spring protection
  146  and management zone of an Outstanding Florida Spring.
  147         4. General Inspection Trust Fund in the amount of the
  148  lesser of 0.02 .02 percent of the remainder or $300,000 in each
  149  fiscal year to be used to fund oyster management and restoration
  150  programs as provided in s. 379.362(3).
  152  Moneys distributed pursuant to this paragraph may not be pledged
  153  for debt service unless such pledge is approved by referendum of
  154  the voters.
  155         Section 2. Section 259.035, Florida Statutes, is amended to
  156  read:
  157         259.035 Acquisition and Restoration Council.—
  158         (1) There is created The Acquisition and Restoration
  159  Council is created and is composed of 11 voting members, as
  160  follows:.
  161         (a) Four members The council shall be composed of 10 voting
  162  members, 4 of whom shall be appointed by the Governor to serve
  163  4-year terms. Of these four appointees, three must shall be from
  164  scientific disciplines related to land, water, or environmental
  165  sciences and the fourth must shall have at least 5 years of
  166  experience in managing lands for both active and passive types
  167  of recreation. They shall serve 4-year terms, except that,
  168  initially, to provide for staggered terms, two of the appointees
  169  shall serve 2-year terms. All subsequent appointments shall be
  170  for 4-year terms. An appointee may not serve more than 6 years.
  171  The Governor may at any time fill a vacancy for the unexpired
  172  term of a member appointed under this paragraph.
  173         (b) The Four members remaining appointees shall be composed
  174  of the Secretary of Environmental Protection, the director of
  175  the Florida Forest Service of the Department of Agriculture and
  176  Consumer Services, the executive director of the Fish and
  177  Wildlife Conservation Commission, and the director of the
  178  Division of Historical Resources of the Department of State, or
  179  their respective designees.
  180         (c) One member shall be appointed by the Commissioner of
  181  Agriculture representing with a discipline related to
  182  agriculture, including silviculture;. one member shall be
  183  appointed by the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
  184  representing with a discipline related to wildlife management or
  185  wildlife ecology; and one member shall be appointed by the
  186  Secretary of Environmental Protection representing a discipline
  187  related to water quality management which includes the study of
  188  dissolved oxygen levels and nutrient pollution of groundwater
  189  and surface water.
  190         (d) The Governor shall appoint the chair of the council,
  191  and a vice chair shall be elected from among the members.
  192         (e) The council shall hold periodic meetings at the request
  193  of the chair.
  194         (f) The Department of Environmental Protection shall
  195  provide primary staff support to the council and shall ensure
  196  that council meetings are electronically recorded. Such
  197  recording shall be preserved pursuant to chapters 119 and 257.
  198         (g) The board of trustees may has authority to adopt rules
  199  pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement the
  200  provisions of this section.
  201         (2) The four members of the council appointed pursuant to
  202  paragraph (a) and the three two members of the council appointed
  203  pursuant to paragraph (c) shall receive reimbursement for
  204  expenses and per diem for travel, to attend council meetings, as
  205  provided in allowed state officers and employees while in the
  206  performance of their duties, pursuant to s. 112.061.
  207         (3) The council shall provide assistance to the board of
  208  trustees in reviewing the recommendations and plans for state
  209  owned lands required under ss. 253.034 and 259.032. The council
  210  shall, in reviewing such recommendations and plans, consider the
  211  optimization of multiple-use and conservation strategies to
  212  accomplish the provisions funded pursuant to ss. 259.101(3)(a)
  213  and 259.105(3)(b).
  214         (4)(a) The council may use existing rules adopted by the
  215  board of trustees, until it develops and recommends amendments
  216  to those rules, to competitively evaluate, select, and rank
  217  projects eligible for the Conservation and Recreation Lands list
  218  pursuant to ss. 259.032(3) and 259.101(4).
  219         (b) By December 1, 2009, the Acquisition and Restoration
  220  council shall develop rules defining specific criteria and
  221  numeric performance measures needed for lands that are to be
  222  acquired for public purpose under the Florida Forever program
  223  pursuant to s. 259.105. Each recipient of Florida Forever funds
  224  shall assist the council in the development of such rules. These
  225  rules shall be reviewed and adopted by the board and, then
  226  submitted to the Legislature for consideration by February 1,
  227  2010. The Legislature may reject, modify, or take no action
  228  relative to the proposed rules. If no action is taken, the rules
  229  shall be implemented. Subsequent to their approval, each
  230  recipient of Florida Forever funds shall annually report to the
  231  Division of State Lands on each of the numeric performance
  232  measures accomplished during the previous fiscal year.
  233         (c) By December 31, 2014, the council shall develop and
  234  recommend rules to fund pilot projects that test the
  235  effectiveness of innovative or existing nutrient reduction
  236  technologies designed to minimize nutrient pollution in the
  237  springs of this state. The council must approve funding for at
  238  least two pilot projects in each project selection cycle if the
  239  department determines that there are at least two projects that
  240  will not be harmful to the ecological resources in the study
  241  area.
  242         (d) By December 31, 2014, the council shall develop and
  243  recommend rules to competitively evaluate, select, and rank
  244  projects eligible for partial or complete funding under s.
  245  373.807. In developing these rules, the council shall give
  246  preference to the projects that it estimates will result in the
  247  greatest improvement to water quality and quantity. At a
  248  minimum, the council shall consider the following criteria:
  249         1.Whether the project is within a spring protection and
  250  management zone of an Outstanding Florida Spring impaired by
  251  nutrients.
  252         2. The level of nutrient impairment of the Outstanding
  253  Florida Spring in which the project is located.
  254         3. The quantity of pollutants, particularly total nitrogen,
  255  the project is estimated to remove in a spring protection and
  256  management zone.
  257         4. Whether the project is within a spring protection and
  258  management zone of an Outstanding Florida Spring that is not
  259  meeting its adopted minimum flow or level.
  260         5. The flow necessary to restore the Outstanding Florida
  261  Spring to its adopted minimum flow or level.
  262         6. The anticipated impact the project will have on
  263  restoring or increasing water flow or level.
  264         7.Whether the project facilitates or enhances an existing
  265  basin management action plan adopted by the Department of
  266  Environmental Protection to address pollutant loadings.
  267         8. Whether the project is identified and prioritized in an
  268  adopted regional water supply plan.
  269         9.The percentage by which the amount of matching funds
  270  provided by the applicant exceeds the statutory minimum required
  271  under s. 373.805 or s. 373.807.
  272         10.For multiple-year projects, whether the project has
  273  funding sources that are identified and assured through the
  274  expected completion date of the project.
  275         11.The cost of the project and the length of time it will
  276  take to complete relative to its expected benefits.
  277         12.Whether the applicant, since July 1, 2009, has used its
  278  own funds for projects to improve water quality or conserve
  279  water use within a springshed or spring protection and
  280  management zone of an Outstanding Florida Spring, with
  281  preference given to those applicants that have expended such
  282  funds.
  283         (e)(c) In developing or amending rules, the council shall
  284  give weight to the criteria included in s. 259.105(10). The
  285  board of trustees shall review the recommendations and shall
  286  adopt rules necessary to administer this section.
  287         (5) An affirmative vote of six five members of the council
  288  is required in order to change a project boundary or to place a
  289  proposed project on a list developed pursuant to subsection (4).
  290  Any member of the council who by family or a business
  291  relationship has a connection with all or a portion of any
  292  proposed project shall declare the interest before voting on its
  293  inclusion on a list.
  294         (6) The proposal for a project pursuant to this section, or
  295  s. 259.105(3)(b), or s. 373.807 may be implemented only if
  296  adopted by the council and approved by the board of trustees.
  297  The council shall consider and evaluate in writing the merits
  298  and demerits of each project that is proposed for Conservation
  299  and Recreation Lands, Florida Preservation 2000, or Florida
  300  Forever funding, or the protection of water quality in
  301  Outstanding Florida Springs and shall ensure that each proposed
  302  project meets will meet a stated public purpose for the
  303  restoration, conservation, or preservation of environmentally
  304  sensitive lands and water areas or for providing outdoor
  305  recreational opportunities. The council also shall determine
  306  whether the project conforms, if where applicable, with the
  307  comprehensive plan developed pursuant to s. 259.04(1)(a), the
  308  comprehensive multipurpose outdoor recreation plan developed
  309  pursuant to s. 375.021, the state lands management plan adopted
  310  pursuant to s. 253.03(7), the water resources work plans
  311  developed pursuant to s. 373.199, and the provisions of s.
  312  259.032, s. 259.101, or s. 259.105, or s. 373.807 whichever is
  313  applicable.
  314         Section 3. Subsection (1) of section 373.042, Florida
  315  Statutes, is amended to read:
  316         373.042 Minimum flows and levels.—
  317         (1) Within each section, or within the water management
  318  district as a whole, the department or the governing board must
  319  shall establish the following:
  320         (a) Minimum flow for all surface watercourses in the area.
  321  The minimum flow for a given watercourse is shall be the limit
  322  at which further withdrawals would be significantly harmful to
  323  the water resources or ecology of the area.
  324         (b) Minimum water level. The minimum water level is shall
  325  be the level of groundwater in an aquifer and the level of
  326  surface water at which further withdrawals would be
  327  significantly harmful to the water resources of the area.
  328         (c) Minimum flow and water level for an Outstanding Florida
  329  Spring, as defined in s. 373.802. The minimum flow and water
  330  level is the limit and level, respectively, at which further
  331  withdrawals would be harmful to the water resources or ecology
  332  of the area.
  334  The minimum flow and minimum water level shall be calculated by
  335  the department and the governing board using the best
  336  information available. When appropriate, minimum flows and
  337  levels may be calculated to reflect seasonal variations. The
  338  department and the governing board shall also consider, and at
  339  their discretion may provide for, the protection of
  340  nonconsumptive uses in the establishment of minimum flows and
  341  levels.
  342         Section 4. Paragraph (a) of subsection (1) of section
  343  373.0421, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
  344         373.0421 Establishment and implementation of minimum flows
  345  and levels.—
  346         (1) ESTABLISHMENT.—
  347         (a) Considerations.—When establishing minimum flows and
  348  levels pursuant to s. 373.042, the department or governing board
  349  shall consider changes and structural alterations to watersheds,
  350  surface waters, and aquifers and the effects such changes or
  351  alterations have had, and the constraints such changes or
  352  alterations have placed, on the hydrology of an affected
  353  watershed, surface water, or aquifer, provided that nothing in
  354  this paragraph shall allow significant harm as provided by s.
  355  373.042(1)(a) and (b), or harm as provided by s. 373.042(1)(c),
  356  caused by withdrawals.
  357         Section 5. Part VIII of chapter 373, Florida Statutes,
  358  consisting of sections 373.801, 373.802, 373.803, 373.805,
  359  373.807, 373.809, 373.811, and 373.813, Florida Statutes, is
  360  created and entitled the “Florida Springs and Aquifer Act.”
  361         Section 6. Section 373.801, Florida Statutes, is created to
  362  read:
  363         373.801 Legislative findings and intent.—
  364         (1)Springs are a unique part of this state’s scenic
  365  beauty, deserving the highest level of protection under Article
  366  II, Section 7, of the State Constitution. Springs provide
  367  critical habitat for plants and animals, including many
  368  endangered or threatened species. They provide immeasurable
  369  natural, recreational, economic, and inherent value. Flow level
  370  and water quality of springs are indicators of local conditions
  371  of the Floridan Aquifer, which is the source of drinking water
  372  for many residents of this state. Springs are of great
  373  scientific importance in understanding the diverse functions of
  374  aquatic ecosystems. In addition, springs provide recreational
  375  opportunities for swimming, canoeing, wildlife watching,
  376  fishing, cave diving, and many other activities in this state.
  377  Because of such recreational opportunities and the accompanying
  378  tourism, state and local economies benefit from many of the
  379  springs in this state.
  380         (2) Water quantity and water quality in springs are
  381  directly related. For regulatory purposes, the department has
  382  primary responsibility for water quality; the water management
  383  districts have primary responsibility for setting minimum flows
  384  and levels; the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
  385  has primary responsibility for the development and
  386  implementation of best management practices; and local
  387  governments have primary responsibility for providing wastewater
  388  and stormwater management. The foregoing responsible entities
  389  must work together in a coordinated manner to restore and
  390  maintain the water quantity and water quality for Outstanding
  391  Florida Springs.
  392         (3) The Legislature recognizes that:
  393         (a)Springs are only as healthy as their springsheds. The
  394  groundwater that supplies springs is derived from rainfall that
  395  recharges the aquifer system in the form of seepage from the
  396  land surface and through direct conduits such as sinkholes.
  397  Springs are adversely affected by polluted runoff from urban and
  398  agricultural lands; discharge resulting from poor wastewater and
  399  stormwater management practices; stormwater runoff; and the
  400  reduced water levels of the Floridan Aquifer. As a result, the
  401  hydrologic and environmental conditions of a spring or spring
  402  run are directly influenced by activities and land uses within a
  403  springshed and by water withdrawals from the Floridan Aquifer.
  404         (b)Springs, whether found in urban or rural settings, or
  405  on public or private lands, are threatened by actual or
  406  potential flow reductions and declining water quality. Many of
  407  this state’s springs are demonstrating signs of significant
  408  ecological imbalance, increased nutrient loading, and declining
  409  water flow. Without effective remedial action, a further decline
  410  in water quality and quantity is expected.
  411         (c)The state standards regulating both water quality and
  412  quantity, including minimum criteria relating to nutrient
  413  concentrations in groundwater, need to protect both human health
  414  and the complex biological and ecological systems that
  415  contribute to the integrity of springs.
  416         (d)Springshed boundaries and areas of high vulnerability
  417  within a springshed need to be identified and delineated using
  418  the best available data.
  419         (e)Because springsheds cross local government
  420  jurisdictional boundaries, a coordinated statewide springs
  421  protection plan is needed.
  422         (f)The aquifers and springs of this state are complex
  423  systems affected by many variables and influences and scientific
  424  uncertainty exists regarding their present condition, the action
  425  required to ensure their recovery and health, and the health and
  426  vitality of the ecosystems they support. In implementing this
  427  act, the department and the water management districts shall
  428  take a precautionary approach to springs protection. Where the
  429  possibility of significant or irreversible harm exists, the lack
  430  of full scientific certainty may not be used as a reason for
  431  postponing common-sense actions required to protect springs
  432  under this part.
  433         (4)The Legislature recognizes that sufficient information
  434  exists to act, action is urgently needed, and action can be
  435  continually modified as additional data is acquired. Therefore,
  436  state agencies and water management districts shall work
  437  together with local governments to delineate springsheds and
  438  spring protection and management zones and develop comprehensive
  439  plans and land development regulations that protect the springs
  440  of this state for future generations.
  441         Section 7. Section 373.802, Florida Statutes, is created to
  442  read:
  443         373.802 Definitions.—As used in this part, the term:
  444         (1)“Bedroom” means a room that can be used for sleeping
  445  and that:
  446         (a) For site-built dwellings, has a minimum of 70 square
  447  feet of conditioned space;
  448         (b) For manufactured homes, is constructed according to the
  449  standards of the United States Department of Housing and Urban
  450  Development and has a minimum of 50 square feet of floor area;
  451         (c) Is located along an exterior wall;
  452         (d) Has a closet and a door or an entrance where a door
  453  could be reasonably installed; and
  454         (e) Has an emergency means of escape and a rescue opening
  455  in accordance with the Florida Building Code.
  457  A room may not be considered a bedroom if it is used to access
  458  another room except a bathroom or closet and the term does not
  459  include a hallway, bathroom, kitchen, living room, family room,
  460  dining room, den, breakfast nook, pantry, laundry room, sunroom,
  461  recreation room, media/video room, or exercise room.
  462         (2)“Department” means the Department of Environmental
  463  Protection, which includes the Florida Geological Survey or its
  464  successor agency or agencies.
  465         (3)“Local government” means a county or municipal
  466  government the jurisdictional boundaries of which include an
  467  Outstanding Florida Spring, or any part of a delineated
  468  springshed or spring protection and management zone for an
  469  Outstanding Florida Spring.
  470         (4)“Onsite sewage treatment and disposal system” means a
  471  system that contains a standard subsurface, filled, or mound
  472  drainfield system; an aerobic treatment unit; a graywater system
  473  tank; a laundry wastewater system tank; a septic tank; a grease
  474  interceptor; a pump tank; a solids or effluent pump; a
  475  waterless, incinerating, or organic waste-composting toilet; or
  476  a sanitary pit privy that is installed or proposed to be
  477  installed beyond the building sewer on land of the owner or on
  478  other land to which the owner has the legal right to install a
  479  system. The term includes any item placed within, or intended to
  480  be used as a part of or in conjunction with, the system. The
  481  term does not include package sewage treatment facilities and
  482  other treatment works regulated under chapter 403.
  483         (5)“Outstanding Florida Spring” includes all historic
  484  first magnitude springs, as determined by the department using
  485  the most recent version of the Florida Geological Survey’s
  486  springs bulletin, and the following springs and their associated
  487  spring runs:
  488         (a)DeLeon Spring;
  489         (b)Peacock Spring;
  490         (c)Rock Springs;
  491         (d)Wekiwa Spring; and
  492         (e) Gemini Spring.
  493         (6)“Responsible management entity” means a legal entity
  494  established for the purpose of providing localized management
  495  services with the requisite managerial, financial, and technical
  496  capacity to ensure long-term management of an onsite sewage
  497  treatment and disposal system within its jurisdiction.
  498         (7)“Spring protection and management zone” means the areas
  499  of a springshed where the Floridan Aquifer is vulnerable to
  500  surface sources of contamination or reduced levels, as
  501  determined by the department in consultation with the
  502  appropriate water management districts.
  503         (8)“Spring run” means a body of flowing water that
  504  originates from a spring or whose primary source of water is
  505  from a spring or springs under average rainfall conditions.
  506         (9)“Springshed” means the areas within the groundwater and
  507  surface water basins which have historically contributed to the
  508  discharge of a spring as defined by potentiometric surface maps
  509  and surface watershed boundaries.
  510         (10) “Spring vent” means a location where groundwater flows
  511  out of a natural, discernable opening in the ground onto the
  512  land surface or into a predominantly fresh surface water.
  513         Section 8. Section 373.803, Florida Statutes, is created to
  514  read:
  515         373.803 Delineation of spring protection and management
  516  zones for Outstanding Florida Springs.—
  517         (1)Using the best data available from the water management
  518  districts and other credible sources, the department, in
  519  consultation with the water management districts, shall
  520  delineate the spring protection and management zone for each
  521  Outstanding Florida Spring. The delineation of spring protection
  522  and management zones must be completed by July 1, 2015, unless a
  523  water management district provides sufficient and appropriate
  524  evidence to the department that it is in the best interest of
  525  the public to justify extending the deadline for up to 1 year.
  526         (2)Each water management district shall adopt by rule,
  527  pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54, maps that depict the
  528  delineated spring protection and management zones for each
  529  Outstanding Florida Spring within its jurisdiction.
  530         Section 9. Section 373.805, Florida Statutes, is created to
  531  read:
  532         373.805 Minimum flow and level for Outstanding Florida
  533  Springs.—
  534         (1)By July 1, 2015, each water management district shall
  535  establish a minimum flow and a minimum water level for each
  536  Outstanding Florida Springs located partially or fully within
  537  its jurisdiction in accordance with ss. 373.042 and 373.0421.
  538  The deadline may be extended each year if a water management
  539  district provides sufficient evidence to the department that an
  540  extension is in the best interest of the public.
  541         (2)If a minimum flow and a minimum water level have not
  542  been set for an Outstanding Florida Spring by July 1, 2015, a
  543  water management district may only approve a consumptive use
  544  permit application if the applicant provides reasonable
  545  assurance that the withdrawal will not cause harm to the
  546  Outstanding Florida Spring.
  547         (3)If sufficient water is not available to meet an adopted
  548  minimum flow and water level, the water management district,
  549  pursuant to s. 373.0421(2), shall implement a recovery or
  550  prevention strategy for the Outstanding Florida Spring by July
  551  1, 2017. The recovery or prevention strategy for each
  552  Outstanding Florida Spring must include, at a minimum:
  553         (a) A listing of all specific projects identified for
  554  implementation to achieve the recovery or prevention strategy;
  555         (b) A priority listing of each project;
  556         (c) The estimated cost for each listed project; and
  557         (d) The source and amount of financial assistance from the
  558  water management district for each project, which may not be
  559  less than 25 percent of the total project cost.
  560         (4)The water management districts may adopt rules to meet
  561  the objectives of this subsection.
  562         Section 10. Section 373.807, Florida Statutes, is created
  563  to read:
  564         373.807 Protection of water quality in Outstanding Florida
  565  Springs.—By July 1, 2015, the department shall assess each
  566  Outstanding Florida Spring for which an impairment determination
  567  has not been made under the numeric nutrient standards in effect
  568  for springs vents.
  570         (a) By July 1, 2017, the department shall develop a basin
  571  management action plan as specified in s. 403.067(7) for each
  572  Outstanding Florida Spring impaired by nutrients. A plan for
  573  such spring completed prior to July 1, 2014, must be revised to
  574  meet the requirements of this section by July 1, 2017.
  575         (b) Each basin management action plan required under this
  576  subsection must consider the spring protection and management
  577  zone delineations established pursuant to s. 373.803 and include
  578  a detailed allocation of the pollutant load to each identified
  579  point source or category of nonpoint sources, including, but not
  580  limited to, agricultural fertilizer, onsite treatment and
  581  disposal systems, animal wastes, wastewater treatment
  582  facilities, stormwater, and residential lawn fertilizer.
  583         (2) REQUIREMENTS.—Each local government, wastewater
  584  treatment facility, and agricultural producer located partially
  585  or fully within a spring protection and management zone of an
  586  Outstanding Florida Spring impaired by nutrients are required to
  587  abide by the following provisions, as applicable:
  588         (a) Within six months of the delineation of the spring
  589  protection and management zone of an Outstanding Florida Spring
  590  within its jurisdiction, a local government must:
  591         1. Develop and implement an ordinance that meets the
  592  minimum requirements of the department’s Model Ordinance for
  593  Florida-Friendly Fertilizer Use on Urban Landscapes. Such
  594  ordinance must require that, within a spring protection and
  595  management zone of an Outstanding Florida Spring impaired by
  596  nutrients, the nitrogen content of any fertilizer applied to
  597  turf or landscape plants must contain at least 50 percent slow
  598  release nitrogen per guaranteed analysis label and that annual
  599  application rates of total nitrogen may not exceed the lowest,
  600  basic maintenance rate recommended by the Institute of Food and
  601  Agricultural Sciences as of August 2013. The department shall
  602  adopt rules to implement this subparagraph which set reasonable
  603  minimum standards that local governments must impose and reflect
  604  advancements or improvements regarding best management
  605  practices.
  606         2. Create or revise its stormwater management plan to
  607  address nutrient pollution from point sources and nonpoint
  608  sources of stormwater in accordance with s. 403.0891.
  609  Notwithstanding s. 403.0891(3)(b), a local government must
  610  consult with the appropriate water management district, the
  611  Department of Transportation, and the department before adopting
  612  or updating its local government comprehensive plan or public
  613  facilities report, as applicable, as required under s. 189.415.
  614         (b) Each wastewater treatment facility must meet a standard
  615  of no more than 3 mg/L Total Nitrogen, expressed as N, on an
  616  annual basis by July 1, 2019, unless granted a variance or an
  617  exemption under s. 373.813.
  618         (c) Each agricultural producer, within 2 years after the
  619  adoption of a basin management action plan, must:
  620         1. Implement the best management practices or other
  621  measures necessary to achieve pollution reduction levels
  622  established by the department pursuant to s. 403.067(7)(c); or
  623  conduct water quality monitoring prescribed by the department or
  624  the applicable water management district.
  625         2. The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, in
  626  consultation with the department, shall develop rules to
  627  implement this paragraph.
  628         (d) A local government or wastewater treatment facility
  629  shall file a plan for achieving the goals required under this
  630  subsection by July 1, 2015, with the department for approval.
  631  Upon a showing to the department of inordinate expense or that a
  632  delay is in the best interest of the public. The department may
  633  grant a local government or wastewater treatment facility an
  634  extension of up to two years.
  636  AND DISPOSAL SYSTEMS.—In developing a basin management action
  637  plan for an Outstanding Florida Spring, the department, in
  638  consultation with the Department of Health and local
  639  governments, must identify onsite sewage treatment and disposal
  640  systems serving single-family residential properties of less
  641  than 1 acre and multi-family residential, commercial, and
  642  industrial properties located within a spring protection and
  643  management zone. Within 1 year of identification of these
  644  systems, and in consultation with the department, the local
  645  governments in which they are located shall develop an onsite
  646  sewage treatment and disposal system remediation plan. For each
  647  onsite sewage treatment and disposal system, the plan must
  648  include whether the system requires upgrading, connection to a
  649  central sewerage system, or no action. The plan must also
  650  include a priority ranking for each system or group of systems
  651  that requires remediation. Each remediation plan must be
  652  submitted to the department for approval. Following approval of
  653  the remediation plan, the local government shall begin
  654  implementing the approved remediation plan. The costs of
  655  connection to or upgrading the onsite sewage treatment and
  656  disposal systems may not be imposed upon the property owner.
  657         (4)FUNDING.—
  658         (a) In order to satisfy the requirements under this
  659  section, state agencies, water management districts, local
  660  governments, special districts, utilities, regional management
  661  entities, and agricultural producers, in cooperation with
  662  property owners and agricultural producers, may submit a project
  663  proposal to the Acquisition and Restoration Council, pursuant to
  664  s. 259.035, in order to receive funding for up to 75 percent of
  665  the total project cost, except for projects to upgrade or
  666  connect onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems. Projects
  667  submitted by a fiscally constrained county, as described in s.
  668  218.67(1), or a municipality located therein, are eligible for
  669  funding for up to 100 percent of the total project cost.
  670         (b) Projects approved by the Acquisition and Restoration
  671  Council shall be funded by moneys from documentary stamp tax
  672  revenues deposited into the Ecosystem Management and Restoration
  673  Trust Fund in accordance with s. 201.15(1)(c). The Legislature
  674  may use other sources of revenues to fund projects submitted to
  675  the Acquisition and Restoration Council pursuant to this part.
  676         (c) The department may distribute moneys deposited into the
  677  Ecosystem Management and Restoration Trust Fund pursuant to
  678  paragraph (b) to any entity that submits a project proposal
  679  application to the Acquisition and Restoration Council for which
  680  funding is approved. The department shall distribute moneys to
  681  state agencies and water management districts for all reasonable
  682  administrative costs related to implementing this part.
  683         (d) Moneys in the fund not needed to meet obligations
  684  incurred under this section shall be deposited to the credit of
  685  the fund and may be invested in the manner provided by law.
  686  Interest received on such investments shall be credited to the
  687  Ecosystem Management and Restoration Trust Fund for springs
  688  protection and restoration.
  689         Section 11. Section 373.809, Florida Statutes, is created
  690  to read:
  691         373.809 Prohibited activities within a spring protection
  692  and management zone of an Outstanding Florida Spring.—
  693         (1)The issuance of new permits for the following
  694  activities is prohibited within a spring protection and
  695  management zone of an Outstanding Florida Spring:
  696         (a)A municipal or industrial wastewater disposal system,
  697  including rapid infiltration basins, except systems that meet an
  698  advanced wastewater treatment standard of no more than 3 mg/L
  699  Total Nitrogen, expressed as N, on an annual permitted basis, or
  700  a higher treatment standard if the department determines that
  701  the higher standard is necessary to prevent impairment or aid in
  702  the recovery of an Outstanding Florida Spring.
  703         (b)An onsite sewage treatment and disposal system, except
  704  a system on a lot with a ratio of one bedroom per acre or
  705  greater or an active or passive performance-based onsite sewage
  706  disposal and treatment system that can achieve 3 mg/L or less
  707  total nitrogen at the property boundary.
  708         (c)A facility for the transfer, storage, or disposal of
  709  hazardous waste.
  710         (2)Each local government shall ensure that its
  711  comprehensive plan reflects such prohibitions and that they are
  712  implemented through passage of local ordinances.
  713         Section 12. Section 373.811, Florida Statutes, is created
  714  to read:
  715         373.811 Rules.—
  716         (1) The department, the Department of Health, the
  717  Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, water
  718  management districts, the Acquisition and Restoration Council,
  719  and responsible management entities may adopt rules pursuant to
  720  ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to administer this part, as
  721  applicable.
  722         (2)(a)The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
  723  is the lead agency coordinating the reduction of agricultural
  724  nonpoint sources of pollution for Outstanding Florida Springs
  725  protection. The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
  726  and the department, pursuant to s. 403.067(7)(c)4., shall study
  727  and, if necessary, in cooperation with applicable county and
  728  municipal governments, and stakeholders, initiate rulemaking to
  729  implement new or revised best management practices for improving
  730  and protecting Outstanding Florida Springs and for requiring the
  731  implementation of such practices within a reasonable time period
  732  as specified by rule.
  733         (b)The department, the Department of Agriculture and
  734  Consumer Services, and the University of Florida’s Institute of
  735  Food and Agricultural Sciences shall cooperate in conducting the
  736  necessary research and demonstration projects to develop
  737  improved or additional nutrient management tools, including the
  738  use of controlled release fertilizer that can be used by
  739  agricultural producers as part of an agricultural best
  740  management practices program. The development of such tools must
  741  reflect a balance between water quality improvements and
  742  agricultural productivity and, when applicable, must be
  743  incorporated into the revised best management practices adopted
  744  by rule of the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
  745         Section 13. Section 373.813, Florida Statutes, is created
  746  to read:
  747         373.813 Variances and exemptions.—
  748         (1)A person may apply to the appropriate agency or a water
  749  management district for a variance or an exemption from any
  750  requirement in this part. An agency or a water management
  751  district may approve the application upon receiving reasonable
  752  assurance that the applicant’s proposed activity, evaluated
  753  individually or as part of cumulative impacts, will not cause or
  754  contribute to violations of water quality standards or minimum
  755  flows or levels in an Outstanding Florida Spring.
  756         (2) Until funding becomes available as provided for in s.
  757  201.15(1)(c)3.b., or the Legislature provides another source of
  758  funding, remedial actions are not required under this part,
  759  unless required as a component in the development of or
  760  compliance with a basin management action plan.
  761         Section 14. Present paragraphs (n) through (q) of
  762  subsection (2) of section 381.0065, Florida Statutes, are
  763  redesignated as paragraphs (o) through (r), respectively, a new
  764  paragraph (n) is added to that subsection, and subsection (7) is
  765  added to that section, to read:
  766         381.0065 Onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems;
  767  regulation.—
  768         (2) DEFINITIONS.—As used in ss. 381.0065-381.0067, the
  769  term:
  770         (n) “Responsible management entity” means a legal entity
  771  established to be responsible for providing localized management
  772  services that have the requisite managerial, financial, and
  773  technical capacity to ensure long-term management of onsite
  774  sewage treatment and disposal systems within its jurisdiction.
  776         (a) By March 1, 2015, the department and the Department of
  777  Environmental Protection shall submit a report and
  778  recommendations to the Governor, the President of the Senate,
  779  and the Speaker of the House of Representatives on the creation
  780  and operation of responsible management entities within spring
  781  protection and management zones of Outstanding Florida Springs,
  782  as defined in s. 373.802, which are impaired by nutrients. The
  783  report must focus on the feasibility of different management
  784  models to prevent, reduce, and control nutrient pollution from
  785  onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems, including the
  786  costs associated with each model. In addition, the report must
  787  compare the results of the differing management models to a
  788  mandatory onsite sewage treatment and disposal system evaluation
  789  and assessment program or any other option that would achieve
  790  similar nutrient pollution reductions in the short and long
  791  term.
  792         (b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), a municipality, county,
  793  or appointed regional entity may establish, upon approval by the
  794  department, a responsible management entity for the prevention,
  795  reduction, and control of nutrient pollution caused by
  796  discharges from onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems.
  797  Responsible management entities may implement rules and
  798  maintenance programs in coordination with the department. The
  799  authority of the responsible management entity includes, but is
  800  not limited to, permitting development of system performance
  801  standards; development of standards for construction, operation,
  802  and inspections; maintenance programs for onsite sewage
  803  treatment and disposal systems; coordinated planning with other
  804  local wastewater service providers for nutrient reduction; and
  805  consolidation of multiple, smaller individual projects into a
  806  single project proposal for submission to the Acquisition and
  807  Restoration Council pursuant to s. 373.807.
  808         (c) The department shall ensure that responsible management
  809  entities adopt rules and policies that are at least as
  810  restrictive as state law.
  811         Section 15. Paragraphs (a) and (c) of subsection (7) of
  812  section 403.067, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:
  813         403.067 Establishment and implementation of total maximum
  814  daily loads.—
  817         (a) Basin management action plans.—
  818         1. In developing and implementing the total maximum daily
  819  load for a water body, The department, or the department in
  820  conjunction with a water management district, if not otherwise
  821  required to do so under applicable law, may develop a basin
  822  management action plan that addresses some or all of the
  823  watersheds and basins tributary to the water body. Such plan
  824  must integrate the appropriate management strategies available
  825  to the state through existing water quality protection programs
  826  to achieve compliance or to prevent noncompliance with water
  827  quality standards the total maximum daily loads and may provide
  828  for phased implementation of these management strategies to
  829  promote timely, cost-effective actions as provided for in s.
  830  403.151. The plan must establish a schedule implementing the
  831  management strategies, establish a basis for evaluating the
  832  plan’s effectiveness, and identify feasible funding strategies
  833  for implementing the plan’s management strategies. The
  834  management strategies may include regional treatment systems or
  835  other public works, where appropriate, and voluntary trading of
  836  water quality credits to achieve the needed pollutant load
  837  reductions.
  838         2. A basin management action plan must equitably allocate,
  839  pursuant to paragraph (6)(b), pollutant reductions to individual
  840  basins, as a whole to all basins, or to each identified point
  841  source or category of nonpoint sources, as appropriate. If the
  842  water body is an Outstanding Florida Spring, the plan must
  843  allocate pollutant reductions, including loads to groundwater,
  844  to each identified point source or category of nonpoint sources
  845  within a spring protection and management zone delineated
  846  pursuant to s. 373.803. For nonpoint sources for which best
  847  management practices have been adopted, the initial requirement
  848  specified by the plan must be those practices developed pursuant
  849  to paragraph (c). If Where appropriate, the plan may take into
  850  account the benefits of pollutant load reduction achieved by
  851  point or nonpoint sources that have implemented management
  852  strategies to reduce pollutant loads, including best management
  853  practices, before the development of the basin management action
  854  plan. The plan must also identify the mechanisms that will
  855  prevent address potential future increases in pollutant loading.
  856         3. The basin management action planning process is intended
  857  to involve the broadest possible range of interested parties,
  858  with the objective of encouraging the greatest amount of
  859  cooperation and consensus possible. In developing a basin
  860  management action plan, the department shall assure that key
  861  stakeholders, including, but not limited to, applicable local
  862  governments, water management districts, the Department of
  863  Agriculture and Consumer Services, other appropriate state
  864  agencies, local soil and water conservation districts,
  865  environmental groups, regulated interests, and affected
  866  pollution sources, are invited to participate in the process.
  867  The department shall hold at least one public meeting in the
  868  vicinity of the watershed or basin to discuss and receive
  869  comments during the planning process and shall otherwise
  870  encourage public participation to the greatest practicable
  871  extent. Notice of the public meeting must be published in a
  872  newspaper of general circulation in each county in which the
  873  watershed or basin lies not less than 5 days nor more than 15
  874  days before the public meeting. A basin management action plan
  875  does not supplant or otherwise alter any assessment made under
  876  subsection (3) or subsection (4) or any calculation or initial
  877  allocation.
  878         4. The department shall adopt all or any part of a basin
  879  management action plan and any amendment to such plan by
  880  secretarial order pursuant to chapter 120 to implement the
  881  provisions of this section.
  882         5. The basin management action plan must include milestones
  883  for implementation and water quality improvement, and an
  884  associated water quality monitoring component sufficient to
  885  evaluate whether reasonable progress in pollutant load
  886  reductions is being achieved over time. An assessment of
  887  progress toward these milestones shall be conducted every 5
  888  years, and revisions to the plan shall be made as appropriate.
  889  Revisions to the basin management action plan shall be made by
  890  the department in cooperation with basin stakeholders. Revisions
  891  to the management strategies required for nonpoint sources must
  892  follow the procedures set forth in subparagraph (c)4. Revised
  893  basin management action plans must be adopted pursuant to
  894  subparagraph 4.
  895         6. In accordance with procedures adopted by rule under
  896  paragraph (9)(c), basin management action plans, and other
  897  pollution control programs under local, state, or federal
  898  authority as provided in subsection (4), may allow point or
  899  nonpoint sources that will achieve greater pollutant reductions
  900  than required by an adopted total maximum load or wasteload
  901  allocation to generate, register, and trade water quality
  902  credits for the excess reductions to enable other sources to
  903  achieve their allocation; however, the generation of water
  904  quality credits does not remove the obligation of a source or
  905  activity to meet applicable technology requirements or adopted
  906  best management practices. Such plans must allow trading between
  907  NPDES permittees, and trading that may or may not involve NPDES
  908  permittees, where the generation or use of the credits involve
  909  an entity or activity not subject to department water discharge
  910  permits whose owner voluntarily elects to obtain department
  911  authorization for the generation and sale of credits.
  912         7. The provisions of The department’s rule relating to the
  913  equitable abatement of pollutants into surface waters do not
  914  apply to water bodies or water body segments for which a basin
  915  management plan that takes into account future new or expanded
  916  activities or discharges has been adopted under this section.
  917         (c) Best management practices.—
  918         1. The department, in cooperation with the water management
  919  districts and other interested parties, as appropriate, may
  920  develop suitable interim measures, best management practices, or
  921  other measures necessary to achieve the level of pollution
  922  reduction established by the department for nonagricultural
  923  nonpoint pollutant sources in allocations developed pursuant to
  924  subsection (6) and this subsection. These practices and measures
  925  may be adopted by rule by the department and the water
  926  management districts and, if where adopted by rule, shall be
  927  implemented by those parties responsible for nonagricultural
  928  nonpoint source pollution.
  929         2. The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services may
  930  develop and adopt by rule pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54
  931  suitable interim measures, best management practices, or other
  932  measures necessary to achieve the level of pollution reduction
  933  established by the department for agricultural pollutant sources
  934  in allocations developed pursuant to subsection (6) and this
  935  subsection or for programs implemented pursuant to paragraph
  936  (12)(b) (13)(b). These practices and measures may be implemented
  937  by those parties responsible for agricultural pollutant sources
  938  and the department, the water management districts, and the
  939  Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services shall assist
  940  with implementation. In the process of developing and adopting
  941  rules for interim measures, best management practices, or other
  942  measures, the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
  943  shall consult with the department, the Department of Health, the
  944  water management districts, representatives from affected
  945  farming groups, and environmental group representatives. Such
  946  rules must also incorporate provisions for a notice of intent to
  947  implement the practices and a system to assure the
  948  implementation of the practices, including recordkeeping
  949  requirements.
  950         3. Where interim measures, best management practices, or
  951  other measures are adopted by rule, the effectiveness of such
  952  practices in achieving the levels of pollution reduction
  953  established in allocations developed by the department pursuant
  954  to subsection (6) and this subsection or in programs implemented
  955  pursuant to paragraph (12)(b) (13)(b) must be verified at
  956  representative sites by the department. The department shall use
  957  best professional judgment in making the initial verification
  958  that the best management practices are reasonably expected to be
  959  effective and, if where applicable, must notify the appropriate
  960  water management district or the Department of Agriculture and
  961  Consumer Services of its initial verification before the
  962  adoption of a rule proposed pursuant to this paragraph.
  963  Implementation, in accordance with rules adopted under this
  964  paragraph, of practices that have been initially verified to be
  965  effective, or verified to be effective by monitoring at
  966  representative sites, by the department, shall provide a
  967  presumption of compliance with state water quality standards and
  968  release from the provisions of s. 376.307(5) for those
  969  pollutants addressed by the practices, and the department is not
  970  authorized to institute proceedings against the owner of the
  971  source of pollution to recover costs or damages associated with
  972  the contamination of surface water or groundwater caused by
  973  those pollutants. Research projects funded by the department, a
  974  water management district, or the Department of Agriculture and
  975  Consumer Services to develop or demonstrate interim measures or
  976  best management practices shall be granted a presumption of
  977  compliance with state water quality standards and a release from
  978  the provisions of s. 376.307(5). The presumption of compliance
  979  and release is limited to the research site and applies only for
  980  those pollutants addressed by the interim measures or best
  981  management practices. Eligibility for the presumption of
  982  compliance and release is limited to research projects on sites
  983  where the owner or operator of the research site and the
  984  department, a water management district, or the Department of
  985  Agriculture and Consumer Services have entered into a contract
  986  or other agreement that, at a minimum, specifies the research
  987  objectives, the cost-share responsibilities of the parties, and
  988  a schedule that details the beginning and ending dates of the
  989  project.
  990         4. Where water quality problems are demonstrated, despite
  991  the appropriate implementation, operation, and maintenance of
  992  best management practices and other measures required by rules
  993  adopted under this paragraph, the department, a water management
  994  district, or the Department of Agriculture and Consumer
  995  Services, in consultation with the department, shall institute a
  996  reevaluation of the best management practice or other measure.
  997  If Should the reevaluation determines determine that the best
  998  management practice or other measure requires modification, the
  999  department, a water management district, or the Department of
 1000  Agriculture and Consumer Services, as appropriate, shall revise
 1001  the rule to require implementation of the modified practice
 1002  within a reasonable time period as specified in the rule.
 1003         5. Agricultural records relating to processes or methods of
 1004  production, costs of production, profits, or other financial
 1005  information held by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer
 1006  Services pursuant to subparagraphs 3. and 4. or pursuant to any
 1007  rule adopted pursuant to subparagraph 2. are confidential and
 1008  exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State
 1009  Constitution. Upon request, records made confidential and exempt
 1010  pursuant to this subparagraph shall be released to the
 1011  department or any water management district provided that the
 1012  confidentiality specified by this subparagraph for such records
 1013  is maintained.
 1014         6. The provisions of Subparagraphs 1. and 2. do not
 1015  preclude the department or water management district from
 1016  requiring compliance with water quality standards or with
 1017  current best management practice requirements set forth in any
 1018  applicable regulatory program authorized by law for the purpose
 1019  of protecting water quality. Additionally, subparagraphs 1. and
 1020  2. are applicable only to the extent that they do not conflict
 1021  with any rules adopted by the department which that are
 1022  necessary to maintain a federally delegated or approved program.
 1023         Section 16. Section 381.00651, Florida Statutes, is
 1024  repealed.
 1025         Section 17. Comprehensive study on nutrient reduction
 1026  improvements and the beneficial use of reclaimed water,
 1027  stormwater, and excess surface water.—
 1028         (1) The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and
 1029  the Department of Environmental Protection, in cooperation with
 1030  the five water management districts, shall conduct a
 1031  comprehensive study on nutrient reduction improvements for row
 1032  crops and for the expansion of the beneficial use of reclaimed
 1033  water, stormwater, and excess surface water in this state. The
 1034  final report of the study must:
 1035         (a) Describe factors that currently prohibit or otherwise
 1036  complicate the expansion of the beneficial use of reclaimed
 1037  water and include recommendations for the mitigation or
 1038  elimination of such factors.
 1039         (b) Identify environmental, public health, public
 1040  perception, engineering, and fiscal issues, and user fee
 1041  amounts, including utility rate structures for potable and
 1042  reclaimed water.
 1043         (c) Identify areas in the state where making reclaimed
 1044  water available for irrigation or other uses is necessary
 1045  because the use of traditional water supply sources is
 1046  constrained by limitations on availability.
 1047         (d) Evaluate the costs to users of reclaimed water compared
 1048  to the cost associated with traditional water sources, including
 1049  an examination of the nutrient concentrations in reclaimed water
 1050  and the necessity for additional fertilizer supplementation.
 1051         (e) Evaluate permitting incentives, such as further
 1052  extending current authorization for long-term consumptive
 1053  permits to all entities substituting reclaimed water for
 1054  traditional water sources or including in such permits a
 1055  provision that authorizes conversion to traditional water
 1056  sources if reclaimed water becomes unavailable or cost
 1057  prohibitive.
 1058         (f) Describe the basic feasibility, benefit, and cost
 1059  estimates for the infrastructure needed to construct regional
 1060  storage features on public or private lands for reclaimed water,
 1061  stormwater, or excess surface water, including collection and
 1062  delivery mechanisms for beneficial uses rather than discharge to
 1063  tide, such as agricultural irrigation, power generation, public
 1064  water supply, wetland restoration, groundwater recharge, and
 1065  water body base flow augmentation.
 1066         (g) Describe any other alternative processes, systems, or
 1067  technology that may be comparable or preferable to a regional
 1068  storage system or that may effectively complement or be a
 1069  substitute for a regional storage system.
 1070         (h) Evaluate the impact of implementation of a
 1071  comprehensive reclaimed water plan on traditional water sources
 1072  and aquifer levels.
 1073         (i) Evaluate strategies to reduce nutrient loading from row
 1074  crops in areas sensitive to nutrient pollution, including the
 1075  application of organic fertilizers, or provide incentives for
 1076  agricultural producers to plant crops that require less
 1077  fertilization.
 1078         (2) The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and
 1079  the Department of Environmental Protection shall jointly hold a
 1080  public meeting to gather input on the design of the
 1081  comprehensive study and to provide an opportunity for public
 1082  comment before publishing the final report of the study.
 1083         (3) The final report shall be submitted to the Governor,
 1084  the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of
 1085  Representatives by December 1, 2015.
 1086         (4) This section expires on December 1, 2015.
 1087         Section 18. This act shall take effect July 1, 2014.