Florida Senate - 2016 SB 756 By Senator Brandes 22-00775-16 2016756__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to the Department of Transportation; 3 amending s. 311.07, F.S.; increasing the minimum 4 amount that must be made available annually from the 5 State Transportation Trust Fund to fund the Florida 6 Seaport Transportation and Economic Development 7 Program; amending s. 311.09, F.S.; increasing the 8 amount per year the department must include in its 9 annual legislative budget request for the Florida 10 Seaport Transportation and Economic Development 11 Program; amending s. 316.003, F.S.; defining the term 12 “port of entry”; amending s. 316.545, F.S.; providing 13 a specified penalty for drivers of commercial motor 14 vehicles who obtain temporary registration permits 15 entering the state at, or operating on designated 16 routes to, a port-of-entry location; amending s. 17 334.044, F.S.; authorizing the department to assume 18 certain responsibilities under the National 19 Environmental Policy Act with respect to highway 20 projects within the state and certain related 21 responsibilities relating to review or approval of a 22 highway project; authorizing the department to enter 23 into certain agreements related to the federal surface 24 transportation project delivery program under certain 25 federal law; authorizing the department to adopt 26 implementing rules; authorizing the department to 27 adopt certain relevant federal environmental 28 standards; providing a limited waiver of sovereign 29 immunity to civil suit in federal court consistent 30 with certain federal law; creating s. 337.027, F.S.; 31 authorizing the department to establish a program for 32 highway projects that assist small businesses; 33 providing a program purpose; defining the term “small 34 business”; authorizing the department to adopt rules; 35 amending s. 338.165, F.S.; removing an option to issue 36 certain bonds secured by toll revenues collected on 37 the Beeline-East Expressway and the Navarre Bridge; 38 amending s. 338.231, F.S.; increasing the number of 39 years before an inactive prepaid toll account is 40 presumed unclaimed; creating s. 339.0809, F.S.; 41 creating a nonprofit corporation to be known as the 42 “Florida Department of Transportation Financing 43 Corporation”; defining the term “corporation”; 44 providing for membership of a governing board of 45 directors; providing certain powers and duties; 46 authorizing the corporation to enter into service 47 contracts with the Department of Transportation 48 subject to certain requirements; authorizing the 49 corporation to issue and incur notes, bonds, 50 certificates of indebtedness, or other obligations or 51 evidences of indebtedness under certain circumstances; 52 providing that the fulfillment of the purposes of the 53 corporation promotes the health, safety, and general 54 welfare of the people of the state and serves 55 essential governmental functions and a paramount 56 public purpose; providing certain exemptions from 57 taxation and assessments; authorizing the corporation 58 to validate certain obligations subject to certain 59 requirements; providing applicability; prohibiting the 60 benefits and earnings of the corporation from inuring 61 to any private person; requiring title to all property 62 owned by the corporation to revert to the state upon 63 dissolution of the corporation; authorizing the 64 corporation to contract with the State Board of 65 Administration to perform certain services; 66 authorizing the board to contract with others to 67 provide such services and to recover certain costs; 68 authorizing the department to enter into a service 69 contract in conjunction with the issuance of debt 70 obligations which provides for certain periodic 71 payments; providing an effective date. 72 73 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 74 75 Section 1. Subsection (2) of section 311.07, Florida 76 Statutes, is amended to read: 77 311.07 Florida seaport transportation and economic 78 development funding.— 79 (2) A minimum of $25
$15million per year shall be made 80 available from the State Transportation Trust Fund to fund the 81 Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic Development Program. 82 The Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic Development 83 Council created in s. 311.09 shall develop guidelines for 84 project funding. Council staff, the Department of 85 Transportation, and the Department of Economic Opportunity shall 86 work in cooperation to review projects and allocate funds in 87 accordance with the schedule required for the Department of 88 Transportation to include these projects in the tentative work 89 program developed pursuant to s. 339.135(4). 90 Section 2. Subsection (9) of section 311.09, Florida 91 Statutes, is amended to read: 92 311.09 Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic 93 Development Council.— 94 (9) The Department of Transportation shall include at least 95 $25 no less than $15million per year in its annual legislative 96 budget request for the Florida Seaport Transportation and 97 Economic Development Program funded under s. 311.07. Such budget 98 must shallinclude funding for projects approved by the council 99 which have been determined by each agency to be consistent. The 100 department shall include the specific approved Florida Seaport 101 Transportation and Economic Development Program projects to be 102 funded under s. 311.07 during the ensuing fiscal year in the 103 tentative work program developed pursuant to s. 339.135(4). The 104 total amount of funding to be allocated to Florida Seaport 105 Transportation and Economic Development Program projects under 106 s. 311.07 during the successive 4 fiscal years shall also be 107 included in the tentative work program developed pursuant to s. 108 339.135(4). The council may submit to the department a list of 109 approved projects that could be made production-ready within the 110 next 2 years. The list shall be submitted by the department as 111 part of the needs and project list prepared pursuant to s. 112 339.135(2)(b). However, the department shall, upon written 113 request of the Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic 114 Development Council, submit work program amendments pursuant to 115 s. 339.135(7) to the Governor within 10 days after the later of 116 the date the request is received by the department or the 117 effective date of the amendment, termination, or closure of the 118 applicable funding agreement between the department and the 119 affected seaport, as required to release the funds from the 120 existing commitment. Notwithstanding s. 339.135(7)(c), any work 121 program amendment to transfer prior year funds from one approved 122 seaport project to another seaport project is subject to the 123 procedures in s. 339.135(7)(d). Notwithstanding any provision of 124 law to the contrary, the department may transfer unexpended 125 budget between the seaport projects as identified in the 126 approved work program amendments. 127 Section 3. Subsection (94) is added to section 316.003, 128 Florida Statutes, to read: 129 316.003 Definitions.—The following words and phrases, when 130 used in this chapter, shall have the meanings respectively 131 ascribed to them in this section, except where the context 132 otherwise requires: 133 (94) PORT OF ENTRY.—A designated location that allows 134 drivers of commercial motor vehicles to purchase temporary 135 registration permits necessary to operate legally within the 136 state. The locations and the designated routes to such locations 137 shall be determined by the Department of Transportation. 138 Section 4. Paragraph (b) of subsection (2) of section 139 316.545, Florida Statutes, is amended to read: 140 316.545 Weight and load unlawful; special fuel and motor 141 fuel tax enforcement; inspection; penalty; review.— 142 (2) 143 (b) The officer or inspector shall inspect the license 144 plate or registration certificate of the commercial vehicle, as 145 defined in s. 316.003(66), to determine if its gross weight is 146 in compliance with the declared gross vehicle weight. If its 147 gross weight exceeds the declared weight, the penalty shall be 5 148 cents per pound on the difference between such weights. In those 149 cases when the commercial vehicle, as defined in s. 316.003(66), 150 is being operated over the highways of the state with an expired 151 registration or with no registration from this or any other 152 jurisdiction or is not registered under the applicable 153 provisions of chapter 320, the penalty herein shall apply on the 154 basis of 5 cents per pound on that scaled weight which exceeds 155 35,000 pounds on laden truck tractor-semitrailer combinations or 156 tandem trailer truck combinations, 10,000 pounds on laden 157 straight trucks or straight truck-trailer combinations, or 158 10,000 pounds on any unladen commercial motor vehicle. A driver 159 of a commercial motor vehicle entering the state at a designated 160 port-of-entry location, as defined in s. 316.003(94), or 161 operating on designated routes to a port-of-entry location, who 162 obtains a temporary registration permit shall be assessed a 163 penalty limited to the difference between its gross weight and 164 the declared gross vehicle weight at 5 cents per pound. If the 165 license plate or registration has not been expired for more than 166 90 days, the penalty imposed under this paragraph may not exceed 167 $1,000. In the case of special mobile equipment as defined in s. 168 316.003(48), which qualifies for the license tax provided for in 169 s. 320.08(5)(b), being operated on the highways of the state 170 with an expired registration or otherwise not properly 171 registered under the applicable provisions of chapter 320, a 172 penalty of $75 shall apply in addition to any other penalty 173 which may apply in accordance with this chapter. A vehicle found 174 in violation of this section may be detained until the owner or 175 operator produces evidence that the vehicle has been properly 176 registered. Any costs incurred by the retention of the vehicle 177 shall be the sole responsibility of the owner. A person who has 178 been assessed a penalty pursuant to this paragraph for failure 179 to have a valid vehicle registration certificate pursuant to the 180 provisions of chapter 320 is not subject to the delinquent fee 181 authorized in s. 320.07 if such person obtains a valid 182 registration certificate within 10 working days after such 183 penalty was assessed. 184 Section 5. Subsection (34) is added to section 334.044, 185 Florida Statutes, to read: 186 334.044 Department; powers and duties.—The department shall 187 have the following general powers and duties: 188 (34) To assume responsibilities of the United States 189 Department of Transportation with respect to highway projects 190 within the state under the National Environmental Policy Act of 191 1969, 42 U.S.C. s. 4321 et seq., and with respect to related 192 responsibilities for environmental review, consultation, or 193 other action required under any federal environmental law 194 pertaining to review or approval of a highway project within the 195 state. The department may assume responsibilities under 23 196 U.S.C. s. 327 and enter into one or more agreements, including 197 memoranda of understanding, with the United States Secretary of 198 Transportation related to the federal surface transportation 199 project delivery program for the delivery of highway projects, 200 as provided by 23 U.S.C. s. 327. The department may adopt rules 201 to implement this subsection and may adopt relevant federal 202 environmental standards as the standards for this state for a 203 program described in this subsection. Sovereign immunity from 204 civil suit in federal court is waived consistent with 23 U.S.C. 205 s. 327 and limited to the compliance, discharge, or enforcement 206 of a responsibility assumed by the department under this 207 subsection. 208 Section 6. Section 337.027, Florida Statutes, is created to 209 read: 210 337.027 Authority to implement a business development 211 program.— 212 (1) The Department of Transportation may establish a 213 program for highway projects that would assist small businesses. 214 The purpose of this program is to increase competition, lower 215 prices, and provide increased support to meet the department’s 216 future work program. The program may include, but is not limited 217 to, setting aside contracts, providing preference points for the 218 use of small businesses, providing special assistance in bidding 219 and contract completion, waiving bond requirements, and 220 implementing other strategies that would increase competition. 221 (2) For purposes of this section, the term “small business” 222 means a business with average gross receipts of less than $15 223 million for road and bridge contracts and less than $6.5 million 224 for professional and nonprofessional services contracts. A 225 business determines its size by averaging its annual gross 226 receipts over the last 3 years, including the receipts of an 227 affiliate as defined in s. 337.165. 228 (3) The department may adopt rules to implement this 229 section. 230 Section 7. Subsection (4) of section 338.165, Florida 231 Statutes, is amended to read: 232 338.165 Continuation of tolls.— 233 (4) Notwithstanding any other law to the contrary, pursuant 234 to s. 11, Art. VII of the State Constitution, and subject to the 235 requirements of subsection (2), the Department of Transportation 236 may request the Division of Bond Finance to issue bonds secured 237 by toll revenues collected on the Alligator Alley, the Sunshine 238 Skyway Bridge, the Beeline-East Expressway, the Navarre Bridge,239 and the Pinellas Bayway to fund transportation projects located 240 within the county or counties in which the project is located 241 and contained in the adopted work program of the department. 242 Section 8. Paragraph (c) of subsection (3) of section 243 338.231, Florida Statutes, is amended to read: 244 338.231 Turnpike tolls, fixing; pledge of tolls and other 245 revenues.—The department shall at all times fix, adjust, charge, 246 and collect such tolls and amounts for the use of the turnpike 247 system as are required in order to provide a fund sufficient 248 with other revenues of the turnpike system to pay the cost of 249 maintaining, improving, repairing, and operating such turnpike 250 system; to pay the principal of and interest on all bonds issued 251 to finance or refinance any portion of the turnpike system as 252 the same become due and payable; and to create reserves for all 253 such purposes. 254 (3) 255 (c) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the 256 contrary, any prepaid toll account of any kind which has 257 remained inactive for 10 3years shall be presumed unclaimed and 258 its disposition shall be handled by the Department of Financial 259 Services in accordance with all applicable provisions of chapter 260 717 relating to the disposition of unclaimed property, and the 261 prepaid toll account shall be closed by the department. 262 Section 9. Section 339.0809, Florida Statutes, is created 263 to read: 264 339.0809 Florida Department of Transportation Financing 265 Corporation.— 266 (1) The Florida Department of Transportation Financing 267 Corporation is created as a nonprofit corporation for the 268 purpose of financing or refinancing projects for the department 269 as provided in subsection (5). 270 (2) When used in this section, the term “corporation” means 271 the Florida Department of Transportation Financing Corporation. 272 (3) The corporation shall be governed by a board of 273 directors consisting of the director of the Office of Policy and 274 Budget in the Executive Office of the Governor, the director of 275 the Division of Bond Finance, and the Secretary of 276 Transportation. The director of the Division of Bond Finance is 277 the chief executive officer of the corporation and shall direct 278 and supervise the administrative affairs of the corporation and 279 shall control, direct, and supervise the operation of the 280 corporation. The corporation shall have such other officers as 281 may be determined by the board of directors. 282 (4) The corporation shall have all of the powers of a 283 corporate body under the laws of this state to the extent that 284 they are not inconsistent with or restricted by this section, 285 including, but not limited to, the power to: 286 (a) Adopt, amend, and repeal bylaws not inconsistent with 287 this section. 288 (b) Sue and be sued. 289 (c) Adopt and use a common seal. 290 (d) Acquire, purchase, hold, lease, and convey such real 291 and personal property as may be proper or expedient to carry out 292 the purposes of the corporation and this section and to sell, 293 lease, or otherwise dispose of such property. 294 (e) Elect or appoint and employ such other officers, 295 agents, and employees as the corporation deems advisable to 296 operate and manage the affairs of the corporation, which 297 officers, agents, and employees may be officers or employees of 298 the department and the state agencies represented on the board 299 of directors of the corporation. 300 (f) Borrow money and issue notes, bonds, certificates of 301 indebtedness, or other obligations or evidences of indebtedness 302 necessary to finance or refinance projects as provided in 303 subsection (5). 304 (g) Make and execute any and all contracts, trust 305 agreements, and other instruments and agreements necessary or 306 convenient to accomplish the purposes of the corporation and 307 this section. 308 (h) Select, retain, and employ professionals, contractors, 309 or agents, which may include the Division of Bond Finance, as 310 necessary or convenient to enable or assist the corporation in 311 carrying out the purposes of the corporation and this section. 312 (i) Take any action necessary or convenient to carry out 313 the purposes of the corporation and this section and the powers 314 provided in this section. 315 (5) The corporation may enter into one or more service 316 contracts with the department to provide services to the 317 department in connection with projects approved in the 318 department’s work program, which approval specifically provides 319 that the department may enter into a service contract for the 320 project pursuant to this section. The department may enter into 321 one or more such service contracts with the corporation and 322 provide for payments under such contracts, subject to annual 323 appropriation by the Legislature. The proceeds from such service 324 contracts may be used for the corporation’s administrative costs 325 and expenses after the payments specified in subsection (6). 326 Each service contract may have a term of up to 35 years. In 327 compliance with s. 287.0641 and other applicable law, the 328 obligations of the department under such service contracts do 329 not constitute a general obligation of the state or a pledge of 330 the full faith and credit or taxing power of the state, and such 331 obligations are not an obligation of the State Board of 332 Administration or entities for which it invests funds, other 333 than the department as provided in this section, but are payable 334 solely from amounts available in the State Transportation Trust 335 Fund, subject to annual appropriation. In compliance with this 336 subsection and s. 287.0582, the service contract must expressly 337 include the following statement: “The State of Florida’s 338 performance and obligation to pay under this contract is 339 contingent upon an annual appropriation by the Legislature.” 340 (6) The corporation may issue and incur notes, bonds, 341 certificates of indebtedness, or other obligations or evidences 342 of indebtedness payable from and secured by amounts payable to 343 the corporation by the department under a service contract 344 entered into pursuant to subsection (5) for the purpose of 345 financing or refinancing projects approved as provided in that 346 subsection. The duration of any such note, bond, certificate of 347 indebtedness, or other obligation or evidence of indebtedness 348 may not exceed 30 annual maturities. The corporation may select 349 its financing team and issue its obligations through competitive 350 bidding or negotiated contracts, whichever is most cost 351 effective. Indebtedness of the corporation does not constitute a 352 debt or obligation of the state or a pledge of the full faith 353 and credit or taxing power of the state, but is payable from and 354 secured by payments made by the department under the service 355 contract. 356 (7) The fulfillment of the purposes of the corporation 357 promotes the health, safety, and general welfare of the people 358 of the state and serves essential governmental functions and a 359 paramount public purpose. 360 (8) The corporation is exempt from taxation and assessments 361 on its income, property, and assets or revenues acquired, 362 received, or used in the furtherance of the purposes provided in 363 this chapter. The obligations of the corporation incurred 364 pursuant to subsection (6) and the interest and income on such 365 obligations and all security agreements, letters of credit, 366 liquidity facilities, or other obligations or instruments 367 arising out of, entered into in connection with, or given to 368 secure payment of such obligations are exempt from taxation; 369 however, such exemption does not apply to any tax imposed under 370 chapter 220 on the interest, income, or profits on debt 371 obligations owned by corporations. 372 (9) The corporation may validate obligations to be incurred 373 pursuant to subsection (6) and the validity and enforceability 374 of any service contracts providing for payments pledged to the 375 payment of such obligations by proceedings under chapter 75. The 376 validation complaint may be filed only in the Circuit Court of 377 Leon County. The notice required to be published by s. 75.06 378 must be published in Leon County, and the complaint and order of 379 the circuit court may be served only on the State Attorney for 380 the Second Judicial Circuit. Sections 75.04(2) and 75.06(2) do 381 not apply to a complaint for validation filed under this 382 subsection. 383 (10) The corporation is not a special district for the 384 purposes of chapter 189 or a unit of local government for the 385 purposes of part III of chapter 218. The provisions of chapters 386 120 and 215, except the limitation on the interest rates 387 provided by s. 215.84, which applies to obligations of the 388 corporation issued pursuant to this section, and part I of 389 chapter 287, except ss. 287.0582 and 287.0641, do not apply to 390 this section, the corporation, the service contracts entered 391 into pursuant to this section, or debt obligations issued by the 392 corporation as contemplated in this section. 393 (11) The benefits and earnings of the corporation may not 394 inure to the benefit of any private person. 395 (12) Upon dissolution of the corporation, title to all 396 property owned by the corporation reverts to the state. 397 (13) The corporation may contract with the State Board of 398 Administration to serve as a trustee with respect to debt 399 obligations issued by the corporation as contemplated by this 400 section; to hold, administer, and invest proceeds of such debt 401 obligations and other funds of the corporation; and to perform 402 other services required by the corporation. The State Board of 403 Administration may perform such services and may contract with 404 others to provide all or a part of such services and to recover 405 its costs and other expenses thereof. 406 (14) The department may enter into a service contract in 407 conjunction with the issuance of debt obligations as provided in 408 this section which provides for periodic payments for debt 409 service or other amounts payable with respect to debt 410 obligations, plus any administrative expenses of the 411 corporation. 412 Section 10. This act shall take effect July 1, 2016.