Florida Senate - 2020                                    SB 1382
       By Senator Albritton
       26-00785A-20                                          20201382__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to environmental resource management;
    3         amending s. 403.067, F.S.; providing that basin
    4         management action plan management strategies may
    5         include certain water quality improvement elements;
    6         requiring the Department of Environmental Protection,
    7         in coordination with the Department of Agriculture and
    8         Consumer Services, to develop and implement a
    9         cooperative agricultural regional water quality
   10         improvement element; providing guidelines for the
   11         element; providing requirements for participation in
   12         the element; requiring the Department of Environmental
   13         Protection, in coordination with the Department of
   14         Health or water management districts, to develop and
   15         implement a cooperative urban, suburban, commercial,
   16         or institutional water quality improvement element;
   17         providing guidelines for the element; requiring the
   18         Department of Environmental Protection to work with
   19         the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
   20         and producers to improve certain data and technology
   21         resources; requiring the Institute of Food and
   22         Agriculture Sciences of the University of Florida, in
   23         cooperation with the Department of Agriculture and
   24         Consumer Services, to develop a research plan and a
   25         legislative budget request; providing requirements for
   26         the plan; establishing a nutrient reduction cost-share
   27         program within the Department of Environmental
   28         Protection; providing requirements for the program,
   29         subject to legislative appropriation; providing
   30         priorities for funding allocations; authorizing the
   31         department to waive a local match requirement under
   32         certain circumstances; requiring an annual report to
   33         the Governor and the Legislature; amending s. 403.412,
   34         F.S.; prohibiting local governments from recognizing,
   35         granting, conveying, or extending legal rights or
   36         legal standing to animals or the natural environment
   37         under certain circumstances; providing construction;
   38         providing an effective date.
   40  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   42         Section 1. Paragraph (a) of subsection (7) of section
   43  403.067, Florida Statutes, is amended, paragraphs (e), (f), and
   44  (g) are added to that subsection, and subsection (14) is added
   45  to that section, to read:
   46         403.067 Establishment and implementation of total maximum
   47  daily loads.—
   50         (a) Basin management action plans.—
   51         1. In developing and implementing the total maximum daily
   52  load for a water body, the department, or the department in
   53  conjunction with a water management district, may develop a
   54  basin management action plan that addresses some or all of the
   55  watersheds and basins tributary to the water body. Such plan
   56  must integrate the appropriate management strategies available
   57  to the state through existing water quality protection programs
   58  to achieve the total maximum daily loads and may provide for
   59  phased implementation of these management strategies to promote
   60  timely, technically cost-effective actions as provided for in s.
   61  403.151. The plan must establish a schedule for implementing the
   62  management strategies, establish a basis for evaluating the
   63  plan’s effectiveness, and identify feasible funding strategies
   64  for implementing the plan’s management strategies. The
   65  management strategies may include regional treatment systems or
   66  other public works, where appropriate, and voluntary trading of
   67  water quality credits to achieve the needed pollutant load
   68  reductions. In addition to the interim measures, best management
   69  practices, or other measures required in paragraph (c),
   70  management strategies may include a cooperative agricultural
   71  regional water quality improvement element, as set forth in
   72  paragraph (e), or a cooperative urban, suburban, commercial, or
   73  institutional regional water quality improvement element, as set
   74  forth in paragraph (f).
   75         2. A basin management action plan must equitably allocate,
   76  pursuant to paragraph (6)(b), pollutant reductions to individual
   77  basins, as a whole to all basins, or to each identified point
   78  source or category of nonpoint sources, as appropriate. For
   79  nonpoint sources for which best management practices have been
   80  adopted, the initial requirement specified by the plan must be
   81  those practices developed pursuant to paragraph (c). Where
   82  appropriate, the plan may take into account the benefits of
   83  pollutant load reduction achieved by point or nonpoint sources
   84  that have implemented management strategies to reduce pollutant
   85  loads, including best management practices, before the
   86  development of the basin management action plan. The plan must
   87  also identify the mechanisms that will address potential future
   88  increases in pollutant loading.
   89         3. The basin management action planning process is intended
   90  to involve the broadest possible range of interested parties,
   91  with the objective of encouraging the greatest amount of
   92  cooperation and consensus possible. In developing a basin
   93  management action plan, the department shall assure that key
   94  stakeholders, including, but not limited to, applicable local
   95  governments, water management districts, the Department of
   96  Agriculture and Consumer Services, other appropriate state
   97  agencies, local soil and water conservation districts,
   98  environmental groups, regulated interests, and affected
   99  pollution sources, are invited to participate in the process.
  100  The department shall hold at least one public meeting in the
  101  vicinity of the watershed or basin to discuss and receive
  102  comments during the planning process and shall otherwise
  103  encourage public participation to the greatest practicable
  104  extent. Notice of the public meeting must be published in a
  105  newspaper of general circulation in each county in which the
  106  watershed or basin lies not less than 5 days nor more than 15
  107  days before the public meeting. A basin management action plan
  108  does not supplant or otherwise alter any assessment made under
  109  subsection (3) or subsection (4) or any calculation or initial
  110  allocation.
  111         4. Each new or revised basin management action plan must
  112  shall include:
  113         a. The appropriate management strategies available through
  114  existing water quality protection programs to achieve total
  115  maximum daily loads, which may provide for phased implementation
  116  to promote timely, cost-effective actions as provided for in s.
  117  403.151;
  118         b. A description of best management practices adopted by
  119  rule;
  120         c. A list of projects in priority ranking with a planning
  121  level cost estimate and estimated date of completion for each
  122  listed project;
  123         d. The source and amount of financial assistance to be made
  124  available by the department, a water management district, or
  125  other entity for each listed project, if applicable; and
  126         e. A planning-level estimate of each listed project’s
  127  expected load reduction, if applicable.
  128         5. The department shall adopt all or any part of a basin
  129  management action plan and any amendment to such plan by
  130  secretarial order pursuant to chapter 120 to implement the
  131  provisions of this section.
  132         6. The basin management action plan must include milestones
  133  for implementation and water quality improvement, and an
  134  associated water quality monitoring component sufficient to
  135  evaluate whether reasonable progress in pollutant load
  136  reductions is being achieved over time. An assessment of
  137  progress toward these milestones shall be conducted every 5
  138  years, and revisions to the plan shall be made as appropriate.
  139  Revisions to the basin management action plan shall be made by
  140  the department in cooperation with basin stakeholders. Revisions
  141  to the management strategies required for nonpoint sources must
  142  follow the procedures set forth in subparagraph (c)4. Revised
  143  basin management action plans must be adopted pursuant to
  144  subparagraph 5.
  145         7. In accordance with procedures adopted by rule under
  146  paragraph (9)(c), basin management action plans, and other
  147  pollution control programs under local, state, or federal
  148  authority as provided in subsection (4), may allow point or
  149  nonpoint sources that will achieve greater pollutant reductions
  150  than required by an adopted total maximum daily load or
  151  wasteload allocation to generate, register, and trade water
  152  quality credits for the excess reductions to enable other
  153  sources to achieve their allocation; however, the generation of
  154  water quality credits does not remove the obligation of a source
  155  or activity to meet applicable technology requirements or
  156  adopted best management practices. Such plans must allow trading
  157  between NPDES permittees, and trading that may or may not
  158  involve NPDES permittees, where the generation or use of the
  159  credits involves involve an entity or activity not subject to
  160  department water discharge permits whose owner voluntarily
  161  elects to obtain department authorization for the generation and
  162  sale of credits.
  163         8. The provisions of the department’s rule relating to the
  164  equitable abatement of pollutants into surface waters do not
  165  apply to water bodies or water body segments for which a basin
  166  management plan that takes into account future new or expanded
  167  activities or discharges has been adopted under this section.
  168         (e)Cooperative agricultural regional water quality
  169  improvement element.—A basin management action plan may include
  170  as an additional management strategy a cooperative agricultural
  171  regional water quality improvement element.
  172         1.The department, in coordination with the Department of
  173  Agriculture and Consumer Services, shall develop the element and
  174  implement it through a cost-sharing program. The element may
  175  include cost-effective, technically and financially practical
  176  cooperative agricultural nutrient reduction projects that may be
  177  implemented on private properties, subject to available funding.
  178  The projects may include any of the following on lands of
  179  willing sellers or willing participants, which, in combination
  180  with state-sponsored regional projects and other management
  181  strategies included in the basin management action plan, will
  182  reduce the nutrient impacts from agricultural operations:
  183         a.Land acquisition in fee or in conservation easements.
  184         b.Site-specific water quality improvement or dispersed
  185  water management projects.
  186         2.To qualify for participation in the element, the
  187  participant must have already implemented the interim measures,
  188  best management practices, or other measures adopted by the
  189  department pursuant to subparagraph (c)2.
  190         3.The element may be included in the basin management
  191  action plan as a part of the 5-year assessment under
  192  subparagraph (a)6.
  193         (f)Cooperative urban, suburban, commercial, or
  194  institutional water quality improvement element.—The basin
  195  management action plan may include as an additional management
  196  strategy a cooperative urban, suburban, commercial, or
  197  institutional regional water quality improvement element.
  198         1.The department, in coordination with the Department of
  199  Health or water management districts, shall develop the element
  200  and implement it through a cost-sharing program. The element may
  201  include cost-effective, technically and financially practical
  202  cooperative urban, suburban, commercial, or institutional
  203  regional nutrient reduction projects that may be implemented on
  204  properties, subject to available funding. The projects may
  205  include those that reduce stormwater pollutant loading, which,
  206  in combination with state-sponsored regional projects and other
  207  management strategies included in the basin management action
  208  plan, will reduce the nutrient impacts from urban, suburban,
  209  commercial, or institutional operations.
  210         2.The element may be included in the basin management
  211  action plan as a part of the 5-year assessment under
  212  subparagraph (a)6.
  213         (g)Data collection and research.
  214         1.The department shall work with the Department of
  215  Agriculture and Consumer Services to improve the accuracy of
  216  data used to estimate agricultural land uses in basin management
  217  action plans. The departments shall work with producers to
  218  identify agricultural technologies that could be implemented,
  219  subject to available funding, on properties where the
  220  technologies are deemed technically and financially practical.
  221         2.The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences of the
  222  University of Florida, in cooperation with the Department of
  223  Agriculture and Consumer Services, shall develop a research plan
  224  and a legislative budget request to:
  225         a.Evaluate and, where cost-effective and technically and
  226  financially practical, suggest enhancements to the adopted best
  227  management practices;
  228         b.Develop new best management practices that are cost
  229  effective and technically and financially practical and that,
  230  when proven, may be considered by the department for rule
  231  adoption pursuant to paragraph (c).
  232         c.Develop technically and financially practical
  233  agricultural nutrient reduction projects that would be
  234  implemented with willing participants on a site-specific,
  235  cooperative basis in addition to best management practices, and
  236  that would be considered for inclusion in a basin management
  237  action plan pursuant to paragraph (e).
  238         3.The department, in cooperation with the Institute of
  239  Food and Agricultural Sciences of the University of Florida and
  240  the regulated entities, shall consider the adoption by rule of
  241  best management practices for the management of nutrient impacts
  242  from golf courses and other recreational areas.
  244  reduction cost-share program is established within the
  245  department.
  246         (a)Subject to legislative appropriation, the department
  247  may provide funding for projects that will individually or
  248  collectively reduce nutrient pollution under a basin management
  249  action plan or an alternative restoration plan for the
  250  following:
  251         1.Projects to retrofit onsite sewage treatment and
  252  disposal systems.
  253         2.Projects to construct, upgrade, or expand facilities to
  254  provide advanced waste treatment, as defined in s. 403.086(4).
  255         3.Projects to connect onsite sewage treatment and disposal
  256  systems to central sewer facilities.
  257         4.Projects identified in the cooperative urban, suburban,
  258  commercial, or institutional regional water quality improvement
  259  element pursuant to paragraph (7)(f).
  260         5.Projects identified in the cooperative agricultural
  261  regional water quality improvement element pursuant to paragraph
  262  (7)(e).
  263         6.Data collection and research activities identified in
  264  paragraph (7)(f).
  265         (b)In allocating funds for projects, the department shall
  266  equally prioritize projects identified in subparagraphs (a)1.-4.
  267  with projects identified in subparagraph (a)5. For projects
  268  identified in subparagraphs (a)1.-4., priority must be given to
  269  projects that subsidize the connection of onsite sewage
  270  treatment and disposal systems to a wastewater treatment plant
  271  or that subsidize inspections and assessments of onsite sewage
  272  treatment and disposal systems. In determining such priorities,
  273  the department shall consider the estimated reduction in
  274  nutrient load per project, project readiness, the cost
  275  effectiveness of the project, the overall environmental benefit
  276  of a project, the location of a project within the plan area,
  277  the availability of local matching funds, and the projected
  278  water savings or quantity improvements associated with the
  279  project.
  280         (c)Each project described in subparagraphs (a)1.-3. must
  281  require a minimum of a 50 percent local match of funds. However,
  282  the department may waive, in whole or in part, this
  283  consideration of the local contribution for proposed projects
  284  within an area designated as a rural area of opportunity
  285  pursuant to s. 288.0656.
  286         (d)The department shall coordinate with the Department of
  287  Agriculture and Consumer Services, the Institute of Food and
  288  Agricultural Sciences of the University of Florida, and each
  289  water management district, as necessary, in allocating funds
  290  pursuant to this subsection.
  291         (e)Beginning January 1, 2021, and each January 1
  292  thereafter, the department shall submit a report regarding the
  293  projects funded pursuant to this section to the Governor, the
  294  President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of
  295  Representatives.
  296         Section 2. Subsection (9) is added to section 403.412,
  297  Florida Statutes, to read:
  298         403.412 Environmental Protection Act.—
  299         (9)(a)A local government regulation, ordinance, code,
  300  rule, comprehensive plan, or charter may not recognize, grant,
  301  convey, or extend legal standing or legal rights, as those terms
  302  are generally construed, to a plant, an animal, a body of water,
  303  or any other part of the natural environment which is not a
  304  person or a political subdivision, as defined in s. 1.01(8),
  305  unless otherwise specifically authorized by state law or the
  306  State Constitution.
  307         (b)This subsection may not be interpreted or construed to
  308  do any of the following:
  309         1.Limit the ability of the Department of Legal Affairs,
  310  any political subdivision of the state, or a resident of the
  311  state to maintain an action for injunctive relief as provided in
  312  this section.
  313         2.Limit the ability of an aggrieved or adversely affected
  314  party to appeal and challenge the consistency of a development
  315  order with a comprehensive plan, as provided in s. 163.3215, or
  316  to file an action for injunctive relief to enforce the terms of
  317  a development agreement or to challenge compliance of the
  318  agreement with the Florida Local Government Development
  319  Agreement Act, as provided in s. 163.3243.
  320         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2020.