Florida Senate - 2021                             CS for SB 1924
       By the Committee on Community Affairs; and Senator Diaz
       578-02921-21                                          20211924c1
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to emergency management powers of
    3         political subdivisions; amending s. 252.38, F.S.;
    4         specifying that a political subdivision has the burden
    5         of proving the proper exercise of its police power in
    6         the issuance of certain emergency orders; authorizing
    7         the Governor or the Legislature to invalidate
    8         emergency measures issued by a political subdivision
    9         under specified conditions; amending s. 252.46, F.S.;
   10         providing for the automatic expiration of emergency
   11         orders issued by a political subdivision; authorizing
   12         the extension of such orders if certain conditions are
   13         met; prohibiting a political subdivision from issuing
   14         a subsequent order for the same emergency that is
   15         substantially similar to the expired order; providing
   16         an effective date.
   18  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   20         Section 1. Section 252.38, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   21  read:
   22         252.38 Emergency management powers of political
   23  subdivisions.—Safeguarding the life and property of its citizens
   24  is an innate responsibility of the governing body of each
   25  political subdivision of the state. However, political
   26  subdivisions are given police powers to preserve, not impair,
   27  private rights. Therefore, a political subdivision that deprives
   28  any person of a constitutional right, fundamental liberty,
   29  statutory right, or property to address a purported emergency
   30  bears the burden of proving that the exercise of police power is
   31  narrowly tailored, serves a compelling governmental interest,
   32  and accomplishes the intended goal through the use of the least
   33  intrusive means.
   34         (1) COUNTIES.—
   35         (a) In order to provide effective and orderly governmental
   36  control and coordination of emergency operations in emergencies
   37  within the scope of ss. 252.31-252.90, each county within this
   38  state shall be within the jurisdiction of, and served by, the
   39  division. Except as otherwise provided in ss. 252.31-252.90,
   40  each local emergency management agency shall have jurisdiction
   41  over and serve an entire county. Unless part of an
   42  interjurisdictional emergency management agreement entered into
   43  pursuant to paragraph (3)(b) which is recognized by the Governor
   44  by executive order or rule, each county must establish and
   45  maintain such an emergency management agency and shall develop a
   46  county emergency management plan and program that is coordinated
   47  and consistent with the state comprehensive emergency management
   48  plan and program. Counties that are part of an
   49  interjurisdictional emergency management agreement entered into
   50  pursuant to paragraph (3)(b) which is recognized by the Governor
   51  by executive order or rule shall cooperatively develop an
   52  emergency management plan and program that is coordinated and
   53  consistent with the state comprehensive emergency management
   54  plan and program.
   55         (b) Each county emergency management agency created and
   56  established pursuant to ss. 252.31-252.90 shall have a director.
   57  The director must meet the minimum training and education
   58  qualifications established in a job description approved by the
   59  county. The director shall be appointed by the board of county
   60  commissioners or the chief administrative officer of the county,
   61  as described in chapter 125 or the county charter, if
   62  applicable, to serve at the pleasure of the appointing
   63  authority, in conformance with applicable resolutions,
   64  ordinances, and laws. A county constitutional officer, or an
   65  employee of a county constitutional officer, may be appointed as
   66  director following prior notification to the division. Each
   67  board of county commissioners shall promptly inform the division
   68  of the appointment of the director and other personnel. Each
   69  director has direct responsibility for the organization,
   70  administration, and operation of the county emergency management
   71  agency. The director shall coordinate emergency management
   72  activities, services, and programs within the county and shall
   73  serve as liaison to the division and other local emergency
   74  management agencies and organizations.
   75         (c) Each county emergency management agency shall perform
   76  emergency management functions within the territorial limits of
   77  the county within which it is organized and, in addition, shall
   78  conduct such activities outside its territorial limits as are
   79  required pursuant to ss. 252.31-252.90 and in accordance with
   80  state and county emergency management plans and mutual aid
   81  agreements. Counties shall serve as liaison for and coordinator
   82  of municipalities’ requests for state and federal assistance
   83  during postdisaster emergency operations.
   84         (d) During a declared state or local emergency and upon the
   85  request of the director of a local emergency management agency,
   86  the district school board or school boards in the affected area
   87  shall participate in emergency management by providing
   88  facilities and necessary personnel to staff such facilities.
   89  Each school board providing transportation assistance in an
   90  emergency evacuation shall coordinate the use of its vehicles
   91  and personnel with the local emergency management agency.
   92         (e) County emergency management agencies may charge and
   93  collect fees for the review of emergency management plans on
   94  behalf of external agencies and institutions. Fees must be
   95  reasonable and may not exceed the cost of providing a review of
   96  emergency management plans in accordance with fee schedules
   97  established by the division.
   98         (2) MUNICIPALITIES.—Legally constituted municipalities are
   99  authorized and encouraged to create municipal emergency
  100  management programs. Municipal emergency management programs
  101  shall coordinate their activities with those of the county
  102  emergency management agency. Municipalities without emergency
  103  management programs shall be served by their respective county
  104  agencies. If a municipality elects to establish an emergency
  105  management program, it must comply with all laws, rules, and
  106  requirements applicable to county emergency management agencies.
  107  Each municipal emergency management plan must be consistent with
  108  and subject to the applicable county emergency management plan.
  109  In addition, each municipality must coordinate requests for
  110  state or federal emergency response assistance with its county.
  111  This requirement does not apply to requests for reimbursement
  112  under federal public disaster assistance programs.
  114         (a) In carrying out the provisions of ss. 252.31-252.90,
  115  each political subdivision shall have the power and authority:
  116         1. To appropriate and expend funds; make contracts; obtain
  117  and distribute equipment, materials, and supplies for emergency
  118  management purposes; provide for the health and safety of
  119  persons and property, including emergency assistance to the
  120  victims of any emergency; and direct and coordinate the
  121  development of emergency management plans and programs in
  122  accordance with the policies and plans set by the federal and
  123  state emergency management agencies.
  124         2. To appoint, employ, remove, or provide, with or without
  125  compensation, coordinators, rescue teams, fire and police
  126  personnel, and other emergency management workers.
  127         3. To establish, as necessary, a primary and one or more
  128  secondary emergency operating centers to provide continuity of
  129  government and direction and control of emergency operations.
  130         4. To assign and make available for duty the offices and
  131  agencies of the political subdivision, including the employees,
  132  property, or equipment thereof relating to firefighting,
  133  engineering, rescue, health, medical and related services,
  134  police, transportation, construction, and similar items or
  135  services for emergency operation purposes, as the primary
  136  emergency management forces of the political subdivision for
  137  employment within or outside the political limits of the
  138  subdivision.
  139         5. To request state assistance or invoke emergency-related
  140  mutual-aid assistance by declaring a state of local emergency in
  141  the event of an emergency affecting only one political
  142  subdivision. The duration of each state of emergency declared
  143  locally is limited to 7 days; it may be extended, as necessary,
  144  in 7-day increments. Further, the political subdivision has the
  145  power and authority to waive the procedures and formalities
  146  otherwise required of the political subdivision by law
  147  pertaining to:
  148         a. Performance of public work and taking whatever prudent
  149  action is necessary to ensure the health, safety, and welfare of
  150  the community.
  151         b. Entering into contracts.
  152         c. Incurring obligations.
  153         d. Employment of permanent and temporary workers.
  154         e. Utilization of volunteer workers.
  155         f. Rental of equipment.
  156         g. Acquisition and distribution, with or without
  157  compensation, of supplies, materials, and facilities.
  158         h. Appropriation and expenditure of public funds.
  159         (b) Upon the request of two or more adjoining counties, or
  160  if the Governor finds that two or more adjoining counties would
  161  be better served by an interjurisdictional arrangement than by
  162  maintaining separate emergency management agencies and services,
  163  the Governor may delineate by executive order or rule an
  164  interjurisdictional area adequate to plan for, prevent,
  165  mitigate, or respond to emergencies in such area and may direct
  166  steps to be taken as necessary, including the creation of an
  167  interjurisdictional relationship, a joint emergency plan, a
  168  provision for mutual aid, or an area organization for emergency
  169  planning and services. A finding of the Governor pursuant to
  170  this paragraph shall be based on one or more factors related to
  171  the difficulty of maintaining an efficient and effective
  172  emergency prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response, and
  173  recovery system on a unijurisdictional basis, such as:
  174         1. Small or sparse population.
  175         2. Limitations on public financial resources severe enough
  176  to make maintenance of a separate emergency management agency
  177  and services unreasonably burdensome.
  178         3. Unusual vulnerability to emergencies as evidenced by a
  179  past history of emergencies, topographical features, drainage
  180  characteristics, emergency potential, and presence of emergency
  181  prone facilities or operations.
  182         4. The interrelated character of the counties in a
  183  multicounty area.
  184         5. Other relevant conditions or circumstances.
  186  Governor, or the Legislature by concurrent resolution, may at
  187  any time invalidate an order, an ordinance, a proclamation, a
  188  rule, or any other measure issued by a political subdivision to
  189  address a purported emergency if the Governor or the Legislature
  190  determines that such order unnecessarily restricts a
  191  constitutional right, fundamental liberty, or statutory right.
  192         Section 2. Subsection (4) is added to section 252.46,
  193  Florida Statutes, to read:
  194         252.46 Orders and rules.—
  195         (4) An order issued by a political subdivision shall
  196  automatically expire 10 days after its issuance; however, such
  197  an order may be extended before its expiration by a majority
  198  vote of the governing body of the political subdivision if
  199  deemed necessary. Upon the expiration of an order, a political
  200  subdivision may not issue a substantially similar order to
  201  respond to the same emergency.
  202         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2021.