Florida Senate - 2023                        COMMITTEE AMENDMENT
       Bill No. CS for SB 748
                              LEGISLATIVE ACTION                        
                    Senate             .             House              

       The Committee on Fiscal Policy (Boyd) recommended the following:
    1         Senate Amendment (with title amendment)
    3         Delete lines 69 - 223
    4  and insert:
    5  damage. An inspector may inspect a townhouse as defined in s.
    6  481.203 to determine if opening protection mitigation as listed
    7  in paragraph (2)(e) would provide improvements to mitigate
    8  hurricane damage.
    9         (b) The Department of Financial Services shall contract
   10  with wind certification entities to provide hurricane mitigation
   11  inspections. The inspections provided to homeowners, at a
   12  minimum, must include:
   13         1. A home inspection and report that summarizes the results
   14  and identifies recommended improvements a homeowner may take to
   15  mitigate hurricane damage.
   16         2. A range of cost estimates regarding the recommended
   17  mitigation improvements.
   18         3. Insurer-specific Information regarding estimated premium
   19  discounts, correlated to the current mitigation features and the
   20  recommended mitigation improvements identified by the
   21  inspection.
   22         (c)(b) To qualify for selection by the department as a wind
   23  certification entity to provide hurricane mitigation
   24  inspections, the entity must shall, at a minimum, meet the
   25  following requirements:
   26         1. Use hurricane mitigation inspectors who are licensed or
   27  certified as:
   28         a. Are certified as A building inspector under s. 468.607;
   29         b. Are licensed as A general, building, or residential
   30  contractor under s. 489.111;
   31         c. Are licensed as A professional engineer under s. 471.015
   32  and who have passed the appropriate equivalency test of the
   33  building code training program as required by s. 553.841;
   34         d. Are licensed as A professional architect under s.
   35  481.213; or
   36         e. A home inspector under s. 468.8314 and who have
   37  completed at least 3 hours of hurricane mitigation training
   38  approved by the Construction Industry Licensing Board, which
   39  training must include hurricane mitigation techniques,
   40  compliance with the uniform mitigation verification form, and
   41  completion of a proficiency exam Have at least 2 years of
   42  experience in residential construction or residential building
   43  inspection and have received specialized training in hurricane
   44  mitigation procedures. Such training may be provided by a class
   45  offered online or in person.
   46         2. Use hurricane mitigation inspectors who also:
   47         a. have undergone drug testing and a background screening.
   48  The department may conduct criminal record checks of inspectors
   49  used by wind certification entities. Inspectors must submit a
   50  set of the fingerprints to the department for state and national
   51  criminal history checks and must pay the fingerprint processing
   52  fee set forth in s. 624.501. The fingerprints must shall be sent
   53  by the department to the Department of Law Enforcement and
   54  forwarded to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for processing.
   55  The results must shall be returned to the department for
   56  screening. The fingerprints must shall be taken by a law
   57  enforcement agency, designated examination center, or other
   58  department-approved entity; and
   59         b.Have been certified, in a manner satisfactory to the
   60  department, to conduct the inspections.
   61         3. Provide a quality assurance program including a
   62  reinspection component.
   63         (c)The department shall implement a quality assurance
   64  program that includes a statistically valid number of
   65  reinspections.
   66         (d) An application for an inspection must contain a signed
   67  or electronically verified statement made under penalty of
   68  perjury that the applicant has submitted only a single
   69  application for that home.
   70         (e) The owner of a site-built, single-family, residential
   71  property or townhouse as defined in s. 481.203 for which a
   72  homestead exemption has been granted may apply for and receive
   73  an inspection without also applying for a grant pursuant to
   74  subsection (2) and without meeting the requirements of paragraph
   75  (2)(a).
   76         (2) MITIGATION GRANTS.—Financial grants shall be used to
   77  encourage single-family, site-built, owner-occupied, residential
   78  property owners to retrofit their properties to make them less
   79  vulnerable to hurricane damage.
   80         (a) For a homeowner to be eligible for a grant, the
   81  following criteria must be met:
   82         1. The homeowner must have been granted a homestead
   83  exemption on the home under chapter 196.
   84         2. The home must be a dwelling with an insured value of
   85  $700,000 $500,000 or less. Homeowners who are low-income
   86  persons, as defined in s. 420.0004(11), are exempt from this
   87  requirement.
   88         3. The home must undergo have undergone an acceptable
   89  hurricane mitigation inspection as provided in subsection (1)
   90  after July 1, 2008.
   91         4. The home must be located in the “wind-borne debris
   92  region” as that term is defined in the Florida Building Code.
   93         5. The building permit application for initial construction
   94  of the home must have been made before January 1, 2008.
   95         5.6. The homeowner must agree to make his or her home
   96  available for inspection once a mitigation project is completed.
   98  An application for a grant must contain a signed or
   99  electronically verified statement made under penalty of perjury
  100  that the applicant has submitted only a single application and
  101  must have attached documents demonstrating the applicant meets
  102  the requirements of this paragraph.
  103         (b) All grants must be matched on the basis of $1 provided
  104  by the applicant for $2 provided by the state up to a maximum
  105  state contribution of $10,000 toward the actual cost of the
  106  mitigation project.
  107         (c) The program shall create a process in which contractors
  108  agree to participate and homeowners select from a list of
  109  participating contractors. All mitigation must be based upon the
  110  securing of all required local permits and inspections and must
  111  be performed by properly licensed contractors. Mitigation
  112  projects are subject to random reinspection of up to at least 5
  113  percent of all projects. Hurricane mitigation inspectors
  114  qualifying for the program may also participate as mitigation
  115  contractors as long as the inspectors meet the department’s
  116  qualifications and certification requirements for mitigation
  117  contractors.
  118         (d) Matching fund grants shall also be made available to
  119  local governments and nonprofit entities for projects that will
  120  reduce hurricane damage to single-family, site-built, owner
  121  occupied, residential property. The department shall liberally
  122  construe those requirements in favor of availing the state of
  123  the opportunity to leverage funding for the My Safe Florida Home
  124  Program with other sources of funding.
  125         (e) When recommended by a hurricane mitigation inspection,
  126  grants for eligible homes may be used for the following
  127  improvements:
  128         1. Opening protection.
  129         2. Exterior doors, including garage doors.
  130         3. Brace gable ends.
  131         4. Reinforcing roof-to-wall connections.
  132         4.5. Improving the strength of roof-deck attachments.
  133         6.Upgrading roof covering from code to code plus.
  134         5.7. Secondary water barrier for roof.
  135         (f)When recommended by a hurricane mitigation inspection,
  136  grants for townhouses as defined in s. 481.203 may be used only
  137  for opening protection.
  139  The department may require that improvements be made to all
  140  openings, including exterior doors and garage doors, as a
  141  condition of reimbursing a homeowner approved for a grant. The
  142  department may adopt, by rule, the maximum grant allowances for
  143  any improvement allowable under this paragraph.
  144         (g)(f) Grants may be used on a previously inspected
  145  existing structure or on a rebuild. A rebuild is defined as a
  146  site-built, single-family dwelling under construction to replace
  147  a home that was destroyed or significantly damaged by a
  148  hurricane and deemed unlivable by a regulatory authority. The
  149  homeowner must be a low-income homeowner as defined in paragraph
  150  (h) (g), must have had a homestead exemption for that home
  151  before prior to the hurricane, and must be intending to rebuild
  152  the home as that homeowner’s homestead.
  153         (h)(g) Low-income homeowners, as defined in s.
  154  420.0004(11), who otherwise meet the requirements of paragraphs
  155  (a), (c), (e), and (g) (f) are eligible for a grant of up to
  156  $10,000 $5,000 and are not required to provide a matching amount
  157  to receive the grant. Additionally, for low-income homeowners,
  158  grant funding may be used for repair to existing structures
  159  leading to any of the mitigation improvements provided in
  160  paragraph (e), limited to 20 percent of the grant value. The
  161  program may accept a certification directly from a low-income
  162  homeowner that the homeowner meets the requirements of s.
  163  420.0004(11) if the homeowner provides such certification in a
  164  signed or electronically verified statement made under penalty
  165  of perjury.
  166         (h)The department shall establish objective, reasonable
  167  criteria for prioritizing grant applications, consistent with
  168  the requirements of this section.
  169         (i) The department shall develop a process that ensures the
  171  ================= T I T L E  A M E N D M E N T ================
  172  And the title is amended as follows:
  173         Delete lines 7 - 19
  174  and insert:
  175         granted a homestead exemption; authorizing an
  176         inspector to inspect townhouses to determine if a
  177         certain mitigation would provide improvements to
  178         mitigate hurricane damage; revising the information
  179         provided to homeowners as part of a hurricane
  180         mitigation inspection; revising the hurricane
  181         mitigation inspectors that may be selected by the
  182         Department of Financial Services to provide hurricane
  183         mitigation inspections; deleting a provision requiring
  184         the department to implement a certain quality
  185         assurance program; revising the criteria for
  186         mitigation grant eligibility for homeowners; deleting
  187         a provision that subjects mitigation projects to
  188         random reinspection for a specified timeframe;
  189         revising the improvements for eligible homes for which
  190         mitigation grants may be used; providing that such
  191         grants for townhouses may be used only for a specified
  192         purpose; revising the amount low-income homeowners