Week Two of Session Wrap-Up
Updated: Mar 17
The second week of Florida's Legislative Session proved quite successful for the Florida Trust, and we are just getting started! Here is an update on three main legislative focuses for 2023:
State Historic Tax Credit
Senate Bill 288, The Main Street Historic Tourism and Revitalization Act passed its second committee stop! On Tuesday, March 14 the Finance and Tax Committee unanimously voted in favor of SB 288, pushing us one step closer to implementing a historic tax credit in Florida! The bill is now in Appropriations and is waiting to be put on the agenda.
The companion bill, House Bill 499, has been referred to the House Ways & Means Committee and is still currently awaiting action. Please review the committee member list and reach out to your local Representative encouraging them to support this bill. Also, contact committee Chairman Stan McClain and urge him to agenda the bill as soon as possible. You can find your Representative here.
We would like to recognize our incredible House Representatives for their support of House Bill 499. Representative Anna Eskamani, Representative Allison Tant and Representative Michelle Salzman, thank you for supporting and fighting to protect Florida's history and heritage! Your co-sponsorship is absolutely essential for the success of a state historic tax credit in Florida.
Protect Florida's Abandoned Cemeteries
Senate Bill 430, Abandoned and Historic Cemeteries, passed the Governmental Oversight and Accountability Committee! One of a number of supporters speaking in favor of SB 430, Lonnie Mann, said forgetting the final resting places of former Floridians is a “disgrace that needs to be remedied.” A sentiment that was echoed by Senator Tracie Davis in her remarks. The bill saw unanimous support from the committee. The Governmental Oversight and Accountability Committee was the bill's first committee stop and is now currently waiting to be on the agenda for the Appropriations Committee on Transportation, Tourism and Economic Development. Please contact Chairman Ed Hooper and ask him to agenda the bill. Also, don't forget to reach out to any member of the committee and urge them to support this bill. Click here to see a list of the committee members.
House Bill 49, Abandoned and Historic Cemeteries moved favorably through its first committee stop in the House. But, it still needs to be put on the agenda for the Infrastructure & Tourism Appropriations Subcommittee. Contact your local Representatives or, any that you may know on the committee, and urge them to support the bill. Further, please encourage Committee Chairman Alex Andrade to give this important legislation a hearing by getting it on the agenda.
FY2024 Historic Preservation Special Category Grant List
Our annual FY2024 Historic Preservation Special Category Grant booklet is here! This year, there are over 30 listed projects that are in dire need of financial assistance to preserve historic significance and archaeological resources, assistance in archaeological excavations and research projects, and the development and fabrication of major Florida museum exhibits.
Other Legislative Bills of Interest
The team at Florida Trust is keeping an eye on a few other pieces of legislation that were introduced this session. Specifically, legislation that permits the local regulation of nonconforming or unsafe structures and legislation aimed to prevent flood damage. These bills have unintended consequences for Florida's historic places. Read more about these bills, and our stance, here.