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Marco T. Paredes, Jr.

Director of

Government Affairs




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Robert Walters




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Dear Colleagues and Friends,

As Director of Government Affairs for Stearns Weaver Miller, I am monitoring bills being considered by the Legislature and will report developments regarding them in our weekly “Rotunda Report.”

Below is a high-level summary of important bills and key issues from session this week, February 12-16. We’ve also included a deeper dive into the amendments to the 2023 Live Local Act, including an analysis of how its proposed grandfathering clause may impact when to file an application or a notice of intent. Developers may need to move quickly to secure their rights under the current law. For more information, please contact me.

Bills Are Dead

With three weeks of Session left there are 711 general bills that have not been heard in any of their committees of reference as of the session mid-point. Bills that have not moved through one committee, or do not have a House or Senate companion, are more than likely dead this Session. Though anything can happen in the last remaining weeks of Session, unless stalled bills are a leadership priority, the odds of passage are slim.



The stormwater ratification bills, SB 7040 and HB 7053, will ratify the Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) revisions to the stormwater rules within Chapter 62-330 of the Florida Administrative Code. The Senate version passed favorably out of the Rules Committee on Wednesday and the House version passed favorably out of the Infrastructure Strategies Committee on Thursday. The Senate bill will be going to the floor in the coming days.


Tax Package

This week the House introduced its version of the Tax Package as HB 7073. The bill covers a large range of issues including revising technical changes to Florida’s Tax Code, reducing the business rent tax from 2% to 1.25% for a year, and creating new tax exemptions and credits. The Senate Tax Package has not been introduced, but should be in the coming days.

Brian McDonough




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Jacob Cremer




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Nicole Neugebauer MacInnes




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Legislation Spotlight:

The Effect of the Live Local Enhancement Bill’s Grandfathering Clause


Stearns Weaver Miller has been closely monitoring the implementation of the Live Local Act from the 2023 Florida Legislative Session (Senate Bill 102) and proposed legislation amending the Live Local Act. Developers whose projects may be adversely affected by the proposed legislation may need to act quickly to preserve their rights under the proposed grandfathering clause.


On January 4, 2024, Representative Vicki Lopez and Senator Alexis Calatayud filed House Bill 1239 and Senate Bill 328, respectively. As we previously reported, the bill amended several key components of the Live Local Act, including changes to both the land use and “Missing Middle” ad valorem property tax portions of the Live Local Act, as well as funding for the Florida Hometown Hero program (together, the “Old Amendment”).


On February 7, 2024, after enacting several amendments to the initially filed bill, the Senate unanimously passed its version and sent it to the House (the “New Amendment”). The House version still has one Committee stop left, and is expected to pass out of both chambers soon. The New Amendment withdraws or modifies several of the proposed changes present in the Old Amendment, though a few problematic changes remain that we are closely monitoring such as modifications to the height preemption and a carveout from using Live Local for some projects in the vicinity of an airport.


This update focuses particularly on the grandfathering clause due to the current effective date of the bill being upon signature of the Governor. Specifically, the grandfathering clause states that the proposed amendments to section 125.01055 (counties) and 166.04151 (municipalities) are prospective in application. Specifically, a proposed development “that meets the present requirements of ss. 125.01055(7) and 166.04151(7), Florida Statutes, for which an application, written request, or notice of intent to utilize such provisions was submitted to and accepted by the county or municipality, as applicable, prior to the effective date of this act shall be processed under the provisions of ss. 125.01055(7) and 166.04151(7), Florida Statutes, as they existed at the time of submittal.” This language was not included in the Old Amendment, but was included after substantial feedback from various stakeholders.


Based on this language, developers should submit applications or notices of intent as soon as possible if the developer would like to be grandfathered under the existing version of the Live Local Act.


Stearns Weaver Miller is actively monitoring all aspects of the Live Local Act, including the funding opportunities, ad valorem exemption programs, and land use preemption implementation across the State of Florida.


You can also view our previous comprehensive analysis of the legislation here.

The information provided in this email does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information in this email is for informational purposes only. Information in this email is general in nature and may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information. Readers of this email should contact us or an attorney of their choice to obtain advice with respect to any particular legal matter. No reader of this email should act or refrain from acting on the basis of information in this email without first seeking legal advice from counsel. Only your individual attorney can provide assurances that the information contained herein – and your interpretation of it – is applicable or appropriate to your particular situation. This email does not create an attorney-client relationship between the reader and the authors of the email or this law firm.


Our Government Affairs practice group monitors both the legislative and executive branches to stay well-informed of emerging legislative and regulatory developments. 


Our Affordable Housing practice represents developers who use low income housing tax credits, tax exempt bond financing, and other public and private funds for the construction of affordable housing for low and moderate income households. We also represent some of the nation's largest lenders making construction loans or providing credit enhancement to developers of affordable housing.


Our Land Development, Zoning & Environmental practice provides a broad array of legal and planning services related to transactions, land use entitlements, land development, and environmental matters, as well as government affairs and litigation related to those practice areas.

About Stearns Weaver Miller


Stearns Weaver Miller is a Florida-based law firm with more than 150 attorneys and offices in Miami, Coral Gables, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa and Tallahassee. For over 40 years, our multidisciplinary team of attorneys and professionals have worked collaboratively to help our clients understand and resolve complex legal issues and disputes. For more information, please visit stearnsweaver.com.