What is Stewardship District?
“Stewardship Districts”…What are they?
The District is a local unit of special-purpose government of the State of Florida, created pursuant to Chapter 2005-338, Laws of Florida as amended (the “Act”). Among the purposes for which the District was established are financing the acquisition and construction of, and the maintenance and operation of the infrastructure, and other public facilities necessary for development of the lands within the District. The Act authorizes the District to issue bonds for purposes, among others, of financing the cost of acquisition and construction of assessable improvements including water management and control, water supply, wastewater management, reclamation and reuse, roadway improvements, landscaping, street lights, parks and other basic infrastructure projects within and, in accordance with the provisions of the Act, without the boundaries of the District.
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Stewardship Districts
Q. HOW ARE STEWARDSHIP DISTRICTS ESTABLISHED?
A. The Florida legislature establishes Stewardship Districts by Special act (which is like other legislation, also signed into law by the Governor). The local legislative delegation sponsors the special act, after considering the same at meetings held in the local area: As these are “local bills”, the establishment of such Districts follows a strict procedural and noticing time line that occurs well in advance of the regular legislative session (which generally runs 60 days in March and April).
Q. HOW ARE STEWARDSHIP DISTRICTS GOVERNED?
A. Each Stewardship District established to date has been tailored to the specific needs of a particular community and local jurisdiction. Landowners generally elect the board (which is usually five members) for a specific period of time, and the transition to residents sitting on the board is usually much longer than with CDDs, reflecting the extended duration of development and build out. In some cases, the transition to residents may begin after specified population triggers are reached; in others, it may be at specific dates.
Q. DO CDDS AND STEWARDSHIP DISTRICTS HAVE DIFFERENT POWERS?
A. To some extent, CDD powers are all set out in general law, Chapter 190. The powers of each Stewardship District are contained within each special act. However, it is often the case that powers found in Chapter 190, as well as those found in Chapter 298 (drainage districts), form the starting place for the drafting of such special acts. Still, special powers needed for the particular land area within the Stewardship District are possible and have been included.