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Local Government Law Blog
Charter County Can’t Use Citizens Review Board to Review Alleged Misconduct by Deputy Sheriffs
Local Government Law Blog
Written by Becky Vose   
Wednesday, August 26 2009 16:27

This case is so new (as of August, 2009) it is not yet released for publication, but it is extremely important – particularly to charter counties.  Orange County had provided in their charter and ordinances for a “citizen review board” to investigate citizen complaints against the Sheriff’s Office.  Because the Sheriff is a constitutional officer, and because the Orange County Charter never abolished the office, (as it has a right to do), the 5th DCA held that the county has no right to investigate citizen complaints against Deputy Sheriffs.

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County’s 60% Voting Requirement to Amend Charter Held Unconstitutional
Local Government Law Blog
Written by Becky Vose   
Friday, August 14 2009 00:00

In November, 2008, the 1st DCA ruled that an amendment to the Clay County home rule charter to require a 60% majority for approval of future amendments to the charter, violated the Florida constitutional requirement of a simple majority vote.  This case will no doubt have an effect on numerous counties because such a 60% voting requirement has been a popular amendment to county charters.

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City Can Condemn Property Outside of City Limits
Local Government Law Blog
Written by Becky Vose   
Tuesday, July 07 2009 12:43

Did you ever think that a city could take property, through eminent domain (condemnation), that is outside of the city and isn’t even contiguous to the city?  The 2nd DCA (located in Lakeland) recently decided a lawsuit where the City of Lakeland condemned property that was located in unincorporated Polk County to build a road that would be maintained by Polk County after it was built.  Polk County did not object to the taking, but the owner of the property did object.  The court found that the taking was for a public purpose and that it was not necessary for the city to show that it was for a city purpose – the fact that it was a public purpose was enough.  If you want to look it up, the citation is Edna L. Kirkland et al. v. City of Lakeland,3 So.3rd 398 (Fla. 2d DCA 2009).

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Government Grants for Small Cities and Counties
Local Government Law Blog
Written by Becky Vose   
Tuesday, July 07 2009 11:49

I just received an inquiry about available Florida or federal funding for neighborhood and commercial revitalization for smaller cities and counties.  This is a timely subject, because one of the available programs has an application due date of July 31, 2009.  That program is the “Florida Main Street Program.”  It is a relatively small grant program of the State of Florida which encourages the revitalization of traditional, historic downtown and neighborhood commercial districts.  The available funding is a $10,000 seed-money grant per community that is reimbursed based on the same amount spent by the local program over the course of a year.

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