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      MAY 28, 2003




Item 1      Chapter 18-23, F.A.C. Amendments


REQUEST: Approval of amendments to Chapter 18-23, F.A.C.


COUNTY: Statewide


APPLICANT:  Department of Environmental Protection (DEP)


STAFF REMARKS: The Office of Coastal and Aquatic Managed Areas (CAMA) is proposing to amend Chapter 18-23, F.A.C., to ensure that the State Buffer Preserves and natural islands within the State Aquatic Preserves are managed to protect the natural and cultural resources in accordance with the Board of Trustees' conservation lands management policies. Compatible public use of these properties is provided. The rules are being amended to:


(1) Update the description of Buffer Preserves to include the properties acquired since the promulgation of the existing rules and the natural islands within Aquatic Preserves;


(2) Advise the public on how to obtain information about the boundaries of Buffer Preserves and Aquatic Preserves;


(3) Specify the management goals of CAMA for the Buffer Preserves;


(4) Specify that the Buffer Preserves shall be open to the public from sunrise until sunset, except for those that are natural islands, which shall remain open at all times, and shall allow the public to: (a) use designated trails and roads for hiking, horseback riding, and bicycle riding; (b) Camp in designated areas; (c) have campfires in designated areas; (d) operate vehicles in areas designated as public access roads; and (e) operate motor vehicles and vessels in water bodies, wetlands, or low lying areas designated for such use with signs;


(5) Specify that the following activities are not allowed: (a) consumption of alcoholic beverages (this does not apply to the natural islands of the Buffer Preserves, because the use of alcoholic beverages by boaters is regulated by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission); (b) hunting, harassing, possessing or trapping wildlife; (c) use of animal trapping or concealment devices; (d) use of firearms of any type or other weapons potentially dangerous to wildlife and humans, including shooting into Buffer Preserves from beyond the boundaries; (e) admission of unleashed domestic animals, except those assisting the handicapped; (f) transplantation or removal of any plant or animal, or parts of plants or animals (living or dead); (g) removal, disturbance, pollution or destruction of property, or natural or cultural resources; and (h) solicitation or distribution of commercial materials and advertising of any commercial event, other than DEP materials or announcements of DEP sponsored or sanctioned events and gatherings; and


(6) Establish and specify the amounts of fines for violations of the rules pursuant to legislative action in 2001.  


In 2001, the legislature granted specific authority to make rules and levy fines up to $500 for rule violations via Chapter 253.86, F.S. Five public workshops were held throughout the state during the first week of December of 2002 to seek public input to the rulemaking process prior to drafting any proposed changes to the previous rules. CAMA then drafted the proposed changes to coincide with management responsibility while considering public input obtained from the workshops. Then, on February 6, 2003, a public hearing was held in Melbourne to seek public input on the proposed changes. Subsequent modifications were made to incorporate public suggestions while maintaining sufficient provisions to allow for the effective conservation management of the Buffer Preserve properties.   


(See Attachment 1, Pages 1-45)




      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Two




Item 2      Forms of Authorization Rule Amendments/Chapter 18-21, F.A.C.


REQUEST:  Consideration of a request to publish a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for amendments to Chapter 18-21, F.A.C., regarding the forms of authorization required to use sovereignty submerged lands.


COUNTY:  Statewide


APPLICANT:  Department of Environmental Protection (DEP)

              (Forms of Authorization Rule Amendments)


STAFF REMARKS:  The DEP, as staff to the Board of Trustees, is proposing to amend Chapter 18-21, F.A.C., Sovereignty Submerged Lands Management, to clarify existing provisions and thresholds used in determining the appropriate form of authorization needed to conduct activities on sovereignty submerged lands.  This will include related amendments to: definitions; management policies, standards, and criteria, including general consent conditions; applications for leases and easements; and fees.  It is the intent of this rulemaking to provide more clarity to staff and the general public in determining the appropriate form of authorization.  This rulemaking also originated partly from settlement of a rule challenge by Catalpa Cove Property Owners' Association.  The issue in that case was the form of authorization for a channel being proposed by the Association.  The Board of Trustees directed staff, on March 14, 2000, to clarify the form of authorization required to authorize a channel.


DEP initially published a Notice of Development of Proposed Rules in the April 9, 1999, Florida Administrative Weekly.  DEP staff prepared a preliminary draft rule that was presented and discussed at four Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) meetings in 1999 and 2000.  The TAC consisted of representatives of the marine industry, contractors, local government, water management districts, the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, DEP, and general public.  Although the TAC did not reach consensus on all issues, a revised draft rule was developed based on input from the TAC.  The draft rule also was discussed at public workshops in May, July and November 2000.  Staff continued to modify the draft rule and, because of the extent of changes, an additional public workshop was held in December 2001.  Presentation of the proposed rule to the Board of Trustees was subsequently delayed to avoid conflicting with "aquaculture" amendments being developed by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and by the constitutional change in Board of Trustees membership.  In the interim, staff has made minor revisions to further clarify the proposed language and to reflect recent statutory changes.


The full text of the proposed amendments is attached along with a detailed summary.  The proposed rule amendments are generally described as follows:


18-21.003, Definitions:

* Added a definition of "minimum-size dock or pier" to clearly specify certain docks that qualify for a consent of use.

* Replaced the term "ownership oriented facility" with "private residential multi-family dock or pier" and added a definition of  "private residential single-family dock or pier" based on the type of residential structure or use on the associated riparian upland parcel.

* Revised the definition of preempted area to clearly include areas that are no longer reasonably accessible to the general public.

* Defined private and public channels.  These definitions are used to determine whether a channel qualifies for a consent of use or an easement.

* Revised the definition of "revenue-generating" activities, including adding provisions that neither construction by a developer of a private residential single-family or multi-family dock or pier nor certain incidental activities in association with a residential upland qualify as "revenue-generating."


      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Three




Item 2, cont.


* Clarified the definition of sovereignty submerged lands to provide that all submerged lands, title to which is held by the Board, will be managed in accordance with Chapter 18-21, F.A.C.


18-21.004, Management Policies, Standards, and Criteria:

* Clarified that the policies, standards and criteria of this section apply to all activities including those that qualify for consent by rule.

* Clarified the unit:slip ratio language applicable to private residential multi-family docks, including its applicability along commonly owned riparian shorelines.

* Added the "General Conditions for Authorization" (previously known as "General Consent Conditions").


18-21.005, Forms of Authorization:

* Provided that in determining the proper form of authorization the decision shall be based on granting the "least" interest necessary to conduct the activity and provide for co-location of projects.

* Listed as "exceptions" activities that are authorized by various statutory exemptions from requiring Board authorization.

* Created a separate listing of activities that qualify for "consent by rule" (a.k.a. automatic consent) and clarified those activities.

* Expanded the list of activities that qualify for a Letter of Consent, including provisions for emergency activities and restoration or enhancement projects.

* Clarified those activities that require a lease or easement.

* Transferred special event authorizations into consent of use and lease sections as appropriate.

* Deleted management agreements and transferred activities previously authorized under these provisions to consent of use and easement based on the nature of associated structures and preemption of the public.

* Clarified noticing requirements and referenced these requirements in applicable application sections of the rule to avoid unnecessary repetition.


18-21.008, Applications for Lease:

* Amended noticing provisions as noted above.


18-21.009 and .010, Applications for Public and Private Easements, respectively:

* Amended noticing provisions as noted above and minor technical changes.


18-21.011, Payments and Fees:

* Amended to reflect replacement of the term "ownership oriented" with "private residential multi-family docks.

* Amended to reference Section 253.03, F.S., exceptions to severed materials fees.


Upon approval of the proposed rule by the Board of Trustees, a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking will be published in the Florida Administrative Weekly and on the Department's Internet noticing site.  Staff will conduct a public hearing before returning to the Board of Trustees for consideration of any changes and final rule adoption.


(See Attachment 2, Pages 1-23)




      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Four




Item 3      Delegation of Authority to Approve Upland Easements





REQUEST:  Authorization to expand the Department of Environmental Protection, Division of State Lands' delegation of authority to approve upland easements to private entities from one quarter acre or less in size to ten acres or less in size.


COUNTY:  Statewide


APPLICANT:  Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), Division of State Lands (DSL)


STAFF REMARKS:  Under current delegations of authority, DSL staff can issue or modify  upland easements to public entities regardless of size.  The authority to approve upland easements to private entities is limited to easements one-quarter acre or less in size unless:  (1) the easement is being granted or modified as part of the acquisition of a parcel of land and such easement or modification is necessary to formalize a pre-existing use; or (2) the purpose of the easement is to provide services for state-owned facilities.  Staff is requesting that the current acreage threshold for approving private easements under delegation of authority be increased from one-quarter acre to ten acres.  Easement requests require an estimated average of 16 hours of staff time to process through the agenda cycle.  The 16 hours includes two hours initial preparation time; six hours internal DEP review time; and four hours each for Cabinet Aides and Cabinet meetings.  This figure pertains only to the staff person assigned to process the request and does not take into consideration the time spent by other staff, senior management, Cabinet Aides, or Cabinet members, who also must review the request as it moves through the agenda process. 


Since January 1, 1998, 39 easements have been presented to the Board of Trustees for approval.  To date, none have been denied.  One access/utility easement application at Cayo Costa State Park was withdrawn pending staff efforts to negotiate a land exchange.  Twenty-seven of these requests, or 69 percent, would not have required Board of Trustees' approval if the delegation of authority for easements was ten acres or less in size.  Controversial applications, such as the Cayo Costa State Park application, will continue to be submitted for Board of Trustees' approval.  Staff believes that the time saved by processing these requests under delegation of authority would be more productively spent handling more critical ownership and environmentally sensitive issues. 


DEP staff will provide to the Governor and each Cabinet Member ten days advance notification of any easement to be approved under the delegation.  Unless objections are received within the ten-day period, DEP staff will proceed with final approval.


(See Attachment 3, Page 1)






Item 4      Therriault Access/Utility Easement/Pine Log State Forest


REQUEST:  Consideration of a request for a non-exclusive access and utility easement to Scott and Karen Therriault over 2.78 acres, more or less, of state-owned land within Pine Log State Forest.



            Easement Number 30876

      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Five




Item 4, cont.


APPLICANT:  Scott E. Therriault and Karen T. Therriault 


LOCATION:  Section 08, Township 01 South, Range 16 West


CONSIDERATION:  $2,350 to be deposited in the Internal Improvement Trust Fund


STAFF REMARKS:  The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Forestry (DOF) currently manages Pine Log State Forest under Board of Trustees' Lease Number 3688.  The state forest was acquired in the 1930s under a program authorized by the legislature for the acquisition, development and management of a system of state forests and parks.  The Therriaults own 30 acres landlocked within the forest.  They are requesting a 5,841-foot long by 20-foot wide access and utility easement to serve a single-family residence to be built on their property.  The narrow width of the easement will reduce impacts to the state forest, but will accommodate only underground utilities.  The applicants have no objection to a special condition in the easement requiring underground utilities.  The proposed easement follows two existing state forest roads.  DOF staff supports the request for the easement provided that: (1) the applicants understand that the road is maintained to DOF standards and any additional improvements are to be paid for by the applicant; (2) the applicants must coordinate all maintenance activities with PLSF staff; and (3) no exotic species are to be introduced in fill material used to maintain the easement. 


Section 704.01(2), F.S., provides that a statutory way of necessity exists when land outside municipal boundaries, used as a dwelling, or for agricultural, timbering or stock raising purposes, is shut off so that no practicable route of ingress or egress to the nearest public or private road exists.  In such cases, the landlocked landowner may lawfully use, with or without an easement, lands lying between his property and the nearest public or private road for access and utility services.  Although there has been no judicial determination that the Thierraults are entitled to a statutory way of necessity under the provisions of section 704.01(2), F.S., it appears that their property meets the criteria for a statutory way of necessity.  No public interest determination is required for statutory ways of necessity.


The easement was valued at $2,350 as of September 10, 2002.  The Therriaults have agreed to pay the easement fee. 


A local government comprehensive plan has been adopted for this area pursuant to section 163.3167, F.S.; however, the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) determined that the plan was not in compliance.  A compliance agreement between DCA and the local government has been finalized.  The proposed action is consistent with the adopted plan as amended according to the Bay County Planning and Zoning Division.


(See Attachment 4, Pages 1-17)





Item 5      Andress Access/Utility Easement/Cayo Costa State Park





REQUEST:  Consideration of a request for a perpetual, non-exclusive access and utility easement to Noel E. Andress and Karen Savulis-Andress over 0.52-acre, more or less, of state-owned land in Lee County within the boundary of Cayo Costa State Park.

      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Six




Item 5, cont.



            Easement Number 30901


APPLICANTS:  Noel E. Andress and Karen Savulis-Andress


LOCATION:  Section 18, Township 44 South, Range 21 East


CONSIDERATION:  Appraised easement value to be deposited in the Internal Improvement Trust Fund


STAFF REMARKS:  In November 2001, the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), Division of State Lands (DSL) received an application from Peter and Linda Foy for an easement for access and utilities to service a 1.1-acre, more or less, lot in unrecorded Island Grove Subdivision (Island Grove) on Cayo Costa Island.  The Foys were represented by Mr. Noel Andress.  The application was subsequently amended to reflect Mr. and Mrs. Andress as the applicants.  The Andresses are also lot owners within the subdivision.  The Foys and the Andresses own two of the last eight lots within the subdivision that remain in private ownership.  The Board of Trustees has acquired the remaining lots, as well as all other lands surrounding the subdivision, leaving the private landowners landlocked. 


On October 8, 2002, the easement application was withdrawn from the Board of Trustees' agenda to allow DSL staff to evaluate a potential land exchange with the Andresses.  Because a land exchange could not be successfully negotiated, the Andresses have requested that the Board of Trustees again consider their easement application. 


Section 704.01(2), F.S., provides that a statutory way of necessity exists when land outside municipal boundaries, used as a dwelling, or for agricultural, timbering or stock raising purposes, is shut off so that no practicable route of ingress or egress to the nearest public or private road exists.  In such cases, the landlocked landowner may lawfully use, with or without an easement, lands lying between his property and the nearest public or private road for access and utility services.  Although there has been no judicial determination that the applicant is entitled to a statutory way of necessity under the provisions of section 704.01(2), F.S., staff believes the applicants' proposal does not meet the criteria because there is a practical alternative route of ingress and egress.


The applicants are requesting a 60-foot-wide easement that would run approximately 815 feet from Island Grove east to the open waters of Primo Bay (Option 1).  DEP, Division of Recreation and Parks (DRP) staff inspected the easement area and do not recommend approval of Option 1.  Anticipated environmental impacts would include prop scarring, destruction of seagrasses, and turbidity as a result of dock construction and/or boat/barge operations in the vicinity of the shallow bay, direct and indirect loss of listed species and their habitat, including mangrove wetlands, by vehicle, boat, and foot traffic, and secondary impacts from fragmentation of otherwise undisturbed habitat and plant communities.


Peripheral impacts of the proposed easement and residential construction would include attendant noise, visual intrusion, and potential introduction of exotic or invasive plants and animals, wildfires, trash dumping, interference with prescription burning programs and potential disturbance of cultural resources on DRP managed lands.  Proposed access in this area would also create the potential for access by unauthorized persons in an area where it is very difficult for park staff and park patrol officers to access or patrol on a routine basis.  An uncontrolled entry point into the park would likewise compromise the safety of park visitors and other residents.


      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Seven




Item 5, cont.


A second alternative route runs north from Island Grove to La Costa Isles Subdivision (Option 2).  Although longer (2,420 feet versus 815 feet), Option 2 could utilize existing trails and La Costa Drive, thereby minimizing the need for additional clearing.  DRP staff has determined that this route would potentially impact dune and swale areas, oak/cabbage palm hammocks, and pinelands on the interior of the island.  These areas are habitat for the gopher tortoise, bald eagle and several species of rare or threatened plants, including Joewood, beach creeper, and epiphytic orchids and bromeliads.  However, this route has been previously impacted by past trail development, clearing, residential construction and the introduction of invasive exotic species, primarily Brazilian pepper and feral hogs.  These land uses have fragmented habitats and directly destroyed vegetation that stabilize the dunes.  Extension of a trail to the applicants' lot would directly impact additional habitat but could be located in the field to minimize removal of larger trees and avoid gopher tortoise burrows.  Indirect impacts would include increased potential for wildfire, restricted prescriptive burning programs, and impaired exotic plant and animal control efforts.  Additional intrusions of vehicles, incidental plant and animal introductions, and trash dumping would impair public land management and the safety of park visitors and resources. 


Option 2 would be preferable since the area has been previously impacted from residential and trail development.  Although some resource impacts are unavoidable, this route does not add the additional impacts of uncontrolled access, fragmentation of undisturbed habitats, and additional impacts to marine and wetland resources within the park and adjacent aquatic preserve.  The applicants currently own lots in the subdivision to the north and have a dock easement in an existing canal accessed by a public right-of-way.


The applicants do not want to pursue Option 2.  It has been determined that all the lots along the southern boundary of La Costa Isles Subdivision are subject to a deed restriction that states that, "This lot shall never be used for road or street right-of-way to connect with or to any road or street right-of-way in any adjoining property, provided that this restriction may be released by the grantor herein, their heirs or assigns."  Option 2 crosses Lot 30, Block 1, La Costa Isles, which is one of the lots subject to this deed restriction.  Although DSL staff does not believe that the eight possible single-family access easements would be a violation of the deed restriction, the original grantor no longer exists and is not available to confirm such a determination.  To avoid any liability in any lawsuit that might arise as a result of granting this north-south easement, DEP staff had proposed to include a special easement condition requiring the grantees to accept responsibility for all costs associated with any litigation that may occur as a result of granting the easement and providing that the easement will terminate in the event the Board of Trustees does not prevail in a lawsuit.  The applicants' attorney has recommended that they not accept Option 2 and that they proceed with a request for approval of Option 1.  DEP's recommendation is for denial of Option 1. 


Although DRP staff recommends denial of Option 1, it is prepared to support Option 2 provided that the applicants: (1) demonstrate that there is no practicable alternative to using Option 2; (2) take all steps necessary to minimize impacts to park resources; (3) keep the width of the proposed easement area to the minimum possible and not exceed 25 feet; (4) furnish evidence that they have a valid permit to place a structure on their lot; (5) provide an acceptable survey and demarcate the boundaries of the easement area on the ground; (6) provide a plan for and obtain approval of the park manager before building any type of road on the easement area; (7) agree to accept responsibility for all construction, maintenance, and repair associated with costs related to the easement area; (8) agree to provide warning signs to ensure safety of the park users whenever they conduct any construction activity on or next to the easement area; (9) agree to pay reasonable costs incurred by DRP as a result of activities within the easement area or adjacent lands managed by DRP if such costs are determined by DRP to be a result of the applicant's use of the easement area; and (10) agree to coordinate with and obtain approval of the park manager before undertaking any construction,

      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Eight




Item 5, cont.


maintenance, or repair activity in the easement area.  In addition, DSL staff recommends a special condition prohibiting the use of impermeable materials in construction of the easement. 


The applicants have indicated they intend to build a single-family residence on their lot, which use is allowable under section 704.01(2), F.S.  DRP has requested that the applicants furnish evidence that they have a valid permit to build a structure on their lot.  However, the Lee County (County) Department of Community Development has provided a letter indicating that no building permits may be issued until access to the property has been determined.  To ensure that the applicants' lot is developed as proposed, a special easement condition is recommended requiring commencement of construction of the residence within three years from the date of execution of the easement or the easement will terminate.     


DEP has received objections from Ms. Carol Sellars and Barbara and Dan Trescott, landowners in La Costa Isles.  Ms. Sellars opposes the easement because any new development will be visible from the beach, destroying the existing scenic vista.  The Trescotts maintain that because Island Grove is still pristine and undisturbed, the state should make every effort to acquire the remaining lots.  They have requested that the state either enforce its public trust responsibilities and deny the application or seek to condemn the remaining privately owned lots in the subdivision.  Two other individuals, Mr. Paul Faust and Mr. William Stokes, also oppose the granting of the easement for many of the same reasons noted by the Trescotts.  The County has submitted a resolution supporting the Trescott's position that the state either purchase or condemn the lots.  The County has offered to donate to the Board of Trustees 120 acres it currently owns on the island, and make financial contributions up to $193,000 to assist in acquiring the remaining lots on the island.  DEP staff would prefer to have the Board of Trustees acquire the remaining lots, but the landowners have rejected all offers.  The County also recommended condemnation if purchase was not successful. 


DSL staff recently updated its appraisals of the remaining lots in Island Grove and La Costa Isles and will begin making a new round of offers.  The County's offer to assist in purchasing inholdings will be considered in future negotiations; however, condemnation is not recommended.


The Board of Trustees has not completed an appraisal for the easement to date pending final action.  If approved, an appraisal of the approved easement route will be required that is acceptable to DSL. 


A local government comprehensive plan has been adopted for this area pursuant to section 163.3167, F.S.  The Department of Community Affairs has determined that the plan is in compliance.  The proposed easement is consistent with the adopted plan according to a letter received from the County Department of Community Development.


(See Attachment 5, Pages 1-39)






Item 6            RICO #149/Offer to Purchase by DOT


REQUEST:  Acceptance of an offer from the Florida Department of Transportation to purchase a 0.88-acre parcel of Racketeer Influence and Corrupt Organization property.


COUNTY:  Orange

      RICO No. 149


      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Nine




Item 6, cont.


APPLICANT:  Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT)


LOCATION:  Section 10, Township 24, Range 29


CONSIDERATION:  $551,295 ($450,000 sales price, $101,295 rental income)


The Internal Revenue Service has placed a lien on this Racketeer Influence and Corrupt Organization (RICO) property for $947,289 but has agreed to settle the lien for $359,642.24.


The remaining proceeds, will be disbursed pursuant to section 895.09(2)(a), F.S., as follows:


* 25% to the Department of Legal Affairs or the State Attorney's Office that filed the forfeiture action

* 25% to the investigating law enforcement agency

* 25% to the Division of Children and Families' Substance Abuse Trust Fund

* 25% to the Forfeited Property Trust Fund of the Department of Environmental Protection


            APPRAISED BY                  BUYER'S

Underwood      APPROVED      PURCHASE      CLOSING

PARCEL            ACRES              (02/08/02)  VALUE           PRICE       DATE 

RICO 149             0.88       $450,000          $450,000          $450,000          120 days after BOT approval     


STAFF REMARKS:  In 1977, the State of Florida enacted the "Florida Racketeer Influence and Corrupt Organization Act" (Act) as a means to penalize individuals, entities and/or organizations found guilty of racketeering through the confiscation of their property.


Through the Act, the state has authority to confiscate properties, including real estate, owned by individuals, or entities, found guilty of "racketeering".  Once the property is confiscated, the Board of Trustees holds title to the forfeited properties.  The Act directs the Board of Trustees to dispose and disperse funds pursuant to chapter 895, F.S. 


Title to this property was vested in the Board of Trustees on October 18, 1995, pursuant to section 895.05, F.S.  FDOT has agreed to purchase the property for appraised value.  FDOT will use this property to expand Central Florida Parkway to six-lanes.


There is no existing mortgage on the property.  Expenses to date total $51,767.11, which includes advertising, appraisals, travel, title search, utilities, taxes and miscellaneous.  These expenses were paid out of the Forfeited Property Trust Fund, which will be reimbursed at closing.  In addition to repayment to the Forfeited Property Trust Fund for expenses incurred, a seven percent surcharge of $38,590.65 will be paid to the General Revenue Fund.


A consideration of the status of the local government comprehensive plan was not made for this item.  The Department of Environmental Protection has determined that the disposition of land is not subject to the local government planning process.


(See Attachment 6, Pages 1-20)




      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Ten




Item 7      Outlawlessness Productions, Inc. Option Agreement/FWC Chassahowitzka Swamp Wildlife Management Area Additions and Inholdings Project


REQUEST:  Consideration of an option agreement to acquire 71.16 acres within the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commissions' Chassahowitzka Swamp Wildlife Management Area Additions and Inholdings project from Outlawlessness Productions, Inc.


COUNTY:  Hernando


APPLICANT:  Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC)


LOCATION:  Section 27, Township 22 South, Range 17 East




            APPRAISED BY            SELLER'S      TRUSTEES'

              Catlett      APPROVED      PURCHASE      PURCHASE    OPTION

PARCEL      ACRES      (12/14/02)    VALUE         PRICE         PRICE           DATE 

Outlawlessness    71.16      $350,000      $350,000     $170,000*      $280,000**  150 days after

Productions, Inc                                   (80%)       BOT approval


*   Seller purchased in March 2000

** $ 3,935 per acre


STAFF REMARKS:  This acquisition was negotiated by FWC and is eligible for funding under its Florida Forever Additions and Inholdings Program. 


All mortgages and liens will be satisfied at the time of closing.  There are two easements on the property that provide access to adjoining properties.  The easements were considered by the appraiser and do not affect the value of the property.  FWC has determined that the easements will not affect the management of the property.  On June 22, 1999, the Board of Trustees approved a staff recommendation to delegate to the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) the authority to review and evaluate marketability issues as they arise on all chapter 259, F.S., acquisitions and to resolve them appropriately.  Because these issues were discovered during preliminary due diligence, further research may change the facts and scope of each issue and, therefore, DEP staff will review, evaluate and implement an appropriate resolution for these and any other title issues that arise prior to closing.


A title insurance policy, a survey, an environmental site evaluation and, if necessary, an environmental site assessment will be provided by the purchaser prior to closing.


The property is located in an area, which includes the Weeki Wachee Preserve and the Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge, with linkage connecting important wildlife habitats.  The Chassahowitzka Swamp Wildlife Management Area (WMA), along with adjacent public lands, provides important habitat for Florida black bears, as well as other animals and plants.  The natural topography and plant cover of the site are common to the physiographic region and remain essentially intact.  Dominant plant cover on the site consists of sandhill, pine flatwoods interspersed with oak hammocks transitioning to cypress domes.  The potential for listed species to be located on or use the property is considered high.  Acquisition of this land will create a more complete pattern of ownership for the WMA, provide additional wildlife habitat, and enhance the overall management of the WMA.


The property will be managed by FWC as an addition to the WMA. 


This acquisition is consistent with section 187.201(23), F.S., the Agriculture section of the State Comprehensive Plan.


(See Attachment 7, Pages 1-18)




      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Eleven




Item 8      Information Presentation/Division of State Lands' Privatization and Efficiency Effort




REQUEST:  Presentation of information regarding the next phase of the Division of State Lands' privatization and efficiency effort.


STAFF REMARKS:  The Preservation 2000 (P2000) program and the current Florida Forever program are considered to be two of the most successful conservation and recreation land acquisition programs in the world.  Since 1990, the beginning of the P2000 program, many states and foreign countries have requested advice and consultation from the Division of State Lands (DSL) so that they could emulate Florida's success.


One of the cornerstones to the success of these programs has been the integration of the private sector into the operations of DSL.  As a result DSL staffing level has remained relatively constant since the beginning of the P2000 program.  This is important when considering that DSL received, through P2000, a 250 percent increase in land acquisition funding over previous programs.  While there have been some new positions attached to the funding, DSL has also eliminated positions as a result of efficiencies gained through privatization.  DSL currently employs about 70 full time staff in the land acquisition program.  The latest reports from our private contractors show that there are around 300 people employed in the private sector as a direct result of the Florida Forever program.


DSL is one of the most privatized divisions in state government.  Pursuant to section 259.04(1)(b), F.S. and section 259.041(8)(b), F.S, DSL is using private contractors to improve efficiency.  Privatized functions include: land title services, real estate closing services, environmental site assessment services, survey and survey review services and appraisal and appraisal review services.  The only area of the program not yet privatized is general real estate services.  In addition to keeping staffing levels constant, the use of private services has enabled DSL to increase the volume of land acquisitions processed, dramatically decrease our response times, and, as a result, render a higher level of customer service to property owners.  One example of decreased response times is the use of private title and closing contractors to expedite closings and the procurement of title products.  The result is a 58 percent reduction in the average closing time since June of 1999.  Overall, the acquisition process time has decreased 46 percent over the last four years.


The purpose of this item is to report on the next phase of the DSL privatization effort; the privatization of general real estate services.  This privatization project, currently being implemented by DSL, will result in private organizations providing real estate services such as:


* Project Evaluation and Planning

* Project Management Services

* Consulting Services

* Disposition and Marketing Services

* Auction Services

* Support Staff

* Negotiation Services

* Special Project Services

* Property Owner Education and Outreach Services


Having these services available will enable DSL to more effectively, efficiently and productively perform the duties of acquiring, leasing and disposing of state lands and will further increase our level of service to the citizens of Florida.


      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Twelve




Item 8, cont.


While this latest effort is a natural result of previous privatization success, its genesis is in another project being developed by the DSL.  This project, dubbed Project Triage, is also part of our effort to dramatically increase effectiveness and reduce time frames.  The concept of this project is that if we better define project success up front, and we better evaluate the feasibility of success up front, we will increase our effectiveness by working on those projects where success is better assured.  This would result in a reduction of the ineffective application of staff and monetary resources and would result in reduced, yet more effective, work efforts and thereby increase processing speed.  The process of initiating and maintaining Project Triage would require extensive staff hours and areas of expertise that are not readily available in the division.  In evaluating this project the DSL determined that we should proceed with the privatization of general real estate services so that we could obtain the resources necessary to implement and maintain Project Triage.


Another advantage of engaging outside real estate services is the ability to obtain negotiation consultation and negotiation services from companies and individuals that have proven success in negotiating specific types of real estate in specific areas of the state.  The contracts with all companies will contain provisions to obtain these services, payment for which will be on a production or commission basis.  Pricing for all other services will be on an hourly or project basis.  In an effort to avoid any potential conflicts of interest, any company selected is required to covenant that it presently has no interest and shall not acquire any interest, direct or indirect, which would be adverse to the interests of the Board of Trustees and/or would materially limit the company's exercise of independent professional judgment in performing any duties under their contract.  In addition, any company selected must agree to indemnify, defend, save and hold harmless the State of Florida and DEP from all claims, demands, liabilities and suits of any nature arising due to any negligent act or failure to act by the company or its agents, employees or subcontractors.  Any company under contract to DSL will, as an agent for DSL, be bound by and held accountable to the same standard of integrity and confidentiality as employees of the division. 


DSL has already begun the process of implementing this privatization effort.  DSL openly requested proposals from interested parties around the state.  Many companies responded to DSL and submitted the appropriate resumes and proposals. Through interviews, presentations and research the list was refined to include only those companies that, in the opinion of the reviewing committee, exhibited the highest potential of expertly providing one or more of the required services.  Discussions will begin in early May with ten companies to negotiate fee schedules for the various activities identified.


The use of private contractors for the real estate services discussed in this item is another effort by DSL to meet the direction by the Governor and Cabinet to better apply financial resources, expedite the land acquisition process and improve customer service and efficiency.  It is DSL's intention to provide the Board of Trustees with a status report of this project, one year after contracts are finalized.


(See Attachment 8, Pages 1-58)






Item 9            Southern Golden Gate Estates/Everglades Restoration Project Discussion




REQUEST:  A discussion concerning issues between Collier County and the State of Florida regarding the Everglades restoration project within Southern Golden Gate Estates (SGGE).

      Board of Trustees

      Agenda - May 28, 2003

      Page Thirteen




Item 9, cont.


STAFF REMARKS:  The Board of Trustees expressed an interest in meeting with the Collier County Commissioners to discuss issues between Collier County (County) and the State of Florida and propose ways to better work together to insure the successful completion of the Everglades restoration project within SGGE.  The Department of Environmental Protection's Division of State Lands invited the Honorable Tom Henning, Chairman of Collier County Commission, and his fellow Collier County Commissioners to participate in the discussion. 


The following questions have been submitted as topics of discussion:


* On Tuesday, March 13, 2001, the Collier County Commissioners approved Resolution No. 2001-89, a "Resolution providing for the Establishment of Earthmining, Conditional Use "1" of the "A" zoning district, pursuant to section of the Collier County Land Development Code for property located in Section 16, Township 50 South, Range 26 East, Collier County, Florida."   Included was the approval of Conditional Use Petition #CU-2000-16 and Commercial Excavation Permit No. 59.764 for the benefit of landowner Jesse Hardy.  The land development code for Collier County has designated this area as "rural and agricultural area".  SGGE has also been mapped and identified as a Natural Resource Protection Area Overlay on the Golden Gate area future land use map.  The SGGE area has also been designated as a "critical project" under the Federal Water Resources Development Act.  How does this property qualify for a conditional use permit?   Have all the requirements set forth on the "conditions of approval" to Resolution 2001-89 been reviewed and approved prior to the current excavation activity and is this approval consistent with the current comprehensive plan for SGGE?   


* What is the status of the County's potential sale of its interest in the roads within the SGGE area to the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida? 


(See Attachment 9, Pages 1-49)