Sustainability group recaps wins and losses of 2024 legislative session

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Florida Capitol
The Old Florida State Capitol, now a museum, with the new Capitol in the background. By Roberto Galan via iStock for WMNF News (2022).

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The Florida Legislative Session ended March 8th.  Sustainability advocacy group 1000 Friends of Florida recapped what they feel are the wins and losses of the session during a presentation on  Wednesday.

The group 1000 Friends of Florida advocates for protections of land and water, transportation, affordable housing, and local government.

The group tracked various bills during the state legislative session. Paul Owens is the president of the nonprofit.

“One of the highlights of this year’s session was that passage of that bill to dedicate gambling revenues to land conservation and management water quality protection and community resilience.”

Policy and Planning Director Kim Dinkins also outlined what they feel were losses in the session.

One of them was the passage of House Bill 1635. It would allow energy resource facilities in any commercial, industrial, or manufacturing land use or zoning.

“Under the preemption, large-scale fuel storage facilities, for example, could be located to residential areas or preschools. Inclusion of the commercial land use and zoning designated areas is concerning because, again, those could be schools or retail areas.”

Owens hopes to see better community planning bills in the next session.

“It really comes down to this: if we want to keep Florida special for future generations, for our children and our grandchildren, we really need to plan for it.”

The session ended on March 8th.

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