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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Title XII
Chapter 171
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F.S. 171.051
171.051 Contraction procedures.Any municipality may initiate the contraction of municipal boundaries in the following manner:
(1) The governing body shall by ordinance propose the contraction of municipal boundaries, as described in the ordinance, and provide an effective date for the contraction.
1(2) A petition of 15 percent of the qualified voters in an area desiring to be excluded from the municipal boundaries, filed with the clerk of the municipal governing body, may propose such an ordinance. The municipality to which such petition is directed shall immediately undertake a feasibility study of such proposal, and the governing body shall, within 6 months, evaluate the feasibility study of such proposal and either initiate proceedings under subsection (1) by introducing a contraction ordinance or reject the petition as a legislative decision.
(3) After introduction, the contraction ordinance shall be noticed at least once per week for 2 consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the municipality, such notice to describe the area to be excluded. Such description shall include a statement of findings to show that the area to be excluded fails to meet the criteria of s. 171.043, set the time and place of the meeting at which the ordinance will be considered, and advise that all parties affected may be heard.
1(4) If, at the meeting held for the purpose of considering the contraction ordinance introduced by the governing body, a petition is filed and signed by at least 15 percent of the qualified voters resident in the area proposed for contraction requesting a referendum on the question, the governing body shall, upon verification, paid for by the municipality, of the sufficiency of the petition, and before passing such ordinance, submit the question of contraction to a vote of the qualified voters of the area proposed for contraction, or the governing body may vote not to contract the municipal boundaries.
(5) The governing body may also call for a referendum on the question of contraction on its own volition and in the absence of a petition requesting a referendum.
(6) The referendum, if required, shall be held at the next regularly scheduled election, or, if approved by a majority of the municipal governing body, at a special election held prior to such election, but no sooner than 30 days after verification of the petition or passage of the resolution or ordinance calling for the referendum.
(7) The municipal governing body shall establish the date of election and publish notice of the referendum election at least once a week for the 2 consecutive weeks immediately prior to the election in a newspaper of general circulation in the area proposed to be excluded or in the municipality. Such notice shall give the time and places for the election and a general description of the area to be excluded, which shall be in the form of a map clearly showing the area proposed to be excluded.
(8) Ballots or mechanical voting devices shall offer the choices “For deannexation” and “Against deannexation,” in that order.
(9) A majority vote “For deannexation” shall cause the area proposed for exclusion to be so excluded upon the effective date set in the contraction ordinance.
(10) A majority vote “Against deannexation” shall prevent any part of the area proposed for exclusion from being the subject of a contraction ordinance for a period of 2 years from the date of the referendum election.
1(11) If more than 70 percent of the acres of land in an area proposed to be contracted is owned by individuals, corporations, or legal entities that are not registered electors of such area, such area may not be contracted unless the owners of more than 50 percent of the acres of land in such area consent to such contraction.
History.s. 1, ch. 74-190; s. 17, ch. 90-279; s. 5, ch. 2023-305.
1Note.Section 6, ch. 2023-305, provides that “[t]he amendments made by this act to s. 171.051, Florida Statutes, are intended to be prospective in nature and apply only to petitions filed on or after July 1, 2023.”