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The Florida Statutes

The 2018 Florida Statutes

Title XXVIII
NATURAL RESOURCES; CONSERVATION, RECLAMATION, AND USE
Chapter 375
OUTDOOR RECREATION AND CONSERVATION LANDS
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F.S. 375.075
375.075 Outdoor recreation; financial assistance to local governments.
(1) The Department of Environmental Protection is authorized to establish the Florida Recreation Development Assistance Program to provide grants, subject to legislative appropriation, to qualified local governmental entities to acquire or develop land for public outdoor recreation purposes. The department shall develop and plan a program that must be based upon the funding appropriated by the Legislature for such purpose.
(2)(a) The department shall adopt, by rule, procedures to govern the program, which shall include, but need not be limited to, a competitive project selection process designed to maximize the outdoor recreation benefit to the public.
(b) Selection criteria shall, at a minimum, rank:
1. The extent to which the project would implement the outdoor recreation goals, objectives, and priorities specified in the state comprehensive outdoor recreation plan; and
2. The extent to which the project would provide for priority resource or facility needs in the region as specified in the state comprehensive outdoor recreation plan.
(c) Funds may not be released under this program for these public recreation projects until the projects have been selected through the competitive selection process provided for in this section.
(3) A local government may submit up to two grant applications during each application period announced by the department. However, a local government may not have more than three active projects expending grant funds during any state fiscal year. The maximum project grant for each project application may not exceed $200,000 in state funds.
1(4)(a) For the 2018-2019 fiscal year:
1. Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, $4 million of funds for projects must be used exclusively for projects that provide recreational enhancements and opportunities for children. The department shall conduct a separate grant application process exclusively for such projects. The department shall establish a schedule for the grant application process for projects that provide publicly available recreational enhancements and opportunities for children and shall award the grants for such projects by December 31, 2018.
2. Notwithstanding subsection (3), a local government may submit up to three grant applications for projects if at least one of those projects provides recreational enhancements and opportunities for children. The maximum project grant for each project application that provides recreational enhancements and opportunities for children may not exceed $250,000 in state funds, which the local government must match on a dollar-for-dollar basis.
(b) The selection criteria used by the department for grant applications submitted pursuant to this subsection must give priority to projects geared toward children under the age of 12, but which also provide educational opportunities and have established safety standards. The department shall give the highest priority to project applications that further demonstrate they will serve the needs of children with unique abilities and will be accessible and usable to those with physical and developmental disabilities. All projects must have playground equipment and lighting that is adequate for evening use.
(c) The playground equipment should be designed to serve children under the age of 12 with unique abilities, including those with physical and developmental disabilities. The criteria must also establish a minimum lot size for such project.
(d) This subsection expires July 1, 2019.
History.s. 1, ch. 86-293; s. 16, ch. 90-217; s. 287, ch. 94-356; s. 39, ch. 99-247; s. 20, ch. 2000-170; s. 32, ch. 2000-197; s. 42, ch. 2006-1; s. 53, ch. 2015-229; s. 83, ch. 2016-62; s. 71, ch. 2018-10; s. 14, ch. 2018-111.
1Note.Section 71, ch. 2018-10, added subsection (5), redesignated by the editors as subsection (4) to conform to the repeal of subsection (4) by s. 14, ch. 2018-111, “[i]n order to implement Specific Appropriation 1686A of the 2018-2019 General Appropriations Act.”