October 12, 2007

South Florida Land Use Water Supply Allocation Requirements/Concurrency

Holland & Knight Alert
Joseph G. Goldstein

In accordance with the growth management legislation enacted by the Florida Legislature in 2005, the Miami-Dade County Water and Sewer Department (WASD) is currently working on the design and implementation of a water allocation system that will be used to determine the availability of adequate water supply for new development.

Specifically, Senate Bill 444 contained modifications to Florida Statutes Chapter 163, which now requires that adequate water supplies, along with sanitary sewer, solid waste, drainage and potable water be in place and available to serve new development no later than the issuance of a certificate of occupancy. Additionally, prior to the issuance of a building permit for new development, the local government is required to determine whether adequate water supply to serve the new development will be available no later than the anticipated date of issuance of a certificate of occupancy. To read the entire text go to: Chapter 163.3180-Concurrency.

In essence, the new legislation incorporates water supply into the local government’s concurrency review. It is anticipated that the water allocation system will operate similar to the current sewage flow allocation program operated by DERM. Generally, WASD will review proposals for new developments and allocate/reserve water capacity to serve the anticipated development. Once allocated, the water reservation will entitle the development to adequate capacity until a certain date. Currently, WASD is preparing a draft ordinance which will codify the water allocation system and its procedures.

We are, and will continue to be, actively involved in meetings and discussions with WASD as they design and implement their water allocation system.

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