Welcome to the City of Weston's SB 360 Constitutional Challenge Website. On this site you will find all of the documents relevant to the case, from the initial legal analysis to all court filings, and those local governments who have chosen to join with us as plaintiffs.
On June 1, 2009, over the objection of Florida cities and counties, as well as the Florida League of Cities and the Florida Association of Counties, the Governor signed Senate Bill 360, the Community Renewal Act (the Act), into law, which makes sweeping changes to Florida's growth management laws.
The language in the Act is unclear, prompting disagreements between attorneys for developers and local governments as to its applicability. Weston believes the Act has substantial negative impacts on Weston and other local governments, particularly if the interpretation set forth by attorneys for developers is adopted.
The law firm of Weiss Serota Helfman Pastoriza Cole & Boniske PL (the Firm), which serves as the City Attorney for Weston, was requested to do a legal analysis to determine whether the Act was subject to challenge on constitutional grounds. As set forth in the analysis, the Firm determined that a strong argument can be made that the enactment of the Bill violated: (1) Article VII, Section 18 of the Florida Constitution, which prevents the legislature from imposing requirements on local governments without providing a means to pay for such requirements unless certain requirements are satisfied (the Unfunded Mandate Provision), and (2) Article III, Section 6 of the Florida Constitution, which requires that every law embrace only one subject (the Single Subject Provision). On July 7, 2009, the City of Weston, joined by the Village of Key Biscayne, the Town of Cutler Bay, Lee County, the City of Deerfield Beach, the City of Miami Gardens, the city of Fruitland Park, and the City of Parkland, filed a Complaint of Declaratory and Injunctive Relief in the Circuit Court of Leon County against Florida's Governor, Secretary of State, President of the Senate and Speaker of the House challenging the constitutionality of SB 360. Subsequently the following have chosen to join with us as plaintiffs: Village of Palmetto Bay, City of Pompano Beach, City of Homestead, City of Cooper City, City of North Miami, City of Coral Gables, City of Pembroke Pines, Broward County, North Miami, St. Lucie County, Levy County, Islamorada Village of Islands, Lauderdale-By-The-Sea, City of Homestead.
The case has been assigned to the Honorable Charles A. Frances, currently serving as the Chief Judge of the Second Judicial Circuit. Judge Francis is a native of St. Petersburg, FL and received his B.A. from Florida State University in 1969, and his J.D. with honors, from Florida State University College of Law in 1972. Judge Francis practiced law in Tallahassee for 27 years prior to his judicial appointment in 1999.
The lawsuit has been given Case No. 09-CA-2639.
Jamie Alan Cole, Esq.
Weiss Serota Helfman
Pastoriza Cole Boniske, PL
200 East Broward Boulevard
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301
John R. Flint
City of Weston
17200 Royal Palm Boulevard
Weston, FL 33326