Current Status

5/4/19

HB987

As appears on the House of Representatives website: “Indefinitely postponed and withdrawn from consideration on Friday, May 3, 2019 11:59 PM”

It thus seems that all legislation threatening to Home Rule is dead for the 2019 Session.

4/15/19

It appears that the most egregious of the bills introduced in the 2019 session have been stalled. HB987 and SB824 are essentially the same and propose to remove all local control of vacation rentals. HB987 has passed 3 committees in the House, but met some resistance in the last Committee, the Commerce Committee. However, SB824 was effective shelved in the Senate Innovation, Industry, and Technology Committee on Wednesday 4/10. If HB987 is passed by the full House, there is a chance that it will be forced to be heard by the Senate; however, without a companion bill in the Senate. the likelihood of passage has been lessened.

The Vacation Rental Industry applied its resources to pressure the both the 2017 and 2018 Legislature to roll back regulation from the 2014 compromise to 2011 that effectively eliminated the ability for local authority to regulate vacation rentals. In both years it failed by a narrow margin. The fight has continued again in the 2019 legislative Session.

 The following are links to the bills currently filed for the 2019 session:

https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2019/00824

https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2019/00814

https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2019/00812

https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2019/00987

https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2019/01196

https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2019/01129

These bills if successful would have the following effects:

  1. Establish as a constitutionally protected right of any property owner to rent their property.

    The effect of this innocent sounding provision would be to entirely void ANY local government, homeowner association, condominium association or pre-existing property deed provision that restricts vacation rentals.

  2. “The regulation of vacation rentals, including, but not limited to, inspection, licensing, and occupancy limits, is expressly preempted to the state.”

    As it states, this would mean all regulation of vacation rentals would be done by the state, a most egregious example of the one size fits all mentality pervasive in the legislature.

  3. “A court of law shall determine … …establish by clear and convincing evidence that the local law, ordinance, or regulation complies with this section”

    In a court of law “clear and convincing” is the most rigid standard applied to an argument which means any local regulation must apply to this rigid standard in court. This would be applied vs. the “constitutionally protected” right referred to in #1 above.

  4. “when a complaint related to a vacation rental is reported. The Division….”

    Since control of vacation rentals is entirely preempted to the state, now if a neighbor has a complaint about a neighboring party house, the remedy will be to call the state. Your local government won’t have any authority.