Florida's 2016 Legislative Session - the Budget

The new fiscal year starts July 2, 2016. During this legislative session, State Lawmakers will debate how to use the budget surplus. Questions will include what programs are funded and how much of the surplus the state needs to keep in reserve. Governor Scott and key state lawmakers have said that water is a budget priority. We'll hold them accountable to those statements.

Lawmakers will also have to resolve how to implement Constitutional Amendment 1. 75% of Florida voters approved the Florida Water and Land Conservation Initiative in 2014. It has yet to be implemented.

 Amendment 1 is designed to dedicate a share of document stamp revenues for the Land Acquisition Trust Fund. Part of the these funds will help to manage and restore lands in order to protect water, drinking water resources, and lands in the Everglades. The funds will also support existing water and conservation programs that were drastically cut in previous years.

Committees took action on HB 989/SB 1168, Implementation of Water and Land Conservation Constitutional Amendment in early February. There are concerns that this legislation will not include the funding approved by voters