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  • 03/30/2023 3:53 PM | Anonymous

    The Biden administration sells oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico

    March 29, 20234:27 PM ET

    By Bill ChappellJeff Brady

    Fossil fuel energy companies looking to extract oil and natural gas from U.S. waters in the Gulf of Mexico got a boost on Wednesday, as they secured access to 1.6 million acres of waters offered at auction.

    That was just a fraction of some 73.3 million acres of federal waters the Interior Department's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) opened up for bidding. Officials spent more than an hour reading aloud the bids in Lease Sale 259, with some 13,600 blocks of "outer continental shelf" acreage in the Gulf of Mexico at stake.

    Continue reading the article HERE

    Or click the link below:

  • 03/30/2023 3:45 PM | Anonymous

    Below is a PDF with information from the NOAA Fisheries- Southeast Regional Office regarding Bryde's Whale Recorvery Outline and Rice Whales.

  • 01/24/2023 6:20 PM | Anonymous

    Florida's rental market is causing so much pain to everyday workers that it might stifle the state's economic growth. At least that's the takeaway from a new study from Ken Johnson, an economist at Florida Atlantic University's College of Business. 

    According to Johnson, there are too many vacation rentals in the Sunshine State. These short-term rentals — oftentimes listed on sites like Airbnb and Vrbo — are removing apartments and homes that could otherwise be filled by workers that need to live near their jobs. 

    Additionally, Johnson describes the regulations some homeowners and condominium associations as "oppressive" because they limit when homeowners can begin renting their units, which only puts further pain on renters' wallets.

    It's this particular combination of strict HOA rules and the sheer number of vacation rentals is a mixture that is affecting housing affordability negatively, he said. 

    "Both of these take away units that could be rented to the public, and it's the shortage of available units that drives rental rates higher," Johnson wrote in the study. 

    Florida became a hot destination for many during the pandemic as remote workers became untethered from their desks and had the freedom to chose living in warmer places. In all, the state's population grew by 1.9% between June 2021 and June 2022, the most of any state for that period, census data shows

    The droves of people moving to Florida is just one reason why the rise in rents across the state has outpaced the national average for the past three years. According to Johnson's study, Florida is now home to 9 of the 21 most overpriced rental markets in the US. 

    For example, Johnson estimates that renters in the Cape Coral-Fort Myers area are paying a 18% premium for their homes when compared to long-term trends, according to FAU's Waller, Weeks, and Johnson Rental Index. The index is weighted to capture the historical rent trends in a given area rather than computing the average rents of homes that are currently available. 

    Currently, the average rent in Cape Coral is above $2,200 per month while the Waller, Weeks, and Johnson Rental Index estimates that a fair market value is closer to $1,880 per month. 

    The number of vacation rentals in the state is only making it harder for people to find affordable places to rent, the study suggests. For example, Panama City Beach, a popular coastal vacation community, has more than 11,800 vacation rentals listed on Airbnb and Vrbo at an average cost of $265 per night, AirDNA data shows. That's compared to the city's total housing stock of nearly 17,000 units, as counted by Point2Homes.

    "In Florida, US Census data indicates the share of housing units used as vacation rentals has remained constant since 2010, and yet the cost of housing is up everywhere, for everyone because the country simply has not built enough housing," a spokesperson for Airbnb said to Insider over email. "The need to prioritize building new housing is an issue in communities large and small across the country, and Airbnb is committed to working with local officials on efforts to support housing solutions and Florida's vacation rental industry which continues to provide economic opportunity throughout the Sunshine State." 

    However, in many instances, it is more lucrative for homeowners to list their properties on short-term rental websites like Airbnb and Vrbo instead of leasing their house or apartment to a regular long-term renter, which is one reason why there are so many of these units in the state, Johnson said in the report.

    Meanwhile, data from Point2Homes shows that apartment rents in Panama City Beach have climbed up 5.6% over the last 12 months to more than $1,830 per month. Single-family homes are renting for closer to $2,800 per month as well. 

    To view the full article, CLICK HERE.

  • 01/09/2023 12:06 PM | Anonymous

    Click the link below to view the SRIA January 11, 2023 Committee Meeting Agenda.

  • 12/30/2022 5:02 PM | Anonymous

    When the new year starts in less than a week, a number of new laws will take effect in Florida.

    Among the new laws SB 2A, which involves the state’s property insurance industry and was passed just a few weeks ago.

    The changes were made, in part, because of the recent hurricanes. After Hurricane Ian slammed the Sunshine State, dealing between $50 billion and $65 billion in estimated damage, Florida’s already troubled property insurance market was pinched even more.

    Insurance companies had been dropping customers and raising rates because of financial problems. So state lawmakers gathered for a special session this month. The Florida Legislature passed SB 2A, which will do a few things starting in the new year.

    First, the law creates the Florida Optional Reinsurance Assistance Program, or FORA. It’s a billion-dollar fund that will act as a financial safety net to bail out insurance companies in the event of a major catastrophe like a hurricane.

    Republican Florida Senate President Kathleen Passidomo released a statement when the bill was filed, saying, “The goal we all share is for Florida to have a robust property insurance market that offers homeowners the opportunity to shop for insurance that meets their needs and budget. We also want to make certain that when damage occurs, claims are paid promptly and fairly.”

    The law also speeds up the claims process. New claims will have to be filed within one year instead of two.

    And it will also speed up the payout or rejection process, with companies required to make that decision in 60 days instead of 90.

    The law also works to get more Floridians out of the state-created Citizens Property Insurance program, which was meant to be an insurer of last resort for property owners priced out of the private market. Under the new law, owners would be required to buy flood insurance and move to a private policy if there are any policies that are no more than 20% above the cost of a Citizens policy.

    Read the full article at the link below.

  • 12/03/2022 12:26 PM | Anonymous

    State of Play

    Just before Labor Day, another shooting occurred at a Florida Airbnb party house, leaving another person dead. This time, it was in a quiet Jacksonville Beach neighborhood. Since Spring Break, the state has experience a rash of shooting, assaults, and fights spilling out of vacation rentals into residential communities from Walton to Miami Dade County.

    Airbnb announced around that same time that it's making permanent its ban on house parties with a staffer recently proclaiming in an Orlando Sentinel op-ed, "Airbnb protects communities from disruptive 'party houses'." Of course, the company has a long track record in the state of Florida of opposing even the most basic protections against unlawful and disruptive short-term rentals. Residents from The Villages, PlantationNeptune BeachEscambia County, and Walton County (just to name a few) have recently demanded action from policymakers as their quiet neighborhoods have been overrun by unlawful nightly rentals.

    Between now and the start of 2023 legislative session, lawmakers will hold in-district delegation meetings. These meeting are designed for constituents (like you) who cannot make the mid-week drive to Tallahassee to participate in the legislative process. Each delegation meeting provides a time period for public comment. Make your voice heard. Follow this link to find your delegation hearing and make sure to submit comments - in person or via email if you cannot attend. More details are included below.

    Arizona Republicans Reverse Course on STRs

    Rental platforms have long desired to export an Arizona-style vacation rental law to Florida. Fortunately, Florida lawmakers have resisted, and now Arizona has reversed course after its neighborhoods have been overrun by house parties. The Republican Governor recently signed a bill approved by the Republican-led legislature that would empower municipalities to crack down on party houses in the state.

    Legislative Update and Calendar

    Florida lawmakers returned to the state capitol last week for organizational session, choosing their legislative leadership and outlining upcoming priorities. Legislators will gather over the coming weeks for a special session on property insurance and for committee meetings to workshop legislation ahead of the 2023 legislative session.

    Neither the House Speaker Renner or the Senate President Passidomo have mentioned publicly that addressing the vacation rental issue is a top priority in 2023. However, both lawmakers' coastal districts face acute challenges on the issue. And, the Senate President has indicated that addressing housing affordability is a top priority for her.

    The investor-driven "hotelization" of residential housing stock is a well-documented contributor to affordable housing crises in many communities. A Pensacola resident recently wrote an op-ed asserting that unregulated short-term rentals were removing workforce housing options for local residents.

    As noted above, between now and the start of 2023 legislative session, lawmakers will hold in-district delegation meetings. Follow this link to find your delegation meeting and follow the instructions to submit a speaking card and address your local delegation. Tell them your concerns very plainly. Alternatively, you can email your local members and let them know that you cannot make the delegation meeting but are concerned about unregulated vacation rentals overrunning residential neighborhoods.

    Legislation will be workshopped in the coming weeks. We'll keep you updated on developments. In the meantime, here are the key dates:

    • In-District Delegation Hearings - December 2-TBD
    • Committee Weeks - December 12-16; January 3-6, 17-20, 23-27; February 6-10, 13-17, 20-24
    • Regular Session Convenes - March 7
    • Regular Session Concludes - May 5

  • 10/04/2022 6:48 PM | Anonymous

    The rapid growth of short-term rentals in cities, towns and villages across the U.S. has caused much debate. From contentious city hall meetings where residents advocate for more stringent or more relaxed regulations to lengthy and expensive legal battles between cities and short-term rental platforms, cities can easily get caught in the crosshairs of a complicated policy issue.  

    The Issue

    As short-term rentals have become more accessible to both hosts and users, the prevalence of short-term rentals in cities has skyrocketed over a short period. But the meteoric success of short-term rental platforms has not always been welcomed enthusiastically by everyone. 

    Common complaints are that short-term rentals can drive up local rents, limit the availability of long-term residential rentals, attract an influx of tourists and create excessive noise. Because of this, local leaders must respond to many competing priorities – housing affordability and availability, local tourism and economic development, neighborhood wellbeing and health and safety – which makes passing regulations and balancing those priorities difficult.  

    Cities also find it difficult to enforce the regulations they do manage to pass. Some ordinances are difficult for hosts and residents to understand and difficult for cities to enforce because they are overly complicated or poorly publicized. In other instances, cities have no systematic way to identify hosts who are not in compliance with regulations or identify what properties are being used for short-term rentals and when.   

    Despite the limitations and challenges that city leaders face, local leaders can pass regulations that effectively balance competing priorities, fit community needs and are enforceable. Doing so will help cities and their residents enjoy the benefits of short-term rentals, such as enhanced tourism and supplemental income for residents, while limiting their negative impacts.  

    What Can Cities Do?

    The National League of Cities released a new report, Short-Term Rental Regulations: A Guide for Local Leaders, alongside a Short-Term Rental Ordinance dashboard, to help local leaders break down the process of developing a short-term rental ordinance. These resources are informed by an extensive analysis of 60 short-term rental ordinances from across the country, focused on the legal definition of short-term rentals, regulations, enforcement and permit.  

    The guide highlights instances in which cities have navigated complicated short-term rental challenges, such as: 

    • Moving platforms online: Henderson, NV developed an easily navigable webpage that serves as a one-stop-shop on all things short-term rentals for hosts, residents and staff.  
    • Gathering data: Fayetteville, AR worked with a local university to inform city discussions on short-term rental regulations.  
    • Engaging a diverse group of stakeholders: San Diego, CA spent a year engaging many different stakeholder groups such as a motel/lodge union, neighborhood groups, hotel stakeholders, realtor groups and associations, restaurant associations, the city council, local planning boards and organizations, pre-existing short-term rental operators, Expedia and Airbnb, to inform its ordinance.  
    • Determining fines and fees: Lake Placid, NY collaborated with its justice court to define a short-term rental fine structure based on other successful cases.  

    What’s Next?

    When regulated with care and the proper safeguards in place, they can be successfully integrated into the fabric of a community. With proper regulation, cities can enjoy the benefits of short-term rentals and limit their negative impacts.   

    Regulating short-term rentals is not about limiting their potential, but about enacting the appropriate mechanisms to keep competing priorities and interests balanced. As cities consider regulations to address short-term rentals in their communities, it is important that they act promptly, remain focused on a clear policy objective, consider racial equity, actively engage with relevant stakeholders, develop and enforce clear regulations, and provide continuous review of ordinances. The resources in this guide can help cities find the proper balance to effectively support and regulate this growing industry.  

    View the full article at:

  • 09/06/2022 2:25 PM | Anonymous


    Committee on Appropriations

    This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

    SB 4-D Page: 1

    SB 4-D — Building Safety

    by Senator Boyd

    Below is the PDF summary of SB 4-D.

    Click HERE to view the PDF

  • 08/10/2022 5:39 PM | Anonymous

    If you’re a landlord that rents out a single-family home, a large apartment building, or even business space, you’ve likely wondered if your rental property is considered a business come tax time. It’s important to know that there are two classifications when it comes to rental property and taxes. You need to know this information so you can properly get your tax deduction when the time comes. 

    Below we’re going to talk about how to know whether or not your property is considered a business, different types of business structures for landlords, and more. Keep on reading to get the most money back come tax time and learn a bit about whether or not your property is a business.


  • 08/10/2022 5:31 PM | Anonymous

    Media Contact:
    Logan McDonald
    Phone: (850) 595-1479

    The Pensacola & Perdido Bays Estuary Program (PPBEP) is pleased to announce the first ever Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP) for the Pensacola and Perdido Bay Watersheds is now available for review and public comment.

    PPBEP’s CCMP – A Prescription for Healthy Bays, is intended to serve as a guide for implementing monitoring, research, reporting, restoration, education and outreach, and policy priorities that enhance the community’s quality of life and economic prosperity, while improving the health and sustainability of the Pensacola and Perdido Bay Watersheds.

    The CCMP recommends priority actions developed in partnership with community stakeholders to address stressors that impair our waters. The identified actions are important steps to restoring our land and water, while maintaining a balance between humans and nature.

    This ten-year science-based, community-driven guiding document allows stakeholders to work collectively, across jurisdictional boundaries, toward a shared vision for the recovery of our waters. The completion of the CCMP allows PPBEP and its partners to leverage resources and funding opportunities to make this vision a reality.

    "Environmental stewardship is critical to our quality of life and economy along the Gulf Coast. Having the CCMP in place establishes a blueprint for forming partnerships and leveraging resources to create long-lasting improvements to the health and resilience of our estuaries and communities,” said Robert Bender, Chairman of the Pensacola & Perdido Bays Estuary Program.

    "The Estuary Program Management Conference and staff have put in an incredible amount of work to produce this draft CCMP. We look forward to sharing this with the community and receiving their comments, which will be addressed prior to release of the final CCMP in September 2022,” said Matt Posner, Executive Director of the Pensacola & Perdido Bays Estuary Program.

    The deadline to submit comments is 11:59 p.m. CT on Aug. 28, 2022. The draft CCMP and comment form are available on the Estuary Program’s website at

    The mission of the Pensacola & Perdido Bays Estuary Program is to restore and protect the Pensacola and Perdido Bay watersheds through restoration, education, and unbiased monitoring of the health of our bays, estuaries, and watersheds.

    The Pensacola and Perdido Bays Estuary Program serves as a trusted source for residents, businesses, industry, and the community on issues relating to preserving, restoring, improving, and maintaining the natural habitat and ecosystem of the bays, estuaries and watersheds of Pensacola and Perdido Bays. PPBEP strives to achieve a healthy and collaborative environment by:

    1. Elevating and increasing the importance, awareness and understanding of environmental quality.

    2. Employing rigorous, unbiased, and scientifically sound science to inform and guide decisions, policies, and initiatives.

    3. Funding programs and projects that protect the environment, increase ecological resilience

    4. Building a network of inclusive, multi-stakeholder partnerships that takes into account factors affecting the environment, the economy, and the community-at-large for the benefit of improving the quality of life for all.

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