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Weekly Interim Update from October 23, 2015

Property Rights

SB 416-Relating to Location of Utilities
On Tuesday, October 20th, SB 416, relating to the Location of Utilities, by Senator Anitere Flores (R-Miami) unanimously passed through its first hearing in the Senate Community Affairs Committee with 7 yeas and 0 nays.

SB 416 will address who is the responsible party for the cost of relocating utility facilities in a public easement. Easements dedicated to the public for utilities are typically located along existing road or highway rights-of-way and are available for use by a variety of utility providers. Under the bill, the owner of a utility that requires relocation will be liable for relocation costs only if their lines and facilities are across, on or “within” the right-of-way, rather than “along” any right-of-way.

SB 416 also states that a governmental authority must assume the cost of the utility work required to eliminate the interference if the utility is located within an existing and valid utility easement. AIF’s Vice President of State and Federal Affairs, Brewster Bevis, stood in support of this bill

The next hearing for SB 416 will be in the Senate Transportation Committee .

AIF supports protecting the private property rights of Florida businesses.