Section 235.2197, Florida Statutes 2001
235.2197 Florida Frugal Schools Program.--
(1) The Legislature recognizes the need for public accountability and public confidence in the expenditure of capital outlay funds by district school boards. The Legislature further recognizes that frugal construction of functional schools is an essential element in providing, with limited state and local resources, adequate school facilities for a growing student population.
(2) The "Florida Frugal Schools Program" is created to recognize publicly each district school board that agrees to build frugal yet functional educational facilities and that implements "best financial management practices" when planning, constructing, and operating educational facilities. The State Board of Education shall recognize a district school board as having a Florida Frugal Schools Program if the district requests recognition and satisfies two or more of the following criteria:
(a) The district receives a "Seal of Best Financial Management" as provided in s. 230.23025 or implements best financial management practices applicable to educational facilities as evidenced by a review under s. 230.23025.
(b) The district school board certifies that each educational facility planned and constructed by the district after the effective date of this act will comply with the cost limits established in s. 235.435(6) and that evidence of such compliance will be submitted for validation on a project-by-project basis to the Department of Education.
(c) The district school board submits a plan to the Commissioner of Education certifying how the revenues generated by the levy of the capital outlay sales surtax authorized by s. 212.055(6) will be spent. The plan must include at least the following assurances about the use of the proceeds of the surtax and any accrued interest:
1. The district school board will use the surtax and accrued interest only for the fixed capital outlay purposes identified by s. 212.055(6)(d) which will reduce school overcrowding that has been validated by the Department of Education, or for the repayment of bonded indebtedness related to such capital outlay purposes.
2. The district school board will not spend the surtax or accrued interest to pay for operational expenses or for the construction, renovation, or remodeling of any administrative building or any other ancillary facility that is not directly related to the instruction, feeding, or transportation of students enrolled in the public schools.
3. The district school board's use of the surtax and accrued interest will be consistent with the best financial management practices identified and approved under s. 230.23025.
4. The district school board will apply the educational facilities contracting and construction techniques authorized by s. 235.211 or other construction management techniques to reduce the cost of educational facilities.
5. The district school board will discontinue the surtax levy when the district has provided the survey-recommended educational facilities that were determined to be necessary to relieve school overcrowding; when the district has satisfied any bonded indebtedness incurred for such educational facilities; or when the district's other sources of capital outlay funds are sufficient to provide such educational facilities, whichever occurs first.
6. The district school board will use any excess surtax collections or accrued interest to reduce the discretionary outlay millage levied under s. 236.25(2).
(d) The district school board receives the equivalent of a one-half cent levy from the local infrastructure sales surtax.
History.--s. 16, ch. 97-384; s. 104, ch. 99-2; s. 17, ch. 2000-152; s. 9, ch. 2001-86.