July 11, 2020
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House Bill 1701e1

House Bill 1701e1

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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1                      A bill to be entitled

  2         An act relating to Broward County; providing

  3         for the creation of a countywide independent

  4         special district to provide children's services

  5         throughout Broward County; providing for a

  6         governing board to be known as the Children's

  7         Service Council of Broward County; providing

  8         for the membership and duties of the council;

  9         providing financial requirements and budget

10         procedures; providing for authorization of the

11         levy of ad valorem taxes not to exceed one-half

12         mill; providing for a ballot question;

13         providing for a referendum; providing an

14         effective date.

15

16         WHEREAS, section 125.901, Florida Statues, authorizes

17  the creation of an independent special district to provide

18  children's services throughout each county of the State, and

19         WHEREAS, the Florida Legislature has determined that it

20  would serve the public interest to establish said independent

21  special district within Broward County, NOW, THEREFORE,

22

23  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:

24

25         Section 1.  Title.--This act may be cited as the

26  "Children's Services Act of Broward County."

27         Section 2.  Creation of an Independent Special

28  District.--There is hereby created, effective January 2, 2001,

29  an independent special district to provide children's services

30  throughout Broward County.  The boundaries of the District

31  shall be coterminous with the boundaries of Broward County.


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1  The governing body of the District shall be a board of

  2  directors to be known as the Children's Services Council of

  3  Broward County.

  4         Section 3.  Membership.--Such council shall consist of

  5  10 members, including:

  6         (1)  The superintendent of schools; a local school

  7  board member, chosen by a majority of the School Board of

  8  Broward County; the district administrator from district X of

  9  the Department of Children and Family Services, or his or her

10  designee who is a member of the Senior Management Service or

11  of the Selected Exempt Service; one member of the County

12  Commission, chosen by a majority of the Broward County Board

13  of County Commissioners; and a judge assigned to juvenile

14  cases who shall sit as a voting member of the board, except

15  that said judge shall not vote or participate in the setting

16  of ad valorem taxes under this section. The chief judge of the

17  17th judicial circuit shall designate which judge shall serve

18  on the board. All of the proceeding members shall serve 4-year

19  terms effective January 2, 2001.

20         (2)  The remaining five members shall be appointed by

21  the Governor, and shall, to the extent possible, represent the

22  demographic diversity of the population of Broward County.

23  After soliciting recommendations from the public, the Broward

24  County Board of County Commissioners shall submit to the

25  Governor the names of at least three persons for each vacancy

26  occurring among the five members to be appointed by the

27  Governor, and the Governor shall appoint members to the

28  council from the candidates nominated. The Governor shall make

29  a selection within a 45-day period or request a new list of

30  candidates. All members appointed by the Governor shall have

31  been residents of the county for the previous 24-month period.


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1  Such members shall be appointed for 4-year terms, except that

  2  the length of the terms of the initial appointees shall be for

  3  2 years. The Governor may remove a member for cause or upon

  4  the written petition of a majority of the County Commission

  5  plus one. If any of the members of the council required to be

  6  appointed by the Governor under the provisions of this

  7  subsection shall resign, die, or be removed from office, the

  8  vacancy thereby created shall, as soon as practicable, be

  9  filled by appointment by the Governor, using the same method

10  as the original appointment, and such appointment to fill a

11  vacancy shall be for the unexpired term of the person who

12  resigns, dies, or is removed from office.

13         Section 4.  Powers and Duties.--

14         (1)  The Children's Services Council of Broward County

15  shall have the following powers and duties:

16         (a)  To provide and maintain in the County such

17  preventive, developmental, treatment, and rehabilitative

18  services for children as the council determines are needed for

19  the general welfare of the County.

20         (b)  To provide such other services for all children as

21  the council determines are needed for the general welfare of

22  the County.

23         (c)  To allocate and provide funds for other agencies

24  in the County which are operated for the benefit of children,

25  provided they are not under the exclusive jurisdiction of the

26  public school system.

27         (d)  To collect information and statistical data which

28  will be helpful to the council in deciding the needs of

29  children in the County.

30

31


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1         (e)  To consult with other agencies dedicated to the

  2  welfare of children to the end that the overlapping of

  3  services will be prevented.

  4         (f)  To lease or buy such real estate, equipment, and

  5  personal property and to construct such buildings as are

  6  needed to execute the foregoing powers and duties, provided

  7  that no such purchases shall be made or building done except

  8  for cash with funds on hand or secured by funds deposited in

  9  financial institutions.  Nothing in this act shall be

10  construed to authorize issuance of bonds of any nature.

11         (g)  To employ and pay, on a part-time or full-time

12  basis, personnel needed to execute the foregoing powers and

13  duties.

14         (2)  The Children's Services Council of Broward County

15  shall:

16         (a)  Immediately after the members are appointed, elect

17  a chair and vice chair from among its members, and elect other

18  officers as deemed necessary by the council.

19         (b)  Immediately after the members are appointed and

20  officers are elected, identify and assess the needs of the

21  children in Broward County served by the council and submit to

22  the County Commission of Broward County a written description

23  of:

24         1.  The activities, services, and opportunities that

25  will be provided to children.

26         2.  The anticipated schedule for providing those

27  activities, services, and opportunities.

28         3.  The manner in which children will be served,

29  including a description of arrangements and agreements which

30  will be made with community organizations, state and local

31  educational agencies, federal agencies, public assistance


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1  agencies, the juvenile courts, foster care agencies, and other

  2  applicable public and private agencies.

  3         4.  The special outreach efforts that will be

  4  undertaken to provide services to at-risk, abused, or

  5  neglected children.

  6         5.  The manner in which the council will seek and

  7  provide funding for unmet needs.

  8         6.  The strategy which will be used for interagency

  9  coordination to maximize existing human and fiscal resources.

10         (c)  Provide training and orientation to all new

11  members sufficient to allow them to perform their duties.

12         (d)  Make and adopt bylaws and rules for the council's

13  guidance, operation, governance, and maintenance, provided

14  such rules are not inconsistent with federal or state laws or

15  county ordinances.

16         (e)  Provide an annual written report, to be presented

17  no later than January 1, to the County Commission of Broward

18  County.  The annual report shall contain, but not be limited

19  to the following information:

20         1.  Information on the effectiveness of activities,

21  services, and programs offered by the council, including

22  cost-effectiveness.

23         2.  A detailed anticipated budget for continuation of

24  activities, services, and programs offered by the council, and

25  a list of all sources of requested funding, both public and

26  private.

27         3.  Procedures used for early identification of at-risk

28  children who need additional or continued services and methods

29  for ensuring that the additional or continued services are

30  received.

31


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1         4.  A description of the degree to which the council's

  2  objectives and activities are consistent with the goals of

  3  this section.

  4         5.  Detailed information on the various programs,

  5  services, and activities available to participants and the

  6  degree to which the programs, services, and activities have

  7  been successfully used by children.

  8         6.  Information on programs, services, and activities

  9  that should be eliminated; programs, services, and activities

10  that should be continued; and programs, services, and

11  activities that should be added to the basic format of the

12  Children's Services Council.

13         (3)  The council shall maintain minutes of each

14  meeting, including a record of all votes cast, and shall make

15  such minutes available to any interested person.

16         (4)  Members of the council shall serve without

17  compensation, but shall be entitled to receive reimbursement

18  for per diem and travel expenses consistent with the

19  provisions of section 112.061, Florida Statutes.

20         (5)  All financial records and accounts relating to the

21  district shall be available for audit by state auditors as

22  they are assigned from time to time to audit the affairs of

23  the County officials. If no annual audit of the district is

24  conducted by the state, the council shall cause an independent

25  audit of the District to be conducted.

26         (6)  Within 10 days, exclusive of weekends and legal

27  holidays, after the expiration of each quarter annual period,

28  the Children's Services Council shall cause to be prepared and

29  filed with the County Commission of Broward County a financial

30  report which shall include the following:

31


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1         (a)  The total expenditures of the council for the

  2  quarter annual period.

  3         (b)  The total receipts of the council during the

  4  quarter annual period.

  5         (c)  A statement of the funds the council has on hand,

  6  has invested, or has deposited with qualified public

  7  depositories at the end of the quarter annual period.

  8         (d)  The total administrative costs of the council for

  9  the quarter annual period.

10         Section 5.  Fiscal Year.--

11         (1)  The fiscal year of the District shall be the same

12  as that of Broward County.

13         (2)  On or before July 1 of each year, the Children's

14  Services Council of Broward County shall prepare and adopt an

15  annual written budget of its expected income and expenditures,

16  including a contingency fund.  The written budget shall be

17  certified and delivered to the Board of County Commissioners

18  on or before July 1 of each year.  Included in each certified

19  budget shall be an estimate of the millage rate necessary to

20  be applied to raise the funds budgeted for expenditures, which

21  millage rate shall not exceed a maximum of 50 cents for each

22  $1,000 of assessed valuation of all properties within the

23  County which are subject to County taxes.

24         (3)  The budget of the Children's Services Council so

25  certified and delivered to the Board of County Commissioners

26  shall not be subject to change or modification by the Board of

27  County Commissioners or any other authority.

28         Section 6.  Levying of Ad Valorem Taxes.--In order to

29  provide funds for the Children's Services Council of Broward

30  County, the council may levy ad valorem taxes annually on all

31  taxable property in the County in an amount not to exceed


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1  one-half mill, provided that the authority to levy such taxes

  2  has been approved by a majority vote of the electors of the

  3  District voting in the Countywide Election to be held in

  4  accordance with the requirements of the constitution and the

  5  laws of Florida and as set forth in this act.  The tax shall

  6  be assessed, levied, and collected in the same manner and at

  7  the same time as is provided by law of the levy, collection,

  8  and enforcement of collection of County taxes.  All tax money

  9  collected under this act, as soon after the collection thereof

10  as is reasonably practicable, shall be paid directly to the

11  Children's Services Council by the Tax Collector of the County

12  and all other applicable County officials.  The moneys so

13  received by the Children's Services Council, shall be

14  deposited in a special bank account, shall be withdrawn only

15  by checks signed by the chair of the council and countersigned

16  by one other member of the council, who shall be so authorized

17  by the council.  The chair and other member of the council who

18  signs its checks shall each give a surety bond in the amount

19  of $1,000 which bond shall be conditioned that each shall

20  faithfully discharge the duties of their office.  No other

21  member of the council shall be required to give bond or other

22  security.  No funds of the council shall be expended except by

23  check as aforesaid, except expenditures of petty cash account

24  which shall not at any time exceed $100.  All expenditures

25  from petty cash shall be recorded on the books and records of

26  the Children's Services Council.  No funds of the council,

27  except the expenditure of petty cash, shall be expended

28  without prior approval of the council, in addition to the

29  budgeting thereof.

30         Section 7.  Powers, Duties, Responsibilities and

31  Obligations.--Except as specifically provided by this act, the


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1  Children's Services Council of Broward County shall have all

  2  powers, duties, responsibilities and obligations as provided

  3  for special districts in section 125.901, Florida Statutes as

  4  amended except that the independent district created by this

  5  act may only be amended or dissolved by special act of the

  6  Legislature.

  7         Section 8.  Referendum.--There is hereby authorized the

  8  calling of a special referendum election to carry out the

  9  purposes and intent of this act and to do all things necessary

10  to implement and fund the Children's Services Council and the

11  independent district created hereby in accordance with the

12  terms of this act and the laws pertaining to elections.  The

13  item that shall appear on the ballot on September 5, 2000, the

14  date of the primary election of 2000, shall be as follows:

15

16  (Title)  Creation of Children's Services Council of Broward

17  County and authorization of taxation

18

19  (Issue)  An independent special district known as "The

20  Children's Service Council of Broward County" is created to

21  fund the improvement of children's developmental, health, and

22  other children's services by the levying each year of an ad

23  valorem tax not to exceed one-half (1/2) mill for services for

24  children.

25

26  Yes       

27

28  No        

29         Section 9.  This act, except for this section, which

30  shall take effect upon becoming a law, shall take effect only

31  if it is approved by a majority vote of those qualified


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                                      HB 1701, First Engrossed/ntc



  1  electors of Broward County voting in a referendum as provided

  2  in section 8 of this act to be called by the Supervisor of

  3  Elections of Broward County on September 5, 2000, the date of

  4  primary election of 2000, in accordance with the provisions of

  5  law relating to elections currently enforced in Broward

  6  County. In this election, procedures prescribed in sections

  7  101.6101-101.6107, Florida Statutes, may not be used.

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