Section 120.541, Florida Statutes 2004
120.541 Statement of estimated regulatory costs.--
(1)(a) A substantially affected person, within 21 days after publication of the notice provided under s. 120.54(3)(a), may submit to an agency a good faith written proposal for a lower cost regulatory alternative to a proposed rule which substantially accomplishes the objectives of the law being implemented. The proposal may include the alternative of not adopting any rule, so long as the proposal explains how the lower costs and objectives of the law will be achieved by not adopting any rule. If such a proposal is submitted, the 90-day period for filing the rule is extended 21 days.
(b) Upon the submission of the lower cost regulatory alternative, the agency shall prepare a statement of estimated regulatory costs as provided in subsection (2), or shall revise its prior statement of estimated regulatory costs, and either adopt the alternative or give a statement of the reasons for rejecting the alternative in favor of the proposed rule. The failure of the agency to prepare or revise the statement of estimated regulatory costs as provided in this paragraph is a material failure to follow the applicable rulemaking procedures or requirements set forth in this chapter. An agency required to prepare or revise a statement of estimated regulatory costs as provided in this paragraph shall make it available to the person who submits the lower cost regulatory alternative and to the public prior to filing the rule for adoption.
(c) No rule shall be declared invalid because it imposes regulatory costs on the regulated person, county, or city which could be reduced by the adoption of less costly alternatives that substantially accomplish the statutory objectives, and no rule shall be declared invalid based upon a challenge to the agency's statement of estimated regulatory costs, unless:
1. The issue is raised in an administrative proceeding within 1 year after the effective date of the rule; and
2. The substantial interests of the person challenging the agency's rejection of, or failure to consider, the lower cost regulatory alternative are materially affected by the rejection; and
3.a. The agency has failed to prepare or revise the statement of estimated regulatory costs as required by paragraph (b); or
b. The challenge is to the agency's rejection under paragraph (b) of a lower cost regulatory alternative submitted under paragraph (a).
(2) A statement of estimated regulatory costs shall include:
(a) A good faith estimate of the number of individuals and entities likely to be required to comply with the rule, together with a general description of the types of individuals likely to be affected by the rule.
(b) A good faith estimate of the cost to the agency, and to any other state and local government entities, of implementing and enforcing the proposed rule, and any anticipated effect on state or local revenues.
(c) A good faith estimate of the transactional costs likely to be incurred by individuals and entities, including local government entities, required to comply with the requirements of the rule. As used in this paragraph, "transactional costs" are direct costs that are readily ascertainable based upon standard business practices, and include filing fees, the cost of obtaining a license, the cost of equipment required to be installed or used or procedures required to be employed in complying with the rule, additional operating costs incurred, and the cost of monitoring and reporting.
(d) An analysis of the impact on small businesses as defined by s. 288.703, and an analysis of the impact on small counties and small cities as defined by s. 120.52.
(e) Any additional information that the agency determines may be useful.
(f) In the statement or revised statement, whichever applies, a description of any good faith written proposal submitted under paragraph (1)(a) and either a statement adopting the alternative or a statement of the reasons for rejecting the alternative in favor of the proposed rule.
History.--s. 11, ch. 96-159; s. 4, ch. 97-176.