Section 582.23, Florida Statutes 2003
582.23 Performance of work under the regulations by the supervisors.--
(1) The supervisors may go upon any lands within the district to determine whether land use regulations adopted are being observed. Where the supervisors of any district shall find that any of the provisions of land use regulations adopted are not being observed on particular lands, and that such nonobservance tends to increase erosion on such lands and is interfering with the prevention or control of erosion on other lands within the district, the supervisors may present to the circuit court for the county or counties within which the lands of the defendant may lie, a petition, duly verified, setting forth the adoption of the land use regulations, the failure of the defendant landowner or occupier to observe such regulations, and to perform particular work, operations, or avoidances as required thereby, and that such nonobservance tends to increase erosion on such lands and is interfering with the prevention or control of erosion on other lands within the district, and praying the court to require the defendant to perform the work, operations, or avoidances within a reasonable time and to order that if the defendant shall fail so to perform the supervisors may go on the land, perform the work or other operations or otherwise bring the condition of such lands into conformity with the requirements of such regulations, and recover the costs and expenses thereof, with interest, from the owner of such land. Upon the presentation of such petition the court shall cause process to be issued against the defendant, and shall hear the case. If it shall appear to the court that testimony is necessary for the proper disposition of the matter, it may take evidence or appoint a special master to take such evidence as it may direct and report the same to the court within her or his findings of fact and conclusions of law, which shall constitute a part of the proceedings upon which the determination of the court shall be made.
(2) The court may dismiss the petition; or it may require the defendant to perform the work, operations, or avoidances, and may provide that upon the failure of the defendant to initiate such performance within the time specified in the order of the court, and to prosecute the same to completion with reasonable diligence, the supervisors may enter upon the lands involved and perform the work or operations, or otherwise bring the conditions of such lands into conformity with the requirements of the regulations and recover the costs and expenses thereof, with interest at the rate of 5 percent per annum, from the owner of such lands.
(3) The court shall retain the jurisdiction of the case until after the work has been completed. Upon completion of such work pursuant to such order of the court the supervisors may file a petition with the court, a copy of which shall be served upon the defendant in the case, stating the costs and expenses sustained by them in the performance of the work and praying judgment therefor with interest. The court shall have jurisdiction to enter judgment for the amount of such costs and expenses, with interest at the rate of 5 percent per annum until paid, together with the costs of suit, including a reasonable attorney's fee to be fixed by the court.
History.--s. 10, ch. 18144, 1937; CGL 1940 Supp. 4151(481); s. 26, ch. 73-334; s. 927, ch. 97-103.