Section 180.191, Florida Statutes 2009
180.191 Limitation on rates charged consumer outside city limits.--
(1) Any municipality within the state operating a water or sewer utility outside of the boundaries of such municipality shall charge consumers outside the boundaries rates, fees, and charges determined in one of the following manners:
(a) It may charge the same rates, fees, and charges as consumers inside the municipal boundaries. However, in addition thereto, the municipality may add a surcharge of not more than 25 percent of such rates, fees, and charges to consumers outside the boundaries. Fixing of such rates, fees, and charges in this manner shall not require a public hearing except as may be provided for service to consumers inside the municipality.
(b) It may charge rates, fees, and charges that are just and equitable and which are based on the same factors used in fixing the rates, fees, and charges for consumers inside the municipal boundaries. In addition thereto, the municipality may add a surcharge not to exceed 25 percent of such rates, fees, and charges for said services to consumers outside the boundaries. However, the total of all such rates, fees, and charges for the services to consumers outside the boundaries shall not be more than 50 percent in excess of the total amount the municipality charges consumers served within the municipality for corresponding service. No such rates, fees, and charges shall be fixed until after a public hearing at which all of the users of the water or sewer systems; owners, tenants, or occupants of property served or to be served thereby; and all others interested shall have an opportunity to be heard concerning the proposed rates, fees, and charges. Any change or revision of such rates, fees, or charges may be made in the same manner as such rates, fees, or charges were originally established, but if such change or revision is to be made substantially pro rata as to all classes of service, both inside and outside the municipality, no hearing or notice shall be required.
(2) Whenever any municipality has engaged, or there are reasonable grounds to believe that any municipality is about to engage, in any act or practice prohibited by subsection (1), a civil action for preventive relief, including an application for a permanent or temporary injunction, restraining order, or other order, may be instituted by the person or persons aggrieved.
(3) This section shall apply to municipally owned water and sewer utilities within the confines of a single county and may apply, pursuant to interlocal agreement, to municipally owned water and sewer utilities beyond the confines of a single county.
(4) In any action commenced pursuant to this section, the court in its discretion may allow the prevailing party treble damages and, in addition, a reasonable attorney's fee as part of the cost.
History.--ss. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, ch. 70-997; s. 1, ch. 88-301; s. 1, ch. 92-181; s. 1, ch. 98-15.