Florida Special District Handbook Online
(FloridaJobs.org/SpecialDistrictHandbook)

Handbook Topics

  1. About the Handbook
    1. Welcome
    2. Updates
    3. Printable Version
    4. Acknowledgements
    5. Report Errors and Make Suggestions
  2. Search the Handbook
  3. Subject Index
  4. Introduction to Special Districts
    1. What are Special Districts?
    2. A Brief History of Special Districts
    3. The Uniform Special District Accountability Act
    4. Special District Advantages - Reasons Special Districts Are Created
    5. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Special Districts
  5. The Special District Accountability Program
    1. Program's Responsibilities
    2. Collecting a Fee to Fund the Program - The Annual Special District Fee
    3. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About the Special District Accountability Program
  6. Creating Special Districts
    1. Creating Independent Special Districts
    2. Creating Dependent Special Districts
    3. Newly Created Special District Responsibilities
    4. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Creating Special Districts
  7. Making Changes to Special Districts
    1. Amending Special District Charters
    2. Merging Special Districts
    3. Municipal Conversion / Incorporation of Special Districts
    4. Incorporation or Annexation of a Community Development District
    5. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Making Changes to Special Districts
    6. Reviewing and Revising Rules - The Agency Rule Report and the Regulatory Plan
  8. Dissolving Special Districts
    1. Dissolving Dependent Special Districts
    2. Dissolving Independent Special Districts Created and Operating Pursuant to a Special Act
    3. Dissolving Independent Special Districts Created by a County or Municipality by Referendum or any other Procedure
    4. Dissolving Independent Special Districts That Are Inactive
    5. Debts and Assets of a Dissolved Independent Special District
    6. Dissolving Dependent and Independent Through a Declaration of Inactive Status
    7. The Consequences of a Declaration of Inactive Status
    8. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Dissolving Special Districts
  9. Election Requirements
    1. Popularly Elected Systems
    2. One-Acre/One-Vote Electoral Systems
    3. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Election Requirements
  10. The Public Facilities Report
    1. Activities of Special Districts as they Relate to Local Government Comprehensive Planning
    2. Public Facilities - Definition
    3. Public Facilities Reporting
    4. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About The Public Facilities Report
  11. The Oversight Review Process
    1. Oversight of Special Districts Created by Special Act of the Legislature that Failed to File Specific Required Reports or Requested Information with the Appropriate State Agency or Office
    2. Oversight of Special Districts Created by Local Ordinance or Resolution that Failed to File Specific Required Reports or Information with the Appropriate State Agency or Office
    3. General Oversight Review Process of Special Districts
    4. Who May Conduct A Review
    5. Criteria That The Reviewers Must Consider
    6. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About the Oversight Review Process
  12. Accountability Overview
    1. Local Government Financial Reporting System
    2. Important Accountability Filings and Reports
    3. Noncompliance Status Reports: What will Happen When Special Districts Fail to Comply with Important Accountability Filings and Reports
    4. Technical Assistance
    5. Consequences of Continued Noncompliance
    6. Enforcing Compliance
    7. Other Accountability Requirements
    8. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Special District Accountability
  13. General Financial Requirements
    1. Uniform Fiscal Year
    2. The Uniform Chart of Accounts
    3. Travel Expenses and Reimbursements
    4. General Budget Requirements
    5. Additional Budget Requirements for Dependent Special Districts
    6. Budget Amendment Procedures
    7. Financial Emergencies
    8. Bankruptcy
    9. Procurement - General Requirements and Options
    10. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Special District General Financial Requirements
  14. The Annual Financial Report
    1. All Special Districts Must Comply With The Annual Financial Report Requirement
    2. Deadline For Submitting the Annual Financial Report
    3. How to File the Annual Financial Report
    4. Failure to Comply with the Annual Financial Report Requirement
    5. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About The Annual Financial Report
  15. The Annual Financial Audit Report
    1. Special Districts That Must Provide For An Annual Financial Audit
    2. Procedures to Follow When An Audit is Required
    3. Deadline For Submitting the Annual Financial Audit Report
    4. How to File the Annual Financial Audit Report
    5. The Auditor General's Review
    6. Failure to Comply with the Annual Financial Audit Report Requirement
    7. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About The Annual Financial Audit Report
  16. Bond Financing and Reporting Requirements
    1. Issuing Bonds
    2. Complaint for Validation of Bonds
    3. Selling General Obligation Bonds and Revenue Bonds
    4. Bond Reporting Requirements
    5. Failure to Comply with Bond Reporting Requirements
    6. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Bond Financing and Reporting Requirements
  17. Retirement Plans and Reporting Requirements
    1. Retirement Plan Options for Special Districts
    2. Types of Retirement Plans
    3. Local Government Retirement Plan Requirements
    4. Firefighter Pensions
    5. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Local Government Retirement Plans (Local Retirement)
    6. Florida Retirement System
  18. Ethics Laws and Disclosures
    1. Ethics Disclosures
    2. Penalties for Code of Ethics Violations
    3. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Ethics Laws and Disclosures
  19. Sunshine Law and Public Records Law
    1. Sunshine Law (Open Meetings)
    2. Public Records Law
    3. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About the Sunshine Law and Public Records Law
    4. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About the Uniform Special District Accountability Act Requirements Covered in this Chapter
  20. Public Records Retention and Disposition
    1. Records Management
    2. Disposition of Public Records Upon Dissolution or Merger
    3. Annual Compliance Statement
    4. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Public Records Retention and Disposition
  21. Ad Valorem Taxes and Truth-In-Millage
    1. Ad Valorem Taxes
    2. Non-ad Valorem Assessments
    3. Service Charges
    4. Truth in Millage ("TRIM") Process
    5. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Ad Valorem Taxes and Truth-in-Millage
  22. Public Deposit Requirements
    1. Benefits of Florida's Public Deposits Program
    2. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Public Deposit Requirements
  23. Investment of Surplus Funds Option
    1. Features of Florida Prime
    2. Requirements
    3. Contact Someone Who Can Answer Questions About Investment of Surplus Funds Option
  24. Reporting Requirements By Due Date
    1. Due By A Specific Date
    2. Due By A General Date
  25. Reporting Requirements By Agency and Agency Contacts
    1. File with the Auditor General
    2. File with the Department of Economic Opportunity, Special District Accountability Program
    3. File with the Department of Financial Services, Bureau of Local Government
    4. File with the Department of Financial Services, Bureau of Collateral Management
    5. File with the Department of Management Services, Division of Retirement
    6. File with the Department of Revenue, Property Tax Oversight Program, TRIM Compliance Section
    7. File with the Department of State, Division of Library and Information Services
    8. File with the Commission on Ethics
    9. File with the Florida Legislature
    10. File with the Special District's Governing Body Meeting Minute Recorder
    11. File with Each of the Special District's Governing Body Members
    12. File with Each Local General-Purpose Government in Which the Special District is Located
    13. File with Special District's Residents and Prospective Residents and Residential Developers
    14. File with the State Board of Administration, Financial Operations
    15. File with the State Board of Administration, Division of Bond Finance
    16. File with the Local Supervisor of Elections in the County of the Reporting Person's Permanent Residence
    17. File with the Local Supervisor of Elections in the County in which the Special District of the Reporting Person has its Principal Office
    18. Other Contacts Referenced in the Florida Special District Handbook Online:
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