The new Monroe County Land Development Code is effective today. This code establishes the specific regulations to implement the vision and policies of the updated 2030 Comprehensive Plan.
The Comprehensive Plan
evaluates just about everything that would affect the island chain, including
land use, housing, marine resources and conservation of environmentally
sensitive land. It addresses transportation, including mass transit, ports,
aviation and infrastructure (water, sewer, solid waste disposal, drainage and
groundwater aquifer recharge). This plan also deals with recreation and open
space, cultural resources, historic preservation and capital improvement for
all County services.
Both the Comprehensive
Plan and Land Development Code originally were developed 20 years ago. To
update these detailed documents was a 6-year effort – with numerous public
meetings along the way. The Monroe County Board of County Commissioners adopted
both the Plan and Code in April 2016. After review and approval by the State,
the Plan went into effect June 16, 2016.
A month later, also after
State review and approval, the State published a final order approving the Land
Development Code update. This initiated a 21-day appeal period.
The 580 page Code
would have become effective on August 16, 2016; however, during the appeal
period, a petition was filed with the State that challenged their Final Order
regarding 6 words. It challenged Section
130-165 of the Code, which added a condition that in order to aggregate
development of two or more parcels, the development must be “located on
contiguous parcels of land”.
The challenge of these
few words held up the effectiveness of the entire Land Development Code. The
petitioners, State and County agreed to settle the matter by deleting the new
text of “located on contiguous parcels of land” and the petitioners voluntarily
dismissed their case. As a result, the Land Development Code is now in effect. The
adopted documents can be viewed at: http://keyscompplan.com/.
The applications for
the Planning and Environmental Resources Department are being updated to
reflect the newly effective Land Development Code and can be accessed here: http://www.monroecounty-fl.gov/index.aspx?NID=189.