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A 'smart growth' group calls for DeSantis to veto a 'death knell' to growth management bill

 Urban sprawl
Urban sprawl

Environmentalists and growth control advocates are calling for Gov. Ron DeSantis to veto a billthey claim would kill most attempts to fight new sprawling developments.

The bill, which was presented to the governor last week, would make anyone who fights a change in a county's comprehensive growth pay the other side's attorney's fees if they lose.

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Jane West is policy and planning director with the "smart-growth" advocacy group 1000 Friends of Florida.

"I have characterized this bill as the death knell to growth management in Florida, and it definitely is," she said.

West said it would deter citizens from fighting plans for new developments that don't fit in with existing growth plans.

The billwas introduced in the Senate by Nick DiCeglie of Pinellas County.

She also said the bill contradicts DeSantis' executive order he issued before the legislative session to support long-term growth planning and environmental protection in the state.

"We are still in a very bad situation with this particular bill," West said during a conference call Wednesday. "So we are asking all of you to please contact the governor's office to veto sprawl bill 540. It's bad for the water, bad for the Everglades and bad for Florida."
Copyright 2023 WUSF 89.7. To see more, visit WUSF 89.7.

Steve Newborn is WUSF's assistant news director as well as a reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.
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