In 1968, the Florida Constitution was amended to authorize local home rule powersfor both cities and charter counties. … On the heels of this decision, the legislature, in 1973, enacted the Municipal Home Rules Power Act (MHRPA), now codified in Ch. 166 of the Florida Statutes.
The Legislature now wishes to remove the Municipal home rules Power Act and I am not certain that it may be a good idea. However, Mayor Spencer Lofton has requested that we all vote against the legislation taking away the home rule. The First Amendment Foundation believes the Home Rule is a fabulous Act; however, they have not envisioned a Town like White Springs.
The most precious powers a city in Florida has are its Home Rule powers. The ability to establish its form of government through its charter, and to then enact ordinances, codes, plans and resolutions without prior state approval is a tremendous authority. To further be able to enforce them “at home” and to make necessary changes as a city grows is a great reflection of the trust that citizens have in their respective city leaders.
Of course, city laws cannot conflict with state or federal laws. In the metropolitan Miami-Dade County government and in certain chartered county governments, some municipal ordinances and processes are subject to county review. However, for most of Florida’s 412 municipalities, Home Rule powers ensure that the cities are effectively and efficiently providing for the wishes of their citizens.
Karin for the blog