Governor Scott has recently issued emergency declarations applicable to 51 Florida Counties, providing opportunities for extending certain development approvals within those areas.

Florida Statute 252.363 provides an extension for permits and authorizations when the Governor declares a state of emergency, effective within the area covered by the emergency declaration. Executive Orders 16-205 and 16-206 were issued on August 31, 2016 in response to the threats posed by Tropical Storm Hermine. The emergency declarations apply to the following counties: Alachua, Baker, Bay, Bradford, Brevard, Calhoun, Citrus, Clay, Columbia, Dixie, Duval, Escambia, Flagler, Franklin, Gadsden, Gilchrist, Gulf, Hamilton, Hernando, Hillsborough, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lake, Leon, Levy, Liberty, Madison, Manatee, Marion, Nassau, Okaloosa, Orange, Osceola, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Putnam, Santa Rosa, Sarasota, Seminole, St. Johns, Sumter, Suwanee, Taylor, Union, Volusia, Wakulla, Walton, and Washington. These emergency declarations are effective for 60 days, unless extended. The emergency declaration tolls the period remaining to exercise the rights under a permit or other authorization for the duration of the emergency declaration and extends the deadline for the permit or authorization for an additional 6 months beyond the tolled period. With some exceptions, this extension applies to expiration of local-government-issued development orders, building permits, DEP and water management district permits pursuant to part IV of chapter 373 and to DRI build-out dates.

Within 90 days after the termination of the emergency declaration, the holder of the permit or authorization must provide written notice to the issuing authority of the intent to exercise the tolling and extension granted. The notice must identify the specific permit or other authorization qualifying for extension.