Would we have our own building department/permitting?
Yes. Initially, the municipality would be under the County Comprehensive Plan and Code but it would be administered through the municipality.
The municipality has two years to create and adopt its’ own comprehensive plan and then a code subject to it.
Will we have to pay more for police services?
Yes. However, it will be dedicated service to the municipality. The cost will depend on the level of service requested, the negotiated contract with PBSO or the cost to create a police department as decided by the future municipal board. Initially, it is recommended the municipality remain with PBSO. Below is the excerpt from the Florida Statutes regarding municipal law enforcements agencies.
F.S. 166.049 Municipal law enforcement agencies; communications and assistance.—The chief of police shall:
(1) Schedule at least two law enforcement officers to be on duty at all times. While on duty, each officer must be able to communicate directly with the other and, if not engaged in another law enforcement activity, respond to the other officer’s request for assistance; or
(2) Establish a means for a municipal law enforcement officer to communicate with the county sheriff’s office and to request assistance of a routine law enforcement nature from the county sheriff’s office; or
(3) Establish a mutual aid agreement as provided in chapter 23 in order for a municipal law enforcement officer to communicate with municipal law enforcement agencies of other jurisdictions and to request routine law enforcement assistance from those agencies.
166.0493 Powers, duties, and obligations of municipal law enforcement agencies.—Every municipal law enforcement agency shall incorporate an antiracial or other antidiscriminatory profiling policy into the agency’s policies and practices, utilizing the Florida Police Chiefs Association Model Policy as a guide. Antiprofiling policies shall include the elements of definitions, traffic stop procedures, community education and awareness efforts, and policies for the handling of complaints from the public.
166.0495 Interlocal agreements to provide law enforcement services.—A municipality may enter into an interlocal agreement pursuant to s. 163.01 with an adjoining municipality or municipalities within the same county to provide law enforcement services within the territorial boundaries of the other adjoining municipality or municipalities. Any such agreement shall specify the duration of the agreement and shall comply with s. 112.0515, if applicable. The authority granted a municipality under this section is in addition to and not in limitation of any other authority granted a municipality to enter into agreements for law enforcement services or to conduct law enforcement activities outside the territorial boundaries of the municipality.
Will we have to pay more for fire services?
Possibly. It will depend on the level of service requested and the future Village Council. However, initially it is recommended the municipality remain within the Fire MSTU with the County and therefore the costs will remain the same.
WATER AND SEPTIC
Will we be forced on city water and city sewer if we became a municipality?
No, the municipality will continue with the current arrangement with Palm Beach County Water Utilities by petition only for water.
It should be noted that the State of Florida has been looking into septic conversion throughout the State of Florida for at least the past 5 years, in response to many environmental issues. The County has also been reviewing it at the PBC Water Task Force. According to the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council (TCRPC), there will likely be delays in implementing a conversion requirement because of improperly treated waste from sewer treatment plants that is creating a toxic environment. The treatment plants need to be upgraded.
In short, we are at risk of being forced to convert to County water and sewer right now. These costs would be imposed on each and every taxpayer, without a vote or petition, by the County. As a municipality, we would have the ability to advocate on behalf of our municipality at the State level, to properly plan conversion – if the State is forcing conversion, and to seek appropriate funding sources to help off-set the costs involved from the State and Federal governments. It is our understanding, the County could not force conversion on our community, if we are a municipality, unless there was substantial evidence showing it was a health issue. This would be a power only the State could enforce without substantial evidence of there being a health issue.
County water is already a possibility in our community via petition of the majority of landowners on a street within a ¼ mile section of a main line. This process is set out on the ITID website here.
Although the Town of Royal Palm Beach has an interlocal agreement with the County to receive 10% of construction and services on water and sewer in the “Acreage”, the agreement is not with ITID, nor with the residents, nor with the municipality. The Town of Royal Palm Beach does not control where the water and sewer is going nor can they force it on our community now or in the future.