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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Chapter 373
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F.S. 373.079
373.079 Members of governing board; oath of office; staff.
(1) Each member of the governing board of the district, before entering upon his or her official duties, shall take and subscribe to an oath, before some officer authorized by law to administer oaths, that the member will honestly, faithfully, and impartially perform the duties devolving upon him or her in office as member of the governing board of the district to which the member was appointed and that he or she will not neglect any of the duties imposed upon him or her by this chapter.
(2) Immediately after their appointment, and every 2 years thereafter, the governing board shall meet at some convenient place and choose some suitable person, who may or may not be a member of the governing board, and who may be required to execute bond for the faithful performance of his or her duties as the governing board may determine, as secretary. Such board shall adopt a seal with a suitable device and shall keep a well-bound book entitled, in effect, “Record of Governing Board of   District,” in which shall be recorded minutes of all meetings, resolutions, proceedings, certificates, bonds given by all employees, and any and all corporate acts, which book shall at reasonable times be open to the inspection of any citizen of this state or taxpayer in the district or his or her agent or attorney.
(3) The chair and members of the board shall receive no compensation for services as such; but, while officially on work for the district, they shall receive their actual travel expenses between their respective places of residence and the place where official district business is conducted, subsistence, lodging, and other expenses in the actual amount incurred therefor. These expenses may not exceed the statutory amount allowed state officers and employees. Payment or reimbursement to governing board members for the use of private or charter aircraft may be no greater than that allowed for commercial air travel for equivalent distances. This subsection applies retroactively to the effective date of the creation of each of the five separate water management districts.
(4) The governing board of the district shall employ:
(a) An executive director, ombudsman, and such engineers, other professional persons, and other personnel and assistants as it deems necessary and under such terms and conditions as it may determine and to terminate such employment. The appointment of an executive director by the governing board is subject to approval by the Governor and must be initially confirmed by the Senate. The governing board may delegate all or part of its authority under this paragraph to the executive director. However, the governing board shall delegate to the executive director all of its authority to take final action on permit applications under part IV or petitions for variances or waivers of permitting requirements under part IV. The executive director may execute such delegated authority through designated staff members. Such delegations shall not be subject to the rulemaking requirements of chapter 120. The governing board must provide a process for referring a denial of such application or petition to the governing board for the purpose of taking final action. The executive director must be confirmed by the Senate upon employment and must be confirmed or reconfirmed by the Senate during the second regular session of the Legislature following a gubernatorial election.
(b) An inspector general, who shall report directly to the board. However, the governing boards of the Suwannee River Water Management District and the Northwest Florida Water Management District may jointly employ an inspector general, or provide for inspector general services by interagency agreement with a state agency or water management district inspector general. An inspector general must have the same qualifications and perform the applicable duties of state agency inspectors general as provided in s. 20.055.
(5) The executive director may employ a legal staff for the purposes of:
(a) Providing legal counsel to the executive director and district staff on matters relating to the day-to-day operations of the district;
(b) Representing the district in all proceedings of an administrative or judicial nature; and
(c) Otherwise assisting in the administration of the provisions of this chapter.

Attorneys employed by the governing board must represent the legal interest or position of the governing board.

(6) By resolution the governing board may determine the location of its principal office and provide for the change thereof.
(7) The governing board shall meet at least once a month and upon call of the chair. The governing board, a basin board, a committee, or an advisory board may conduct meetings by means of communications media technology in accordance with rules adopted pursuant to s. 120.54.
History.s. 15, part I, ch. 72-299; s. 1, ch. 82-46; ss. 6, 12, ch. 84-341; s. 25, ch. 88-242; ss. 1, 2, ch. 89-279; ss. 11, 12, ch. 90-217; s. 23, ch. 93-213; s. 8, ch. 94-235; s. 254, ch. 94-356; s. 1006, ch. 95-148; s. 10, ch. 97-160; s. 21, ch. 2001-256; s. 13, ch. 2003-265; s. 6, ch. 2009-243; s. 51, ch. 2010-205; s. 7, ch. 2012-6.