Community Development Districts (CDDs)
A CDD is a governmental system created to serve the long-term particular requirements of its community. Created pursuant to Chapter 190 of the Florida Statutes, a CDD’s main powers are strategy, finance, construction, run and keep community-wide infrastructure and services specifically for the benefit of its citizens.
What will the CDD Do?
Through a CDD, the community can offer its citizens a broad range of community-related services and infrastructure to help ensure the highest quality of life possible. CDD responsibilities within our community may include storm water management, potable and irrigation water supply, sewer and wastewater management, and street lights.
How CDDs Operate
A CDD is governed by its Board of Supervisors which is elected initially by the landowners, then begins transitioning to locals of the CDD after six years of operation. Like all community, county, state, and national elections, the Office of the Supervisor of Elections oversees the vote, and CDD Supervisors are subject to state ethics and financial disclosure laws.
The Florida Commission on Ethics – The CDD’s company is performed in the “Sunshine,” meaning that all meetings and records are open to the public. Public hearings are hung on CDD evaluations and the CDD’s budget plan undergoes yearly independent audit.
Relationship with Home Owner’s Associations
The CDD complements the responsibilities of community homeowner’s associations (HOAs). Many of the maintenance functions handled by these associations in other communities may be handled by the CDD. However, the associations have other responsibilities such as operating amenities and ensuring that deed restrictions and other quality standards are enforced. The CDD may contract with the Master Home Owners Association to perform maintenance functions.
Benefits to Residents
Residents within a community with a CDD may expect to receive three major classes of benefits. First, the CDD provides landowners consistently high levels of public facilities and services managed and financed through self-imposed fees and assessments. Second, the CDD ensures that these community development facilities and services will be completed concurrently with other parts of the development. Third, CDD landowners and electors choose the Board of Supervisors, which is able to determine the type, quality, and expense of CDD facilities and services.
Other savings are realized because a CDD is subject to the same laws and regulations that apply to other government entities. The CDD is able to borrow money to finance its facilities at lower, tax-exempt, interest rates – the same as cities and counties. Many contracts for goods and services, such as annually negotiated maintenance contracts, are subject to publicly advertised competitive bidding.
Residents and property owners in a CDD set the standards of quality, which are then managed by the CDD. The CDD provides perpetual maintenance of the environmental conservation areas. This consistent and quality-controlled method of management helps protect the long-term property values in a community.
The Cost of a CDD
The cost to operate a CDD is borne by those who benefit from its services. Property owners in the CDD are subject to a non-ad valorem assessment, which appears on their annual property tax bill from the county tax collector and may consist of two parts: an annual assessment for operations and maintenance, which can fluctuate up and down from year to year based on the budget adopted for that fiscal year, and an annual capital assessment to repay bonds sold by the CDD to finance community infrastructure and facilities, which annual assessments are generally fixed for the term of the bonds. Because costs and services vary depending upon the individual CDD, specific fee information is available for each community.
The CDD makes it possible for our community to offer the most desirable elements of a master-planned community. Residents enjoy high quality infrastructure facilities and services with the comfort and assurance of knowing that the standards of the community will be maintained long after the developer is gone. With a CDD in place, residents are assured of the ability to control quality and value for years to come.
The Community Development District
- Q. What can the Community Development District in our community be responsible for?
- A. Under current legislation, the CDD may plan, establish, acquire, construct or reconstruct, enlarge or extend, equip, operate, and maintain the following basic infrastructure.
- Water management; main line irrigation, and lake and water control structures
- Water supply
- Sewer and wastewater management
- Bridges and culverts
- District roads, signs, and street lights
- Parks and recreational facilities
- Fire prevention and control
- Security (including guardhouses, fences, gates, and electronic intrusion-detection devices)
- Control and elimination of mosquitoes
- Waste collection and disposal
- Conservation areas
- Q. What are the ongoing responsibilities of the CDD:
- A. The ongoing responsibilities of the CDD are to administer the CDD bonds and operate its community facilities and services for the benefit of the property owners. These include the following systems and facilities of the CDD.
- Wetlands, Waterway Management, and Drainage
- Common Area Landscaping and Entrance Monuments
- Parks, Playground, Clubhouse, and other Recreational Facilities
- Community Events and Newsletters
- Roving Patrol and Security Service
- Common Area and Street Lighting
- Q. Who governs the CDD?
- A. The CDD is governed by a five-member Board of Supervisors elected initially by the property owners. Eventually, the Board will be elected by majority vote of the resident electors in the community. A professional manager implements the policies of the Board.
- Q. What do I pay for the services?
- A. The CDD issues Special Assessment Revenue Bonds to finance community infrastructure. Generally, Community Development Districts assess each property owner a yearly capital debt service assessment to pay back those bonds. In the case of the CDD a significant portion of this capital assessment will be prepaid by the developer at the time of closing.
In addition, to maintain the facilities of the community and administer the CDD, the CDD conducts a public hearing each year at which it adopts an Operating and Maintenance budget. The finding of this budget is levied as an Operating and Maintenance assessment on your property by the Board of Supervisors. All residents pay for a share of the maintenance of the CDD Improvements through this assessment.
The annual operating and maintenance assessment amount will be set annually by the Board of Supervisors. You can view the Annual Assessments for the current Fiscal Year here.
The Board of Supervisors is required to hire a District Manager who has oversight responsibility of the works of the District. Meritus Districts is currently serving as our District Management company.
The Board is authorized to hire other employees and agents as it deems necessary. Our present District Engineering firm is Stantec, Inc., and the firm of Burr & Forman. serves as District Legal Counsel. All professionals hired work at the direction of the Board of Supervisors.