Community Development Districts, or CDDs, are special districts established by Florida statute setup to pay for and manage infrastructure needs for large developments. CDDs are an alternative to municipal incorporation.
A CDD is essentially a legal entity with the power to enter into contracts, own property and so on. A CDD is controlled by the residents and landowners in the area. Decisions as to what services and amenities are offered are up to them, not the developer.
Florida Statutes section 190.012 defines the powers a CDD has:
- Water management and control
- Water supply, sewer and wastewater management
- Bridges and culverts
- District roads and street lights
- Public transportation and parking
- Investigation and remediation of environmental contamination
- Conservation areas, parks and recreational facilities
- Fire prevention and control
- School buildings and related structures
- Security (…but no police powers)
- Waste collection and disposal
- Mosquito control
Examples of CDDs in Florida include:
- Aberdeen Community Development District (St. Johns)
- Piney-Z Community Development District (Tallahassee)
- Sarasota National Community Development District
- Vista Lakes Community Development District (Orlando)
CDD’s are setup with the assistance of an experienced land use attorney. Of the 638 CDD’s in the state, nearly 75% of them were established during the 2003-08 housing boom.