House -- and 3 local lawmakers -- upend Pinellas
A bill (HB 1445) that pre-empts a summertime ban on selling fertilizer in Pinellas County passed the Florida House by a 74-37 vote Monday that included several local lawmakers’ support.
The news wasn't going to be viewed unexpectedly in county government. Assistant county administrator Elithia Stanfield, who oversees lobbying, said the county's chances didn't "look good," noting the lack of unanimous support in its delegation. Part of Pinellas' problem is its retail ban went farther than other counties, leaving it a bit isolated politically.
Retailers and the agriculture industry sought to upend the county’s ordinance and protect the lawn care companies who losing business. The county sought to protect its impaired waterways from runoff pollution.
Among Pinellas’ eight House members, three broke with the county to vote for the bill: Reps. Tom Anderson, R-Dunedin; Peter Nehr, R-Tarpon Springs; and Jim Frishe, R-St. Petersburg. An effort to add the pre-emption to a Senate bill also is expected this week.
David DeCamp, Times staff writer