Does it matter to Fla. Cabinet if more homes not needed?
Gov. Charlie Crist and the Cabinet are scheduled to decide on Tuesday whether 400 acres of rolling horse country outside Ocala can be developed into about 800 homes. It's a minor agenda matter for Florida's top elected officials, but one with major implications for the future of the state's growth management policy.
The issue is simple: Does Marion County need more homes?
The state's growth management agency says no. The developers say that regardless of need, they should get to build on land that is theirs. Big guns, including the Florida Farm Bureau and the Florida Chamber of Commerce, are lobbying on the developer's behalf. Tom Pelham, head of the Department of Community Affairs, said it's no accident that an innocuous subdivision in the middle of the state has attracted such high-powered attention in Tallahassee.