What Is CDD
Highlands Community Development District Overview
Highlands Community Development District (the “District”) is an independent local unit of special-purpose government. The Uniform Community Development District Act of 1980
(otherwise known as Chapter 190, Florida Statutes) provides, among other things, the power to manage basic services for community development, power to borrow money and issue bonds, and to levy and assess non‐ad valorem assessments for the financing and delivery of capital infrastructure. The District shall be governed by the uniform community development district charter as set forth in Sections 190.006—190.041, Florida Statutes.
The District was established for the purposes of financing and managing the acquisition, construction, maintenance, and operation of certain infrastructure necessary for community
development within the District. A District provides the “solution” to Florida’s need to provide valuable community infrastructure generated by growth, ultimately without overburdening other governments and their taxpaying residents. Community Development Districts represent a major advancement in Florida’s effort to manage its growth effectively and efficiently. This allows a community to establish higher construction standards, meanwhile providing a long-term solution to the operation and maintenance of the community’s facilities.
Community Development District Organization
The Highlands Community Development District (the “District”) is organized like other local governments in Florida, in that the legislative body is composed of a five-member board known as the Board of Supervisors. The Board establishes the policy of the District in accordance with Florida law. The Board, by law, must hire a District Manager. In addition, the Board may choose to employ other staff such as District Counsel and District Engineer. Staff members operate utilizing the same formalities as a County Administrator and County Attorney. The Board, through review of advertised Requests for Qualifications, ranks and selects a District Engineer to perform the engineering needs of the District. The District staff administers the operations of the District and implements the Board’s policies and contracts.
Board of Supervisors
The Board of Supervisors has the final responsibility for:
- Governing of the District, its staff, residents and CDD owned facilities and properties.
- Assessing and levying non‐ad valorem assessments.
- The annual budget and financing of the district, including, operations and maintenance fees and general oversight of the District.
- Controlling the use of funds generated by the District.
- Approving the hiring and firing of key personnel.
- Financing improvements of CDD owned properties.
- Complete all forms required by the State of Florida as a Public Officer.
- Comply to and understand the Sunshine Amendment and Code of Ethics for Public Officers.
- Holding and attending District Board meetings.
- Maintaining the current standing of the District up to code and compliance with the State of Florida and other local governmental entities.
- Planning for the future growth and maintenance of the District and its owned properties.
The District Manager’s responsibilities include:
- Charge and supervision of the works of the District.
- Preserving and maintaining any District facility and property or improvements.
- Preparation and submittal of a proposed operations and maintenance budgets for Board of Supervisors review and action.
- Preparation of contract specifications for District operations, including community appearance, waterway management, and facilities maintenance.
- File all required forms and documents with state and local agencies.
- Attend all Board of Supervisor meetings.
- Implement the policies of the Board of Supervisors.
- Additional duties as directed by the Board of Supervisors.
The Highlands Community Development District (CDD) is responsible for the management, operations, and maintenance of certain community infrastructure and amenities as prescribed in Chapter 190, Florida Statutes. These responsibilities include:
- Clubhouse including pool, fitness center, and pool furniture. Also, to include security, landscaping and lighting.
- Clubhouse reservations
- Camera security system at recreation center.
- Issuance of Access Cards for access to the clubhouse, restrooms, and fitness center
- Monuments and Lighting at entrances
- CDD owned common area landscape.
- CDD owned storm water system including lake, ponds, structures (manholes, weirs, pipes), and ditches.
- Lakes, ponds, wetlands, conservation areas, and easements owned by the CDD.
- Irrigation system pumps, irrigation system components on CDD property.
- Pet/Dog clean up stations.
The Highlands CDD clubhouse is the central hub of resident activity in the community. Included in this complex is a pool and a well-equipped exercise room. There is also a meeting center, with separate resident lounge area, small kitchen area and TV. Wi-Fi is available in the complex also. Access Cards are used for pool, restrooms, and fitness center access. Security surveillance cameras and motion lights are in strategic locations throughout the Clubhouse and pool area. The cameras are meant to capture incidents, accidents and vandalism. Images gathered can be used to recover cost of repairs or referral to law enforcement agencies.
The District onsite Clubhouse Manager operates out of the clubhouse, while performing many administrative and maintenance functions throughout the district. Residents can obtain Access Cards from Clubhouse Manager. Through the Clubhouse Manager, residents may also rent the clubhouse for private parties. Unfortunately, the pool is not available for rental when securing a clubhouse reservation. However, if the clubhouse has been rented for a private reservation, those renting may have up to 15 non-resident guests at the pool.
Each community organization, group or individual using or reserving the use of District facilities agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Highlands Community Development District (“District”) including the management company, and the respective officers, agents, contractors and employees of each, from any and all liability, claims, actions, suits or demands by any person, corporation or other entity, for injuries, death, property damage of any nature, arising out of or in connection with, the use of the district lands, premises and / or facilities, including litigation or any appellate proceeding with respect thereto. Nothing herein shall constitute or be construed as a waiver of the District’s sovereign immunity granted pursuant to Section 768.28, Florida Statues.
The District and its agents, employees and officers shall not be liable for, and the Homeowner, Renter or Non-Resident User shall release all claims for injury or damage to or loss of personal property or to the person, sustained by the user or any person claiming through the user, resulting from any fire, accident, occurrence, theft or condition in or upon the District’s lands, premises and/or facilities.