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House passes Water Street Tampa development measure

With no debate, the House on Monday approved a proposal to create a special district to fund some features of a proposed $3 billion development in the city’s Channelside neighborhood.

The vote was 113-1, sending it to the Senate. There is no companion measure there, House records show. 

The lone ‘no’ vote in the House Monday was Patrick Henry, a Daytona Beach Democrat.

The bill (HB 1393), sponsored by Tampa Republican Jamie Grant, creates a Water Street Tampa Improvement District.

The proposal is backed by Strategic Property Partners, a partnership of Bill Gates‘ investment arm, Cascade Investment, and billionaire developer Jeff Vinik.

Water Street Tampa has become one of the most eagerly awaited private developments in Tampa.

When complete, it will cover 9 million square feet and include the first new office towers created in Tampa in nearly 25 years, as well as retail, educational and entertainment space.

The special improvement district allows an appointed board to levy special assessments on commercial properties.

The five-member board could also levy a millage rate up to one mill — $1 per $1,000 of assessed value.

(Background from Florida Politics Tampa Bay correspondent Mitch Perry.)

Written By

Jim Rosica is the Tallahassee-based Senior Editor for Florida Politics. He previously was the Tampa Tribune’s statehouse reporter. Before that, he covered three legislative sessions in Florida for The Associated Press. Jim graduated from law school in 2009 after spending nearly a decade covering courts for the Tallahassee Democrat, including reporting on the 2000 presidential recount. He can be reached at jim@floridapolitics.com.

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