Code Enforcement Legal Issues Journal

Becoming a Code Enforcement Professional (CEP) is the highest designation that a code enforcement officer can achieve in the State of Florida.  To become a CEP, officers must submit a Legal Issues Paper that discusses a conflict important to the code enforcement profession.  There have been many Legal Issues Papers submitted over the years, some of which exemplify the professionalism of our members and some of which provide an interesting historical reference or perspective.  In 2016 the Florida Association of Code Enforcement formed a three person committee to review the CEP papers and choose the best papers for publication.

We are pleased to offer this Code Enforcement Journal of published papers to represent our membership and profession.

Featured Legal Issues Journal:

Author:  Robert Santos-Alborna

Title:   Noise in the City of Miami Beach:  Historical Analysis, Legal Defensibility, and Emerging Issues

Excerpt:  In the City of Miami Beach, as may be the case in other metropolitan cities in the State of Florida and the U.S., noise is a challenging issue that impacts both residents and businesses alike. While some residents assert that Code's noise validity rates are unacceptably low, paradoxically, business owners and operators in the entertainment and hospitality industries believe that the City of Miami Beach issues far too many noise violations and is not business friendly.

This analysis will address this apparent paradox and will provide historical data including noise-related trends, patterns, and other relevant noise-related information within the City of Miami Beach. The analysis will also seek to identify emerging issues that other municipalities may be experiencing, including the incorporation of technology to the code enforcement process. Lastly, the analysis will evaluate the current municipal ordinance at the City of Miami Beach to ensure legal defensibility and explore options regarding the incorporation of technology in the noise assessment practice.

This topic and experience gained by Miami Beach in addressing noise may be of value to other municipalities in the State of Florida as they may be experiencing similar challenges: whether dealing with a demanding business industry whose interest is in direct conflict with that of area residents, or developing processes to allow for input from area residents, businesses and other stakeholders, or the inclusion of technology into Code's day-to-day activities. In that vein, the City of Miami Beach provides a petri-dish to other Code Enforcement agencies to assess and learn from, as it attempts to reconcile all the aforementioned interests while increasing transparency, improving service delivery, and enhancing the public trust in local government.

Full Paper:  Noise in the City of Miami Beach

Previous Legal Issues Journal Papers:

Supreme Court decision: Clyde Reed, et al., v Town of Gilbert, Arizona, et al. written by Jeffrey S. Look

The United States Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) and the Act’s Effect on the City of Gainesville, Florida’s Land Use Regulation written by Christopher Cooper