The Real Deal Miami

Court ruling opens doors for big public spending shift

September 18, 2008 03:08PM

The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that voter referendums are not required when spending large chunks of community-redevelopment money, which effectively ends auto dealer Norman Braman’s lawsuit attempting to derail a spending plan for the new Florida Marlins baseball stadium. The development money, usually administered by community redevelopment agencies, or CRAs, is the glue that holds Miami’s megaplan together. Although not used to directly fund the Marlins stadium, CRA money would flow to other pieces of the megaplan — freeing up other funds to pay for the stadium. The voter-referendum issue has been one of the biggest headaches for megaplan backers, though they have done their best to work around it.