Affidavit: A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it, before a notary or officer having authority to administer oaths.
Amendment: A proposal to alter the text of a pending bill or other measure by striking out some of it, by inserting new language, or both. Before an amendment becomes part of the measure, thelegislature must agree to it.
Annuity: A periodic (usually annual) payment of a fixed sum of money for either the life of the recipient or for a fixed number of years. A series of payments under a contract from an insurance company, a trust company, or an individual. Annuity payments are made at regular intervals over a period of more than one full year.
Answer: The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for defense.
Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
Appraisal: A determination of property value.
Appropriation: The provision of funds, through an annual appropriations act or a permanent law, for federal agencies to make payments out of the Treasury for specified purposes. The formal federal spending process consists of two sequential steps: authorization
Arrest: Taking physical custody of a person by lawful authority.
Assets: (1) The property comprising the estate of a deceased person, or (2) the property in a trust account.
board of supervisors: means the governing board of the district or, if such board has been abolished, the board, body, or commission succeeding to the principal functions thereof or to whom the powers given to the board by this act have been given by law. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Bond: includes "certificate" and the provisions which are applicable to bonds are equally applicable to certificates. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Chief judge: The judge who has primary responsibility for the administration of a court but also decides cases; chief judges are determined by seniority.
Community development district: means a local unit of special-purpose government which is created pursuant to this act and limited to the performance of those specialized functions authorized by this act; the governing head of which is a body created, organized, and constituted and authorized to function specifically as prescribed in this act for the purpose of the delivery of urban community development services; and the formation, powers, governing body, operation, duration, accountability, requirements for disclosure, and termination of which are as required by general law. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
Component independent special district: means an independent special district that proposes to be merged into a merged independent district, or an independent special district as it existed before its merger into the merged independent district of which it is now a part. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
Corporation: A legal entity owned by the holders of shares of stock that have been issued, and that can own, receive, and transfer property, and carry on business in its own name.
Cost: when used with reference to any project, includes, but is not limited to:
(a) The expenses of determining the feasibility or practicability of acquisition, construction, or reconstruction. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Deed: The legal instrument used to transfer title in real property from one person to another.
Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
Elector-initiated merger plan: means the merger plan of two or more independent special districts, a majority of whose qualified electors have elected to merge, which outlines the terms and agreements for the official merger of the districts and is finalized and approved by the governing bodies of the districts pursuant to this part. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Equitable: Pertaining to civil suits in "equity" rather than in "law." In English legal history, the courts of "law" could order the payment of damages and could afford no other remedy. See damages. A separate court of "equity" could order someone to do something or to cease to do something. See, e.g., injunction. In American jurisprudence, the federal courts have both legal and equitable power, but the distinction is still an important one. For example, a trial by jury is normally available in "law" cases but not in "equity" cases. Source: U.S. Courts
Escheat: Reversion of real or personal property to the state when 1) a person dies without leaving a will and has no heirs, or 2) when the property (such as a bank account) has been inactive for a certain period of time. Source: OCC
Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
Ex officio: Literally, by virtue of one's office.
Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
Fiscal year: The fiscal year is the accounting period for the government. For the federal government, this begins on October 1 and ends on September 30. The fiscal year is designated by the calendar year in which it ends; for example, fiscal year 2006 begins on October 1, 2005 and ends on September 30, 2006.
Foreclosure: A legal process in which property that is collateral or security for a loan may be sold to help repay the loan when the loan is in default. Source: OCC
Fraud: Intentional deception resulting in injury to another.
Gift: A voluntary transfer or conveyance of property without consideration, or for less than full and adequate consideration based on fair market value.
Governing body: means the governing body of the independent special district in which the general legislative, governmental, or public powers of the district are vested and by authority of which the official business of the district is conducted. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Guarantor: A party who agrees to be responsible for the payment of another party's debts should that party default. Source: OCC
Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
Indemnification: In general, a collateral contract or assurance under which one person agrees to secure another person against either anticipated financial losses or potential adverse legal consequences. Source: FDIC
Independent special district: means a special district that is not a dependent special district as defined in subsection (2). See Florida Statutes 189.012
Initiative: means the filing of a petition containing a proposal for a referendum to be placed on the ballot for election. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Joint merger plan: means the merger plan that is adopted by resolution of the governing bodies of two or more independent special districts that outlines the terms and agreements for the official merger of the districts and that is finalized and approved by the governing bodies pursuant to this part. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Joint resolution: A legislative measure which requires the approval of both chambers.
Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
Landowner: means the owner of a freehold estate as appears by the deed record, including a trustee, a private corporation, and an owner of a condominium unit; it does not include a reversioner, remainderman, mortgagee, or any governmental entity, who shall not be counted and need not be notified of proceedings under this act. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Lease: A contract transferring the use of property or occupancy of land, space, structures, or equipment in consideration of a payment (e.g., rent). Source: OCC
Legislative Auditing Committee: means a committee or committees designated by joint rule of the Legislature, by the President of the Senate or the Speaker of the House of Representatives, or by agreement between the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives. See Florida Statutes 1.01
Liabilities: The aggregate of all debts and other legal obligations of a particular person or legal entity.
Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
Local general-purpose government: means a county, municipality, or consolidated city-county government. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Local governing authority: means the governing body of a unit of local general-purpose government. See Florida Statutes 189.012
Merged independent district: means a single independent special district that results from a successful merger of two or more independent special districts pursuant to this part. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Merger: means the combination of two or more contiguous independent special districts resulting in a newly created merged independent district that assumes jurisdiction over all of the component independent special districts. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Merger plan: means a written document that contains the terms, agreements, and information regarding the merger of two or more independent special districts. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
Office of Economic and Demographic Research: means an entity designated by joint rule of the Legislature or by agreement between the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives. See Florida Statutes 1.01
Oversight: Committee review of the activities of a Federal agency or program.
Partnership: A voluntary contract between two or more persons to pool some or all of their assets into a business, with the agreement that there will be a proportional sharing of profits and losses.
person: includes individuals, children, firms, associations, joint adventures, partnerships, estates, trusts, business trusts, syndicates, fiduciaries, corporations, and all other groups or combinations. See Florida Statutes 1.01
Person: means an individual 18 years of age or older who is a potential or actual subject of proceedings under this part. See Florida Statutes 394.912
Personal property: All property that is not real property.
political subdivision: include counties, cities, towns, villages, special tax school districts, special road and bridge districts, bridge districts, and all other districts in this state. See Florida Statutes 1.01
Presiding officer: A majority-party Senator who presides over the Senate and is charged with maintaining order and decorum, recognizing Members to speak, and interpreting the Senate's rules, practices and precedents.
Project: means any development, improvement, property, utility, facility, works, enterprise, or service now existing or hereafter undertaken or established under the provisions of this act. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Proposed elector-initiated merger plan: means a written document that contains the terms and information regarding the merger of two or more independent special districts and that accompanies the petition initiated by the qualified electors of the districts but that is not yet finalized and approved by the governing bodies of each component independent special district pursuant to this part. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Proposed joint merger plan: means a written document that contains the terms and information regarding the merger of two or more independent special districts and that has been prepared pursuant to a resolution of the governing bodies of the districts but that is not yet finalized and approved by the governing bodies of each component independent special district pursuant to this part. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Public facilities: means major capital improvements, including, but not limited to, transportation facilities, sanitary sewer facilities, solid waste facilities, water management and control facilities, potable water facilities, alternative water systems, educational facilities, parks and recreational facilities, health systems and facilities, and, except for spoil disposal by those ports listed in…. See Florida Statutes 189.012
Qualified elector: means any person at least 18 years of age who is a citizen of the United States, a legal resident of Florida and of the district, and who registers to vote with the supervisor of elections in the county in which the district land is located. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Qualified elector: means an individual at least 18 years of age who is a citizen of the United States, a permanent resident of this state, and a resident of the district who registers with the supervisor of elections of a county within which the district lands are located when the registration books are open. See Florida Statutes 189.07
Quorum: The number of legislators that must be present to do business.
Real property: Land, and all immovable fixtures erected on, growing on, or affixed to the land.
Recourse: An arrangement in which a bank retains, in form or in substance, any credit risk directly or indirectly associated with an asset it has sold (in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles) that exceeds a pro rata share of the bank's claim on the asset. If a bank has no claim on an asset it has sold, then the retention of any credit risk is recourse. Source: FDIC
Refunding bonds: means bonds issued to refinance outstanding bonds of any type and the interest and redemption premium thereon. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Remainder: An interest in property that takes effect in the future at a specified time or after the occurrence of some event, such as the death of a life tenant.
Remainderman: One entitled to the remainder of an estate after a particular reserved right or interest, such as a life tenancy, has expired.
Restitution: The court-ordered payment of money by the defendant to the victim for damages caused by the criminal action.
Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
sewer system: includes treatment plants, pumping stations, lift stations, valves, force mains, intercepting sewers, laterals, pressure lines, mains, and all necessary appurtenances and equipment; all sewer mains, laterals, and other devices for the reception and collection of sewage from premises connected therewith; and all real and personal property and any interest therein, rights, easements, and franchises of any nature relating to any such system and necessary or convenient for operation thereof. See Florida Statutes 190.003
Sexually violent predator: means any person who:
(a) Has been convicted of a sexually violent offense; and
(b) Suffers from a mental abnormality or personality disorder that makes the person likely to engage in acts of sexual violence if not confined in a secure facility for long-term control, care, and treatment. See Florida Statutes 394.912
Special district: means a unit of local government created for a special purpose, as opposed to a general purpose, which has jurisdiction to operate within a limited geographic boundary and is created by general law, special act, local ordinance, or by rule of the Governor and Cabinet. See Florida Statutes 189.012
Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
Tort: A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person, as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident.
Transcript: A written, word-for-word record of what was said, either in a proceeding such as a trial or during some other conversation, as in a transcript of a hearing or oral deposition.
Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
Venue: The geographical location in which a case is tried.
veteran: means a person who served in the active military, naval, or air service and who was discharged or released under honorable conditions only or who later received an upgraded discharge under honorable conditions, notwithstanding any action by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs on individuals discharged or released with other than honorable discharges. See Florida Statutes 1.01
water management and control facilities: includes all real and personal property and any interest therein, rights, easements, and franchises of any nature relating to any such water management and control facilities or necessary or convenient for the acquisition, construction, reconstruction, operation, or maintenance thereof. See Florida Statutes 190.003
writing: includes handwriting, printing, typewriting, and all other methods and means of forming letters and characters upon paper, stone, wood, or other materials. See Florida Statutes 1.01