Florida League of Cities

Interests of Foreign Countries (Monitor) – Passed 

CS/CS/SB 264 (Collins) restricts the issuance of government contracts or economic development incentives to foreign entities that are owned by, controlled by or organized under the laws of a foreign country of concern (i.e., the People’s Republic of China, the Russian Federation, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the Republic of Cuba, the Venezuelan Regime of Nicolas Maduro, or the Syrian Arab Republic, including any agency of or other entity within significant control of such foreign country of concern). The bill further prohibits a foreign principal, as defined in the bill, from owning or acquiring agricultural land or other interests in real property on or within 10 miles of a military installation or critical infrastructure facility. A foreign principal that owns agricultural land acquired before July 1, 2023, may continue to hold such land and must register with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (DACS) by January 1, 2024, on a form prescribed by DACS. If the property owned or acquired before July 1, 2023, is on or within 10 miles of a military installation or critical infrastructure facility, the foreign principal must similarly register with the Department of Economic Opportunity by December 31, 2023. The bill prohibits the People’s Republic of China, the Chinese Communist Party, its officials and members, other political party official or members, other legal entities or subsidiaries organized under the laws of, or having a principal place of business in, China or its political subdivisions, or other persons domiciled in China, who are not U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents of the United States, from purchasing or acquiring an interest in, real property in Florida. However, a natural person may purchase one residential real property not exceeding 2 acres in size and not on or within 5 miles of a military installation if certain conditions are met. The bill also allows the purchase of real property for diplomatic purposes recognized, acknowledged and allowed by the federal government. The bill also amends the Florida Electronic Health Records Act to require the physical storage of personal medical information in the continental U.S., U.S. territories or Canada. The bill amends the Health Care Licensing Procedures Act to require that licensees sign an affidavit attesting that all patient information is physically stored in the continental U.S., U.S. territories or Canada. Finally, the bill amends section 836.05, Florida Statutes, relating to criminal threats and extortion, to provide that a person who violates the statute while acting as a foreign agent for the purpose of benefitting a foreign country of concern, commits a first degree felony.   

Effective date: July 1, 2023. (Taggart)