Title: Land Value State Sovereign Land Question Kissimmee River Valley
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/WL00001891/00001
 Material Information
Title: Land Value State Sovereign Land Question Kissimmee River Valley
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida
Abstract: Memorandum Preliminary Draft Land Value State Sovereign Land Question Kissimmee River Valley To: L.M. Blain From: C.L. Knight and P.R. Hobby July 22, 1992
General Note: Box 9, Folder 10 ( SF- Safe Upland Line - 1967 and 1992 ), Item 12
Funding: Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: WL00001891
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Holding Location: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

Full Text
UL-22--1992 18:0 FROM KNIGHT.APPRAISAL TO 2286422 P.82


TO: Mr. L.M. Blain
FROM: C.L. Knight and P.R. Hobby
DATE: July 22, 1992
Re: Land Value State Sovereign Land Question Kissimmee
River Valley

Dear Mr. Blains
You have presented to us for review and comment two studies
prepared for the South Florida Water Management District. The
first study dated February 17, 1992 was prepared by Real Property
Analysts, Inc., and the second study was prepared by Investment
Realty Consultants, Inc.. Basically the methodology used by both
appraisal groups consisted of analyzing sales in several counties
including, Polk, Osceola, Highlands, Okeechobee, Brevard, Semi-
nole, and Volusia where in real estate transactions were found
that reflected purchases of both land affected by state sovereign
land claims as well as tracts of lands unaffected by state
sovereign land claims. Investment Realty apparently made a
pointed effort to find the two types of sales in order to compare
one with the other while Real Property Analysts appeared to
examine only those sales which may have a state sovereign land
claim. In confirming the sales analyzed the appraisers discussed
with appropriate parties, which in many oases included both the
buyer and seller, general information relative to the sale with
particular attention being paid to the knowledge of the buyer as
to the existence of a possible state claim on the sovereign lands
(lowlands and wetlands) and if the buyer had knowledge of the
state claim, did the claim have any effect on the price that the
buyer paid for the property.
The appraisers basically found two broad classifications of land.
One would be land bought for agricultural purposes primarily
cattle grazing. The second category would be other uses, primar-
ily residential development. Our reading of the sales confirma-
tions on the other sales used strongly indicates to us that the
buyers recognized in all cases that they could not use the lands
claimed by the state or that might be claimed by the state as
sovereign land. The appraisers for Investment Realty Consultants
apparently reached the same conclusion.
It is interesting to note that they use the term active land use
(development purposes) and passive land use (agricultural use-
cattle grazing). In one case in Real Property Analysis Report
the sale described on page 46 actually presents a sale wherein

J .L-22-992 1s:03 FROM KNI4HT.PPISF 2286422 P.03

fMEQ (Continued)

the seller was in foreclosure and sold the property to a third
party. The buyer kept the uplands or usable area (active lands)
and sold back the lowlands subject to state sovereignty claim, to
the seller as follows:
Parker Poinciana, Inc., purchased from First and Second Poinciana
Limited Partnership 6,437 acres in February 1989, for a reported
consideration of $1,645.00 per acre. The sovereign land was
estimated to be 334.5 acres was sold to London Creek Association
which was the former owner for $840.00 per acre. This sale, and
resale was based on an agreement reached in 1985 which appears to
clearly specify the terms of the sale and resale. This sale then
clearly states that land with a state sovereignty claim has a
value of $840.00 per acre as against the entire parent tract
containing land that is usable with no sovereignty claim for
$1,645.00 per acre for the entire 6,437 acres.
On the second classification, agricultural lands, some of the
sales used apparently were to uninformed buyers who were not
aware of a possible sovereignty land claim. Our reading of the
confirmation would indicate that in these sales, the confirmation
call by the appraiser was first knowledge that the buyer had that
there was a possibility of a state sovereignty land claim on a
portion of their purchase. Almost universally these buyers
adopted an attitude "well if the state wants i1 they are going to
pay me for it".
On sales where both the buyer and seller of the agricultural land
had knowledge of a possible state sovereignty land claim, the
Appraisers Investment Realty concluded that there was approxi-
mately $50.00 per acre less value for lands where there may me a
dispute with the state of Florida as to the ownership of the
alleged sovereign lands. Real Property Analysts on the other
hand found that on the Kissimmee Chain of Lakes and the Kissimmee
River basin area, the market did not make a distinction in value
between the potential sovereign lands and lands that were not
subject to a possible sovereign land claim.
You have asked us to comment on this study and methodology. We
have summarized our thoughts as follows.
1. At this time the state of Florida has not generally moved to
restrict the adjacent land owners use of land claimed by the
state under the sovereign principle, ie. Generally speaking
they have not erected fences that would prohibit cattle from
ranging from the non-sovereign lands onto the sovereign
lands. Therefore, the market appears to be generally unin-
formed and assumes that "they" can continue to use the
sovereign lands as long as they own the adjacent uplands.


J4-22-1992 18:04 FROM KNIGHT.FAP[i L f 2286422 P.04

XBW (Continued)

2. Purchasers of land unaware of the sovereignty claim were
adamant about asserting their rights to the alleged sover-
eign lands if they are claimed by the state of Florida.
3. There still seems to be a legal question in at least some
cases as to the strength of the state's claim to wetlands as
is demonstrated by the Lake Poinsette case, Paradise Fruit
vs. State of Florida, wherein it was found that the sub-
merged land belonged to the adjacent property owner. In
this case Brevard County clearly recognized three land value
Dik dplands $1,375.00 per acre; Uplands $4,325.00 per
acr:ajd wetlands, all of which was in lake bottom -
$30 0-0 pr acre.
4. St. John)J River water Management District has now adopted a
policy that they will not pay for sovrign lands, however,
reading the sales, the property ownei~s dealing with St.
John's are working from the premisekth t they-are selling
the entire tract and it appears that t. Johzi4 may be
allocating the purchase price "as they see fit*. We would
suggest, therefore, that the St. John's sales considered in
this study should be considered as suspect, since the buyer
prepared an allocation of the purchase price that was not
agreed on by the seller.
5. In our opinion, the methodology used, while it may be the
best tool available at this time for the purposes of
analysis, is flawed for the following reasons.
A. Generally speaking the state has not restricted the use
of sovereign lands by the upland land owner. There
fore, the extent of the state claim is not generally
known in the market.
B. There is still some legal dispute as to the validity of
at least some of the state claims as to sovereign land.
C. Some sales were included wherein the buyers were not
aware of possible state sovereign land claims. In one
sale as discussed on page 20 of the Real Property
Analysts Report, all of the sale property falls within
the Milleson line area and none outside of the
state sovereign land claim area. The buyer paid
$1,054.00 per acre for 92 acres. The buyer reported
that the sale property was 100% usable grazing land.
Therefore, the buyer purchased this property confident
that he could use this land for the grazing of cattle
in perpetuity.

J -22-1992 18:05 FROM KNIGHT.IPPRAISAL TO 2286422 P.05

kUM (Continued)

D. The analysis of "other" sales used clearly shows that
the market strongly diffteentiates between the value of
upland "active* or developable land as against lower
lands possibly subject to state sovereign land claims.
If the price paid for the 92 acre sale of land
within the Milleson line was $1,054.00 per acre, this
value can not be supported by present cattle grazing
economics. In order to generate a net return of 10 on
the investment each acre would have to produce net
earnings of $105.40 per year. This is clearly not
possible, even at korean War time period cattle prices.
It is obvious that in the eyes of the typical buyer land
use is not frozen forever as cattle pasture and the
market is recognizing potentially changing land uses.
B. By assuming a frozen highest and best use and differen-
tiating between active and passive land uses, the analy-
sis does not take into account the long term fluctuating
real estate market in the state of Florida and does not
recognize possible changing future land uses.

Respectfully tt

C.T. fight,

hilp R. Bobby


I I I i .11


301/042 o1v


Old Kiss.
River bed
Ok. County

295/8700 Ma- N/S C-38
19 8 Ok. County

109 /547 Feb N/S C-41
1990 Highland Co.



2343 ac
2343 ac

1104 ao
1104 ac





graitee knew of sov.


Property 100% below
milleson m) line
grantee stated no
discussion of issue
during negotiations

Irrigated improved
pasture; buyer knew
there was 200-300
feet extending north
of canal that was ob-
tained by State,
however has fencing
across this land and
uses it

Imp. pasture with im-
provements (2-houses
eta) Grantor stated
not familiar with
sov, land issue;

land issue however
believed the purchase
was of land up-to the
Flood Control Line

751/221 Apr Old Kiss.
1983 River Ok. Co.

1006/0066 Feb Lake Kiss.
1991 Osoeola Co.

118 ao

5000 ac
3750 ac
1250 ac
? sov.

$641 ao Sale is of an island
created by the
construction of C-
38 boat access
only; buyer states
sov, lands not dis-
cussed or delineated

$850 ac

1985 contract date -
of that time buyer
not aware of sov.
land issue; in 1991
he recognized there
may be a claim, how-
ever pd. orig. amount

P. 6


L-22- 1992 18:05 FROM KNIHT. #MISL



2286422 P.07

1006/0666 Feb Lake Kiss. Os.
1991 County

909 1411 Feb Lake
1989 Batohineka
Lake Marian
Creek Polk &
Os. Co's.

883/2352 July Lake Toho-
1988 pekaliga
Os. County


6437 ao
6437 ac

216.5 ac
177 ac
39.5 ac


$2000 ac

$1645 ac

$7852 ac


Sale of portion of
land above; the sov.
land issue was
recognized and known
that about 50 ac may
be claimed by the
State, however re-
portedly had no
effect of the price

A DRI'd tract for
20,000 units. Of the
total land area
334.51 ac below the
the 54.3 foot
elevation (milleson
line) was deeded land
to the original owner
(land on creek
Association) for
$280,900 or $840.50
per ac. The transfer
of sov. land was
based on a 1985
Agreement if
undisputed Title
could not be

PUD zoned land; buyer
(ZOM Realty) had
survey done denoting
ordinary high water
line; further states
that the sov. land
was marsh, had no
value and could not
be used to access
take. He rejected any
value in the sov.

22=6422 P.09

JL-22-1992 18:06 FROM riGHT.APPRAISAL



2741/0944 May Lake Kiss.
1989 Polk County

2568/0506 Aug Lake
1989 Hatchinela

5590 ac
1118 ac
4472 ac

6142 ao
1228 ac
4914 ac


$1000 ac

$1254 ac


Purchased to plant
citrus. Grantees were
aware of sov. land
issue but not
delineated at time of
purchase. If land is
Flooded he expects
compensation for land

Buyer stated there
were no discussions
involving sov. lands
during negotiations.
Stated disputed lands
have value because it
is leased cattle
Fazing, and the less
eludes disputed

2246/0478 Dec Lake Jessup
1990 Seminole Co.

1194 ac
400 ac
794 ac
240 ac

$921 ac Seller states price
was based on upland
acreage and no value
was given to the wet-
lands which includes
the sov. land

2124/0302 Nov St. Johns
1989 River Sem. Co.

2080/0040 Apr Lake Harney
1989 & St. Johns
River Sem. Co.

3406 ac
1349 ac
2057 ac

144 ac
45 ac
99 ac

$1352 ac

$1007 ac

Purchased by Seminole
County. They stated
sov. land was not
recognized in the
purchase. Stated
sov. land was
included in the total
conveyance and was
not valued separately
Sov. land issue was
not discussed in the
sale write-ups

jL-22-1992 18:06 FROM KN GHT.FAPPPi5L

2286422 P.09

s s M y (COTI D)


2087/1842 July Bconlock-
1989 hatchee
AND River Sea. Co.
2051/1154 Mar

1887/0433 Sept Lake Jessup
1987 Sem. Co.


917 ac
510 ac
407 ac

2216 ac
1001 ac
1215 ac


$4787 ac

$1584 ac


Purchased for res.
develop. buyers
stated they did not
reconsider or
delineate sov. lands
in purchase. Also
stated riverfront is
most valuable portion
and expect compen-
sation if State
claims any land.

Purchase by City of
Sanford for effluent
spray field. Land was
transferred by two
deeds; a Warranty
Deed for "non sov.
land" and a Quit
Claim Deed for the
potentially sov.
land (land below

1865/0706 July Lake Jessup
1987 Sem. County

199 ac

$452 ac

Buyer stated sov.
lands were an issue
in negotiations and
survey performed
and purchased only;
non sov. land did
not assign any value
to sov. land

SaL3 i


3/1955 Jan Lake Jessup
1986 Sea. County

1088/1721 Oct St. Johns
1990 River
Brevard Co.

2931/1017 Dec St. Johns
1986 River
AND Brevard Co.


1700 ao
1138 ac
565 ac
694 ac

3650 ac
1800 ao
1850 ac
1435 ac

2349 ac
259 ac
2090 ac
317 ao


$621 ac

$877 ac

$715 ac


In orig. sale soy.
land was not an
issue; buyer sub-
sequently sold prop-
erty to SJRWND in
Aug. 1990. At that
time SJRNMD had a
survey completed to
determine the sov.
land. S8RNMD paid
$794/ac overall.
Buyer states that
he had the property
appraised at $1000/ao
and $1100/ac. Be took
a lower price to
avoid the sov. land
issue with the State

SJRWMD was buyer
uplands were all in
imp. pasture 1,435
were considered by
buyer to be soy. land

Purchaser was SJRWMD
Purchase agreement
required seller to
have survey completed
to determine sov.
land (below OHWL).
Survey states 317 ac
were below OBWL.
There was 2,666.8
needed acres. State
did not pay for sov.

2286422 P.11




2787/2872 Mar


Lake Poinsett
Brevard County

1056/0383 Apr Wekiug River
1990 Lake County


1,104 ao

6093 ac
4453 ac
166 ac
1473 ac


$1146 ac

$3527 ac

Co9bW22 t

Bought by Brevard Co.
Price based on;
$1,375/ac diked lands
$4,325/ac uplands &
$300/ac wetlands
All of wetlands are
in Lake bottom. Sov
issue was recon-
sidered by both
parties however, a
recent court decision
stated that Lake
Poinsett had not been
surveyed when Florida
became State and
therefore ownership
of Lake Bottom was
vested to the land

Purchased by SJRWMD
Price based ons
$4796.80 for uplands
$456.89 for wetlands
No value for sov.
land; State required
seller to have survey
completed to
determine sov. land &
were included in the
Deed of transfer.
Seller did not
allocate value to
sov. land, uplands or
wetlands, only wanted
a bottom line figure.
All of the above
breakdown was done by


J-22-1992 18I08 FROM MI On.T APPRAISAL

s RssEaR (cOanaiaDD)




Dec Oklavaha River
1988 Lake County


484.31 ac

Oklawan River 3120 ac
Marion County 1040 ac
2080 ac


$3400 ac

$703 ac


Purchased for res.
develop. Broker &
buyer states sov.
lands was issue and a
survey determined the
OHWL was conveyed
at a specific
price/ac and all sov.
land transferred at
$100 total price.
Broker stated that
there was an area 1/2
mile wide between
river and the upland
area that made use
and view of river im-

Purchased for cattle
grazing. Buyer was
aware of sov. land
issue, however was
not a part of
negotiations. Buyer
states he owns all
land, even into the
river and would
expect compensation
for it if sold to the

2266422 P.12

J_.L- _.-.M LYOU r(rCO rIMU rEqtD, .1nlT inf
L' i

Af=i MDT



Nov Boon River
1989 basin
Orange Co.

1524/1330 Aug Oklawaha
1988 Canal
Marion Co.

3043/0903 Oct Lake Monroe
1987 Volusia Co.

sov. ulan

9368 ac
6089 ac
3279 ac

3922 ao

3248 ac
3022 ac


$63010 ac

$1504 ac

$462 ac


Purchased by Flag
Dev. for mixed use
Buyer stated there
was no discussion of
sov. land in nego-
tiations further
stated they had value
back; they were
generating revenue
from them in form
of grazing, hunting
and fishing leases.
Also states that any
claim of sov. would
be confined to river

Purchased byu SJRWMD
Seller stated they
owned to the center
of the river and the
area adjacent to the
river had been diked
& drained. Stated
that the land
adjacent to river was
more valuable B/C
soil was better.
The muckland adjacent
to the river was
given 64% of value
for 40% of land area

Purchased by Volusia
County Sov. lands not
discussed in

p 1K

2286422 P.14


~LaRSswrz C -orjerg)

sov. LMP


Dec St. Tohns
1986 Volusia Co.

0280/0623 May Unnamed Lake
1986 Flagler Co.

0280/0616 May Unnamed Lake
1986 Flagler Co.

796 ac

1050 ao


$1760 ac

$491 ac

3626 ac


Sov. lands were not
discussed in
negotiations and
buyer believes he
owns to center of
Grantor sold property
based on:
700/ac for pasture
550/ac for native
400/ac for swamp
There was no
discussion of sov.
land and buyer stated
lakefront was more

See comment above

T O -

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