Harvey Ruvin

County Ordinances, Referenda, and Projects

During his 20 years as a County Commissioner, Harvey Ruvin sponsored:

  • Miami-Dade County BEACH RENOURISHMENT PROJECT restoring a 200 foot-wide sandy beach from Haulover Park south to Government Cut (10 and 1/2 miles) and providing full public access (1975-1980).
  • Sponsor of successful Referendum approving a $90 million tax levy for the purchase and maintenance of ENDANGERED LANDS - also the nation's largest program of its kind in the nation (1990).
  • Spearheaded establishment of Countywide curbside collection of home-separated RECYCLABLES, the largest program of its kind in the nation (1990).
  • The program was later enlarged to include multi-family residential businesses.
  • Established a Commission on the Status of Self-Esteem, Personal and Social Responsibility (1990).
  • Sponsor of permanent water conservation regulations as well as requirements for ultra-low volume commodes, faucets and shower heads in all new construction, Countywide (1991).
  • Sponsor of Ordinance regulating Ozone depleting chemicals and banning cans powered by CFC's (1991).
  • Sponsor of Ordinance requiring Stage II nozzle heads at commercial gasoline stations to cut ozone and particulate emissions from pumps (1990).
  • Developed and successfully proposed sweeping changes in Dade County's procurement policies, so as to promote markets for recycled goods of all types (1992).
  • As sponsor and chairman of the BISCAYNE BAY MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE, he played an important role in the protection of South Bay, as well as the success model Restoration and Enhancement of North Bay (1981 to 1995).
  • Established BAYNANZA, an annual week-long event for the celebration of the environmental, esthetic, historical and economic values Biscayne Bay represents (1981 to present).
  • The establishment of a COMPREHENSIVE ENERGY MANAGEMENT PLAN which is credited with cutting 20% from County electric bills, concluding a fuel plan which has cut the County's gas demand by 37% (1977) at the time of critical shortages.
  • Sponsored the ENERGY CODE amendment to the South Florida Building code, which for the first time required specific energy standards (1977).
  • Earliest advocate of the DADE COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT MASTER PLAN establishing an orderly pattern and a timely sequencing of the necessary services for healthy future growth - in harmony with both our natural and urban systems. Goal to curtail urban sprawl (1976).
  • Creation and maintenance of the Miami-Dade County CONSUMER ADVOCATE Office (1975).
  • Changes to the Building Code, requiring SPRINKLER and SMOKE EXHAUST SYSTEMS in mid and high-rise buildings; and an Ordinance requiring minimum FIRE-FLOW to fight fires (1973).
  • TREE ORDINANCE creating incentives for tree preservation, regulating proper tree removals and establishing civil and criminal remedies to prevent or fine violators (1988).
  • Sponsored a successful short-term building moratorium enabling an Ordinance to safeguard and further review land use processes and plans (1974).
  • HOUSING - CHAIRED A SUBCOMMITTEE OF THE COMMISSION which brought together builders, environmentalists, bankers, government agencies, etc. to forge innovative; local loan guarantee and second mortgage home ownership programs that have supplied decent, safe housing for hundreds of elderly, low, and moderate-low income families (1975).
  • Clean Air Ordinance - setting strict standards for SO2 emissions for both economic and environmental reasons (1981).
  • Sponsored changes to the Building Code eliminating ARCHITECTURAL BARRIERS for physically handicapped persons, as well as an Ordinance OUTLAWING DISCRIMINATION in housing and employment for the "able-disabled" (1984).
  • Fought to RETURN SECURITY DEPOSITS to water and sewer customers once good credit is established (1983).
  • Sponsored a package of Ordinances dealing with the proper storage, transport and disposal of HAZARDOUS WASTES. The proposal, now implemented, set up the first local 'mini' super-fund in the nation to deal with hazardous waste emergencies (1983).
  • Other measures dealing with the protection of the BISCAYNE AQUIFER that supplies Miami-Dade County with its sole source of fresh water (1970 through the 1980's).
  • Sponsored a Beverage Container Deposit Law aiming to curb the flow of garbage that pollutes our landfills, which, although narrowly defeated by a strong industry media blitz, served as a consciousness-raising device (1976).
  • Sponsored a successful NUCLEAR FREEZE REFERENDUM (1982).
  • Sponsored the County’s efforts in 1992 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions formalized by the County’s CO2 Reduction Plan - the plan has resulted in approximately 40 million metric tons of carbon reduced or avoided to date.