Butterfly World hopes to negotiate rent price with county

Broward County wants to charge $115,000 per year to use land, director says

By Madeleine Wright - Reporter

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A popular Coconut Creek attraction is fighting to stay open. 

Dozens of people showed up Tuesday to a Broward County commissioners' meeting wearing "I love Butterfly World" T-shirts. 

The attraction is fighting with the county over the price of rent.

Butterfly World representatives said they currently pay the county $18,000 a year to lease the land for the attraction.

But it claims the county wants to charge them $115,000 -- six times the current rate, which would make it hard to continue operating.

The executive director is hopeful the attraction and county can come to an agreement. 

"I'm confident that we can," Mary Jane Vanden Berge said. "What we would like to see happen today is for the Parks Department staff to be directed toward giving us a fixed rent that is fair, that really reflects the small piece of land and the value of it, and that would allow us to continue operating the way we need to."

Butterfly World has been open since 1986.

Broward County commissioners are scheduled to discuss the issue at their meeting Tuesday.

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