Water-Related News

Lee County commissioners vote to sue feds over planned Lake O water releases

Lee County commissioners are prepared to bring legal action against the Army Corps of Engineers if there aren’t substantial changes to the Lake Okeechobee System Operating Manual, or LOSOM.

LOSOM seeks to establish water releases from Lake O taking into account additional infrastructure that will soon be operational.

Lee County is unhappy with the plan as it stands now because “the overall burden of flood control releases to the Caloosahatchee would increase” and so would the “total volume of water pushed into our estuary,” according to a letter sent to the Army Corps of Engineers by Kevin Ruane, chairman of the Lee County Board of Commissioners.

“To have a change like this for the next 10 years, there’s not a scientist around that would say this is fair and equitable,” Ruane said.

During their meeting Tuesday, Ruane asked the county to be ready to take legal action.

“I’m just tired of getting beat up every day and this has just got to stop,” Ruane said.

The motion passed unanimously.