Water-Related News

SFWMD wasn’t consulted on controversial water supply bill Florida Senate committee passed

State water managers who oversee resources for 9 million Floridians were not consulted on a controversial water supply bill a Senate committee approved Wednesday.

SB 2508, which could guarantee agriculture gets the irrigation water it wants to siphon off Lake Okeechobee even when the level is low, will be heard by the Senate Feb. 17.

South Florida Water Management District Chair Chauncey The district is concerned the bill is "upsetting the balance," Goss said, in the multiyear process of writing a new Lake O management plan that will determine discharge amounts to the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee rivers for the next decade or more.

Why wasn't the SFWMD looped in before the bill was filed Friday, halfway through the Jan. 11 to March 11 session?, asked Sen. Jeff Brandes, a St. Petersburg Republican. Goss was among the many who addressed concerns to the Senate Appropriations Committee Wednesday.