The South Florida Water Management District continues to undermine public trust by making decisions that seem to ally more with who is in office than the law and the will of the people.
District Board members seem immune to the havoc red tide and toxic algae have had on our coastal communities. Dead marine life littering our beaches does not phase this group.
Last week the District called a ninth hour agenda change less than 24 hours before their scheduled meeting. Added to the agenda was the opportunity to vote on whether or not to lease an area of land, reserved for the EAA reservoir, to a subsidiary of Florida Crystals.
The current lease on the land would have come due in March 2019 and without further intervention would have been available for work to start preparation for the EAA Reservoir.
Shockingly, the Board moved to approve an 8-year lease for sugar farming, claiming they had a duty to keep the land in viable service until reservoir building plans are finalized.
To the Contrary
Needless to say the blowback from this action was real. Scientists across the state were quick to point out that land remediation in preparation for the reservoir would literally take years and so no sound argument could be made for it to be continued to be farmed.
The Florida Wildlife Federation will bring a lawsuit against the District for illegally changing the agenda without proper public notice. But will this solve the bigger issue of an agency directed by a Board, appointed by the Governor? More will be revealed on this debacle.