FCC News Brief - December 20, 2018

Read Rural lands between Fort Myers, Clewiston targeted for pollution control - “The state is moving forward with a plan to cut down on the amount of algae-feeding nutrients from rural areas and farms east of the Fort Myers area.  Called Basin Action Management Plans, or BMAPs, the plans target pollution with the goal of improving water quality in systems like the Caloosahatchee River. Nutrients from farms and developed areas in the historic Everglades — which extends from just south of Orlando to the Florida Keys and includes 16 counties — feed blue-green algae blooms and red tide outbreaks like the ones that raged this past summer.  Adding farm lands between the Fort Myers and Clewiston areas to the Caloosahatchee River BMAP would mean stricter pollution controls for those operations, said Sara Davis, with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, at a meeting Tuesday in Fort Myers...The BMAP that covers the Caloosahatchee River now extends from the W.P. Franklin Lock and Dam in Alva to the Gulf of Mexico, but that area could soon extend all the way to Lake Okeechobee. Some water quality experts and environmental groups have criticized the BMAP process, saying it does not do enough to identify and regulate pollution sources.  But everyone attending Tuesday's meeting seemed to be in favor of the expanding the Caloosahatchee River version to includes all lands that drain into the river. Currently the more restrictive standards are only applied to the coastal estuary, the area that receives the most damage from the nutrient pollution. "The downstream stakeholders experience the cumulative effect of nutrient loading and the manifestation we see in things we see like harmful algal bloom," said Calusa Waterkeeper John Cassani. "There’s a lot of back and forth about equity, but really I think there needs to be acknowledgment that the downstream stakeholders are really taking it on the chin....” Chad Gillis reports for the Fort Myers News-Press.

Read City moves forward with spray field purchase - “In a unanimous vote Tuesday, Chipley City Council approved $1,747,000 to purchase a 485-acre property to dispose of its effluent water...“This is the first piece of property that will handle the capacity of our wastewater treatment,” said council member John Sasser, who had initially signed off on the purchase documents with the Bultmans on behalf of the council during his tenure as mayor, and who made the motion Tuesday to approve the purchase. Located at 33 Pike Pond Road, and sold to the City of Chipley by James and Marsha Bultman, the property is promising for the city’s use, according to engineer Bill Perry who updated the council on the property’s features during a recent meeting. The land is expected be able to accept the city’s effluent for up to 50 years. “This will be the only spray field,” Sasser said. “It will open up opportunities for us to release the industrial park back to the county, sell the Davidson spray field.” The sell of the those two properties will go back to the debt service on the $13.4 million wastewater project, according to officials..” Jacqueline Bostick reports for the Washington County News.

Read Pasco joins regional climate change coalition after initial reluctance - “At first, when 24 Tampa Bay governments formed a regional coalition in October pledging to combat the effects of climate change, Pasco County held back from joining. Pasco County Commissioner Jack Mariano, the county's representative on the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council, declined to forward the resolution to his commission colleagues for consideration until the Planning Council took out the words “climate change,” the Tampa Bay Times reported Nov. 16. Mariano has since had a change of heart. The Pasco County Commission adopted the resolution last week with no discussion, becoming the 26th local government (New Port Richey previously joined) to join the Tampa Bay Regional Resiliency Coalition. During an earlier meeting, Mariano apologized to the commission for putting Pasco in a negative light. But he did not address his comments to the Times that he objected to signing the document because he disagrees with scientific evidence that human activity is the main cause of the warming atmosphere. Planning Council executive director Sean Sullivan confirmed the agency was working on creating an alternate resolution for Pasco County that did not have the words “climate change” at Mariano's request. But after a recent discussion, Mariano “felt it would be important to keep that term in the document,” Sullivan said. “The term climate change throughout that document is there intentionally,” Sullivan said. “While we don't want to force that theory on anyone, it is a critical component of that document…” Tracey McManus reports for the Tampa Bay Times.

Read December 18th The Orlando Sentinel’s Central Florida 100: Lee Constantine - “OK, folks, here’s the deal: You can’t have it both ways. Policymakers I’ve worked with always want environmental decisions based on science. Now, however, we have 99.3 percent of scientists warning us about the dangers of climate change, yet our administration uses every cockamamie excuse to ignore the findings. Let’s be truthful, you can disagree over what proportion is man-made but you cannot be intellectually honest and say climate change doesn’t exist. That’s only a justification for doing nothing and placing all of the financial and physical hardships on our children and grandchildren. We must reject the naysayers and do what we can NOW. Future generations deserve nothing less.” Lee Constantine, commissioner, Seminole County.

Read Climate change committee in Congress to be led by Tampa Rep. Kathy Castor? - “If the new Democratic House of Representatives brings back a panel to address global warming, the Tampa Bay area will have a prominent seat at the table. U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor is likely to chair the climate change committee if it materializes, giving the region a powerful voice in Congress' efforts to address this looming threat. The Tampa Democrat has already discussed the possibility with incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, she told the Tampa Bay Times. However, it's apparently not a done deal. Some senior Democrats in line to win powerful committee chairmanships are hesitant to give up jurisdiction over what is expected to be a high-stakes, high-profile fight with the Trump administration over environmental policies. "These standing committees will have plenty to do," Castor said. "We need to raise the profile of the climate crisis. People are demanding action and don't understand why we're not leading the world on climate change innovation." House Democrats started the climate committee in 2007 when they last controlled the House. However, Republicans killed it in one of their first acts after winning a majority in 2010. Democrats, especially in Florida, have clamored for its return. Castor said she expects there will be Republicans on the committee as well. If the committee resumes in the new Congress, Castor, already a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, is not an unexpected choice to lead it. Scientists frequently list the Tampa Bay area among the regions in the United States most threatened by the effects of climate change, such as rising sea levels and more powerful storms. Miami often tops that list…” Steve Contorno reports for the Tampa Bay Times.

Read Climate gentrification: Is sea rise turning Miami high ground into a hot commodity? - “When Paulette Richards answered the door of her Liberty City home a year ago, she found two men standing there.“Someone filed foreclosure on your property today and we’re here to see if you’re interested in selling,” they told her...Like Richards, many inner city Miami residents of say they are feeling the pressure to abandon their community to developers in the race to get rich in Miami’s historically black and minority neighborhoods, some of the last cheap land left in the booming coastal city. Low-lying Miami faces anywhere from 14 to 34 inches of sea rise by 2060, and some believe developers see the scarce high ground (much of it in the city occupied by low-income communities of color) as a safe investment. They call it climate gentrification. Miami’s two existential issues — a scarcity of affordable housing and rising sea levels — intersect with climate gentrification...But even with data, it’s difficult to pinpoint climate as a driver of a South Florida real estate market that has a long history of building homes or neighborhoods, then knocking them down to start over again. That’s why the city of Miami recently decided to study the issue and come up with solutions, as well as dedicate $4 million from the Miami Forever Bond toward helping residents at risk from these forces fix up their homes. Miami appears to be the first city in the U.S. to formally consider the topic…” Alex Harris reports for the Miami Herald.

Read Red tide is top concern during Manatee County legislative delegation meeting - “After more than a year of red tide killing sea life, impairing water quality and hurting tourism in the region, local leaders are urging Manatee County’s legislative delegation to take action to combat the harmful algae bloom when they convene in Tallahassee in March. A number of speakers brought up red tide during the delegation meeting Wednesday. A Manatee Chamber of Commerce official talked about the impact of red tide on local businesses, local government leaders spoke about the harm to their communities and the head of Mote Marine Laboratory pitched a plan to develop technologies that can mitigate red tide. Mote President and CEO Michael Crosby proposed a new nonprofit research consortium to address red tide. It would be housed at Mote, where scientists would collaborate with researchers from other institutions on efforts to diminish red tide blooms when they occur...Members of Manatee County’s legislative delegation have pledged to make addressing red tide a priority in the 60-day legislative session. State Rep. Will Robinson, R-Bradenton, already has filed a bill that would require septic tanks to be inspected every five years to determine if they are failing and leaching algae-feeding pollution.” Zac Anderson reports for the Herald-Tribune.

Read Mulberry company begins accepting tons of sludge- “A Mulberry waste disposal company has started accepting 30,000 tons of sludge with elevated levels of arsenic from a contaminated site in Fort Myers. Transportation of the sludge started after the Florida Department of Environmental Protection approved the process last week... The sludge is a byproduct from the city’s first water treatment plant, according to the Fort Myers News-Press. During the 1960s and ’70s it was placed into 12- to 15-feet deep pits in the neighborhood of Dunbar in Fort Myers. Residents in the community of Dunbar were unaware until the newspaper began reporting on the sludge. It’s led to a lawsuit between the city and area residents, according to the Fort Myers newspaper. Residents in Polk are unhappy about the sludge coming to their county. “We have enough toxic waste in our own community,” said Glenn Martin, of Lake Wales, during a county meeting on Tuesday in Bartow. “I just can’t understand why we should be a sewer site for Florida.” County Manager Jim Freeman said the county does not have any regulatory authority over Clark Environmental...County Commissioner Bill Braswell said he thinks Fort Myers could have found a closer site to dump the sludge. “It’s a political hot potato,” Braswell said. “Now we (Polk) get to have a potential leak into the aquifer…” John Chambliss reports for The Ledger.


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December 20, 2018 – 5:30PM– Calhoun County Legislative Delegation– (Blountstown) – Attend the Calhoun County Delegation meeting at the Calhoun County Commission Board Room, (20859 Central Ave, Blountstown, FL 32424). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!

December 20, 2018 – 9:30AM-3:30PM– Hillsborough County Legislative Delegation– (Tampa) – Attend the Hillsborough County Delegation meeting at the David A. Straz Center for the Performing Arts, Ferguson Hall (1010 N Maccinnes PL Tampa, FL 33602). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! To learn more and access/submit the speaker request form visit www.hillsborouthcounty.org.

December 20, 2018 – 9:00AM– Walton County Legislative Delegation– (DeFuniak Springs) – Attend the Walton County Delegation meeting at the Walton County Board of County Commissioners (76 N 6th St DeFuniak Springs, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! To request an appearance form to be placed on the agenda or submit handouts for the Walton, Holmes, Washington and/or Jackson County Legislation Delegation meetings, please email gainer.george@flsenate.gov or gainey.andrea@flsenate.gov or contact Senator Gainers district office at (850) 747-5454 no later than 4 p.m., Friday, December 14th.

December 20, 2018 – 10:30AM– Holmes County Legislative Delegation– (Bonifay) – Attend the Holmes County Delegation meeting at the Holmes County Board of County Commissioners (107 E Virginia Ave Bonifay, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! To request an appearance form to be placed on the agenda or submit handouts for the Walton, Holmes, Washington and/or Jackson County Legislation Delegation meetings, please email gainer.george@flsenate.gov or gainey.andrea@flsenate.gov or contact Senator Gainers district office at (850) 747-5454 no later than 4 p.m., Friday, December 14th.

December 20, 2018 – 11:45AM– Washington County Legislative Delegation– (Chipley) – Attend the Washington County Delegation meeting at the Washington County Board of County Commissioners (1331 South Blvd Chipley, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! To request an appearance form to be placed on the agenda or submit handouts for the Walton, Holmes, Washington and/or Jackson County Legislation Delegation meetings, please email gainer.george@flsenate.gov or gainey.andrea@flsenate.gov or contact Senator Gainers district office at (850) 747-5454 no later than 4 p.m., Friday, December 14th.

December 20, 2018 –2:15PM– Jackson County Legislative Delegation– (Marianna) – Attend the Jackson County Delegation meeting at the Jackson County School Board 2903 Jefferson St Marianna, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! To request an appearance form to be placed on the agenda or submit handouts for the Walton, Holmes, Washington and/or Jackson County Legislation Delegation meetings, please email gainer.george@flsenate.gov or gainey.andrea@flsenate.gov or contact Senator Gainers district office at (850) 747-5454 no later than 4 p.m., Friday, December 14th.

December 20, 2018 –5:00– Bay County Legislative Delegation– (Panama City) – Attend the Bay County Delegation meeting at the Bay County Government Building (840 W 11th St Panama City, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! To request an appearance form to be placed on the agenda or submit handouts for the Walton, Holmes, Washington and/or Jackson County Legislation Delegation meetings, please email gainer.george@flsenate.gov or gainey.andrea@flsenate.gov or contact Senator Gainers district office at (850) 747-5454 no later than 4 p.m., Friday, December 14th.

January 3, 2019 – 4:00PM– Nassau County Legislative Delegation– (Yulee) – Attend the Suwannee County Delegation meeting at James Page Government Complex, (96135 Nassau Place, Yulee, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! For more information, contact Representative Cord Byrd’s legislative Assistant Katherine Woodby at Katherine.Woodby@myfloridahouse.gov.

January 14, 2019 – 9:00AM-11:00AM– Suwannee County Legislative Delegation– (Live Oak) – Attend the Suwannee County Delegation meeting at Live Oak City Hall (101 White Ave SE, Live Oak, FL 32064). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!

January 14, 2019 1:00-3:00PM– Columbia County Legislative Delegation– (Lake City) – Attend the Columbia County Delegation meeting at the Florida Gateway College Administrative Building 1 Board Room (149 SE College Place, Lake City, FL, parking near Library). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! For more information, email Tonya Shays at shays.tonya@flsenate.gov .

January 14, 2019 4:00-6:00PM – Baker County Legislative Delegation– (Macclenny) – Attend the Baker County Delegation meeting at the Macclenny City Hall, Commission Room (118 E Macclenny Ave, Macclenny FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! For more information, email Tonya Shays at shays.tonya@flsenate.gov .

January 15, 2019 – 9:00AM– Martin County Legislative Delegation– (Stuart) – Attend the Martin County Delegation meeting at Indian River State College Chastain Campus, Wolf Technology Center (2400 E Salerno Road, Stuart FL 34997). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!

January 15, 2019 – 5:00PM-9:00PM– Brevard County Legislative Delegation– (Palm Bay City) – Attend the Brevard County Delegation meeting at Palm Bay City Council Chambers (120 Malabar Road, Palm Bay City, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!  Deadline to submit request to appear is noon January 7, email Anna Budko, Anna.Budko@myfloridahouse.gov.

January 15, 2019 – 9:00AM-5:00PM– Lee County Legislative Delegation– (Fort Myers) – Attend the Lee County Delegation meeting at Florida Southwestern State College Nursing Building, Room AA-177 Fort Myers, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!  Deadline to submit request to appear is noon January 7, email dane.eagle@myfloridahouse.gov for more information.

January 15, 2019 – 9:30AM-4:00PM– Broward County Legislative Delegation– (Fort Lauderdale) – Attend the Broward County Delegation meeting at 115 South Andrews Avenue Room 430, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!  To be placed on the agenda, complete this Speaker Form. Topics for this meeting include the environment and growth management.

January 16, 2019 – 1:00PM– Dixie County Legislative Delegation– (Cross City) – Attend the Dixie County Delegation meeting at Dixie County Commission Chamber, County Courthouse, (214 NE Hwy 351, Cross City, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! 

January 16, 2019 – 9:00AM-12:00PM– Indian River County Legislative Delegation– (Vero Beach) – Attend the Indian River County Delegation meeting at Indian River County Administration Complex, (1801 27th St, Building A, Vero Beach, FL 32960). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!  To participate in the delegation meeting, a request form and corresponding materials must be delivered to Sen. Mayfield's office no later than January 9. To receive a request form, email Margaret Mitchell at Mitchell.Margaret@flsenate.gov .

January 16, 2019 10:00-11:30AM – Lafayette County Legislative Delegation– (St. Mayo) – Attend the Lafayette County Delegation meeting at County Commission Chamber, Lafayette County Courthouse (120 W Main St, Mayo, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! For more information, email Tonya Shays at shays.tonya@flsenate.gov .

January 16, 2019 – 4:00PM– Gilchrist County Legislative Delegation– (Trenton) – Attend the Gilchrist County Delegation meeting at County Commission Meeting Facility, (210 S. Main Street, Trenton, FL). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! 

January 17, 2019 – 9:00AM-12:00PM– St. Lucie County Legislative Delegation– (Fort Pierce) – Attend the St. Lucie County Delegation meeting at the Indian River State College – Ft. Pierce Campus Knight Center for Emerging Technologies Indian River State College (3209 Virginia Ave, Building V Fort Pierce, FL 34981). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! 

January 18, 2019 – 9:00AM-10:30AM– Okeechobee County Legislative Delegation– (Okeechobee) – Attend the Okeechobee County Delegation meeting at the Okeechobee County Government Center, Commission Chambers (304 NW 2nd Street Okeechobee, FL 34972). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! To submit a speaking request, contact Justin Morgan, justin.morgan@myfloridahouse.gov or (863) 462-5019 before January 10, 2019.

January 18, 2019 – 12:00PM-2:00PM– Highlands County Legislative Delegation– (Sebring) – Attend the Highlands County Delegation meeting at the Highlands County Government Center, Commission Chambers (600 S Commerce Ave Sebring, FL 33870). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources! To submit a speaking request, please contact Maura Palmer, maura.palmer@myfloridahouse.gov or (863) 386-6000 if you have any questions before January 10, 2019.

January 19, 2019 - 10:00am-12:00pm - Rising Sea Levels- Are we losing our coastal cities? (Deerfield) - The Deerfield Progressive Forum will host Dr. Colin Polsky, Director of the Florida Center for Environmental Studies and Professor of Geosciences at Florida Atlantic University, for a discussion of sea level rise and its impacts on Florida. For 39 years progressives in South Florida have been enlightened by a series of weekly talks presented by nationally distinguished speakers on provocative current issues. Lively discussion follows each talk. The Deerfield Progressive Forum meets every Saturday morning from December through March from 10:00 AM-noon in Century Village, Deerfield Beach. For more information, visit their site here.

January 22, 2019 - 12:00pm-1:30pm - Free 2019 Florida Legislative Preview Webinar - The 60-day 2019 Florida Legislative Session starts on March 5 and is scheduled to end on May 3 of 2019.  The actions taken during the session likely will have significant public policy impacts for planning, conservation, transportation, community design and other issues of concern to many Floridians with myriad impacts for concerned citizens, professionals, local elected officials and others.  1000 Friends President Paul Owens, Policy and Planning Director Thomas Hawkins, and Board Member Emeritus and Past Chairman Lester Abberger will discuss key growth management, design, conservation and related bills including budget recommendations that may be up for consideration during the 2019 Florida Legislative Session and will discuss how this could impact state and local governance and planning in Florida. This event has been approved for 1.5 AICP CM LEGAL CREDITS for planners (#9162191) and .15 CEUs for Florida Environmental Health Professionals. 1000 Friends has applied for professional certification credits for Certified Floodplain Managers, Florida attorneys, and Florida DBPR Landscape Architecture but cannot guarantee credits will be approved.  Register at www.1000friendsofflorida.org/webinar/.

January 28, 2019 – 2:00PM-5:00PM– Palm Beach County Legislative Delegation– (Boynton Beach)– Attend the Palm Beach County Delegation meeting at Lakeside Medical Center, (39200 Hooker Highway, Belle Glade). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!  To participate in the delegation meeting, complete this form and return by mail or email to Christine Shaw, Cshaw1@pbcgov.org.

January 28, 2019 – 2:30PM-6:00PM– Orange County Legislative Delegation– (Orlando)– Attend the Orange County Delegation meeting at the Orange County Administration Center, Commission Chambers (201 South Rosalind Avenue, Orlando, FL 32801). You are encouraged to speak on behalf of Florida’s land, wildlife and water resources!  To participate in the delegation meeting, email LD@ocfl.net to request an appearance form.

March 27, 2019 - 12:00pm-1:30pm - Free 2019 Florida Legislative Update Webinar - This free webinar is scheduled for a little more than three weeks into the 2019 Florida Legislative Session. The actions taken during the session likely will have significant public policy impacts for planning, conservation, transportation, community design and other issues of concern to many Floridians with myriad impacts for concerned citizens, professionals, local elected officials and others. 1000 Friends President Paul Owens, Policy and Planning Director Thomas Hawkins, and Board Member Emeritus and Past Chairman Lester Abberger will discuss key growth management, design, conservation and related bills including budget recommendations that are being considered during the 2019 Florida Legislative Session and other legislation that may surface as the session progresses. This event has been approved for 1.5 AICP CM LEGAL CREDITS for planners (#9162194). 1000 Friends has applied for professional certification credits for Certified Floodplain Managers, Florida attorneys, Florida Environmental Health Professionals, and Florida DBPR Landscape Architecture but cannot guarantee credits will be approved. Register at www.1000friendsofflorida.org/webinar/.

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