S, STATL 01 I .O'IMA
tOitffc C 0 i 'f 1 ..
: j' ,; .1.-I 14L CAPITO. 7
-< ITALLAHASSL: 30. SbJAN 5 A/I :
N () I A' .Jill
December 24, 1975
Honorable Charles E. Schuh Mayor
Post Office Box 2842
Saint Petersburg, Florida 33731
Dear Mayor Schuh:
Thank you for your letter requesting that I consider
restructuring the Southwest Florida Water Management District
Governing Board to some form of a one-man, one-vote represen-
tation. Such a change would, of course, require legislative
All the water management districts are faced with a
broad spectrum of water-related problems and challenges
because of unprecedented State growth and generally subnormal
rainfall for the past 15 years in peninsular Florida.
As a legislator and as Governor, I have watched the
development of water management e districts closely and have
noted in particular the organizational differences between
the Central and Southern Flor-ida Flood Control District (FCD)
with its district-wide, sij.ln -basin operation and the South-
west Florida Water Management District (SWF) with its multi-basin
approach. There are advantages in centralized control but there
are also many benefits to ib derived from having individual,
localized basin boards such as your Pinellas-Anclote Water
The basin board has control over its own budget: and must
qive prior approval to final construction plans for di strict
works to be constructed in its basin. 'his also provides an
opportunity for each basin boarc:' to influence district cidecisions
affecting more than one basin. Mr. John Anderson served tC he
Pinella:--Anclote Basin .well in this capacity during his te'; nure
on the governing board. I am confident that Mr. Lrewis HomeCr
will continue this service.
Honorable Charles E. Schuh
December 24, 1975
As the FCD and SWF have initiated programs for the
issuance of permits authorizing the consumptive use of
particular quantities of water, it has become increasingly
apparent that the water resource problems in South Florida
vary from those in your area both in magnitude and complexity.
The flood control district has an extensive system of
canals, dikes, and structures and allocates water primarily
from surface flows on a system based upon what it refers to
as its "water budget." Your district, on the other hand, has
a number of smaller hydrologic units or basins and has had to
develop rules more accurately measuring and allocating ground
By district rules, "water crop" is precipitation less
evapotranspiration. The rules further provide that "except
where determined otherwise, the water crop throughout the
district will be assumed to be 365,000 gallons per year per
acre and that issuance of a permit will be denied if the amount
of water consumptively used will exceed the water crop of lands
owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by the applicant." The
board for good cause shown may grant exceptions to this provi-
sion when, after consideration of all data presented including
economic information, it finds that any exceptions are consistent
with the public interest (1GJ-2.11, Florida Administrative Code).
There is no provision in the rules which establishes "water crop"
as a property right or interest.
The rules and orders of SWF are subject to review not
only through the courts but also by the Governor and Cabinet
sitting as the Land and Water Adjudicatory Commission.
I am very aware of Saint Petersburg's water needs and
problems and sincerely hope the West Coast Regional Water Supply
Authority can help meet your needs and those of all the people
in the central west coast area. Saint Petersburg is to be
commended for its efforts in helping to form the Authority.
Please be assured that I will carefully consider any
legislation affecting water management.
With kind regards,