Title: Newspaper article in the St. Petersburg Times, "The Greenway sellout."
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00052146/00001
 Material Information
Title: Newspaper article in the St. Petersburg Times, "The Greenway sellout."
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Publication Date: Feb. 3, 1993
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida
General Note: Box 4, Folder 5 ( CROSS FLORIDA BARGE CANAL ), Item 7
Funding: Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00052146
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

Full Text

The Greenway sellout --
Florida fought for more than two de-
cades to stop a barge canal that would have L
ripped the heart out of this state's ecology. ea Rodman
Now the state's own Legislature is refusing Tampa Reservoir Palatka
to accept victory, and it's time for some Bay FLA.
How could lawmakers possibly enter-.
tain plans to further delay the restoration of Or
the Ocklawaha River, which is the most Springs
widely acknowledged catastrophe of the 301 o
Cross Florida Barge Canal? How could they \ Dam
ever consider plans, which have been 315
fought bitterly by state and local agencies, 9
to put a power plant on the lower Withla- National
coochee River on the western end of the Forest
canal lands? How could they ignore Gov. ,
Lawton Chiles and the state Cabinet, which 75 cali----
have unanimously endorsed plans to restore Springs \
the canal lands to their original beauty and
convert them into the Cross Florida Green- Times art
way State Conservation and Recreation t o t
Area? It's time to open the Rodman Dam and
Arearestore the natural flow of the
In the Senate today, the Natural Re- h a l flow of the
sources Committee is scheduled to talk
about the Greenway and the plans to open stagnant, shallow, weed-filled pool that has
the Rodman Dam so that the natural flow of suffered fish kills and required extensive
the Ocklawaha River can be restored for maintenance. By opening the dam, the state
the first time in 25 years. Yet, rather than can eliminate those problems and restore
celebrate the state's victory, some of the 9,000 acres of productive hardwood forest.
senators are questioning the reason for the It also can save, immediately, the $1-million
"fight. a year being spent on dam operations.
They are listening to one influential o oeat
senator, George Kirkpatrick, D-Gainesville, Kirkpatrick's insistence that the Ockla-
who wants to make some of his bass-fishing waha restoration needs more study is noth-
buddies happy, and they are making some ing more than a delay tactic, and a costly
ridiculous suggestions: Maybe the state one at that. The river has been studied by
needs to continue pouring $1-million a year academic groups, university scientists,
into the maintenance and operation of a state and federal regulators, and it was at
dam that serves no useful purpose. Maybe one point the subject of a $2.5-million Corps
the restoration, which has been studied and of Engineers study. All reached the same
recommended by every relevant state and conclusion: The river should be restored.
federal agency, needs to be studied for yet a In the Senate, two Tampa Bay area
few more years. Maybe we should just leave lawmakers, Curt Kiser, R-Palm Harbor,
this one to George. and Charlie Crist, R-St. Petersburg, al-
Maybe, just maybe, the Legislature is ready have shown commendable leadership
selling out the Cross Florida Greenway. on the subcommittee that first addressed
Though Kirkpatrick has tried to turn the Ocklawaha restoration. They will be
the issue into a personal one, the fate of the tested again today, as will other Tampa Bay
canal lands affects all Floridians. The fight members of the full Natural Resources
against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Committee: Jim Hargrett, D-Tampa; Mal-
and the U.S. Congress is a fight that all colm Beard, R-Tampa; Karen Johnson, D-
Floridians waged. When those lands finally Inverness; and Ginny Brown-Waite, R-
were transferred to the state government Spring Hill.
in November, all Floridians should have felt In the next few weeks, the Legislature
pride, will be making its formal declaration on the
The job of the Legislature now is to Cross Florida Greenway. To reverse
fulfill the promise of the canal Greenway, course now, after fighting the federal gov-
and to reject Kirkpatrick's personal cru- ernment for two decades, would amount to
sade. The reservoir he is trying to save is a a most curious surrender.

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