March 30, 1981
TO: DONALD R. FEASTER, Executive Director
FROM: JOHN R. WEHLE, Interagency Coordinator
RE: Water Management Lands Acquisition
When the state designated SWFWMD as sponsor of the Four River Basins Project,
among other items, they committed to purchase the lands necessary for the
project. The funds for water storage lands acquisition came from General
Revenue via the Water Resources Development Account.
In 1974, the District requested the money needed to complete purchase of lands
in the Green Swamp and Upper Hillsborough FDAs. The legislature, convinced of
the project's value, appropriated the money. However, because of the national
recession that occurred later in the year, tax revenues were not as expected,
and in January 1975, the Governor and Cabinet were forced to make budget cuts
and the Green Swamp and Upper Hillsborough dollars were among the first cut.
The Governor and Cabinet referred us to other state programs which involved
land acquisition, specifically the Environmentally Endangered Lands Program.
In the summer of 1975, there was a unanimous vote of the EEL committee that
the Green Swamp qualified for inclusion, but due to a number of circumstances,
including problems with the EEL program, no dollars were ever allocated.
Since that time, virtually no money has been provided for Green Swamp or
Upper Hillsborough land acquisition.
In 1979, the legislature established the Conservation and Recreation Lands
Trust Fund headed by a selection committee of state agency secretaries and
directors. This committee was established to recommend lands for acquisition
using the remaining EEL dollars and new dollars from a severence tax on phos-
phate, limestone, and petroleum mining. The District submitted its applications
and when the final list was presented to the Governor and Cabinet, a portion
of the Green Swamp ranked No. 10 on the priority list. At the Cabinet meeting,
there was strong opposition to water management district lands being on the
list. The District presented its case regarding efforts to obtain dollars for
these lands. The Governor stated it was the first time he understood the
water management districts' problems in land acquisition.
As a result of the meeting, the CARL selection committee was directed to
develop more detailed criteria for CARL and EEL lands. Further, the Governor
directed his staff to investigate other means of funding water management
lands acquisition, recognizing the limited amount of CARL dollars available.
Working with DER, the Governor's staff proposed an increase in the documentary
stamp tax on real estate sales. The following is a summary of the bill pro-
vided by Buddy Blain in a March 19, 1981 memorandum:
Memo to: D. R. Feaster
From: J. R. Wehle
Re: Water Management Lands Acquisition
a. The bill will increase the documentary stamp surtax from 40t
per $100 to 454 per $100.
b. The additional 5 will be paid into a new nonlapsing Water
Management Lands Trust Fund.
c. Proceeds will be allocated by the secretary of DER to water
management districts for land acquisition for the conserva-
tion and protection of water. and water-related resources.
d. The money may not be used for the acquisition of rights-of-
way for canals.
e. Twenty-five percent (25%) of the funds will be allocated to
each of the three larger districts.
f. Ten percent (10%) each shall be allocated to Suwannee and
g. There is a 4:1 matching requirement unless a specific ratio
to the contrary is provided by the legislature for individ-
ually identified parcels.
h. There is an automatic repealer at the end of ten years.
Although no detailed criteria had been established, the Governor's office and
DER requested a list of lands and approximate costs from each water management
district. At first, we thought they meant only those lands necessary to com-
plete the FRB project. However, in further discussions with a representative
from the Governor's office, we found out that it was not as restrictive, but
still no firm criteria had been established. All communications were verbal,
From this point, the District staff met in a first attempt to establish criteria
and then develop a basic list of lands. Our criteria included:
1. Those lands approved by the Governing Board for submittal to
the CARL selection committee.
2. Lands necessary for the proper operation of District structures.
3. All or parts of lands required in the original FRB proposal.
4. Ten-year floodplains in areas near heavy development pressure or
potentially available lands upstream of potable water supplies.
5. Other hydro-environmentally sensitive lands earlier identified.
This is the staff's first list. After input from the Governing Board on dele-
tions or additions, staff will perform more indepth analyses of these areas
for further consideration. An argument can be made for practically any natural
Memo to: D. R. Feaster
From: J. R. Wehle
Re: Water Management Lands Acquisition
floodplain, wetland, or recharge area (such as the 10-year floodplain of the
entire Peace River, or the recharge area along the Highlands Ridge) to be
placed on the list. Again, this is the staff's first effort, using a quickly
developed set of criteria. DER will be establishing further criteria if the
documentary stamp tax passes. District staff will be establishing more details
as the program progresses.
This memorandum and the presentation at the Governing Board workshop are
designed to generate Board discussion and guidance in the development of
criteria and selection of lands. It is my feeling that the District should
have the flexibility to change the list as conditions change or lands become
available for acquisition. Nothing in this first list is intended to be
cc: L. M. Blain
W. T. Allee
Mar 3X, 19
IND LAND ESTmED APPR XIMATE
ACQUIRED NEED CCT PER ADDITICAL yAL CfliS
PRoE (ACS) O DEE ACRES ) ACRE O r
* 1. Green Swmp Project
A. Green Swanp F.D.A. 45,598 $ 9,146,005 9,765 .800 $ 7,812,000
B. Upper Hills. F.D.A. 6,110 2,096,866 8,056 804 6,480,198
C. Little Withlacoochee 23.487 654,200 1,120 -0- (*) Existing ease
,Total 791 98,071 18,941 I 14, 14292,198
2. Starkey Water Storage
Lanrls 5,399 2,692,736 2,867 1,000 2,867,000 17,159,198
3. Withlacoochee & Hils. .
S- Riverine Corridors
Corridor "A" (With-
lacochee River) -0- -0- 1,918 800 1,534,000 18,693,198
C, rridor "B" (With.
River) -0- -0- 11,048 800 8,838,400 27,531,598
Corridor '"C (Hills.
River) -0- -- 2,287 .1,000 2,287,000 29,818,58
Total 5,399 2,692,736 18,120 15,526,400
4. Cypress Creek 3,737 2,966,726 7,243 1,500 10,864,500 40,683,098
5. Brooker Creek Riverine
Corridor "A" (Hills. Co.) -0- -0- 420 4,000 1,680,000 42,363,098
Corridor "B" (Pinellas Co.) -0- -0- 595 4,000 2,380,000 44,743,098
Total 3,737 2,966,726 8,258 14,924,500
6. Medard Reservoir Floodway 1,254 61,736 140 4,500 630,000. 45,373,098
7. Jack Creek -. -0- 864 1,200 1,036,800 46,409,898
8. Anclote River 1oodway .-0- -0- 4,328 1,000 4,328,000 50,737,898
9. Cypress Creek/Trout.Creek
Corridor -0- -0- 9,984 2,500 24,960,000 75,697,898
10. Blackwter Creek -0- -0- 12,224 1,200 14,668,800 90,366,698
11. Lowery Mattie Conservation
Area -0- -0- 24,400 800 19,520,000 109,886,698
L 12. ZCiirrel Prairie -0- -0- 1,728 3,000 5,1i4,000 115,07,698
13. Prairie Creek -0- -2,752 1,500 4,128,000 119,198,698
SSlough -0- -0- 4,416 500 2,208,000 121,406,698
Sawgrass -0- -0- 4,300 1,000 4,300,000 125,706,698 .
TAL 85,585 17,618,269 110,455 125,706,698
1. GREEN SWAMP PROJECT
A. GREEN SWAMP F.D.A.
B. UPPER HILLSBOROUGH F.D.A.
C. LITTLE WITHLACOOCHEE F.D.A.
2. ANCLOTE WATER STORAGE LANDS
3. WITHLACOOCHEE & HILLSBOROUGH
A. CORRIDOR "A" (WITHLACOOCHEE RIVER)
B. CORRIDOR "B" (WITHLACOOCHEE RIVER)
C. CORRIDOR "C" (HILLSBOROUGH RIVER)
4. CYPRESS CREEK
5. BROKER CREEK RIVERINE SYSTEM
A. CORRIDOR "A" (HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY)
B. CORRIDOR "B" (PINELLAS COUNTY) A
6. MEDARD RESERVOIR FLOODWAY
7. JACK CREEK
8. ANCLOTE RIVER FLOODWAY
9. CYPRESS CREEK/TROUT CREEK CORRIDOR
10. BLACKWATER CREEK
11. LOWERY MATTIE CONSERVATION AREA
12. SQUIRREL PRAIRIE
13. PRAIRIE CREEK
14. GUM SLOUGH
15. TATUM SAWGRASS
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