WATER POLICY CH. 17-40
RULES Law Implemented 373.036 FS. History-New
"OF THE 5-5-81.
DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL 17-40.02 Definitions. When appearing in
ULATION this Chapter, the following words shall mean:
(1) "Department" means the Department
CHAPTER 17-40 of Environmental Regulation.
WATER POLICY (2) "District" means a q Water
17-40.01 Declaration and Intent. Management District created pursuant to
17-40.02 Definitions. Chapter 373, Florida Statutes.
17-40.03 General Water Policy. Specific A authority 373.026(7), 373.043, 403.805 FS.
17-40.04 Water Use. Law Implemented 373.036 FS. History-New
17-40.04 Water Use. 5-5-8).
17-40.05 Water Transport.
17-40.06 Water Quality.. 17-40.03 General Water .Policy. The
17-40.07 Surface Water Management. following statement of general water policy
17-40.08 Minimum Flows and Levels. shall provide a basis for Department review of
17-40.09 District Water Management water management programs, rules, and
Plans. plans. Water management programs, rules
17-40.10 Review and Application. and plans, where economically and
environmentally feasible, not contrary to the
17-40.01 Declaration and Intent. public interest, and consistent with Florida
(1) The waters of the state are among its laws, shall seek to:
basic- resources. Such waters should be (1) Assure availability of an adequate and
managed to conserve and protect natural affordable supply of water for all
resources and scenic beauty and to realize the reasonable-beneficial uses. Uses of water
full beneficial use of the resource. Recognizing authorized by a permit shall be limited to
the importance of water to the state, the reasonable-beneficial uses.
Legislature passed the Water Resources Act, (2) Reserve from use that water necessary
Chapter 373, Florida Statutes. to support essential non-withdrawal demands,
(2) Chapter 373, Florida Statutes, provides including navigation, recreation, and the
that the State Water Use Plan and the Florida protection of fish and wildlife.
Water Plan will be developed progressively as (3) Promote water conservation and reuse
studies are completed and as Department or as an integral part of water management
District rules and programs are developed, programs, rules, and plans. Encourage the use
(3) As a part of the State Water Use Plan, of water of the lowest acceptable quality for the
the Department may provide such purpose intended.
information, directions, or objectives for the (4) Utilize, preserve, restore, and enhance
guidance of the Districts as it deems necessary. natural water management systems and
(4) To this end, this Chapter is intended to discourage the channelization ,or other
clarify water policy as expressed in Chapter alteration of natural rivers, streams and lakes.
373, Florida Statutes, and to otherwise provide (5) Protect the water storage and water
guidance to the Department and Districts in quality enhancement functions of wetlands,
the development of programs, rules, and plans. floodplains, and aquifer recharge areas
(5) This Chapter does not repeal, amend or through acquisition, enforcement of laws, and
otherwise alter any rule now existing or later the application of land and water management
adopted by the Department or District. practices which provide for compatible uses.
However, procedures are included in this (6) Mitigate adverse impacts resulting
Chapter which provide for the review and from prior alteration of natural hydrologic
modification of Department and District rules patterns and fluctuations in surface and
to assure consistency with the provisions of this ground water levels.
Chapter. (7) Establish minimum flows and levels to
(6) This Chapter shall be a part of the State protect water resources and the environmental
Water Use Plan and the Florida Water Plan. values associated with marine, estuarine,
(7) It is the intent of the Department, in freshwater, and wetlands ecology.
cooperation with the Water Management (8) Encourage non-structural solutions to
Districts, to seek adequate sources-of funding water resource problems and give adequate
to supplement District ad valorem taxes to consideration to non-structural alternatives
Simplement-the-provisions of this Chapter. whenever structural works are proposed.
Specific Authority 373.026(7), 373.042, 403.805 FS. (9) Encourage the management of
(1) The long term yield available from the
source of water;
(m) The extent of water quality
degradation caused; -....-.....
(n) Whether the proposed use would cause
or contribute to flood damage;
(o) Whether the proposed use would
floodplains and other flood hazard areas to significantly induce salt water intrusion; and
prevent or reduce flood damage, consistent (p) The amount of water which can be
with establishment and maintenance of withdrawn without causing harm to the
desirable hydrologic characteristics of su&i' resource.
areas. (q) Other relevant factors.
(10) Manage the construction and (3) Water shall be reserved from permit
operation of facilities which dam, divert, or use in such locations and quantities, and for
otherwise alter the flow of surface waters to such seasons of the year, as in the judgment of
prevent increased flooding, soil erosion or the Department or District may be required
excessive drainage. for the protection of fish and wildlife or the
(11) Encourage thedevelopment of local or public health or safety.
(4) Conservation of water shall be a
regional water supplies within districts rather (4) Conservation of water shall be a
than transport water across District requirement unless not economically or
boundaries, environmentally feasible.
boundaries. Specific Authority 373.026, 373.043, 403.805 FS.
(12) Control point and non-point sourcesof Law Implemented 373.036, Part II, 373 FS.
water pollution to the greatest degree feasible History-New 5-5-81.
as provided in Chapters 17-3, and 17-6, F. A. 5
C. 17-40.04 Water Use
(13) Develop interstate agreements and (5) In implementing consumptive use permitting programs,
undertake cooperative programs with the department and the districts shall recognize the rights of
Alabama and Georgia to provide for property owners to make consumptive uses of water from
coordinated management of surface and their land and the rights of other users to make consumptive
ground waters. uses of water, as both limited by law, for reasonable
Specific Authority 373.026, 373.043, 403.805 FS. beneficial uses in a manner consistent with the public
Law Implemented 373 FS. History-New 7-1-81. interest that will not interfere with any presently existing
17-40.04 Water Use. The following shall legal use of water.
apply to thpse areas where the use of water is (6) Nothing in this Chapter shall he deemed to authorize a
regulated pirsuant to Part II of Chapter 373, permitted to make consumptive uses of water which cause
Florida Statutes: significant adverse impacts on off-site land uses or legal uses
(1) No permit shall be granted to authorize of water, or abridge the right of affected persons to seek
the use of water unless the applicant
establishes that the proposed use is a redress or mitigation of such significant adverse impacts
reasonable-beneficial use, will not interfere an appropriate forum.
with presently existing legal uses of water and spiilic Aut hwiv: 171 .126 :17.1 o1:1. 41i.\.WIs FI'S. Ia Impmenit.d- 37.1.036. 'arn I
is consistent with the public interest. Fs liuwaryv-N.
(2) In determining whether a water use is a 17-40.05 Water Transport. The following
reasonable-beneficial use, consideration shall apply to the transfers of water where such
should be given to any evidence presented transfers are regulated pursuant to Part II of
concerning the following factors: Chapter 373, Florida Statutes:
(a) The quantity of water requested for the (1) The transport or use of water across
use; District boundaries shall require approval of
(b) The demonstrated need for the use; each involved District.
(c) The suitability of the use to tfe source of (2) In deciding whether the transport and
water; use of water across District boundaries is
(d) The purpose and value of the use; consistent with the public interest pursuant to
(e) The extent and amount of harm caused; Section 373.223, Florida Statutes, the Districts
(f) The practicality of mitigating any harm should consider the extent to which:
by adjusting the quantity or method of use; (a) Comprehensive water conservation
(g) Whether the impact of the withdrawal and reuse programs are implemented and
extends to land not owned or legally controlled enforced in the area of need.
by the user; (b) The major costs, benefits, and
(h) The method and efficiency of use; environmental impacts have been adequately
(i) Water conservation measures taken or i determined including the impact on both the
available |o be taken; supplying and receiving areas;
(j) The practicality of reuse, or the use of (c) The transport is an environmentally
waters of .more suitable quality; and economically acceptable method to supply
(k) The present and projected demand for water for the given purpose;
the source of water; (d) The present and projected water needs
of the supplying area are reasonably
determined and can be satisfied even if the
transport takes place;
(e) The transport plan incorporates a
regional approach to water supply and
distribution including, where appropriate,
plans for eventual interconnection of water
supply sources; and
(f) The transport is otherwise consistent
with the public interest based upon evidence
Specific Authority 373.026, 373.043, 403.805 FS.
WATER POLICY CH. 17-40
Law Implemented 373.036, Part II, 373 FS. areas,
History-New 5-5-81. (iv) facility failure, or
17-40.06 Water Quality. (v) other actions adversely impacting offsite
(1) Water quality standards shall be water flows or levels.
enforced pursuant to Chapter 403, Florida S c A implemented 373.036, Pa37 IV, 4 73 FS.
Law Implemented 373.036, Part IV, "373 FS.
Statutes, to protect waters of the State from History-New 5-5-81. i
point and non-point sources of pollution.
(2) State water quality standards adopted 17-40.08 Minimum Flows and levels.
by Department rule shall be a part of the (1) In establishing minimum flows and
Florida Water Plan. levels pursuant to Section 373.042,
Specific Authority 403.061, 373.026, 373.043, consideration shall be given-to the protection of
403.805 FS. Law Implemented 373.036, 373.039, water resources, natural seasonal fluctuations
403.021 FS. History-New 5-5-81. in water flows or levels, and environmental
17-40.07 Surface Water Management. values associated with coastal, estuarine,
The following shall apply to the regulation of aquatic, and wetlands ecology, including:
surface waters pursuant to Part IV, Chapter (a) Recreation in and on the water;
373, Florida Statutes. (b) Fish and wildlife habitats .and the
(1) The construction and operation of passage of fish;
facilities which manage or store surface waters, (c) Estuarine resources;
or other facilities which drain, divert, (d) Transfer of detrital material;
impound, discharge into, or otherwise impact (e) Maintenance of freshwater storage and
waters in the State, and the improvements supply; .
served'by such facilities, shall not be harmful to (f) Aesthetic and scenic attributes;
water resources or inconsistent with the (g) Filtration and absorption of nutrients
objectives of the Department or District. and other pollutants;
(2) In determining the harm to water (h) Sediment loads;
resources and consistency with the objectives of (i) Water quality; and
the Department or District, consideration (j) Navigation.
should be given to: (2) Established minimum flows and levels
(a) The impact of the facilities on: shall be a consideration where relevant to:
(i) recreation, (a) The construction and operation of
(ii) navigation, water resource projects.
(iii) water quality, (b) The issuance of permits pursuant to
(iv) fish and wildlife, Part II, Part IV, and Section 373.086, Florida
(v) wetlands, floodplains, and other Statutes.
environmentally sensitive lands, (c) The declaration of a water: shortage
(vi) saltwater or pollution intrusion, pursuant to Section 373.175 or Section
including any barrier line established 373.246, Florida Statutes.
Specific Authority 373.026, 373.043, 403.805 FS.
pursuant to Section 373.033, Florida Statutes, Law Implemented 373.036, 373.042, 373.086,
(vii) reasonable-beneficial uses of water, 373.175, 373.246 FS. History-New 5-5-81.
(viii) minimum flows and levels established
pursuant to Section 373.042, Florida Statutes, 17-40.09 District Water Management
(ix) other factors relating to the public (1) A water management plan shall be
health, safety, and welfare; prepared by each District which is consistent
(b) Whether the facilities meet applicable with the provisions of this Chapter and Section
design or performance standards; 373.036, Florida Statutes. The plan shall
(c) Whether adequate provisions exist for identify specific geographical areas where
the continued satisfactory operation and water resource problems have reached critical
maintenance of the facilities; levels.
(d) The ability of the facilities and related (2) A course of remedial action shall be
improvements to avoid increased damage to specified for each critical problem.
offsite property or the public caused by: (3) Measures may include, but are not
1 (i) floodplain development, encroachment limited to, water resource projects; water
or other alteration, resources restoration projects pursuant to
(ii) retardance, acceleration or diversion of Section 403.0615, Florida Statutes; purchase
flowing water, of lands; enforcement of Department or
"." (iii)f"dtitiorrof natural water storage District rules; and actions taken by local
CH. 17-40 DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATION
government pursuant to a Local Government which take into account differing regional
Comprehensive Plan, local ordinance, or water resource characteristics and needs.
zoning regulation. (6) A District shall initiate rulemaking to
(4) District Plans shall also provide for consider implementatirrn- -of- -programs
identifying areas where collection of data, pursuant to Sections 373.033, 373.042,
water resource investigations, water resource 373.106, Part II, Part III, or Part IV of
projects, or the implementation of regulatory Chapter 373, Florida Statutes, where the
programs are necessary to prevent water Department or District determines that
resource problems from reaching critical present or projected conditions of water
levels, shortages, saltwater intrusion, flooding,
Specific Authority 373.026, 373.043, 403.805 FS. drainage, or other water resource problems,
Law Implemented 373.036, 373.03373.73.042, prevent or threaten to prevent the achievement
373.106, 373.114 FS. History-New 5-5-81. of reasonable-beneficial uses, the protection of
17-40.10 Review and Application. fish and wildlife, or the attainment of other
(1) This Chapter shall be reviewed water policy directives.
periodically, but in no case less frequently than (7) The Department and Districts shall
once every four years. Revisions, if any, shall assist other governmental entities in the
be adopted by rule. development of plans, ordinances, or other
(2) Within 12 months after adoption or programs to promote consistency with this
revision of this Chapter, the Department, in Chapter and District water management
coordination with the Districts, shall review plans.
existing rules for consistency with the (8) Duplication of water quality and
provisions contained herein, quantity permitting functions should be
(3) District rules adopted after this eliminated where appropriate through
Chapter takes effect shall be reviewed by the delegation of Department responsibilities to
Department for consistency with this Chapter. Districts.
(4), At the request of the Department, each (9) The Department and Districts should
District shall initiate rulemaking pursuant to assist educational institutions in the
Chapter 120, Florida Statutes, to consider development of educational curricula and
changes the Department determines to be research programs which meet Florida's
necessary to assure -consistency with this present and future water management needs.
Chapter. The Department shall be made a Specific Authority 373.026, 373.043, 403.805 FS.
Chapter. The Department shall be made a
Law Implemented 373.036, 373.033, 373.042,
party to the proceeding. 373.106, 373.114 FS. History-New 5-5-81.
(5) District water policies may be adopted
which are consistent with this Chapter, but