STATE OF FLORIDA
DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATION
TWIN TOWERS OFFICE BUILDING GOVERNOR
2600 BLAIR STONE ROAD
TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA 32301 VICTORIA J. TSCHINKEL
Mr. Donald R. Feaster .l
Executive Director \
Southwest Florida Water Manage et
5060 U.S. 41 South Et<
Brooksville, Florida 33512
Dear -fatz ru
On Friday, May 1, 1981, a workshop was held regarding the
proposed general water policy, Section 17-40.03, Florida Admini-
strative Code, and several versions of a proposed property rights
section to go in Section 17-40.04(5), F.A.C. The workshop was
well attended and representatives of each water management district
were present and very helpful. The attached draft of General
Water Policy represents comments at the workshop.
After discussion, it was concluded by participants at the
workshop that we were not at a point at which a statement of
property rights in the use of water could be drafted which would
be generally accepted in Florida. It was the consensus of partici-
pants at the workshop that any consideration of such a section
should be postponed and not adopted at the forthcoming rule hearing
in June. Accordingly, the notice of the hearing has been drafted
so that such an issue can be discussed at the hearing but no pro-
posed rule has been drafted and filed with the Joint Administrative
Procedures Committee. Thus, a rule regarding property rights in
the use of water cannot be adopted at the hearing in June.
The only item to be considered for adoption by the Secretary
at the June hearing will be a general water policy section,
Section 17-40.03, F.A.C., which will be inserted in the water policy
rule previously adopted. It would be appreciated if you could
bring this rule, which has been discussed with your staff, to the
Board at its next meeting for consideration and comment. Any
resolution or action by the Board will be considered by the
Secretary at the rule adoption hearing in June.
Protecting Florida and Your Quality of Life
Mr. Donald R. Feaster
May 7, 1981
I would like to personally express to you my appreciation
for the cooperation of your staff, particularly Buddy Blain.
Buddy has worked very closely with me and the other water management
district attorneys. Without the help of the five water management
district attorneys, this rule would not have been possible. At
the very beginning of the rulemaking proceedings, the Department
recognized its inexperience in this area and the need for help from
the district attorneys who have so much experience and background
in this area. Their help has been vital to the adoption of this
entire rule. I hope in the future that we can repay this coopera-
tion with help in areas where you require assistance.
cc: Vicki Tschinkel
1 17-40.03 General Water Policy
2 The following statement of general water policy shall provide
3 a basis for Department review of water management programs, rules,
Sand plans. Water management programs, rules and plans, where
5 economically and environmentally feasible, not contrary to the
6 public interest, and consistent with Florida law, shall seek to:
7 (1) Assure availability of an adequate and affordable
8 supply of water for all- reasonable-beneficial uses. Uses of water
9 authorized by a permit shall be limited to reasonable-beneficial
11 (2) Reserve from use that water necessary to support
12 essential non-withdrawal demands, including navigation, recreation,
1 and the protection of fish and wildlife.
14 (3) Promote water conservation as an integral part of
1 water management programs, rules, and plans and the use and reuse
16 of water of the lowest acceptable quality for the purpose intended.
17 (4) Utilize, preserve, restore, and enhance natural water
1 management systems and discourage the channelization or other
alteration of natural rivers, streams and lakes.
20 (5) Protect the water storage and water quality enhancement
functions of wetlands, floodplains, and aquifer discharge areas
through acquisition, enforcement of laws, and the application of
land and water management practices which provide for compatible
(6) Mitigate adverse impacts resulting from prior altera-
tion of natural hydrologic patterns and fluctuations in surface
and ground water levels.
(7) Establish minimum flows and levels to protect water
resources and the environmental values associated with marine,
estuarine, freshwater, and wetlands ecology.
1 (8) Encourage non-structural solutions to water resource
2 problems and give adequate consideration to non-structural alterna-
3 tives whenever structural works are proposed.
4 (9) Encourage the management of floodplains and other flood
5 hazard areas to prevent or reduce flood damage consistent with
6 establishment and maintenance of desirable hydrologic characteristics
7 of such areas.
8 (10) Manage the construction and operation of facilities
9 which dam, divert, or otherwise alter the flow of surface waters to
10 prevent increased flooding, oil, erosion or excessive drainage.
11 (11) Encourage the development of local or regional water
12 supplies within districts rather than transport water across District
14 (12) Control point and non-point sources of water pollution
15 to the greatest degree feasible as provided in Chapters 17-3, and
16 17-6, F.A.C.
17 (13) Develop interstate agreements and undertake cooperative
18 programs with Alabama and Georgia to provide for coordinated manage-
19 ment of surface and ground waters.