| Material Information
||Memorandum: Propsed Wetlands Regulation Update
||Biological Research Associates, Inc.
||North America -- United States of America -- Florida
||Memorandum: Propsed Wetlands Regulation Update, December 3, 1986
||Box 7, Folder 2 ( Vail Conference 1987 - 1987 ), Item 13
||Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
-^s -7 a ~ ^ ~--------'..---- --- ----'; ^ --
BIOLOGICAL RESEARCH ASSOCIATES, INC.
TO: Florida Land Council
FROM: Biological Research Associates, Inc.
DATE: 3 December 1986
RE: Proposed Wetlands Regulation Update
Since our last meeting in early October a number of important events have
occurred relative to the draft mitigation rule proposed by the Florida
Department of Environmental Regulation (DER) and the draft isolated wetlands
rule proposed by various Water Management Districts including the South Florida
Water Management District (SFWMD) and the Southwest Florida Water Management
District (SWFWMD). This environmental update provides a brief analysis of the
proposed rule changes as well as copies of the latest drafts and other relevant
DER Mitigation Rule
Since our last discussion the following major revisions to the mitigation
rule have been proposed by the Department:
1. Criteria for phosphate mining has been incorporated into the rule, which
generally are less stringent than that imposed on other regulated
7792 Pofeional Place P. O. Box 290647
Florida 33687 (813) 985-2408 -
/2. The requirement for a certified soil scientist to supervise the earthwork
/ has been relaxed.
3. Reconstruction mitigation must be conducted in the same surface
waterbody "... unless the applicant demonstrates that those functions can
be adequately replaced in a different waterbody".
4. The exemption for requirement of financial responsibility (e.g.,
performance bonds, trust agreements, surety bonds, etc.) was increased
from $5,000.00 to $20,000.00.
5. Three different sets of success criteria language simultaneously submitted
by the Department for public comment. One version requires that plant
dominance and diversity in the mitigated wetlands be "substantially
equivalent" to the reference wetland. The other two versions are hybrids,
one stressing an 80% similarity in species composition, the other
functional equivalence. All three versions contain "as specified in the
permit conditions" language, suggesting that success criteria will be
subject to negotiation and the whims of Department personnel.
Despite considerable opposition many of the more onerous provisions in the
rule (e.g., type-for-type replacement, 2:1 created wetlands ratios, up-front
mitigation requirements) have not been modified and likely will be included in
the rule scheduled for publication in the Florida Administrative Weekly
sometime in December 1986. Finally, the Department has issued the attached
draft economic impact statement at the 12 November 1986 workshop in Miami. In
our opinion their analysis underestimates the potential cost of the proposed
mitigation rule for the typical developer by at least 100%.
Water Management Districts Isolated Wetlands Rule
The fifth and second revisions to draft isolated wetlands rules were
published by SFWMD on 20 October 1986 and SWFWMD on 18 November 1986,
respectively (attached). The SFWMD continues to take the lead and remains the
more stringent rule; SWFWMD has extensively revised their latest draft rule
primarily by copying major sections of the SFWMD rule. Both Districts have
maintained a 0.5 acre size threshold; upland buffers have been reduced to an
average of 25 feet in the SFWMD rule and 15 feet in the SWFWMD rule. The
Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission (FGFWFC) and others have supplied
the Districts with the attached biological information to support the
maintenance of very small, isolated wetlands.