Title: Palatka Meeting SJRWMD Chief Raps Taxing Plan
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/WL00002048/00001
 Material Information
Title: Palatka Meeting SJRWMD Chief Raps Taxing Plan
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Publisher: Florida Times-Union
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida
Abstract: Palatka Meeting SJRWMD Chief Raps Taxing Plan, June 18, 1975
General Note: Box 10, Folder 1 ( SF Taxation, ad valorem tax referendum-SWFWMD-1975 - 1975 ), Item 96
Funding: Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: WL00002048
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Levin College of Law, 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

with the chairman on co-
operation with SFD was mem-
ber John Dicks, Jackson-
"Let's find out why and
get to the cause... not the
symptoms," stated Dicks.
Marshall said he was not
In disagreement with White
or Dicks, however, he added
that he felt there should not
be any major expenditure of
staff involvement in those
Dr. Suzanne Bayley,
Gainesville, suggested that
the district pursue the con-
tractural agreement with
the Oklawaha district to
demonstrate the efficiency
'of the cooperative agree-
JUST TO KEEP the dis-
trict apprised of workshop
and business meetings of the
incoming districts would in-
volve approximately one-
fifth of a month's working
schedule, said legal counsel
Herb Webb.
"We wouldn't be hung up
like this," said Marshall, "if
they (these districts) did not
have ad valorem taxing cap-
"I don't think the Legisla-
ture should allow five (wa-
ter management) boards to
obligate the people of Flori-
da," stated Marshall. "My
position is that I hope that'
issue fails... and I will do
everything in my power to
see that it does."
AFTER AUTH told direc-
tors that he was getting in-
complete reports on permit-
ting, member George
Brow n, Daytona Beach,.
claimed the director was not
forceful enough.
"Get a truck and a Zerox
machine and go down there
(FSD) and make copies of
their records.., these are
public documents, aren't
they?" quizzed Brown.
"I would object to having
someone go down there,"
White interjected. "I think
we should pursue what we
have under our present con-
"The upper St. Johns is as
dead as a hammer," said
Brown informing the direc-
tors of a meeting in Talla-
hasee on Tuesday and
Wednesday spearheaded by
environmental groups in-
cluding friends of the St.



Raps Taxing Plan

River Water Management
District Chairman Dr. Ar-
thur Marshall is opposed to
proposed ad valorem taxa-
tion by the state's five dis-
tricts and says he will work
vigorously to defeat the is-
sue which will appear in a
statewide referendum next
. Marshall's statement came
at the beginning of an all-
day meeting of the district
board here Tuesday.
- EFFECTS OF recent leg-

By EVELYN LONG, Times-Union Staff Writer

Isolation and government re-
organization which takes the
district, from the Cabinet
and puts it under the new
Department of Environmen-
tal Regulation, headed by
Jay Landers were discussed
by the board.
Five of the seven-member
district boards are up for
appointment next month by
the governor.,
As a result of breakdown
in contractural agreement

P.O. Box o10278


with South Florida Water
Management -District--(for-
merly. Centra. and Southern
Florida Flood Control Dis-
trict) the board voted unani-
mously to call for a joint
board meeting of the two
boards in August, after the
governor makes board ap-
pointments, to discuss and
resolve management of the
St. Johns River Basin.
Currently, the St. Johns
River Water Management
District consists of 12 coun-
ties. Another five located in
the headwaters of the St.
Johns River had been sched-
uled to join the district on
SJuly 1. Complicating the
transfer, it was explained, is
present taxing abilities of
the Central and Southern
Flood Control District,
amounting to some $26 mil-
lion in ad valorem taxation.
out more similarities than
differences in water man-
agement of the river valley,
and suggested that the dis-
trict concentrate its efforts
and funds in the well de-
fined 12-county area already
within the district.
Dennis Auth, 'executive
director, had informed
directors that SFD had vot-
ed on Friday to table a co-
operative agreement with
the SJRWMD until the issue
on ad valorem taxation had
been presented to the voters
on the preferential statewide
ballot next March.
Member Bobbie White,
Hastings, disagreed witn
Marshall on withholding fi-
nancial assistance in the
counties set for transfer.
"They've got to have a
reason (for taking the ac-
tion)", said White, "and we
must pursue this reason to
find out why SFD voted the
delay after being so agree-

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From Page 1
coastal areas."

The legislature has added legislation giving further authority
and responsibility, he said, for control of withdrawal of water
from the Floridian aquifer (subsurface water) and comsump.
tive use of water, and the conservation of subsurface and sur-
face water.
"Our purpose is to manager water for the most benefit of the
general public," he said.
Swiftmud is further broken into 10 water basins, or watershed
Swiftmud's area of responsibility includes waterrich Marion
County, but it also includes the area around Tampa and St.
Petersburg. The problem there is that so much population has
lowered the water table in that area so much that salt-water is
encroaching, and wells have had to be shut down.
In fact wells monitored by the water management districts
show that the water level in Florida is dropping "significantly"
Salt water encroachment is also evident in South Florida.
Graw drew a rough sketch of Florida and showed a dotted line
just inside the coastal area of the southern part of the state.
"Years ago, they were having salt water encroachment in
these areas. Now," he said, shading in a significant area of
land inland from the coast, "this is what has happened."
Because Tampa and the St. Petersburg area have more
population than their source of water can satisfy, they have
drilled additional wells inland. Graw said that present plans
propose drilling in the Green Swamp area.
"Water knows no boundaries," he said, "but we have the use

of It."
At the present time, no water from Marion County is being
piped in to any outside city.
"There is a misconception that water short areas, such as
Pinellas or Hillsborough Counties, can arbitrarily extend
pipelines into other areas that are plentiful in the supply of
water," he said, "without concern for the people in those areas.
Conceptually, the people who live in the water rich counties
have the final say within their own county boundaries, arid they
can protect themselves under the law."
What will happen in the future is the question.
Graw believes that within the next 10 years, the state will be
compelled to devise a statewide water plan.
"At present, there is a plan on the drawing boards for an in-
terlocking of systems," he said.
He said it is a state problem. There is an abundance of water
in the state, he said, but because of a lack of planning for
growth, some areas are in a critical position.
A question that concerns some local people is whether or not
areas like Silver Springs or the Rainbow Springs would ever be
used to provide water for areas of the state that are water poor.
The question is still one that has no certain answer, but Graw
said, "The city of Ocala uses about 11 million gallons a day. You
take one spring and never take away from a river. Some rivers
have daily flows that are astronomical. There is sufficient ex-
cess that is dumped into the oceans that could be used by the
people of Florida and yet not upset the ecological balance. I
don't want to play with nature, she has done good job..."
Partly because of the problem of South Florida, the
legislature recently realligned the water management districts.
In late 1976, Marion County will be split between the St. John's
River. Water Management Area and the Southwest Florida
Water Management District.

At present, the basins are able to levy a one mill tax for, -
projects within the management area, and each district can-'
levy .3 of one mill. This levy is to provide funds for water quality
A constitutional amendment has been proposed which would
allow the districts to levy up to one mill for water management
Both McCall and MacKay voted against the amendment.
"I was concerned over the bill giving the districts the "
authority, McCall said.
"It was one of those bills passed during the last minute of the
session. It provides for a non-elective, appointive group to levy
taxes for water control, and it might not be legal for this reason.
It would give the appointive group in the water management
districts control of water factors, which in the future would
mean that in Marion, the county could have its water piped out
into another area where water, is scarce. Just because we have r
water we would have no control over it."
More and more, the water management districts are attrac-
ting the attention of legislators.
"I'm starting to tell everybody interested in politics and
power to watch the water management districts and their boar-
ds," said Sen. Phillip Lewis of West Palm Beach, chairman of <
the senate natural resources committee recently. "That's where
the power is going to be."
Rep. William Fulford of Orlando, Lewis' counterpart in the
House, agrees, saying that most citizens and lawmakers "don't
fully understand the potential power" of water management
Stan Winn, assistant director of the Florida Pollution Control
Department, said recently, "Water in Florida and who controls
it is going to become more and more important as time goes

ac(Kay Says Water

'Our Next Continuing Crisis'

j Star-Banner City Editor
SSen. Kenneth H. (Buddy) MacKay of Ocala says that it will be
four next, continuing crisis" in the legislature. Rep. Wayne
WcCall of Ocala calls it the most important problem we have,
More important, I think, than even energy".
SMost of us take it for granted in Marion County, but without it,
ane of us would be alive in three days time.

Water is a dull topic. That is, as long as it is plentiful. When it
becomes scarce, it becomes the most paramount item in life.
Songs are written about water. Odes to water are numerous.
Range wars are fought over water.
The top half of the state has plenty of water. The south half of
the state does not. In order for the water poor counties to get
along, they need help from the water rich counties.
Bob Grew of Ocala is one of the most knowledgeable men in

the area when it comes to water management, and what is being
done in Florida to conserve and manage it.
Graw was recently elected to the post of vice president of the
Southwest Florida Management District. The water districts,
five now iii" thi'slate, art mainly Tesponsible for our most
precious commodity, and yet very few people are really
familiar with their function.
The Southwest Florida Water Management District, called

"Swiftmud", is one of the districts established by the
legislature to implement flood control measures within a 15-
county area, Graw explains, with the original intent to control
"The initial concept was flood control to prevent devastating
property damage and loss of life in years past, mainly in the

seeTKApg. 2A

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