PLEASE NOTE CHANGE OF ADDRESS:
STATE o FOI Department of Legal Affairs
STATE OF FLORIDA Civil Division
DEPARTMENT OF LEGAL AFFAIRS 222 W. Poenarcla St
OFFICE Or THE ATTORNEY GENERAL Petroleum %,iljing
OFC^ THE CAPITOL Tallahassee, Florida 32304
ROBERT L. SHEVIN TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA 03804
ATTORNEY GENERAL tr
S EP .-5
September 21, 1973 SEP5 i
Mr. Garald G. Parker, C.P.G.
Senior Scientist and Chief Hydrologist
Southwest Florida Water Management District
Post Office Box 457
Brooksville, Florida 33512
Dear Mr. Parker:
You will find enclosed a copy of the Complaint we are
going to file in the Green Swamp case and the original and
one copy of your affidavit which we plan to file with the
Complaint. Please sign the original of the affidavit and
return it to me. The remaining documents are yours to
keep for your own information and records.
If you should find anything in the affidavit about
which you have reservations, please call me. I tried to
be true to the information you supplied us, but I may
have misstated something.
Thank you for your help on this matter. I look
forward to working with you more closely as this case
THOMAS A. HARRIS
Assistant Attorney General
STATE OF FLORIDA, ex rel.
ROBERT L. SHEVIN, Attorney
GROVELAND RANCH ACRES, INC., a
Florida corporation; ZENITH
AMERICAN LAND AND DEVELOPMENT
-CORPORATION, a Delaware corporation;
ATGAR DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, a
Florida corporation; and, ZENITH
AMERICAN CORPORATION, a Florida
CIRCUIT COURT OF THE
JUDICIAL CIRCUIT OF
)A, IN AND FOR POLK COUNTY.
) 3 4".
i /530 /se.
CIVIL ACTION NO.
COMPLAINT FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION
AND PERMANENT INJUNCTIVE RELIEF
1. This is a civil action for a temporary and
permanent injunction for which this Court has jurisdiction
pursuant to Section 6(3) of Article V of the Constitution
of the State of Florida.
2. The State of Florida, as a Sovereign State,
brings this action as parents patriae, trustee, guardian and
representative, in behalf of the citizens and residents of.
the State of Florida, to protect and preserve the property,
health and welfare of the people of the State of Florida,
and the environment of the State of Florida.
3. Relator, ROBERT L. SHEVIN, as Attorney General -
of the State of Florida, and as the Chief Legal Officer of
the State, is required to represent the people of the State
when their rights are affected, and to act as legal guardian
of the people, under Article IV, Section 4(c), Florida Consti-
tution, 1968 Revision, and the Common Law, such represen-
tation including the abatement of public nuisances. Further,
realtor, ROBERT L. SHEVIN, as Attorney General and Chief Legal
Officer of the State, is authorized to seek abatement of public
nuisances under the provisions of Section 60.05, Florida
I a .: -
Statutes, as amended by Chapter 71-268, Laws of Florida, 1971,
and Section 823.05, Florida Statutes.
4. Article II, Section 7, Florida Constitution,
It shall be the policy of the state
to conserve and protect its natural re-
sources and scenic beauty.
This section is self-executing and enforceable by the.Attorney
General acting as parents patriae to protect public and
5. Defendant Zenith American Land and Development
Corporation is a Delaware Corporation licensed to do business
and currently engaged in business in the State of Florida.
6. Defendants Zenith American Corporation, Grove-
land Ranch Acres, Inc., and Atgar Development Corporation are
Florida corporations currently engaged in business in the
State of Florida.
7. All. Defendants have been and presently are
dredging, filling, draining, sub-dividing and selling for
.human habitation certain portions of Green Swamp, to wit:
as to the Defendants, Zenith American Corporation, Groveland
Ranch Acres, Inc., and Zenith American Land and Development
Corporation, 11,000 acres in the southeast quadrant of Green
7 7 Swamp, northeast of Lakeland, Florida, along Deestill Road;
and, as to Defendant Atgar Development Corporation, 1350 acres
in the southwest quadrant of Green Swamp, north of Lakeland
along Old Polk City Road.
8. Green Swamp, covering approximately 870 square
miles, is not a typical swamp but a high, poorly drained plateau
I with only patches and strands of true swamp scattered widely
over it. It lies mostly in Polk and Lake Counties with smaller
parts in Sumter, Pasco and Hernando Counties.
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9. The Green Swamp benefits the State of Florida
and its citizens in the following ways:
(a) It is the center of the largest single
recharge area for the Floridan Aquifer, which
aquifer supplies 90% of the water currently used
in Peninsular Florida;
(b) It is the source of five rivers: the
Withlacoochee, Hillstorough, Peace, Oklawaha,
and Kissimmee rivers;
(c) It provides the habitat for numerous
forms of wildlife which have adapted to Green
(d)' It provides aesthetic beauty and en-
richment to the lives of Florida citizens who
live in or visit the area.
10. The continued activities of the Defendants will
injure the State of Florida and its citizens by:
(a) Significantly decreasing the recharge
of the Floridan Aquifer and the amount of ground
water available for human use in peninsular
S---- PUb)- llunAn -waters of Green Swamp,
creating a huge, noisome sump of human wastes
and ruining the; major recharge source of the.
(c) Creating flooding of significantly
greater magnitude than now endured on the lands.
which border the five rivers originating in
(d) Destroying the natural habitat of the
wildlife inhabitants of Green Swamp, resulting
in the demise of such wildlife;
(e) Destroying the aesthetic beauty and
value of Green Swamp as it is presently consti-
(f) Creating fire hazard conditions threatening
all of Green Swamp and surrounding areas.
11. The aforesaid activities of the Defendants do
deleteriously affect, in the State of Florida, public
water supplies, public health, and the use and enjoyment of
public and private lands.
12. The Defendants, by their activities mentioned
above, have created and are creating a public nuisance in
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violation of the Common Law and the provisions of Section 60.05
Florida Statutes, as amended by Chapter 71-268, Laws of Florida,
1971, and Section 823.05, Florida Statutes, such public
nuisance being continued and unabated.
13. The relator has reason to believe and fear that
unless restrained by order of this court, Defendants will con-
tinue their aforementioned activities to the injury of the
State and citizens of Florida.
S14. In this case, the potential harm to the State
\ of Florida, its natural environment and resources, and its
citizens far outweighs the detriment to the Defendants should
they be enjoined from-engaging in the activities complained of
S15. Defendants' dredging, draining and selling
activities complained of herein are and continue to bring
immediate and irreparable harm upon the Plaintiff and its
16. The Plaintiff has no adequate remedy at law.
Wherefore, Relator, ROBERT L. SHEVIN as Attorney
General of Florida, prays that the Court:
S' (a) Issue a preliminary injunction enjoining
the Defendants from all further activity, including
dredging and draining, which could reasonably re-
sult in the lessening of water quantity or quality
in Green Swamp;
(b) Permanently enjoin the Defendants from
all development activities which could reasonably
result in the lessening of water quantity and
quality in Green Swamp;
(c) Order such other relief as the Court may
DATED at Tallahassee, Florida, this day of
-- September, 1973.
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ROBERT L. SHEVIN
K4NETH F. HOFFMAN
Assistant Attorney General
Ti6OMAS A. HARRIS
Assistant Attorney General
Department of Legal Affairs
212 West Pensacola Street
Tallahassee, Florida -. 32301
F-nrar~lra ~4L~Q~ej ~~--- ~p~a~~
STATE OF FLORIDA )
COUNTY OF HERNANDO )
BEFORE ME, the undersigned authority, personally
appeared GARALD G. PARKER, who being first duly sworn, deposes
I am a Certified Professional Geologist, A.I.P.G.
No. 691, and presently am both Chief Hydrologist and Senior
Scientist of the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
I hold a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Science from Central
Washington College (1935) and a Master's of Science in Geology
From the University of Washingtqn (1947). I have served
nearly 30 years as a professional geologist and hydrologist
with the U. S. Geological Survey and was, from 1940 to 1948,
in charge of the Survey's cooperative investigations in the. -
southern Florida District. I am the principal author of the
definitive report on geology and water resources of southeastern
Florida, U. S. Geological Survey Water-Supply Paper 1255, cora-
"' prising 965 pages, 24 plates, 223 figures and 147 tables.
Additionally, I have written numerous other published reports
on Florida geology and hydrology, one of which won for me the
S. Gold Medal Achievement Award of the Florida Academy of Sciences
Z have served the U. S. Geological Survey as research
geologist and hydrologist and as administrative geologist, and
advanced from Junior Geologist io Principal Geologist in the
period 1940-59, and was awarded in 1958 an Outstanding
Achievement Award for my work on the Delaware River Basin
.I |Project, which was published as U. S. Geological Professional
Paper 381. My last tour of duty with the U. S. Geological
Survey was as District Hydrologist for the New York State
District, a position I resigned to accept my present job. I
am a member of a number of professional societies including
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the American Institute of Professional Geologists, the American
Petroleum Geologists, American Water Resources Association,
Geological Society of America and others. I was national
president of American Water Resources Association in 1968 and
Currently am a member of AWRA's Executive Board. I was selected
for membership in the National Research Council-National Academy
of Sciences in 1963.
I will explain here the probable effects of dredging,
draining, and urbanization of Green Swamp. What I shall say is
opinion of reasonable scientific certainty based on my expertise,
training, observations, experiences and reading. I have been
through the Green Swamp and surrounding geological area on
geological reconnaissance trips and, thus, have an acquaintance
with the area; by studying geologic reports, I have gained_
additional pertinent information.i -" A
Peninsular Florida drads more than percent of its O
water supplies from the Floridan Aquifer. The highest elevation
of the Floridan Aquifer underlies Green Swamp. From its high
position Green Swamp is one of the major sources of new water
and hydraulic pressure for the aquifer, thus playing an important
role in recharging and maintaining the water supply for a large
part of Florida. Recent hydrologic studies of water available
in the Southwest Florida Water Management District show that
the district, for once-only uses of water, will be using all
S of the natural annual fresh water replenishment by 1985.
Draining of Green Swamp will substantially decrease the amount
of water available from the Florida Aquifer, move up the date
of the end of water source sufficiency, and most probably cause
S' water shortages in the near future.
SFurther, allowing urbanization of municipal-type
developments in the Green Swamp, would carry with it the seeds
of destruction to the water supply even if over-drainage were
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not the cause. The problem is how to dispose of the human,
industrial, commercial and agricultural wastes that would
accumulate from development of the Green Swamp lands. Lacking
streams to carry away and dilute the wastes, the poorly drained
Green Swamp could well become a huge sump of human and industrial
wastes that would ruin the heart of the recharge source for
*the major water supply of Central Florida.
There is no place to dispose of either liquid or
solid wastes except onto or into the ground, and thus no way.
to keep wastes out of the water supply. Nature can handle
wastes from the sparse population now occupying the Green
Swamp area, but could not possibly handle safely the tons of
daily waste that would be generated from urbanization -- not
unless such liquid wastes were all to be treated to the quality
of drinking water and the solid wastes be so processed and
isolated from both surface waters and ground waters that
poisonous and injurious leachates could be forever kept out
...-*..-_ f 4the. jimnlfer 4 and streams--.------- .
An additional effect of draining Green Swamp is
creation of fire hazard conditions. During the eons prior to
drainage, the wetlands ecosystems developed and were essentially
immune to forest, brush or grass fires. Such immunity resulted
from constantly wet solid, overflowed lands (swamps, bogs.,
*streams, lakes, marshes, etc.) and the lush plant growth
which, together with atmospheric moisture produced by evapo-
transpiration, created a situation in which fires simply could.
not develop or spread. Once these wetlands are drained and
when drought conditions develop, the soils dry out, Vegetation
wilts or becomes so desiccated that much of it dies, and the
once fire-immune swamp suddenly becomes a huge tinderbox. It
was just such a condition as this that permitted the devastation
by fires of more than 22,000 acres of the Big Cypress Swamp this
past spring and summer.
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Five major rivers originate here. At the U. S.
Geological Survey stream gaging stations located closest to the
outer boundaries of the Green Swamp proper, the streams and
their average annual flows are: Withlacoochee River at Croom,
541 mgd (million gallons a day) which is a runoff equivalent
of 8.09 in/yr (inches a year); Hillsborough River near
Zephyrhills, 188 mgd 17.44 in/yr; Peace River at Bartow,
190 mgd 13.71 in/yr; Oklawaha River at Moss Bluff, 240 mgd
.. 5.52 in/yr; and Kissimmee River near Lake Wales, 747 mgd =
9.70 in/yr. Thus, total annual runoff is about 1,706 mgd or
more than 3.5 times the runoff (potential water supply that
might be derived from streamflow) of the Big Cypress.
These streams are less sources of water supply than
* they are sources of flood-control problems. No deep valleys
are present anywhere in the area in which large and economical
*water supply reservoirs can be constructed and into which the
annual flood flows could be stored. The dredging and draining
......-----. o--of- n Swamp will must puby-result in larger and more
destructive seasonal floods in each of the five rivers.
Green Swamp is the habitat of many of the forms of 7
flora and fauna adapted to its particular environment. Drainage
Sof the swamp would destroy the natural habitat of these life
forms and hasten their demise.
FURTHER AFFIANT SAYETH NOT.
^/ -- Affiant -
.Sworn to and subscribed .. .
before me this day
< ",of ,- ,. S W. .1973.
NOTARY PUBLIC, State of
I. My Commission Expires:
age gittg so stI F orol d WIA
1. tistn ExApiresx Fib. 2. 19A
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