r F" -- i .. .... ..... .n S ... L....
draft October 3, 1977
* ft. Governor James h. W ..iams
RE: Water Element, State Comprehensive Plan
Dear Lt. Governor Williams:
The Southwest Florida Water Management District has participated in meetings of the
Policy Advisory Council as you requested in your letter of June 8, 1977, and appreciates
the opportunity to provide input toward the development of the Water Element of the Stat(
Comprehensive Plan. We are concerned, however, that development of this important documE
is being unduly rushed toward completion in an effort to have it approved by the
Governor and put before the LegiSlature by next spring.
/n D Ix &"Ua--# d14
The Southwest Florida Water Management District isnab e to suppoP4 the current draft o"
ptv Ad D5 P
the Water ElementAas thPe foremost guide to the future of this state as it relates to
t originally our understanding that the five portions of the State Water Use Plan
being developed by the five water management districts respectively would provide the
initial basis for the Water Element. These five plans were to be brought together and
added to water quality aspects by the Department of Environmental Regulation (DER) in
coordination with the Division of State Planning to form the Water Element. As it now
appears, $be Element is being promulgated' cncG ently and probably will be completed
before the State Water Use Plan.
We feelfX' would be a better document iffthe original procedure to pi-rue -itr wter-
4lcmn+ -eeri-e U -b foIl.wed becsu~ e t u des a sound, well-documented data basejput
together by professionals and shaped by the Boards who daa:iy-face the many complex and
critical water resource problems h / <-*- ,a
We also feel that the District's foremost effort toward water resource planning is, and
should continue to be, aimed at producing its portion of the State Water Use Plan as set
forth in Chapter 373 F. S. To assign additional hydrologists, biologists, engineers
and planners to an in depth review of each draft of the Water Element entails a consider
cost in dollars, time and energy, and is a significant duplication of effort.
It also seems that many of the issues being discussed by the PAC have been included in
other elements of the Comprehensive Plan which have already been approved by the Governor
and further consideration by the PAC would be either unnecessary or would result in
conflicting policy which the Governor would be obliged to reject. Two issues, for example
that appear to be addressed in other elements are those pertaining to interbasin transfer
of water and whether or not water should be used to limit growth. (See Land Development
policies #5, #6, #15; and, Agriculture Element Policies VW-l, #W-2, Growth Element
Policies #6 and #6, respectively).
77-T-JZ '"-'?. --- '
Other policies apparently already approved by the Governor include those pertaining
to power plant siting; re-establishment and protection of wetlands; retention and storage
of surface water; agricultural conservation of water; use of mandatory conservation
techniques in urban and industrial areas suffering a shortage; protection of the ground-
water resource; protection of recharge and groundwater supply areas; and, regulation of
withdrawals and coastal canals to prevent saltwater intrusion. These policies were, for
the most part, generated and forwarded to the Governor without appreciable input from
the Southwest Florida Water Management District.
Because many of the issues with which we were very concerned have already been approved
by the Governor and because we have serious questions about a number of the remaining
policies now being presented to the public via meetings around the state, the Governing j_ .
Board *-cospe -led respectfully ...w..r.. f Ir Puppot o-f the Water Cle.t bcing
We feel our portions of the State Water Use Plan, now scheduled to be forwarded to
DER by the end of this year, will provide a more competent base upon which the state
can build the Water Element when incorporated with those of the other water management
districts. The positions and policies stated in our plan will also preclude the possi-
bility of confusion over the problems we face and the methods we feel will most efficient
rectify them. We are concerned the policies adopted by the PAC will be attributed to the
Governing Board of the Southwest Florida Water Management District because of the
District's membership and participation on the council even though the Governing Board
is the only District authority that can adopt such policies and it has not been in a
position to do so.
DERRILL S. McATEER
cc: Governing Board
bcc: D. R. Feaster
E. D. Vergara
J. B. Butler
C. E. Palmer
John Wodraska, SFWMD
Don Morgan, SRWMD
Bill McCartney, NFWMD