S STATE OF FLORIDA
-* DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATION
"'' 2562 EXECUTIVE CENTER CIRCLE, EAST
TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA 32301
REUBIN O'D. ASKEW
'GOVERNOR January 24, 1977 JOSEPH W. LANDERS. JR.
Mr. Jim Tait
Office of the Governor
Tallahassee, Florida 32304
S Dear Jim:
Per your rq.uetst, arguments in favor of maintaining the WRDA
Account are a follows:
.1) Precedent the Legislature has appropriated funds
for water management and flood control since 1949,
ranging from a low of $750,000 in 1961 to .as much
Ias $23,000,000 in 1974.
2) Prior state participation reflects a commitment
toward completion of the state's two major water
-resource projects, the Central and Southern Florida
Flood Control Project and the Four- River Basin Project.
Completion of the two major projects at the earliest
possible date will minimize construction and land
3) WRDA funds are matched by Federal Corps of Engineer
'fuanas at a ratio of approximately four~ to one. Further-
more, no. project is undertaken by the Corps :f Engineers
unless the benefits are shown to outweigh the costs
and there is a demonstrated need for the project.
S.Thus every WRDA dollar Invested must benefit the State
4) Water supply would be a potential restraint to growth
in SFWMD and SWFiMD should completion of the two projects
5) The two projects are of benefit to the entire State
in that economic growth, in SE and SW Florida generates
sales tax revenue and stimulates economic growth.
6) Funding for the WRDA account ultimately comes from
sales tax revenues, a major portion of which comes
from SE and SW Florida.
January 24, 1977
7) 373.495 provides for the establishment of a WRDA
8) While all five water management districts now have
t4xing authority, only three %St. John' s, SFWMD, and
SWFSR4D) have the taxing capacity to finance major works.
9) Basin taxation limitations preclude completion of major
components of the Four River Basins project in the
foreseeable future without WRDA 'funding.
10) Potential. environmental co nflicts are theoretically
resolved through the EIS review process.
11) A large portion of WRDA funds is expended for land
acquisition which, is of environmental benefit.
Furthermore, there 'is the potential for use of WRDA
funds for environmental restoration.
12) Even if eventually discontinued, a gradual rather than
abrupt phase-out of WRDA funding would be less disruptive.
The immediate impact of abruptly discontinuing the
WRDA account would be as .follows:
South Florida Water Management District
The result of failure of the State to provide matching funds
for construction for the Central and Southern Florida Flood
Control project would be the option on the part of existing
contractors ,to terminate contracts due to lack of funds.
There would certainly be no funds of the SFWMD available to
use as matching funds between July and October when the new
budget year of the District commences. This would give a t
opportunity for termination with consequent financial liability
on the part of the District for any damages sustained by the
contractor because of the termination.
The Federal on-going contracts which would be unfunded total
$6,119,760 which the state matches with $1,984,940.
The termination would delay completion of funding for raising
Lake Okeechobee, because of contract termination. The contracts
would have to restart, which takes time, possibly as much as a
year. It could also discourage the Federal Appropriation of;
funds as the State would be failing to fund on the basis of
The same arguments are just as persuasive for the on-going
contracts of water supply to Everglades National Park and South
January 24, 1977
Southwest Florida Water Management District
The $1.7 mil. for construction is required as the District's
17% contribution to the Federal Government for Tampa iBypass
Canal ,(TBC) and related projects. Without funding, this project
would cease since Basin tax funds are inadequate to finance costs.
The $1.5 mil. for highway bridges is for bridges over the TBC.
Without bridges, plugs would remain in the canal since Basin
taxation is also inadequate to finance bridge costs.
Without each of the above, TBC would remain only partially
complete and provide no flood protection for the Cities of
Tampa and Temple Terrace.
Anclote Water Storage Area funds are required to meet the next
contract for acquisition of the property which is needed to
continue development of thel area as a well field for relief
of the Water Shortage Area in West Pasc6 County.
Funds required for the other water storage lands are needed
to continue acquisition of the property required for the Four
River Basin water detention project. Adequate funds~are not
available within the limits of Basin taxation for` the necessary
Joseph W. Landers, Jr.