Title: FL Home Builders's Water Supply Funding Paper--Typical Questions and Anwers (memo and Discussion of a Local Cources First Water Policy for Florida)
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Title: FL Home Builders's Water Supply Funding Paper--Typical Questions and Anwers (memo and Discussion of a Local Cources First Water Policy for Florida)
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Language: English
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida
Abstract: FL Home Builders's Water Supply Funding Paper--Typical Questions and Anwers (memo and Discussion of a Local Cources First Water Policy for Florida)
General Note: Box 11, Folder 2 ( 17th Annual Water Management Seminar - 1998 ), Item 21
Funding: Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
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Full Text



, I I

Servng the home building and remodeling industry of lorida.

TO: Gene Adams (FL Assn. of Realtors), Bill Hunter (FL Assn.
of Community Developers), Kari Hebrank (Florida Assn. of
Counties) andJareHayman (FL League of Cities)

FROM: Keith Hetrick 'an Jake Varn -'

DATE: February 12, 1997

RE: Water Supply Funding

For a number of reasons, the home builders are having
difficulty getting the attention of local government to support the
idea of authorizing "new" recurring dedicated local option funding
sources for water, "if" there is going to be any attempt this
legislative session to address water issues. We're not asking
local government to push for new money -- only to support new local
option money for water supply if there are any "new" water planning
provisions imposed on either local government or WMDs this session.

Conversely, we would oppose a water planning bill that
contains no access by local government to new funding sources. In
our view, even if new planning requirements are imposed only on
WMDs, local government should still be concerned about what
Additional incentives are available to assist in the production of
more water. Therefore, in our opinion, local access to new funding
is necessary if the following assumptions are made:

1. Increased demand for water is inevitable given Florida's
projected growth rate. Therefore, the water supply issue has to do
with how to avoid periodic water shortages in various areas of the
state due to increased demand on ground water sources from all
uses, including the environment; and, how and who should pay the
attendant costs of producing more water;

2. The beneficiary of water should pay the attendant costs.

3. The goal should be to produce enough water to ensure an
adequate, affordable and sustainable water supply for all uses,
existing and future (as opposed to limiting growth to the
availability of water);

4. Local governments (including private utilities) have and
should retain the responsibility for water supply;

5. As a matter of state policy, the legislature needs to
provide local government with as many tools as possible to create
incentives for additional water supply production in a way that
allows local government to choose among various water supply

Flodd Horme b uHldJ AMOdln P.O. Box 1259 Taolhossee, FL 32302-1259 (904) 224-4316 FAX (904) 224-1359
Street address 201 East Park Avenue Talahassee, FL 32301

3 1_ 1 _

Water Supply. Funding
February 12, 1997
Page 2

6. It is desirable to further clarify or delineate the
responsibilities of local government versus the water management
districts in water issues (which will result in new requirements
given to water management districts).

Because the state associations representing local government
are neither enthusiastic about access to new money nor leading the
charge, we believe that we have simply not done a good job
communicating our position. Clearly, on this issue, local
government, urban interests and development should be in step.
Therefore, the following is intended to respond to what we believe
are questions or misconceptions about the funding issue.

1. More money equates to promoting growth and not all local
governments want to grow or be responsible for additional services
brought on by growth.

RESPONSE: This argument is flawed because a lack of money
means "no growth" and not all local governments want "no
growth." Therefore, the solution: allow those local
governments who want to grow or need additional funding the
option to access to new local option moneys for water supply

2. Local governments don't need new money; in any event,
local governments already have the ability to raise utility rates.

RESPONSE: Raising utility rates to pay for increased demand
may or may not be a sufficient or preferable choice for some
local governments to address water supply problems. Utility
rates are only one solution. Our goal is to provide local
government with as many meaningful tools as possible so that
they can choose among their options to resolve water supply or
shortage problems. In some instances, alternatives to rates
may be a more desirable, efficient or practical way to
accumulate "significant" funds to undertake a major capital

3. The state is simply trying to force local government
officials to take the heat for raising taxes.

RESPONSE: Not true. A local option is just that. It allows
local government to choose how to resolve a problem. They
don't have to select the option and won't if there is no
problem. Why would the state mandate a statewide tax and
distribute it back to all local governments when there is not
a clear identified statewide problem in each local government?


Water Supply Funding
February 12, 1997
Page 3

4. The state will end up putting so many restrictions on
additional funding that any benefits will be outweighed by the

RESPONSE: Not so. But, there must be some basic built-in
underlying accountability measures in a local government's
ability to access funds. For example, a local government's
access to new money for more water should result in the
improvement of water supply locally for those who pay
[conversely, new water money should not be used to offset
other general service costs]. In addition, we support a state
policy that local access to new money for improved water
supply must be used in a manner that either serves a
regionally compatible water solution or is not in conflict
with another jurisdiction. Aside from those basic underlying
considerations on local access to new water funds, we would
oppose any other strings, such as attaching a referendum to
local government access to new funds.

5. We don't know what the "need" is statewide so how can we
decide as a matter of state policy if and what "new" revenue
sources should be authorized and how much.

RESPONSE: It doesn't matter. The key to producing new water
is local flexibility and access to a "significant" new source
of recurring dedicated revenue to address water problems.
Every local government will have different needs. When local
governments were given a local option penny sales tax for
infrastructure, there was not a state identification of
specific local needs. The legislature simply recognized that
a penny was a significant infusion of money for local
government infrastructure needs (unfortunately, with a
referendum attached).

6. A new funding source will allow or make it easier for
WMDs to force local governments to pay for alternative more
expensive water supply systems because WMDs would have an easy out
to set minimum flows and levels to protect the environment without
having to worry about the implications for supply.

RESPONSE: This is a very important concern of South Florida
agriculture and should also be a concern for urban interests.
However, if WMDs have the responsibility for protecting the
resource and local governments have the responsibility for
supply (as is now the case), WMDs are going to set minimum
flows and levels regardless of whether local governments have
access to new "supply" money. The real issue is how minimum


I I i

Water Supply Funding
February 12, 1997
Page 4

flows and levels will be set. In this regard, it is important
to understand that the home builders are not pushing for local
government access to new money for water in a vacuum. Yes --
new money is supported if there is to be a water bill that
contains "any" new planning requirements imposed on any
entity. Yes -- new money is a necessary piece of the puzale
to balance "any" new planning requirements. However, WMDs
must also be required to demonstrate how minimum flows and
levels will impact local water supply for all existing and
future uses. In addition, WMDs must be accountable for and
substantially participate in developing regional funding
solutions from a resource development perspective before
minimum flows and levels are established in a manner that may
adversely impact water supply. Conversely, in our view, any
appropriate codification of minimum flows and levels standards
necessitates local government access to new funding options.
Therefore, if there is to be any water bill proposing "new"
planning or appropriate "minimum flows A levels" provisions,
local government access to new funds should also be part of
the package.

7. New moneys will only be allowed for alternative sources
and not the development of traditional ground water sources.

RESPONSE: Not true. Locals could use new money for the
development of traditional sources.

8. Private utility customers would not benefit from local
improvements to water supply infrastructure, yet would be subject
to paying newly authorized local option taxes. In addition, some
local governments believe that private utilities legally cannot
benefit nor should they benefit as a matter of policy from local
option taxes.

RESPONSE: This is a red herring issue. First, there could be
an easy way to reallocate the proceeds of local option money
(based on a proportion of the population served by public vs.
private utility) so as to serve a public purpose for both
"public and private customers" (for lack of a better term).
Secondly, home builders are not into the growth fights
resulting from public vs. private utility competition. We
simply want to make sure that water is produced now and in the
future for all uses, no matter who is producing or delivering
it. Local governments would be very short sighted in our
opinion to be side-tracked by the issue of private vs. public
utility provision.


- I. i 11 3

Water Supply Funding
February 12, 1997
Page 5

I hate to be sounding the charge for new money on behalf of
local government but Jake Varn and I and others, who represent
development and the building industry, believe that to allow any
more planning on the part of WMDs without also providing additional
funding will ultimately result in more regulation and less water
and a "scarcity" approach to managing water in Florida. All of us
(including local government and development) ought to be "shot" if
we learned nothing from the growth management act: i.e. that
planning without infrastructure funding will not solve growth

I hope that this information is useful in responding to
questions about why home builders are advocating new money.


I I 1 1H


vf ,* */

B asr ad the Ho Cwnnt eme atler anl owa
sowmbar t

I l l i



I. Summary Page 1

II. Evolution of Florida Water Law Page 3
I. The Origins of Florida Water Law 3
ii. The Riprian System 3
iii. The Prior Appropriation Doctrine 6
iv. The 1967 Florida Water Resources Act 6
v. The Florida Water Resources Act of 1972 6
vi. Recent Cases n Florida Water Law 16
vii. "Local Sources First" and Existing Florida Water Law 18

III. Northern Tampa Bay A Case Study Page 25
I. Overview of the Hydro-geology of Northern Tampa Bay 25
ii. Background on the Region's Public Water Supply 25
iii. Outstanding Water issues in the Northern Tampa Bay Region 26

IV. Implementation of a Local Sources First Policy" Page 29
I. Attempts at Defnition 29
ii. Implementation Issues 32

V. Conclusions Page 34

VI. Methodology Page 36

VII. Appendices

Page 39


One of the most intensly debated issues in Florida water policy s popularly called
local sources first. No official definition exists. In general, many interest group with a
stake in Florida water policy agree that the concept is based on the prince that water
users should consume water resources in their geographic area first, before king
water outside their area. However, these me interested parties disagree on what
constitutes "local." Is a geographic are as small as a municipality, or as large as a
water management district (WMD), local ? Are wellields located in one county but
owned and pumped by a nearby county a oca source of water for the county that
consumes the water? Are alteative water sources, such as reclaimed wastewater
and desalinated water, local sources" which a community must tap before being
allowed to import ground or surface waters to serve its geographic area?
The concept of local sources r lr is not specifically expressed in the Florida statutes.
Overthe years, the courts have rejected claims from property owners, consumptive-use
permit applicants, county governments and even the Southwest Florida WMD that
localized use or management of water resources could take precedence over state and
regional management and distribution. Yet, scattered throughout the statutes are
assurances that counties from which water is being pumped have the ability to make
use of that water themselves in the future.
The only implementation of a Local Sources First policy is by the Southwest Florida
WMD, in its 1990-2010 Neds and Soures Plan. The policy simply states that "local
sources are to be developed to the greatest extent feasible prior to importing water from
distant sources." Two years ago, the Southwest Florida WMD incorporated "Local
Sources First in a rule to address the water resource and supply problems in its
South Water Use Caution Area (or SWUCA), which includes all or part of eight
counties, from southern Hilborough County to northern Charote County. However,
several provisions of the rule including the application of local sources firs were
struck down by an administrative law judge in April 1997.
The Southwest Florida WMD's northern Tamp Bay area has been embroiled in a "local
sources first debate since at least 1994. Pasco County residents have watched
wetlands, akes and wes dry up in recent years primarily because of groundwater
pumping by the West Coast Regional Water Supply Authority (West Coat) from
wefiaelds in Paco. West Coat operates most of the infrastructure that provide
potable water to Hilborough, Pasco and Pinelas counties, and has been in tigation
much of the at three yme wth the Soutwest Florida WMD on ius related to its
permits that allow it to pump upward of 140 milon gallons a day. Many Pasco County
resident, supported by nehboring Ctru and Hernando countie, say Pinkel County
and St.Peterburg, in patcuar, should be required to use deallnated water and other
altative local sources ofwater, instead of relying excily on groundwater.

Legislation in1996 and 1997 sought o include in statute certain requirements that, at
the very least, the WMDs be directed to consider local source first" when evaluating.
water-use permit applications. None of the attempts was successfuL During the 1997'
legislative session, the House passed a water package (CS/HB 715, et al) that included
"local sources t" consideration. The language ws removed by the Senate.
Although attempts to reinsert the language were made on the Senate floor and on the
House floorwhen the amended bilretumed for a 11al vote, CSMHB 715, et al was sent
to the Governor without mention of'focal sources first.
Because of the intense interest in the issue among legislators, Speaker Webster
directed he staff of the Committe on Water and Resource Managment to prepare an
interim project report on "local sources first" issues.
The report, entitled iscusaion of a 'Local S~orce Flirto Water Policv fr Florida.
concludes that the Legislature could incorporate a flexble policy of oca sources first"
in Florida water law without altering its foundation that water is a public resource to be
managed on a state and regional basis.



Any discussion of the policy implications of "local sources first" must begin with a brief
discussion of the history of Florida water law, beginning with the earliest common law
and concluding withe relationship between "local sources first and the current state
of the law. A historic discussion provides a deeper understanding of current Florida
water law, which in turn illustrates how the policy of local sources first"might affect this
body of law. Ultimately, th Legislature must debate this central question: does the
policy of "local sources flrst further exisng Florida water law, or does it represent a
departure? The following discussion aims to provide the necessary background to
assist in answering that question.

1. The rlahl o Florida War Law

From the earliest times, the law treated water like wildlife and the air as a public
resource belonging to everyone. Tmrasme,- mantwamwihiand TmsetaMhin of
Water 45 Callf Law Rev. 638,640 (1967). According to ancient law, no one person
could legally own the water itself instead, they like everyone e merely possessed the
right to use water. Thus, water law, unlike the law for other natural resources such as
timber and minerals, did not recognize private property rights. See Vlle of Teuesta
v. Jupiter Inlet Corp. 371 So. 2d 663, 66 (Fla. 1l79) statingg the present law that one
does not possess a private property right in the water itself), Sca denied, 444 U.S. 965,
100 S.Ct. 453 (1979).

However, in this country, a split developed over the issue of water ownership. East of
the Mississippi River, the states developed a "riparian system" patterned after English
common law that recognized the right to use water by those who held riparian rights
(i.e., those landowners holding land bordering a watercourse). Under the riparian
system, riparian owners could use surface waters so long as their use did not
unreasonably interfere with the rights of others. But in stats west of the Mississippi
River, the development of the "prior appropration doctrine lad to the recognition of a
private property type right in the use of water. This doctrine allowed water users to
"appropriate" unriited amounts of water in rpetuity so long as they used water for a
beneficial purpose.

I1. Th ari,,a, sm
As previously noted, states east of the Mississippi River developed a "riprian system"
of water law. Originaly, ths system borrowed heavily from English common law for
surface watecourses under which a riparian owner enjoyed the right to an
undiminished flow of water, both in quality and quantity. This early ApMrican common
law doctrine was known as the "natural flow" doctrine. Over time, the "natural flow"
doctrine lost favor in the eastern states, including Flodida, to the easonable use"

doctrine. This doctrine gnized the right of riparian owners to diminish the quality
and quantity of the water bordering watercourses so long as their use constituted a
reasonable beneficial use that did not unreasonably interfere with the water use of other
riparian owners. Like ancient water law, the reasonable use doctrine merey granted
riparian owners the right to the use of water rather any right of absolute ownership.

However, the reasonable use' doctrine created an exception to the prohibition on
unreasonable interference. Flowing in a diffuae manner through underground
substrata, without any permanent or distinct channels, percolating groundwater
received different treatment under the reasonable use doctrine than surface
watercourses and even groundwater flowing through definite channels. With
percolating groundwater, overlaying landowners could consume unlimited quantities
without regard to the adverse effect on other landowners provided that the water
consumption reasonably related to a natural use of the land.

To determine benefcial use and unreasonable intrerence under the "reasonable use"
doctrine, the courts engaged in a case.bycase analysis. Guiding the courts in this
analysis, a legal treaties known as the Restatement (Second) ofTorts identified nine
factors to determine the reasonableness (or the lack thereof) of a particutr water use:

Sthe purpose of the respective uses;

the suitability of the uses to the watercourse or lake;

Sthe economic value of the uses;

Sthe social value of the uses;

the -xtent and amount of the harm caused;

-the practicality of avoiding the harm caused;

the racticaty of adjusting the quantity of water used by
each propreor

the protection of existing values of land, investments and
fuimpdssi; and

the burden of requiring the users causing the harm to bear
the loss.

Florida water law adopted the ripariann syst and applied a reasonablee use'
standard to water usage and consumption. In Tamra Watamwor Co. v. Cline 20 So.

780 (Fla. 1896), the Florida Supreme Court applied a "reasonable use" standard to
uphold an injunction preventing pollution caused by excavation near an underground
stream flowing into the property of Tampa Wateorks Company. The Florida Supreme
Court also applied this "reasonable use" analysis to water consumption from surface
water bodies. Sm Taylor v. Tampa Coal Co.. 46 So. 2d 392 (Fla. 1950). Moreover,
the Florida Supreme Court in Tayvor v. Tamna Coal Ca Io*d that recreational uses
such as boating, swimming, or fishing possess as much right to use water as economic
purposes like irrigation. But he Court in laygr recognized the superior right of
domestic uses such as drinking, washing, and cooking in determining the
reasonableness of water usage. Jd. at 394. In explaining the "reasnable use doctrine
as applied to surface waters;the I0Iao court made the following statement

Except as to the supplying of natural wants, including the
use of water for domestic purposes of home or farm, such as
drinking, washing, cooking, or for stock of the proprietor,
each riparian owner has the right to use water in lake for
all lawful purposes, so long as his use of the water is not
detrimental to the rights of other riparian owners.

As to percolating groundwater, the Florida Supreme Court in Cason v. Florida Power
ag, 76 So. 535, 536 (Fla. 1917), stated that "each landowner is restricted to a
reasonable use of his property as it acts subsurface waters passing to or from the
land of another." Affirming the holding in ason the Florida Supreme Court in Kochv.
Wi. 87 So. 2d 47, 48 (Fl. 1956), held that use by oveying landowners of
percolating groundwater must be tied to a reasonable and beneficia use of th land
and cannot unreasonably interfere with the rights of others. d Because use of
percolating groundwater remained tied to the overlying land, the landowner could not
transport this water off-elte.'

The case of\Vage of Taquasa v. Jupter Inlet Corp. 371 So. 2d 663, 666 (Fla. 1979),
cat denied 444 U.S. 65, 100 S.Ct 453 (1979), elaborates on the reasonable
doctrine" as applied to percolating groundwater. The Florida Supreme Court in
wuest exMplainedthat the reasonableness of a particular use hinged on such factors
as the quantity of water availle for use, the reasonable demands of other users, and
considerations ofpubic policy. I at 670. Finally, in suggesting the reasons for the
adoption of an administrative water system, the Court in T71ual pointed out the

SThe Court in Keh furthermore, found that percolating groundwater drawn for
public supply enjoyed no special status under the "reasonable use doctrine. 87 So. 2d
at 48.

difficulties of water allocation under thereasonable use doctrine. The reasonableness
of a use was determined only at the time of conflict and, oer, rights to u water
lacked certainty because an Unanticipated use by another landowner could end the
reasonableness of existing uses.2 Jd

While sa Ist5 itd eF adeveb.d and refined the reasonable use doctrine,
the states west of the Misisipi River adopted the "ror appropitlon" doctrine.
Unlike both the "reasonable use doctrine and andcnt wster law, this doctrine
recognized rights In water use that resrhble privas property rights. Here, the right to
water use was based on seniority whe the initliser of water in a particular
watercourse could "appropriate" unlimited quanrtitgs provided the diversion served a
beneficial purpose. So long as the user ontt1d the water cons4 on, the right to
unlimited quantities was perpetual in durtin. The concept of "bendicial use" emerged
to prevent waste in situation where those wifh der or superior rights diverted all water
without regard to the conservation of its ue. Beid the perpetual nature of the water
use right, the prior appropriation doctrine qso pe iltted a riparian landowner to sell or
use water on lands unconnected wfth he supplying water body. Hence, under the
"prior appropriation" doctrine, water rights assumed a status similar to private property
rights for other natural resources like timber or minerals.

IV. Thelmi W W WtR ourBeg Aat
In light of mounting water pr0bltents i a lack of an adequate framework for resolution,
the Florida Legiature in 1955 cretedthe riw a Water Resources Study Commission
to determine the app rlte structure for compensive water management The
Commission rejected a proposal to adopt the pror appropriaton doctrine as a means
to achieve water management in Flqorga. Instead, the Cmmissin recommended the
creation of a statewide administer aency to manage Florida's water resources.
Based on this recommendation, the Fida Legislature passed the 1957 Florid.Water
Resources Act, which created an agency in the State Board of Conservation authorized
to issue water consumption permits and establish rules to conserve watersin areas
threatened by saltwater intrusion.

V. Ac* 11
Despite the idp n e 4 Rieoupea Act, the state's water
problems conthued to womn. In resose, a group of watr law expert lead by Dean

I2n adopting the reasonable use" doctrine, Florida courts did not recognize any
private property right in wer. Sei 371 So.
2d at 6(F 1979) lhternm naw n meant
that the overlying owner had a pror or propri interest in the corpus ofthe water

Frank Maloney set about to develop a Model Water Code for Florida that blended the
best of the prior appropriation and "reasonable use" doctrines to a single statewide
administrative system. The Florida Model Water Code devised a "reasonabe-
benefidci standard based on western and eastern water law to guide water
consumption and allocation in anew administrative system The Florida Legislature
adopted much of the Florida Modl Water Code int the Florida Water Resources Act of
1972, which was later incorporated along with the remnants of the 1957Florida Water
Resources Act into Chapter 373, F.S.

The Florida Water Resources Act of 1972 created a two-tiered administrative system to
manage and regulate water resources in the tate. A the stae level, the Department of
Natural Resources (now the Department of Environmental Protection or DEP) directed
the development of stat water policies, collected water-related information, and
exercised general supervision over five water management districts in the state.
Established on the basti of th e fhydrogeoogical basins in Florida, the WMDs
comprised the second component of the administrative system created by the Water
Resources Act Consistent with section 373.016(3), F.S., which authorizes the DEP to
delegate its powets to th to th "greatest extent possible." the governing boards of the
districts have been granted most regulatory and planning maers relating to water

As recognized by the Florida Supreme Court in Qacaud Coy v. St. Johns River
Water Manmagmnt Dstri 504 So. 2d 385, 396 (F. 1987), the Water Resources Act
supersedes the "reasonable use" doctrine and abolishes the need for case-by-case
judicial determinations of water consumption and allocation:

In 1972, Florida's Legislature.broke frm the common law
and enacted chapter 373. the "Florida Water Resources Act
of 1972"... in order to implement a etewide and
comprehensive administrative system of regulation, resource
pronction, r water use penmUing. ULder this At the
[DEPI and fe waer mangment district are charged with
the respornto of protein and conserving Florida's
dedous w r resources.

The conclusion reached in sceaa County recognizes that the Legislature intended to
preempt the common law doctrine of reasonable use. Section 373.217(4), F.S., states
thPat II of the Florida Water Resources Act of 1972, a amended, preempts the

regulation of the consumptive use of water as defined n this ac" Once again,
becausewler wc ltes a pt ub resource which no o "Iwns," Cha!pter 373, F.S., in
fact really relate he righttolse water.

The language of Chplter 373, F.S., Mhica the broal scope of the Watr f urces
Act. Section 373.010(1 F.S., states that thI waters in the stalt are ang artasic
resource ...[s]uch waters have nOt hereetioi rbi berd or ft lyi d qo as
to realize their full beneficial use." Accordingly, s cton 37(3.)01 ), F.t., s the
following legislative policies:

(3)(a) To provide fr the management of w r and related land

(b) To promote the conservation, replenishment, recapture,
enhancement, cvopnent, and proper utilcaton of sitra
and ground waiter

(d) To promote the o vallty ofucit water for a
existffg and future aesoaI bd'.bemit uses and natural

(g) To pmwe nWatl resourcs,l1sh, and wldfe- [and]

(D Otherwise to p a t he heafl safety, and gnral
welfare of the people ~etb state.

To achieve these obec th esources A t provides for a,statewide,
comprehensive water manament d Obdumvn sW*ie. Part 373, F.S.,
relates to water resource plt at Ithe of
consumptive ubes < uf j n er* aldu e Ionif u species the
respond ibties ftaer storage of
surface waters. F i V tai rceU us
provisions. Of Ithe Wr !Wtif i on
Florida water law relating to Parts I and II. These ,aVor*73 F.S., relate
most logicaly to the policy of local sources first"

3 Se aBIs. Section 373.217(2), F.S. (stating that ]t is futhe r intent of the
Legislature that Part II of the Florida Wter Resources Act of 1972 ... shall provide the
exclusive authority for requiring permits for the consumptive use of water and
authorizing transportation thereof).


As previously discussed, Part I of Chapter 373, F.S., arlates to water resource planning.
Section 373.036, F.S., requires the DEP to develop and prepare a Florida water plan
composed of a state water use plan and state water quality standards and
lassifications. But prior to the 1997 legislative session, the Floida water plan was
never actively implemented as a tool for water management. In response, the
Legislature passed CSB 715, t al during the 1997 session and reafirmed its
commitment to state water planning. Pursuant to section 373.036(1), F.S., the
Legislatue redefined the Florida water plan to include the following:

(1)(a) the programs and activities of the department relating
to water resources, flood management and natural systems;

b) the water quality standards of the department;

c) the district water management plans; and

d) goals and objectives for the development and review of
programs, rules, and plans reading to water resources.

The last required element oftheFlorida water plan constitutes the "water resource
implementation rule." Under the mandates of sections 373.036 and 373.114, F.S., the
DEP must review district rules for consistency with the Florida water plan.

In developing the Florida water plan, section 373.036, F.S., requires the DEP to study
the conservation and augmentation of water resources and ascertain existing and
contemplated needs of water for the protection o ah and Wile, irrgatlon, mining,
power supply, and domestic municipal, and industrial uses. To this end, the DEP must
give due consideration to t following factors:

the attainment of the maximum ren onable-beneflcial use
of water

the maxi~r n economic development of water resources
conmsisnt with oher uses

Ve corof water for such purposes a s envi rnmenta
p-olection, drainage, flood control and water storage;

e quant ofwater available for application to a
reaonabe bnelicial use;

the prevention of wasteful, uneconomical, impractical or
unreasonable uses of water resources;

presently exerised domestic use and permit rights; and

the state water resources policy as expressed in Chapter
373, F.S.

In addition to the development of the Florida water plan, Chapter 373, F.S., also
requires the districts to prepare water plans. Identified as district water management
plans, these plans must address water supply, water quality, flood protection and
floodplain management, and natural systems on the basis of a 20-year planning period.
Section 373.036(2), F.S., mandates that the districts give due consideration to factors
similar to those required of the DEP for the Florida water plan. District water
management plans shall include but are not limited to the following components:

the scientific methodology for establishing minimum flows
and levels as wel as all established minimum flows and

identification of one or more water supply planning regions;

certain technical data relating to comprehensive planning
ard groundwater basin availability invntories;

a district wide water supply assessment that determines for
each water supply planning regionexisting and reasonably
anticipated water needs and sources as well as whether
such sources are adequate to supply existing and future
needs and to sustain water resources and natural systems;

any completed regional water supply plans.

As the preceding paragraph indicates, the districts must include minimum flows and
levels in their district water management pRans. Section 373.042, F.S., mandates that
the DEP or the districts set minimum flows and levels for all surface watercourses and
aquifers at a point in which furtherr withdrawals would be significantly harmful to the
water resources or ecology of the are.' Alhough this requirement dates back to 1972,
very few minimum flo and levels have been set to date Addressing tis very issue,
the court in Cwnmed Cilsens of Putnm County v. St Johns River WiPte
Maraement Ditrict 82 So. 2d M (Fab. th DCA 1993), dbAlared that section
373.042, F.S., compels the districts to adopt and implement minimum flows and levels.
In the absence of a specific deadline for such adoption and implementation, the court
concluded that St Johns River VhWir Management Ostrict must act within a
reasonable time. IJ& at 523.

Section 373.0421, F.S., also addresses minimum lows and levels. In establishing
minimum flows and l this section requires te DEP or districts to consider
changes and structural alteratons to wersheds, surfa w rs, quer and the
various constraints such alteraions place on e hydro-geology of these water
resources, provided that such consideration doesot alow for sgfiant harm caused
by withdrawal.' However, section 373.0421, P.S., excludes certain water bodies (e.g.,
limited sizes) from the minimum flows and levels process. In addition to the
establishment of minimum flows and levels, section 373.0421, F.S., provides that where
an existing flow or level is beow or is prsd within 20 years to fall below the
applicable minimum flow or level that the OEP or disAlim must implement a strategy to
either estolre the exikng fow or level or prevent b decln Such a strategy shall
operate an a timetable to protect exists and pr ted e asonable-ber al usesas
the development of additional water supplies and the adoption of conservation and
other efciency measures proceed.

The final aspect of water resource planning under Part I of Chapter 373, F.S., involves
the adoption of regional water supply plans by the districts. However, pursuant to
section 373.0361, F.S., a district need only InMlat a regltno water supply plan where it
determines that water sources are not adequate for a 2year planning period to supply
all existing and projecld re asonablebenAlica uss and to ustin water resources
and related natural systems. If a district develops a regional water supply plan, it must
contain a water supply component ad a water resource development comonent The
water supply component includes a quantiication of water supply needs for all existing
and reasonably projected future needs, a list of water source options, and estimates of
costs, potential funding and available water from each identified water source option.
On the other hand, the water resourw development comlnant encompasses the
various strategies and programs designed to manage water remuroe as well as the
construction and maintenance of facilities for water storage. Specifially, under section
373.0361, F.S., this component includes a klt of hose pet It support water
supply development as wel as funding, construction, and water availability estimates
for each project.

WhilMeart I of Chapter 373, F.., deals wth water resouce and supply planning, Part II
of Chapter 373 ulbs the enl-initrh process for t pemanin Of consunmpve
uses ofwater. The regulatoy system created by Part II of Chapter 373 replaces the
case-by-case water allcaton performed by the courts under te old common lw
doctrine of "me-onable use A Section 373217, F.S., and o'rg Cunty v. St

4 SAm Rule 62-40.473, Florda Administrtl e Code (rqui the districts to also
consider the protection of water resources, natural seasonal adulons in water lows
or levels, and environmental values associated with coastal, estuarine, aquatic, and
wetlands ecology in establishing minimum flow and levels).

- H >M iteJ <

Johns River Watpr anagement Dftri 504 So. 2d 385 (Fla. 1987).. By the year 1983,
section 373216, F.S., contemplated that each district would adopt a consumptie use
permitting program to provide for the allocation of water (also called water use
permitting). Section 373.219, F.S., authorizes the district to impose reasonable
conditions on permits "to asur that [a] use is consistent with the overall objectives of
the district or department and is not harmful to the water resources of the area."
However, domestic water consumption is exempted from consmptiv use permitting.s

Although Part I of Chapter 373, F.S., suerseded the common law, the Legislature
borrowed the reasonable-benefiwa" standard developed in the Florida Model Water
Code, which blended together the common law of the eastern and western states. This
standard became one element of the statutory tt used for consumptive use
permitting. The Legislature defined "reasonable-benefi use as 'the use of water in
such quantity as is necessary for economic and efficient utilization for a purpose and in
a manner which is both reasonable and consistent with the public interest" Section
373.019(13), F.S.

Section 373.223(1). F.S., sets out thstatutory test for consumptive use permitting
(often called the the-prong" test). In order to receive a permit for the consumptive
use of water, an applicant must demonstrate that the proposed use of water meets the
following criteria:

s a rson beneficial use as defined in section
373.019, F.S.*;

WI not intrfere with any present existing legal use of
water; and

-Is consistent with the public interest

Over time, administrative and case law have identified several relevant factors to
consider in the determination of whether a particular use constitutes a reasonable use:
the suitabilty of th use for V particular water body, ts social value and the aixt of
harm caused. A Richaid Hamann and Thom.Anherson, Wter. an

SThis exneplon for domestic use is consistent with the common law cises
discussed in Section I.

SSfm Rule840A10(2), Falorida dminisr Code (where the DEP outlines
eighteen factors that muAt be considered n determining whether a use is a reasonable-
beneficial use).

Wildlife: The Coming Crisis in Consumative Use. 7 Fla. B. J. 3, p. 41, 42 (1993). Sah
abas, ~V agm nT v~ Junr Inlet m.. 371 So. 2d 663,667(Fla. 1979) (where
the court enumeratd the follwing factor in considering the reasonabenss of a use
under the common law: the quantity of water available for use, the reasonable demands
of other users, and considerations of public policy), gL deniid. 444 U.S. 965, 100
S.Ct. 453 (1979). In addition, the public intent crition containedin section
373.223(1), F.S., oflt broad authority to'conider a spectrum of tltutry polices,
ranging from environmental protection o ter conservation. Hmann and Ankerson,
a ra.at 42. So gha Fla. Cnet. art. II, sec. 7 ("It shal be the policy of the state to
conserve and protect its natural resources and scenic beauty.').

With regard to the prohibition on interfering with existing legal water uses, the court in
Harloff v. City of Sarata, 575 So. 2d 1324 (Fla. 2d DCA 1991), addressed this issue.
In that case, Harloff sought a consumptive use permit rom the Southwest Florida Water
Management District (Southwest Florida WMD ) to sink a well in order to supply water
to his vegetable farm. at 1326. To protect a municipal wel eld located near
Harloffs farm, the City of Sarasota challenged his permit OW t in an
administrative hearing. The hearing offcr recommendedthat Haroff receive all
amounts of water requested in his permit application. d at 1327. Although accepting
the findings of fact made by the hearing moaf the Southwest Forida WMD '
governing board determined that Harlof had not meet the consumptive use criteria of
section 373.223(1), F.S., and granted him a consumptive use permit with power
withdrawal levels. d

The lHartf court agreed with the Southwest Florida WMD 's governing board. Id. The
court interpreted section 373.223(1), F.S., to pac the burde n on the appcant
requesting a consumptive use pemit to demns aate compbnce with the three-prong
test." I at 1328. Moreover, the court reasoned that determinitons of whether a
permit request constitutes a "reasonable-benecia' use or causes interferencee best
belong to the admiishtraive perltwe of the districts. at 1327. Otherwise, l the
legal interpretation of these podiies were tft to vious hearing ofprs the concepts
would ineviably remove dlhbirnt meniwngs before dlmet he g o~rs."
Finally, the court affirmed Southea Florid WMD 's decision because i
recognized that the Cll ensumpgeue permt wai enllWed to superior status uner
section 373.223, F.S, a an exoAng permnl lat 1328.

While the M case addressed competing water uses in situations invong an
existingwater ue, sedon 373.33, F.S provides a general mecha nm for deciding
between competing appleim o where a limited quantty of water exists. Section
373.233(1), F.S., states the following:

f two or more applcons which otherwise comply with the
provisions of this part are pending for a quality of water that

is inadequate for both or all, or which for any other reason
conflict the governing board or the department shall have
the right to approve or modify the application which best
serves the public interest.

As pointed out by the administrative law udge in Charlott County v. Sothwst Florida
Water Managermnistihat DOAH NO. 94-574RP (Mar. 26, 1997), aoeal docked,
No. 97-1626 (Fla. 2d DCA April 22, 1997), the deiberatve process provided in section
373.233, F.S., should not be dismissed and constitutes an important feature of Chapter
373's system of water allocations. Id. at 227-230. This section provides a mechanism
to allocate limited supplies of water to those applicants that best serve the public

Consequently, the judge declared that rules promulgated by the Southwest Florida
WMD to prevent further saltwater intrusion in Floridan aquifer unlawfully sidestepped
this deliberative process required by section 373.233, F.S. i. at 229-230. These rules
created various presumptions and regulatory mechanisms that favored existing and
renewal water uses to such an extent so as to practically exclude new water uses.
Given the broad scope of these rules, the judge found that th deliberative process in
section 373.233. F.S., where the governing board must perform a public interest
analysis had been rendered meaningless. d. at 230.

Where a competing renewal and an initial application are in conflict but otherwise equal, 5
section 373.233(2), F.S., provides that the governing board or department shall give
preference to the renewal application over the initial application. While existing permits
receive preferertial treatment under section 373.223(1), renewal applications only
receive a preference in the unlikely event hat competing applications are equal.

For all existing uses at common law, section 373.226, F.S., automatically granted
consumptive use permits to those users seeking such permits within two years of the
adoption of the consumptive use permitting ystm. These users would automatically
receive such permits if the water use was a reasonable-benessr use and allowable
under the common law. Hwever, upon renewa.,r if having failed. to meet the two-year
deadline, al existing uses wee subject to the est in section 373.223, F.S. a ie Cof
St Petrabum v. Southwet Florida Wt Maimrnnt itri 355 So. 2d 796, 799
(Fla. 2d DCA 19) (Whie theCourt held the extent of withdrawals prior to.the
adoption of consumptiy permitting was ~evmt and that the Ciy was only entire to
that amount conslstnt with section 373.223, F.S.), aBMlM dism d. 358 So. 2d 796
(Fla. 1978).

Besides setting out a process for the allocation pf the consumptive use of water, Part II
of Chapter 373, F.S., also addresses the subje of water rangers. Section
373.223(2), F.S., authories the governing boed or the DEP to allow a "holder of a use

-~ -r~~--iu-r-- --c-~,l~-c:i-r~-*a~um~~~~, uxr

permit to transport and use ground orsurface water beyond overlying land, across
county boundares or outside the watr d from wr which it is taken" f both the transport
and ultimateue ofthe water serves the pubic interest Of course, a trwnr and use
approved under section 373.2(2), F.S, must si meat the three-prong test The
statutory language in section 373.223(2), FS., suggests that nsfs are limitd to the
boundaries of the district

But in Oscola County v. St Johns River Water Manageent Dltri~t 504 So. 2d 385,
388 (Fla. 1987), the Florida Supreme Court coosued section 373.23(2), F.S., liberally
to uphold the Deparment of Environmenta Regulateon's rues that authorized
interdltlot trnsers (i.., transfers of waterouside the boundarige of the supplying
water management district). The Court specilfcaly reacted the argument that section
373223(2), F.8., failed to expicity authorize interdit transfers. id Rather, based
on the language of Chapte 373, F.S., the Court discrned an empremeed legislative
intent "to foter a cooperate and aefecve interaction be the various districts and
the ER [now the DEP] ... to put to the most benencial use possible entdety of the
stat's war resources. (emphasis supplied).' Id,

In response tothe Os o Cu case.the Flord Legislature in 1987 adopted
section 373.2295, F.S., which authorizes intodistrict transfers, although only for
groundwater wthdrmas. S Section 1, Chapter 87-347, Ls of Florida. According
to section 373.2295(4),F.S., the districts shall lsue an nterdistrc ttnsfr permit the
application meets the requirements of Chapter 373 and if the needs of the area
receiving the water and the specific area sw ing the water can be satisfied. In
performing this analysis, the district must give special attntion to the future water
needs of the projected populations of both the donor and recipient areas.

Rule 2-40.422(1), Flo Administrative Code, requires the approval of both
districts for the transfer or use of surfae Mfr across district boundaries.
SSome argue that because section 373.296, F.S., only refers to nterdistrict
transfers of groundwater that the legislature intended to exclude interdistrict transfers
of surface water. Thi agurnent fals to s cogne hue broad ierp etaion given to
section 373223(2), F., by the Flodd Su eme Court in lOn* 3Cy it. John
River WMalmr nanitr l 504 So. 2d 385, 388 (Fl. 1987). Momover, because
the boundaries of the districts often cross over county lines, it appears that the
Legislature contemplated interdistrict transfers of surface waters Insection 373.223(2),
F.S., where it says that the governing board or the DEP may alow a "hlder of a use
permit to transport and use ground or surface water ... cross county boundaries"
(emphasis supplied).

While Chapter 373, F.S., contains several additional parts not covered by the preceding
discussion, this discussion focused on thoee parts of Chapter 373 most relevant to a
"local sources it" policy. Part II of Chapter 373, dealing with consumptive uses of
water, particularly relates to the policy of loca sources first." Before shifting to a
discussion of Ftedda water law as it relates to the policy of local sources first" the
report turns to two recent administrative law orders with the potential to greatly impact
existing Florida water law.

VI. Recent Cae in ieWrida Water aw
Perhaps the admiistrmtive order with the greatest potential impact on Florida water law,
the final order issued in 0~1rt11 Cou : SuhwU lrida Ma eent
Distrit, DOAH No. 94-574RP (Mar. 26, 1997), apa docked No. 97-162 (Fla. 2d
DCA April 22, 1997), address a wide rane of issues, including local sources first"
Also known as the SUCA ruling, this final order arose from the Southwest Florida
WMD's decialonto impose groundwater wittrawal ihstrictns in a proposed area
called the Southern VWter Use Caution Area or SWUCA The major provisions of these
restrictions included the following: a minimum aquifer level; an exemption from the
minimum aquifer level for renewal permits; limitations on new permits until restoration of
the minimum aquifer level; higher water-use efficincis for al uses; water-use credits
for alternative sourcesand conservation and a method of reallocating existing
permitted quantities to new users. The district established the SWUCA to halt the
further push of saltwater intrusion into the Florida aquifer.

The adoption of the SWUCA restrictions triggered a swift response from water users in
the area. Ultimately, several counties as wel as environmentalist and certain
agricultural interests joined in an administrative hearing to determine the-validity of
numerous existing and proposed rules relating to the SWUCA. Without a doubt, the
SWUCA ruling's scope cut a broad swath across Florida water law. First, the decision
validates the Southwest Florida WMD's scientific analysis and methodology used to
establish a minimum aquifer level to reverse and stabilize saltwater intrusion. I~L, at
492-46,WS02. The administrative w judge aso concluded that Chapter 373, F.S.,
supported the Southwest Forida WM decision to balance protection of t aquifer
with possible sooeconomic impacts in setting the minimum aquifer level. at 499-

But the decision @ o lsalidated sevel aspe of the SWUCA provisions. Notably,
provisions reiting to p Slentiattb inent to eidVg perm.ied users atlm of permit
renewals and those loca existing permitted quooeas to new users were

'The SWUCA decision can be found at Q G v- Sn.tn
.Florida Ai nm M nt trict 97L FALt 104 i0AOlrder Mar 26,

rejected for lack of statutory authority in Chapter 373, F.S. Id, at 505-510, 517-519.
The decision repudiated existing rules imposing the development of alteative sources
on certain users where determined feasible b bthe Southwest Florida WM I, at

More importantly, the administrative law judge in SWCA struck down Southwest
Florida WMD rule that imposed a local sourcesirs requirement on applicants
seeking consumptive use permits. lI, at 574, Basically, these rules required
applicants to demonstrate that the proposedater use utilied local resources to the
"greatest exint practicable" and that waterresource near the place of demand were
not feasible. t, at 57. The judge in WUCA first explained, on the basis of statutory
language.and relevant cases, that Chapter 373, F.S., contemplated the tate and
regional management of water, including its ansport over distances. J, at 509-570.
Yet, he also noted that several statutory provisions in Chapter 373, F.S., mandated the
protection of donor aes. w Sections 373.196(5), 373.1961(1)(e), and 373.192(5),
F.S. He therefore conduded that Chapter 373, F.S., as currently drafted vests
Southwest Florida )MD with some discretion to consider a local sources first policy
when evaluating consumptive use permits. Nonetheless, the judge opined that 1a
conclusive prioritizatio of local resources over regional resources is not authorized
under the current statute outside the context of a determination under Sections
373.196(3), 373.1961(5) [now found in 373.1961(1)(e)), and/or 373.1962(5), F.S." Id,
at 574.

Aside from the Jack of statutory authority to impose a rigid local sources first policy,
the judge declared the district's local resources rules invalid for theack of adequate
standards to guide their application. Holding that Chapter 373, F.S., granted the
Southwest Florida WMD a measure of discretion to implement local ources first the
judge still found the standards set forth in the rules "unceptby vague because they
provide no basis for meaningful review of the Dstrics exercise of its discretion." Id, at
573. The judge pointed out that the pubic interest determination performed under
section 373.223(1), F.S., allows for some consideration of local sources first," but
ultimately, the distris local sources provisions e invalid because they elevate this
consideration to a onclusive criteria without any standards as to how t will be applied."
Id1, at 5734874.

About the sae time as the WUA ruling, another significant administrative hearing
captioned me ,a C"- et Rami*aW"' a r SMn & v* Auh mft v- Suthw t Florida \W,-
Manamnt trict. DOAH Nos. 95-1520, atc. (May 29, 1997) bega on the
Southwest Fiorid W 's denial of renewal applicants for swapubl well fields in
the northern Tampa Bay region. I are adjacent to these wel fields, the water levels
in lakes and wetlands had fallen o historic lows, although diputes raged over whether
excess groundwater pumpage by these wel ftlds had actually caused the drops.
Based on the evidence presented, the administrative law judge linked the adverse

environmental harm to the withdrawal of groundwater by the permittees. ds, at 29-33.
As he stated in his recommended order, "t]he greater weight of the evidence
establishes that the major adverse environmental impacts are related to the withdrawal
by the permittees of substantial quantities of water from the Floridan aquifer." 1, at 29.

Yet, despite evidence of environmental harm, the judge recommended that the
Southwest Florida WMD issue a final order renewing the water use permits at the
current average daiy quantities. JL at 66. Determining that the renewal applications
met te three-prong test in section 373.223, F.S., the judge also concluded that
groundwater withdrawals from these well fies constituted the utilization of local
resources to the greatest extent practicable. L at 39-40,46. But more significantly,
the judge stated that environmental hfir resulting from excessive groundwater
withdrawals was accepted by the Southwest Florida WMD in prior permitting decisions
as inthe public interest i at 35. Moreover, he noted that there is no credible
evidence that impacted areas would retum to prepumping condition even if pumping
were halted from the subject well fields." 1iL 39-40. Because of the Southwest Florida
WMD's prior acceptance of environmental harm and given that a stop to pumping
would not reverse environmental degradation, the judge recommended renewal of the
permits.10 IJ, at 66.

VII. LMal Souree Fist" and Existlng Florida Walr Law
Since the adoption of the Florida Water Resources Act of 1972, a two-tiered
administrative system has driven water consumption and management in this state.
Yet, despite the durability of the Water Resources Act, water problems have worsened
due to tremendous population growth, particularly along the coastal counties. Inland
counties have come to fear that water resources within their jurisdictions will be
consumed to satisfy the growing thirst of he coastal areas. Under these
circumstances, the policy of local sources first" has been advanced as a means to

10 Compare the Southwest Florida WMD's permiing decisions that excessive
ground water withdrawals were in the public interest with the final order issued by the
South Florida Water Management District In the Matter o Aplication No. 03285-F for
a Water Use Prmit id by uth de Agro Hm. Inc. Dade County. Floria 1985
Fla. ENV. LEXIS 8 (S. Fi. Vftr Mmt Dist. June95). In Adr Ho the
applicant sought a consumptive use perm to intall wells br therrigaton of a
proposed tomato farm. The project aite ly in an undisturbed weiand which was critical
habitat for the endangered Cpe Sable perrow. Concluding that theevelpment of
this project in such important habitat would result inllant har to the edangered
Cape Sable Sparow, th district determined tha the applicant had failed to provide
reasonable assurances that the propped use was a reasonable beneficial use
consistent wit hith public interest.

encourage the wise and sustainable use of the state's water resources. But "local
sources first" remains vague and undefined.

Despite the ambiguity of the policy, several cases from Florida water law address
issues or concerns at the heart of "local sources first. rimariy, these cases define the
legislative intent behind the Florida Water Resources Act of 1972; and, as these cases
discuss the Act, they offr insight into how the policy of local sources first might impact
Florida water law, which rests mightily on the Florida Water Resources Act of 1972.
Interestingly, the policy of local sources fit suggests a revival of the common law rule
that water use was limited to lands adjacent to the water source. SL a., Koch v.
Wi, 87 So. 2d 47, 48 (Fla. 1956) (reasonable use of percolating groundwater limited
to overlying lands). In any event, the central question remains whether the policy of
"local sources first" fits or can be made to fit into the existing structure of Florida water
law, or does it represent a departure.

To start, arguments in favor of the policy of "local sources first appear to rely, at least
implicitly, on thmassumption that those nearest the impacted water supply enjoy some
special claim to that water. But in terns of legal ownership, Florida law makes clear
that water constitute a public resource owned by all Foridians. ia Section
373.019(20), F.S. (which states that the waters of the state aramong its most basic
resources ... suchh waters should be managed to conserve and protect water
resources and to realize the full beneficial use of these resources) and Villag of
Teaquet v. Jupiler Inlt Caor.. 371 So. 2d 663, 667 (Fl. 1979) (holding that [t]he right
of the owner to ground water underlying his land is to the usufruct of the water [i.., a
right to use th water] and not to the water tsel), .art.d 444 U.S. 965, 100
S.Ct 453 (1979). T t, at most those favoring the policy of local sources first may
claim that they enjoy the right to use water reourcesin the state, but they share this
status with all Floridians.

Among the cases bearing on the "local sources irWt debate, OacaQ n Couty v. St
JoM Rhnifr U M ,wMn & 504 So. 2d 386 (Fla. 1907), considered
whether t Department of Environmental Regulation property excised its statutory
authority under Chapter 373. F.S., in impmenting rules regarding the interdistrict
transfer of water. As to g &QC autv. BSmverd County applied to the district for a
consumptive us permit authorizing the withdrawal of water from Osceola County,
which resides in the South Floida Water Management District. at 387. To halt any
consideration of this permit request, Osceola County filed a writ of prohibition in the
Fifth Distrt Court of Appeal, daimng the district lacked be author under Chapter
373, F.S., to consider a onsumptive use permit for water outside its boundaries. I

Rather, the Florida Supreme Court held that Chapter 373, F.S., and particularly section
373.223(2), F.S., provided sufficient authority for the Department of Environmental
Regulation to establish les for intedistrict transfers. I at 388. In fact, the Court

found that "the legislature's expressed intent [in Chapter 373 was] to foster a
cooperative and effective interaction between the various districts and the DER in order
to put to the most beneficial use possible the entirety of the state's water resources."
Id Moreover, in language that goes to the heart of the "local sources first debate, the
Court quoted this portFbn of the lower court opinion:

Nothing in the Water Resources Act indicates a legislative
intent that water management districts operate solely as
independent provinces, without regard for statewide
concerns... Political boundaries are artifiia divisions that
may and sometimes should be transcended when planning
for the most beneficial use of our state's water resources.

Id (citing to Osceola County v. St Johns River Watr Manaament District, 486
So. 2d 616, 619 (Fla. 5th DCA 1986)).

Moreover, the Court warned that Osceola County in the future may seek a transfer of
water very similar to the one proposed in this case. On this note, the Court concluded
by saying, "we believe that the legislature has foreseen this, and has statutorily
empowered DER and the districts to work together for the common good on a problem
of statewide concern." Id.

The Osceolr C y case offers much to the local source first debate. First, this case
interprets Chapter 373, F.S., to manifest a legislative intent to provide for even
encourage state and regional rather than local water management By finding a
legislative intent to promote regional water management, thi case supports the notion
that water supply sources constitute public resources for the use and consumption of all
Floridians, whether near or far. This conclusion is further bolstered by the Legislature's
enactment of section 373.2295, F.S., which explicitly provides for interdistrict transfers
of water. Second, this case wans against tldng he parochial view of water resources
as the local government guarding its after may some day fnd itself in need of water
from a distant source. Foreshadowing the sentimerli voick in Oaftla County th
court in Plrnatl County v. L iPadaett PW .: 333 So. 2d 472, 479 (Fla. 2d DCA
1976), Ma dAnhsid. 382 So. 2d 172 (Fie. 77), mad the following oabsrvation:

It i undertanabe that where, as here, a project is
'deigned to fumish water to a difrent county from that
where the proc is lcated, the home county could well be
reluctant t issue the required approval..[but this] could be
devastating to an urban community with limited water
resources...[with watl being vital to human exI~ence and
considering that water resooue prems vary fom one
region to another, it is desirable thatthese detemrmnatfons be

_~~111____ ___ 1_1_

made on a regional, rather than on a county or municipal

The administrative law judge in the SWUA decision also noted the state and regional
approach to water management enunciated in Chptr 373, F.S. In describingthe
implementation of a consumptive use program, the judge stated that "the District must
keep in mind the overall policies of Chapter 373 which include the regionallizastion of
water supplies [and] the fostering of cooperative efforts to meet the reasonable-
beneficial water needs in the District At the same time, the judge highlighted several
statutory provisions in Chapter 373, F.S., requiring the districts to protect the water
needs of donor areas, address any a0rse environmental impacts caused by water
transport, and encourage development of alternative water sources. Sections
373.196(5), 373.1961(1)(a) and 373.1962(5), F.S. Although these statutory provisions
along with others in Chapter 373, F.S., provide some support for "local sources first,"
the Southwest Florida WMD's local resource rules exceeded statutory authority and
lacked adequate standards or pplication. The judge made this observation about the
Southwest Florida WMD's local resources rules:

In sum, the water use pemitting process necessarily
involves a balancing of many important, yet sometimes
conflicting goals. How much emphasize [sic] to place on the
development of local resources before ooind to remote
sources can be part of the balancing. Chapter 373 accords
the lDstrict some discretion in this regard ... [but these local
source provision are invalid because they elevate this
consideration to a conclusive criteria withoutany standards
as tohow itwil be applied.

Ij, at 573-574.

Along with cae law, several statutory provisions contain language that bears on the
"local sources first deba. As previously disused, sens 373.223 and 373.2295,
F.S., both provide for the tanr of water rom te water supply source to moredistant
locabon. By authoring t transfer of water om remote sources, these statutory
provisions touch on issues atthe heart of the local sources firse debate.

In addition to water tranfs, statutory provisions inChapter 373, F.S., address other
issues in the locall sources rt debate. For instance, on the issue of public supply,
section 373.196(1), F.S., recognize the need for cooper e sorts" between local
government, the ditricts and the DEP to supply rapidly urbanizing areas with
adequate and dependable water. Likewise, section 373.196(3), F.8., speccally
provide for the conution of exsng "cooperative eots, including ter tranfes.
Section 373.196(1) FR speaks to the issue of altemative water souc by explaining

that such "cooperative efforts" should include "all practical means of obtaining water,
including, but not limited to, withdrawals of surface and ground water, recycling of waste
water, and desalinization ..." Thus, section 373.196, F.S., appears to bear on the "local
sources first" debate by affirming the-ltte and regional approach to water management
yet recognizing the need to develop alternative water sources."

Section 373.1961(1Xa), F.S., addresses another issue at the center of the debate on
"local sources first" Section 373.1961(1)(a), F.S., expresses a policy of avoiding
environmental harm caused by water withdrawals:

(1) In the performance of, and n conjunction with, its other
powers and duties, the goveing board of a water
management district...

(a) Shall engage in planning to assist counties,
municipalitis, private utilities, or regional water supply
authorities in meeting water supply needs in such manner as
will give priority ... [to] conversation and reducing adverse
environmental effects'd improper or excessive Withdrawals
of water from concentrated areas ..

Perhaps more than any other imue, the subject of environmental harm due to
excessive water withdrawal drives the debate on "local sources first" Arguably,
section 373.1961 (1)(a), F.8., along with other statutory provisions in Chapter 373, F.S.,
demonstrate the Legislature's recognition of the potential environmental cost of water
withdrawals. Sa g4,. Section 373.196, F.S. (allowing the continued operation of
existing water production and transmission facdlides provided that the "obtaining of
water "is not] done in a manner which results in adverse effects upon the areas from
whenct ich water is withdrawn.").

Finally, on the issue of prior right section 373.1961(1)(), F.8., contains language
addressing this issue. In tein of local sources first," concerns over prior right stm
fromthe fear that the rma of water by more distant areas may potntly deplete
donor areas of ft waw burceas they xpedIence populaton growth. Speaking to
this concern, section 373.11(1(e), F.S., read'ms blows:

(1) In the perarmance of, and in conjunction with, ts other
powes and duis, thegoverning board of a water
management district ....

A' l Section 403.851. F.S. (expressng legslaie poky "thte citizens
of Flc a shalsre assured of the avdilablty of safe drinking water.-).

22 I

(e) Shall not deprive, directly or indirectly, any county
wherein waters withdrawal of the prior right to the
reasonable and benefiial use of water which is required to
ppy adequate the reasonable and beneficial need of
the county or any of the inhabitants or property owners

In addition to reasons of environmental harm proponents of local sources first" often
advocate the policy because they believe that water transfers reduce the capacity of
water sources in donor areas to meet future growth. Section 373.1961(1)(e), F.S.,
appears to address this concern.13

Considering these various statutory provisions together, it may appear that they
express conflicting objectives: they simultaneously seek to avoid environmental harm,
provide for rapidly growing urban areas, encourage the use of aterative water
sources, and protect the future growth needs of donor areas. But a more logical
interpretation is that these provisions reflect the difficult task of allocating water in an
efficient, equitable and environmental sound manner. Similarly, the policy of local
sources first itself illustrates the complex issues of waterallocation. Ultimately, while
these statutory provisions touch on issues wrapped up in th local sources first
debate, they do not provide definitive answers as to how the policy of local sources
first affects the balancing of the competing water demands intended by Chapter 373,

12.Sfmals, Section 373.1962(5), F.S. (pertaining to regional water supply
13 In additionto statutory provisions in Chapter 373, F.S., section 187.201(8),
F.S., addresses water issues relevant to a local sources first policy. This section
outlines the goals and policies ap icable to water resources that comprise the state
comprehensive plan. Secton 187.201()(), F.S., defines the goal of the state
comprehensive pla as to watr resources as fiowa:

(8Xa) GoaL-Florda shall assure the availability of an
adequate supply of water for a1 competing uses deemed
reasonable and beneficial and shall maintain the functions of
natural systems and the overall present level of surface and
ground water quality. Florida shall improve and restore the
quality of waters not presently meeting water quality


Turning to case law, it appears that the policy of "local sources first" if properly drafted
- can conform to the state and regional water management approach enunciated in
Chapter 373, F.S. The judge in SWUCA in fact, states that"requiring some
consideration of local sources may be justified under the public interest prong of the
statutory three-prong test" for consumptive use permitting found in section 373.223(1),
F.S. But the cases make clear that Chapter 373, F.S., as currently drafted sets out a
state and regional approach to water resource and supply management.

Whether any "local sources first" policy can be reconciled with Chapter 373, F.S.,
depends upon the form of the policy. The case law suggest that the elevation of a
"local sources first policy to a conclusive criterion in water use permitting would conflict
with the state and regional approach currently embodied in Chapter 373, F.S. Of
course, the Legislature possesses the authority to make such a policy change. But if
the Legislature desires a locall sources first policy more consistent with the existing
statutory approach, then a lfes conclusive or mandatory policy would appear to be
more appropriate. For instance, the Legislature could amend Chapter 373, F.S., to
mandate that the WMDs impose a local sources first requirement on water use
permitting to the "greatest extent practicable" and where "feasible." Although this
approach makes the WMDs the ultimate arbiters of how and when to apply a "local
sources first" policy, it also appears to better conform with the existing state and
regional approach to water management

In any event, the legal implications of the policy of local sources first" remain unclear.
While several cases and statutory provisions in Chapter 373, F.S., clearly provide for a
state and regional water management approach, these legal authorities do not
definitively block the adoption of local sources first." In fact, these authorities suggest
how a "local sources first" policy can co-exist with the purposes of Chapter 373, F.S.
But it does appear that Chapter 373, F.&. both in its language and interpretative
cases regards Florida's waters as public resources of value to the entire state that
should be managed on a state and regional basis. Whether this approach found in
Chapter 373, F.S., precludes the policy of oc sources first depends on the means
adopted to implement the policy. The legal implications of local sources first hang on
this issue: whether the Legislature can craft a policy of local sources first consistent
with the state and regional approach envisaged by Chapter 373, F.S., or does
Legislature desire to adopt "local sources frst in such a manner as to depart from
Chapter 373, F.S.


In discussing the policy of "local sources first," the water situation in the northern Tampa
Bay region features prominently. Perhaps more than any other area in the te, this
region's reliance on the transfer of water, particularly groundwatr, to meet the needs of
its rapidly growing counties and cities ignites controvy. As a result of these
tremendous water withdrawals, the region's lakes an wetlands exhibit signs of
environmental degradation low water levels, invasion by upland species, and toss of
habitat for endangered and threatened spies. In view of the prominent of the
northern Tampa Bay region to the local sources first" deb the following section of
this report briefly discusses the region's hydro-geology and outstanding legal/policy
issues surrounding the region's public water supply.

I. r~ w f th dool of Northen T.a.m av
In northern Tampa Bay, an uneven, porous surlcial aquifer consisting of sandy, fine-
grained material underlays the area. Beneath the surgical aquifer lies the Floridan
Aquifer, where water slowly collects in a porous immone formaton. A clay layer of
varying thickness lis between the urficial aquifer and th Floridan Aquifer. in some
areas, this clay layer because of s thinness or permeability allows the movement of
water between the surficial aquifer and the Floridan Aquifer but in other areas, the clay
layer blocks or substantially slows this movement of water. Where the clay confining
layer thins out or has high permeability, a ose connection exists between the level of
the groundwater in the Flordan Aquifer and the levels of wetlands and lakes on the
surface. Also, various cavities and channels known as kartt features riddle the
porous limestone of the Floridan Aquifer in this region. Annual rainfall recharges the
Floridan Aquifer through these karst features" and in areas where the water table of
the surficial aquifer exceeds the water pressure of the Floridan Aquifer.

II. Backound on the RIPubl Wir Public supply reign as the mst dominant water ue in the northern Tampa Bay region.
in order to metd thi demand, varous local govemme l West Coast Regional
Water Supply Authority (West Coast) operate water produ~n an transmission
facilities to pump and transport water to municipal areas. Operating as the primary
wholesale water suppler in the Tampa Bay region, West Coast supplies potable water
to several local governments, and these local governments in turn supply water to
roughly 1.8 mion residents." Local governments such as the City of Petersburg and
Pinelles County also prove for pub i water supply needs. To meet these demands,

4 The following local government comprise the membership of West Coast
Hlsborough County, Pasco County, Pineas County, the City of Tampa, the City of St
Petersburg, and non-voting member the City of New Port Richey.


West Coast and local governments rely on several large well fields in Hillsborough and
Pasco counties.

Withdrawing vast quantities of groundwater, these public well fields are targets for
controversy Over the years, numerous lawsuits have erupted between the Southwest
Florida Water Managerent District (Southwes Florida WMD) and West Coast or those
counties dependent upon water from these well fields. These lawsuits typically involved
disputes over the validity of various rules and permitting decisions reached by the
Southwest Florida WMD as it tied to balance growing water demand with
environmental and resource protection.'

III. Outstanding Water Issue n the Northern Tamp y Region
Until recently, it appeared that the water allocation balance favored growing public
demand over the environment However, fr the case of WmaMCMt regional Water
SuoDly Abuthori v. %adh Florida Valo "lmofmet QS, DWAH NW. 95-
1520, etc. (May 29, 997); the Southwest Fkrida VWD denied consumptive use
permits to several well fields used to meet public supply demand in the region because
of environmental damage resulting from enormous groundwater withdrawal. The
Southwest Florida MD's denial was challenged in an administrative hearing where the
administrative law judge ultimately recommended the granting of the permits. Because
the administrative law judge ound environmental damage as a result of groundwater
withdrawals yet curiously recommended the granting of the permits, the impact of this
case and the fate of the public well fields remains unclear. The goveming board of the
Southwest Florida WMD is expected to issue a final order in the proceeding in
November of 1997.'*

At the same time, the future of West Coast and ts capacity for meeting the public
supply needs in northern Tampa Bay also remains unclear. As a substantial supplier of
water for public demand, the Iftu ofW~st Coast impacts the water situation in the
northern Tampa Bay region. Cu tly, the future of West Coast rides on the outcome
of negotiations over its goveUrance structure and the proposed "Partnership plan with
the Southwest Florida WMD.

SIn fact the are of northern Hillborough County, southern Paco County and
Piellas County constitutes the Northern Tampa Bay Water Use Caution Area. The
Southwest Florida WMD has imposed various water use limitations and issued
emergency orders curtailing withdrawals in this area.
F For a mo detaied discussion a of r W AWa
v. Southwest Flori~d ar Mnam njDiric DOAH Nas. 95-1520, etc. (May 29,
1997), please refer to Section VI of Evolutri tiforirida Wtr L.aw.

Concerning the governance structure of West Coast, the Legislature in 1997 amended
section 373.1963, F.S., to provide for a voluntary interlocal agreement designed to
transform West Coast into the exclusive wholesle water supper in the Tampa Bay
region. The voluntary interlocal agreement set out in section 373.1963, F.S., would
achieve this transformation of West Coast in two basic ways. First, it expands the
scope of West Coast's authority by requiring member governments to relinquish to
West Coast their individual rights to develop potable water sources and by establishing
West Coast as the exclusive wholesale potable water supplier for all its members.
Second, the voluntary interocal agreement would change the internal governance
structure of West Coast to avoid unilateral veto power by a single member government.
At this time, the member governments of West Coast are negotiating an agreement
along lines of the voluntary interlocal agreement provided in section 373.1963, F.S.

As negotiations continue over governance, West Coast is discussing a "Partnership"
plan with the Southwest Florida WMD to address the planning and funding of additional
water supply sources. Pursuant to section 373.1963(1)(f), F.S., West Coast and the
Southwest Florida WMD must develop alternative sources of potable water to meet the
needs of the member governments for at least 20 years and for natural systems. West
Coast and the Southwest Florida WMD must mutually bear development and
construction costs for the above infrastructure. By December 31, 1997, West Coast
and the Southwest Florida WMD shall either enter a mutually acceptable agreement
outlining the means to achieve the above goals, or jointly report to the Legislature the
level of progress made and any impediments encountered in their attempts to meet the
goals of section 373.1963(1)(), F.S.

To achieve this goal, the Southwest Florida WMD would integrate the Partnership"
agreement into its recovery strategy for the existing well fields in Hillsborough, Pasco,
and Pinellas counties. As apart of this recovery strategy, the Southwest Florida WMD
would acquire these well fields and then enter a license agreement with West Coast for
their operation and maintenance. In addition, and to help reduce the reliance on
groundwater, the "Partnership" agreement envisions annual finding from Southwest
Florida WMD to West Coast and its members for water conservation, reclamation and
the development of alternative water supplies. Overall, this portion of the agreement
aims to bring 85 million gaons per day of new water on line in the next 10 years while
reducing pumping from the West Coast system from 144 million gallons per day to 90
million gallons per day. Aftr December 31, 2010, the amount of pumpage may change
as the Southwest Florida WMD determines the total quantity for withdrawal based on an
evaluation of water resource recovery achieved and the development of additional
water sources.

At this time, the status of both the voluntary interlocal agreement and the "Partnership"
plan remain unclear yet the outcome of both sets of negotiations will greatly affect the
water situation in northern Tampa Bay region. In fact, given the prominence of the

northern Tampa Bay water situation to the rest of the state, the outcome of thee
negotiations w.t key~ exert considerabl influence on the water situation in the entire
state, including the debate on the policy of "local sources first."


As the preceding section illustrates, Florida statutes and case law largely view water as
a public resource to be managed on a state and regional basis But at the same tme,
the SWCA decision intfprets Chapter 373, F.S., to provide the WMDs with some
discretion to consider a local sources first policy when making pubic intent
determinations. If the Legislature chose to implement a more specific local sources
first" policy into existing state water law, one of the first steps would be to define the
policy. Depending on how narrow or broad the definition, a codified "local sources first"
policy could have significant legal implications.

I. Atlampt at Dehntn

Florida Statutes do not define "local as a stand-alone word only in conjunction with
other tears, such as local government and "lo-eloption sales tax." ('Locer is found in
the statute a noun, when referring to regulation of labor unions, and thus is
unrelated to water policy issues ) In the context of these terms, the adjective local
refers to a political boundary either municipal, county or regional that is not
associated with the state. Case law also appears to define "local in the context of non-
state or non-federal governments.

If the Legislature were to define "local to mean a county jurisdiction as many
proponents of a strong local sources fir policy advocate the implications could be

First, groundwater and free-flowing surface waters do not recognize political
boundaries. In fact, the extensive irastone caverns of the Florida Aquifer, the state's
largest supplier of groundwater, extend into Georgia and Alabama. Because
groundwater, rivers and even springs ae not stai resources, assertion of a special
claim by political units s roblematic, at east under Foda's current legal scheme.

Second, just as water does not recognize political boundaries, neither does Florida's
current structure for water management and water supply. Boundaries of th five
WMDs were drawn bad on watesheds, so that in several instances, counties are
split between two WMDs. Polk County, fr emple, is prtly in the St Johns River
WMD and pary in the Southwest Florida WMD. Additionally, the various water supply
authorities in Florida general have nuti-county service areas. A water supply
authorities wealli or surface water pumping stations may beiusteredin one county,
or they may be spread tht hout the service aea butthe inhatruture and the water
benefit customers in the entire service area. How a "county sources first policy could
be applied in these circumstances is unclear.
Third, water is referred to in numerous cites in Florida Statutes as one of Florida's most
basic resources. Chapter 373, F.S., establishes statewide water policy directives, and


directs the Department of Environmental Protection and the WMDs toconserve,
protect, manage and control the waters of the state to achieve state policy goals. No
where in law is the state described as the owner of water, or that water is the property
of the state (as expressed in the 1972 Florida Model Water Code). However, statutory
references to water as a public resource to be managed by the state or the WMDs,
seems to peclude a kocal government from having jurisdiction over who can use
ground or surface waters, and when they can use it."

Finally, Florida law does not recognize water as a property right of the overlying or
adjacent landowner. Under Chapter 373, F.S., which blends the reasonable use and
prior appropriation doctrines, overlying or adjacent property owners can withdraw
ground or surface waters if their uses constitute a reasonable-beneficial use, will not
interfere with any other existing legal uses, and are in the public interest. This is the so-
called three-prong test found in s.373.223(1), F.S. A legislative endorsement of a
mandatory "local sources first policy where a county or other non-state political
jurisdiction would be required to first consume the water whether from natural or
alternative sources within its boundaries may convey the inference that the county
"owns" that water.

Yet there may be benefits to a "county sources first" policy. Such a policy would finally
forge the link between land-use planning and water management planning. A county
could grow ory to the extent that it either has sufficient groundwater or surface water
supplies readily available, or the infrastructure and fee scale in place to utilize
desalination, reuse and other alternative water supply techniques. Local governments
would fully implement the statutory intent of the goals of the State Comprehensive Plan
expressed in s. 17.201(8)(b)5., F.S.: "ensure that new development is compatible with
existing local and regional water supplies." A similar statement of intent is expressed in
s. 373.0395, F.S., which relates to the WMDs' development of a groundwater basin
resource availability inventory: "lti the intentof the Legislature that future growth and
development planning reflect the niiltons of the available groundwater or other
available water supplies."

In the context of chapter 373, FS., however, a flexible definition of "ocar likely is
needed to reflect the t Ds' stautory reponslbeit, diffeenees in Floda's ydro-
geological regions and varying consumptiv use needs.

Chapter 373, FS, mrs numerous referee s to the importance of developing
alternative water suppls. Th ue of reclaimed water is mentioned most often. Section

17 In fact, with regard to water transfers, section 373.223(2), F.S., prohibits a
local government from adopting or enforcing any law, ordnance, rule, regulation, or
order parenting the transfer of water arose verying land, county boundaries, or
outside the watershed.

373.1961, F.S., directs the WMDs to take an active role in assisting locl governments,
private utilities and regional water supply authorities with the planning, development
and even funding of alternative water supplies. Chapter 97-160, Laws of Floda,
(CS/HB 715, et al) Ofuthr emphasized the WMDs' resp onbilles in longrange
planning and devlopmnt of water resource, and of alternative wat supplies where
Although not currently used on a large-scale, the use of alternative water supplies is not
science fiction. Curntty, 129 public water systems in 18 counties use some form of
membrane technology to lter dissolvd organic mater and other soids from water for
industrial or potable purposes. One of the first was th city of Dunedin, which applies
revmre osmois (RO) teniues to bracish and fresh groundwater to remove
minerals; thesystem provides 100 percent of the city's supply of drinking water forts
37,000 residents. Based on 1996 reports, another 416 water systems, representing
dozens of communities statewide, provided a total 402 mlon gallons a day of
reclaimed water for irrigon and other outdoor uses. And until recent, the City of Key
West maintained a dealinaon plant for emergency water supply purposes.

Read in the context of chapter 373, F.S.. it is logical to conclude that a local sources
first pol would define "ources to include not only ground ndd sure waters, but
reclaimed wastewater, dealinated or demineraled water, stomnwater, and any other
alternative source.

If the Legislature were to codify a local sources first" policy, when would it be applied?
Applicants for consumptve use permits could be required to use a combination of
"locar water, non-locar water and alterrnae sources as a concd on of obtaining
permits. Or, they could be required to exhaust their supply of nearby water and
alternative soures bore bekin aoed to imprt wer. Under the most kely
scenario, applicaui for nrw or renewal consumptOe use pemfs may have to
demonstrate to the AlDs that thy ha- made every effort to maxibde naturally
occurring water sources nearly, as we s implement mt use of alteative sources
and consevat measures, before being allowed to import water from another county
or region. In any event, a feble policy of local sources firt would not prevent an
applicant from importing water where "local sources" are nether available,
technological feasible, nor economic y viable.

Again, a flexible approach to "local sources first may be apprprlste in order to deal
with individual circumstances. For example, an industrial applicant in a county with
bountiful groundwar supplies my want to ppe in rclaed wsewatr to cool
factory turbines. To require the ue precious groundwater for a non-potable use,
simply to adhere to the leera of a local sources frtrequrment. would not be sensible
public policy.

IL Implnttifm laues n
When considering the basic legality of a "local sources first policy, it ially appears
that such a policy, by and large, would comply with constitutional provisions. However,
a policy of "local sources first' may impose an incidental effect on various contracts
between both public and private entities for the construction or operation of water
production and transmission facilities. Both the United States Constitution and the
Florida Constitution prohibitstate action impairing contractual obligations. Sea U.S.
Cont. art. I, sec. 10 and Fla. Const art. I, sec. 10. Even assuming that a "local
sources first" policy affects such contracts, it appears that because the policy will act as
a generally applicable rule rather thn one specifically directed at contractual.
obligations that the policy does not run afoul of these constitutional provisions. fSe
Exxon Crp. v. Eagerton. 462 U.S. 176 (1983)

Another constitutional provision potential impacted by a local sources first policy" is
Article VIL Section 18 of the Florida Consution. This provision outlines a general
policy against unfunded mandates on local governments. Arguably, a local sources
first" policy may require certain local governments to expend funds to develop alternative
water sources if the policy prevents the use of more distant sources. Yet, assuming the
policy of "local sources first" sver an important state interest, it appears thathe policy
will not violate ArticeV, Section 8 of the Florida Constitution if the policy plies to a
persons similarly situated, including the state and local governments "

The issue of unfunded mandates raises a related issue: should the Legislature provide
a funding mechanism for the policy of "local sources firit." If the state impments this
policy, certain local governments depending on remot sources of water face potential
difficulty in funding alternative wtr puppies. The substantial sums necessary to
construct adequate water suppfy facities may pjace financial burdens on already
strained municipal and county budgets. Without the infusion of legislative
appropriations or the enactment of Apding options the potent funding diAcultps of
-local governments may frustrate the succesfulnplementation of a "local sources first"

"In addition, Article VII, Section 18 of the Florida Constitution provide other
means to avoid the unfunded mandate prohibition. For instance, and again assuming
that a "local soure ilrs f policy drves an important state interest, the Legture could
approve the pocy on a two-thirds vote by the membership 'f eah house or simply
appropriate sufficient funds to implement the policy.
"Another isue to consider in the adoption of a "ocal sou es first policy
concerns the effective date of implementation. Because some areas of the state at this
time rely heavily on the transport of water from remote locations, the immediate
implementation of a "local sources first policy imposes potential problems. These


Moreover, some local govemmenti in the state rely on existing infrastructure to
transport water from remote location.. For example, the Tampa Bay region, South
Florida and the Florida Keys currently use existing infrastructure to move water from
distant locations to serve public water supply needs. In the case of South Florida and
the Florida Keys, this tasfr of water occur over hundreds of miles. Given the
rellten on this existing infrastructure, the question arises as to how a local sources
firs policy should apply to Msch infrastructure. Should such infrastructure eexemptd
from the application of a local sources firt" policy? Even assuming that this
infrastructure receives an exemption, should the policy of "local sources first be used to
encourage or even compel these areas to develop alteative water supply sources? To
successfully implement a "local sources firs policy, these question should receive
thoughtful consideration.

Finally, in considering the hiple mntation of a local sources first policy, another
question arises as to whether thi policy should be liked to land-use planning and
regulation. Ove the years, the subject of water and l nd use lnkages has attracted
considerable attention. SA a&g David Blatt, "Fromthe Groundwater Up: Local Land
Use Planning and Aquifer Protection" J. Land Us & Entl. L 107 (1988) and Florida
Governor's Wer Resource Commission. 1989. Final Imaprt Voa I and II. The
Commission, Tallhassee, Florida. Once again, with a "local sources firt policy, the
opportunity appears to link water and land use planning and regulation.

Arguably, a "local sources first policy represents a unique opportunity to fInk water and
land use together because this policy could require the development of alternative
water supplies to support aelstng and Ature growth. Thus, a policy of local sources
first" resembles the oncurency requirements of cmprhensiv planning which
prohibit the approval of additional development unless adequate infrastructure exists to
support current and projected demands. In the case of local sources first denial
of water transers *r m remote sources may force local governments to develop
alternative water supply infrastructure in order to accommodate additional growth and

areas of the state need time to Wfnd and build alternave water supply fcilitates so as
to gradually reduce their dependence on remote water sources.


Chapter 373, F.S., and interpretative case law clearly sat that, in Florida, water is a
public resource to be managed on a state and regional basis. However, certain
statutes alsocomment that consumptive use withdrawals should not create adverse
impacts on the areas where they are made, nor should the WMDs deprive these donor
areas of thir own reasonable and beneficial uses of the water that is withdrawn for
another area's consumption. Moreover, the administrative law judge in the SWUCA
decision recognized that Chapter 373, F.., as currently drafted allows the WMDs some
discretion to consider a local sources first" policy when making public interest

In light of this, it appears the Legislature could craft language maintaining the state and
regional management approach at the heart of the 1972 Water Resourqs Act, while
directing the WMDs to take intoconsideration localized concerns and circumstances
when evaluating consumptive use permit applications.

Attempts to specifically define "local sources first," at least in terms of geographic or
political boundaries, wil be difficult to accomplish as a connsensu. A narrow definition
may be appropriate for some regions of Florida and in some circumstances, but could
create havoc in other areas where regional water-distribution infrastructure has the
support of all participants and plays a crucial economic role. Ifthe intent of the
Legislature is to address Florida water policy issues from a statewide perspective, a
flexible 'local sources first" policy could be codified in statute to give the WMDs or the
DEP the legal discretion to.consider certain factors in the permitting process.

If toe Legislature decides to pursue a codification of a 'local sources first" policy,
amendments to chapter 373, F.S., would be necessary. Possibilities include:

o Amending 373.01. F.S. Declaration of policy. Subsection (2) could be
amended to include a new paragraph expressing a consensus view of local
sources first."

s. 373.038. F.S. Florida Water Plan: district water

manaemontplanL. References could be made in this section of law to a
consensus localsources first" policy. The plans themselves would need to be
reviewed to ensure that their current provisions relating to optimization of local
water sources are consistent with statutory intent.

o AmAndin s. 373~223. F.S bCondiWmor a a pnmtt. The Legislature
could decide to arm d subsecron (1), which detas the thre-pronged test, to

.o, A bO4


include "local sources first considerations in the consumptive-use permitting
evaluation. Placing those considerations in the statutes here would put "local
sources fir" on par with the reasonable-beneicial use test, the public interest
test and the requirement that a permit wi not interfere with any currently
existing legal use of water. The WMD also would be required to evaluate local
sources irst consideration for every permit application, and deny those
applications that could not comply with them.

Or, the Legislature could amend subsection (2) as the House tried to do during
the 1997Lesion-- and give the WMDs discretion to consider "local sources
first" issues when evaluating permit applications.

In both cases, the considerations could be the same: whether the proposed use
is a reasonable-beneficial use; the cumulative environmental and economic
impacts to the donor are because of the proposed withdrawal; whether there
are envronentally, financially and technically feasible alteratves to the
withdrawal of ground or surface waters; the proximity of the proposed water
source to where it would be used; whether there is a regional water supply
authority or other regional infrastructure in the area that would be affected;
and/or whether the applicant offered to incorporate conservation techniques.

o Amend a. 37322. F.S. Applicaon for a rmit Subsecton (1) could be
amended to include documelont that the consumptve use permit applicant
had considered using natural occurring water sources in his area, or alternative
water sources, before requeang withdrawals from beyond the area. The
documentation could include an explanation of why the permit applicant chose to
seek ground or surface waters outside his area.

o Crea( t s. 3732294. F.S. aditi transr of wavr. The Legislature
could decide to establish a process by which a WMD governing board would
evaluate intradistrict permit app tns on the ba of a local sources first
policy. Section 373.22956, F.S., relating to the tansfs of groundwater from
within one VOID to e i in another VM could be used as a model. However,
the intraistriict ane pr pce probably would not need to be as complex, nor
involve final approval of the permit by the DEP, sincWe h WMDS ae responsible
for manainthe waters within their juditions.

Any new statutory leaguage must be linked to each other, and especially to existing s.
373.198, 373.1W1 and 373.9682, P.S., related to legislae innings, VdD
responseblldes regarding water production, and regional water supply autoriies.
Without dear linkage, the s may encounter difficulty rom th courts when trying
to implement a local sources first poly.


Committee staff used a number of research tools in drafting the Discussion of a "Local
Sources First" Water Policy far Florda interim project report Guided by a workplan
approved by the committee chairman, staff conducted document research, public
hearings, two questionnaires, and interviews. A brief description of the methods

o A keypart of the workplan was the development of research questions,
with input from the committee chairman, to ensure that staff was collecting and
evaluating all relevant data.

The research questions were:

1. Is there a consensus definition of "Local Sources First?" I not, what
does the concept mean to various interest groups? Why does "Local
Sources F st" mean different things to different people? Should the
Florida Legislature adopt a definition in law?
2. Is this concept a part of law, rule, case law or policy elsewhere in the
United States or in other nations? If so, how did it develop, and how is it
3. What are the advantages and disadvantages, from the perspective of
water-resource allocation, of the LglatuWre implementing "Lcal Sources
First" as a decision-making tool for DEP and the WMDs?
4. What are the benefits to water r~ources, and to the ecosystem in
general, from Implementation otLocal Sources first What are the
5. What are the economic implications of implementing "Local Sources
6. Should DEP and the WMDs have the flexibility to decide under what
water-tse permitting scenarios to utilize "Local Sources First, or should
these consideration always be required?
7. What should these consderamions include, and what interest groups
besides DEP and the WMD should participaten developing them?
8. Should Loal Sources F be incorporatedin we WMDs' water-
resource planning and develop mnt process? Should it be incorporated
into the water-suppypltnning and deveopent processes of local
government, regional water supply authorities and utilities?
9. ha-t impact may a legislative codication of Lmtcal Sources First
have one foundations of Florda water law? Would it a t the three-
pronged public interest tst? If so, what are the impicationa What
pressures might it put on a VWDMa, in thefuture, to make decisions
when faced with competing applications?


10. Could codification further foster the balkanization of Florida into
"water rich areas and "water poor" areas?

o Document research over the summer and early fall included review of
statutes and the Florida Administratve Code; a variety of water policy reports
written recent years by legislative and agency staff a search of Premise,
Lexus and The Frida Admni ve La W ktv to locate pertinent cases; and
the 1972 Florida Model Water Code, on which Chapter 373 was based.

o Staff mailed two questionnaires to solicit information. One was mailed to
51 people or organizations that have been active over the last three years in
developing or commenting on w r legislation. The letter asked for a definition
of local sources first' Staff received 27 responses, some of whichwere jointly
prepared by the individuals who had been contacted. The definitions covered a
broad spectrum of opinions on the issue of local sources firt. (The ronses
am included as Appendix 1U.

The second questionnaire was mailed to the 49 other states and Puerto Rico.
Thirty-seven states, and Puerto Rico, responded. None has a "local sources
first" policy, although five responded that they either regulate, or are in the
process of regulating, interbasin transfers of water. (A samal coyv of th
survey is included as Appendix 2: cooae oft4he reoonms are available upon
o The Committee convened fivepublic hearings on "local sources first"
issues: in Tampa, Inverness, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers and Tallahassee. A
copy of the press release announcing the public hearings is included as
Appndi 3. and a synopsis of the public hearings follows:

Tampa. Aust 20. 1997: Nearly two dozen members of the public
attended this hearing, as did eight committee members and Rep Maro Fischer,
D-St. Peterburg. Six members of the public spoke, and five of them said they
favored a local source first policy that directed cmmuies to use local
sources of water. including dealnatd water nd other alteratives to
groundwater, before being allowed o transport water from other areas. The sixth
person explained to the members that a large amount of potable water is
available in the Pinelas County area from surficial aquifers, but that the current
permitting and censure requirements for shallow wells has deterred the use of
shallow wells as a potable water source.

Inveress. August 21. 1997: At least 500 people attended this public
hearing, with crowd estimates ranging as high as 850 because a constant stream
of area residents flowed in and out of the Citrus County Auditorium during the 3
hourr meeting. The public hearing drew people from Citrus, Hernando, Marion,
Sumter and Alachua counties. Thirty-six people had the opportunity to speak,


about half of the number who had submitted appearance cards. The majority of
the speakers expressed strong support for a "local sources first policy that
would require counties or communities to utilize all possible water sources within
their political jurisdictions, before being allowed to transport water from outside
their boundaries. A majority also expressed support for desalination as an
altematl ivwater source for Pinellas County, rather than continue pumping
groundwater from wells in Pasco County. Five committee members, and three
other legislators Rep. George Albright, R-Ocala, Rep. Bob Casey, R-
Gainesville, and Sen. Anna Cowin, R-Leeburg attended the public hearing.

Fort Lauderdale. Auut 26. 1997: Five committee members and seven
members of the public attended this public hearing. Only two people spoke, and
both worked for Broward County government. Stressing that Weither they or
Broward County had taken a position on local sources first," they commented
that if narrowly defined, such a policy would have negative impacts on the
Broward-Dade area, which relies on a long-distance transfer of water from Lake
Okeechobee to meet many of the area's water needs. They requested that the
Legislature consider a "local sources first policy that is flexible.

Fort Mvya August 27. 1997: Thirty people attendedthis public hearing,
and eight people spoke, expressing a variety of opinions. Some support for a
flexible local sources firt policy was expressed, but so were concerns that
such a policy, if not carefully worded, would lead to divisiveness between "water-
rich" and "water-poor" counties. Others noted that it will very difficult to define
"local," because of-the hydro-geologic variances among the water management
districts. Four legihators attended t4is public hearing.

Tallahassee. September 18. 1997: An estimated 65 people attended this
meeting, and 16 people spoke. Many of the speakers supported a "local sources
first" policy that would require counties to utilize all possible water sources within
their political jurisdictions, before being allowed to transport water from outside
their boundaries. Several speakers said counties should maximize the sources
of water available to them, and that includes developing alteative sources,
such as desalinated water. One speaker expressed concerns that a "local
sources first polly would beli conflict with Florida water law. Seven committee
members attended.



Daniel Webster, Speaker

Committee on Water and Resource Management
Governmental Responsibility Council, Group V
Joha Lauret 0. "Rick" Miton, Jr.
Chair Vice Chair

June 12, 1997

Dear Mr........:

The House Committee on Water and Resource Management is researching a number of water-
policy issues related to 'Local Sources First over the interim. One of the key issues is how to define
"Local Sources First. No statuary deflnition exists, nor is there a consensus definition among the
different user groups. Establishng parameters of what constutes a local source of water may be of
great help to this Commitee, and the legislature s a whole, when evalumtng 'Local Sources First
proposals during the 1998 legisative session.

In order to obtain as complete a view as possible of what "Local Sources First means to different
user groups, I am asking you and a number of other people, who have shown an interest in water
policy issues in recent years, to individual draft a definion of what the concept means to you.
You also are asked to incde a discussion of the rationale on which your definition i based.
Please mail your response in the enclosed, sf-addressed envelope by July 7,1997, to:

Joyce Pugh, legislative research director
Committee on Water and Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1300

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call me at (941) 34-7270 or Joyce Pugh at


Rep. John Laurent, Chair

cc: Rep. Rick Minton, vice chair
rRep. Lee Constantine, chair, Govemmental Responsibility Council

214 House Office Building Talahasee, Florida 32991300 (904) 488-0711

B5 oatd of County Commission

.Cake County
Since\ OUflJ la7w 315 WEST MAIN STREET P.O. BOX 7800 TAVARES. FLORIDA 32778-7800

July 24, 1997

The Honorable John Laurent
Chair, Committee on Water and Resource Committee
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Dear Representative Laurent:

The Board of County Commissioners of Lake County, Florida, at their July 22, 1997 meeting,
established Lake County's definition of "local sources first" and asked that I forward this to you
for information.

"Local Sources First" is defined as the use of all natural resources in this case water tlat are
as close to the consumer as can be physically extracted from the natural resource system. 1) The
use of conservation measures, such as restrictive low use "conservation" plumbing and the use
of "reclaimed and reused" water from the existing water supplies 2) The withdrawal of
resources from the nearest possible geographic source, including the use of desalination of
saltwater as a freshwater resource 3) Withdrawal of resources that e as close to the consumer
as can be physically extracted from the natural resources including local watershed, then
consideration of the local sub-basin, then the local basin. 4) "Local Resources First" is not
consistent with inter-basin or inter-waer supply resources. 5) Withdrawal from groundwater
supplies with strong consideration for the aquifer storage, restoration and recharge.

We look forward to hearing from the House Committee on Water and Resource Management
regarding their position and definition of "local sources first" as well.


William "Bill" H. Good

cc: vjoyce Pugh, Legislative Research Director
John Wayne Smith. Florida Association of Counties



rDwO n s OMB iWm r Hwo. n RD ar n ae


- ~~~-~~~~- -~~-ELL~

Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services
BOB CRAWFORD, Commissioner
The Capitol Tallahassee, FL 32399-0800

Please Respond to:

July 23, 1997

The Honorable John Laurent, Chair
Committee on Water and Resource Management
Florida House of Representatives
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Dear Chairman Laurent:

Thank you for your letter of June 18 requesting input on the concept of "local sources
first". In order to understand the perspective of the Florida Department of Agriculture and
Consumer Services (DACS) about "local sources first" some background discussion is useful.

According to the U. S. Geological Survey, agriculture, on a statewide basis, continues to
C be the largest category of water user, accounting for slightly over half of the total 7.5 billion
gallons per day of freshwater withdrawn by all users. Public supply, although growing with
Florida's increasing population, accounts for about one quarter of total freshwater withdrawals,
with domestic use, power generation and self supplied commercial-industrial comprising the
remaining quarter. However, the state's rapid growth, particularly along the coast where
traditional water supplies are least plentiful, a an administraive system for water allocation
that only guarantees water availability for period of time specified by permit, has created a
concern that water supplies currently available to agriculture may be diverted to other uses in the
future. In addition, for certain areas where water resources are critically stressed th immediate
solution to increasing water needs is often transport om emote locations rather than an
emphasis on locally available conservation, reuse, or alternative sources. These fetors tend to
naturally align the agrcltura industry with those areas of the state that could be characterized as
water rich and create the potential for conflict with those areas that have exhausted locally
available sources. Ths, wile recognizing that water is a public resource, this Department
supports the concept oflocal sources first; local areas should first maximize the use of locally
available supplies before importing water om remote locations.

Our support for "local sources first" was evident during the 1997 legislative session when
Commissioner Bob Crawford supported HB 715, which you sponsored, and similar legislation in
the Senate sponsored by Senator Bronson. Both bills initially incoported the concept of local
sources first by requiring the Governing board of a water management district to consider the
proximity of and other feasible alternatives to, a proposed source of water when determining
Consistency with the public interest for water use permits. During the amendatory process this

Florida Agriculture: e A $6 Billion Industry

The Honorable John Laurent, Chair
July 23, 1997
Page Two

requirement of the Governing Board first became permissive, then was dropped from the
legislation when it became apparent that its inclusion jeopardized the passage of the water

While the general concept of "local sources first" has broad support, great difficulty arises
in defining it statutorily due to the highly subjective nature of its components. Each water supply
problem will be different depending on the location and particular nature of the water resources.
What is local or remote will vary, just as will the types of sources to be considered, and the order
in which it may be feasible to use them. Overlain on each of these considerations are issues of
water resource impacts economic feasibility.

In some respe- is similarity between the difficulty in defining local sources first
and in defining signifi .arm for minimum flows and levels. While the legislature has not
attempted to define significant harm in statute, in the creation of section 373.0421 it has provided
guidance as to what is to be considered when the Governing Board makes that determination.
Similarly, the legislature will probably not be able to precisely define "local sources first", but it
could provide authority and guidance for the Governing Board to consider certain factors in
permitting decisions.

For this reason, I would suggest the Committee first revisit the guidance provided in
section 7 of HB 715 as originally filed dwing the 1997 session. Because of concerns expressed
about a "local sources first" mandate on the Govening Board, the guidance could be permissive
as long as it was clear the Board could consider factors related to the proximki f a water source
to a use when making permitting decisions. An alternative approach could be to make revisions
to sections 373.196 and 373.1961(1Xe which provide protection for the areas fon which water
is withdrawn, by making these sections consistent with 373.016(2) and (3)(d) as added by the
1997 legislature..

With -ay approach the Committee decides to take, whether byAdefinition, through
additional policy guidance, or by grant of additional authority to the Governing Boards, "local
sources first" will be a difficult issue because it candivide wer us groups against each other
and against environmental water needs. During the discussing about "local sources first", it
would be well to remember that CS/HB 715, 1249, 1321, and 1339, passed under your
leadership, fimuanmntaly changed the debate about this issue by focusing on meeting the needs
of all users and the environment while avoiding t adverse effects of competition for water. If
the Northern Tamps Bay problem can be solvedand some time allowed for the water resources
,ad water supply development -tures of HB 715 to take effect, then he crisis nature of the
.cal sources first" discussion ay fade. Success in this effort will largely depend on the
serious commitment of the water management districts to redirect resources to water resources

The Honorable John Laurent, Chair
July 23, 1997
Page Three

Thank you for the opportunity to provide our perspective on "local sources first". The
Department looks forward to participating in the Committee's discussions and is ready to provide
any assistance which would be useful in resolving this issue.



Charles C. Aller
Director, Office of Agricultural Water Policy


cc: Commissioner Bob Crawford
Representative Rick Minton, Vice Chair

A. Duda & Seon Inc. Offi of Govemmet Affair
310 W. Cofe Avnue

1f.niM: (904) 681s2794
July 22, 1997 RBC. (g 796

Representative John Laurent
House Committee on Water & Resource Management
Room 214, House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Dear Mr. Chairman:

This is in response to your letter of June 18 requesting our views on the "local ources
first" issue. A. Duda & Sons views are being incorporated in the Florida Agricultural Coalition's

The Florida Water Coalition is letting each of its members individually respond to your
request. We are concerned that "local sources first" is a complex, divisive, and emotional issue
and care needs to be used when the Florida Legislature discusses it. The Florida Water Coalition
looks forward to working with you and your committee on increasing the standing of existing
permit users, reviewing Minimum Flows and Level Rules and other water related legislation.

With warm personal regards.

Florida Water Coalition




. t


45S4 West (n ClQb Imd
ieite 20s
Ws ?ala 5ud FL 334
56L471.1344 Tele.pse -,*
4 ;l;.47- .052 FaeIile

July 21, 1997

Joyce Pugh, Ch Legislative Research Director
House Committee on Water & Resource Management
214 ouse Office Building
Tallahass IL 32399


Thank you for your letter of June 18 inviting comments and input on the issue of "local
sources fet." I apologia for the delay in repoadin? to yo The Florida Water Cuncil is
panricip g with Doug Mean and Chuck Littteohn ofthe ndFloaWaer Coei to prpWre a
commas semo reftcrie the views sad opimoms of Coaliio m brs. Origiay ths was
to have been smfiie to represeatthe posmi of the Flosid Waer Comil. However, at the
July 11 ameebglofte Caoeirs Boerd ofDirecos, it wu agreed ta we should submit our own
response as wl I hope the laeness four ubmittl will not inconvein you.

The Floida Water Council is aot*forprofit orniatioz that was eabliNhed to
repr"esea he iere of waer users wdthip tdm coea t of Forida's water polcy debate. Our
members iRlude aor ub ~ utiliti (Dad, Browr, Pal Beh, Las sad PimW a Copties),
agrtural ia~eas water coaro district, water aMd waste operoPrato iroemta
coasultant, Moginn fiar s and m conmmuty developers. The Counsi was actively e ged in
the pues ofE H Bill 715 drig te 1997 lilatie session sad we sincerely appreciaed the
efbors put frth by you and your taif to develop and advance is impaas water law. Our
imvolveme in uhe 1997 seeio prvid d a firustea u4den-maditg of thecom l dbeeb
surroundal the conep of "locl sourea rst" and we respect the work tht Chirmps Laure
aad the conummineel.ve tOake ia is cusiag the legistive spotlight on this iss

Please feet ee to cad m if you have any questions or ifI ra provide additional
ifoniation. In the meantime, I hope tha you are enjoying your summer md that your rst
reruitment is going wel.


Cathleen CVge
Executive Director



The Florida Water Council would oppose any legislative effort to mandate a hard d fast
rule of "local sources first" for the State of Florida. The Council understands and is yympathethic
to the very diffult situation in the greater Tampa Bay region that has given rinetothe concept of
"local sources first However, we believe this is a shortsighted, quick-ftx approach to the
complicated task of water resource development.

A fundamental strength of Florida water law is the tenet tht water is a public resource to
be managed and developed on a regional basis for the good of the statiea a whole. "Local
sources first" dwiey contradicts this philosophy. As such, we foresee that hany "local sources
first" mandate would lead to a divi e polarization between waer-rich and water-poor regions of
the state.

Seing aside our lndamer,. disagreement with the phbJosophy of localsources first,"
we uggesttht such a policy would beivepoible to impleum. How do we de61 "loal?' Is it
to be bed on political jurisdictions? If to what degree municipal, coutym vel, regional as
in the case of wdr management dist l boundaries? Ad how would we facor i water
reourcs suh a aaquwfersrdwarsystemr whoa~gseogr-bical eempa spea the boundaies of
many local jurisdictions?

The Florida Water Coia strongly supports the proami that dodevelo~peat of water
resources wor water supply purposes naui dRdin a smasinable manner in order to protect the
environiert aid enhance aeioie developnmem TFs coma t should apply whetherr the source
of water is local or distant. Wihin themismng ieework fbr the reguaiof water use the
reponsibityfor appling thi pnacdpteasu with e water wmanageu mardiia ts. When issuing
conumptw use permits the d tricts iu take into account emvirmiui impacts an must
ensure that te welr um reets ba spWond test it is a neeieabi) enefialus i does
not aothwr euidda ag iand it is iaoaN a with the Twopubliateret ai
jurisdiction together with the ottalfr abritysvth i the war ummpagnm r disticts under
Chapter 373 gives them th resposibU U t ao cwer and o prmit wvtr uss i ac a way
so as to avoid or mininir environmental impact and economic disruption. We suggest that a
"local sources rd'pi y would absoi he the raicts ofherrsponihy for regional water

Regarding tha reposibity, the Florida Waer Couacil strongly supports the direction to
t water management districts muder this year's House Bl 715. This legisaion dates a new
emphasis on water supply a primary mission of the districts The disis ar directed to assess
wwtravailablity. develop regional water supply plus, ad thed dthe ~dof wear
resources on a regional basis so that the needs of existing aad fbumre use ar mot tle water
mam gmaine district diat their considerable techniIcl and fnaacial reon6 to m m the
requirements of House Bill 715, then "local sources first" aiss will be averted.

Page 2

There are many examples in the state of Florida where suace or groundwater is
transported over long distances to provide water supply. Water is a renewable resource, and if
ample water supplies xist in a rego and can be developed in a ustainable mner to provide for
hd economical supply of water to another rgio, then it makes good ene to do so. To force
areas of te state to expenive-uneasomical water supply lteratives which may well have
thdir own environmental downsides is bad public policy. If more economic sources of water
are avilale, even th are located at greater distance it is practical aid i the best intent of
th state to development them.

Whenever the debate over "local sources first" has emerged in the legislative arena, there
is general coo aus that such a policy could no apply to the operation of the Central A Southern
Florida (CASF) project. We strongly support this position and would vehemently oppose any
attempt to apply a local souros first" interpretation to this system. By the smae token, we point
out that if the Central Southern Florida project is an acceptable aception to "local sources
first then why would theb not be other acceptable Hceptiu is tu mbese of dt CS
project, we doubt ayone would argue against the continued operation ofth Florida Keys
Aquedut Auhom y which transports water all the way from is weleds in Florida City (Dade
Coumy) to Key West. If thee are acceptable ways of managing water, theahy would the
development ofsmilar systems be unacceptable i other areas of t state?

n short, we suggest that the noton of"local sources first" developed out of an
unfortunate ailre to manage water resources property. This ilure needs to be addressed, and
we courage the tate to do so But this failure serious u it is, should not drive die water policy
for the State of Florida.

Mark F. Carpanini Drawer ATOI P.O. Box
County Attorney 330 W. Church SV
Bartow, FL 33831-9005
Palmer C. Davis :, Tel: (941) 534-6482
Mary Eizabeth Harlan Fax: (941) 534-7654
Karia Foremni Wright
Krl~a Ward of County Conoissisoners
Office of the County Asroev

July 11, 1997

Joyce Pugh
Committee on Water and Resources Management
214 House Ofice Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Re: Definition of Local Sources First

Dear Ms. Pugh*

Neil Combee Chairman of the Polk County Board of County mmioners, asked that I
respond to your letter of June 18, 1997 relating to a definition of "Local Sources First."

Having been involved somewhat with water supply issues, I think local sources first is best
defied as a concept whereby a community would be required to develop all local sources of water
supply which are economically feasible to develop before seeing to import water extracted from
other jurisdictions. For purposes of this concept, development of local sources of water is not
economically unfsible simply because it is more expensive than water imported from elsewhere.

It seems axiomtic that dierent parts of Florida are blessed with different and varying
degrees of natural resources and advantages of location. Coastal mmnis have access to many
resources which ierior communities do not; northern Florida communities are similaly endowed
with difrent natural characteristics than southern Florida communities

Coastal coniuhm in Florida have long exploited their natural location advantage and
have a a consequence experienced unp edeted growth and development Interior communities
have had to rely on other resources to grow and develop.

Now, it has been made clear tht in order for coastal ommmies to continue to develop, they
must rely on sources of water which e more expensive (but not impossible) to develop than they
have been in the past. In other words, the coept of local sources first simply requires those coastal


communities to deal with a disadvantage of their geographical location in much the same way that
all commities ust.

The concept of local sources first also recognizes that to the extent a coastal community
would seek to develop sources of groundwater in an interior co unity, it necessarily deprives that
conmumity of its ability to fill develop and utilie that source. The reason is that the potential use
ofgroundwater supplies are limited by the very nature of resource.

This situation becomes particularly acute under regulatory schemes such as the Southern
Water Use Caution Area (SWUCA) rules as proposed by the Southwest Florida Water Management
District whereby a reduction in groundwater leves operate to preclude any further withdrawal of
groundwater, which as a practical matter may be the only source of water available fbr many inland

Ultimately, to not require that local sources of water be developed first is to permit and
sanction a sort of imperialim whereby coastal common s usurp a natural advantage of interior
com raim to thk datrihmt br purely economic MiaonsM wie oaaingt to enjoy whaver other
advantages they posses.

I hasten to add that this view i mine and may not be shard by ay nmr of the Pok
County Board of County Comri iomner.

Please call me if you have any questions.


Mark F. Caparniui


xc: Board of County mComufioa.rs
County Maagr
Jeff Spence




SUITE 2910
111 N.W. 1st STREET
MIAMI, FLORIDA 33128-1994
(306) 375-5311

July 15, 1997

Ms. Joyce Pugh
Legislative Research Director
CoMiMtee on Waterand Resource Management
214 House Oice Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300



Dear Ms Pugh:

We understand that Represeativ John Ls t, aie of the Ho Water and Resource Management
Committee is seeking input from interested parties to draft a definition "Local Souces First" in a
future water bill. While Dade County does not have specific language on a definition at this time, we do
offer the following substantive comment Please be advised that the term "Local Sources First" has a
potential adverse impact on many counties, including Dade, which use the Cental and Southern Flood
Control Project. This project delivers water from Lake Okeechobee to several counties. The lake
supplies water to the water conservation areas west of Dad Browvm and Palm Beach Counties and the*
conservation areas then recharge the Biscayne Aquifer in Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties.

The lower east and west coasts of the State of Florida depend on Lake Okeechobee as a water supply
source. If a new definition of "Local sources First" prohibits the exportation or intra-county transport of
water, the lower east and-west coasts will face serious water shortages and will have to replace their
present water supply source. Therefore, any new definition must exclude the areas served by the Central
and Southern Flood Control Project.

Please contact Jorge Rodriguez, Deputy Director, Dade County Water and Sewer Authority Department
at (305) 669-7602 or Virginia Sanchez, Director, Intergovenmental Affairs (305) 375-5600 should you
have any questions regarding this matter. Thank you for your consideration ofthis important issue.


AnVz ,P.E.
County Manager

cc: Jorge Rodriguez, P.E., Deputy Director, Metro Dade Water and Sewer Department
Virginia Sanchez, Director, Inergovernmental Affairs
John Wayne Smith, Governmental Liaison, Florida Association of Counties

I~~~------ ----~-----I ----~--~-w~~i*W~148

PuOI Works O trerwt Office oft 'rvrcnmw)ta Swvce
Watr, Mal cement DMiven
2555 W. Cooors Road
Pompano Ieon!. FL 33C60
(954) 831.0781 OAX (95 831-0738
Ms. Jouce Pugh, Lgistiv Renrnch Dictor
ConittM on Water mld nRouC Mnmgmefnt
214 House 0fficBuiing
Taahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Dear Ms. Pugh:

Anchd i a repone to tb request for dd ions ofLocal Source Fir". The repons i
offered primely as a diLm on itmu.

"Local ourmmc t" revd cowiderable disusio at various working oup on war
resource prior to both the 1996 and 1997 litive esons v m inseanc te i ms proved
to be quiet diiive sad mor difficult to addrs thnm t ih nnmam low and level ie. At no
time wu there a proposed lttion tht would have gewed a debition tht wur ccpbl to
more than a iited faion of the p urticipw s. Even though, asems to dslp wer resour
legisaioa that coutaned local forces fr" concepts w ranmM id o umpt to fmdy
very rel problem the soltio of "local source fm" always fbrmtd th basi or aen v aer
problem in othr and more widsprd ar ofthe O ma.

Withid south Florid "loodl sources ra" provide th potenmda to umrvel thm war maera oet
system upon wbia a msliAb f1aM urba and apicmluritam nly di war ipply.w It is
withe pottial problem ad divia, na oftthr eim s ind that is ueted th ean
altrm aiv course by e amc d by the pfoviOi n of a I 715 passe by the 1997Leg isar. If
filed, te repoMnibities auigned so the we Mi a gut d sicKts, to provide wter fh
exiaing and fatur uses a one in ten year l of service a oruaoi w provWsio
precludufi ani e the s wo ssad a-itiBg law, @" provde a resource mnegms solution
without the problem attedwa to locall smumes ar" legiladio

Roy P& Reynold5 PB,~Di
Water MNsmanMi DMuion

omWoAMwA coi.WCon SW oM courmn Uoafn -. N Wopp, rn h v M .a l rW awr -A.o. jtm
weSW urne w A wN WAsswL4us,~s-w_, -W_-


-- 6 N L1 -

L.lJ Sarc FMMRt With respect to the utiliatimn ofuw rur r aou s e human mndavors
men that the most geographical inmmdiat hydrogieio ra m u be pulled to supply water up
to the mamum potential ofthat unit bere a user can ek wawom a hyroloic unit thbt s
geographically more distuit.

This defiition attempt to tie a uer or withdnrwl t he suW e water r groudwatr source that
is clost to the point of use, baed upon a land wuc meauaremat. It does not attempt to
dierenmiatwbwpmg curnbc source and toumie bdeirb egrand nor doert aUtempt to
deliee promity by geopolitical boundari. In so doing te d ii do r address the
source of th war within the hydroogi uni, it o*ly requires ththe hydrology unit be the
closest bydrgfqgiunit to the ua The a tmm Atadh ter in ithera nquif.er a ram-water
body Ecoul bte lw$ud of milBs way. t Fomr meple t
the hrid a Aquib r;
ay lowing riv or or rea
Lake Qkemchobee or
the Ceatral d Sou Florida Proij c

OeopoliWcal boundares were not utl bemmau lrida a mny we r ma u sem that
both cross gopoitil boundaries and provide water tppie, noted in the above amp It
would s that R defaioti atte mipIeda adno fim at OD:# ru witia I ubo00i6lH
boundary wmMid Wea to ddam i -lffa-m eiuuh t a1ate Malc users or
eqpt oep Wk ou nes and uas the dl* OijaLm.

The defiition es that "'aniaia dn "r would have bee deat ft e y source.

The defnition pose problem br which it does not provide sohltio, such a;
fbrin the ue of a les viabe or mmre epniw veloI source when a non-local source
may be mire viable or cost ueuiSa
requiring thee of a local soure wha uem of a foer diatut source may be more
hvB enaPmiday bmieM. *

For the deion to be national ad acceptable within south Porida ithe term "drologic nit"
must be bioaiy corned to ialie interactive audtr and uamdp9ii AIsIten WMb dhe
Coral and South oridea Projet water mova wifht and betweandrt
system due to both nanura ad m maade infiusem. In providing water both the natural
system and h endeavors this sysm moves water across numerous geopolt l bondaris
rom the Ordando ara o the north to Key Weat on the south. It is epecte t mhat aydeii ition
that retricted the ability to manage the resource wihi thi system would not be acceptable.

I I___U1_ ___ I -PIWIUI~-I~--~ ULhL .


POST F0rClE OX esae
(041) 1al-a7OO
PAX 4(04, as44S5
FAX (904) 48S-341S


July 10, 1997

Honorable John F. Laurent
Chairman, Water & Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, FL 32399

Dear Representative Laurent:

Thank you for your letter to Wade Hopping of June 18, 1997,
regarding the definition of "local sources first." Wade and I are
representing the Florida waterworks Association.

The Association is a broad-based group of water and wastewater
utilities throughout Florida. In light of the different interests
within the Association, it has hot taken a position on the "local
sources first* issue. The Association remains very interested in
other vater policy issues and will be once again advocating the
reconciliation of environmental and economic regulation of water

We look forward to continuing to work with you.

Si merely,


cc: Jim Moore, President
Florida Waterworks Association

A ^1 D'partmentof

& Environi mental Protection g
Marjory Stoneman Douglas Building
Lawtn Chitn 3900 CommonwaMfh Boulevard virti, WI,
Govenor Tallahasse, Florida 32399-3000

July 7, 1997

Ms. Joyce Pugh
Committee on Water and Resource Mnagement
214 House Office Building
Tallahua e, FL 32399-1300
Dear Ms. Pugh:
This is in repons to the June 18 letter from Rep. Ltamt qesn ourdelnin of
the concept of local oure first. We appetite the opportunity to provide you with
our thoughts on uh istie.
As he letter correctly indicates, tw Is no esta hed dfnitiOn for wht i meat by
local sources first Dfnitkn fqrhrwat pt r Ioc O cow ry from
w~ hiun w e4ti aw ori kr e twou
Ysu itthia mry not ber Ric^icv ,a eSxp touttabi~a spei, hi definiton
of a source.l Vthir* thet it Ip u i thte Op r solupon Ols issue lis
either a prohibitgn of itonedn aeow endorsement of tVem. Thamem., awlfee a munrproduclve magistaiNsbe tofocus
on critic tht should be taklu into account when detmrining if a wWater g5ift
one area to another should occur.

Currently, guidance is giv in oth apter 373 F.S., and the Water Resources
Implementeton Rule (Chapter bA C.), related to when a tnsr am dtict
mbomdai m N ppWoved. *l t and rule language i attached. We would
suggest the a effrt be Wcused on whether this guidance should t
enhance be provided for transfers within a district
a wI r baMMOn itw n tc i. ial oarticular focus might be to further expand on
the guidance Ir Rule 02-40.422(2)(b), FAC. concerning an evaluation of the cot.
benefits, and environml nt impacts to bo th te upplying and r giving area that
should be made by th water management distrlacetalg Imhlnr a rWlherrot to
approv water transfers. For ex ot le ioru Shart n amilM~ 4 nptare not
incurred in the ara supplying tr ter. it may be appropriate to requit that a
minimum low or level be estabi for the source water body before a transfer is

"Protect Conserve and Manage Floridos Environment and Naturl Resources"

Ms. Joyce Pugh
July 7, 1997
Page 2

We hope this input is helpful to the Committee's work, and look forward to working with
you further on this interim project


Pamel P. McVety
Executive Coordinator
Ecosystem Management



cc E9st WhitilMd

'JUL 1 0 lW
later .*
SNorthwest Florida Water Management District

I Route 1, Box 3100, Havana, Florida 32333-9700
(On U.S. Highway 90. 10 miles west of Tallahassee)
0 (850) 539-5999 (Suncom) 771-2080 (Fax) 539-4380
Douglas E. Barr
ExecutiuDinetor July 8, 1997

Ms. Joyce Pugh, Legislative Research Director
Committee on Water and Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1300

Dear Joyce:

In response to Representative Lauren's letter regarding "Local Sources," outlined below are
comments on the definition in the context of development of alternative water supplies in
northwest Florida.

The first issue to come forward in any discussion of this topic is what constitutes "local."
Limiting the concept of "local" to only water sources in the immediate vicinity of the area of use
may be unduly restrictive. Taking guidance from Chapters 187 and 373, Florida Statutes, and
Chapter 62-40, Florida Administrative Code, one could consider the development of regional
water supplies, in lieu of transferring water across district boundaries, as encouraging the 4
development of local sources first. The Northwest Florida Water Management District would
support discussions of a "regional" approach to the issue of what constitutes a local source. The
boundaries of the regional planning areas recently identified by the water management districts
may offer an avenue for discussion.

The issues of providing for a sustainable water supply source and limiting impacts to the
resource and legal users should also be addressed in the concept of "Local Sources First."
Chapter 373.196, FS, stresses the need for cooperation between parties to provide for dependable
water supplies without resulting in adverse impacts on the area where the water is withdrawn.
This takes into account the present and foreseeable water use needs of the supply area. The
water use needs of an area, the availability of water supply sources, and the identification of
resource concerns can be addressed through the regional water supply planning initiatives of the

We hope, that our thoughts are of assistance in addressing this matter. If you have any questions
or would like to discuss this matter further, please call.


Douglas E. Ba
Executive Director
Chairman- Tallahase Vice Chairman. Tallahase SecretaryTreasurer-Chumuckla Caontnmwn

Blounssoun Quincy Apalechcokd PonamaClty Fort WatonBeach

6 of (,49 JM ds dib Abidd -447f.Z690
d01 B Sf- 25--- i^ (eo-nmm- SM47p..*90s
(9^W !W E*O-1J if ... 4 647 -1107 ^- tW0 COMMISSIONERS
July 3, 1997 Mw.Iw O.T:

Honorable John Laurent, Chair
Committee on Water and Resource Management
Florida House of Representatives
c/o Joyce Pugh, legislative research director
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Fl. 32399

Dear Representative Laurent,

Thank you for the opportunity to address the very important issue of local sources first as it
relates to water policies in the State of Florida. Marion County was disappointed that language
reflecting this general policy was not included in the water legislation that paed the 1997
Legislative Session.

If it were easy to define local Morc there would probably be one in existence today. The
fact that, as you point out, o stautry definite exists ilhut s th elusive na of this issue.
However, it may be more useful to define whtlocal srourcesfrir dom ot ames. It does not
mean the inland transfer of water over several juridictional boundies, basis the cae of the
transfer of water from well fields in Hrnando County to Pinellas County.

Local sources first implies that local government authorities, including municipalities and
counties, should make every attempt to soie local wat supply problems though the
application of various methods and technologies (eg. wre e omosis) befe being allowed to
transfer water supplies from other regions of the state

Local sourcesrat mees that until a local goernmnt exhausts all tenative maes transfer
of water shall not be allowed unless by consent of the county government from which the
transfer is to occur.

I wish you and the Committee success in finding language that will address this most important

M ly.
Lary C, hirman
1 Marion County Commission

JUL 10 1997
Fesident 1997 Fidrtague of Cies, Inc.
Jim Naugle 201 Wet Park Avenue
Mayor, Fort Lauderdale Poet Office Box 1757
Tallahassee, FL 32302-1757
First Vice Prs nt Telephone (904) 222-96
Samuel J. Ferred uFX W 2fom
Mayor, Greenacrs FAX (04)
Second VIcehr--esidont
David Rigsby Florida League of Cities
Mayor, DeLand

July 9, 1997

Ms. Joyce Pugh
Legislative Research Director
Committee on Water and Resource Management
Florida House of Representatives
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1300

Dear Ms. Pugh:

Thank you for your letter requesting the League's input on "local soumes first." We appreciate
being included with the other associations and agencies in your research. Each year, the League
adopts a policy statement to state the position of municipal governments on pending or
anticipated legislation. As identified in the 1997 policy statement, Local Sources First provides
that the transfer of water should be the option of Jstresort once all other environmentally sound,
financially and technically feasible options have been exhausted, including water conservation,
water reuse, and intra-distrct alternative water supplies. Furthermore, that transfer should occur
with the concurrence of the impacted municipalities and counties.

The rationale behind this definition is to prevent the transfer of water from one district to another
if other water supply alternatives have not been considered fist. Obviously, should legislation
on this issue become law, this would have a significant effect on areas that currently receive
water from other areas to supply their consumers.

I hope this information is useful in defining "local sources first from the municipalities'
perspective. Should you have ay questions or quire additional inflation, please fel free to
contact me.


JAllison Tribble
Legislative Analyst
AnrWr... w r ersMwer. aif m limeJlljsma. nmiYnir. Ooiy .Mii r in. Conn.n. .mw Oa- men.co- nw.
OmmImi. Lm b Hme*W ,. -,. va O .,?eugat. Ma. '=er r
t r. kUs~ iu i. euc.. PMI Cp M Mmrn.i. a
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Al* m u. Mmw PVnm. P'. am 0umr. Comma mmc. Thumam nul. Cm 'mAl.er. 11mm P111us em W M.Vimr. P alo
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w oca oO^ t. bBi Pan km MElM. b ai M Dbaor iNrG 0" %.oni.r.. alCo O. .



PmONI (813) 464-3363 lAX (813) 464-3022 315 COURT STRIAT CLIARWATIER, LORIDA 34616


July 1, 1997

J2L ioi~

The Honorable John Laurent
Committee on Water and Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Subject: Your letter of June 18, 1997, regarding Local Sources First
Water Policy Issues

Dear Representative Laurent;

Thank you very much for your letter of June 18 inviting Pinelas County to participate in formulating
policy issues related to local sources first regulations. We e h instructed our representative, Fred
McConnick of Landers & Parsons in Tallsham to coordinate our resp e to your request. Fred
will work with Joyce Pugh and your committee and others in helping formulate a policy on this



Robert B. Stewart
Pinellas County C mission

cc: Fred McCormack, Landers & Parsons
Jake Stowers, Asst. County Administrator


p~s m)Ism PYm



Southwest Florida

Water Management District
2379 BrootStreet BrooklUle. Flonda 34609-6899 1-800-423-1476 (Florida Only) or
(352) 796-211 SUNCOM 628-4150 T.D.D. Number Only (Florida Only): 1-800-231-6103

.in b E Owracnun Emicr

novy Ham. Jr.
Chairman. St. Petesurg
Joe L Dav. Jr.
Vice Chairman. Wauchul
Curi Ll Law
Secretary. Land O L0akes
Say Thompson
Treasurer. Tompa
Jams L Alten
Ramon P. Campo
Rebecc M. g9e
Joan P. Ho4mnls IV
Ronald C. Johmon
Lake Wales
Jars L Man i
St. PeteAurg
Vlrgina SR a
L. *Slan Vegara
Executive Oector
Ewaod sw HeenlWon
General Counel



7601 H9-ftyW301 Noh
aWoo. andao W337.6759
1BW.30797 C (813) 9*7451
SJNCOM 57$.M70

a'O C~ luvouevod
Wow RPCo 3=377
i41004924S2 o (941) 53d.11
SJNCOM 572.6=

?' 5 CUar'acn w a
VOce. Rondo 342923M24
: -30-320- or (941) 4W212

July 7, 1997

2303 HIhwa 4 wer
(352) 637-130


Ms. Joyce Pugh, Legislative Research Director
Committee on Water and Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Dear Ms. Pugh:

This will respond to Representative Laurent's request of June 18, 1997, to comment
upon the concept of Local Sources First from the perspective of the Southwest Florida
Water Mahlagment District (SWFWMD).

To date, the Governing Board of the SWFWMD has supported a Local Sources First
policy based upon guidance afforded by sections 187.201(8), 373.0395, 373.196(1),
373.1961(lXe), and 373.223(1) and (2), Florida Statutes; Water Resource
Implementation Rules 62-40.310(1Xf) and (g), Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.);
the Florida Water Plan, Chapter 2: Water Supply, Water Supply Strategy 1;
SWFWMD's Rule 40D-2.301(1)(j) and the companion interpretive provision in the
SWFWMD's Basis of Review For Water Use Permit Applications, Section 4.9,
incorporated by reference in Chapter 40D-2., F.A.C.; and the SWFWMD's Water
Management Plan, Water Supply Policies, No. 5 (see attached excerpts).

In addition, attached for your information is the Local Sources First legislative language
supported by the Water Management District Review Commission.

There are two fundamental reasons why a Local Sources First Policy can initiate intense
debate between those who espouse it and those who oppose it One is ecological and
the other is a concern over equitability. Briefly stated, transfer of water from one
watershed or basin to another will have ecological impacts if it occurs in such quantities
that dependent natural systems such as wetlands, riverine or estuarine systems, become
adversely impacted. In addition, the water utility transporting the water to the demand
area has no incentive to utilize more enviro entaly acceptable water sources or to
reuse or conserve the water in the demand area if given free rein to utilize cheaper less
environmentally acceptable water sources from another ama. Equitability becomes
involved when a demand area develops a source located elsewhere because it is cheaper
and the source area population is consequently forced to use higher costing alternatives
later when its need for water exceeds the amount of low-cost water remaining. While
the economic nature of this inequity might be overcome through voluntary, mutually
beneficial water supply contracts between the parties ofthe source and demand areas, *
the associated politics may not be so easily overcome. In other words, even though a t-
contract may be devised which provides adequate legal guarantees that protect the
interests of all parties, the affected public in the source area may not be easily


July 7, 1997
Ms. Joyce Pugh
Page Two
It should be noted that Rule 40D-2.301(1)(j), F.A.C., and the Basis of Review provision cited
above have been ruled invalid as written by an Administrative Law Judge. See Division of
Administrative Hearings Case No. 94-5742RP (Final Order dated March 26,1997) at paragraphs
908-920 and 1475-1488. However, based on the Judge's rationale and the guidance he gave in
his Final Order, the District believes it is possible to rewrite the rule in such a manner that the
policy is preserved.
Basic to developing a Local Sources First policy is the difficulty in defining what is meant by
Local Source. The District has attempted to do this by defing it a a source that is originated by
a water supply authority fom within its jurisdictional rm Also, as a general principle, sources
developed by cities, counties or private utilities, which are not members of a water supply
authority, from within the boundaries of another county, would not be considered local. Please
note that these definitions are not expressly contained in the SWFWMD's Rules and the
SWFWMD has never denied a water use permit application solely because the source was not
considered local.
I hope this is responsive and helpful to your and Representative Lauret's interest toward this
important issue. Please contact us ifwe can provide further information.
Sin r

E. D. "Sonny" Vergara
Executive Director

cc: Rep. Rick Minton, Vice Chair
Rep. Lee Cootanti o Chair, Governmntal Resposibility Council
SWFWMD Governing Board Members


Chapter 187. State Comprehesive Plan

187.201(8) Water Resources.-
(a) Goal.- Florida shall assure the availability of an adequate supply of water for all
competing uses deemed reasonable and beneficial and shall maintain the functions of natural
systems and the overall present level of sa ce and ground water quality. Florida shall improve
and restore the quality of water not presently metin water quality standards.
(b) Policies.-
3. Encourage the development of local and regional water supplies within
water management districts instead of trnsporting surface water across district boundaries.
5. Ensure thatne~i rdevelo is compatible with listing local and
regional water supplies.
11. Promote water conservation as an integral part of water management
programs as well as the use and reuse of water of the lowest acceptable quality for the purposes

373.0395, Groundwater basin resource availability inventory.-
(Last sentence) It is the intent of the Legislature that future growth and
development planning reflect the limitations of the available groundwater or other available water

373.196, Legislative findings.-
(1) It is the finding of the Legislature that cooperative efforts between
municipalities, counties, water management districts, and the Department of Environmental
Protection are mandatory in order to meet the water needs of rapidly urbanizing areas in a manner
which will supply adequate and dependable supplies of water whee needed without resulting in
adverse effects upon the areas from whence such water is withdrawn Such efbrts should utilize
all practical means of obtaining water, including, but not limited to, withdrawals of surface water
and groundwater, recycling of waste water, and desalination, and will necessitate not only
cooperation but also well-coordinated activities.

373.1961, Water production.-
(1) In the performance of and in conjunction with, its other powers and
duties, the governing board of a water management district existing pursuant to this chapter
(e) Shall not deprive, directly or indirectly, any county wherein
water is withdrawn of the prior right to the reasonable and beneficial use of water which is
required to supply adequately the reasonable and beneficial needs of the county or any of the
inhabitants or property owners therein.


373.223, Conditions for a permit.-
(1) To obtain a permit pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, the applicant
must establish that the proposed use of water
(a) Is a reasonable-beneficial use as defined in s. 373.019(4);
(b) Will not interfere with any presently existing legal use of water, and
(c) Is consistent with the public interest.
(2) The governing board or department may authorize a holder of a use permit to
transport and use ground or surface water beyond overlying land, across county boundaries, or
outside the watershed from which it is taken if the governing board or department determines that
such transport and use is consistent with the public interest, and no local goVernment shall adopt
or enforce any law, ordinance, rule, regulation, or order to the contrary.


Chapter 6240, F.A.C, Water Rsrce Implementation Rule
62-40.310, General Policies
(1) Water Supply
(f) Enourage the development of local and regional surface and ground
water supplies within districts rather than transfer water across district boundaries.
(g) Encourage demand management and the development of alternative
water supplies, including water conservation, ruse ofreclaimedwater, desalination, stormwater
and industrial wastewater reuse, recharge, and aquifer storage and recovery.

Chapter 40D-2, F.A.C., Cosumptive Use of Water
40D-2.301, FAC., Conditions for Issuance of Permits
(1) In order to obtain a Water Use Permit, an Applicant must demonstrate that the
water use is reasonable and beneficial, is in the pubic interest, and will not inteee with any
existing legal use of water, by providing reasonable assurances, on both an individual and
cumulative basis, that the water use:
(j) Will utilize local water resources to the greatest extent practicable;

Basis of Reviw for Water Use Permit Applatios incorporatedd into 40D-2 by rerence)
4.9 Developmet of the Local Resource
The local water resource shall be utilized to the maximum extent possible prior to the
consideration of remote alternate sources. Applicants for water sources remote from the local
area ofuse shall demonstrate that water sources near the demand source a not feasible. Items
to be addressed in assessing this feasibility include but are not limited to:
1. Impacts to the water resources and associated environmental resources of the
local versus remote area of withdrawal;

2. Economic factors, such as distribution and maintenance costs, land purchasing,
condemnation, and development costs, and other costs; and
3. Use of the lowest quality of water available to fufill all or a portion of the


Chapter 2: Water Supply
Water Supply Strategy 21: Promote optimization of local sources before consideration
of long-distance transport of water.
Selected Action Steps
1. Require that local sources, demand management measures, and alternative
sources be developed to the greatest extent practicable, considering te environmental economic,
and technical feasibility of such alternatives before considering long distance transport.
2. Encourage, assist in, and where appropriate, require the development and
efficient use of alternative sources of water, including reuse of reclaimed water, reywater use;
desalination; retention, storage, and beneficial use of stormwater and other appropriate
alternative sources to ensure water availability, reduce the demand for conventional sources, and
to maximize and maintain existing sources.
3. Ensure that proposals for transfer of water are fuly assessed pursuant to
provisions of s. 373.2295, F.S., and s;.62-40.422, FA.C. "



It is the policy of the District to:

5. Require that local sources, demand management measures, and alternative sources be
developed to the greattet t practicable, considering the virommena, economic and
technical feasibility of such alternatives, before development of sources outside a utility's local
service area.



Local Sources First Language


Modify Section 373.223, Florida Statutes, as follows:

(1) To obtain a permit pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, the applicant
must establish that the proposed use of water:

(a) Is a reasonable-beneficial use as defined in s. 373.019(4);

(b) Will not interfere with any presently existing legal use of water; and

(c) Is consistent with the public interest.

(2) The governing board or the department may authorize the holder of a use
permit to transport and use ground or surface water beyond overlying land, across
county boundaries, or outside the watershed from which it is taken if the covering
board or department determines that such transport and use is consistent with the
public interest, and no local government shall adopt or enforce any law, ordinance,
rule, regulation, or order to the contrary. Notwithtanding any polices contained
in part I of this c)haotr.t4when evaluating whether a peantil irtrd~trict or intra-
district transport af ground or surfa.e waftr is consistatit with the public interest.
the goveming board or the department shall consider

(a\ the rnmimitv of the oronosed source of water to the area in which it

is to be used or allied, and

LW other economically and technically feasible alternatives to the source
being proposed including but not limited to desalination. reuse. stormwater.
and aquifer storage and recovery.

14 See Recommendation #39 on page 26 of this document


75.;:C; rLS niJN^ -;T3W~ EQ' =>k:j3-53'7-3975 =3GE

Executive Offices
\t11 West Main Street, Ma~snic Building, Third Floor
Inverness, Florida 34460
----- (86) 437.9810 AX (382) 387.9803
July 8, 1997

Joyce Pugh, Legislative Research Director
Committee on Water & Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1300

RE1 Local Sources First

Dear Ms. Pugh:

The Citrus Councy Board of County Commissioners (B3ard) are
in receipt of correspondence from Representative John
Laurent, Chairman, Committeo on water & Resource Management,
dated June 18, 1997 with regard to issues relating to "Local
Sources Pirst". The Local Sources First issue was discussed
by the Board at their regular meeting of June 24, 1997 and
was approved via Resolution on July 8, 1997, a copy of which
is attached hereto for your information. Please consider the
approved Resolution as the Board's recommendation on how to
best define "Local sources First'*, as well as the Board's
rationale on which their definition is based.

Please be advised that the Board considers the water policy
isAues relating to "Local Sources First" extremely important.
AddiLionally, -the roard reqi sts that a public workshop be
scheduled locally in order to discuss these important water
policy issues. A reply from the Water and Resource
Management Camittee regarding a mutually convenient date
would be greatly appreciated.






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3. The Clerk ro the Boaul is hjoeby dltt:eed to furnish certified copies of this
Resolution to Ounle Webuter, Speakr of thn Flixkl: House of Reprmuwtativwe. Iw
Honorable Lawton Chies. Governor, and Buddy MacKay Lieutonant Governor; its
Loqisltive Dolegation composed of Sonator Chadrs U. Williams Sonaor Anna Cowin
and Ropresontative Nancy Arqgnano; :te Water & Resour Management Councd
composed of: Annie Betancoun. David 1. Ritnor, Jana o Boyd, John Laurent, Carl U.
I itUtalmd, Sharn M~c:hdn Minton, R. Z. Saey. Robert B. Sindler. and Jamey


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ASSOCIATION OP. Bo 549/ Tallahme, Florida 32302
3 COUNTIES PI..u 90e/224-314 FAX: 904/222.8M39

July 2, 1997

The Hoorable John Lament
Committee on Watr and Resource Management
214 Homus Offc Building
Tallaass, Floaida 32399-1300

Re: Defnition of Local Sources First'

Der Chairman Laurent:

On behalf of Floida's 67 counties, I want to thank you for s king the input of County
Commiss es on such an important issue as defining "Lcal Sources PinLt. The FAC is very
inersted in coaouibuting a the o t pmet of our stay's wer police. However, timing
cmains wl prohibit the FAC from responding to your survey byby the recommended de of
July 7.

In liht of this fact, the FAC has notified its members of your inquiry (ee attachment) and
encouraged counties to respond on an individual basis. In addition, the PAC would
respectfiuy equest an ension for the Ansscian to respond until such time tha we can
review couty spouses and deveop an official position.

Your understanding is greatly appreciated. If you have any questions, please call me at this
office or Gay hre at (352) 637-10 or Steve Slbert at (13) 464-3377.


Govrmensal Unlon


c Commnriusimer Gary Bautel, Citrus County
Commissioner SteWve Selbert, Pwellas County
Ms. Joym Pugh, C. nite on water ad Rsurce Manageme

l'1WAN ow.4 cCDaB IOia | \ar \I

2 July, 1997

8725 Quail Run Drive
Wesley Chapel, Florida 33544 "

Hon. John Laurent, Chair
Committee on Water and Resource Management
Florida House of Representatives
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Dear Representative Laurent;

Thanks for the opportunity to provide input towards a definition of "local sources
first," and please be assured that your diligence on water issues is much appreciated
across the State.

"Local sources fira Is the total Integrated development of any
governmental body water resources, no mater what the water quality. This
would require local governments to use everything at hand-demand management
measures (conservation), storm water run-off, reuse, treated effluent ground water
sources, and brackish oralt watr desalination either through Reverse Osmosis or by
other means.

While some communities object to being forced to use sources other than
groundwater for potable supply, technology has made alternatives viable. These
alternatives produce water of much higher quality than groundwater, whose quality
deteriorates mas mini of the aquier continues. With Florida's burgeoning population,
further depletion of the aqufers invites ecological disaster-soil subsidence, karst
collapse, sinkhole formation, private property damage, loss of swamp nd forests, etc..
There simply isn't enough water beneath us to provide for the ever-increasing demands
of public supply while ensuring sustainabity of the resource and environment. As
ground water becomes more scarce, battles such as the one which has engulfed the
Tamp Bay area wil escalate. With the depletion of the resource, and the corresponding
reductions in water quality, the same technology, for example, reverse osmoss, will have
to be introduced to ean ground water to potable water quality standards. These same
technologies ar applicable to the other sources (storm water run-off, reuse, treated
effluent, brackish and salt water, quantities of which exist in every locality).

Coastal metropolitan areas have at hard.the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of
Mexico, with unimaed quarntiteof environnt all ly and sustainable resources.
This contrasts with the situation inland from the coast where such options ar not open.
Agriculture is a vital component of Florida's economy. People must have food. Both
agriculture and industry depend on, and use, water In situ.' It is imperative that we
sustain inland water from unnecessary encroachments by coastal communities. As

I _

Laurent, page 2

ground water is withdrawn, lakes and wetlands disappear, reducing convectional rainfall.
In the Tampa Bay region, pumping already mines the aquifer, far outstripping the
recharge by rainfall. The total dependence on rainfall has to be broken, otherwise the
demands of coastal metropolitan communities can be met only by destruction of the

Water must be supplied locally, common sense and good public policy demand it.
Without a "local sources first" policy, there will never be enough pressure on local
governments to stop their looking afeld to solve their water problems Such forays
outside their locales merely transfer the problem to somewhere else. The "local sources
first' policy will also result in optimization of the water resources by fostering development
of sources of supply near to the places of use.

Thanks again for the opportunity to participate in this effort.

With kind regards.

Sincerely yours,


JUL 07 199Iggf m Ow
Jon R Wus.. AmyMMs Nam aIOkreea
T nme Ma POST OFFICE BOX 1429 PALA -A FLORIDA 32178-1429
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July 3, 1997

The Honorable John Laurent, Chair
Committee on Water and Resource Management
Florida House of Representatives
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Re: Discussion of "Local Sources First" Concept

Dear Chairman Laurent:

Thank you for your June 18, 1997, letter to Henry Dean requesting input on the definition
of "Local Sources First." Mr. Dean has asked that I respond on his behalf I am pleased
to offer a definition of what this concept means to us at the St. Johns River Water
Management District (SJRWMD).

Let me start by expressing one definition of"Local Sources First" which I have most often
heard expressed by the most ardent supporters of the concept. This definition could be
summarized as follows:

the development of water supply sources within the political jurisdiction or
water service are of a pubic water supplier first, without particular attention
to cost, with importation ofwater fom sources remote to(or outside of) the
polical jurisdiction or service are being practiced only when fWuther water
supply development within the polidcal jurisdicton or service area would result
in unacceptable water resource impacts.

Under this definition, water suppliers would be forced to develop water supplies from
within their respective service area or political jurisdiction regardless of the cost or
economic feasibility, provided that unacceptable water resource impacts do not occur.
While this concept serves to protect the water resource, it does not necessarily allow for
the optimal use of available sources to promote reasonable-beneficial uses as envisioned
and directed by Chapter 373 F.S.

One of the difficulties in implementing any "local source first" concept is the difficulty of
identifying local and remote (not local) sources. The concept may make most sense in
those cases where water supply sources being considered are distinct and definable, such
as a particular river or lake. However, for most of us, the primary source of water supply

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NaWw ,e In mNN O.m. PuIMeT mm .I amae
KINhy Chny GrhMin A GrOen Jms H. WMw. POalb T. Hwdwn Reid Hughes
McNKoMus Vmeeon oA Webob CAYMona mH

The Honorable John Laurent
July 3, 1997
Page 2

is the ground water aquifer, which crosses many jurisdictional and political boundaries. In
the great majority of cases there seems to be little support, based on hydrologic principles,
for the artificial differentiation of "local" and "remote" sources. Rather, it is best
conceptualized as a "shared" source, in which the impacts of all uses may cumulatively
impact many other users to varying degrees. I believe it was a recognition of this fact that
led to the basic framework for Florida water law in Chapter 373 F.S., that clearly
establishes that the water resources of the state belong to all the citizens of the state for
the public benefit, rather than particular local governments or property owners. The
basic premise of the water supply planning effort, as directed by the 1997 Water Supply
Bill, is that water management districts must consider all reasonable-beneficial uses, and
develop a plan that is economically, technically, and environmentally feasible for all water
users. This is the goal that we have heartily embraced. In our view, the "local source
first" definition as stated above would unnecessarily constrain this planning effort and
could in some cases, result in a plan that is less than optimal when considering all water
users in the planning region.

If the "local sources first" concept is to be implemented, I would support the following
definition that has been discussed among the water resource management profession:

the development of water supply sources within the political jurinsdiu o or
water service area of a public water supplier, with importion of water from
sources remote to te politicaljurisdiction or service area being practiced only
when both of the following conditions aist:
further water supply development within the political jurisdiction or service
area would result in unacceptable water resource impacts or would not be
economically feasible and
the remote water supply source can be develop 1) without interferin
with meeting water supply demands exisdiy and proceed during the water
supplyplanning horion for that remote area, 2) without sing
unacceptable water resource impacts, and 3) recognIisng the economic
impact on both the supply and use area

This definition makes it clear that the objective of water supply development is to provide
economically feasible water for all the citizens and users of the region, while protecting the
long term susainability of the water resource and water related environmental resources.
This concept is very consistent with SJRWMD's water supply planning efforts and the
public interest test within our consumptive use permitting rules. When implementing this
definition, however, the difficulties could become two fold. The first, and in most cases
the easiest, is determining acceptable/unacceptable water resource impacts. The second,
and more difficult, is determining what constitutes acceptable/unacceptable economic
impacts and feasibility. As you know, the economic conditions and water supply costs
vary widely from one region to another. The relative cost of water can be described as
cheap or expensive depending on an individual's point of view. For example, is raising the

The Honorable John Laurent
July 3, 1997
Page 3

cost of water in the Tampa Bay Area from $.50/1000 gallons to S td $2/1000 gallons to
stay "local" through desalinization or reuse too expensive? What role should communities
outside of the Bay Area have in participating in this economic determination ifthe
alternative is to develop a water supply in their area? Hov do the water management
districts take the economic feasibility question into consideration when the cost of water
varies around the state from S5/1000 gallons in the Keys to S.30/1000'gallons in many
rural communities? As far as I can tl the cost of water in the Keys has not slowed that
area's development.

As a water manager, I welcome these challenges. I also believe that the water
management districts are extremely capable now of analyzing and providing for acceptable
water resource conditions. However, I believe the much greater debate will practically
occur around economic impacts t both th- upplying and user areas. I suggest that
tackling this issue would be of great importance to the future of water supply development
in the state.

I appreciate your effort to gather input from all involved in this important issue. Please
cal ifwe can provid~z e ftheinfo rmatio ito assist you.


o R. Wehle, P.O.
distant Executive Director

cc: Henry Dean
Governing Board Members, SJRWMD
Sam Poole, SFWMD
ED. Vergara, SWFWMD
Jerry Scarborough, SRWMD
Doug Barr, NWFWMD
Viinira Wetherel, FDEP

-------I- -

P.O. BOX 1270. OCALA FLORIDA 34478-1270
(352) 629-8401
Fax (352) 629-8391 Suncom 654-8401

July 3, 1997 0JU '

JUL a 097

Honorable John Laurent
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Representative Laurent:

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the issue of "Local Sources First". The issue is
important to our community as we plan for our future. In fact, the Marion County Commission
and the Ocala City Council both adopted resolutions on the issue during the 1996 legislative
session which they presented to our legislative deegatio

The phrase 'Local Sources First' no longer accurately reSects the City of Ocala's position. This
phrase has acquired an emotional connotation in eseace, implying that 'the haves should not be
required to give to the have nots' which has created more divisiveness amongst the special
interests groups involved, in particular between rural and urban interests. A more accurate phrase
for policy considerations might be 'equitable location of resources' which would reject the
reality that water is a state resource to be managed and sustained on a regional level and not a
local resource to be hooded by any givpoenit= nity. Policies e ring the equable allocation
of resources should not only tae into coideration current economic, environmental and social
conditions, but tfture conditions as wel These policies should promte the uatainability of
Florida's water resource, ensuring continued economic developme while protecting our
environment and maintaining our quality of life in the years to come.

It is imprude for the Stte o Florida to sanctin the transf of water fom one region to
another to correct a deiciency which has occurred bease of inaduate growth manw ient
and planning. The use of water tranf only postpoes the inevitable that all feh water
supplies wil become stressed as increased population and demands ofindustry inthe State
gradually deplete listing resources even in areas with apparent abundant supplies. Tasfr
should lm ih r be lowed rt drM out mri to n o .

SWater transfers will eventually turn areas with significant water resources into the same shortage
conditions faced by present water poor regions. There are significant ecological, environmental
and economic impacts which are compounded through withdrawals fom other areas for those
regions currently having supply problems:

~L---l ~--L---------

As supplies are slowly depleted from one area, the ecosystems supported by those waters
begin to deteriorate and will eventually become non-supportiv of those habitats. As the
adjacent ecosystems once supported by these waters become nonfnctional, other
ecosystems relying on this base system, such as rivers, estuaies, bays and other natural
systems lose their ability to maintain their habitats and ecosystems. This process repeats
itself in other reliant adjacent ecosystems all the way to the coastal area. What this means,
environmentally, is that wildlife habitats, breeding grounds, etc. are lost forever.

Industries once derived from those habitats, such as fisheries, agriculture and even other ancillary
businesses associated with these industries, become lost. As the interface between fresh and salt
water zones gradually encroaches closer and closer up-stream into rivers estuaries, bays and
ultimately las related fisherieswill fail and once productive farmland will become unusable due
to underlying salt or brackish water intrusion into the area Whole economies based 6to these
habitats and ecosystems will be lost

The irony is that coastal areas with the ability to derive potable water from the ocean or gulf will
ultimately be the water suppliers of the future as even abundant water supply areas such as Ocala
and Marion County (with one of the highest growth rates in the State) reach the limit of their
natural system's ability to sustain potable water.

A local sources first policy or a policy supporting the equitable allocation ofresources should
require utilization of all potential water sources for potable water supply rather thn relying on
transport ofwater supplies fom other re or regions. In that ttment technologies are
constantly improving and changing, local sources should include but not be limited to the
Ground water resources
Surface water sources
Brackish water resources
Wastewater recovery (see latt article from Water Environment Technology Journal)
Aquifer Storage Retrieval of Rluse
Saltwater resources

Full utilization of reuse should be imperati to protect and supplement listing water resources
and can be implemented for irrpgtieq aquie recharge or storage as wel as developing
protection zooe to prevent bracksh or saltwater intruson into existing fresh water sources.

All areas are dependent on water to support continued growth in both population and economics.
Without adequate water supplies no entity can contimn to be viable and thrive Wholesale
transfer of water from one region to anoer only postpones the inevitable Wth the growth and
demands on our resources that Florida is epriing, water i a finite resource. Policies
supporng the susta bty of our water resources are imperative to the maintenance of our
quality oflife in Florida.

Policies such as the establishment of Minimum Flows and Levels are critical to planning for
Florida's growth and ensuring the equitable distribution of water. Once minimum flows and levels

I '

are set, the viability and life expectancy of water resources are known quantities from which to
properly plan and manage our growth for the future. Without minimum flows and les, we are
deluding ourselves with a quick fix to the long term problem which will lead to the ultimate failure
of our precious water resources, the ecosystems they support, the economies based upon them
and the deterioration of our quality of life.

In summary, 'Local Sources First' is synonymous with ensuring the equitable allocation of
resources both for today and tomorrow for all Floridians. Policies which promote the
sustainabiity of our water resources and equitable allocation of those resources include
minimizing transfer of water from region to region, promoting the utilization of all potential water
resources for potable water supply and establishing ininam flows and levels:

Thank you once again for the opportunity to comment on the 'Local Sources First' issue. I look
forward to working with you to reach a consensus agreement on the 'Local Sources First" issue
which wil ensure quality water supply for all Floridians.


Oel Wingo, Ph.D.
Assistant City Manager

c: Scotty Andrews, City Manager
City of Ocal City Council
Marion County Legislative Delegation

JUL o, N-~i1


July 2 1997

Ms. Joyce Pugh
Legislative Research Director
Committee on Water and Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300
RE: "Local Sources First' Concept

Dear Joyce:

This letter is in response to a letter from Representative John Laurent, dated June 18, 1997,
requesting my input regarding the above-referenced subject.

The concept of "local sources first' refers to a component of water use regulation that restricts the
set of water sources for any given water use to available local sources. Water from a non-local
source may be withdrawn only if there are no available local sources.

The rationale for a "local sources first policy can be eSpained based on several parameters.
Water use regulatory policy should provide a fair and efficient system for water use allocation that
seeks to maximize the societal benefits of water use. including resource and economic
sustainability. Water that is transported and used outside of the watershed or basin of its source
has a negative effect on the sustainability of the water resources and natural systems in its
source's watershed or basin. The result is a net loss of water in the system that is inconsistent with a
water resource and natural system sustalinablty objective. In addition, the economic value of the
lost water constitutes lost economic value to economies within the source's watershed or basin.
This effect is inconsistent with an economic sustanability objective (at least in terms of local

A policy that would allow the importation of water from outside a watershed or basin also works at
cross purposes to a sustainabilty objective in that it fails to encourage either efficient water use or
the development of sustainable economic activity within a recipient watershed or basin.
Additionally, the economic value of the net gain of water constitutes an economic enrichment of
economies within the recipient watershed or basin. This effect is also inconsistent with an
economic sustainabltty objective (at least in terms of local economies).
It is important to recognize the existence of local economies and consider effects upon them for
other reasons. The effect of a "local sources flrst policy on sustainability objectives from the
standpoint of land use and growth management policies must also be considered. Local
governments and other units of growth management planning are required to make land use
decisions and to plan for and manage growth based upon existent condiltons and resources
within the boundaries of the planning unit. The avalabty of water is one of the most important
factors influencing growth and many kinds of development.

PaxF (902) 2244056 Bpr(90 )31-5S409 B-li mraaoiia bom.o

July 7 1997
Page Two

If water is withdrawn from one planning unit for use in another, that water is no longer available for
land use and growth management planning purposes in the donor planning unit and directly
reduces the amount of water available to meet the needs of any future growth there. Conversely,
the recipient planning unit is able to make use of resources withdrawn from another planning unit to
satisfy present and future growth needs. With respect to water, the donor planning unit is. in effect,
subsidiing the growth of the recipient planning unit. Such a policy would be inconsistent with a
sustainability objective in a land use and growth management context for both donor and
recipient planning units.

Whether local sources are viewed in a hydrologic or a planning unit context, a domino effect
could result without a local sources first" policy. A donor area could run out of available water
and become a recipient of water supplies from yet another donor area. In such circumstances,
an area would be resorting to the importation of water where local supplies would be available but
for their export to another area. Over time, this scenario might be replicated, making areas both
donors and recipients of water, with attendant infrastructure costs and inevitable inefficiencies of
water use.

Finally, without a "local sources first policy, water could be transported for use over greater
distances and hydrologic barriers. The infrastructure neceary to accompieh such water
transport will, in many instances, cause adverse environmental impacts and have negative land
use andgrowth management planning iplicatons. In addilon. pipenes and other transport
costs are likely to be much higher for non-local than for local water sources.

The Audubon Society supports the pa-age of egilation that strenghens and clarfies a policy of
"local sources nt"r in lorda water law. Such legislation should resolve ues raised by the
definition offered at the beginning of this letter among them the eanin of the word local
and 'available". Boththe concept of hydroogic boundaries (waershed and bain) and that of
planning unit jurisdictions must be included in determining areas within which a use wil be
considered local'. The meaning of availablee must take into consideaton conservation
measures to reduce water quantities sought and the development of sources of alternative water
supplies such as reuse and desealatlon. Any use of water from a non-local source should occur
only if the non-local source is determined to be more feasible than al available local sources.
The feasibility determination must result from a cost comparison that incorporates environmental
and all other hidden costs.

Thank you for the opportunity to prodeput to the Cor tee on this mpotant Iue. The
Audubon Socety oos forward to wing wth the gilature on this mportat ue.


Gove et Relaltons Dir

cc: Estus Whitfield Governor's Office
Pan McVety, DEP
Mike Sayton, SFWMD
John Wehle, SJRWMD
David Fsk SRWMD
Ed Helvenson SWFWMD

JUL 0 8 1997

Post Offce Box 69 ei.i Florida 39619
(904)935-2960 July 7, 1997

Joyce Pugh, Legislative. Researh Director
Committee on Water and Resource MatIgement
214 House Office Building
Tallahasseae FL 32399-1300

Dear s. Push:

In rspone to your Wler of Jme 23. 1997 Isubmit the following definiion of "Local Sources First":

LOCAL SOURCES FIRST me tha surface water and groundwater with one watershed
(including any eseay downsam) should rmuin wiidn ta watershed so a to maintain the
historical water cycle, water flows, and water levels fr the are Te hunmn uses within venous
watershlds differ, but one type or intensity of ue does not v priorityver others. The natural
features of each area historically 4ependant upon the fresh water found the. The shld be
no trsfer of freshwater fo one watershed to mnothr unless there is senitificaly dm nable
reional and/or Statewide bmeefa t 11T ch ams f boh source and r er wae heads shall
approve, by Pafirendum. such nafer ar aOn alysis of the isue imvoed hsi bern made md
prmageatd by bth parties ad such Water Mm magint ad Deparment of rnironmseal
Protection officials as e involved by State policy and regulation.

This defnitiou ipls at water wihin a wamtrashd ld used, m-sed, ad otherwise canaoumly re-
cycled. Watr oxnmrvai on eaauRmuw t be mprdoy m nd m casooa y viewed to inae uIs aailbe waer
o projected lre use. Conervaion mares include, f0lr enupl
Stypes of iigaui systes
types of tailets and showereads equiad by buidin offaals, sold, madinsd
progMwa rof l dak d aiaand aepairina twicheidm water gib nna ~an
requirmmnt ofasium anle sat coloyam a dip ad MIWWO = ofd Mdan systems
progas s quin p tkpi ad pubbo buildmi, l matel, endamin mad mulM-w
esidet ial buadhing

Wydrologic chart (dipiying piWmmnic mnut f) ae used to detamin watesheds, not political
boundaries. A concuency requirm t for fresh water should be made p of arllgowth mauamnt
decisions at the local level.

Thlk you for the oppuamity to subnait this draft defiitio I beli eve rationale for it is
fairly obvious but we will be hppyto elaborate if you would like. Pee keep me posted n all
Commiutee plas and developmies.


Svenn T.indrold

People dedicated to seeing the Suwannee River and tributaries connue In their natural pristine state

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JUL 0 3 IW

July 7, 1997

The Honorable John Laurent
Florida House of Representatives
Committee on Water and Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1300

Dear Representative Laurent

This is in response to your request dated June 18, 1997, asking our input
regarding a definition of "Local Sources." We feel there are two key
elements to any definition of "Local Sources."

First, there should be a relationship between the source and the use. Water
resources and water supplies should be developed within the general area
where use or service is provided whenever ecologically, economically and
technically feasible. For example, the area served by a public water utility
should encompass the source of the supply and the utility should make
water supplies available to all potential uses within the area.

Second, and in our opinion more important, if we are going to manage
water resources to avoid the problems we have seen in other areas of the
state and country, the source itself should be used to define what a local
source is. In short, "Local Sources" should be defined in terms of the river
basin or Sgoundwater basin (as appropriate) and transfers outside these
hydrologic boundaries should only be considered as a measure of last
resort, not just economic expediency.

We look forward to working with you and your committee as. you explore
the "Local Sources" concept and draft a policy fo Florida's future. Please
call on me at your convenience if I can be of further assistance.

David W. Fi P.G.
Assistant Executive Director

cc: Joyce Pugh

922 CR4A UVE OAK. PLORIA3M TELEPHONE 90t-o100l m00I2260 FAX 9WM43-10

South Florida Water Management District
3301 Gun Club Road, West Palm Beach, Florida 33406 (561) 686-8800 FL WATS 1-800-432-2045 &
TDD (561) 697-2574 .,
GOV 04-14 RF # 97607

July 3, 1997 UA

Joyce Pugh, Legislative Research Director
Committee on Water and Resource Management
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1300

Dear Ms. Pugh:

This letter is in response to your request June 18, 1997 to provide the Water and Resource
Management Committee with a definition discussion of"Local Sources First."

Simply put, "local sources first" means developing the water resource in an area near the intended
end use. Having stated this, an examination of the concept reveals ho* a simple definition belies
the complexity of the issue.

In order to respond to your inquiry we must examine the realities of allocating water, a natural
resource which is, itself, transient in both ime andjogrI hic location. The drafters of TheMode
Wa Code and Chapter 373, Fla Stat, recnizd the nature of thisnatural resource and created a f
water management system which does not recognize political or non-resource based boundaries.
From a water resource management standpoint, we believe that potential water users may look to
any water source to fulfill their reasonable and beneficial needs so long as there is no harm to the
water resource and they will not interfere with existing legal users. This is precisely why water
management districts were established along water resource basin boundaries as opposed to
political or other such boundaries.

The real question revolves around planning and funding. Chapter 373, F Stat, has, since its
inception, directed the State's agencies to undertake water supply planning. The recently adopted
HB 715 provides more detailed direction in this regard, particularly in the area of capital facility
development If the water management districts property address future water supply demands in
their regional water supply plans, debate surrounding the use of "local sources first" should largely
disappear. Through the planing effort, the district will identify areas where supplies are not
anticipated to meet forecased demands Once identified, water supply and water resource
development components will address satisfaction of the demands through a variety of projects.
Auditionally, existing legislation section 373.036(4), Fla. Stat.; enables the districts to "zone"
sources for preferred users In light of the potential presented by bth the projects and existing
statutory provisions, one must question whether it is neessty to impose a requirement upon users
to develop local sources first.

Finally, the South Florida Water Management District has uniq issues associated with local
sources first. The over one thousand miles of Central and Southern Flood Control Project canals
link the water resource for communities stretching from Orlando to Key West. Water is truly a
Gowning Beard:
Frank Williamn, Jr., Chairman Vera M. Carter Richard A. Machek Samuel E. Poole I, Executive Director
Eugene K. Pettis Vice Chairman William E. Graham Michael D. Mimon Michadd Slayon, Deputy Executive Director
MitcheU W. Bergar William Hammond Miriam Singer
Mailing Addreac P.O. Ba 24680, West Palm Beach, FL 33416-4680

transient resource within our District. Due to this extraordinary project, the District, as well as
human and environmental uses would be adversely impacted by a strict local sources first

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this issue. I look forward to participating with the
House Committee on this and other topics in the future.


Mike Slayton
Deputy Executive Director
Executive Office



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September 4, 1997

The Honorable John Laurent, Chairman
Water and Resource Management
Florida House of Representatives
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1300

Dear Representati

As you know, water issues were one of the major policy considerations of the 1997 Legislature.
Thanks to your leadership, important changes were made in state-wide water policy during the
session. Hillsborough County proved to be a major player in the evaluation of water policy
options. Our county remains active in water issues for a number of important reasons. I have
taken time to enumerate these in the following paragraphs.

1. Hillsborough County is both a major donor county, as well as an importer of water. This
latter condition is made necessary due to the presence of two St. Petersburg-owned wellfields and
part of one Pinella County welfield located within the northwestern part of Hillsborough
County. These facilities withdraw substantial amounts of water from within our County
boundaries, and export these for use and eventual discharge outside of our County's boundaries.
Hillsborough County, in turn, must import a portion of its allocated supplies for northwest
Hillsborough from neighboring Pasco County via the West Coast Regional Water Supply

2. Hillsborough County contains many lakes and wetland systems which have been adversely
impacted as a direct result of these large scale withdrawals by other governments. A number of
Hillsborough County citizens living in these impacted areas have experienced reduced property
values, failures of private wells, and loss of recreational use of their lakes. The damage has been
shown to be severe. Our County was a party in a recent lawsuit designed to require reductions
in the permitted whdrawals from several of these wellfields.

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The Honorable John Laurent
September 4, 1997
Page Two

3. Hillsborough County is the third largest agricultural county in the state. Agrici Iture is a major
contributor to the economy of the county, and is the largest user of groundwater in the southern
and eastern portions of the county. The continued ability of our local agricultural interests to
have access to local sources of water is extremely important to us. Recently, the West Coast
Regional Water Supply Authority has popped a project which would tae the permitted
groundwater fom some of our hmnrs and ship some of that water to other counties/cities, in
exchange for surte water to be delivered to the faiers. I have received calls voicing concern
over this proposal, even though it is a voluntary arrangement

4. Hillsborough County is one of the leading industrial counties in the state. A significant
percentage of these industries utilize substantial quantities of water, and we value these industries'
abilities to have access to local sources of water. At least one of our local industries has been
proposed by WCRWSA to be included in the groundwater for surface water exchange described

5. As the most populous county on the west coast of Florida, the public supply systems within
Millsborough County utilize submantial quantities of water. We are proud of the strides our
citizens have made in recent years to lower their use of water, and because of their efforts, we
use less water today for public supply than we did in 1919, even though we have added in excess
of 60,000 new people to the system. Our per capital use has declined to about 107 gallons per
person per day. Despite the es ssful efforts, the fact remains that Hillsborough County
continues to experience a moderate level of growth in the public supply sector, hence we expect
to need additional quantities of water in the future to serve our own citizens.

6. Our county is one of a very few counties to be located in two different Water Use Caution
Areas, so designated by the SWFWMD. These rules hae significant effects on a major
percentage of the County's businesses and citizens.

7. Our county is slated by WCRWSA to be the main supplier of future supplies of water to the
three county region over the next twenty years. Given the impacts we've already experienced,
given the demands for water anticipated to be needed'by our own citizens and businesses, some
of us ae concerned that other parts of oar county may in the future experience impacts similar
to those currently being experienced in the northwest part of the county. Such a scenario would
not be acceptable to us.

Few, if any, local governments span the breadth of water related issues to the extent of
Hillsborough County. Consequently, the fAture of Hillsborough County is dependent upon the
watr resource issues being addressed in a manner which does not penalize our environment,
citizens, or businesses for the benefit of those who are far removed from the impact.

The Honorable John Laurent
September 4, 1997
Page Three

I have attached an issue statement on local sources for your information.

I am confident we will be directing our staff to work with your committee over the next several
months as you wrestle with ths matter. I want to thank you for your Committee's efforts and
urge you contact me or our County staff if there e any pointing this letter you wish to
discuss further. We believe local source definition is a necary part of our efforts to protect
our environment, and the resources of current and future donor counties.


lgic Beggr. Chairman
Bord of County Commissioners

1ems ..
cc; Board of Comty Commissioners
Daniel A. Kleman, County Adinistrator


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Approximately two years ago, the Board of County Commissioners discussed and adopted an
'Eight Point Program" relating to water resource issues in Hiltsborough County. The principles
contained within the "Eight Points" stressed water resource development and management based
upon ecological sustainability, iitremental cost, diversification of sources, emergency back up
capabilities, and aressive demand management practices. We continue to implement this
program trough agresive water conservation, aggressive reclaimed water programs, aggressive
enforcement of water restrictions, rebate programs, educational programs, speakers bureaus, to
name a few.

The issue of local sources is of direct relevance to the County's Eight Point Program.
Speciucally, point number eight discuss the transfer of watr crass political boundaries. We
believe the criteria must be met for such transfer to be in the public interest. First, the transfer
of water must not remalt in environmental impacts to the area of the County from which the water
is being withdraw. We have termed this "ecological sustainability". Second the transfer of
water must be agreeble to both parties involved. In other words, the "donor" county and
importing county must be in agreement as to the wms and condition involved in the transfer.
One party may mot "exploit the resor of other wit mutual consent. The third condition
is that the transfer of water should not negatively impact the ability of the donor county to supply
its own fure demands from within its own political boundaries. To not require this sets up a
"leap far" ceurio where ties move into another county, develop the resource within that
county, and foce that county to tn to its neighbor for water.

As elected local officials we are routinely faced with making decisions that affect our citizens
in the areas of land use and ning. In all such inst#ses, both sides of the issue are our citizens.
We are accoutabe to both. When water is developed in one local area, and transported, used
and discharged in another local jurisdiction, the balancing of interests is skewed No longer does
a local elected board have the ability to address both the benefits of the transfer and the impacts
of the transfer. T elected ofcialfrm the dor locality are left to deal with impacts in terms
of immedalte e uniromn ntal problems p te well failures, property value declines, and future
availbilty of their loal so e their own growth. The resving local government officials
are faced primarily with bnfits derived fom receiving relatively inexpensive water, but are not
forced to deal with the problem amoeid wih the itpats of the withdrawal. It is my opinion
that any local soues legislation mut address this matter and reetify this inequity.

I i[ /l ."H

A. Duda & Sons
Florida Cattlemen's
Florida Citrs Mutual
Florida Citrus
Processors Association
Florida Farn Bureau
Florida Fertilizer and
Agrichenical Association
Florida Forestry Association
Florida Frit &
Vegetable Aaociation
Florida Land Council
Florida Nurserymen
Growers Association
Florida Phosphate Council
Florida Poultry Federation
Florida Pulp &
Paper Association
Florida Strawberry
Growers Association
Gulf Citrus
Growers Association
Indian River
Citrus Leaue
Jack M. Berry, Inc.
Jefferson Surfit, Inc.
Lykes Brothers, Inc.
Peace River Valley
Citrus Growers Association
St. Joe Forest Products
Sugar Canem Growers
Cooperative of Florida
Sunshie State Milk Producers
Turner Foods Corporation
U. S. Sugar Corporation

July 22, 1997

Ms. Joyce Pugh,
Room 214, House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Dear Joyce:

In response to Representative Laurent's June 18 letter
requesting input in defining local sources first", members of the
Florida Agricultural Coaliton listed below met and agreed on the
position stated in this etter. The representatives included
A. Duda& Soms, AMco, mI. Florida Citr Mut al, Florida Farm
Bureau Federation, Florid Forestry Assodation, Florida Fruit
& Vegetable Association, Florida land Couaem, Frida
Nuseryman & Growers Association, FlordaPtoultry Federation,
Florida Pulpmand Paper A *atn-GoveRmenta-tal A&Affirs,
Hilliard Brother of Florida, Sugar Came Growers Cooperative of
Florida and the Sunshine State Milk Prducers.

Agriculture is a critical part ofFlorida's ecoaemy, and an
adequate supply oflean water is criial tothe future of the
agricultural industry. Discussions regarding local sources first"
and the impacts of any f re legislaormelating to this issue will
be far reaching so we recommend thatthe House Water and
Resour es n nnt Committee and the lorida legislature
proceed with caution in this area.

As such, our foremost remma nation is that an interim study
be conducted by the committee. As part ofthe study, public
hearings shouldbe held throughout the State t educate the
public and to receive statewide input on this issue. To date, the
concept oft apml sources iTra has originated and been driven by
the water shortagecriisi just oe triarountregion of the state.
Because o this narrow geographical focus, we believe it is
important that Chairman Laurent's committee pursue a more
statewide perspective on local sources first before undertaking
any legislative initiatives.

Of course, one of the most difficult factors when considering 'local
sources first" is attempting to agree upon a definition of what is
meantbylocal. In our deliberations, the agricultura
representatives began by developing a list of principles to assist
in framing the issue. These principles are based on the
assumption that the current structure of water management is

Western Aricutural Reon

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PHONE 904/ 222-5646

FAX 904/ 222-6179

Ms. Joyce Pugh
July 22, 1997
Page 2

PrEmdiles to be considered be deafnig localsurces ret
Does the proposal protect the resource?
Does the proposed use of water impact existing legal uses?
Is the proposal economically viable?
Is the proposal politically possible?
When considering a proposed use of water, it may be appropriate to consider
"local sources first as a actor however, it should not be the overriding factor
in permitting water usage.
In addition to determining an accept definition of local sources first," we believe
that statewide deliberations on this issue need to consider and differentiate between
traditional sources of water supply and alternative sources of water supply.
Typical ly, we think of ground and surface waters as traditional supply sources But
should reuse and omervation iniM tirofettiai be oniderd traditional as wel
Likewise, we recommend that a detid analysis of alternative sources (reverse
osmoss, desalinatin, aquifer stage and recovery, strange augmentation) be
undertaken. Such analysis should examine the current status of these technologies:
the degree to which they are being implemented throughout the state; impediments -
including technical, regulatory and economic to fther or lare-cale
implementation; and the status of research and development which may hasten or
augment the practicality of these sources.
On a final note, we ask that as the Committee takes up the issue of"local sources
first it bear in mind three important concepts:
local sources f is a trm dously contentious and divisive issue that
can igte parochialism and potential water wars througout this state. It
shouldbe dltwith very carelly.
Ample direction and authority already exist in state statute to guide the
permitting water ue. When allocating water, the water management
district should be taking environmental and ecoomc tors into
onnsieration to smre that both are protected.
Owing to the leadership of Chairman Laurent, the 1997 leglaiture adopted a
water resources bill, ous Bill 715, which addresses the need to develop water
resources and water supply to provide for existing and future water demand.
The water management districts should redirect mne ofdtheir e tig le aion
resources to water resource development. If the mandates of this legislation


Ms. Joyce Pugh
July 22, 1997
Page 3

are properly implemented, the water supply should not be a crisis in this state
and "local sources first" will not drive state water policy.

Thankyou for the opportunity to outline our prminy thogh on this complex
and critical issue. We are very interested in continuing our discussions and hope that
we will be included in future meeting or hearing that the Committee schedules.

Signing on behalf ofthe above listed parties.


Mike Joyner, Chairman
FloridaAgricultural Coalition

oc: Florida Agricultural Coalition


Attomeys at Law
541 Old Magnola Road
Crawfordvlle, Forkda 32327
Fax 850421-2426

July 21,1997

Ms. Joyce Pugh, Legislative Resource Director
Water & Resource Management Committee
214 House Office Building
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1300

Dear Joyce:
Thank you for the opportunity to address the local sources first" issue. The
following remarks are submitted by me on behalf of the Florida Wildlife
Federation and by David Guest and Ansley Samson of Earthjustice Legal Defense
Fund. In addition to those thoughts set out below, we endorse the comments
submitted to you by the Florida Audubon Society.

"Local sources first has become a catch phrase for the tension between
management of a state resource, local government growth decisions, and natural
resource protection. It has sprung from the "water wars" that have already taken
place in the state. Because Florida spends a great deal of human energy on
encouraging and providing for growth, continuing conflict between growth and a
limited yet essential natural resource is nearly inevitable.

More specifically, allowing local governments or private enterprises to use
water sources far from the water users they serve especially for large public or
commercial water supply uses paves the way for long-term conflicts among
different localities because the areas impacted by water removal are far from
those served by the water sources. A primary issue in thee conflicts is the
impact of water use. Substantial water withdrawals often draw down aquifer
levels, dry up temporary and permanent wetlands, and redu lake levels. Such
drawdowndestroy habitat for wetland-dependent species and drinking water
sources for upland species. If groundwater drawdowns occur near human
structures, Florida geology karstic and often highly fractured is such that
structures may be imperiled because of ground instability resulting rom loss of
hydrostatic pressure. Both groundwater and surface water withdrawals may
leave docks stranded far above the waterline and negatively impact recreational
activities and the businesses that depend on them.


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