DRAFT LANGUAGE FOR PROPOSED EXECUTIVE ORDER
ON WATER RESOURCES
September 12, 1996
As a general framework for the executive order, with the
exception of the section on water supply development and funding,
the Department of Environmental Protection would be directed to
work with the Water Management Districts to oversee and assist in
the implementation of specified tasks and policies, as outlined
Minimum Flows and Levels
A. Schedules--By October 1, 1996, and annually thereafter, the
submittal to the Department by each District of a priority
list and schedule for the establishment of minimum flows and
levels for surface watercourses, aquifers, and surface
waters within the District. The initial priority list and
the updated priority lists are to be based upon the
importance of the waters to the state or region and the
existence of, or potential for, significant harm as set
forth in section 373.042(1), Florida Statutes.
Consideration is to be given to establishing minimum flows
and levels for waters within designated water resource
caution areas. The Southwest Florida Water Management
District shall include on its initial priority list waters
within the area described in section 373.042(2), Florida
B. Establishment and Implementation
1. Complete the establishment of minimum flows and levels
for surface watercourses, aquifers, and surface waters
on initial District priority lists by the end of fiscal
year 1999, except that establishment of minimum flows
and levels for waters within the area described in
section 373.042(2), Florida Statutes, is to be
completed pursuant to the time requirement in section
373.042(3), Florida Statutes.
2. Base the establishment of minimum flows and levels on
scientific determinations of the sustainability of
water resources, using the best information available.
3. Re-evaluate minimum flows and levels periodically and
revise them when necessary.
4. Implement minimum flows and levels equitably and
fairly, and in a manner to help ensure the
sustainability of water resources.
5. Develop consistent methods for establishing and
implementing minimum flows and levels where needed and
practicable, including consistent processes for peer
review. However, peer review for minimum flows and
levels for waters within the area described in section
373.042(2), Florida Statutes, is to be conducted
pursuant to section 373.042(4), Florida Statutes.
Water Supply Planning
Conduct comprehensive water supply planning which takes into
account land use planning, with broad participation by interested
and affected parties, within the following framework:
A. Identify in each District one or more water supply planning
regions, which singly or together encompass the entire
district, based on surface watersheds, groundwater basins,
and other factors, as appropriate.
B. Determine for each water supply planning region:
1. Water availability.
2. Whether existing and reasonably anticipated sources of
water are adequate to meet the water supply needs of
all existing and projected legal uses and the natural
systems for a 20-year planning horizon.
3. Whether harm to the water resources has occurred or is
reasonably expected to occur.
C. Prepare a regional water supply plan for each region where
sources of water are not adequate or harm to the water
resources has occurred or is reasonably expected to occur,
in order to meet the water supply needs of all existing and
projected legal uses and the natural systems within the
region. A regional water supply plan shall identify
environmentally, technically, and economically feasible
water supply options for the planning region; a proposed
schedule for implementing feasible options; and funding
Water Supply Development and Funding
A. In furtherance of the direction given in section 3, and with
staffing support from the Department of Environmental
Protection and the Department of Community Affairs, the
Office of the Governor will develop and conduct a process to
investigate and formulate recommendations on effective means
for water supply development and funding. This process will
be open to the public and will encourage and provide the
opportunity for the voluntary participation of all
interested private interests, levels of government, and
members of the Legislature.
B. For purposes of this executive order, "water supply
development" means the development and delivery of adequate,
safe, and dependable water supplies, including traditional
and alternative supplies, for all existing and projected
legal uses, in a manner which sustains water resources.
C. Within the context of integrated water supply and land use
planning, this process will address:
1. Mechanisms for water supply development, including the
legal and institutional framework needed for water
supply development and distribution, and the assignment
2. Various funding options for water supply development,
with consideration of new or existing federal, state,
regional, or local government or private sources,
leveraging, joint ventures, grant and loan programs,
water use fees, rate structures, and others.
3. Existing and potential incentives for, and obstacles
to, development of economically, environmentally, and
technically feasible water supplies, with particular
emphasis on water conservation, alternative water
supply development, and the application of innovative
D. This process may include discussion of other related issues,
as appropriate, including relevant recommendations of the
Land Use and Water Planning Task Force and the Water
Management District Review Commission.
E. The Departments of Environmental Protection and Community
Affairs are directed and the Public Service Commission, the
Office of Public Counsel, and the Water Management Districts
are requested to provide assistance as needed to carry out
the provisions of this section.
F. By February 1, 1997, the Office of the Governor shall submit
to the Governor and the Legislature appropriate
recommendations, if any, developed through the process
conducted pursuant to this section. This process may be
continued beyond February, 1997, as deemed appropriate, to
develop further recommendations.
Water Management District Review Commission
A. The Office of the Governor recognizes the extensive and
diligent work of the Water Management District Review
Commission and commends the Commission for its general
support for maintaining Florida Water Law and for
maintaining and improving Florida's system of water
B. Consistent with the Commission's recommendation regarding
Executive approval of District budgets, the Legislature has
enacted and the Office of the Governor will implement
section 373.536(5), Florida Statutes.
C. Many of the Commission's recommendations which address
improving Water Management District operations and programs
can be implemented under existing statutory authority. The
Department of Environmental Protection is directed to work
with the Water Management Districts to develop a report, to
be submitted to the Governor by November 1, 1996, which
lists the recommendations of the Water Management District
Review Commission the Department and Districts are
implementing or will implement under their existing
statutory authority, and how they are implementing or will
implement the listed recommendations. The Department shall
provide copies of the report to the Legislature and the