Title: Letter: Oct 18, 1977 with Attachment: Recommendation of Program, Planning and Development Committee
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/WL00002520/00001
 Material Information
Title: Letter: Oct 18, 1977 with Attachment: Recommendation of Program, Planning and Development Committee
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida
Abstract: Letter: Oct 18, 1977 with Attachment: Recommendation of Program, Planning and Development Committee, To: Estus Whitfield and Curry Hutchinson From: Rich McWilliams
General Note: Box 10, Folder 21 ( SF Water Use Plan, State-Water Element - 1977-78 and 1985 ), Item 21
Funding: Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
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Bibliographic ID: WL00002520
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Holding Location: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

Full Text

1" J


J. William McCartney
Executive Director

Northwest Florida

)r Management District


October 18, 1977

Mr. Estus Whitfield
Mr. Curry Hutchinson
Department of Administration
Division of State Planning
IBM Building
660 Apalachee Parkway
Tallahassee, Florida 32301

Dear Estus and Curry:

Enclosed are the draft recommendations of the
Northwest District's board committee for Programs,
Planning and Development.

The comments represent the committee's reactions
to the general policy issues described in the Water
Element. However, the committee stressed that additional
comments may be forthcoming, particularly when the recom-
mendations are presented to the entire Governing Board
for their consideration.

If I can provide any other information, please
do not hesitate to contact me.

Enc. (1


Rich G. McWilliams, Director
Division of Program Development

cc: Exebutive Directors, Water Management Districts

Torn S. Coldowey
Boari. Member

Lou;s Atkins
Vice Chairman
Howard Odom
Board Member

Alan Wh'dby
Board Member

Benson L. Skeiton, Jr
Sec /Treas.
William H Williams
Board Member

(904) 487-1770

Henry C. Lare

Frdnk Catowell
Board Memoer



i. n -, .

Draft Recommendation of the Program, Planning and Devel-
opment Committee
Northwest Florida Water Management District
S... October 11, 1977
The draft Water Element is a document of considerable merit

and obviously represents great effort on the part of the Division

of State Planning and other cooperating agencies. The comments

and suggestions enumerated below are submitted in an effort to

make the document somewhat more compatible with water management

practices, viewpoints, and particularly water management needs

in northwest Florida. Detailed word-by-word comments-were not

considered appropriate; emphasis was directed to general policy

issues of importance to northwest Florida.

1. The draft element is almost entirely a conservation/protection

oriented document. Although conservation of water resources

is doubtless one of the prime objectives of water management

in all areas of the state, the facilitation ofbeneficial
development of water resources is also of considerable im-

portance. For example, location of water supplies that could

be developed for industrial usage without conflict with other

existing or projected uses is a primary consideration in

determining the future growth of the northwest area of Florida.

Location and development of additional water supplies that

can be safely used to support economic development should

receive emphasis as a policy of the state.

2. (Re policy statement 1, page 6)...Maintenance of groundwater

levelskas near the pre-modification levels as possible is

stress d in a number of policies in the draft element. How-

ever, this policy statement does not describe the healthiest

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or most economical method of managing the groundwater system
in many areas. Northwest Florida's water quantity problems

are related, generally, to short term excesses .and short term

shortages. Removal of water from aquifers during periods of
shortage will make room for water in the system during periods
of excess. It is recognized that this practice could not

apply in some coastal areas with a potential for saltwater
encroachment. However, it can be an effective management
tool in many inland areas. We recommend that this statement
be changed to read..."Maintain groundwater within the safe
range of levels in the aquifer system..."

3. Policies related to maintenance of groundwater levels also

stress use of surface water in preference to groundwater for

many purposes, including municipal, industrial and agricultural

useS, where possible. It is important to recognize that the

cost of treating surface water, compared to groundwater, prior

to use may be prohibitive in many cases.

In further consideration of cost3 the Blement devotes
less than adequate emphasis to the economics of any water
use or management practice. If policies are to be effectively

implemented, they must be economically feasible.

4. Water management functions are being carried out at all
levels of government with many overlapping areas of authority
and responsibility. The Water Element should address, as

a policy issue, the optimum organizational structure for

accomplishing water management functions in Florida.

Of equal importance, state-policy should address the

optimum method of funding for the wide range of water management
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activities in Florida. Funding sources and methods vary

considerably from one level of government to another and,

in fact, within the same governmental level in many cases.

Many funding sources re unsure fromaear o y ar, which

may preclude development of well planned, scheduled,

systematic, long-term management activities.

5. Although some inference is made concerning priority -water

uses in the draft element, state policy should provide

general guidelines to be used in establishing local or

regional water use priorities. However, the policy should

recognize differences in water resources and development

patterns in the various regions of the state and should

provide enough flexibility in establishing water use priorities

to accommodate these-differences.

6. State policy should address delegation of every possible

water Itanagement function to the lowest level of government

at which the information and expertise are available to

reach a soundly reasoned-solution to problems and that can

adequately function to carry out these responsibilities.

The legislative intent in delegation of all feasible portions

of Chapter 373, Florida Statutes would be an important

-)i^ consideration.

7. Although it is understandable that state level policies

cannot possibly address all levels of implementation, we

feel it would be quite appropriate for the policy state-

ments to provide some understanding of how and by whom they

would be carried out.

I '

8. (Re policy statement 1, page 8)...Raising surface water levels

may involve "taking". Many modifications to surface water

courses have been in existence for many years. Changes which

would approximate the "original" hydroperiod may inundate

lands for which the landowner may justifiably demand compen-

sation. A second consideration must be given to areas such

as the conservation areas in south Florida where more water is

supplied to these areas than they would receive naturally.

This has been determined to increase the biological productivity

of the area. This policy statement could better include a

statement that, in all surface waters, levels should be main-

tained which are most advantageous to the area concerned.
9. (Re policy statement 6, page 15)...Water as a physical limiting

factor to growth is a questionable statement. Perhaps it

would be better to develop a policy which would provide for

information related to the available sources of water from

which individuals or industry could predict future costs of

water, water can be supplied to any area of- lorida in any

quantity or quality if the user is willing to pay the cost.

In other words, the overriding factor is cost.

10. Water-related mapping techniques, terminology, boundaries,

symbols, etc. are as varied as the agencies that use them.

As a prime example, there are at least three existing different

systems for delineation and cataloging of drainage basins

in the saarte. The existing discrepancies hamper the com-
Spatibility -of-technical-, information compiled- by various

agencies. The need for solution of these problems should

be indicated in the Element, possibly by inclusion in

objective (k), page 3.

11. The dependence of estuaries on fresh surface water supplies

(example: policy statement 2, page 9) is indicated in the

Element. An appropriate addition to the policy statement,

or its explanatory paragraph, would be an indication that

the actual volumes of water needed by estuaries are not

known and acquisition of this information should be of high

priority to the state.

12. Although the need for state-level water policies is certainly

apparent, the effect of simultaneous planning on local,

regional, state and federal levels will likely result in

conflicts that will be difficult to resolve. The alternative

of delaying state-level policy planning until local and

regional plans are complete should receive serious consideration.

13. The "beneficiary pays" concept (re page 3, objective m) is

of significant concern to all involved in water management.

It seems doubtful that all beneficiaries could be defined

or could effort to pay full costs for many water management

activities. We understand that this objective is currently

being revised and would like to express strong interest in

the outcome of that effort.

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