URGENT: Call or write now to oppose Senate Bill 1464

This Wednesday Senate Bill 1464, companion legislation to Representative Jimmy Patronis’ House Bill 703, will be heard in the Senate Environmental Preservation & Conservation Committee. Conservation groups, local governments and newspaper editorial boards have all expressed opposition to what has been called “the worst bill of the legislative session” by the Gainesville Sun, “toxic” by the Martin County Times, and a “bill (that) would harm Florida” by the Lakeland Ledger.

This legislation poses a direct threat to the health of Florida’s springs, rivers, estuaries, and natural lands by undermining the authority of local governments to make land use decisions, rolling-back springs and wetlands protections, and allowing for long-term consumptive use permits. In some cases consumptive use permits could be granted for up to 50 years, essentially removing this water from the control of the public and its elected and appointed representatives for a half century during a time when we know certain areas of our state will be unable to meet water demands in the near future.

Among the most environmentally damaging aspects of this legislation are provisions which:

  • Preempt local government authority to protect wetlands and springs and regulate stormwater runoff on agricultural lands.
  • Preempt local government authority to require a supermajority vote on comprehensive plans and amendments.
  • Allow 50-year consumptive use permits for dispersed water storage projects.
  •  Allow 30-year consumptive use permits for water projects associated with Developments of Regional Impact.

Just last week the members of the Senate Environmental Preservation & Conservation Committee stood with Florida’s waters and citizens when they unanimously passed the Springs and Aquifer Protection Act. Now we must call on them to do so again, by voting against Senate Bill 1464.

Ryan Smart of The Florida Conservation Coalition urges all Florida residents to please call or write the Senators below, and House sponsor Jimmy Patronis, and let them know that you care for Florida’s environment and oppose this bad bill.

Rep. Jimmy Patronis (850) 717-5006 jimmy.patronis@myfloridahouse.gov
Sen. Charlie Dean (850) 487-5005 dean.charles.web@flsenate.gov
Sen. Wilton Simpson (850) 487-5018 simpson.wilton.web@flsenate.gov
Sen. Joseph Abruzzo (850) 487-5025 abruzzo.joseph.web@flsenate.gov
Sen. Thad Altman (850) 487-5016 altman.thad.web@flsenate.gov
Sen. Dwight Bullard (850) 487-5039 bullard.dwight.web@flsenate.gov
Sen. Andy Gardiner (850) 487-5013 gardiner.andy.web@flsenate.gov
Sen. Denise Grimsley (850) 487-5021 grimsley.denise.web@flsenate.gov
Sen. Jack Latvala (850) 487-5020 latvala.jack.web@flsenate.gov
Sen. Darren Soto (850) 487-5014 soto.darren.web@flsenate.gov

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