Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Public can tell Pat Neal where to go

Public Can Still Weigh in on Perico Island Mangroves

Published Tuesday, June 30, 2015 12:10 am
When it comes to the unique permit Pat Neal requested from SWFMD to allow the developer to destroy high-quality mangroves and replace them with four homes, the message could not be more clear: don't do it. Neal requested a permit similar to the days of the 1960’s and 70’s when there was no environmental regulation. A litany of regulatory agencies have ruled against the proposed project, but it’s not over yet. 

In an ALJ recommended order issued last week, here is what the judge summarized:

“Although not acknowledged by the District, this is an unusual project. It resembles the kind of project that was common in the 1960s and 1970s in Florida, before the enactment of environmental regulatory programs, when high-quality wetlands were destroyed by dredging and filling to create land for residential development. In all the reported DOAH cases involving ERPs and mitigation of wetland impacts, the circumstances have involved impaired wetlands and/or the restoration or permanent protection of other wetlands on the project site. No case could be found where an applicant simply paid for authorization to destroy almost an acre of high-quality wetlands and convert it to uplands."


What can I do? seems to be the most common question I’m asked about these things. Well, take a few minutes and email or write to SWFMD Executive Director Robert Beltran atrobert.beltran@watermatters.org or 2379 Broad Street, Brooksville, FL 34604-6899. You can call him at (352) 796-7211 (ext. 4606). Let him know you want SWFMD to stop permitting projects that destroy wetlands, and to uphold the Recommended Order denying the permit for: App/ID/Permit No:690912/43041746.000 Land Trust # 97-12, also known as Harbor Sound on Perico Island, DOAH Case No. 14-4735.

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