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Monday, 08 August 2016 10:07

Update: 10-yr Lagoon plan passes 5-0

Written by  Compiled by Team SCPA

UPDATE August 8, 2016 at 9:30pm
Dying Indian River Lagoon, cont'd.

Brevard County Commissioners Consideration of 'Save Our Lagoon Project Plan'
Tuesday, August 8, 2016

SUMMARY

Save Our Lagoon Project Plan was presented by Virginia Barker, Director, Brevard County Natural Resources, assisted by Al Vazquez, Managing Partner,Clearwaters LLC, Dr. John Windsor, Professor Emeritus F.I.T., and Marcey Frick(?). Mr. Vazquez said the $302 million budget over ten years provides for 'bare bones' improvements, and will achieve minimum required compliance with required water standards. Mr. Vazquez said 'I've never seen a benefit-to-cost ratio this good.' He said 'time is money' and if the 10-year plan can be achieved in five years instead of ten, the financial benefits to the county are doubled.

Brevard County Commissioners voted 5-0 to proceed with proposed 10-year plan for restoration of the dying Indian River Lagoon. Of the funding options, basically property tax vs. sales tax, Commissioners voted to put half cent sales tax option on November ballot for a decision by voters. NO commissioners suggested that property owners contribute any property tax money. As proposed, the plan requires $302 million from the county over a 10-year period. Implementing a funded plan of action is expected to facilitate additional state and federal funding sources.

Among citizen comments, sales tax was frequently mentioned as a way to have tourists and people from outside the county to contribute needed funding.Some speakers suggested that it would be proper to have a combination of property tax and sales tax, in order to provide bigger funding faster for speedier Implementation of the proposed project.

VIDEO of complete proceedings, including excellent explanation of the
http://brevardcountyfl.iqm2.com/Citizens/SplitView.aspx?Mode=Video&MeetingID=1409

SEE project plan here:
http://www.brevardcounty.us/naturalresources

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Posted August 8, 2016
Can we proceed to restore the dying Indian River Lagoon? cont'd.

Brevard County set to launch (historic!) plan to restore the sick and dying Indian River Lagoon

Public support will be needed to make it happen!
Action:

1) Attend commission meeting, WEAR BLUE as show of support.
2) Send a message to County Commissioners, contact link below.

10am Time Certain, Tuesday, August 9, 2016 (meeting begins 9:00am)
Brevard County Board of Commissioners
Government Center Commission Board Room, Building C
2725 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Viera FL 32940

Brevard County Natural Resources, Virginia Barker, Director, will present to County Commissioners a 10-year Save Our Lagoon Project Plan to restore the health of the dying Indian River Lagoon. A variety of funding options are under consideration, which may result in an initiative on the November ballot.

The Marine Resources Council has summarized the plan, with contact info for County Commissioners:
http://www.mrcirl.org/component/content/article/44-our-programs/whats-new/267-save-our-lagoon-project-plan
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Preview the 'Save Our Lagoon Project Plan' here:
http://www.brevardcounty.us/naturalresources

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The newly established Brevard Indian River Lagoon Coalition is building a network of public support among citizens, businesses and non-profit organizations for restoration of the lagoon. The Coalition intends to link to other coalitions up and down the length of the lagoon, creating a network of public support for restoration that cannot be denied. Sign a pledge and join the coalition:
http://citizensforthelagoon.org/the-pledge

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Opinion: Wayne Mills, former Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) played a significant role in the ongoing efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay. Mr. Mills is acting as an advisor to Brevard Indian River Lagoon Coalition, and has made a solid statement of support for Brevard County's Save Our Lagoon Project Plan. Read his comments, click here.

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Melissa Martin, IRL Coalition Discussion Group: What we don't want: A dead waste lagoon!
"WE NEED TO FUND IMMEDIATE SOLUTIONS, PLEASE LET US DECIDE IN NOVEMBER SO WE CAN VOTE TO SAVE OUR LAGOON."
Facebook page, click here.

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Compiled by Team SCPA

Last modified on Sunday, 28 August 2016 20:42

1 comment

  • Comment Link Kathleen Minear Monday, 08 August 2016 16:12 posted by Kathleen Minear

    It's a necessary project but is it necessary to have us pay for it with yet another tax?

    Why aren't 2014 Florida Amendment 1 funds being used for this project?

    75% of voters approved this and was summarized on the ballot with:

    “Funds the Land Acquisition Trust Fund to acquire, restore, improve, and manage conservation lands including wetlands and forests; fish and wildlife habitat; lands protecting water resources and drinking water sources, including the Everglades, and the water quality of rivers, lakes, and streams; beaches and shores; outdoor recreational lands; working farms and ranches; and historic or geologic sites, by dedicating 33 percent of net revenues from the existing excise tax on documents for 20 years.[4] ”

    The lagoon certainly qualifies under this Amendment.

    So where is Rick Scott on this? Did he use 2015-2016 funds on this? How much of the 2016-2017 are allocated for it?

    "More than one-fifth of the money that Gov. Rick Scott recommends spending next year under a water and land conservation spending initiative approved by voters in 2014 would go towards salaries, contract workers and expenses, according a POLITICO Florida analysis."

    " POLITICO Florida compiled $928.6 million in spending from the Land Acquisition Trust Fund into various categories, including $201.1 million in salaries and expenses among four departments."

    Finally, if the lagoon is suffering a 'plumbing problem' due to run-off and septic drainage then how will 100's of millions of dredging the muck out help in the long run?

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