A number of events this week brought the South Florida Water Management District’s (SFWMD) proposed 2012 budget closer to adoption. The Joint Legislative Budget Commission met in Tallahassee on September 7 and approved the SFWMD’s proposed budget which prioritized Everglades restoration. Later in the week, the SFWMD held a public hearing on the tentative budget. Audubon policy staff was in attendance at these meetings and has been following this issue closely.
In developing the FY 2012 budget, the SFWMD was able to retain its commitment to Everglades restoration and water quality, doing its best to cut costs by trimming overhead. Audubon is supportive of this effort.
While this dedication to continue Everglades restoration in the short term is important, specific impacts may be felt this year and the long term picture is unclear. Audubon of Florida’s Executive Director Eric Draper wrote a commentary in the Palm Beach Post last week highlighting the importance of funding Everglades restoration projects for the environment and our water supplies. Click here for more information on projects that could move forward with funding.
On September 20 the SFWMD will hold its final public hearing on the FY 2012 budget. What do you think about the budget cuts? Tell us in the comment section below!