LIVE OAK, FLA., SEPTEMBER 18, 2023 – After months of gathering data, soliciting project ideas, and coordinating with neighboring water management districts and stakeholders, a draft update to the North Florida Regional Water Supply Partnership water supply plan is now ready for review and public comment.
The North Florida Regional Water Supply Planning area covers 14 counties and is a direct result of collaboration between the Suwannee River Water Management District, St. Johns River Water Management District, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, local governments, public supply utilities, environmental advocates, and other interested stakeholders.
To ensure everyone has the opportunity to be a part of the planning process, the water management districts are hosting two public workshops where staff will provide a brief presentation and an opportunity for stakeholders to view displays, ask questions, and engage with staff.
The first meeting will take place on Wednesday, September 20, at the SJRWMD Office (4049 Reid Street, Palatka, FL 32178) and begin at 2 p.m. with a posterboard session, followed by a presentation at 2:45. The second meeting will take place on Thursday, September 21, at the SRWMD Office (9225 County Road 49, Live Oak, FL 32060) and begin at 5:45 p.m. with a posterboard session, followed by a presentation at 6:30 p.m.
The workshops can be attended in person or viewed online by webinar. The workshops will begin with an in-person posterboard session (poster display and opportunity for in-person attendees to ask questions) followed by an online presentation. During the workshops, any member of the public attending in-person can provide verbal comments on the draft water supply plan. Written comments can be submitted at any time through October 6, 2023.
To view the draft plan and submit written comments online, visit www.northfloridawater.com/watersupplyplan/index.html.
The public comment form and workshops are just the latest in the process to ensure stakeholders have the chance to be a part of the planning process. To compile this latest update, the Districts held technical workshops in November 2021 and reviewed comments on the scientific methods used to update population and water demand projections. In November 2022, the Districts held constraint assessment workshops and reviewed comments on the methods and results used to determine the effects of the plan on water users and related natural systems. In spring 2023, the Districts solicited water supply project options which are incorporated in the updated draft.
To learn more about the water supply planning process, visit www.sjrwmd.com/water-supply/planning.
The mission of the Suwannee River Water Management District is to protect and manage water resources using science-based solutions to support natural systems and the needs of the public. The District holds true to the belief of water for nature, water for people. Headquartered in Live Oak, Florida, the District serves 15 surrounding north-central Florida counties.
For more information about the District, visit www.MySuwanneeRiver.com or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.