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Yes, the Suwannee River Partnership administers several cost share programs available for farmers. Please contact the District at 386.362.1001 for details.
To offer property to the District, you need to submit a completed Property Offer Form to the Director of Land Acquisition and Management. Land acquisition coordinators will work with you to obtain any other information needed.
The District is required to provide an MFL priority list and establishment schedule to the Department of Environmental Protection annually. See the list for the current year.
Nitrate-nitrogen (nitrate) is a nutrient required by aquatic flora for growth and reproduction. However, when high concentrations of nitrates make their way into groundwater and surface waters, problems often arise.
High nitrate concentrations may create an imbalance in a natural surface water system, causing excessive growth of algae and other vegetation. In shallow areas an overabundance of algae blocks the light needed by underwater vegetation. Algae take up dissolved oxygen as they die and decompose. The resulting lack of oxygen affects fish, shellfish, and aquatic invertebrates.
High nitrate levels can create health concerns, too. Concentrations that exceed the federal drinking water standard (10 milligrams of Nitrate as Nitrogen per liter of water) can result in methemoglobinemia, or "blue baby" syndrome.
Sources of nitrates in groundwater and surface waters are:
Elevated nitrate concentrations have been found in groundwater, springs, and rivers in the District, particularly in the Suwannee River Basin. Monitoring and studies are underway to identify trends in nitrates.
Reports and studies are available. Please use our Online Contact Form to request these documents.
The District is working with other agencies and individuals to monitor and reduce the level of nitrates in our groundwater and surface waters. More information about water quality improvement projects can be found on our Water Quality webpage.
The Suwannee River Partnership was formed in 1999 to coordinate efforts between government agencies, farmers and growers, and local citizens to find solutions to the nitrate problem in the Middle Suwannee basin.
The Department of Health offers a publication titled "Drinking Water: Is Yours Safe?" This brochure addresses the problem of lead, bacteria, nitrates and other contaminants in drinking water. Request copies from your nearest County Health Department office, the main Department of Health office in Tallahassee or download it from the Florida Department of Health website.
For more information on nitrate, see visit our Water Data Portal.
There are three impact zones on river lots:
1. For property located within a floodway and within the first 75 feet adjacent to the normally recognized bank of water, clearing is limited to that necessary to provide reasonable pedestrian access or to remove diseased or dead vegetation.
2. For property located within a floodway but outside of the 75 foot setback, clearing is allowed for the construction of structures, associated water supply, waste water disposal, and private driveway access facilities. Removal of diseased and dead vegetation is also authorized.
3. Property outside of the floodway is regulated by local government. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection requires permits for any wetland clearing in this zone.
A wetland is an area that often holds water and contains soils that support water-loving vegetation. For the regulatory definition of wetlands, please see Section 373.019 of the Florida Statutes.
The depth of the Suwannee River varies a great deal, depending on current rain conditions. The District does not evaluate boating conditions on a daily basis. We do maintain river levels (level above mean sea level). Therefore, contact a local outfitter for specific information about boating conditions.
Local vendors can provide vessel rental as well as transportation and trip information. Information on vendors can be obtained from the local chambers of commerce or by contacting the State of Florida’s Nature and Heritage Tourism Center in White Springs by phone at 386.397.4461.
The District and Florida State Parks have developed camping facilities on the Suwannee River Wilderness Trail. For more information on these facilities, contact the Suwannee River Wilderness Trail at 800.868.9914. Elsewhere, canoe and boat camping are allowed on District lands along the Suwannee and other rivers by special use authorization(SUA). And SUA can be obtained at no charge by calling the District at 386.362.1001, 800.226.1066 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Suwannee River Wilderness Trail is a system of public and private recreation and visitor facilities focused on paddling the Suwannee River from White Springs to the coastal town of Suwannee. For more information, call 800.868.9914.
These areas are managed by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Recreation and Parks. Reservations for river camps are made through the Suwannee River Wilderness Trail at 800.868.9914. Reservations for cabins are made through Reserve America (800.326.3521 or 866 I CAMP FL).
For current conditions, see the rainfall amounts, groundwater levels, real-time river levels, and hydrologic conditions reports pages. For past conditions and analysis, search our Document Center.
The District declares land as surplus when it’s ownership by the District no longer serves a conservation purpose. When the District is able to sell surplus lands to private individuals, it also returns that parcel to the tax rolls of the County in which it is located.
Generally, proceeds from surplus land sales will be used to purchase lands that have water resource value than lands that were sold. Sale of P2000 lands are provided to the state and sale of Florida Forever lands can be used to purchase other lands with greater water resource value or for restoration or water resource development purposes identified in the District’s Florida Forever Annual Work Plan.
Yes, Article X Section 18, adopted in 1998, provides that lands designated for natural resource conservation purposes may be disposed of only if the members of the governing board of the entity holding title determine the property is no longer needed for conservation purposes and only upon a vote of two-thirds of the governing board. The lands listed for surplus were approved by the District’s Governing Board following the procedure listed above.
District lands are evaluated for their water resource value for floodplain management and the protection of surface waters, wetlands, springs and aquifer recharge. Parcels that do not have high water resource value are then screened to ensure that their disposition will not compromise future management or public use of other District-owned lands.
The District’s Governing Board may consider factors that are secondary to its mission of protecting water resources and will determine the importance of such factors on a case by case basis.
Once evaluations are complete, staff sends its recommendation to the Governing Board’s Lands Committee to determine which parcels will be forwarded to the Governing Board for consideration. The recommendation may include a provision to retain certain restrictions on the property that is sold to ensure environmental qualities remain preserved. The Governing Board reviews these recommendations and may declare lands surplus in accordance with Florida Statutes.
All discussions and decisions regarding surplus lands take place in open public meetings that are advertised for the purpose of receiving public input.
The District posts surplus land sales on its website, sends notices out via its listserv and/or may list the surplus lands with real estate firms that have been prequalified by the District . Once the District has determined that the land is not wanted by other Governmental entities and has complied with other statutory requirements, the District may choose to offer the opportunity to purchase to adjacent property owners via certified mail. Notice of such offering is posted on the District website and also published in the local newspaper. If that is not successful, then the District will offer the property to the public at large.
State statues prohibit the District from selling land for less than appraised value. Therefore, the District requires appraisals on each property. The Governing Board may also require that the purchasing party assume all costs associated with the purchase, including document preparation and recording fees.