Florida Keys Stewardship Act Invests in Florida Keys’ Most Significant Environmental Needs
Local governments and entities in Monroe County, Fla., this week praised the filing of the Florida Keys Stewardship Act – House Bill 447, sponsored by Representative Holly Raschein (R-Key Largo). The Senate Bill is slated to be introduced by Senator Wilton Simpson (R-Trilby). Local governments in support of the Florida Keys Stewardship Act include Monroe County; City of Key West; City of Marathon; Islamorada, Village of Islands; and City of Key Colony Beach. Local entities in support of the Act include the Key Largo Wastewater Treatment District and Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority.
The Florida Keys Stewardship Act would invest $25 million each year for 10 years into water quality, restoration and protection; water supply protection; and land for critical habitat protection, public safety in case of an evacuation, property rights and military base protection.
“We are truly grateful that Senator Simpson and Representative Raschein have sponsored this important legislation,” said Commissioner George Neugent of the Monroe County Board of County Commissioners. “The Florida Keys has a one-of-a-kind environment that cannot be found anywhere else, giving it local, statewide and national significance. We look forward to working with the Senator and Representative to advance legislation that makes much-needed investments to protect and preserve the Florida Keys’ environment and the investments that the state has already made in the area.”
“The Florida Keys is the epitome of the Florida laid-back lifestyle and is a premier tourism, military, and commercial and recreational fishing destination” said Mayor Craig Cates of the City of Key West. “The Florida Keys Stewardship Act would invest funds into water quality protection, water supply protection and sensitive lands in order to safeguard the Keys’ unique environment, which these industries and Keys’ residents rely on every day. We wholeheartedly support this greatly-needed investment.”
“At the heart of the Florida Keys, the Marathon City Council is committed to protecting our natural treasures, improving quality of life and expanding our economy,” said City Manager Mike Puto of the City of Marathon. “We are strongly vested in the future of the Florida Keys and believe that the Florida Keys Stewardship Act is a smart investment in the Keys that also has a significant return on investment for the entire state.”
“The Council of Islamorada, Village of Islands, is proud to support the Florida Keys Stewardship Act,” said Mayor Mike Forster of Islamorada. “This measure would allow the Florida Keys to make critical investments in water quality and supply protection, as well as in land, to assure that the Keys’ environment is preserved for future generations of Floridians.”
“The Florida Keys’ tropical island atmosphere, numerous national and state parks, a national marine sanctuary, wildlife refuges, state aquatic preserves, world-class fishing, and the world’s third-largest barrier reef draws visitors from across the state, nation and world,” said Mayor Jerry Ellis of the City of Key Colony Beach. “But, we must make essential investments in water quality and supply protection and land in order to protect this environment for years to come. As such, we firmly believe that the Florida Keys Stewardship Act is a smart investment for Florida.”
“As a chain of tropical islands, the Florida Keys is surrounded by clear ocean waters and diverse sea life, making the Keys a popular place to live and an important vacation destination,” said Chairman Dave Asdourian of the Key Largo Wastewater Treatment District Board of Commissioners. “The Florida Keys Stewardship Act is critical to the economy of the Keys and the state of Florida, as the area contributes a significant amount of revenue to Florida. We support this smart measure for the upcoming 2016 Legislative Session.”
“We firmly stand in support of the Florida Keys Stewardship Act,” said Chairman J. Robert Dean of the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority Board of Directors. “The act will bring much-needed investments to the area, including water supply protection, so that we can enhance the Florida Keys’ water supply for our residents and visitors, as well as future generations of Floridians.”