Water conservation and resource protection are two key focuses of amended water use rules that Suwannee River Water Management District (District) is proposing.
The following is a list of some of the proposed rules:
• Watering restrictions for lawn and landscape irrigation: Homeowners and businesses that have an established lawn and landscape would only be allowed to water once weekly during the months of December through February and twice weekly during the months of March through November. In either case, landscape irrigation would not be permitted between the hours of 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
• Conservation for all users: Users in each type of water use class would need to implement a water conservation plan.
• Conditions for issuance: In order to obtain a water use permit, renewal or modification, the proposed use of water would need to meet various conditions, including the following: the use would be reasonable and in the public interest; it would not interfere with any existing legal use of water; it would not result in harm to the resource; and it would not violate state water quality standards.
• Implementation of alternative water supply: This would allow District staff to recommend or require large water users to implement alternative water supply when it is feasible. Alternative water supplies are necessary where water sources are inadequate to meet demands over the next 20 years.
• Permit duration and five-year review: This would give District staff better criteria for establishing permit duration. It would also provide a five-year review of the permit to ensure better compliance.
• Criteria for water bottling: Applicants requesting a permit to bottle water would need to submit a business plan, which would include demonstrating how much water is needed for the operation and the demand for bottled water.
The District’s Governing Board approved the publishing of the proposed water rules at its monthly meeting on June 9. The proposed rules are scheduled for publication in Florida Administrative Weekly in July. The public will have 21 days after the proposed rules are published to object or request a hearing.
The proposed rules may be obtained by contacting Linda Welch, Rules Coordinator, SRWMD, 9225 CR 49, Live Oak, FL 32060. You may also call 386-362-1001 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.