What They’re Really Saying: Florida’s Leaders Are Not Buying Senate Plan to “Buy The Land”

leadersAs the Florida Senate considers Senate Bill 10, which calls for the purchase of up to 153,000 acres of farmland south of Lake Okeechobee, several state and national leaders have expressed strong concerns over the idea that “buying the land” is the right approach.

Here’s what Florida leaders are saying about the misguided, multi-billion-dollar plan to “buy the land”:

 

  • “The House is not prepared to bond…The fact that you’re bonding, is it because you are saying the government needs more money for ‘X?’ I think that the House has been vocal that we do not need more money. We have a spending problem.” – House Speaker Richard Corcoran (R-Land ‘O Lakes)

 

  • “There are better ways to spend $2.5 [b]illion for water policy in the state of Florida and Everglades restoration. One of the problems with the history of restoration over the past several decades has been that every time there is a new president or a new election of most anyone, everybody wants to change up the plan of work because they want credit for the groundbreaking instead of the ribbon cutting.” – Commissioner Adam Putnam

 

 

  • “My great concern is that North Florida and North Central Florida are already derelict in receiving funds that is shared by the state for the environment. The notion of sending billions of dollars to an unproven land-grab in South Florida, for potentially dubious results, continues to leave the rest of Florida alone.” – Representative Jay Fant (R-Jacksonville)

 

  • “I think we need to look at the dikes we also need to look at a solution north of the lake. That’s where we have to pay attention right now. We have Speaker (Richard) Corcoran who says no bonding. We have to look at that in a fiscally responsible perspective.” – House Minority Leader Janet Cruz (D-Tampa)

 

  • “There are a lot of priorities that I have and others have that have been involved with this issue for a long time that I think take precedence.” – Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL)

 

  • “To say that we’ll be able to come up with that money to buy private property and that they’ll be willing to sell is a lot of steps.” – Congressman Tom Rooney (R-FL)

 

  • “South Florida receives the majority of these funds, and that is not the way Amendment 1 was sold to Florida voters.” “[SB 10 is] a subject of concern.” – Former Congressman Steve Southerland

 

  • “When you add it all up, it amounts to a liberal eco-nirvana: buying land for buying’s sake. It is an erosion of property rights. It is a purchase without an immediate purpose. And it is a plan that will punish the very men and women in agriculture who help make Florida’s economy hum.” – Leslie Dougher, Former RPOF Chairman

 

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