The South Florida Water Management District has begun the water use permit renewal process for the Lake Okeechobee Basin, which includes portions of Palm Beach, Martin, Glades, Okeechobee, Lee and Hendry counties. All individual and major general water use permits for irrigation withdrawals from Lake Okeechobee or its tributaries will expire on February 28, 2009. Since Water Use Permits have a finite duration, they must be renewed in order to re- establish the right to use water. Applications for permit renewals will be evaluated against criteria contained in updated rules. In order to explain the revised rules and renewal process, a final informational workshop for the Basin will be held at the District’s Clewiston Field Station located at 2425 Hookers Point Road (863-983-1431). The workshop will be on February 25th beginning at 10:00 a.m. The workshop is scheduled to inform permit holders of the renewal process, processing fees, deadlines and to assist with any problems or questions. Additional information can be found on the Water Use Permit Renewal page on the District web site at www.sfwmd.gov or by calling the informational hotline at (800) 547-2694.