EPA to Hold Additional Numeric Nutrient Criteria Hearings in Florida

Gary Cooper Cattle, Citrus, Florida, Nursery Crops, Specialty Crops, Sugar, Vegetables

Florida Farm Bureau Federation is again asking, and urging its members to attend and participate in the upcoming added series of public hearings about EPA’s Numeric Nutrient Criteria proposals for Florida. This series of meetings will take place April 13-15 in Ft. Myers, Tampa and Jacksonville, respectively. Farm Bureau leaders emphasize the negative impacts these proposed water quality standards could have on agricultural businesses statewide. In a release this week Farm Bureau again distributes the following background, hearing times and dates information, so Florida farmers and ranchers can best prepare.
In January 2010, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed numeric nutrient criteria for flowing waters in the State of Florida. In February 2010, EPA held public hearings in Tallahassee, Orlando, and West Palm Beach. Over the three days of public hearings, EPA heard from over 235 citizens. The opposition to EPA’s proposed rule significantly outweighed those in favor of the proposal, with over 76% of citizens speaking in opposition to EPA’s proposed rule. Agriculture was well represented at the public hearings with a large number of Florida Farm Bureau members representing the concerns of the industry.

Due to the significant turnout at these public hearings, EPA will be holding additional public hearings on April 13, 14, and 15. We must continue to apply the pressure and ensure that the voice of agriculture is heard. Our goal is to exceed the number of speakers who attended the February public hearings.

In November 2009, an Ag Policy Bulletin was distributed to educate members on this issue. To view this Ag Policy Bulletin go to:
Please plan to attend one of the six public hearings being held April 13-15. In
order to guarantee your opportunity to speak at the public workshop you are
asked to pre-register online. We will alert you when pre-registration for
these hearings opens.

The dates and locations of the public hearings are as follows:

Fort Myers – April 13, 2010
12:00 – 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Harborside Event Center
1375 Monroe Street

Tampa – April 14, 2010
12:00 – 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Hilton Tampa Airport
2225 North Lois Avenue

Jacksonville – April 15, 2010
1:00 – 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 – 10:00 p.m.
Clarion Hotel Airport Conference Center
2101 Dixie Clipper Drive

For More Info call Staci Braswell, FFBF, 352-374-1522, or e-mail her at Staci.Braswell@FFBF.org