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Water Policy Rulemaking


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The department has finalized the development of the CFWI Rule and Applicant’s Handbook. Rulemaking is underway for the Lower Santa Fe and Ichetucknee Rivers (LSFIR) and Associated Priority Springs Minimum Flow and Levels (MFL) and the Outstanding Florida Springs Rule.

Follow the links below for rulemaking efforts associated with these topics:

Central Florida Water Initiative - This rulemaking was to provide uniformity for consumptive use permitting withing the Central Florida Water Initiative Area which includes all of Orange, Osceola, Polk and Seminole counties and southern Lake County, as designated by the Central Florida Water Initiative Guiding Document of Jan. 30, 2015, available online. The rulemaking is complete as of Jan. 5, 2022 and is currently being implemented by the St. Johns River Water Management District, Southwest Florida Water Management District, and South Florida Water Management District.

Lower Santa Fe and Ichetucknee Rivers (LSFIR) and Priority Springs Minimum Flows and Levels (MFLs) - The Lower Santa Fe and Ichetucknee Rivers and associated priority springs MFL has been re-evaluated and rulemaking is underway to update the existing rule along with the prevention and recovery strategy. Department-adopted MFLs and applicable recovery and preventions strategies are effective in all applicable water management districts without the need for further rulemaking and generally affect water use permits.

Outstanding Florida Springs– Springs are of great importance to Florida’s unique ecosystem and provide exceptional recreational opportunities to Florida residents and our visitors. The department has been required to adopt uniform rules (2016-01, Laws of Florida) for issuing permits that prevent harmful groundwater withdrawals and to develop a uniform definition of the term “harmful to the water resources” which will provide the water management districts with minimum standards for protecting these unique systems.

Suwannee River and Associated Springs MFLs and Recovery and Prevention Strategies – This MFL will be adopted by the Department and will establish MFLs for the Upper and Middle Suwannee River and associated priority springs.

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Last Modified:
March 21, 2022 - 9:30am

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