State gives $3M for district springs projects

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By Mark Scohier, Staff writer

The state has set aside $3 million for projects aimed at improving the health of springs within the Suwannee River Water Management District's 15-county boundary, according to state officials.

"If I could sum up the (last legislative) session in one word, it would be 'springs,'" said Steve Minnis, director of governmental affairs and communications with SRWMD, at a governing board meeting Thursday in Cedar Key.

"We're gonna' see a lot more next year," Minis said. "There's been more interest in springs."

Minnis, in a later email, stated that the money would be used for such projects as establishing Minimum Flows and Levels (MFLs) along the Suwannee River, a move meant to protect the river and associated springs from heavy water withdrawals, and for six other plans aimed at water preservation and improvement, including aquifer recharge projects, additional agricultural Best Management Practices (BMPs) and plans to remove sediment and erosion from the spring vent at Otter Springs.

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