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Paradise Preserved: Springs Protection In Wakulla County.

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Presentation on theme: "Paradise Preserved: Springs Protection In Wakulla County."— Presentation transcript:

1 Paradise Preserved: Springs Protection In Wakulla County

2 SPRINGS OF THE COUNTY Wakulla is filled with many freshwater springs and groundwater fed ponds and sinkholes Wakulla Springs – one of the largest and deepest in the world Spring Creek – largest average discharge of spring water in the state Panacea Mineral Springs

3 Issues We Are Facing Rapid growth of invasive plants in Wakulla Springs This growth is linked to elevated concentrations of nutrients in the spring water

4 1994 Wakulla Springs Special Planning Area

5 HISTORY OF THE SPECIAL PLANNING AREA On July 5, 1994, the Wakulla County BOCC approved the Wakulla Springs Special Planning Area by Ordinance Created to protect the water quality of Wakulla Springs and its contributing water bodies, which includes the largest underwater cave system in the US. Ordinance helps raise awareness for springs protection.

6 NUTS & BOLTS OF ORDINANCE Protection of water quality sought through the regulation of 128 substances For residential and commercial Reporting threshold = 5 gallons of liquid or 50 pounds of solid of any of the regulated substances Regulated substances include everything from fertilizers to batteries There are exemptions to regulated substances, such as fuel for agricultural equipment New commercial projects must document the use, storage and disposal of regulated substances Injection wells and drainage wells not permitted Currently, there are no property owners registered Residential and existing commercial property owners are expected to self-report. Program operates on the honor system

7 WAKULLA SPRINGS BASIN MAP

8 WAKULLA-LEON SINKS CAVE SYSTEM

9 2008 SPECIAL PLANNING AREA EXPANSION

10 Water Quality Protection Measures Performance Based Septic Tanks required County- wide since December of 2006 Expansion of central sewer into Wakulla Gardens raised concerns March 3, 2009 BOCC meeting – Adopted an Ordinance which exempts owners of a well maintained PBST from connecting to sewer Exemption is County-wide Also, a separate exemption for low income families

11 Karst Protection Measures Require a 100 to 300 foot buffer from the rim of karst features with a direct connection to aquifer New and substantially redeveloped sites must conform with St. Johns River Water Management District Karst criteria, including … –Karst features cannot be used as storm water management facilities –Pre-development flow rate and volumes must equal post- development

12 Ongoing Efforts $20M Expansion of Central Sewer and Water Reuse Facilities County is participating in on-site septic tank Regional Management Study Stormwater Master Plan for Wakulla Gardens

13 Ongoing Efforts Wakulla Springs Restoration Joint Workshop

14 Future Protection Measures Comprehensive Plan Evaluation and Appraisal Report Amendments, 2009 Possible Changes Wakulla Springs Special Planning Area -Evaluate creation of a TDR program -Identify sending and receiving areas

15 Future Protection Efforts Land Development Code Updates, anticipated 2010 Refine Springs Special Planning Area Requirements Implement TDRS, if included in the Comprehensive Plan –Identify sending and receiving areas Conform to NWFWMD ERP requirements Incorporate BMPs for Landscaping –Florida Yards and Neighborhoods, focus on fertilizer Incorporate Low Impact Development (LID)

16 For Additional Information Deanna Green Wakulla County Planning & Community Development (850) Fax (850)


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