By Jessie R. Box
Greene Publishing, Inc.
Suwannee River Water Management District (SRWMD) Governing Board had a meeting June 10 at 9 a.m. in Cedar Keys, Fl. On the agenda was the water use permit that JJJ & T Family Limited Partnership has applied for from the SRWMD.
According to the Staff Report from SRWMD, the permit for the JJJ & T Family Limited Partnership is to irrigate 1,748 acres with an Average Daily Rate of 3.1981 million gallons with 12 irrigations wells and 12 center pivots.
According to Lee Town Manager Danny Plain, Justin Strickland from Florida Rural Water Association, presented his finding of the Lee wells only having an eight-foot buffer in the wells should a drought happen, to the SWRMD Governing Board members.
Lee Town Council President Doug McNicols and Plain spoke to the board members. There were also several Lee residents that spoke out against issuing the water use permit to the board members.
According to Steve Minnis, Director of Governmental Affairs and Communications at Suwannee River Water Management District, the SRWMD Governing Board voted unanimously to issue the water use permit to JJJ & T Family Limited Partnership. The applicant did agree to a special condition: drilling well number three first, which will be the closest well to the Town of Lee wells and pumping it to see if Lee’s wells are affected.
At the time of the meeting on June 10, the town council had 21 days to pursue an administrative hearing. If the town council decides to pursue hearing, JJJ & T Family Limited Partnership cannot move forward until the matter is resolved.