Public Input Sought on Permit Request Allowing Lake Restoration in North Central Florida

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

September 19, 2014

Photos available on FWC’s Flickr site: Go to https://flic.kr/s/aHsk3fd2Vy.

Suggested Tweet: Public invited by @MyFWC to comment on lake restoration permit in #Florida:http://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/FLFFWCC/bulletins/d04f31 #boating #fishing

Public input sought on permit request allowing lake restoration in north central Florida

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has applied for a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District to conduct restoration activities on 11 lakes and water bodies in the FWC’s North Central Region.

This permit is required pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899. The request is part of an overall initiative in which the FWC is working with the Corps to obtain permits for routine restoration work in 94 lakes and water bodies throughout Florida.

The following water bodies within the FWC’s North Central Region are included in the permit application:

  • Cross Creek, Little Lochloosa Lake, Lochloosa Lake, Newnans Lake and Orange Lake in Alachua County
  • Orange Creek Recreation Area in Alachua and Marion counties
  • Withlacoochee River in Pasco, Hernando, Sumter, Citrus, Marion and Levy counties
  • Alligator Lake in Columbia County
  • Mystic Lake in Madison County
  • Suwannee Lake in Suwannee County
  • Tsala Apopka Chain of Lakes in Citrus County

The FWC is seeking a permit that would authorize all of its routine mechanical aquatic plant maintenance activities related to habitat restoration and navigation maintenance within these water bodies for a period of 15 years. The proposed maintenance techniques include mechanical harvesting and shredding of aquatic vegetation and use of earth-moving and tilling equipment on vegetated areas during dry conditions.

The proposed restoration activities on lakes and other water bodies would improve habitat for fish and wildlife and provide outdoor opportunities for boating, angling and wildlife viewing.

The Corps permitting process requires the opportunity for public comment. On Sept. 18, the Corps published a Public Notice for the proposed work on its website: www.saj.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/PublicNotices.aspx. To view the notice, click on the following file number to open the Public Notice: SAJ-2014-01962 (SP-JED). If you would like to provide comments or have any questions regarding the Corps permit process, please follow the directions included in the Public Notice. Note that the Web address is case-sensitive and should be entered as it appears above.

Learn more about mechanical control of aquatic plants at http://plants.ifas.ufl.edu/manage/control-methods/mechanical-control.

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