The Florida Legislative session just ended, and local organizations are calling on Governor DeSantis to veto a provision regarding fertilizer. As you likely know, residential fertilizer can be a potent source of run-off polluting waterways and estuarine environments. In Florida, nutrient pollution, sometimes from fertilizer run-off, contributes to harmful algal blooms, fish kills, and a host of other water quality issues.
According to Waterkeeper Florida, “In the waning hours of the legislative session, lobbyists for the fertilizer industry snuck a provision into the budget proviso that would prohibit local governments from adopting or amending fertilizer ordinances that include a summer blackout period in the next year. This will hinder local governments from taking action to protect their local waterways from nutrient pollution, at a time when many of Florida’s waters are critically impaired. Since this language was inserted at the last minute, it was never discussed during any committee meetings, it was never available for public comment, and it was buried in hundreds of pages of budget documents.”
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Florida Waterkeeper is now calling on Gov. DeSantis to veto that specific “budget proviso” to continue to allow local governments to protect their waterways from fertilizer run-off. If you are a Florida stakeholder, you can easily send that message through this Action Alert.
“The legislature is trying to stop local governments from protecting their waterways from nutrient pollution,” said Justin Tramble, Executive Director of Tampa Bay Waterkeeper. “It makes no sense to strip away a common sense tool like the ability to adopt rainy season fertilizer bans. It’s the exact opposite of what we need to be doing. Communities across the state of Florida rely on clean water, and it’s time our elected officials start acting like it. Our hope is that the Governor will veto this proposed language in the budget implementing bill.”
Action Alert can be found here!