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June 4, 2012

The Southwest Florida Water Management District is inviting the public to comment on proposed minimum flows and levels (MFLs) for Lake Hooker in Seffner at a public meeting on Thursday, June 14.

The rule development public workshop will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the District’s Tampa Service Office, 7601 US Hwy 301, Tampa.

The state Legislature requires the District to set MFLs for priority water bodies within the District. A minimum flow or level is the limit at which further water withdrawals will cause significant harm to the water resources and/or environment.

Minimum levels are established to protect lakes from impacts associated with groundwater and surface water withdrawals. Guidance levels are developed as advisory information on expected water level fluctuations within lake basins. Minimum and guidance levels serve as guidelines for the District’s permitting programs and for development of water resource projects.

During the workshop, District staff will review the regulatory framework and the technical basis for the proposed MFLs and guidance levels. The workshop also will provide an opportunity for local governments, residents and others to be part of the development of minimum levels for Lake Hooker.

Public comment gathered at the workshop will be summarized and presented to the Governing Board. Following consideration of the comments, the Governing Board may choose to adopt the minimum and guidance levels into District rules. Governing Board meetings are open to the public where brief oral comments are permitted on meeting agenda items. District staff anticipates presenting the proposed levels for Lake Hooker at the August or September Governing Board meeting.

Written comments can be submitted by July 14 via email to Christina.Uranowski@watermatters.org or mail to the District at 2379 Broad Street, Brooksville, FL 34604, Attn: Christina Uranowski.

A draft report containing information on the development of MFLs for Lake Hooker will be posted on the District’s website within one week prior to the meeting. To locate the report prior to the workshop, visit WaterMatters.org/mfl and click on the “MFL documents and reports” link. For more information, please contact Christina Uranowski or Keith Kolasa at 1-800-423-1476, extensions 4271 or 4236.

 
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