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August 28, 2007

The Southwest Florida Water Management District Governing Board Tuesday approved the consolidation of three water use permits (WUP) for Sarasota County Utilities.

The consolidated permit does not include an increase in quantities. The three permits that were consolidated allowed an annual average permitted quantity of 13,737,400 gallons per day (gpd). Additional quantities needed during the term of the permit will be met by the Peace River/Manasota Regional Water Supply Authority.

The consolidated permit requires the county to develop a Facilities Management Plan, which will allow the county to improve wellfield management, conservation efforts and long-term compliance with permit conditions.

The 67,200-acre service area includes all of the unincorporated area of Sarasota County west of the Myakka River, except the Englewood Water District service area.

The permit expires Aug. 28, 2017.

As part of the permit, the county must maintain its water-conserving rate structure and submit an annual report on its effectiveness. A water-conserving rate structure has tiered water rates which increase with water use.

The county must also investigate the feasibility of desalination and submit required reports, which include monthly meter readings, annual reuse and wellfield water levels, and water quality information.

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