Friends of the Everglades has joined Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation, the Conservancy of Southwest Florida, and Calusa Waterkeeper in sending a letter to Gov. DeSantis strongly urging him to veto SB 2508.

DeSantis previously blasted the nefarious nature of this bill and the way it was introduced for “short circuiting public engagement and leaving affected agencies in the dark.”

Though amended to remove some of the most harmful provisions, SB 2508 still poses risks to Florida’s fragile environment and threatens to undermine years of work to develop the new Lake Okeechobee System Operating Manual (LOSOM) that could help relieve communities from toxic discharges and harmful algae blooms. Moreover, provisions that would allow the Rural and Family Lands Protection Program to buy land outright — possibly competing with the Florida Forever land preservation program — remain in place, as does wording allowing public utilities such as FPL to pay the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to expedite the wetlands “dredge and fill” permitting process.

As the letter states, “This bill will have widespread negative impacts on Floridians, the state’s tourism-based economy, and undermines the transparency that [his] administration has advocated for in the past.”

DeSantis should continue to stand with Floridians who rallied together to voice massive opposition to SB 2508. He must veto this bill.

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