SFWMD staff face a lousy choice this season: violate state law and sabotage a project that benefits virtually everyone in South Florida, or disobey the sugar industry--especially Florida Crystals' Fanjul brothers (below)--and start thinking about a job search.
It’s hard not to sympathize. No one wants to be the guy who cancels the Fanjuls’ sweetheart lease on taxpayer property. But Matt Morrison and Joe Negron (below) and the rest of us know that Florida Crystals isn’t swapping land unless the district follows the law and terminates those leases.
Will Alfy and Pepe Fanjul (below) like moving operations to places like the P.R.I.D.E. land, which SB10 gave to the project? Actually, they might--it’s said to be more valuable.
And did Matt Morrison and SFWMD deliver the “optimal” plan, as SB10 requires? Not exactly.
It’s a tough choice: follow the law or keep your head down. But there’s not much honor in bluffing your way through it. Could the governor step in and protect people who do the right thing and really solve this problem? That’s what leaders do, after all.
In any case, all we want for Christmas is an EAA reservoir plan that takes the best possible crack at cutting discharges, sending clean water south, spending taxpayers’ money wisely, and delivering a better future for all Floridians.
And maybe the Everglades Foundation's alternative is just the present we're hoping for. After all, why wouldn't SFWMD consider a better, easier, cheaper EAA reservoir plan?