The Gross National Debt

For State of Florida Answers Click Here

Just in: Governor Scott and Senator Bennett Concerned about Domestic Violence high salaries while shelters are in great need.  Tiffany Carr $326000 salary as ceo of a minor non profit with exclusive rights to distribute DCF Domestic Violence funds.  Her assistant hauls in a reported $290,000. 

Office of Domestic Violence Program Sr Management Analysis Supervisor Renee C. Starrett answered our inquire to Govermor Scott by saying,

"Please be assured that we have evaluated spending by the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence including executive staff salaries, and are satisfied that their administrative costs are less than one percent of state contracted funds."

 We can't help but wonder if Governor Scott is aware of the answer given about his concerns about apparent salary abuse with State of Florida Funds.  

 Somehow top employees a small private company are each allowed 1% of the total cost of all shelters of $31,000,000 to distribute the funds!  It appears to top state officials that a private company has stepped into the distribution of funds and skims 1% for the top employee and 1% for her assistant, according to Federal Tax 990 filing.   

 DCF gives funds to a private company and at that point salaries double and tripple the DFC Secretary's annual salary and that of his Deputy.  See below.

Below are DCF appropriate salaries for your position as senior management, and other DCF employees.  Non profit  is not a license to abuse spending of state funds.  Perhaps a non profit is too expensive a choice to be involved in the distribution of state funds.

Reasonable Salaries with much greater responsibilities 
* DCF Secretary David Wilkins $140,000 annual salary
* Suzanne Vitale Deputy Secretary, 128,000 annual salary
* Senior Management Renee Starrett $70,000 annual salary

One percent would be excellent if Ms Carr's enterprise actually earned the funds or even raised the funds putting on fund raisers.  In fact the state of Florida gives her company a fat $32 million check and she gives it out to 42 shelters.  Of course that is a simplification but accurate. 

 A very small staff in a single office could distribute and coordinate this fund  Each of the shelters has a director and the extra funds would go directly to the families.    $250,000 for the entire staff budget could easily distribute and coordinate the funds distribution of the state funds.  That is .0078125 of 1%.  The tax payers of Florida will look into this issue.  We will poll the shelters and determine if they would rather have Ms. Carr receive the extra $250,000 currently passing to a "wind fall" to Ms Carr.  Salaries should be audited in the distribution of state funds creating a more reasonable distribution system for tax payer funds.  If the top two salaries exceed $600,000 combined, an audit will likely turn over more excess and waste.  If Ms Carr can be paid at this level what other expenses might be excessive.  It may be time to take away the exclusive opportunity that has been given to Ms Carr's private company by past legislation.

It seems that Governor Rick Scott and every person we talk with, is concerned about the appparent excessive pay Ms Carr is allowed by DCF, as the head of such a small private organizaton.  

Across the state private citizens donate diapers and needed items to these desperately needy families at domestic violence shelters, while the salaries take funds that should go to needy, as the legislature intended and the tax payers of Florida intended.  Senators pass $60,000,000,000 budgets but never would consider taking $326,000 salary plus benefits for themselves.  

It would appear that the State Funding does not justify spending over $300,000 for a director of a 501 c3.  An examination of the tax return 990 shows the combined salary of the top person T. Carr and her assistant tops $600,000.
Apparently Ms Carr has stated that she would not mind if her salary would be cut to a reasonable amount.  We think perhaps $70,000  $100,000 might be appropriate for her level job.

We will ask the legislature to introduce competitive bidding into the process of handing out state funds.  1% of legislative funding amounts is not appropriate.
The Senators who appropriated the funds make closer to $30,000. 

We will have to look closer.  We share Governor Scott's concerns.  One group should not control the funding by tax dollars to domestic violence groups around the state.



Heads Up Alert Tax Watch Florida  -  How much is too much salary when helping families in need.  $326,000 seems to have slipped through the cracks every year as private income for small  Domestic Violence State dollar hand out company.   An additional $290,000 plus goes to assistant director.  Non Profit may be in a major profit mode.  More Tax Dollars could go to needy families if not skimmed off for apparent excessive salaries.  Governor Scott takes a look at the 10 year arrangement to give exclusive rights to a small non profit.  This salary seems a bit violent as in excessive taking from the poor and giving to the rich.

Governor Rick Scott, Senator Mike Bennett express shock upon learning about high salaries based on exclusive right to hand out state funds to families in need.  
Governor Scott expresses concern over high salaries for 501 c3 Domestic Violence Group head.
While many local fund raisers are working to keep diapers on children in Domestic Violence Shelters, and the Legislators in Tallahassee have worked over time to fund shelters state wide, some appear to profit too much helping the poor.

Many in the know are supporting Governor Scott in his concern about excessive salaries supported by tax dollars and apparently skimming away much needed support for county domestic violence shelters.  Senator Mike Bennett, R-Bradenton is a strong supporter of Governor Scott.

Senator Alan Hays R-vowed to look into the apparent problem in hopes of solving the seemingly excessive 

Department of Families and Children Speak for Private Company high salries. 
Contacted by the Governor's office in response to concerns by Tax Watch Florida CEO Don Browning, Ms Renee C. Starrett a senior management analysis for the Department of Family and Children indicated that $300,000 plus salary was actually appropriate in her opinion.  Red flags are now popping up around the story first reported by the Tampa Bay Times.  Even the Non Profit Quarterly expressed concerns in a story by Ruth McCambridge.  Governor Jeb Bush gave exclusive control of the $31,000,000 distributed by the State of Florida to 42 county agencies that provide shelter to Domestic Violence Shelters.  


Ocala County may be the answer.  Marion County is losing the battle.  Most Marion Funded programs are now branded Ocala.

Ocala Marion was the start.  Then Marion County was dropped below the line as "Marion County Florida" the home of Ocala.

Ocala is now branded as Ocala Sports Center, Ocala EDC, Ocala CC. Ocala CVB, Ocala Library, Marion County has lost the battle. 

Tea Party Solutions Supports Marion County Lake Weir Kiwanis and the Marion County Sheriff Tuscaloosa Tornado Relief effort.


Marion County EDC recognizes Commission Chairman Stan McClain and fellow commissioners as having an effect on Wasteful Marion County Programs. Carl Zalak and Kathy Bryant are having an impact.

 Citizens gain access.  State of Florida rolls out the information red carpet.  Governor Rick Scott establishes a Right to Know Web Link.
Just in:  Florida Water Management Districts to take a page from Marion County Moto.  Doing more with less, is a top priority for Governor Scott and Secretary Herschel Vinland.
 New accountability program for the 5 Florida Water Districts is in the works. 
Governor Rick Scott and Florida Secretary of State Kurt Browning kick off  500 years of Florida History during Florida Heritage Month.  Tourist industry braces for Celebration of La Florida 500.
 In the time it takes you to read this page, the Federal Government will borrow $50,000,000, mostly from a communist country.
Governor Rick Scott turns down Federal Borrowed Funds.  It is up to our 50 state governors, to turn down federally borrowed funds, especially when our largest lender is communist China.  We will go to lenders for all types of rediculous spending.  Raising taxes is no longer necessary when we can just borrow the money.  We are now creating debt that is approaching 100 % of our national GDP. 

Click picture for more information...
Governor Rick Scott introduces fiscal reform.

The Gross National Debt

Remember: $10 trillion of our national debt, has been borrowed by the current leadership federal leadership, Boehner, Pelosi, and Stearns.  Let's focus on the facts!  It will take 49 other Governors following Governor Rick Scott's lead, to show our congressional leadership how to live without borrowing.  Big government not only lives off borrowed funds, but as government grows regulation grows as well, ending our liberty and killing productivity.



Tax Watch Florida has developed a perspective to help understand the National Debt that has been borrowed only during the past 20 years.

20 years ago, our current leadership in congress, Nancy Pelosi, John Boehner, and Cliff Stearns were new congressmen.  During their time in office they have helped vote in borrowing of $10 Trillion Dollars.

Let's agree to borrow a dollar a day, for as long as it takes to borrow half that amount, or $5 Trillion Dollars.  

According to scientist the universe started 13.7 Billion years ago.  Turning that into days is times 365 days per year, or a bit over 5 trillion days.  

So borrowing a $2 dollars a day since time began, with the Big Bang, would allow us to borrow $10 Trillion Dollars.   We are borrowing over $1 Trillion Dollars per year.  The ship is going down!

Now we have a perspective of how much our current leadership in both parties have borrowed adding to our national debt.

Where were you 20 years ago when our leadership Pelosi, Boehner, and Stearns started borrowing $2 a day since the beginning of time?  Every issue that comes up in federal spending must be borrowed, and that is usually from a communist country.

Write in and tell us what you were doing 20 years ago.  Let's put this National Debt in perspective and assign the responsibility to our elected officials in the House of Representatives who must propose our national budget.

How good of a Job have they been doing over the last 20 years?  Can we afford another 20 years?

I Didn't think So!  

Don Browning 

Executive Director of TaxWatch Florida 

Team Conservation names new Florida Water Czar.  Growth is termed "Sprawl" by those who would kill Economic Growth.  Keep Government out of Urban Promotion.  If people want to live in a city they will.  Water District reform is just around the corner as Governor Rick Scott scores big with the Florida Legislature.  An example of runaway government excess is the South Florida Water District budget that now exceeds $1,000,000,000.  Yes folks you read it right, that is a billion with a Capital "B".  Governor Scott takes aim at wasteful government spending.   “This board is committed to building a budget that is mindful of today’s challenging economic climate yet accomplishes our mission to benefit the environment and quality of life for 7.5 million South Floridians,” said SFWMD Governing Board Chairman Eric Buermann.   Governor Rick Scott will get the final word on the expansion of spending in the Water Districts.


Great living areas such as Del Webb, On Top of The World, and the Villages are labeled as sprawl by the Pro Urban Forces. 

The Gross National Debt

Tax Watch Florida endorses Marion County Commission Candidates Carl Zalak and Kathy Bryant with an A+ Fiscal Management Platform rating.
Commissioner Barbara Fitos receives a "D" rating.  While often eloquently joining in commission debate,  Barbara Fitos has consistently supported the Economic Action Killer, "Springs Protection" ordinances.  Misnamed, the ordinances do not protect the springs but due protect polluting utilities, and help grow bigger government.  The "ordinances" stop healthy development while protecting polluters of the Aquifer and the Springs.  Alachua County Utilities is known for taking the money saving route of dumping processed sewer effluent into the aquifer just up stream from Marion County Springs.  The resulting algae is then blamed on development in Marion County. 

Carl Zalak Addresses the Veterans at the VFW Retirement Home in Ft McCoy Florida. The Future Marion County Commissioner Carl Zalak receives a A+ rating from Tax Watch Florida for his Community Economic Action platform.

SB 550 the new Sewage Law, is a tax on living.  Just like Obama Health Care we now will have to purchase another service by law just because we are alive and excreting daily.  On-Site Sewage Disposal Systems are not second class citizens in the sewer disposal world.  It is usually the City Sewer System that is problematic because of the need to dispose of Millions of Gallons of Sewer Effluent daily.  Historically processed sewer effluent was dumped in rivers, and oceans and other water bodies, often with little processing in the last century.  Currently in Florida the processed sewer effluent can be discharged into the Drinking Water Aquifer.  At this point the EPA is asking for numeric standards and most utilities cannot comply at current sewage loads.  Try adding double or triple the piped in capacity by trucking in sewage from each on site Sewer Disposal System.  Just in Marion County SB550 would bring in 24,000 new customers at the stroke of the Governor's Pen.  Most trucks would have to deliver to City or County Sewer Plants.  Actually, On-Site Sewage Disposal Systems are usually considered superior to City Systems if there is adequate land.   End the Sewage Bounty Tax.  Say No to SB 550.

SB 550 is a POOP Tax.  It is a given that everyone must use the toilet daily, now we will be taxed thousands to haul our sewage from an ON Site Sewer Treatment System to a Urban Sewer Treatment System.  Really what the Utilities want is the income stream by law.  Current "pipe connected customers" are used to secure bonding for utility expansion.  Rural citizens have been out of the reach of Cities and County Utilities.  Now they will be by law, "Truck Connected Customers" and required to pay to Septic Companies who must take their newly acquired sewage to the Utilities.  We now must buy Health Care if we are living, and now in Florida we will have a Sewer Care Tax that we must pay just for living.

 Where pipes to City and County Utilities don't exist we will by law have to pay to truck our poop to the Major Utilities.    All citizens will be asked to pay into a utility industry that is vast and will grow if this new Law is Allowed to Stand.  Capacity will have to more than double at the big sewer plants who currently struggling with their own Processed Sewer Effluent.    Big utilities have a daily problem disposing of Processed Sewer Effluent.  The problem is so big that FDEP approves discharge into any water body that can take the Effluent even the Aquifer.   Septage deposited on the land is not the answer and big utilities will have to grow in order to handle all this pumped waste.  Calculate the volume of pumped sewage and economically the Sewer Utilities, and Septic Tank Industries are the only winners.

Citizens with On-Site Sewage Disposal Systems will have to start supporting City/County Utilities, but the big burden will be on the current Sewer Utility Customers such as Dell Webb, who will have to pay for the increased expansion of their Sewer Provider.

Repeal SB 550 for several reasons.  The bill should never have passed in the first place.   SB 550 will impose an unfunded liability on the citizens of this state.  Those on Septic Systems will have to fund a new pumping, transport, and sewer processing industry.  Septic tank companies, government agencies at all levels regulation and inspection persons and Sewer Treatment Utilities will benefit.

Most People were not informed about SB 550.  It was rushed through as a "last moment measure" on the last day of session.  It was lobbied hard by Cities and Counties with Utilities that need new customers.

Citizens on Sewer Utility Service will be asked to pay for expanded capacity that will be needed to process all the sewage now being processed in On Site Treatment Systems.

SB550 is an unfunded mandate that is not needed by 94% of those impacted by the new law.  The Wekiva Study found only 6% of the nitrates were from Septic Tanks in the main study.  There is no support for this bill outside of the Utility interest, and the anti growth Environmental Groups funded through FDEP's Springs Working Groups.  This seems to be a reaction to the EPA requirement for a Standard for Pollution by utilities in Florida.  As you all know we in Florida have no standard for dumping by utilities into streams, rivers and lakes out side of our TMDL or Total Maximum Daily Load.  The TMDL is a Subjective Standard.  That is The Size of the Water Body determines if dumping should occur.  Florida has no Numeric Standard for water pollution therefor every year millions are spent to direct the blame for water pollution on citizens.  

County Utilities and DOT are the problem because they are struggling with capacity.  Most Experts figure it will cost Utilities and DOT, in Excess of 10 Billion just to set a numeric pollution standards to comply with the Clean Water ACT.   Now is not the time to make these rush decisions.  

Come to Marion County and try out some of the On Site Sewage Disposal Systems and you will be impressed.  Ask the Lobbiest who are for SB 550 and work for utilities who are dumping Sewer Effluenty and Storm Sewer waste in the Aquifer, if they have drunk down a glass of what they are putting in our Aquifer because they can't deal with current capacity.  

 Let's stop Taxing the Little Guy, for living!

Bob Burton named Florida Water Czar by Team Conservation.  More...

Just in: Don Browning fails in race for US Congress District 6.  It is time for an Outsider who understands business to help reform Washington insiders but it will not be Don Browning in the 2010 election. 
Republicans vote to bring back 11 term Congressman Cliff Stearns.  Mounting national debt and a history of funding the Hard Left Liberal Base in District 6 did not seem to matter.  Now the 22 year incumbent faces Independent Steve Schonberg amid ethical questions about stock ownership and federal funding by Stearns.
Debt that is out of control calls for the judgement of an experienced businessman.  
Spending that is out of control calls for the judgement of an experienced businessman.
Reforming an out of control US Congress is job one, is Don Brownings slogan.
View images from the campaign trail.  Winners all, as the process goes on to select our future elected leaders. 

The Marion County Citizens Economic Action Team may be the answer to Straight Talk Solutions.

Tax Payers win!  New Courthouse brought in under budget and on time.  Dr. Lee Niblock, Marion County Administrator, stresses motto of doing more with less.  New Marion County Chamber of Commerce will help unite the hundreds of thousands County Citizens.

Citizens of Florida turn up the heat on Florida Governmental agencies. Senators Dean, Oelrich and Dockery ask important questions about how Utilities are regulated. Discharge from utilities is often allowed because the Florida Aquifer is so vast. Many in government environmental regulation are saddened by being saddled with old dumping procedures. Blaming the public is becoming less of an option.
FDEP recently came clean about sewer dumping from the Silver Springs Zoo. A consent order has been issued stopping the algae growing practice. As landlord of Silver Springs Attraction, FDEP was taking the blame for pollution discharging into Springs waters.
An example of improvement, is the new People's Water Czar. No cost to the taxpayers, the Water Czar is out to represent ordinary people. Watch out when a government agency says," we must educate the public". Follow the benefits to ordinary folks from the new Florida Water Czar.

The People are ready for less Spin from government agencies. An example of improvement, the effort from Senator Paula Dockery and Senator Charlie Dean. Making state agencies more accountable can come at no cost to the taxpayers. Even the Water Czar is out to represent ordinary people at no cost. Watch out when a government agency says," we must educate the public". Follow the benefits to ordinary folks from the new Florida Water Czar.

Visit Springs Protection . Com for the latest in Environmental News.

Viisit Tax Watch Florida. Org for additional up to date information on Florida Tax issues.

Secretary of DEP Mike Sole, "Protecting Florida’s springs means ensuring that water entering the aquifer is free
from pollutants."  Sec. Sole seems to be interested in Outing the Utilities who dump over 90% of the Nitrates into our springs.

Actually, Secretary Sole promotes a Guide Book for Protecting Springs in Florida designed to help amend local Land Use Plans that must be sent to Tallahassee for approval.

Controlling the Florida Growth Economy is the Goal.   The Goal should be to identify nitrite dumping and help fix the springs.

Few people know that drinking water can contain up to 10 parts per million of Nitrogen, but in a spring 1 part per million is trouble.  DEP uses the ploy of saying the sewer discharge is 10 parts per million when they know that 1 part per million is distroying our springs.

"A manual issued by the Florida Departments of Community Affairs and
Environmental Protection, entitled Protecting Florida’s Springs, Land Use Planning
Strategies and Best Management Practices (called “Springs Protection Manual”)
provides important information for the local government setting out to implement
provisions to protect springs and springsheds in its jurisdiction. "


The Spring Protection Elements in the DCA Manual are excellent and would be effective if they applied to Utilities who do 90% of the dumping.

Read the Manual.  See the deception of the FDEP springs protection program.  Note how the millions spend of tax payers dollars are used to redirect attention away from Utilities.


EPA is helping Florida set standards to get past the old bad management practices.  Recently EPA directed that FDEP at least set standards for Nitrate dumping.  This will affect utilities.  FDEP and Secretary Mike Sole are fighting the order but this editor hopes EPA will win and we will get standards.

Editor: Tax Watch Florida


Don Browning

Tax Watch Florida is the Environmental Blog to help restroe a healthy economy in Florida.

Don Browning Environmental Artist and Author, Editor

Tomorrows Astronauts study Earth Science. NASA and Space Florida are on the leading edge of Education and Economic Development. More.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Silver Springs Attaction is told to stop discharging animal sewage to Springs.

FDEP has forcefully addressed the long standing problem of collection and discharge of animal waste into the Silver Springs Attraction waters.  Environmentalist Don Browning felt the people of Marion County were unfairly being blamed for algae growth in Silver and other springs.

The Sewer Plant serving Gainesville to the north of Silver Springs is the next on the list to have to clean up its act.  Processed Sewage Effluent is growing to be a big threat to the Florida Drinking Water Aquifer.  Vast and easy to hide pollutants in, the Aquifer is becoming polluted by Utility discharge on a daily basis.


The Federal EDP is asking Florida to adopt a standard for pollutants before discharging into water bodies.

Currently under a maximum daily load system a body of water can be big enough to take all the pollutants utilities need to discharge.  The new standards will look at what is being discharged.


Big improvement to have standards.  imagine a highway where the speed is determined by what the road can take, or a driver who can drink as much as he or she seems to be able to take.  Not hardly.


We will keep you informed of progress.


Don Browning


12:37 am est 

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Processed Sewer Waste Discharged into the Aquifer Polluting our Springs. Can we afford to fix or even admit what Utilities are dumping?

Tax Watch Florida askes if we should be spending millions of tax payer's dollars to cover up the discharge of Processed Sewer Waste into the Aquifer.  Kanapaha, University of Florida, Orlando Utilities near the Wekiva Springs are just a few examples.  Rapid Drainage Basins and many other dump techniques are sending 200 million gallons of processed Sewer Waste into our drinking water daily.

FDEP, Florida Department of Environmental Protection has grown to over 2 Billion in size annually.  They spend millions promoting a fiction that the source of nitrate contamination is not known.  Web sites paid for by taxpayers consistently ask for education of the public to save the springs from nitrates.

A network of DCA, Water Districts, Acorn type Community Action groups of hired workers work to spread a message that it is the public who is causing problems in our springs.  Homeowners are blamed for fertilizer use in their yards.  Warnings that nutrients might somehow get into the water supply are on billboards, Web sites, Radio Adds, and never does the FDEP divulge that they routinely authorize Millions of Gallons of sewer waste to be discharged at all levels of the aquifer.

Google Springs Protection, number 2 on the page is the Multi million dollar publication by Division of Community Affairs that blames the people of Florida for the sewage and storm sewer nitrates that are dumped by DEP approved public utilities.

There is even a spin put on supporting utilities as the best way to protect the over 700 springs of Florida.  Never is it listed in the message that to save money, utilities use underground streams to drain Processed Sewer waste, or Storm Sewer waste.  Alachua County is a great example at the sink hole used by Gainesville and other Alachua cities to drain away Storm Sewer Waste.  

A list of water bodies goes on and on.  BMP's are used to justify the practice of dumping.  Bad Management Practices have been around for years, and now are used to justify utility dumping.  BMP's name was cleverly changed to BEST Management Practices, in an attempt to discuise the dumping.  

Tax Payers are beginning to wonder if Government can be trusted.  This Editor of the TAX WATCH FLORIDA is asking the Legislature to look at the entire deception effort to protect utility dumping practices.

If we have to dump to save money, then lets just admit what we are doing as a society.  There is no reason to spend millions to put a happy face spin on the biggest pollution source in Florida.

Google "Aquifer Recharge" and you will find very coded messages about dumping by authorized utilities.

In Senator Constantine's district the Senator who is attempting to address Springs Protection you will find the map blotted out by drains of contamination very near the Weikive.  The largest is 50 million gallons daily at Orlando listed as beneficial recharge.

 Your Editor Don Browning

Tax Watch Florida . Com

Protecting your tax dollar

11:35 am edt 

Monday, October 12, 2009

10 times what should be allowed is dumped daily in our Aquifer

FDEP has been operating for years with out standards for dumping sewage and storm sewer runoff into clean aquifer water.


It makes no sense, but it is true.  Annually some senator attempts to set regulation on the parties who are causing algae in Florida's Springs.


Never have they pointed the finger of blame at Florida's Environmental Protection Department.  Now the word is out.  EPA is requiring standards on the utilities that FDEP has been allowing to skate by with 1000% times the nitrogen level in sewer discharge than springs could stand.

 Millions in tax dollars are lost each year covering up the scam to dump Million of Gallons of Sewer Effluent daily into the aquifer just above Silver Springs.


Sink hole use, Drainage Wells, with names like, "Beneficial Recharge" cause the damage to our springs while FDEP collects millions to divert attention away from the really big polluters. 


11:11 pm edt 

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ocala and Marion County Admit to Polluting Springs.

Storm Sewer officials admitted this week to polluting Silver and Rainbow Springs.  Storm Drains are going straight into rivers and springs.  Sink Holes are used to drain Hundreds of Acres of Ocala and Alachua County.


Marion County Engineer took considerable heat this week when she went back to the old "We must educate the Public" chant.  The public knows better than dumping into our water supply.  No person in the general public has drilled a pipe into the ground water to dump unwanted polluted runoff.


DEP is being asked to look into the years of pollution that did not show up on scientific studies to deternine why the Springs were in such bad shape.

The same scientist get the study contracts year after year, and the same cover up occurs.  No Site Point Pollution is occurring the scientist report states. 

Now we know that at 30 points the City of Ocala must stop dumping the collected storm sewer water into the Aquifer.  We now may be able to clear up Silver and Rainbow Springs.


Don Browning, Environmental Reporter.

1:09 am edt 

Sunday, July 12, 2009

St Johns Water Management District Approves Sink Hole Pollution

Most Citizens are aware that dumping pollutants into a Sink Hole is a good way to contaminate the Aquifer we all use for our drinking water source.  Most environmentalist are stunned to learn that a new practice has developed to allow dumping into the aquifer. 

Ocala Florida is a prime example.  Fix Storm-water . Com was first to break the news about the Sink Holes used at the 17th street Storm Sewer Project.  A Water Retention Pond was dug around a sink hole.  In order to disguise the sink hole, tons of broken concrete slab hunks were dumped over the Sink Hole to hide it from public view.

Environmentalist Don Browning asked authorities to build a fence around the sink hole to keep children from being swept into the aquifer during a rain storm.

St Johns Water Management spokesman Dave Fisk explained that if a sink hole is involved in new construction it is allowed to feed storm sewer pollution into the drinking water Aquifer.  When asked why a long standing Sink Hole on Highway 475 was the target for receiving Storm Sewer Runoff, Dave Fisk explained that the use of the Sink hole as a drain for the storm sewer was long standing and therefor "Grandfathered" as allowable.

 Recent Environmental Studies of Silver Springs funded by St Johns fail to mention the Sink Hole dumping as a primary source for pollution.  Also missing from the much critized study are the 28 drainage wells at dump billions of gallons of polluted high nutrient storm sewer runoff directly into the ground water feeding Silver Springs less than 5 to 10 miles away.


When a Tax Payer funded organization investigates itself, it is very likely to cover up serious problems.


St Johns Water Management District agents recently targeted the Lake Eustis Sailing Club for adding gravel to their gravel drive way.  The Drive Way still soaks up rain as it has always done, however St Johns officials have targeted the club for costly storm water engineering work.  This approach is all to common.  St Johns investigates it self and consistently finds that it has a double standard but that is alright because they said so.  Sailors at Lake Eustis have asked for help at all levels of Florida Government.  What science and engineering allows as lawful for one group should be applied to all groups.  Stay tuned for the latest as Environmentalist Artist brings you the Rest of the Story, as Paul Harvey would say!


12:48 pm edt 

Friday, November 21, 2008

Florida Legislators and Governor Crist link up with Florida's Civic leaders.

By adopting bipartisan Energy and Economic development legislation, House and Senate leaders are ready to tackle revenue issues with more effecient spending and a stronger tax base.  Juice up the economy to help spread the load is the cry from leadership.  With out a viberent economy little can be done to fund effective government services.


Plugging holes in the boat is a great analogy.  DEP is looking at a Springs Protection Inititative that had grown out of control with run away spending.   In 1999 the legislature asked for study of Florida's Springs.  Initially, this was a good idea, however companies have grown use to annual contracts for what is known as "Working Groups". 

DEP has always been able to coodinate meetings and produce spokesmen for environmental issues. With a over developed Springs Inititive Program that had grown to a $16,000,000 annual request, spokesmen are being hired to travel to spring venues and hold meetings with other government employees.  They all are knowledgeable about springs and the value of keeping them clean, however the State of Florida found it self spending millions of Dollars holding meetings to discuss how to reduce development in Florida.


In Marion County, Silver Springs has a working group, Rainbow Springs has a Working Group that now cost the State Millions in meeting costs.  Centered on the idea that development is not good for the Springs, Pandion Systems of Alachua County Florida has grown dramatically over the years coordinating stratagies to slow or halt Development in Marion and surrounding counties. 


Effective at stopping development.

With national and world housing markets tanking, now is not the time to hire anti-development coodinators to speak for the Department of Environmental Protection.   The contracted housing market is doing a wonderful job of stoping the economy in Florida.  We don't need to add fuel to the fire.


Tell your legislator that they are on the right track in canceling all spending to stop development in Florida.

 Springs Protection Reform is needed.  DEP has the man power to speak directly to the people.  As for meetings with fellow workers, meetings with themselves is little more than a day off for State, District and county/city workers.  A recent meeting in Dunnellon Florida included upwards of 20 government staffers and only civilians on the program.

In Marion County Commissioners are beginning to ask workers to actually stop pollution and stop wasteful meetings.   Stoping pollution in Marion County is important because the City of Ocala alone has 2 sink holes and 28 drainage pipes dumping directly into the groundwater near Silver Springs.


Many Government types are not happy to hear the call to actually clean up pollution sources rather than continue talking about problems in the springs.  One 5 year study actually voiced concerns about pollution but would not mention major dumping sites that actually emptied pollution a few feet from the famous 1200 meter testing station on the Silver River.

Legislative leaders are learning that more laws don't clean up the pollution.  DOT and DEP leadership is doing a great deal to kill these old ineffective programs.


Write to Ray Melenson at: Director@Marion Springs Protection . Com

4:22 pm est 

2010.02.01 | 2009.10.01 | 2009.08.01 | 2009.07.01 | 2008.11.01

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Florida Tax Watch is helping Florida Agencies become more appropriate to their mission.  Often Government Agencies go off mission and have a difficult time getting back on track.  When complaints are made, often these agencies investigate themselves.  Example:  DEP, the Department of Environmental Protection is the land lord of the Silver Springs Attraction Property in Marion County Florida.  DEP is also in charge of Springs Protection for the State of Florida.  Complaints by environmentalist and even the Marion County Commission about pollution at the attraction have been actually defended by DEP as not significant or too small to be considered important. 

Dumping of Zoo Sewerage into the Lagoon at the Silver Springs Attraction covered up as a source for many years, of increased Algae Bloom in Silver Springs.  Millions in Tax Payers funding for Springs Protection is wasted because it is difficult or impossible to get a clear hearing on the subject.  An Agency should never investigate it self, is a principle that is well established in Florida Law.

Complaints about DEP stewardship of Silver Springs are referred to DEP to investigate.  It is not difficult to imagine that DEP does not find the agency or its tenant at fault in polluting Silver Springs.


Environmentalist Don Browning has asked for reform.  St Johns River Water Management District also investigates its self to the detriment of the Florida Tax Payers and the Environment.

No other pollution source even comes close.  Regulated dumping into the aquifer is approved and regulated by the FDEP officials who fully understand that the utilities dump 10 times what we find in the springs.  No wonder the springs are experiencing increased nutrients.

Drainage Wells are a disaster for Florida Water.
Utilities use drainage wells and pump powered Drains to the aquifer. It hurts everyone.