Board approves Final Order adopting judge’s recommended order for Sleepy Creek water use

PALATKA, Fla., Jan. 9, 2018 — The St. Johns River Water Management District’s Governing Board on Tuesday entered a Final Order adopting an administrative law judge’s recommended order to issue a consumptive use permit modification to Sleepy Creek Lands LLC.

The permit modification authorizes an increase of 1.22 million gallons of groundwater per day (mgd) from the Upper Floridan aquifer for the irrigation of improved pasture and other crops, livestock watering and commercial/industrial use for a limited duration of 2018 through 2023. To ensure that the use will comply with the recently adopted Silver Springs minimum flows and levels (MFLs), the permitted allocation will reduce back to the current allocation of 1.46 mgd in years 2024 through 2034.

Sleepy Creek provided reasonable assurances that its application met all applicable conditions for its requested permit modification and demonstrated that the withdrawals will not cause harmful hydrologic alterations to water resources in the area, including wetlands and springs. The applicant’s water conservation plan includes proposed installation of high efficiency irrigation system, water audits, rainfall shutoff sensors, on-site weather station, use of a professional water conservation consultant, daily maintenance inspections and other measures.