District proclaims April 2019 as Springs Protection Awareness Month

A group of people standing next to a poster

Left to right: Board member Ron Howse, Assistant Executive Director Lisa A. Kelley, Board members John Miklos, Douglas Burnett, Douglas Bournique, Susan Dolan, Janet Price and Allan Roberts, District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle, Board member Fred Roberts and Director of the Division of Water and Land Resources Dr. Erich Marzolf.

A group of people standing next to a poster

Left to right: Board member Ron Howse, Assistant Executive Director Lisa A. Kelley, Board members John Miklos, Douglas Burnett, Douglas Bournique, Susan Dolan, Janet Price and Allan Roberts, District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle, Board member Fred Roberts and Director of the Division of Water and Land Resources Dr. Erich Marzolf.

PALATKA, Fla., March 12, 2019 ― For the sixth consecutive year, the St. Johns River Water Management District’s Governing Board has approved a proclamation designating April as Springs Protection Awareness Month. The annual designation helps increase awareness about the importance of Florida’s springs and encourages residents and stakeholders to participate in the protection of springs.

“Over the past five years, the District has co-funded 114 projects to protect our Outstanding Florida Springs.” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle. “By approving this proclamation, the Governing Board continues to demonstrate the agency’s commitment to science-based projects that help to ensure our springs are protected.”

The district has worked with other agencies for many years through various programs to increase knowledge and understanding about the region’s springs, while also working to protect springs systems. Since 2014, through district cost-share programs, the district has contributed more than $56.6 million toward vital springs protection projects, resulting in more than 79 million gallons per day of groundwater withdrawal offsets and alternative water supply. These projects also have reduced total nitrogen loading in the vicinity of priority spring systems by more than 1 million pounds per year and total phosphorus loading by 166,000 pounds per year.

Rep. Charles “Chuck” Clemons, R-Newberry, recently introduced HR 8007 recognizing April 2019 as Springs Protection Awareness Month in Florida. For the past six years, water management districts across the state have joined the Legislature in recognizing the importance of increasing public awareness about the importance of springs and encouraging behaviors that will enhance springs protection.

Visit www.sjrwmd.com/springs for more information about the district’s work to protect springs.