• Civic Association Director George Cohon Speaks About Leadership to Town Public Safety Team
  • Year in Review: Anti-Terrorism Drill Held at Port of Palm Beach [Video]
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  • This Week in Palm Beach Video 12-8-2017
  • This Week in Palm Beach - December 8, 2017

 

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Civic Association Director George Cohon Speaks About Leadership to Town Public Safety Team
By Michele Dargan, Special for the Civic Association -- Nothing can take the place of persistence in achieving success, says George Cohon, senior chairman and founder of McDonald’s in Canada and Russia.
Year in Review: Anti-Terrorism Drill Held at Port of Palm Beach [Video]
Year-In-Review: There was a massive show of force at the Port of Palm Beach Monday.
This Week in Palm Beach Video 12-8-2017
The Civic Association is proud to announce an overview of This Week in Palm Beach on video with news correspondent Christina Noce. See the video below and let us know what you think!
UPDATE 12-8-2017 1:00 PM: Presidential Visit this Weekend
Beginning at approximately 1:00 PM on Friday, December 8, 2017, the process of closing roadways around Mar-A-Lago will be initiated. The closure will be in effect through Sunday, December 10, 2017. [Updates in Red]
This Week in Palm Beach - December 8, 2017
Get the news that is important to you in This Week in Palm Beach. December 8, 2017 edition. Click Here To See Original Full E-Newsletter
This Week in Palm Beach - December 1, 2017
Get the news that is important to you in This Week in Palm Beach. December 1, 2017 edition. Click Here To See Original Full E-Newsletter
Bradley Park Beautification Ribbon Cutting Scheduled
The Preservation Floundation gave a presentation this week to the Civic Association Beautification Committee on the Bradley Park transformation project.
Worth Ave. Christmas Tree Lighting Celebration in Palm Beach [Video]
The Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony on Worth Ave. was attended by hundreds this week and included Santa riding in on a Fastboats Marine Group speedboat.
Top Stories
Civic Association Director George Cohon Speaks About Leadership to Town Public Safety Team
Posted by R. Michael Brown
Published: Thursday, 14 December 2017 13:00

By Michele Dargan, Special for the Civic Association -- Nothing can take the place of persistence in achieving success, says George Cohon, senior chairman and founder of McDonald’s in Canada and Russia.

He should know. It took Mr. Cohon 14 years to ink a deal with the Russian government, allowing him to open the first McDonald’s there in 1990.

Despite obstacles along the way, he persisted in pursuing avenues and making connections until his idea came to fruition.

“There are 650 McDonald’s restaurants in Russia today and 50,000 Russian employees,” he said. “It’s a Russian success story.” Or, as Mr. Cohon refers to it, “Hamburger Diplomacy.”

A Civic Association Director and member of the executive committee, Mr. Cohon spoke to more than 30 members of the police and fire departments Monday as part of the Town of Palm Beach Public Safety Leadership Series. The series is designed to have community leaders share their success stories in an effort to help develop future department leaders.

The noon meeting, held in the Society of the Four Arts’ Dixon Education Building, was catered by McDonald’s. Mr. Cohon, 80, grew up on the south side of Chicago in a rough neighborhood. He graduated from Drake University in Iowa and Northwestern University School of Law. “Part of my success is because of what I learned on the south side of Chicago,” Mr. Cohon said. “I learned street smarts there. Ray Kroc, our founder, had a great saying, ‘None of us is as good as all of us.’ Together you do things.

All the successes that I’ve had in my life, and I’ve been very fortunate, is because of the people working together with me. No one person does it. Too often the CEO or the founder gets too much of the credit, but I try to pass the credit around, which is what we all should do.”

After graduating from law school, Mr. Cohon realized that he hated practicing law. “Look forward to coming to work each day,” he said. “If you’re in a job and you’re not looking forward to what you’re doing, you’re in the wrong job. Get up in the morning and go to work with an energy. If you’re burned out in what you’re doing, change jobs. Be happy in what you’re doing.”

It was through a client who wanted to buy a McDonald’s franchise that Mr. Cohon met Ray Kroc. When the deal with Mr. Cohon’s client fell through, Mr. Kroc offered a franchising opportunity for Eastern Canada to Mr. Cohon for $70,000. Mr. Cohon borrowed the money, moved his family to Canada and opened his first restaurant in London, Ontario in 1968.

“You build the company one store at a time and you never forget that the customer is the most important person in your life,” he said. “You exist because of the customer.” It was in 1976 that he received a call from the Canadian government, asking to borrow his customized Greyhound bus to entertain the Russians during the summer Olympics in Montreal that year. The next Olympics in 1980 was going to be held in Moscow and the Russian delegation (called the Soviet Union at the time) was going to be in Montreal.

While walking in Montreal with his family, Mr. Cohon saw his bus with the Russian diplomats coming out of the bus. He wanted to meet them, but was stopped by an official who told him that he needed to go through the Protocol Department in Ottawa in order to meet them.

“I told him, ‘the protocol is that I own the bus,’” Mr. Cohon said. One of the Russians understood English and they all wanted to thank Cohon for loaning them the bus. They invited him to dinner. Mr. Cohon said that he would go to dinner with them, but first wanted to stop off for a snack. He took them to McDonald’s.

“They had seen a McDonald’s and never heard of it,” he said. “They fell in love with it.” Mr. Cohon asked the Russians how they thought McDonald’s would do if he opened one in the Soviet Union.

They thought it would be successful, Mr. Cohon said. “That was the entry point for getting McDonald’s into the Soviet Union,” he said. “Everyone thinks we plotted it and it was some Machiavellian scheme. What really happened was, ‘the protocol is I own the bus,’ and that started the dialogue.

GeorgeCohonPublicSafety w800

“Understand what was going on in 1976 between the United States and the Soviet Union,” he said. “President Ronald Reagan is saying it’s the evil empire. It’s the heart of the Cold War. It’s Communism versus Capitalism and I went into this country during all that. I never viewed them as the enemy. I never was afraid when I was there.” Mr. Cohon said he and his team met with anyone who would meet with them to try and get the first McDonald’s open in Moscow in time for the 1980 Olympic Games.

By 1979, Mr. Cohon thought he had a deal in hand after he met an athlete on the Soviet basketball team, who said he could help facilitate it. Mr. Cohon said he was holed up in a hotel room for 17 days waiting to ink the deal. “After 17 days, I thought I was going in for a signing ceremony and the look on his face told me that the deal was dead,” Mr. Cohon said. “This is after spending five years of my life and millions of dollars.”

During this time, Mr. Cohon read a favorite inspirational piece of Mr. Kroc’s called “Press On.” The takeaway is that persistence and determination pay off in the end. Mr. Cohon became friends with Alexander Yakovlev, the Soviet Ambassador to Canada, who told him “the ideology will change.”

After spending four million dollars, the McDonald’s board of directors were pessimistic that he would ever be able to open a McDonald’s in the Soviet Union. Mr. Cohon heard things like: “You’ll never get good employees, because the Russians are not service oriented. You won’t be able to build nice buildings. You won’t be able to get product there and you won’t make money.”

When Mikhail Gorbachev came into power, Mr. Yakovlev was called back to the Soviet Union and was put in a high position in the government with his office right next to Mr. Gorbachev’s. Mr. Yakovlev put Mr. Cohon in touch with the Mayor of Moscow, which started the breakthrough and eventually sealed the deal.

The McDonald’s in Moscow opened on Jan. 21, 1990. There were 10,000 people waiting in line by 6:30 a.m. The restaurant served 34,000 that day, the most ever served at any McDonald’s in one day. It’s a record that’s stands to this day.

In 1999, Mr. Cohon published a book that recounts his path to getting McDonald’s into the former Soviet Union called, “To Russia With Fries.” The book was a bestseller.

Mr. Gorbachev, who became a friend of Mr. Cohon’s, wrote the forward. Mr. Cohon gave a book to each of the public safety employees who attended his talk.

Mr. Cohon became a Canadian citizen in 1975 and lives in Toronto and Palm Beach with his wife of 57 years, Susan. They have two sons and three grandchildren.

In 2009, Mr. Cohon received the Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship. He’s received the highest public service award from three continents. Among other awards, he’s an officer of the Order of Canada for outstanding service to his country; he received the Order of Ontario; he was awarded Russia’s Order of Friendship and he received the Israel Prime Minister Medal.

Mr. Cohon said it’s important to him to do charitable work. He is the founder of Ronald McDonald House Charities in Canada and in Russia and a founding patron of Ronald McDonald Houses.

Mr. Cohon left the attendees of Monday’s seminar with a piece of advice. “Check your ego at the door,” he said. “It’s not an easy thing to do. But if you check your ego at the door and realize that none of us is as good as all of us, you’ll get along better in life.”

 

Top Stories
Year in Review: Anti-Terrorism Drill Held at Port of Palm Beach [Video]
Posted by R. Michael Brown
Published: Tuesday, 12 December 2017 12:48

Year-In-Review: There was a massive show of force at the Port of Palm Beach Monday.

Local, state, and federal law enforcement practiced their response to a terrorist attack. It's called "Operation Guardian." Click to see video below:

WPTV-NBC5 [2:01]

 

Officers participated in active-shooter drills, hostage situations, and dealing with violent protesters.

About 350 officers from eight different agencies took part in the training.

"When an incident happens like you have in Orlando or Fort Lauderdale Airport, more than one agency is going to be involved and we have to know how each other works," said Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw.

Bradshaw said the training is more important than ever because President Trump is making Palm Beach County his part-time home.

See More (WPTV-NBC5)

Top Stories
This Week in Palm Beach Video 12-8-2017
Posted by R. Michael Brown
Published: Friday, 08 December 2017 14:00

The Civic Association is proud to announce an overview of This Week in Palm Beach on video with news correspondent Christina Noce. See the video below and let us know what you think!

The video will be distributed on social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and others. Follow us!  

Click video to play it - Civic Association This Week in Palm Beach Overview [3:29]

Click Here to See a Web Version of This Week in Palm Beach


Click Here to Subscribe to This Week in Palm Beach

 

Tell us what you think!  Contact Mike Brown, Communications Director at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Transportation
UPDATE 12-8-2017 1:00 PM: Presidential Visit this Weekend
Posted by R. Michael Brown
Published: Friday, 08 December 2017 10:30

Beginning at approximately 1:00 PM on Friday, December 8, 2017, the process of closing roadways around Mar-A-Lago will be initiated. The closure will be in effect through Sunday, December 10, 2017. [Updates in Red]

The FAA issued flight restrictions for the area around Palm Beach from 11 p.m. Friday to 9:30 a.m. Saturday. A separate FAA notice restricts flights in the area from 2:30 p.m. Saturday to 6 p.m. Sunday. The president is expected to arrive late Friday night from a rally in Pensacola. On Saturday the president will head to Mississippi and back in the afternoon. 

Expect the usual roadblocks around Mar-a-Lago from Friday through Sunday:

Mar a LagoRoadBlock w600

Other FAA advisories were issued for weekend trips to Pensacola on Friday, and Jackson, Miss., on Saturday so be on the lookout for several presidential motorcades and additional temporary road closures in the area.

From the Town of Palm Beach:

It is recommended that all household staff, landscaper maintenance companies, pool companies, etc. adjust their schedules accordingly so as not to spend an unnecessary amount of time in traffic due to the 1 PM closure.

As always, motorists are strongly encouraged to refrain from cellular phone use or any other distractions while driving to assist in the movement of traffic.

During the closure period, all forms of travel, including pedestrian travel, are prohibited on S. Ocean Blvd from the intersection of S. County Road to Southern Boulevard. The travel restrictions will also extend eastward to the ocean.

If you are a resident living south of the South Ocean Blvd. and South County intersection you will be granted access with proper credentials.

Traffic heading east on Southern Boulevard will only be allowed to exit right at the roundabout to South Ocean Boulevard. Northbound travelers on South Ocean Boulevard will exit onto westbound Southern Boulevard.

Anyone traveling south on South County Road or South Ocean Boulevard will be redirected north at the intersection of those roads.

As a reminder, commercial vehicles (including landscaping trucks) are prohibited from traveling east on Southern Blvd and North of the 1200 block of S. Ocean.

Marine security zones will be in effect during this period.

Press

President in Palm Beach: Ninth Visit Comes with New Wrinkles

President Donald Trump’s upcoming visit to Mar-a-Lago should feature the least disruptive arrival motorcade of his presidency and a brief Saturday reprieve for weekend pilots who are grounded when the president is in town.

Trump, whose eight previous presidential visits have often snarled rush hour traffic between Palm Beach International Airport and his tropical White House, isn’t expected to arrive on Air Force One until 11 p.m. or later Friday night.

Read More (Palm Beach Daily News)

Top Stories
This Week in Palm Beach - December 8, 2017
Posted by Stephan Nilson
Published: Thursday, 07 December 2017 17:12

Get the news that is important to you in This Week in Palm Beach. December 8, 2017 edition.

Click Here To See Original Full E-Newsletter

Active ShooterTo subscribe to This Week in Palm Beach and receive it in your inbox, CLICK HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This Week in Palm Beach
This Week in Palm Beach - December 1, 2017
Posted by Stephan Nilson
Published: Friday, 01 December 2017 15:54

Get the news that is important to you in This Week in Palm Beach. December 1, 2017 edition.

Click Here To See Original Full E-Newsletter

AnglerAveTo subscribe to This Week in Palm Beach and receive it in your inbox, CLICK HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top Stories
Bradley Park Beautification Ribbon Cutting Scheduled
Posted by R. Michael Brown
Published: Friday, 01 December 2017 10:41

The Preservation Floundation gave a presentation this week to the Civic Association Beautification Committee on the Bradley Park transformation project.

A Ribbon Cutting ceremony to re-open the park is scheduled for Tuesday, December 12, 2017 at 9 a.m.

Over the summer of 2017, the Preservation Foundation transformed Bradley Park through a $2.7 million project that fully realized Colonel E.R. Bradley’s vision for a town-serving park along the shore of Lake Worth. Enhancements include a quarter-mile-long meandering stone dust path that incorporates benches and leads pedestrians through a series of exhibition gardens separated by tall Podocarpus hedges.

The presentation to the Civic Assocition was given by Amanda H. Skier, Preservation Foundation Executive Director, and Brian Vertesch, SMI Landscape Architecture.

Read More (Preservation Foundation)

Top Stories
Worth Ave. Christmas Tree Lighting Celebration in Palm Beach [Video]
Posted by R. Michael Brown
Published: Thursday, 30 November 2017 09:22

The Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony on Worth Ave. was attended by hundreds this week and included Santa riding in on a Fastboats Marine Group speedboat.

Mary Robosson, VP of the Palm Beach Civic Association, was there for the celebration and recorded a video on her cellphone. The directors and staff at the Civic Association wish you a very Happy Holidays!

SantaFastBoat w300
Photo: Andres Leiva / Palm Beach Daily News

Civic Association Video [45 sec.]

2017 Worth Ave. Christmas Tree Lighting in Palm Beach from Palm Beach Civic Association on Vimeo.

The Worth Ave. Association holds the event every holiday season. 

 

News

Tree lightings mark the beginning of the season in Palm Beach

Palm Beach kicked off the Christmas season Tuesday night as two town trees were ceremoniously lit.

Read More (Palm Beach Daily News)

 

 

 

By Michele Dargan, Special Report from the Civic Association.

When foul-smelling blue-green algae coated Treasure Coast waterways just days before the Fourth of July holiday, Florida officials scrambled to respond.

Although the slime surfaced in parts of Palm Beach County, including the island, it wasn’t close to the magnitude suffered by Martin and St. Lucie counties.

State and federal officials scrambled trying to rectify the situation.

The algae in Palm Beach was seen from the south end of town to the Lake Worth Inlet, said Deputy Town Manager Jay Boodheshwar.

“The highest concentrations were in the Ibis Isle/Sloans Curve area, which is in close approximation to C-51 canal discharge point,” Mr. Boodheshwar said.

Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency in four counties, including Palm Beach, and the Army Corps of Engineers decreased the flow of water out of Lake Okeechobee into the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie estuaries to try and stop the spread of the algae blooms, which thrive in fresh water containing nutrients phosphorous and nitrogen.

This year was the perfect storm for a widespread bloom to occur, scientists say. Large amounts of winter and spring rain combined with the nutrients in the lake formed blooms; while, at the same time, the water rose so high from the rain that the water needed to be released in order to prevent the dike from bursting.

Last weekend, the Corps further reduced the amount of water flowing from Lake Okeechobee.

Image: Blue-green algae polluting waters up and down the Florida coasts.

BLUE GREEN ALGAE 600

“As a result of water releases, drier conditions and decreased inflows, the lake level has started to recede,” Col. Jason Kirk, the Corps Jacksonville district commander said in a statement. "Although the lake is still high for this time of year, current conditions are providing us with the opportunity to further reduce discharges and bring some degree of relief to the estuaries experiencing above normal seasonal algal blooms."

The Corps must keep water levels in the lake down, while it continues to reinforce areas of the aging 143-mile aging Herbert Hoover Dike surrounding Lake Okeechobee. Since 2007, the Corps has spent more than $500 million in improvements to prevent the dike from bursting, according to the Corps’ website.

The South Florida Water Management District authorized storing additional water in the Upper Kissimmee Chain of Lakes north of the lake and in Florida Power and Light’s cooling pond at the Martin Clean Energy Center.

Last weekend, the Corps further reduced the amount of water flowing from Lake Okeechobee.

Susan Gray, an ecologist with the South Florida Water Management District, said algae blooms remain in Lake Okeechobee and the St. Lucie Estuary. There are small patches of algae - off and on - in the Lake Worth Lagoon, she said.

 “The initial bloom in the lake was 33 square miles and now it’s about a hundred square miles, but it’s patchy and streaky now as opposed to a continuous mass,” she said. “On a body of water as large as Lake Okeechobee you can’t treat it or move it around. If this is the type producing toxins and you break it up, it releases toxins into the water.”

Measurements from the algae in Palm Beach County show little or no toxins, she said.

The Lake Worth Lagoon is less likely to see an algae breakout of a large magnitude because the lagoon has “more tidal exchange” and less amounts of freshwater coming into it, Ms. Gray said. 

Lisa Interlandi, a senior staff attorney with the Everglades Law Center, spoke at the July 12 meeting of the Palm Beach Town Council.  

Ms. Interlandi asked the council to draft a resolution that would move up the timetable for building a water storage facility south of Lake Okeechobee.

Council members directed staff to work on a resolution that would be ready for review at the August meeting.

Peter Antonacci, executive director of the South Florida Water Management District, also spoke at the council meeting.

“There’s no silver bullet,” he said.

Many factors, including the amount of nutrients in the water, the rate of water flow into the estuaries, and the hot weather, contribute to outbreaks of algae blooms, Mr. Antonacci said.

The district owns 105,000 acres of land north of the lake, but is waiting for agreements to be inked to determine a schedule for building reservoirs, he said

The district has a schedule of approximately 50 different projects that will help with keeping Florida’s waterways clean, but it will take anywhere from 25 to 50 years and cost $8 to 12 billion, Mr. Antonacci said.  

Gaston Cantenz, vice president of corporate relations for Florida Crystals, responded to environmentalists who are calling for the state to buy more land, south of the lake, in the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA). Since the mid-1990’s, 107,000 acres of farmland in the EAA have been acquired for Everglades restoration, Cantenz said.

“We just lost 42,000 acres three short years ago,” Cantenz said. “Now they want 15 percent of the entire farming basin on top of the 107,000 we’ve already lost. Two sugar mills have already shutdown over that time and those jobs and that economic activity in the Glades region has been lost.”

There are five storm water treatment areas that are operational in the Everglades Agricultural Area and are built on former farmland, Mr. Cantenz said. Those areas have treated more than 16 million acre-feet of water and reduced phosphorous in the water by more than 80 percent, according to the South Florida Water Management newsletter.

In 2014, there was a breakout of algae blooms without any water releases from Lake Okeechobee, according to a June 2016 fact sheet from the South Florida Water Management District.

“The nutrients and fresh water that can fuel growth of naturally occurring blue-green algae also comes from local storm water runoff and septic tanks,” according to the district’s fact sheet.

Mr. Cantenz pointed to information from Martin County’s Comprehensive Plan, which cited a 2013 breakout of algae blooms in the St. Lucie River and Indian River Lagoon and attributed it to – in part – “on-site sewage treatment and disposal systems.”

Gov. Scott has proposed new funding for a 50/50 matching grant program for communities that are affected by the algae blooms. If approved by the legislature for the 2017-2018 budget, the voluntary program will provide half the funding to residents who agree to change from septic tanks to sewer systems and the state will pay the other half.

Image: SFWMD Everglades Projects

SFWMD EVERGLADES PROJECTS

There are an estimated 300,000 residential septic tanks along the Indian River Lagoon, said Brian LaPointe, an environmental scientist with Florida Atlantic University’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute in Fort Pierce.

“Ninety-six percent of the water coming into Lake Okeechobee comes from the north,” Mr. LaPointe said. “The watershed from Lake Okeechobee reaches all the way up to Orlando and water flows downhill. Major rainfall transports the nutrients from urban areas and farms to the lake.

“In May, when we began to see the green algae form blooms in Lake Okeechobee and the water levels were very high, the Army Corps had to release water into the estuary,” Mr. LaPointe said. “As the water moves into the estuary, the bloom continues to grow. It can double its biomass in less than a day if the nutrients are there.”

Most of the solutions need to be done long term, he said.

“We must clean up the nutrients at the source and we need more water storage both north and south of Lake Okeechobee so we won’t have to release so much water,” Mr. LaPointe said. “A lot of these are big projects that are underway and some are awaiting funding from the federal government.”

Eric Eikenberg, CEO of the Everglades Foundation, said he spent three days visiting with local officials and members of the business community in Martin County.

“This is our Flint Michigan,” Mr. Eikenberg said, referring to Flint’s polluted drinking water. “It’s heartbreaking to actually see the toxic algae in the marinas. What’s most impactful is the smell – it literally takes your breath away. The people working in the marinas are all wearing industrial masks. It’s a health hazard, an ecological disaster and an economic hit. It has to stop. How many more outbreaks do we have to tolerate?”

Four projects from the Central Everglades Planning Project are part of the solution, he said. Building a reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee is one of those projects, Mr. Eikenberg said.

The four projects will connect Lake Okeechobee to the Florida Keys, clean up the water and significantly reduce the amount of water that goes east and west, he said.

“There’s no solution to stop the damage you’re seeing today, but if we don’t start on these projects, it’s going to be another 15 to 20 years. People are tired of toxic algae ruining their real estate and impacting tourism. The lake continues to fill and we’re in the middle of the rainy season and God forbid if we get a hurricane that goes over Lake Okeechobee.”

All sides agree that moving forward with Everglades restoration is the solution, but it won’t be solved in the short term.

According to the South Florida Water Management District:

The Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) is a 50-50 cost sharing between Florida and the federal government. To date, the federal government has spent approximately $1.1 billion on design and construction of CERP projects; while the state has outspent the federal government by investing approximately $2 billion in land acquisition, project design, and construction. As federal funding has lagged, the district has stepped in to expedite construction of key projects. Congress could expedite completion of authorized CERP projects by appropriating enough money to erase the difference between state and federal CERP spending.

 Fast Facts on Blue Green Algae

  •  Cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, can multiply in rivers, lakes and canals. An overabundance of nitrogen and phosphorous create algae blooms.
  • Algae blooms are most common in the summer when growth conditions are ideal - the water is warm and the weather is calm.

  • The nutrients and fresh water that can fuel growth of naturally occurring blue-green algae also comes from local storm water runoff and septic tanks. Algae blooms have occurred in past years, such as 2014 when there were no lake releases.
  • Many cyanobacteria species are capable of producing harmful toxins. Cyanobacteria can cause taste and odor problems in public water supplies and can kill domestic animals, pets, and fish and wildlife that drink or are otherwise exposed to untreated contaminated water or toxic biota.

  • Although a major focus for public health officials is cyanotoxins in drinking water supplies, increased concern for the possible risk for human illness through recreational exposure is on the rise.

  • There is no effective large scale treatment method that exists to remove blue green algae blooms. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission does not recommend any form of treatment because it may release toxins.

  • No proven connection has been found between cyanobacteria and neurodegenerative disease.

  • The South Florida Water Management District is holding more water in the Upper Chain of Lakes north of Lake Okeechobee. The district took extraordinary measures to decrease lake releases, including storing billions of gallons of lake water in the A-1 Flow Equalization Basin.

  • The district advises the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, but the Corps is solely responsible for authorizing and conducting lake releases to coastal estuaries for flood protections.

Source: Florida Fish and Wildlife, South Florida Water Management District, Florida Department of Health and Florida Department of Environmental Protection.


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