On Tuesday, August 16, the Palm Beach Town Council unanimously passed and adopted the following resolution on the Florida Everglades:

 RESOLUTION NO. 123-2016

A RESOLUTION OF THE TOWN COUNCIL OF THE TOWN OF PALM
BEACH, PALM BEACH COUNTY, FLORIDA URGING EXPEDITED
COMPREHENSIVE ACTIONS TO STORE, TREAT, AND CONVEY
CLEAN WATER TO AND· FROM LAKE OKEECHOBEE TO
ALLEVIATE HARMFUL DISCHARGES TO EVERGLADES NATIONAL
PARK, FLORIDA BAY AND NORTHERN COASTAL ESTUARIES

Everglades 3D mapWHEREAS, the discharge of water from Lake Okeechobee has contributed to algae blooms within local water bodies and recreational areas in South Florida, incl uding the Lake Worth Lagoon. Peanut Island and ocean-side beaches, resulting in beach closures and impacts to tourism; and

WHEREAS, the Everglades is the largest and most important freshwater, subtropical peat wetlands in North America; and

WHEREAS, one-third of all Floridians, nearly seven million people, depend on the
Everglades for their water supply; and

WHEREAS, approximately I .7 billion gallons of water per day are lost from the Everglades through discharges from Lake Okeechobee to the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, causing significant harm to the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee Rivers; and

WHEREAS, additional improvements are needed to manage stormwater runoff onto publicly owned properties north of Lake Okeechobee such as those recently approved by the South Florida Water Management District to slow down the flow of water south to the Lake and limit discharges from the Lake as recommended in the 2015 University of Florida Water Institute Report; and

WHEREAS, the United States Army Corps of Engineers has prepared the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP), the goal of which is to deliver a finalized plan, known as a Project Implementation Report (PIR), for a suite of restoration projects in the central Everglades to prepare for congressional authorization, as part of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration
Plan (CERP). The CEPP will identify and plan for projects on land already in public ownership
to allow more water to be directed south to the central Everglades, Everglades National Park and
Florida Bay; and

WHEREAS, Lake Okeechobee is the heart of the South Florida ecosystem yet its capacity is
limited by the condition of the Herbert Hoover Dike which is in need of repair and is critical
to the future storage of water and the health of estuaries; and

WHEREAS, studies indicate that failure of the Dike at Lake Okeechobee could cause catastrophic
flooding in large areas of Palm Beach County and create massive economic losses from flooded
crops in the Glades. In 2006, a state hired panel of engineering experts warned that the leak prone
Dike around the lake posed a grave imminent danger to the people and environment of South
Florida; and

WHEREAS, once the Dike is restored the Lake can retain large quantities of water that will not
flow into estuaries. With more storage capacity discharges from the Lake can be reduced.
Increased storage north of the Lake will enhance water quality, storage south of the Lake will
provide relief to discharges in the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee Rivers while providing more
water to Florida Bay. The South Florida ecosystem will be enhanced with these improvements
while protecting life and property; and

WHEREAS, storage of water south of Lake Okeechobee in the Everglades Agricultural Area
("EAA") will assist in reducing discharges from Lake Okeechobee to the estuaries and to restore
the Everglades and Florida Bay and has been prioritized in restoration plans since the original
adoption of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan by State of Florida and the Federal
Govermnent in 2000; and

WHEREAS, the current schedule for the implementation of Everglades restoration projects has
delayed the initiation of planning for storage within the EAA until 2021 or later, potentially
resulting in a decade or more of additional harmful discharges from Lake Okeechobee to the
estuaries; and

WHEREAS, it is estimated that Florida has 2.3 million on-site sewer treatment and disposal
systems in operation, serving approximately 31 % of the population. Of the 2.3 million septic
tanks, less than I % are managed by operating permits and/ormaintenance agreements,
with the remainder only being serviced when the system fails. Over half of the 2.3 million septic
tanks are over 30 years old and installed under less stringent standards. Sewage, or "blackwater"
from a typical residential building contains a variety of inorganic and organic substances
including, but not limited to, nitrogen, phosphorous and E. coli bacteria; and

WHEREAS, over the past century, development, population growth, excessive drainage of
wetlands, and alterations in water quality and flow, including construction of water control
structures and facilities within the Everglades has altered the natural hydrologic patterns of
water in the region and have greatly damaged the Greater Everglades ecosystem; and

WHEREAS, protecting and restoring the Everglades is critical to restoring hydrology and
surface water, which can reduce threats caused by saltwater intrusion.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE TOWN COUNCIL OF THE TOWN
OF PALM BEACH, PALM BEACH COUNTY, FLORIDA, AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1: Recitals. The above recitals are true and correct an are incorporated herein by
reference.

Section 2: The Town of Palin Beach urges the federal govermnent, the State of Florida legislature
and the Governor of the State of Florida to expedite the process of planning and funding landbased
water storage treatment and conveyance north and south of Lake Okeechobee while limiting
discharges from Lake Okeechobee as recommended in the 2015 University of Florida Water
Institute Report.

Section 3: The Town of Palm Beach urges the Federal Govemment and the State of Florida to
expedite the planning for water storage, water quality treatment and conveyance south of Lake
Okeechobee to decrease harmful discharges to the east and west coasts of Florida while
increasing the flow of clean water south to the Everglades and Florida Bay.

Section 4: Further, the Town of Palm Beach urges Congress to immediately increase funding and
expedite work authorizations for the United States Army Corps of Engineers Lake Okeechobee
Dike restoration project and authorize the Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP) which
increases the ability to store, treat, and convey water south.

Section 5: The Town of Palm Beach urges the State of Florida or its agencies to embark upon
implementation of a region wide septic tank replacement program converting to centralized
sanitary sewerage collection, distribution and treatment systems to eliminate "blackwater"
leaching into the various surface water resources of this region in order to reduce contamination
from the nitrogen, phosphorus and E. coli.

Section 6: The Town of Palm Beach urges all relevant and responsible governments and agencies
to implement robust plamling programs in the South Florida region to control over-development
and agricultural runoff into Lake Okeechobee and local tributaries.

Section 7: Transmittal. The Town Clerk is directed to furnish copies of this Resolution to:
• U.S. Senator Bill Nelson
• U.S. Senator Marco Rubio
• U.S. House of Representatives Members for the State of Florida
• U.S. Army Assistant Secretary for Civil Works, Jo-Ellen Darcy
• U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District Commander Col. Jason Kirk
• U.S. Secretary ofthe Interior Sally Jewell
• Florida Governor Rick Scott
• Florida Senate President Andy Gardiner
• Florida Senate President - designate Joe Negron, District 32
• Florida House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, District 51
• Florida House Speaker - designate, Richard Corcoran, District 37
• Florida Senate and House Members Having Districts within the South Florida Water
Management District boundaries.
• Chair, South Florida Water Management District Goveming Board, Daniel O'Keefe
• Executive Director, South Florida Water Management District Peter Antonacci
• Secretary, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Jon Steverson

PASSED AND ADOPTED in a regular, adjourned session of the Town Council of the Town of
Palm Beach assembled this 16th day of August 2016.