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Manatees or the Superbowl 2005?

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Old 07-15-2002, 01:58 PM
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Thumbs down Manatees or the Superbowl 2005?

Well the city of Jacksonville has got a problem! I saw this in the USA Today Paper,

Jacksonville Superbowl plan struggles, too

Jacksonville's plans for redeveloping a riverfront area near the site of the 2005 Super Bowl are bumping into federal protection of endangered manatees. The problems involve permits for boat slips at luxury condominiums along the St. Johns Rivers near Alltel Stadium. The permits are on hold because the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says not enough is being done to protect manatees that swim there. Manatees are protected under federal endangered species laws. So many were killed by boats in the river in the 1980s that Duval County was required to improve protection for them. Authorities don't want to approve developments that would bring more boat traffic until effective protection for the manatees is in place. Wildlife officials suggested the city add 80 speed limit sign buoys in the river. But city officials say that would be a safety hazard and too expensive, about $1,000 a buoy.

Manatees wouldn't be in Jacksonville AT ALL if it wasn't for the power plants! It's too far north for them.
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Old 07-15-2002, 02:38 PM
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Oh Man, sounds like they got themsleves a little problem up there....This might be good if the right exposure comes from this.

Could you imagine the response from viewers and fans listening to this bull**** on ESPN Sportcenter. Well, lost sponsorships and potential contributors because the city couldn't accomodate the water-bourne fanfair.
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Old 07-15-2002, 02:51 PM
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From Friday's Orlando Sentinal.


Officials ordered to make good on sea-cow safety

By Ludmilla Lelis | Sentinel Staff Writer
Posted July 13, 2002


Slow going. (BARBARA V. PEREZ/ORLANDO SENTINEL)
Jul 13, 2002

Saying the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service violated a settlement calling for stronger manatee protection, a federal judge has given officials until Monday to come up with a plan for more slow-speed zones or no-motor zones in Florida waterways.

The ruling is likely to mean the quick imposition of new boating restrictions in more than a dozen places, including Brevard County and the state's west coast.

Attorneys in the case did not get the ruling by U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan in Washington, D.C., until Thursday, setting off a flurry of meetings among wildlife officials to determine how they can create the new manatee refuges and sanctuaries that were promised 11/2 years ago.

Attorney Eric Glitzenstein, who represents a coalition of environmentalists that signed the original settlement and later sued the government for not living up to it, said the ruling shows federal wildlife officials were not serious about manatee protection.

"They had taken a frivolous position that they don't have to do any more," Glitzenstein said. "We simply want them to live up to their part of the bargain."

Chuck Underwood, wildlife-service spokesman, said agency officials were still reviewing the ruling Friday and would not comment. He expected they would have to work through the weekend to meet the judge's demand for a memo outlining a plan of action.

The environmental coalition sued the federal government and the state of Florida in January 2000 but averted a trial through settlements reached last year. The settlements called for wildlife officials to implement a variety of new protective measures for manatees, including more "refuges and sanctuaries throughout peninsular Florida."

Refuges amount to slow-speed zones, which are found throughout Florida waterways. Sanctuaries, such as the one at Blue Spring State Park in Orange City, are more-restrictive zones that prohibit motorboats and swimmers in areas where manatees congregate.

In January, the federal government created two new federal refuges in Brevard County: slow-speed zones in the Merritt Island Barge Canal and in Sykes Creek.

But the government put off until December plans to create refuges and sanctuaries in 14 other manatee zones. Those plans included a slow-speed zone at Haulover Canal in Brevard, a slow-speed zone in a popular water-skiing area in Cocoa Beach and a dozen new slow-speed or no-motor zones along the Gulf Coast.

The Gulf Coast zones, stretching from Citrus through Lee counties, include areas that often compete with Brevard for having the most boat-related manatee deaths annually.

Sullivan said federal officials were wasting time and could have satisfied the agreement by moving ahead simultaneously with all 16 manatee zones.

Federal officials had argued that they were postponing a decision on the remaining 14 zones because they wanted to see whether Florida officials would protect those same areas under the terms of its settlement with the coalition.

However, Sullivan ruled that was not a good excuse. "Whatever the political ramifications, such a justification cannot excuse a violation of the agreement," Sullivan wrote.

Brevard boater Daniel Dvorak, who opposed regulations in the Barge Canal and Sykes Creek, called the proposed federal zones for the Haulover Canal and Cocoa Beach pointless.

"In Cocoa Beach, there's been no history of any manatees killed there, and the Haulover Canal, you have to go slow there anyway," he said. "It's like saying you have to go slow in your driveway."

Save the Manatee Club biologist Patti Thompson was thrilled with the judge's ruling but said she would be disappointed if the federal government imposed only the 14 proposed zones.

She said officials need to focus on more protections in the Caloosahatchee River in southwest Florida and in Volusia County, two areas with increasing manatee mortality.

"These are the areas where manatees are being struck and killed, and something needs to be done," she said
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Old 07-15-2002, 03:33 PM
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"Save the Manatee Club biologist Patti Thompson was thrilled with the judge's ruling but said she would be disappointed if the federal government imposed only the 14 proposed zones".

The SMC will NEVER BE SATISFIED with what the state or Feds. do. And when the SMC is NOT satisfied, they will start sueing again!
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