Mayfield Minute - December 1, 2019
Good Morning!
I hope you had a safe and relaxing Thanksgiving with your family and friends. I will be in the District this week attending meetings and preparing for the final week of interim committee meetings in Tallahassee.

I consider it a great honor to represent all of the citizens and visitors of District 17. Please share  this link  with your friends and family so that they too can sign up for the Mayfield Minute .
 
If you or someone you know needs my assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact my office. My staff and I are here to serve you!
Town Hall Meeting: Florida Train Safety Legislation
Representative Tyler Sioris and I will be hosting a Town Hall meeting this week to discuss legislation we have filed to promote and enhance the safe operation of high-speed passenger rail systems in Florida.

Town Hall Meeting
Florida High Speed Passenger Rail Safety Act
Wednesday, December 4, 2019 at 5:00 PM
Location: Melbourne City Hall, Council Chambers
900 E Strawbridge Ave, Melbourne

The Florida High-Speed Passenger Rail Safety Act, Senate Bill 676 and House Bill 465, incorporates recommendations identified in a study commissioned by the Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability (OPPAGA), published on October 31, 2018. The study, titled the Florida Passenger Rail System Study, examined all existing and planned passenger rail systems in the state of Florida and identified key safety deficiencies within Florida’s passenger rail system.

Florida has a fatality rate that is 3.5 times the national average. This is unacceptable and must be addressed if we are going to continue to encourage additional high-speed passenger trains. 

At this Town Hall we will discuss our train safety legislation and hear input from members of the community about the high-speed passenger rail that will be passing through Brevard and Indian River counties.

This meeting is free to attend and open to the public. If you have any questions regarding this upcoming meeting, please contact my office at (321) 409-2025.
State Attorney's Office Warns of SMishing Scams
The State Attorney's Office is warning residents about a new phishing scam that uses text messages, also known as SMS phishing or "SMishing." This texting scam looks legitimate because it is presented as a fraud alert sent from your cell phone carrier, financial institution or online service provider like iCloud, Netflix, or Amazon.

Typically the message will report a problem with billing, lack of payment, account suspension, or purchase alert. By creating concern, the scammers hope recipients will click on the provided “link” or call the number provided in the text. Those that do click the link end up on a spoof site that will resemble your carrier's site — HTTPS certificate and all. If you do enter your user ID and password, you've just handed over the keys to your account. Scammers can then begin harvesting your financial information, email, address, and other details. They can lock you out, make purchases, and open new accounts.

The State Attorney recommends caution when receiving text messages of this kind and not to login via the links provided. Instead, save a bookmark for each provider’s login page or use a password manager that ties passwords to specific URLs and can identify a spoof site for you. If you are a victim of a SMishing scam, or have received theses messages, you may file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission or the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center .
Florida Launches First-Ever Water Quality Dashboard
Governor Ron DeSantis recently announced the launch of ProtectingFloridaTogether.gov , the state’s first-ever comprehensive water quality dashboard. The dashboard, provides real-time information on water restoration projects and water quality via an interactive state map. 

Our water and natural resources are the foundation of our economy and our way of life in Florida ,” said Governor DeSantis. “ That’s why it is vitally important that we keep Floridians informed of our current initiatives and the quality of our water at the state level. I’ve made this issue a priority, and I am thankful to have committed partners such as the First Lady, our state agency leaders and environmental stakeholders. We are all in this together, and this dashboard is a great step in moving our state toward more innovative, comprehensive ways to keel Floridians informed and involved. ” 

The initial version of the Protecting Florida Together water quality status map focuses on blue-green algae, red tide and nutrient concentrations in the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee rivers and their respective estuaries, and Lake Okeechobee. Additional features will include an expanded statewide map to be added over the next year. Information about the Office of Environmental Accountability and Transparency, the Blue-Green Algae Task Force, and Red Tide Task Force will also be available.

Harmful algal blooms have had a devastating effect on Florida’s communities in recent years. " said DEP Secretary Noah Valenstein. " We understand that and are making every effort to expedite water quality improvements for the benefit of all Floridians and visitors to our state. This site is a demonstration of our commitment to better communication, transparency and accountability in the way water quality information and the state’s actions are provided to the public.

Residents looking for ways to help protect Florida’s waters can find tips and resources on ProtectingFloridaTogether.gov and can visit Volunteer Florida’s VolunteerConnect website to find volunteer opportunities. 

In my efforts to protect and improve our treasured waterways, I have filed Senate Bill 712: Clean Waterways Act. This is a comprehensive statewide initiative that addresses significant sources of pollution to our treasured waters including leaky septic systems, outdated water treatment infrastructure, sanitary sewer overflows and stromwater. This legislation revises Basin Management Action Plan (BMAP) requirements, increases notification requirements for sewage spills, and establishes a 50% matching grant program to encourage local governments to connect septic tanks to sewer systems; construct, upgrade or expand wastewater facilities; or retrofit existing septic tanks for improved performance. This bill also requires Water Management Districts to include design and performance standards that increase nutrient removal from stormwater discharges in all new development and redevelopment projects.
District 17 Highlights
Space Coast TPO Public Participation Plan
The Space Coast Transportation Planning Organization (SCTPO) has posted its 2019 DRAFT Public Participation Plan (PPP) for public review. The PPP is a blueprint for action to involve and engage the public in transportation planning. 

Meaningful and effective participation is essential to the successful implementation of a public plan, project, or program, and is necessary to ensure the needs of the local citizens are being adequately addressed. All SCTPO planning work , as well as major amendments to adopted plans and programs, must follow the requirements outlined in the PPP. Public input during the development of the PPP is essential to make sure the process provides full and open access to all.  
 
Public comments are being accepted through December 12, 2019. You may provide comments online , or by emailing them to abby.hemenway@brevardfl.gov . You may also submit written comments to: Public Involvement Officer, Space Coast TPO, 2725 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Building B, Room 105, Melbourne, FL, 32940.
SACIRC Presents Vaping Forum
Vaping has been declared a National Epidemic by the US Surgeon General due to the dramatic rise in the use of electronic cigarettes among Florida’s middle and high school students.

According to the 2018 Florida Youth Tobacco Survey, more than one in three Florida high school students have tried e-cigarettes, and nearly one in four reported current use. Many e-cigarettes are available in fruit, candy and mint flavors that that make it more appealing to young people. The Florida Department of Health reports that 85% of youth (ages 12-17) who vape say they use flavors.

In response to this epidemic, I have filed Senate Bill 694 to combat the dangerous rise in e-cigarette use by minors. 

The Substance Awareness Center of Indian River County and Substance Abuse Free Indian River will also be hosting a forum to discuss the harmful effects of vaping, addiction in youth, ingredients in vape products and the consequences of using at their upcoming community forum.
Vaping: A National Epidemic
Wednesday, December 4th
6:30 to 8:00 PM
Vero Beach Elks Lodge
1350 26th Street, Vero Beach

This event is open to the public and free to attend. For more information, or to RSVP please contact safir@sacirc.org or visit SAFIRC.org .
One Lagoon - Indian River Lagoon Council
The Indian River Lagoon (IRL) spans 156 miles, or approximately 40% of Florida's east coast. The IRL system is a particular type of estuary called a lagoon, where a shallow estuary is separated from the ocean by barrier islands, and exchanges water with the ocean only through inlets. 

The IRL is home to a rich array of plants and animals whose existence depends on the quality of water within the Lagoon. More than 2,000 species of plants, 600 species of fish, 300 species of birds, and 53 threatened or endangered species inhabit the IRL for at least some portion of their lives, and scientists have shown the IRL to be one of the most biologically diverse estuaries in North America, with approximately 4,000 documented species.

Due to these unique features, the IRL was designated as an Estuary of National Significance by Congress in 1987. Today, the IRL National Estuary Program is sponsored by the IRL Council, which develops comprehensive management plans to assure that our estuary maintains its integrity. 

The Council recently released a video, showcasing the natural beauty of the lagoon, the challenges it faces, and actions that can be taken to help improve it. Watch the One Lagoon video by clicking here.
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Contact Information
Melbourne Office
900 E. Strawbridge Ave.
Melbourne, FL 32901
(321) 409-2025

Tallahassee Office
322 Senate Office Building
404 South Monroe Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1100
(850) 487-5017

Vero Beach Office
Administration Building B
1801 27th Street
Vero Beach, FL 32960
(772) 226-1970