Although our first public hearing has yet to be scheduled, there's still much to report! Starting with the most recent development, we're pleased to announce that we've hired a new land use consultant to represent Save Guana Now: Tom Atkins. He and our Attorney Jane West, who has significant litigation experience at state and federal levels, are both heavy hitters. Tom's past clients include the U.S. National Park Service (Gulf Islands National Seashore), the University of Florida, and the City of Jacksonville.
In other important updates, the county received a memo from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection regarding the potential impact of development at the Outpost. Written by Dr. Michael Shirley, Manager of the GTM Research Reserve, the memo describes the detrimental impact development could have on Guana Lake. The memo states: "Guana River north of the dam is economically important to the tourism of St. Johns County" and it "merits water quality protection." The memo provides data to show how Guana Lake is "prone to the deleterious effects of excess stormwater pollutants." It concludes: "...the recommendation from the Research Reserve and from the Guana River Marsh Aquatic Reserve Management Staff is that protecting and improving the water quality of Guana Lake be seriously considered in deliberating this decision." This document counters Gate's claims that development at the Outpost will have no negative impact on the surrounding preserve.
In case you missed recent broadcast coverage of Save Guana Now - first from WJCT Public Radio's Melissa Ross and then from Action News Jax's Russell Colburn - you can listen to the radio show
and watch the television report