As Everglades Bonds Face Lawsuits, Florida Looks for Alternate Funding

Sigo, Shelly
March 2003
Bond Buyer;3/19/2003, Vol. 343 Issue 31596, p24
Trade Publication
The Florida Joint Legislative Committee on Everglades Oversight involving Everglades Trust Fund has learned on March 17, 2003 that lawsuits continue to prevent bonds for Everglades restoration from being issued and that no funding is left for Everglades from the state's two major environmental bond programs. Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Secretary David Struhs updated the joint committee on the status of Everglades funding, which is hampered by the state's economic problems and by the fact that no funding is available from the Preservation 2000 and Florida Forever bond programs. The DEP proposes freeing up 260 million dollars of Preservation 2000 funds and 47 million dollars of Florida Forever funds, which are now in debt service reserve accounts, and earmarking the cash for the Everglades Trust Fund, according to Ernie Barnett, the DEP's director of Everglades restoration. On February 25, 2003, Florida governor Jeb Bush's cabinet had approved replacing cash reserves with a surety bond, and the governor said that he would amend his budget and recommend that the Legislature deposit the cash reserves into the Everglades Trust Fund.


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