Section 253.7829, Florida Statutes 2004
253.7829 Management plan for retention or disposition of former Cross Florida Barge Canal lands; authority to manage lands until disposition.--
(1) It is declared to be in the public interest that the department shall do and is hereby authorized to do any and all things and incur and pay from the canal authority assets, for the public purposes described herein, any and all expenses necessary, convenient, and proper to:
(a) Develop a management plan for the retention or disposition of lands acquired for the Cross Florida Barge Canal, which plan shall reflect a consideration of alternatives for disposition as provided in this section of all lands in fee or less than fee owned by the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund, including those lands previously owned by the canal authority and the United States Army Corps of Engineers, and lands to be transferred to the state by the United States Army Corps of Engineers. The management plan shall establish a plan for delineating the specific boundaries of the Cross Florida Greenways State Recreation and Conservation Area. The Legislature intends that such boundaries include, at a minimum, a 300-yard-wide corridor, except where the original corridor is a lesser width or except in areas where bridges and roads cross the canal corridor, on former canal lands within the original canal corridor extending from the St. Johns River to the Gulf of Mexico, including all of the Oklawaha River Valley and Rodman Reservoir, and all canal works in all areas whether completed and in use or not, but excluding all parts of Lake Rousseau. Such boundaries may include other former canal lands according to the following criteria:
1. The proximity of the lands to former canal corridor lands.
2. The environmental sensitivity or importance of the lands or its characteristics as a unique or significant wildlife habitat.
3. The proximity of the lands to existing state or federal land which is maintained, at least in part, as natural wildlife habitat, so that the addition of the parcel would function as a wildlife corridor, or as additional habitat.
4. The potential of the lands to be developed as outdoor recreation lands.
Commercially valuable parcels, including those parcels near road crossings, within the canal corridor which do not meet the criteria of subparagraphs 1.-4. and other former canal lands which are not included within the boundaries of the Cross Florida Greenways State Recreation and Conservation Area under the criteria of subparagraphs 1.-4., may be disposed of as surplus lands pursuant to s. 253.783(2)(a)-(d). Such alternatives for disposition will include retention by the state or any agency thereof for the specific public purposes outlined in this paragraph or by the counties or adjacent municipalities for recreational or conservation purposes, and a declaration of lands not to be retained as surplus lands to be disposed of pursuant to s. 253.783(2)(a)-(d). The management plan shall also address any remedial measures necessary to correct any environmental or economic damage caused by works constructed as a part of or as a result of the Cross Florida Barge Canal.
(b) Operate and maintain existing lands and interests in lands, appurtenances, structures, and facilities. Operation and maintenance of water control structures may be delegated by the department to the St. Johns River Water Management District or the Southwest Florida Water Management District, as necessary. Rights-of-way necessary for the construction and maintenance of electric transmission lines may be authorized.
(2) The development of hydroelectric power is a compatible use of greenway land and may be considered by the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund as an allowable use within the greenways of Lake Rousseau and the lower Withlacoochee River, provided that such hydroelectric power complies with all requisite state and federal environmental and water management standards.
(3)(a) Before taking any action to control the rhesus monkey population located in Marion County, the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission shall conduct a study of the options available to them to deal with control of the rhesus monkeys located within a 10-mile radius of the convergence of the Oklawaha and Silver Rivers. The options studied shall include but not be limited to:
1. Developing a management plan to allow the monkeys to remain in their present locations.
2. Relocating all or some of the monkeys to appropriate private state or federal lands in the United States.
3. Sterilizing all or some of the monkeys, regardless of whether they remain in their present location or are relocated.
4. Euthanizing all or some of the monkeys.
(b) During the time the study is being conducted, the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission may control monkeys that constitute a threat to visitors to such area. Such control includes, but is not limited to, the right to deny public access to any area where the monkeys are known to congregate. The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission shall post adequate warning signs in areas to which the public is denied access.
(c) The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission may consult with any other local or state agency while conducting the study and may subcontract with any such agency to complete the study.
(d) The study of the options shall be delivered to the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund.
(e) Nothing in this subsection affects the signed agreement between the department and the Silver Springs Attraction regarding the relocation of rhesus monkeys from Silver River State Park to the attraction, and such agreement continues to be valid.
(4) The Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund may authorize the sale or exchange of surplus lands within the former Cross Florida Barge Canal project corridor and the acquisition of privately owned lands or easements over such privately owned lands within the project corridor necessary for purposes of completing a continuous corridor or for other management purposes provided by law. However, such acquisition shall be funded from the proceeds of any sale or exchange of surplus canal lands after repayment to the counties, as provided in s. 253.783(2)(e), or from other funds appropriated by the Legislature.
(5) The management plan shall specifically and in sufficient detail address the canal corridor lands comprising the Oklawaha River Valley, identifying the recreational and scientific management options which are environmentally desirable and cost-effective. The management plan shall be consistent with the ultimate aim of developing an overall integrated management plan for continued preservation of the entire Oklawaha River Valley ecosystem.
(6) The management plan shall be prepared by the department. The management plan shall be submitted to the Governor, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the minority leaders of the Senate and the House of Representatives, and the chairs of the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Conservation and the House Committee on Natural Resources, no later than 12 years from the deauthorization of the Cross Florida Barge Canal. Operation and maintenance of water control structures shall be delegated to the Southwest Florida Water Management District and the St. Johns River Water Management District or a responsible entity contracted by the districts during the period from November 28, 1992, until the management plan is completed by the canal authority and is adopted by the Legislature. The final disposition of the water control structures must be outlined in this management plan as adopted by the Legislature. Such plan shall not be implemented until state legislation specifically directing implementation of the submitted plan or a modified plan, as recommended, becomes effective.
History.--s. 6, ch. 84-287; s. 2, ch. 85-302; s. 2, ch. 90-328; s. 3, ch. 92-116; s. 58, ch. 93-213; s. 86, ch. 94-356; s. 847, ch. 95-148; s. 8, ch. 99-205; s. 75, ch. 99-245; s. 40, ch. 2001-61.
1Note.--Deauthorized Jan. 22, 1991, by Pub. L. No. 101-640, s. 402.