The following is a press release from South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD). The CREW Land & Water Trust encourages all people who enjoy using the CREW Project trails for recreational purposes to attend this meeting.
Oct. 17, 2018
Public Invited to WRAC Forum to Provide Input
on Recreation Program at CREW Management Area
The quarterly Recreational Issues Forum will be on the road in Fort Myers next week
Several miles of trails provide a variety of recreational opportunities for all ages at the CREW Management Area. Click on the image for a larger version.
Fort Myers, FL – Outdoor enthusiasts will have an opportunity next week to provide input and support for the South Florida Water Management District’s (SFWMD) current recreation program at one of Southwest Florida’s premier public lands.
The Water Resources Analysis Coalition’s (WRAC) quarterly Recreational Issues Forum will focus on the Corkscrew Regional Ecosystem Watershed (CREW) Management Area. The CREW area offers several recreational activities, including hiking, bird watching, camping and hunting. The forum will be held:
Monday, October 22, 2018
SFWMD Fort Myers Service Center
2301 McGregor Blvd.
Fort Myers, FL 33901
SFWMD and its partners – representing environmental groups and governmental agencies – manage CREW for its numerous benefits to water storage and wildlife preservation.
In April, SFWMD completed restoration of 1,000 acres of Southern CREW in Lee County, allowing the area to return to its natural hydrological conditions of periodic inundation. The restoration project benefits the entire Southwest Florida ecosystem and its residents by restoring wetlands and historic sheetflow of water, improving regional flood protection, drainage and increasing water storage and aquifer recharge capability.
The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission is holding three public meetings to get input on bear management in south Florida – including the area near and around CREW. The Florida black bear was taken off the endangered species list two years ago – a testament to the recovery efforts to save this umbrella species.
Now, southwest Florida is seeing an increase in human-bear encounters – which don’t always end up good for the bears. People and bears can co-exist, but human actions play an important role in how well that works. These public meetings will provide information on bears and opportunities for the public to make comments.
Come learn and get involved. Your voice and your actions will make a difference for bears in southwest Florida. Meetings in our area are:
The CREW Land & Water Trust elected five new Trustees to its board at their May 9, 2014 Trustees Meeting. CREW welcomes:
Dennis Gilkey of Gilkey Organization, LLC
Steve Kissingerof Children’s Advocacy Center
John Mathes of Mathes Realty Appraisal and Board member of Bonita Springs Utilities
Bob Rosier, of Rosier Insurance
Laurel Smith of Gravina, Smith, Matte & Arnold Marketing & Public Relations firm
These new Trustees bring valuable business and non-profit experience and insight to the CREW Trust Board. We thank them for volunteering their talent and time, and we look forward to working closely with each of them.
As you may recall, we recently posted about Florida’s water management districts (including the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) – which owns most of the CREW) conducting assessments of their lands to determine if there are any that could be sold off/surplused to other entities to generate revenue for the state.
Now, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is doing a similar assessment of other public lands bought with taxpayer money. Many of these lands are within state parks and wildlife management areas (WMAs). Proceeds from lands surplused and sold through this process will be used to fund the Florida Forever program (up to $50 million) to purchase other, more critically needed conservation lands. CREW is not on the DEP list, but there may be other sites of interest to our members and visitors.
DEP is holding three public meetings this week – today (8/21) in Tallahassee and two webinars on 8/22 and 8/23) – to get public comment on the process and the parcels being considered for sale/surplus. Many of the parcels are small (<5 acres) and a full listing can be found here. If you’d like to make comments or just want to find our more about the process and plans, you can visit the DEP website.