Water Restrictions Through Permitting

In North-East and Central Florida the St. John's River Water Management District is responsible for managing water resources under the Water Resources Act. Recently amendments have been proposed to the current permitting rules, below is an excerpt explaining what will now be required by golf courses in the region.

According to the press release: As part of the proposed changes, applicants for ERPs for projects that include irrigated landscape, golf courses or recreational areas would be required to develop and implement a water conservation plan.
The water conservation plan would include a water conservation-based irrigation plan, which would:
* Require separate irrigation zones for turf and non-turf areas
* Limit the use of high volume irrigation to no more than 60 percent of the landscaped area on a residential or commercial lot
* Require measures to increase the efficiency of irrigation systems

Applicants also would need to design their irrigation systems to use lower quality sources of water, such as reclaimed water and storm water when feasible, and specific requirements would need to be met for projects with wet detention ponds as part of the stormwater management system.
The proposed changes would also require that property owners' associations enforce water conservation plans and that covenants and restrictions would not restrict the use of Florida-Friendly LandscapingTM.
The proposed rule changes also would consolidate the processing of permit applications for ERP applicants who also require a consumptive use permit (CUP) for irrigation. This change would allow for coordination of land development and water use issues so that projects are constructed in a manner that facilitates the use of lower-quality sources and implements feasible water conservation measures to help ensure an available water supply.
In separate public workshops also to be held on Sept. 16 and 17, the District will address proposed CUP streamlining changes, which include permit modification procedures and fees, limiting conditions, water use types, water use reporting, drought frequency, and other miscellaneous amendments.

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