A Partners In Planning Publication of

  The Hillsborough River Interlocal Planning Board &  

  The Hillsborough County City-County Planning Commission 

eNews Issue 23  

           Summer 2016    


In This Issue

Upcoming Meetings
Meet your River Board
Volunteers Needed
Recognition for River Board
Invasive Plant Controls
Keep Florida Fishing
New SWFWMD Exec Dir
Land Exchange for Protection
Save $ when it Rains
USGS Charts

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Upcoming Meetings

Hillsborough River Interlocal Planning Board Meetings
9:30a @ Temple Terrace City Hall
City Council Conference Room 

Monday, August 22
Monday, November 28

Hillsborough River Technical Advisory Council (TAC) Meetings
1:30p @ Tampa Union Station
Tuesday, August 16 
Tuesday, September 20 
Tuesday, October 18 
Tuesday, November 15

View the full meeting calendar. Agendas are posted one week prior to each meeting.

For more information on the Hillsborough River Interlocal Planning Board & Technical Advisory Council, call 813.272.5940 or visit:

Meet your Hillsborough River Interlocal Planning Board
Tampa City Council Member Lisa Montelione
Lisa Montelione

Vice Chair
Temple Terrace
Grant Rimbey

Al Higganbotham
Hillsborough County Commissioner
Al Higginbotham

Volunteer for River & Coastal Cleanup

Join Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful as a Site Captain for their Hillsborough River and Coastal Clean Up event on September 17, 2016.

Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful is in need of volunteers to host cleanup locations all over Hillsborough County. This is a great opportunity to develop community relations and leadership skills while protecting the environment.
Contact Tom for more info.

Recognition for River Board's 30 Years!
Congratulations to our Hillsborough River Interlocal Planning Board and Technical Advisory Council on 30 years of planning for the environmental health of the Hillsborough River keep on flowing in! Created by the Florida Legislature in 1986 to monitor activities and actions in and around the Hillsborough River, the River Board adopted and maintains the River Master Plan and makes recommendations for the river's continued vitality to local governments, regulatory agencies, and others. Accomplishments of the River Board's impact on the Hillsborough River are being celebrated throughout Hillsborough County and the region...
City of Tampa 
Commendation in celebration
of the 30 year anniversary
and proudly supporting
its preservation of the
Hillsborough River

April 28, 2016

Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council
Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council Future of the Region Awards - 1st Place
1st Place - Future of the Region Awards
Natural Environment Category
April 22, 2016
Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association
Florida APA Sun Coast section Award of Excellence

Sun Coast Section
Annual Awards Program

Award of Excellence

April 20, 2016
Hillsborough County
Board of County Commissioners Commendation
In recognition of significant impacts to our community
April 20, 2016
City of Temple Terrace
Mayor Frank Chillura

In recognition of
work and achievements

April 5, 2016

Controlling the cost of controlling invasive plants
Of all the invasive plants in Florida's waterways, hydrilla costs the most to contain - $66 million over a seven-year period, a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researcher says. But UF/IFAS researchers are finding new ways to use less chemical treatment, and thus less money, to manage hydrilla.
From 2008 to 2015, state and federal water resource managers spent about $125 million to control invasive aquatic plants, according to an April Extension document co-written by Lyn Gettys, a UF/IFAS assistant professor of agronomy and aquatic weed specialist. You can find the document here: bit.ly/28UsGoh.
Of that $125 million, about $66 million goes to control hydrilla, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The problem is so big that the UF/IFAS Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants (CAIP) hosts a Plant Camp annually. In fact, 24 teachers from across the state recently came to Gainesville to learn about invasive plants and how they can bring this knowledge and awareness into the classroom.
Hydrilla originally was used to decorate fish aquariums. It wound up mainly in South Florida waterways after aquarium plant dealers tossed the plants into canals in the 1950s. Hydrilla has now spread from Florida to Maine, California, Idaho, Massachusetts, New York, Washington and Wisconsin. "Hydrilla restricts water flow, and that's a problem especially in South Florida during tropical storms," Gettys said. "Water can't move in the canals, which can cause flooding." It also limits light from getting to underwater plants and fish, possibly choking off their oxygen and sometimes causing fish kills.
Furthermore, it creates problems for fishing areas. If a lake is about 50 percent full of hydrilla, approximately 60 percent of the lake's users will fish and swim in other water bodies, said Bill Haller, a UF/IFAS agronomy professor and UF/IFAS CAIP program director. When it comes to challenges faced by endangered species, invasive species are second only to habitat loss, Haller said. Controlling invasive plants protects native plants and animals, and it's a constant battle - which is why the next generation needs to get involved, he said.
The state relies primarily on herbicide treatments to control hydrilla, but UF/IFAS scientists are continually studying and helping develop less-expensive and more selective treatments for the invasive plants with no or only minimal non-target damage to native plants. For example, scientists statewide are trying to combine the sterile grass carp - a fish - with the chemical treatments, to better help manage hydrilla. The grass carp is used in more than 50 countries worldwide, but it eats everything, not just hydrilla, Haller said. In Florida, it's only used in enclosed small ponds, he added.

Entomology faculty also are combining an insect with a native pathogen and plant growth regulator to reduce the prolific growth of hydrilla. New aquatic invasive plants come along all the time, Haller said. For example, UF/IFAS Extension faculty are in the process of evaluating biocontrol insects to try to manage various invasive plants, including the water primrose, a relatively new, possibly hybrid plant that's spreading quickly, he said.

July is Keep Florida Fishing Month!
Keep Florida Fishing advocates for clean waters, abundant fisheries, and access to both. Recreational fishing is important to Florida's economy, supporting more than 123,000 jobs and generating $9.3 billion in economic activity. At more than 3 million strong, Florida anglers also are the financial force behind the state's fisheries conservation efforts, providing $46.5 million annually through fishing-license fees and excise taxes on fishing equipment and motorboat fuel. Furthermore, anglers are often the ones to recommend catch limits and other measures to preserve species.
Armstrong appointed SWFWMD Executive Director
Brian Armstrong
The Governing Board of the Southwest Florida Water Management District appointed Brian Armstrong to replace Robert Beltran, who is returning to the private sector after serving as Executive Director since September 2013. Mr. Armstrong has served as the District's assistant executive director since May 2014. In that role he has been responsible for the leadership and oversight of the Operations, Maintenance & Construction, Regulation, and Resource Management divisions. He brings more than 15 years of experience in water resource management.
Previously, Armstrong was the assistant director for the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Southwest District. There he led the restructure of the DEP District operations by reducing costs and improving internal operating performance, including the creation of a successful compliance management team. Prior to that, Armstrong served as the Water Supply and Resource Development manager for the District. Armstrong is a licensed professional geologist who earned his Bachelor of Science in Geology and his Master's Degree in Hydrogeology from the University of South Florida.
SWFWMD and County exchange land for restoration and protection
The Southwest Florida Water Management District's Governing Board recently voted to exchange properties with Hillsborough County in an effort to work together to protect conservation land. The Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners voted to approve this same effort at their April 20 meeting.
The District agreed to exchange approximately 205 acres of land with the County for approximately 425 acres. This transaction will reduce the acreage of District landholdings that do not significantly meet the District's four areas of responsibility and will support the objectives of Hillsborough County. In the future, these types of partnerships will continue to ensure effective and efficient management of public lands.
Hillsborough County agreed to exchange lands that they currently solely own, referred to as in the Little Manatee River Corridor (Rood Parcel), for lands recommended for exchange by the District. These lands include the Alafia River parcels (167 acres) and the Lower Hillsborough Wilderness Preserve parcels (38 acres), which were acquired through separate transactions as part of a flood detention area project.
The District will also reduce management liability and acquire an inholding that offers restoration project alternatives. The District will commit a minimum of $1.5 million to perform upland habitat restoration over an estimated 390 acres of the Rood property plus an additional estimated 54 acres adjacent and to the north of the Rood property for a total approximate restoration of 444 acres.

How much $ can you save on irrigation costs after just 1 inch of rain?
Lawn Sprikler
A one-inch rainfall event delivers approximately 7,000 gallons of rainwater to a 10,000 square-foot lot. That free rainfall is equal to $20 - $70 in potable water irrigation costs, depending on your total monthly water use. A rain sensor will do the work and the saving for you.

A rain sensor is a device or switch that overrides the automatic irrigation system when rainfall occurs. The sensor temporarily shuts off a system if it is operating during a rain shower or is scheduled to run following rainfall. If you have an automatic irrigation system without a sensor, the City of Tampa will provide one at no charge ($30 value) to residents. Request a rain censor using your City of Tampa Utility account number.

You may install the sensor yourself or have it installed. You are responsible for the installation cost.Florida Law (Section 373.62 F.S.) requires that all irrigation systems be outfitted with a working rain shut-off device or other technology to inhibit or interrupt operation of the irrigation system during periods of sufficient moisture. To ensure proper operations, sensors should be checked at least once annually.

Using the same online form, additional water conservation supplies are available for free to Tampa Water customers, including:
  • Plumbing Retrofit Kit - Low flow showerhead, bathroom aerators, kitchen aerator, teflon tape, toilet leak detection dye tablets, installation instructions, and informational brochures
  • Save Water KitToilet leak detection dye tablets, the most recent Water Quality Report, and informational materials on checking for leaks and conserving water.
  • Commercial Kitchen Pre-Rinse Spray Valve - Available only to Commercial Customers
Get more information about saving water and other water-related topics online.
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