Jeb Bush, Governor

Tallahassee, Florida 32399

Dear Governor Bush:

I find it necessary to inform you of a very serious problem concerning our Florida Everglades. One of the worlds natural wonders is now on the drawing board to be destroyed forever.

The Everglades restudy team has taken on itself to destroy a vast area lying north of Tamiami Trail (Highway 41). Before their plans are completed and written into law, as Governor I believe it paramount that you address this. problem.

I have sent you two letters, one on 1-21-99 and 3-2-99, concerning this problem. These letters are attached along with a news article written 10-27,1979. If we can not learn by the history of destruction it is only evident that it will repeat itself.

Conservation groups of South Florida have been fighting this battle for 33 years and are loosing to the politicians who are not concerned of the destruction of The Everglades, but what benefits them personally.

Large portions of The Everglades hammocks'(Area 2) have been completely destroyed. Area 3 is now being destroyed because of very high water tables. The deer herd was over 10,000, today the count is about 53.

You do not have to be a rocket scientist to see that continued flooded conditions have killed off trees, plants, fish, birds and most all mammals.

The restudy team is requesting 8.4 billion dollars only to destroy a big section of The Everglades by continuing to flood out all dry ground within its boundaries.

The water depth should not exceed 15 inches. The restudy team is setting 30 inches or more in depth, which will destroy all hammocks and dry islands leaving no place for the wildlife to exist. Science, proven facts, history and common sense are now loosing out again to politics.

The Game & Fresh Water Fish Commission and The Florida Marine Patrol are now combined in what was expected to be a great force movement to protect Florida's fish and wildlife.†† "WHAT A JOKE". The newly appointed agency The Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission is not representing the trees, plants, birds, fish and wildlife, but recommending 30 inches or more of water is two times than The Everglades ecosystem should sustain. The new agency has gave way to the clout of The US Army Corp of Engineers and The South Florida Water Management District. This water table recommen≠dation was a great shock and let down to individuals that are acquainted with the natural Everglades ecosystem.

It appears that the word Everglades was an effective way to make a great sales pitch for 8.4 billion dollars for the Army Corp of Engineers. In this modern day of agencies and there advancement, who are we to turn to, to protect our fish, wildlife and ecosystem?

The 8.4 billion dollars to save The Everglades (a worlds natural wonder) is a wonderful investment for future generations to enjoy. The procedures which are now taking place, we can only see its destruction forever. The accountability should be addressed. Individuals or agencies are never held accountable for serious mistakes, therefore business goes on as usual followed by destruction.

In 1955 when I became employed by The Game & Fish Commission, I was requested to take an Oath to Protect The State of Florida's natural resources, this included birds, fish, wildlife, plant life and the ecosystem. I cannot turn my head or ignore the procedures which are taking place. Governor Bush, without your leadership to truly save The Everglades it will be lost forever.

If I can assist you in any manner please do not hesitate to call on me.

Sincerely Yours,

Tom Shirley

Tom Shirley

5120 SW 172 Avenue

Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33331

954-434-8416

CC:Frank R. Finch S.F.W.M.D.

Christ Mc Voy S.F.W.M.D.

Col. M. Robson F.F.W.C.C.

Lorraine Heisler F.F.W.C.C.

Steve Coughlin F.F.W.C.C.


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