Bob Graham sees new threats to Everglades

Published: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 at 12:32 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 at 12:32 p.m.

TALLAHASSEE — Former U.S. Sen. Bob Graham says bills that would allow for water privatization and redefining of public and private land threaten the progress of Everglades restoration.

The retired Democrat spoke Tuesday at the inaugural meeting of the bipartisan Everglades Legislative Caucus in the Capitol.

Graham said "the Everglades is water" and "water belongs to the people of Florida" and not private interests.

The South Florida Everglades have suffered from the gradual intrusion of housing developments and farms and have been polluted by urban and fertilizer runoff.

State lawmakers cut Everglades restoration funding last year. They have also reduced taxes that fund water management districts and held back money from the Florida Forever land-buying program.

Graham was a U.S. Senator from 1987-2005 and was governor from 1979-1987.

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