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AIF group lauds passage of Florida House water bill

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The Florida H2O Coalition — a water policy vehicle backed by Associated Industries of Florida — applauded today’s action by the Florida House of Representatives to pass HB 7003, a sprawling piece of water legislation aimed at protecting ecologically sensitive waterways.

“Today, the Florida House took a giant step forward in adopting a policy that will better prepare Florida for current and future water challenges,” said AIF Senior Vice President of State and Federal Affairs Brewster Bevis in a Thursday statement.

“HB 7003 creates sustainable solutions for growing our water supply, provides protections for our springs, and gives water managers additional options so that the regional needs of our state can be better met.”

Bevis went on to praise state Rep. Matt Caldwell, who sponsored the bill, as well as Speaker Steve Crisafulli for setting a water-centric tone ahead of the 2015 session. He also said that, on behalf of the Coalition, Bevis will be closely monitoring action on SB 918, the bill’s upper-chamber companion.

“As this bill heads to the Senate, the H2O Coalition will continue to advocate for a broad solution that increases our state’s commitment to solving water quality and quantity issues.”

The bill, entitled Relating to Environmental Resources, passed by a vote of 106 to 9, with the many of the House’s most liberal Democrats voting ‘No.’

Ryan Ray writes about campaigns and public policy in Tampa Bay and across the state. A contributor to FloridaPolitics.com and before that, The Florida Squeeze, he covers the Legislature as a member of the Florida Capitol Press Corps and has worked as a staffer on several campaigns. He can be reached at ryan@floridapolitics.com.

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