The letter from Captain Dylan Hubbard, President of the Florida Guides Association, to Mr. Eric Sutton, the Executive Director of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, can be summarized as follows:
Captain Hubbard begins the letter by expressing gratitude for the efforts made by the FWC and FWRI to address water quality issues in Florida. He then presents an idea aimed at furthering the progress of water quality improvement in the state. He emphasizes the importance of uniting various groups, including those from the fisheries, hospitality, and conservation sectors, to collectively work towards the preservation and protection of the state's water resources. He suggests that the FWC could play a pivotal role in organizing a water quality symposium, similar to the snook and redfish symposiums, to facilitate the exchange of information and initiatives. The symposium would focus on restoration plans, solutions, and strategies, while avoiding divisive issues. Captain Hubbard lists specific topics that could be discussed during the symposium, including habitat restoration, shoreline softening with artificial reefs, reducing pollutants through coastal community turf credits, sewage infrastructure improvements, and responsible growth plans with an infrastructure-first approach. He expresses a desire to discuss the idea further and explore ways to bring the proposal to fruition.
February 8th, 2022
Executive Director of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Mr. Eric Sutton,
I wanted to reach out to you and thank you for all your hard work that you and the FWC and FWRI are doing regarding the water quality issues that plague our state and our beautiful ecosystems. However, I do have an idea that I feel would be a great addition to that work towards furthering our water quality improvement around the state.
As you well know, our water ways, lakes, and state waters adjacent to the state make up our Florida Economy. I feel its imperative we try and pull together and unite efforts towards preserving, protecting, and improving this resource.
There are tons of great groups around the state working on these issues in a variety of forms and across a myriad of differing industries including fisheries, but also hoteliers, restaurateurs, NGOs, and more.
I feel often that we could accomplish so much more if there was some way to bring these groups together share information and knowledge and current projects so we could all have more effectiveness as we work towards the bipartisan issue of improving water quality around the state.
With all this said, I feel the FWC is the appropriate and powerful body able to unite these groups, associations, clubs, and memberships together for a water quality symposium. Much like how you have held snook and redfish symposiums in the past, but this would be in my mind set up like a commission meeting with potentially a full day or two full days with an agenda discussing restorative plans, initiatives, and solutions like the following, while doing our best to avoid the divisive issues. I would love an opportunity to chat with you about this and more and how we could get this goal accomplished and explain the following more as well.
- Habitat restoration
- Softening shorelines with artificial reefs
- Reducing pollutants with coastal community turf credits
- Sewage infrastructure improvements
- Increasing penalties and monitoring for spills
- Responsible growth plans with infrastructure first mentality
Captain Dylan Hubbard
President, Florida Guides Association