Former Environmental Lawyer Named Next Secretary of FDEP

Governor-Elect Rick Scott Names Herschel Vinyard as Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Brian Burgess January 3, 2010 850-922-5130
TALLAHASSEE, FL – In his continued focus on protecting the natural resources of Florida, while creating the best possible mechanisms for job creation in the state, Governor-elect Rick Scott today appointed Herschel Vinyard as Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection.
The appointment is subject to confirmation by the Florida Senate and the Florida Cabinet.
Vinyard, who also served as a member of Scott’s Economic Development Transition Team, has a deep background in environmental compliance and innovation, having practiced environmental law for nearly a decade, while more recently serving as director of business operation for BAE Systems Southeast Shipyards. This mix of legal expertise and service with a major Florida employer positions Vinyard to uniquely understand the need for strong environmental protection while ensuring that government and business find new ways to partner in growing the Florida economy.
“Herschel is a man of deep environmental knowledge and practical business experience. He has a love for our great state’s natural resources and a passion for job creation. He will effectively balance those interests for the benefit of all Floridians. We are fortunate to have recruited Herschel from the private sector into government service,” Scott said.
As an example of Vinyard’s focus on environmental responsibility and effective business practices, he provided counsel to BAE Systems in their recent, successful efforts to remove its treated wastewater outfall from the St. Johns River. That wastewater is now being used for irrigation purposes and eliminates a discharge to one of Florida’s most significant water bodies.
In addition, Vinyard led his company’s three-year effort to obtain state approval for a sovereign submerged lands lease. His experience in this complex regulatory proceeding provided Vinyard with new insights on the challenges businesses face in the permitting process and the need to provide a more efficient and streamlined mechanism to meet environmental requirements.
“Good environmental practices make good business sense. Not only can such stewardship better protect the resources around us, they often save money and lead to new innovation. Herschel has been on the front lines of such efforts and will ensure that Florida leads the nation in new partnerships between government and industry that save money, streamline processes and create jobs,” Scott said.
During his practice at one of Florida’s most well-respected law firms, Vinyard represented numerous clients in a myriad of complex environmental matters. His expertise includes the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, the Clean Water Act and liability issues associated with the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act, as well as Florida’s statutory counterparts in Chapter 376 and 403. He is also a past chair of the environmental and land use law section of the Jacksonville Bar Association.
Vinyard is involved in a number of volunteer efforts associated with conservation and environmental protection. As an advisory committee member of the Northeast Florida chapter of the Trust for Public Lands, Vinyard helped develop a strategy to identify and acquire sensitive environmental lands. He serves on the Florida DEP’s Lower St. Johns River TMDL Executive Committee to assist in the development of a basin management action plan for that water body.
About Herschel Vinyard:
Vinyard has more than twenty years of experience in environmental law and business management. In his current role as director of business operations at BAE Systems Southeast Shipyards, Vinyard is responsible for strategic planning, business development and regulatory and government affairs. BAE is the world’s second largest defense contractor. He also serves on a number of professional and civic associations that draw upon his expertise in environmental and complex business practices. This includes board service on the Jacksonville Port Authority, the Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Manufactures Association of Florida. During his decade in private practice at Smith, Hulsey and Busey, Vinyard counseled clients in state and federal environmental compliance and permitting, was heavily involved in the siting of an electrical cogenerating facility and assisted in industry waste minimization efforts. He received his undergraduate and law degrees from Louisiana State University.
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3PR News: Sarasota County Preps for EIS scoping process….

Sarasota County’s assistant attorney, David Pearce, sent a lengthy memorandum to Water Resource Manager, Jack Merriam, outlining the legal parameters of the EIS (Environmental Impact Statement) recently undertaken by the Army Corps of Engineers. The following “connected actions” were excerpted from the memo. They describe the environmental impacts of phosphate mining and fertilizer manufacturing. The entire memo will soon be posted on the 3PR website www.protectpeaceriver.org

1. Connected Actions – Site Preparation
2. Connected Actions – Topsoil and Muck Removal, Storage, and Redistribution
3. Connected Actions – Severing Connection to Surficial Aquifer and Dewatering
4. Connected Actions – Uplands and Isolated Wetlands
5. Connected Actions – Operation of Beneficiation Plants
6. Connected Actions – Consumptive Use of Water
Connection Actions – Waste Water Discharge
8. Connected Actions – Waste Management
9. Connected Actions – Phosphogypsum Stacks

Click to read entire article

Legal: Williams declaration

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF FLORIDA
JACKSONVILLE DIVISION
SIERRA CLUB, INC.; PEOPLE FOR
PROTECTING THE PEACE RIVER,
INC.; and MANASOTA-88, INC.,
Plaintiffs,
v.
UNITED STATES ARMY CORPS OF
ENGINEERS; and COLONEL ALFRED
A. PANTANO, JR.,
Defendants,
and
MOSAIC FERTILIZER, LLC,
Defendant-Intervenor.
)
)
)
Case No. 3:10-cv-00564-HLA-JBT
DECLARATION OF AMBER E. WILLIAMS

To see entire document: http://www.protectpeaceriver.org/wp-admin/media.php?action=edit&attachment_id=261

Legal: Winchester 2nd declaration

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF FLORIDA
JACKSONVILLE DIVISION
SIERRA CLUB, INC.; PEOPLE FOR PROTECTING
PEACE RIVER, INC;, and, MANASOTA—88, INC.
Plaintiffs,
v. Case No.: 3:10-cv-00564-HLA-JBT
UNITED STATES ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS;
and COLONEL ALFRED A. PANTANO, JR.,
Commanding District Engineer, U.S. Army Corps
of Engineers, Jacksonville District,
Defendant.
__________________________________________________
SECOND DECLARATION OF BRIAN H. WINCHESTER

Click for entire document: http://www.protectpeaceriver.org/wp-admin/media.php?action=edit&attachment_id=260

Federal Judge Slaps Temporary Restraining Order on S. Ft. Meade Mine Extension

This afternoon (07/01/10) United States District Court Judge, Henry Lee Adams, ordered a 28-day restraining order on any mining activities at the South Fort Meade Mine Extension in Hardee County. A hearing for preliminary injunction has been scheduled for July 22, 2010 at the US Courthouse in Jacksonville, FL.

The Restraining Order follows a Complaint filed by Sierra Club, 3PR, and Manasota-88, on June 30. The Complaint alleged violations of the Clean Water and the National Environmental Policy Act by the Army Corps of Engineers. The plaintiffs demonstrated “likelihood of success in their claims that The Corps acted in a manner that was arbitrary, capricious, and contrary to the law.” The Order went on to state that ” the public interest favors the issuance of a temporary restraining order to protect these resources (the Peace River and Charlotte Harbor) and the natural environment until the case can be resolved on the merits.”

Dennis Mader
Pres. 3PR

24,000 Acres of Phosphate Mines in Desoto County Require Comp Plan Amendment

This is huge! Please Plan to Attend en Masse

Charlotte Sun April 20,2010 – Notice of Public Meeting

Tues. May 4, 2010 5:30pm

and

Tues. May 25,2010 6:30pm public hearing:

1. LS 010-01  General Phosphate Mining Overlay for future land use Map and Comprehensive Plan – Transmittal
Mosaic Fertilizer, LLC and Desoto County have prepared an application to amendment the Future Land Use Map (FLUM) to create an overlay category identifying lands with a high potential for Phosphate Mining.  Supporting policies regulating density, intensity and permitted uses within the overlay are included as an amendment to the Comprehensive PLan Future Land Use Element text.  The proposed overlay includes lands not owned by Mosaic Fertilizer LLC or their subsidiaries.  The overlay is approx. 24,000 +/- acres and located west of the Peace River and the city limits of Arcadia and covers an area to the Manatee/DeSoto County line, often referred to as the PINE LEVEL area.  Portions of the overlay are approx. 3 miles or greater north of SR70 and approx. 2 miles south of SR72.  A map showing the general location is provided herein  A legal description is on file with the application in the Planning Department office.