LAKE HARBOR, Florida — Gov. Rick Scott ceremoniously signed a bill on Friday that includes money to speed construction of a reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee. Scott officially signed Senate Bill 10 on Tuesday.
The bill aims to reduce the recurrence of toxic algae outbreaks that have impacted communities along the Caloosahatchee River and create cleaner beaches in Southwest Florida by restoring the flow of clean water to the Everglades and Florida Bay. The reservoir will store 120 billion gallons of storm overflow.
The measured was cheered by Eric Eikenberg, CEO of the Everglades Foundation.
“Toxic algae were going down into the Caloosahatchee, Sanibel, Captiva,” he said. “Folks in Lee County suffered, the environment and economy. What today does is provides a new outlet.”
Scott Says Lake O Reservoir Plan will Help Estuaries
About 100 people lined the southern banks of Lake Okeechobee Friday to see Rick Scott sign legislation aimed at building a reservoir that should eventually help ease freshwater discharges to the Caloosahatchee River.
“This continues the puzzle to fix the flow of water and the Everglades through all the Everglades restoration,” Scott said. “This is good for all of us. It’s good for our wildlife. It’s good for our agriculture industry and it’s great for this part of the state.”