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Army Corps of Engineers set to revise management of Lake Okeechobee

Posted: 4:59 PM, Jan 31, 2019
Updated: 2019-01-31 18:35:11-05
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OKEECHOBEE COUNTY, Fla. — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans to revise their management of Lake Okeechobee and develop a new Lake Okeechobee System Operating Manual.

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That will determine when water managers discharge water to the east and west.

The Corps implemented the Lake Okeechobee regulation schedule back in 2008.

Hal Chittum, owner of Chittum Skiffs, is now hopeful.

"Luckily Governor DeSantis is off to a good start," said Chittum.

A Corps spokesperson said development of the new manual is made possible because repairs to the Herbert Hoover Dike will be complete by 2022. That will complement other projects coming to fruition by that time.

"We’ll have more flexibility based on new infrastructure being constructed and the public process will inform where we end up," said Tim Gysan, project manager of the manual.

The Corps will hold a series of public meetings over the next few weeks to hear concerns from residents.

"Make sure we get our voices heard," said Mark Perry with Florida’s Oceanographic Society. "Hopefully people putting the pressure on we can get them to fast track this schedule."

Here’s a rundown of all future meetings:

Lehigh Acres
Tuesday, Feb. 5
1 p.m. - 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Lee County Mosquito Control District Training Center
15191 Homestead Road
Lehigh Acres, FL 33971

Okeechobee
Wednesday, Feb. 6
6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Indian River State College
Williamson Conference and Education Center
2229 N.W. 9th Avenue
Okeechobee, FL 34972

Clewiston
Monday, Feb. 11
6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
John Boy Auditorium
1200 South W.C. Owen Avenue
Clewiston, FL 33440

Stuart
Tuesday, Feb. 19
1 p.m. - 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Indian River State College
The Clare and Gladys Wolf High-Technology Center
2400 SE Salerno Road
Stuart, FL 34997

Broward County
Tuesday, Feb. 26
Time TBD
Location TBD

West Palm Beach
Wednesday, Feb. 27
6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
South Florida Water Management District
Governing Board Auditorium
3301 Gun Club Road
West Palm Beach, FL 33406

Miami Gardens
Thursday, Feb. 28
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
North Dade Regional Library
2455 NW 183rd Street
Miami Gardens, FL 33056