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Reservior Opponents Resent Orvis Lobbying


Rural Palm Beach County officials and sugar growers are reacting bitterly to a business group’s lobbying campaign for a massive reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee.

Governor Rick Scott and legislative leaders met with Everglades Foundation CEO Eric Eikenberg, hoteliers, a boat manufacturer and the CEO of Vermont-based outfitter, Orvis.

U.S. Sugar’s Judy Sanchez says the group is pitching a plan that will devastate the local economy and do nothing to stop toxic algae blooms in South Florida waterways.

“It’s a pretty sad state of affairs that you have big outdoor recreational companies and their executives walking around, looking to put the hard-working men and women of the Glades community out of jobs.”

Eikenberg and delegation members stressed the economic fallout from the environmental emergency and the threat future blooms pose for tourism and the outdoor recreational industry.

A chamber poll claims 92 percent of Lee County hotels lost 100 nights of stay because of the outbreak.

A Miami native, former WFSU reporter Jim Ash is an award-winning journalist with more than 20 years of experience, most of it in print. He has been a member of the Florida Capital Press Corps since 1992.