Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Conservation 20/20 - The People Responsible for Preserving Lee County

Conservation 20/20 is a county ordained organization that seeks to acquire lands for preservation. Their website is here - http://www.conservation2020.org/index.cfm.

In sum of the information provided on the website, the organization began with a group of Lee County citizens who recognized in 1995 that there was land in this area that needed to be preserved before the whole place was developed and it was too late. They called themselves Conservation 20/20 at this time and eventually through their lobbying, voters enacted a law to raise taxes, the money from which would go towards protecting natural habitats. Officially the group is now called the Conservation Lands Acquisition and Stewardship Advisory Committee (or CLASAC), but they are still more widely known as Conservation 20/20. The function of this committee is to take offers and screen possible lands to be protected, which are then deemed preserves by the county.

Also according to the website, the group has these four primary objectives:
1. Protect and preserve natural wildlife habitat.
2. Protect and preserve water quality and supply.
3. Protect developed lands from flooding.
4. Provide resource-based recreation.

I was not aware until now of this branch of Lee County Parks and Recreations, and it appears that they are the responsible party for many of the preserves in Lee County that I have ever visited or heard about.

The preserved natural habitats that I have visited that were set up by Conservation 20/20 are - Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve, Matanzas Pass Preserve (thanks to the University Colloquium course), Boomer Preserve - Koreshan State Historic Site, and I may have been to the San Carlos Bay - Bunche Beach Preserve, but my memory does not serve me so well on that.
There's always a possibility that I will go to one of the other preserves listed on the site. I seem to always end up at the Koreshan State Historic Site for one reason or another. I'd like to learn more about the individual preserves and see what interests me.

I see no fault whatsoever in Conservation 20/20's mission and I believe that tax money is efficiently being allocated through their program. It is a small price to pay for the ability to live in the future, quite literally!

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