Originally published by The News-Press on November 22, 2023 by Chad Gillis

Some environmental advocates and researchers are concerned that a detrimental change may be planned for the Estero Bay Aquatic Preserve, which has been under state protections since 1966.

The state published a public notice recently that gave very little details, only that a change will be proposed in 2024.

The Nov. 9 notice, published in The News-Press, reads: “Notice is hereby given of intent to apply to the Florida Legislature, in the 2024 regular or any special or extended legislative sessions, for passage of an act relating to aquatic preserves, amending chapter 75-172 or Section 258.39(28), Florida Statutes, relating to the boundaries of the Estero Bay Aquatic Preserve.”

“We probably won’t know until the day before the (legislative) delegation (meets),” said Calusa Waterkeeper Emeritus John Cassani. “If it’s something that’s under the radar, it probably won’t be on the agenda until the last minute.”

The News-Press reached out to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection about the notice but did not receive a reply.

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