Originally published in The News-Press by Chad Gillis on January 17, 2020

Lawmakers are pushing several bills this session that have regulatory implications as the state tries to rid its waters of blue-green algae and similar pollution.

The recommendations came from the Blue-Green Algae Task Force, a group of five scientists who meet regularly to discuss water issues like pollution, toxic algae blooms and septic tanks.

Some environmental advocates say they are encouraged by the water quality bills that have been put forward so far but that there is still room for improvement.

“It’s a good start but it’s weak on several components,” said Calusa Waterkeeper John Cassani. “The bill defers to various technical committees to respond back on things like stormwater treatment and sludge disposal. It just delays the implementation, and without knowing what the recommendations are from the technical committees, it’s hard for me to support the bill entirely.”

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