Letter: SFWMD To Blame For The Flooding

The fault for The Acreage and Wellington flooding is clearly that of the South Florida Water Management District. The SFWMD’s negligence and poor planning is to blame, and not a conveniently timed hurricane.

Isaac dropped a mere 12 inches or so on The Acreage. About 18 years ago we had the storm of the century out here and took 36 inches of rain in 24 hours. There was more flooding with Isaac, even though it was less than half the rainfall. The SFWMD says that the ground was soaked prior to Isaac causing trouble. Well, guess what? All the rainfall in the entire month of August didn’t add up to 36 inches, so I’m not buying it. And still, why was the ground soaked and the water table high just prior to a hurricane? Again, the SFWMD is to blame.

But the SFWMD is pointing their long fingers at everyone else. First, they blame Acreage residents for “building in a swamp, and they deserve what they get.” Well, for the record, The Acreage is not and never was a swamp — at least not before the SFWMD came onto the scene. The vast majority of land in The Acreage is scrub land, not swamp land. Pine trees don’t grow in swamps.

Now, more recently, the SFWMD is blaming Gov. Rick Scott for the flooding. They claim that he cut their funding, which somehow caused the canals not to work right. But Rick Scott has been governor for only a few years. Why hasn’t the SFWMD fixed the canals previously? So basically, the SFWMD can try blaming others for their negligence, but ultimately, the flooding was all their fault — not the Indian Trail Improvement District, not the Acme Improvement District, not Rick Scott, not Isaac, not Santa Claus and not anyone but the management of SFWMD.

With that, I’m saying that we need to petition the governor to change the management of the SFWMD to an elected board. They must be held accountable for their mistakes.

Dennis Hawkins
The Acreage


  1. All due respect to Mr. Hawkins and his opinion, but I have seen an elected board in action (or rather inaction) in the Acreage. I do not think politicizing drainage is good for the residents of the Acreage nor South Florida. Playing politics with safety is always bad. The Board should be ONLY comprised of engineers and biologists that are appointed for 3-4 year terms. That way you will have engineers who understand the infrastructures deficiencies and its strengths and where to make improvements when necessary. The biologists should be there to limit negative impacts on the environment when ever possible. The safety of ALL in South Florida should come first. To be honest, I would rather a knowledgeable civil engineer and/or a biologist run the show instead of a “soccer mom or dad” with self-important political aspirations.

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