The federal government is footing half the $8.4 billion bill for restoring the Florida Everglades — so no wonder eight U.S. lawmakers are expressing concern over what they see as the state’s efforts to alter the Everglades Forever Act, which sets the terms of the cleanup. Florida Department of Environmental Protection chief David Struhs is in Washington, D.C., today to reassure those lawmakers, who hailed from both sides of the aisle, and emphasize the state’s commitment to restoring the Everglades. Those reassurances are necessary, because this week, the Natural Resources Committee of the Florida legislature approved changes in a matter of minutes to a law that took years to negotiate. Some of those changes include amendments so confusing that lobbyists on both sides of the Everglades issue were left in the dark. Now, many fear that the changes, if approved by the state legislature, will jeopardize billions of dollars in federal aid.
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