Polk Vision Reboots; Can Environment Be Included?

The Ledger reports that Polk Vision is planning a series of public meetings around Polk County during the next two months to hear from citizens about their ideas about what can be done to make this a better place for all of us.

I wonder if there’s any interest in adding completion of the work to protect the natural environment for the sake of future generations to the agenda.

The 2004 meetings after Polk Vision originally organized served as a catalyst to get more money for Polk’s underfunded park system.

Polk County’s voters got together in 1994 and told the County Commission they wanted to tax themselves to buy and manage some of Polk’s remaining environmental jewels. That program was a success, but the work is incomplete.

There are still some missing pieces, some land whose purchase would fill gaps that would accomplish important things. It would protect entire ecosystems rather than mere fragments through the ownership of larger contiguous tracts that could be fenced, managed with prescribed fire and restored to further protect globally imperiled species.

This primarily involves land west of Crooked Lake, the only Outstanding Florida Water in Polk, though some land along the Peace River and in the Green Swamp Area of Critical of State Concern may offer opportunities as well.

The next Polk Vision meeting will occur at 8:30 a.m. Thursday at the Auburndale Civic Center in downtown Auburndale and will continue through the next month or so, wrapping up at April 13 at the Winter Haven Chamber of Commerce.

The meetings occur at different times of the day, so pick a date or time that fits your schedule. All but two of meetings occur during the work day, which may limit attendance for some people who may want to get involved.

To view the meeting schedule, go to http://portal.polkvision.com/ .

Posted in Group Conservation Issues.