We are grateful and proud to report that Governor DeSantis has signed House Bill 1489, legislation that designates the southern Brevard Barrier Island as an Area of Critical State Concern (ACSC). The ACSC designation enhances protections for resources and public spaces of major statewide significance from damage due to uncontrolled development.
The five other designated ACSC areas in Florida include the Florida Keys, Key West, Big Cypress, the Green Swamp and the Apalachicola Bay area.
The southern Brevard Barrier Island is especially worthy of protection. Its beaches, dunes, coastal scrub, and maritime hammock areas represent one of the most fragile and endangered natural upland communities in the state and the nation. It is also the home to important nesting grounds for threatened and endangered sea turtles, including boasting the largest nesting aggregation of loggerhead sea turtles in the world.
After hearing from local citizens and conservation groups concerned about threats to the southern Barrier Island from incompatible development, 1000 Friends worked with the Sea Turtle Conservancy and Brevard legislators to help draft and then pass HB 1489 without a single vote in opposition in either the state Senate or House. We are grateful to our many supporters who contacted state senators, representatives and ultimately the Governor, helping this bill to become law.
Even after this resounding victory, there is more to be accomplished through conservation and responsible planning to protect other environmental treasures in our state from uncontrolled development. With your continued support, we will build on our success with HB 1489 for years to come.