Until the recession, Florida spent about $300 million per year from “doc stamp” funds to purchase and manage public lands. Over the past few years, that money has been diverted to the general fund and less than $15 million per year has been spent to acquire conservation lands since 2011. “We need to assure that natural resources are protected,” said Laurie MacDonald, speaking to ABM for the legacy group.
“It was a shock to many of us involved in land conservation to see funding zero out,” added Sally Thompson, a long-time ABM member who also has held leadership positions with the Southwest Florida Water Management District and the Florida Greenways and Trails Council. “It’s been a bipartisan effort for so many years.”
According to recent polls, about 75% of voters support the amendment and no major opposition group has stepped forward, MacDonald said.