Heartland counties still have no voice at SFWMD

WEST PALM BEACH — The South Florida Water Management District Governing Board will focus on water quality issues at its Sept. 11 workshop meeting in West Palm Beach. The Heartland counties of the South Florida Water Management District will once again have no representation.

The seat for the at-large member for an area that includes Glades, Highlands, Okeechobee, Orange, Osceola and Polk counties has been vacant since March.

At a press conference in Stuart on Jan. 10, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced that he had correspondence to all of the board members, “thanking them for their service but requesting their resignations.”

One position was vacant when the governor made his announcement. The terms of three board members expired in March. While some board members at first vowed to stay and serve their appointed terms, they were pressured to resign with a campaign of threats on social media. Some even received threatening phone calls at their homes.

The eight SFWMD governing board members appointed by Gov. DeSantis all live in coastal areas.
• Chairman Chauncey Goss, founder and managing partner or Goss Practical Solutions, lives in Sanibel.
• Vice Chairman Scott Wagner, president and owner of Wagner Legal, lives in Miami Beach.
• Carlos E. Martinez, president of CEM Investments LLC, lives in Pinecrest.
• Cheryl Meade, CEO of Trumpet Calls LLC – Real Estate Holding Company and Development, lives in Islamorada.
• Charlotte Roman, a retired U.S. Army officer, lives in Marco Island.
• Jay Steinle, managing director of Lighthouse Investment Partners, lives in West Palm Beach.
• Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch, an agent with the Life Style Realty Group, lives in Sewall’s Point.
• Ron Bergeron, engineering construction contractor and founder of The Bergeron Family of Companies, lives in Fort Lauderdale.

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