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Tavares, Florida 32778

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For immediate release - November 9, 2005

Public land council takes tour of Ferndale Preserve

FERNDALE — The Lake County Public Land Acquisition Advisory Council toured the recently purchased Ferndale Preserve on Wednesday morning during a public meeting.

Lake County purchased the 192-acre scenic preserve on the shores of Lake Apopka on Aug. 31. A grant secured last year from the Florida Communities Trust funded 75 percent of the acquisition. A partnership between the Lake County Board of County Commissioners, Lake County Water Authority and the St. Johns River Water Management District funded the other 25 percent of the land purchase on County Road 455, a state designated scenic highway.

The Public Land Acquisition Advisory Council toured the property to discuss a range of subjects, including land management of the new public property. Among the council’s concerns is the intrusion of nonnative plants on the preserve, such as a large stand of banana trees.

The Council also discussed its progress at evaluating other properties for possible public acquisition. After reviewing several properties at a meeting last week, council members said they were delighted with the progress.

“We have the full support of the County Commissioners and I think we are moving at the speed they expect of us,” said Nadine Foley, chair of the Council.

Other Public Land Acquisition Advisory Council members in attendance Wednesday included Gregg Gensheimer, Joe Branham and Carol Johnson.

As of Monday, the Lake County Public Lands Management Division had received three inquiries from property owners about submitting acquisition applications for the Council to review. Interested property owners can submit their properties for consideration by filling out an application. The Public Land Acquisition Advisory Council only considers properties from willing sellers.

To obtain an application, call (352) 343-9648, e-mail dhansen@co.lake.fl.us or log on to www.lakecountyfl.gov. Applications must meet four of the 13 established criteria for the program. A list of criteria can be found at www.lakecountyfl.gov. The list encompasses three areas of primary concern: enhancing water resources, protecting environmentally sensitive lands and providing potential recreational lands.


Related Links:
Public Lands Acquisition Advisory Council
Public Lands Management

Contact information:
Christopher Patton
Communications Coordinator
Office: (352) 343-9609; Cell: (352) 455-0445

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