Our Halpatiokee Fight
The Alliance and the Indian Riverkeeper are deeply committed to defend our Preserve State Parks. Once it became apparent to us that the legal safeguards designed to protect them were not engaged and Route 1C was selected for the bridge route as a result, we felt we had no choice but to pursue legal remedy though the courts.
We are indeed fortunate that good-hearted and highly competent attorneys have taken up our cause. Jason Totoiu, Esq., of the Everglades Law Center in Winter Haven, Florida, drafted the original assessment of the 4(f) challenge, and got the ball rolling with his letter registering our protest to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) in April of 2012. Robert N. Hartsell, Esq. and Sarah M. Hayter, Esq. of Hartsell Law in Pompano Beach and Rachel S. Doughty of Greenfire Law in Berkeley, California took the ball from there, beginning with a letter to the FHWA in November of 2013, and the first filing in May of 2014.
We’ve come a long way already but we need your help to keep our momentum going. Please donate whatever you can to this noble cause.
Here’s a list of important milestones:
Word has spread of our fight to the offices of permitting agencies like the ACE, the SFWMD, and the Coast Guard. Any contemplated permitting action has now been given the status of “Heightened Public Concern” and agencies are seeking additional and concise information as to how the construction of the Route 1C bridge is not violating federal and state laws. We are paying attention.
If ever there was a David and Goliath fight, this is one. We are counting on your support. Whether it is through contacting your elected representatives, agency heads, including from the FDEP (!), to express your concerns with the taking of Preserve State Parks for things like road infrastructure, or actual dollars contributed to our legal defense fund, we are profoundly grateful to you.