FDEP to reopen Tampa Bay Aquatic Preserves Office
Ribbon-cutting marks renewed management near one of state's largest cities
DUNEDIN – Local and state officials will celebrate the re-opening of the Tampa Bay Aquatic Preserves office with a ribbon-cutting and ceremony at the City of Dunedin Municipal Marina on Tuesday.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Office of Coastal and Aquatic Managed Areas will join local dignitaries in a ribbon cutting, followed by a boat tour of one of the more than 100 spoil islands within the preserve.
The office closed July 1, 2011 due to budget constraints. Over the past 18 months, restructuring of grant funds and responsibilities has allowed positions to be transferred from Tallahassee to Tampa in order to create one full-time and two part-time positions for the re-opened office.
Tampa Bay Aquatic Preserves is the second largest urban estuary in the state, and it is important for commercial and recreational fishing. Tampa Bay Aquatic Preserves is home to all four species of mangroves native to the state. The aquatic preserves attract tourists from around the world to its clean and beautiful waters right off shore from one of Florida’s largest cities. The Tampa Bay area is home to four aquatic preserves: Boca Ciega Bay, Terra Ceia, Cockroach Bay, and Pinellas County.
The event will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 18, from 1-2 p.m. at the City of Dunedin Municipal Marina, 51 Main St. in Dunedin.
About the Office of Coastal and Aquatic Managed Areas:
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Coastal and Aquatic Managed Areas is responsible for oversight of the State’s 41 Aquatic Preserves, three National Estuarine Research Reserves, the Coral Reef Conservation Program, and the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. It is the mission of CAMA to conserve and restore Florida’s coastal resources for the benefit of people and the environment. For more information http://www.dep.state.fl.us/coastal