Email, write or telephone Governor DeSantis at this very critical time.

Include email address with your letter or phone call. If you do not want your e-mail address released in response to a public records request, do not send electronic mail to this entity. Instead, contact this office by phone or in writing.


Telephone: (850) 717-9337

Script: This is (name). My email address is xxxxx. I am calling today to ask you to provide leadership in moving forward restoration of the Ocklawaha River by breaching the Rodman/Kirkpatrick Dam. Restoration can’t wait.



Office of Governor Ron DeSantis
State of Florida
The Capitol
400 S. Monroe St.
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0001

Key points that you can include in letter or email are below. Please make the letter your own – particularly with a few personal words of introduction in the beginning and why you care so much about The Great Florida Riverway.

With your leadership, we can achieve the most important restoration project currently available for central and north Florida today. Restoration of the Ocklawaha River by breaching the Rodman/Kirkpatrick helps restore three rivers—the St. Johns, Ocklawaha, and Silver—plus 50 springs including Silver Springs. We call this The Great Florida Riverway.

Three Reasons Why Ocklawaha Restoration Can’t Wait.


  1. Avoids a Potential Dam and Lock Failure:The dam and lock are past their 50-year life expectancy and present a danger to the town of Welaka and other downstream communities. It does not make sense to spend millions to repair a dam and lock that does not provide any major public benefit. Restoration is the only fiscally responsible answer.


  1. Provides Essential Manatee Habitat:More than 1,000 manatees have died in the last year. Providing warm-water habitat for wintering manatees that is safe, has available food sources, and the right temperature to avoid cold stress syndrome is key to manatee conservation. Breaching the Rodman/Kirkpatrick Dam would provide hundreds of manatees with unimpeded access to warm water habitat in the larger, uncovered Ocklawaha springs and Silver Springs.


  1. Restores the health of the Ocklawaha and St. Johns Rivers and Silver Springs:The Rodman/Kirkpatrick dam continues to degrade three rivers and 50 springs negatively impacting the economy and environment of northeast Florida. This is an issue of regional and statewide significance that can’t be ignored.


The lower St. Johns River estuary is losing its submerged grasses essential to the fishery and commercial shellfish industry. Silver Springs has lost its historic fish and exotic fish are taking over. The Rodman Reservoir is declining in use and invasive weeds are a major issue requiring lots of herbicide treatments. Twenty springs are buried by the waters of the dam.

There are NO good reasons to delay this unprecedented project. The plan and permit application for partial restoration of the Ocklawaha are done, essential lands have been acquired, ample federal and state funds are available, and overwhelming public support has been demonstrated from a SJRWMD survey and the recent Barcelo Ocklawaha Restoration Poll. Support for a FREE Ocklawaha River polled at 77%. The project was recently recommended by Florida TaxWatch.

I hope that I can count on you to move Ocklawaha River restoration forward. Ocklawaha Restoration Can’t Wait.

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