My husband and I have lived in Jefferson County for over 26 years.
We purchased our house and property in 1993, due to the area being rural and a place we could have our horses and animals.
We have put our hearts and souls into making our home and property a place we could be proud of and enjoy. My husband has planted almost every tree surrounding our property, as he has always said we would live in a forest.
We knew when we bought, out in the county, that we could face predators and parasites, but we never thought they would come in the form of a big business named NextEra, that would take our property.
NextEra has pushed this project along as fast as they possibly could and for the most part, in total secrecy. NextEra has kept everyone out of the loop.
Jefferson and Leon County commissioners only found out when local residents started questioning them about the project. NextEra isn't partnering with counties, so they don't feel it's necessary to share anything with very people they are planning on taking land from. A project this large should be done in complete transparency.
The public records request, I put into the City of Tallahassee, indicated that “the city has very little information on the scope of the project”.
The public records request I put in with Parrish Barwick, Jefferson County Coordinator and Shannon Metty, Jefferson County Planning Official indicated that they “had little contact with NextEra/FPL/Gulf Power”.
Mr. Parrish sent an email pre my request, dated March 14, 2019 where Timothy Bryant stated
“What’s your availability on Monday, March 18, 2019 to discuss a proposed Gulf Power transmission line project impacting Jefferson County Districts 1, 3, and 5? If possible, I would also like to meet with commissioners Fulford, Surles, and Walker (or their aides) on Monday to make them aware of the project, as well.”
Per Mr. Barwick this meeting never took place.
This in itself show lack of information and transparency.
And the fact is, NextEra’s project provides NO service in Jefferson or Leon County. The only need for this line is so NextEra can connect Gulf to FPL.
NextEra is planning on placing 22,000 lb. cement poles, 17 feet into the ground. Their digging, in our sandy area, will create sink holes and caverns and will have to be filled with grout and cement.
As all of you know, we sit on the aquifer and our aquifer runs into the St Marks, Wacissa and Aucilla river. Our well pumps do not have to be placed very far down to pump out our drinking water.
What type of well contamination to our drinking water will we have to deal with the concrete and grout NextEra will have to pore into the ground to hold up these poles? Not to mention the damage to the St Marks, Wacissa, Aucilla rivers and our beautiful tree lined roads?
Also, lastly, people that are in NextEra’s cross hairs, such as ourselves, will have documented property value losses of up to 38%. Our home and property are one of our biggest investments.
I beg you, as our elected commissioners, SAY NO TO NEXTERA/FPL/GULF POWER ON TRAM ROAD!
Debi and Keith Brock