Sugar industry protection/support is a very contentious OPEN issue - more on this page - also the recent press:
US-Sugar and their bull -10/10/2012
Sugar subsidies, pollution anything but sweet deal for taxpayers -06/29/2012
Sugar industry's sweet deal -06/25/2012
"Sugar Barons and Stakeholders" - MPA Thesis,
NY University, 2010.
The development of the Sugar-land deal and Big Sugar role in the
- as reflected in the press (2008-12):
» CLICK for more BELOW on the grandiose concept of the sugar company land buy-out and how it has been watered down. More on Big Sugar -
Big Sugar uses Everglades as toilet -09/14/2012
Sugar subsidies, pollution... -06/29/2012
Everglades needs "polluter pays" -03/29/2012
Taxpayers pay for industry's mess -03/29/2012
Big Sugar: Great Destroyers -03/27/2012
Everglades: Pointing at agriculture for cleanup
Farmers not paying fair share -03/27/2012
Report: Taxpayers foot clean-up bill -03/27/2012
Taxpayers pay to clean up Glades -03/27/2012
Who Pollutes ? Who Pays ? -03/26/2012
The Sweet Lobby: Big Sugar Battle -03/07/2012
Who’s Naughty and Who’s Nice:
A Year After the Everglades Big Sugar Deal -12/23/2011
Big Sugar land - about the land lease -0113/11
SFWMD rents land to FL-Crystals -0113/11
U.S. Sugar lambastes rival Florida Crystals -0112
Hold water polluters to account -1125
Everglades finance plan - victory or setback -1122
FL Supreme Court approves land deal -1119
FL High Court allows Everglades land buy -1118
FL Supreme Court supports land deal -1118
Florida Must Restore Everglades -1109
Everglades is taking another step forward ! -1029
No Money Left to Fix Everglades ? -1022
Purchase doesn't stop pollution from LO -1016
Next governor will influence E-restoration -1014
lLand deal celebrated, hurdles large -1014
Land deal for Everglades at $197M -1013
E-glades land deal closes important step -1013
Florida finalizes deal with US-Sugar -1012
Everglades restoration deal moves forward -1008
Sugar land deal finally a lock -1008
In Governors race, where is Big Sugar ? -0920
Criticism of US-Sugar land buy ignores facts -0913
Special master: right move at right time -0906
Report may aid Everglades land buy -0901
Reduced US-Sugar land buy wise -0828
Wrong - taxpayers prop up Big Sugar -0826
Battle Over Everglades Deal -0824
Injunction denied US Sugar deal -0823
FL settles for less for Everglades, estuaries -0821
Everglades purchase is fiscally irresponsible -0818
Miccoasukee seek halt to the land deal -0816
Land Deal - Scaled Back -0815
Lost Hope for the Everglades ? -0813
For the Everglades, a Dream ... -0812
Scaled-down version approved -0812
Bad data & land buy- 0622
Sour grapes don't stop E-glades restoration- 0617
Salvage US-Sugar land deal- 0609
US-Sugar land buy too costly- 0608
Land deal to improve Everglades -0520
US-Sugar deal holds promise -0513
Environmental dispute to top court in FL- 0423
Lake O releases show need for land buy
Not a setback: room for US-Sugar deal -0408
Top FL court mulling Everglades debt -0408
FL Supreme Court questions land deal -0407
Lawyers: Reject Everglades land deal -0407
Judge's order for reservoir imperils land buy -0331
Big Sugar sues - Clean Water Act -0329
Find money for sugar deal ? -0327
Sugar growers take a swipe at Evergl. deal -0326
Independent, 3rd party to negotiate (Mar.25)
Time to renegotiate with US Sugar (Mar.24)
Everglades Land Purchase (Mar.17)
Best for Everglades, re-do US Sugar deal (Mar.15)
Don't give up on Everglades (Mar.15)
Everglades needs sugar deal done right (Mar.13)
Big Sugar sues to stop Clean Water Act
Everglades land deal: 6-month extension (Mar.12)
Water managers extend US Sugar deal (Mar.11)
Purchase is key to Everglades restoration (Mar.10)
Key vote on US Sugar land buy (Mar.9)
Deal - save Everglades - and a sugar firm
Everglades: a Dream Is Deferred (Mar.8)
Deal for Everglades Helps Sugar Firm (Mar.7)
Fair price ? That depends (Mar.7)
US Sugar deal calls for oversight (Mar.9)
l Water district can't afford to buy land (Mar.7)
l Water managers - Everglades on hold
l Everglades Restoration Clears a Hurdle
l Crist praises for Big Sugar land buy
lUS-Sugar Everglades land deal approved
lFlorida to buy land from sugar firm
(June 24, 2008)
The most recent court
decision took the SFWMD to task - and the US-Sugar Corp. pressure precipitated the Aug.12, 2010 decision by the SFWMD to spend "only" $197 million of its cash reserves.
Milestones of the "sugar land deal" :
June 2008 - Gov. Crist announces the initial agreement with US-Sugar Corp. to buy out its assets, including 180,000 acres of sugar-cane fields for ~$1.75 billion.
May 13, 2009 - The original deal is scaled down to $560 million for 72,500 acres of US-Sugar land, no other company assets.
SFWMD Board approves.
August 27, 2009 - Judge approves $650 million in bond issue by the SFWMD, despite challenges.
March 11, 2010 - SFWMD Board votes to extend the deal deadline by 6 months.
March 30, 2010 - Judge Moreno orders the A1-reservoir construction to resume, further weakening the already shaky land buy-out deal.
April 7, 2010 - FL Supreme Court hears Miccosukee Tribe's claim against SFWMD bond issue, no decision rendered as yet.
August 12, 2010 - The Miccosukee Tribe asks judge to stop the land deal by injunction.
August 12, 2010 - SFWMD Governing Board approves a "cash-only" deal of $197 million for ~26,790 acres of the US-Sugar land. The Company will lease back the land and keep using it.
October 11, 2010 - The closing deadline for the above sale deal. If not met - penalty of $10 million, safe a possible court injunction.
About U.S. Sugar
Headquarters: Clewiston, FL
Robert Buker, Chief Executive;
Robert Coker, Senior Vice-President
Employees: 1,700, down from 2,100 in 2006
Properties: Farms more than 187,000 acres in Hendry, Glades and Palm Beach counties. Owns a mill and refinery in Clewiston and a closed mill in Bryant.
Other holdings: Southern Gardens Citrus, which produces 42 million gallons of orange juice annually and owns 33,000 acres of groves; South Central Florida Express short-line railroad, which hauls sugar cane and products, fertilizer and farm equipment as well as products for lumber, paper and citrus industries
Harvest (2007-08): 612,000 tons
About $400 million from cane production
Other alliances: U.S. Sugar is a member company of United Sugars Corp. in Edina, Minn., which markets and distributes its sugar and that of beet sugar producers American Crystal Sugar Co. and Minn-Dak Farmers Cooperative. United Sugars' annual revenues are about $1.2 billion.
Sources: U.S. Sugar, Hoover's Inc.
Today, domestic producers sell sugar at 22 cents a pound. Producers in most other nations get 8 cents. America's artificial price prop adds $2.5 billion
to the shopping bills of U.S. consumers each year.
The federal sugar subsidy program is "one of the most invidious, inefficient, byzantine, special-interest, depression-era federal programs
" (Sen. Charles Schumer, D-NY).
For maintaining its special market position, "Big Sugar" buys political and legislative influence by heavily contributing to BOTH dominant political parties.
Interview with Chris Edwards, CATO Inst. (AUDIO)
Brief explanation of sugar trading in the USA (2007)
Time to Rethink the U.S. Sugar Program , 35 min. (2007)
Director - Center for Trade Policy Studies
President - National Foreign Trade Council
Some more facts on "Big Sugar"
as presented by The Everglades Trust (CLICK here or logo below):
The latest "trick" (March 2013) with "Big Sugar" label on it:
New bill Amendment PCB-SAC-13-01
(Palm Beach Post)
| US-SUGAR LAND DEAL
mouse-over photos for MYTHS and FACTS | From $1.75 billion down to $197 million
|Freechild, A. (2010) : "Sugar Barons and Stakeholders: The Impact of the US Sugar Deal on Everglades Restoration". NY University.
| >> FULL TEXT:
|US-Sugar and their bull
NewsZap.com (Oct.10, 2012)
Increased uptake of phosphorus improves plant health, root structure and growth.
This is right off their website: 2008 through 2010 was a bittersweet time for U.S. Sugar – a company that has been farming in the Lake Okeechobee region for more than four generations. It was during this time period when the Company agreed to sell a considerable amount of its sugar cane and citrus acreage to the South Florida Water Management District for the “River of Grass” restoration project. U.S. Sugar is firm in its belief that the sale was for a good cause and is proud to be part of this historic opportunity to make extraordinary progress in Everglades restoration and restore much of the natural footprint of South Florida.
It was BITTERSWEET for them ??? In 2009, a proposal for a scaled down acquisition was made due to the global economic crisis. Under the new contract, U.S. Sugar agreed to sell 72,500 acres of the Company’s land for approximately $530 million to the SFWMD. While the SFWMD finalized plans for the land, the Company (US Sugar) would continue to farm the 72,500 acres through a 7-year lease that may be extended under certain circumstances. PLUS: On August 12, 2010, a second amended agreement was reached for the South Florida Water Management District to buy 26,800 acres of land for $197 million along with the option to acquire 153,200 acres in the future. How in the name of Hades was that a "bittersweet time" ? $727 MILLON IN TWO YEARS !!! Plus they laid off 100's of employees because they were loosing that land ?? Oh but wait they now have 99,300 acres they can still farm BUT alas they don't have to pay property taxes on that land because it's now government land.
So the Hendry County Property Appraiser's office wants them to pay their fair share in taxes now and they are doing all they can to get him voted out of office in favor of a sore looser who cost the county almost $200,000 in court costs when she was defeated four years ago !! And if they have to pay more in taxes well they'll just have to lay more people off ...
There is nothing SWEET about what US Sugar is trying to do. They are asking us to swallow a load of bull with no sugar to help it go down while they destroy a good man’s name so they don't have to pay more in taxes. The Hendry/Glades Sunday News seemed to believe it would be around a $700,000 hike in taxes for them. That's alot of money or is it ?? It really isn't when you consider they are farming almost a 100,000 acres that are no longer on the tax roles ! I'm no appraiser but I'd bet thats a million or more in savings they are getting by not paying taxes on that land. So even saving by not paying taxes on land they'd leased they "will have to lay off" employees !?!?! What happened to that 3/4''s OF A BILLION DOLLARS YOU GOT TWO YEARS AGO ?
Why can't you use some of that money to prevent any lay offs? After all it was some of my tax money. Just an old lady with alot of time on her hands and a lot of questions for a company that was so happy to help with the Everglades restoration even if getting 3/4's of a billion dollars was such a bittersweet time for them !
|Lost Hope for the Everglades ?
Sunshine News (FL) - by Nancy Smith
| U.S. Sugar deal diverts money from concrete solutions.
More land to no purpose, more government waste in Florida.
Thursday’s (Aug.12, 2010) South Florida Water Management District
vote was all that and so much more.
The unanimous vote of the governing board turned the ailing Florida Everglades – a natural masterpiece without equal – into little more than a gold chip in a game of greed and ambition.
And frankly, it made me sick.
Back on April 1, when I wrote about Judge Federico Moreno ordering construction to resume on the 16,700-acre A-1 reservoir, I believed – just as former Gov. Jeb Bush, former executive director of the Water Management District Henry Dean, and many others – that the Everglades had a chance again.
Finally, I thought, we’re going to build restoration projects, just as we were doing before we got sidetracked on Gov. Charlie Crist’s U.S. Sugar deal.
But I should have known better.
It took a newspaper from New York City to show Floridians that U.S. Sugar was taking them for a ride. And even then, they wouldn’t believe it. Land is the thing. Gotta have land. And so, with the governor’s encouragement, the U.S. Sugar deal continued through two downsizings.
Well, I spent a lot of years as an editor and columnist in Stuart writing about the folly of land purchased for something that turned into nothing – the millions of dollars spent on the Inlet State Park that never became one, the property for a public golf course that lapsed into a preserve, the rights of way purchased for roundabouts that were engineered and then canceled on a commission’s whim.
But I’ve never seen anything to match the sheer dimwitted absurdity of handing over $197 million, the sum total of all your cash – as the Water Management District did Thursday – to a seller holding a gun to your head.
On Aug. 4 the seller, U.S. Sugar, gave the district one day to agree to the deal, and a week to get the board to Thursday’s “decision meeting.” It’s that or nothing, U.S. Sugar said. And if you agree to the $197 million for 26,800 acres but have to back out of the deal later, you owe us $10 million – no excuses, no “out” clause. (The district says, yes, there is an “out” if the deal is blocked in court; attorneys say, no, there is no exception.)
And for $197 million, you get to let U.S. Sugar use 17,900 acres of dead citrus land for free, for as long as 20 years; and 8,900 acres of the sugar land for $150 an acre. Bottom line, you empty your pockets, U.S. Sugar fills theirs, you come to a dead stop, they keep on truckin’.
You’ve created one happy seller because now you can’t afford to develop any part of the Everglades restoration project. You’re broke, they’re flush, and unless you raise some taxes -- with, say, the help of a supportive, friendly governor – then you aren’t going to phase in too much restoration.
Interestingly, most defenders of the U.S. Sugar deal Thursday were establishment people – government workers and members of A-list environmental organizations.
My personal favorite speaker was Drew Martin from the Sierra Club. He somehow found a way to compare the Sugar deal with the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. I guess in Martin’s mind, board Chairman Eric Buermann is Thomas Jefferson and U.S. Sugar is France.
Before Thursday’s vote was taken, the smart folks asked the Water Management District to wait. Wait to see if the three Indian burial mounds on the property can be moved. Wait to see what’s involved in cleaning up the two polluted parcels. Wait to see if the federal judge is going to grant the Miccosukee Tribe’s request to halt the sale. The Miccosukees have a point, after all. If the sale goes through, where’s the money going to come from to build a reservoir ?
Here’s where I came unglued:
Kirk Fordham, CEO of the Everglades Foundation said, “We can’t afford to wait any longer. You can’t build [restoration] projects without land.”
Really ? The Water Management District has land all over the place. Even if we ignore the 233,000 acres the district owns for Everglades restoration already, what about the property mostly north of the lake, bought-and-paid-for, to help clean the polluted water now flowing into the lake and save the St. Lucie River and estuary ?
This is something I know about. In 2002 Martin County paid $2,500 an acre for 13,000 acres of Allapattah Ranch. In 2007 – when real estate was at its peak – Martin shelled out $12,800 an acre for the last 7,000-plus acres of the ranch. We all cheered both purchases. Anything to help the Everglades and our sick river.
We bought the need for those land buy-backs then, just as the supporters of the U.S. Sugar deal did Thursday. But check it out. Allapattah is now in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ hands for God-knows-what federal purpose.
Tom Kenny, a former Martin County commissioner, told me Thursday night, “Martin has about $43 million so far in land buys it made for the Everglades.”
Allapattah isn’t the only property bought as part of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Project (CERP). In all, there are some 130,000 must-have-but-no-rush acres, including the Everglades Agricultural Area (31,600 acres), and Indian River Lagoon parcel (26,800 acres).
I asked Sen. Paula Dockery, R-Lakeland, what she thought of Thursday’s unanimous vote. “I’m disappointed but not surprised,” she said. “I’m a great supporter of Everglades restoration, somebody who sponsored Everglades Forever. But this is the wrong land, wrong time, wrong price.
“We should never have switched from building projects, from a reservoir that was nearly built, that we had already put $300 million into, to buying land that brings us to a halt.”
Asked if there’s anything that can be done to get Everglades restoration back on track, Dockery said, “It’s up to the governor. The governor can make it or break it.
“But let’s be honest, U.S. Sugar handed $680,000 over to Bill McCollum for his campaign. And that’s just the money we know about.
“I think, when this deal closes, U.S. Sugar and Bill McCollum will owe 18 million Floridians a gigantic ‘thank you.”
There you have it. That gold chip of greed and ambition – a sugar giant and a gubernatorial candidate playing for some very high stakes. They want it all and, apparently, they don’t think it matters how transparent their motives are.
Meanwhile, the Everglades. What chance for the River of Grass ?
|For the Everglades, a Dream Loses Much of Its Grandeur
New York Times - Aug.12/10
|WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — In the end, Gov. Charlie Crist’s effort to buy huge swaths of sugar company land for the Everglades restoration was just too much: too much money, too much land to handle, and too much of a fight with critics and the courts.
A vote on Thursday by the South Florida Water Management District — to scale back the deal for a third time — is expected to finally end negotiations, but it also amounted to an admission of overreaching. What began two years ago as a stunning $1.75 billion purchase of the United States Sugar Corporation and all its assets, including 187,000 acres of land, is now set to close in October at a fraction of its original size, with 26,790 acres being sold for $197 million.
Eric Buermann, chairman of the advisory board at the water district, which will buy and manage the land, said the end result was simply a product of economics. “This is what we can afford to bite off,” he said.
But to some degree, the deal has also been defined by shortsightedness. Internal records and interviews show that the governor and the district repeatedly underestimated the purchase’s financial and environmental complications, leading to the costly suspension of projects with more immediate benefits, and to the alienation of potential partners.
Ultimately, they left the Everglades with delays in exchange for majestic dreams, now unlikely to be realized.
It all got started with the desire for a single act that would save one of the world’s most treasured wetlands, along with its endangered plant and animal species. When Mr. Crist, standing at the edge of a man-made wetland in June 2008, announced the proposed deal, he called it “the holy grail” of restoration. And indeed, there was a lot of potential. Scientists have long maintained that there is nothing the Everglades — hurt by more than a century of dredging and development — needs more than space to store and clean water.
Never before had so much land north of Everglades National Park been made available, and the ecosystem was desperate: an $8 billion plan to save the Everglades, approved by President Bill Clinton in 2000, had been faltering for years.
But over time, it became clear that other motivations were also in play. Putting United States Sugar out of business appealed to environmentalists who had been feuding with the company, as well as to the governor, a moderate, who was eager for publicity in his quest to become Senator John McCain’s vice-presidential running mate.
In the fizzy moment of negotiations, little thought seemed to have been given to affordability, or to long-term plans. What would the state do with all the company’s farm equipment that was among the assets? What about the thousands of rural Floridians who would eventually be put out of work when farming stopped on United States Sugar’s 187,000 acres?
Mr. Crist was immediately inundated with complaints from the counties that would be affected. Farmers and local officials lined up at public meetings during the next year to demand an economic plan. “Please don’t let us down,” said Mali Chamness, the mayor of Clewiston, the small town where United States Sugar has been based since 1931.
The next deal, unveiled on Nov. 11, 2008, was smaller: a $1.34 billion purchase of just over 180,000 acres. The assets were no longer included and Mr. Crist called the new deal “miraculous.” But to truly restore the north-to-south “river of grass” from Lake Okeechobee to Florida Bay, land swaps with a competing company, Florida Crystals, would be necessary. The swaps fell through before negotiations were able to get off the ground, in part, interviews show, because United States Sugar did not want a competitor involved; the governor went along.
When dwindling tax revenues led to a third deal — a proposed $536 million purchase of 72,800 acres announced in April 2009 — Mr. Crist made it clear that he wanted the deal approved when he replaced two of the district’s board members, including a vocal critic. Yet once again, he had misjudged the road ahead: the district’s financial advisers said the purchase threatened vital water supply operations, and this year judges in two federal lawsuits demanded that state and federal officials do more to improve the Everglades’ water quality.
The smaller deal, according to the district, is in part an effort to address those lawsuits. “It’s a very strong signal that we’re heading in the right direction,” said Shannon Estenoz, a board member.
Governor Crist, in a statement praising the vote, quoted the philosopher Lao Tzu: “The longest journey begins with a single step.”
For many, the smaller acquisition — with an option to buy more land later — brings a sense of relief. With the larger deals, “there was a concern that we were going to spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to make things work,” said Eric Draper, executive director of Audubon of Florida. He called the deal approved Thursday a success because the district can afford it, and the land can be used for restoration relatively quickly.
Yet for critics (including some new arrivals from the Tea Party), it is still too much, too late. Dexter Lehtinen, a lawyer who has been involved in several lawsuits pushing for Everglades restoration since the 1980s, said the district was “taking money that could be spent on projects and spending it on land acquisition.”
Rosa Durando, a longtime environmentalist who has been demanding specific solutions since the first deal was announced, said she was still not satisfied. “I see a lot of pie in the sky,” Ms. Durando said, “but I don’t see how it would work on the ground.”
This is the "flow-way" required for water from Lake Okeechobee to proceed south towards the Everglades - cleansed along the way by STAs.
|Sugar-Land articles from the hot season of the issue:
(most from the mid-summer, 2010 - New York Times' search)
Not So Sweet: The Intricacies of Big and Little Sugar. InTheseTimes (blog) - Kari Lydersen - Feb.16/12
The lead on a story by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) attacking import limits and other government protections for the U.S. sugar industry was an attention-grabber: "That Valentine’s Day hand on your back pocket billfold is not your sweetheart’s, it’s the sugar lobby’s."
In the Everglades, the Miracle That Wasn't. New York Times (blog) - Damien Cave - Aug.12/10
The aging environmentalist with the Abe Lincoln beard ambled to the podium on Thursday to tell water managers that he could no longer support ...
l SFWMD Votes for Sugar. TheSunshineStateNews - Aug.11/10:
The South Florida Water Management District voted to purchase Everglades land from US Sugar, even though a decision from a federal judge that would affect ...
l Water managers approve Everglades/US Sugar deal. BusinessWeek - Aug 12, 2010:
An effort to restore Florida's Everglades will move forward after water managers approved a new, scaled back land deal. The South Florida Water Management ...
l Water managers OK Florida-US Sugar land deal.
MiamiHerald.com - C. Morgan - Aug 12/10: Although they faced a slew of critics, the South Florida Water Management District's governing board approved a deal to buy land from US Sugar for ...
Florida Everglades Restoration Plan Shrinks as Economy Thwarts Bond Sale.
Bloomberg - Simone Baribeau - Aug 12, 2010:
Florida's two-year-old plan to buy private property for Everglades restoration was approved unanimously ...
l Tribe asks judge to stop scaled-down Everglades land deal up for vote. Kansas City Star - Andy Reid - Aug 11, 2010:
A new legal fight could swamp Florida Gov. Charlie Crist's Everglades restoration land deal with US Sugar Corp., even before the recently ...
l Paula Dockery Nails It: Charlie Crist Passes U.S. Sugar Deal Baton to Bill ...
Sunshine State News (blog) - Aug.11, 2010:
Sen. Paula Dockery, R-Lakeland, passionate about her love for the Everglades, Thursday said she was disappointed but not surprised by the South Florida ...
l Lost Hope for the Everglades ? Sunshine State News - Nancy Smith - Aug.13, 2010:
More land to no purpose, more government waste in Florida. Thursday's South Florida Water Management District vote was all that and so much more. ...
l Water Board Votes to Purchase U.S. Sugar Land Without Waiting for Judge.
Sunshine State News - Lane Wright - Aug.13, 2010:
A month ago, the South Florida Water Management District Board said they didn't want to make a decision on Gov. Charlie Crist's US Sugar land deal until ...
l Everglades/U.S. Sugar deal will benefit Southwest Florida.
NaplesDailyNews - Aug 12, 2010: NAPLES — The environmental benefits of Thursday's deal to buy US Sugar land for Everglades restoration will trickle down to Southwest Florida ...
l Treasure Coast environmentalists lament Everglades restoration plan. Stuart News - Aug 12, 2010: Treasure Coast environmentalists who had strongly supported the Everglades restoration plan to buy US Sugar Corp. land south of Lake ...
l State Finalizing US Sugar Purchase
Southwest Florida. (Blog) - Aug 12, 2010:
CLEWISTON, FL. -- The South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) Governing Board today approved unanimously with one abstention a revised strategy to ...
l Smaller U.S. Sugar land purchase approved. Bizjournals.com - Aug 12, 2010
In a 6-0 vote, water managers approved a plan on Thursday to buy significant portions of US Sugar Corp.'s property in the Everglades Agricultural Area. ...
l Water Management approves land deal. WPTV The Associated Press - Aug 12, 2010:
PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. - After years of paring down the proposal, the controversial Everglades land deal was approved. ...
l $197M deal approved for smaller US Sugar land buy. Naples Daily News - Aug 12, 2010:
The governing board of the South Florida Water Management District has approved a scaled-back version of a buyout of US Sugar land for ...
l Scaled-down deal on Everglades land should be approved. Tampabay.com - Aug 12, 2010:
The land deal with US Sugar Corp. that goes before the governing board of the South Florida Water Management District today is a far cry from the ambitious ...
l Everglades needs sugar land: Without it, restoration stalls. Palm Beach Post - Aug 11, 2010:
The U.S. Sugar land deal, whittled to one-seventh of its original size, deserves the support today of the SFWMD Governing Board. But it no longer is the game-changing deal once touted by environmentalists and Gov. Crist. ...
l Big Sugar.
Orlando Sentinel - Aug 11, 2010:
The Clewiston-based US Sugar Co. has steered in excess of $680000 – and likely much more — into ads helping McCollum blunt the wave of television ...
l The incredible shrinking sugar deal.
Palm Beach Post (blog) - Aug 11, 201:
The cost of the US Sugar deal has been whittled from the original $1.75 billion to $197 million. The acreage has gone from 188000 acres to ...
l Latest Everglades deal better than nothing ? Orlando Sentinel - V. Schaffner - Aug 11, 2010:
Charlie Crist's ambitious plan in 2008 to restore the Everglades, which the governor called as “monumental as the creation of our nation's first national ...
l Saving wetlands, farms and the Everglades. TBO.com - Aug 11, 2010:
A land deal in South Florida last month shows how it's possible to protect the environment, property rights and the agricultural industry at the same time. ...
l Local environmentalists oppose whittled-down U.S. Sugar land deal. TCPalm - Aug 11, 2010:
In an example of politics making strange bedfellows, local environmentalists and a right-wing tea party group have come out against a ...
l Dam It: Tide May be Turning Against U.S. Sugar Everglades Deal. Sunshine State News (blog) - Aug 11, 2010:
In what appears to be first local newspaper editorial opposing the US Sugar land acquisition, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel today urged the South Florida ...
l Miccosukees File Injunction to Block Everglades Land Purchase. Sunshine State News (blog) - Aug 11, 2010:
Hours before the South Florida Water Management District was to consider a plan to purchase 26800 acres of US Sugar land, the Miccosukee Tribe went to US ...
l Everglades Deal Downsized Again; Critics Still Aren't Buying it. SunshineStateNews - Aug.11, 2010:
A downsized Everglades land deal is still a big deal to both sides as the South Florida Water Management District board meets this week. ...
l US Sugar acquisition may not be such a sweet deal. Sun-Sentinel - Aug 11, 2010:
It almost sounded too good to be true, and, in the end, it has turned out to be so. The state of Florida, in effect, would buy out US Sugar Co. and use its ...
l Regional meetings on Everglades land buy could air out controversy ...
Palm Beach Post - Christine Stapleton - Aug 10, 2010:
The proposed purchase of 28,000 acres to help restore the Everglades is as much about appeasing a federal judge as it is about clean water. ...
l Smaller Florida-US Sugar land deal still draws bitter debate. MiamiHerald.com - Aug.13, 2010: South Florida water managers approved a scaled-back deal to buy 26800 acres from US Sugar for $197 million. All the familiar critics turned ...
l Scaled-down version of Gov. Crist's Everglades land deal is approved. Kansas City Star - Andy Reid -Aug.13, 2010: Two years after announcing a nearly $2 billion plan to restore the Everglades' "missing link," Gov. Charlie Crist on Thursday settled for a ...
l Florida Everglades Project Shrinks as Economy Thwarts Bond Sale. San Francisco Chronicle - Aug 12, 2010 (Bloomberg): -- Florida's two-year-old plan to buy private property for Everglades restoration is on the verge of approval at one-seventh its ...
l Small Sugar Land Deal Still Draws Bitter Debate. Florida Trend - Will Gorham - 9 hours ago
All the familiar critics turned out Thursday to blast Gov. Charlie Crist's no-longer-so-big sugar land purchase as a bad deal that could wind up hurting ...
l Crist speaks out on US Sugar-Everglades deal. The Florida Independent (blog) - Virginia Chamlee - Aug.13, 2010: A little over a week after the South Florida Water Management District published a revised “Sugar Deal,” Gov.Crist ...
l Scaled-down version of Crist's Everglades land deal with US Sugar OK'd.
Stuart News (subscription) - Andy Reid - Aug 12, 2010:
WEST PALM BEACH — South Florida water managers on Thursday approved a downsized version of Gov. Crist's ...
l Water managers okay Florida-US Sugar land deal Tampabay.com - Aug 12, 2010:
MIAMI — All the familiar critics turned out Thursday to blast Gov. Charlie Crist's no-longer-so-big sugar land purchase as a ...
l Miccosukee, Tea Party, even ex-Gov. Kirk weigh in at water district. Palm Beach Post - Aug 11, 2010:
Marianne Moran, a Tea Party activist, is in the picture with other members of the organization broadcast voicemail messages from opponents against the proposal to ...
l Tribe seeks halt to Everglades/US Sugar deal. WZVN-TV - AP, Aug 11, 2010:
The Miccosukee Indians are seeking to stop the state from purchasing agricultural land in the ... .
|Other big land acquisitions by the State of Florida
1992/93: Topsail Hill, $20 million, 21,000 acres
2006: Babcock Ranch, $350 million, 74,000 acres
1999: Talisman Sugar Corp., $133.5 million, 50,960 acres
2008: Palm Beach Aggregates, $217 million, 1,200 acres
1999: Fisheating Creek, $46 million, 18,272 acres
2010: US-Sugar Corporation, $197 million, 26,790 acres (recent)
Recent "sugar" comment ("Rich get fat on government teat", Seacoastonline.com, Sept.23, 2012) :
... "Little has been said about the rest of Romney's claim — that the lower half (of population) is uniquely dependent on government. The truth is almost exactly opposite. Aid for poor families and children has steadily declined. Housing subsidies, Head Start payments, heating assistance — you name it — have all been cut, often dramatically. What remains untouched are subsidies that support big business — tax subsidies so ingrained in the federal budget that hardly anyone talks about them.
One of 2 examples: We handsomely subsidize high fructose corn syrup, part of a Byzantine set of corn price supports that also unwisely props up ethanol, the gasoline additive. Corn syrup is the predominant sweetener in soft drinks, even though it's far more expensive than sugar from the Caribbean. Congress levies high tariffs on sugar from desperately poor countries to protect Florida growers who are largely gone, thanks to reduced water withdrawals from the Everglades. Without the tariffs and corn subsidies, food prices would fall and taxpayers would save. Obviously, it's too sensible for Congress to even talk about.
More Sweet Myths and Facts on "Big Sugar" (mouse-over/CLICK).