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SCCF Goes to Tallahassee for Everglades Action Day

February 12, 2024
two women in front of outdoor sign that says 'the florida capitol'

Last week, SCCF Policy & Advocacy Associate Allie Pecenka (left) joined Conservancy of Southwest Florida Water Policy Manager Michele Arquette-Palermo (right) on a trip to Florida’s state capitol for Everglades Action Day.

Everglades Action Day takes place during Florida’s legislative session every year as a precursor to Everglades Day on April 7, which honors the birthday of legendary Everglades activist Marjory Stoneman Douglas. During Everglades Action Day, policy experts and Everglades advocates mobilize as a group in Tallahassee for a day of action in the state capitol.

Pecenka and Arquette-Palermo, along with a team of students from Florida Gulf Coast and Florida State Universities, joined members of the Everglades Coalition to meet with elected officials, discuss the importance of Everglades restoration, and present the Everglades Coalition’s 2024 legislative priorities.

five people stand indoors in Florida state capitol

 L-R: FSU student Daniel Lewis, FGCU graduate student Celina Ceballos,  Conservancy of Southwest Florida Water Policy Manager Michele Arquette-Palermo, FGCU graduate student Susannah Cogburn, SCCF Policy & Advocacy Associate Allie Pecenka. 

These priorities include:

  • Everglades restoration
  • Strengthening protection for all Florida waters
  • Reinstating strong statewide and regional land-use planning to guide sustainable growth
  • Protecting investments in Everglades restoration from the impacts of climate change.

The group also discussed SCCF’s recent water quality economic report — a collaboration between SCCF, the Conservancy of SWFL, and Captains for Clean Water — that quantifies the impacts of harmful algal blooms on Southwest Florida’s economy.

“Communicating with our elected officials is one of the most powerful ways to make our voices heard, and the Everglades are something all citizens can engage with,” Pecenka said. “Meeting with our district representatives and senators allows us the opportunity to discuss issues and pending legislation that will impact our coastal environment.”


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