State Lands

yellow flower

Florida is home to millions of acres of public lands, many of which DEP protects for conservation or recreation purposes. Currently, DEP’s Division of State Lands is conducting a thorough analysis of Florida’s land inventory to ensure that we are acquiring and managing land in a way that makes the most sense for Floridians and our environment.  By carefully examining what we already own, we can better determine what’s missing and make sure we’re protecting the areas that need it most.

DEP’s Division of State Lands is Florida’s lead agency for environmental management and stewardship, serving as staff to the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund (Governor and Cabinet). An important part of protecting these lands is making sure we have the right lands in the right places, and that we’re using them for the right reasons.

DEP Closes on Conservation Easement with Eglin Air Force Base

The Department closed on the second largest conservation easement in Florida.  The easement fulfills the Department’s continued emphasis on preserving land that protects springs and water resources.  Additionally, the land provides a critical buffer to Eglin Air Force Base for many Department of Defense missions that they test and train range support.  This land easement completes the Seven Runs Creek part of the Florida Forever project.

The Department’s Division of State Lands signed agreements with the Air Force, as well as the Navy and National Guard to extend our environmental protection and military readiness partnerships.  The State, in partnership with the military has acquired nearly 40,000 acres of land, since 2011.  This agreement also supports the local economy by keeping a strong and well trained military presence in northwest Florida.

For more information regarding this conservation easement, click here.

Presentation from Public Meetings Informs Public on Assessment of State Lands

The Department hosted three public meetings to inform the public and accept comments regarding the assessment of state lands.  During the meetings, DEP presented the scientific process used to assess conservation land managed by state agencies and the results of that assessment. Florida Legislature required the Department to sell up to $50 million of land no longer needed for conservation, so that more valuable land could be purchased.

Click here to view the presentation shown at the public meetings.

Florida’s Land Acquisition Programs Presentation, Nov. 15, 2011

The Board of Trustees asked DEP to present an overview of Florida’s land acquisition programs. The link below provides the PowerPoint presenation given by Clay Smallwood, DEP’s Division of State Lands director.

  • Florida’s Land Acquisition Programs – Presentation to the Board of Trustees , Nov. 15, 2011

Disposition of State Lands and Facilities Report, Oct. 1, 2011

As directed by Florida Statute, DEP submitted a list of state-owned property recommended for disposition to the  the governor and Legislature on Oct. 1, 2011. This report includes a list of state-owned property with potential for disposition (including vacant land and land with facilities) compiled by DEP and the Department of Management Services. Also included are properties sold and properties placed under management leases since the March 1, 2011, interim disposition report .

“Nearly 14,000 acres of protected land removed from consideration for sale by state,” originally published by The Florida Current, Oct. 2, 2011, Bruce Ritchie

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