District Statutory Powers
The Sebastian River Water Control District was renamed the Sebastian River Improvement District in June, 2007 per Governor’s signature as per unanimous recommedation of the State legislation. In addition to Chapter 298, the other primary governing document of the Improvement District is Chapter 189, Florida Statutes. The Sebastian River Improvement District is organized and exists under the provisions of Chapter 189 and 298, Florida Statutes. Districts organized under Chapter 189 and 298 are commonly referred to as “189 and 298 Districts”. The Sebastian River Improvement District, aka Sebastian River Drainage District was created by Decree of Incorporation entered by the Circuit Court in 1927.
The initial vision of the 1927 Plan of Reclamation encompassed all lands now lying within what is now identified as the Sebastian River Improvement District. As common throughout early historic readings identified with special taxing districts (water control districts within the State of Florida), the earlier or initial versions of the present day Water Control Districts were referred to as Drainage Districts.
The original SRID Plan of Reclamation was modified in 1939 as a result of the hardships attributed to the depression period following 1929 economic bust. The initial Plan of Reclamation encompassed approximately 50,000 acres and extended to Fellsmere.
The District is responsible for stormwater drainage by gravity within District boundaries. Pursuant to Florida Statutes, Chapter 298 and 189, its Water Control Plan, and any prior Plan of Reclamation, the District owns, constructs, operates and maintains works of the District, regulates their use by others, and as applicable, acquires maintains and sells surplus machinery and equipment, contracts for the construction, operation and maintenance of the works of the District by others and controls, condemns or otherwise acquires lands.
Works of the District include but are not limited to, rights of way for canals, laterals, sub-laterals, flow ways, levees, dikes, gated structures, culverts, facilities, weirs and assorted equipment. Plenary powers to acquire, maintain and manage District works are granted by Florida Statues.