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Fishing Club affirms support for PURRE with donation

By Staff | Mar 16, 2011

The Sanibel Island Fishing Club recently made a $1,000 donation to the PURRE Water Coalition, accompanied by a note saying, “Keep up the good work!” PURRE is an acronym for People United to Restore our Rivers and Estuaries.

PURRE Chairman Mike Valiquette made a surprise visit to the club’s meeting last week to thank them and tell them about the nonprofit’s latest efforts.

“Mike is our voice,” said Rol Campbell, president of the Fishing Club. “In this day and age when people are sending stuff down the river, we have to have somebody out there speaking on behalf of water quality. Our contribution is to keep Mike in front of the officials to do the things that are necessary to keep our water clean and to further efforts on water quality, particularly in this environment when everybody’s looking at cutbacks. The first thing to go is the environment, and that’s wrong.”

PURRE’s immediate concerns are legislative efforts in the state to pass a fertilizer ordinance that will make null and void all municipal ordinances, including Sanibel’s; and efforts to block implementation of the EPA’s numeric nutrient standards, which put specific limits in place for how much pollution can be passed between water bodies in the state.

In addition, PURRE remains focused on the Caloosahatchee and its problems, which include unfiltered storm water runoff and sewer overflow – and the unbalanced water release schedule from Lake Okeechobee. Also of concern to PURRE are proposed severe cutbacks in funding for Everglades Restoration.

“Things are looking more discouraging than they have in some time,” Valiquette said. “This contribution from the Sanibel Island Fishing Club is so appreciated because without public support, we simply can’t continue to do the necessary work for water quality. And there’s no question the state of Florida is getting ready to head in a backward direction in this regard.

“We want to make sure we support PURRE, and we want PURRE to know we continue to support its efforts to protect and improve our local waters,” added Campbell.