Hillsborough County Florida Conservation and Environmental Lands Management Department
We manage more than 61,000 acres of environmentally sensitive wildlife habitat and corridors acquired through the Jan K. Platt Environmental Lands Acquisition and Protection Program (ELAPP).
Management responsibilities include:Prescribed burningInvasive species controlWildlife inventoryTrail maintenanceFeral animal controlHabitat improvements for endangered and threatened species of plants and animals
ELAPP is a voluntary program established for the purpose of providing the process and funding for identifying, acquiring, preserving and protecting endangered, environmentally-sensitive and significant lands in Hillsborough County. It is a citizen-based program with volunteer committees involved in every key aspect of the program. ELAPP is not a regulatory program, but lands are identified for the program because of their environmental significance.
When rain falls on lawns, forests and fields, the water not absorbed by plants filters through the soil before reaching
and replenishing Florida’s groundwater supply. Ninety percent of the state’s drinking water is supplied by groundwater.
When stormwater falls on pavement, buildings and other
impermeable surfaces, the runoff flows quickly and
can pick up trash, chemicals, silt and other pollutants.
Historically, storm sewer systems were designed solely
to allow runoff to drain quickly from developed areas and
Modern stormwater management systems are designed
not only to prevent flooding, but also to remove
pollutants, protect waterbodies, capture rainfall to
replenish groundwater, and prevent damage to property
and wildlife habitat.
Stormwater management systems come in a variety of
shapes, sizes and forms, but there are two basic types:
» Retention systems are designed to capture runoff
and allow it to seep through the soil. Swales, a
commonly used feature, resemble shallow ditches.
The grassy slopes filter sediments as stormwater
percolates into the ground.
» Detention systems – or ponds – are designed
to allow material to settle and absorb before
the stormwater is gradually released. Shoreline
vegetation around the detention system helps filter
sediments from the runoff.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection
(DEP) regulates activities that generate stormwater
runoff. Projects that alter the natural flow of water
the amount of
are regulated by
DEP also regulates
activities that have the potential to increase pollutant
loads to water bodies or to municipal separate storm
sewer systems (MS4s) as covered by the National
Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES).
ERP stormwater permits:
» Are required for projects that alter land topography
to the extent that there is a significant increase in the
site’s stormwater runoff;
» Authorize the construction