Welcome To The Scenic Florida Website

To enhance, protect and preserve the visual environment of Florida as mandated by the Scenic Beauty clause of the Florida Constitution.

Scenic Waterways: Paddle Florida Adventures during 2016

Scenic Florida
Photo: Florida Times Union

Paddle Florida Inc. is a not-for-profit organized to support canoeing and kayaking in Florida.

Multi-day padding/camping adventures across Florida showcase the state’s natural beauty and rich cultural heritage while promoting water conservation, wildlife preservation, springs restoration and waterways protection. Paddle Florida also seeks to promote Florida as an international destination for nature-based tourism.

Florida Keys Challenge — Jan. 15-22

Embark on an unforgettable 79-mile open water adventure from Pennekamp State Park in Key Largo to Fort Zachary Taylor State Park in Key West. Paddle alongside sea turtles and railroad visionary Henry Flagler’s “Eighth Wonder of the World.”

The Great Calusa Blueway — Feb. 13-19

Bask in the history, culture and beauty of Southwest Florida and explore 57 miles of Lee County’s rivers, bays, creeks and mangrove tunnels, aquatic preserves, Calusa Shell mounds and pristine white-sand barrier islands. 

Dam to the Bay on the Ochlockonee — March 12-18

From wild Tupelo honey to fresh Gulf oysters, experience the Panhandle’s Ochlockonee River that winds through state and national forest lands on 76 miles of Florida’s most remote wilderness river trail. Registration ends Feb. 18.

Suwannee River Paddling Festival — April 1-3

The fourth annual Suwannee River Paddling Festival will take place at the Suwannee River State Park near Live Oak. The festival will feature supported 12-20 mile trip options on the scenic Suwannee and Withlacoochee Rivers, a benefit concert featuring some of Paddle Florida’s favorite entertainers to support waterways protection, and an opportunity to hear from regional water and wildlife experts. 

For trip details and registration information, visit paddleflorida.org..."

-- Clay Sun, Florida Times Union


Grand Jury Releases Findings On Billboard Company's Illegal Tree Cutting Permits

In June 2009, Citizens for a Scenic Florida received an anonymous letter reporting that acres of trees were being cut down along I-10 and other state roads in the Panhandle without approved vegetation management plans or associated mitigation fees.  As it turned out, more than 2000 trees were "illegally removed" from state right-of-way along I-10 and other roads in the Panhandle.  The letter indicated that the trees were removed by Bill Salter Advertising Co. in order to create view zones for the company's billboards.  The letter also suggested that Salter Advertising had used the influence of then State Representative Greg Evers to broker a deal with FDOT leadership and that an FDOT employee had been ordered by the FDOT District Director of Operations James Rodgers to let Salter Advertising "do whatever they want."  In response to public records requests by Citizens for a Scenic Florida and the St. Pete Times, no documents provided by FDOT confirmed any communications on the subject between then Representative Evers, then FDOT Secretary Stephanie Kopelousos, and then FDOT Deputy Secretary Kevin Thibault.  In response to a public records request made in 2010 (by a citizen in St. Petersburg) for all emails to and from Secretary Kopelousos for a given period, among the thousands of documents provided by FDOT were emails revealing such communication between Evers, Kopelousos and Thibault. Other emails turned up later when the original records requests were repeated verbatim in 2011. This information was forwarded to the State Attorney for the Second Judicial Circuit and subsequently reviewed by a Grand Jury. The Grand Jury called it a debacle.

* Grand Jury Presentment (report)

* Grand Jury Presentment Attachments


* Citizens for a Scenic Florida Press Release


* Citizens for a Scenic Florida letter to Governor Scott


* Citizens for a Scenic Florida letter to FDOT Secretary

*
FDOT letter (dated 2-22-2012) to Bill Salter Advertising, Inc.