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Central District

DEP's Central District, under Director Jeff Prather, is committed to working proactively to:

*  Create strong community partnerships

*  Safeguard natural resources

*  Enhance ecosystems


The district covers an 8 county area spanning over 9,000 square miles.


It is a diverse mixture of people and natural resources:

Population: 3.5 million people

14 state parks

Major industry (tourism, health care, aerospace, defense, manufacturing)

*  4 first-magnitude springs

Busy seaport

North America's most diverse estuary


To contact us:

DEP Central District

3319 Maguire Blvd

Orlando, Florida 32803




Email us at: DEP_CD@DEP.state.fl.us


Telephone directory - DEP Central District


 Organizational chart - DEP Central District


Silver Springs by Dave Herbster 

Silver Springs - one of the district's 4 first-magnitude springs



News and Information

Successes, Continuous Improvement, Achievements, and lessons learned

o   Quality permits in the shortest time possible:  The permitting program continued to keep average time-to-process an application under 10-days. Also, they continued to capitalize and build on efficiencies such as pre-application meetings, triaging applications, and maximizing personal contact with applicants.  All of this represents significant improvement over the past five years.


o   Working proactively - Wekiva Protection Area nitrogen reduction effort: Reducing nitrogen discharges in the spring shed is a vital part of improving the Wekiva River. In April 2016, tighter requirements take effect for ten more plants in the recharge area, and the district is providing early outreach and guidance to all ten. This has resulted in two plants (Oak Springs and Lake Fairview Manor) choosing to hook up to larger plants that can meet the tighter standards sooner. 

o   Enthusiastic about outreach:  To achieve “the highest compliance rates,” you have to prevent violations before they occur. In the past quarter, the district conducted 37 outreach efforts that reached over 1,000 people. Noteworthy district outreach efforts include workshops for water plant operators that focused on the most common types of non-compliance and how to avoid them. And it included workshops on protecting mangroves (so important as habitat, and protected by Florida law). And presentations that emphasized faster cleanups and re-purposing contaminated and under-used land.

o   Building cost savings - the guidance that keeps on giving:  For the quarter, the District received about 175 water applications electronically. A consultant from the Villages estimated that his clients save about $275 per application each time he applies electronically. For the quarter, that’s about $48,000 in savings – all attributable to innovative guidance developed by staff within the district.

o   Building efficiency in the District’s “Business Hub”: In 2014, the District’s Business Program set an ambitious goal – to improve the speed with which they process outgoing correspondence from 72 minutes to 65 minutes. This goal represented a 10% improvement.  Since then, it is fair to say that the Business Program has blown this goal out of the water.  In the most recent quarter, they processed outgoing correspondence in an average of just over 20 minutes – an improvement which has opened the way to other potential improvements not envisioned in 2014.



Spotlight on Facility Success


CONTACT: DEP Press Office, 850.245.2112, DEPNews@dep.state.fl.us


~Awards presented to three recipients for innovation at wastewater and drinking
water facilities~

DEP Central District Director Jeff Prather with Plant Operations Excellence Award recipient representing City of Eustis Wastewater Treatment Plant.


OCALA, Fla. – The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today presented the 2015 Plant Operations Excellence Awards to three Central Florida drinking water and domestic wastewater facilities at the annual Focus on Change Seminar. Drinking water facility award recipients were City of Clermont East Water System and City of Port Orange, Charles B. Garnsey Water Treatment Plant. The wastewater facility recipient was the City of Eustis Wastewater Treatment Plant.

“We applaud these plant operators for their hard work and commitment to excellence," said Jeff Prather, DEP Central District director. “Florida depends on clean water, so we’re excited to work alongside these leading utilities and the communities that they serve.”

Each year, the department presents awards to domestic wastewater and drinking water facilities around the state that demonstrate excellence in operation, maintenance, innovative treatment, waste reduction, pollution prevention, recycling or other achievements. These awards recognize facilities that demonstrate a special commitment to excellence in management through dedicated professionalism and that have an impeccable history of record-keeping compliance. 

The department is awarding a total of 16 facilities, including five domestic wastewater facilities and 11 drinking water facilities statewide. The other awards are being presented at district ceremonies during the upcoming Focus on Change Seminars in Panama City, Haines City, Punta Gorda and Tamarac.

This is the 26th year that the Florida Rural Water Association has conducted the Focus on Change Seminar in conjunction with DEP. The seminar is designed to provide current regulatory information to utilities in order to improve compliance.

The department's Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) and the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) programs have awarded a combined total of more than $5 billion for 182 wastewater, stormwater and drinking water improvement projects. The programs are funded by federal grants, state matching funds, loan repayments and interest earnings. The CWSRF began awarding grants in 1989 and the DWSRF began awarding grants in 1998. For more information, visit here.

About the Florida Department of Environmental Protection

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is the state’s principal environmental agency, created to protect, conserve and manage Florida’s environment and natural resources. The department enforces federal and state environmental laws, protects Florida’s air and water quality, cleans up pollution, regulates solid waste management, promotes pollution prevention and acquires environmentally sensitive lands for preservation. The agency also maintains a statewide system of parks, trails and aquatic preserves. Visit the department’s website at www.dep.state.fl.us.



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Central District

Online Resources

 Link opens the Contamination Locator Map (CLM) page

Nuisance Exotic ID Guide

DEP Business Portal

Dock Permitting link

 Link opens Florida's Water- ours to protect 

Link opens ERP Online Help

Link opens Map Direct- DEP's Mapping Program

Link opens the OCULUS information page in a new window

Compliance Assistance Button















Last updated: April 15, 2016

  Central District Office 3319 Maguire Blvd, Suite 232 Orlando, Florida 32803-3767
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