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Crist shakes up South Florida water board

Gov. Charlie Crist appointed two new members to the South Florida Water Management District and confirmed that he demanded assurances from the newcomers that they would support his plan for a $536-million purchase of U.S. Sugar property for Everglades restoration.

Crist appointed Anne "Sandy" Batchelor-Robjohns, 56, of Miami Beach, co-CEO of The Batchelor Foundation, and environmental and land use lawyer Glenn Waldman, 49, of Weston. Crist also reappointed Shannon Estenoz, 42, a research assistant at FAU, to a new four-year term. Batchelor-Robjohns will replace Gladys Perez on the five-member governing board, and Waldman will replace Michael Collins.

Crist's litmus-test approach to the water-board appointments recalls his insistence that new appointees to the Public Service Commission take a skeptical view of a major rate increase sought by Florida Power & Light.

"I did that personally. Damn right," Crist said. "The litmus test is, you'll protect the Everglades. You'll protect the environment. You'll protect the water down there. It is the Water Management District." 

-- Steve Bousquet