One of the most important things that we as civic educators can do is model good civic behavior for our students. One of these good civic behaviors is, of course, engagement with local issues. In recognition of this, we want to pass along an opportunity to engage in a discussion of Amendment 1, the Florida Water and Land Conservation Initiative. Shelby Taylor, from the Bob Graham Center for Public Service, wants you to know that

On Sept. 4 at 6 p.m. at the University of Florida’s Pugh Hall, former U.S. Sen. and Gov. Bob Graham will host a discussion of the Florida water and land conservation amendment that Florida voters will have the opportunity to vote on this November.
Amendment 1, the Florida Water and Land Conservation Amendment, funds the Land Acquisition Trust Fund to acquire, restore, improve, and manage conservation lands by dedicating 33 percent of net revenues from the existing excise tax on documents for 20 years. Conservation lands include: wetlands and forests; fish and wildlife habitats; lands protecting water resources and drinking water sources; beaches and shores; outdoor recreational lands; working farms and ranches; and historic or geologic sites.
This program is free and open to the public.
 
Questions about the event can be sent to Shelby Taylor at the Bob Graham Center for Public Service, sheladk9@ufl.edu or Ph 352-273-1086.
 
This can actually be connected to our benchmarks as well. For example, SS.7.C.2.3—Experience the responsibilities of citizens at the local, state, or federal levels connects by illustrating engagement with local issues. SS.7.C.2.12–Develop a plan to resolve a state or local problem by researching public policy alternatives, identifying appropriate government agencies to address the issue, and determining a course of action, is an obvious one that connects here as well, as the Amendment is intended to address a state and local problem and also serves an illustration of the way that citizens can influence public policy. SS.7.C.2.13–Examine multiple perspectives on public and current issues is another benchmark that could work here as well; a public forum is one great way to have students consider multiple perspectives on public and current issues. SS.7.C.3.13–Compare the constitutions of the United States and Florida is one final benchmark that could come into play, especially if you are looking to discuss the ways in which each constitution is amended.
 
Do you have a civic engagement opportunity that you would like folks to know about? Post them in the comments!

   
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