ABOUT THE JUPITER INLET DISTRICT
When was the Jupiter Inlet District created and what does it do?
Created as an independent special taxing district in 1921 by special act of the Florida State Legislature, the Jupiter Inlet District was established to maintain the navigational channel from the mouth of the Loxahatchee River to the Atlantic Ocean. The Jupiter Inlet District is responsible for bypassing sand that migrates into the inlet system to downdrift beaches per the Florida Beach & Shore Preservation Act, and conducts annual dredging, channel maintenance, sand bypass and beach placement projects. Per the Commission adopted Loxahatchee River Management Plan, projects within the greater Loxahatchee River-Lake Worth Aquatic Creek Preserve are focused on restoration and preservation of the important waterways and natural resources. Other critical functions of the District include channel marker maintenance, erosion control, shoreline stabilization and inlet infrastructure maintenance, and environmental monitoring and protection. For more detailed information, please visit our Projects & District News page.
Who manages the Jupiter Inlet District?
The Jupiter Inlet District is governed by a 5-member Commission elected by property owners within the District's boundaries. Citizens can cast their vote for all eligible Jupiter Inlet District Commission seats during the general election held in November of each odd-numbered year. Commissioners serve 4-year terms that are staggered. For more information, visit the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections.
How does the Jupiter Inlet District fund its projects and operations?
Per its charter, the Jupiter Inlet District has defined boundaries and is authorized to collect ad valorem tax revenue from property owners with those boundaries in northern Palm Beach County. The FY 2021-2022 ad valorem tax rate is 0.0921 mills and we work with the Palm Beach County Property Appraiser and Tax Collector to notice proposed rates and collect revenue. A home valued at $250,000 with a $50,000 homestead exemption, for example, would pay $18.42 in taxes annually to the Jupiter Inlet District. In FY 2021-2022, assessments are expected to generate $2.4M in support of the Jupiter Inlet District’s projects and activities.
Cost-share funding from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) Beaches and Funding Assistance program is another important source of project funding and as part of the Commission's commitment to fiscal responsibility, in FY 2020-2021, the District secured $1.5 million in cost-share funding in support of its projects.
How often does the Jupiter Inlet District dredge the inlet and navigational channels in the Central Embayment connecting to the Loxahatchee River to the Atlantic Ocean?
Guided by a Florida Department of Environmental Protection-approved Inlet Management Plan, the Jupiter Inlet District dredges an annual average of 60,000 cubic yards of sand from the inlet sand trap located 1,000 feet West of the inlet mouth. Projects can occur annually or semi-annually. Through consistent monitoring by coastal engineers and semi-annual hydrographic surveys of the inlet, its sand trap, the Central Embayment and project-specific sites, the Jupiter Inlet District conducts maintenance dredging of navigational channels routinely in the interest of public safety in navigation.
We work collaboratively with a host of partners, including but not limited to: U.S Army Corps of Engineers, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Florida Inland Navigation District, Loxahatchee River Preservation Initiative, Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse Outstanding Natural Area, Jonathan Dickinson State Park and Palm Beach County Department of Parks and Recreation. For more information about our projects and partnerships, please visit our Projects & District News page.
Does the Jupiter Inlet District maintain the navigation markers in the South and Main Channels located in the Central Embayment that connects the Loxahatchee River tributaries to the Jupiter Inlet?
Yes. The Jupiter Inlet District was given the authorization to create the Main channel and install navigation markers in 2007 and has maintained them ever since. In 2014, the District completed the South Shoreline Access Channel after decades of work with state and federal partners. With extensive seagrass in the area - all located within the larger aquatic preserve – the South channel gave boaters accessing the waterway from the southern shoreline a navigable channel to avoid cutting through the seagrass beds to connect to the Main Channel. Channel markers were installed by and are maintained by the Jupiter Inlet District. While downed channel markers along the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) are maintained by the US Coast Guard, please report any missing or downed channel navigation markers in this area directly to the Jupiter Inlet District by calling (561) 746-2223.
What other types of projects are managed by the Jupiter Inlet District?
For a comprehensive overview, please visit our Projects & District News page.
How long are the North and South jetties?
Focused on public safety in navigation, the Jupiter Inlet District maintains inlet infrastructure to include the North and South jetties and the armoring of shorelines on either side of the inlet. The North jetty is 800-feet in length and the South Jetty extends 1,200 feet. Safety maintenance and repair inspections are conducted monthly by the District’s engineer of record, with larger structural elements and maintenance inspections of the jetties and armoring conducted on an annual basis. A popular nearshore fishing destination, the South Jetty is managed through a lease agreement the District enacted with Palm Beach County Department of Parks and Recreation, as part of the larger Jupiter Beach Park public access point.
How much sand can be stored in the Jupiter Inlet District’s Dredged Material Management Area (DMMA)?
The Jupiter Inlet District’s Dredged Material Management Area (DMMA) can hold up to 10,000 cubic yards of sediment from channel maintenance dredging of the Main and South channels in the Central Embayment. Access to these sand resources can be provided to our partners for public projects as approved by the Commission.
ABOUT SPECIAL DISTRICTS
How and why are special districts created?
The Florida Legislature, municipalities, counties and the Governor and Cabinet have the authority to create special districts and do so for a variety of reasons. Most often, special districts are created to provide local or regional public services to residents that are not delivered by any other state or local government agencies. Special districts can be governed by a Board of appointed or elected members who have the expertise relevant to the specialized function of the special district, allowing municipalities and counties to focus on general governmental issues, as is the case with the Jupiter Inlet District.
Are there different types of special districts?
Yes. There are both independent and dependent special districts, single county and multi-county, and they provide a broad range of different public services. In the interest of accountability of public resources, special districts and their governing Board are held to the same high standards as municipalities and counties and must comply with accountability standards set by Chapter 189, Florida Statutes that include issues financial reporting requirements, Government-in-the-Sunshine and ethics laws.
How many special districts are there in the State of Florida and what services to they provide?
The Jupiter Inlet District a single-county, independent special district and functions as one of more than 1,700 special districts. Special districts fight fires, provide mosquito control services, fund childrens’ services, operate hospitals, airports, waterways and seaports. Throughout the State, special districts finance, build and maintain public facilities like parks, museums, schools and transportation infrastructure. For more information of special districts, visit the Florida Association of Special Districts (FASD) or the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.
How are special districts funded?
Special districts often generate their own revenue in the form of ad valorem assessments, non-ad valorem assessments, user fees, tax increment financing, tolls and/or grants. The system is designed so that those benefiting from the public services provided are those who pay for them.