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Politicians and the local media are becoming aware of a problem Eye on Jacksonville highlighted more than six months ago.

Retention ponds are dangerous. Two children have drowned in them recently.

They also collect pollutants and, while they might not actually pose a health threat, expensive lawsuits are bound to be filed.

That’s what happened with incinerator ash dump sites. The taxpayers are on the hook for more than $180 million in that example.

No matter what precautions are taken, such as fencing and signs, it is almost impossible to prevent accidents.

It also is impossible to prevent pollutants from draining into the ponds, because that is what they are designed to do.

Ergo, the ponds are “attractive nuisances,” in legal language, and are likely to prove costly. Presumably the benefits will exceed the costs.

But retention ponds provide yet another platform for politicians to pontificate and bloviate. And for the media to wring its hands and shed crocodile tears, without proposing any workable solutions.

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Lloyd was born in Jacksonville. Graduated from the University of North Florida. He spent nearly 50 years of his life in the newspaper business …beginning as a copy boy and retiring as editorial page editor for Florida Times Union. He has also been published in a number of national newspapers and magazines, as well as Internet sites. Married with children. Military Vet. Retired. Man of few words but the words are researched well, deeply considered and thoughtfully written.

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