DEP Provides $1.2 Million to Zephyrhills for Water Upgrades

Oct. 21, 2014

~Funding will help reduce groundwater withdrawals from the Hillsborough River Basin~

Note: This version corrects total amount of funding provided by DEP and adds details on local funding.

A grant of $1.2 million from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection allows the city of Zephyrhills to address water-pressure issues for users in the southern part of the city.

The project stems from the city’s goal of reducing its reliance on wells in the Hillsborough River Basin and begin using wells in the Withlachoochee River Basin for its water needs. That transition to the Withlacoochee basin has led to some water-pressure issues for users and fire-protection lines.

“This is a project that not only protects the state’s environment but also provides for the safety of residents in Zephyrhills,” DEP Secretary Herschel T. Vinyard Jr. said. “DEP is excited to see the city follow through on the Southwest Florida Water Management District’s goal of reducing groundwater withdrawals from the Hillsborough River Basin.”

“I am happy to see that DEP has finalized the contract with the city of Zephyrhills, and Zephyrhills can now move forward with construction on this much-needed water project,” said Rep. Will Weatherford, Florida Speaker of the House. “In order to address the increasing demand for water in Zephyrhills, the city will be able to make necessary improvements on their current water system to ensure those needs are met by supplying this precious resource to the community in the future.”

“Protecting the safety of Zephyrhills residents as well as the health of the Hillsborough River Basin is a project that makes sense for the state of Florida,” Sen. John Legg said. “I am thankful to Governor Scott, the Florida legislature and the Department of Environmental Protection for providing the funding for this project.”

Zephyrhills is located in Pasco County. The project is expected to be completed in 2016.

The $1.2 million has been supplemented by an additional $984,124 from the city of Zephyrhills for the project.

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