DEP Commits $4.75 Million to Water Projects in Northwest Florida

November 25, 2014

~Projects address infrastructure needs as well as water quality~

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is providing $4.75 million for six water-related projects in northwest Florida. Thanks to matching local funds, a total of $7.5 million is being invested in the projects located in Bay, Liberty, Jackson and Walton counties. The projects will provide upgrades to potable-water, wastewater and stormwater facilities in the four counties.

“These substantial upgrades coming to northwest Florida are essential to ensuring our residents have access to the necessary quantity and quality of water,” said DEP Secretary Herschel T. Vinyard Jr. “I appreciate the leadership of Governor Scott and the foresight of the Florida Legislature to make these investments.”

“The economic and environmental health of northwest Florida communities depends on water quality and adequate supplies of water,” Sen. Don Gaetz said.  “That’s why I appreciate Governor Scott and my legislative colleagues supporting these important projects that I placed in the state budget.”

The city of DeFuniak Springs in Walton County received $417,498 to replace deteriorating water lines and water mains that are crucial to the city’s water system. The project consists of replacing more than 9,800 linear feet of concrete water main with PVC. This replacement will help conserve water by correcting leaks as well as improve water quality and pressure. This project is anticipated to be completed by the end of June 2015.

The city of Marianna in Jackson County will be able to continue its ongoing water transmission improvement project thanks to a $665,000 investment. The city recently constructed a new well, elevated storage tank and replaced more than 8,500 linear feet of water main. This funding will go to the creation of a reliable water transmission main connection between the city’s two elevated storage tanks. The project also includes 10 new connections to the distribution system, new fire hydrants and the replacement of approximately 3,500 linear feet of water main. This project is anticipated to be completed by the end of 2015.

Liberty County is currently experiencing a shortage of storage and well capacity. To address this shortage, the department is providing the county $75,000 to evaluate its current storage tank and well capacity to determine how much additional well capacity can be obtained. The funding will also be used for the design and construction of additional well capacity. This project is anticipated to be completed by the end of 2015.

The city of Mexico Beach in Bay County received funding for the construction of two new water production wells to supply the city with an alternate water supply in the spirit of preparedness. The current water supply has to travel a considerable distance to the city and therefore is vulnerable in the case of a natural disaster. This project is valued at $1,592,309 and is anticipated to be completed in June 2016.

Additionally in Bay County are two wastewater projects to increase protection of St. Andrews Bay. One is in Southport and consists of removing septic tanks and connecting 220 residential and small commercial properties to the Bay County Utility Service. The county is providing $1,220,405 and the department is contributing $1 million. The second wastewater project is focused on the Bay County Road 388 force main. The project will involve diverting wastewater flow from an old package plant to a Class I regional wastewater treatment and reuse facility. The county is contributing $1.5 million for this project and DEP is providing an additional $1 million. This project is anticipated to be completed by the end of November 2016. The Southport project is anticipated to be completed by spring 2016.

 

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