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Politics

Senate Floats $10 Million for Restoration of Springs

April 28, 2013 - 6:00pm

Ten million dollars has been floated toward the state's threatened freshwater springs with legislators having finished work on a compromise budget bill now expected to get a vote this week.

A day after they were left out of a $58 million package for water projects around the state, the Senate directed trust fund money for the springs.

The money is far short of the $122 million plan that water districts have drafted to restore a number of endangered springs, which face threats from groundwater pumping and pollution. But the total tops the $6.5 million that Gov. Rick Scott proposed.

As part of the budget talks, the House and Senate each outlined $29 million worth of projects on Saturday. Despite the House having initiated discussion for the springs and a number of senators backing the proposal, the springs were not included in initial lists of water projects that would be paid for.

But at the urging of Senate President Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, money for the springs was drawn from the Florida Forever Trust Fund as supplemental funding lists were released Sunday night.

"President Gaetz wanted to make a strong commitment for protecting and enhancing our springs, particularly as it relates to the Silver Springs area," said Sen. Joe Negron, R-Stuart, who as Senate Appropriations Committee chairman headed the budget talks for the Senate.

The budget also sets aside another $3 million from the Water Management Lands Trust Fund for the Suwannee River Water Management District for springs restoration and protection projects.

Money for the springs was among a long list of last-minute changes in which projects that had been omitted from the spending plan suddenly were in the funded column, while a number of other projects got a further bump in dollars.

IMG Academy in Bradenton, a student-athlete training center, landed $2.3 million Sunday after having been cut in favor of the money going to the Sarasota-Bradenton World Aquatic Center in the economic development and transportation portion of the budget.

The rowing center, meanwhile, saw its funding bumped from $2.5 million to $5 million with the final round of allocations. The center had requested $5 million to help land the 2017 World Rowing Championship.

The water project lists did include money for the emergency restoration of Apalachicola Bay, but $3 million has been set aside in the budget for the Panhandle waterway from the Water Management Lands Trust Fund.

The individual water projects also do not include the $70 million that has been directed in the budget for Everglades restoration.

Water projects negotiators for the House and Senate agreed to support:

Southeast

Coral Gables, wastewater collection system, $589,468

Cutler Bay, stormwater, pollutant elimination project, $400,000

Doral, canal bank stabilization, $1 million

Fort Lauderdale, Seven Isles seawall improvements, $100,000

Homestead, race track inline booster pumps, $195,000

Homestead, well motor installation, $12,000

Key Largo, wastewater treatment construction, $1 million

Lake Park, Lake Shore drainage improvements, $200,000

Lauderdale Lakes, flood mitigation, $500,000

Marathon, wastewater treatment, $1 million

Miami Gardens, NW 170 Street stormwater drainage, $200,000

Miami Gardens, NW 195/204 Street stormwater drainage, $150,000

Miami Gardens, Vista Verde stormwater drainage, $250,000

Miami Gardens, neighborhood stormwater swale re-garding, $10,000

Miami Lakes, West Lake drainage improvements, $300,000

North Miami, Biscayne Bay Canal West drainage basin upgrades, $150,000

Opa-Locka, sewer lift rehabilitation, $390,000

Opa-Locka, Burlington Canal dredging and restoration, $700,000

Palm Beach County, Lake Worth Lagoon sea grass restoration, $125,000

Palm Beach County, Lake Worth Lagoon, Monastery Artificial Reef MacArthur State Park, $150,000

Palm Beach County, Lake Worth Lagoon, North Palm Beach living shoreline, $100,000

Palm Beach County, Loxahatchee River Preservation Initiative, $1.3 million

Palmetto Bay, Sub-Basin 10 drainage improvements, $250,000

Pembroke Park, stormwater retrofit, $200,000

Riviera Beach, West 18th-22nd Street stormwater laterals, $500,000

Riviera Beach, West 6th Street stormwater improvements, $500,000

South Miami, Dorn Avenue drainage, $120,000

Sunrise, Twin Lakes drainage improvements, $250,000

Surfside, 88th Street pump station, seawall repairs, $75,000

Miami-Dade County, SW 157th Avenue Canal, $1.1 million

West Miami, stormwater improvements, $250,000

Southwest

Bonita Springs, Oak Creek restoration, exotic plant removal, $250,000

Charlotte County, regional reclaimed water expansion, $500,000

DeSoto County, Lettuce Lake/Oak Haven Mobile Home Park utility water supply improvement,
$90,000

DeSoto County, Lake Suzy Utility wastewater treatment facility, $350,000

Hendry County, Airglades Airport and Industrial Park wastewater force main, $3 million

Fort Myers, Cape Coral, reclaimed water distribution pipeline, $900,000

Glades County, water infrastructure improvements, $1 million

Glades County, wastewater improvements, $350,000

Moore Haven, stormwater conveyance and improvements, $150,000

Port LaBelle, water system, $470,000

East Coast

Deltona, wastewater treatment facility, $500,000

Indian River County, Florida Atlantic University Harbor Branch Indian River Lagoon
Observatory, $2 million

Martin County, Danforth Creek stormwater retrofit and wetland treatment, $3 million

Okeechobee, stormwater retrofit, $250,000

Okeechobee, Pine Ridge Park utility improvements, $300,000

Ormond Beach, $125,000

Port Orange, Cambridge Canal improvements, $500,000

First Coast

St. Johns County, St. Johns River restoration and economic impact study, $7 million

North Central

Belleview, sanitary sewer extension, $1.15 million

Bushnell, Sumter County, water main extension, $1,234,032

Gainesville, Tumblin Creek stormwater project, $625,000

Lake County, Umatilla sewer system, $1,225,000

Marion County, wastewater treatment, $300,000

Tampa-St. Pete

Crystal River, Kings Bay cleanup, $100,000

Dade City, hydrant and valve replacement, $520,000

Dade City, Orange Valley well, $550,000

Hardee County, regional wastewater service improvements, $500,000

Lakeland, Skyview water and wastewater modifications, $3.75 million

Manatee County, wastewater clarifier retrofit, $1 million

Pasco County, Laccoochee/ Trilby water system improvements, $500,000

Polk County, Frostproof, new generators for main water plant well, $150,000

Polk County, Frostproof, water storage tanks at main water plant, $200,000

Sarasota County, Phillippi Creek septic system replacement program, $438,000

Tampa, Westshore waterway improvements, $150,000

Tampa, Met West Ditch stormwater project, $125,000

Winter Haven, South Lake Conine wetland treatment, $619,000

Zephyrhills, Zephyrhills-Dade City interconnect, $1.925 million

Orlando

Orange County, Oakland wastewater system, $300,000

Big Bend and Panhandle

Apalachicola: wet weather storage pond, $957,000

Blountstown, water main replacement, State Road 20, $472,000

Chipley, drinking water system improvements, $400,000

Dixie, Lafayette, Taylor counties, Big Bend Water Authority sewer system improvements, Steinhatchee River, $75,000

Gretna, potable water supply upgrades, $150,000

Monticello, water distribution extension, $500,000

Noma, Holmes County, system wide water line replacement, $300,000

Tallahassee, Briarwood neighborhood septic tank abatement, $300,000

Walton County, coastal dune lakes environmental assessment, $500,000

Walton County, Mossy Head wastewater treatment facility, $3 million

Walton County, U.S. 98 water line extension, $1 million.

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