PALATKA, Fla., Aug. 8, 2017 — The St. Johns River Water Management District is providing $2 million in cost-share funds to Putnam County toward expansion of its East Putnam Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility. The project will significantly reduce nutrient loading to Dunns Creek and the St. Johns River.
“By replacing the old system, the project will eliminate treated wastewater discharges from the county’s Paradise Point wastewater treatment facility to Dunns Creek,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle. “Eventually, as many as 2,260 septic systems could be replaced by central sewer, which will significantly improve groundwater and surface water quality for residents in the area and will have a positive effect on impaired water bodies, including Dunns Creek and the St. Johns River.”
“This is a great project for Putnam County. With the help of cost share from SJRWMD, Putnam County is able to promote economic development along Highway 17 South and remove sewage from the St. Johns River in areas prone to flood,” said Larry Harvey, chairman of the Putnam County Board of County Commissioners. “As chairman of the board, I applaud my fellow commissioners and staff for all the hard work in moving this project forward. We started with an idea after Governor Scott toured these areas, and now it has become reality. Thank you SJRWMD staff, Executive Director and Board members for such a great partnership.”
The project will eliminate the existing Paradise Point wastewater treatment facility, located in a flood zone in the San Mateo area of East Palatka. That facility, which was heavily impacted by Hurricane Matthew’s storm surge last fall, will be replaced by a pump station and force main system that will convey the wastewater to the county’s master pump station on Yelvington Road and on to the East Putnam Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility.
The $2.5 million project will expand sewer service from Pico Road to the Dunns Creek Bridge and allow for additional future connection of septic to sewer systems. By eliminating the existing Paradise Point wastewater facility’s surface water discharge to Dunns Creek and ultimately the St. Johns River, the project eliminates discharges of 270 pounds per year of total nitrogen and 45 pounds per year of total phosphorus.
When completed, additional septic to sewer conversion will eliminate an estimated 52,960 pounds per year of total nitrogen and 2,750 pounds per year of total phosphorus.
Information about the district’s cost-share programs can be found at www.sjrwmd.com/funding/.