PALATKA, Fla., May 10, 2022 — The St. Johns River Water Management District Governing Board approved $20.5 million in funding for cost-share projects for fiscal year 2022–2023 as part of the Districtwide and Rural Economic Development Initiative (REDI) and Innovative cost-share programs. These projects all support one or more of the District’s core missions: water supply, water quality, flood protection and natural systems. Twenty-five projects were approved for funding, including 23 that directly support Gov. DeSantis’ Executive Order 19-12 “Achieving More Now for Florida’s Environment” that focuses, in part, on reducing the flow of nutrients to waterways and developing alternative water supplies.
“We appreciate the support of Gov. DeSantis, along with our Governing Board and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, for their continued focus on providing funding for projects that benefit our shared water resources throughout the region,” says St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Mike Register. “These funding opportunities are helping local communities expand our reach to benefit and protect water resources.”
District cost-share funding for water resource protection and restoration projects helps local governments make progress in preserving, restoring and enhancing the Floridan aquifer system, which is where more than 90 percent of Florida’s drinking water comes from. Cost-share projects also benefit the St. Johns River, Indian River Lagoon and other waterways and Outstanding Florida Springs.
“Protecting and restoring water quality is a priority for not only the District, but also the state,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Chair Rob Bradley. “In addition to the District’s cost-share programs, historic funding has been provided by Gov. DeSantis and our state partners to encourage projects that reduce nutrient loading, conserve water and improve water quality.”
In total, 38 applications were ranked and scored based on District core mission benefits, cost effectiveness, likelihood of successful and timely completion, and application quality and completeness. Projects must begin during fiscal year 2022–2023 with completion expected within two years. The approved projects include:
The Board also approved sending a list of five springs restoration projects benefitting Outstanding Florida Springs, including Silver and Volusia Blue, to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for funding consideration, along with 11 alternative water supply projects also to be evaluated for DEP funding.
For information about District cost-share programs, visit www.sjrwmd.com/localgovernments/funding.
For a full list of projects, click here.