Florida Construction News staff writer
Seven awards totaling $22.7 million will help septic to sewer conversions, stormwater management and wetland restoration in areas surrounding Biscayne Bay, Florida’s largest estuary with a direct connection to Florida’s Coral Reef.
“In the year since we convened the Biscayne Bay Commission, we have improved coordination among stakeholders to develop a path toward restoration of this treasured resource,” said Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Shawn Hamilton. “The investments we are making under the leadership of Governor DeSantis are an important step forward to improving water quality in Biscayne Bay. I look forward to continuing this momentum through our collaborative work with our local partners.”
The seven projects are:
- $14.5 million is awarded to Miami-Dade County for water quality characterization and pollution reduction projects.
- $2.3 million is awarded to the City of North Miami for septic to sewer conversions.
- $2 million is awarded to the City of Coral Gables for Phase I Sanitary Sewer improvements.
- $2 million is awarded to the City of Miami Springs for stormwater infrastucture.
- $700,000 is awarded to the Town of Cutler Bay for wetland restoration.
- $650,000 is awarded to the Village of Key Biscayne for stormwater infrastructure.
- $600,000 is awarded to Miami River Fund, Inc., a non-profit organization, will work with local governments on stormwater and marine debris management.
Funding awarded in the recent announcement brings the four-year total investment in Biscayne Bay water quality and protection to $52 million. In total, Florida has invested more than $3.3 billion over the past four years in protecting natural water resources and Everglades restoration projects, more than doubling the amount of funding from the previous four years before the governor took office.
Additionally, last year the governor signed House Bill 1177 to establish the Biscayne Bay Commission. The commission brings state, federal and regional entities together to monitor the strategic plan for Biscayne Bay and create an associated financial plan to ensure its priorities are funded, using agencies representing the commission.