Bunnell and Flagler Beach will each receive $500,000 for pollution-reducing sewer-pipe improvements thanks to a pair of grants from the St. Johns River Water Management District Governing Board. The district board approved the two grants at its monthly meeting in Palatka earlier today.
The Flagler Beach project will add slip-ling within 4.3 miles of existing clay pipe in the city’s sewer system. The project is estimated to reduce annual “nutrient loading” dumping in the Intracoastal Waterway by approximately 540 pounds of total nitrogen and 440 pounds of total phosphorus. Project cost is $500,000.
“Slip lining is the process of adding an impervious barrier inside existing sewer lines,” Flagler Beach City Commissioner Rick Belhumeur said. “In many areas there is stormwater intrusion into the existing pipes (especially the older clay pipe) thereby adding to the volume that gets processed at the wastewater treatment plant. I would hope that this grant money will lighten the (monetary) load on the paying utility customers and help minimize the size of imminent requests by staff for rate increases during future budget sessions.”
The Bunnell project will add slip-lining in nearly three miles of existing clay pipe in the city’s ageing sewer system. The project is expected to reduce annual nutrient loading to Black Branch Creek and Haw Creek by approximately 200 pounds of total nitrogen and 30 pounds of total phosphorus.
The cities are receiving funding from the annual cost-share program for Rural Economic Development Initiative communities, and for projects that use innovative technology that would help future permitting and implementation of alternative water supplies.
The grants target economically disadvantaged communities and communities willing to innovate. One of the criteria for the grant is past performance: applicants get point deductions for a history of poor performance in delivering cost-share projects, if they’ve shown themselves unable to stay on schedule or stay within budget, or if they haven’t submitted timely reports and invoices.
Bunnell and Flagler Beach were among eight applicants, seven of them considered disadvantaged communities, just one considered innovative–and that one was withdrawn. No applicants were assessed a deduction.
“I’m looking forward to partnering on two important projects that will help improve and protect water resources in these communities,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Ann Shortelle. “Together we can do great things.”
The district’s cost-share program seeks to partner on projects that benefit one or more of the district’s core missions of water supply, water quality, natural systems restoration or flood protection.
Watch Slip-Lining In Action: