Flagler County officials admitted to the catastrophic consequences of the Plantation Bay utility deal and to the county’s inability to manage the plant as they look for ways to extricate the county from a huge debt load.
plantation bay utility
Flagler County was ready to award a $6.1 million contract to build a new water plant at Plantation Bay when Commissioner Dave Sullivan pushed to halt the process and consider other options Monday.
The Flagler County Commission is asking for a state appropriation of $10 million to fix the Plantation Bay sewer plant partly from fears that a sewer tank may burst, but the decision was hasty and lacked ready analysis.
Flagler County won a $500,000 grant for improvements to its Plantation Bay utility, Bunnell won $460,000 for stormwater and sewer improvements from the St. Johns River Water Management District.
Pending appropriations include $2 million for improvements to the Plantation Bay utility, $200,000 for the Malacompra drainage fix, and $200,000 for Flagler Beach’s stormwater improvements.
The 1,600-odd customers of the Flagler County-owned Plantation Bay water utility woke up to dry faucets today as vandals were believed to have emptied the subdivision’s water tanks overnight.
As Flagler government fully acquires the Plantation bay utility from Bunnell, residents have seen water bills more than double, and may see further rate increases yet if the shoddy water plant is to be improved.
With recurring deficits of close to $1 million in the general fund, the Bunnell City Commission heard the bleakest audit report it’s heard in recent years, with no new revenue expected to brighten the picture.
If questions lingered over Flagler County’s and Bunnell’s expensive and controversial acquisition of the Plantation bay utility, Plantation Bay residents dispelled them Thursday by enthusiastically giving their endorsement to the deal, though county and city commissioners are still facing questions from constituents beyond the development.
The two governments late Wednesday evening jointly voted to buy the troubled Plantation Bay utility, a wreckage of a 28-year-old water and sewer system serving about 1,600 customers, most of them in Volusia County, plunging Flagler County in the utility business.