MANATEE COUNTY – Two months after local officials traveled to Washington D.C. to request additional federal funding for Wares Creek, the final piece of federal funding has been secured and the flood relief project will now be completed, according to county officials.
Manatee County Natural Resources Director Charlie Hunsicker announced last week that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was recently allocated an additional $12 million requested as part of the Manatee County Commission’s federal legislative package. The additional funding will enable the Corps to contract work to complete the long-awaited project along the creek bed from 9th Avenue to Cortez Road in Bradenton.
Phase I of the project, a dredging and deepening of the creek bed between Manatee Avenue and 9th Avenue was completed last fall. But the next and longest area of the flood control project was delayed without additional funding. During Phase I, the Jacksonville District of the USACOE recalculated the total construction cost and realized an additional cost of $12 million would be required to complete the widening of the creek from 9th Avenue to Cortez Road.
Hunsicker said in a press release that the final piece of federal funding would not have been possible without the persistent efforts of the Manatee County Commission along with help from Congressman Vern Buchanan, Florida Governor Rick Scott and U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson.
“In January, the county began a targeted outreach strategy with key Congressional officials highlighting the importance of the request,” Hunsicker said. “We understood the long odds of gaining approval of an additional $12 million in light of the federal budget sequestration, projected cuts in Corps funding, and the need for unanticipated aid for natural disasters nationwide.”
With the final funding secured, Hunsicker thinks the Corps could award a bid for the final section of the project by August and work could begin by the end of 2013.
No comments on this item
Only paid subscribers can comment
Please log in to comment by clicking here.