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Ron DeSantis Announces $240 Million From Wastewater Grant Program for 36 Projects

At the end of last week, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced that he had awarded $240 million through the Wastewater Grant Program to support 36 wastewater infrastructure projects to reduce nutrients in Florida’s waterways.

Awarded projects include advanced wastewater treatment upgrades and septic to sewer projects that will eliminate nearly 20,000 septic tanks. A list of all projects selected for funding for FY 2022–23 can be found here.

“Since my first day in office, I have worked to achieve more for Florida’s environment, and we have delivered,” said DeSantis. “By building better infrastructure that protects our waterways, we are ensuring the health of our environment for years to come.”

“Under Governor DeSantis’ leadership, Florida is tackling the state’s water quality issues head-on,” said Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Shawn Hamilton. “It’s through major funding commitments like this, paired with our talented and passionate staff and partners, that we can truly reduce nutrient pollution and continue to restore our natural resources.”

The Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) Wastewater Grant Program helps fund wastewater infrastructure projects that construct, upgrade, or expand wastewater treatment facilities to provide advanced waste treatment and projects to upgrade or convert traditional septic systems.

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All projects will reduce nutrient pollution to Florida’s waterways. The Wastewater Grant Program was established in the Clean Waterways Act signed in 2021 and prioritizes projects in basin management action plans, restoration plan areas, and rural areas of opportunity. The program requires at least a 50 percent match, which may be waived by DEP for rural areas of opportunity.

On January 10, DeSantis signed an executive order “to further advance the protection of Florida’s environment and water quality and continue the historic momentum achieved over the Governor’s first term.” The executive order directs strategic action with a focus on accountability, sound science, progress, and collaboration and includes a proposed $3.5 billion investment over four years for Everglades restoration and protection of our water resources including through the Wastewater Grant Program, surpassing previous investments. This includes expanding the Wastewater Grant Program eligibility to address additional sources of nutrient contribution.

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