FDEP Awards $200K for Seminole’s Waterfront Park

SEMINOLE – The city of Seminole was awarded a $200,000 Land and Water Conservation Fund program grant from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection for Waterfront Park.

The grant requires a 100%, dollar-for-dollar match from the city, which will use funds from Penny for Pinellas III, said City Manager Ann Toney-Deal at the Sept. 25 Seminole City Council meeting.

Park elements funded by this grant include the observation boardwalk, an access trail, a picnic facility and landscaping.

At the meeting, the council voted unanimously to authorize the city manager to enter into a grant agreement with the FDEP.

The city was slated to receive the grant sooner, but it was held up when it was discovered that an environmental assessment of the property was required. The city completed this assessment and submitted it to the National Park Service and FDEP.

“This is a happy day to receive this grant agreement,” Toney-Deal said.

Though the grant was temporarily held back, the city continued to prepare the property, she added, completing necessary engineering work.

“We are ahead of the curveball,” she said. “We did not wait.”

The city has until next year to complete the work funded by the grant, she said.

At the same meeting, the council also approved a Pinellas County-funded restriping of 84th Lane in a 6 to 1 vote. There will be no changes to the roadway’s configuration, which includes one dedicated left-turn-only lane, and a dual left-turn and right-turn lane.

A motion to change the roadway’s striping configuration and to create one dedicated left-turn only lane and one dedicated right-turn lane failed in a 5 to 2 vote. Councilors Roger Edelman and Bob Matthews cast the only votes in support of the change.

Community Development Director Mark Ely said the county conducted a traffic survey of 84th Lane in February. The county found that approximately 2,400 cars traveled the road in a 12-hour period. Seventy-six percent of the cars turned left, while 24 percent turned right, he said.

Council also authorized Toney-Deal to enter a contract with the Florida Municipal Insurance Trust for property, liability, workers’ compensation and firefighters’ cancer presumption insurance coverages.

The city will enter a two-year contract with FMIT for fiscal years 2019-2020 and 2020-2021.

Toney-Deal said the city received three “very competitive” bids. Signing with FMIT saved the city $164,000, she said.

SOURCE: tbnweekly.com