Punta Gorda council secures funding for flood prevention plan
PUNTA GORDA, Fla.– Relief is coming for residents in Punta Gorda.
The Boca Grande Boulevard neighborhood experiences severe flooding every rain season, but the city has a plan to put a stop to the problem.
The City Council has been asking the state legislature for money for several years. Mayor Lynne Matthews said their requests started out small. However, this year they went big by asking for one million dollars.
She said the council was happily surprised to see their money appropriated in Governor Ron DeSantis’s approved budget Wednesday.
“Every time it rains, they get inundated with flooding water all over their neighborhood. There’s a lot of young families with children that live over there so we’re concerned about safety,” Mayor Matthews said.
FEMA designates this area as a flood zone AE, meaning there’s a one percent chance of flooding annually, and a 26% chance over a 30 year mortgage.
The goal is to install a retention pond. The city has already purchased some of the vacant lots, and is hoping to buy one more.
The estimated cost from start to finish is roughly four million dollars. The one million from the state will help a lot, Matthews said. The other portion of the project will be funded by the one cent sales tax and money from the general fund.
The design and engineering phase cannot begin until the last piece of land is purchased. But the city is expecting construction to begin in fiscal year 2022.
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