FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Feb. 19, 2013
DEP AWARDS GRANT FUNDING FOR BOATER PUMPOUT SERVICES IN FLORIDA KEYS
~More than $500,000 dedicated to Clean Vessel Act environmental improvements~
MONROE COUNTY – The Florida Department of Environmental Protection has awarded more than $539,000 in grant funds to provide for no-cost boater pumpout services throughout all unincorporated areas of the Florida Keys. In conjunction with the Monroe County Marine Resources Office, the funds will be used to deploy six pumpout vessels, assist in operational costs and will ensure the proper disposal of boater sewage. It is anticipated that services will be provided to more than 1,300 boats per month. To date, more than $700,000 has been committed to this project.
“Pumpout services are essential for ensuring that the environment is protected and boater sewage doesn’t enter our waters,” said Brad Stombock, Director of the Department’s Office of Sustainable Initiatives. “These grants make it possible to service boaters who want to enjoy Florida’s waters and keep them clean.”
To date, the Florida Clean Vessel Act grant program has funded more than 400 projects across the state. These projects have prevented more than 13 million gallons of waste from entering Florida's waters.
"Monroe County has operated pumpout vessels for the past eight years with the assistance of Clean Vessel Act funding," says Monroe County Mayor George Neugent. "In its commitment to increasing water quality and providing for a large liveaboard population, the county has contracted with PumpOutUSA to provide mobile pumpout services to areas of the Florida Keys."
Major Pumpout Service Locations in the Florida Keys Area:
-2 vessels at Key Largo
-2 vessels at Islamorada
-2 vessels at Summerland Key
-1 back up vessel at Stock Island
"The free pumpout program for recreational vessels has been a vision of PumpOutUSA for over three years," says Dan Martin, Director of Business Development at PumpOutUSA. "With the funding of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Clean Vessel Act through DEP and Monroe County, this program is now becoming a reality."
The Florida Clean Vessel Act Grant Program is funded through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Sport Fish Restoration Clean Vessel Act Program. Funds made available through this program are used to reimburse marinas up to 75 percent of the cost associated with the purchase, installation, maintenance, repair and operation of boater pumpout systems. The Sport Fish Restoration Program is funded through federal fees that have been added to marine fuel and fishing tackle. These fees are collected on the federal level and then are distributed to states for a variety of sport fish restoration projects including improving boating access, fish habitat and population restoration and the Clean Vessel Act grant program.
Boaters can sign up for pumpout service by visiting http://www.po-keys.com/Free-Pumpout-Service-Registration.html.