Monroe County just announced it has been awarded a $49.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to remove Hurricane Irma debris from 103 of the most impacted canals in unincorporated Monroe County, the City of Marathon and the Village of Islamorada.
The grant will be presented in at the BOCC’s meeting in July, and cleanup work is expected to begin in August with $35.2 million going to unincorporated Monroe County, $7.5 million for Marathon and $6.5 million for Islamorada.
USDA-NRCS is also providing $37.8 million in reimbursements, with a local match (non-federal funding) of $11.4 million. This $11.4 million is split between the County, Marathon and Islamorada based on construction projections. Monroe County expects to use Florida Keys Stewardship Act funding to cover some of the local match. Eight of these canals are in the Upper Keys, 23 in the Middle Keys and 72 in the Lower Keys.
The grant, which is part of USDA-NRCS’s Emergency Watershed Protection Program, is for canal clearing as a result of Irma and will be presented to the BOCC’s July meeting for approval.