Every year the City of Punta Gorda shares its priorities for the state budget with the Charlotte County Legislative Delegation. The Boca Grande area of the City of Punta Gorda has been a top priority for the city for a number of years. Fortunately, this year the project emerged as a priority that was supported statewide and by Governor Ron DeSantis as well.

The City of Punta Gorda, with the assistance of the lobbying firm, Capitol Access, has secured a $1 million appropriation for the Boca Grande Boulevard area water quality improvement project. The city offers a sincere thank you to Governor DeSantis, State Rep. Michael Grant, State Sen. Ben Albritton and State Sen. Joe Gruters for their support and work on this important initiative. The project also has substantial local support through the 1% sales tax program.

The project will increase community resiliency and provide necessary flood control and water quality treatment of stormwater runoff from the city’s Boca Grande neighborhood. The area experiences significant flooding and the current drainage conveyance does not provide a formal measure of water quality treatment. The drainage from this area ultimately outfalls to Charlotte Harbor. The harbor and surrounding coastal areas will benefit from the project’s treatment of impairments. Design and property acquisition are almost complete and construction is anticipated to start in fiscal year 2022.

While the statewide budgeting process is complete for this fiscal year, the City of Punta Gorda budget process continues at the next City Council meeting. On June 16 at 9 a.m. at the Historic City Hall City Council will consider the five year capital improvement project proforma including the General Construction Fund, 1% Sales Tax Fund, and unfunded construction projects. They will also review the Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 Burnt Store Isles (BSI) Canal Maintenance Assessment District Budget status and discuss the item. The FY 2022 Punta Gorda Isles (PGI) Canal Maintenance Assessment District Budget status and discussion will also take place at this meeting.

Resident engagement is critical to the success of our small city. The City Council meetings have a dedicated time on the agenda for public comment and no longer reading comments received via email into the record. The City Council designates a public comment time to receive in-person comment from members of the public on agenda items and other items of interest. Anyone wishing to address the council on any item may do so at this time during the meeting. Those who choose to speak must state their name for the record. Each person will be allowed to speak once on each subject up to a maximum of three minutes.

We welcome all residents to attend the City Council and other committee meetings to have their voices heard in the decision making processes for Florida’s Harborside Hometown.

Readers may reach City Manager Greg Murray at citymgr@cityofpuntagordafl.com or by calling 941-575-3302.

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