Governor Rick Scott announced that the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is providing an additional $3 million in grant funding to assist local communities impacted by red tide, bringing the total amount of grant funding to $9 million. With this funding, DEP has already committed $1 million to Sarasota County and more than $1 million to Lee County. Earlier this month, Governor Scott issued Executive Order 18-221 declaring a state of emergency due to impacts of red tide. Red tide is a naturally occurring algae that has been documented along Florida’s Gulf Coast since the 1840’s and occurs nearly every year.
Governor Scott said, “We are using every resource available to support our communities impacted by red tide. This $9 million in grant funding that DEP is providing to Southwest Florida counties will help get businesses and families back to work as they continue to recover from this year’s red tide.”
This funding is part of the grant program that was launched in July by DEP, which has provided a total of $9 million in funding, including $3 for counties impacted by blue-green algae and $6 million for counties impacted by red tide. In total, DEP is providing funding to support efforts in the following counties:
- $750,000 for Manatee County,
- More than $190,000 for Collier County,
- $1.1 million for Sarasota County,
- A total of $3.17 million for Lee County, and
- $700,000 for Martin County.