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Canal Scene At Keaton Beach, Florida

 


DEPARTMENT OF
GRANTS ADMINISTRATION
Director:Melody Cox
850-838-3553

The Taylor County Grants Department oversees the research, preparation, submission and administration of County grants. This includes the local Transportation Disadvantaged Program. In addition to grants administration, the department prepares various reports, plans, and studies for the County which impact current or future funding. Steinhatchee is a designated Waterfronts Florida Community and the Grants Department also administers this program.

Key projects which were completed this past year which were grant funded included:

Steinhatchee Boat Ramp including paved parking and construction of a picnic pavilion. This project was funded with Florida Fish and Wildlife and Sportfish Restoration funds and a Coastal Partnership Initiative Grant.

 

Keaton Beach Coastal Park parking facility and picnic pavilion. It is important to note the facility was constructed to meet low impact development standards using permeable pavers. Eighteen (18) acres of “disturbed” wetlands at the site has been restored. The project was funded with three Florida Boating Improvement Program grants, a Coastal Partnership Initiative Grant, and a US Fish and Wildlife Services Grant.

 

Rehabilitation of Runway 18-36 the primary runway at Perry-Foley Airport, purchase of a Jet A Fuel system, the removal of trees obstructing runway approach zones, and installation of new security gates. These projects were funded 100% with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and FDOT Aviation grants. 


Current Priority Projects

Williams Fish Camp Landing (Mandalay):
The County has been awarded a grant from the Florida Boating Improvement Program (FBIP) in the amount of $178,411.00 for the construction of a two lane boat ramp at Mandalay. The project has a total cost of $237,882.00 with Taylor County providing a cash match of $44,471.00 and "in kind" of $15,000. The existing launch will be demolished. In addition to the construction of the boat ramp, the project includes docking and associated gang ways, handicap accessible parking and sidewalks, and boater safety signage. The boat ramp project will be completed by May 2015.


Forest Capital Hall:
The County has been awarded a grant from Florida Division of Cultural Affairs in the amount of $215,550.00 for the rehabilitation of Forest Capital Hall. The project has a total cost of $431,100.00 and Taylor County will be providing a match of $215,550.00 through tourism/bed tax funds. The project scope of work includes connection to city sewer, installation of a sprinkler system, renovation of restroom facilities, installation of new multi-use flooring in the auditorium, rehabilitation and expansion of the stage area, and installation of a handicap accessible lift to the stage.


The complete renovation of Forest Capital Hall will be completed in several phases as funding is available. The County will be submitting a grant to the Florida Department of Agriculture 2015 Educational Facilities Program in an effort to obtain additional funds for the rehabilitation project.

Perry Foley Airport Corporate Hangar Project:
The County received a grant from FDOT in the amount of $83,970.00 for the design and engineering of a corporate hangar to be located at Perry Foley Airport. The facility will be designed to easily accommodate a Fixed Based Operator (FBO). FDOT will have funding available after July 2014 for the actual construction of the facility.

In addition to the Corporate Hangar Project, the County will receive grant funds in the amount of $199,980.00 from FAA and FDOT to update the Airport Layout Plan and Master Plan. This project will be underway by fall 2014.

AVCON, Inc. is the airport consulting and engineering firm. Working with AVCON, FAA, and FDOT, the County has been able to secure 100% grant funding for the above indicated projects.  

Keaton Beach Coastal Park:
The development of the 45.2 acre Keaton Beach Coastal Park will be completed in a series of phases over a ten year period as funding comes available. The County acquired the site with grant funding awarded to the County by Florida Communities Trust in the amount of $3.2M.

The County has been awarded a grant in the amount of $50,000 from the FDEP Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). Though administered by Florida Department of Environmental Protection this is a federally funded grant. The grant will be used for one of several phases of the development of Keaton Beach Coastal Park. The scope of work includes the installation of a wetland wildlife observation deck and boardwalk, a children’s play area, ½ mile mulched walking trail, non-boater parking area, and habitat education signage. A U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service grant (USFWS) in the amount of $35,000 will also fund a portion of the observation deck and boardwalk. The USFWS grant also provides funding for the construction and installation of two bat houses.

Hodges Park at Keaton Beach:
The County anticipates receiving a Florida Recreational Development Assistance Program (FRDAP) grant in the amount of $50,000 to be used for improvements to Hodges Park. The project scope of work will include installation of a shade covering over the playground, improvements to the restrooms and shower area, repairs to the pier which will increase handicap accessibility, and rehabilitation of the beach. Beach improvements include replenishment of the sand and installation of Kalinich woven wood picket sand screen fencing. Habitat and coastal stewardship educational signage and additional security lighting will be installed. Current amenities at Hodges Park include the fishing pier, picnic facilities, shoreline pavilions, playground, restrooms, and parking.


Upcoming Projects:

The following projects will be completed over the next few years and grant funds have already been awarded for these projects.

Project 1: Keaton Beach Coastal Park

Funding source: FDOT Transportation Alternative Program
Amount: $250,000
Scope of work: Construction of restrooms with a water fountain, non-boater parking facility, and onsite trails.

Project 2: Keaton Beach Trail Project

Funding source: FDOT Transportation Alternative Program
Amount: $600,000
Scope of work: Construction of a 3.1 mile trail and associated boardwalks adjacent to County Road 361 from Keaton Beach to Dark Island.

Project 3: Green Street Sidewalk

Funding source: FDOT Transportation Alternative Program
Amount: $265,000
Scope of work: Construction of a 0.79 mile sidewalk from the intersection of Green Street and Arena to the intersection of Green Street and Howard Street. The new sidewalk will connect to the existing Howard Street Sidewalk to Taylor County Elementary School.

Project 4: Old Dixie Highway Sidewalk

Funding source: FDOT Transportation Alternative Program
Amount: $328,000
Scope of work: Construction of a 1.5 mile sidewalk from the intersection of Jefferson Street and Old Dixie Highway to the intersection of Old Dixie Highway and Plantation Road. Southside Park is located adjacent to Old Dixie and Plantation Road.