"Miami-Dade County Reevaluating Future Water Plans"

"Miami-Dade County, faced with lean times and slower growth, is rethinking plans to build a large water-treatment plant in the south area of the county in hopes of finding a cheaper alternative to satisfy state regulators.

Earlier this week, the Miami-Dade County Commission, at the behest of County Manager George Burgess, abruptly withdrew plans to consider awarding a $49.7 million construction contract to John J. Kirlin LLC, the Fort Lauderdale firm that won a competitive bid to erect a 20-million-gallon-a-day water-treatment plant at 11800 SW 208th St.

The move comes just three months after Miami-Dade got approval from the South Florida Water Management District to defer or cancel several other projects the county had committed to build in order to meet its water-use permit requirements.

The county’s reassessment comes as Gov. Rick Scott’s new administration is signaling possible major changes in environmental regulation in the state. The state’s water management districts, including the South Florida Water Management District, which oversees water use, for instance, are facing drastic budget cuts under the governor’s proposal."

Martha Brannigan and Curtis Morgan report for the Miami Herald February 21, 2011.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011