CEDAR KEY, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis announced more than $6 million in awards to Hurricane Idalia-impacted communities through the Rural Infrastructure Fund (RIF) program and the Florida Disaster Fund. $5.3 million in RIF awards have been awarded to help nine communities impacted by Hurricane Idalia by strengthening public infrastructure and expanding job opportunities for employers and families in rural communities. Additionally, $1 million is awarded through the Florida Disaster Fund to expedite the Hurricane Idalia home repair program through FloridaCommerce.


“Hurricane Idalia packed a punch in the Big Bend region, and we are providing these communities resources for recovery and long-term economic growth,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “Today’s awards add to the more than $24 million awarded this year through the Rural Infrastructure Program to drive economic development and strengthen local infrastructure.”


“The Big Bend region experienced devasting damage due to Hurricane Idalia and FloridaCommerce continues to ensure that communities have the help they need through resources like the RIF Program,” said Florida Secretary of Commerce J. Alex Kelly. “By setting aside funds for impacted communities, we are committed to staying proactive and ensuring that communities can continue growing as they recoup what was lost.”


“I am proud that the Volunteer Florida Foundation and the Florida Disaster Fund can deploy this award and help impacted Floridians return to their homes after Hurricane Idalia,” said Volunteer Florida CEO Josie Tamayo.


Today’s RIF awards are a result of swift action in a November 2023 Special Session of the Florida Legislature to address urgent issues facing the state due to Hurricane Idalia.


In coordination with disaster recovery partners, the $1 million Florida Disaster Fund award will accelerate the recovery process for Floridians who lost their homes or experienced extensive damage from Hurricane Idalia. The funding will be prioritized to support low-to-moderate income homeowners who no longer carry insurance in the hardest hit counties to assist them in returning to decent, safe, and sanitary homes.


The following Hurricane Idalia-impacted communities will receive awards through the RIF program:

  • Cedar Key Water & Sewer District ($2,500,000) – to rehabilitate 17 lift stations, including raising control panels above storm surge levels to safeguard essential water and sewer services for the community and local industries.
  • City of Live Oak ($601,000) – to design and install a gravity sewer collection system and water services along the 68th Terrace corridor to support current and future commercial developments, including an immediate commercial development.
  • Lafayette County ($400,000) – to construct a 3,000 square foot commercial building in the Industrial Park in Lafayette County.
  • Town of Cross City ($337,721) – to evaluate three potable wells, including addressing declining water quality and developing recommendations for repair or improvements.
  • Taylor County ($304,500) – to construct new concrete infrastructure and install a 15,000-gallon aviation fuel tank system at the Perry-Foley Airport.
  • City of Monticello ($300,000) – to complete planning, design, and permitting for Phase 1 of Monticello’s I-10 & SR-19 Sewer Transmission System Improvements, focusing on rehabilitating or replacing two critical lift stations.
  • City of Perry ($300,000) – to conduct a study on stormwater management throughout the city to address stormwater at the Gram’s Legacy Grove Site and provide preliminary engineering for water, wastewater, and natural gas.
  • City of Jasper ($300,000) – to conduct a comprehensive Sanitary Sewer Evaluation Survey to systematically investigate, televise and map the entire sewer collection system, including gravity sewers and lift stations.
  • Town of Lee ($290,000) – to analyze and develop design plans to improve the existing water and sanitary sewer systems serving the CR255 corridor and the developing Madison County Industrial Park.To learn more about the RIF program, click here.



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