Sprinkle list: Last-minute earmark adds $10M more for Indiantown water treatment plant

Indiantown, Florida_-_panoramio
The village plans to build a 2-million-gallons-per-day reverse osmosis facility.

The small, rural village of Indiantown will receive $22.5 million in the coming budget to upgrade its failing water treatment and distribution center, thanks to a last-minute earmark from Florida lawmakers.

It was already on track to receive $12.5 million through the state’s General Appropriations Act (HB 5001) for Fiscal Year 2024-25. Then the House’s “sprinkle list” poured in an extra $10 million in nonrecurring funds.

That put state funding for the project at just $2.5 million shy of what Republican Sen. Gayle Harrell and Rep. John Snyder of Stuart sought this Session in matching appropriations requests.

Indiantown, an economically disadvantaged Martin County municipality of fewer than 7,000 residents, plans to add $280,000 in local funds to cover 1.1% of the project’s cost.

And the project is needed, as indicated by local businesses that offer private treatment and purification systems for homes and businesses and note how Indiantown’s Anastasia Aquifer-sourced groundwater “can give water a bad odor and taste” and noticeable hardness if not treated.

“This project will consist of the construction of a new 2-million-gallons-per-day reverse osmosis water treatment plant to serve the expansion and development occurring within the utility service area of (Indiantown),” the appropriations requests said. “This is the Village’s top priority project.”

Part of the project will involve building a deep injection well at the existing wastewater treatment plant that is already undergoing improvements. The well, which will be needed to dispose of the reverse osmosis plant’s waste stream, can also be used for normal wastewater treatment disposal.

Indiantown plans to gauge the impact of the project, targeted for a December 2027 completion, by monitoring a “decrease in boil water notices once the residents have a safe and reliable water source,” the appropriations request said.

“Additionally, water clarity and quality will be easily measured at the plant and within the distribution system,” the request said.

The House and Senate have released their respective “sprinkle lists” for the coming budget, and they combined for a healthy sum: $650 million that lawmakers can say they delivered last-minute for local projects.

A sprinkle list, as its name suggests, is an assortment of supplemental funding initiatives the Legislature compiles as budgeting processes near closing to provide typically small apportionments (compared to other earmarks) to regional projects.

As was the case in years prior, the preponderance of sprinkle set-asides this year can be separated into education, infrastructure and a third pot of miscellaneous items.

The sprinkle lists’ release signals that budget negotiations are wrapping and the Legislature is likely to end Session on schedule Friday.

Jesse Scheckner

Jesse Scheckner has covered South Florida with a focus on Miami-Dade County since 2012. His work has been recognized by the Hearst Foundation, Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Society of News Editors, Florida MMA Awards and Miami New Times. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @JesseScheckner.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn