Daniel Parker, MSP, GAL
From: Julianne Renk Price, Environmental Specialist
Through: Cheryl L. Dunn, RS, Environmental Manager
Subject: October 2005 Wabasso PACE EH Grant Update
There comes a time in a mans life when to get to where he has to go-if there are no doors or windows-he walks through walls.- Bernard Malamud.
There was a specific event that was a milestone for the community of West Wabasso which occurred this month. The event entailed going before the County Commissioners to ask for funding to cover the cost of impact fees as they related to the West Wabasso Water Project. As in the past, good intentions turn into productive ideas; however, West Wabasso has not been privy to actually seeing the physical results get carried through to fruition.
The $825,000 state grant awarded to the Utilities department to run water lines through West Wabasso was thought to have included impact fees for the residents; however, we all recently learned this is not the case. The problem with the impact fees is that for this community, the median household income is $6,250 (2000 US Census figure). A $1,300 impact fee is a huge imposition to people who have below poverty level incomes. The project hit a brick wall of sorts and this time; all involved parties were dedicated to finding a solution so we could press on with the project.
After many suggestions that I believed to be unsatisfactory, Erik Olson, the Utilities Director, made a stand and suggested that the Commissioners foot the bill to cover all impact fees with the hope of getting partially reimbursed by grants for those willing and eligible to qualify for them. Now, all parties got involved in seeing this brilliant plan through. Two influential individuals went to some of the Commissioners before the agenda item was discussed, and let them know this NEEDED to be approved. I brought the brown jug of water from a resident's well to show the Commissioners and had the opportunity to place it in front of them so they could see the actual poor quality of water that many of these residents used. Erik Olson gave a brief presentation about the uniqueness of the community and the scope of the water project. Over thirty residents from West Wabasso were present to prove the importance of this project to the Commissioners. The end result was a 5-0 vote to approve allocation of funds to cover the impact fees!
There must be a beginning of any great matter, but the continuing unto the end until it be thoroughly finished yields true glory. Francis Drake
Past Indian River County Updates
The following files are provided in the Adobe Acrobat pdf format. Files over 100 kb in size that may take longer to download and view, have their file size listed.
December, 2005 - In My Opinion: West Wabasso Assessment Project Update (From the Florida Journal of Environmental Health)
October 10, 2005 - West Wabasso residents rejoice over water project
October 7, 2005 - West Wabasso to get county water
September 20, 2005 - Indian River County replaces septic tanks for 10 families in west Wabasso
July 8, 2005 - Indian River health officials receive national award
June, 2005 - Spring 2005 PACE Progress Report for the Wabasso Environmental Assessment (380 kb) (From the Florida Journal of Environmental Health)
June 17, 2005 - World Changers group fixes homes in West Wabasso
June 15, 2005 - Impoverished area to get waterlines
June 12, 2005 - World Changers redo Wabasso
May 1, 2005 - Water System on its way to Wabasso
December 25, 2004 - Woman's work aids west Wabasso residents
October 18, 2004 - Storms stall Wabasso help
September, 2004 - PACE Progress Report for the Wabasso Environmental Assessment (620 kb) (From the Florida Journal of Environmental Health)
September 28, 2004 - Storms run Wabasso family out of own, borrowed homes
August 28, 2004 - Families get new homes
August 11, 2004 - Draft Brochure, Bringing Basic Needs to a Forgotten Community (1.4 meg file)
July 30, 2004 - Kindness rules in Wabasso (109 kb)
July 28, 2004 - Teens team up to build man's house
June 2, 2004 - Indian River seeks aid for water
May 26, 2004 - Groups enlist residents to help revive Wabasso
May 11, 2004 - Wabasso may have to wait a year for street lights to come on
May 9, 2004 - Town hall meeting to address Wabasso's needs