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Algae crisis in Southwest Florida prompts visit by State and Federal officials

Posted: 4:20 PM, Aug 13, 2018
Updated: 2018-08-13 20:20:21Z

Washington, D.C. – Officials from the Environmental Protection Agency , Department of Interior , Army Corps of Engineers , and South Florida Water Management District confirmed that they will visit Southwest Florida in response to Congressman Rooney’s call for action.

On Tuesday, Congressman Rooney urged administrators of key federal agencies to visit the area - to assess damage from toxic algae, meet with area stakeholders, and provide recommendations on how their agencies may assist.

Congressman Rooney stated,

“I am encouraged that these federal agencies which have the ability to provide help for our ongoing toxic algae crisis have responded quickly to our request. Seeing the devastation in-person and having a dialogue with those directly affected is critical to understanding the urgency of providing resources to solve the immediate needs of our community.”

On August 15th, Congressman Rooney and agency officials plan to tour areas hardest hit by toxic algae blooms then travel to Fort Myers Beach for a working session with members of area chambers of commerce, fishing, real estate, tourism and hospitality industries. There will be a press conference on Fort Myers Beach following the tour. Times and specific locations will be available in the coming days.

The following individuals will be attending on behalf of their agencies:

  • Environmental Protection Agency - Region 4 Deputy Regional Administrator, Mary Walker
  • Department of Interior – Agency confirmed, attendee TBD
  • U.S. Army Corps of Engineers - District Commander Colonel Jason Kirk
  • South Florida Water Management District – Agency confirmed, attendee TBD