Public Works and Enterprise Programs
In FY99, $5.6 million for transportation improvement projects are funded from Local Option Gas Taxes.
Projects funded in the FY99 program are:
Transportation Impact Fee
Ordinance No. 9362A, passed in 1986, imposes an impact fee on land development in the City. Revenues generated are used to provide for roads and related facilities necessitated by new development.
Projects funded in FY99 are:
Tampa-Ybor Historic Streetcar
Planning is well underway for commencing operations by mid-year to late 2000 for the Tampa-Ybor Historic Streetcar. The first phase will be 2.3 miles and will run between Ybor City (start at 8th Avenue and 20th Street) and the Tampa Convention Center with ten stops in between. Stops will include the Florida Aquarium and the Ice Palace. In the beginning, there will be four streetcars running daily and the system will be operated by a "not-for-profit" corporation. It is anticipated that the cars will be ordered in the Fall of 1999. Two additional cars will be added in the second and third years of operation bringing the total to eight. The current estimated capital costs for design, construction, and inspection services are approximately $24 million with funding coming from a variety of sources. These sources include City Gas Taxes, HART grants, State and Federal Funds, endowments, and special assessments. Initial funding will be advanced by the City through a bond issue.
Stormwater management continues to be a high priority service. A Stormwater capital improvement program of $3.9 million is planned for FY99.
The priorities for stormwater projects are to alleviate the flooding of: structures, land and private property, streets and rights-of-way.
Utility Tax Fund projects included in the FY99 budget are:
El Nino Recovery
The Department of Sanitary Sewers and Stormwater Division are scheduled to complete repair of a substantial backlog of cave-ins. The El Nio weather system created a large number of sanitary sewer pipeline cave-ins. Barricaded cave-ins have resulted in hazards for traffic and pedestrians, as well as health hazards associated with unauthorized access to cave-ins by children. Funding for emergency cave-in repairs has been authorized at $1.2 million.
Community Investment Tax Fund
The Community Investment Tax, approved by the voters on September 3, 1996, provides for a one-half cent increase to the Sales Tax. In FY99, revenues from the tax are projected to be $8.5 million of which $5.4 million will be allocated to Capital Improvement projects. The remaining $3.1 million will go toward the purchase of vehicles and equipment.
The capital improvement project funds will be used for:
Utility Tax Construction Bond
In FY96, the City realized $23.6 million from refinancing Utility Tax Convention Center Bonds. The proceeds included almost $16.0 million for public safety Capital Improvement projects. Bond expenditures planned for FY99 include:
In FY99, the Parking Department will continue to operate and maintain facilities in the Central Business District and outlying areas.
The Parking Department will hire three additional security guards in FY99, augmenting an existing security force of 23 guards. Safety of parking patrons is a high priority for the division.
In FY99, we will commence a plan to completely re-landscape all of the parking lots underneath the Crosstown Expressway. The first phase of this program will start between Ashley Drive and Florida Avenue.
During FY98, $30.4 million in Utility Tax Improvement Bonds were issued for acquisition of property and associated costs of the following projects during FY99 and FY2000:
Downtown Site Acquisition - $3,000,000
Downtown lots will be selected and purchased to provide additional surface parking in areas of the City experiencing substantial growth. As development takes place, these lots may be converted into long-term structural garages in order to handle the subsequent increase in parking.
City-wide Acquisition of Replacement Facilities - $2,200,000
This project provides for the acquisition of property and associated costs.
South Howard Surface Lot Construction - $1,500,000
Approximately 300 new parking spaces will be created throughout the district in order to provide parking for patrons of area restaurants and shops. Construction is anticipated to be completed in the later half of FY99.
City Hall Parking Lot - $260,000
A new surface parking lot will be built on the block east of City Hall. The lot will have approximately 120 spaces and will be completed in early FY99.
Fortune Street Parking Lot - $230,000
A new surface parking lot for monthly parking is planned on a City-owned block on the corner of Fortune and Marion Streets. This project is on hold pending a possible swap of properties with Hartline.
Centro Ybor Parking Garage Construction - $11,000,000
Construction of a 1,200-space parking garage in Ybor City in FY99 will help with the development in the Historic District. The garage is scheduled to open by December, 1999.
TPD Headquarters Parking Garage - $2,400,000
Construction of a parking garage for municipal vehicles will take place on the corner of Florida Avenue and Kennedy Boulevard. The garage will have approximately 300 spaces and is scheduled to open in late 1999.
Fort Brooke Garage Expansion - $8,300,000
Expansion of the Fort Brooke Parking Garage, adding three floors, will commence in FY99. The addition will add 900 spaces to the 1,200-space facility. Construction will take approximately 12 months.
Lowry Park Parking Lot - $1,500,000
Creation of this new parking lot and entry features will result in a new main vehicle access to the zoo from Sligh Avenue. This project is expected to be completed in the year 2000.
Total Bond Projects - $ 30,390,000
Improvement projects are funded in FY99 for the following locations:
Average Monthly Residential Utility Bill
The current monthly bill for an average home user is $57.20 and will not change for FY99. There is no residential rate increase proposed for either Water, Sewer or Solid Waste. This once again allows us to maintain utility rates lower than many local jurisdictions.
The Sanitary Sewer Department's goal is to provide complete and cost effective service and to respond in a timely manner to expanding service requirements. Department personnel collect, treat and dispose of 60 million gallons per day (MGD) of raw sewage from over 100,000 customers in Tampa and its immediate suburbs. Sanitary treatment of wastewater requires the careful removal of pollutants and pathogens from wastewater in a manner consistent with Federal, State and local regulations so that the end product can be returned to the environment for natural recycling.
FY98 is the first year that the expanded Howard F. Curren Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant (AWTP) achieved a daily effluent processing capacity of 96 million gallons per day.
Water Resource Recovery Project
This project would provide treated effluent to be pumped into the Tampa By-Pass Canal to supplement water sources for the growing needs of the region while providing a net environmental benefit. In 1993, the City of Tampa completed a pilot study that investigated the economic and technical feasibility of providing supplemental treatment of effluent from the Howard F. Curren AWTP to produce a water at least as good as the City of Tampa's current Hillsborough River raw water source. The study determined the treatment to be technically feasible.
An implementation study, funded in conjunction with the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Southwest Florida Water Management District and the West Coast Regional Water Supply Authority (WCRWSA) was recently completed. The results of the study will be presented to the governing board of the WCRWSA in the first quarter of 1999. The board will decide whether the project will be implemented or another alternative water source being explored in the region will be developed. If this project is chosen, construction would begin in FY2000.
The first phase of a consultant study to examine staffing levels and increase efficiency in the Sanitary Sewer Department was recently completed. A plan of action will be developed during the fourth quarter of FY98 and implementation is projected to begin in FY99.
Operating revenue projects funded in FY99 are:
Tampa continues to be a local and national leader in water treatment and water conservation techniques. Tampa Water Department (TWD) serves approximately 440,000 people through more than 121,000 connections. Twenty-two percent of TWD customers are located in unincorporated Hillsborough County. Two water treatment plants, Hillsborough River (HRWTP) and Morris Bridge (MBWTP) produce water, which consistently exceeds federal and state water quality requirements. Since beginning an aggressive water conservation program in 1989, water pumpage has been reduced to an average of 66 million gallons per day (MGD). Non-revenue producing water remains below industry average and is considered outstanding for a system with more than 2,100 miles of water mains ranging in age from new pipe to pipe more than 100 years old.
The "Water Quality 2000" (WQ2000) program initiated in FY96, continues to move forward through a series of improvement programs to ensure exceptional water quality at reasonable costs well into the 21st century. The first program component is the development of a Water Quality Master Plan, (WQMP). This component addressed several short-term issues including existing water quality, existing process optimization, current and anticipated water quality regulations, applicable treatment process alternatives and anticipated treatment capacity requirements. The WQMP also included the construction and operation of several innovative pilot treatment plant facilities to perform actual treatment alternative testing on site.
The second key component of WQ2000 is Tampa's commitment to the "Partnership for Safe Water", a voluntary program involving more than 300 water utilities nationwide, proactively optimizing water treatment processes to provide increased protection against disease-causing organisms in the public drinking water supply. In May 1997, TWD was one of only three utilities nationally awarded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's "Director's Certificate of Recognition" for successfully completing the first three phases of this innovative water quality improvement program. The WQMP also included an evaluation of several short-term construction improvements designed to enhance the performance and reliability of the current treatment processes directly related to surpassing the goals of the Partnership program.
The third component of the WQ2000 program, also begun in FY96, included a competitive assessment of the Production Division by a panel of experts familiar with public and private sector operation and maintenance of water production facilities. The panel recommended significant investments in upgrades of plant automation and replacement of maintenance-intensive equipment. Implementation of the overall recommendations will result in significant cost savings in chemical feed efficiencies and a 27% staff reduction.
The fourth component of WQ2000 will focus on the design and construction of the HRWTP expansion and recommended treatment process improvements. The pilot plant studies conducted under the WQMP should be completed in FY99, permitting selection of the long-term treatment improvement plan. It is anticipated that the existing treatment process will need to be modified to meet anticipated regulations and Tampa's water quality goals.
Funding for Phase I (the first of two phases) of WQ2000 is anticipated through a Drinking Water State Revolving Loan agreement with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection for $12.3 million over the next two fiscal years.
The Distribution Division maintains more than 2,100 miles of water mains ranging in size from 2 to 54 inches in diameter and over 10,000 fire hydrants in a 211 square mile area.
New transmission mains for the northeast portion of the service area and work on 30th Street near the University of South Florida and the medical facilities were completed in FY98 to provide better pressure in the area. Construction on a transmission main along Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, to provide additional capacity to serve new development in the Northeast portion of the service area, was also completed in FY98.
In FY99, construction of a 30-inch transmission main from Busch Boulevard to 22nd Street to Fowler Avenue and 30th Street is planned to improve water service to the Morris Bridge area.
Consumer Affairs Program
The Customer Service Section of the Consumer Affairs Division has created a series of educational pamphlets to increase customer awareness about TWD services and is updating the HRWTP brochure. In conjunction with the Distribution and Engineering Divisions, the Customer Service Section implemented improved notification and communication procedures with the public regarding upcoming capital improvement projects. The "Triage" process was implemented in FY98 to further improve our customer service contract and to expedite correcting any problems occurring in the system.
The conservation section continues to implement award-winning programs. The Lowry Park Zoo Retrofit and Conservation Signage Project, the Water Wonders Program and the Conservation Theatrical Performance won state-wide awards for water conservation education from the Florida Section of the American Water Works Association in FY97.
Toilet rebate and replacement projects targeted lower income residents, single family, multi-family and commercial customers in FY97 and FY98. In FY99, approximately 4,000 residential and commercial rebates will be offered. The TWD will continue to expand the focus of the Water Conservation Program to include water use evaluation and recommendations for more efficient water use for our significant users in the industrial, commercial and institutional classes.
The City of Tampa is a party to the governance process, which converts the West Coast Regional Water Supply Authority to a regional wholesale water supply utility. The City will sell the Morris Bridge Wellfield to the new utility and will retain its Hillsborough River surface water supply. Tampa will purchase some water from the new utility and will use the interest proceeds from investments from the sale of the Morris Bridge Wellfield to help offset the cost of water purchases.
Hillsborough River Dam
Renovation work on the Hillsborough River Dam will be initiated in the latter part of FY98 to replace four steel crest gates that were installed in the 1940Ős and to perform remedial seepage elimination and soil stabilization. The new gates will enable the dam to function at top efficiency for another 50 years. The costs of the renovations are $2.8 million and are expected to be completed by March, 1999.
Refunding the 1998A and 1998B Water/Sewer Bonds resulted in savings of $4 million. A portion of these savings are being used to pay for the Dam repairs.
The Water Department's FY99 Capital Improvement Program equals $6.7 million. These funds have been identified for:
The Solid Waste Department operates an integrated solid waste management system (waste reduction, recycling, waste-to-energy, landfill) to provide efficient and environmentally safe collection and disposal service. Solid Waste personnel continue to concentrate on environmentally critical programs such as illegal dumping, recycling and retrofitting the McKay Bay Refuse-to-Energy Plant.
Residents in the City of Tampa continue to recycle at a high rate. In FY99 the focus continues on encouraging more businesses to recycle. The department continues to collect glass, office paper and cardboard on a small scale from businesses at no charge. This service has been very well received.
Hillsborough County, which includes the City of Tampa, has a state mandated county-wide recycling goal of 30%. This was met and exceeded several years ago. The current recycling rate is 36%.
Drop Off Recycling Program - The City has 24 sites where residents may drop off recyclables. This is one of the highest volume drop-off programs in Florida. Over 300 tons of glass, aluminum, milk cartons, newspapers, drink boxes and cardboard are collected each month. Drop-off sites are located at City parks, supermarkets, churches, fire stations and area businesses.
Curbside Recycling - This includes both yard waste collection and blue box collection of glass, aluminum and newspaper. Both services are provided in various neighborhoods throughout the City and have excellent participation. Yard waste collection is provided by City crews and processed by a contractor.
The Art of Recycling Contest - This was the sixth year of the art contest for high school and college students. More than 150 entries were received again this year. The art is displayed for six weeks at the Tampa Museum of Art in April and May.
Christmas Tree Recycling - Sites were again available throughout the County, with three sites in the City to collect discarded Christmas trees. The Parks Department uses the mulch for landscaping. FY99 will be the tenth year of the program. County-wide, over 70,000 trees were collected in FY98.
The City, in conjunction with Hillsborough, Pinellas and Sarasota counties, is focusing an educational campaign on waste reduction, a home composting program and buying recycling products. The City held two home composting workshops at the Port of Tampa Recreation Center in February and June.
The Recycling Division, in conjunction with the Mayor's Beautification Program, has two Americorps Volunteers in Service to America members working for one-year commitments. Their focus is to educate and involve low-income residents in recycling and composting programs. One works with children in recreation centers in low-income neighborhoods and uses recycled materials to make tables and chairs. The other volunteer is developing a recycled office furniture project. We will also participate in a large event to be held at the Florida Aquarium for America Recycles Day, November 15.
Commercial Compactor and Roll-off Service
The Solid Waste Department started commercial compactor and roll-off service in FY97. Commercial compactors are a very efficient and effective means for collecting large quantities of commercial refuse. Estimated revenue of $860,000 is expected in FY99.
McKay Bay Refuse-to-Energy
The McKay Bay Refuse-to-Energy (RTE) Complex consists of a scalehouse, transfer station and RTE facility. The scalehouse weighs all incoming and outgoing waste; the two scales were replaced in FY 97. The transfer station is used to sort waste into various categories for further processing. About 88% of the incoming waste goes directly to the RTE facility, 3% to landfill and 9% is recycled.
In 1989, the Federal Government passed major revisions to the Clean Air Act. In 1995, the Environmental Protection Agency released the new emissions standards with a five-year compliance deadline. The new standards require state of the art combustion control in the furnace and air pollution control equipment in the back half of the facility. This requires a complete retrofit of the current facility in order to meet the new standards and ensure that the facility will function effectively for 20 years after retrofit.
The capital cost, estimated in excess of $80 million, will be financed by new revenue bonds. The construction is scheduled to begin in mid-1999 with the facility in compliance in the year 2000 when two of the four lines are to be completed. The second two lines are scheduled to be completed in the year 2001.
Also being reviewed for FY99 is the construction of a new Solid Waste Administration Building for $1.2 million. The new building will be located at the site of the current facility on Spruce Street and will house all administrative personnel as well as the Environmental Coordination and Recycling Departments. In addition, the building will also accommodate part of the Utility Accounting Department. Financing for the new building will come from the sale of revenue bonds.